Cannabis Is Just a Placebo

“Recently, National Geographic covered the growing trend of experts now questioning the efficacy of marijuana as a treatment for what it is most commonly prescribed: pain relief.” - Breakpoint


It’s worth noting that for decades, good research into the effects of cannabis has been stymied by no less than our federal government, which placed the only plot for growing the stuff in a way that’s legal under the authority of the Drug Enforcement Administration—which promptly regulated research to the point that no sane researcher would dare start.

So what we’re seeing at this point is not a huge number of good, peer reviewed papers either retaining the null hypothesis or accepting the alternative hypothesis, but rather a bunch of experts speaking about a very limited pool of data. I hope that this pool of data grows a lot, whatever it shows.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Do you not find it interesting how, when people have a particular view of the efficacy (or inefficacy) of something, a few studies in support are hard evidence, but if they have a different view from the studies, the studies are a dismissibly small pool?

Views expressed are always my own and not my employer's, my church's, my family's, my neighbors', or my pets'. The house plants have authorized me to speak for them, however, and they always agree with me.

A lot of journalists don’t know the difference between expert opinion and statistical evidence. Or, for that matter, other journalists don’t quite understand the difference between National Geographic and peer reviewed medical journals. And at this point, the experts I trust are 15 miles down the road—they’re saying it “may have benefits”, which means that the studies are saying very interesting things, but it’s not yet conclusive. At the same time, Mayo’s saying the risks “may include”, which indicates a lack of data there, too.

Either way, I’d love to know, and again, it’s not been helpful that decent research has been bottled up while an apparently non-lethal drug is on the same DEA control schedule as heroin and fentanyl, which are decidedly lethal.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.