Pioneering cannabis researcher Tod Mikuriya, one of the driving forces behind California's medical marijuana initiative, died last week from cancer at the age of 73. Yesterday's New York Times carried an obituary that noted Mikuriya was "a longtime registered Republican" who "became a Libertarian in later years."
The pointless retrial of Ed Rosenthal, a.k.a. the Guru of Ganja, for growing medical marijuana in Oakland, California, is nearing a close, with the jury mulling whether to convict him on federal drug charges. It's not a hard decision, since Rosenthal admits growing pot and, as in the first trial (the outcome of which was overturned because of juror misconduct), U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer has ruled inadmissible the fact that he was growing it in cooperation with the city of Oakland for patients authorized to use it under state law. But Breyer did consider that fact relevant in determining Rosenthal's punishment after the first trial, sentencing him to the one day he'd already served largely because Rosenthal believed he was acting within the law. Even if Rosenthal is convicted again, he won't serve any time.