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Arizona Chamber Of Commerce To Host Anti-Marijuana Legalization Workshop


arizona marijuanaArizona is one of a handful of states that will be voting on marijuana legalization in November. There are still some signatures that need to be verified, but the campaign should have more than enough by the deadline. Opponents have been ramping up efforts in Arizona, with the Arizona Chamber of Commerce announcing that it will be putting on an invite-only workshop next month. The intent of the workshop is to arm anti-marijuana supporters with talking points and ‘education’ in anticipation of the November legalization vote. Per the Phoenix New Times:

The Arizona Chamber of Commerce is offering an anti-cannabis workshop next month with prohibitionist county attorneys Bill Montgomery and Sheila Polk to help “sound the alarm” on a proposed legalization initiative.

The Chamber will offer the March 2 invite-only workshop to corporate legal advisers, human resources professionals, risk managers, and compliance officers.

Made up of representatives from the cream of Arizona’s business community, the high-powered group came out against the planned initiative in June and donated $10,000 to an opposing group in December.

I don’t understand why any business organization would oppose legalization. The marijuana industry can operate in virtually any part of any state, bringing jobs and opportunities where they are desperately needed. Marijuana business owners are good people, and should be welcomed by the Arizona Chamber of Commerce, not opposed.


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Johnny Green


  1. I suffer from GAD with Civilian Trauma (PTSD). My adrenaline fires at an abnormal rate durring episodes causing me lingering pain in my stomach and chest. My voice also quivers involuntarily, and that bestows barriers to communication with others. Cannibis calms these symptoms. Pharmaceutical pills help a great deal. However, I can’t grow my own pills when the doctor decides to not call me back. Worse still, my insurance drug policy hits a dounut hole and jacks up the cost of my medication making it unaffordable. Also, with the poor, if not criminal lack of accountability from the medical community adds up to people flying into withdrawal from toxic pharmaceuticals without propper care to ween one off the pills. Not only is weed non-toxic (providing people use correct pesticides), it’s also a profitable industry. Stop putting people in jail for selfish and destructive reasons. Legalize, tax, grow, and enjoy a healthier alternative to destorying ones body with pharmaceuticals and alcohol.

  2. Social Conservative on

    Because employers just think these things, they don’t actually say them. Any who did would get their ass sued off. The ridiculousness of the statement should have been a clue as well. Sorry for being a dick but when I get attacked by some lunatic I tend to go on the defensive.

  3. saynotohypocrisy on

    And how the hell was I supposed to know that? Social conservatives are notorious for hating on cannabis. You need lessons in how to use sarcasm.

  4. Both Bill Montgomery and Sheila Polk rely heavily on the Rocky Mountain Task Force report for their prohibitionist propaganda and disinformation campaign. Jacob Sullen at Forbes Magazine recently wrote an article that deals with problems with the Rocky Mountain Task Force report. This is a report that not only presents misleading findings but is grossly inaccurate.

    “In 2012 Coloradans approved Amendment 64, which legalized marijuana for recreational use, by a vote of 55 percent to 45 percent. Last February a Quinnipiac University poll found that 58 percent of Colorado voters supported that decision, while 38 percent opposed it and the rest weren’t sure.

    For prohibitionists determined to portray marijuana legalization in Colorado as a disaster, those poll results are inconvenient, since they indicate that public support for Amendment 64 was higher after more than a year of legal recreational sales and more than two years of legal possession and home cultivation than it was in 2012. Honest drug warriors would acknowledge the Quinnipiac numbers and perhaps try to balance them with other poll results. Dishonest drug warriors would do what the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (RMHIDTA) does in its new report on marijuana legalization: change the numbers.

    The RMHIDTA, a federally supported task force dedicated to suppressing marijuana and other illegal drugs, claims only 50 percent of Colorado voters supported legalization in that Quinnipiac survey—eight points lower than the actual result. It also understates the 2012 vote for Amendment 64 by a point, but the comparison still supports the story that the task force wants to tell: The consequences of legalization in Colorado have been so bad that public support for the policy already has fallen. Even assuming that the RMHIDTA’s misrepresentation of the Quinnipiac survey was a mistake, the direction of the error is not random. You can be sure that if the report had overstated support for legalization by eight points, someone would have caught it before the text was finalized. Which underlines a point that should be obvious by now: Despite its pose as a dispassionate collector of facts, the RMHIDTA, which issued similar reports in 2013 and 2014, is committed to the position that legalization was a huge mistake, and every piece of information it presents is aimed at supporting that predetermined conclusion. So even when the task force does not simply make stuff up, it filters and slants the evidence to play up the purported costs of legalization while ignoring the benefits.”

