Monday, 28 February 2011

Lancashire Police Arrest more Youths for a Crime without a Victim.

quote: "They show that last year 127 youngsters were charged with possession of the drug, 124 of them male."

I don't suppose it matters to the law whether or not those 127 did any harm to anyone but it matters to the cause of JUSTICE.

Cannabis - being a substance illegal to possess, grow or supply (without a license) is highly attractive and highly profitable to people of all ages.  Every use is exposed to the world of crime, hard drugs and profiteering, without any restrictions or controls whatsoever.

I have heard that the minimum age for buying cannabis in the UK is £10, whereas through Dutch Coffeeshops it is 18, and they do not have the same sort of problems there.

Furthermore, the attempts at enforcing drug prohibition in the UK costs the UK taxpayer over £16 Billion annually.

Samantha Jones from the Lancashire Drug and Alcohol Action Team said: “We know that, far from being a ‘safe’ drug, cannabis can be very destructive and lead to mental illnesses."

It is a shame that she could not tell the truth, which is that in fact a very small number of users experience serious problems with cannabis (apart from getting arrested) - and of course those people need to be aware of the risks and discouraged - but the FACT is that many MILLIONS of users claim to benefit - and the law does not even attempt to distinguish between them.  Whether a person benefits or suffers they are arrested and treated the same.

And what good does this expensive and unjust prohibition do?

Well it keeps people employed at public expense in the criminal justice industry, boosts profits for pharmaceutical companies and enables untraceable and un-taxable profits from unscrupulous criminal suppliers

Lancashire Evening Post, February 28 2011
Teenage drug use rises

Hundreds of cannabis users caught by police in possession of the drug are children, it was revealed today.
In the past three years, officers in Lancashire have charged more than 350 under-18s with possession of the class B drug.
And, over the same period, 17 children aged between 10 and 17 have been charged with DEALING the drug.
Today, the figures were met with alarm by health bosses who warned of the potential effects of cannabis use.
The figures were revealed to the Lancashire Evening Post following a Freedom of Information Act request – and show an increase on two years ago.
They show that last year 127 youngsters were charged with possession of the drug, 124 of them male.
That compares to 76 in 2008, although the figures have fallen since 2009, when there were 146 youngsters charged with the offence.
Samantha Jones from the Lancashire Drug and Alcohol Action Team said: “We know that, far from being a ‘safe’ drug, cannabis can be very destructive and lead to mental illnesses.
“Not only does it cause short-term memory loss and lethargy, which can have a negative effect for young people studying at school or college, but it also increases the risk of cancer and lung disease.
“In Preston, Chorley, South Ribble and West Lancashire, Youngaddaction Central Lancashire is commissioned to provide substance misuse support to young people up to 21-years-old.”
A police spokesman said: “Clearly, the issue of a child as young as 10 being caught in possession of cannabis is of concern.
“However, this is rare amongst children this young and the overall annual statistics of cannabis possession are low when you consider the number of people across Lancashire in this age category.
“We are aware that young people do experiment with cannabis and we regularly run policing operations and employ stop and searches to address the issue. We combine these tactics with targeted operations aimed at identifying the cultivators and dealers of cannabis and other drugs.”

Saturday, 26 February 2011

David Cameron Needs to think it through on cannabis

In his interview "A World View" at 10 mins 45 seconds in, David Cameron makes some strange statements in response to questions about the "legalisation" and the "medicinal" uses of the cannabis plant.

The Prime Minister says that he is against "legalisation" because "if you look at the sort of marijuana that is on sale today it is incredibly damaging, is very vey toxic and in many cases leads to huge mental health problems, but a more fundamental reason for not making these drugs legal is that to make them legal would make them even more prevalent and increase use levels even more than they are now and I don't think it's the right answer.  I think a combination of education and also treatment programmes for drug addicts those are the two most important points."

Yet, according to a study conducted by Kings College, London (2007) concluded "samples of cannabis seized by the police and discovered that the strength was the same as when similar checks were conducted a decade ago."

Despite that report and despite several studies conducted by the Government's own Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD) recommending that cannabis remain in class C of the Misuse of Drugs Act, the Labour Government supported by the Conservatives upgraded cannabis to class B again in 2009 based upon this falsity.

In any case, if indeed there is a deemed to be a problem caused by the uncontrollable supply of strong strains of cannabis with no quality controls or indications of strength or purity, would it not have made more sense to create a legal distinction based upon strength?

Would it not make more sense for the Government to control supply by growing or importing "old style" cannabis - the sort Mr Cameron and so many MP's smoked in their youth - and sold it to adults through outlets similar to Dutch-style "Coffeeshops".

On the medicinal value of cannabis, Mr Cameron says that should be left to experts, yet he defies his own experts when it comes to classification and defiantly opposes the Dutch doctors that prescribe medical cannabis bud to patients including British People that go there.  

Whilst residents of EU countries such as The Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Italy, are allowed to bring their prescribed natural cannabis to the UK with them, being protected under the Schengen Agreement, the Government stubbornly threaten to arrest UK residents that do the same.  Pure hypocrisy considering that expensive "Sativex" - a cannabis extract in alcohol - produced by Pharmaceutical companies, is available to a limited number of patients legally in the UK

Mr Cameron favours better education about drugs yet seems to know so little about cannabis himself.


The Legalisation of the possession, cultivation and supply of cannabis is not a question of whether cannabis use is beneficial (as claimed by hundreds of millions of users around the world) or causes harm (a claim made by a quite small percentage of users). Neither is it about the scientific evidence, nor is it about whether or not one should use cannabis.

