May 28, 2024

Ngaio Bealum, Author at MARIJUANA POLITICS

Ngaio Bealum is one of the premiere cannabis comics in the United States and you’ll see why he has performed at just about every Hempfest on the West Coast and too many cannabis-related events to even keep track of. He has appeared on Comedy Central, BET, MTV and many other networks and shows across your television dial. Very recently, he was a featured guest on the hilarious podcast of Doug Benson (Super High Me, Half-Baked), Getting Doug With High. In addition to his cannabis comedy, he is the former editor of West Coast Cannabis Magazine and has been a tireless activist for legalization. While Ngaio’s comedy is hilarious whether you are a full-fledged member of the cannabis community or not, it certainly doesn’t hurt. You should follow him on Twitter @ngaio420

Dank News! This is what’s happening.

Weed Buds

News travels fast, but stoners travel slow(ly). We here at Marijuana Politics want to make sure you are up to date on the latest weed news, so we have compiled a tasty hit of headlines just for you. Check it out:

Congressman wants to end drivers license suspensions for drug offenses

TL;dr  –  Congressman Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas) has introduced an amendment to fix a decades old law left over from the failed “War on Drugs”. Currently, states that do not immediately suspend the driver’s licenses of people arrested for drug possession can be denied federal monies. Suspending someone’s license does nothing to stop drug use. Congressman O’Rourke’s amendment would change the law. Read more here.


Colorado Sells another $100 million dollars worth of pot- in a month! 

Tl;dr – Once again, Colorado has sold over one hundred million dollars of pot in a month, according to reports. The state sold $127 million worth of cannabis and cannabis products, while taking in about 95 million in taxes. Tax money and job creation. That’;s what legalization does. Check it out right here.


Netflix TV show”Disjointed” opened a pot shop this weekend.

The new Netflix sitcom “Disjointed” is set in a cannabis dispensary, and what better way to promote the show than to offer custom cannabis? West Hollywood pot shop AHHS was turned into a facsimile of Ruth’s (lead Kathy Baker’s character) dispensary and offered some Netflix themed goodies like “Banana Stand Kush”. The LA times has the scoop.


Snoop and Martha are up for an Emmy!

That’s right: Snoop Dogg and Martha Stewart have been nominated for an Emmy award for their VH1 special “Snoop and Martha’s Potluck. This is the first Emmy nomination for a pot-themed show since “Weeds” was on the air.    Leafly has more info


5 states looking to Pot the Vote in 2018

Michigan wants to legalize adult use, while South Dakota, Missouri, Utah, and Oklahoma want to make medical marijuana available to qualified patients. MJBiz Daily has the updates.


Ngaio Bealum is a writer, comedian, cannabis activist, and a decent juggler. You can catch him on the road performing at events around the country and MCing the International Cannabis Business Conference. Follow him on the social medias. @ngaio420



NBA Open to Discussing Medical Cannabis

NBA basketball

Could the NBA allow players to (openly) use cannabis? It just may happen.  A recent post on reddit suggests that NBA commissioner Adam Silver is at least open to the idea. When asked about medical marijuana use and the NBA, this is what Commissioner Silver had to say:

“I would say it’s something we will look at. I’m very interested in the science when it comes to medical marijuana. My personal view is that it should be regulated in the same way that other medications are if the plan is to use it for pain management. And it’s something that needs to be discussed with our Players Association, but to the extent that science demonstrates that there are effective uses for medical reasons, we’ll be open to it. Hopefully there’s not as much pain involved in our sport as some others, so there’s not as much need for it.”

There may not be as much pain in the NBA as there is in the NFL, but there is certainly wear and tear. Professional basketball players routinely push their bodies to the limits. About twelve years ago, many players decided to curtail their use of prescription anti-inflammatory drugs for fear of kidney and liver damage. Cannabis is a natural anti-inflammatory and has no real side affects, except for perhaps a pleasant buzz.

As it is now, cannabis use can get an NBA player suspended, although that wasn’t always the case.  Old school fans will recall when former Celtics Center  Robert Parish got busted for receiving cannabis in the mail. He didn’t miss a game.

