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Wow, just a few days after we clarified our position supporting the medicinal use of marijuana, President Obama has ordered a shift in the Federal marijuana policy consistent with recognizing medical marijuana. The power of the blog is indeed amazing. Who would have thought ASNet would wield such power? Had we any notion that we could provoke such a radical shift in policy, we would have moved our medical marijuana advocacy out of the back pages and into the forefront much sooner. Or did we really have the implied impact?
For those who just can’t dump epidemiological research as a means of inferring causation, take a lesson here. The correlation with our policy announcement is high; others have been publically promoting the medicinal use of marijuana for years without much apparent impact on the Federal government. Within a week and a half of our announcement through the ASNet Discussion Forum, BINGO, marijuana is one giant step closer to being recognized as a legitimate medical treatment at the Federal level—wow! Of course we have advocated that the laws be ‘relaxed’ to recognize medical marijuana use since 2004, but we didn’t promote this position until recently and shortly thereafter the major shift in Federal policy occurred. We must have caused it, right? Well, maybe not. Think about this example the next time you try to infer causation from an epidemiological study. And learn from it.
Lead story: “Attorney general signals shift in marijuana policy” from Associated Press.
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