Archive for the ‘EDUCATION’ Category

Judge Rules Medical Marijuana Not An Agricultural Crop

Former Judge Took $1 Million In Bribes From Builder Of Private, For-Profit Juvenile Detention Centers

Should anyone really be surprised when a private, for-profit correctional system results in abuses like this?
A long-serving judge in Pennsylvania has been ordered to spend 28 years in prison for his role in a bribery scandal that resulted in thousands of juvenile convictions — many of them for marijuana — being overturned by the state supreme court.
Former Luzerne County Judge Mark Ciavarella Jr., 61, was sentenced on Thursday for taking $1 million in bribes from the builder of two juvenile detention centers in a case that became known as “kids for cash,” reports the Associated Press.
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court overturned about 4,000 convictions issued by Judge Ciavarella between 2003 and 2008, ruling that he violated the rights of the juveniles, including the right to legal counsel and the right to intelligently enter a plea.

Ciaverella’s trial earlier this year ended in a conviction on racketeering charges. His lawyers had asked for a “reasonable” sentence in court papers, claiming he had already been punished enough.
“The media attention to this matter has exceeded coverage given to many and almost all capital murders, and despite protestation, he will forever be unjustly branded as the ‘kids for cash’ judge,’ ” they whined.
Federal prosecutors said Ciavarella and another judge, Michael Conahan, took more than $2 million in bribes from the builder of the Pennsylvania Child Care and Western Pennsylvania Child Care detention centers and extorting hundreds of thousands of dollars from the facilities’ co-owner.
“Ciaverella was known for his harsh and autocratic courtroom demeanor,” AP writes, but I can translate that a little more clearly for you. The man was a god-damned douche bag.
The judge filled the beds of private, for-profit correctional centers with children as young as 10, many of them first-time offenders convicted of petty theft, marijuana possession and other crimes.
The asshole judge remained defiant even after his arrest, insisting the payments were legal and denying he incarcerated children for money.
The jury returned a mixed verdict last February, convicting him on 12 counts, including racketeering and conspiracy, and acquitting him on 27 others, including extortion. The guilty verdicts resulted from a payment of $997,600 from the builder of the detention centers on Judge Ciavarella.
And now we have 4,000 youths scarred for life by this son of a bitch. You can never undo what getting sent away to places like this does to kids.
Former Judge Conahan pleaded guilty last year and is still awaiting sentencing.

7 cannabis studies that will change everything…

​​ Welcome to Room 420, where your instructor is Mr. Ron Marczyk and your subjects are wellness, disease prevention, self actualization, and chillin’.
Worth Repeating
​By Ron Marczyk, R.N.
Since the 1960s, the major milestones our country has achieved are incredible.
We elected an African-American president, women’s issues have made tremendous progress, and gays and lesbians can marry.
But cannabis is still illegal…?  Not for long! 
As the tsunami of hard empirical positive medical cannabis research builds, it meets the inevitable changing younger demographics of our country, and with the need for new cannabis- based jobs and new tax revenue.
The cannabis legalization tipping point is close at hand!
“Cannabis is the people’s medicine” and has overwhelming public support.
Let’s knock this last domino over!
And to that end…
I would like to highlight several 2011 research papers that discuss the most current findings regarding medical cannabis treatment and disease prevention.

The following medical papers focus on:
• Cancer and colon cancer prevention,
• Inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, colitis, Crohn’s disease
• Vomiting from chemotherapy
• Osteoporosis
• Traumatic brain injury
• Heart disease /Heart attack
The concept of the endocannabinoid system was outlined a mere 14 years ago, and looks how far we have come!
Today “phytocannabinoid therapeutics” is the newest, fastest growing field in medical research.
As this medical cannabis evidence-based tsunami approaches, its main therapeutic action appears to restoring homeostasis to multiple body systems.
The action by which phytocannabinoids heal is by reestablishing the proper immune set points within CB 1/2 receptors in both brain and body.
Perhaps the root of many human illnesses is an anandamide deficiency, which, when corrected and rebalanced by THC intake, produces homeostasis.
Whatever anandamide does in the body, phytocannabinoids mimic. My prediction is that phytocannabinoids will ultimately be found to be an vital to human health.
Phytocannabinoids mimic the same actions of Anandamide in the brain and body, which maintain homeostasis, maintaining wellness and disease prevention!    

