Barack Obama, Oprah Winfrey, Bill Clinton, Clarence Thomas, and Stephen Colbert top list released Wednesday by Marijuana Policy Project
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A list of the “Top 50 Most Influential Marijuana Users” in the United States was released Wednesday by the nation’s largest marijuana policy organization.
The Marijuana Policy Project’s annual list is topped by President Barack Obama, media mogul Oprah Winfrey, former President Bill Clinton, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, and television show host Stephen Colbert. They are followed by television show host Jon Stewart, entertainer and entrepreneur Jay-Z, Secretary of State John Kerry, business magnate George Soros, and comedian Bill Maher.The entire list is available below and online at http://www.mpp.org/Top50
“The goal here is to dispel the myth that marijuana users are ‘losers’ who lack motivation and highlight the fact that they are typically productive and oftentimes quite successful,” said Mason Tvert, director of communications for the Marijuana Policy Project. “As this list demonstrates, many of our nation’s most successful citizens have used marijuana.”
The list is composed of Americans who have used marijuana at least once during their lifetimes, including some who speak openly about their current marijuana use. They were selected based on their “power to influence cultural and social attitudes, political clout, individual wealth, and … media profile,” which is the criteria used by Out Magazine to select its “Power 50” list of LGBT Americans. The list includes known supporters and opponents of marijuana policy reform.
“We hope this list gets people thinking about the fact that marijuana prohibition laws cause more harm than the substance itself,” Tvert said. “Some of these folks might not have made it to where they are today had they been arrested for using marijuana.”The Marijuana Policy Project, the nation’s largest marijuana policy organization, has been responsible for changing most state-level marijuana laws since 2000. For more information, visit http://www.MarijuanaPolicy.org.Top 50 Most Influential Marijuana Users
1. Barack Obama
2. Oprah Winfrey
3. Bill Clinton
4. Clarence Thomas
5. Stephen Colbert
6. Jon Stewart
8. John Kerry
9. George Soros
10. Bill Maher
11. Bill Gates
12. George W. Bush
13. Andrew Cuomo
14. Rand Paul
15. Sanjay Gupta
16. LeBron James
17. Rush Limbaugh
18. George Clooney
19. Michael Bloomberg
20. Lady Gaga
21. Brad Pitt
22. Ted Turner
23. Tom Brokaw
24. Michael Phelps
25. Jennifer Aniston
26. David Letterman
27. Morgan Freeman
28. Angelina Jolie
29. Martha Stewart
30. Seth MacFarlane
31. John Hickenlooper
32. Andrew Sullivan
33. Susan Sarandon
34. Conan O'Brien
35. Matt Damon
36. Lincoln Chafee
37. Maya Angelou
38. Justin Bieber
39. Sarah Palin
40. Phil Jackson
41. Johnny Depp
43. Robert Downey, Jr.
44. Bryan Cranston
45. Miley Cyrus
46. Hugh Hefner
48. Oliver Stone
49. Rick Steves
50. Snoop Lion
Medical Marijuana Industry Experts Host Chicago Educational Event Professionals from around the nation featured at day-long event to educate investors and entrepreneurs in Illinois’ emerging medical industry
Chicago, IL – The National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) will host the Midwest CannaBusiness Symposium on August 24 in Chicago to prepare investors and entrepreneurs for Illinois’ emerging medical cannabis industry. Earlier this month, Governor Pat Quinn signed HB 1 and created a framework for the licensure of as many as 22 cultivation facilities and 60 dispensing organizations to provide medical marijuana to qualifying patients.
The Symposium will bring cannabis business professionals from around the country to provide insight to Illinois’ prospective medical marijuana investors and entrepreneurs, setting the stage for a responsible, sustainable, and effective medical marijuana industry. The day-long educational program will present investors and entrepreneurs interested in Illinois’ medical cannabis market with a unique opportunity to glean information from cannabis business professionals and experts in the fields of regulatory models, operations and ancillary businesses and features individual and panel presentations, question and answer periods, and an evening networking reception.
“Illinois joins a fifteen other states in not only allowing the choice of medical cannabis for those patients who need it, but also ensuring it is provided in the safest, most accountable manner possible: from licensed, taxed, and regulated businesses,” said Aaron Smith, executive director of the National Cannabis Industry Association. “This program will allow patients to benefit from medical cannabis while also allowing every Illinoisan to benefit from the creation of perhaps thousands of living wage jobs, significant tax revenues, and the economic stimulus that comes along with a regulated medical marijuana market. We are confident that this pilot program will be a net gain for the state, and renewed prior to 2018 with enthusiasm.”What:
Midwest CannaBusiness SymposiumWhere:
Embassy Suites Chicago, 600 N State St, Chicago, ILWhen:
Saturday, August 24, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.Who:
Representative Lou Lang, Illinois State LegislatureSteve DeAngelo
, Harborside Health CenterAaron Smith
, National Cannabis Industry AssociationBetty Aldworth
, National Cannabis Industry AssociationFifteen medical marijuana experts and entrepreneurs from Illinois and across the nation providing presentations
More than 100 prospective investors and entrepreneurs attending
For more information, including a complete agenda and speaker list, please visit TheCannabisIndustry.org/symposia
The National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) is the only national trade association working to advance the interests of cannabis-related businesses in the US. NCIA promotes the growth of a responsible and legitimate cannabis industry and works for a favorable social, economic and legal environment for that industry in the United States.
