Opening Statement



Thursday, 18 April 2019

Your Reader Guide 2 Teacher Free Speech News y Views!


Under the influence! 

Above the ignorance! 

Welcome to the straight goods! 

Think of Teacher Free Speech as Oh Cannabis' alter ego. Both have a grass root focus on social justice. Civil Liberty. The counter culture. The good fight against rigged government. And corporate rule. Rooted in the here and now. That's my goal!

Teacher Free Speech News and Views has a wider political, social and economic focus. Hopefully providing more general and comprehensive insights into our life and times. 

Oh Cannabis covers much the same ground. With a much, more specific, activist thrust; the fight to legalize cannabis. An end the legal reefer madness of Prohibition 2.0. But the underlying issues are the same!

Be in the know! Read together, they're more holistic. More complete. Whole. Make more sense.

I know. This is getting pretty high falootin'! Soooooo ..... 




HERE'S WHAT YOU'LL FIND:

EDUCATION BEAT: I use to cover the teacher movement here on my site, in a lot more detail, as a union steward, before I retired. Still do somewhat. But as an older, everyday citizen. With wife, family and grandchildren. And nobody growing any younger. The focus here? On educating ourselves. And others in our care. The goal? To be more inclusive. Empowering. Caring. And to celebrate our diversity

OH CANADA: [Verses "Oh Cannabis" .... comprehend?!] You'll find Toronto, Ontario, and Canadian news links and commentary, in that order, on the pressing issues of the day ...


IN THE NEWS: Includes political, social and economic news links from south of our border. And around the world. From a Canadian POV. Something a little different perhaps, for many readers ...

KULTURE KULT INK: Think "Culture" with a capital K. Society. Arts and entertainment. Society. Links that are just for fun. Or that really don't fit in anywhere else ....

COMMENTS: Please feel free! Any and all constructive criticism and/or points of view are welcome! Use the link. 

Enjoy!

David C

LINKS

My Blog Site Acronym Guide is @ HERE!



COMMENTS

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

Come 2 Dankmasta P's Nugswap!


Psssst! Wanna swap buds in Toronto?!? Come to Dankmasta P's "Nugswap"! It's  from 5-8pm, on the third Saturday of each month, at the venerable downtown Vapor Central Lounge. [LINK!]

There's no cash involved, except for the $5 club entrance fee. Everyone's very friendly, laid back and discreet. Just local cannabis enthusiasts. And lots of home growers. Out to swap, trade or "Gift" each other, with the following:

-Flower
-Cuts + Clones
-Seeds
-Edibles + Extracts

Here's how it works:



Upon arrival, fill out a card. Include a nickname. List the Gifts you've brought. And the Gifts you're looking for. Post it on the bulletin board. 

Next, grab a name tag. Check out the other cards. Decide who you'd like to share with. Then swap wares. 

Of course, you can fire up the volcano's! The dab rigs! Vape away!

No cash means no hassles. Just gift what you got. Get gifts back.

Very gifty! Dankmasta P's Nugswap's are very potent and mind expanding too! Sample a whole whack of different cannabis strains! Try them in bud, edible and/ or in extract form. Learn more about growing your own weed. See what you like for yourself; the low cost/ no cost way. 

Collect a very kool bag of goodies! Maybe win a prize in the draw. 

Get stoned AF. Then safely ride the subway home!

Think alternatives: Ontario's uptight, overpriced, licensed, pot shops? 

Tell Doug Ford to go stick it, the Nugswap way! 

Much to my delight, this shesh, I scored:



Rick Simpson Oil -Very smooth. Clean! A lil' dab will do ya! For aches! Pains! Whatever ails! A classic, home made, medical cannabis high!

CBN Capsule's: A clear, natural extract that helps relax and put you to sleep.

Buds: A dank, indica Rude Boy Kush caught my fancy! Plus there was lotsa fun Grape and Purple Kush. Really, with so many homegrown strains, I always find something trez kool. I even scored a few grams of real Jamaican ganja. Very old school! Hard pressed into a brick! Irie!



Cuttings, Seeds, Clones: Great starter strains! Endless varieties! Take your pick! 

So plan to attend Dankmasta P's next Nugswap! Partake in the festivities! 

A splendid time is guaranteed for all! 



LINKS:

Twitter Updatesdavidchiarelli

The Nugswap Co-op ExplainedHERE!

Teachers In The WeedpatchHERE!

My Nugswap Bud ReviewTHERE!



COMMENTS:

Wednesday, 10 April 2019

Let's Rally 4 Education!

My AcrOnyM GuiDe IS @ hErE!

It's the April 6th Rally for EducationQueen's Park Toronto is packed! 170 buses line the curb outside the provincial legislature. While tens of thousands of protesters pack the front lawns! Teachers! Educators! Parents! And students!



Welcome to the first in a long series of huge protests! Think back to the Harris Years. The late 1990's. Once again, the Ontario teacher and educational worker unions are united in a Common Front.  AEFO, CUPE, ETFO, OECTA, and OSSTF are rallying together. The good fight is back on! The grand kick off is today!

