March 26, 2017

HEMP FOR AMERICA 2: The Farm Bill Died, But Hemp May Live On – Americans Speak Out!

Hemp has been used for it’s fibers and medicinal purposes for over 12,000 years, including in early America till the 1920’s.
And now Congress says we ‘might’ study it? Please!

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The House just got a little bit more hemp-friendly. (Creative Commons Attribution License)

The House is still shell-shocked from the unexpected failure of the Farm Bill last week–the kind of legislation that usually passes smoothly, but in our era of dysfunction, fell victim to a poison pill. As Brad notes, the options going forward include starting over entirely, or even going back to rules written in 1949.

There are a lot of big reasons to be troubled about this. But at least one thing happened during the writing of the final bill that should be cause for celebration: The House actually accepted an amendment allowing research on industrial hemp.

Industrial hemp, defined as a particular strain of cannabis with very low levels of THC, is produced in some 30 countries for use in a wide variety of fiber and textile products. But even though nine states have legalized its cultivation, U.S. law still treats it the same as marijuana, which means the Drug Enforcement Administration could throw you in jail for growing it. So the United States has been importing more and more hemp over the years from places like China and Canada–about $11.5 million worth in 2011, according to a March report, with a “highly dedicated and growing demand base.”

That didn’t used to be the case. The federal government encouraged the cultivation of hemp fiber during World War II, and it only fell out of favor as anti-drug sentiment rose, before being effectively banned in 1970. Now, it’s even illegal to grow the plant for research purposes without explicit permission from the DEA–which is where Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) came in.

Research is important. Without partnering with academic agronomists, it’s hard for farmers to know exactly how to grow an entirely new crop in a given region, and what kinds of yields they can expect. Earlier this year, Colorado State University was considering starting a research program on industrial hemp, but feared losing federal funding because of it. Polis tried to assure the school’s Board of Governors that everything would be okay, and encouraged them to seek a waiver from the DEA, which had granted one to the University of Hawaii back in 1999 (and three more since). But the Board wanted some certainty, so Polis introduced an amendment to the farm bill that would legalize cultivation in colleges and universities for research purposes.

Miraculously, despite last-minute lobbying against it from the DEA, the amendment passed by a vote of 225-200. In light of repeated failures of bills that would legalize industrial hemp production more broadly–one fizzled as an amendment to the Senate farm bill, and a House proposal has been moldering in a subcommittee since April–that’s the most significant sign of progress on the federal level that hemp advocates have ever seen.

It might have a second life sooner than the rest of the House Farm Bill. Polis wants to take that sign of goodwill and tack it on to “any other bill that is germane,” such as Agriculture appropriations, or on its own as a standalone bill. “When you have a Congressional majority on any issue, there are a variety of ways you can move forward,” Polis says.

After that’s taken care of–along with active support from the likes of Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.)–a law respecting states’ desires to allow hemp production within their own borders looks a little less outlandish.

[ SOURCE: washingtonpost.com ]

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COMMENTS:

What about the research that the University of Mississippi has been doing http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/23/health/23conv.ht… taxpayer dollars…

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Just a little research shows that William Randolph Hearst lobbied Congress to make cannabis illegal because it was used for paper (high quality a low cost, environmentally superior) and he wanted to increase the demand for wood pulp because he owned timber. He required his newspapers to call it marijuana (which looked more foreign than the Mexican slang term for smoked substances, marihuana and made it easier to demonize Mexicans in the propaganda). Congress worked on the bill in secret for a couple years before the AMA had a clue that there was a move to make illegal a substance that had been prescribed for millennia. A 2010 Lancet report shows alcohol and tobacco are much more harmful (both to the user and society) than cannabis. Our paper money has always been made from it, as it’s much more durable. During WWII our government taught farmers how to grow it because our foreign sources of hemp were not available. http://relegalize.info/library/hemp-for-victory.sh…

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Save billions and collect a lot of tax money by legalizing the herb across country
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“You can’t smoke rope, not even in Reefer Madness.”

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As they rightfully should have. Hate for the poor, greed, and selfishness seem to be growing American mental illnesses.
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“The farm bill failed because Democràts refused to accept cuts to the program’s categorical eligibility which allows trust fund babies receive food stamps while hiding their assets.”

I dunno, but it seems like good enough reason to abolish the USDA to me.

I mean, seriously, if that’s the kind of thing you’re arguing over, the pooch is already so screwed that it will never walk again.

