Americans Think Weed Is Much Safer Than E-Cigs or Tobacco, Poll Finds

Americans Think Weed Is Much Safer Than E-Cigs or Tobacco, Poll Finds

Original Post: Merry Jane: Americans Think Weed Is Much Safer Than E-Cigs or Tobacco, Poll Finds

[Canniseur: In many ways this is sort of a “Duh!”. Of course weed is safer than e-cigs or tobacco of any sort. Cannabis and tobacco have several things in common. Tobacco was promoted by a government that knew it was unsafe. Cannabis was outlawed by a government that knew it was safe. This country has a whole lot to reconcile in the future. Millions are still hooked on tobacco. Nobody is ‘hooked’ on cannabis.]

A large majority of Americans from all backgrounds, age ranges, and political affiliations are confident that cannabis is not a “very harmful” substance, with even more saying that they believe CBD is safe.

The new data comes from a joint survey by Harvard University and Politico that tallied opinions from more than 1,000 American adults. The poll covered cannabis, CBD, alcohol, and tobacco, with most respondents saying that they believe marijuana and CBD to be far less harmful than alcohol, tobacco, or e-cigs.

Only 20% of survey respondents said that they thought cannabis was “very harmful” and only 5% said the same of CBD. On the flip side, twice as many people considered alcohol to be “very harmful,” while more than 80% felt that tobacco cigarettes were incredibly dangerous.

“Ten years ago, we were jailing people for marijuana,” Robert Blendon, who led the survey and is also a professor of health policy and political analysis at Harvard, told Politico. “Now people see this as not essentially very harmful.”

The survey also asked recipients about their opinions on e-cigarettes or nicotine vaporizers. And while respondents did not hold e-cigs to the same harmful standard as traditional cigarettes, more than 50% considered nicotine vaporizers “very harmful.”

On a whole, 62% of Americans said that they support full-scale recreational cannabis legalization in the US. Additionally, more than 75% of respondents said that they believe CBD products should be sold in drugstores like CVS and Walgreens.

“Given that most Americans are not very concerned about harmful effects of marijuana for recreational use,” the study concluded, “we are likely to see legalization efforts expanded at both the federal and state levels.”

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Original Post: Merry Jane: Americans Think Weed Is Much Safer Than E-Cigs or Tobacco, Poll Finds

Judge Dismisses $4 Million Pot Bust Due to Illegal Vehicle Search

Judge Dismisses $4 Million Pot Bust Due to Illegal Vehicle Search

Original Post: Merry Jane: Judge Dismisses $4 Million Pot Bust Due to Illegal Vehicle Search

[Canniseur: Unscrupulous cops can no longer get away with their underhanded methods. Body cameras now protect citizens from unwarranted search (but not seizure). This is a very good thing. Even still, we cannot wait until legal cannabis is the rule of the land. ]

Two men were caught with 900 pounds of processed pot, and 112 jars of cannabis extract, but their case was miraculously thrown out.

It may be rare, but sometimes, the rule of law can work against the cops. And in the case of two Montana men accused of transporting more than 900 pounds of pot across the Midwest, a shaky police video and a skeptical judge resulted in a hail mary case dismissal for the ages.

According to the Minnesota Star Tribune, Jared Desroches, 31, and Alexander Gordon, 24, were driving a camper truck on Interstate 94 last March when Minnesota state trooper Aaron Myren spotted a cracked windshield and what he described as erratic driving. He pulled them over and found 900 pounds of processed pot, 406 grams of pre-packaged concentrates, 112 jars of cannabis extract, and $15,500 in cash in the back of the truck. 

Both men were arrested at the scene and taken into custody on charges of distributing illicit narcotics. But at a court hearing this week, Minnesota District Judge Timothy Churchwell ruled the vehicle search that led to the discovery illegal, after video from the scene refuted trooper Myren’s lane-swerving claims.

“The video played a huge role in us getting it tossed out because a lot of it didn’t match up to what he [Myrens] was saying,” Paul Applebaum, a St. Paul lawyer who is part of the two men’s defense team, told the Star Tribune. “The squad video, which essentially records from the same vantage point as Myren’s, shows that the pickup never crossed the fog-line — it merely touched it once for a fraction of a second and proceeded flawlessly for a substantial distance before Myren pulled it over.” 

Since the entire case was predicated on the roadside search and seizure, Churchwell dismissed the case altogether, releasing Desroches and Gordon from lock up and sending them back to their home state.