Sadly, the Ford Conservative government has declared war on public education in our province. Thrown even more fuel on the fire by threatening the teachers not to stand in his way. Or else. 

It's official! A huge, Ford PC, school wrecking ball is coming Ontario's way -starting with $851 million in education cuts! A so called austerity measure. Really, a textbook case for creating a crisis in our schools. 

Watch out! We'll see class sizes soar. Support services cut. Special education programs slashed. Our school's left to crumble. As for teacher, and educational worker jobs? Gone! Gone! Gone!

Next will come private school vouchers. B-grade, US style charter schools. So Premier Doug Ford can pay off the high cost of his "For the People" election promises. Like cheap "buck a beer" swill. Penny savings at the gas pump. Tail gate parties at sporting events. New license plates. 



How about Ontario's students? In our publicly funded schools?

They get the leftovers?!? Pretty slim pickings!

Sigh! Alas! No more bread and circus shows!

Ford's rich buddies must be laughing! Ontario is "open for business" again! Sure! With lot's of big, fat tax cuts to line their greedy pockets. Paid for on the back's of our province's struggling students, teachers and once world class schools!  

Regretfully, I've been here to protest at Queen's Park many, many times before. Although I'm retired now, I can quite clearly recall the NDP social contract in 1993. The so called PC "Common Sense Revolution" in the late 90's. The province wide protest strike of fall 97. The "Great Tory Demise" of 2003. The fight against the OLP's Bill 115 and MOU's in 2012-13. With a rerun in 2015. 

Here we go again! Belly up stage front, I sadly watch and listen.  




Ontario Students Say No!

Quite fittingly, the fresh faced student organizers of #studentssayno, including Natalie Moore, Rayne Fisher-Quann, take the lead. Beginning the rally on a strong student first note! 

Various passionate Autism coalition and CSF speakers take their turn, in-between the speeches that follow. Very broad based. Committed to the good fight ahead!

ETFO's Sam Hammond speaks! A seasoned union fighter, Sam knows the battle drill! Also, in the wings; OECTA's outgoing General Secretary Marshall Jarvis. Methinks I even saw OSSTF past president Earl Manners back stage. All 3 -veterans of the struggle! 


The other, current presidents of Ontario's 3 teacher unions, of course, speak. AEFO's Remi Sabourin. OECTA's Liz Stuart. OSSTF's Harvey Bischof. However, the real barn burner of a resistance speech comes courtesy of Ontario CUPE labour President Fred Hahn, another warrior chief, especially during the Wynne years! 




CUPE Ontario's Fred Hahn Rocks The Rally!

Also from the labour front, representing our education support workers and administrative staff, is the CFL's Hassan Yussuff. Next up is OTF's Chris Buckley. The word is to get ready for an upcoming, province wide, General Strike in the days ahead! 

Queen's Park explodes with thunderous cries of "No ifs! No buts! No education cuts!". and "Hey ho! Hey ho! Doug Ford's gotta go!"

The fight against Doug Ford's education cuts is on! In no uncertain terms!

All in all, a very well organized rally! With meeting tents set up. Toilets. A kid's area. Plenty of marshals. Protest cheer leaders. And the prerequisite posters, leaflets, and signs. All ready on very, short notice. 

It augers well! Everything is up and running today. Looking good! 



We also heard from NDP Opposition leader Andrea Horwath. The NDP is the only political party onstage at Saturday's event. Hmmm. OK, but given half a chance? An NDP government has turned on teachers too!

Ontario's been down this political road before. As each Ontario party plays musical chairs. Regardless of what they say, once in office, what do they do? Cut. Cut. Cut. The rigged corporate dictate; always the order of the day. 

Of course, our education community always needs to listen, pressure and lobby the politicos like everybody else does. But otherwise? Beware .... very aware!

As for me? What more can I say? Now that my classroom days are long over?

Nowadays I'm a grandparent. Especially worried about JK/ FDK for my grand daughter and all the other little ones. We also have a nephew who is autistic. Requires the educational supports now being cut.

I taught English, History and Special Ed for many years. From my own experience, I know that large class sizes are a recipe for chaos and failure. Especially without proper staffing and other supports! They are key!



I was very involved as a teacher union activist and PAC advisor, at both the local and provincial level. Also sat on the executive of my local unit for many years. Let's be frank. Teacher union solidarity has often failed in the past, when push comes to shove. 

The FWTAO cut ranks to go it alone in 1997. OECTA in 2012. OSSTF in 2015. Who divided and conquered the province's teachers best? Rae? Harris? Or Wynne? Take your pick! Though I'd say Wynne ....

Compared to all three, Doug Ford is a complete buffoon. MOE Lisa Thompson? Totally inept. Unfit. A sad joke. His PC majority? Brainless, clapping seals!

I'm going to go out on a limb here. The current fight to save our education system is completely doable. That is, unless our teacher union's do themselves in first ....

