VIDEO: Maine Legalization Bill Press Conference

State Representative Diane Russell of Maine held a press conference on 4/20/2011 to discuss her comprehensive marijuana legalization bill. LD 1453 would tax and regulate recreational marijuana, expand the state’s existing medical cannabis program and allow for the farming of industrial hemp. A public hearing on the bill is scheduled for May 10th.

The videos below showcase the event.

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VIDEO: Marijuana Press Conference in NYC

Doug Greene and Chris Goldstein – photo by Jim Bissell

Douglas Greene at Empire State NORML organized the press conference and it was a privilege for me to speak alongside some powerhouses of reform. Our job was to take an important message to the streets: Smoking marijuana is much safer than drinking alcohol for St Patrick’s Day.

The public gave us us a tremendously positive response. Scores of passersby gathered on both sides of Broadway listening to the speeches.

Read more about the event: Big Apple Goes Green with Most Expensive Pot in America

We’ll post a higher definition version next week.

VIDEO: Scotts Miracle-Gro Looks for Marijuana Profits

This is one of the more astounding stories of a mainstream business looking to turn some profit on the marijuana cultivation communities. The CEO of Scotts/Miracle-Gro told the Wall Street Journal this week that America’s greenest business has their eye. Rather than creating new products within their existing retail line, the company may buy up small independents already catering to cannabis growers.

Aaron Houston, the executive director of Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP) is featured in this CNBC program today. Prepare for a whole lot of pot puns.

Chris Goldstein is a respected marijuana reform advocate. As a writer and radio broadcaster he has been covering cannabis news for over a decade. Questions?  [email protected]

Weed Makes You Crazy…Again

The reefer madness saga continues as one man blames two pot cookies for his recent meltdown.

Thirty-two-year-old artist Kinman Chan apologized during his guilty plea last Tuesday to interfering with the flight crew on board a US Airways flight from Philadelphia to San Francisco in January 2010. He was fined and sentenced to probation.

Apparently, the cookies he ingested before boarding made him pull his pants down and flip out on a flight. (I must confess, pot cookies may have caused me to pull my pants down in the past, but not on a flight luckily. A flight of fancy perhaps.)

How many more people will pull down their pants and blame it on a pot cookie? I just might…today.

PITTSBURGH – A San Francisco man claims he was high on a double dose of medical marijuana cookies when he screamed, dropped his pants and attacked crew members on a cross-country flight, forcing its diversion to Pittsburgh, the FBI said Wednesday.

Kinman Chan, 30, was charged in a criminal complaint with interfering with the duties of a flight attendant on allegations that he fought with crew members of US Airways Flight 1447 from Philadelphia to Los Angeles on Sunday. His federal public defender, Jay Finkelstein, declined to comment.

Crew members said Chan made odd gestures before he entered the plane’s rear restroom shortly after takeoff and began to scream, according to the complaint.

Chan told the FBI that he “came back to reality” and exited the restroom, at which point the crew noticed his “pants were down, his shirt was untucked and all the compartments in the restroom were opened.”

When crew members tried to get Chan to sit, he fought them and had to be subdued in a choke hold, the complaint said.

Chan told agents who interviewed him in Pittsburgh that he ate marijuana cookies while waiting for his flight to depart in Philadelphia.

“Chan advised he has a medical marijuana card and he took double his normal dose,” the complaint said.

Margaret Philbin, a spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney’s office in Pittsburgh, said Chan has a legally issued medical marijuana card for a “legitimate” health issue, which she declined to identify.

The flight was diverted to Pittsburgh International Airport, where Chan was arrested, then jailed until a federal magistrate granted him bond Tuesday, Philbin said.

Source: Huffington Post

Beth Mann is a popular blogger and writer for Open Salon and Salon. She is also an accomplished actor and director with over 15 years of experience, as well as the president of Hot Buttered Media. She currently resides at the Jersey shore where she can often be seen surfing or singing karaoke at a local dive bar.

Contact: maryjane {at }

Sage Burning Bird Watcher Falsely Arrested

Birdwatcher and troublemaker Robin Brown of Hollywood, Florida, was arrested after Broward County Sheriffs found her in possession…of sage, which they suspected was marijuana. And get this: the field kit that the police used tested positive for narcotics. Now she is suing over the wrongful arrest.

So much for sage clearing away negative energy.

