Wednesday, July 10, 2019

NM cannabis task force begins work

Speaker of the New Mexico House Brian Egolf not only supports legalization for all adults he serves as legal counsel for the state's therapeutic cannabis leader, Ultra Health. Calling itself "New Mexico's No. 1 cannabis company" Big Dope Ultra just opened facilities in Clayton near the borders with Texas and Oklahoma. Keeping the industry from the clutches of a monopoly has been contentious.

The New Mexico legalization task force is beginning work on legislation today.
After eight years under the Susana Martinez administration (a government that was, to say the least, inhospitable to the plant and its medical benefits), the new governor, Michelle Lujan Grisham, is making strides in the state's medical program. Patient license renewal now requires fewer hoops, and more conditions qualify for permission to use cannabis. Plus, producers are permitted to grow more plants. As a result, New Mexico's patients and cannabis providers find themselves in a very different environment than they did less than a year ago. One of the other positive externalities of medical cannabis is the mainstreaming of the plant as a treatment. The reduction in stigma cannot be understated. Cannabis is rapidly shifting from something associated with stoner culture to a legitimate field of medical study and a legitimate business operation.
Get the whole story here.

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Commitment to reproductive rights helping to drive New Mexico's film industry

After a Republican governor signed a bill into law that discriminates against some couples who want to adopt a boycott of South Dakota is still having effects on tourism where some Black Hills business owners have seen decreases of some 30-40 percent this year.

But in New Mexico a billion dollar boost from the film industry has area economies enthusiastic about the future.
A recent spike in film productions and industry inquiries comes as New Mexico is set to more than double its annual state spending cap on film incentives, and as Hollywood targets both Georgia and Louisiana over recently passed restrictive abortion laws. “It’s an exciting time for film and television in Albuquerque, and we have been seeing an increase in interest from productions as a result of the political topics in Georgia and Louisiana,” said Amber Dodson, city of Albuquerque film liaison. “Our doors are open; we are an inclusive city who welcomes everyone.” [Abortion politics help fuel NM film boom]
1. A pregnant woman is the patient.
2. Ectopic pregnancies kill women.
3. Rich women have full reproductive rights while women at the lower income margins suffer chilling effects on those rights. Women in Alabama, Georgia and South Dakota who can afford it simply jump on a plane and fly to Albuquerque, Minneapolis, Denver or elsewhere for their procedures. Imagine a woman on the Standing Rock or Pine Ridge doing that.
4. South Dakota’s repeated attempts to restrict access to medical care are not only mean-spirited, they're discriminatory anti-choice extremism.
5. "Pro-life" is simply code for white people breeding. African-Americans terminate pregnancies at about the same per capita rate as white people do but don’t take their jobs. Latinas, however, have fewer abortions per capita but the extreme white wing laments it's hemorrhaging jobs to Latinos.
6. No foetus in the United States has any civil rights until the third trimester. Republicans preach civil rights for human zygotes but deny the protections of the First, Fourth and Ninth Amendments to people who enjoy cannabis.

New Mexico's flag has been named the coolest in America. The above image was captured at Mount Rushmore National Monument in the occupied Black Hills.


Friday, June 21, 2019

Speaker Egolf: New Mexico should allow non-residents to become therapeutic cannabis patients


Speaker of the New Mexico House Brian Egolf not only supports legalization for all adults he serves as legal counsel for the state's therapeutic cannabis leader, Ultra Health. Calling itself "New Mexico's No. 1 cannabis company" Big Dope Ultra just opened facilities in Clayton near the borders with Texas and Oklahoma. Keeping the industry from the clutches of a monopoly has been contentious.
State law now allows for medical cannabis patients from other states to use their credentials from those states to purchase medical cannabis in New Mexico. That change requires [Department of Health] to come up with a rule change by March 2020. Egolf said that New Mexico already allows non-residents to receive medical care and fill prescriptions through the mail. That, combined with the law’s stated intention to normalize medical cannabis is enough reason for the state to reverse their previous statement, he said. Egolf also cited fishing and hunting licenses as well as access to oil and gas extraction as benefits non-residents get in New Mexico. [NM medical cannabis producer implores DOH to reverse stance on non-resident medical cards]
Lawmakers in New Mexico's Democrat-dominated legislature rejected a Republican plan that would have established state-run cannabis retail operations but did decriminalize possession of up to one half ounce. The state's therapeutic cannabis program is nearing 74,000 patients.

In February two University of New Mexico researchers published a study on how cannabis helps treat certain medical conditions. Their results showed that smoking the herb is most effective method for people who ingest cannabis.

A failure to reach a consensus on legal cannabis in New Mexico last session was due in part to home growing. If people want to grow commercially that’s where the state is paid to conduct inspections for purity and standards through a tax on sales. Let growers have retail outlets.


Sunday, June 16, 2019

CWD outbreak linked to the extermination of apex predators, overuse of weed killers


Figure 2. Glyphosate usage over the last two decades. It has been estimated that the production of glyphosate is increasing with a rate of about 40 tons per year. Adapted from Benbrook (13).

