Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Why I find the Americas cup so exciting and cannabis law reform so dreary!

I have never been a sailor but I am beginning to wish I was one.
 Instead I have spent the last 15 or so years actively supporting and encouraging all forms of cannabis law reform. And being a parent.

I have stood twice as a candidate for the Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party , once on the West Coast and once in central Christchurch. In the beginning I have to admit I seduced by the fun of doing cannabis law reform. I love cannabis. I love it!!!!
 After all I can see the fun in it and no harm. Cannabis law reform isn't hard core like the Anti aparteid marches of the early 1980's and in particular the anti-springbok tour were scary and often resulted in violent clashes.
I have helped with J days, sold raffle tickets and baked cookies to raise money.FUN.
I have travelled from Invercargill to Kaitaia to meet people and raise awareness .
I even trained as a drug and alcohol counsellor(AOD) and worked a couple of years at Odyssey house to try and understand the cannabis issue from every angle.
I have attended cannabis cups and worked inside the Daktory all in the name of the cause, however today I am wavering in my resolve.

I have been part of NORML and in January I went to California to the Norml (National organisation for the reform of Marijuana laws)
I was in San Francisco representing New Zealand.

I was shocked by how far we have fallen behind the rest of the world in law reform. How can we call New Zealand a just and fair society while ignoring the rights and wishes of the people?

In America today there is medical Marijuana easily available for any person who can be bothered to visit a doctor to get the permit to partake in pot. In fact the concern is, can legal marijuana keep it's counter culture roots or will the big corporations take over?

Gee, I wish that was our only concern.

One of the major areas that cannabis is being used very effectively is in PTSD. This is great for America as it is creating huge numbers of PTSD patients every week. Post traumatic stress disorder is also known as shell shock or battle fatigue. Many former Army and military personnell have endured stress beyond normal limits for long periods of time and alcohol and other drugs are always on hand to manage the problem. Unfortunately they create problems of their own with misuse and over use and dependency.

So after the Daktory I started the High Tea Cafe and now run the information and education centre for cannabis in a cafe environment. I have a small counselling case load but also provide space for those people who want to just discuss the effects of cannabis and discrimination. I also have wall space for local artists and hope to develop an artist in residence programme.

But as to the heady type of activism and law reform that makes me excited I have to say I am sadly deflated. Both by the Government and way the focus has been on psychoactive substances and P and the discussion as recommended by the Law Commission has not really taken place.
This Government and those previous have dodged the cannabis issue. I'm tired of waiting.

The Prohibition of Cannabis in New Zealand, to use a boating comparison, is like a bloody great barge in a narrow canal, it seems impossible to turn around.
By comparison the America's cup Yacht is a boat made of dreams, moving faster than wind. So is, the medical and recreational cannabis law reform movts. in America. Not to mention the plethora of associated products and businesses that support the legalisation and safe access to cannabis.

I want to feel the wind in my hair and the splash of sea spray and not to be bogged down by the pathetic excuse that we can't legalise or decriminalise cannabis in New Zealand for recreational or medical use, because of the conventions made in the US. The same country that made these conventions in the 1970's, now ignores them, along with the Netherlands, Portugal parts of Australia and other countries including Uruguay most recently.( I don't believe anyone in Government or in the Ministry of Health,  has seriously looked at the evidence for cannabis law reform  for decades, because they don't want to rock the electorate vote boat.)

Commitment and money put the New Zealand boat in the water, to compete with the Americans. We need the same commitment and amount of money to get the wind in our sails for cannabis or drug law reform . Sometimes it feels like there is no wind and the cannabis law reform Movt and  becalmed the boat which is in the doldrums.
And it is hard.

It is scary challenging the law, public opinion and the police but we are brave and we are strong.it is expensive and it is often lonely.
 Some of us are fearless.
 I am hoping that like the energy of the sailing and the excitement of the challenge we can inspire a last rush of power to fill the sails for the law reform movt. and together united as a group we can sail to victory with freedom or "safe access to cannabis" as our finish line or goal.

