Thursday, April 16, 2015

Chronicles the #1 American Tragedy



If you’re American, the documented facts in Smoke Signals on the US history of marijuana should outrage you. If you’re not American, you’ll understand the ludicrous and draconian US policy against industrial hemp and marijuana inflicted on its citizens for nearly a century. Author Martin A. Lee pulls no punches demonstrating how the US government has repeatedly screwed over the people in a misguided war that was doomed to fail from the start, a war with implications that are impossible to quantify.

Ridiculous in concept, it’s a war against a plant, hemp-marijuana-cannabis, that has been loved throughout human civilization for noble reasons. A plant that was a required crop during colonial times for its myriad of uses, and a plant that was recalled by the government during the Hemp For Victory campaign of WWII.

Bravo to Lee for creating a treasure chest of marijuana history from the introduction to US society to the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937 and Reefer Madness through enduring tyranny over the decades to the changes happening in places like Colorado and recent medical breakthroughs with cannabinoids. America has been crippled in countless ways by our “leaders” because of their steadfast demonization of this wondrous plant and its potentials, chronicled poetically by the author.

How could our “leaders” brainwash US citizens saying it had no medical value whatsoever? How could they poison our world with plastics, petroleum and dangerous chemicals while imprisoning moms and pops and seizing their properties?

Mr. Lee’s book should be read by the masses, especially at a time when extensive marijuana reform is happening. You can’t keep a great truth from rising. Marijuana is not only for people suffering from cancer and other ailments but for everyone who wants it because it simply makes them FEEL GOOD.

Americans love to sing how we’re the land of the free and the home of the brave, but in some ways Americans have been hoodwinked into submission as the opposite of what our founder fathers envisioned. Washington, Jefferson and Franklin would be speechless if they knew future generations would make hemp a crime worse than murder in some cases.

Bravo to Kerouac, Ginsberg, Kesey, Dylan, The Dead, Brownie Mary, Debby Goldsberry, Ed Rosanthal, Dennis Perron and a plethora of other freedom fighters in the book who never gave in to an oppressive regime. As Perron and others have rightfully pointed out, the American government should be held accountable for reparations for the suffering it inflicted on individuals and the country as a whole.

No wonder we can’t build prisons fast enough because they’re overflowing with non-violent marijuana offenses. How many trillions of dollars have been wasted funding this stupid war while extorting unreasonable finances from people trying to afford a plant that for a time became more expensive per ounce than gold? What else will we discover when doctors can finally research the plant entirely? How much harm has been done with toxic and overpriced pharmaceuticals and health care? The questions go on and on.

It's a great book. Check out Smoke Signals at Amazon.

What are your thoughts? Share a comment.
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Tuesday, March 03, 2015

The Union: The Business Behind Getting High

Adam Scorgie's and Brett Harvey's 2007 documentary, The Union: The Business Behind Getting High, deserves to be seen especially before watching the sequel for 2015, The Culture High.


Interesting highlights include:
  • Cannabis-hemp-marijuana has been the largest agricultural crop in the world throughout history.
  • Marijuana has now been illegal for over 70 years, the longest sustained war in American history.
  • Tobacco is subsidized by the government, made into cigarettes with added chemicals that contribute to heart disease and cancer, killing 480,000 people in the US per year.
  • Alcohol contributes to approx. 85,000 deaths per year.
  • In 10,000 years of marijuana use, no known deaths are directly attributed to it.
  • Law enforcers claim that alcohol contributes to violent crime, but marijuana does not.
  • Prohibition makes matters worse because it brings crime into it.
  • US government spends nearly $8 billion/year on marijuana prohibition.
  • More people are in jail for marijuana possession than for murder, rape, robbery and assault combined.
  • The US has more prisoners per capita than any other nation; over 45,000 current prisoners are serving time for marijuana violations.
  • Marijuana legalization threatens the bottom line for many industries including oil, pharmaceutical, timber, plastics and textile.
  • Pharmaceutical medicines kill over 100,000 people per year.
What are your thoughts? Share a comment.
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Friday, January 09, 2015

CBD Cannabidiol Ends Child's Seizures

A clip from The Culture High. A father resorts to medicinal cannabis for his 7-year old son who has suffered seizures since age 4 months, sometimes hundreds of seizures per day and was prescribed 12 different medications, 22 pills per day from Jayden's doctors. CBD marijuana extract ended the seizures.
CBD has under 1% THC so it doesn't get Jayden high.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a cannabis compound that has significant medical benefits, but does not make people feel “stoned” and can actually counteract the psychoactivity of THC. The fact that CBD-rich cannabis doesn’t get one high makes it an appealing treatment option for patients seeking anti-inflammatory, anti-pain, anti-anxiety, anti-psychotic, and/or anti-spasm effects without troubling lethargy or dysphoria. - Learn more about CBD and medical cannabis at ProjectCBD.org 

