Monday, August 30, 2010

Smoking Pot May Ease Chronic Pain

New study out today from McGill University in Canada which shows smoked marijuana eases chronic pain and increases ability to get restful sleep.


- People with chronic pain who aren't getting enough relief from medications may be able to ease their pain by smoking small amounts of marijuana, a new study suggests.

Marijuana also helps pain patients fall asleep more easily and sleep more soundly, according to the report, one of the first real-world studies to look at the medicinal use of smoked marijuana. Most previous research has used extracts of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the active ingredient in the cannabis plant.

"This is the first time anyone has done a trial of smoked cannabis on an outpatient basis," says the lead researcher, Mark Ware, M.B.B.S., the director of clinical research at McGill University's Alan Edwards Centre for Research on Pain, in Montreal. Medicinal marijuana, state by state

The study included 21 adults with nervous-system (neuropathic) pain stemming from surgery, accidents, or other trauma. Fourteen of the participants were on short-term disability or permanently disabled. All of them had tried marijuana before, but none were current or habitual smokers.

"They were not experienced marijuana users," Ware says. "They came because they had severe pain that was not responding to any conventional treatment."

Each patient in the study smoked four different strengths of marijuana over a period of 56 days. The THC potency ranged from 9.4 percent -- the strongest dose the researchers could obtain legally -- to 0 percent, a "placebo" pot that looked and tasted like the real thing but was stripped of THC. (By comparison, the strongest marijuana available on the street has a THC potency of about 15 percent, Ware estimates.) Medical marijuana may help fibromyalgia pain

The participants -- who weren't told which strength they were getting -- were instructed to smoke a thimbleful (25 milligrams) from a small pipe three times a day for five days. After a nine-day break, they switched to a different potency.

The highest dose of THC yielded the best results. It lessened pain and improved sleep more effectively than the placebo and the two medium-strength doses (which produced no measurable relief), and it also reduced anxiety and depression.

The effects lasted for about 90 minutes to two hours, according to the study.

The results were published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal. 8 natural remedies to help you sleep

Though small, the study adds to a growing body of evidence suggesting that cannabis has painkilling properties that may be useful in medicine, perhaps in addition to other treatments. THC extracts have been shown to help ease cancer pain and the nausea associated with chemotherapy, while a few small studies in hospital populations have found that smoked marijuana can help relieve neuropathic pain.

But medical marijuana isn't ready to become a mainstream chronic pain treatment, says Andrew McDavid, M.D., director of the division of pain management at Scott & White Healthcare, in Temple, Texas.

"The studies out there show some decrease in pain, but it's not alarmingly or shockingly great," says McDavid, who was not involved in the new research. "Although it may have some use, it's probably going to need to be used with something else, if it's approved."

As the study notes, the pain relief the patients experienced from marijuana was modest compared to that seen in studies of analgesic medications such as gabapentin (Neurontin) and pregabalin (Lyrica). 6 mistakes pain patients make

Christopher Gharibo, M.D., an anesthesiologist at the New York University Hospital for Joint Diseases, in New York City, points out that the study didn't address whether marijuana enabled the patients to perform everyday activities without pain -- the best test of a chronic pain treatment.

"I'm not convinced [marijuana] helps from a functional standpoint," he says. "I'm not even impressed by the pain reduction. We have analgesics that do much better."

The potential long-term side effects of habitual marijuana use could prove problematic as well, Gharibo adds. Over time some patients may experience weight gain, a generalized feeling of sedation, and even changes in mood and cognitive function, he says. Can psychedelic drugs treat depression?

The study participants did report some minor side effects, including coughing, dizziness, headache, and dry eyes. Few reported feeling "high" or euphoric, however, which suggests that abuse or addiction is not a major concern with amounts as small as those used in the study.

"We had a total of three single episodes where patients felt a little bit high," Ware says. "So it was extremely rare. The possibility that one would become addicted is low."

Still, if marijuana were to become a more common pain treatment, it's possible that some patients might overdo it, McDavid says.

