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From Mythos to Monoculture

Posted on August 21st, 2020 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , .

hempHemp’s Curious Cultural Trajectory

Now that hemp has finally arrived at its long-sought status as a legal crop and commodity, there is a sense of inevitability to its deviation from the utopian vision that animated the advocates who fought for it a generation ago.

A tension that has always existed between two currents in the subculture of hemp advocacy is increasingly weighted toward the more mundane—activists versus entrepreneurs, idealism versus pragmatism, agrarianism versus agribusiness. And finally the original paradigm of a crop with multitudinous uses as “food, fuel and fiber,” holding the potential to solve humanity’s ecological crisis, versus the hegemony of CBD.

Cannabis in Africa: will 2020 be the breakthrough year?

Posted on December 26th, 2019 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

AfricaMuch media hype anticipates an imminent cannabis boom in Africa, and foreign investment is indeed pouring into a few key countries on the continent. But some dreams have also come to naught—and a few initiatives have displayed some of the worst tendencies of corporate agribusiness in the developing world.

2019: the five biggest moments in cannabis politics

Planet Watch2019 saw advances for cannabis freedom on both the national and global stage—but also some near-misses, from New York state to Mexico, which have left activists frustrated if no less determined. As advocates prepare to carry the fight into 2020, here's a review of what was achieved—or almost achieved—over the past 12 months.

Bernie's legalization plan bars Big Tobacco —but is that the whole problem?

Posted on October 24th, 2019 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , .

BernieBernie Sanders has released his plan for cannabis legalization, which features provisions to keep Big Tobacco from colonizing the new industry. But other exponents of corporate power are already getting a jump on the cannabis sector, and could just as effectively squeeze out independent operators.

The cannabis patent dilemma

Shadow WatchAs the cannabis industry is embraced by corporate power and finance capital, the patenting of strains, products and applications is an increasing concern. But the international patchwork of legality makes for a confusing environment. Illegality has served as a paradoxical break on privatizing of varieties. Growers and advocates are devising means to protect the genetic commons in the new cannabis order.

FDA promotes CBD liver damage scare; advocates skeptical

Posted on July 16th, 2019 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , , .

CBDWith industry waiting on the FDA to issue regs for CBD products, the agency instead released a statement explaining why it has not yet done so—including fears that the trendy cannabinoid may cause liver damage. But advocates charge that the claim is based on faulty research.

Albania, Europe's capital of illicit cannabis, under US pressure to eradicate

Posted on April 23rd, 2019 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , , , , .

AlbaniaAlbania is pledging another one of its endless and fruitless cannabis eradication campaigns, which never succeed in bumping the country from its spot as Europe's biggest illicit producer. The US is pressing the small Balkan nation for the campaign—and kicking in military aid.

Skunk-psychosis link claimed: more reefer madness?

Posted on March 21st, 2019 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , .

Reefer MadnessYet again, a scientific study linking cannabis use to psychiatric maladies gets widespread and sensationalistic media play. And once again, the assumptions behind the study are questionable, and the findings are further distorted by irresponsible reportage.

Does daily cannabis use, especially of high-potency "skunk" strains, lead to an increased risk of developing psychosis? Based on recent media coverage, you can be forgiven for thinking so. But you should really take a closer look before you believe the hype.

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