By Stephen C. Webster on October 14, 2013

Taking yet another chip out of the federal government's insistence that cannabis has "no medical value," researchers at St. George's University of London announced Monday in the scientific journal Anticancer Research that six different compounds in the plant have the ability to eradicate cancer cells.

The scientists focused on three different types of cannabinoids -- cannabidiol, cannabigerol and cannabigevarin -- each in two seperate forms, making up six in all. Each compound is derived exclusively from the cannabis plant, but none of them produce the "high" commonly associated with marijuana consumption.

If the study's author is to be believed, what they discovered has the potential to turn the tide in the battle against cancer.

"These agents are able to interfere with the development of cancerous cells, stopping them in their tracks and preventing them from growing," Dr. Wai Liu, who led the study, explained in an advisory. "In some cases, by using specific dosage patterns, they can destroy cancer cells on their own."

"This study is a critical step in unpicking the mysteries of cannabis as a source of medicine," Dr. Wai Liu added. "The cannabinoids examined have minimal, if any, hallucinogenic side effects, and their properties as anti-cancer agents are promising."

"Used in combination with existing treatment, we could discover some highly effective strategies for tackling cancer," he concluded. "Significantly, these compounds are inexpensive to produce and making better use of their unique properties could result in much more cost effective anti-cancer drugs in future."

In other words, science is now discovering that there really may be some truth to Tommy Chong's claim that marijuana helped him "kick cancer's ass."

Despite the ongoing, groundbreaking research into medical marijuana taking place around the world, researchers in the U.S. still complain that it is virtually impossible to obtain cannabis for testing purposes.

Photo: Flickr user Neeta Lind, creative commons licensed.

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By Wendell Berry

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more 
of everything ready made. Be afraid 
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery 
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card 
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something 
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know. 
So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord. 
Love the world. Work for nothing. 
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it. 
Denounce the government and embrace 
the flag. Hope to live in that free 
republic for which it stands. 
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man 
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers. 
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.


Say that the leaves are harvested 
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus 
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion—put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come. 
Expect the end of the world. Laugh. 
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts. 
So long as women do not go cheap 
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy 
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep 
of a woman near to giving birth? 
Go with your love to the fields.
Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head 
in her lap. Swear allegiance 
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos 
can predict the motions of your mind, 
lose it. Leave it as a sign 
to mark the false trail, the way 
you didn’t go. Be like the fox 
who makes more tracks than necessary, 
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Wendell Berry is a poet, farmer, and environmentalist in Kentucky. This poem, first published in 1973, is reprinted by permission of the author and appears in his “New Collected Poems” (Counterpoint).

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