Our new year of progress

On Wednesday, January 2 2019, Linn County Supervisor-elect Stacey Walker was sworn into office and voted chair of the new three-member board. Walker is the first African American to hold the position and serve as chairperson of the governing body of Iowa’s second most populous county. After he was sworn in, he shared the following remarks. -promoted by Laura Belin

Continue Reading...

Recognizing Bleeding Heartland's talented 2018 guest authors

The Bleeding Heartland community lost a valued voice this year when Johnson County Supervisor Kurt Friese passed away in October. As Mike Carberry noted in his obituary for his good friend, Kurt had a tremendous amount on his plate, and I was grateful whenever he found time to share his commentaries in this space. His final post here was a thought-provoking look at his own upbringing and past intimate relationships in light of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s allegations against Judge Brett Kavanaugh.

Friese was among more than 100 guest authors who produced 202 Bleeding Heartland posts during 2018, shattering the previous record of 164 posts by 83 writers in 2017. I’m thankful for every piece and have linked to them all below.

You will find scoops grounded in original research, commentary about major news events, personal reflections on events from many years ago, and stories in photographs or cartoons. Some posts were short, while others developed an argument over thousands of words. Pieces by Allison Engel, Randy Richardson, Tyler Higgs, and Matt Chapman were among the most-viewed at the site this year. In the full list, I’ve noted other posts that were especially popular.

Please get in touch if you would like to write about any political topic of local, statewide, or national importance during 2019. If you do not already have a Bleeding Heartland account, I can set one up for you and explain the process. There is no standard format or word limit. I copy-edit for clarity but don’t micromanage how authors express themselves. Although most authors write under their real names, pseudonyms are allowed here and may be advisable for those writing about sensitive topics or whose day job does not permit expressing political views. I ask authors to disclose potential conflicts of interest, such as being are a paid staffer, consultant, or lobbyist promoting any candidate or policy they discuss here.

Continue Reading...

Why do I have to choose between opioids and medical cannabis for chronic pain?

Ann Crane (not her real name) is an Iowa woman who has suffered from chronic pain for nearly 18 years. -promoted by desmoinesdem

Around the country, there has been much discussion around the use of cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) to treat medical conditions. Most states allow the use of medical cannabis, and a few have legalized recreational use of cannabis as well. Under a 2017 Iowa law, cannabidiol with no more than 3 percent THC can be used to treat a small number of “debilitating medical conditions” (recently expanded by one).

I am one of thousands who suffer from “intractable or chronic pain,” one of the qualifying medical conditions in Iowa.

Continue Reading...

State board rejects religious claim for cannabidiol

Carl Olsen is a longtime advocate for expanding access to medical cannabis in Iowa and maintains the Iowans for Medical Marijuana website. -promoted by desmoinesdem

On Thursday, September 20, the Iowa Board of Pharmacy moved to dismiss my petition for the religious use of medical cannabidiol, in Olsen v. Board of Pharmacy, No. CVCV056841 (Iowa District Court, Polk County).  The Board says the petition should have been filed with the Iowa legislature instead of the board.

The problem with the board’s position is that the legislature has given the board the duty of recommending changes in the schedules of controlled substances and medical cannabidiol is a controlled substance in Iowa.  There is also an existing exemption for the religious use of peyote, a Schedule 1 controlled substance.  Iowa Code § 124.204(8) (2018).

Continue Reading...
View More...