Cannabinoid Uses.jpg
Graphic: TRENDS In Pharmacological Sciences
Pharmacological actions of non-psychotropic cannabinoids (with the indication of the proposed mechanisms of action). Abbreviations: D 9 -THC, D 9 -tetrahydrocannabinol; D 8 -THC, D 8 -tetrahydrocannabinol; CBN, cannabinol; CBD, cannabidiol; D 9 -THCV, D 9 -tetrahydrocannabivarin; CBC, cannabichromene; CBG, cannabigerol; D 9 -THCA, D 9 -tetrahydrocannabinolic acid; CBDA, cannabidiolic acid; TRPV1, transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1; PPARg, peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor g; ROS, reactive oxygen species; 5-HT1A, 5-hydroxytryptamine receptor subtype 1A; FAAH, fatty acid amide hydrolase. (+), direct or indirect activation; “, increase; #, decrease.
It’s All About THC
THC is unique, in that it is only found in one plant on earth.
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Photo: Rhinoseeds
Power Flower strain
​ The female cannabis plant is a THC-resin factory. THC, which makes up the plant’s resin, has the important job of collecting pollen from the male plant for fertilization. No THC-laced resin, no seed production.  Additionally, this resin tastes very bad to herbivores, which leave it alone, and it also offers superior UV protection to the plant at high altitudes.
A cannabis sativa flower coated with trichomes, which contain more THC than any other part of the plant
The cannabis plant has only two functions: to make THC and seeds.
THC is the most abundant “phytocannabinoid” within the cannabis plant.
All other THC-like substances in the plant are THC intermediate metabolites being assembled by the plant on their way to becoming THC.
Once the plant is cut down and dies, the THC degrades into cannabindiol.  Cannabinol (CBN) is the primary product of THC degradation, and there is usually little of it in a fresh plant. CBN content increases as THC degrades in storage, and with exposure to light and air, and it is only mildly psychoactive.
Why would just this one plant, and the phytocannabinoids it produces control not one, but two dedicated molecular receptors for phytocannabinoids, with more predicted to still be discovered?
Did evolution intend for them to be naturally consumed for proper body function? As any other plant-derived antioxidant?
How THC talks to the brain and immune system
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Graphic: How Stuff Works
​All healing, cancer fighting and aging in your body is controlled by the immune system.
Phytocannabinoids appear to control the activity level of the immune system up or down, so that it doesn’t attack its host or respond too weakly to cellular dysfunction. Whenever you hear the term “anti-inflammatory activity,” think “cannabis immune system control.”
CB1 cannabigenic receptors are the majority of receptor type in the synaptic clef. THC-activated CB1 brain receptors directly link up and control the microglial cells in the brain; the microglia is the specialized white blood cells that make up the brain’s dedicated immune system.
Cannabidiol is degraded THC. It activates CB2 receptors mostly in the body. In both cases, THC controls both immune systems (brain and body), in one form or another. It seems that CB1 brain receptors link up to CB2 body receptors, which in turn control many autoimmune diseases.
The word used to describe this cannabis brain/body link up is Psychoneuroimmunology.
Mind = neurotransmitter = immune system communication system, or in this case
Cannabinergic Psychoneuroimmunology” — cannabinoid-induced immune system healing.
Cannabis consciousness repairs your immune system: never underestimate the power of a bong hit!
#1:   “The Endocannabinoid System and Cancer: Therapeutic Implication” 
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Photo: WhyProhibition.ca
​Findings: Delta 9 THC as a treatment for breast, prostate, brain and bone cancer
“This review updates the relationship between the endocannabinoid system and anti-tumor actions (inhibition of cell proliferation and migration, induction of apoptosis, reduction of tumor growth) of the cannabinoids in different types of cancer.”
“The therapeutic potential of cannabinoids for cancer, as identified in clinical trials, is also discussed. Identification of safe and effective treatments to manage and improve cancer therapy is critical to improve quality of life and reduce unnecessary suffering in cancer patients.”
“In this regard, cannabis-like, compounds offer therapeutic potential for the treatment of breast, prostate and bone cancer in patients. Further basic research on anti-cancer properties of cannabinoids as well as clinical trials of cannabinoid therapeutic efficacy in breast, prostate and bone cancer is therefore warranted.”
“The available literature suggests that the endocannabinoid system may be targeted to suppress the evolution and progression of breast, prostate and bone cancer as well as the accompanying pain syndromes. Although this review focuses on these three types of cancer, activation of the endocannabinoid signaling system produces anti-cancer effects in other types of cancer including skin, brain gliomas and lung.”
“Interestingly, cannabis trials in population based studies failed to show any evidence for increased risk of respiratory symptoms/chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or lung cancer (Tashkin, 2005) associated with smoking cannabis.”