Way back when, Bob Newland posted my inaugural blogospheric essay at The Decorum Forum. In the comments, I added:
Evidence exists that sudden aspen death is attributable to non-point sources of pollution, ie. POEA, polyethyoxilated tallowamine, a surfactant present in Monsanto's Roundup®, is a prime suspect. POEA interferes with mycorrhiza and their ability to metabolize water. Malathion®, a widely used insecticide and legion for its toxicity, also contains a surfactant.
I have been covering effects of the surfactant POEA for nearly three decades. Today, wapiti (elk) in the Mountain West are dying en masse from Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) that some researchers say results from the federal government feeding those cervids in close proximity. Hay fed to those animals is likely contaminated with Roundup®.
Heather Swanson and Ryan Prioreschi monitor wildlife with the City of Boulder. The mountain lions know that something is wrong. A number of years ago, Swanson and her colleagues studied which deer mountain lions prefer to attack. "The mountain lions were definitely preferentially selecting deer that had chronic wasting disease over those that were negative," she says. "And for most of the ones that they had killed, we had not detected any chronic wasting disease symptoms yet. So certainly the lions were able to key in on far more subtle cues than we were." Unlike us, the lions know that while a deer might look sleek and alert, it's actually a ticking time bomb. That's one of the weird things about this disease. It isn't like the usual viral or bacterial illness. The infection can sit in a herd, crawling from animal to animal, for years before people notice anything is wrong. "Through time (it) degrades, essentially, their brain tissue," says Swanson. [Bent Out Of Shape: Could A Mysterious Animal Epidemic Become The Next Mad Cow?]
Environmental pollutants in the umbilical cord blood of infants? How conservative.
Meanwhile, Monsanto continues to sell Roundup formulas with POEA in the United States. The Pilliods’ expert toxicologist Dr. William Sawyer said that POEA makes the Roundup formula 50 times more toxic. [Two billion dollar judgment against Bayer/Monsanto in glyphosate cancer trial was “devastating rebuke” to company’s science]
From GM Watch:
In a new research published in the high ranked scientific journal Toxicology, Robin Mesnage, Benoît Bernay and Professor Gilles-Eric Séralini, from the University of Caen, France, have proven (from a study of nine Roundup-like herbicides) that the most toxic compound is not glyphosate, which is the substance the most assessed by regulatory authorities, but a compound that is not always listed on the label, called POE-15. Adjuvants of the POE-15 family (polyethoxylated tallowamine) have now been revealed as actively toxic to human cells, and must be regulated as such.
Studies have shown POEA can break down tissue that protects the blood-brain barrier leading to prion disease.
U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists developing methods to measure POEA in the environment have shown that it’s a complex and variable mixture of related compounds, and that POEA is still a common additive in several newer agricultural and household glyphosate formulations. [Measuring POEA, a Surfactant Mixture in Herbicide Formulations]
Kill off apex predators like wolves and cougars; spray glyphosate and POEA on everything then wonder why cervids contract a prion disease like CWD.




Friday, June 7, 2019

Climate catastrophes are KXL teaching moments

Genesee & Wyoming, the parent company of the Rapid City, Pierre and Eastern Railroad, conducts the business on the west end of the state-owned track and operates on the right of way that intersects the proposed Keystone XL pipeline at Philip. Had the Quinn Dam just upstream of a RCPE washout failed one of its first casualties could have been the Keystone XL pipeline where it's proposed to cross the Bad River. The same geology that thwarts railroads and forces engineers to rebuild I-90 between Reliance and Rapid City and I-94 between Mandan, North Dakota and Billings, Montana every year also makes construction of the Keystone XL pipeline untenable.




Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Area properties are waiting for new owners

Are you looking for a remote 420-friendly New Mexico property where you can grow a garden? Our neighborhood might be where you want to put down roots!








Saturday, May 25, 2019

Wika takes command of the 175th Fighter Squadron


So, my ex-stepson Lt. Colonel Josh Wika took command of the 175th Fighter Squadron at Joe Foss Field, March 2, 2019. He's the short guy holding South Dakota's flag in the photo.

In the late 80s when he was a sophomore at Spearditch High School he watched Top Gun over and over on a VCR then during the Sturgis Rally that year a guy was giving rides in an ultralight so I bought him a flight. The pilot normally just did a little oval over the Redwater River but he let Josh have the stick and the kid fell in love with flying.

But during his junior year Josh sustained a knee injury during a game of American football that required orthopedic surgery and disqualified him from flying for the Air Force. After a couple of semesters at the University of Wyoming and my divorce from his mother he transferred to the University of North Dakota's Department of Aviation, graduated and joined the South Dakota Air National Guard at the 114th Fighter Wing in Sioux Falls where he flew F-16s during the second Gulf War.

In 2015 I ran into his dad at my youngest daughter's track meet at Black Hills State University in Spearditch also where my older daughter was enrolled. He said Josh will retire after he makes full Colonel.