Sage Stick

Non Sage Stick


The Top Ten Biggest Buzz Kills

Just because you’re buzzed doesn’t mean life stops being annoying. In a perfect world, we’d beam ourselves to a hassle-free planet and ride unicorns and eat marshmallow pies all day.

Until then, we must deal with these 10 buzz kills:

1. Cops

The uniform, the car, the militaristic attitude…goodbye buzz, hello “Can you step out of the vehicle?” (If you’re lucky, it’s a stripper cop and it’s all a great big joke with a sexy ending.)

2. Losing Stuff

My friend Lisa had a rule of thumb: get everything ready before you get stoned. Everything. If you wait until after, you will search endlessly for your keys, phone or general purpose in life. And never find it…never find it.

3. Frigid Temperatures

When I was a flannel-wearing teen lass, I used to hang out at an arcade in South Jersey. Our long-haired gang would pop into the woods on an icy winter’s night to light up. We’d all wonder why we didn’t feel high…until we went back into the arcade and our high would thaw out, just like magic! Head magic.

4. The Rambler

Nothing can be more deadly to a perfectly good high than the Rambler, who starts a story with no intentions of ending it. And because you’re high, you can’t muster up the energy to interject. So instead, you get sucked in, deeper and deeper. Soon your buzz has been bored right the hell out of you, never to return. (The Lecturer has a similar effect.)

5. Your Mother

Okay, some of you get high with your mom and she’s so cool and blah, blah, blah. But parents are similar to cops; you feel like you’ve done something wrong by merely being in their presence. They’re judging, watching all the time. And don’t you forget it.

6.  A Blow to the Head

Once during a party I got hit on the head by a lamp while pulling my coat out of the closet. Boom – high completely gone. Fucking lamp.

7. Monsters

They’re fun in the movies but when they are in your living room, they are unpredictable, angry and messy (because of the green goo). They also will eat your weed and projectile vomit it back up, which isn’t pleasant and a waste of perfectly good weed.

8. Dental Work

I thought it would be a good idea to smoke a little prior to some extensive dental work I had years back. Unfortunately, it just heightened the torturous sensations. Pretty soon, I thought the dentist had it out for me like Olivier in Marathon Man. My buzz was literally drilled out of my head.

9. Existential Angst

There is no god. You are all alone. The people are laughing at you and you look ridiculous. The world feels dry, chalky and desolate and you’re the only scrap of humanity left. The best you can do is listen to some Pink Floyd and embrace the painful truth. Cheetos may help but I make no guarantees.

10. Alien Abduction

I know, it depend on the alien, of course. Some aliens are totally down for a good time but others are into naval probing and mind melding. I find the smaller, ET-style aliens are much more easy going than the ones with the two rows of teeth.

So watch out for buzz kills. Life is short and highs aren’t cheap. Remember: you can always just walk away…even from the cops. Especially from the cops. Go do your own thing. Create your own world. Screw everyone else. Marshmallow pies await you, my friend.

Beth Mann is a popular blogger and writer for Open Salon and Salon. She is also an accomplished artist with over 15 years of experience, as well as the president of Hot Buttered Media. She currently resides at the Jersey shore where she can be found surfing or singing karaoke at a local dive bar.

Contact: maryjane {at }

Science Editor Jahan Marcu

Jahan Marcu is currently investigating the pharmacology of cannabinoid receptors. He was working at the California Pacific Medical Center Research Institute when exciting discoveries were made showing enhanced anti-cancer effects with THC and CBD from the Cannabis plant. The findings were published in the Journal of Molecular Cancer Therapeutics. In 2009 he received the Billy Martin Award from the International Cannabinoid Research Society (ICRS). Jahan is currently the vice-chair the Medical and Scientific Advisory Board at Americans for Safe Access (ASA).  He enjoys nuclear magnetic resonance and The Original Ghostbusters.

Contact:  science { at }

Other blogs

The Philadelphia Medical Marijuana Examiner

The War on Drugs Is Not a Slogan

President Reagan meets Jonathan Magbie. At 27 years old, Jonathan would die on the floor of a Washington DC city jail. In 2004 he was arrested for smoking a marijuana blunt to ease the pain he endured as a quadriplegic. photo

6/17/2011 by Chris Goldstein – When President Nixon signed an Executive Order on June 17, 1971 it sent the United States down a costly path of prohibition. This misguided effort pits Americans against each other in a never-ending battle of biology, psychology and human nature. The result has been a nuclear reactor of violence and deadly addiction.