“Moreover, synthetic cannabinoids (Delta 9 THC) and the endocannabinoid system play a role in inhibiting cancer cell proliferation and angiogenesis, reducing tumor growth and metastases and inducing apoptosis ( self destruction for cancer cells) in all three types of cancers reviewed here.
“These observations raise the possibility that a dysregulation of the endocannabinoid system may promote cancer, by fostering physiological conditions that allow cancer cells to proliferate, migrate and grow.”
IMPORTANT: This is a very intriguing observation. What is being implied here is that some people may be suffering from an anandamide deficiency! Just as a diabetic is insulin deficiencient and must supplement their body with insulin, in this case THC is the vital medicine needed to replace low levels of anandamide.
These observations also raise the exciting possibility that enhancing cannabinoid tone (code for THC locking into the CB1 receptor) through cannabinoid based pharmacotherapies may attenuate these harmful processes to produce anti-cancer effects in humans.
Bottom line:  Smoking marijuana prevents cancer body-wide.
#2:  “Update on the Endocannabinoid System as an Anticancer Target” 
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Graphic: Americans for Safe Access
​Findings: antitumor effects, cancer prevention
“Recent studies have shown that the endocannabinoid system (ECS) could offer an attractive antitumor target. Numerous findings suggest the involvement of this system (constituted mainly by cannabinoid receptors, endogenous compounds and the enzymes for their synthesis and degradation) in cancer cell growth in vitro and in vivo.”
“This review covers literature from the past decade which highlights the potential of targeting the ECS for cancer treatment. In particular, the levels of endocannabinoids and the expression of their receptors in several types of cancer are discussed, along with the signaling pathways involved in the endocannabinoid antitumor effects.”
“Furthermore, targeting the ECS with agents that activate cannabinoid receptors (This means THC) or inhibitors of endogenous degrading systems such as fatty acid amide hydrolase inhibitors may have relevant therapeutic impact on tumor growth. Additional studies into the downstream consequences of endocannabinoid treatment are required and may illuminate other potential therapeutic targets.”
#3:  “Cannabinoids and the gut: new developments and emerging concepts”
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Photo: Top News
​Findings: THC and inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), colitis, colon cancer, vomiting/chemotherapy
“Disorders of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract have been treated with herbal and plant-based remedies for centuries. Prominent amongst these therapeutics are preparations derived from the marijuana plant Cannabis.  Cannabis has been used to treat a variety of GI conditions that range from enteric infections and inflammatory conditions, including inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) to disorders of motility, emesis and abdominal pain.”
“Cannabis has been used to treat gastrointestinal (GI) conditions that range from enteric infections and inflammatory conditions to disorders of motility, emesis and abdominal pain.”
“The mechanistic basis of these treatments emerged after the discovery of Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol as the major constituent of Cannabis. Further progress was made when the receptors for Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol were identified as part of an endocannabinoid system, that consists of specific cannabinoid receptors.”
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Sites of action of cannabinoids in the enteric nervous system. CB2 receptors indicated with the marijuana leaf.
​  “Anatomical, physiological and pharmacological studies have shown that the endocannabinoid system is widely distributed throughout the gut, with regional variation and organ-specific actions.” (CB2 receptors are embedded within the lining of the intestines in large numbers.)
“They are involved in the regulation of food intake, nausea and emesis, gastric secretion and gastro protection, GI motility, ion transport, visceral sensation, intestinal inflammation and cell proliferation in the gut.”
“As we have shown, the endocannabinoid system is widely distributed throughout the gut, with regional variation and specific regional or organ-specific actions.”
“CB2 receptors are involved in the regulation of food intake, nausea and emesis, gastric secretion and gastro protection, GI motility, ion transport, visceral sensation, intestinal inflammation and cell proliferation (cancer)”
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How THC/cannabidiol activates the CB1/2 receptors to shut down colon cancer by signaling cancer cells to self-destruct
​ “Preclinical models have shown that modifying the endocannabinoid system can have beneficial effects…. Pharmacological agents that act on these targets have been shown in preclinical models to have therapeutic potential.” [THC is the Pharmacological agent mentioned.]
Colorectal Cancer Prevention Model