All major scientific studies into the effects of cannabis on people have concluded that the dangers have been grossly exaggerated or concocted, and that cannabis law is at best ineffective and at worst in itself illegal, being contrary to several Articles of Human Rights

The essential questions that should be debated are:

  • Does the prohibition law (the Misuse of Drugs Act, 1971) harm or benefit to society and individuals?
  • What justification is there in punishing a person who grows, uses or even supplies cannabis if they are not harming or threatening anybody?
Two UK Royal Commissions (The British Indian Hemp Drugs Commission, 1894 and The Wootton Report, 1969) looked at cannabis and the law and concluded that prohibition was not the means to reducing harm. Those expensive reports were but were ignored by the governments of the times.

Despite the outcry from both public and eminent bodies, successive UK governments have refused to even debate the legalisation of cannabis. Only now is the debate beginning to open up.

There have been over 1 million prosecutions in the UK for the possession of the cannabis plant over the last 30 years. Most of those people have had no victims to their cannabis "crimes" and posed no threat to society. The annual cost of this to the taxpayer has grown to billions of pounds.

Moreover, the cannabis issue is about much more than the freedom to smoke a 'joint.'

Cannabis, also known as hemp, is one of the most versatile and efficacious plants on earth. It can be used to produce literally thousands of products to replace many of the dangerous synthetics presently in use - everything from dioxin-free paper to pollution-free fuel, from safe herbal remedies to biodegradable plastics, from furniture and bricks for building to food and clothing. Cannabis could literally feed, clothe, house and ease the suffering of most of the world's population, all done on a local level without damage to the environment.

We need to recognise what our greater-grandparents all knew. In his "Complete Herbal and English Physician" of 1826, Culpeper wrote of hemp: "It is so common a plant, and so well known by almost every inhabitant of this kingdom, that a description of it would be altogether superfluous." Culpeper went on to list some of the medical uses of cannabis. Today, many millions testify to the therapeutic value of cannabis to them. Many more are denied the benefit by a law that cannot be said to work. 

The legalisation of cannabis would enable research and investment into the potential benefits of using cannabis once again.

The cost of this senseless prohibition is to society and the environment - it effects each and every one of us in a detrimental way, even though we may not be aware of it. Much of the world is polluted, starving or crime-ridden. Millions of otherwise law-abiding people in Britain live constantly in fear of threat "knock on the door" - or their door being kicked in. Sick people are denied an effective medicine. The young are alienated from authority.  UK taxpayers contribute without choice to the annual bill of trying to enforce prohibition that now runs in to over £18 billion.

The results of legalising cannabis would be far-reaching and benefit the whole of society. They include:

  • Decrease in general crime rate.
  • Easing of the drugs problem.
  • Increase in police and court resources to fight serious crime.
  • Increase in Government revenue through taxation on profits.
  • Increase in public and social well being, spirit, health and happiness.
  • Decrease in pollution.
  • Decrease in the price of fuel, energy and power for our homes, businesses, factories etc.
  • Decrease in unemployment.

Legalisation of cannabis is the only sensible solution to solve the problems associated with its illegality!

Friday, 25 February 2011

The Law did nothing to prevent Holly's heroin addiction

Emma said: "He told me it was cannabis resin and I believed him.

“If I had known it was heroin, I would have stayed away from it. "

This would never have happened to Holly in The Netherlands where the sale of cannabis to adults from "Coffeeshops" has been tolerated since the mid-70's

Dutch Government figures also reveal that the increase in numbers of new heroin addicts is lower than the UK.

Meanwhile, the UK law did not manage to stop Emma from using drugs and did nothing to actually help her: "It was not until he was sent to prison Emma had withdrawal symptoms – known to addicts as clucking – and discovered she was hooked on heroin."

Reformed heroin addict is now a mature student and manager

9:00am Friday 25th February 2011
By James Dwan »

