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High hopes ride on marijuana painkillers amid opioid crisis – Fox News


Fox News

High hopes ride on marijuana painkillers amid opioid crisis
Fox News
A handful of drugmakers are taking their first steps toward developing marijuana-based painkillers, alternatives to opioids that have led to widespread abuse and caused the U.S. health regulator to ask for a withdrawal of a popular drug this month.

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Travel Bans, Gay Wedding Cakes, Gun Rights, and Border Shootings: Special All Supreme Court P.M. Links

  • Supreme CourtToday was the Supreme Court’s final day of releasing orders and decisions for the term, and it was a bit of a doozy. Top news: The court allowed most of President Donald Trump’s travel ban to take effect except in cases of those who have “bona fide” relationships with the United States. This is not a “ruling,” though. It’s a temporary lifting of the injunction until they hear the case in October.
  • The Supreme Court also ruled that Missouri cannot refuse to grant public funds to a church simply because it is a religious institution, as this is a violation of the free exercise clause of the Constitution. The case was about whether a church could have access to a grant to help pay the costs of resurfacing a playground.
  • The Supreme Court also decided it will hear whether a baker can, due to his religious beliefs, refuse to bake and sell a wedding cake to same-sex couples.
  • The Supreme Court also decided it would refuse to hear a case from California to rule on whether the Second Amendment protected the right to carry firearms in public.
  • Rather than deciding whether the family of a Mexican teenager killed by a federal agent can sue over a fatal shooting that took place across the U.S.-Mexico border, the Supreme Court kicked it back down to a lower court.
  • The Supreme Court also struck down a law in Arkansas that caused officials to refuse to list both members of same-sex couples as parents on birth certificates. Note that the law does allow for non-biological fathers to be listed as parents in heterosexual cases, so this wasn’t a matter of actual genetic parentage.

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Jake Tapper: ‘We Are Not the Resistance, We Are Not the Opposition’

Not #TheResistance ||| L.A. Press ClubEven before Donald Trump leveled a Jack Lambert-style hit onto the collective psyche of The Fourth Estate, journalism awards galas were schizophrenia-inducing adventures for those of us willing participants who nonetheless maintain a heightened sensitivity to media pomposity and political class elbow-rubbing. It was nearly a lifetime ago, and I still shudder involuntarily at the memory of hundreds of working reporters standing to sing “God Bless America” to Dan Rather back in 2001.

In the two years since Trump’s famous escalator ride into national politics, the awards-dinner genre’s inherent self-importance and ideological homogeneity has been enough to make even the biggest All the President’s Men romantic feel at least a little bit like a staff writer for The Federalist. Last night’s entertaining Southern California Journalism Awards, for example, began with a first-person plural statement of professional sympathy from Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. “I think this is probably [so] well-attended tonight because all of us—no matter whether journalists, or those of us who interact with journalists, who consume the work of journalists—we all feel that there is something bigger under attack than just journalism and news,” Garcetti said. “The very values that we stand for, who we are, what we want to be, and whether or not we will come together.”

Incredulous-face, ranked: 1) Moynihan, 2) Carlson, 3) Tapper. ||| CNNThis is pretty much boilerplate for political-class gatherings these days. National Press Club Chairman Jeff Ballou spent a good deal of his remarks last night making the defiant claim that “We ARE the Constitution!” Andrea Mitchell in her speech spent paragraphs cataloguing the Trump administration’s violations against basic Washington norms and decency. It’s not that she’s necessarily wrong, it’s that it always feels awkward to be in any room, let alone one populated by journalists, where so many people so vigorously agree on political matters.

That’s why the speech given by CNN anchor Jake Tapper, who was accepting the L.A. Press Club’s President’s Award, was so contextually refreshing and I think nationally relevant to the ongoing push-pull between Trump and the media. Tapper warned implicitly against the journalistic first-person plural, and explicitly in favor of the seemingly obvious yet nonetheless timely reminder that “we really need to stand up and make sure that we get our facts right.”

