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The Art of Cherry Picking and the Real Problem with Cannabis in America



art of cherry picking weed

The Art of Cherry Picking

Providing Perspective to non-nuanced news opinions


Yes, this will be the opinion of an opinion – because the article I’m about to cover poses as a “news” article but in actuality is a poorly constructed opinion. It is my objective today to disembowel the contents of this article and showcase how the “Machine” utilizes information to sustain a policy that is corrosive to society as a whole.


In today’s “sniper session”, we’re going to be analyzing an article written by a man named Ben Leonard, who according to his Politico bio is;


Ben Leonard is a health technology reporter at POLITICO, covering digital health action from D.C. at agencies, in Congress and in the White House, as well as the industry at large.


He’s also a co-author of POLITICO’s Future Pulse newsletter.


The article in question is titled; “Pot is making people sick. Congress is playing catch-up.”


While many of the things Ben says in the article are factually correct, the way it is presented comes paints cannabis in a biased light. I aim to set the record straight.


Argument 1: Recent Health Problems with Cannabis


In the article Ben writes in his opening statements;


But the policymakers overseeing legalization were flying surprisingly blind about its effect on public health. Only recently has a steady flow of data emerged on health impacts, including emphysema in smokers and learning delays in adolescents.



Except, he fails to provide any sources to that claim. It’s simply left in there and the reader is meant to trust Ben’s opinion.


I’d like to see the data on this “new information”. Especially since I’m a person who is monitoring all things within the cannabis space, I would know of this “streams of data” that suggest people are getting sick.


And while it’s true, there are people who get intoxicated from cannabis, the truth of the matter is that it’s a miniscule percentage compared to the larger population that consume cannabis.


The use of cannabis as a medicinal and recreational substance dates back thousands of years, with evidence of its consumption and cultivation found in various cultures and civilizations around the world. In recent decades, scientists and researchers have been studying the effects of cannabis on the human body, with a particular focus on its medicinal properties and safety for consumption.


One of the leading countries in cannabis research is Israel, where scientists have been studying the plant and its effects for many years. Israel has been at the forefront of cannabis research, conducting clinical trials and publishing numerous studies on the topic. These studies have provided valuable insight into the effects of cannabis on the human body and have helped to dispel many of the myths and misconceptions surrounding its use.


Despite the restrictions on cannabis research in the United States, the data and scientific literature on the topic is vast and robust. The overwhelming majority of studies suggest that cannabis is safe for consumption for the majority of people, with only a small subset of people with pre-existing conditions potentially experiencing negative effects.


The available data and scientific literature on cannabis consumption suggests that it is generally safe for the majority of people. While further research is always necessary, the evidence to date suggests that the plant has been used safely and effectively by humans for thousands of years and that its use poses relatively few risks to the majority of people.


Argument 2: “Evidence is overwhelming (maybe)”


While this following section isn’t a single citation of evidence, each study couldn’t prove a causal relationship between whatever the issue was and cannabis. For example,


The researchers found that from 2011 to 2019, teenagers in states that legalized recreational cannabis saw a “slight” uptick in asthma rates in kids ages 12 to 17 compared with states in which cannabis remained illegal. The team, from the City University of New York, Columbia University, the University of California San Diego and others, also found an increase in asthma among children in some racial and ethnic groups.


Except, kids in that age group predominantly utilizes vaporizers as opposed to smoking joints and a 2020 study entitled, “Medical Cannabis in Asthma Patients” concluded;


Cannabis has a bronchodilator effect on the airways and might have an anti-inflammatory effect on asthmatic patients. However, harmful effects on the lungs are mainly attributed to smoking and include airway irritation and the development of chronic bronchitis symptoms.



Which means, if these kids are predominantly “vaping”, and not smoking, then it’s probably in their best interest to consider what elements are placed within the vaping devices. We know a few years ago EVALI caused major concern, however, I doubt that the researchers are even thinking in this manner.


This is because, when researchers talk about age groups like 12-17, they don’t understand the cultural implications behind the consumption of cannabis. I do, because I’ve been writing on cannabis culture for 15 years.


Obviously, there would be an influence in the results if you factor “smoking vs vaping vs eating it” all of which will have different impacts on the individual. Not to mention that cannabis already has a unique effect on each person due to their endocannabinoid system.


The rest of the article also points out suggestive “evidence” linking it to other conditions I have shown in previous articles to be a fancy way of interpreting data according to narrative.


