Archive for Integrity Check

Corporate Control vs Compassionate Use

By John Novak
Written July 19, 2015

It has been incorrectly argued by large corporate interests that no more than 150 or so varieties of the cannabis plant handled by one or two corporations will be enough for every health condition.

This argument is inaccurate as it clearly lacks the most basic horticultural knowledge of maintaining an expanding, dynamic gene pool.

Access to stabilized varieties, especially heirloom and landrace, provides a large gene pool for horticulturists worldwide.

One real world sad example outside of cannabis is the Cavendish banana. Lack of genetic diversity has placed this kitchen favorite in a precarious position, and the danger posed to its continued existence by disease is well documented.

Patients rely on a large variety of varieties being made available because of the unique properties of each plant’s phytocannabinoids & terpene content.

Not only is each variety different, but each plant is unique.

Over time, the desirable genetic qualities break down and access to a large gene pool is mandatory for the ongoing science of finding variety to condition match for the best possible relief or potential cure.

While stabilized varieties offer the best for medical purposes, the cloning of female plants off a stabilized mother will not stop genetic degradation over time.

New seeds and people to breed them will always be needed to perpetuate the existence of stabilized standards and new varieties.

Even the “small guy” in his own basement, garage or backyard horticulturist makes a contribution to the continued existence of the species.

That is why in the present age we have all the wonderful varieties of flowers, vegetables, fruits, trees and shrubs available for use today.

That is what will be needed alongside “mom & pop” businesses and even the bigger corporations.

More so than most plant consumer groups, cannabis patients need control over who grows their plants and how they do it.

This is critical for those who can’t grow it themselves due to financial, health or residential restrictions.

Those who want more direct control over the varieties and the types of fertilizers and pest control methods need home horticulture, designated providers and the ability to participate in non-commercial, non-regulated collective horticulture with other patients, family and friends.

Having direct interaction and commerce with commercial horticulturists is also helpful in acquiring seeds, plants and low cost, high quality products when no other option is available.

One of the biggest arguments patients and medical cannabis advocates have used in the past to keep home horticulture within local laws is the cost of production.

Patients can grow the plants together or by themselves for less money than what the commercial industry is charging.

This argument is starting to be defeated is some areas, like Canada, that are considering having insurance companies pay the costs so it’s even free or next to nothing and still shut down home horticulture.

We are now left with having to defend ourselves over why we need to save the compassionate use model.

And that is maintaining and expanding the variety of choices to match the personal conditions that current world-wide market makes available.

It is so important to preserve because big corporations can never match that kind of need for everyone.

They’ll be able to work alongside and even take advantage, but never completely monopolize.

It’s just too personalized.

The more the science on the endocannabinoid system and the entourage effect of phytocannabinoids in whole plant therapy and medicine advances, the more it is realized how many conditions cannabis safely and effectively treats.

All adult use, especially the elderly, can be seen as a medical/therapeutic preventative, intended or not, in relation to US Patent #6630507, awarded to the Department of Health and Human Services, which states, “Cannabinoids have been found to have antioxidant properties, unrelated to NMDA receptor antagonism. This new found property makes cannabinoids useful in the treatment and prophylaxis of wide variety of oxidation associated diseases, such as ischemic, age-related, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. The cannabinoids are found to have particular application as neuroprotectants, for example in limiting neurological damage following ischemic insults, such as stroke and trauma, or in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and HIV dementia.

Even if a person believes they using cannabis for “recreational” purposes, the bottom line is that varieties have different effects on the user.

That is the point of compassionate use: more choice of effects means a greater chance for superior effective relief, cure or prevention of disease.

Using the same math probability of less choice of available varieties means less chance of superior effective relief. .

It is clear to those who look at the math with an unbiased view: a good match is possible at 15000+ choices where limiting that to 5, 6 or even 800 choices insures that some patients will not get superior effective relief, prevention or cure of their disease.

It is already happening in Washington State where medical shops that provide a vast variety in a near free market are being closed down in favor of the over-regulated I-502 “recreational” shops.

Patients are beginning to give anecdotal evidence that they can not find the same variety and find this out for themselves without knowing the math, they are not getting good enough relief.

The Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961, Articles 4 and 28 gives allowances for Industrial, Medical, Horticultural and Scientific uses of cannabis.