Thursday, May 9, 2019

Udall joins Grijalva in protecting public lands from foreign miners


Wyoming blasts through treaty lands and leaves mercury trails in its wake but the Black Hills of South Dakota and Wyoming are not the only public lands plundered by foreign companies under cover of The General Mining Law of 1872. Arizona and New Mexico are being ravaged by mining, too.

The US Forest Service is often powerless to stop the extractive industry from permanently altering sensitive watersheds because of the 1872 law. Thunder Basin National Grassland west of Devil's Tower is at risk to the legislation, not to mention the ground impacted by another Canadian invasion in the form of a proposed strip mine for rare earth minerals north of Sundance.

In 2018 the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe passed resolutions condemning what they say are abuses of the General Mining Law of 1872 passed to pay Civil War debt leading to the Custer Expedition's discovery of gold in the Black Hills. Another earth hater wants to mine the Rochford area not far from Pe 'Sla on Forest Service ground:
[South Dakota] Department of Environment and Natural Resources engineer Eric Holm said this week that Dakota Resource submitted applications for permits for its project from the state in early August and that the applications were reviewed, site-inspected and approved, and only await deposit of a $20,000 reclamation bond before taking effect. [Tom Griffith, Hunting for the second Homestake]
The GOP-owned South Dakota Department of Ecocide and Natural Ruination (DENR) is a rubber stamp for earth scorching. I almost peed my pants when the Rapid City Journal editorial board said:
The 1872 Mining Act was signed by President Ulysses S. Grant at a time when the government was trying to encourage people to settle and develop the West. Updating it to shift cleanup costs and extract royalties would generate millions in federal revenue. Nearly 1,000 recent mining claims have been filed in the watershed of Montana's Blackfoot River (PDF). Congress should undertake a long overdue revision of this antiquated law.
Repeal or even reform of the 1872 statute has been thwarted repeatedly: only affected tribal nations who lost treaty ground and environmental lawyers can stop mining on public lands.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Black Hills Institute T-rex in New Mexico News

A 12 by 40-foot model of Stan, the Tyrannosaurus Rex whose fossilized bones were found by amateur paleontologist Stan Sacrison in the Hell Creek Formation near Buffalo, South Dakota in 1987, was moved from the lobby of the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science to Farmington to make room for Albuquerque's new Bisti Beast exhibit.

A team led by Pete Larson excavated and restored Stan then created models of what some call the world's second-finest T. rex fossil even after a politically motivated acting US Attorney for the District of South Dakota named Kevin Schieffer upended local control in 1992 and seized a T-Rex fossil named Sue from Pete Larson and the Black Hills Institute of Geological Research in Hill City.
Unlike Fred Nuss, Larson had felt that Sotheby's estimate was overly optimistic, and he'd somehow talked an elderly South Dakota businessman named Stanford Adelstein into traveling to New York to bid on Sue and hopefully to bring the bones back to Hill City in triumph. Larson and Stan [Sacrison] had met in 1992 in Rapid City. A mutual friend and fellow fossil hunter had introduced them, and soon Stan was taking Larson out and showing him some bones that Larson immediately recognized as a T. rex. Larson named it after Stan. In 1993, Stan led Larson to another T. rex, which they named Duffy, after Larson's lawyer, Patrick Duffy, who was handling the criminal aspects of the Sue imbroglio. [excerpt, John Tayman, Boneheads: A tale of big money, prison, Disney World, and the world's foremost dinosaur-hunting twins]
Patrick Duffy v. Kevin Schieffer:
If you haven't had a chance to watch the amazing documentary Dinosaur 13 on CNN or elsewhere, you're missing out on an in-depth look at one of the most compelling but also agonizing incidents in Black Hills history. Despite the fact we benefit from a major federal military base, and are a recipient state when it comes to taking in federal money, and we benefit from several national parks, forests and monuments, many South Dakotans would rather that "the feds" keep their hands out of our business. [editorial, Rapid City Journal]
No shit, right? In 1990, Bush 41 was wimping out by not marching on Baghdad and Mike Verchio still owned the Continental Cafe in Hill City before it burned to the ground. In 2013 then-Governor Denny Daugaard appointed the disgraced Schieffer to the South Dakota Board of Regents.

Larson has just co-authored and published findings from a study of the effects that the Chicxulub impact had on the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction and on the Hell Creek Formation near Tanis, North Dakota: A seismically induced onshore surge deposit at the KPg boundary, North Dakota.







Wednesday, April 17, 2019

More wildlife pix uploaded


Cattle egret, Bosque del Apache



Turkey tom and harem, Bosque del Apache



Blue heron, Bosque del Apache



Pronghorn near Magdalena, New Mexico




Scott's Oriole near Red Rock Road, Santa Fe County, New Mexico



The Three Sisters are winter squash, maize, and climbing beans - food staples originating in Mexico but traded to the Mandan, Iroquois and others for thousands of years. Neighbor Lori is adding their spirits to the casita.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Therapeutic cannabis being considered for New Mexico inmate patients

Opioids are now killing more Americans than guns and car crashes so last month the New Mexico Medical Cannabis Advisory Board recommended that both opioid and general substance abuse disorders should be qualifying conditions for cannabis as therapy.