To be fair…


Ben isn’t calling for keeping cannabis illegal, and that I can respect. But what he is doing is painting cannabis as some “dangerous threat” to society when in reality it isn’t. The danger that we’re seeing, and all of the evidence that he is pointing to suggests that the populace is “uneducated” when it comes to drug use.


Drug prohibition has long been a source of confusion and misinformation, creating a “drug-dumb” populace that lacks a basic understanding of the effects of certain substances and how they interact with the body and mind. This ignorance is the result of decades of fear-mongering and propaganda aimed at demonizing drugs, particularly those classified as “illegal”. The taboo nature of the topic and the fear of legal repercussions have made it difficult for individuals to obtain accurate information about the effects of drugs and their potential benefits or risks.


Cannabis is a prime example of the negative consequences of drug prohibition. Despite its long history of use, dating back thousands of years, the plant has been demonized and vilified for decades, perpetuating myths and misconceptions about its effects. The result is a generation of people who lack basic knowledge about the drug and its potential benefits and risks.


By keeping people in the dark about drug consumption, the government is essentially “giving children scissors to run with on a busy highway”. The lack of accurate information and education about drugs increases the risks associated with drug use, leading to potentially dangerous and life-threatening situations.


Drug prohibition creates a “drug-dumb” populace that lacks basic knowledge about the effects of drugs and their interaction with the body and mind. The continued demonization of drugs and the taboo nature of the topic perpetuates this ignorance and increases the risks associated with drug use. It is time to end the war on drugs and embrace a more rational and evidence-based approach to drug policy.


This is precisely why the article is missing the point…it’s not necessarily about cannabis but rather the people who are using it. Kids are drinking booze too, we have regulations on the table for that.


But the federal government refuses to legalize cannabis. Keeping it in the dark, keeping people dumb. The results and potential negative consequences of cannabis is not a result of the plant, but the ignorance surrounding it.


If people understood that edibles release 11-hydroxy THC which is 10x more potent than Delta-9, they wouldn’t leave candies around for kids to find. They would lock up their stashes, they would educate their children in a similar fashion as they do with booze – which in America is dismal.


In the United States, drug education is left to the hands of street dealers, who have a vested interest in keeping their customers addicted and uninformed. This lack of accurate and comprehensive drug education perpetuates the cycle of addiction and contributes to the high rates of drug-related harm in the country.


The War on Drugs has only exacerbated the problem, leading to increased criminalization of drug use and a lack of resources for treatment and education. The focus has been on punishment rather than prevention, leaving individuals who use drugs without the knowledge or resources to make informed decisions about their own health.


The only way to make the world safer is through the legalization of all drugs and the de-stigmatization of drug use for adults. This would allow for the regulation of drugs and the provision of accurate information about their effects and risks. It would also provide funding for treatment and harm reduction programs, reducing the burden on the criminal justice system and improving public health.


Legalization and de-stigmatization would also remove the profit motive from the drug trade, reducing the influence of street dealers and other criminal elements. By taking the drug market out of the hands of criminals and putting it under the control of the government, we can ensure the safety and quality of the drugs being sold, while also reducing the spread of diseases such as HIV and hepatitis.


In conclusion, the current approach to drug education and the War on Drugs have only contributed to the problem and left individuals vulnerable to harm. The only way to make the world safer is through the legalization of all drugs and the de-stigmatization of drug use for adults, allowing for the regulation of drugs, the provision of accurate information, and the funding of harm reduction programs.





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Does Cannabis Cure Postpartum Depression? One Mom Swears It Did the Trick for Her!




cannabis for postpartum depression

Early pregnancy is rife with postpartum depression and other mood problems. We realize it’s an overstatement, but those first few days, weeks, and months are HARD. Sleep deprivation, aching, leaking, or engorged breasts… throw in mental health difficulties, and you have a recipe for total exhaustion.


Fortunately, there is less stigma associated with postpartum depression (PPD) than formerly. PPD is being discussed more frequently, and there is a better awareness of new parents’ symptoms and many remedies. Many moms are finding success with prioritizing rest, exercise, Vitamin D, and even using CBD to assist control anxiety when diagnosed and addressed early.

The Rise of CBD as a Postpartum Mood Disorder Remedy

Over the past few years, CBD has gained remarkable popularity as a remedy for addressing symptoms linked to postpartum mood disorders, such as anxiety, irritability, and insomnia. Additionally, it has shown promise in supporting the physical recovery process following childbirth.