Cannabiols via CB1 and possibly CB2 receptor activation, have been shown to exert apoptotic actions in several colorectal cancer cell lines.
See the illustration at left for how THC/cannabidiol activates the CB1/2 receptors to shut down colon cancer by signaling cancer cells to self-destruct.
#4:   “Gut feelings about the endocannabinoid system”
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Graphic: CMR Journal
Schematic illustration of the functional roles of the endocannabinoid system (ECS) in the gastrointestinal tract. The ECS regulates four major functional elements in the gut: motility, secretion, inflammation, and sensation in health and disease. Major components of the ECS that have been defined in each of these functional roles are shown: CB1 and CB2 receptors, anandamide (AEA), fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), and the endocannabinoid membrane transporter (EMT). For motility, the CB2 receptors only appear to be active under pathophysiological conditions and are shown italicized.
​ Findings: Stemming from the centuries-old and well known effects of Cannabis on intestinal motility and secretion, research on the role of the endocannabinoid system in gut function and dysfunction has received ever increasing attention since the discovery of the cannabinoid receptors and their endogenous ligands, the endocannabinoids.
In this article, some of the most recent developments in this field are discussed, with particular emphasis on new data, most of which are published in Neurogastroenterology & Motility, on the potential tonic endocannabinoid control of intestinal motility, the function of cannabinoid type-1 (CB1) receptors in gastric function, visceral pain, inflammation and sepsis, the emerging role of cannabinoid type-2 (CB2) receptors in the gut, and the pharmacology of endocannabinoid-related molecules and plant cannabinoids not necessarily acting via cannabinoid CB1 and CB2 receptors.
These novel data highlight the multi-faceted aspects of endocannabinoid function in the GI tract, support the feasibility of the future therapeutic exploitation of this signaling system for the treatment of GI disorders, and leave space for some intriguing new hypotheses on the role of endocannabinoids in the gut.
#5: “Cannabinoids and the skeleton: from marijuana to reversal of bone loss”
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Graphic: Medicinal Cannabis
​Findings: CB2 receptors maintain bone remodeling balance, thus protecting the skeleton against age-related bone loss.
The active component of marijuana, Delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol, activates the CB1 and CB2 cannabinoid receptors, thus mimicking the action of endogenous cannabinoids.
CB1 is predominantly neuronal and mediates the cannabinoid psychotropic effects. CB2 is predominantly expressed in peripheral tissues, mainly in pathological conditions. So far the main endocannabinoids, anandamide and 2-arachidonoylglycerol, have been found in bone at ‘brain’ levels.
The CB1 receptor is present mainly in skeletal sympathetic nerve terminals, thus regulating the adrenergic tonic restrain of bone formation. CB2 is expressed in osteoblasts and osteoclasts, stimulates bone formation, and inhibits bone resorption.
Because low bone mass is the only spontaneous phenotype so far reported in CB2 mutant mice, it appears that the main physiologic involvement of CB2 is associated with maintaining bone remodeling at balance, thus protecting the skeleton against age-related bone loss.
Indeed, in humans, polymorphisms in CNR2, the gene encoding CB2, are strongly associated with postmenopausal osteoporosis. Preclinical studies have shown that a synthetic CB2-specific agonist rescues ovariectomy-induced bone loss.
Taken together, the reports on cannabinoid receptors in mice and humans pave the way for the development of 1) diagnostic measures to identify osteoporosis-susceptible polymorphisms in CNR2, and 2) cannabinoid drugs to combat osteoporosis.
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Graphic: Fit Body Bootcamp
​​Findings: Traumatic brain injury (TBI) represents the leading cause of death in young individuals.
FINDING:  THC activation of the CB1 receptor is the same as the action of anaidemide on CB1 This article discusses how anandamide increases in the brain after injury, so THC may have the potential to become a front line emergency medicine in the future.
“There is a large body of evidence showing that eCB are markedly increased in response to pathogenic traumatic head injury events.”
“This fact, as well as numerous studies on experimental models of brain toxicity, neuroinflammation and trauma supports the notion that the eCB are part of the brain’s compensatory or repair mechanisms.”
These are mediated via CB receptors signalling pathways that are linked to neuronal survival and repair. The levels of 2-AG, the most highly abundant eCB, are significantly elevated after TBI and when administered to TBI mice, 2-AG decreases brain edema, inflammation and infarct volume and improves clinical recovery.( So would THC.)
This review is focused on the role the eCB system plays as a self-neuroprotective mechanism and its potential as a basis for the development of novel therapeutic modality for the treatment of CNS pathologies with special emphasis on TBI.
Bottom line:  For proof see U.S government 2003 patent
#7:  “Acute administration of cannabidiol in vivo suppresses ischaemia-induced cardiac arrhythmias and reduces infarct size when given at reperfusion”
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Graphic: Cannabis N.I.
Not only is CBD cardioprotective — it is also an anti-epileptic, sedative, anxiolytic, antipsychotic, antioxidant, neuroprotectant, anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, anti-emetic, and anti-tumorant.
​ Findings:  Cannabidiol (CBD) is a phytocannabinoid, with anti-apoptotic, (the process of programmed cell death) anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects and has recently been shown to exert a tissue sparing effect during chronic myocardial ischaemia and reperfusion (I/R).
However, it is not known whether CBD is cardioprotective in the acute phase of I/R injury and the present studies tested this hypothesis.
EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH: Male Sprague-Dawley rats received either vehicle or CBD (10 or 50 microg kg(-1) i.v.) 10 min before 30 min coronary artery occlusion or CBD (50 microg kg(-1) i.v.) 10 min before reperfusion (2 h). The appearance of ventricular arrhythmias during the ischaemic and immediate post-reperfusion periods were recorded and the hearts excised for infarct size determination and assessment of mast cell degranulation. Arterial blood was withdrawn at the end of the reperfusion period to assess platelet aggregation in response to collagen.
KEY RESULTS: “CBD reduced both the total number of ischaemia-induced arrhythmias and infarct size when administered prior to ischaemia, an effect that was dose-dependent. Infarct size was also reduced when CBD was given prior to reperfusion. CBD (50 microg kg(-1) i.v.) given prior to ischaemia, but not at reperfusion, attenuated collagen-induced platelet aggregation compared with control, but had no effect on ischaemia-induced mast cell degranulation.”
CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: “This study demonstrates that CBD is cardioprotective in the acute phase of I/R by both reducing ventricular arrhythmias and attenuating infarct size. The anti-arrhythmic effect, but not the tissue sparing effect, may be mediated through an inhibitory effect on platelet activation.”
Remember to exercise your ganja rights! Every day is a Ganja day!

