Opening Statement



Sunday, 14 August 2016

Summer Daze Blog Notes!



Be here now: The endless dog daze of summer find me floating in my kayak out on Lake Mississaganon in Lanark County, south eastern Ontario. Up to a kilometer wide and seven kilometers long, running roughly west to east, with many small bays, islands and uninhabited Crown Lands stretching across the north shore, the spring fed waters remain perfectly refreshing and clean. I love to explore! It's plenty of good exercise, paddling with lots of dives at the many swim spots I find along my way. Often, I like to paddle to the far west end. Catching the stream, I like to drift down the length of the lake back to camp. The breeze, currents and little eddies like a lazy river, as I lay back, work on my tan. By gar -If I get any darker, I'm afraid I might get shot by police next time I go back to the city! 

SOME BLOG NOTES

Internet connectivity up here on the rocky Canadian Shield remains dicey at best. Sometimes I can check my twitter links on the beach, but not always. The nearest wifi cafe, the "North of 7" restaurant in the tiny burg of Plevna Ontario [Blink and miss!] is a 20 minute drive away! Our Toronto home is packed with summer visitors. So I am pretty busy sometimes when I return for supplies. Can't attend to my blogsite as often as I regularly do. 

You can still follow my Twitter account for this summer's alt prog news links. My account is


#david chiarelli 

Learn more about my alt prog Twitter service @ HERE!

NEW BLOGS

Meanwhile, as you will notice my blogsite is on summer hours. There are a few changes in place for now, as follows:

Teacher Free Speech Summer News + Views: I've changed the title to cover both July and August. As usual the new additions are highlighted in large typeset for your convenience in locating them among the growing number of links I add whenever I get back online. Check it out @ READ!

BTW: Also check out my Teacher Free Speech News y Views Guide -On Being Change Guide @ HERE!

Here's the lowdown on some of my new summer blogs: 

Oh Cannabis: Toward Legal Pot in Canada! According to NORML Canada, our new federal government "discussion Paper" on how to proceed towards full legalization in 2017 is a real stinker-ooni. Find out why @ Blog!

My August Toronto Med Rec Pot Report: Also read how the local confusion is playing out for the Toronto summer weed tourist season -the good, the bad and the ugly @ What's Up?!

Finally: Rob Ford Crack Video Released! Toronto Neo Conster and Donald Trump's Canuck bro Rob Ford's crack video finally sees the light of day! Years after our former mayor adamantly denied it even existed while in office. Now he's long dead and gone. Were we conned? You bet! See the video and revisit my "Cracked" links, covering the Ford story back a few years. Consider for yourself how we ended up with our perhaps even more subtly terrifying current Mayor John Tory @ Cracked!

Teacher Summer Holiday: Make No Excuses! Take No BS! Need I say more? Read @ HERE!

MORE BLOG LINKS

Have you checked out my extensive Teacher Free Speech News Blog Archive 2011-16 on the top left of your screen? There are 693 blogs with links to over 3750 Reader Comments below each, for your consideration @ THERE!

Guest Blogs are always welcome, via my email address


davechiarelli@gmail 

More info on writing a guest blog is @ HERE!

COMMENTS:

Saturday, 13 August 2016

Oh Cannabis! Towards Legal Pot in Canada!

Stay tuned for more links! 



The Trudeau government has finally released it's long awaited "discussion paper" on the legalization of marijuana in Canada. You can now read and study "Toward Legalization" now Doc

One would think this would be a good news story! Regretfully, as NORML Canada's [National Organization for The Reform of Marijuana Laws] points out, there is little cause for celebration! The perspectives we are presented with to frame the legalization discussion, with a Spring 2017 target date for implementation, are very mean spirited, and punitive! 

"Toward Legalization" blurs the lines on the proposed legal age for buying pot, to propose limiting the sale of pot to those of us age 25 or older! How so? It passes off the "causal link" of marijuana's effects as an "associative" one, to make a quite less than scientific case for limiting access. That could prove quite problematic, and even a violation of the charter rights for our younger Canadian medical and recreational marijuana users