Now, after Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham signed Senate Bill 406 into law interpretations of the seminal Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act might apply to patients incarcerated in the state's corrections facilities.
Jessica Gelay, New Mexico policy manager for the Drug Policy Alliance, said her group would like to see inmates have access to any needed medication, including cannabis, but also said she would leave it up to state officials to interpret the law. “The Drug Policy Alliance firmly believes that people should not lose their rights when they are incarcerated and should not be prevented from using medicine that they need,” Gelay said. “Medical cannabis patients face discrimination in all walks of life, which is why protections are needed in policy in order to dismantle stigma and permit access.” [Interpretation of updated medical cannabis law could allow all inmates access]
Keeping the industry from the clutches of a monopoly has been contentious and lawmakers in New Mexico's Democrat-dominated legislature rejected a Republican plan that would have established state-run cannabis retail operations but they did decriminalize possession of up to one half ounce.

Ketamine, a Schedule III substance long considered a 'street drug' by some lawmakers and the law enforcement industry, is now being used to treat depression.

Tweaker Ed Laird's addiction to meth drove him to burglarize a still unknown number of properties to feed his madness so perhaps his rehabilitation will include therapeutic cannabis while he serves his sentence.

New Mexico's therapeutic cannabis program is nearing 71,000 patients.

Sunday, March 31, 2019

Tweaker of Red Rock Road still behind bars

I tried to run him off the mesa at least four times after numerous run-ins while he squatted in the double wide on Red Rock Road but to no avail...until now. Thanks to neighbors Lori and Riendo who called the deputy after they saw that white pickup. During the big snow storm he had taken another blue Toyota off the road and afterwards went down a steep two-track, stuck it in the arroyo and broke in to another neighbor's place on Baja Waldo Road.
For years, it seems, Edward Laird roamed around the country — from the Southwest to New England, Oregon to Florida — brazenly breaking into homes and stealing valuables. He made headlines nationwide a decade ago, when he was accused of nabbing what was purported to be a valuable van Gogh sketch from a Santa Fe home. Until, that is, Santa Fe County sheriff’s deputies caught up with him earlier this month at what they say was a vacant home on rural Red Rock Road. Laird still refused to get up and show his hands, the statement said, so a deputy stunned him with a Taser and placed him in handcuffs. [Menace of Madrid finally caught?]
Meth head, nutcase, tweaker - it was all too obvious. One day he came up to the casita and a cat jumped out of the piece of shit pickup he was driving and ran into the desert never to be seen again.

Friday, March 29, 2019

Minnesota company enters New Mexico therapeutic cannabis market


Lawmakers in New Mexico's Democrat-dominated legislature rejected a Republican plan that would have established state-run cannabis retail operations but did decriminalize possession of up to one half ounce. The state's therapeutic cannabis program is nearing 71,000 patients.

Republicans in Minnesota's legislature also blocked legal cannabis for all adults denying the state needed revenue and leaving a thriving black market in place to enrich the law enforcement industry so Minnesota-based Vireo Health is seeking greener pastures.
America's leading science-focused, multi-state cannabis company, today announced the acquisition of an entity which manages the vertically-integrated operations of Red Barn, a holder of one New Mexico's medical cannabis licenses. Red Barn currently operates two medical cannabis dispensaries, located in Santa Fe and Gallup, and a cultivation and processing facility, located in Gallup. "Vireo Health is excited to expand our operations into New Mexico's well-established medical cannabis market," said Chief Executive Officer, Kyle Kingsley, M.D. "Red Barn is a well-respected operator in New Mexico's medical cannabis program, which has earned the trust of consumers. We look forward to welcoming Red Barn into the Vireo Family. Together, we will create best-in-class products and continue to provide patients with compassionate care." [PR Newswire]
Democratic then-Representative from New Mexico's First District, now-Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham worked with Republican-now-Libertarian former Gov. Gary Johnson to legalize cannabis for some patients but Gov. Bill Richardson, a Democrat, signed it into law.

Speaker of the New Mexico House Brian Egolf not only supports legalization for all adults he serves as legal counsel for the state's therapeutic cannabis leader, Ultra Health. Calling itself "New Mexico's No. 1 cannabis company" Big Dope Ultra is building facilities in Clayton near the borders with Texas and Oklahoma. Keeping the industry from the clutches of a monopoly has been contentious.

New Mexico's Cannabis Board is meeting today in Santa Fe to determine whether to recommend adding opioid addiction to the list of qualifying conditions for therapeutic cannabis. Last month two University of New Mexico researchers published a study on how cannabis helps treat certain medical conditions. Their results showed that smoking the herb is most effective method for people who ingest cannabis.

The entry of a major out of state cannabis player brings significant competition to Big Dope Ultra Health who entered a compact with Zionist Panaxia.


Monday, March 25, 2019

Fire suppression enabling western insect outbreaks

Bake a man a pie and he'll learn to divide by seven. Teach a man piety and he'll crucify the apples then say they died for his sins.