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Springfield - In passing HB3227 (formerly SB34) today, the Illinois Senate took a major step in establishing a state based health insurance marketplace that helps small businesses and individuals in Illinois.
State Senator David Koehler (D-46 Peoria), chief sponsor of SB34 (now contained in HB3227) commented after the vote, "I am pleased that a super majority of my colleagues in the Senate voted for Illinois to establish its own state health insurance marketplace. Expanding help and providing a voice for small businesses and individuals who will be utilizing the new Illinois Health Insurance Marketplace is the intention of the Affordable Care Act, and I am proud that the Illinois Senate has made that commitment."
Brigid Leahy, Director of Legislation at Planned Parenthood of Illinois, said, "If we're running things at the state level, we can fix things, we can make them better, we have better control over making sure that it works for consumers. If it’s in the hands of the feds, we don’t have that power."
HB3227 establishes a pro-consumer and pro-small business health insurance marketplace in Illinois. The health insurance marketplace will be the one-stop insurance shop for more than a million Illinoisans.
Speaking on behalf of the Illinois Public Health Association, Tom Hughes said, "The diversity of this board will best represent the population of Illinois and protect consumers in the new marketplace."
HB3227 ensures that the marketplace is governed by a diverse board that represents women, small businesses, communities of color, labor, public health, people with disabilities, and consumers, and provides for accountability of the insurance industry selling plans on the new marketplace.
Jim Duffett, Executive Director of the Campaign for Better Health Care, said, "This historic vote by the Illinois Senate today shows the Senate's commitment to Illinois small businesses and individuals who will be eligible for the new Illinois health insurance marketplace. When fully implemented nearly 1.2 Illinoisans will be utilizing this marketplace. HB3227 will provide small businesses and consumers a direct voice in developing and implementation a State Based Marketplace that meets the needs of Illinoisans. Now it is up to the Illinois House to show their commitment and support to small businesses and individuals, and to President Obama's Affordable Care Act."
Careful Planning Now Will Bolster Successful Implementation of ObamaCare Next Year
The new program implements a provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that allows states to expand Medicaid programs to cover most low-income individuals. The federal Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) granted Cook County permission to launch this program in October 2012. Previously, as many as 250,000 Cook County residents were excluded from Medicaid because they did not meet the program’s restrictive eligibility requirements, such as being totally disabled.
The federally-funded Ryan White Program provides HIV medical care, medications, and supportive services to low-income people with HIV. The program is a payer of last resort, meaning all other sources of payment must be accessed before Ryan White Program funds can be used to cover needed services for people with HIV/AIDS.
Hundreds of people with HIV might have to switch from their current health care provider to one that is in the CountyCare network. Federal requirements prevented Cook County from enrolling all Ryan White Program providers in CountyCare.
It is estimated that half of all Americans diagnosed with HIV do not receive regular medical care, making CountyCare an unprecedented opportunity to reverse this trend in Northeast Illinois. Unlike traditional Medicaid, which requires single, low-income adults to be disabled, CountyCare eligibility is based solely on lawful residency in Cook County and income level.
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– Many of us know someone whose family is dealing with autism; once considered rare, now 1 in 88 children in this country are diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
Silently Seizing: Common, Unrecognized and Frequently Missed Seizures and Their Potentially Damaging Impact on Individuals With Autism Spectrum Disorders (AAPC Publishing) by Caren Haines, RN
, and valuable input by Nancy Minshew, MD, deals with the overwhelming challenge for those living with silent seizures. Many are confronted by anger and falsely accused of disorderly conduct, indecent exposure and drug abuse; while some are even unfairly arrested because the bizarre actions exhibited during a seizure have led to frequent misdiagnosis, medical mismanagement and, in the worst case, commitment to a mental institution.
Because they are difficult to diagnose, or due to a lack of awareness and understanding, as many as 30% of all children and young adults with ASD may have undiagnosed seizure disorders. Silently Seizing is a breakthrough book that explores what most doctors won't tell you – that often the symptoms of autism are caused by seizures, undetectable with standard diagnostic tools.