Since it was George Orwell’s birthday, Tapper started with that great quote you might have seen online commemorating the occasion:

[citation needed] ||| izquotes

The main problem here? There’s no evidence Orwell ever said or wrote such a thing. Tapper used that fact as a jumping-off point to reflect on how sloppiness, side-taking, and social media are combining to undermine many journalists’ anti-Trump goals:

“We need to rise to the moment and make sure that when we quote somebody we know it’s actually correct,” Tapper said. “We don’t need to give the enemies of the Fourth Estate any ammunition. That means we need to be squeaky clean−we’re not the resistance, we’re not the opposition, we’re here to tell the truth, report the facts, regardless of whom those facts favor one way or the other.”

Crazy talk! More from Tapper’s speech as delivered (you can read the somewhat different version as written here):

I know it’s difficult, and I know that it’s easy to get swept up into the stance of opposition when a politician declares war not only on journalism, but on the very concept of empirical fact, and sometimes when that politician declares war on the very concept of basic decency. And we need to stand up for fact and truth and decency.

But when we look our kids in the eye, our grandkids in the eye, in two decades, and tell them what we did during this era, we need we need to make sure that we were also maintaining the integrity of journalism. […]

If the president does something good, we need to report that. When the president does something right, we need to report that. When we tweet every single emotion we have the very moment we have them, we undermine that foundation. And we can’t afford to do that in this day and age.

While I’m confident many readers will still be put off by Tapper’s set of assumptions here (and a perhaps overlapping group will scoff at his alleged false equivalence), this is a message I’m convinced my professional colleagues need to hear. Anti-Trump fervor is producing bouts of pointless hyperventilation and backlash-inducing error, helping cement anti-media sentiment as the most powerful glue left in the Republican coalition (aside from the taste of power, sweet power). Confirmation bias is arguably the greatest generator of journalistic inaccuracy (mine included), so avoiding the false lure of blanket opposition seems to me a sound strategy for producing fewer false positives.

But then, that could be my own bias talking….

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A Terminally Ill Man Checked Out Of Home Care To Smoke Marijuana One Last Time – Refinery29


Refinery29

A Terminally Ill Man Checked Out Of Home Care To Smoke Marijuana One Last Time
Refinery29
After being diagnosed with bowel cancer in December, Patrick Ford, a former welder in Bournemouth, England, has now been told that he only has a few days to live. One of his last requests? To smoke one last bit of marijuana with his friend in his bed

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GoPro captures the moment an alligator nearly took a man’s head off

How can the “craziest and most eccentric alligator handler in Florida” prove his lunacy? You find a dinosaur and let it eat you. Or at least let the close relative of one take a chomp at your face. The ‘Gator Crusader‘ decided to find out what it’s like to get eaten by an alligator and recorded the experience with a GoPro. His reasoning? “Everybody always wants to know what an alligator’s bite is like.” That sounds like a good enough excuse to make this awesome video: Notice that the alligator doesn’t really hesitate before chomping down, perhaps it doesn’t care…This story continues at The Next Web

by Tristan Greene
#TheNextWeb #Internet #tech #news
https://thenextweb.com/distract/2017/06/26/watch-an-alligator-try-to-eat-a-gopro/ via #PCH3lp

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Thousand Oaks City Council to consider allowing medical marijuana dispensaries – Ventura County Star

Thousand Oaks City Council to consider allowing medical marijuana dispensaries
Ventura County Star
Recent surveys have found that a majority of Thousand Oaks residents favor the city reversing its ban on medical marijuana dispensaries and deliveries. The City Council will consider doing so at its meeting Tuesday night. The council currently

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Democrats Accuse Republicans of Mass Murder: New at Reason

So the Democrats, after opposing Donald Trump in the 2016 election partly out of what they claimed was concern about his incivility and coarseness, are now pursuing a debate about health care legislation in Washington by characterizing the Republicans who disagree with them about policy details as mass murderers.

Think that’s an exaggeration? Hillary Clinton, the Democratic Party’s 2016 presidential candidate who remains among its most prominent and mainstream voices, tweeted Friday: “If Republicans pass this bill, they’re the death party.” Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) tweeted, “I’ve read the Republican ‘health care’ bill. This is blood money. They’re paying for tax cuts with American lives.” Ezra Levin, an influential Washington organizer of the resistance to Trump, tweeted Sunday, “TrumpCare will kill tens of thousands of working class people, and with the savings it cuts taxes for billionaires.”