What are your thoughts? Share a comment.
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Friday, December 12, 2014

Cannabidiol CBD, Marijuana Medicine Without the High

CBD is Cannabidiol, the second most prominent chemical compound within marijuana, yet it's taken a distant backseat to THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) over years of selective breeding. That's changing fast as scientists and doctors begin to understand CBD better, which may be far more responsible for medical benefits than THC, the component that makes one feel high. CBD is not psycho-active, an obvious bonus for patients who want natural relief from medical marijuana but don't want to feel stoned.

CBD may be a treatment for chronic pain, diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular disease, alcoholism, PTSD, schizophrenia, antibiotic-resistant infections, rheumatoid arthritis, MS, epilepsy, and other neurological disorders.

What are your thoughts? Share a comment.

Find out much more info at Project CBD (http://www.projectcbd.org/).


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Tuesday, December 02, 2014

New Video Course: Bestselling Keywords for Amazon Authors

Prlog.com - Pismo Beach, CA.

Knowing which keywords to choose and how to use them effectively is a common need for many authors. This online course makes keyword research simple to help authors get their books to rank higher with search terms used by Amazon readers.

A new video course focuses on finding smarter keywords. Just released by self-publishing instructor, Jason Matthews, Bestselling Keywords for Amazon Authors is now available at Udemy and other online educational retailers. The course was created for writers who struggle with metadata and keyword selection, helping make that aspect of publishing easier. It’s designed for writers about to publish and for those already selling books on Amazon. It teaches methods for identifying relevant and popular keywords and categories for any book. It also shows keyword implementation, which helps readers discover books using Amazon’s search engine.

Keywords can be effectively added throughout Amazon’s publishing platform, including in the author’s KDP dashboard, the book’s title, subtitle, product description and within the actual interior text. The course uses Amazon’s search engine in conjunction with Google’s Keyword Planner for research and decision making. It’s a time-saver enabling books to rank higher in search results for their chosen terms.

19 video lectures combine for 77 minutes of instruction with quizzes and supplemental text that includes links to websites listed in the course. Each video shows real-time examples and are between 2 to 5 minutes in length.

Using keywords wisely helps any book rank higher with Amazon’s search engine and places it in front of more perspective readers. This course can be accessed with a discount coupon code at https://www.udemy.com/bestselling-keywords-for-amazon-authors/?couponCode=Keyword7.
Check out the video on YouTube:

About Jason Matthews

Jason Matthews is an author of multiple books in fiction and non-fiction. He’s an avid blogger, speaker and publishing coach. His specialties are building author platform, selling at retailers, social media, blogging and SEO. He teaches a series of author training videos at Udemy and other online educational retailers.

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Voters Approve Legal Marijuana in Washington D.C.-Oregon-Alaska!

flickr photos/emiliep/346381107/
Initiative 71 in Washington D.C. passed as expected by a wide margin, allowing the right for people over 21 to possess up to two ounces of marijuana for personal use and grow modest amounts at home. It does not allow people to smoke in public nor does it allow for selling, though it lets people "give" marijuana to others over 21. The bill still faces a review by Congress in January. With smooth sailing the new law could go into effect by April of 2015.

Oregon voters just created America’s third legal marijuana market. Measure 91 also passed by a wide margin, legalizing recreational marijuana for people over 21, allowing possession of up to eight ounces of “dried” marijuana and up to four plants. The Oregon Liquor Control Commission will regulate sales.

In Alaska voters approved Ballot Measure 2, which allows for cultivation, possession and sales to those over 21 with state taxes on regulated sales.

The majority of Floridians voted to legalize medical marijuana, but Amendment 2 did not pass by the needed 60% to go into effect. Oh well, think 2016.

