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Early use of marijuana apparently delays — and might even prevent — the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, according to a leading scientist in the field. But the work of longtime researcher Gary Wenk of Ohio State University has come to a halt, despite the promising results.

“We found out that people who smoked dope in the 1960s were not getting Alzheimer’s,” Wenk explained, reports KJ Hiramoto at the Seattle PI. “These 90-year-olds without dementia were telling us things like, ‘Well, I drank whiskey and smoked dope,’ and these are the things they remember. They don’t remember habits like how often they ate broccoli.”

Maddeningly, Wenk’s research ground to a halt due to political, legal and financial reasons.

“The evidence in animals is clear but making the leap to humans means that you have to find a drug company willing to handle the lawsuits and the money,” Wenk said.

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Gareth Branwyn:

Gareth Branwyn:
“Chaos magick”

By Todd Brendan Fahey

Henry Miller said that.  And God love thee who see the world as “glass brim-full.”  (There ain’t many among us.)

Gareth Branwyn has released recently Borg Like Me: & Other Tales of Art, Eros, and Embedded Systems  — slabs of cyberculture “How-To”  and jaunty reminiscenses of those heady days gone by, hand-cranked DIY smithwork and reality-hacking consultation, from an Insider among “an incestuous group” of psychedelics-lovin’, nootropic-poppin’ upstarts who spawned Mondo 2000 magazine, bOING bOING print ‘zine (and later Boing Boing-of a-Website near you), eventually morphing into Wired.  He’s done it from a wheelchair and mobile-assisted walker, and his only lament — though he is cheerful about it — is that he finds himself slowly turning into a Cyborg — rods where his hips used to be, one of his legs now occupying a place in his chest.  (Sounds funny, eh? This is NOT sci-fi: Read the book.)

Self-starter that he is, he whirled a dervish of a Kickstarter crowdsourcing effort, raising $20k, and now owns his own small press and 100% of profits that come with it.  And he’ll be happy to tell you how you can, too (see: Tips on Sucks-Less Crowdfunding).  

In Borg Like Me, you’ll learn how to run away from Bible Belt confines at an early age and join a hippie commune; how (or, how not) to become involved with Billy Idol and generally assist on an album (Cyberpunk; Chrysalis, 1993); of his years as Wired magazine’s “Jargon Editor,” he’ll give you new words to use in your daily conversation: “Perot: to quit unexpectedly, as in ‘My cell phone just perot’ed.’”; “Ohnosecond: that miniscule fraction of time in which you realize that you’ve made a BIG mistake.”

And unlike Henry Miller, Gareth Branwyn won’t come on by cadging drinks, until that “one too many” has him still on your sofa the next afternoon…wherein you are soon on someone else’s.  A self-confessed “ADHD kinda guy,” he keeps it brief and tidy.  More probably, he’ll teach you to make your own wall-based Murphy bed — which shuts clean and spits you out to your neighborhood bar once you’ve overstayed your welcome.

You just gotta meet him.  Gareth Branwyn is a lot of fun.

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The recreational marijuana law in Washington state may have gotten off to a very rocky start, but the first legal sales of recreational marijuana took place on July 8. With more and more states legalizing medical and recreational marijuana, it’s only a matter of time before not only marijuana, but also marijuana marketing becomes a booming business.

As more legal marijuana businesses open their doors, there is a growing opportunity for the marketing industry to help budding “ganjapreneurs” (all of the puns in the marijuana industry are seriously the best) get the word out about their brands. These opportunities of course include the promotional product industry. However, before we get to all of that, first let’s get all of the legal jargon out of the way. Read Full Article →

Chris Williams, co-owner of Montana Cannabis, speaks with a documentary crew as his medical marijuana business is raided in March 2011. [Eliza Wiley/Helena Independent Record]

Chris Williams, co-owner of Montana Cannabis, speaks with a documentary crew as his medical marijuana business is raided in March 2011.
[Eliza Wiley/Helena Independent Record]

Chris Williams in happier days [examiner.com]

Chris Williams in happier days

Dear Friends and Supporters,

I have been trying to avoid writing this letter for a long time, but feel I no longer have a choice.

While I do my best to keep positive and stick to doing my time, there are things out in the world that do affect me here. I have not felt this depressed and upset since first entering federal prison. I cannot describe what it is like to be in prison, you have to experience it for yourself to understand, but I hope you never have to experience it!

The reason I have been feeling so stressed is because a person I placed a great deal of trust in has let me down. I have mixed feelings because this person, Kari Boiter has shown me kindness in the past and has worked as my advocate for the past 22 months. And for those efforts I am extremely grateful.

However, I am now equally shocked and disappointed by her lack of integrity and lack of professionalism. I feel as though Kari has been manipulating me and undermining my efforts to apply for clemency/ commutation.

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My first reaction upon reading, with increasing sadness, today’s hype-filed medical marijuana scare story on local National Public Radio affiliate KPLU was, “Wow, I didn’t know KPLU had become part of the Fox News Network.” Yes, it was that bad.

Meanwhile, Seattle Public Schools officials say marijuana use by students is on the rise, and students say it is easier to get than alcohol. Where is the supply coming from? Parents and school officials suspect medical marijuana dispensaries. 

Mixing the volatile elements of kids and pot, and the loaded term “teen addicts,” the story seems to take the pollyanna-ish view that teens wouldn’t be so attracted to marijuana if it weren’t for those darned medical marijuana dispensaries providing pot to sick people.

Yes, it seems that the reason teens smoke pot isn’t that teens have smoked pot for as long as anyone remembers; no, teens are smoking hella pot in Washington because of medical marijuana dispensaries, the article seems to want us to believe.

Somehow, we expected more than this from KPLU.

Somehow, we expected more than this from KPLU.

KPLU reporter Jennifer Wing — clearly a monumentally clueless, unwitting tool of those who stand to profit from I-502, or perhaps someone just too damned lazy to do any real research — has done a disservice not just to journalism, but to all the medical marijuana patients in Washington state. Beyond the obviously inflammatory headline, Wing’s copy reads like a checklist of anti-medical marijuana myths promulgated by those who (oh just entirely coincidentally of course!) stand to profit from recreational pot sales.

Fortunately, the readers and listeners of KPLU aren’t that easily fooled. It’s almost as if the station forgot their own demographics; highly educated liberals won’t be so easily led down the primrose path of bogeymen and dark insinuations as the station apparently believed they would. The first five comments on Wing’s weak story took the station, the story and the reporter to task for their inaccuracy and sloppiness.

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Are marijuana-infused medibles -- like those sold from the Magical Butter food truck -- legal, or aren't they? [Upstart Business Journal]

Are marijuana-infused medibles — like those sold from the Magical Butter food truck — legal, or aren’t they?
[Upstart Business Journal]

It’s been almost two years since the voters of Washington state approved limited marijuana legalization measure Initiative 502. But apparently those two years weren’t long enough for Washington state bureaucrats to figure out exactly what constitutes a cannabis-infused edible product — or even if such products are legal.

Two issues, both of which were supposed to have been settled long ago, have come to the fore:

• Will sales of marijuana-infused edible products be allowed?

• Will infused food items be considered as marijuana, i.e., will 16 ounces of infused brownies be treated legally as a pound of marijuana?

You’d think such questions would have been answered already, in the protracted two-year run-up to implementation of I-502. Aren’t these state agencies — the Department of Health and the Liquor Control Board — even talking to each other about implementing the new law?

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