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How Cannabis Helps Veterans Heal Their Battle Scars

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Many veterans swear cannabis helps them cope with their post-war symptoms. And thanks to Bryan Buckley and the team at the Battle Brother’s Foundation, US vets might soon have a stronger case to support their claim that cannabis can help treat PTSD. 

Bryan Buckley served in the US Marine Corps for 9 years, his first deployment was to Fallujah, Iraq. He has also served in Africa and SouthEast Asia.
I went into the military after the events of 9/11,
Once he made Team Commander for the Marine Raiders (the US Marines’ special operations force), Bryan also served in Afghanistan, particularly in the Helmand Valley. 

I’ve had some high ranking people tell me that the summer of 2012 when we were in Afghanistan was the bloodiest summer for American special operation forces since Vietnam”, Bryan explains, remembering his service in Operation Enduring Freedom (the US government’s tag name for its Global War on Terror).
“And I came out of the military 100% disabled and with 100% post-traumatic stress.”

I swallowed before asking Bryan about his injuries.
In 2012, we were fighting in the Helmand province”. His words cut through the silent phone line like a knife.
During one of those days, I heard a round go past my head. It was from an underbarrel grenade launcher. The grenade exploded right next to me. I took shrapnel to my leg, all throughout my back and to my face. Two of my teammates were wounded as well; one of them lost part of his tricep and the other guy took shrapnel to his stomach.
Bryan nearly lost his left leg following the injuries he sustained that day.
Later that year, he also fell 15 feet from a helicopter, dislocating his ankle and fracturing his spine.
War is a crazy place”.

Image courtesy of Helmand Valley Growers Company.

Bryan’s physical wounds healed quickly. In fact, he was back out in the field just 1 week after having surgery to save his leg from the grenade shrapnel.
But when he transitioned out of the military, Bryan realized that he’d brought home emotional wounds that were a lot harder to heal than the physical ones.
In the military, you always have to stay focused on the mission, even when you’re taking casualties. You just have to focus on the enemy and keep the fight on them. You can’t go internal because that’ll just create more casualties« .
War is a crazy place indeed.


Once I got out and life slowed down, that’s when some of the things you suppress in your mind start to come back up”.
After coming back from war, Bryan’s PTSD started to make its mark. He suffered from sleep issues, depression, and anxiety.
He often found himself reliving his past on the battlefield, especially once he had children. 

The enemy would often use women and children as human shields. You just see some gnarly things”.
Most importantly, Bryan felt like he’d lost his identity and purpose after he returned home to a civilian life.
I couldn’t watch the news for years because they’d talk about actions in Afghanistan and Iraq and I’d feel guilty for not being there” remembers Bryan.
It’s this lack of purpose that leaves many vets battling depression and substance abuse.
It’s also what leads almost 22 US veterans to take their own lives every day

Luckily, Bryan was able to regain that lost sense of purpose by teaming up with fellow Marine veterans Andy Miears and Matt Curran to form the Helmand Valley Growers Company (HVGC); a Californian cannabis company that donates 100% of its profits to researching the benefits of medical cannabis for veterans.
Alongside HVGC, Bryan, Andy, and Matt also founded the Battle Brothers Foundation; a non-profit NGO that aims to empower US veterans through personal development, employment opportunities, and the right kind of medical support. 

It all started in 2016, when Bryan suddenly noticed his friend and co-founder Andy looking better than usual.
He didn’t have that lethargic look about him like he’d been drinking the night before”.
He admits that drinking is one of the most common ways veterans face the symptoms that strike once they end their service.
It’s just part of our culture, but when I asked Andy what was going on, he said ‘I’ve traded in a 5th of Jack for a joint.”
Besides using cannabis to sleep better and relieve his PTSD symptoms, Andy was also working to become a licensed cannabis cultivator. 

Image courtesy of Helmand Valley Growers Company.

One day, Andy told me that cannabis was helping him transition from a warrior to a gardener”, Bryan recalls.
After seeing the positive effect cannabis was having on his friend, Bryan decided to try cannabis for himself.
It was incredible. I was sleeping better, I was waking up feeling refreshed, it was helping my anxiety and depression. Now, cannabis is just part of my daily routine« .

And it wasn’t long before he realized that cannabis could be the purpose he’d been missing after leaving the army.
From the get-go, one of Battle Brothers main goals was to change the US medical landscape by making cannabis a legal and accessible treatment option for veterans, be it for pain-relief, better sleep, or any other medical condition.
Cannabis isn’t for everyone” Bryan says firmly. “But it should be a tool in the toolkit”.

And the Battle Brothers foundation is well underway to completing its mission; it just got approval from a private institutional review board to conduct an observational study that’ll evaluate the safety and efficacy of using medical cannabis in the treatment of PTSD.
In 2016, we spoke to members of Congress to see what it would take to make cannabis available to veterans, they told us to collect reliable data alongside American doctors and build a strong case to present to Veteran’s Affairs. And that’s what we’re doing.”

