Friday, 29 August 2014

Another week, another cover-up, another scandal.

The police in South Yorkshire have been accused of trying to undermine and ridicule the complaints of systematic abuse reported to them by scores of boys and girls.

It is not generally understood that the police have wide discretion as to what they investigate and what they choose not to.  They will collude with their chums in the Crown Prosecution Service to prosecute well-known TV and radio celebrities because the publicity that results serves to frighten and cow the general public and 'bigs-up' the powers of the police.

When it comes to checking on those closer to home – fellow officers, local councillors and the army of faceless bureaucrats who scratch each other’s backs in local and national government while carving-up the generous funding 'initiatives' - there is, to say the least, considerable reluctance.

A new report by the inspectorate of spending states “The force's public protection unit, which investigates child abuse, domestic violence and sex crimes, spent too long trying to disprove the claims of victims rather than simply recording the potential crime and investigating afterwards” and it goes on to say “attempts to manipulate the force's crime figures are not new.”

Jack Straw, a past Home Secretary, described the Metropolitan police as not only institutionally racist but institutionally corrupt.  If he got out and about more he might discover that it is not just the London police.

But let's not allow those other creeps off the hook - those who have set themselves up as superior to the rest of us and claimed the right to govern, control and pass laws over us.  As far back the 1990s Rotherham council staff raided their own child protection department in order to remove the files of hundreds of children in their care who had made allegations of sexual abuse.  This was to undermine a report due to be compiled in 2000.


Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Cannabis: does more good than harm

Leading psychiatrist and mental health advocate Patrick McGorry has commented that one part of the drug was showing promise as an anti-psychotic medicine.

Australian of the Year, Professor Patrick McGorry says one part of cannabis is showing promise as an anti-psychotic medicine.

The director of Orygen Youth Health Research Centre and 2010 Australian of the year said while tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in cannabis was widely thought to be dangerous and increase the risk of psychosis in about 10 per cent to 20 per cent of people, another component - cannabidiol (CBD) - appeared to relieve psychosis, depression and anxiety.

The director of the University of NSW's National Cannabis Prevention and Information Centre described CBD as a 'very interesting part of the complex cannabis chemistry' that does not get people stoned, but rather appears to balance the effects of THC, which makes some people anxious.

She also said 'there was a small, but growing number of studies suggesting CBD relieved psychosis, anxiety and insomnia, and that her team was trialling it in about 10 people withdrawing from cannabis use to see if it helped them through the process.'

In July, market researchers, Reach tel, conducted a survey of more than 3,000 Australians asking them the question : Do you support the legislation of cannabis for medicinal purposes?

The majority would support the move at 65.9 percent, 14.4 percent said they would oppose the legislation and 19.7 percent were undecided on the issue. 

More on this story in the Daily Mail.

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Fuzzy drinks

“Legal” is a new cannabis drink being marketed in Washington State under the slogan 'ridiculously relaxing', where sale and consumption of cannabis is now totally legal.

The drink, produced by Mirth Provisions, comes in three flavours: lemon, cherry and pomegranate.  Presently it is only sold through licensed cannabis outlets.

Meanwhile Alaska and Oregon are set to vote on the issue of revised cannabis legalisation in the autumn.  So far 15 US states have either passed more lenient cannabis laws or are carrying out reviews.

Federal law has also been amended to permit banks to accept money from cannabis trading, paving the way for more relaxation in federal law.


Monday, 25 August 2014

The slippery slope

Today Boris Johnson has declared that the presumption of innocence be waived for those UK citizens arriving here from certain Middle Eastern countries.  In other words they are to be presumed guilty unless they can prove they have done nothing.

This was bound to happen and is another example of the creeping erosion of basic freedoms.  POCA (The Proceeds of Crime Act) is a law that already reverses the burden of proof.  The government passed it in 2002 and has gotten away with it.  So now they are going to push totalitarianism a little further.

Follow Boris’s proclamation to its logical conclusion: there are civil and tribal wars across the Middle East (always have been, by the way); in these wars people are being killed (war does that); therefore – if Boris gets his way - when you now fly in from the region you are presumed to be a murderer unless you can prove that none of the dead bodies out there are your responsibility.

There is one other, unspoken, aspect to Boris’s Law, which is that, only men with dark complexions and beards are likely to be apprehended at the airport.

The trick with the creation of a totalitarian state (and here I am referring to Britain not Syria) is to brand a section of the population outlaws and criminals.  Then you can do what you want with them.  The easiest way to do this is to reverse the burden of proof and thus presume guilt.  This would be the second time that a UK government has neutralised the safeguards in Magna Carta and presumed innocent people guilty.

