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Meet Doctor Narc – Cannabis | Weed | Marijuana

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Meet Doctor Narc, your local cannabis prohibition physician. Is your doctor a narc? Will your doctor report you for driving “under the influence” of cannabis? They should, according to Dr. Kenny Lin, a family physician and associate director of the Lancaster General Hospital Family Medicine Residency.

Dr. Lin writes in an editorial:

“Most of us routinely ask our patients about their use of the drug and counsel them about its potential harms. But how many of us are aware that when it comes to pot and public safety, we have another duty to notify the authorities when we know or suspect that a patient is driving while using cannabis?”

The rest is, as you may have guessed, authoritarian nonsense. But Dr. Lin’s editorial highlights a worrying trend among healthcare professionals. A trend that robs us of expert opinion in place of pill-pushing doctrines.

Doctor Narc Debunked 

Meet Doctor Narc

Doctor Narc writes, 

“The data suggest that people who drive under the influence have a statistically increased risk of being involved in car crashes. Since 2000, the percentage of motor vehicle crash deaths involving cannabis has doubled, and states that legalized cannabis for recreational use have seen a 6.5% increase in crashes resulting in injuries and a 2.3% increase in fatal crashes.”

Because the data suggests a particular trend, he concludes: “I have a duty to report to law enforcement patients who admit to cannabis-impaired driving or whom I strongly suspect are doing so.” He cites Canadian doctors as his inspiration.

But let’s look at this data. Does the evidence suggest people driving with phytocannabinoids in their system are at a higher risk? Let’s look at three of the studies Dr. Kin provides.

Study One: Read the Fine Print 

This study concludes: “The estimated increases in injury and fatal crash rates after recreational marijuana legalization are consistent with earlier studies, but the effects varied across states. Because this is an early look at the time trends, researchers and policymakers need to continue monitoring the data.”

If this is all you read, it sounds conclusive. But what are these “Estimated increases?” The study found: “The effects on fatal crash rates ranged from a 10% decrease to a 4% increase.”

With a margin like that, why not come to the opposite conclusion? Driving high means a potential 10% decrease in fatal accidents.

It seems THC has the potential to both increase or decrease your risk of a fatal car crash. Like most driving-related things – texting, talking intently to a passenger, not checking your mirrors, dealing with pets loose inside the vehicle, driving sleep deprived.

This study compared data through a model that looked at many factors. Its conclusions aren’t grounded in science. Its conclusion is simply a narrative labelled Science™.

Of course, researchers don’t limit this kind of speculative nonsense to cannabis. Anywhere you find public health busybodies, you’ll find a Doctor Narc.

Canada’s new alcohol guidelines are based on observational research (some very poor and irrelevant). Yet, “strengthening regulations on alcohol advertising and marketing, increasing restrictions on the physical availability of alcohol, and adopting minimum prices for alcohol” was the conclusion.

When did research studies begin making political value statements in their conclusions? And speaking of alcohol…

Study Two: Don’t Drive Drunk 

Meet Doctor Narc

This study looked at cannabis and alcohol. Nobody should drive after consuming ethanol. That shit is for your car, not your body. So it’s not surprising this “multinomial mixed-effects logistic regression model cross-sectional analysis” found the following:

“The percentage of fatalities involving cannabis and co-involving cannabis and alcohol doubled from 2000 to 2018, and cannabis was associated with alcohol co-involvement.”

If Dr. Lin has patients who show up high and drunk, then yes, please call the authorities. I will not label you Doctor Narc for reporting drunk drivers.

Weed, of course, is a different substance with different effects. Consider the third study Dr. Lin refers to:

Study Three: Don’t Use This Study to Imply Impairment 

This study speaks for itself. “The study results should not be used to imply impairment or increased risk associated with drug presence.”

What we have here are media headlines taking precedence. Doctors who don’t have the time (or interest) to dive deeply into the literature. Dr. Lin should have considered the epistemology of the research. Or is his anti-cannabis bias enough to ignore the pitfalls of how the studies came to these inconclusive results?

Why Doctor Narc is Wrong 

Consider what Professor Iain McGregor, Academic Director of the Lambert Initiative, told an Australian Senate committee. Does this make more sense than any of the studies Dr. Lin refers to?