The study is expected to launch in July and will involve 60 Californian veterans with moderate to severe PTSD.
The participants will purchase and dose cannabis products at their own discretion over 90 days and report to a team from NiaMedic, a medical data company from Israel, to evaluate the effects the different products have on their PTSD symptoms.
And while this is a huge milestone for Bryan and his team, they show no signs of slowing down.
Confident that this study will harbour positive results, Bryan believes this research will put down the foundations for more aggressive studies in the future that will help build a better reality for America’s veterans. 

These brave men and women raise their right hand and sign a blank cheque that’s payable with their lives. And when they’re back here in America, maybe they’re back here in a physical sense, but not spiritually or mentally. At Helmand Valley Growers Company, we want to be that beacon in the night that lights the path so that these people can live the life of peace that they deserve, and live the American dream that they fought so hard to defend.” 

 

 

Highly Inventive : The Ultimate Weed-Related Bathroom Read

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What do King Tut, Christopher Colombus, Louis Armstrong, and Al Capone have in common? Find out in Highly Inventive, the perfect bathroom book for weed lovers

I have a lot of ideas and not all of them are good, explains BS Wedeman as I am interviewing the two authors of  Highly Inventive: A Highbrow History of Man’s Quest For Weed, a fantastic book that was published last summer.
« But this was a good idea, » Ted Tronnes quickly chimes in.
Together, Ted and BS Wedeman wrote and illustrated the hilarious Highly Inventive: A Highbrow History of Man’s Quest For Weed, a piece that  instantly became my number one read whenever I had 10 minutes to spare. And that happens to often be in the loo. 

“The idea came about, as most of my ideas do: as I was rolling a joint.”

This “bathroom book,” as the authors so lovingly describe it too, boasts a collection of vignettes and illustrations that offer a brief-yet surprisingly detailed, quirky, and ultra-funny look into mankind’s history with weed.
The idea came about, as most of my ideas do: as I was rolling a joint.” laughs BS Wedeman,
I’d been reading a book about Benjamin Franklin, who of course invented bifocals. I was using my bifocals at that very moment to see and be able to roll my j, and I started thinking; ‘what other people have, through an invention or some other way, influenced my ability to enjoy marijuana?’” she says, immediately recalling some of the early stars of her book:
There’s John Landis Mason, who invented the mason jar (a go-to recipient for weed); Luis Marcus who invented the bobby pin (which many people use to hold a joint), and the Phoenicians, who discovered glass-blowing and may have invented some of the first glass pipes.
Immediately, I called Ted and told him about my new idea,” adds BS Wedeman. 

Trump, weed,
A little indulgence in marijuana makes the people in the U.S. government much easier and nicer to deal with. John Adams recognized this 1763 when he wrote under the pen name “Humphrey Ploughjogger” for the Boston Evening Post, “Seems to me if great men don’t leave off writing politics, breaking heads, boxing ears, ringing noses and kicking breeches, we shall by and by want a world of hemp for our own consumption.” In other words, not much has changed in politics over the past 250 years. (excerpt)

Fun facts for a witty weed read

From Ancient Egypt to the colonial US, Ted and BS Wedeman managed to combine close to 90 weed-related vignettes that offer an eye-opening account of just how present cannabis has been throughout human history.
Did you know, for example, that Egyptian pharaohs like Hatshepsut and Tutankhamun used cannabis to relieve menstrual cramps, cleft palate, scoliosis, malaria, and hemorrhoids?
Or that refusing to grow hemp as a US farmer was a crime punishable by jail time up until the 1800s? 

One of the biggest challenges we faced was differentiating between what was true and what wasn’t” explains Ted.
Luckily, BS Wedeman is a professor and professional researcher, so she had access to plenty of reliable databases and information to fuel her research.
To help add some weight to the stories she and Ted included in the book, the two decided to add an appendix with links for those readers wanting to dive deeper into weed history. 

 

Madison, Weed,
James Madison, fourth president of the U.S., said that hemp gave him wisdom on how to structure a democracy and inspired the writing of the Constitution. Unlike another, more recent American president, Madison no doubt inhaled!. (excerpt)

Banned from advertising

Now, almost 18 months after BS Wedeman first called Ted with her idea, the two are psyched to have published their work.
We never thought we’d publish a book about weed,” laughs Ted, who works as a freelance graphic designer and art director in Kansas City, Missouri.
BS Wedeman also has a well established career as a renowned author, researcher, and consultant.
But the comfort of their day-jobs hasn’t slowed the authors’ enthusiasm for getting their book out there:
“I’d love for this book to earn it’s place in every weed-lover’s bathroom,” says BS Wedeman. 

