Embassy Headlines, Issue 37

More confessions about prohibited performance enhancing drugs. Actors, writers, filmmakers, sculptors and musicians now admit to widespread use. Politicians and law-makers are yet to be implicated.

The Embassy Headlines are a selection of recent articles from news services and media sources primarily concerning Cannabis issues, the consequences of prohibition and the challenges for law reform.

Here are the selected headlines for this week.

Embassy Headlines 37

NSW: March Public Hearings – Use of cannabis for medical purposes

Submissions to the NSW inquiry into the safety and efficacy of cannabis for medical purposes are now available for perusal and the Committee will be holding public hearings on 11 and 18 March 2013. Representatives from the HEMP Party and Mullaways Medical Cannabis have been invited to speak at the public hearing on 11 March.

USA: Bill To Legalize Medical Marijuana Nationwide Introduced In Congress

A bill to legalize medical marijuana is being introduced in the Congress, one that would eliminate confusion surrounding federal policy on pot and pave the way for the FDA to legalize all medicinal marijuana. The bill was introduced by Earl Blumenauer, a Democrat from Oregon. The bill has 13 co-sponsors including Republican Dana Rohrbacher of California and would block the federal government from interfering in the 19 states where medicinal marijuana is already legal.

Gundagai: One in 21 driving on drugs

ONE in 21 drivers tested positive to driving under the influence of a prohibited drug during a two-day police operation conducted in Gundagai and Tumut at the weekend. Cootamundra police, in conjunction with Riverina Traffic and Highway Patrol officers, conducted 276 drug tests as part of Operation Hydro, with 13 drivers returning positive samples.

Global drug reform in 2012

Alex Wodak’s review of global drug law reform in 2012.

Big Alcohol and Big Tobacco – boozem buddies?

The claim that alcohol and tobacco are different belies the fact that the two industries have long been intertwined. Big Tobacco used its ill-gotten profits to buy into the alcohol industry and senior executives and board members are on the boards of major alcohol industry players (and vice versa). These companies have long worried that “Big Alcohol” is vulnerable to many of the same criticisms as Big Tobacco. Even in the 1990s, documents linked to the US alcohol industry argued that like tobacco, the liquor industry is vulnerable to the charge that it markets its products to young people.

Ice ice baby: record seizure won’t freeze crystal meth market

Yesterday’s record 585 kg crystal methamphetamine seizure made headlines, but then so do many others. Was this one big enough to deserve special attention? And what effect does a seizure like this have on a narcotics market anyway?

Wibbly Wizard and the dreadful truth about drugs in the arts

IN RESPONSE to the Australian Crime Commission’s damning report on drugs in sport, the Australian Artistic Anti-doping Authority Headquarters (AAAAH!) has just released its own alarming findings on the widespread use of prohibited performance-enhancing drugs among Australian actors, writers, filmmakers, sculptors, and even, surprisingly, musicians.

NZ: Psychoactive Substances Bill a ‘game-changer’

It is right that New Zealand is at the front of the pack on new laws around emerging synthetic drugs, given that New Zealand was their birthplace.

USA: Sending Out Smoke Signals

The etiquette of pot smoking in social settings is largely uncodified. Yet the world needs an Emily Post to hack a pathway through this fuggy thicket, particularly given pot’s increased presence in the mainstream. The recreational use of marijuana is now legal in two states, as is the medicinal use of it in 18 states and the District of Columbia. In 2010, there was the publication of “The Cannabis Closet,” a collection of testimonials from ganja-loving top executives and government employees and responsible parents, all of which had appeared on the writer Andrew Sullivan’s blog

Undercurrents report from Spannabis 2013

Undercurrents produced video reports for Freedom Seeds in Barcelona for Spannabis 2013 featuring many of the main movers and shakers in the cannabis industry. These include Remo from Urban Grower, Howard Marks, Jorge Cervantes, Juan Carlos from Spannabis, Maico from Royal Queen Seeds, and Arjan from Green House Seeds.

Canada: Izms, an alternative to marijuana, skirts illegality

Health Canada says the product, which uses the controversial chemical JWH-018, is illegal, but defence lawyers and police aren’t so sure.

Our Right to Poison: Lessons from the Failed War on Drugs

The global war on drugs has cost billions and taken countless lives — but achieved little. The scant results finally have politicians and experts joining calls for legalization. Following the journey of cocaine from a farm in Colombia to a user in Berlin sheds light on why.

Do You Think Medical Marijuana Should Be Legalized for Dogs?

Cannabis relieves pain and suffering in dogs, but most vets want nothing to do with it.

How Hemp Became Illegal: The Marijuana Link

If I told you there was a plant available to us today that could be grown in pretty much any soil, requires no pesticides and it takes very little maintenance to grow, and this magical plant could be used for a very large number of necessities and goods we use today yet we don’t use it, would you think to yourself “Joe you must be high or on some other cheap drug?”


Australia’s Drug Social Segregation & Discrimination policy keeps us trapped like a baby in a #DrugWar playpen.


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