Georgeana Ortiz, the founder of the CBD company Cerena, emphasizes, “CBD serves as an excellent gateway, beckoning you to step away from the turmoil within your mind and transition into a composed and collected state of being. Ultimately, CBD is a pivotal component in facilitating your journey to move beyond self-imposed barriers and return to a state of thriving rather than merely surviving.”


While both THC and CBD are cannabinoids, CBD has no hallucinogenic effects. In other words, it won’t get you high. When selecting a CBD product, search for a high-quality, full-spectrum oil tailored to your needs or symptoms. Cerena, for example, makes a full-spectrum, certified organic CBD oil called “Calma” that’s expressly intended to relieve stress and anxiety.


Natasha’s Journey: From Postpartum Depression to CBD Advocate

In a noteworthy case, a woman claims to have treated her postpartum depression using cannabis oil. Natasha Doran, 33, began dealing with her mental health issues after giving birth to her son, Isaac, now four, in May 2019.


Despite attempting therapy and medication, she experienced “no improvement” in her severe daily panic attacks. After contacting her general practitioner, engaging in online therapy, and commencing antidepressant treatment, she felt “worse than ever.”


By June 2020, her ability to leave the house had deteriorated, and she was grappling with debilitating insomnia. At the suggestion of a friend, Natasha decided to give CBD oil a chance and made her initial online purchase of a 10ml bottle for £60.


Cannabidiol, a chemical compound in cannabis with purported medical benefits, became her solution. She started by taking a daily drop under her tongue, and soon, she noted a significant alleviation of her anxiety and depression symptoms.


Just six months after incorporating CBD into her routine, Natasha found herself back at the gym, enjoying restful nights and free from panic attacks. She was so impressed by the positive impact of the hemp product that she decided to start her own company, which she named Hemp-Aid Limited, in November 2022, leading her to leave her previous role at a nursery.


In Moreton on the Wirral, Natasha reflected, “She couldn’t sleep, and leaving the house was daunting. There were moments when she felt utterly hopeless. Initially skeptical, she conducted thorough research on CBD before giving it a try, despite initial reservations from her family.”


“After several months of incorporating CBD into her daily routine, she felt a renewed sense of purpose. She eagerly reconnected with friends, resumed gym visits, and arranged playdates for her son. In essence, CBD gave her life back.”


Despite a smooth pregnancy, Natasha had a “traumatic” childbirth experience with her first son at Whiston Hospital in Prescot, Lancashire. Isaac was born with the umbilical cord wrapped around his neck, and the resulting C-section led to severe pain due to blood clots. Reflecting on this period, Natasha, a former nursery manager, confessed that she lost herself after the birth.


She reflected that the surgery left her in considerable pain, which wasn’t the most auspicious start to her journey into motherhood. Following a hospital stay that lasted a week, Natasha soon found herself in profound depression after returning home with her newborn.


In her own words, Natasha explained that she initially thought her feelings were typical for a new mother. However, when she lost all motivation to venture outside, she recognized something was amiss. She felt compelled to act when concerned about her son Isaac’s social development due to her isolation.


After enduring four years of disappointment with traditional treatments, she confided in her partner, who suggested experimenting with CBD oil. Describing her experience, Natasha recounted that the impact was immediate.

She felt an incredible sense of relaxation and tranquility. She regained control over her heart rate and thought patterns, which was one of the best periods of sleep she had experienced in a long time.

She abstained from alcohol, which significantly contributed to her relief from depression. She now enjoys a profound sense of health and fitness. “I’ve never been this committed to a healthy lifestyle. After several months of incorporating CBD into her daily routine, she extensively researched improving her overall well-being.”


She continues incorporating CBD oil into her daily regimen and has taken it further by establishing her own company, Hemp Aid Limited. Natasha expressed her motivation, saying, “The health benefits are remarkable. CBD cured her post-natal depression when she felt utterly hopeless, and now she aspires to provide the same relief to others.


According to the NHS website, “some products claiming to be medical cannabis, such as CBD oil or hemp oil, are legally available to buy as food supplements from health stores.” However, there is no guarantee that products are of high quality or give any health benefits.”


“There is insufficient scientific evidence to support the claim that CBD is an effective treatment for depression or anxiety,” according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. That isn’t to say it wouldn’t help, but there haven’t been enough well-controlled clinical research to support CBD as a treatment for anxiety or depression.Much more research is needed to assess CBD as a potential therapy for anxiety and depression.”


While CBD has shown promise in addressing various health issues, including postpartum depression, it is important to approach its use cautiously. The quality and effectiveness of CBD products can vary, and there is still a need for more comprehensive scientific research and clinical trials to establish its efficacy as a treatment for these conditions. Individuals considering CBD for mental health concerns should consult with healthcare professionals and make informed decisions regarding its use.