"We saw the problem with narcotics. You can't ever predict which people, when prescribed, will abuse it or not. Obviously there needs to be more research."

Un-American to Harass Sick

Another excellent letter to the editor appeared in today's Anniston Star in support of ACC member and medical marijuana patient Michael Lapihuska. If you have not yet written a letter in support of charges being dropped against Michael please take the time to do so now. Send your letters to

Un-American to harass the sick

by our readers

Re "Anniston man finds one state's medicine is another's illicit drug" (News article, Aug. 18):

Harassing the sick and dying is an un-American activity. It is overkill and morally bankrupt to arrest nonviolent people for making a safer health choice, cannabis or marijuana, compared to other medicinal/social drugs.

I am afraid murderers and other violent predators roam free while we police nonviolent adult social, medicinal and religious drug use. Regulation, science-based education and treating abuse as a medical problem is a better drug policy that increases public safety and harm reduction. Prohibition supports despicable people who sell drugs to children, recruit them to sell to their peers and arm them to kill the competition.

Across America, paramilitary drug raids trigger violence rather than lessen the risk. All this unconscionable bloodshed is on the hands of leadership as much as those who pulled the trigger or did the actual butchering and torturing. It is a policy-created problem.

Now is the time to insist American warriors get their adrenaline rush catching murderers and other violent predators. I understand that it will not be possible to stop all murders and rapes. However, get tough on violent crime. Restore justice, the guardian of liberty.

Use of illegal drugs has increased significantly during the drug war, and the use of tobacco has decreased due to truth in education and infomercials about this killer. True science-based drug education allows everyone to make better health decisions. Support for the federal war on drugs is inconsistent with support for individual freedom, constitutional government and the teachings of Jesus, the Prince of Peace.

Colleen McCool
Stephenville, Texas

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Cast a Vote for Compassion

My letter in support of Michael Lapihuska was printed in the Anniston Star today.

Cast a Vote for Compassion

Cast a vote for compassion
by our readers
Aug 29, 2010 | 141 views | 2 2 comments | 1 1 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Re "Anniston man finds one state's medicine is another's illicit drug" (News article, Aug. 18):

Thanks to The Star for the article on Michael Lapihuska's situation. Michael's predicament clearly demonstrates the need for Alabama to pass comprehensive medical marijuana legislation.

What happened to Michael is a complete miscarriage of justice. Since when is geographic location used to determine whether someone is a patient or a criminal? If Michael's doctor recommended marijuana for his treatment, then who are the cops/courts to decide whether he can have that treatment? Cops and judges haven't been to medical school. They are not doctors. Their solution to every problem is taser, shoot, abuse and/or imprison. Clearly, that isn't how we want to treat patients in Alabama. It isn't against the law to be sick or to try and alleviate one's own suffering.

The state of Alabama should respect the laws and professional licenses of other states. An Alabama patient living in a state that recognizes marijuana as a valid medical treatment should not have to fear returning home to visit family and friends. They should be able to bring their medicine with them, without fear of arrest and imprisonment. As it stands now, any Alabama patient living in a medical marijuana state must decide between risking arrest and imprisonment if they bring their medicine, not bringing their medicine and thereby compromising their health, or deciding to never return home again. Imagine if the medicine in question was seizure medication or blood pressure pills. Only barbarians would uphold such a terrible law.

Alabamians for Compassionate Care will reintroduce medical marijuana legislation in the 2011 legislative session. This bill would protect patients like Michael Lapihuska by recognizing medical marijuana patients from other states. Please contact your representative and ask them to support the Compassionate Care Act when it comes before them in 2011.

Loretta Nall
Executive Director
Alabamians for Compassionate Care
Alexander City

Please go and leave comments on the Anniston Star site and then write a letter in support of Michael and send it to

Friday, August 27, 2010

Christian Crusaders in Alexander City, AL

I wish people would learn and teach their children to mind their own goddamn business.

My daughter is in marching band at her school and last night was the first home game. Why they had it on a Thursday night as opposed to a Friday night is beyond me. But, that is another matter entirely. As is the ILLEGAL prayer that was made over the public address system before the game.