A YOUNG woman has quit her life as a heroin addict to start a university course and become a manager.
Just as character Holly Barton in ITV1’s Emmerdale has been going through a cold turkey regime locked away at home, a convicted offender in Colchester said she kicked the habit in a similar way.
Emma, 27, from Colchester, spent eight years in and out of prison, living on the streets and shoplifting to fund her £100-a-day habit.
But after taking part in a Probation Service course, she kicked the habit and is now working as a marketing executive in charge of 20 staff.
She said: “When I was 15, I had a huge row with my mum because she found out I got a tattoo. She hit the roof and kicked me out.
“I slept on the streets for four nights before someone took me in.
“I then moved to a Christian hostel, but couldn’t have been anywhere worse, as kids in there had just been out of care and were taking pills.
“I was a country bumpkin and there were all these hardened, scary girls – it was a nightmare.”
Emma later moved to a YMCA out of Essex, where she met a 22-year-old drug addict named Steven, with whom she became “totally obsessed”.
She said: “Steven smoked heroin on the foil.
“He told me it was cannabis resin and I believed him.
“If I had known it was heroin, I would have stayed away from it.
“For four months I smoked it with Steve and couldn’t understand why I was ill – I thought I had a cold all the time.”
It was not until he was sent to prison Emma had withdrawal symptoms – known to addicts as clucking – and discovered she was hooked on heroin.
“I found out I had a £100-a-day habit without even knowing it,” she added. “I didn’t even know where I could get more, but I soon found out.
“From there, my whole life spiralled totally out of control.”
Emma started shoplifting to pay for heroin and crack cocaine. She would have to steal £400 of goods to raise about £100 by selling the items in pubs.
She would steal everything from electrical items to meat from supermarkets.
She said: “I was in and out of the police station all of the time. One week I was arrested four times.”
After being arrested for trying to steal a vacuum cleaner and DVDs from a Colchester supermarket, she was sent to Highpoint women’s prison in Suffolk for six months.
She added: “I spent my 18th birthday in jail – I was gutted.”
Emma declined help, as she didn’t want to go through the pain of coming off of drugs.
“Until you experience going cold turkey, you can’t judge,” she said. “The pain is horrendous.”
After being sentenced to supervision by Essex Probation on a community order – which included a specialised drug programme – Emma decided to get clean.
She battled on to achieve negative drug test results and, over time, regained control of her life.
“This wouldn’t have been possible without the skills I learnt on that programme, and all your support and encouragement,” said Emma. “Previous efforts to deal with my drug use and all those offences I was committing had little effect. My recent experiences marked a real turning point.”
Emma also decided to go cold turkey and get herself clean, locking herself in her home.
She said: “Going through cold turkey is it like going to hell – you have searing pains in your muscles. I had pains in my kidneys and back which felt like someone was stabbing me with red hot knives. You have hot and cold sweats, you feel disgusting and dirty and can’t walk or anything – you are useless.”
After the 15th day of cold turkey, Emma started to go out of the house, but it took five months for her to feel stable.
She had trouble getting a job due to her convictions, but was finally given a chance at a telesales company in north Essex, and now works as a marketing executive in charge of a team of staff. She said: “I love what I do, and I enjoy every day and I think I can go quite far.
“I have been clean for 18 months and drugs are not even an issue any more – I don’t even think about them.”
Emma has now repaired her relationship with her family and is in her second year of a degree course with the Open University.

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Drug Addiction is a problem for doctors not policemen

Addiction to anything is a serious health problem, yet so many people are addicted or habitualised to so many things, from shopping and gambling through heroin and prescribed medication like methodone.

What they started on is not the issue - helping them to cope or overcome the addiction is a medical issue.

The problem is that the law unfairly and unjustly threatens to punish people addiction to some things / substances, but not others - even though they have not actually harmed anyone or committed other offences (if they have, then the law will deal with them)

For example: a heroin addict can be sent to prison or fined for simple possession for own use - an alcoholic can not be.   Why - if neither has done harm, surely they ought to be treated the same way and offered help, not courtrooms.

That threat of arrest is why so many addicts to drugs which are illegal to possess, where the only supply is criminalised, must feel deterred from seeking help earlier before all the other problems and associated crime become part of their lives too.

It is time the Government tried a new approach other than prohibition that is clearly failing and also brings its own problems (like £18 Billion bill annually to the taxpayers".

It is time the Government treated users of all drugs, the same.  There is no logical reason why some drugs should be totally banned yet available on the street, whereas others that are equally or more dangerous like alcohol is controlled.
Attempts to help Norfolk drug addicts turn lives around

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

The Power of the Jury:

AS A JUROR, you have the power to reject the application of law and the evidence and decide a case on your own conscience.

The jury's purpose has always been to assess whether a law has been brokenand whether the law itself has been justly applied – that is: should the case havebeen brought to court, when there is no victim, no loss and no danger to other people or society?



Where a jury deliberately rejects the evidence or refuses to apply the law either because the jury wants to send a message about a social issue or because the result dictated by the law is against the juror’s sense of justice or morality – this is called jury nullification.


When to nullify:

Consider a prosecution under the Misuse of Drugs Act, where a person has cultivated of cannabis in private, for their own use only. There may be no suggestion of supply to others – no other people were involved, no profit intended.

We should ask: was this law introduced to punish people who grow or use a plant to their benefit, when they do no harm at all to other people and are no danger to society?

Of course not – it was meant to reduce damage from drugs misuse!

Then maybe such a prosecution is a mis-application of the law and good reason to return a verdict of  NOT GUILTY, whatever the judges and barristers say.    It is a juror’s right.

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Barbaric Malaysian Courts still hang people for cannabis


I was shocked to learn just how far behind the rest f the world the courts in Malaysia are ("Trader gets gallows for drug offence")

So Fadil Bachok, 46, is to be hanged by the neck until dead - for what?  Possession of less than one kilo of plant material (cannabis) - less than held by most Dutch Coffeeshop or US Medicinal Cannabis Clinics.

What harm did this man actually do and what harm could he feasibly do, with cannabis.

Cannabis itself has been shown by evidence to be non-toxic (it is impossible to consume the fatal dose), non-addictive and contains nothing that drives people to hard drugs.

 In fact it is one of the most versatile efficacious plants in the world and its seeds are amongst the most complete food.  The plant can be used to make everything from a valuable medicine to fuel to drive our cars, even our planes:  ropes, clothes, paper, plastics, building materials, oils, biofuels and medicine - what other plant can produce that.

Yet most of the world still bans it giving preferential treatment to huge multi-national and pharmaceutical companies that sell often dangerous and synthetic alternatives that harm the environment, at huge cost to the everyday person and society as a whole.  That ban leaves us all under their thumb.

But whatever the real reason for the ban - it is simply barbaric.