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Can You Mix Two Different Cannabis Strains Together and Smoke It? What Happens to Your High?




combining cannabis strains

While you’ve likely experienced smoking from a pipe or bowl with traces of a different weed strain, combining two strains isn’t typically the first choice for most people. The question is, can you deliberately craft distinct highs by combining different cannabis strains and experimenting like a scientist? Some individuals believe it’s possible, while others remain skeptical.


Blending different strains can enhance the renowned entourage effect of cannabis. This effect occurs when various components of cannabis synergize to create a potent high, surpassing the effects of consuming a single cannabinoid in isolation. The entourage effect leads many to argue that using just one cannabinoid for relaxation or therapeutic? What happens when you combine two cannabis strains isn’t as effective as consuming the entire plant, including its terpenes.


If you’re pursuing truly unique effects, mixing two strains can deliver just that, for better or worse. Nevertheless, it’s worth noting that combining strains isn’t overly complex. While the outcome might range from a powerful high to one that tucks you in for the night, especially when you’ve acquired high-quality cannabis, there’s generally no reason to anticipate adverse consequences.

The Entourage Effect

While further research is essential, the existing knowledge suggests that when you blend specific cannabinoids and terpenes tailored to your body’s needs, it can result in a synergistic phenomenon known as the Entourage Effect. This effect can offer a more complete cannabis experience compared to consuming isolated cannabinoids such as THC or CBD.

This phenomenon is rooted in the fact that each of us possesses our internal endocannabinoid system (ECS), with the prefix “endo” indicating its presence within the body.


By blending two or more varieties of cannabis, you expand your body’s and endocannabinoid system’s exposure to a broader array of cannabinoids and terpenes. In doing so, you potentially unlock the health benefits associated with these additional compounds.

The advantages of mixing strains extend beyond simply enhancing potential medicinal benefits. Even recreational users can employ the concept of strain mixing to regulate the potency and effects of their cannabis consumption.


As an example, suppose a potent strain yields unwanted effects when consumed. Blending it with a strain featuring lower THC levels and elevated cannabidiol (CBD) content can alleviate some of these undesirable outcomes. CBD achieves this by diminishing THC’s tendency to bind strongly to cannabinoid receptors within our endocannabinoid system (ECS), thereby assisting in reducing any adverse consequences that might arise from high-THC cannabis.


This is just one example of how the interplay between cannabinoids and terpenes with our ECS significantly influences the potency and effects of various cannabis strains. Consequently, this variation is why two individuals consuming the same strain may encounter distinctly divergent effects.

Mixing Strains of Weed

To create a mix of weed strains, often called a “weed salad,” the simplest approach is to grind your cannabis flowers and combine the two chosen strains. From there, various options open, including smoking, vaping, or crafting your cannabutter.


Now, let’s explore the more intricate aspect: determining the ideal blend for your needs. Should you combine an Indica with a Sativa? Is it acceptable to mix two Indicas or two Sativas? If you decide to mix Sativa and Indica strains, how should you balance the proportions of each? Can you blend older cannabis with fresher batches? What about combining high-THC cannabis with low-THC cannabis or CBD strains?


Given the many variables involved, here are some tips to note when mixing different cannabis strains;

Tip 1: Mix Weed with Similar Scents

You’re likely aware that the distinctive aroma of each cannabis strain is attributed to its terpenes. Additionally, you recognize that the fragrance of a cannabis flower can play a pivotal role in gauging whether its effects align with your body and endocannabinoid system. If a strain’s aroma doesn’t resonate with you, it might indicate that it’s not a suitable match for your system, and your overall experience may be less enjoyable.


Therefore, our initial advice is to combine strains with comparable, pleasant scents or scents that you believe would harmonize well. Conversely, a strain with an appealing aroma could indicate that it will likely complement your system.


If you are uncertain, you can begin by grinding and blending a small quantity. Afterward, taste it and decide if you wish to proceed with mixing a larger batch.

Tip 2: Mix Complement Flavours

For instance, consider combining a strain with a tea-like flavor with another boasting a lemon haze profile. This combination could deliver a refreshing and enjoyable session.

Alternatively, if you have a penchant for cheese strains, you might experiment by mixing cheesecake with strawberry cookies OG for a unique taste experience.