During halftime I caught up with my daughter and got her something to drink. As we were standing there talking a little girl in Bell's grade came up to her and said, "Hey Bell I wanna be your friend. I know you don't have any friends. (Not true, by the way). It ain't my place to judge you (because we Nall's are an Atheist/Agnostic family). We used to be friends in 3rd grade and I want to be friends again."

Bell didn't seem all that impressed and mumbled a non-committal 'sure' to the invitation.

I thought it very odd. Those little vicious (now) teenage tarts have tormented my daughter for 9 goddamn years about her lack of belief in the invisible sky wizard. Bell never talks about it among her peers (she rarely talks to them at all)....because I have taught her that religion or lack thereof is a private family matter and because when it was first learned by her peers that we don't do the bible thumping rigmarole she became a target for every ill mannered, inbred, redneck, 'Christian' kid in that whole damn school. She's had rocks thrown at her, been told she is 'a goin ta helllllllllllll-ah', etc....

After the game as we were driving home I asked her what that little encounter was all about. She told me that the night before a girl in the grade below her got up in front of her church and asked the whole congregation to "Pray for Bell Nall because she is an Atheist." Bell said all that has done is remind people who finally quit fucking with her about it that she is still an Atheist and now the teasing has started again.

While this kids intentions may have been good, I AM PISSED LIKE A BEAR!! What right does she have to get up in front of a group of people who we do not know and who do not know us, other than perhaps me and then only through my political work, and pray for if lack of belief in their ridiculous theology is some sort of sickness that can be cured? The fucking gall of these people.

After all these kids have done in the name of Jeeeeeezus to make Bell's existence absolutely miserable for the last 9 years, why the hell would they reasonably expect Bell to want to have anything to do with them now? Or with Christianity ever? They tormented her because she didn't believe in their Jesus. They never once showed her the tolerance that Jesus taught. Or the love. Or the peace. Or the respect for those who believe differently. Only torment, bullying, hatred, viciousness, and cruelty. And now they want to suddenly start praying for if she is the one who is cruel, vicious, mean, if they were the ones ostracized from every social circle in school because of their beliefs. The goddamn gall!!!

Christianity and all other religious faiths are dangerous tools in the hands of those who lack the brain capacity and life experience to understand them. Children especially. They use it like a weapon to inflict pain and to ostracize anyone who is a little different. Then they turn around and act like the person who they have hurt and tormented is the one who needs praying for. WTF? These people are sick and twisted. And just plain damn stupid. They can't see the forest for the trees. I am so glad I raised my children to NOT be like them. They disgust me.

I intend to find out what church this took place at and, the Sunday after I do, I intend to show up and say much of what I have said here. Then I am going to tell them exactly what they can do with their hateful offspring and their holy book, too.

HINT: I won't be suggesting reading from the 'sacred' text.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

CO. Gov. says med pot fees helping budget deficit

Associated Press

Colorado gov. says pot fees helping budget deficit

(AP) – 14 hours ago

DENVER — Gov. Bill Ritter is using $9 million from medical marijuana registrations to help the state meet a $60 million fiscal emergency.

The state anticipates ending the year with 150,000 applicants for medical marijuana cards, up from 41,000 in 2009. A marijuana card costs $90 per year.

Backers of medical marijuana legislation in a number of states and cities have touted revenue from possible taxes and other fees as a selling point at a time of tight fiscal funding.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Marijuana User MURDERED by State of Alabama

Not sure how I missed this story when it first came out on July 10. Have been trying to contact the family with no luck. I assume this poor guy was using medically. He was in jail for misdemeanor marijuana possession. What a travesty. No one should ever have to go to jail for marijuana....especially those who are ill and using it for relief.

Man dies in Baldwin Co. Jail; Family Warned of Fragile Health

Saturday, July 10, 2010, 8:06 AM
Updated: Saturday, July 10, 2010, 3:59 PM
Connie Baggett, Press-Register

BAY MINETTE -- Family members said they warned officers to no avail about the fragile health of a 32-year-old Eight Mile man who died in the Baldwin County Corrections Center early Friday.