trouble in paradise…?

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Humboldt County signA Look Inside The Emerald Triangle

By Kim Pacilio

With medical marijuana legal in 16 states and counting, there is little doubt that legalized medical marijuana will soon become the norm all across the United States.  And there is no better example in the entire United States of how successful and profitable medical marijuana can be then in a tiny area in Northwestern California known as the Emerald Triangle.  Tucked away in beautiful Northern California, between the Pacific Coast and the Redwood forest, the Emerald Triangle has risen to prominence in recent years and has become infamous for having some of the highest quality medical marijuana in the world.

The Emerald Triangle consists of three notorious California counties Humboldt, Mendicino and Trinity.  With a population of just 225,000 spread sparsely across this beautiful woody hills Northern California landscape, it is almost impossible to imagine that this small area of the country is one of the best areas to grow marijuana in the Northern Hemisphere.  While there aren’t many plants that will flourish in this hilly, tucked away Northern California landscape, the cool winds and the fertile soil make it an ideal place for growing cannabis.

Since the middle of the 1960’s the infamous Emerald Triangle has become a ground zero of sorts for people looking to make a comfortable living in the cannabis growing industry.  Even though growing marijuana is still illegal at the Federal level, California’s friendly medical marijuana laws enable citizens all over the Emerald Triangle to make a small fortune growing and selling marijuana.  The Marijuana trade has even become so lucrative that in most areas in the Emerald Triangle one half to 2/3 of their entire economy is based off marijuana.  With this kind of volume comes enormous profits, not to mention enormous scrutiny.

Dank Marijuana NuggetWith over 1 billion dollars funneling into the Emerald Triangle every year, it is little wonder why the government has begun to take a second and third look at the impact of medical marijuana and the legalization of pot altogether.  With the United States government in complete fiscal crisis, the $40 billion dollar a year marijuana industry could bring substantial revenue back to the government.  Legalizing marijuana would not only bring substantial tax revenue back to the state, but the government would also save an additional $13 billion a year by simply not enforcing marijuana prohibition.