Cannabis and driving is actually a very complicated area. The tendency is to look at it through the prism of alcohol, but there are actually almost diametrically opposite effects for cannabis relative to alcohol. With alcohol, people overestimate their ability and tend to take risks as a result. With cannabis, people actually feel impaired… When they do drive, there are quite reliable effects like a lower speed and a bigger distance between them and the car in front.

McGregor doesn’t discount medical cannabis patients, either. He goes on to say:

If you give someone cannabis for the first time, they’ll be very impaired for a couple of hours after consumption, but, if someone is a patient and they have used cannabis for two years, chronically every day, you will really struggle to find any sort of impairment whatsoever. So we need more research and we need more enlightened information for patients rather than just saying: ‘Don’t drive.’

The Broader Trend

Now, I don’t like singling out doctors. Calling somebody Doctor Narc isn’t very nice. But when you write an editorial as bad as the one Dr. Lin wrote and sign your name to it, it requires a response.

I’m sure Dr. Lin means the best for his patients. But so did all the doctors that pushed Vioxx for arthritis. Approved by the FDA in 1999, they recalled it in 2004 after increased heart attacks and strokes.

Doctors also pushed Baycol, a cholesterol-lowering drug the FDA approved in 1997 and withdrew from the market in 2001. Turns out it caused rhabdomyolysis, a severe muscle disorder.

Oh, and there’s Fen-Phen. A weight loss drug the FDA approved in 1996 and withdrew a year later after discovering heart valve damage and pulmonary hypertension in the people who took it.

And let’s not forget Avandia. The FDA approved this diabetes drug in 1999 and didn’t withdraw it until 2011 after a bunch of people had heart attacks.

And what about the Dalkon Shield? Women in the 1970s and 80s used this type of intrauterine device until we realized it caused infections, infertility, and other serious complications. 

Doctor Narc’s Worldview

Meet Doctor Narc

If he’d been practicing in the 1960s, would Dr. Lin have prescribed Thalidomide to pregnant women? 

These aren’t “gotcha” questions. These are serious inquiries into how doctors make their decisions. Do they simply trust the FDA to do its job? 

Since cannabis isn’t legal and the FDA hasn’t endorsed it as a food or medicine, it is, therefore, dangerous. Meaning police should arrest medical cannabis patients who drive.

Is that extent of their logic?

Would Dr. Lin have called the police on a patient who drove after taking Zohydro ER? The FDA approved this opioid but recently recalled it due to the potential for overdose. 

Does Dr. Lin have a problem with the prescribed opioid-addicted populace driving cars? Why or why not?





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More Weed, More Problems? – Cannabis | Weed | Marijuana

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More weed, more problems? As in, if you smoke all day, everyday, your life is likely a hot mess with no hope of redemption? According to recent research from CU Boulder, the answer to “more weed, more problems” is no.

According to researchers, legalizing recreational cannabis at the state level does not lead to an increase in substance use disorders. Or even increased use of illicit drugs among adults. In fact, it may even decrease issues related to alcohol abuse.

A study involving over 4,000 twins from Colorado and Minnesota found no correlation between cannabis legalization and any increases in cognitive, psychological, social, relationship, or financial problems.

“We really didn’t find any support for a lot of the harms people worry about with legalization,” said lead author Stephanie Zellers. “From a public health perspective, these results are reassuring.”

The study, published in Psychological Medicine, was conducted by researchers from the University of Minnesota, CU Boulder and the CU Anschutz Medical Campus. The study used data from two of the nation’s most extensive and longest-running twin studies: one located at IBG and the other at the Minnesota Center for Twin Family Research.

What Are Twin Studies? 

More Weed, More Problems?

Can twin studies prove that more weed doesn’t equal more problems? Well, what are twin studies?

Twin studies are research designs that compare identical (monozygotic) and fraternal (dizygotic) twins. The idea is that identical twins share all their genes, while fraternal twins share only about half of their genes.

So any differences between the two types of twins can help researchers identify which traits or conditions are likely influenced by genetics and which are likely influenced by environment. Researchers can use twin studies to study a wide range of topics, including genetics, development, and health.