Keep in mind that the ideal cannabis blend varies from person to person. What provides an exceptional experience for you might be less enjoyable for someone else. Therefore, don’t hesitate to let your creativity run wild and concoct various strains with flavors that pique your interest. We recommend starting with a small blend to ensure it aligns with your preferences before proceeding with a larger mix.


Tip 3: Mix Strains With Similar Effects

This tip may well be the most important of all. A practical approach to blending cannabis strains is considering how each strain influences your mood and sensations.

For instance, if you acquire a strain that imparts an invigorating and mentally uplifting high but induces a slight sense of anxiety, you could mitigate any adverse effects by combining it with a more soothing strain.


Conversely, come across a strain that delivers a relaxing, full-body effect but tends to induce couch lock. Mix it with a strain that offers a gentle, uplifting sensation to counteract the couch lock effect.


A helpful guideline to remember is to refrain from mixing strains at opposite ends of the spectrum. A highly energizing and euphoric strain may not harmonize well with one that provides intense, full-bodied relaxation.


Before embarking on your strain mixing journey, consider this vital question: Are you aiming for an indica-like relaxation without an instant knockout? If so, consider pairing an Indica strain with a hybrid that can elevate your high into an enjoyable yet tranquil experience.


Lastly, exercise caution when combining two potent strains. Mixing two strains introduces you to an entirely novel experience, one that has the potential to yield a new, albeit unfavorable, high—the kind where you feel both hyperactive and simultaneously inclined to sleep for extended periods.


Begin with a measured approach, and don’t hesitate to seek guidance at your dispensary. Ultimately, the goal is to have an enjoyable time and explore new horizons.





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More New York Cannabis Program Litigation: First Amendment Challenge to Third-Party Website Rules




On September 18, 2023, a new lawsuit was filed by, inter alia, Leafly Holdings, Inc. (“Leafly”) against the New York State Office of Cannabis Management (“OCM”) and New York State Cannabis Control Board (the “Cannabis Control Board”).

The lawsuit

This legal proceeding involves a First Amendment and other challenges to certain regulations adopted by the Cannabis Control Board. The regulations, known as Resolution 2023-32, introduce new rules under Parts 123 and 124 of the Revised Adult-Use Cannabis Regulations, which significantly restrict the ability of New York dispensaries and consumers to use third-party websites that aggregate information about cannabis products. The petitioners, including Leafly, Stage One Cannabis, LLC (“Stage One Dispensary”), and Rosanna St. John, are seeking to have these regulations invalidated on the grounds that they are arbitrary, capricious, and in violation of both the United States Constitution and the New York Constitution. They are also requesting a temporary halt to the enforcement of these regulations until the legal proceedings are resolved.

The specific provisions being challenged are:

  1. The Third-Party Marketing Ban (9 N.Y.C.R.R. §§ 123.10(g)(21) and 124.5(a)), which restricts certain types of marketing by third-party websites.
  2. The Pricing Ban (9 N.Y.C.R.R. § 124.1(b)(5)(ii)), which imposes limitations on pricing information.
  3. The Third-Party Order Ban (9 N.Y.C.R.R. § 123.10(g)(23)), which restricts the ability to place orders through third-party websites.
  4. The Third-Party All-Licensee Listing Mandate (9 N.Y.C.R.R. § 124.1(b)(2)), which requires third-party websites to list all cannabis licensees.
  5. The Third-Party Distributor Listing Mandate (9 N.Y.C.R.R. § 124.1(c)(1)-(2)), which mandates the listing of third-party distributors.

The arguments

The petitioners argue that the Third-Party Marketing Ban and the Pricing Ban infringe upon free speech rights protected by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and Article I, § 8 of the New York Constitution by limiting lawful commercial speech. They also claim that all the challenged regulations are arbitrary and capricious because they either conflict with New York’s Cannabis Law, lack a rational basis, or exceed the authority of the Cannabis Control Board.

What the plaintiffs want

Furthermore, the petitioners are requesting a temporary stay on the enforcement of these regulations, asserting that they are likely to succeed in their legal challenge and that they are facing irreparable harm due to the violation of their constitutional rights and potential business losses. They argue that maintaining the status quo is in the best interest of justice, and they urge the court to invalidate these regulations on the grounds of being arbitrary, capricious, irrational, and unconstitutional.


This First Amendment challenge is just the latest litigation, unfortunately, in a program that has seen a number of misfires and delays. We will continue to monitor this lawsuit, while awaiting answers on fundamental issues that the Cannabis Control Board has inexplicably failed to address. Stay tuned to our New York coverage for more.

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