Taking out marijuana from the Emerald Triangle economy would be a devastating blow not only to the local residents who rely on the growing and selling of weed to support themselves, but also to the local and state governments who rely heavily on their tax revenue.  And with new medical marijuana dispensary’s popping up all across California every day, the medical cannabis industry has become a large and integral part in California’s diverse economy.

While many Emerald Triangle citizens walk a fine line between growing marijuana legally and triggering a legal crackdown from the federal government and DEA, many Emerald Triangle growers are undeterred.  In an area still reeling from the decades long decline of the timber and manufacturing industries, marijuana has become a mainstay in the Northern California economy and a lifesaver for many Emerald Triangle residents.

Where the Wild Weeds grow

Back in the days before America got Reefer Madness, the good old U.S.A. was a worldwide center of hemp production. Verdant fields of the incredibly useful fiber crop were cultivated all over the country. Once cannabis was outlawed in 1937 due to Harry J. Anslinger’s scare campaign against marijuana, the economic incentive to cultivate hemp was gone.

After a brief return in the “Hemp For Victory” days of World War II — when the Japanese takeover of our fiber source, the Philippines, made it necessary to once again provide our own rope — hemp faded into American history as a crop of bygone days.
But that didn’t mean it was any less useful, it just meant it was no longer politically acceptable. And it also didn’t mean that hemp would no longer grow in Nebraska (and throughout much of the Midwest), it just meant it was no longer actively cultivated.

rated colleges for marijunana

By Steve Elliott ~alapoet~ in Culture
Wednesday, August 3, 2011, at 12:20 pm
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Photo: Little Eddy
A mass exhale of marijuana smoke at the Unibversity of Colorado Boulder campus at 4:20 p.m., April 20, 2010. UC-Boulder came in fourth on the list.

​California and Colorado dominated the The Princeton Review‘s Top 5 colleges for marijuana use this year, with two entries each.

In the rankings — part of the Review’s “The Best 376 Colleges” survey — Colorado College in Colorado Springs ranked as the #1 pot-smoking school in the United States.
The small private school blazed past the competition in the annual rankings, which The Princeton Review released on Monday.
Colorado College has been a “usual suspect” on the marijuana list for the past few years, said Rob Franek, vice president and publisher of the Review.

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Photo: Santa Cruz IMC
A comely reveler at the 4-20 celebration at University of California – Santa Cruz
​Franek said Colorado College, like others on the list, has strong academic standards, reports Brittany Anas of the Boulder Daily Camera.
The Princeton Review surveyed 122,000 students nationwide to come up with the rankings.
“We go directly to whom we think would be experts, and that’s current college students,” Franek said.’
University of Colorado-Boulder spokesman Bronson Hilliard was unimpressed with his school’s #4 showing, saying the rankings are subjective and have no scientific backing.
“The media is way more interested in the rankings than we are,” he sniffed.
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Photo: Santa Cruz IMC
University of California at Santa Cruz, April 20, 2010
​ Pacific Northwest favorite Evergreen College, long known as a countercultural haven, just missed the Top 11, coming in at number 11.
The Princeton Review , which a college test prep company with no connection to Princeton University, released the Top 20 standings to garner publicity for its annual guidebook, The Best 376 Colleges: 2012 Edition, which went on sale Monday.
The lists, besides more academically oriented rankings, also include “party school” standings (Ohio University ranked #1) and one called “Got Milk? (beer usage reported low).” Other rankings include “Birkenstock-wearing, tree-hugging, clove-smoking vegetarians,” “class discussions encouraged,” “great college towns” and “most politically active students.”
As for the Bottom 20 Colleges when it comes to marijuana use, it’s no surprise that schools associated with the U.S. military show up near the top of the list, along with places like Mormon stronghold Brigham Young University in Utah and the Catholic school Thomas Aquinas College in California.
Top 20 Colleges: How Widely Used Is Marijuana?
1. Colorado College, Colorado Springs
2. University of California – Santa Cruz
3. University of California – Santa Barbara
4. University of Colorado – Boulder
5. Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, New York
6. Lewis & Clark College, Portland, Oregon
7. Warren Wilson College, Asheville, North Carolina
8. Eckerd College, St. Petersburg, Florida
9. New College of Florida, Sarasota
10. University of Vermont, Burlington
11. The Evergreen State College, Olympia, Washington
12. New York University, New York City
13. Reed College, Portland, Oregon
14. Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York
15. Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, New York
16. Pitzer College, Claremont, California
17. Arizona State University, Tempe
18. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
19. Sarah Lawrence College, Bronxville, New York
20. Grinnell College, Grinnell, Iowa
Bottom 20 Colleges: How Widely Used Is Marijuana?
1. U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colorado
2. U.S. Coast Guard Academy, New London, Connecticut
3. Thomas Aquinas College, Santa Paula, California
4. Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah
5. College of the Ozarks, Point Lookout, Missouri
6. U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland
7. U.S. Military Academy, West Point, New York
8. Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois
9. U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, Kings Point, New York
10. The University of Tulsa, Tulsa, Oklahoma
11. Ohio Northern University, Ada, Ohio
12. Hillsdale College, Hillsdale, Michigan
13. Creighton University, Omaha, Nebraska
14. University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, Indiana
15. Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan
16. Samford University, Birmingham, Alabama
17. Centenary College of Louisiana, Shreveport
18. University of Louisiana at Lafayette
19. City University of New York – Baruch College, New York City
20. City University of New York – Queens College, Flushing, New York