Many former players are now looking to capitalize on the new legalization. Former Portland Trailblazer  Cliff Robinson and  International Cannabis Business Conference panelist and former Detroit PIston John Salley have each started cannabis based businesses.  It is time for the NBA to embrace the future.

Ngaio Bealum is a writer, comedian, cannabis activist, and a decent juggler. You can catch him on the road performing at events like the Dope Show in Tacoma, Washington, and MCing the International Cannabis Business Conference. Follow him on the social medias. @ngaio420

Cannabis is a Pathway from Opiate Addiction

10 Unexpected Medical Uses Of Marijuana

President Trump’s Opioid Commission, chaired by Governor Chris Christie, has released their findings. The report calls for the president to declare a national state of emergency and recommends a few ways to curtail opiate related deaths and overdoses. Many critics of the the report have stated that while the report is a good start, it does the country a disservice by not looking at using cannabis as a method of harm reduction and ending opiate addiction.

While the concept of “harm reduction” is a relatively new thing for Americans (“Hillary is just as bad as Trump!),  replacing a harmful habit with a less harmful habit is always a good idea. For the longest time, prohibitionists painted cannabis as a “gateway” drug, meaning that cannabis was so addicting and insidious that even a casual user would eventually end up using “harder” drugs like heroin and meth. This is of course poppycock, and new research has shown that sometimes cannabis can be a “pathway” drug, acting as a safer alternative to people suffering from opioid addiction. Too much cannabis won’t kill you; too much Fentanyl will kill you in a hurry. States that allow medical or adult use cannabis have seen a 25% reduction in opioid related overdose deaths. There are some programs in Boston that have had great success using medicinal cannabis (in addition to other therapies) to wean people from “harder” drugs. Perhaps the DEA could fund a study. Heh.

Anything can be addictive: Weed, butter, yoga, religion, fascism, whatever. Anything. As vices, go, marijuana is fairly easy to kick. Not only that, but weed has been shown to help people with serious opiate addictions. A study from Columbia University shows that the addicts that used cannabis as a path away from opiates regularly stayed cleaner longer. Back in the 90’s , CHAMP (Cannabis Helps Alleviate Medical Problems), an OG medical marijuana dispensary in San Francisco, had great success using hash oil as a way to get people off of heroin, oxycontin, and other dangerous narcotics. I’ve said it before, and it’s still true: Marijuana isn’t a gateway to harder drugs, it’s a pathway toward safer drugs.

PS. cannabis can also help people with their nicotine addiction. According to a 2013 study published in the Journal of Addictive Behaviors, people given a high CBD vape pen to to help deal with nicotine cravings smoked fewer cigarettes than the people using a placebo pin. And while one small test isn’t a scientific proof, it could very well be that cannabis can also help people quit smoking cigarettes. Surprise.

Ngaio Bealum is a writer, comedian, cannabis activist, and a decent juggler. You can catch him on the road performing at events like the Dope Show in Tacoma, Washington, and MCing the International Cannabis Business Conference. Follow him on the social medias. @ngaio420


What Is the Best Way to Smoke Weed?

Cosmic Cannabis

Stoners have argued and debated about the best way to smoke weed for decades. Each method has its pros and cons:

Bongs are great for big giant lungbusting hits, although contrary to popular myth, the water doesn’t really filter any toxins, although it does cool the smoke, making it easier to take huge gits. Bongs can also be messy (freshly spilled bong water is the worst) and a pain in the keester to keep clean.

Joints (my personal favorite) are a tad wasteful, although they are easy to use (They are especially easy to eat if you are in a place where marijuana is still illegal) and they taste great! Some folks complain about the taste of the paper, but there are plenty of upscale rolling paper brands that burn clean and are virtually ash-free. Also, if you drop a joint on the sidewalk, it probably won’t shatter into a million pieces.  Everyone should now how to roll a decent joint, even if they don’t smoke. Knowing how to roll a joint is a life skill, like knowing how to change a tire or how to poach an egg. 

Pipes are probably the most convenient way to smoke marijuana. A good hit from a clean pipe is my preferred method for fancy-pants weed tasting. My friend Michael Backes, author of Cannabis Pharmacy: The Practical Guide to Medical Marijuana recommends a good hit from a clean glass pipe. As the most efficient way to smoke cannabis. He also says that you don’t have to hold your breath. One good inhale and exhale should give you exactly what you need. 

