Sunday, December 21, 2003


Considering it's holiday week, there's a considerable amount of noteworthy developments in the stories we've been following these days.

First up is an update on Ed 'NJ Weedman' Forchion's Liberty Bell smokeout, (or would that be smoke-in?). The original event was snowed out but this column reports that Ed and Patrick Duff were calling the troops in yesterday. I haven't seen any press on the rally yet but the article is worth reading for the bio on Patrick. He's new to me but he's apparently an old political activist.

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SSDP is hosting a conference in New Hampshire that promises to Rock the Granite State during the upcoming presidential primary season in January. This election is critical to our future as a civilized society and this is a priceless opportunity to make a difference for drug policy reform in the 04 race.

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For those of you interested in case law, Randy Barnett, who argued the case of Raich v. Aschroft before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals posted an excellent essay on this landmark opinion.

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Richard A. Stimson of High Point, NC weighed in on the Newsroom-1 discussion list with these comments regarding the prisons-for-profit study.

I count it as good news that private prisons are facing financial trouble. It is not something to be proud of, that the U.S. is at or near the top in the percentage of population in prison. The authorities have largely given up on rehabilitation, and subsidized prison products are competing unfairly with products of free labor.

How long will it take the Supreme Court to acknowledge that privatization of prisons violates the Constitutional prohibition of involuntary servitude (slave labor)?

I thought that was well said and although I haven't really checked it out myself yet, his website looks interesting.

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And thanks to all of you who took the time to sign Mama Coca's petition to halt the inhumane fumigation campaign in Colombia. The count is up to 1144 from the original 254 we reported here only a few days ago. Please keep those signatures coming.


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