Full-Court Press: Feds Go After Mendo Marijuana

 

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Photo: Ganja Farmer’s Emerald Triangle News
By Jack Rikess
Toke of the Town
Northern California Correspondent

I love my job.

Every time I leave San Francisco for Mendocino like I did the other day, whether it’s for an interview like I had arranged or for snooping and sleuthing for an upcoming story, I get giddy. It brings out the Tom Sawyer in me.
I’m like that kid the movie, The Black Stallion, when during the climax of the big horse race he throws off his racing goggles and grabs Big Black’s mane like they are one. He rides the galloping horse like they did back on the island when it was just the two of them.

Riding like the Old Spice guy au naturel to the finish line, we, the viewers, are given a chance to relive the best of our own childhood dreams as we watch unemcumbered youth experience the pure bliss of freedom as he wins the race the old-fashioned way, without all those city contraptions like gloves, shirts and protective eyewear.
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Photo: Cannabis N.I.
​ That’s me going to Mendo. Being up there’s this sense of walking free and barefoot, even when I have to wear my tight-ass business Doc Martens.
Also, after Cloverdale going north on 101, I like to look up. When I see my first stage-diving hawk or eagle, I know I’m home.
But the other day, there were no hawks or eagles in the air. Only helicopters. Many, many helicopters. More helicopters than in L.A., on a fast news night.
Black helicopters patrolled like nosey crop-dusters or eager teenagers on Toro lawnmowers doing summer work. Going East-West in straight lines and then banking and returning to the next row over. Spotting. Observing. Looking. Inspecting.
With only one goal on the taxpayer-supported to-do list: Try to find marijuana.
I stopped for gas in Ukiah a little before 8 a.m. At the station, strapping young men like trim bodybuilders in green shorts, green khaki short-sleeved shirts with big ol’ guns, 357s or some other large-mouth pistols holstered to their sides, joked and cajoled with each other as they take hits off their Slurpees and Red Bells.
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Photo: StoptheDrugWar.org
​ A few grab coffees, smiling, making their way back to their Forest Ranger jeeps. They remind me more of Everglade bush pilots than cops. They seem too wholesome to be police.
They’re more like jocks on a road trip, piling out of a car ready and cocked, waiting for something to happen, then after a pit stop and a look around, it’s back to the two-lane blacktop.
They seem innocent enough.
But then you see they’re everywhere. There are cops catching breakfast in the restaurants and coming out of 20-room motels along the frontage roads. Official cars with patrol lights are suddenly in front of you as the pickup you were behind makes a left. Chrome-plated Hummers close you in from behind.
Before I hit the panic button, I realize I’ve entered a convoy of five or six cars and trucks on their way to somewhere.
And still, there’s more helicopters buzzing overhead.
Welcome to Operation Full-Court Press.
Four hundred agents have invaded the Emerald Triangle for at least a month or so. At first they were doing a little surgical striking north and then south and then just to confuse us, somewhere in the middle.
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Photo: Ganja Farmer’s Emerald Triangle News
​ As of this writing, it looks like they’re starting around Covelo and going north. Yesterday it was reported on radio station KMUD that there were roadblocks on 162 West with DEA and INS vehicles prominent. Seventy-seven people have been arrested. About 305,000 plants have been “confiscated.”
The official statement is they are going after the growers who illegally raise marijuana in our national forest. They will leave the permitted growers who are following Mendocino’s 9.31 alone. All of us agree this is a good thing.
The other major counties like Trinity and Humboldt are adopting the same policy of leaving the local growers who are quietly doing their own thing, while going after the more transient growers.
But everyone knows they’re going after the Mexicans in the mountainous country.
From what is being gossiped about, there’s some heavy profiling going on in Norte California. All press releases make it clear that this “concerted effort” between multiple governmental law enforcement agencies has the main objective of going after only organized growers with their massive outdoor industrial grows who have been shooting at and scaring the straights who have the bad luck to go too deep into the woods.