Blunts are stinky and crazy effective. The nicotine from the cigar wrapper and the THC from the cannabis combine to give an intense high.  Blunts aren’t for everyone, and be careful that you don;t develop a nicotine addiction to go along with your cannabis habit.

Vaporizers are cool, I guess. Maybe people claim that a good vape gives the best flavor, but I feel like the high from a vaporized cannabis is not the same as the high from incinerating the whole flower. However, for people with sensitive lungs and throats, vapes are the way to go.

There’s really no wrong way to smoke cannabis. Find one that works for you and stick with it.

Ngaio Bealum is a writer, comedian, cannabis activist, and a decent juggler. You can catch him on the road and MCing the International Cannabis Business Conference. Follow him on the social medias. @ngaio420

5 Ways Weed Can Help You Relax

Jimi Hendrix

5 ways weed can help you chill

For those of us with progressive ideals and radical leanings, life under president Trump is proving to be a demonic, frothy and endless stream of stress inducing policies, tweets, and disappointments. It is a time of protests, organizing, and general grassroots badassery. Fortunately, the smart citizens of the West Coast and a few other states have seen fit to legalize cannabis for adults, proving once again that the Universe has a weird sense of humor. We are probably gonna need all the weed California can grow in order to be able to stare fascism in the eye and say “This oppression will not stand, man”. Here are some ways you can use cannabis to keep your spirit strong and your mind calm:

The usual methods.

Smoke a joint, toke a bowl, do a dab, have a cookie. Whatever your usual method of consumption is, have at it. I recommend an indica dominant hybrid like Lavender, or even a heavier pure indica like Romulan or Bubblegum. Sit on your couch. Breathe. Relax.

Take a bath. A good long soak in a hot tub does wonders for the body and spirit. Sit-ins and protest marches can wreak havoc on the feet and the posterior. Carrying protest signs is hard on the triceps. Get a cannabis infused bath bomb or some bath salts, put on some Mariah Carey or maybe some Zap Mama, and let all your worries float away. Soak it in. Smoke another joint. Plan the resistance.
Note on bath salts and stuff like that: Whoopi makes one (, and Canna Care also makes a good one. You could even make your own if you’re crafty like that. (

Overgrow the government

Now that it is legal for you to grow your own cannabis, you probably should. If your landlord is cool (or if you are especially sneaky, I guess) learning how to care for a few cannabis plants is a good way to practice your survival growing skills, and everyone knows that talking to plants is a great way to relieve stress. For the really subversive:  Throw a few pot seeds in a vacant lot or your local river bank. Just to see what happens.

Get a massage

Cannabis infused oils to the rescue! Healing touches are just the thing to help you decompress. Some local medical marijuana dispensaries (cough Therapeutic Alternative cough) offer free massage sessions to their patients. Or you could trade massages with a friend. You might want to have some cannabis infused sex lube next to the lotions, just in case.
Smoke with friends

Friends are awesome! Invite your friends over to smoke a doobie and make a cannabis infused meal. Cooking with cannabis is easy. Making cannabis infused butters and oils is a simple task, and good meal with good friends is a time-honored way to relieve stress, increase joy, and plot subversive actions aimed at overthrowing the Patriarchy.

Ngaio Bealum is a writer, comedian, cannabis activist, and a decent juggler. You can catch him on the road and MCing the International Cannabis Business Conference. Follow him on the social medias. @ngaio420

NFL Agrees to Talk to the Players About Pot

Silver Football NFL Shield

Finally. NFL management has finally agreed to start talking to the NFL Player’s Union about cannabis use. It’s about damn time. As it stands now, players test positive for cannabis if they are found to have more than 15 nanograms of THC in their bloodstream. The NFLPA would like to raise that limit to 35 nanograms.  Presence of THC in the bloodstream doesn’t prove impairment, by the way. THC remains in the system long after the effects of the drug have worn off.

The hypocrisy of the NFL regarding cannabis use (and “patriotism”, but that’s a different thing) has been deep and astounding. There are so many pot smokers in the NFL that has an “All-Weed” team listed on their website. It’s an open secret that players can use cannabis as long as they pass the preseason drug test. The hypocrisy of the NFL handing out percocet and Oxycontin like candy while suspending players for using cannabis is astounding.