Unfortunately, like with most cannabis-related business ideas, achieving that goal is no smoke in the park.
We just learned that we can’t advertise on Amazon,” says Ted, “because the book relates to an illicit substance.”
BS Wedeman has also opted to write under a pseudonym out of fear of being criticized in her industry.
If the book were really successful, I would put my name on it. But right now I can’t risk it,” she says.
But the two hope to overcome these hurdles by getting their book into brick-and-mortar retailers like CBD stores and vape/head shops this year. 

A podcast based on the book

They are also planning on launching a new line of merch, a podcast with the working title The One Hitter by Highly Inventive (made up of 1-2 minute segments of more weed trivia), and possibly even a second book.
We’re just having fun with it,” says Ted. “If the book manages to rake in a few dollars, then great, we’ll just pass them on to Haley (the Highly Inventive one-woman marketing team),” he laughs. 

If you’re looking for the perfect gift for that weed-loving friend or want to stock up on facts to fuel the banter at your next smoke sesh, make sure to check out Highly Inventive: A Highbrow History of Man’ Quest For Weed on Amazon. 

Richard Branson walks on the sunny side of the weed.

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Richard Branson has never hidden his fondness for cannabis, advocating during the last decade for a responsible legalization. In an article published on his website on November 26, the iconic founder and CEO of Virgin  takes a keen and optimistic look on weed’s upcoming emancipation. And he’s usually right.

As the free world waits for the end of recess to be whistled for Donald Trump and for President-elect Joe Biden to take office, Richard Branson has welcomed other (uncontested) results : those from states where legalization of recreational cannabis has been approved . “I was excited to see some of the other outcomes of this year’s US election. Voters in several states embraced sensible drug policy reforms that will make a huge difference to people’s lives, take the burden off criminal justice systems, improve public health and, ultimately, save lives.  ”wrote Sir Branson.
In Arizona, New Jersey, Montana and South Dakota, voters approved the regulated sale of recreational cannabis on November 3, bringing to 15 the total of number of States in which ganja is legalised.

For the serial success entrepreneur, the good news could be followed tomorrow by another strong sign towards an ineluctable global legalization of cannabis:
UN member states will come together in Vienna for an important session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND), the inter-governmental forum where discussions on the direction and content of global drug policy take place. The item on the agenda is a vote on rescheduling cannabis. What sounds like a tedious bureaucratic exercise has enormous significance for correcting a damaging historical error . For decades, without credible scientific basis, cannabis has been scheduled as a substance with negligible medical or therapeutic value  »  explains Branson on his website.

After a multitude of reports and scientific commissions on a subject that, according to Branson,  has dragged on too long, the World Health Organization (WHO) has finally recommended a limited rescheduling of cannabis, which is clearly a gesture in recognizing its enormous therapeutic potential .
A promising first step while waiting for CND’s vote. During this 63rd session on the matter, CND will look at changes in the scope control substances, in this case: cannabis. This vote is expected to follow the positive WHO recommendations regarding the control of cannabis and related substances. A vote that would free cannabis from various legal shackles in which it has been locked since 1961.
A positive vote to remove cannabis from the strictest schedule would signal that the international drug control system, traditionally a driver of repressive drug policies, might be able to reflect with the ever-accelerating reforms happening on the ground. I hope the CND will come down on the right side of science, public health – and history. » concluded a visionary and always well informed Richard Branson.

A ultimate guide and selection of the best home vaporizers.

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If during your childhood Alice in Wonderland’s smoking caterpillar was a source of fascination, rejoice! Today’s technology has turn  your fantasy into reality, thanks to the home weed vaporizers (and our epic selection ).

A vaporizer is a device that uses hot air at high temperature to create a cannabis infused steam. No tobacco, no combustion, quite an ideal choice for sensitive lungs, athletes, or just for every enthusiast wishing to make the most out of his cannabis.  After all, there is no better way to enjoy a premium weed than having it with no interferences and little or no loss.

The Classic. The Volcano classic (€319, for dry weed only).
The Volcano is a high quality grade vaporizer manufactured by Storz and Bickel, a top notch brand that owns a well deserved reputation on this market. As a fun trivia, on HBO’s « bored   to death », the characters are using a Volcano.  Which doesn’t come as a surprise, since it’s so easy to use and clean. It works the following way: the steam (which is fresh and abundant with this model) is contained in a plastic balloon. Once the balloon filled, you take it out and inhale the steam contained in it.

Several balloons can be filled with just one bowl, which turns out to be quite convenient if you to party with a few friends in your living room. Topping on the cake: even the clumsiest dude will manage to take a drag out of those funky steam filled balloons. It’s fun, approachable and definitely legendary.

The most powerful:  The FlowerPot Vprod (€519, works with weed and any concentrated cannabis products such as hashish, oil etc.)
If the Volcano was to be the grandpa of all indoor vaporizers, the FlowerPot would be its offspring.
To begin with, it’s the first “Twax vaporizer”. Meaning that it can vape oil (or wax, for instance) as dry weed. Making it easy for you to try various combinations for various sensations.

