I’m Phil James, one half of the North Wales CSC podcast. I have outlived my 2 year prognosis for brain cancer thanks to 7 MRI scans clear of any signs of disease thanks to in a big way to medicating with cannabis, mostly from vaping.
After going for my 7th MRI which turned out to be 7th clear MRI in a row since the first was shown online when I took part in the BBC Three Documentary “Dying for Weed”. I was aware that later that week would be the 2nd reading of the Elizabeth Brice Bill in Parliament.
I was determined to go there and meet many of the people in the UKCSC’s that had introduced me to my own local Cannabis Social Club (North Wales CSC) whose chairman Isaac van Hauwaert had become a good friend of mine keeping me well connected with medical providers around the UK which I have no doubt kept the cancer from recurring over the past 2 years.
I felt it was important to show up to the event with Isaac so we could both help represent North Wales Cannabis Social Club as one of the few in the UK that have police commissioner support via ours Arfon Jones.
Both on the wrong side of payday, I had to put both our tickets on credit which shocked us how much train journeys to London had gone up at £175. We felt it would be worth it to support the crowd that would be there no doubt needing numbers to brave the bitterly cold weather.
Even though the bill was talked out by the dethroned neoliberal wing of the Labour party, we still went home with plenty of inspiration on how to improve our own social clubs efforts at fighting prohibition.
It seemed that week was filled with news stories regarding prohibition such as Alfie Dingley’s license denial from the Home Office followed by Jeff Ditchfield’s morning appearance on Sky News on the day of the protest and then a story breaking the following days that “95% of police seizures of cannabis are high THC Skunk”.
We were already aware that it was a counter story from the prohibition lobby because several of the funders of this study claiming 95% of street weed is skunk sat on the board for GW pharmaceuticals. Luckily later in the breaking of that story, BBC News Night confirmed this conflict of interest providing transparency to their feature on this story on their News Night press review for the 27th of February.
This was in our view a crucial caveat that would help weaken the prohibition counter to the more positive stories around the time that supported the medicinal value of cannabis.
This conflict of interest connected to this study put GW pharmaceuticals under closer scrutiny regarding their own involvement in medicine via growing cannabis under license for the drug sativex.
Some left leaning independent sources were also reporting that because of GW’s cannabis production, the UK had become the biggest exporter of medicinal cannabis products but at the same time one of the country least likely to prescribe it given the vast cost to the NHS.
I then suggested to our clubs discussion group that we should do a podcast to cover all these stories and try to keep up with other clubs around the country that were setting an example with live social media videos, giving their thoughts on the news stories and impressions of related programs such as The Kyle Files which featured Teeside’s club and Jeff Ditchfield.
The Facebook live videos seemed to be a great way for the community to reach beyond our echo chambers and do some positive educating of the public as the arrests of Callie Blackwell and Jeff Ditchfield at the end of Patients at parliament were being shared and exposing how ridicules prohibition is to the wider public.
This is when Isaac and I decided to go ahead and film a podcast of us tackling the various stories and debunking any connected junk science with the same hope that a wider audience would have educational benefit to counter the misguided agenda of the prohibition side of mainstream media.
We hope this podcast will inspire other UK Cannabis Social Clubs to start their own, join ours and let us join theirs much like we see in the stand-up podcasts growing momentum in the US with comedians like Joe Rogan, Bill Burr and Jimmy Dore.
I believe that new media online is the best way to counter the mainstream media which is dominated by the prohibition lobby often unchallenged. Because we can now upload to established platforms like Youtube and decentralized platforms such as D-tube/Steemit, mainstream media is eventually going to lose the public as an increasing amount of people are going online for their media.