Alun Buffry

Friday, 18 February 2011



It is estimated that about 600 million people in the world use cannabis, 3 to 8 million in Britain. The vast majority of them report benefits to their health and an increased sense of well-being. Few report harm. The evidence from scientists as to the risks associated with cannabis, at first may seem contradictory. But in fact all the dedicated studies using real cannabis and real people – as opposed to those using chemical extracts on monkeys and mice or those based on stories and often on lies – have stated that cannabis smoking poses no real risk to all but a tiny minority of people. The World Health Organisation itself was quick to point this out.

"A great many assumptions have been made in extrapolating from health effects observed in laboratory animals to the probable health effects of equivalent doses and patterns of use in humans. In addition, there may be problems in extrapolating studies with pure THC to human experience with crude cannabis preparations. The plant material contains many other compounds, both cannabinoid and non-cannabinoid in nature and the possibility must always be considered that differences between experimental and clinical observations may be due in part to the effects of these other substances."

When the DEA Judge Francis Young described cannabis as safer than most common foods we eat, and when the world’s leading cannabis expert Lester Grinspoon MD of Harvard Medical School described it as “remarkably safe”, they were talking about pure cannabis, nothing like some of the crap sold in the UK today under names like “soapbar”, “eurohash” and “squiggy black” or the more recent contaminated cannabis buds called “gritweed” often covered with from anything from ground glass to plastic, sand, even powdered lead and who-knows-what..

MAKE NO MISTAKE – just because some dealer, or even the police, call it cannabis, it may not contain much of the real stuff at all. It’s kak.

Over the last 20 or so years in Britain, the amount of poor quality or fake cannabis available on the illegal market has increased whilst quality, and more recently even price, has gone down.

Much of it contains very little THC (tetrahydrocannabinol, one of the main substances that produces the high when smoked) – some of it contains none at all.  Soap smokers, for example, report an effect, but those who know better also know that effect is not a cannabis “high”.

Substances such as ketamine and crushed barbiturates have been added to produce an effect, because there is so little real cannabis in it. Other substances added to give it the right colour and hardness, can include cancerogenic solvents, animal turds, glues, hardening agents, ground coffee and powdered milk (for colour).

Another problem is some of the more recent varieties of indoor hydroponic cannabis can be unbalanced in the THC-CBD ratio – it;s strong but not everybody finds it pleasant.

In short, nobody really knows what's in cannabis bought from dealers, even passed on down the chain by friends.

This is one of the knock-on effects of the ban on cannabis. When left in the hands of illegal suppliers there is little recourse, no quality control. It’s inevitable – cannabis is so popular and the profit so tempting that it attracts not only honest dealers, but also less scrupulous crooks who will sell anything for a quick earner.

In short, if you smoke that stuff, you have been ripped off and may be killing yourself slowly – and not even getting properly “high”.


When we hear claims that cannabis is remarkably safe from scientists, they are talking about cannabis, not tobacco and not mixes. Cannabis and tobacco are both plants but that’s where the similarity ends.

Tobacco is poisonous, cannabis is not: whilst we know that eating a packet of cigarettes would kill, one cannot eat enough cannabis to kill oneself.

Tobacco is physically addictive, cannabis is not: even though many cannabis smokers may not want to quit (why should they if it is not a risk to their health?), unlike tobacco users who want to stop for health reasons, they don’t need hypnosis, acupuncture or nicotine patches to help.

To stop using cannabis is simply a matter or making up one’s mind and sticking to it, there are no heavy withdrawals symptoms although of course there may be the craving or the need to find alternative ways of socialising or relaxing.. Of course there are also people that suffer from withdrawal in the same way as people do when an effective ameliorative is removed.

BUT even though most people know the deadly health risks associated with smoking modern day tobacco, a huge number of people still mix it with their cannabis under the mistaken belief that it saves money. It doesn’t! Up to two thirds of the cannabis is wasted.

What’s more, people who have stopped using tobacco, report not only a better “high” but also more energy and a better sense of taste and smell.

The “stone” one experiences on a cannabis tobacco mix is very different to that of the ”high” from pure cannabis.

It’s far safer and far more pleasant to find yourself a pipe, bong or vaporiser that suits you and stick to that! It may take a while to change but it’s not that hard really!

If you smoke cannabis with tobacco, you are ripping yourself of and killing yourself slowly!


The real reasons why cannabis possession, cultivation and supply was banned under the Misuse of Drugs Act in 1971 - and before that in the Dangerous Drugs Act of 1928 - are unclear. Certainly cannabis is nowhere near as risky as the other banned substances. Maybe, as some suggest, the motives were money and or religion and ignorance. But the ban was certainly not based on scientific evidence.

The law has thrown cannabis into a bag of mixed drugs and led us to believe that they are somehow connected. But there is nothing in cannabis itself that makes one want to go on to take other drugs. That is down to curiosity, mistaken beliefs that stuff like heroin or LSD are like stronger cannabis, peer pressure and pressure from dealers out to profit from us.

Cannabis is nothing like other drugs. Because you use cannabis does not mean you have to even try anything else. The health risk from those other drugs really is far greater in both the short and long term.

Before you take hard drugs think carefully: are they clean? What strength or how many should you take? What will be the circumstances when you take them – will there be someone to look after you if it goes wrong


The ban on cannabis has led to all these problems: bad quality, bad price, bad advice, increased risk to health, exposure to crime, social alienation, , drug addiction, confused messages to children, loss of freedom, abuse of our Human Rights, wasted police and court time, overcrowding of prisons, public dependence on drug companies and petrol companies (yes, cannabis could replace fossil and nuclear fuels!), pollution and public fear. It has taken the control of our lives away from us and put it into the hands of multi-national conglomerates and drug dealers.