This line of argument carries a powerful emotional charge. However, Ira Stoll argues, it isn’t a particularly useful, constructive, or clear-minded way to think or talk about writing laws.

View this article.

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Democrats Accuse Republicans of Mass Murder

So the Democrats, after opposing Donald Trump in the 2016 election partly out of what they claimed was concern about his incivility and coarseness, are now pursuing a debate about health care legislation in Washington by characterizing the Republicans who disagree with them about policy details as mass murderers.

Think that’s an exaggeration?

Hillary Clinton, the Democratic Party’s 2016 presidential candidate who remains among its most prominent and mainstream voices, tweeted Friday: “If Republicans pass this bill, they’re the death party.”

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) tweeted, “I’ve read the Republican ‘health care’ bill. This is blood money. They’re paying for tax cuts with American lives.”

Ezra Levin, an influential Washington organizer of the resistance to Trump, tweeted Sunday, “TrumpCare will kill tens of thousands of working class people, and with the savings it cuts taxes for billionaires.”

This line of argument carries a powerful emotional charge. It isn’t, though, a particularly useful, constructive, or clear-minded way to think or talk about writing laws.

To start with, there’s the Washington-centric misconception that the killers are the congressmen. Disregarded are any other actors who play roles in our health care system. If federal politicians are murderers for adjusting health care laws, what about all the state-level politicians who failed to enact Mitt Romney-style comprehensive coverage in their own states before Obamacare? Were they also murderers for failing to act? What about doctors and hospitals who refuse to treat non-emergency patients who are uninsured and can’t pay? The system could probably treat more people if doctors, nurses, and medical-device and drug-company executives earned less money. Does that make every BMW-driving surgeon a murderer? Is every individual American a murderer who spends any discretionary income on movies or trips to Disney World rather than charitable donations earmarked for uncompensated care to his local hospital?

It may well be that as a moral matter, voluntarily paying for a poor person’s health care is a superior use of money than driving a fancy car or taking an expensive vacation. But an individual’s choice to consume rather than donate doesn’t make that individual a murderer, or even a killer. Neither does a congressman’s decision not to compel the individual, by taxing him, to do so. The failure of Democrats to recognize this signals a fundamental confusion.

There’s also a false certainty in the claim that higher taxes for more health insurance will translate into extended lives. Some of the more honest Democrats acknowledge this if one listens to them carefully. Even Sen. Bernie Sanders, for example, in repeating an exaggerated claim that TrumpCare would cause 28,000 unnecessary deaths, conceded, “Nobody, obviously, knows exactly what would happen.”

Obviously.

The “Harvard” study—really more of a blog post by one Harvard professor, two non-Harvard medical students, and two scholars at a liberal think-tank—that Sanders and Clinton cite is more nuanced than they claim. It mentions two studies—”outlier results”—raising doubts about whether insurance coverage translated into better health. It concedes, accurately, “insurance is a necessary but not sufficient factor to receive quality health care.” Ironically, its model for projecting what it calls “excess deaths” is based entirely on extrapolation from “analyses of the Massachusetts health reform.” Again, that is a state-level reform of the sort that might have spread organically and successfully if President Obama and the Democrats in Congress hadn’t decided to impose it nationally.

Democratic accusations about additional deaths are often made without any price tag attached. Assume, for the moment, that Democrats are right that money should be taken away from higher earners and redistributed instead for the purpose of extending life-years or improving health.

There’s a whole universe of possible interventions other than subsidizing heath insurance or Medicaid. Auto-ignition breathalyzers to prevent drunk-driving accidents, a nationwide 55-mile-an-hour speed limit with aggressive enforcement, disabling texting from cellphones in moving cars, some sort of intervention in Syria—all might, at least potentially, save more lives at a lower cost.

Failing to enact these measures doesn’t make politicians murderers, or even the moral equivalent of murderers. It’s just a political difference of opinion.

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