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Friday, August 01, 2008

I think it was for the best

Welcome to the Donkey Show.



Manny Ramierez was traded to the LA Dodgers yesterday in a 3 team deal and It is not often you trade away a Future Hall of Famer  and it makes your team better.

I guess I will have to Peel off the Ramierez off the Back of my  #24 Jersey now that he is gone. I am glad just for the fact that it is now over and Manny showed that it is always all about him and I think he was starting to tear at the Soul of the team and Last week was the first time I can remember him ever being Booed in Fenway park.

Time to move on. Good luck in LA Manny you will fit in fine since they don't care out there in LA.

I will be interested to see what Manny Ramierez gets for a contract after this season is over. Will some team (METS) step up and give him a 4 year contract when his is 36 and fast approaching DH only status?

Thanks for the Memories Manny.



Thursday, July 31, 2008

Barney Frank Wants to Legalize Marijuana

CNN) -- The U.S. should stop arresting responsible marijuana users, Rep. Barney Frank said Wednesday, announcing a proposal to end federal penalties for Americans carrying fewer than 100 grams, almost a quarter-pound, of the substance.

Rep. Barney Frank's bill would radically curb federal penalties for personal marijuana use.

Rep. Barney Frank's bill would radically curb federal penalties for personal marijuana use.

Current laws targeting marijuana users place undue burdens on law enforcement resources, punish ill Americans whose doctors have prescribed the substance and unfairly affect African-Americans, said Frank, flanked by legislators and representatives from advocacy groups.

"The vast amount of human activity ought to be none of the government's business," Frank said on Capitol Hill. "I don't think it is the government's business to tell you how to spend your leisure time."

The Massachusetts Democrat and his supporters emphasized that only the use -- and not the abuse -- of marijuana would be decriminalized if the resolution resulted in legislation. Video Watch Frank lay out the proposal »

The Drug Enforcement Administration says people charged with simple possession are rarely incarcerated. The agency and the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy have long opposed marijuana legalization, for medical purposes or otherwise.

Marijuana is a Schedule I controlled substance, meaning it has a high potential for abuse and no accepted medical use, according to the drug control office.

Don't Miss Is it time to legalize pot?

"Smoked marijuana has not withstood the rigors of science -- it is not medicine and it is not safe," the DEA states on its Web site. "Legalization of marijuana, no matter how it begins, will come at the expense of our children and public safety. It will create dependency and treatment issues, and open the door to use of other drugs, impaired health, delinquent behavior, and drugged drivers."

Allen St. Pierre, spokesman for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, likened Frank's proposal -- co-sponsored by Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas -- to current laws dealing with alcohol consumption. Alcohol use is permitted, and the government focuses its law enforcement efforts on those who abuse alcohol or drive under its influence, he said.

"We do not arrest and jail responsible alcohol drinkers," he said.

St. Pierre said there are tens of millions of marijuana smokers in the United States, including himself, and hundreds of thousands are arrested each year for medical or personal use. Is it time to legalize pot?

There have been 20 million marijuana-related arrests since 1965, he said, and 11 million since 1990, and "every 38 seconds, a marijuana smoker is arrested."

Rob Kampia, director of the Marijuana Policy Project, said marijuana arrests outnumber arrests for "all violent crimes combined," meaning police are spending inordinate amounts of time chasing nonviolent criminals.

"Ending arrests is the key to marijuana policy reform," he said.

Reps. William Lacy Clay, D-Missouri, and Barbara Lee, D-California, said that in addition to targeting nonviolent offenders, U.S. marijuana laws unfairly target African-Americans.

Clay said he did not condone drug use but opposes using tax dollars to pursue what he feels is an arcane holdover from "a phony war on drugs that is filling up our prisons, especially with people of color."

Too many drug enforcement resources are being dedicated to incarcerating nonviolent drugs users, and not enough is being done to stop the trafficking of narcotics into the United States, he said.

Being arrested is not the American marijuana smoker's only concern, said Bill Piper of the Drug Policy Alliance Network. Those found guilty of marijuana use can lose their jobs, financial aid for college, their food stamp and welfare benefits, or their low-cost housing.

The U.S. stance on marijuana, Piper said, "is one of the most destructive criminal justice policies in America today."

Calling the U.S. policy "inhumane" and "immoral," Lee said she has many constituents who are harassed or arrested for using or cultivating marijuana for medical purposes. California allows medical marijuana use, but the federal government does not, she explained.

House Resolution 5843, titled the Personal Use of Marijuana by Responsible Adults Act of 2008, would express support for "a very small number of individuals" suffering from chronic pain or illness to smoke marijuana with impunity.

According to NORML, marijuana can be used to treat a range of illnesses, including glaucoma, asthma, multiple sclerosis, HIV/AIDS and seizures.