Thursday, 17 February 2011

Cannabis Awareness

Until the early nineties, people knew cannabis as a 'drug' of relaxation or recreation. However, people are realising that cannabis is more, much more, than just a way to get 'stoned' at the weekend. Some people even recognise that cannabis is not at all like drugs- many more perceive it as a medicine.

Once one discovers just what cannabis is, what it can be used for, and the history of cannabis, one can only wonder why we were not told all this in school. One would wonder why it was, in fact, almost hidden away from us. If one was lucky enough to come across Jack Herer's masterpiece 'The Emperor Wears no Clothes' one may have been surprised to read his claim that cannabis can save the planet - in fact he offered an 10,000 dollars reward to anyone who can disprove him!

It is thanks to people like Herer, that many of us are now aware of the facts In fact cannabis is a relaxant, a food, a medicine, a resource for fibre for paper, furniture, sails, rope, canvas and even bricks.

Cannabis seed is a highly nutritious food, a source of oil for use as a fuel (Henry Ford built his first Model T to run on hempseed oil), a lubricant, and an ingredient in paints, varnish, lacquers, sealant and even plastics.

Cannabis is said to be the most efficacious plant on earth.

Cannabis is also used in religious rituals by Rastafarians, Copts, Buddhists, Hindus and Jains.

For many people the cannabis plant is a part of daily life.

Cannabisis easily obtained (although not always very pure) in almost every village, town or city in Britain.

One may wonder what the down side of cannabis is. Why is it illegal, with tens of thousands prosecuted annually in the UK, if it is so useful? Is it harmful or dangerous? Does it lead to hard drugs? Is it addictive? Can one overdose? To justify the prohibition of cannabis surely there must be at least one 'yes' to these questions. But, there isn't.

Over the last hundred or so years, there have been many government-sponsored investigations and reports into cannabis and its effects on health when eaten or smoked. These include the Indian Hemp Commission, the US Shafer Report, the US Costa Rican studies, Jamaican Studies, Coptic studies, the LaGuardia Study, the UK Wootton Report and the Report of the DEA-appointed Judge Young. All failed to find any danger in the use of cannabis; they state that it is non-addictive; it does not lead to use of narcotics; it is a beneficial medicine; there is no detrimental effects on memory, motor coordination, judgment or reaction times; it does not impair either mental performance or physical ability; it does not a-motivate; it does not create a particular lifestyle In the words of The Lancet "The smoking of cannabis, even long term, is not damaging to health."

So why is cannabis illegal? Why was it made illegal and when? Most people, even if aware of the many beneficial uses of cannabis, would merely conclude that it was because the powers decided that they did not want the people 'stoned'. Well, that is hardly likely to be the truth, since cannabis had been widely used for centuries throughout the world, even in Europe, and it had caused no problems. Also, as alcohol and tobacco, both highly addictive and toxic drugs, are legal, it is clear that cannabis was not made illegal even under a mis-guided belief that prohibition would protect health.. Maybe we should look at what else was happening in the world about the time of the prohibition of cannabis

Cannabis was made illegal almost worldwide after the Geneva Opiates Conference of 1925 classified it as a narcotic (wrongly- cannabis never had any narcotic properties). Could there be some ulterior motive? Is this conspiracy theory or is it paranoia? Let the reader decide.

Strangely enough, there had been some important 'breakthroughs' during the decades before 1925, including the synthesis of man-made fabrics such as nylon and rayon, the increase in the use of diesel and petrol-driven engines, and tranquilizers and pain-killing drugs. The multi-national billionaire power- hungry directors of the huge companies which could profit, even at the expense of life itself, were not slow to realise that their expensive synthetics could never compete in a world market where the needs of man were so neatly met by the many uses of the humble cannabis Hemp plant. Hemp had been widely used for paper, cloth, medicine and fuel, for centuries, and cannabis could be grown easily almost anywhere. People would never simply accept the prohibition of such a useful resource ... unless, of course, it could somehow be shown to be dangerous. And that was precisely what the employees of those world-polluting companies proceeded to attempt to do. They created myths and fears, encouraging Egypt and Turkey to insist upon including cannabis as a narcotic (hence drug), alongside heroin and opiates. These countries falsely claimed that some of their people suffered from 'chronic hashism', but there has never been such a condition. Cannabis was prohibited in the UK in 1928 as a direct result of the Geneva Conference at which Britain had abstained.

In the USA, powerful political servants such as Anslinger used the lie that cannabis was dangerous to brainwash the population into accepting the loss of their most valuable resource as a necessity to protect the young from the 'evils' of marijuana intoxication. Marijuana was a name for the leaves and tops of the cannabis plant. Claims of 'reefer madness' were advertised throughout America. Parents were warned of a 'drug far more frightening than Frankenstein's Monster.' Black people and Mexicans, were singled out and arrested. Anslinger even spoke publicly against 'Ginger-haired niggers.' The hatred campaign quickly spread to include Jazz musicians; and clubs. Meanwhile Henry Ford, in an attempt to remain independent of the petroleum companies, illegally grew hemp for three years. Anslinger was sacked by John Kennedy a year before Kennedy was assassinated; by the way the words 'assassinate' and 'hashish' have the same origin.

