Jan 082014

The ink isn’t dry on the Fresno County cannabis ban that was passed Tuesday, so it’s a little early to claim 20/20 hindsight about what it all means. It doesn’t take effect until Feb. 6, and the Fresno County Planning Commission still has a cameo role to play before the curtain falls. (Anyone have a rubber stamp handy?) Even so, some common themes that can be observed in the run-up to the ban, and in [read more …]

Mar 092012

As the curtain lowers on quasi-legal dispensary operations in Fresno County, medical cannabis patients may be forgiven for feeling angry, sad and bitter. There are hurt feelings and a renewed distrust of the same government we expect to protect our rights. “Only in Fresno…” some may mutter, but that’s not the case. The dispensary melodrama is playing out in hundreds of cities and dozens of counties statewide, with the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices taking the lead [read more …]

Dec 272011

‘Twas 10 nights before Christmas when the Fresno Police Department put an outdoor marijuana-growing ban on the City Council’s agenda. It was, department officials said, a matter of some urgency. Urgent enough, in fact, to bypass the normal planning process. Upon further review (thank goodness for video), the city railroaded its cultivation ban through at the most opportune time, hoping to gain the legal upper hand while Prop. 215 patients weren’t watching. The strategy succeeded [read more …]

Mar 092011

George Mull opposed Proposition 19. Steve DeAngelo campaigned for it. Which made it all the more interesting at the recent CalNORML conference in Berkeley, where both said that medical cannabis distribution in California is — and I’m paraphrasing here — a total fucking mess. Mull is a Sacramento attorney who represents several NorCal collectives, and their struggles in assorted cities and counties have convinced him that statewide regulation is necessary. To that end, he co-founded [read more …]

Bud’s Blog: Finding the ‘sweet spot’ for pot ain’t easy

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Mar 072011

The Drug Policy Alliance gets top billing today in our belated video coverage of CalNORML’s marijuana reform conference in Berkeley. Ethan Nadelmann, DPA’s founder and executive director, and California director Stephen Gutwillig both possess a keen understanding of the political process, and their thoughts on legalization in 2012 deserve special attention. First and foremost is understanding that political compromises will be necessary to craft a winning initiative. Politics is a contact sport, after all, and [read more …]

Bud’s Blog: Two must-see videos for Tuesday

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Mar 012011

Today’s videos arrive from the better-late-than-never department, considering a month has passed since the CalNORML conference in Berkeley. But context is important, as is video editing, so taking my time isn’t a bad thing. We begin with a new and slightly improved video of Oakland Vice Mayor Desley Brooks, who has taken the lead on rewriting the city’s proposed regulations for large-scale cultivation. Brooks credited Oakland City Council President Larry Reid and Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan [read more …]