medical marijuana

“Freed” or “Fried?” Ag commish stand-up segment in agency promo

It’s not exactly a page out of a David Letterman skit, but Florida Department of Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried did a brief comedy bit to promote her agency’s new website.

Fried used the pronunciation of her last name — “freed” — to tout the launch of the fdacs.gov in a video.

Fried, whose name is pronounced “freed,” says on the video that her agency is giving Floridians “an opportunity to have a more user-friendly website, whether to renew a license, “find your local farmer’s market,” or file a consumer complaint.

Fried then demonstrates the ease of filing a consumer complaint by typing one into her laptop. (A random observation: Why is her desk so neat?!)

After posting the complaint, the ag commish immediately receives a call from someone asking for “Miss Nikki Fried?” The unfortunate telephone rep, however, mispronounces Fried’s name as “fried.”

Fried corrects the pronunciation, but before the operator mistakenly refers to her again as “Miss Fried” before the call ends. Fried takes it in stride.

“I guess the new website can’t fix everything, but why don’t you check out fdacs.gov and see for yourself,” she quips.

Latest installment in Morgan v. Gillum feud: ‘Massa mentality’ and shaming

For the second day in a row, Orlando trial lawyer and political kingmaker John Morgan and Florida Democratic gubernatorial nominee Andrew Gillum are going mano-a-mano on social media.

The feud between the two escalated Wednesday, when Morgan, during an appearance at a Tiger Bay Club luncheon in the capital city, threatened to sue the former Tallahassee mayor, if Gillum ever runs for office again.

Morgan told the crowd of political insiders that he believes he has a “cause of action” against Gillum over his decision to leave more than $3 million in the bank ahead of the 2018 November election. Gillum narrowly lost to Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis.

After Morgan’s remarks to the Tiger Bay Club in Tallahassee garnered headlines on Wednesday, Gillum — who’s been trading barbs with Morgan on Twitter throughout the summer — took the fight to a new social media platform: Instagram.

“John Morgan suffers from what I like to call the ‘Massa’ mentality. A condition where your wealth and ‘supremacy’ deludes you into thinking that you own people,” Gillum wrote in a Thursday morning, alongside a post of a News Service of Florida story entitled “Morgan Warns Gillum Not to Run Again.”

Gillum added in the Instagram post: “He may own many slaves, but I am not one of them.”

Morgan fired back on Twitter and on Instagram three hours later:

@AndrewGillum if you gave someone $250K to build an orphanage & instead they kept the money to promote themselves I think you would be outraged!! That’s what is happening here. I don’t have slaves, but I am fighting to eliminate slave wages in Florida. My people make $15/hr. You really should be so ashamed of what you did. #FollowTheMoney 💸

When one of Gillum’s Instagram followers asked him about the unspent campaign money, Gillum — who’s now a CNN contributor — provided a lengthy response:

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— By Ana Ceballos.

 

 

Q-Poll: Floridians high on getting high

pot exclamation pointFlorida voters are at an all-time high for allowing grown-ups to have small amounts of weed for personal use, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll released today.

The poll found 65 percent of voters statewide support legalizing small quantities for adult use, while 30 percent disapprove.

Republicans, however, aren’t as keen on green: They’re split 48-48 percent, according to the poll results.

Meanwhile, more than three-quarters of Dems — 78 percent — back the bud, showing that the partisan divide isn’t limited to guns.

The survey also found voters support the sale of legal marijuana in their community by a 61-34 percent margin.

Here’s the crosstabs:

18. Do you support or oppose allowing adults in Florida to legally possess small amounts of marijuana for personal use?

                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Support              65%    48%    78%    72%    69%    62%    64%    68%
Oppose               30     48     19     24     28     32     30     28
DK/NA                 5      4      3      5      3      6      6      4
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Support              89%    70%    63%    52%    71%    61%    66%    66%    68%
Oppose               10     24     34     40     26     32     29     30     30
DK/NA                 1      5      3      8      3      6      5      4      2
 
 

19. Would you support or oppose the sale of legal marijuana in your community?

                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Support              61%    46%    74%    66%    63%    60%    63%    64%
Oppose               34     50     23     29     33     35     33     31
DK/NA                 4      4      2      5      4      4      3      5
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Support              83%    64%    60%    50%    65%    62%    64%    53%    65%
Oppose               17     28     35     45     30     34     32     44     32
DK/NA                 1      8      5      4      5      3      4      3      3
 

 

The poll of 1,279 Florida voters was conducted from June 12 – 17, with a margin of error of +/- 3.3 percentage points, including the design effect.