Opioids now killing more Americans than guns and car crashes

New Mexico’s Medical Cannabis Board is scheduled to meet March 29 in Santa Fe to decide whether to recommend adding opioid addiction to the list of qualifying conditions for the state’s therapeutic cannabis program.
Opioids now kill more Americans than car accidents or guns. Along with alcoholism and suicide (which may itself be partly driven by opioid addiction), opioids are part of the so-called deaths of despair phenomenon that has helped increase white American mortality rates since the turn of the century. Legalizing marijuana at the federal level would help, too — legalization has been found to lower opioid use. [How the Opioid Crisis Makes Everyone Poorer]
Last month two University of New Mexico researchers published a study on how cannabis helps treat certain medical conditions.

States with the most alcohol-impaired driving deaths are Montana, South Carolina, North Dakota, Alabama, South Dakota, Texas and Wyoming. Republican-glutted states are the drunkest, kill the most kids, are the most obese and most addicted to opioids.

Obesity and mental illness are closely linked, especially in northern tier states. Rich people can save themselves since they merely flee South and complain that immigrants are taking over the workforce; but, poverty chains those who live in despair year 'round.

Friday, March 22, 2019

Glass remains a municipal waste stream challenge


Glass sculpture at Tinkertown Museum near Sandia Park, New Mexico

One material in the waste stream remains a challenge: glass. It takes enormous amounts of energy to melt and millions of yards of earth to disturb every year to mine the silica used in its manufacture.

Japan recycles nearly 100% of her glass but the US has thousands of mountains of glass cullet from the municipal waste stream waiting to be repurposed.
The Santa Fe Solid Waste Management Agency Joint Powers Board is considering a contract amendment that could cost in excess of $200,000 a year for an Española trucking company to haul most of the glass collected here to the Momentum Recycling plant in Broomfield, Colo., between Denver and Boulder. The Momentum company, however, is less strict in accepting glass, accepting loads that have up to 25 percent nonglass material, such as plastic and paper that make it into the glass deposit bins. [Santa Fe New Mexican]
According to NPR reports and other sources the Earth isn't producing sand fast enough to keep up with the humans. We sell millions of tons of salvage material to India and Asia to be recycled while tearing up our own ground mining for virgin minerals while steel and plastics, that could be petroleum, are buried in landfills.

If hydraulic fracturing has to occur why not divert and mine waste glass from landfills for frac sand instead of ripping up the Earth for new sources of quartz?


Monday, March 18, 2019

Neighborhood hosts production of Perpetual Grace, LTD



The production company for an upcoming series that airs beginning in June and stars Academy Award winner Ben Kingsley has been shooting in our neighborhood on the Santo Domingo Pueblo's portion of the Galisteo Dam Road, the Cochiti Pueblo's portion of the Tetilla Peak Road and at the Bonanza Creek Ranch. The soundtrack includes work from The Deep South scheduled to appear and perform at the Santa Fe Brewing Company in July. Sam Peckinpah shot a bunch of scenes for the 1978 film Convoy out here, too.
Since 2016, productions shot in New Mexico include six feature films, eight television series and another five TV pilots from Red River to Albuquerque to Las Cruces – employing more than 10,000 cast and crew, and 30,000 part-time extras. The film and television business has, since 2003, accounted for $3.44 billion in local spending – on wages and payments to New Mexico businesses that sell goods and services to productions. [Four stars for expanded NM film tax incentives]


Somebody tagged the mailboxes on the Galisteo Dam Road!

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Bullock sold out Montana's cannabis pioneers


In 2012 when Steve Bullock was Montana's attorney general running for governor he failed to show up for the rights of same-sex couples to marry and for an initiated therapeutic cannabis law.

His silence on one high-profile case was so deafening that his collusion with the federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and other Justice officials could barely be heard whispering it in courtroom hallways. The jury in the case didn't hear all the facts because the judge sent them home after instructing them to ignore the medical value of cannabis.

Chris Williams was the only person in the case not to plea bargain but his former partners took deals and testified against him. Williams faced forty five years in prison, was found guilty on eight charges and was led away in handcuffs. He ended up spending some five years in federal prison.
Federal attorneys danced around the elephant in the middle of the U.S. District courtroom in Helena for the third day in the trial of Christopher Williams, finally mentioning Montana’s Medical Marijuana Act only after the jury was dismissed for the day on Wednesday. Williams readily agreed that he had formed a partnership with Thomas Daubert, Chris Lindsey and Richard Flor in the spring of 2009. But it was only after the jurors had left the room that Daubert, Lindsey, Williams and his attorney, Michael Donahoe, outlined before Judge Dana Christensen the full story of why they created the business and wanted high standards.