IBG stands for Institute of Behavioral Genetics, a research center at the University of Colorado Boulder. The Minnesota Center for Twin Family Research located at the University of Minnesota.

Both centers conduct twin studies and have been collecting data over the years. And both centers are among the nation’s most prominent and longest-running twin studies. They provide researchers with a wealth of data on genetic and environmental factors related to human behaviour and development.

The Problem with Twin Studies

Of course, Twin studies are not without their critics.

  1. Assumption of equal environments: Twin studies sometimes assume that identical and fraternal twins are raised in similar environments, but this may not always be the case. For example, identical twins may be treated more similarly than fraternal twins, which could affect the results.
  2. Limited generalizability: Researchers often conduct twin studies on small, specific samples, such as twins from a particular country or region. This limits the generalizability of the findings to other populations.
  3. Missing heritability: Twin studies estimate the proportion of variation in a trait or condition due to genetics. But they do not account for all the genetic variation that may influence the trait or condition.
  4. Complexity of human behaviour: Many complex human behaviours and conditions, such as mental disorders or intelligence, likely result from multiple genes and environmental factors. Twin studies may not fully capture these interactions.
  5. Selection bias: Twins who volunteer for studies might differ from twins who do not volunteer, which can bias the results.

Twin Studies Disprove More Weed, More Problems? 

More Weed, More Problems?

The researchers of this “more weed, more problems” study compared the 40% of twins who reside in states where recreational cannabis is legal to those who live in states where it remains illegal to understand the overall impact of legalization.

Researchers have been tracking the participants, who are now between the ages of 24 and 49, since their adolescence. They’ve been gathering information on their use of alcohol, tobacco, cannabis and several other illicit drugs, as well as assessing their overall well-being.

By specifically comparing twins within 240 pairs, in which one twin lives in a state with legal cannabis and the other where it is not, the researchers aimed to identify any changes caused by cannabis legalization.

The researchers previously found that identical twins residing in states where recreational cannabis is legal tend to use it around 20% more often than their twins living in states where it remains illegal.

So does that mean more weed, more problems?

To answer this question, the team compared survey results that examined 23 indicators of “psychosocial distress.” Including the use of alcohol and illicit drugs like cocaine and heroin, psychological distress, financial difficulties, cognitive issues, unemployment, and relationship issues both at home and at work.

“We included everything we had data on with the goal of getting a well-rounded look at the impacts on the whole person,” said Zellers. “Big picture, there’s not much there.”

No, More Weed Does Not Equal More Problems

More Weed, More Problems?

So is “more weed, more problems” debunked?

Researchers found no relationship between legal cannabis and an increased risk of “cannabis use disorder” or dependency.

For years, critics have called cannabis a “gateway” drug to harder substances like cocaine and heroin. The researchers found no changes post-legalization.

“For low-level cannabis use, which was the majority of users, in adults, legalization does not appear to increase the risk of substance use disorders,” said co-author Dr. Christian Hopfer.

Not only does this study question the “more weed, more problems” narrative, but it also shows legal cannabis’ benefit. People in legal states are less likely to develop alcohol dependency problems, including driving drunk.

“Our study suggests that we should not be overly concerned about everyday adult use in a legalized environment. But no drug is risk-free,” said John Hewitt, professor of psychology and neuroscience at CU Boulder.

While the study found no adverse effects on the daily lives of cannabis-consuming adults, the study also found no evidence that legal cannabis benefited people’s cognitive, psychological, social, relationship, or financial status.

Overall, the study seems to suggest the same thing we have before. Substances are neutral. It is the person who can choose to use or abuse them. But the drugs themselves have no innate power of control.





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Health Canada: Let’s Ban Potent Cannabis Extracts  – Cannabis | Weed | Marijuana

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Despite a healthcare system already on the verge of collapse pre-COVID, Health Canada bureaucrats have focused on cannabis companies selling extracts.

Health Canada recently requested federally licensed cannabis companies to discontinue the sale of cannabis products the bureaucracy considers mislabeled. Health Canada is concerned adults are consuming products labelled “extracts” as “edibles.”