  5. Sheila Polk recently would not answer in a public meeting when asked if she had smoked marijuana. I encourage none to vote for her until she takes a piss test and fully answers the question. The county attorney would expect no less from the citizens of Yavapai county. Our elected officials need to be held to a higher standard than that expected of citizens, not a lower standard, as Sheila would have it.

  6. “Big Pharma must be getting seriously worried by the results of a recent survey conducted by the Centre for Addictions Research of BC. The pharmaceutical (along with the alcohol) industry is a powerful influences in Washington and has long been lobbying against cannabis legalization in order to protect their profits.

    Natural Blaze reports:

    However, the tide has turned as decriminalization of medical and recreational cannabis sweeps the nation and the continent. With legalization, more and more people are discovering how this plant can provide a safe alternative to the dangerous effects of prescription pills. The survey of 473 adult therapeutic cannabis users found that 87% of respondents gave up prescription medications, alcohol, or other drugs in favor of cannabis. Adults under 40 were likely to give up all three of these for medical cannabis. The most startling revelation, and one that will have Big Pharma running to their crony lawmakers, is that 80% of respondents reported substituting cannabis for prescription drugs.

    In addition, 52% said they substituted cannabis for alcohol and 32% said they substituted it for illicit substances. These results indicate a very promising trend of people moving away from dangerously addictive and deadly substances in favor of a miracle plant that has never caused an overdose death.”


  7. I made comment on cancer, a bit off topic, but something this chamber misses the need for. This chamber is clearly made up of ignorant and/or bought off people, without a concern for full truth or the needless damage they do. I hope it gets exposed & ended.

  8. Yes. Two main paths..one is big pharma, the other, labs that work with dispensaries, for development of best cure or profit use. Big pharma (Gorsky) has done recent research on THC & CBD to find some good effect, but concluded they have better chemicals..to keep poisoning people for profit, as you say. Healthy & cured is no profits! They are only after what keeps things in limbo for continued use..until that kills you instead. Check the stats..about 250,000 a year killed in the US alone by BP stuff…Evil.

    Nothing said by Gorsky about plant source or strain, but that there may be a synergy with other components..and they did not research that!

    Dispensary related labs work with developing specific use strains (Steep Hill) that work best for a specific concern. What is so key is the entourage effect of the whole plant. This is so far best done with whole plant strains through labs. Fed approved U of Mississippi weed for big pharma is known to be poor, ditch weed, although they may finally be having a look at strains for epilepsy. They are way behind the labs.

    Trying to simplify into few parts or forms (pill, spray) for profits by big pharma will never match the whole natural plant strain as is with current ingestions.
    The labs have yet to develop best strains for specific cancers, but they are the ones who will, not big pharma, sooner the better..save lives.
    Eating it fresh along with other ingestion may be best combo of that.

    Since big pharma cannot compete outside their work path they cannot compete with that. I hope the labs can soon come up with specific cancer cure strains, and when they do, that will be the full end of big pharma’s control, especially if Bernie Sanders bill gets through, to remove the plant from the CSA too.

  9. “After preaching since the 1970s that marijuana had absolutely no medicinal effect or value for human beings, and putting the weed in the same classification as heroin, the Department of Health’s National Cancer Institute is now ‘advising that cannabinoids are useful in treating cancer and its side effects by smoking, eating it in a baked product, drinking herbal teas, or even spraying it under the tongue.’ The U.S. Department of Health also made a partial list of other highly-beneficial medicinal uses of marijuana such as reducing anti-inflammatory activity, blocking cancerous cell growth, relieving muscle spasms in multiple sclerosis sufferers, as an effective antiviral agent, an anti-bacterial and preventing the growth of blood vessels that supply tumors.”




  10. Sheila Polk recently would not answer in a public meeting when asked if she had smoked marijuana. I encourage none to vote for her until she takes a piss test and fully answers the question. The county attorney would expect no less from the citizens of Yavapai county. Our elected officials need to be held to a higher standard than that expected of citizens, not a lower standard, as Sheila would have it. Sheila should join Tom Horne who was observed by the FBI in a hit and run accident with his mistress in the car and remove herself from Arizona politics.

  11. No offense taken. I’d rather be corrected once than incorrect forever — and I always enjoy your posts.

  12. The County Attorney has a problem with people who use Marijuana. He recently told a veteran that he was the enemy because he uses mmj. What kind of mind dismisses a persons good work for society because he uses an herb for his medical issues? I think the best thing for the movement and for society in general is to get rid of politicians who go against the will of the people. People like this guy must spend all their waking moments figuring out how they are going to rule the world, and make everyone conform to his will. It’s kind of sick.
    “The Maricopa County attorney is coming under fire for calling a veteran an “enemy” during a debate– and he’s not backing down from his words.”