The FlowerPot is an upmarket/high grade model made out of titanium (which explains the price) that delivers a constant stream of hot air filtered of any impurities. This process allows the FlowerPot to bring you a full flavored steam with numerous hits on any chosen cannabis product.  Unfortunately, it is also one of the most complex and hard to operate desktop vaporizers. For the real players only.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m5X13XYbxxc

The Best value/ Best buy. The plenty (€219, for dry weed only) is a mid range vaporizer by Storz and Bickel (the very same company that brought us the Volcano Classic) that comes with a three years warrantee.
This vaporizer is designed to deliver a direct inhalation through a hose… just like Alice’s smoking caterpillar. Easy to use, the Plenty has a wide range of heating temperature (130° to 202° Celsius). The temperature can be set through a thin scow wheel.

Once the desired temperature is reached, the heating process stops. A cool feature that will prevent you from setting your apartment on fire. The steam is of course fabulous (courtesy Storz ansd Bickel) and the machine is as noiseless as it gets. The only downside is its looks, clearly not as posh as the legendary Volcano Classic with its triangular design. Yet, for such a low budget, one can’t complain.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3qX1puUInWc

The water friendly. At last but not least, The Vapehale Cloud Evo (€414, for weed only) is the most innovative vaporizer of this selection. Each EVO is equipped with a “PerpetuHeat Thermal”. A technology that automatically adjusts the heating to a person’s inhalation rate, ensuring smooth, rich, and consistent vapor. As you inhale, the air flows past the heater, warms up to your set temperature and then glides through to vaporize your chosen herb or concentrate.

This vaporizer utilizes convection heating technology, which provides superior heating and vaporization when compared to conduction heating.(Most vaporizers utilize conduction heating, which consists of a hot surface that actually kind of chars the herb, leading to that all too common burnt taste). The Vapehale Cloud’s all glass air path delivers pure vapor and enables you to taste full spectrum flavor. Traveling from the glass enclosed heater core to the customized glass mouthpiece, your herb hits your airways as rich, clean, moisture conditioned vapor, cooled to perfection.  Probably the most sophisticated of them all… See it in action here:

 

A quick guide to World’s different types of weed and their effects

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For a long time, the cannabis community has used the terms indica and sativa to try and pigeon-hole the effects of cannabis. But these terms actually tell us nothing about how a particular strain will make us feel. The biggest variable affecting our experience with cannabis being the plant’s chemical profile. Here’s our ultimate -and condensed-  guide to a better understanding of different terpenes profile and the effects that are to be expected.

Forget about the « Indica Vs. Sativa » classification
Cannabis is a very complex plant that contains up to 400 different active chemicals, many of which we barely understand. The concentration of these 400+ chemicals can vary greatly from one plant to another (even if they are considered to be the same strain or chemotype) and even among different parts of the same plant.
In an interview for Medical Marijuana 411, Dr. Jake Felice, a neuropathic doctor, cannabis clinician, and author, explains how different parts of the cannabis plant may produce different terpenes.
“The cannabis plant can have a very wide variety of terpene expression, even within the same plant. Upper leaves tend to be preyed upon by insects, so the plant might put out insecticide terpenes, such as limonene and pinene. In the lower plant, it might be more appropriate for it to develop bitter sesquiterpenes to prevent grazing from animals,” says Dr. Felice.
Stress, the type of medium and fertilizers used during cultivation, drying, curing, and other parts of the processes that go into producing cannabis can also impact what terpenes a plant produces and in what concentrations.
The terms indica or sativa, however, tell us nothing about a particular strain’s chemical profile. More than anything, these terms tell us what a plant might look like, whether it will grow tall or short, develop broad or narrow leaves, etc.

Going Beyond THC levels: How terpenes are defining the effects of cannabis
For years, the unique effects of cannabis have been almost entirely attributed to THC. Today, however, we know that THC is just one of the 400+ chemicals found in cannabis and therefore can’t be entirely responsible for the plant’s myriad of unique effects.
New research is showing us that terpenes might be just as important in dictating how cannabis makes us feel. Not only are terpenes responsible for the unique aromas and flavors of cannabis, but they have very potent physiological effects that may make or break our experience with a particular cannabis chemovar (or strain). 