“This case is being prosecuted in federal court. As such, the case is governed exclusively by federal law,” Christensen said. “Under federal law, marijuana is a Schedule I controlled substance. Federal law prohibits the manufacture, distribution, possession with intent to distribute, simple possession and use of marijuana for any purpose. State laws related to the legality of marijuana in certain circumstances have no bearing on the issues before you and provide no defense to any charge against the defendant as set forth in the superseding indictment. [Medical cannabis defendant tells full story after jury leaves]
Eve Byron revisted her 2012 stories in the aftermath of the case.
Fifteen years ago, three men tried to create the “gold standard” for growing and dispensing medical marijuana in Montana. Instead, the lawyer, the lobbyist and the farmer wound up as convicted felons. The number of registered patients dropped over the years as various reforms were enacted. But that’s changing, too; as of Jan. 1, 2019, Montana reported 31,186 patients were enrolled in the state medical marijuana program. Although Lindsey is still active in the legalization movement, he, Daubert and Williams all paid dearly for their involvement in Montana's medical marijuana industry. Daubert said the fourth Montana Cannabis partner, Flor, perhaps met the worst fate. Flor died from medical problems in a Las Vegas jail during a layover in a prison transfer in August 2012, while serving his five-year sentence. [The lawyer, the lobbyist and the farmer: Montana marijuana advocates' rise and fall]
Medical insurance has been a hot topic during Montana's 2019 legislative session and in 2017 the body voted to tax therapeutic cannabis. Democratic Governor Steve Bullock vetoed an earth hater bill that would have restricted women's access to reproductive health care.

Despite Republican entrenchment Democrats in Montana's legislature worked to bring better testing for contaminants to better serve that state's therapeutic cannabis patients and providers. Montana and the legislature are being flooded with cash from Koch-backed 'Americans For Prosperity' in a state where the far white wing is pushing the legislature to seize federal lands to mine, log, graze, whatever to pay back their benefactors.

It's been said countless times that The Last Best Place is not Oregon (even though the states show commonality in the white nationalist bloc) and elects Democrats with Blue Dog credentials: both Senator Jon Tester and Bullock believe that with vigilant environmental oversight they would support TransCanada's tarsands enema beginning in Montana. Montana's Left has a hard-on for what it perceives as Democrats being GOP-lite who have deserted progressive ideals just to woo centrist voters.

Practical choices beat Democrats in 2016 because our candidates ran away from President Obama, marriage equality and cannabis rights but now Democrats are keenly aware that to energize millennials and a jaded base radical times call for sensible approaches to reforms of civil liberties for all adults. Unless money is raised the earth haters and Nazis of the GOP will keep defining our priorities and buying elections.

Hey, Governor Bullock, instead of gallivanting off to Iowa don't make the same mistake Brian Schweitzer made by allowing a US Senate seat fall to Steve Daines; retake it.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Mountaintop-removal mine resurrected in Wyoming Black Hills


The divide between the Little Missouri and the Belle Fourche drainages is not very wide at the Missouri Buttes in northeastern Wyoming. At that location it's not difficult to visualize how the Clovis People migrating into the region some 12,000 years ago seeking shelter and food sources found their way into lands free of glaciation. There are at least 23 prehistoric sites near Devils Tower National Monument (Mahto Tipila) some of which are archaeological treasures eligible for the National Register of Historic Places.

But today more Canadians are taking advantage of Wyoming's continued assault on that portion of the Black Hills. A mine intended to remove Bull Hill from the headwaters of the Beaver Creek drainage in the Bearlodge Ranger District then replace it with a pile of waste rock could pollute the Belle Fourche and Cheyenne Rivers even worse than they are now.

In January of 2016, the US Forest Service suspended the Draft Environmental Impact Study for a Wyoming Black Hills mountaintop-removal mine that would take minerals containing elements like neodymium and praseodymium extracted from the Belle Fourche watershed. In 2017 Rare Element Resources said its project to strip mine a part of the Bearlodge Mountains just upstream of the South Dakota border had a new investor and applied for enough water for the mineral separation process despite widespread contamination in Crook County wells.
Rare Element Resources (RER) has announced it will spend the first nine months of 2019 completing a pilot plant campaign to verify all the steps in its proprietary process of separating rare earth elements. Whether the Bear Lodge Project is revived after that study will depend on an evaluation of the results. The Forest Service confirms that it has not yet been asked to resume the permitting process, according to Scott Jacobson, Public Information Officer. As to what it would take to relaunch the process, he says: “For us to get things going would really depend on what the company would propose to do. The company suspended operations three years ago so we would need to assemble a team of various specialists…review the company’s proposal and get the NEPA process started again. If the company decides to start up again, our timing would depend on if they would like to proceed with their plan of operations from three years ago, or if there are changes.” [Sundance Times]
Acid mine drainage can kill or cause birth defects in the birds and mammals that happen into contaminated standing water on these sites. Wyoming Senator John Barrasso and the other Earth raping Republicans are working overtime to defund environmental protection, especially on public lands.
In pursuit of riches and energy over the last 5,000 years, humans have released into the environment 385,000 tons of mercury, the source of numerous health concerns, according to a new study that challenges the idea that releases of the metal are on the decline. [Science Daily]
If human activity has released all those tons of mercury, would it not follow that we have also released proportional amounts of carbon?