The move is expected to cost cannabis companies millions of dollars. And it comes at a time when most publicly traded cannabis producers are still losing money.

Why target products that have been on the market for three years? Health Canada has not responded to any media on the topic, including Cannabis Life Network’s request for clarification.

Health Canada: Let's Ban Cannabis Extracts 

While Health Canada’s targeting of cannabis extracts surprises many, others, like CLN, have been expecting this move for a while.

In the letter seen by MJBizDaily, Health Canada said that “upon further review of the products in question, Health Canada has assessed that this product is edible cannabis and, consequently, it contains a quantity of THC that exceeds the allowable limit of 10 mg per immediate container.”

The letter goes on to define “extract,” “edible,” and “food.”

“Health Canada has determined that (the products in question) are consumed in the same manner as food, and therefore fit the definition of edible cannabis,” the Health Canada letter says.

Cannabis extracts cannot exceed 1,000 milligrams per container, one hundred times more than Health Canada permits in the edible class. Ergo, companies would instead produce extracts than edibles.

However, the line has gotten blurred, and this is likely what concerns the bureaucracy’s busybodies. For example, New Brunswick-based cannabis producer Organigram has a “Jolts” product advertised as a lozenge. While each candy is 10mg, the entire pack of 100mg.

Likewise, Redecan has a cannabis extract containing 800 to 1000mg of THC per bottle. However, the oral dispensing syringe caps each “dose” at 8-10mg. 

Are these the products Health Canada wants discontinued?

Health Canada On Extracts: Useless

Health Canada: Let's Ban Cannabis Extracts 

Why Health Canada? And why now? Why at all?

Industry sources expect to lose tens of millions if Health Canada demands extracts and lozenges get pulled from the Canadian cannabis market. They also expect the illicit and legacy markets to fill the void.

Regardless of what you think about public health and safety or an individual’s freedom to consume as much THC as they want, there’s significant concern about how Health Canada is going about this.

This kind of regulatory enforcement is akin to banana republics. Health Canada has already approved these products. Organigram’s “Jolts” have been on the market for over a year.

Producers of these extracts followed all the rules and regulations. And now Health Canada will arbitrarily limit (or ban) these products because… what? Canadian consumers prefer potent extracts over weak-ass edibles?

The lesson here is to remove all THC limits, not bring the hammer down on companies producing legal products. This is not how you regulate an industry.

Infantilizing Adults

While Health Canada hasn’t responded to a request for comment, I suspect the justification will likely be over “public health” and “increased hospitalizations from high-THC products.”

Another way of saying: we’re so bad at delivering health care that instead of improving it, we’re going to start controlling the behaviours that may lead people to need a hospital bed.

That’s the most insulting part of all of this. Health Canada treats adult cannabis consumers like children by limiting their autonomy and decision-making.

Actions speak louder than words. Health Canada bureaucrats (who live off our taxes) lack trust in cannabis-consuming adults to make their own choices and take responsibility for their actions.

When regulations are not based on evidence or are not well-reasoned, they are an infringement on personal liberty and autonomy.

Even with “conventional thinking,” in which government regulations are effective and immune to corruption and politics, it’s essential that regulators balance the need to protect public health and safety with the need to respect adults’ autonomy and decision-making abilities.

Health Canada’s crackdown on cannabis extracts clearly violates that balance. 

This situation would be like if Health Canada discovered that vodka and whiskey were stronger than beer. And so they order distilleries across the nation to arbitrarily limit their alcohol content and take the products off the shelves.

Health Canada has no business regulating cannabis. 

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10 Ways Most Cannabis Research is False – Cannabis | Weed | Marijuana

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Most cannabis research is false. A bold statement. So what does it mean? In 2005, Stanford University professor John Ioannidis published the paper “Why Most Published Research Findings Are False.”

In it, he argued that most published research findings are false due to a combination of factors such as small sample sizes, inadequate adjustment for multiple comparisons, and conflicts of interest.

The paper made quite an uproar in the scientific community. While some criticized Ioannidis for simplifying the problem, most agree there is a replication crisis in scientific literature. For example, one study may find cannabis increases the risk of heart attacks. But if no other research can replicate its findings, is the study telling us anything authentic or valid?

