A serious blow to Canadian audiophiles, must read


I love the third paragraph. Sorry to see that the Canadian court's decision has destroyed the patriotism of our north of the border friends. Hopefully the Candian audio industry can weather this setback!
I was thinking comparatively about Tobacco. I suppose the curing, selecting, and blending process tobacco undergoes would make it more difficult to the homegrower. Unlike Marijuana which is easily grown and prepared for consumption. A lot of states in the US have basically "decriminalized" possession. For instance, possession of less than 28 grams will be a misdemeanor. So long as you can prove it was not for distribution. Meaning the Pot would be contained in one container along with possession of apparatus for smoking, like a pipe or papers. I really ride the fence on this issue so its hard for me to formulate an opinion. Anywho, its food for thought nonetheless.

Pragmatist, "gross oversimplification" indeed, and fairly inaccurate as well. But I digress, hoi palloi politics are mostly ideology and cannot be proved either way. The "energy bill" you speak of, was in writing in its last form, and it looked right smart to me. With all he "corporate welfare" as you might call it, as rewards for renewable power, clean air, technology, long term updates, exploration, etc. etc.

As evidenced by the latest power difficulties, the last thing we need to do as a nation, is cripple our power industry. We are a capitalist country and if it isnt already obvious, the companies will do nothing if we dont dangle a carrot of profits in their nose. Companies are not so indifferent from people. It would be obsurd to expect someone to do something, anything, for absolutely nothing. More food for thought.

We obviously disagree on the energy bill;it will interest me to see what finally comes out of conference.

I stand by my statement about welfare. Obviously corporations have the rights to profitabilities but subsidies,by whatever namesdistort prices so that capital deployments are less efficient and real prices rise as their results.
Thsalmon: Below are some excerpts from the first six of your "references" that purport to prove your point and they are hardly convincing. Each study is either irrelevant or inconclusive. Also, It seems that many of these studies don't discriminate between use and abuse of a recreational drug. My own comments are between curly brackets {}.

1) Further epidemiological studies are necessary to confirm the association of marijuana smoking with head and neck cancers and to examine marijuana smoking as a risk factor for lung cancer. {Inconclusive}
2) ...more studies are needed that focus on disentangling effects of marijuana from those of other drugs and adverse environmental conditions. {Inconclusive}
3) This has implications for marijuana as cancer risk factor. {Inconclusive: this is the strongest "conclusion" regarding health risk in this whole article.}
4) METHODS: Bronchoscopy was performed in 104 healthy volunteer subjects, including 28 nonsmokers and 76 smokers of one or more of the following substances: marijuana, tobacco, and/or cocaine. {Inconclusive since it's not specific}
5) In two different weakly immunogenic murine lung cancer models, intermittent administration of THC (5 mg/kg, four times/wk i.p. for 4 wk) led to accelerated growth of tumor implants compared with treatment with diluent alone. {Above quantity is ridiculous. 0.1mg/kg is required to get high. If you inject enough of just about anything into healthy cells, they will develop carcinoma.}
6) ...it remains to be confirmed that smoking cannabis alone leads to the development of chronic lung disease. {Inconclusive}

You're going to have to do better than cut and paste the impressive looking (to some, I suppose) results from a google search to convince anybody that there are studies proving the harm from cannabis use. I didn't assert anything, therefore I need not present references in support. I only called on you to provide references for your false assertion.

And, in reply to your bogus claim regarding cannabis as a "gateway" drug: I'm sure that one could prove caffeine is a gateway drug. No doubt over 99% of heroin users started with either Coca-cola, Dr. Pepper, or coffee. Therefore caffeine is an insiduous precursor to heroin addiction. What a ridiculous argument. Let me know if you can provide any references whatsoever that actually support your assertions, Thsalmon.
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Your analysis is clearly flawed, to say the least. It is also quite simple to conclude from your statements that you haven't read many scientific papers and that you are probably not acquainted with statistics or the scientific method. Virtually every paper in every scientific journal I read ends with some statement implying "further research is necessary." That is how the researchers justify further funding to complete their work! You seem to believe that it means that the data is "inconclusive." Furthermore, you cannot seem to understand how findings of a high proportion of premalignant cells in bronchial washings from marijuana smokers, laboratory evidence of the teratogenicity of THC and reports of advanced lung or head and neck cancers in young users of marijuana could be relevant. I suppose that you are either unable/unwilling to digest the body of information on the adverse effects of marijuana use or that you choose to ignore it due to personal bias. Your statement regarding soft drinks and heroin use additionally exposes an ignorance of the difference between association and causation. Interestingly, the tobacco industry uses the same sort of tactics (systematic and selection bias, inappropriate interpretation of confounding factors, differences between association and causation, etc.) to deny the adverse health effects of tobacco.