Jacob Ashley Jordan was found dead in his cell at about 1 a.m., according to a news release issued Friday by the Baldwin County Sheriff's Office.

Sheriff's spokesman Maj. Anthony Lowery said Jordan had a "pre-existing medical condition," had been moved into the jail's medical wing and was treated by nurses. Jordan was in his cell at the time of his death, Lowery said.

He declined to give details, citing privacy laws that protect medical information, but did say there was "no evidence of any physical injury."

The early investigation indicated that Jordan was booked into the county jail on July 2 after being transferred from the Mobile Metro Jail on a second-degree possession of marijuana charge and hunting violations, Lowery said in the release. Late Thursday afternoon Jordan began experiencing health problems and was moved into the medical block for treatment and observation. He was under medical care of the jail's doctor and nurses at the time of his death, Lowery said.

The case is being investigated by the Baldwin County District Attorney's Office, the Alabama Bureau of Investigation, the Baldwin County Coroner's Office and the Sheriff's Office, as is standard policy. Jordan's body was transported to the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences in Mobile for autopsy, according to Lowery.

Jordan's mother, Peggy Jordan of Eight Mile, said in a telephone interview Friday that there is much more to the story, and she wants answers.

"The sheriff told me JJ and three others were sitting in their cell watching television when JJ slumped over and his heart stopped," Jordan said. "They tried CPR, but couldn't revive him. I told them over and over he had Addison's disease and that he needed treatment. This didn't have to happen."

According to the National Institute of Health, Addison's is one form of adrenal insufficiency that strikes about four in every 1,000 people. Adrenal glands don't produce enough of certain hormones that regulate blood pressure, cardiovascular function, blood sugar levels, immunological response and metabolism. Crisis episodes can be fatal.

This is a travesty. Chances are pretty good that he was using marijuana to treat the symptoms of his illness. Regardless, no one should ever go to jail for using marijuana. It's ridiculous!

To all those who have said "Its against the law" "Its the crime do the time"...PLEASE!!! Just because something is against the law doesn't mean the law is right. I used to be illegal to free a slave in Alabama but legal to won one. We all can agree that those laws were totally wrong. Just like modern day marijuana laws in Alabama are wrong. The government has absolutely no business telling citizens what they can and cannot put into their own bodies nor do they have any business demanding samples of our bodily fluids.

The cops, medical staff at the jail, and the judge who set the bond so high that his family could not bond him out are all murderers now. They should be arrested, convicted and imprisoned....after the family bankrupts them, of course.

~How long will they kill our prophets while we stand aside and look~ Bob Marley

Friday, August 20, 2010


Submitted by Loretta Nall on Fri, 08/20/2010 - 12:25pm

Dexter Ave. Fountain Montgomery, AL

Saturday, September 18, 2010 - 12:00

Alabama Compassionate Care/Alabama NORML Free Marc Emery Rally.

We will meet at the fountain at the bottom of Dexter Ave. at noon on September 18 and march up Dexter Avenue to the Alabama Capitol Building. Marc Emery considers Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. one of his hero's and he will be very pleased that we are conducting a march for his freedom in such an historic place.

If you are in Alabama and believe that marijuana should be legalized BE THERE!

Please bring signs that say


Wear your Free Marc t-shirts if you have them.

(You will need to fill in Date, Location and Time)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Anniston Man Finds One States Medicine is Another's Illicit Drug

ACC member and patient Michael Lapihuska finally got his story in the Anniston Star. Michael is in a terrible situation. Please read this article and then write a letter to the editor demanding charges be dropped and that Michael be released. Send your letters to

Anniston man finds one state’s medicine is another’s illicit drug

by Laura Camper
Star Staff Writer

Michael Lapihuska, a former Anniston resident, is facing a jail sentence and two years probation for bringing his prescription with him from California to Alabama when he came home for the holidays last December. The problem — his prescription was for marijuana.