  13. Lawrence Goodwin on

    No offense, doctor, just wanted to set the record straight on the U.S. casualties, all of which were totally avoidable. The economic toll of war is indeed staggering. I’m right there with you in demanding an end to all senseless military waste of our tax dollars—and using the funds instead for intelligent things like cannabis research to treat cancer. I watched my father die from cancer and it really sucked, just as you describe. Every American suffering today from cancer—and veterans suffering from PTSD—should have immediate access to whatever product from cannabis flowers they so choose. Politicians STILL refusing to amend prohibitive laws is the real crime, certainly worthy of a major class-action lawsuit.

  14. saynotohypocrisy on

    A level playing field between cannabis and the C of C’s drug killer alcohol would be more than fair to booze. The war on cannabis is a war on level playing field capitalism, by people who scream their devotion to the level playing field, like these flaming hypocrite Chamber of Commerce fascists.

  15. The lower death count from the Iraq war makes my argument about how bad it is that so many Americans are killed by Cancer that much stronger. We lose more Americans to Cancer every THREE DAYS than we did in Iraq in NINE YEARS.

    The 2 TRILLION DOLLAR figure for the cost of the Iraq war, and the number of 400 YEARS of NIH Cancer Research funding is extremely conservative.

    Google says about the cost of the Iraq war may range up to 6 TRILLION DOLLARS by the time all expenses are accounted for. That equals TWELVE HUNDRED YEARS OF NIH CANCER RESEARCH FUNDING at current levels.

    Here are Google’s numbers for the cost of the Iraq war.

    The U.S. war in Iraq has cost $1.7 trillion with an additional $490 billion in benefits owed to war veterans, expenses that could grow to more than $6 trillion over the next four decades counting interest, a study released on Thursday said.Mar 14, 2013

  16. Lawrence Goodwin on

    You’re “facts” about the Iraq war are way overblown. Most analyses I’ve seen put the figure of United States combat deaths in Iraq, during the 9-year period between 2003 and 2012, at slightly above 4,400 plus serious injuries for another 30,000 troops.

  17. Cancer costs the economy over 260 Billion Dollars a year. The NIH only spends about $4.9B a year on Cancer Research.
    The Iraq war cost America over 2 TRILLION Dollars.
    That’s 400 years of NIH Cancer Research funding at current levels.
    We lost 4,425 Brave American Men and Women in the War in Iraq over roughly nine years.
    We lose 4,500 Brave American Men, Women, and Children, to Cancer EVERY THREE DAYS!!!!
    The average Cancer Research Post Doc (Post PhD) get paid about $50K a year — less than half what a fresh BS/CS or BS EE/CS can get a a place like Google.
    If you’re an American man, you’ve got a 1 out of 2 chance of getting Cancer and a 1 out of 2 chance of dying from it — after going through hell on earth.
    If these facts don’t bother you, they should.

  18. Everyone who cares about this issue can help by reminding people that Cannabis Oil is an adjunct to be used with, NOT a replacement for, Chemotherapy and Radiation. Google Marijuana Oil Chemotherapy Radiation.
    Cancer is nothing to be trifled with. One of the most exciting things to happen in years is the idea of using lower doses of Chemo combined with Cannabis Oil as a way to spare the immune system and to have it do the “heavy lifting” in fighting Cancer.
    A very famous, incredibly highly accomplished and respected Physician once told me “A Patient is not a ‘Science Project’ — they’re a Human Being.” Cancer Patients deserve the best treatment they can get and that means Cannabis in addition to mainstream therapy — not a replacement for it.

  19. After bashing cannabis like this the Chamber will be losing at least half of their funding next year.

    The C of C is funded by local businesses paying 100 bucks a year to “be a member”. (which of course is useless, when was the last time you heard of anyone calling the Chamber to get info about an area?)

    With support for cannabis well over 50%, half of the C of C’s support will not fund them next year.

    The Arizona C of C just killed themselves as will all businesses that bash cannabis.

    Don’t ya love it when prohibitionist proclaim their hatred? We get to call them out on it and make them look like fools.

  20. It is no surprise that this event is invitation only, for they would never be able to face the public in a free and open exchange of ideas. Since they are democracy-hating tyrants who simply want to wield absolute power (and keep the profits flowing), they don’t roll that way. Prohibitionist scumbags tend to be elites who who have open contempt for the people when the people’s wishes run counter to their agenda, and are terrified of people fact-checking them in real time and exposing their lies, the way Russ Belville did during a “town hall” style debate in Oregon.