4 terpenes you are likely to find most in most strains and how they’ll affect your “high”:
Alpha-pinene. Pinene, as the name suggests, has a sharp, fresh pine aroma. Think of the smell of conifer trees or eucalyptus. Besides having anti-inflammatory properties and working as a bronchodilator, one of the more unique effects of pinene has to do with memory. Pinene is an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor, meaning it can inhibit the breakdown of acetylcholine, the main neurotransmitter involved in memory. So, if you’re looking for a cannabis strain that’ll leave you with a clear head and the ability to think cohesively and stay focused, look for a variety with lots of pinene.  **Note: Unfortunately, most modern-day cannabis strains contain very little pinene.
 Apha Pinene dominant  strains: Jack Herer, Blue Dream, Strawberry Cough

Myrcene. Arguably one of the better-known terpenes, myrcene tends to give cannabis a musky, herbal, and spicy aroma. Basil, laurel trees, hops, and wild thyme plants all produce considerable amounts of myrcene, too. This terpene has analgesic properties and produces a strong sedative, almost narcotic-like effect (commonly known as “couchlock”). If you’re having trouble sleeping or need strong pain-relief, look for cannabis strains with high amounts of myrcene. If you need to stay focused and productive, however, you’ll want to steer clear of this terpene.
Myrcene dominant strains: OG Kush White Widow, Sour Diesel

Limonene. Limonene has a sharp, fresh citrus aroma, and is found in high concentrations in citrus peels, rosemary, peppermint, and ginger. It has very powerful antidepressant properties, and studies also show that it is an anti-inflammatory, anxiolytic, and potent immunostimulant. If you’re looking for mood-boosting effects, anti-inflammatory properties, and relief from anxiety or stress, try to look for strains with high concentrations of limonene. **Note: Most of today’s cannabis varieties contain low amounts of limonene. Beware of strains with strong citrus aromas, as myrcene can sometimes also give off citrus aromas.
Limonene dominante Strains: Do-Si-Dos , Sunset Sherbet, Super Lemon Haze

Beta-caryophyllene. Caryophyllene is one of the main aromatic compounds in black pepper, and it gives cannabis a spicy, woody, and peppery aroma. There is solid research showing that caryophyllene is a very effective, gastro-protective anti-inflammatory. Studies also show that it’s a selective agonist of CB2, the cannabinoid receptor that mediates pain, inflammation, and more. Unlike some of the other terpenes on this list, caryophyllene is very much present in today’s cannabis strains and is one of the main terpenes found in cannabis extracts.
Beta-Caryophylene dominant strains: Gelato, Zkittlez, Chemdawg 

In order to properly understand how a type of cannabis will make us feel, we need to look beyond the individual compounds present in a particular plant. We also need to consider the way these compounds synergize (the Entourage Effect), as well as the set and setting in which we use cannabis.
**This list is far from complete. For a more thorough overview of the terpenes in cannabis and their effects, read Taming THC: Potential Cannabis Synergy and Phytocannabinoid-Terpenoid Entourage Effects. 

 

Argentina is (almost) legalizing.

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Today marks the beginning of the end of prohibition in Argentina.
At midnight on Thursday, the Argentine government published a set of changes to bill 27.350, the nation’s heavily criticized medical cannabis law. 

Patients registered under RECANN, the national cannabis patients registry, now have the right to cultivate their own medicine, either individually or as part of a group or collective, or buy cannabis oils, tinctures, or topicals at pharmacies.
Moreover, the new legislation also broadens the qualifying conditions for medical cannabis treatments in Argentina.
Up until now, bill 27.350 restricted the use of medical cannabis only to public health trials including patients with refractory epilepsy.
The new legislation, however, gives any patient with a doctor’s prescription for cannabis (or its derivatives) the right to either cultivate their own medicine or buy it from a licensed pharmacy. The state even promises free access to cannabis therapies for people without health insurance.
For thousands of patients, caretakers, parents, and children, this is the day they’ve long been waiting for.
Up until now, anyone found in possession of cannabis seeds or plants ran the risk of being trialed under the nation’s drug law and faced up to 15 years in prison.
These new regulations promise an end to this injustice.
“Finally! Our right is law!” reads the latest post by Mamá Cultiva Argentina (MCA), the nation’s most recognized cannabis activist group.
“This right, won after many years of struggle by organizations across the country, not only brings  with it the peace of mind of not being criminalized for exercising our autonomy by cultivating our own medicine. It might also be a solution for many of the socioeconomic problems brought on by the neoliberalism [of the previous government] and the global pandemic,” the post reads. 

“This new era of bill 27.350 will begin to repair the injustice of the persecution and stigmatization of the plant that’s brought quality of life to many people. For this reason, we celebrate a State that accompanies us, that guarantees us access to the substance by the means we choose, that doesn’t punish us or paternalize us. This regulation demonstrates that the knowledge gained through our popular experience is of value when it comes to building our future.”
“Before us lies a long road of implementation. But we’re convinced that the construction [of the legal framework behind bill 27.350) will be rich and prosperous and that we have public interlocutors in place who demonstrate their priority in finding consensus,” the post continues.

