Clear thinking about drug policy
Director, Drug Policy Institute and Assistant Professor, University of Florida College of Medicine, Division of Addiction Medicine, Department of Psychiatry
President, Policy Solutions Group, Inc.
About

About

From 2009-2011, I served in the Obama Administration as Senior Advisor at the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP). Now I am a consultant working with governments, NGOs, the media, and other organizations on a wide range of drug policy issues. My areas of specialization include evidence-based drug prevention, treatment, and law enforcement (both domestic and international), as well as the impacts of drug legalization and “medical” marijuana.
Drug Policy Principles

Drug Policy Principles

I am often asked where I stand on the “drug war.” A more constructive exercise would be to list some ways drug policy could be improved. Here, I briefly state what I think about drugs and why.
Latest entries

One Voice Summit: Stoned Truths, the Facts about Marijuana, Is June 10 in Ringoes

By Hunterdon County Democrat, Published: May 18, 2015 at 2:05 PM The week of May 17-23 is National Prevention Week, an annual health observance supported by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and dedicated to increasing public awareness of, and action around, substance abuse and mental health issues. There are three primary goals of...
Will New AG Change Obama's View on Legal Pot?

Will New AG Change Obama’s View on Legal Pot?

By Ariane de Vogue, Published: May 16, 2015 at 7:17 PM WASHINGTON (CNN) —The Supreme Court is prodding the Justice Department to weigh in — for the first time under Attorney General Loretta Lynch — on the delicate legal issue of how to treat states that have legalized marijuana in the face of a federal ban. It...
Pot Legalization across the Country May Hinge on California Vote

Pot Legalization across the Country May Hinge on California Vote

By Alison Vekshin, Published: May 16, 2015 SAN FRANCISCO — A fight next year over whether to allow recreational marijuana use in California may serve as a tipping point as legalization proponents press their campaign in other states. “A lot of eyes are on California,” said Gavin Newsom, the state’s lieutenant governor and a legalization proponent. “It’s...
Legislators Look to Make Push to Legalize Marijuana Difficult

Legislators Look to Make Push to Legalize Marijuana Difficult

By Alan Johnson, Published: May 11, 2015 at 8:14 AM Supporters of three proposals to put legal marijuana in the Ohio Constitution are pushing for a spot on the fall ballot. But there is growing talk of a move by the General Assembly to undercut full legalization. Sources say legislators want to create a more restrictive alternative...
Legal Marijuana Faces Another Federal Hurdle: Taxes

Legal Marijuana Faces Another Federal Hurdle: Taxes

By Jack Healy, Published: May 9, 2015 DENVER — Money was pouring into Bruce Nassau’s five Colorado marijuana shops when his accountant called with the bad news: The 2014 tax season was approaching, and Mr. Nassau could not rely on the galaxy of deductions that other businesses use to reduce their tax bills. He was...
Group Asks the UN Not to Accuse Countries That Legalize Marijuana of Treaty Violations

Group Asks the UN Not to Accuse Countries That Legalize Marijuana of Treaty Violations

By Jonah Bennett, Published: May 6, 2015 at 8:06 PM It’s been almost 20 years since the United Nations conducted a review of global drug policies, and the process kicks off again Thursday. This time, 100 organizations have signed a letter requesting the intergovernmental body lets countries legalize marijuana without being accused of violating treaty provisions. The coalition...

Marketing of Marijuana

By Kevin Sabet and Patrick Kennedy, Published: May 5, 2015 To the Editor: Re “The Perils of Smokeless Tobacco” (editorial, April 23) and “It’s Time to Regulate E-Cigarettes,” by David A. Kessler and Matthew L. Myers (Op-Ed, April 23): We applaud your editorial and Op-Ed essay for highlighting the rise in electronic cigarette use among high...

New England States Racing to Legalize Recreational Pot

By Gillian Graham, Published: May 3, 2015 at 4:00 PM Propelled by successful campaigns in Western states to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, some advocates and legislators say a marijuana legalization race is developing in New England, with millions of dollars in tax revenue riding on the outcome. Lawmakers in five of the six...
Seven Myths about Marijuana and Your Health

Seven Myths about Marijuana and Your Health

By Bobby J. Guidroz, Published: May 3, 2015 at 5:30 PM Editor’s note: Amid discussion about the potential legalization of medical marijuana in Louisiana, St. Landry Parish Sheriff Bobby Guidroz has offered his perspective in this column. This is the latest of a series of his articles on the subject. Myth 1: ‘I can’t become addicted to...
Here’s Anti-Legalization Group Project SAM’s Response to CNN’s ‘Weed 3’

Here’s Anti-Legalization Group Project SAM’s Response to CNN’s ‘Weed 3’

By Ricardo Baca, Published: April 20, 2015 at 1:03 PM CNN’s third “Weed” documentary debuted Sunday night, and the program is CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta’s biggest statement on medical marijuana yet. “We should legalize medical marijuana. We should do it nationally. And, we should do it now,” Gupta wrote in the days leading up...

Latest Marijuana Death Should Raise Concerns in CO, Says Researcher

By Bill Bumpas, Published: April 27, 2015 The leader of an anti-marijuana organization says the latest death in Colorado linked to pot edibles demonstrates how potent the drug can be. There have been three deaths in Colorado associated with marijuana edibles. The most recent came in March, when a 23-year-old committed suicide after eating marijuana products. “These...

Experts Say Marijuana Industry May Imitate the Worst Parts of the Tobacco and Alcohol Businesses

By Elizabeth Jackson, Published: April 28, 2015 Marijuana legalization has spread a great deal in various states the likes of Colorado, Washington state, Oregon, and Alaska over the past few years. This may have given rise to more opportunities of being able to buy and sell pot. However, this for-profit industry may not have public health in...