For what it's worth, I'll be monitoring the teacher protests here on my site. Provide insights from time to time, as I see fit. Hopefully help you make some sense of whatever come's next. 


Read my Teacher Free Speech blogs if you like. Or skip them if you don't. I don't work for anyone anymore. Nor do I have any educational fights to pick, except with Doug Ford PC's!

My site advocates all sorts of activist causes. Hope you will follow on the teacher free speech education front too, regardless of your other interests. Enjoy. Maybe even learn something worthwhile that you didn't know before. And most importantly, join in! Help with the good fight!

As Ontario citizens, we need to rally for public education! We are a very diverse, forward looking province. Education is our great equalizer. Creating opportunities and social stability. Providing a knowledgeable, skilled workforce. That's what truly makes us "open for business", Mr. Ford! 

We can't stand idly by. Let Ford's Conservative wrecking ball destroy our hard fought for, publicly funded school system! Enough of his bullshit!

In solidarity!

David C



COMMENTS:

Wednesday, 27 March 2019

Teacher Free Speech Spring 2019 News y Views!

HEY hO! kEEP ChECKing BAcK! LaTeR AdDITIoNs WiLL bE AddED In LaRgE TYpe SeT! mY Acronym Guide IS @ hErE! ... LegaLIZation nEws noW Moved to "Oh Cannabis!" @ [] MuCh, mUch morE to coMe .....





EDUCATION BEAT

Not Right: Big, bad, bully boy, Premier Doug Ford warns Ontario's teachers that they better not protest his plans to increase class sizes! Or else! Ummm. So much for quality public education? The freedom of speech?! The right of assembly?!? Maybe Ford forgets the Great Tory Demise of 2003!?! What happened last time the PC's picked a fight with our teachers?!? Yup! the circus stage is set! Let the fireworks begin TStar

"Rally 4 Education" or "Cuts Hurt Kids": Ontario has a world class education system. Or rather we did, after the last round of Neo Conservative attacks during the Mike Harris Era. Well, here we go! Now Ford's PC's are out to cut, cut, cut again! 

Fortunately, the province's teachers, parents and students aren't wasting any time. Nor are AEFO, CUPE, ETFO, OECTA and OSSTF either. Our union movement is all ready help make the necessary arrangements. Organizing collectively across the province. To get the job done. 

Let's hope nobody backs down! Stab themselves and/or each other in the back. Not this time around! Ho boy! It's definitely going to take lots of good, strong, steadfast eyes, ears and voices to stay the course. Pull this off together, again. 

The big kick off rally, of sorts, is Saturday, April 6 at Queen's Park. Plan to attend! Our children are the future. Quality public education offers a real opportunity for everybody to get along and do well. It is the great equalizer needed in a very diverse province like ours. Bottom line? The cost of inaction is just too great! Let's not fail to make the grade! Facebook

Let's Rally 4 Education: Read my first hand account of the April 6 protest @ HERE!



Protest Now! Tens of thousands of teachers, education workers, parents, and students protest the Ford cuts to education outside the Queen's Park legislature in Toronto @  Varsity @ TStar @ CBC

Common Front: It's official! AEFO, CUPE, ETFO, OECTA, OSSTF jointly commit to working together to protect publicly education in our province. Same as during the Harris Years, when the Common Front's refrain was "We Won't Back Down". Will they or won't they, this time around?!? Let's see! The joint statement @ JSEO

Labour Front: Ontario's labour groups are also quickly mobilizing for the fight against the Ford government's public service cuts. An ongoing series of protests, like the Days of Action during the Harris years, is all ready in the works. Here's the OFL battle plan, coming out the gate. But what next? @ R+F

Students Say No: Ontario high school students are very busy organizing across the province. They're walking out of classes to protest Ford's cuts on April 4th! Student's first @ Narcity Follow Twitter

Here's Why: Student protester/ activist Rayne Fisher-Quann reads Ford the riot act @ TStar Ditto Frank HongCTV

Power of Purple: CUPE public service workers are encouraging everyone to wear purple on April 4th in solidarity with the students! Follow @ Twitter



Education Cuts: During March break, Ontario Premier Doug Ford tried to sneakily slip a rash of ruthless, education cut announcements by unnoticed. They included everything from slashing Autism support services, to increased class sizes. Some shady, new hiring practices too. Hey! How else can Ford now pay for his piss poor, dollar beer promise? The mere pennies we're saving on gas prices at the pump? Or reward his poor lackies? His rich friends? And so, the end result of his deceptive, election promises are coming home to roost! Cluck! Cluck! Cluck! Don't be fooled! Check out Ford's dim witted ... um ... "new vision for education" @ ETFO

MOE: Ministry of Education Lisa Thompson: Tragically, the minister's lame excuses for massive PC education cuts are a complete circus show, totally lacking in substance @ Macs She's definitely out to neo con us about how they're needed to fix an education system that isn't broken and balance the budget too. Boo hoo hoo @ GR 

Sad Fact Check: Our education empress Lisa Thompson has no clothes! Not so much as a shirt on her back! Not when it comes her bizarre praise for larger class sizes @ CBC

Student's First: An Ontario teacher succinctly cuts through Thompson's BS for us. She explains how first and foremost they'll badly hurt the students, especially the most neediest ones. But who cares? We the people do @ Huff



My Back Pages: This blog site has extensively covered the fight against education cuts in Ontario from 2011 through present. In particular, check my often quite controversial posts from 2012 through 2015. Those who forget their history are doomed to repeat it! You'll also still find all the original news and document links archived here! See top left of your screen! More @ Teacher Free Speech Archives!