The prohibition laws had little social effect, though, in Britain, where very few people were smoking it during the first half of this century. Prohibition began to have its disastrous effect on British society mainly after 1960, when it became much more easily obtainable and used; people here began to enjoy it too; they became 'criminals' in law, subject to arrest and prosecution for their crimes with no victims. Many popular figures such as Keith Richard and Mick Jagger, were among those arrested. However, the use of cannabis continued to grow, as did the plant itself.

The spreading of lies and fear was so successful that large sections of communities turned against anyone known to use cannabis, courts and prisons filled, cannabis prices rose, as did the crime rate and the number of hard drug addicts. Cannabis was no longer a roadside or garden plant, it was called an “illegal drug” controlled solely by 'criminal' organisations. The propaganda campaign was so successful that even the political and commercial successors have believed the lies. And the powerful multinational petro-chemical and pharmaceutical companies, as well ad drug dealers, criminal gangs and terrorists that make huge profits due to prohibition, remain firmly behind the ban

Of course it is not cannabis itself that is illegal – or even its use. It is the possession, production *cultivation) and supply that is unlawful – the law is aimed at people, not plants.

What has prohibition done? It has alienated and criminalised millions of people; caused thousands to be thrown into prison; mixed the supply of cannabis, with no control of quality, in with that of hard drugs, the tax-free profits financing large criminal and terrorist organisations; it has removed a highly beneficial medicine (both preventative and curative) from pharmacists' shelves - thus causing unnecessary suffering from illnesses such as MS, Glaucoma, AIDS, cancer, arthritis and rheumatics, spinal injury, depression, insomnia, loss of appetite, cramps, epilepsy; menstrual and labour pains and asthma; it has restricted religious practices; it has encouraged the production of environmentally polluting synthetic alternatives; it has helped perpetuate the Greenhouse Effect and helped destroy the Ozone Layer. All that with huge costs of policing these unworkable, unjust and ineffective laws. Prohibition, which has never worked when applied to an economically valuable resource ( as opposed to crimes of violence, theft etc), has never worked. In short, the prohibition of cannabis is nothing less than an inhumane, profit-motivated, social evil.

The reason why cannabis was made illegal has been largely forgotten. Cannabis is now grown again for its fibre, and advocated medicinally. Now it is the lies that we have to destroy, and the money motivation of illegal suppliers, which we have to battle, to free this benign herb again.

Some campaigning groups have been struggling for years to make people aware of the injustice or prohibition, the impracticalities and expense of enforcing the cannabis laws, and of the harmless and beneficial nature of cannabis itself. We even find we have to tackle the subtle programming with which we have ourselves been fed by prohibitionists. An example of this was a discussion on whether or not cannabis could cause hallucinations. I remember reading once, in a comic probably, that Nepalese temple Ball Hashish was hallucinogenic. But upon realising exactly what an hallucination is, I realised that nobody I knew had ever hallucinated on cannabis alone; furthermore, I learned that cannabis, chemically, cannot possibly produce hallucinations; it's effect is always one of relaxation (not always repose). How much more difficult to open the eyes of those who have never even tried cannabis themselves, who live in fear of the 'drug menace' and do not see the difference between illegal cannabis users and addicts of drugs?

Cannabis awareness is growing rapidly. Every person must be presented with the truth. The politicians won't tell them, but we will.

It is high time that the Government took notice of the official reports and empirical evidence available about cannabis, noted the safety record, listened to the voices of its people and its experts, and acted to rid us of this repressive law.

Few would now claim that cannabis use does more harm than the arrests and prosecutions for cannabis under the UK Misuse of Drugs Act.

It is time all people reacted, not just the cannabis smokers. This cannabis prohibition is destroying the planet, and that includes all of us and all of our children and grandchildren. Legalisation of cannabis (possession, cultivation and consumer-protected supply) would immediately go a long way to solving many social problems and ease drug and alcohol addiction; it would enable the legal supply of a natural plant remedy for many ailments; it would enable the production, on local levels, of natural fibres for clothes, rope, canvas; it would supply us with hurd usable as building materials and furniture; it would enable the production of virtually cost-free energy on a local level, it would enable the production of highly nutritious seed which could be used to literally feed the world; it would help reverse the Greenhouse Effect, cutting down on pollution.

Please, good people everywhere, WAKE UP. Force the politicians to put right one of the gravest errors of modern times - the prohibition of cannabis. Now is the time to ac - so write to your MP now at the House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011



  • Over £16,000,000,000 (16 Billion) is spent in the UK fighting ‘drugs’ annually. 
  • Millions are criminalised - over 1 million in the last 30 years. Prison sentences, including those for non-payment of fines, lead to family break-ups and all the problems associated with imprisonment.
  • Millions risk their health by consuming cannabis of uncontrolled and doubtful purity i.e. there is no quality control.
  • No adequate research can be conducted on the therapeutic uses of natural cannabis. Seriously ill people are prohibited from a beneficial medicine.
  • The Government receives no revenue. The ‘criminals’ make all the profits. Legal cannabis would mean that the profits are taxable.
  • The industrial uses of cannabis are virtually ignored at the cost of environmental disaster. The world starves because the seed cannot be legally grown in most countries. We are exhausting fossil fuels and using dangerous radioactive materials to produce energy and run cars which could be done of the Eco-friendly cannabis plant. Factories pump chemicals such as dioxins into our land in order to produce paper from wood pulp; this could be stopped using cannabis instead of trees. The plant is quick-growing, which would help to counteract the Greenhouse Effect. When cannabis biomass fuel is burned it releases only the carbon dioxide which it recently absorbed whilst growing, whereas the CO2 release by burning fossil fuels (petrol, coal etc) was absorbed millions of years ago.
  • People requiring a relaxant can only choose alcohol, which is far more dangerous than any amount of cannabis.
  • The illegal cannabis market mixes it with the supply of hard drugs.
  • The law invades people's privacy and prevents them from their pursuit of happiness, freedom of religious practice and freedom of lifestyle granted under the United Nations Human Rights Charter 

    How Cannabis Works



Tuesday, 15 February 2011

'I grew cannabis to ease heroin craving' -Essex Echo

Rodney Barr ought to be commended for growing and using cannabis to cope with withdrawal from heroin instead of seeking expensive and addictive pharmaceutical preparations like methadone.