It's pretty clear Americans are tired of the war on marijuana (and hopefully hemp too). Hats off to all the voters who helped make new realities in this country. Next mission, 2016. America, are you ready to fix this injustice of a prohibition on one of the world's greatest natural resources?
--
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Saturday, November 01, 2014

NY Times Gets It: Time to Legalize

courtesy flickr photos/minow/5129134923
Great NY Times editorial board article on why the war on marijuana is a failure at many levels. Thank you, editorial board!
It took 13 years for the United States to come to its senses and end Prohibition, 13 years in which people kept drinking, otherwise law-abiding citizens became criminals and crime syndicates arose and flourished. It has been more than 40 years since Congress passed the current ban on marijuana, inflicting great harm on society just to prohibit a substance far less dangerous than alcohol.
The federal government should repeal the ban on marijuana.
We reached that conclusion after a great deal of discussion among the members of The Times’s Editorial Board, inspired by a rapidly growing movement among the states to reform marijuana laws.
There are no perfect answers to people’s legitimate concerns about marijuana use. But neither are there such answers about tobacco or alcohol, and we believe that on every level — health effects, the impact on society and law-and-order issues — the balance falls squarely on the side of national legalization. That will put decisions on whether to allow recreational or medicinal production and use where it belongs — at the state level....(continue reading NY Times article)

What do you think--is it time to finally legalize it? Leave a comment.
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Thursday, October 23, 2014

Marijuana Vote 2014: Should Pot Be Legal?

https://www.flickr.com/photos/diversey/9179211415
The 2014 midterm election has a few eye-catching marijuana initiatives, either for medicinal use or to legalize it as Colorado and Washington did in 2012. Those landmark states allow adults over 21 to possess and use pot in modest amounts though the details get a little murkier when it comes to transactions like selling, the exact weights, the ages and home locations of people involved. Go figure.
23 other states have already passed some measure of medicinal use and/or decriminalized personal use of small amounts. Thoughts ahead to 2016 include how many states may allow further medical use, further recreational use, further pet use (see below), or even talk of downright federal legalization.

Legalize it?
Seems like a stretch since the federal government still classifies cannabis as a Schedule 1 drug, the most dangerous controlled substance category that has "no known medical use and is highly abusive." Cocaine is a Schedule 2 drug, allowing for medical use. What about the approximately 40,000 inmates currently in prison for marijuana-related offenses? (That's more than inmates of homicides, burglaries and sex crimes combined.)
Oregon and Alaska both have similar measures, 91 and 2, to what Colorado and Washington have passed, essentially legalizing personal use and in theory benefiting from the commodity's taxation. The problem  is that most pot is still sold under the table to avoid excessive taxes, plus banks are shy to do business with weed dealers. Again, go figure. But if Oregon and Alaska legalize marijuana, that should royally piss off Californians to be so far behind the times since California was the state that got the whole medical joint rolling back in 1996. Hard to believe it's been 18 years.

Grandma likes herb
One state voting on medicinal marijuana is Florida, which has by far the largest percentage of citizens over 65, an age group noted for care-taking needs and often steeped in tradition. Just guessing, might be a close vote there.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/dustinq/485932555

Undo the damage done
Perhaps the most interesting vote since the 1937 Marijuana Tax Act is Initiative 71 in Washington D.C. that seeks to fully legalize the possession and use of up to two ounces of marijuana and the possession and cultivation of up to three marijuana plants. If it passes, one would assume the lines drawn by the federal government will need to be made much clearer or perhaps eliminated altogether.

The future
The horizon is poised for an explosive evolution, similar to when the large lizards died out and mammals roamed freely. Imagine buying a snack from a pot vending machine like the ones distributed by Zazzz. Or for those who like their feet more grounded, how about cannabidiol for your ailments, all the healing without the high? There's even companies like Canna-Pet that make pet food, treats and oils. Again, it's for good health and not for getting Kitty stoned, you can stick to the catnip for that. And my cereal wouldn't be the same without a scoop of hemp seeds thrown in, bought at Costco but imported from Canada of course.

Okay, you can have your weed but God please not your hemp!
IMO, the strangest aspect about all of this is that hemp is still illegal, a wonderful plant that can be used for textiles, plastics, paper, food, fuels, building materials and much more. Believe it or not, it used to be illegal NOT to grow hemp in Virginia due to its versatility. Fun fact: hemp doesn't get you high, it's simply a great plant that can be used for just about anything and that's why our forefathers grew it. The war against this plant is beyond something that doesn't make sense; it's a paradox and a travesty and seriously needs fixing.

What do you think--should pot be legal? Or dare I say it, should hemp be legal? Leave a comment.
--
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Thursday, September 04, 2014

Still No NFL Black Kickers. What gives?