Mamá Cultiva Argentina was founded in 2016 by Valeria Salech and a group of other mothers, many of whom have been cultivating cannabis illegally for years either for themselves or for members of their families.
Roughly 4 months ago, Valeria Salech and the rest of MCA were eager that change might come to bill 27.350 as the Argentine Health Ministry announced the first draft of the new regulations it signed off today.
“I’m not ashamed to tell you that every morning I wake up and the first thing I do is check the boletin oficial [the gazette where the Argentine state publishes its legal norms],” Valeria told us in an interview in July.  

Seems like that habit might die off tomorrow. 

L’Argentine légalise le cannabis (thérapeutique).

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Aujourd’hui marque le début de la fin de la prohibition en Argentine.
Jeudi à minuit, le gouvernement argentin a publié une série de modifications au projet de loi 27.350, la loi nationale sur le cannabis médical très critiquée, pour le plus grand bonnheur des malades comme enthousiastes de la weed.

Les patients enregistrés sous RECANN, le registre national des patients atteints de cannabis, auront désormais le droit de cultiver leur propre médicament, soit individuellement, soit dans le cadre d’un groupe ou collectif, ainsi que d’acheter des huiles, teintures ou  topiques de cannabis dans les pharmacies.
En outre, la nouvelle législation élargit considérablement les conditions d’admissibilité aux traitements au cannabis médical en Argentine.
Jusqu’à présent, le projet de loi 27.350 limitait l’utilisation du cannabis médical aux seuls essais de santé publique incluant des patients atteints d’épilepsie réfractaire.
Dorénavant, la nouvelle législation donne à tout patient ayant une prescription médicale pour le cannabis (ou ses dérivés) le droit de cultiver son propre de l’herbe ou de l’acheter dans une pharmacie agréée.
L’État promet même un accès gratuit aux thérapies au cannabis pour les personnes sans assurance maladie!
Pour des milliers de patients, de gardiens de parents et d’enfants, c’est le jour qu’ils auront  attendus depuis longtemps.
Jusqu’à présent, toute personne trouvée en possession de graines ou de plantes de cannabis encourait jusqu’à 15 ans de prison.
Ces nouvelles réglementations mettent un point final à ces lois ante-séculaires.
« Finalement! Notre droit est la loi« ! est-il écrit dans le dernier article de Mamá Cultiva Argentina (MCA), le groupe de militants du cannabis le plus reconnu du pays.
«Ce droit, acquis après de nombreuses années de lutte par des organisations à travers le pays, apporte non seulement la tranquillité d’esprit de ne pas être criminalisé pour avoir exercé notre autonomie en cultivant notre propre médecine. Cela pourrait également être une solution à de nombreux problèmes socio-économiques provoqués par le néolibéralisme [du gouvernement précédent] et la pandémie mondiale », peut-on aussi y lire.

« Cette nouvelle ère du projet de loi 27.350 commencera à réparer l’injustice de la persécution et de la stigmatisation d’une plante qui a apporté une qualité de vie à de nombreuses personnes. Pour cette raison, nous célébrons un État qui nous accompagne, qui nous garantit l’accès à la substance par les moyens que nous choisissons, qui ne nous punit pas et ni ne nous infentilise. Cette réglementation démontre aussi que les connaissances acquises grâce à notre expérience populaire sont précieuses pour bâtir notre avenir ».
«Devant nous , il y a encore un long chemin de mise en œuvre pratique. Mais nous sommes convaincus que la construction [du cadre juridique derrière le projet de loi 27.350) sera riche et prospère et que nous avons des interlocuteurs publics en place qui démontrent leur priorité dans la recherche d’un consensus ”, poursuit le post.

Mamá Cultiva Argentina a été fondée en 2016 par Valeria Salech et un groupe d’autres mères, dont beaucoup cultivent illégalement du cannabis depuis des années pour elles-mêmes ou pour les membres de leur famille.
Il y a environ 4 mois, Valeria Salech et le reste du MCA s’étaient impatientés  de ne voir aucun changement de la loi  27.350 alors que le ministère argentin de la Santé annonçait le premier projet de nouveau règlement qu’il a signé aujourd’hui.
«Je n’ai pas honte de vous dire que chaque matin je me réveille et que la première chose que je fais est de vérifier le boletin oficial [la gazette où l’État argentin publie ses normes juridiques]», nous avait  déclaré Valeria dans une interview en juillet.
Une habitude qui pourrait bien disparaître demain.

Weed: Biden’s lukeworme program.

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As the world -and half of the US- are celebrating Biden’s election, a crucial question arises: what about cannabis?
Here’s some answers… and a whole lotta questions.

Just say no!

Joe Biden is a fierce legalization opponent and on a mission to give a hard time to any weed enthousiast.
It’s 1986, and Biden (who works at the time under Reagan’s Republican administration) is a key figure in an all-out « War on Drugs », carried by the (in)famous « Just Say No ».
In 1990, he was one of the main architects of an ultra-coercive series of measures, where the common foot stoner would -roughly- be sentenced to the same jail time than a street crack dealer.
2010. The times they are A’changin‘ and Biden softens his speech. « There is a difference between sending someone to jail for a few ounces [of weed] and legalizing it. The punishment should fit the crime. Yet I still believe think legalization is wrong. I still believe [cannabis] is a getaway drug »

Or maybe?