As America’s piecemeal legalization system continues to expand, opportunistic outlaws have revved up their interstate trafficking efforts in recent years, with law enforcement across the country announcing large scale pot busts almost daily.

Unfortunately, because the two men were stopped in a prohibition state with way more weed than is allowed, the two lucky transporters still won’t be able to get their truckload of product out of lock-up. You can’t win ‘em all.

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Original Post: Merry Jane: Judge Dismisses $4 Million Pot Bust Due to Illegal Vehicle Search

Bathroom Trap Door Leads Italian Police to Massive Cannabis Grow

Bathroom Trap Door Leads Italian Police to Massive Cannabis Grow

Original Post: Merry Jane: Bathroom Trap Door Leads Italian Police to Massive Cannabis Grow

[Canniseur: I bet it was the aroma that gave the location away. This reminds me of the large bust in a Philadelphia neighborhood, where the house had a strong aroma when just walking by. It was busted too. You just cannot hide that aroma for very long. ]

A mesmerizing video detailing a glowing portal to the huge grow operation has quickly gone viral across social media.

Police on the Italian island of Sardinia opened the cannabis equivalent of a cartoon treasure chest when they discovered a massive cannabis grow operation hidden behind a small trap door in the shower of a residential bathroom. 

In a new video that has now gone viral with more than 4 million views on Twitter alone, Sardinia cops find a secret door hidden on the wall of a tiled bathroom stall. Behind it, gold light shines from a secret room made to house an industrial-sized black market pot grow.

According to CNN, the clandestine grow room was over 5,000 square feet and housed more than 500 plants. To facilitate uniform growth, the room was equipped with full lighting ballasts and a halogen lamp system. And in true criminal fashion, the grow house was temperature controlled by heat pumps and fans running off stolen electricity.

Cops on the scene made one arrest, charging the homeowner with production and possession of illicit narcotics, as well as possession of an unlicensed firearm and ammunition. Police did not report how they stumbled upon the shower door greenhouse, but with such a massive space hidden from the public, we’re guessing they just asked where the second half of the house was. 

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Original Post: Merry Jane: Bathroom Trap Door Leads Italian Police to Massive Cannabis Grow

Dealers Caught with More Than 100,000 Counterfeit Weed Vape Cartridges

Dealers Caught with More Than 100,000 Counterfeit Weed Vape Cartridges

Original Post: Merry Jane: Dealers Caught with More Than 100,000 Counterfeit Weed Vape Cartridges

[Canniseur: While this is a start, the black market for vape cartridges is so large, ‘when it comes to slowing the damage done by counterfeit vape carts, this single arrest is nothing more than a flea bite on an elephant’s backside’. ]

While it’s unclear if these black market vapes contain chemical thickeners, the bust offers an important look at the underground industry which has led to a slew of vape-related illnesses.

Police officers in Kenosha County, Wisconsin say that a tip from a local high school student led them to a sophisticated counterfeit THC vape cartridge manufacturing operation that could potentially be tied to the vape-related illness that has already hospitalized hundreds of Americans and killed at least six.

According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, brothers Tyler and Jacob Huffhines were arrested after a search warrant of a condo in Bristol, WI turned up 31,200 filled vape cartridges, 98,000 empty vape cartridges, and 57 mason jars filled with what appeared to be cannabis oil. At the height of the operation, police say the crew was filling 3,000-5,000 cartridges every single day.

Local sheriffs say that they were led to the Huffhines brothers thanks to a pair of parents who pushed their son to tattle after catching him puffing on a vape cartridge, which the teen said he purchased for just $16. Authorities have sent samples of the oil to a laboratory, but it is not yet clear if the vape cartridges or cannabis oil confiscated from the Huffhines contains vitamin E acetate, the diluent currently thought to be causing the rash of vape illnesses.

But while parents, health experts, and even the president have all decried the vape illnesses as a cause for grave concern, most experts have failed to consider how black market vape cartridges are actually produced, and how potentially dangerous chemicals can be distributed to youth across the country. And so whether these particular Wisconsin cartridges contain chemical thickeners or not, the busted operation is an important look at the underground vape industry. 

Gallery — Here’s What Fake Vape Carts Actually Look Like:

At similar cart mills around the country, like-minded dealers order cheap empty vape cartridges and familiar packaging from overseas manufacturers, and mason jars full of cannabis oil from black market dealers — usually in California, Oregon. Next, the dealers will use syringes or pipettes to measure oil into each cartridge, screwing the tops on and folding them into boxes with names like Dank Vapes, Mario Carts, Exotic Vapes, and countless others. In Wisconsin, authorities say that the Huffhines paid a team of employees $20 an hour to fill cartridges and stuff them into thousands upon thousands of boxes labeled with various strains of “Dank Vapes,” “Chronic Carts,” and “Dabwoods.”