Your debating tactics are similarly underhanded. You have asserted that I am mistaken, and I have provided you evidence to the contrary. You then accuse me of "cutting and pasting" from a Google search," which is not the case. Next, you make your own very selective, systematically biased conclusions based solely upon a few words gleaned from the abstracts of the papers. Then to top it all off, you state that you have asserted nothing and therefore do not have to back up your statements with any evidence whatsoever. Ay carumba!

Maybe the abstract from the last reference on my list could be helpful to you.

Dose-related Neurocognitive Effects of Marijuana Use

Neurology, 59(9): 1337-43 2002

K.I. Bolla, PhD, K. Brown, MPH, D. Eldreth, BA, K. Tate, BA and J.L. Cadet, MD
From the Department of Neurology (Dr. Bolla and D. Eldreth), Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Hopkins Bayview Research Campus; and Molecular Neuropsychiatry Section (K. Brown, K. Tate, and Dr. Cadet), NIH/NIDA-IRP, Baltimore, MD.

Background: Although about 7 million people in the US population use marijuana at least weekly, there is a paucity of scientific data on persistent neurocognitive effects of marijuana use.

Objective: To determine if neurocognitive deficits persist in 28-day abstinent heavy marijuana users and if these deficits are dose-related to the number of marijuana joints smoked per week.

Methods: A battery of neurocognitive tests was given to 28-day abstinent heavy marijuana abusers.

Results: As joints smoked per week increased, performance decreased on tests measuring memory, executive functioning, psychomotor speed, and manual dexterity. When dividing the group into light, middle, and heavy user groups, the heavy group performed significantly below the light group on 5 of 35 measures and the size of the effect ranged from 3.00 to 4.20 SD units. Duration of use had little effect on neurocognitive performance.

Conclusions: Very heavy use of marijuana is associated with persistent decrements in neurocognitive performance even after 28 days of abstinence. It is unclear if these decrements will resolve with continued abstinence or become progressively worse with continued heavy marijuana use.

And regarding my “bogus” assertion that marijuana is a “gateway” drug, you might find this interesting.

Escalation of Drug Use in Early-Onset Cannabis Users vs Co-twin Controls

Michael T. Lynskey, PhD; Andrew C. Heath, DPhil; Kathleen K. Bucholz, PhD; Wendy S. Slutske, PhD; Pamela A. F. Madden, PhD; Elliot C. Nelson, MD; Dixie J. Statham, MA; Nicholas G. Martin, PhD

JAMA. 2003;289:427-433.

Context: Previous studies have reported that early initiation of cannabis (marijuana) use is a significant risk factor for other drug use and drug-related problems.

Objective: To examine whether the association between early cannabis use and subsequent progression to use of other drugs and drug abuse/dependence persists after controlling for genetic and shared environmental influences.

Design: Cross-sectional survey conducted in 1996-2000 among an Australian national volunteer sample of 311 young adult (median age, 30 years) monozygotic and dizygotic same-sex twin pairs discordant for early cannabis use (before age 17 years).

Main Outcome Measures: Self-reported subsequent nonmedical use of prescription sedatives, hallucinogens, cocaine/other stimulants, and opioids; abuse or dependence on these drugs (including cannabis abuse/dependence); and alcohol dependence.

Results: Individuals who used cannabis by age 17 years had odds of other drug use, alcohol dependence, and drug abuse/dependence that were 2.1 to 5.2 times higher than those of their co-twin, who did not use cannabis before age 17 years. Controlling for known risk factors (early-onset alcohol or tobacco use, parental conflict/separation, childhood sexual abuse, conduct disorder, major depression, and social anxiety) had only negligible effects on these results. These associations did not differ significantly between monozygotic and dizygotic twins.

Conclusions: Associations between early cannabis use and later drug use and abuse/dependence cannot solely be explained by common predisposing genetic or shared environmental factors. The association may arise from the effects of the peer and social context within which cannabis is used and obtained. In particular, early access to and use of cannabis may reduce perceived barriers against the use of other illegal drugs and provide access to these drugs.

Sorry I can’t supply full text versions of these articles, because they are copy-written documents.

Anyway, it really doesn’t bother me if adults choose to use the substance in a responsible manner. However, society shouldn’t have to foot the cost of the long term consequences. To expose children to the drug is, and should remain, a felonious act. There is substantial evidence of health risk with regular marijuana use, particularly to the young. To deny it is absurd. There might be legitimate therapeutic uses for THC in medicine, but there is no compelling evidence to suggest that THC is superior in efficacy or safer that existing medications.

I still think that the Canadian pot activist’s statement in the original post is funny. That's why I wanted others to read it.