Sadly, the discussion paper also presents the government's case in a very big biz, corporate, monopolistic light! It seems to confirm that Canada's long persecuted marijuana advocates and indie grass root users, growers, and indie ganjapreneurs will now be largely shut out of the new system that's being discussed. Tragically, many of the proposals could prove quite unrealistic and unmanageable. Indeed, as NORML Canada's very bleak critique advises us: 
On June 30, 2016 the federal government released a discussion paper on cannabis legalization entitled “Toward the Legalization, Regulation and Restriction of Access to Marijuana.” The paper tells us that the new regime will be punitive, monopolistic, and unmanageable. The paper is premised on various mean-spirited and wrong-headed assumptions about cannabis. Perhaps most offensive of all, the paper repeatedly stresses the “especially important” need to prevent the normalization of cannabis and thereby continue the almost one hundred years of stigma and prejudice against cannabis.
The paper is a dark message about the future of cannabis regulation.The paper is obsessed with the dangers of cannabis. Organized crime is looming around every corner. Those who do not comply with the new system must be stopped. Dispensaries are so obviously evil there is no need to explain why. Home growing will cause your house to explode. And of course, think of the children.
The paper favors mail delivery as a means of distribution as is required in the Marijuana for Medical Purposes Regulations (MMPR). There is not a person alive who would rather purchase cannabis by mail. This is an idea that must have been pushed by licensed producers as they have the infrastructure to do this. It is an astonishingly bad idea. All consumers will want to see and smell what they are buying and speak with the people from whom they are purchasing.
The paper considers storefronts as something that “may be required in order to provide an alternative to the current illegal sellers that exist in certain Canadian cities.” In other words, new dispensaries might have to be permitted if only to help extinguish the current dispensaries.
The paper indicates that home growing brings risks of mould, fire and home invasion. These myths were debunked in Allard v. Canada where Mr. Justice Phelan found that the risk of mould can be avoided by having a proper ventilation system, the risk of electrical hazards can be addressed by having a certified electrician take care of any electrical installations, and the risk of home invasion was speculative without a foundation. I can grow tomatoes in my home, but if I grow cannabis then my house explodes. The paper seems to favour the MMPR licensed producer model over home-growing.
The paper advises there are health risks associated with cannabis use during adolescence. The paper says there is good evidence that cannabis use in early adolescence can harm scholastic achievement. They use the word ‘associated’ because there is no causal link. Science has not established a causal link between cannabis use and poor outcomes for youth.
The paper should be upfront about its shortcomings, but instead it uses this weak science as justification for a potential minimum age of 25. There could be no more sure-fire plan for pushing young people towards the black market than a minimum age that is oblivious to the reality of cannabis use in Canada in 2016.
The paper seems to think that strengthened sanctions are necessary for those that act outside the boundaries of the new system. In other words, the previous government’s mandatory minimums are not enough. Our cannabis laws need to be made more draconian.
The paper suggests limits on THC levels, limits on how much may be possessed, limits on where cannabis may be consumed, limits on hours of operation, limits on advertising, limits on density of retailers, and limits – perhaps even a complete ban – on edibles.
Reasonable limits on advertising could be a practical means of guarding against big cannabis. There is nothing wrong with the government requiring reasonable regulation of packaging and production. The issue of age is a complex one in which despite an absence of peer reviewed science, a government might choose 18 or 19 as a minimum age because there is probably a consensus on this issue and that is how we have approached alcohol.
However, this document is hysterical. It signals the government’s intention to shut the cannabis community out of the cannabis industry. It suggests an unrealistic expectation of micro-managed control. It reveals the government’s sinister plan to fight the normalization of cannabis. The discussion paper’s mean, punitive, monopolistic, and unmanageable proposals will guarantee many years of conflict, litigation, legal uncertainty, and a thriving grey market.
– Paul Lewin, @PaulLewinLawyer

Read the above and more of NORML's notes on "Toward Legalization" many shortcomings @ NORML


To further add insult to injury, please note that after many decades of bummers, burns and rip offs under prohibition, Canadian weed aficionados and med pot patients are now only are handed some more really bad shit! Alas! You only have until until August 31 to respond using the links provided at the end of the discussion paper! Better get writing!

Some more advice? See if you qualify for a medical marijuana patient licence now! As NORML Canada warns, we could be facing many, many years of awful legal challenges, wrangling, bad laws, logic and other such nonsense! Indeed, it could well prove to be your "Gold Card" to avoid many of the awful problems that "Towards Legalization" shows us lie ahead! 



MORE LINKS:

Moved: My August Toronto Med Rec Pot Report is @ Here!