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I’m sorry, but it seems like getting rid of the agency responsible for food safety inspections just because someone somewhere might be taking advantage of SNAP seems to be a gross overreaction.

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Ah, yes, because those farmers, processors, and restaurateurs do so love to poison their customers. It’s the tried and true way to build a business.

The USDA and the FDA are as corrupt and incompetent as, say, the IRS or the U.S. Department of State, and to believe that they are protecting the food supply is ludicrous.

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“U.S. law still treats [hemp] the same as marijuana”

The worst thing is, it’s typical of the entire behemoth. In its triteness, it tells you everything you need to know about the disgrace that is our festering government.

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Except it was the American public which demanded it be outlawed. The people here seem to have a fear of everything.

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“Except it was the American public which demanded it be outlawed.”

Fatuous, on its face. And no argument against the idiocy of it, irrespective.

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It was in 1937 marijuana was made illegal based on accusations by Anslinger, etc. that it caused white women to listen to jazz and date black men, etc. Not sure laws based on old racist premises need to be pushed as American public opinion today unless someone’s still that racist.

Thoeni has it right. “Reefer madness” got our parents (and their parents) terrified of weed so the begged the government to do something. Now they are afraid of the Government. Not fatuous at all (If it were you might have made some effort to prove it.)

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–*”Reefer madness” got our parents (and their parents) terrified of weed*–

Nonsense. Virtually no one saw the movie between the time it was made in 1936 until it was rediscovered for the joke it was in the 70s. And anyone who was influenced by that nonsense probably had a number of mental defects.

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Not to mention the health benefits of hemp seeds and hemp oil which contain all 20 amino acids our bodies use to produce protein. In addition, hemp seeds and oil are one of the few vegetable sources of omega 3 fatty acids which are crucial in maintaining proper Ph levels in the body. Hemp may also be an important source of bio fuels in the future.

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ever had hemp probiotics…………?

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Plus the fact is the strain that’s called marijuana has extensive health benefits for many, and some people even would be dead if they didn’t take it.

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What fools we have running this country now…in WW2 we ran our military trucks on hemp seed oil…hemp produces 10 tons of fiber on one acre of marginal land that could be burnt in coal fired power plants with minimal environmental impact…or used as fiber board or insulation…….BUT…the lumber industry lobbied against it as the fiber was being made into plywood…cutting into the lumber industries profits…hemp oil was already perfected…now we spend billions on green algae research…and billions more at 16 dollars a gallon for green algae fuel for our military at obozos demand…or executive order# 9,543,879 ….
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Hemp. Oil was already proven in ww2….

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RELATED:

Billion Dollar Crop: The history and advantages of hemp as an industrial fiber

This surprising video explains the environmental interest in the non-drug variety of hemp as a versatile industrial fiber, and documents the history of its prohibition.

Backed by years of worldwide research, BILLION DOLLAR CROP exposes the political and industrial manipulations, which outlawed one of the most valued plants in history.

Hemp once provided the paper on which US banknotes were printed, the cloth for the original Levi jeans, as well as the sails and rigging of ships. During World War II it was of such strategic importance that the US Government encouraged farmers to convert to hemp cultivation.

BILLION DOLLAR CROP shows how the recently developed, non-drug variety of hemp is being researched and cultivated internationally because of the plant’s versatile qualities and environmental friendliness. This program takes the audience on a world tour from Australia to the United Kingdom, and from The Netherlands to France and the US. It illustrates how hemp is being cultivated as an industrial fiber for use as an alternative to wood for paper production, to cotton for clothes, and to plywood for construction. We all benefit, especially our forests and topsoil.

Directed by Barbara Ann Chobocky
Produced with Michael Cordell and Jeffrey Bruer

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BONUS:

Reefer Madness (1936) – Colorized and Restored Version

The propaganda, turned, cult-movie about Marijuanausage. Notice the colorful postmillenium editing. Also great acting and cutting. A great film about pre-first world war propaganda in America

Reefer Madness is an exploitation film portraying the tragic events that ensue when high school students are lured by pushers to try “marihuana”: a hit and run accident, manslaughter, suicide, attempted rape, and madness.

It was originally financed by a church group and made under the title Tell Your Children. The film was intended to be shown to parents as a morality tale attempting to teach them about the dangers of cannabis use. Soon after being shot, however, the film was purchased by producer Dwain Esper, who re-cut the film for distribution on the exploitation film circuit.

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This is a Great article/post on the subject by Santa Cruz: Legalize Hemp: The Case for Reviving America’s First Crop

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