Frank, who is chairman of the Financial Services Committee, said that about a dozen states have approved some degree of medical marijuana use and that the federal government should stop devoting resources to arresting people who are complying with their states' laws.

In a shot at Republicans, Frank said it was strange that those who support limited government want to criminalize marijuana.

Asked whether the resolution's passage would change his personal behavior, Frank quipped, "I do obey every law I vote for" but quickly said he did not use marijuana, nor does he encourage it.

"I smoke cigars. I don't think other people should do that. If young people ask me, I would advise them not to do it," he said.


If HR 5843 were passed, the House would support marijuana smokers possessing up to 100 grams -- about 3½ ounces -- of cannabis without being arrested. It would also give its blessing to the "nonprofit transfer" of up to an ounce of marijuana.

The resolution would not address laws forbidding growing, importing or exporting marijuana, or selling it for profit. The resolution also would not speak to state laws regarding marijuana use.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

police officer's house raided due to heat Loss

UK: Heat-loss home sparks 'cannabis factory' raid
Raymond Brown
Cambridge News
Wednesday 30 Jul 2008

A WOMAN police officer's house was raided after a helicopter's infra-red camera spotted it as a suspected cannabis factory.

The home was emitting so much heat, officers thought it could be cultivating large quantities of the drug.

Police swooped on the house and the reason for the blazing heat became clear - not drug production but insufficient insulation.

Sawston police community support officer (PCSO) Zally Huseyen said the problem was caused because of poor quality workmanship on her new home.

The Cambridgeshire helicopter was on an unrelated mission when its camera homed in on the house in Lower Cambourne.

Officers later discovered the new £400,000 house was was pouring out extreme heat because it was so poorly insulated, claimed the mother of five.

The 46-year-old told the News about the police raid and how her "dream home" turned into a nightmare.

She said: "It was so embarrassing when we were raided. I saw the police car pull up and knew the sergeant.

"She recognised me when I answered the door. She was shocked and said three times, 'This is your house?'

"They showed me the footage from the helicopter and I couldn't believe it."

The defects in the Barrett home, which was built by David Wilson Homes five years ago, has cost the PCSO thousands of pounds since moving in a year ago.

The PCSO claims bodges include extractor fans that blow instead of suck, windows fitted the wrong way round, bags of cement and nails buried in the garden, a garage that floods regularly and shifting bricks.

Builders also failed to paint the wooden slatted house with fireproof paint. When they came to rectify the fault they just turned the slats around.

And because of poor insulation, the house pours out heat.

In cannabis "factories" fluorescent bulbs are used to grow the drug, which needs at least eight hours of daylight and temperatures of 15C.

Mrs Huseyen said: "The things they have done are a joke but they are not funny. I have been told they will do nothing about it as the warranty ran out two years ago."

David Bell, managing director for David Wilson Homes South Midlands, said: "All David Wilson homes are built to the highest specification and in accordance with all energy efficiency legislation and regulations.

"Each home undergoes a thorough independent inspection before being occupied.

"Since being contacted by Mrs Zally Huseyen regarding concerns over the energy efficiency of her home at Monksfield we have conducted additional investigations, including checking the insulation of the property, which found that the home complies with all the relevant standards."



"Bush's 3rd Term"

UK: Is the war against drugs working?

UK: Is the war against drugs working?
BBC News
Wednesday 30 Jul 2008

Drug seizures have little impact on the amount of narcotics on Britain's streets, according to a think-tank report.

Two men with very different experiences of the drugs world tell their stories and offer their views.


Darren, from Braintree, Essex, is schools team leader with the charity Drugsline (0808 1 606 606).

I was a heroin addict from the age of 22 to 28. It completely devastated my life.

Initially I started with cannabis just before my 15th birthday. But after I suffered physical abuse in a young offender's institution I was introduced to heroin.

All I wanted to do was blot out the pain, but it took over everything.

There was always heroin around.

Very occasionally you would have trouble with supply - you'd have a shortage of drugs.

But more often than not, when one dealer hasn't got any drugs then another one does.

Eventually I'd lost what I considered to be the battle to live. It was just a matter of time before I was going to overdose.

Fortunately, I managed to get onto a rehab programme in prison. So now I'm determined to help young people avoid making the same mistakes as me.

I'm not saying that money should be taken away from enforcement. You have to have it.

But so little cash is put into education, and I can see from the work I do with Drugsline what a difference it can make.


I've smoked cannabis regularly for three years, and the so-called war on drugs has never affected me at all.

The only time I even think about getting caught is if I'm at an open-air gig and I fancy a joint. Even then, I'll usually see lots of other people doing the same.

I'm about as far from the stereotype of a drug user as it's possible to get. I'm middle-class, the director of three companies, and I've never broken the law in my life - other than the law on drugs.