OTPP: The Ontario Teacher Pension Plan concluded 2018 with a whopping 191.1 billion in net assets! The virtues of a defined pension plan are many, as was pointed out at length, during this year's April AGM. Also, we're safe! Seems that the Ford government can't chisel away at our teacher pension plan to balance his provincial budget either. Another highlight: The director's updated stakeholders on the OTPP's responsible investment strategy, in response to many of our ongoing, educator, ethical concerns @ OTPP @ OTPP

OH CANADA



Seal of Disapproval: Controversial Ontario Conservative Premier Doug Ford is putting on quite the embarrassing circus show at Queens Park! He continues to insist that the party faithful actually stand up to cheer, bark and clap whenever he and his ministers speak. How ridiculous! True, the opposition is in disarray. But as polling shows, the electorate still isn't being fooled by his stupid, clown antics @ City Yup! His "strong arm" antics are even putting North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un to shame @ Beav

Hole-y Cheese: A Useful Grass Root Activist Primer: Here's how you can quickly run the dirty lil' Ford rat outta your home town, next time he drops by to grandstand for the news cameras. Be ready! First; build a local communication's network. Next, get your protest signs ready. Then organize a car pool. It's real easy! Dougie and his rat pack like to pretend that he's the Big Cheese, but really he's just a scared little mouse. Here's how the locals unceremoniously kicked Ford out of Napanee! Sent him scurrying at the first sign of trouble. See how he runs @ R+F




Ontario's New Licence Plates?!?

Integrity Sans Rules: Ontario's Integrity Commission decides that no rules were broken when our Dougie picked buddy boy Ron Taverner as Ontario's new OPP police chief! Say what? Basically ... get this ... it's because there are no official rules in place to break! At least Ron fortunately has the good sense to withdraw his own name, keeping the OPP and his own public integrity intact @ CBC @ CP24



Because it's 2019: PM Justin Trudeau doubles down, unceremoniously kicking out former AG MP Jodie Wilson-Raybould and Treasury Board Prez MP Dr. Jane Philpott from his Neo-Liberal "cock-us"! So much for Justin the feminist! Our TRC man with nothing but respect for Canada's indigenous people! 

Why so much drama?!? There's no way these grrrrrl's are going to help with the cover-up. Sacrifice their own principles and integrity. Trudeau's SNC-Lavalin corporate pals must be royally pissed! And now his own scandal riddled ass is on the line too!

How far do Justin's Liberal values go? With a fall federal election around the corner? Out the party door! But it's a futile attempt at damage control. He's lost his mojo! 

SNC Lavalin -The Whole System is Guilty: The scandal so far, as part and parcel of our rigged Canadian political system @ FB 

More @ Global @ NP @ CTV @ Globe Plus here's a few First Nation perspectives on how Jodie, in particular, is being treated! Ouch! Hey Justin -wanna talk oil pipelines?!? @ Huff @ Huff

Bad Girl Jodie! Bad! Bad! [Not!] Here's what Ms. Wilson-Raybould says @ Macs @ Facebook  

Ottawa Musical Chairs: Throw enough mud at the wall. Something's gotta stick! Voila, the SNC-Lavalin affair! CPC Opposition Leader Andrew Scheer finally scores a direct hit! Kicks up a total shit storm! Justin Trudeau's Liberal juggernaut comes unhinged. And so our Corporate Globalist Neo Lib/ Neo Cons are once again poised to play musical chairs, in this fall's upcoming federal election. 

The NDP? Prefer a watered down third party version instead? Okay, leader Jagmeet Singh finally has a seat in parliament. Can seriously join in the fray. But is it a case of too little too late? Sad. More @ CBC @ Mac

IN THE NEWS



It's Mueller Time: Sadly, Big Bob's long awaited report continues to divide Americans. AG William Barr has just released an .... ahem .... condensed version of the findings. [Text] There's isn't any proof beyond a reasonable doubt of Russian collusion. But possibly there's been obstruction of justice. Make sense?! Get this -All told, Trump's cronies were nailed with 215 criminal charges. 38 indictments or pleas. 5 prison sentences. Plus, the Russians were definitely involved in at least two attempts at election meddling. While plenty of other related Trumpster Inc. investigations remain ongoing. If Congress digs a little deeper, it might very well uncover a whole lot more dirt and corruption still. 