The US is beginning to get religion on existing rare earth stocks; we have more buried in landfills than all other developed countries combined. Japan recovers most of her needs from the waste stream.

ip photo: Missouri Buttes and Devils Tower at sunset.

Monday, March 4, 2019

UNM study: all cannabis ingestion is medical

Back in 2011 Bob Newland got me thinking again about how humans developed a technology to ingest the smoke of native plants.

The concept is simple enough; imagine seeing a horn or an antler smoking in a lightning-caused fire looking like a novel way to move burning material from place to place. Protohumans mastered fire about 790,000 years ago, after all. Smoking mixtures came with humans as they passed through Beringia. White Buffalo Calf Woman brought the pipe to the Plains cultures.

Last month two University of New Mexico researchers published a study on how cannabis helps treat certain medical conditions. Their results showed that smoking the herb is most effective method for people who ingest cannabis.
The findings mark a contrast to conventional wisdom that cannabidiol, or CBD, is the part of the marijuana that contains medical benefits while tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, “merely makes one high,” said Jacob Miguel Vigil, an associate professor in the Department of Psychology. “If you are taking it because you are stressed out after work … well in theory those are medicinal purposes,” Vigil said. [Albuquerque Journal]
God might not be enough for religious states. They lead the nation in anti-depressant use and as another brutal winter smothers the Great Plains leaving residents on the verge of suicide one writer sees hope.
If there is one observation I feel compelled to share after five years in the cannabis industry, it is that I do believe that all cannabis use is medical. When the modern medical cannabis movement began a little over a decade ago, very little was remembered about the benefits that the cannabis plant has to offer. The phytocannabinoids produced by the plant are in essence exactly what the body needs to maintain a healthy, balanced endocannabinoid system. So if you think you are a recreational user of cannabis, you might want to think again. [Erica Freeman]
The comparison between the absence of power in the New Mexico Republican Party and the flaccidity of the South Dakota Democratic Party in my home state is dizzying in its similarity.
Steve Pearce, the losing candidate for governor last year and now chairman of the New Mexico Republican Party, wants to blame Democrats for the snowballing effort to legalize recreational marijuana. Senate Bill 577, the Republican initiative, calls for marijuana to be sold in state-owned stores. Pearce and the Republicans lost every statewide election last year. They also were routed in the competition for control of the state House of Representatives. Democrats now control the House 46-24, their widest margin since 1996. Worse for the Republicans, they have a thin bench. Not a single member of their ranks looks capable of mounting a serious challenge next year to Democratic U.S. Sen. Tom Udall. [GOP chairman can’t make hay out of cannabis]
Alaska suffers as do other states in the frozen tundra red states where access to affordable health care is virtually non-existent but legal cannabis there helps to ease the doldrums.
Alaskans have to wait until December 21 to see the light slowly increasing daily, and for most that day can’t come soon enough. “It looks like seasonal affective disorder (S.A.D.) is related to low light levels,” said psychologist and depression specialist Suzanne Strisik. “[That] is when we are around the holidays and we are trying to adjust to those low light levels.” [Megan Edge]
Obesity and mental illness are closely linked, especially in northern tier states like South Dakota. Rich people can save themselves since they merely flee South and complain that immigrants are taking over the workforce; but, poverty chains those who live in despair year 'round.

Migration must be celebrated, not outlawed. Statehood for Mexico would mean more people could save themselves from brutal winters in the North.

Saturday, March 2, 2019

Therapeutic cannabis finally arrives in North Dakota

In 2016 North Dakota voters passed Measure 5 then the legislature drafted rules and a Republican governor signed it into law.

The Botanist in Fargo is the first of eight planned therapeutic cannabis dispensaries in North Dakota for 130 patients or caregivers and the state is processing another 120 applications.
The dispensary has a large waiting room after a person enters with workers behind a large glass window where patients can check in. Some discounts will be offered, including 25 percent for veterans and 10 percent for senior citizens over age 65, low-income residents and caregivers who are providing product for minors. Paperwork will be required for low-income residents to gain a discount. [Barry Amundson, Inforum]
There is concern among activists that Republican operatives will provide names of patients to the Trump Organization that would prevent them from purchasing firearms.

North Dakota's failed poorly-written Amendment 3 that would have legalized for all adults also included language that would have forced the expungement of the records for some cannabis convictions yet in its repressive, nanny state neighbor to the south if you're even suspected of ingesting cannabis members of the law enforcement industry will force a catheter into your urethra and seize your assets.
In a new study titled, "The Association between Cannabis Product Characteristics and Symptom Relief," published in the journal Scientific Reports, UNM researchers Sarah See Stith, assistant professor in the Department of Economics, and Jacob Miguel Vigil, associate professor in the Department of Psychology, found that THC and CBD contents were the most important factor for optimizing symptom relief for a wide variety of health conditions. [THC found more important for therapeutic effects in cannabis than originally thought]
Why anyone would want to buy hybrid genetically engineered cannabis seed from Bayer CropScience/Monsanto or some other earth hater every year remains a mystery. It costs about $50,000 to plant 20 acres of GMO hemp so let your non-tribal corn ground laden with glyphosate go fallow for five years and see if you can get organic certification for your value-added crop.