Legalized Marijuana in Canada by Spring 2017? What do we already know? Not know? An overview of the Trudeau governments approach to legalization prior to the discussion paper? More CBC ]
Very, Very Vague: See what the Canadian Department of Justice has to say about the legalization and regulation of marijuana on it's site @ GCA

Busted? Ontario's Wynne government has also already locked out our province's indie, grass root “free market” advocates, users and ganjapreneurs [i.e. growers, dealers, dispensaries], who have borne the brunt of the so called “War on Drugs”, from the legalization process! They seem determined to hand over the new growing, marketing and profit opportunities to the corporate big biz interests, and maybe even government monopolies such as the LCBO. This writer argues that Ontario shouldn’t be setting up such a rigid, corporate system for controlling the weed market @ Star


MORE WEED BLOGS:

My blog on the Wynne government's crackdown on pot in our province is explained @ On Bill 45!


Reefer Madness Canada: The Harper Era @ Bummerz!

A Visit to Bob Marley birthplace in Nine Miles Jamaica @ Hi! Hi! Hi!

More links to follow! Also, read my monthly Teacher Free Speech News y Views blogs! Lot's more progressive links and updates on developments in the legalization of weed in Canada can be found there! 


MORE WEED NEWS

The Canadian government announces it will allow licensed medical marijuana patients to grow their own weed or designate somebody to grow it for them @ Reuters

Med Pot Gold Card? The inside dope on the latest new rules for growing medicinal pot is Ottawa 



Ganja Grrrrls! Join NORML's Women's Alliance @ Here!

COMMENTS:


Friday, 12 August 2016

My August Toronto Pot Report!



Welcome to the mid August Toronto Pot Report -live from Canada's "Skyscraper Provincial Park"! My impromptu mid August stroll through the downtown Queen St West and Kensington Market scene reveals many dispensaries still opening and closing over and over again in an endless game of "Whack-A-Mole" with Toronto Police. 

Stock is limited to a respectable variety of buds and joints, often on sale, many strains selling for $8-12 Canadian [Cdn] a gram. Some limited hashish was also on supply, with Moroccan at $20 Cdn a gram.



CN Tower: Nope! No Drake on top!

Edibles seem to have disappeared from the local scene! Fortunately, I did my homework first! Big 31 licensed producer, Snoop Dogg's "Tweedhas got this market well covered, legally by mail, with new A+ lines of hemp oil -ZaiusArgyle and Bedrolite that are sure to please on both the THC or CBD count. As a bonafide licensed medical marijuana patient, the government tax on these prescription drugs remains highly problematic both in cost and in principle. For shame! 

An extra fee is required by Tweed for 24 hour courier delivery in the Toronto area. However, delivery remains free on tax free prescription Naboline synthetics and Sativex sprays from the local pharmacy, the former even covered by some drug plans. The latter buccal spray is very pricey for most tastes at about $750 Cdn for a 3 pack of 3 X 10 ml 90 hit vials, but clean and very convenient in a fix; 1 spray = mild, 2 = average, 3 =very high!]



A limited supply of dispensary medicated summer drink mix was still available on my walk. It could certainly prove popular with hot weather crowds in the years ahead, if not prohibited under upcoming legal legislation. Pixie Mix N'Go Mango [THC 80/ CBD 50 28g for a 500 ml bottle] would seem perfectly delightful for a summer city outing or better yet -a country promenade! $5 Cdn!

Above average street shwag remains plentiful and cheap. Prices quoted were within the $120-180 Cdn range an ounce. Nice buds, pleasant bouquet, and a high THC count! A little seedy at times! Worry not! Everybody seems to know somebody safe and kool. The Black Market definitely remains a recreational growth industry player as both the Canadian federal and Ontario provincial governments continue to fumble the legalization roll out ball! 



Dispensary staff seemed in good spirits despite the constant legal grind. Email notices to registered customers will keep one abreast of openings, closings and any other alternative arrangements. Though if you are a local, a simple walk by and friendly "hello" should suffice. No scary characters here! 

Vapour lounge and hotbox patio's are wide open for the summer crowds. Personally I find that scene a little too "urban goofy' for me. Much prefer the old/ new school ambiance and outdoor high at The Octagon, Land o' Lakes, as the Toronto weed club scene continues to evolve. The strum and drums remain a highlight. Deep in the woods. Invite only. Unless you bring your own instrument; bongo, clavas or even spoons will do, as long as you intend to join in and play .... Still, all seems to remain relatively well with the August Toronto pot scene, much better than in years past, police hassles with the dispensary owners notwithstanding.! 