Each week I suppose my fiancée and I spend about £40 on cannabis - maybe a little more in the summer, when I like to smoke it out on my balcony. That's a lot less than many people I know put away on alcohol.

If there have been crackdowns and seizures, I haven't noticed it in the price - which is quite good going when you look at how much food and petrol has gone up.

It annoys me that, at 38 years of age, the government can tell me what I can and can't smoke.

My GP knows I use it, and told me that if it hadn't adversely affected me in the first weeks, it never would.

The only problems I encounter come from cannabis being illegal. In the past I've had to go to some rather shady characters.

I don't like the fact that the money I'm spending is going to gangsters or al-Qaeda or whoever.

I'm not interesting in stronger drugs like heroin and cocaine. But it seems to me that keeping them illegal only makes things worse.

People are always going to take them, whatever the government says.

If they were provided on prescription to addicts, then you wouldn't have all the crime associated with people trying to feed their habits.

Colorado Up In Smoke?

Colorado Up In Smoke?
Posted by CN Staff on July 30, 2008 at 05:56:02 PT
By Peter Marcus, DDN Staff Writer
Source: Denver Daily News

Colorado -- The potency of marijuana has increased over 151 percent since 1983. But Coloradans still say, “Smoke ‘em if you got ‘em.”
A study released yesterday by the Office of National Drug Control Policy indicates that Colorado ranks in the top 10 for states with the highest current marijuana use. At least 7.6 percent of Coloradans smoked weed in the past month.

Also, contrary to arguments made by pot proponents, the 2008 Marijuana Sourcebook revealed that less than one half of 1 percent of inmates in state prisons are serving time for marijuana possession only. Marijuana still accounts for two out of five drug violation arrests nationwide.

Drug Czar John Walters said that while marijuana use among teens has continued to decrease, convincing adults to stop using the drug has remained a problem.
“Baby Boomers have this perception that marijuana is about fun and freedom. It isn’t,” he said. “It’s about dependency, disease and dysfunction.”

The Marijuana Sourcebook was released one day before Congressman Barney Frank, D-Mass., is expected to hold a news conference today in Washington announcing plans to introduce legislation that would remove federal penalties for personal marijuana use. The resolution would eliminate federal penalties for the adult possession of up to 100 grams of marijuana, and for the not-for-profit transfer of up to one ounce of the drug.

“The Drug Czar must be truly scared of the federal marijuana decriminalization bill that is moving through Congress,” said Denver pot proponent Mason Tvert. “It appears his office spent more time preparing this one marijuana ‘report’ than it has ever spent actually helping people with substance abuse problems receive treatment.”
Tvert is an advocate of legalizing marijuana. He ran a successful campaign in Denver in 2005 that legalized the adult possession of up to an ounce of marijuana. A second successful campaign last year instructed the Denver Police Department to make marijuana its lowest enforcement priority. The campaign was launched after Denver marijuana arrests increased despite the decision by voters in 2005.

Tvert said that while few marijuana users are thrown in prison, the fact that they’re arrested in the first place is a significant problem.
“They are permanently branded as criminals with drug convictions just for using a drug less harmful than alcohol,” he said. “If the Drug Czar is so thrilled with how states are handling those arrested for marijuana possession, he should support the bill introduced by Rep. Barney Frank that simply leaves marijuana enforcement up to the states.”

Second-Most Used Illicit Drug
Marijuana is the most commonly used illicit drug next to psychotherapeutics like anti-anxiety medications, according to the Marijuana Sourcebook report. In addition to Colorado, northern California, Alaska, Hawaii, parts of Montana, Wyoming, New Mexico, most of the Northeast and northern Florida are all experiencing high marijuana usage rates. In California, over 4.9 million marijuana plants were destroyed last year.

Approximately 2 million people started using marijuana in the past year, according to the report. Fifty-three percent of people scored weed for free and 43 percent bought it. Seventy-eight percent of marijuana users got it from their friends. And 55 percent used pot inside their own homes, while 22 percent smoked it at an outside public area.

There are about 25.4 million people smoking marijuana in the United States, according to the report. Users spent an estimated total of $11 billion in all to obtain the drug.
Walters believes strongly that there are serious consequences to smoking marijuana, including emotional and physical tolls.
“Too many of us are in denial and it’s time for an intervention,” he said.

Tvert, however, said regardless of pot’s potency, it’s still less harmful than the legal alternative — alcohol.
“Alcohol use alone is the nation’s third leading preventable cause of death, whereas there has never been a single death in history attributed solely to marijuana use,” he said. “Why on earth would the Drug Czar prefer adults use a more deadly drug?”

Source: Denver Daily News (CO)
Author: Peter Marcus, DDN Staff Writer
Published: Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Copyright: 2008 Denver Daily News