Meanwhile the bitter "Mr. Birther" himself continues to indignantly rail over Russia-gate. Fake news? Ha! Remember what he did to Obama? Looks good on him! Doesn't like it much either! But watch out! Now our big, bad Donald is really pissed. Angry. And emboldened. Like never before. This isn't over. Far from it. Vladimir must be laughing so hard, he'll piss pants. A very useful idiot indeed. Trez stupido. More @ NYT @ WP @ Fox @ Atlantic

Building Walls: Guess what?! The Trumpster doubles down. He's vetoing Congress to build his Mexico wall. And planning to totally eliminate what's left of  Obamacare for millions and millions of Americans. Hey! Where are your tax dollars needed most? To provide affordable health care for all? Or build a dim witted, medieval style wall? Whoa! Think about it: The world's richest, most powerful country needs to debate this?!? For shame! No mojo no more! @ MJ @ NPR

The Day After Mueller: Let the inquest begin! Did the Democrats get the deeper story wrong from the get go? Or did Trump's new bragging rights result from a whole lot of misguided, media overkill? Or ... or ... maybe something/ anything else is to blame?!? Say what? Naomi Klein and others weigh in. Check out the podcast and text @ Intercept Even more speculation @ Intercept

Lotsa Oligarchical Rigging 2.0: Throughout Ru$$iagate, the Democrat$ have been very bu$y too. They've been indulging in a lot of diabolical hanky panky on behalf of the U$ military-indu$trial complex. The goal? To edge the Trump$ter and GOP into more and more defence $pending. Perhaps even a new Cold War! Sigh! Alas! More @ ITT




Trump Laundromat: Shady, Trumpian, real estate deals? Dirty money laundering? An international Rooskie crime syndicate? They could very well help explain what the Donald was doing. OK. So, he didn't knowingly collude? What else does the Mueller report say? The devil might still be hidden in the details @ NR

Gun Bans: New Zealand wastes no time banning assault rifles within a week of the brutal massacre at a Whitechurch mosque, in which at least 49 Muslim worshippers are slaughtered while at prayer. Meanwhile back in the US of A? Despite one non stop mass shooting after another!? No such luck. Not with the NRA still calling the shots in Congress @ CBC

Brexit 2.0? UK PM Elizabeth May's Conservative party continues to flounder over plans to leave the EU. A second referendum could even be in the works. It's a terrible clash -should Britain stay or should they go? More @ BBC @ BBC



The Russians R Coming! The Russians R Coming: In a scene vaguely reminiscent of the lead up to the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, the Russians have sent military troops and supplies into Venezuela. They've warned the US not to even think of staging a coup, let alone invade the rogue, socialist state. Like in 62, the US is again evoking it's self proclaimed Manifest Destiny, ie: no foreign interference in the America's. But Trump isn't JFK. Far from it! So far he's ignoring the UN, which is desperately asking everybody to cool it. Not to play dangerous games with all the "aid". And deal with the concerns peacefully through the proper international channels. So what do we get? One beady US eye on the state controlled oil reserves. With lots and lots of Trump bullying and bluster. Sans any Kennedy brinkmanship whatsoever  As this sad, sad humanitarian nightmare drags on and on and on. Growing increasingly ugly. What next?!? @ Haar @ Ind

Imperialism 101: Here's why the US is back again interfering in Venezuela's election politics .... Ooops! Isn't that supposed to be a no no?!? Only in the US, you say? More @ DM

Neo Lib BS: Have no doubt, the US has an awful, throbbing hate on for Venezuela! Hugo Chavez created a "revolution within a revolution". By including the marginalized, he dared challenge the neo liberal status quo. In short, it's a vision for the developing world that simply can't be allowed! By hook or by crook, it must be made to fail, by whatever means necessary. Look beyond the media lies @ DV

KULTURE KULT INK




Tip: Learn 2 Learn 4 Yourself! 

5 Hour Rule: Yep! That's the bare minimum we should spend each week learning about ourselves and the world around us! It can include reading, reflecting and thinking. By reading. Or surfing online. At home. A library. In a museum. A gallery. Or even just through our studied observations in the school of life. What have you. 

Eh? No! There's no need to go to class to do it either. Not if you've graduated already. Basically, it's just a question of becoming life long learners. First and foremost, the learning should be of personal interest. And fun. As we follow our own particular muse, wherever it takes us. 

It's absolutely essential! Nowadays, like never before, knowledge is power. At work. At play. In our everyday lives. It's not just about earning $$$ either, as these articles would suggest. Think self development. Keeping sharp, alert and "in the know", so you are nobody's fool, instead. All this and more @ AL and @ E

It's Only Rock + Roll [But We Love It]: Quite arguably, the Rolling Stones taught us how to be young in the sixties and seventies. Now they're showing us how to grow old, without giving up. Alas! The band's summer US/ Canadian tour has been postponed for medical reasons. 75 year old Mick's headed for an operation! But he promises to be back on the road as soon as he can ... Hmmm. Who'd have ever guessed that the Kieffer might outlive him?!? More @ DB @ Gu @ NME

Doo Doo Doo Heartbreaker: Hmmm. Seems Mick is headed to New York for heart surgery; either a valve replacement or a splint. More @ WebMD



COMMENTS

Friday, 22 March 2019

Oh Cannabis Spring 2019 News y Views!