With this knowledge in hand, the term “illicit” defies common sense in relationship with the use of cannabis for adult use or a superior and effective relief, prevention or cure, especially when it has never been the direct cause of death in all of recorded history.

This is why the laws must change and the species itself protected from over-regulation and monopolization schemes.

In today’s world of on-demand consumerism, we must not so easily forget the decades, and in many cases thousands of years of history of selective breeding.

There would be no named varieties of flowers, trees, veggies, fruits and herbs that bless our society today if those that came before us had such apathy.

We can not give up on protecting and expanding the vast genetic heritage simply to line the pockets of a few who have no sense of integrity on this issue.

In his own words: WSLCB Officer and Whistleblower John Jung

NOTE FROM 420LEAKS: After hearing his testimony in front of state legislators in March, we decided to attend Officer Jung’s court hearing in his lawsuit against the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board (WSLCB) in June.

We wish to thank Officer Jung for having the courage to come forward and take his battle to the courts. Although he lost in Pierce County Superior Court, we hope he appeals the ruling as his evidence is overwhelming, to say the least.

We have started a new folder on the 420leaks database specific to his case. New files will be added as they become available. You can view those files here, including the transcript of the last court hearing.

Having said that, we wish the agency would be disolved or just go back to being a commercial regulatory agency and stop trying to become police officers.

We have watched the WSLCB beg the state legislators for full police powers after i502 passed in 2012. The legislators turned them down every time. Now they have a dubious win in court.

It changes the nature of the agency relationship to their licensees and the public in ways we did not vote for with our medical or adult use cannabis laws.

It is well beyond time to remove it from the controlled substances act completely.  And to take this out of the hands of this agency completely.

The story told by Officer Jung emphatically shows us the level of corruption on the inside, and it begins at the top levels of leadership.

They are an agency that has found itself on the receiving end of a cash windfall, thanks to cannabis regulation and enforcement. It is time for this state to reign them in, if not completely destroy them by absorbing their duties into the other regulatory, without the police state goon squads.

What happens if one of these officers who don’t have the proper training has a weapon accidently discharge, or worse, actually shoots someone?




In his own words: WSLCB Officer and Whistleblower John Jung


I’ve been a liquor enforcement officer (LEO) for the past 11 years with Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board (WSLCB).

However, in recent years, I have noticed what I consider to be unethical and unlawful acts against the public; from inconsistent application of rules to preferential treatment of licensees, but the most notable problem being LEOs without proper police training being passed off as if they are peace officers, contrary to the requirement of RCW 43.101.095.

After Citizen Review Panel investigation into WSLCB’s problematic enforcement activities, it was concluded that WSLCB needed to apply more consistent enforcement practices and meet the state law enforcement training standards by enrolling all new LEOs to the Basic Law Enforcement Academy (known as BLEA) at the Criminal Justice Training Commission.

This was a part of the accountability assessment from the investigation findings. WSLCB acknowledged that more consistent standard training will result in more responsible LEOs for the division. With funding approved, WSLCB initiated BLEA training for all new recruits.

Unfortunately for WSLCB, between 2002-2007, retention of LCB officers who had completed BLEA training had a critically high turnover rate during that period of 43 officers, nearly 50%.

In fact, nearly 80% of the candidates left the agency with full law enforcement credentials to go to other agencies for better working conditions and pay.

To evade this problem, WSLCB simply changed the training requirement to an abbreviated 440-hour version of BLEA or sent recruits to Idaho police academy, which limited LEOs ability to transfer as laterals to other agencies.

Essentially WSLCB created a sub-standard police training for recruits, thereby not meeting the requirement of being Washington Peace Officers (RCW 43.101.095) but yet calling them peace officers.

Soon after Washington state privatized liquor sales and legalized marijuana, the agency met with many challenges to this new role and responsibilities, according to an internal agency document.

Legislatively, the agency attempted year after year to expand LEOs authority including “grandfathering” existing LEOs to peace officer status in order to alleviate these legal challenges.

Unfortunately, it never gained enough support to expand and legalize LEOs as peace officers.

However, in late 2017, the agency, without legislative action, implemented policies not only identifying LEOs as peace officers but also encroached into general authority law enforcement activities.

These troubling actions have left me with doubts about the agency’s integrity, including misinformation in LEOs annual performance evaluation forms which indicate as if LEOs attended and completed BLEA training regardless of their previous training records.

