Should medical cannabis be legal? - Saturday Paper


(Brendan Molloy) #1

Awful situation, especially when recently a NSW parliamentary committee found that medical cannabis should be legalised for use in certain cases, but of course, won’t follow the science.


(Tim Challis) #2

I hope this is not too simplistic a response, but surely drugs and their use in treatment of illness is a medical matter, and should be left firmly in the hands of that profession. Politicians might be well-advised to stick to their knitting and stop making themselves look foolish?


(Brendan Molloy) #3

Yeah, that’s totally our position on it too.

As for recreational use, that’s almost entirely political as it stands, but even then we took a good stab at making that science-based in our drug policy.


(Mario Panebianco) #4

Yeah, I’m happy with the policy on Drug use. Decriminalization has a multitude of benefits including less crime, taxable income, and greater treatment options and support for those addicted to currently illegal substances.

I’d like to bring up three separate issues, perhaps I should make them in their own topic.

  1. Alcohol
  2. Smoking
  3. Obesity

I think we need more discussion on these topics. Personally I think we are in a good place currently with smoking. However, Alcohol has some problems that need addressing. Particularly the binge drinking sub culture that has encompassed Australia’s youth. Obesity is another problem that affects the health system in particular. Better education on these subjects is one answer but I’m not sure what policies we can implement in order to deal with these problems, that is, if we decided we need to.


(Sammy B) #5

Former AFP boss backs cannabis oil parents

Mr Palmer’s comments come as a Victorian couple faces possible charges for using cannabis oil to treat their three-year-old son’s severe epilepsy. Cassie Batten and Rhett Wallace were taken into police custody on Thursday after the Epping Sex Offences and Child Abuse Investigation team raided their Mernda home and seized their supplies of the oil.

Efficient use of resources, right there…

Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/former-afp-boss-backs-cannabis-oil-parents-20140712-zt5gg.html#ixzz37K41tcFt


(Ben C) #6

my opinion: legalise it. tax it out the wahoo. budget balanced. dust hands.


(Sammy B) #7

I think something similar to Washington state in the US would be better than blanket availability. Or tie it to the PBS.

In Washington a person with a qualifying medical condition can get a medical marijuana card or a written recommendation from their doctor. This card/recommendation permits them to buy medical strains of marijuana from licensed dispensaries (technically, for legal reasons, the dispensaries are set up as trading hubs. Growers trade goods for money, buyers trade money for goods. Yay bureaucracy).

Washington has also just launched retail stores for recreational marijuana and raised a lot of money in taxes doing so - over $300,000 in 10 days.

Separating the medical and recreational markets is important. It will help keep prices down for legitimate medicinal users, while still allowing sensible taxation on the recreational side. Either something similar to Washington with medical users getting a card and attending dispensaries or have medical strains of cannabis available via the PBS. I would lean towards dispensaries myself as the number of available strains is huge and always growing, plus it takes trial and error for each person to find strains that work for them.

Our current policy is more or less in line with what I’ve said, it just doesn’t go into much detail beyond legalising marijuana and possibly making decriminalised drugs available via prescription.


(Andrew Downing) #9

Does it need to say more?

There’s a tricky balance in policy writing, where if you try to cover everything related to a policy, it becomes too long, then people won’t read it, and the real purpose of policy like this is party promotion, to quickly get voters liking the cut of our jib.

We do have another less onerous process for creating official “position statements” that serve to explore the consequences of established policy individually or in combination. These can be written and approved by the National Council, then ratified at the next Congress meeting. It just can’t introduce new fundamental elements of policy, as new policy requires presentation at congress and vote of the membership.

If you wanted, you could write a position statement about the way this could all go given our policy, or if your ideas do require actual policy change, then consider what the smallest required changes would be, and pitch them to the next Congress.