The “War on Drugs” is not a slogan. Ask any Police Officer. Ask anyone who lives in Trenton, Philadelphia or Camden. This is a pitched battle right in our streets and in our homes.  Thousands have lost their lives. Millions have gone to prison. Trillions of tax dollars have been spent at every level. There has never been a measurable result, only more victims.

I have seen many levels of this war in person. In high school my Quaker group helped tutor middle-school students in Camden. Spending time in the neighborhoods over the years brought the open air drug trade into quick focus. Then in the late 1990′s I was employed on a contract to test various housing projects in Philadelphia for lead paint. Armed with a computer pack and an x-ray gun we walked through thousands of occupied units in high rises and row homes. This is the no man’s land, communities that have been obliterated by the constant shelling.

For the last decade I have been working on marijuana law reform because it is the key to solving the drug war problem. Cannabis chalks up more arrests every year in the US than for all other drugs combined. The irony is that it was not supposed to be included under criminal prohibitions at all.

When President Nixon made that devastating order in 1971 marijuana was classified with drugs like cocaine as a temporary measure.  Nixon tapped a fellow Republican who had just stepped down as Pennsylvania governor to find out how cannabis should be treated. Raymond P. Shafer led The National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse.

This team of sociologists, psychologists, physicians, lawmakers and policy experts toured the country to conduct careful research and observations. Shafer then led the effort to craft the strikingly candid final report: “Marihuana: A Signal of Misunderstanding.” The conclusion was that cannabis should not remain in the narcotic drugs scheme. The Commission went further, recommending that personal possession of cannabis – even transfer for no remuneration – should be decriminalized.

If President Nixon had followed that careful advice we would have never fought a war against marijuana. Instead we would have eventually regulated the cannabis markets for recreation and medication. Hemp farming would be a valuable part of our agricultural economy and sustainable products. But Nixon was not pleased with the Commissions’ assessments and chose to leave them out of policy.

The “War on Drugs” is not a slogan. It is fought with laws, bullets, money, prison cells and human beings. It is fought in front of us every day. And it can stop. A real truce is to begin treating serious drug addiction as a public health problem. In order to pay for that treatment and research we need to legalize marijuana.

But this also brings up the bigger picture: Ending marijuana prohibition and signing a final armistice for the drug war could swiftly jumpstart the national economy – at a time when we need it the most. The tremendous influx of tax revenue from cannabis is already being realized in some places through medical marijuana. This is where the missing jobs could be found, in the millions.

Ending the drug war is the most important social justice and economic policy change we need to make today. After 40 years of failure it is time to try something new.

Chris Goldstein is a respected marijuana reform advocate. As a writer and radio broadcaster he has been covering cannabis news for over a decade. Questions?  [email protected]

Senator Leach statement on medical marijuana bill in PA

Senator Daylin Leach, Rep. Mark Cohen and PA4MMJ at a press conference in Harrisburg 5/4/2010

4/28/2011 – State Senator Daylin Leach (D-17) re-introduced Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana bill on April 25th. The issue has strong public support, Franklin & Marshall polling in 2010 showed that 80 percent of residents are in favor of a medical cannabis law.

Senator Leach issued this statement on Wednesday April 27th: “I’m happy to have re-introduced Senate Bill 1003 and am hopeful it will be brought up for consideration by the Legislature. It is a common-sense bill that would simply give sick people access to medication so they feel better. Countless studies show marijuana can alleviate the side effects of many diseases. It’s time we give Pennsylvanians access to the treatment they need and deserve.”

SB 1003 would legalize the use of cannabis for residents with serious medical conditions such as cancer, Multiple Sclerosis and HIV/AIDS. The bill includes provisions for a system of Compassion Centers, ID cards for patients, home cultivation and sales tax.

Senators Larry Farnese, James Ferlo and Wayne Fontana are the initial co-sponsors. The bill has been referred to the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee. READ SB 1003

PA residents may contact their legislators via

This is why Christmas is Bullshit

Found this video while browsing through the lovely website, UK-based Dope-Smoker. (Take note of their clean, contemporary design. There are so many collegiate-looking weed sites out there bogged down with too much green and pot leaves – nice to see something more modern.)

On a lighter note, my picks for the very few holiday tunes that don’t want me want to impale myself with skewers: