The Daily Word in earthquakes in Italy, Dakota Access Pipeline, and Humboldt County weed growers

The Daily Word

Former DEA official Joseph Rannazzisi has accused Congress of prioritizing the pharmaceutical industry's profits over public health in its fight against prescription opioid epidemic. Rannazzisi said that drug companies have a "stranglehold" on Congress, influencing legislation to be more lax in allowing doctors to prescribe disproportionately large doses of prescription painkillers.

Native American water protectors of the Standing Rock Camp in North Dakota are despairing as the Dakota Access Pipeline nears completion. Time is running out, but some are doubling down on their commitment to stopping the pipeline before it reaches the Missouri River. “They can’t go through the river. We are not going to let them,” said Leota Eastman Iron Cloud, a Native American activist from South Dakota.

Central Italy was rocked by a devastating 6.6-magnitude earthquake on Sunday, leaving 300 dead and 15,000 without homes. Aftershocks continued into Monday, including one at 4.2-magnitude. This is the worst earthquake in Italy since 1980.

Lebanon was 29 months without a head of state until today, when Michel Aoun was sworn into office. Political infighting has kept position open since Michel Suleiman stepped down at the end of his term in May 2014.

With the legalization of medical marijuana in California came opportunities for long-time illegal growers in Humboldt County (where most of the weed in the US is grown) to legitimize their businesses. This may seem like a great option for growers, but in reality it's more complicated than that.