At age 2, the author’s son was diagnosed with autism. By the time he was 12, his diagnosis didn't account for his uncontrollable aggression, the acrid smells that lingered in his mind and the odd voices that screamed at him from inside his head. By the time he was 18, his out-of-control behavior mirrored a mood disorder with psychotic features. Silently Seizing begins with a close-up look at this family's journey and examines a disorder that cannot always be identified in a clinical setting.
As a registered nurse, Caren Haines relied on her training to help her decipher her now 24-year-old autistic son’s perplexing behaviors. Based on knowledge gained from years of intensive research and information from top researchers in the field of autism, she is helping families become free from the debilitating symptoms of silent seizures and psychosis.
Haines’ says, “Intersecting at two medical subspecialties, neurology and psychiatry, the child who has autism and partial seizures is at a serious disadvantage. By inadvertently allowing children's brains to “silently seize,” we are robbing them of their ability to function normally. Untreated, these seizures can predispose children to develop behavioral disturbances, such as self-injury, aggression and psychosis, which are seen in many cases of autism. If they are treated early with anti-seizure medications, many children show amazing gains in expressive language and comprehension. More importantly, many children lose their diagnosis of autism.”
Backed by up-to-the-minute research, Silently Seizing: Common, Unrecognized and Frequently Missed Seizures and Their Potentially Damaging Impact on Individuals With Autism Spectrum Disorders is a must-read book that includes sections describing autism, the seizure-autism connection, tips for diagnosing and treating seizures, as well as how to better understand children's behavior. It acts as a virtual guide to help parents navigate through this complex and mystifying disease. For more information, please visit: www.bit.ly/Rb2WBW
Psychologist Offers 4 Tips for Maintaining Balance in Difficult Times
It’s no wonder nearly one in 10 Americans suffers from depression. “Top risk factors include being unable to work or unemployed; having no health insurance; suffering from obesity,” notes psychologist Gregory L. Jantz
, citing a Centers for Disease Control
“Unfortunately, those topics have dominated headlines for the past five years. What’s worse, by 2020, the World Health Organization estimates depression will be second most debilitating disease worldwide.”
The author of “Overcoming Anxiety, Worry and Fear,
) says these negative emotions along with sustained, excessive stress can lead to depression, which now overshadows other problems for which patients seek help at his clinic.
“Depression can be rooted in a number of problems, and those need to be addressed – simply taking a pill is not usually effective treatment. Anger, fear and guilt can all be underlying causes, even when the person isn’t aware he’s experiencing those feelings.”
A holistic treatment approach, which may or may not include medication, helps people overcome a bout of the debilitating illness, and learn techniques to manage it themselves, he says.
People at risk of depression can work at maintaining their emotional equilibrium by counterbalancing negative feelings with optimism, hope, and joy. This is most effective if they do this holistically, addressing the four main categories of human need.
“By purposefully feeding the intellectual, relational, physical, and spiritual aspects of your life positive emotions, you can achieve balance,” Jantz says.He offers these suggestions:• Intellectual:
Be aware of what you’re feeding to your mind. Try reading a positive, uplifting book, and setting aside time in your day to fill yourself up intellectually with constructive, encouraging messages. Be aware of what you are reading and listening to, and seek to counter the negative input we all get with positive influences.• Relational:
Think of a person you really enjoy talking to, someone who makes you feel good about yourself or someone who’s just fun to be around. Plan today to spend time with that person this week, even if it’s just for a moment or two. Make the effort to verbalize your appreciation for his or her positive presence in your day.• Physical:
Physical activity is a wonderful way of promoting emotional health. Engage in some mild exercise this week. Take a walk around the neighborhood. Stroll through a city park. The goals are to get your body moving and to allow you to focus on something other than yourself and your surroundings. Greet your neighbors, stop at the park and watch someone playing with his dog, or cheer at a Little League game. Intentionally open up your focus to include the broader world around you.• Spiritual Support:
Take some time to nourish your spirit. If you are a member of a religious organization, make sure to attend services this week. If you are not, listen to some religious or meditative music. Spend time in quiet reflection, meditation, or prayer. Intentionally engage in an activity that replenishes and reconnects your spirit.
If you are not depressed but feel anxious and stressed, have trouble sleeping or find your not content much of the time, Jantz says it’s time to start taking care of yourself.
“Depression is painful and as debilitating as any other disease,” he says. “Take steps to de-stress your life and to work on emotional balance before it gets worse.”About Gregory L. Jantz, Ph.D
Gregory L. Jantz has more than 25 years experience in mental health counseling and is the founder of The Center for Counseling and Health Resources, near Seattle, Wash. The Center, “a place for hope,” provides comprehensive, coordinated care from a treatment team that addresses medical, physical, psychological, emotional, nutritional, fitness and spiritual factors involved in recovery. He is the best-selling author of more than 20 books, including “When Your Teenager Becomes…The Stranger in the House.” If you’re concerned you or a loved one may be depressed, visit www.aplaceofhope.com
and click the “Are You?” tab for a self-evaluation.