Canvassing for Opinion - aka "Blairs Brain on Cannabis"

IMHO prohibition sentiment requires inherent addiction to status quo, an incapacity to visualise beyond the here and now and a desperate desire to know others might feel the same... Reform is not revolutionary, rather it is evolutionary. Having survived banging your head against a brick wall the evolutionist relishes having stopped. / Blair

Monday, October 10, 2011

"psychosis was not associated with cannabis use"

Despite previous media claims to the contrary, researchers concluded: "psychosis was not associated with cannabis use"

Main short-term somatic (bodily) effects of ca...Image via Wikipedia"Although the onset of cannabis use disorder preceded the onset of illness in most patients, our findings suggest that age at onset of psychosis was not associated with cannabis use disorders. Previous studies implicating cannabis use disorders in schizophrenia may need to more comprehensively assess the relationship between cannabis use disorders and schizophrenia, and take into account the additional variables that we found associated with cannabis use disorders."
A separate study slated for publication in the same journal assessed the cognitive skills of schizophrenic patients with a history of cannabis use compared to non-users. Authors reported that patients with a history of marijuana use "demonstrated significantly better performance on measures of processing speed, verbal fluency, and verbal learning and memory" compared to abstainers. Marijuana use was also associated with better overall GAF (Global Assessment of Functioning) scores compared to those of non-users.
Authors concluded: "The results of the present analysis suggest that (cannabis use) in patients with SZ (schizophrenia) is associated with better performance on measures of processing speed and verbal skills. These data are consistent with prior reports indicating that SZ patients with a history of CUD (cannabis use disorders) have less severe cognitive deficits than SZ patients without comorbid CUD. … The present findings also suggest that CUD in patients with SZ may not differentially affect the severity of illness as measured by clinical symptomatology."
Both study's findings are in line with previous (though virtually unreported) research indicating that marijuana is unlikely to instigate incidences of schizophrenia in the general population, that cannabis use among patients with the disease is associated with higher cognitive function, and that at least some schizophrenics find subjective relief from symptoms of the illness by using pot. Nonetheless, odds are the nobody from the mainstream media will be champing at the bit to report on them.
Bottom line: marijuana's complex relationship with schizophrenia is far from understood, and likely won't be for some time. But that doesn't give the MSM a free pass to only promote one side of the story.

--

Blair Anderson 


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Saturday, October 08, 2011

Political Scandal in New Zealand

LCI: FREE DAKTA GREEN!!! The Current Political Scandal in New Zealand

Live Like It's LegalImage by NUkiwi via Flickr
Blair Anderson
http://mildgreens.blogspot.com
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Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Ban Idiot Politicians

It is disingenuous of both media and government officials, especially thse from the Ministry of Health to pretend we do not have in place already an appropriate and fit for purpose legislative response to 'effectively regulate and control' psychoactive recreational soft drugs. AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - OCTOBER 08: Broadcaste...Image by Getty Images via @daylife

re: http://www.investinnz.co.nz/news/further-3-synthetic-cannabis-substances-be-banned-46n8

This regime was adopted and implemented (became law) in 2008. It was a response to the marketing and sale of BZP and designed to provide appropriate rules and regulations the recognised the reality that the USE of drugs other than tobacco and alcohol is occurring, and that the rational response was not to ban and thus create contingent downsides worse than the USE of the drugs themselves.
 A rational scale to assess the harm of drugs. ...Image via Wikipedia
With an enforceable R18 (consistent with current legislation regarding access to alcohol) the RESTRICTED SUBSTANCES REGULATIONS were heralded as 'innovative' and world class by leading drug policy guru's such as Professor David Nutt.  (see http://legislation.govt.nz/regulation/public/2008/0373/latest/whole.html )

Nutt described these rules as 'absolutely' suitable for managing cannabis, New Zealand's most popular neighbouring intoxicant. In his recent seminal paper summarised on his blog (http://profdavidnutt.wordpress.com/ ) that balances evidentially the arguments surrounding cannabis and alcohol availability - it is clear that ANY government that is serious about fixing the alcohol issue is not serious about doing so unless it addresses and fixes the glaring anomalies surrounding cannabis.

The response by Dunne et al is a nonsense while this remains the elephant in the room.
self made, based on information in the article...Image via Wikipedia
Dunne's failure to use the fit for purpose 'regulatory model' OR even talk about it smacks of 'electoral dishonesty' and should not surprise us, given he is so marginalised from an electorate that has resoundingly said (77% variously) decriminalise pot.

It is a case of people being smarter than the purveyors of moral turpitude. There is NOTHING moral about hurting people for no good reason, and nothing correct about pretending your solution is better than something your not prepared to discuss.

Consider this comment by Professor Nutt:
Taken together we estimate that alcohol is at least twice as harmful to users than cannabis and 5 times more harmful to society. The obvious conclusion is that the current legislation criminalising cannabis users is illogical as well as inhumane and may be causing much more harm than it does good. Time for a rational intervention Mr Cameron?  (ipsofacto Tony Ryall, John Key etc)
The full paper can be found in the Journal of Psychopharmacology http://jop.sagepub.com/content/early/2011/09/03/0269881111414751
Dunne deserves a  good electoral ass kicking, but media are complicit in pandering to fears where there are none and failing in there duty to balanced reporting, elsewise they would have asked him WHY drive people to drink?

Blair Anderson 
Social Ecologist 'at large'
http://mildgreens.blogspot.com
http://blairformayor.blogspot.com
http://blair4mayor.com
http://efsdp.org

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