The replication crisis doesn’t only affect sociology, medicine or psychology. It also affects cannabis studies. Leading to an uncomfortable conclusion: most cannabis research is false. 

Most Cannabis Research is False

Most Cannabis Research is False

Is most cannabis research false? The replication crisis has led to calls for more transparency and rigour in the research process. But ultimately, the only way out is to evaluate studies based on their replication rate.

Can adolescent cannabis use lead to psychosis or an increased risk of developing schizophrenia? Are cannabis consumers less likely to abuse opioid-based pain medication? Does cannabis make you a more compassionate person? Can it lead to poor cardiovascular health? Will cannabis impair your driving?

Some studies answer in the affirmative, others in the negative. Prohibitionists and public health busybodies like to cite studies that show cannabis’ negative qualities. Proponents of cannabis tend to mention the positive studies.

But most cannabis research is false, whether it confirms your bias or not.

10 Ways Most Cannabis Research is False

The replication crisis has affected studies on cannabis in several ways, including:

  1. Lack of replication: Many studies on cannabis have been criticized for their inability to be replicated. This calls into question the validity of their findings.
  2. Lack of standardization: There is a lack of standardization in the way cannabis is used and administered in studies (not to mention the strains used, their specific cannabinoid content, etc.). This makes it impossible to compare results across different studies.
  3. Small sample sizes: Many studies on cannabis have small sample sizes, which can lead to unreliable results.
  4. Lack of control groups: Some studies on cannabis have lacked proper control groups. This makes it difficult to determine the specific effects of cannabis.
  5. Uncontrolled variables: Many studies on cannabis have not controlled for other factors that could affect the results, such as tobacco use or poor diet. Sometimes, researchers won’t even account for underlying medical conditions.
  6. Limited generalizability: Some researchers conduct studies on cannabis on specific populations, such as patients with a particular medical condition, which can limit the generalizability of the results to the general population.
  7. Publication bias: There is a tendency for researchers to publish positive or negative results than inconclusive results. This leads to an over-representation of “findings” in the literature.
  8. Funding bias: Studies funded by industry stakeholders, such as pharmaceutical companies. This makes the study more likely to produce favourable results than studies funded by other sources. This ultimately creates a bias in the literature.
  9. Lack of transparency: Some studies on cannabis have been criticized for lack of transparency in their methods and results. This makes it challenging to evaluate the robustness of their findings.
  10. Prevalence of observational studies: There is a high prevalence of observational studies in cannabis research, which are prone to bias and confounding. They are less substantial than RCTs (randomized controlled trials) in determining causality.

This overreliance on observational studies means most cannabis research is false. Just as funding bias results in slogans like “Follow the Science,” which is ultimately synonymous with “Follow the Money.”

Studies Say” is the Modern Equivalent to, “The Scriptures Say…”

Most Cannabis Research is False

We’re not here to bash anyone’s spiritual beliefs. If you find solace in Holy Scripture, then all the best. But if you try and argue that your interpretation of the scriptures is describing a reality we all must follow, we’re going to have a problem.

Likewise, we won’t call out anyone using research studies to help navigate the world. You may be on a vegan diet and, therefore, like reading studies confirming the lifestyle’s benefits.

But, once you begin arguing with others that the vegan lifestyle is the only way to live, and you support these opinions by referring to “studies,” then it’s time to step back and reassess.

Both “scriptures” and “studies” express authority or provide evidence for a particular belief or claim.

Scriptures refer to religious texts or teachings considered sacred or authoritative by those who follow that faith. 

Studies, on the other hand, refer to scientific research findings. These are supposed to be based on empirical evidence and subject to rigorous testing, verification, and replication

The failure of much modern research, including cannabis research, to replicate findings is no small matter. That is why most cannabis research is false.

When you read: “Randomized controlled trials evaluating the therapeutic use and safety of marijuana are lacking, but a growing body of evidence suggests that marijuana consumption may be associated with adverse cardiovascular risks.”

You can roll your eyes. There is no “growing body of evidence” because, without RCTs, there is no evidence. Without replication, all you have is an opinion.





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