Author Topic: Hemp  (Read 342 times)

netfreak

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Hemp
« on: February 14, 2017, 04:50:05 pm »
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                              By Repo Man


          Cannabis Hemp, also known as marijuana, is an annual plant
that flourishes in all 50 states.  The benefits of the hemp plant to
mankind are immeasurable, and references to its use date back to the
beginning of recorded history.  The plant has potential for a wide
variety of medical and industrial uses, including fiber, paper,
plastics, and fuel.  Unfortunately, most people are blind to these
benefits because of disinformation campaigns maintained by corporate
entities that are in fear of losing profits to the hemp farmer.
          Throughout the centuries, hemp fiber had been used to make
every grade of textile, from canvas to lace.  In fact, the word
'canvas' comes from the Latin 'Cannabaceous Hempen,' which translates
into the Modern English scientific name, 'Cannabis Hemp.'  Some
strains of the plant reach a height of over 20 feet in one growing
season, making it an ideal crop for fiber production.  Hemp has no
natural enemies, and does not require a deluge of poisonous
pesticides, unlike cotton, our "traditional" fiber plant.  (Over fifty
percent of all pesticides used on the planet today are used on
cotton.)  Consequently, not only can hemp fiber be produced more
More [Y,n,c]
             
efficiently than cotton, its production is environmentally sound.
Hemp fiber has three times the tensile strength of cotton, and is
softer and more absorbent.  Since a living plant cannot be patented,
and since Polyester or Dacron is inferior to hemp fiber in quality, it
doesn't take a genius to figure out why DuPont wants it to remain
illegal.
          After the fiber-making process, the hurds, which are the
leftover bits of woody pulp holding the fibers together, have many
uses.  Hemp hurds contain 77 to 80 percent cellulose, which composed
the tough, woody cell walls of the stem of the plant during the
growing season. Cellulose is the raw material for a wide variety of
manufactured goods, such as paper, cellophane, and rayon.  The hurds
decompose naturally into the basic cellulose, with no chemicals
necessary as a catalyst.  Tree pulp contains only about 60 percent
cellulose, and the chemicals necessary to break down and process tree
pulp are very toxic, and especially unhealthy when dumped into our
rivers and streams.  It takes 41 acres of trees to make the paper of
10 acres of hemp, and the paper made from hemp is substantially
superior to the paper made from trees.  A book printed on hemp paper
will easily last 200 years.  Hence, the manufacture of cellulose-based
goods is much more efficient and environmentally sound with hemp, and
as a bonus, paper made from hemp is dioxin-free.
          The possibilities of hemp as a source of energy cast an
optimistic glow on these times of frugality.  The seeds of the hemp
plant contain 30 percent oil by volume, and straight from the seed it
can be used as a very high grade machine oil, and as a base for paints
and varnishes.   The biomass, or the leafy portion of the plant, can
be converted into charcoal and methanol by method of pyrolysis, which
involves heating at extreme temperatures in a low oxygen environment.
This charcoal can directly replace coal, one of our primary non-
renewable resources, and burn without the sulfur by-product, which is
the sole cause of acid rain.  Methanol can be used as fuel in our
cars, and burns cleaner and more efficiently than gasoline.  Methanol
also does not produce CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons) which upset ozone
formation.  If six percent of U.S. acreage were planted in hemp, all
of our nation's fuel requirements would be met without importing a
drop of oil.  With hemp as our energy source, the United States could
assume a global position as a fuel exporting nation, with the added
bonus of absorbing the majority of the greenhouse gases caused by
burning fossil fuels.
          Environmentally, hemp has many advantages.  Since the plant
grows so fast, it is a very efficient photosynthesizer.  In fact, it
is the only plant that can produce enough biomass per acre to process
enough CO2 to reverse the greenhouse effect.  In turn, this will cause
the ozone layer to begin reforming properly by maintaining a balance
between oxygen and carbon dioxide.  The burning of fossil fuels is the
direct cause of this imbalance, since the carbon remains of the
organic matter that formed fossil fuels are not alive today to absorb
the additional CO2 production when they are burned.  With hemp as a
source of fuel, and the hemp crop to absorb the CO2 by-product of
combustion, a homeostasis can be maintained in which Earth's natural
healing can begin.
          An additional environmental bonus of hemp is that it does
not stress the soil like most other plants.  Wheat, barley, cotton,
and other crops have roots about one or two inches long, and while the
plants are alive, nutrients are leached from this strata of the soil.
When they are harvested, the roots decompose into nutrients to be used
by the next generation of crops.  Hemp, on the other hand, has roots
that extend ten to twelve inches into the ground, and after harvest,
these decomposing root structures will rebuild the soil.  The leaves
that drop from the plant add to the richness of the topsoil and act
has humus, an organic fertilizer, giving the roots something to thrive
on.  Southern California and Utah had used hemp to rebuild compacted
and overworked soil until 1915.
          For hundreds of years, the flowering tops of the female hemp
plant have provided medicine for a myriad of maladies.  In the 1800's
and early 1900's, cannabis preparations were prescribed by physicians
for various ailments, such as breathing problems, depression, eating
disorders, and anxiety.  Recently, it has been discovered that
glaucoma patients can bring intraocular pressure down to a normal
level by using cannabis.  Also, it has been discovered that cannabis
gives anorexic patients the desire to eat.  Cancer patients would be
able to live the rest of their life without the painful side effects
and nausea of chemotherapy if cannabis were made available to them.
Medicines made from hemp were prevalent all the way up until the time
the plant was made illegal.
          From a recreational standpoint, many people view marijuana
use as a viable alternative to alcohol and hard drugs.  Many artists
and musicians claim that their marijuana use enhances their
creativity.  Some say it makes them more industrious, and gives them
good ideas.  Some use it for religious reasons.  Others enjoy relaxing
after a hard day's work.  Regardless of the uses and effects people
claim, it is the safest recreational drug known to man, safer than
alcohol, and considerably safer than nicotine.
          All was well with hemp until the year 1937, the year after
E.I. DuPont DeNemours & Company invented the chemical catalyst that is
used to process tree pulp into cellulose.  Company executives
predicted this chemical would be responsible for 80 percent of all
rail tanker shipments coming from DuPont.  Incidentally, this was also
about the same time that Popular Mechanics (February, 1938) ran an
article, called "Billion Dollar Cash Crop," about an invention that
could make large-scale hemp processing available to the average
farmer.  This invention threatened to cause losses to major timber-
holding companies, such as the Hearst Paper Manufacturing Division.
After the threat of major losses, Hearst began the largest anti-
marijuana campaign of all time, and one of his infamous headlines read
as follows:

          "MARIJUANA MAKES FIENDS OF BOYS IN 30 DAYS;
          HASHEESH GOADS USERS TO BLOOD-LUST."

          Thus, hemp provided unwanted competition in the cellulose
industry, and it simply had to be eradicated.  Memorialized in
DuPont's 1937 annual report to stockholders, profits would be made "to
the extent to which the revenue-raising power of government may be
converted into an instrument for forcing acceptance of sudden new
ideas of industrial and social reorganization."  They urged investors
to continue investing despite this setback.  Investors invested, and
politicians were purchased.  The result is a very expensive "war on
drugs," which is a battle that cannot be won, no matter how many lives
our government destroys.  Simply put, the "war on drugs" promotes
inefficiency of our economy and hurts everyone, whether they want to
believe they are involved or not.
          Our founding fathers, under the hempen flag of the new
nation, dressed in their hemp clothing, drafted the Declaration of
Independence on hemp paper, while their lamps were burning hemp seed
oil.  As quoted by Thomas Jefferson, "Hemp is of first necessity to
the commerce and marine; in other words to the wealth and protection
of the country."  Unfortunately, our current "leaders" are merely
puppets of political power, corrupted with corporate cash, protecting
the profits of their powerful patrons at the expense of environmental
emergency and the price of personal privacy.  It's time people get
educated beyond the disinformation campaigns and scare tactics being
employed by the conglomerate corporations in control of this country,
and begin to question the real motives of our Big Brother.


                     * Much of the information in this essay comes from the
                       book "The Emperor Wears No Clothes, by Jack Herer.
                       Buy it at Budget.  It's about twenty bucks, but worth
                       every penny.  Buy it.  Read it.....


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