This is WeedWeek, because cannabis news matters. 

Like  it on Facebook follow it on Instagram  and Twitter and share it with the link . Subscribers’ names and contact info are confidential. You can also follow me on Twitter.

List  your conferences, festivals and parties for free on the site. 

Would you appreciate a WeedWeek regional supplement with more news from California and/or Canada? Sign up at the appropriate link.

If you’d like to advertise in or sponsor such a project contact Adrienne Nascimento at

I loved Five Came Back, a Netflix miniseries about great Hollywood directors whose propaganda films  supported the allied war effort during World War II.

Here's the news:


President Trump called Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte to praise Duterte’s war on drugs. “I just wanted to congratulate you because I am hearing of the unbelievable job on the drug problem,” Trump told Duterte, according to a transcript obtained by The Intercept.  Duterte has attracted international condemnation for the conflict's thousands of extrajudicial killings. 

Vermont Gov. Phil Scott (R) vetoed the REC bill that had passed the legislature. Scott sent it back with concerns about road safety and access for kids. A revised bill could pass during next month’s session. If so, Vermont would be the first state to legalize REC through the legislature. The Burlington Free Press explains.

On Twitter, anti-legalization activist Kevin Sabet claimed some of the credit for the veto.

U.S. House majority leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) apologized to pro-cannabis Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.) after a 2016 recording caught McCarthy saying he thinks Russian president Vladimir Putin pays Rohrabacher and then candidate Donald Trump. Rohrabacher denied accepting money from Putin.

Canada wants to maintain the “spirit” of its international treaty commitments, while legalizing REC, which violates the letter of those commitments. 

The L.A. Times looks at how states are moving to protect their cannabis industries in the event of a federal crackdown. The paper also learns that product testing in California is likely to be delayed by months.

Trump’s proposed budget included massive cuts to most discretionary programs, but not the drug czar’s office, despite earlier threats. Lawmakers worried that zero-ing out the office would exacerbate the opioid crisis.

Boston mayor and legalization opponent Marty Walsh (D), blasted the suburbs that have banned pot shops. "If they voted for it, they should have a pot shop in their neighborhood, they shouldn't have to drive to Boston for it," he said.

Cleveland is reconsidering its ban on MED grows.

Both houses of Oregon’s legislature have voted to strengthen MED tracking rules in a bid to keep U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions at bay.  

Miami New Times discovers that the Miami city attorney who compared MED to pedophilia has a history of sexual harassment.

After the state legislature couldn’t reach a deal, the Florida Health department released a framework for MED regulation. In other news, Gov. Rick Scott (R)  vetoed a much debated bill that would allow liquor sales at Wal-Mart and other big box stores.

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) vetoed industrial hemp growing. In addition, a state study contradicted Ducey’s assertion that legalizing REC last year would have drained state coffers.

It’s hard to be a MED activist in Utah.

Conservative veterans group The American Legion wants the Trump administration to reschedule cannabis to enable medical research.

Embattled Trump advisor Roger Stone will be a keynote speaker at a cannabis conference in New York. Stone tweeted: “I will reveal my plans to convince @realDonaldTrump to reaffirm his support for State’s Rights when it comes to marijuana on June 16.” (The conference declined to comment to WeedWeek on whether it was paying Stone. Stone did not respond to a Twitter message.)

An essay in the Wall Street Journal argues that the return of federalism -- states' rights -- on the left is good for America.

Under new president Emmanuel Macron, France is moving towards decriminalization.

Home growing MED is increasingly popular in Chile, a country considered one of the most conservative in South America. MED is also available in some Santiago pharmacies.

A leftist political party in Malta wants to legalize cannabis and decriminalize all drugs.


A Florida lawyer and a California real estate entrepreneur separately announced plans to each invest $100M in cannabis. The Miami Herald profiles John Morgan. I spoke with Paul Daneshrad for L.A. Weekly.  