Anyone in the public who gains access to these files will assume all LEOs are peace officers since the documents note completion of BLEA training.

This is nothing more than a deception.

Although many LEOs are aware of this troubling decision by the agency yet many remain silent in fear of retaliation.

I, too, could’ve remained silent about this action and allow this agency to continue to misuse its authority against the public.

However, my personal integrity is greater than the fear of retaliation and that’s why I’ve decided to speak out in order to hold this agency accountable and transparent because the public deserves more.

My claim against the state isn’t about me wanting more training, rather it is about an equal opportunity of training like other LEOs, but more importantly it is about following the law, RCW 43.101.095.

As an enforcement agency, LCB has the obligation to be held at higher standards when it comes to respecting and enforcing laws of this state.

-John Jung, WSLCB Enforcement Officer

View his testimony in front of the Washington State Legislature in March 2019 starting at about the 25 minute mark.

Police State Lives on in Washington State

The police state lives on with the blessings of the majority of the Supreme Court in Washington State.

View the full dissenting opinion in Worthington vs Westnet here

Conclusion

WestNET appears in court to initiate forfeiture proceedings but doesn’t want to be called into court by another. WestNET acts like a legal entity when it enters into agreements that it deems beneficial but doesn’t want to be treated as a legal entity otherwise. WestNET agrees to keep records but maintains that it has no records, and contends that it would be impossible for it to keep records. These contradictory positions—once hidden, but now in plain view—impair the integrity of our prior decision in Worthington I and all related proceedings.

I would grant Worthington’s motion to recall the mandate and take judicial
notice of the newly discovered, undisputedly authentic evidence.

I respectfully dissent.

Gordon McCloud, J.

Worthington v. WestNET, No. 90037-0 (Dissent to Order)

Officer Testifies on Toxic Culture, Corruption Within WSLCB

Can’t believe this didn’t make the news. On March 19, 2019, Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board (WSLCB) Officer Officer John Jung exposed corruption at a public hearing in front of the WA ST House Commerce and Gaming Committee, fears retaliation to the point of hiring an attorney to help him. Start watching from the 25 minute mark…
https://www.tvw.org/watch/?eventID=2019031223

Corporations and Industry Don’t Care About Real People

I find it more than a little disturbing that the cannabis industry has continued to ignore the rights of the people they are trying to market their products to.

While Wall Street is flush with new money and new ticker symbols appearing on American stock exchanges, and new states opening the doors to “legalization”, you would think that someone out there would think it might be a good idea to first make sure the customers you serve will not be subject to police abuse.

The fact that it hasn’t happened from the multinational corporations isn’t entirely surprising, however. In fact, the first big marijuana bill in the US Congress this year was not a bill to end prohibition, but to allow banks to take money from marijuana businesses.

However, in many states, even smaller “mom & pop” supported lobby organizations that have sprung up have not pushed for ending harassment, arrests and forfeitures against their potential customers.

For instance, Washington State passed the first medical cannabis legislation in 1979. Again in 1998, with adult use passing in 2012.

However, we still have no arrest and forfeiture protection for the majority of patients.

Adults are still harassed, imprisoned or getting their property seized for having more than an ounce or trying to grow their own.

Not a single bill has ever come out of the industry groups to fix this.

And that’s in a state that “legalized”.

Maybe those of you in the industry will take this more seriously now if you read it for yourself on NBC News, because you sure have been good at marginalizing, gaslighting and ridiculing your potential customers when we tell you this stuff.

Marijuana legalization must make War on Drugs’ victims whole before companies profit

For Amazon-owned Whole Foods to get the right to sell a single pot brownie, every non-violent marijuana-related conviction must be thrown out.

So yes, even Amazon’s John Mackey, CEO of Amazon subsidiary Whole Foods, sees the organic grocer pushing into cannabis.

But have they backed legislation to first end the Drug War abuse? Not to our knowledge. Considering Amazon is headquartered in our state, you’d think that might be a priority now that they have an eye on this market.

Customer satisfaction on this doesn’t end with the sale. It should begin with ending the Drug War on REAL PEOPLE FIRST.

STOP PUTTING THE CART BEFORE THE HORSE!

More stories of consumers getting harassed in the news lately:

Over 60 Party Guests Zip Tied and Arrested for an Ounce of Marijuana

“Outrage After Police Search Terminally Ill Cancer Patient’s Hospital Room For Marijuana”