Lapihuska was arrested Dec. 15, when a police officer stopped him on McClellan Boulevard near Walmart for hitch hiking. The officer searched him, found a prescription bottle of marijuana in his pocket and asked Lapihuska to take it out.

When Lapihuska complied, he was arrested for possession despite the doctor’s recommendation he presented to the officer.

“I understand that I broke the law, but the law was wrong,” Lapihuska said. “If I would have had OxyContin or Xanax, morphine, anything like that, and walking down the street, the police would have just gave me my prescriptions back and let me walk.”

Read more: Anniston Star - Anniston man finds one state’s medicine is another’s illicit drug

Friday, August 06, 2010

Funniest shit....EVER!

In case you might have missed the Antoine Dodson story out of Madison County here it is. Antoine's sister woke up to find an intruder in her bed (which is not funny) and her brother Antoine ran upstairs to fight him off.

What is hysterical is Antoine's interview with the local media after the incident.
Just watch...

And of course some genius internet smartass used autotune to make Antoine's words into a song.

Goddamn I love the internet!

Help Kohl's Help Alabama Schools

My son discovered that Kohl's is giving away $500,000 each to the top 20 schools with the most votes garnered on Facebook. He just graduated from The Alabama School of Mathematics and Science in Mobile and has developed a passion for trying to help them raise the money to keep their doors open. He wrote the following plea for Alabamians to please vote for that school on Facebook. After you read his article please click the link at the bottom on the page or the gadget located at the top right of this blog to vote for ASMS to receive $500,000. Right now they are creeping up on the 20th spot on the list. With your help we can put them over the top. Please pass this along to everyone you know and help us reach this goal.

A landmark school in the education of Alabama's youth is in danger of closing down. In the face of the current economic crisis, many schools have had to make budget cuts, with schools in the Mobile region facing even more economic danger from the oil spill in the Gulf. The Alabama School of Mathematics and Science is no exception. Teachers have been laid off, staff have experienced drastic salary cuts, and an entire hall of the school has been closed down to save money for the upcoming school year. Now that may not seem so different from other schools, but as Alabama's only fully public residential high school, ASMS is in a special position. They provide the only place in the state where an excelling student, no matter their background, can go if they wish to further their education in many aspects. This year many teachers and staff have been laid off, limiting the studies that these youths can expand into. An entire hall has been closed down, restricting 1/8 of the population that would have arrived this year from getting this chance. Now, 1/8 of a population may not sound like much, but like coins in a jar, it adds up exponentially over time. This year, upwards of 50 students may not get the education they want and deserve. Next year, the school may not even be around at all.

The numbers speak for themselves. ASMS has a 100% graduation rate, since 2000 has earned $130 million in scholarships and in the last year alone generated around $9.2 million, in a class of a mere 92 students. In the past two years it has produced four winners of the prestigous Gates Millenium Scholarship. Every student to have ever graduated from ASMS has gone on to college, and it has produced doctors, engineers, and many people of great notoriety. The school's website outlines its mission best: "Located in Mobile's Old Dauphin Way Historic District, ASMS was established in 1989 by the Alabama State Legislature to identify, challenge, and train Alabama's future leaders. " Newsweek has even listed this school as one of the top ten high schools in Alabama, and has also listed it as a top high school in the nation. It has been accredited by several sources, many universities and college boards included. They have even been on the forefront of medical reasearch in the past - one of ASMS's students in 2008 was a semifinalist in the Intel Science Talent Search - the first one ever from Alabama, rewarded for his research on cancer cells. Yet even with all this prestige, there is still more behind this school than meets the eye.