Inhale! Hold! Exhale! Smile! Then Read "Oh Cannabis News Y View" @ Directory! UpDAtEs AddED iN LaRgE TyPe! Live tweets @ davidchiarelli 




HEADLINES

Canada's Indigenous Six Nations declare weed sovereignty on treaty lands. What'll the Feds and provinces do?

US Legalization: Both Democrat and GOP politicians and lawmakers are getting onboard! But will they succeed in 2019?

Pot Race: Licensed Ontario dispensaries desperately race to open April 1st in Canada's largest market! Will they make the deadline? If not, what will the Ford government do?

Nowhere 2 Toke: Licensed lounges remain verboten in Ontario, despite legalization! Is there any hope in sight?

Pot Tax: Canadian Federal Budget includes a new medibles and topicals tax. Provides limited income tax relief for med pot users! How to fight back? 

Stock Market Reefer Madness: Canada's floundering legal cannabiz industry faces some huge challenges. The unlicensed market is totally kicking their butt! Why can't they compete?

Casual Causal: Cannabis is under renewed scrutiny! A lot of it very hostile and misleading. More reefer madness? Now? What gives? And what to do?

All This and Some Spring Weed Musings Below ....

420 CELEBRATIONS



420 2019: This April 420 is the first since Canada legalized weed. It's left us with Prohibition 2.0 and quite a legal mess. Should we treat our most venerated pot holiday as a day to protest? Or celebrate? Let's not forget our movement's activist roots! More @ Leafly

420 Vancouver: Cypress Hill are this year's headliner! However, the park board is out to quash Vancouver 420 once again, even though cannabis is now legal! Activist's, including organizer Dana Larsen list 10 reasons why it will continue anyway, as a protest event @ GStraight

420 Toronto: This year's main festivities will now be held in Woodbine Park along Queen St. East at Eastern Avenue and Coxwell, from noon until 6 pm. Sounds great! Plans call for DJ's, bands, sponsor and vender tables plus a "Free Farmers Market"! Stay tuned for more details @ Twitter and Facebook

Hotbox's 420 Block Party: There'll be live music, venders and free giveaways. Plus Hotbox's venerable outdoor, summer "Potio" re-opens! Come from 1-10 pm. Check out Toronto's landmark lounge and head shop at 204 Augusta Avenue in Kensington Market, downtown west. Don't forget to say "High!" to Abi Roach! And thank her for all her fine work at NORML.ca! More @ Twitter @ Facebook



420 Sudbury: The main event's Saturday April 20 at Mr. Green's Novelties, LaSalle Blvd. Sudbury. [Link] The party continues that evening 10 til 2pm at Coyote's. More details @ Facebook

420 Tickets: Lots and lots of trez kool 420 events happening across Toronto and throughout Southern Ontario this year! Including club dates, comedy fests, private parties etc. etc. etc. But they require tickets. Get yours now @ EB More Toronto events @ TS


Got something happening? 
Let me know! More links to come!!!

OH CANNABIS



Weed Sovereignty: Six Nations are fed up. The largest of Canada's indigenous peoples are now in effect declaring weed sovereignty on the treaty lands. The goal? To protect their "health and safety". And to prevent "external interference". All levels of Canadian government be damned! They've got their own regulations for cultivating, distributing, selling and using weed. Minimum age is set at 19. Plus 18% of sales goes towards community projects. A new cannabis control commission is being set up. And provincial sales licenses have no validity here! So what if anything will Ontario's "law and order" reefer madman Premier Doug Ford do now? Or Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who's facing a dicey federal election this fall? With indigenous issues all ready in the spotlight? Note that many of the Six Nation reserves are located next to our major urban centres. Ontario's government licensed dispensaries don't even begin to open until April 1st, with only 25 so far approved, for across the whole province. Ha! The heat is on @ HSpec @ CBC

April Fools: The first 25 pot shops are finally scheduled to open across Ontario, Canada's largest province population wise, come April 1st. That's almost 6 months after legalization. However, they aren't expected to even put a dent in our booming, unregulated cannabis market. Think high prices and a lack of licensed retail outlets. Duh. Its clearly a case of too little too late, for the foreseeable future. What to do?!? Hint: Grow your own or stick to Weedmaps! More @ CBC @ TStar

Sales Dept: Ontario's first 25 legal cannabis shops could be earning $500 million a year! Of course, as we know, that's nothing. It could be a lot more, if Ontario was a truly, free, open market sans Ford's lottery licensing BS @ MJB