Stew ’em if ya got ’em? Denver hearts magic mushrooms

Because Colorado.

The mile-high city just got higher after Denver voters gave the thumbs-up to a proposal effectively decriminalizing magic mushrooms.

Denver will now become the first city in the nation to give the nod to psilocybin mushrooms, which can cause users to trip their brains out but which studies now show can be useful in treating depression.

Voters narrowly approved the measure by less than 2,000 votes. The Denver Post reports that some ballots have yet to be counted, but they’re not expected to change the results, which will be certified on May 16.

From the Post:

“It’s been one hell of a 21 and a half hours,” Initiative 301 campaign manager Kevin Matthews said. “If these results hold, this is an example of the absurd comedy of the great metaphor. Against all odds, we prevailed. This is what happens when a small team of dedicated and passionate people unite under a single idea to create change.”

The proposal requires the po-po to treat possession of psychedelic shrooms as their lowest priority. It’s similar to an initiative that paved the way for the legalization of pot.

Again, from the Post:

“Our victory here is a clear signal to the rest of the country that we’re ready for a broader conversation around psilocybin and its potential benefits,” said Matthews, a 33-year-old stay-at-home dad.

‘Magic’ mushrooms – the next medical pot?

psychedelic-1084082_1280The mile-high city might be getting even higher if Denver voters sign off on a proposal to decriminalize magic mushrooms.

They’re voting today on the “Denver Psilocybin Mushroom Initiative,” which would “deprioritize, to the greatest extent possible” criminal penalties “for the personal use and personal possession of psilocybin mushrooms.”

The proposal doesn’t legalize shrooms, but it would ban the city from spending any money to impose criminal penalties on folks who possess them.

The magic mushrooms, which have hallucinogenic properties, are a Schedule 1 drug under federal law.

Backers of the initiative point to research showing the health benefits of magic mushrooms (sound familiar?).

One small study found that psilocybin is “showing promise” in treating patients with depression, with the caveat that “its therapeutic mechanisms are poorly understood.”

Microdosing of LSD and magic mushrooms, which doesn’t cause users to trip their brains out, has become a thing among creative genius-types, who claim its positive effects include a boost in production.

We’re trying to think of a city in Florida where voters might give the nod to mind-bending mushrooms. St. Pete? Key West? Tweet @thedarakam with suggestions.

Gainesville Green goes legit. Plus dope swag

IMG_B049DF48B479-1Hey, who doesn’t want some dope swag, while helping efforts to legalize pot in the Sunshine State?

Those of us who grew up in Florida remember Gainesville Green from back in the day.

The sticky, smelly, smooth-burning weed was renowned for its ass-kicking properties.

Now, the infamous Florida grow is making a splash on the legal market, in conjunction with the state’s largest medical marijuana operator, Trulieve, and partner, Sunshine Cannabis.

The press release announcing its introduction into the medical pot arena reads more like a come-on from High Times than something you’d pick up in your doctor’s office, but, we repeat, who doesn’t want some dope swag? And who doesn’t want to help legalize it in Florida?

Don’t Miss this EVENT! Today from 12pm-4pm in Gainesville Florida at the Heartwood Soundstage we are officially launching Gainesville Green, the most legendary strain from the state of Florida, with the creator of the strain Rick Naya.  This is Truly a historic moment for the Sunshine State, as we bring back the state’s most legendary strain to the legal medical marijuana market.  Tomorrow’s event is not to be missed, we have a bunch of dope swag exclusively made just for this event.  We will be giving away some more recommendations as part of our Sunshine Compassion program.

