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What to Expect in a Legal Marijuana Market in Massachusetts

By Bob Salsberg The long wait for recreational marijuana sales to begin in Massachusetts is almost over with the first commercial cannabis shops set to open on Nov. 20, 2018. It can hardly be termed a robust launch with only two stores opening initially, in Leicester and Northampton. But they can boast of being the first anywhere in the eastern United States as the commercial cannabis industry looks to expand its geographic base amid increasing public acceptance. Massachusetts voted to legalize recreational marijuana in 2016, but it’s taken more than…

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High Art: Marijuana Inspires Chicago Artist’s Vivid Triptych

By Mark Taylor Jeff Zimmermann eats only once daily — at bedtime — and frequently logs 12-hour workdays. That Spartan aesthetic is emblematic of the Chicago artist’s fierce work ethic. “I’m always sketching, painting, planning or organizing my next project,” said Zimmermann, 48, an internationally renowned painter and public muralist whose massive wall paintings inspire conversation throughout Chicago’s downtown and neighborhoods and whose works are sold worldwide. Jeff Zimmermann stands in front of the marijuana flower painting in his triptych, “Gold Meat Weed.” The artwork is available for $35,000, and…

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After Legalization, Michigan Prosecutors End Marijuana Cases

MUSKEGON, Mich. (AP) — A prosecutor’s office in western Michigan is dropping some pending marijuana cases after voters in the state approved recreational use of cannabis for adults 21 and older. A statement from the office of Muskegon County Prosecutor D.J. Hilson says he’ll also consider expunging any past marijuana convictions that otherwise would have complied with the new state law. It’s not immediately known how many cases would be affected by the decision. The prosecutor in Kent County, western Michigan’s largest county, earlier said he’d probably drop pending marijuana…

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Mormon Church May Face Lawsuit Over Anti-Marijuana Campaign

One week after Utah voters approved a medical marijuana ballot initiative, a lawyer representing patients and advocates has formally notified the Mormon church to preserve records ahead of a potential lawsuit concerning its alleged attempts to undermine the measure. It’s no secret that the church opposed the medical cannabis initiative Nov. 6, 2018, which ultimately passed by roughly 52 percent to 46 percent, with some ballots still left to be counted. Though the organization said it supports medical cannabis reform, it vehemently resisted Proposition 2 and implored church members to…

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Make Canna-Infused Turmeric Ginger-Spiced Nuts for Holidays

Your house will smell amazing when these cannabis-infused nuts and spices are in the oven, sending notes of delicious goodness through the air. This combination of nuts and spices combines the heart-healthy fats from the nuts and the wondrous health properties of the turmeric and ginger. Feel free to vary the spices to suit your taste, or try my Latin-spiced variation below. Make several batches for yourself or for gifts. They keep well when stored properly in an airtight container. Turmeric Ginger Spiced Nuts Laurie Wolf, a Portland, Oregon-based food…

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DEA Scolded For Lax Marijuana Eradication Program Monitoring

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) got a slap on the wrist from a federal watchdog agency over its management of a multi-million-dollar marijuana eradication program. In a report released on Nov. 14, 2018, the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office (GAO) said the DEA had failed to adequately collect documentation from state and local law enforcement partners that received funds through the federal program. And that lapse could prevent the agency from being able to accurately assess “program performance.” What’s more, the DEA “has not clearly documented all of its program goals…

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Adult-Use Sales in 2 Massachusetts Shops to Begin on Nov. 20

By Bob Salsberg, The Associated Press BOSTON (AP) — Two marijuana stores in Massachusetts were given the green light Nov. 16, 2018, to begin selling to recreational customers in week, making them the first commercial dispensaries in the eastern United States. Both stores — New England Treatment Access in Northampton and Cultivate Holdings in Leicester — said they would open the morning of Nov. 20, 2018, after the Cannabis Control Commission, Massachusetts’ marijuana regulatory agency, authorized them to begin operations in three calendar days. The announcement ends a long wait…

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How Cannabinoids Work: Part II – Paths Through the Body

Though medical cannabis research is expanding daily, for patients and their health-care professionals, it’s challenging to understand the interaction between many variables at play to determine dosages, the type of cannabis, and importantly, the delivery system. Even if you know exactly how much of an active ingredient such as THC you’re getting, how you take it into your body affects its effectiveness — just as acetaminophen will be more bioavailable if it’s injected directly (96 percent) into the bloodstream rather than given by mouth (67 percent). Cannabinoids can be smoked,…

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Concentrate Review: Savor the Power of Critical Concentrates’ Private Reserve OG

Critical Concentrates’ Private Reserve OG is a muscular extract with relaxing effects. Despite its power, there’s a sublime gracefulness to its earthy savor. In addition to its succulent, melt-in-your-mouth flavor, this budder-like extract integrates a complex array of compounds for our therapeutic benefit. Critical Concentrates is based in California and was anointed the winner at the 2017 Southern California High Times Cannabis Cup for best sativa concentrate. Critical Concentrates’ accompanying Instagram post reads:  “The real wins are the stories that are never told.” View this post on Instagram #tangietuesday 🏆…

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Blunt Truths, Chapter 5 – Harry Anslinger, Part II: Marijuana on the Radar

The story so far: Racism lies at the heart of all marijuana prohibition. The man most responsible for making marijuana illegal, former prohibition cop Harry Anslinger, assumed office as America’s first commissioner of narcotics in 1930. At the time, he oversaw a patchwork of state-by-state regulations, a small staff, a minimal budget and equally minimal mandate. Anslinger’s assigned mission, as he began, was interdiction of opium and cocaine smuggling. Marijuana regulation played no part in it. But then — something changed. The first crisis in Harry Anslinger’s tenure as first-ever…

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