Sunday, 1 September 2013

So what will draw the attention of the GCSB?

I must confess to already accepting that this bill will pass. A pragmatic speech from Russel Norman confirmed this, by saying that this bill will be thrown out under the next Labour /Greens Government. That got me thinking about what would it take to be under surveillance? If you oppose the Government could you be spied on?
What does this mean for the opposition parties in Parliament now?
There have been issues swirling around the Beehive that certain MPs do not like having their private information tampered with yet are willing to allow a LAW that made what was ILLEGAL, now Legal.
 It is just wrong.

The level of security breaches, bungles, blow outs and cover ups is beyond a simple conspiracy theory. the game is pretty obvious. Rules are gone. this is a game with no rules. Plus how could you have faith in a Government that routinely fucks up data information NOVOpay was just one example. ACC Breaches and the MSD now wants to do drug testing. I do think they are capable of doing this legally. One thing I would never ever want to be openly sent would be anything to do with my health information after the ACC debarcle to another government department where I only exist as a number.

I am sure no one has noticed how the majority of the National Party MPs have had PR makeovers and no longer even speak regular english. Rather it's a serious , Look John , or Rachel or any other tv journalists name and the first sentence is Look (insert name) I'm not going to talk about that now. (drop vocal tone to Match Margaret thatchers) and continue to stare frostily before saying ,now if you would like to talk about the snapper quota or price of a latte , that's what people are really interested in.

How odd. I am 47 and have never had snapper until moving to Auckland. Snapper is not even caught in the cold south Island waters. we have cod. Red and Blue. One for each political leaning. I am pretty sure the greens would look down on eating fish and who would want to eat a green fish anyway? Maybe some lovely sea weed to go with the organic quinoa?

But back to wondering what is going to draw the GCSB to look at, ok SPY on us. The first thing I heard this morning was all activist will be targets of abuse and likely to be spied on. maybe just for a practice or training exercise.

I am an activist! Should I be worried. I wonder if I could un-activate and join the National Party or maybe move and join the Country Womens Institute I would be above suspicion? Hmmm it's got me thinking.
It is dehumanising a population to act in this way. It is anti-democratic but I saw that the National party could dispense with democracy way back in 2009 when they took over Ecan and then didn't hold a local election in Chch . See what happens when people have their rights eroded. Nothing. All the money s sucked out and the people are not the ones to profit. Just another good deal was made by some person somewhere else.

When a big heartless machine called a corporation poses as a person pretending to care you have a big problem . Cos the money will buy them the next election and the people who now don't care anymore cos they lost their democratic rights end up not voting and things just get better for the Corporations and the people

Shane, You're a WINNER Babe

If I were Kevin Rudd I'd be investigating the legality of the Australian TAB paying out on the lection bets before the election. I am pretty sure this has never happened on a horse race. No race , no dividend.

Psychologically saying you have lost before the race and paying out potentially has the power to change voters minds.
Who wants to vote for the identified loser?
It is a very powerful suggestive ploy , it works , but is it legal?

Everyone loves a winner and I am picking Shane Jones as the most outstanding candidate so far in our own Leaders race.I can already picture him wearing a Korowai as the leader with the most mana.

He may also be the under dog but we like that. Perhaps he is the Lady Di of politics, not the peoples Princess but maybe a Prince of the people. He certainly is well spoken and has great poise.

No one is perfect, most potential politicians try to claim they are prefect some are even pious. However usually pride comes before a fall and we all know Shane has owned up to being a person capable of making mistakes but owning them.

We all can admit to some minor failing whether it is swearing, indiscretions or gambling too much. Human beings have weaknesses.
 It is his candid nature that makes him a superiour candidate to David Cunliffe.

I live in New Lynn  and despite being from Christchurch, not Auckland, I am more well known and a familiar sight in new Lynn than Mr. Cunliffe.
 He suggested that he wants to keep his family protected . Um from his constituents? What is he afraid of ?Too precious.

 He doesn't live here and once again it seems to be a pattern for David. he isn't one of us.