There are more than a few studies that show cannabis to be an effective medicine as both a pain reliever and an anti-inflammatory. Not to mention that cannabis is also known for its neuroprotective properties, as in: IT PROTECTS THE BRAIN. Considering all the concussions and CTE in the NFL, a thinking person might wonder if, instead of banning pot, the NFL should make cannabis use mandatory.

Fortunately, many pro football players are starting to speak out about medical marijuana. Former Bears QB Jim McMahon used cannabis to kick his percocet habit. Former Ravens tackle Eugene Monroe just donated $80,000 toward medical marijuana research. Studies show that states have legalized cannabis have seen a 25% drop in opioid overdoses. When it comes to pain relief, cannabis is much safer alternative than most over the counter and prescription medicines. It is time for the NFL to let go of it’s outmoded thinking on a variety of subjects and give Kaepernick a job, I mean allow its players to use cannabis. Or both. Both would be good.

Ngaio Bealum is a writer, comedian, cannabis activist, and a decent juggler. You can catch him on the road and MCing the International Cannabis Business Conference. Follow him on the social medias. @ngaio420

Cory Booker, Oakland, and Racial Justice in the Cannabis Community

Cory Booker

Last week, US Senator Cory Booker (D-New Jersey) introduced a bill that would not only legalize cannabis under federal law, but would put pressure on states to legalize cannabis at the state level. This is an excellent idea. No one should go to jail for using, growing, or buying cannabis, and studies have shown that  law enforcement agencies arrest people of color for cannabis “crimes” way more often than they arrest white people, even though  both groups use and sell cannabis at the same rate.  The bill stands little chance of passing (USAG Jeff “Let’s double down on the War on Drugs” Sessions definitely hates it, but we probably won’t know what Donald Trump thinks until he tweets about it), but it is a good start.

The federal government should legalize cannabis and should pressure states to legalize as well.  States that have allowed cannabis legalization have seen fewer deaths from opioid overdose, as well as increased job creation and enhanced sales tax revenue .

While the federal government continues to wallow in the failure of the War on Drugs, some states and cities have embraced legalization. Colorado and Oregon are raking in the cash. Nevada almost ran of of legal weed in the first week because demand was so , er, high.  And over in Oakland, CA, the city council recently passed am ordinance  that not only encourages the creation of new cannabis businesses, but gives licensing priority to people that have been arrested fpr cannabis “crimes” .  Aw yeah. This is how it should be. Like cannabis activist Chris Conrad says: “It’s not a rap sheet, it’s a resume”.  Folks that lost their livelihoods in the War on Drugs should be the first folks to get a chance to capitalize on these newly legal opportunities.

Listen: It’s not “40 acres and a mule” but any steps taken to repair the damage  done to communities of color by the racist and ,misguided War on Drugs is a step in the right direction.

Ngaio Bealum is a writer, comedian, cannabis activist, and a decent juggler. You can catch him on the road and MCing the International Cannabis Business Conference. Follow him on the social medias. @ngaio420

Featured photo credit: Sean Davis






Steve DeAngelo and Ngaio talk weed and the future!

Steve DeAngelo and Ngaio Bealum

Cannabis visionary and awesome business person Steve DeAngelo (Harborside Wellness dipsensaries, ArcView Group, et cetera)  Has a new book out.

The Cannabis Manifesto is his latest treatise about marijuana for today, and tomorrow.

I got a chance to sit down with him and have a nice chat about weed, the law, dabs, and stuff.

Leave a comment.

Purchase Steve’s book at and get a free website domain!

Cannabis Manifesto

All the Cannabis Themed Events

If you had the money, time, and desire, you could go to some sort of cannabis friendly event almost every day of the year. This is my attempt at keeping an up to date list of most of the major (more than 500 people, or some sort of culturally cool or significant type festivity) all over The USA.  If you have an event to add, please leave it in the comments. I will try my best to keep this list current, but we all how cannabis users are about planning ahead.