At the other end of the economic spectrum, I wrote about L.A. budtenders, and what it’s like to have one of the newest jobs in the country.

Cannabis breathalyzer company Hound Labs raised $8.1M in a round led by blue chip venture capital firm Benchmark Capital, which is known for its investments in Uber, Dropbox, Snap and other big tech companies.

To test another breathalyzer, Washington State University researchers are looking for subjects willing to smoke weed for science.

Facebook shut down an Arizona legalization group’s page. “My heart’s like, sort of broken,” Safer Arizona chair David Wisniewski said.

Social network MassRoots said it needs to raise $5M in the next year to stay in business.

A judge suspended MED licensing in Maryland because the approval process failed to deliver racial diversity.

Wired spoke to pot start-ups about surviving in the Trump era.

Producer Vireo claims to have launched the first MED ad campaign in the New York City subway.

More companies claim to make faster acting edibles.

New Mexico Political Report finds “glaring discrepancies” in records kept by several state MED companies; at least five claim to have sold more product than they produced. 

The SEC temporarily suspended trading in cannabis stocks Eco Science Solutions (ESSI) and Holy Grail Company (HGRL).

In Oregon, REC is absorbing the MED market.

A Rhode Island judge has ruled against a company that declined to hire a MED user for an internship.

The L.A. Times writes about Adelanto, a desert city that’s becoming a growing hub. At present the town’s main industry is prisons. I wrote about Adelanto last month.

Local California governments may struggle to cash in on the green rush, CALmatters says.

On Fox News, Home Depot co-founder Ken Langone said, “People use food stamps to buy marijuana, that's illegal, or cocaine, or whatever the hell else people use to get high. How do we make sure that we don't take a system that is well-intentioned that becomes badly abused?” (WeedWeek is not aware of any dispensaries or cocaine dealers who accept food stamps.)

L.A. Weekly profiles Bonita “Bo” Money, a businesswoman and activist who’s trying to diversify the cannabis industry. Leafly says Washington state laws impede racial equity in the industry.

Delivery services have popped up in D.C. Their legality is dubious.

Some women of retirement age are starting cannabis companies.

Following a vote, the National Cannabis Industry Association announced its new board of directors.

Whoopi Goldberg, who’s name is on a line of cannabis products aimed at women, supports a New York effort to include severe menstrual cramps as a qualifying condition for MED.


Health and Science

The first large-scale clinical trial showed that a GW Pharmaceuticals’ CBD drug epidiolex reduced seizures in children with Dravet syndrome. Access the study in the New England Journal of Medicine here. Following successful clinical trials, the U.K. company is applying for approval to sell its cannabis derived epilepsy drug Epidiolex in the U.S.

St. Louis ER doctors are using a cream made from capsaicin, an ingredient in hot peppers, to treat cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome, a condition that can arise from very heavy cannabis use.

Israeli research on rats suggests cannabinoids might treat traumatic brain injury.

Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) introduced a bill to facilitate MED research.

The Journal Epilepsy & Behavior devoted an entire issue to cannabinoid science.

Philadelphia librarians have grown accustomed to patrons overdosing on opioids. Two drug counselors died of overdoses at a halfway house outside Philadelphia. The latter article notes that addicts actively seek out batches of heroin that have killed people.

Colorado is using pot taxes to fund treatment for opioid addicts.

A Georgia student is suing his high school for not letting him bring his state-approved MED on campus.

A product called Carcinoblock claims to neutralize he carcinogens in bong smoke.

A study suggested using psychedelics makes people more liberal.

Criminal Justice

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has been widely criticized for his drive to restore mandatory minimum sentences, but he has support from the National Association of Assistant U.S. Attorneys, a conservative bloc. For more see here.

The New Republic uncovers a memo from 1982 in which Sessions, then a U.S. attorney, called for the kinds of policies he’s enacting now. “The liberals will buzz about with agonizing whines,” Sessions wrote. “After they have come forth and identified themselves as sympathizers for drug smugglers and other assorted criminals, congregating about the bait, they should then be flattened by the President [Reagan].”

