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Peter Reynolds

The life and times of Peter Reynolds

Posts Tagged ‘FSA

Talking Cannabis With the MHRA

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MHRA Headquarters

In November 2016 I organised a meeting with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and a number of key players in the CBD market.  It was in response to the MHRA seeking to clamp down on sales of CBD oil and related products.  That meeting led directly to the formation of the Cannabis Trades Association UK (CTAUK) which now represents more than 80% by turnover of all CBD suppliers in the UK.

Since that first meeting my friend and colleague Mike Harlington has taken on the leadership role at CTAUK and I give him great credit for what has been achieved.  We expect formal recognition by the MHRA is only a few weeks away and that is a tremendous coup.  For the first time ever, in the face of total intransigence by government, we have established to a significant degree a legally regulated cannabis market.  Clearly, it doesn’t yet go anywhere near far enough but this is the most concrete move ever towards long overdue cannabis law reform.

The first 18 months of CTAUK have not been easy.  Other than the MHRA, the other branches of government concerned are the Food Standards Agency (FSA) and the Home Office.  The FSA has also become a close working partner but, unsurprisingly, the Home Office remains difficult and our efforts to engage constructively with it have been characterised by responses that are inconsistent, irrational, contradictory and a realisation that it’s losing its grip on cannabis policy.  It is impossible to deal with.  In fact, I almost sympathise with the unfortunate civil servants charged with administering a policy that is itself irrational and contradictory and driven only by outdated prohibitionist values.  Maladministration of the Misuse of Drugs Act is now a persistent reality and several legal challenges to the Home Office’s conduct are imminent.  Soon the High Court will become involved in UK cannabis policy and then, in theory, facts and evidence should prevail rather than propaganda and government disinformation.

Dr Chris Jones

The CTAUK has been engaged in regular meetings with the MHRA and I was invited along for the most recent occasion.  The CTAUK team was Mike Harlington, Tom Whettem of Canabidol and myself.  The MHRA team was Dr Chris Jones, head of the Borderline Medicines section and Raj Gor. We discussed many administrative matters and gave a great deal of time again to discussing medicinal claims and how members could avoid mistakes.  It seems obvious that no claims of medicinal benefit can be made but there are many instances where it’s not clear cut.  A particular case we looked at was the use of ‘night’ and ‘day’ CBD products.  Eventually it was agreed that this description is acceptable but only just. This is an excellent example of how CTAUK works to represent its members’ interests and with goodwill on both sides how positive agreement can be reached.

On a continuing, day-to-day basis CTAUK and MHRA are in constant touch, ironing out problems, asking for and taking advice from each other.  I am impressed with the way the relationship has evolved and jointly we bring great benefit to the industry and consumers.

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Hoodwinked By The Banker Robbers

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That’s you and me.  We’re the one’s who’ve been conned and cheated.  Gordon, Alistair, the FSA – they’re all either criminally negligent incompetents or co-conspirators.

Absolutely nothing has changed in the world of banking.  Is any more proof needed that the people running banks are liars, cheats and thieves?  Aside from the systematic extortion of the taxpayer, none of the promises about lending to the real ecomony or reining in their depraved “culture” have been kept.

Spineless assurances will not do anymore.  The government must radically overhaul the terms of the licences under which banks operate.   Real leadership and responsibility is needed now to ensure that this happens  before the end of the year – not after months or years of consultation and behind the scenes corruption.

Businesses that want to enjoy the huge privilege of serving UK consumers as bankers must be held to a strict and rigidly enforced rulebook.   No participation in casino banking, minimum levels of lending, maximum levels of interest rates and charges, a “right to borrow” for those businesses and consumers who meet straightforward criteria.

These steps are essential to re-establish the operation of an effective market economy.  In a world which has become entirely monetised we can no longer be subject to the rapacious and avaricious behaviour of those who run the money business.

A Conspiracy Of Shabby, Venal Thieves

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It is truly pathetic isn’t it to see these pathetic, small men grubbing around in the gutter to try and save themselves?crosby

“Sir” James Crosby runs HBOS into the ground then bails out at the last minute to become vice-chairman of the FSA.  You really couldn’t make these things up unless you were writing a Mafia or organised crime novel.

He becomes one of the Prime Minister’s cronies and overpaid advisors but then is caught out by the whistleblower who he sacked.

They are tumbling like nine pins now but who is still getting away with it?  Who has been in post for longer than any of these bank robbers?  Who was responsible for settiong up the regulatory system that has proved to be corrupt and incompetent?  Gordon Brown, the worst, most corrupt, most incompetent, most myopic, most venal of them all.

There is no more time.  This tyrant must be overthrown now.  All these knighthoods must be withdrawn.  Criminal investigations and personal bankruptcies must follow.

Written by Peter Reynolds

February 11, 2009 at 12:16 pm

Now Is The Time For Recrimination – Before They Get Away!

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I am delighted to see that The Times and now, this morning, Andrew Marr, are joining me in calling for bankers to be brought to account.  The “Thunderer” even said that “heads must roll”.  Roll they must, many of them, until the baskets are full and the streets of the City are running with blood.  The executions should take place in public so that the greedy thieves and scoundrels who have pillaged our economy can be subject to public humiliation and villification as they meet their doom.

I will carry the metaphor no further but the dread and fear that should now be ruining the weekends of the chief executives and chairmen of the banks should be little different from that of the French aristocrats awaiting the guillotine.

We must insist that those individuals who have taken multi million pound bonuses from banks, funds and all forms of financial institutions that are now insolvent must be able to justify the payments in the same way that a director of a small business that had gone bust might have to explain his drawings to a liquidator.  In many instances money will have to be recovered.

Whether guilty of personal wrongdoing or not, the chairmen, chief executives and non-executive directors who have presided over this catastrophe must take responsibility and go!  The same sanction must fall on the heads of the regulators.

Lord Adair Turner, Chairman, and Jon Pain, Managing Director Retail Markets, who both accepted poisoned chalices at the FSA only last month may have some excuse but the rest of the board should be summarily dismissed, not even allowed to resign.

Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling have been extraordinarily unequivocal in many of their statements this week.  We want to know much, much more detail about the “mechanisms” that will put in place to restrain the banks in future.   If the taxpayer has saved your business then in future you will not be gambling on ludicrously complex financial products that only you understand and for which you set the rules.  We prefer that you lend £100,000 to a small business rather than £10 million to a virtual roulette wheel.

“There a million stories in the Naked City”.  Now is the time for “le dénouement”.