Ngaio Bealum, Culture Editor,





15  The Clinic Classic Charity Golf Tournament  Denver, CO

14-16 Seattle Hempfest – Seattle, WA

14-16 The Highlarious Comedy Fest (THC fest) Seattle, WA

21-23 Hempcon San Jose, CA

22-23 High Times Cannabis Cup – Clio, Michigan


12- 13 Oregon Medical Marijuana Business Conference – Portland, OR

16- 20 Twisted Sister Cannabis Yoga Retreat, Colorado

26-27 Boston Freedom Rally  – Boston, MA


2-5  Madison Hempfest (Midwest Harvest Fest)


6-8  Cannafest – Prague

12-15 High Times Cannabis Cup – Negril, Jamaica


13 – 15 H 25th Annual Humboldt  Hempfest – Garberville, CA


12 – 13  Emerald Cup Outdoor Cannabis Celebration  Santa Rosa CA


A Less White Green Rush: Minorities and Canna-business

The “Green Rush” is booming.  As marijuana prohibition falls by the wayside, many “legitimate” entrepreneurs are looking to get into the cannabis industry. The funny thing is, most of them are white.  That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but let’s remember that 61 percent of the people in jail or prison for non-violent drug offenses are Black or Hispanic. So while it is great that this industry is booming, it’s not so great that many of the people most affected by cannabis prohibition are not getting a chance to take advantage of the opportunities of cannabis legalization.

The Minority Cannabis Industry Association is looking to change that.  Their goal is to create more opportunities for people of color in the cannabis industry. I had a chance to talk to MCIA Vice President Jesce Horton at the 2015 Oregon Medical Marijuana Business Conference.  Take a look. Leave a comment. Get Involved.

5 Great Pot Based Internet Shows

So, you just hit a jay straight to the face. Now you need some sort of entertainment. Sure, you could play a video game or watch the same old boring things on TV. But why not try watching some shows made just for people that really, really like weed?  Please use this handy-dandy listicle to get your stoner bingewatching on.



1. Getting Doug With High

Doug Benson has been an advocate for cannabis legalization for years. The star of  Super High Me also produces two other great shows: Doug Loves Movies, and Getting Doug with High.  GDWH (that’s what the fans call it) has a very simple premise: Doug’s  friends come to his studio basement(known as the Spacement), smoke weed, and chat.  It’s very entertaining. This episode with the dudes from Workaholics is one of the best:

2.  Strain Hunters

Wow. These guys run Greenhouse Seeds in The Netherlands. Not only do they produce some super nice cannabis, they travel the world searching for rare old school cannabis strains to bring home and cultivate. It’s like he’s the “Indiana Stoned” of ancient pot plants. Check out this visit to Swaziland:


3. Stoney Sunday   

Coral Reefer started out with a twitter page and a love of cannabis.  Nowadays, her Stoney Sunday vlog is viewed by thousands of happy stoners all over the world.  This episode where her mom visits is particularly delightful.


4. B Real – The Smokebox

B – Real is a legend in the cannabis community. He is the guy who popularized the blunt, for crying out loud.  His youtube channel is full of cool things, but the Smokebox series could be my favorite. it’s llike “Comics in Cars Getting Coffee”, but with weed. here he is with another legend, Tommy Chong:


5. GGN Hood News

Snoop Dogg’s show. ‘Nuff Said.

Highlarious: Top 7 Clips of Comics Talking About Pot.

Marijuana and stand up comedy go together like setups and punchlines. Back in the 70’s, George Carlin and  Cheech and Chong  were perhaps the biggest advocates of cannabis-infused comedic lifestyles, but folks like Steve Martin had a few jokes in his act. The 80’s? Not so much.  Reagan’s drug war kinda put the kibosh on the pot jokes for a bit. In the 90’s however,  cannabis humor made a gigantic comeback. Dave Chappelle, Doug Benson, and other folks brought pot back to the mainstream consciousness. Here in the 21st century, there are more than a few comics that talk about the joys, highs and lows of getting stoned and cannabis culture. Here are some of my favorite cuts:


Brian Posehn

This “Renaissance Nerd” is not only a great standup, he also writes for Marvel Comics (Deadpool)  and has a great podcast (  Here he is with a story about smoking weed in Portland:


Louis C.K. 