    In response, the cannabis community in Arizona might consider staging a counter-event, picketing the COC event and holding a press conference outside. Since the COC event will likely not be made public, it will be difficult to counter their lies in real time, because they know that they would get an earful from the cannabis community if they allowed the public to participate, but that should not deter the cannabis community from taking action anyway and making their case to the public. It presents a wonderful opportunity to stand up to the bullies and stand up for the rights of all of the people of Arizona.

  21. Everyone who cares about this issue needs to call the white house comment line at (202) 456-1111 and ask that the President get Marijuana removed from Schedule 1 immediately.

    Absolutely every current or former Cancer Patient needs to call.

    Medical Marijuana is a “Wonder Drug” for Cancer Patients undergoing Chemotherapy.

    Now, there’s mounting evidence that the biochemicals in Marijuana can attack Cancer in a wide variety of ways, and that the results patients are seeing with High Dose Medical Marijuana Oil Therapy (HDMMOT) are so significant that it’s moral imperative to begin large scale clinical trials of it IMMEDIATELY.

    Dr. Sanjay Gupta says it best with regards to Medical Marijuana —

    “Marijuana isn’t just ‘good medicine’, in many cases, its the only medicine that works”


    “We should legalize Marijuana. We should do it Nationally. And we should do it NOW!”

    Please try your best to call at least once a day and ask everyone else you know to do the same and to pass the idea on.

    If enough people call, the President will realize just how much Americans care about this issue.

    Don’t wait until you or someone you love gets Cancer to get involved.

    By then it will be too late!

  22. The Arizona Chamber of Commerce, along with every other prohibitionist, is drenched in blood. Blood from forcing people to chose alcohol and nicotine over a far safer alternative. Blood from forcing the ill and dying to use killer prescription drugs instead of marijuana, blood from the many killed in no-knock raids, and blood from forcing people to buy from violent black market criminals.

    Prohibitionists are fundamentally opposed to everything that can be subsumed under social progress. The struggle for life, liberty and justice often begins where rulers or governments abuse their power. If you are a prohibitionist then you no longer work for the good of the people. To suppress and torment individual citizens for their personal tastes, interests or affiliations is plain fascism.

  23. I’m not saying that we’ve already ‘won’; the battle still isn’t over yet and i’m aware.

    I’m saying that once the truth about cannabis reaches everyone throughout the country and throughout the world, it’s going to be very difficult for them to turn things back to Reganomics in the 1980’s as well as very difficult to turn things back to reefer madness hysteria in the 1930’s.

    We just have to keep strong and stand our ground as best as we can.

  24. Fungi Sclerotia 1427 on

    Of course,
    but we must not be complacent and think that we have already “won”,
    and be overtaken by another Reagan-style “Just Say No” / War On some Drugs era.

  25. Fungi Sclerotia 1427 on

    Great American Tower
    3200 N. Central Avenue
    (1 block S. of Osborn Rd, west side)
    Phoenix, Arizona 85012

    15th Floor Conference Room
    Wednesday, March 2, 2016 8:30-9:30 a.m. MST

    Start with ALL of the companies that are the MOST adamant about conducting
    random, suspicionless testing for INACTIVE cannabis metabolites,
    (regardless of whether those companies are attending the upcoming AZ CoC meeting or not).

  26. Socially Conservative? And uneducated too. You’re for denying people the right to choose. Ill people the right to medicate. Hemp farmers the right to produce renewable products. You degrade the meaning of Conservatism. And shouldn’t be allowed to procreate.

  27. saynotohypocrisy on

    I’d love to get back to work but alcohol supremacist fascists like you keep interfering with my life. Get out of my face, tyrant.

  28. I wish I knew where they were meeting, might find out which companies to put on my “boycott list”.

  29. I LOVE the fact that this workshop is “by invitation only”. That way they won’t get any people telling them the TRUTH about legalized marijuana. They get to unilaterally spread their BULLSHIT, unchallenged!

    This’s being funded with TAXPAYER money! Whenever Bill Montgomery or Sheila Polk are involved, it’s a group called MATFORCE. An anti legalization group, organized and funded by taxpayer money!

    I believe a FOIA request is in order here!

  30. Marijuana is the cure for Cancer! There is a lot of big bucks in the cancer business. Do not be diluted into thinking that they are worried about people driving under the influence or stoners smoking weed in their garage. This movement is heavily funded because it is very imperative to big business that they be allowed to continue their poison people with chemotherapy business.

  31. David Yoseph Schreiber on

    The problem is that prohibitionists are not good people so they do not like good people, especially ones that put them on the spot for being sleazy and corrupt.

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