A decade later, Barack Obama’s former vice president views on cannabis have changed again. “I wasn’t always right. I know we haven’t always done it right [with regards to incarceration for marijuana offenses]; but I always tried, « admits Biden in 2019 interview with ABC.
« No one should be in jail for smoking marijuana, » concluded the then chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Biden’s current position, if it does not follow that of his fellow citizens (66% of Americans are for a nationwide legalisation ), has at least one perk: that of paving the way for reform of the banking system.
Between technical problems and a certain mistrust of the green gold industry, most players in the legal cannabis business indeed have the greatest difficulty in accessing basic banking services. Whether getting a loan or simply opening a corporate current account, banks and credit institutions prefer to play it safe and avoid any criminal and / or financial sanctions that’d be imposed on them. And although the law of the states that have legalised is on the side of ganja-entrepreneurs, mistrust and fear of bad publicity prevents them from gaining access to any major financial institutions.

Decriminalization, the bogus idea?

Biden’s decriminalization plan, beyond being a cautious compromise between prohibition and legalization, could quickly  turn into a logistical nightmare for the cannabis industry.
By simply decriminalizing weed, Joe Biden is legally placing its trade under the control of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
And that’s no good news: by seizing the certifications and approvals of the cannabis business, the FDA would also be responsible for overseeing the manufacturing, packaging and distribution of all cannabis related products, thus imposing strict requirements on producers, especially when it comes to the levels of THC, CBD and CBN, the three potent molecules.
And if it  could look like a relaxation of the legislation, Biden’s decriminalization is quite far away from the cannabis paradise suggested by the former candidate Bernie Sanders, who was eager to legalize all over the country once elected.
If Biden has by the past demonstrated his ability to evolve, let’s hope Sleepy Joe won’t take a nap on the matter once in the White House.

What is Rosin and how to make it

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Extracts or “dabs” are revolutionizing the way we think about and experience cannabis. Not only do they offer higher potencies, but their high concentration of terpenes also brings new flavors and aromas to the table that surprise even veteran weed lovers.
Unfortunately, cannabis extracts like wax and shatter can be hard to access outside of the world’s few legal cannabis markets and are far from safe to make at home. Rosin, however, is an exceptional extract that you can easily make without burning down the neighborhood. 

What is Rosin?

Rosin is like BHO’s chemical-free, DIY-friendly cousin. It’s made using a combination of heat and pressure that extracts terpenes and cannabinoids from dried cannabis, hash, or kief. The result is a golden, translucent, and sap-like extract with a rich flavor and roughly 50-70% THC. 

Rosin produced from professional, licensed extractors is made using specialized rosin presses. These machines cost anywhere between $1,000 and $10,000 and use either pneumatic or electric pumps that are able to deliver tons of pressing power. These professional presses also have precise heating elements to maximize their yield potential and are able to press large amounts of flower or kief at a time. 

Pure Pressure’s Long’s Peak, for example, is a pneumatic rosin press designed specifically for commercial rosin production. It is capable of generating 8 tons of pressure and pressing up to 35 grams of flower or 70 grams of kief or hash at a time. 

What’s the cool thing about it?

Similar to other extracts, rosin boasts a different high to what you’d normally expect from flower. Based on my experience, I’d describe it as more of a clear, mental rush, but this can obviously vary depending on what cannabis strain your rosin is made from. 

In the US and Canada, considered by some to be the frontiers of cannabis legalization, rosin is a huge hit. And it’s not hard to see why; unlike BHO (Butane Hash Oil), which usually has to undergo a long, slow purge to remove any residual butane prior to extraction, rosin is a 100% solventless extract. It is made using only heat and pressure and is completely chemical-free. 

Best of all, you don’t have to have to go to a dispensary or risk burning your house down to get your hands on some delicious rosin. 

How to make your own Rosin. Easily.

Some manufacturers sell small rosin presses designed for personal use. The MyPress, for example, is a popular manual rosin press that can exert up to 6 tons of pressure and is capable of pressing about 1 to 1.5 grams of flower at a time. According to some reviews, the MyPress can produce yields of 20-25%, which is very good for such a small press. 

At $420 USD, however, the MyPress can be a pricey investment for the recreational cannabis user. But then again, you don’t really want to be pinching pennies when buying a rosin press, either. You’ll want a machine capable of delivering plenty of pressure and just the right temperatures in order to maximize your rosin yields. 