Instead more taxpayers money is wasted by prosecuting him - even though he did no harm to others.

As for sentencing him to a curfew - to stay indoors where his so-called crime was committed, well that's just plain nonsense.

Maybe he'll take up some nice quiet hobby like indoor gardening to keep himself busy during some of the curfew hours
 'I grew cannabis to ease heroin craving'
Essex Echo, February 15 2011

A FORMER heroin addict was caught growing cannabis in his Basildon retirement flat to ease his cravings.
Basildon magistrates electronic ally tagged Rodney Barr, 62, and banned him from going out between 10pm until 6am for a month, after he admitted growing the Class B drug at his flat in Helmores, Basildon.
His mini-cannabis factory had gone undetected for some time, the court heard with the plants being kept warm inside a makeshift tent in his flat.
He was only caught out when police on a routine patrol smelled something suspicious as they passed the flat on January 21.
They followed their noses inside, where they found eight mature cannabis plants.
Barr told the court he had he become addicted to heroin late in life and used cannabis as a way of weaning himself off the stronger drug.
His solicitor, Mark Jerman, told the bench: “It’s pretty unusual to have someone before the court for this sort of matter, particularly when you hear he became involved in cannabis as a way to remove himself from heroin use, which had only been in the past few years.”
Mr Jerman claimed his client had been surrounded by heroin users while living at Witchards, Basildon, and this had led him to take up the drug.
Instead of seeking professional help for his problem, Mr Jerman said Barr had effectively “self-medicated”, deciding to grow his own cannabis as a way of avoiding contact with drug dealers.
He described the growing set-up as relatively unsophisticated The court accepted the drugs had been grown purely for personal use and gave Barr a six-month community order, and a curfew.

Monday, 14 February 2011

Success of Norfolk hospital’s cannabis trials highlighted

Dr Willy Notcutt - cannabis healer
I was pleased to read about the successful medicinal cannabis trials at James Paget Hospital in Great Yarmouth ("Success of Norfolk hospital’s cannabis trials highlighted", Evening News, Nov 25).

Dr William Notcutt announced “It is not just its use in pain relief that is exciting. It is possible drugs could be developed from cannabis as anti-inflammatories and even to treat certain types of cancer.”

This is yet more evidence that proves the medicinal value of cannabis yet the Government still insist that cannabis is a dangerous drug with no medicinal value and Schedule it as such within the Misuse of Drugs Regulations.

The cultivation of cannabis, even for one's own use to relieve dreadful symptoms of some terrible ailments and injuries, still carries a maximum prison sentence of 14 years, and simple possession one of five.

Over the last decade or so there have been numerous reports of medicinal value form scientists and academics along with hundreds of testimonials from individuals.

The last Government refused to listen to its own Advisory Committee on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD) regarding the classification of cannabis in law, leading to the sacking of it's chair, Prof David Nutt and resignation of many other Committee members.

When will the Government acknowledge the medicinal value of the plant itself instead of handing over to the pharmaceutical companies that are making a cannabis-extract in alcohol - Sativex - which many health authorities are refusing to patients because it is too expensive. meanwhile the almost free-to-grow plant is still banned.

Alun Buffry

Ref: Success of Norfolk hospital's cannabis trials highlighted


Despite The UK having signed the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948, it took over 50 years to incorporate Human Rights into British law. Until the Human Rights Act of 1999, the only recourse for an individual or group to take action against the Government was through the often long drawn-out processes of the European Courts.

After the UK introduced The Human Rights Act, the direct avenue to the European Courts has been delayed by the necessity that the UK courts deal with the case first and the European Court has become the last resort.

The two Articles of Human Rights that mostly concern cannabis growers and users are those recognising our Right to a Private Life and or Right to believe and practice what we choose.

Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights:

(1) "Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in worship, teaching, practice and observance."

(2) "Freedom to manifest one's religion or beliefs shall be subject only to such limitations as are prescribed by law and are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of public safety, for the protection of public order, health or morale, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others."

Article 8 grants a person the Right to a Private Life: “Everyone has the right to respect for his private and family life, his home and his correspondence."

There is nothing that says the choice of one's religion or belief can be limited to those approved of by any Government, Court or other authority – that's why they used the word “freedom.” There is nothing about what one does in private having to be with the approval of any authority, subject to the same criteria as Article 9

The law is quite specific: Governments and other authorities only have toe right to invade or interfere with our private life or the practice of one's religion or beliefs, UNLESS they can show that there is some threat of harm to society, public health, public order, security etc, or the Rights of others. How does smoking (or growing) pure cannabis in private do that? No Government has answered that question and the only answers from the UK talk about the use of the law as a deterrent – which in any case could hardly be called effective

How does the UK Government justify the use of oppressive tactics such as the Misuse of Drugs Act against people who decide to grow and / or use a plant at home, in private, or as a part of their religion or belief system?