Some of the proceeds from yesterday’s event went to legalization efforts, according to the release:

Sunshine Cannabis is a Florida first brand committed to YOUR RIGHT to GROW YOUR OWN. Our company was founded with a mission to free the plant and free the seed. This is why we have made an indefinite and ongoing commitment to donating a minimum of 10% of all company proceeds to the Regulate Florida ballot initative to legalize cannabis in the Sunshine State for all adults and give businesses a fair opportunity in Florida. In an ongoing effort to solidify our commitment to Florida we have decided to DOUBLE DOWN on the amount we donate from the proceeds of Gainesville Green sales to Regulate Florida. This is an ongoing and indefinite commitment that will only end WHEN YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO GROW YOUR OWN! #SunshineFam we love you and are working day and night to help increase access to the patients of Florida. Help us free the plant in Florida and Vaporize to Legalize the Sunshine State.

 

Weed that boosted Obama from Waikiki to White House coming to Florida soon?

originalChoom may or may  not be opening up in the Sunshine State anytime soon, but these guys get some points for chutzpah if for nothing else.

Canada-based Choom Holdings Inc. makes much of its connection to former President Barack Obama, but more about that later.

Choom, whose CEO is named “Chris Bogart” (we kid you not), announced Monday it intends to enter Florida’s medical marijuana market, as part of its “strategy to become a multi-state operator,” through its wholly owned subsidiary, Choom USA Holdings Inc.

Choom, which trades on the Canadian Stock Exchange, signed a letter of intent to purchase a 95% equity interest in “a Florida-based vertically-integrated cannabis applicant,” according to a press release.

The release doesn’t identify the name of the “applicant,” which is clearly not one of the state’s 14 licensed medical marijuana treatment centers, or the amount of the transaction.

The Florida company “is progressing on its Master License application to operate up to 25 retail locations with potential for more as the number of registered patients increase, as well as, a micro-processing and cultivation facility for medical purposes,” the release says.

It goes on:

Upon completing the transaction, Choom will use its medical brand, Clarity Medical Centres, to create a network of branded Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers.  Florida’s medical marijuana program has over 190,000 qualified patients, up from approximately 168,000 at the start of 2019, making it the largest medical marijuana market in the United States.  Florida has recently allowed the use of smokable medical marijuana products, potentially opening the program to a considerably larger audience.

“We are very excited to be expanding into Florida and to bring Choom’s medical brand into that market.  Florida’s medical marijuana program is a very attractive opportunity for us seeing that it allows for vertically-integrated operations and it has been a market we’ve had our sights on for a while now.” states Chris Bogart, President & CEO of Choom. “This investment aligns with our strategy of becoming a multi-state operator in the US and helps us to bolster our growth targets. Florida is home to over 21 million residents and has shown impressive year over year growth on the number of registered patients with a large portion of the market being relatively uncaptured.”

Now for the Obama bit:

The company’s website boasts that the onetime president was an integral member of the “Choom Gang” back in Honolulu, where he graduated from high school in 1979.

Obama was part of a group of buddies who “loved to choom the pakalolo,” or smoke weed, according to the website:

Not only was Obama a member of the Choom Gang, he was the group’s trendsetter—coining a number of their toking terms and protocols, including “roof hits” (the practice of sucking every last whiff of smoke lingering by the roof after hot-boxing a car), “total absorption” (holding in one’s hit for as long as possible, or suffering a one-toke penalty for premature exhalation), and the infamous “interception,” where he’d break rotation to steal an extra hit. In fact, Obama even thanked The Choom Gang “for all the good times” in his high school yearbook!

But here’s our favorite part:

“Yes, that same sweet, sticky sensimilla that led Obama from Waikiki to the White House will be coming to a Choom™ store near you.”

Choom’s pitch veers from the less flamboyant advertising for medical pot, but, hey, they’re hitching their star to a president who also happens to be a super-cool cultural icon.

Choom may claim to be all about “cultivating good times with good friends,” but one Florida cannabis industry expert isn’t buying their come-on.

“It doesn’t appear the subject of this press release involves acquiring an actual asset,” our pro told us. “It appears to be pure speculation in an attempt to bolster their stock.”