“Violent crime surged, federal drug prosecutions fell. We’re going to reverse that trend,” Sessions said this week. “There’s been too much legalization talk and not enough prevention talk.”

The N.Y. Review of Books calls Sessions “More Dangerous Than Trump.” The administration’s proposed budget includes $84M to the Justice Department “for increases in the federal detainee population.” (That link, to Mother Jones, also explains how the budget “screws everyone but the filthy rich.”)

Acting DEA chief Chuck Rosenberg reiterated his assertion that marijuana is not medicine.

More Canadians are being barred for life from entering the U.S. after saying that they have used marijuana at some point. It’s a bonanza for Canadian immigration lawyers.    

Several Colorado businesses say the IRS is overstepping its authority by using Colorado state pot databases to investigate marijuana crimes unrelated to taxes.

An Arizona judge overturned a man’s misdemeanor pot conviction in ruling that being in a high crime neighborhood and with someone who ran away, wasn’t sufficient grounds for a frisking by police.

San Diego district attorney Bonnie Dumanis filed criminal charges against a cannabis entrepreneur two weeks after she was ordered to return $100,000 seized from , James Slatic. The raid in question took place in January 2016.

A South Dakota jury found out-of-state consultant Eric Hagen not guilty of charges related to his work on an aborted effort to create a pot resort on a tribal reservation.

The attorney of a West Virginia woman who pleaded guilty to second degree murder, said she had had a “substance-induced psychotic” reaction from smoking pot the night before the killing.

Most Canadians want the federal government to pardon past marijuana offenses. More than 2,500 Californians have applied for their convictions to be reduced or erased under the state’s REC law. It’s not clear how many request have been granted.

Manchester, U.K. suicide bomber Salman Abedi was an occasional cannabis user.

Here’s how Riverside, Calif, managed to close all 118 of its MED dispensaries within 10 years.

An Ohio Supreme Court judge called for the state to decriminalize.

Louisiana is the nation’s incarceration capital. Slate looks at a failed reform effort.

A man in Wyoming who told police that some of his stash was stolen was arrested for possessing the rest.

Shots were fired but no one was injured in a botched D.C. dispensary robbery.

Product reviews:



Denver 4/20 rally organizers have been banned from Civic Center Park for three years after leaving the site in bad disrepair this April.

The ACLU is suing the Rolla, Mo. library for blocking a MED activist from hosting a meeting.

Rolling Stone attends, “The best pot party in California.

Denver artists say the cannabis industry is driving up real estate prices to unaffordable levels.  

A letter writer to the Denver Post doesn’t want to smell his neighbors’ weed. A Minnesota man mistakenly donated more than 100 grams of pot to a clothing drive.

Longtime British Columbia cannabis activist Ted Smith is retiring with plans to create a line of herbal teas.

The Decemberists’ frontman Colin Meloy imagined life as a budtender.

Here's the WeedWeek list of pot journalists on Twitter and the list of cannabusiness people on Twitter. Both are works in progress. Recommendations welcome.

I've also created two political Twitter lists you can subscribe to: Real News and Tweeting the Resistance. 

Want to reach a devoted audience of top cannabis professionals? Advertise in WeedWeek. Contact Adrienne Nascimento at for details.

Do you find WeedWeek valuable? Forward it to someone.


Advertising policy: Advertisers have no influence on WeedWeek's editorial content or on the content of articles that I write for other publications. In an effort to replicate the separation of business and editorial operations practiced at reputable news organizations, a WeedWeek salesperson will be responsible for all sales-related contact with advertisers and will work, as much as possible, without input from me. Any future advertising queries sent to me will be referred to a salesperson. In the newsletter, all ads and other forms of paid content will be clearly marked. I will not approach potential advertisers to solicit business, and reserve the right to reject ads if they present a conflict of interest, the appearance of a conflict of interest or for any other reason.

All rights reserved.