The law alone is not sufficient justification for the Government to infringe upon those Rights.

It is the responsibility of the Government to show that cannabis is a real threat, backed by scientific evidence and not scare-mongering anecdote.

Of course, they are unable to do that.

Strange that both Parties in the Coalition and Labour in Opposition claim to stand by Human Rights and yet all refuse to grant victimless cannabis users the Right to practice their belief – that the consumption of cannabis is beneficial and even necessary to them in the privacy of their own homes.

Sunday, 13 February 2011

To James Brokenshire et al at the UK Home Office:: Feb 10 2011

When India signed to agree to the prohibition of cannabis they exempted the Sadhu's and Jains that used cannabis as part of their culture and religion. The chewing of coca leaf is also part of the culture in several South American countries, and part of their religious practices. To ban that practice is contrary to Human Rights - an issue that the UK Government seem to prefer to ignore.

Also coca leaf chewing in Bolivia has nothing whatsoever to do with cocaine imported into and used in the UK.

Brokenshire et al, you are TOYING with people's beliefs and religious practices that have nothing whatsoever to do with you - to suggest that what happens in Bolivia will bring any change to either attitudes or law in the UK is a very poor excuse for your form of tyranny

We don't need you nanny's to tell us what we can and cannot ingest into our bodies and unless a person is doing harm they should be protected by law, not punished by it.


Letter to Daily Mail, January 24 2011


I read with dismay several recent articles by Peter Hitchens ("Professor Nutt, the cannabis propagandist in a scientist's white coat", November 21st and "The crazed smile that says: It’s the little packets of madness that we really need to fear", 17th January).

These articles do nothing to further the debate on cannabis and the law, nothing to help prevent damage caused by cannabis and the law, nothing to help those that risk punishment through use of cannabis to ease their suffering or to help them relax, and nothing to halt the unjust punishment of the very people the law ought to protect.

For sure we read negative articles from zero-tolerance prohibitionists like Mr Hitchens but in fact the few people mentioned are a tiny minority of the estimated 5 million regular users in the UK, hundreds of millions worldwide. The very vast majority of those users claim benefit and suffer no harm.

Yet the Daily Mail prefers to remain partial in this debate and ignore both the positive values of the cannabis plant and the negative costs of the prohibition laws.

Isn't it time that you gave the legalise cannabis lobby a say?


Alun Buffry


What is the difference - how might we distinguish - between the recreational use of cannabis and the medical? This question is bound to be at the forefront of discussion when government representatives debate the issue of legalisation.

According to the law, until 1971 cannabis was a substance of potential therapeutic value: it could be prescribed medically. During that year however, with The Misuse of Drugs Act, its status was re-defined: it ceased to be legal. The Government had performed an about-turn.

This was largely due to British agreement with the United Nations Single Convention on Narcotics of 1961, in which cannabis was classified as a dangerous drug of no therapeutic value. The British Government claimed that cannabis was being misused as a recreational drug.

The justification of the new law has always seemed spurious, and as time has passed increasingly so.

To begin with the negative case against the ruling: cannabis is not nicotine, is not alcohol. It is incomparably less dangerous than these, if dangerous at all.

There has not been a single instance of reported death for which cannabis is directly responsible, whereas, repeatedly, studies have linked tobacco with cancer, with high blood pressure, and with emphysema and a variety of other lethal conditions. Yet it is cannabis that is outlawed, while tobacco, currently, is available in Britain to anyone over 16-years-old.

And as with nicotine, so with alcohol; and intoxication. No study has been able to establish that the 'high' intoxicated state that results commonly from the smoking of cannabis has behavioural consequences of a significantly pernicious kind. Indeed the consequences are by and large benign.

This is hardly the case - to put it mildly - where alcohol is concerned. Alcohol addiction is the world’s most debilitating and destructive disease. Yet in general, in Britain and the Western World, it is alcohol that is the socially approved and permitted option, and the legally endorsed; not cannabis.

We turn now to the more positive argument for reversing the 1971 ruling. What at once needs emphasising at this point is the unbifurcated, holistic nature of our purpose. We are not campaigning for the recreational and medicinal usage of cannabis (to bring ourselves round again to our initial question), for to state the case that way is to presuppose in our argument, or to build into it, a false dichotomy. As far as we are concerned, the recreational very largely is the medicinal, the medicinal the recreational. We are aware, for instance, nowadays, that cannabis can contribute valuably to the treatment of nausea, chronic pain, asthma, multiple sclerosis and various other ailments. Yet to affirm this baldly could conceivably mislead, by obscuring more subtle propositions. We might be truer to our cause if we began with the proposition that cannabis is a mode of self-medication. Animals, we hear, self-medicate by digesting plants and other matter. And so possibly with human beings: many if not most cannabis users (so some researchers believe) are intuitively medicating themselves for stress and / or depression. Which is a way of saying that the cannabis user is not for the most part a person in quest of a 'high', or seeking consciously the cure for an ailment, but a human being searching intuitively for recreation: the re-creating of himself (or herself). This might all seem, and in fact in part obviously is, hypothetical: the jury is still out where self-medication is concerned.

For all that, what is at stake here is an issue we cannot and should not ignore. The cannabis user does himself and his cause no favours - the established opposition being what it is, an embattled force led by people with a propensity to simplistic thought - if he himself understates the complexity and subtlety of his essential purposes.

His theme ought to be that the line between the medical and recreational use of cannabis is blurred, and probably non-existent.