Luckily, if you don’t want to fork out $420 for a personal rosin press, you don’t have to. You can make your own rosin safely at home with a good hair straightener, some parchment or baking paper, some kind of makeshift dab tool (a clean, sharp pocket knife works quite well), and heat-resistant gloves. Here’s how: 

  1. Break up roughly 0.5g of cannabis flower, kief, or ice water hash and stick it between 2 pieces of parchment or baking paper. Fold in each side of the paper to create a kind of envelope. 
  2. Preheat your hair straightener to its lowest setting. 
  3. Place your wrapped flower in between the heated plates of the hair straightener and press down very firmly for at least 3-7 seconds. Once you hear a sizzle, relieve the pressure and remove the parchment paper from the straightener. 
  4. Remove the sticky sap from the parchment paper using your pocket knife and put it in a container for storage or load it directly into a bowl or joint and enjoy!

OPTIONAL: If you’re pressing flower, consider pressing it twice for a better yield. 

Keep in mind that this is by far the best way to press rosin. It is, however, effective enough if you want to make small batches of this delicious concentrate at home without investing in a proper press.
If you’re serious about making your own rosin and want to maximize your yields, however, you’ll need to dig deep into your pockets and invest in something like the MyPress. 

 

A Personal Guide To Getting High And Having Great Sex

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– AVERTISSEMENT – 

Whether you like it rough, gentle, kinky, vanilla, gay, straight or over the phone, we all have one thing in common; we want our sex to be AMAZING. And if you use cannabis, you’ve likely already experimented with it between the sheets. 

Unfortunately, getting high and getting laid isn’t always as great as it sounds. For some people, cannabis can produce side effects that definitely don’t belong in the bedroom (paranoid penetration, anyone?).
However, there are also many ways in which cannabis can enhance sex. In this article, I’m going to walk you through my tips on using weed in the bedroom, most of which I’ve learned the hard way.

Disclaimer: I’m not a sex therapist nor a doctor. I’m just a guy who enjoys weed and sex.

Know Your Body 

Cannabis is a really complex plant that affects all of us differently. In my years of smoking, vaping, and eating weed, I’ve found that the golden rule to getting high and having a good time (both in and out of the bedroom) is knowing my own body. Many people find cannabis helps them relieve stress and anxiety, for example. I’m the complete opposite; if I’m particularly stressed or anxious, getting high will only amplify those feelings. If I’m in a good state of mind, however, weed can boost my mood, calm me down, and help me relax.

Hence, I already know that weed won’t magically make me horny if I’ve got a lot on my mind. However, I also know that when I’m in the mood, cannabis can intensify my feelings of pleasure and get me more in tune with myself and my partner. If you want to get high and have great sex, it’s key you understand how weed affects your body first. 

Know Your Partner 

It takes 2 people (or more) to have sex. So, while it’s important to understand how weed affects your sexuality, it’s just as important to know how it affects your sexual partner/s. For some people, weed is a great ice-breaker, helping them let down their guard and leave behind some of their inhibitions. For others, it might raise those inhibitions when they’re with someone new but intensify the way they connect with someone they’re familiar with. 

Communication is really key here (and anytime you’re trying to have great sex). If you want to bring weed into the bedroom, communicate with your partner/s about it first to ensure an enjoyable experience for everyone. 

Know Your Weed

Weed can vary really dramatically, especially if you live in an area where it is still illegal and unregulated. Hence, whenever you plan on getting high and having sex, make sure you know what you’re toking on before bringing it into bed. In general, I enjoy balanced cannabis strains that aren’t too cerebral or overly physical. A super intense cerebral high can sometimes kick my mind into overdrive, while a hard-hitting body stone is more likely to send me to sleep than get me hard.

If you’re lucky enough to live in an area where cannabis is sold legally, talk to a budtender to find a strain that delivers the effects you’re looking for. If weed is still illegal where you live, always try a new strain on its own before trying to pair it with sex. 

Know Your Dose

I’m a one-hit-wonder kind of guy; one or two tokes from a joint is just enough to help me feel relaxed, focused, and positive. If you want to get high and have great sex, know your dose and stick to it. 

Don’t Get Hung Up On Smoking

The way we use and enjoy cannabis is changing drastically. Today, there are many different ways you can introduce cannabis into your sex life without smoking.  “It doesn’t have to be psychoactive,” explains Ashley Manta, a sex educator and “cannasexual,” in an interview with VICE. “THC is a vasodilator, which means it brings more blood flow to the area,” she says. THC lubricants, therefore, can help both men and women stimulate arousal, increase physical sensation, and increase natural lubrication. 

Edibles can be another great way to enjoy cannabis in the bedroom, offering a slower, more gradual onset and longer-lasting effects than a joint or vape. Unfortunately, due to cannabis policies and the extremely subjective nature of sex, there’s hardly any decent scientific research into how the 2 overlap. Hence, it’s really up to you to experiment with cannabis in its many different forms and find something that works best for you and your partner/s.

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