Australia has taken a bold step forward and illustrated that the push-back against marijuana prohibition is not simply restricted to the United States. Although not embracing cannabis in the same way as alcohol, the use of medicinal marijuana in Australia will make it more socially acceptable to be a weed smoker and will enable more scientific testing to take place. This step will enable further research information about the nature of cannabis to be generated and thus the prohibition of the substance will be lifted.
I have been covering the US Presidential Election for over six months now and I have been watching it through a mix of emotions including, but not limited to, anticipation, excitement, and terror. Much of the discussion about the presidential race is about the GOP for very legitimate reasons as they are currently decided between a fascist, an evangelical psychopath, and man so slippery he could be mistaken for an eel. However the Democratic race has always interested me more and following the Democratic primary in Nevada I think the Clinton campaign has a renewed sense of belief. The danger from this is that because of this injection of optimism they will become sloppy, and this may result in a Republican in the White House.
The people of Nevada and South Carolina have spoken and Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump have won the Democratic and Republican caucuses respectively. Rather than analyse the specifics of the night’s events, I’ll use this piece to go through what I believe will be the long term result of these contests. Normally I use these articles to argue in favour of my own political positions, however I shall not be doing that this time. Instead I’ll say what I think will happen, rather than what I want; this is not going to be fun for me.
With the debacle of the junior doctors continuing, the Tories are desperately trying to spin the dispute as the fault of the BMA rather than the terrible negotiation tactics of Jeremy Hunt. However the newest problem with NHS staff is nothing to do with Jeremy Hunt, but is everything to do with another Tory policy. All this latest episode illustrates is that the Tories are fundamentally inept at protecting the NHS and they need to be called out.
At the beginning of the Democratic primary the supporters of Hillary Clinton dismissed Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders as a fringe candidate. It must be said that the tone of the campaign has also changed markedly since the start and that the basis upon which people have supported Clinton has been sloppy and inane logic. When Sanders was polling below Vice President Biden, who wasn’t even running, the Clinton campaign’s approach was patronising and somewhat jovial.
After Sanders gained in the polls the Clinton camp changed tone and shifted the rhetoric to the Left in order to prevent people running toward Sanders. The words coming out of Clinton’s mouth may have changed but many of the premises that Clinton supporters use to justify their decision has remained moronic.
In terms of LGBT rights most of the media focussed on the fight to achieve equal marriage. Although in many countries around the world this is now the case, there are many places that still do not treat LGBT people with the same decency as heterosexual citizens. Thankfully the activists and campaigners have carried on the fight without large media coverage, and there is progress to report from Portugal, a country that had legalised same-sex marriage in 2010.
Now that a few days have passed since the New Hampshire primary we can take stock of what the event means in the context of the wider election. If you hadn’t already heard the winners were Bernie Sanders for the Democrats and Donald Trump for the Republicans, both of which won by substantial margins. For many reasons the Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary aren’t representative of the result of the wider election, however it’s also worth pointing out that these early states do set the tone of the rest of the campaign.