Again, the locals agree this is a good thing. Plus, the price of marijuana should go up.
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Photo: Felipe Buitrago/Metroactive
​ Even so, some of the locals are getting very nervous and stressed with the helicopters strafing the compound, looking for illegal grows. The best the legitimate grower can do is pain a 4×8 sheet of plywood with his or her permit numbers, so when Sky King’s looking for the bad guys, they leave Ma and Pa Kush alone.
This still doesn’t satisfy some of the local fears.
One grower complained of paying the $85 per permit and still having to live under this scrutiny as the climate changes concerning the growing of marijuana.
“I went to the Sheriff’s Office and paid my money for permits, which is kinda like taxes and kinda like blood money,” my bandana-wearing source said. “But I did it because that’s what needs to happen on our side for change to occur.
“Now the Feds are here,” he said. “It feels like they’re taking over the town.”
Do you worry that the Feds will go to the Sheriff’s Office to get a list of growers who have come forward?
“No, Sheriff Allman told us that wouldn’t happen,” the grower assured me.
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Photo: USA Today
​ “Right now, the Sheriff is stuck between us and that very hard rock called the Feds,” he said. “The Sheriff lives here. The Feds are like the growers they’re trying to catch. They’ll be here for a month or two, then leave. It is Sheriff Allman that is left to keep the peace. And because the Feds don’t understand the culture up here… Let’s just say things are going to be tense before they’re better.”
Another legitimate grower chalked up the whole operation — the Feds, the tension — to the cost of doing business in Mendo.
A gentleman in his 60s with a silver ponytail wrapped in leather laughed at the other locals who were getting upset with the flyovers and the heavy police presence.
“It’s the cost of doing business up here,” he said. “There’s nothing illegal about hating marijuana. Some cops and most of the Feds hate marijuana. But you’ll see the pendulum swings wildly one way and then slowly, it starts to swing to the other side. That is the way it is up here.”
You don’t seem too worried.
“Today it’s the Feds. Come the middle of September, beginning of October, the rip-offs come. When it starts getting close to harvest… time to start sleeping in my grow, locked and loaded.”
You’re pretty serious when it comes to guns and intruders?
“We don’t give warning shots up here. We don’t give the courtesy over-the-head warning.”
Really?
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Photo: Cannabis Culture
​ “Naw, that’s the way it was maybe five years ago, maybe even three,” the old coot continued. “See, that’s what the Feds don’t understand. If I have someone trying to steal my crop, now, I call 9-1-1. I call the cops. It wasn’t that long ago that we shot to kill. See, stealing is stealing, to us and the cops.
“Last year in Laytonville, a couple of kids — that’s who most of your unsophisticated robbers are, kids through about 24, y’know, stupid kids trying to get rich quick. These kids try to rob a Mom and Pop. A small local garden with white picket fence at the end of someone’s road.
“Well they come into these folks’ living room with a pellet gun… I can’t really remember, maybe it was as big as a .22. One kid shoots the husband in the leg with his toy gun while the wife grabs the Dirty Harry and blows the kid away in her living room with a .357. Cops came and left just as quick, saying it was justified.”
It seems better for the community to not have the frontier justice kind of retribution that you’ve had up here for the past half century.
“That’s what the Feds don’t get,” the veteran grower said. “This isn’t Iowa. This isn’t Virginia. It’s Mendo. We’re changing. We’re trying to become more law-abiding citizens. I don’t know what they have against us.”
Sitting in hand-carved wooden chairs in the hot sun in front of his cabin, we listen to the clamoring birds in the trees and the rotor blades slicing the air as helicopters migrate above us.
“But it’s like Buddha says, this too shall pass.” The old man’s eyes traced the copters as they fly out of sight over the mountains as they go north to their next observational gig.
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Photo: Jack Rikess
Toke of the Town correspondent Jack Rikess blogs from the Haight in San Francisco.

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