China points to cannabis legalization as example of “social malaise” in the U.S.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China has published a bizarre report about “drug abuse in the United States” that repeatedly uses cannabis legalization as evidence of a society gone awry.
Amid a bunch of straightforward points around consumption rates and industry size, there are long, inaccurate tirades against the U.S. government.
One example: “The U.S. government has pushed for the legalization of cannabis and other drugs out of economic considerations … The U.S. government has justified drug legalization to cover the fact that it would do anything for economic gains.”
Another: “Knowing the serious social problems brought by the legalization of cannabis, the U.S. government has not responded by strengthening cannabis control, but instead further promoted drug legalization. Between its people’s lives and health and economic interests, the U.S. government has chosen the latter, which is an important factor in the sustained push for drug legalization in the country.”
This report isn’t out of nowhere. There are plenty of points of tension between the U.S. and China, and drug policy is certainly on the list (albeit far below the more pressing issues making headlines in recent days). In late 2022, for example, amid rising tensions around Taiwan, China suspended its cooperation with the U.S. on combating drug trafficking.
While the report focuses a lot on cannabis, its conclusion returns to this broader conflict: “The United States should stop making unwarranted accusations against China and undermining China-U.S. counter-narcotics cooperation. Even less should it mislead the public and shift its responsibility for ineffective response to drug abuse at home onto others.”
Forian sells BioTrack.
Or, another seed-to-sale company sells.
Last month, as we reported in this newsletter, it was seed-to-sale company Akerna, which sold its software to POSaBIT for $4 million.
Now, it’s BioTrack, sold by Forian to Alleaves in a $30 million deal. (BioTrack contracts with New York, in addition to nearly a dozen other states, for seed-to-sale.)
Also, Forian’s current CEO Daniel Barton is stepping down and will be replaced in the interim by Forian co-founder Max Wygod.
The sale, Wygod said in the announcement, allows Forian to “focus our efforts on our healthcare information business, which has been the key driver of our growth to date.”
R Street Institute paper highlights access issues with medical cannabis programs.
The R Street Institute, a “center-right think tank” based in Washington, D.C., has published a policy study called “Better Policy Is Needed to Improve Access to Medical Cannabis.” The researcher interviewed patients in California, Colorado, Florida and Virginia.
The paper argues that, despite more than three-quarters of states passing medical cannabis laws, “restrictions on medical cannabis purchase and possession force many patients to choose between effectively treating their health condition and breaking the law, despite the drug being legal for medicinal use in their state.”
There are delivery bans and geographic barriers, or Cannabis Deserts as Cannabis Wire calls them, which limit access to medical cannabis because, essentially, it’s just too far.
And then there’s the cost, as medical cannabis is not covered by insurance.
“This cost is further exacerbated by retail regulatory requirements, purchase and possession limits, and––in some states––excessive taxation,” author Stacey McKenna, a resident senior fellow at the R Street Institute wrote.
+ More: The R Street Institute has been leaning into cannabis policy over the past few months.
In November, as Cannabis Wire reported, Jillian Snider of the R Street Institute joined a group of advocates from both sides of the aisle to discuss where their cannabis priorities overlap. Those participants included: Maritza Perez of the Drug Policy Alliance, Jeremiah Mosteller of Americans for Prosperity, Aamra Ahmad of the American Civil Liberties Union, Weldon Angelos of Mission Green, Nithya Nathan-Pineau of the Immigrant Legal Resource Center, and Justin Strekal, of Better Organizing to Win Legalization, who moderated the discussion.