The 2014-15 season begins as another year with no black kickers in the NFL, adding to the perplexing absence at the position. African Americans represent 67% of the players and over half historically, making this so mind-boggling. (Punters and place-kickers are different positions if you're thinking of Marquette King.)
Since the Super Bowl era began in 1966, about 60% of the NFL has consisted of black players while the place-kicker position has been represented by less than 1/1000 for black players.
The paradox begs for understanding. Is a bizarre underlying prejudice at play, or are black kickers simply the world's rarest athlete?
The NFL is currently in its 49th season of the Super Bowl era, which has had 1,610 starting kicker positions to fill. Only 5 black kickers representing 14 seasons have filled those spots.
The most peculiar sports statistic of all time, the question remains: why? Who are those kickers and what could explain this?
Click below to read the full article...

Black Kickers in the NFL: the Final Prejudice or the Rarest Athlete?

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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Lessons from the Dying


Dead? Part of my consciousness resisted the notion even though I was moving fast beyond the hunch that it was possible. I remained stuck in space, waffling over what to do. The light continued to draw me to it, not in a demanding way but like a gentle invitation.
“There is as much time as you need,” the voice said with such compassion that I felt completely at ease, which resulted in an outpour of emotion. I didn’t want to cry but there was no resisting. The emotions flowed from me like water from a busted dam as the realization hit home that everything I had known was now in the past, forever separated. The voice reassured me as it said, “Many souls encounter what you’re feeling now.”
I continued to sob, still wanting to hold back but knowing that wasn’t possible. The emotions were set free in a way I had never experienced, slowly morphing into a sound I’d never made before. It was no longer a weeping of only sadness but a release of fear, frustration and resentment mixed with relief, joy, even love. The sounds of all emotions combined into a melody of pure expression. Then they passed and left me as quickly as they had come.
I settled into a peaceful acceptance. I relaxed and focused more clearly on the light source, allowing the brilliant yet soft glow to draw me in.
At last I said, “I’m okay.”
“You are.”
The final thing I said before joining the light was, “I’m surprised I hadn’t thought about this more.”
***
Most of us don’t think much about our mortality. We don’t wake up and wonder if today might be our last. Instead we think about the things on our schedule and in the days ahead. But some people do go through their day occasionally wondering, will I die today? It’s hard for the rest of us to imagine what that must be like.
There are many people who are close to their dying days and conscious of it. Usually we think of the elderly, but this also includes children and younger adults, anyone with a condition that is ending their lifetime imminently. Whether you spend time with people who know they are experiencing final days, or if you research them and read books by hospice workers, it should be noted how often their recommendations and reflections on life contain similar themes. The consistency of their advice should be taken to heart like pearls of wisdom.
What are some lessons from the dying elderly? People who have lived full lives and are winding down typically say things like this:
  • Do what you love.
  • Life is short; appreciate the time you have.
  • Don’t work too hard or worry so much about money.
  • Relationships are everything. Make time for family and friends. Give love.
  • Be honest.
  • Forgive everyone. Forgive yourself.
  • If you owe someone an apology, give it.
  • Be happy.
It’s not surprising that many children and younger adults with life-threatening illnesses speak about similar themes:
  • Be yourself and let others be who they are.
  • Be grateful for your blessings.
  • Time is precious.
  • People matter.
  • Follow your dreams.
Hospice care expert, Dr. Lani Leary Ph.D., has worked with hundreds of patients experiencing their final days. She has found dying people do not fear death; they are more concerned about emotional abandonment, not feeling connected to loved ones or not feeling valued. Dr. Leary says dying people want these things:
  • They want us to listen. Listen openly without judgment, assumptions or comparisons. Be comfortable with silence too.
  • They want us to touch them. Dying people may feel self-conscious, even ugly or undesirable. Physical touch helps tremendously whether it’s holding their hands, embracing them or gently brushing their hair.
  • They want our love and permission to let go, that they may leave this lifetime without feeling like they quit on us, failed us somehow or abandoned us (Leary, 2011).
When you take the advice of those about to pass on and combine that with their final requests from us, it becomes a pretty good recipe for wise living. Imagine if more people in the world:
     Better You, Better Me by Jason Matthews
  • Listened without judging and let people be who they want to be.
  • Touched each other more openly, in a caring way meant to appreciate the other person.
  • Focused on improving relationships, cultivating happiness along with forgiveness for everyone.
This is easier said than done, but wouldn’t the world be a better place if more of us had this philosophy? I knew I needed to improve in these areas, which were among my first focal points in being a better version of me. The focus on the bigger picture is an ever-present theme. We’ll discuss these concepts and others throughout the chapters of this book. We’ll also cover ways to remember and apply the concepts, which have remarkable results.

This book is available at Amazon.

 --
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