The Price Point: Licensed government weed only accounts for 30% of total cross Canada sales. It's also 36% more expensive. That's if you can even find a legal dispensary or lounge, so you can toke. Duh @ CTV
Needless to say, high prices are pushing consumers back to the unlicensed market for cheap weed @ CBC

Alberta Bound: There are some problems but the province is Canada's weed capital! It's got the most pot shops. Sales seriously out perform the rest of the country, including Ontario and BC. Surprise! Unlike Neo Con Man Doug Ford, "socialist" NDP Premier Rachel Notley's has actually made sure the province is legally "open for business"! More @ Vice

Canuck Pot Budget: It's official! The 2019 Canadian federal budget includes a new excise duty tax for cannabis edibles and extracts, including oil and topicals. It takes effect May 1st for medical cannabis users. Later this year for everyone else, once it's legalized for recreational use. Expect to pay $0.01 cent tax per milligramme of THC, in the government's new tax by "THC content" scheme. Meanwhile, the $1 per gram tax on dried flower remains unchanged. Consumer spending on "legal cannabis" was only $1.2 billion, less than projected. However, our untaxed "black market" enjoyed a 400% increase in sales. Basically, government licensed weed just doesn't make the grade. Can't compete in supply, quality or price. But try telling Ottawa that, as they pile on more and more taxes, regulations and other restrictions @ BloomB 

Med Pot Tax Time: Cannabis remains the only Canadian prescription drug that includes an excise tax! A little medical patient tax relief is being offered through a 15% credit come income tax time. Still, no justice, not peace! The good fight continues @ Leafly 



Good Morning Judge: A Nova Scotia medical cannabis patient becomes the first of many planning a constitutional challenge to Canada's new impaired driving laws. Why? The roadside test measures the level of THC in your system. Not how impaired you are. If you have a cannabis prescription, the test becomes discriminatory -the THC will show up, even though you aren't stoned. Expect a lot more legal challenges in the daze ahead @ CTV

CFAM: Canadians For Fair Access 2 Medical Marijuana continue to actively lobby for and demand the removal of any and all taxes on medical cannabis. Join the fight @ CFAM

Worker Compensation Pot Claims: Injured workers from across Canada continue the important fight to have medical cannabis prescriptions for pain management covered as a benefit. The results remain mixed at best @ CBC

Ford's Ontario Pot Lottery: A third, winner strikes gold by throwing their lot in with Alberta's High Tide Inc., this time to open a legal Canna Cabana dispensary in Toronto, by the government's April 1st deadline. Surprise! The corporate big boys somehow come out on top again! So much for our many, long time, eager, knowledgable, homegrown, mom and pop operations who didn't win the draw. More below in "Green Marketing" and @ HTI

IN THE NEWS



US Legalization: US lawmakers from both the Democrats and the GOP are on a roll. This spring, there are 6 pieces of legislation before congress to end prohibition at the federal level. Will one of them pass? Here are the 6 different bills in play @ Leafly But don't hold your breath! Here's why they still might not pass this year @ Fool

Canadian Green Print eh? American busine$$e$ are increa$ingly nervou$ that Canadian legalization will freeze them out of the marketplace if they wait too long. Some even view the Canadian model as a "blueprint" for how it can be set up in the United States. Hmmm. Wanna buy a used one for corporate government monopoly? Then try ours! Sure, it's got some salient points. Actually, I'd say it's more of a "green print" too, but but but .... More @ SN



US Cannabiz Equity: The MCBA [Minority Cannabis Business Association] isn't taking any chances as legalization takes hold across the US. They're providing US lawmakers and regulators with a policy model. It seeks to maximize the ability of disadvantaged communities of colour to rightfully benefit in equal measure as manager, owners, employees and investors in the new, legal cannabiz sector. Whether anybody is listening is something else. But it's important work that needs to be done from the get-go. Bravo! Read @ NCV 

The Times They Are A Changing: Here's how the cannabis industry in the US has changed over the last 10 years @ MM

GREEN MARKETING



Cannabis Market Crash: The Canadian Cannabis Index lost half it's value in 2018. There's still dark storm clouds on the horizon. What could go wrong in the year ahead? @ MT

Pot Wars: In all fairness, Canada's seemingly hapless LP's [Licensed Producers] are often being sent in battle with both hands tied behind their back. Until they can compete with supply, quality and pricing, the unregulated, underground cannabiz sector will continue to kick their ass @ MT

Stock Ticker: Cannabis stock promoters continue to prey on investors and operators who are not really "in the know". Beware @ NCV

Hunny Pot: Come April 1st, 6 months after legalization, and Toronto finally has one ... count em' -one .... legal cannabis shop! It's a pricey Apple Store type set up, with personal shopping assistants and all the other fancy bells and whistles. The owner Hunny Gawri; a non toker, remains confident that the government can keep him in business with enough legal boo. But once the novelty wears off, can the Hunny Pot really even begin to compete with our all ready flourishing, much cheaper priced, unlicensed, underground market? The countless other experienced, heritage, dispensary owners, waiting patiently in the wings? Check Gawri's Hunny Pot out @  TL @ Vice @ BBM @ BBM Lotsa pix @ WL



It's blood money, Hunny!


