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Cannabis, marijuana, what do we know?

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Chemurgy2016-10-16 Dr Z. Essak, MD - Vancouver, BC

Cannabis is a plant that has been part of human history for thousands of years and on every continent. The uses of cannabis are far beyond just medical and recreational use.

What do we really know about cannabis?

Is cannabis more than just good for medical and health use, is it also good for the economy and the environment?

A fascinating 2011 BBC Documentary "The True History of Marijuana", a full length movie, is well worth watching. The documentary is complete with intrigue and drama, science and technology.

The founders of Chemurgy, included Henry Ford in the 1940's. From the same time in history other recognizable names William Randolph Hearst, John D. Rockefeller Jr, and Andrew Mellon with their economic interests and connections and how they changed the path of civilizations.

What we didn't learn in school.

In the 1940's, Henry Ford and others were searching for ways to integrate the agriculture and industry sectors for economic growth; to get away from thinking of economic stimulus as focusing on individual sectors separately, and instead to apply stimulus where it would facilitate multiple sectors.

They founded a movement, Chemurgy, and quickly focused on cannabis as the candidate of choice to facilitate both agricultural and industrial sectors. This was not an accident, a surprise or something radical.

For thousands of years cannabis has been used by civilizations throughout the world on all continents.

The uses of cannabis are extremely varied, from cloth that is long-wearing, the original Levy Jeans, or like a fine silk; quality paper that survived centuries; medicines; nutrition, hemp seed oil, also bio-fuels and even plastic.

The challenges were not in the growing of cannabis, a renewable resource, that does not require the use of pesticides and does not produce toxic residues from processing; that might also have additional environmental benefits from its high carbon affinity.

The challenge they faced was that the process of separating the stem covering from the core was a manual process, limiting productivity.

The decorticatorThat was until the development of the machine, the decorticator. New at the time, no doubt a thresher of sorts.

Chemurgy was all set to go. With cannabis and the decorticator the possibilities were endless.

But something happened.

How a handful of individuals changed the path of civilizations with their influence and their ownership and economic interests in wood lots, oil, and patents to make plastics, nylon, and cellophane from oil.

Things that might be done with alternate, renewable resources, such as cannabis and a future without the dominance and dependence on petroleum and oil products.

So get comfortable and enjoy the movie.

See the BBC Documentary, "The True History of Marijuana" by Massimo Mazzucco (2011) Duration 1:17:34

If the opening of the movie on the efforts to introduce medical use and legalization is not of immediate interest to you fast forward to 9 minutes.

00:00 Medical Marijuana and Efforts to legalize cannabis

09:00 Industrial cannabis

12:00 fabrics, variety including silk like

15:30 Henry Ford, a founder of the Chemurgy movement, to bring together agriculture and industry, and development of the Decorticator machine.

17:00 The politics of prohibition. William Randolph Hearst, John D. Rockefeller Jr. (Standard Oil), Andrew Mellon (the US Secretary of the Treasury under President Herbert Hoover and owner of the 6th largest bank, heavily invested in DuPont petrochemical and owning much of Gulf Oil - one of "the 7 sisters"), and Harry J. Anslinger (a US government official and staunch supporter of prohibition and the criminalization of drugs).


The three minute trailer does not tell enough of the story. The trailer only sets the stage leaving the viewer to watch the movie for the full story.

"The True History of Marijuana" - TRAILER


Web links

Canada will ask the US to rethink a 'ludicrous' marijuana policy (Important for anyone crossing the border)

Chemurgy on wikipedia

Canada Government news release on task force

Chaired by Anne McLellan, former deputy prime minister under Paul Martin and former health and justice minister, with other members: Dr. Mark A Ware (vice-chair), Dr. Susan Boyd, George Chow, Marlene Jesso, Dr. Perry Kendall, Rafik Souccar, Dr. Barbara von Tigerstrom, ​and Dr. Catherine Zahn.


CMA 2016 survey



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