Since the cannabis oil is typically imported from a black market source, and traditionally sent by mail, illicit cart makers often do not know exactly what is in the mason jars they are sourcing. What may appear to be a potent THC distillate flavored with botanical terpenes could actually be cut with vitamin E acetate, glycol, or another diluent. On the other hand, it is also possible that counterfeit vape makers could purchase and add their own cutting agents to further stretch the selling potential of their untested cannabis oil. Without lab testing, there is frankly no way for consumers to know what it actually inside vape cartridges produced on the black market.

Wisconsin police say they are investigating to see how far the Huffhines’ suspected cannabis cartridge organization spread, and whether the brothers were responsible for distributing their carts on a national scale. But even if it is found that the brothers were selling cartridges cut with vitamin E acetate to high schoolers across the country, the widespread and decentralized nature of the black market cart industry means that it is almost certain that there are still countless other dealers pushing thousands upon thousands of similar products. In an interview with Leafly this week, Michigan-based Floraplex Terpenes CEO Alec Riffle estimated that there are 50 million vape cartridges cut with vitamin E acetate currently circulating throughout the US black market.

Tyler and Jacob Huffhines are being charged with manufacturing, distribution, and delivery of more than 10,000 grams of marijuana, as well as gun charges, cocaine possession, and a slew of other crimes. But when it comes to slowing the damage done by counterfeit vape carts, the single arrest is nothing more than a flea bite on an elephant’s backside.

Top Image via 

Original Post: Merry Jane: Dealers Caught with More Than 100,000 Counterfeit Weed Vape Cartridges

New Mexico Will Now Allow Out of State Residents to Get Medical Marijuana Cards

New Mexico Will Now Allow Out of State Residents to Get Medical Marijuana Cards

Original Post: Merry Jane: New Mexico Will Now Allow Out of State Residents to Get Medical Marijuana Cards

[Canniseur: More states with medical cannabis programs allow out of state residents to either get a card or use their card from their home state. This is a good thing and, at a low level, creating medical cannabis a ‘national’ program. Although it’s still contained entirely in each individual state. Confused? So am I!]

Thanks to a recent ruling from a New Mexico judge, residents from across the nation can now secure the right to purchase and consume cannabis legally in the Land of Enchantment.

If you’re planning a trip to New Mexico to check out the picturesque scenery or see if you can find and liberate a few new extraterrestrial friends, you can now add a little medicinal greenery to your desert vacation — even if you don’t actually live in the Land of Enchantment.

According to a report from the Phoenix New Times, a ruling from a New Mexico District Judge has opened the state medical marijuana program to out of state residents. Now, anyone who qualifies can register for a legal weed card in New Mexico, no matter where they live.

Derek Rodriguez, a cannabusiness owner who lives in nearby Arizona, was the first non-resident to obtain a New Mexico MMJ card. After a change in the state’s medical marijuana program removed a residency requirement, Rodriguez sued for his right to participate in the New Mexico system. And while Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham said that the residency removal was intended to facilitate reciprocity for MMJ cardholders from other states, District Judge Bryan Biedscheid sided with Rodriguez, and ruled that the program is open to any person who would like to apply, regardless of any MMJ status in their home state or country.

States like Nevada and Hawaii already allow reciprocity for medical marijuana cardholders from other states. But when it comes to open enrollment in an out-of-state program, New Mexico’s new policy is the first of its kind. Despite recent pushes from local cannabis advocates, New Mexico has not yet been able to pass a recreational legalization proposal.

“It’s fantastic that New Mexico is going through this in a very public manner,” Demitri Downing, executive director of the Marijuana Industry Trade Association of Arizona, told Phoenix New Times. “The more and more people discuss it, the more and more people understand the nuances of what doesn’t make sense. And what doesn’t make sense is not having reciprocity.”

Joining Rodriguez, two Texan men also sued New Mexico for the right to join the state’s medical marijuana program. For a huge number of Texans, New Mexico reciprocity could allow them to take a short drive from the draconian drug policies of the Lone Star State to legally access cannabis elsewhere.

New Mexico officials say that they plan to appeal Judge Biedscheid’s ruling to try and reign in the reciprocity clause.

Lead image via

Original Post: Merry Jane: New Mexico Will Now Allow Out of State Residents to Get Medical Marijuana Cards

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