CBD products being sold in South Dakota and other states are little different from raw milk, preserves, pies or juices that are often tainted with hormones, pesticides and worse but sold at farmers markets anyway. Giving the products as gifts is one thing but selling untested product especially through interstate commerce is completely different. The only reason farmer grow crops like corn and soybeans is because they're subsidized sending commodity prices into the shitter.





Monday, February 25, 2019

Just say it: Republicanism is Nazism

How frustrating it must be for principled conservatives to have establishment Republicans in the South Dakota legislature encouraging intellectual diversity on campus while ridiculing it in the statehouse.

It’s difficult to imagine a movie version of Mein Kampf that's any more terrifying than the one showing right now in Pierre during the 2019 legislative session.
The voters who put Trump in office and endorse him have gotten what they want and have reshaped the country. The United States is experiencing the kind of moral and intellectual transformation that Germany did in the 1930s. The parallels of what the Germans did to the Jews and what Americans are doing to Latinos and other immigrants are striking. We now understand that Hitler had many collaborators in Germany and in the countries he invaded that desired the Holocaust and all the persecution of minorities that were part of it. Trump has a lot of help and approval in the Nazification of America. One of his most effective henchmen is Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. [excerpt, David Newquist, If you wonder how Nazis and the Holocaust happened, the American Reich is putting on a demonstration]
The United States was founded on the backs of slaves as systematic genocide became a way of life for white christians quoting scripture as they slaughtered their fellow humans. After colonizers realized enslaved American Indians had no resistance to diseases brought from the Old World, Africans were imported to do the dirty work.

In 1888 L. Frank Baum began editing the South Dakota newspaper The Aberdeen Saturday Pioneer where he advocated for the extermination of American Indians.
Let’s take a close look at some of South Dakota’s more nefarious history because this part of it is synonymous with Hitler’s efforts at genocide. Think about it: He, just like Adolph Hitler, called for the genocide of a race of people. Now what is the difference to what Hitler wrote and what L. Frank Baum wrote? There is none. But then keep in mind that Hitler was just writing about Jews and Baum about Indians, totally inconsequential to the Master Race and the white settlers. [Tim Giago]
In the early twentieth century after President Theodore Roosevelt invited Booker T. Washington to the White House white supremacists began erecting statuary commemorating and celebrating treason in the United States.
When West Virginia House of Delegates member Eric Porterfield, R-Mercer, called the LGBT community “the modern-day version of the Ku Klux Klan” in an interview with a Charleston Gazette-Mail reporter last week, it drew condemnation not just in the state, but nationwide. But Porterfield, in fact, joined a long legacy of right-wing evangelicals who have conflated legal protections for lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and transgender people with white supremacy and domestic terrorism. [When W.Va. Delegate Compared LGBT to KKK, He Highlighted the History of Religious Right Prejudice]
After Orson Welles' 1938 radio broadcast of War of the Worlds Adolf Hitler cited the ensuing panic as "evidence of the decadence and corrupt condition of democracy" then modeled his final solution on the Native American Genocide. General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union Joseph Stalin actually used the radio play to his advantage.
The Horten brothers were involved in the flying disc crash in New Mexico. And that is from a single source. ... There was an unusual moment where that source became very upset and told me things that were stunning that's almost impossible to believe at first read. And that is that a flying disc really did crash in New Mexico and it was transported to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, and then in 1951 it was transferred to Area 51, which is why the base is called Area 51. [Area 51 'Uncensored': Was It UFOs Or The USSR?]
In South Dakota Moody and Pennington Counties struggle with racism on daily and local levels. Confederate flags routinely fly in Rapid City showing support for racism in like-minded states, South Carolina and Mississippi. Many more come out during the Sturgis Rally as bikers in the Black Hills flaunting their racist bents fly the flag of slavery from their machines. Gettysburg, South Dakota remains a white supremacist stronghold.

Rosebud rapper, Frank Waln, is a survivor of the genocide visited against tribal nations. Over eight hundred people were arrested outside Standing Rock during the Dakota Excess demonstrations, 155 arrested in Ferguson and only four were arrested in Charlottesville.

South Dakota's Republican congressional delegation and legislature embrace white privilege every day.
But this process has a rather Reichstag feel to it. A governor, the head of the executive branch of government, gets to appoint whom he or she wants to the legislative branch. Get enough appointments and you’ve basically captured another branch of government that’s supposed to be a check and balance on you. The state Legislature in South Dakota already has a built in disadvantage vis-à-vis the executive. The legislature meets for about 40 days a year in the first quarter of the year. Meanwhile, the Governor and his or her administration runs state government 24/7. Like they are supposed to in a democracy, not a Reichstag. [Todd Epp]
Right to life? Not if you're non-white or noncomforming in America or South Dakota.

Republican is not just another word for earth hater; it's another word for Nazi.