This guy has quickly become America’s favorite Philosopher-Uncle.  He just released a new comedy special ( This is a clip from about 4 years ago. You ever get too high? Louis has:


Katt WIlliams  

He’s just funny. No one else has his energy or style.  Here he talks about the benefits of weed in general:


Ngaio Bealum 

Ngaio Bealum ( been a marijuana activist for more than 20 years. He’s also, really really funny. And good looking. And an amazing lover that can be very discrete if you’d like, yet haunt your dreams.  Here he is talking about weed and parenting:


And here he is chopping it up with Doug Benson on an episode of “Getting Doug With High”:



Bill Hicks

Was he a comedy Genius? Visionary? Bad Ass? yes.  The legend of Bill Hicks has only grown in the years since his death.  I got to see him perform live  twice and it changed my perception of stand up comedy.  Here he is breaking down the difference between marijuana and alcohol:


Cheech and Chong

Two of the best ever.  Did these guys invent the modern stoner stereotype? Does Pinocchio have wooden balls, man?  This is  from  of their funniest movies, Up in Smoke: 


Dave Chappelle

Come on, son.  We’re talking about the star of Half Baked.  In this clip, Dave talks about weed, booze, cops and white privilege. It’s masterful.


Garfunkel and Oates

It’s so easy to get a medical marijuana recommendation in California, they wrote a song about it.


Bonus Clip- Steve Agee

This Sarah Silverman Show veteran tells good story about stoner epiphanies.


Let me know your favorite weed clips in the comments! We can make another list.


Flying High: The Ins and Outs of Traveling the Friendly Skies with Weed

Can you carry your medical marijuana (or your recreational marijuana) on a commercial airplane? I do. It’s usually not a big deal.  Over the past 20-plus years of bringing weed with me dang near everywhere I go, I have had no real problems.

There are two ways to carry your marijuana in an airport: In your pocket and in your luggage. I suppose there are more than two ways, but most of the other ways are kinda gross. In the days before 9/11 (and before California had a medical-marijuana law), I would just put my stash in my pocket, make sure I had no metal objects on my person, so as to not set off the metal detectors, and breeze right through the machine. No problems.

Today's x-ray backscatter technology can detect that fat sack of yours.
Today’s x-ray backscatter technology can detect that fat sack of yours.

Nowadays, with the new backscatter machines being able to detect that fat sack in your pants (heh), that method isn’t so foolproof. Last year, I got caught (by the backscatter machine!) with a small amount of cannabis and a pipe while flying from Spokane, Washington, to California, and the Transportation Security Administration agent didn’t bat an eye. I told him it was medical cannabis, and he said to me, “Well, that’s not going to affect the safety of the plane in any way.” I agreed with him that I posed no risk, and he sent me on my merry way.

When it comes to putting the weed in your luggage, make sure you have your letter of recommendation next to your meds. A friend of mine was flying from Oakland to Los Angeles with some cannabis flowers and a variety of hashish samples in his suitcase. Security found it and called him into the office. The sheriff there told him they had found his stash, noted that he had his letter of recommendation and that everything seemed to be in good order. My friend kept his cannabis and made his flight. I have also placed weed in my carry-on bag, accidentally left some in my sport coat and sent it through the X-ray machine (do X-rays harm weed?). And way back in the day, I would carry it in my shoes. Can’t do that one anymore.

TSA agents are usually just looking for weapons and explosives, not your twenty bag of ganja.
TSA agents are usually just looking for weapons and explosives, not your twenty bag of ganja.

While the airport is technically federal property, and it is in fact illegal to carry cannabis across state lines,  the TSA doesn’t really care about small amounts of weed. Its official policy is to allow local law enforcement to deal with people found carrying small amounts of pot in an airport. Local law enforcement in states with medical-marijuana laws generally won’t do anything if you have your medical-cannabis patient paperwork. In states with legal marijuana, it’s a little different.

The authorities are doing their best to prevent weed from leaving their state so other states don’t get upset. Even so, being caught with a small amount of pot at the Denver airport carries a first time fine of $150, although they haven’t fined anyone yet. They just confiscate the stash.  In Washington, they will turn you over to the real cops if you have more than an ounce.   The bottom line is, if you are carrying a small amount of cannabis, you most likely won’t encounter any real problems.

(This piece is for entertainment purposes only, please consult with your own attorney for legal advice.)