Friday, 8 August 2014

Cannabis legalisation - Nick Clegg still misses the point

Welcome though the news is that the Liberal Democrats are pressing for the decriminalisation of drugs for personal use, sadly they are still choosing to miss the point.

According to a survey carried out a couple of years ago by the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction

30.8% of UK population have smoked cannabis on occasions (that is more than 20 million people)
20% of the population, Euro-wide, (62 million people) have smoked cannabis
20 million people, Euro-wide, have smoked cannabis in last year
In UK in 15 – 34 age group 43.4% have smoked cannabis

While it is certainly true that it is nonsensical to imprison citizens for possession of cannabis, Mr Clegg still chooses to fall into the trap that a smoker is a ‘victim’.  Someone who purchases cannabis is a consumer.  The implication that every smoker is victim, yearning to be cured is, as ever, not supported by the statistics.  If cannabis were both addictive and highly dangerous then, by the European Union’s own research, there would be 62 million addicts.  Quite obviously there are not.
As ever, the politicians are willfully peddling lies, and that is sad.  They, of all people, should understand human nature.   Of course a chap arrested by the police and threatened with imprisonment is going to say “It wasn't my fault.  It is this damn drug. I can’t help it.”  If it gets him a lighter sentence he will say anything – and good luck to him.
The truth is – and hard statistics are difficult to come by – it is believed that about 3 million British citizens smoke a joint or two every week.  Not only do they remain healthy and unharmed, many of them feel better for it.  They report for work on time, safely drive cars and trucks, represent their clients in court and even wear police uniforms. I have certainly met one or two medical practitioners who enjoy the occasional joint.
Nick Clegg may have judged that, as much of the rest of the civilised world is relaxing its stance on cannabis, a little white-lying is justified to get it past the lawmakers here.  We are, after all, a nation unaccustomed to hearing the truth.

So, maybe we should not be too mean with our praise – just so long as something actually comes of all this talk.  Remember “Call-me-Dave” was in favour of relaxing the law until he seized the reins of power.  Maybe Boris will be crazy enough to pull it off when it is his turn.

Coming soon in Amazon eBooks: The Cannabis Cover-up

Thursday, 31 July 2014

US moves closer to cannabis legalisation

More evidence that American opinion-formers continue to press for the  legalisation of cannabis.  This week the New York Times editorial board has committed the newspaper to run a campaign that reports a comprehensive and balanced view comparing the potential harm that cannabis represents compared with the actual harm caused by ill-considered drug law.  Their research and objectivity is unimpeachable.

Here is an example of their conclusions:

"It took 13 years for the United States to come to its senses and end Prohibition, 13 years in which people kept drinking, otherwise law-abiding citizens became criminals and crime syndicates arose and flourished. It has been more than 40 years since Congress passed the current ban on marijuana, inflicting great harm on society just to prohibit a substance far less dangerous than alcohol.

The federal government should repeal the ban on marijuana.

Nearly three-quarters of states have done one or more of the following: experimenting with legalizing medicinal uses of marijuana, reducing penalties, or even simply legalizing all use."

They report that 75% of US citizens now live under more benign cannabis laws and have produce a map to show it.

The newspaper also makes the point that the original law, passed by congress, making cannabis illegal was based on an untruthful and emotional outburst by a congressman during the era of the Vietnam war in which he linked the nation's failures in the war to the menace of drugs - as ever trying to portray 'drugs' as the villain and the armed forces as the victim.

Mark Graham on Amazon 

Sunday, 25 May 2014

Cannabis at Marks and Sparks

Former Marks & Spencer chief executive Sir Stuart Rose has admitted smoking cannabis while he was at the helm of the store.
Sir Stuart, one of the UK’s most well-known business leaders and current chairman of online retailer Ocado, said he tried  the drug while on holiday five years ago.
Speaking to The Times magazine, Sir Stuart, 64, said his first experience with smoking marijuana was on his school leaving day.
‘I smoked a joint when I was 18 on the day I left school. I was sick as a pig,’ he said.
‘I never had a joint again until I went to a friend’s house for lunch, in a foreign country, about five years ago, and we had a very nice lunch on a very hot day looking over the sparkling sea.
‘This box of cigars went round, cigarettes, and I was fumbling around, and I found this thing and said, “What’s that?” And my host said, “Shut up and smoke it”.
‘So I did, and I giggled a lot, and he gave me two to go  away with, and I smoked the other one the following day, and the following one about two months later, and I have to say, it was great!