As someone who attended this school, I can say safely that nowhere else I have ever been could compare to that institution. While I was there, I discovered a place that was more than just a school - more than a coach barking textbook definitions at me in history, where more focus was placed on jocks and football than on actual education, more than lazily copying down notes that I had learned constantly for the past eight years. There I found a home-away-from-home, a place where the staff and teachers were actually interested in the subjects they were teaching - and were ecstatic to have the chance to pass it on to the next generation. There I found people ready and willing to help without any provocation, who knew that sometimes you just didn't get it the first time, and would sit down with you for hours on end until they were absolutely sure that you knew it. Teachers that weren't concerned about making sure they met their quota for passing students, and were more concerned that their students didn't leave their room without actually knowing and understanding what was being taught. I found a community of students so diverse, and willing to accept others that I was taken aback simply by the family atmosphere that this school exudes from every pore. I built a foundation of friendships and relationships that I am confident will be maintained up until I lay on my deathbed - and so did every other student to pass through those walls. Friends and family alike have been affected by this school, a place that provided education and scholarship opportunities to those who would normally have none.

And yet it is this school that is in danger of shutting down permanently. I could only help out in little ways, fixing up things around campus, helping staff, donating what I could, and hoping, praying that this place would be available to future generations. Until a few days ago, when I discovered a solution. Kohl's Cares, in honor of their tenth anniversary, is giving away $500,000 to twenty schools apiece who demonstrate great care and success in education. All that is required is that the school submit an idea on how they would spend the money, and that they get people to vote for their establishment. Facebook is hosting this contest, and everybody who has a facebook account is eligible to vote. The dedication students, parents, staff, and teachers alike is already apparent - the school is ranked 30th out of hundreds, possibly thousands of schools, and only requires a few more votes to make it into the top 20. The future of this fine school and the thousands of students it could teach in the future, could depend on this money.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

$1 Million bounty for Sheriff Arpaio's head

A Mexican Drug Cartel has placed a $1 million dollar bounty on Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio's head.

It may be wrong for me to wish such a thing, but I sincerely hope they take that self righteous, cruel bastard out. Hell, I would like to contribute to that bounty, truth be told.

My only question is...would they like his head on a stick or a platter?

Monday, August 02, 2010

Snippets of my conversations with Marc Emery

I communicate with my very close friend and mentor Marc Emery nearly every day while he is being held political prisoner in an American federal prison for selling marijuana seeds from Canada.

Despite Marc's miserable circumstances he maintains his sense of humor...which is essential for maintaining ones sanity during difficult times. For example I got the following email from him yesterday and thought it would be good to share with those of you who read this blog. It's very humorous in a morbid sort of way.

Dear Loretta,

One of the unsurpassable ironic moments is the postage stamps they sell me are the 'Liberty Bell' universal 44 cent stamps. So here I am, a political prisoner (clearly stated by none other than head of DEA Karen Tandy) putting the Liberty Bell on my letters from jail. Oh these United States just crack me up. Like the license plates made in New Hampshire that say "Live Free Or Die" made by the prisoners at the state prison in Concord, NH.

That having been said, one correspondent wrote and asked if I was a dual citizen, because in my writings I write "our constitution" when referencing the Bill of Rights or the Amendments. I said that all my heroes are american, all my political philosophy is guided by Americans, virtually no Canadian political philosopher. My top 5 life influences are Thomas Jefferson (greatest man ever), Ayn Rand, Malcolm X, Martin Luther King, Jr and Ron Paul. Even as a teenager the founders of Marvel Comics Stan Lee, Steve Ditko and Jack Kirby influenced me more than any Canadian ever has. So much as I like being a good Canadian (polite, well mannered), I'm really culturally an American, and one day I would appreciate being made an honorary American and given the Medal of Freedom, which I will richly deserve if I get it.

Not only is it's true. We Americans parade around the world gloating about our freedoms. But, how free are we really? Sure we are freer than say those who live in Afghanistan or Iran. But we are far from entirely free. And seeing as how we make up only 5% of the world population but have 25% of the world's prison population we can't be that damn free. Can we?

Anyway, just wanted to let readers know that Marc is doing as well a one can do in this situation. He told me a few days ago that Canada is going to begin accepting Canadian prisoners back into the country to do their time there. He will not be able to file his application for transfer until after he reaches his final destination in the American Federal Prison system. Here's hoping he gets to go home so that he can be closer to his family and so that he gets time off for good behavior.