In Summary: Both the indies and the Big 31 continue to hang on, alas, trying to make the best of an often messy, confusing and aggravating business scene during the peak Toronto tourism season. Locals continue to keep their heads up and spirits high despite the tiring hassles in the lead up to the legalization of recreational weed in Canada! Meanwhile, the scene here for both the casual toker or weed aficionado visiting town might seem strained. Still, look about and you will certainly still find lots about the Toronto pot scene that's very kool and trippy indeed! And an especially good deal for the US visitor too, considering our 75 cent dollar!



Backgrounders

On Bill 45 -the Wynne government's crackdown on pot in our province @ Here!

Reefer Madness Canada: The Harper Era Revisited @ Bummerz!

My June Toronto Pot Report and news links are @ Here!

More Canada and US weed News y Views are featured regularly @ There!

COMMENTS:

Thursday, 11 August 2016

Finally: Rob Ford Crack Video Released!



Rob + The Donald: Great Neo Conster Minds Think Alike ....?

Ex Toronto Mayor Rob Ford's Crack Video has finally been released to the media by the Canadian justice system! Fortuitously, suspected accomplice and aid of sorts Alexander "Sandro" Lisi's court case has suddenly been dismissed, clearing the way. Eh? There was just too much darn boondoggling to proceed?!? Nice white privilege if you can get it!!! 

However, the mid summer dead news timing must be optimum for Canada's Neo Cons! And of course, Rob's long dead and gone now, having provided the perfect cover for an even more insidious bait and switch. Indeed, Neo Lib Richie Rich John Tory now sits safely esconed in the Toronto Mayor's seat. He's moving full tilt forward the agenda much, much more effectively and thoroughly through "Crazy Town" than poor ol' Rob ever could!

Be that as it may, we now have the video that Rob denied even existed for so long, throwing our fair city into turmoil! And it's a whopper! Check out the language, the twisted logic and the other conservative views! Especially on current PM Justin Trudeau! 

Congratulations Torontonians! After all is said and done, now we get to see the booby prize, even if it is too late, to save us more grief! Check it out yourself Youtube


Rob on Justin? A bad, bad boy! 

This blog has long documented the havoc Mayor Rob Ford wracked on our fair city during his tumultuous term in office. Check out the links:

Part 1 Nov 2012  Part 2 @ Here! Part 3 @ There! Part 4 @ Then! Part 5 @ More! Part 6 @ Here! Part 7 @ There!

Current links continue to be posted in my Teacher Free Speech Summer News y Views blog @ More!

My A Night Out With Ford Nation Remembered is @ Here!



The Ford Toronto Legacy ...

COMMENTS:

Communist Girls ARE More Fun!

Communist Girls ARE More Fun!
See below ...

Youtube Bar: Afrika Bambaataa!

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Communist Girls Are More Fun #1

Communist Girls Are More Fun #1

Communist Grrrls are More Fun #2

Communist Grrrls are More Fun #2

Communist Grrrls Are More Fun #3

Communist Grrrls Are More Fun #3

Communist Girls Are More Fun #4

Communist Girls Are More Fun #4

Art at the Paris Louvre: What does it mean?!?

Art at the Paris Louvre: What does it mean?!?
A careful analytical study!

Help! I Have No Arms!

Help! I Have No Arms!
Please scratch my back.

I can't find my underwear!.

I can't find my underwear!.
Have you seen them!

Weee! I can fly!

Weee! I can fly!
Look! I can crawl thru walls!

I have a headache!

I have a headache!
And a broken nose.

I have a square hole in my bum!

I have a square hole in my bum!

Here try this, it's very good!

Here try this, it's very good!
No. You have a bird face.

I have an ugly baby!

I have an ugly baby!
No I'm not!

Let's save all our money + buy pants!

Let's save all our money + buy pants!
OK but I need a new hand too!

Oh no! I got something in my eye!

Oh no! I got something in my eye!

You don't look well.

You don't look well.
No. My head hurts +I have a sore chest.

Would you like a bun?

Would you like a bun?

Chichen-Itza: Lost Maya City of Ruins!

Chichen-Itza: Lost Maya City of Ruins!
The Temple of Kukulkan!

Gotta love it!

Gotta love it!
Truly amazing!

Under Reconstruction!

Under Reconstruction!

Temples + Snakes!

Temples + Snakes!

The Snake!

The Snake!
It runs the length of the ball field!