Ganjika Rat: Desperate pot dealers, long left out of the government legalization model, are undercutting prices by selling to folks lined up for hours, outside Brampton's sole legal pot shop. The owner declares war. Calls for police arrests. Can't compete. The fight is on @ BG

Oh Man! Men still hold 93% of the cannabis boardroom seats in Canada. That's only up 2% from last year! Considering the leading role of women activists and entrepreneurs in Canada's underground legalization movement, that hardly seems equitable, nor fair @ MJB

LGBTQ MIA: The queer community's annual, global, purchasing power is projected at $5.4 trillion. That's lotsa big bucks! Yet they're mostly being ignored by cannabis marketers. And still finding themselves on the outside looking in, within the corporate cannabis workplace too! More @ Leaf

Canopy Growth Grows: They've hooked up with one of our lucky Ford Pot Lottery winners. Now HMV music's former flagship store on the downtown Yonge strip is reopening as a Tokyo Smoke cannabis dispensary. Whoda guessed? All those years ago? When we use to go shopping there for CD's, and DVD's? Then, had to step back out into the Toronto night, looking for a lil' boo to go with the movies and tunes .... @ TStar

A Cheap Beginner Health Fix: Here are the top CBD products you can legally buy for under $50! Some are even listed on Amazon and/or are available for shipping to Canada @ CSH

HIGHER LEARNING



A Mental Case: A recent UK/ Euro study suggests that cannabis puts us at risk of mental psychosis. That's always possible, if one is already so predisposed, of course. However, as NORML stresses, the research lacks any scientific proof of a direct causal relationship between cannabis and mental disorder. It's strictly based upon observational data. That's suspect at best. Other variables could also be responsible and at play. For example, did those tested also drink? Use any other drugs or intoxicants? Without proper, objective research, such alarming and unsubstantiated reefer madness claims are suspect and misleading at best @ NORML

Smoking Tobacco Vs Pot: No, relatively speaking, they aren't the same. Pot isn't harm free, but studies suggest it'll cause coughs not cancer. Rolling blunts with a tobacco wrapper might lead to smoking cigarettes too. More @ GH

Oil's Well? Vaping cannabis oil is pretty kool. I much prefer it indoors during our long cold Canadian winters. However, it might have some health risks. Now that cannabis is being legalized, proper testing and research can begin in earnest. New research is seeking alternatives to the possibly harmful substances including thinning liquids commonly used in making it @ Leafly




April is World Autism Awareness Month!

Autism -High Hopes: Can cannabis help children and adults with autism? The verdict's still out. However, studies suggest that it might reduce violent outbursts and improve other challenging behaviours and symptoms, for those on the spectrum. Now, that it's being declassified as a Schedule 1 drug in many places, more in-depth research can seriously begin. Israeli researchers for one, aren't wasting any time racing headlong into the study. There are high hopes that our lowly weed could prove be a healthy, natural alternative to the much, more harmful chemical drugs currently being prescribed. Here's a quick survey of the recent literature on autism and cannabis @ RS @ CP @ ToI

HIGH TIMES



Ontario Pot Place: Our local Hotbox Cafe is partnering up with the Toronto Craft Beer Fest. They're opening Canada's first legal "Potio", where you can toke weed. It's a test run of sorts, at Ontario Place from June 21 to 23rd. Two daze eh?  Well, it's a start. Otherwise, there are still no legal licensed facilities anywhere in Canada's most populated province @ BlogTO

Dankmasta P's Nugswap continues in Toronto on the 3rd Saturday of each month. It's an interesting alternative to the government's corporate weed agenda. Swap and grow your own @ HERE!

Toronto Toke Tours: Toking tours? Limos? VIP services? Yoga, massage, and cooking classes? All this and more! Say "High" to Toronto on your next "trip". Now, we are legal! Find lotsa trez kool Toronto pot tourism options @ TTT



High AF Sex: Hey Ladies! A new study shows that a toke before sex makes for a great orgasm! Yep! Up to 2.10% times better! Whoa!! So grab yer favourite bud ... or blossom! Double your pleasure! Double your fun! With the big "O" @ Vice



It's Only Rock + Roll [But We Need It!]: For the straight goods on the Rolling Stone's Mick n' Keif, read Oh Cannabis' alter ego -Teacher Free Speech Spring 2019 New y ViewsHere!

Spring Weed Break: Winter's over! There's a thaw in the air. Many tokers are starting  to kick back a bit. Want to relax, but still need a little energy to get us through to the summer holidaze. Which strains work best? Consider Chocolate Fondue, Ultra Sour, Go, Super Silver Haze. More @ Leafly



All A' Twitter: Please note -I often tweet lots and lots more news and stoner links for your information and entertainment. Follow me @ @davidchiarelli

COMMENTS

Communist Girls ARE More Fun!

Communist Girls ARE More Fun!
See below ...

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!