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What can $3.5 million in funding get you? The top slot as the most venture-capitalist-backed company in the cannabis industry.

Last week, Baker, a marketing-automation platform, announced that it had secured a $1.6 million extension to its August 2016 seed round — bringing its total raised capital to $3.5 million. The company’s software connects dispensary owners with customers throughout every touchpoint, from online ordering to in-store check-in and interactive shopping menus. Last year, Baker helped more than 250 dispensaries collect a total of $3.1 million in revenue.

The National Park Service has announced that vaping will no longer be allowed in any national parks. NPS revised its regulations and amended the definition of smoking to include electronic cigarettes and all other electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS).

“Protecting the health and safety of our visitors and employees is one of the most critical duties of the National Park Service,” Michael Reynolds, the acting director of the National Park Service, said in a statement. “It is clear from a recent rule by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and a report by the Surgeon General that electronic cigarettes are a threat to public health, especially to the health of young people.”

Last May, NPS announced that it would consider placing ENDS products under the same regulations as tobacco. Now it’s made its decision.

Buddha Tahoe OG.

A somewhat surprising number of Florida’s biggest and most influential newspapers have come out against medical marijuana. The Orlando Sentinel, the Tampa Bay Times, and the Florida Times-Union are just a few. None of those editorials actually bashes the idea of medical marijuana. They’re cool with it, in theory. They just think that it should be an issue decided on by the Florida Legislature and that the amendment is too vague and will cause some sort of abuse. What kind of abuse? No one knows — the editorials are being very vague about it.
This of course ignores two key points:
1. There is no way the Florida Legislature in its current Republican-controlled form will legalize medical marijuana (and this amendment failing will give it more reasons not to do so).
2. Floridians already smoke tons and tons and tons of marijuana.
More at the Miami New Times.

Police in St. Ann cities across the country claim that legalized marijuana in other states are causing a big influx of weed to come into the area. But even if that’s true, is it really a bad thing?
Stories like this pop-up around the country every few weeks. And ever since marijuana laws have progressed more towards sanity in states like Colorado and Washington, the threat that more weed will come into places where it’s not legal has been a common complaint for people opposed to legalization. But whether or not legal weed in Colorado is making its way to St. Louis through the mail, it’s never really explained why this is worse than illegal weed getting here from other places. In fact, despite that whole federal crime for mailing controlled substances over the postal service, it’s probably better. Click over to the Riverfront Times for the full list.

Austin, Texas officials say that synthetic smokable drugs often mislabeled as “synthetic marijuana” by the media are to blame for at least 15 calls for physically violent and unconscious individuals Wednesday evening. Many people turn to this crap, popularly called “Spice” or “K2”, as an alternative to smoking marijuana because the chemicals don’t show up on drug tests.

Americans are sick of the current federal stance on marijuana and increasingly favor decriminalization and legalization. But that shouldn’t mean that there should be a major shift in federal pot policy, according to Drug Enforcement Administration deputy director Thomas Harrigan.
Harrigan told a House subcommittee dubbed “Mixed Signals: The administrations stance on marijuana” this week that science should trump public opinion and that states should be wary of changing their laws. He said that the country “can’t abandon science and fact in favor of public opinion.”

A handful of herbal healing

Rarely does a week go by without a new headline, from a respected publication, coming out highlighting another of the amazing benefits of responsible cannabis use. While critics of medical marijuana ignorantly, and incessantly, argue that a majority of medicinal weed smokers have no real physical ailment, every day more and more people across the country are stepping out of the cannabis closet to treat their illnesses.
The headlines regarding cannabis and health benefits have become so commonplace, that we as advocates need to constantly remind ourselves that while it is a miraculous plant, marijuana is not a “miracle drug”. Still, it comes as a bit of a shock when otherwise respected scientists and researchers rush so quickly to condemn pot as a useless form of pseudo-medicine, as a recent article in the journal of Arthritis Care and Research unfortunately did.

Despite the state being home to the great Willie Nelson, Texas and marijuana don’t go hand-in-hand. You’re looking at a misdemeanor for carrying anything under two ounces with up to 180 days in jail and $2,000 in fines. Cultivation is based on weight, and cops love to weigh everything attached to a plant – easily putting you at the four-ounce felony threshold and getting you anywhere from 180 days to five years mandatory prison time.
Yee-haw, indeed. Texas, your laws are absurd.
Angelica Leicht with the Houston Press knows this, and lists off ten reasons why the Lone Star State needs to legalize the herb.

Morocco has long been known as a Mecca of cannabis cultivation and hash exportation, with Moroccan hash long prized for its potency and quality. The only thing keeping it from becoming an accepted commodity is that pesky thing called “legality,” as cannabis isn’t legal in Morocco.
But that might change soon. The Moroccan parliament has begun hearings on the possibility of legalizing the production and exportation of cannabis for medical and industrial purposes.

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