cannabisnews.com: Legalizing Marijuana is No Panacea
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Legalizing Marijuana is No Panacea
Posted by CN Staff on April 26, 2010 at 07:40:12 PT
By Thomas Elias
Source: Daily Californian
California -- There's a sense among a lot of Californians that legalizing marijuana and taxing it is some sort of panacea that would solve many law enforcement problems, make it safer to smoke pot and also produce a tax bonanza of $1 billion or more per year. Voters will see just such a proposal in November.Much of the pro-legalization thinking is based on analogies to the alcohol experience, which sees booze putting about $3 billion into the coffers of state and local governments each year and providing more than 300,000 jobs around the state.
But cannabis is not alcohol. For one thing, criminal elements did control much of the booze trade during Prohibition and they did foment gang warfare during the 1920s and early '30s. But backyard breweries and distilleries were far more rare than pot gardens are today. And when it came to larger-scale production, foreigners were rarely involved. So it was easier to bring alcohol into the realm of legitimate business than is likely with legalized pot.Then there's the matter of federal law. When Prohibition ended, so did most federal alcohol raids. But Californians have their heads in the sand if they believe a state vote to legalize pot will end federal raids.Yes, President Obama indicated while campaigning in 2008 that he most likely would not hassle mom and pop medical marijuana operations, from growers to dispensaries. And raids have eased off since his election. Obama and his attorney general, Eric Holder, reserve the option to raid under the constitutional provision giving federal law precedence over state laws.Obama never said a positive word about recreational marijuana, not covered by the 1996 Proposition 215, which made medipot legal in this state but authorized no other sort of use. Sure, pot users pay $40 or $50 to shady doctors who hand out "recommendations" needed to get marijuana at dispensaries. That's an end-run around the law, but falls short of open defiance of federal law.Many precedents suggest such defiance would cause the federal Drug Enforcement Administration to restart serious anti-pot enforcement efforts again if recreational use is "legalized."Then there are the matters of price and taxation. The sales and excise levies that would produce the largest share of taxes anticipated by backers of legalization depend directly both on price and the openness of sales.How likely are pot prices to remain at their present level of $100 per ounce or more? Not very, if every pot user can suddenly grow his or her own in a backyard or a window box. Which means estimates of the tax take from legalization are probably higher than it would be.And how likely are the big commercial pot growers to allow themselves to be taxed?With legalization likely to bring the price of pot down, the drug cartels behind illicit operations won't want to give a nickel to the tax man.They may engage in some kind of warfare against growers who do pay taxes and let themselves be regulated. They won't take kindly to competition or having their street dealers made irrelevant.Legalization could bring to California the kind of drug wars plaguing Mexico and Colombia, where gangs and cartels openly defy police.None of that even mentions the moral and medical questions often raised both by doctors and police: What is the social benefit of legalizing a mind-altering substance that produces passivity and lethargy? And what about addiction, anxiety and psychosis, three conditions that may be associated with regular pot use.Life will not become simpler if pot is legalized, nor would the benefits be as clear-cut as proponents suggest.ē Thomas Elias, a journalist based in Southern California, writes about state politics. His column appears in Opinion on Mondays. Source: Daily Californian, The (CA Edu)Author: Thomas EliasPublished: April 26, 2010Copyright: 2010 The Daily CalifornianContact: dailycal dailycal.orgWebsite: http://www.dailycal.org/URL: http://drugsense.org/url/L82njczaCannabisNews -- Cannabis Archiveshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/list/cannabis.shtml 
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Comment #26 posted by Had Enough on April 30, 2010 at 20:39:29 PT
Los Angeles DA Really Hates Pot Legalization
Pot-hating, publicity-loving Los Angeles County District Attorney Steve Cooley, who has claimed medical marijuana dispensaries are illegal operations, is now targeting the legitimacy of a November ballot initiative to legalize recreational cannabis and allow local governments to tax and regulate it. In an April 13 letter (PDF) to Attorney General Jerry Brown, Cooley claims the title and summary for the measure is "wrong and highly misleading" and should be disallowed, reports Peter Hecht at The Sacramento Bee.Cooley, an ambitious hot-dogger of a Republican who's hoping to replace Brown as attorney general, claims the initiative falsely offers "major tax and other benefits" for state and local governments by regulating marijuana similarly to alcohol.Found here...http://www.tokeofthetown.com/2010/04/los_angeles_da_really_hates_pot_legalization_initi.php***Check out the banner above and behind his head...
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Comment #25 posted by afterburner on April 28, 2010 at 07:39:12 PT
'Sneaky Puffs" -- Heather Mills
Sneaky Laws, sneaky puffs.Enshrining racism in state anti-cannabis laws = sneaky law.Unconstitutional Taxing of Cannabis ("Marihuana") to avoid passing a Constitutional Amendment = sneaky law.Paraphernalia laws = sneaky law.Evicting people from government-sponsored housing for cannabis possession = sneaky law.Cutting cannabis users off from student aid = sneaky law.Restricting cannabis from huge 1000 feet 'school zones' = sneaky law.Arming local law enforcement with army surplus weapons = sneaky law.Increasing penalties on cannabis possession if a 2nd Amendment protected gun is present in a home = sneaky law.Passing higher penalties from cannabis possession than for rape or murder = sneaky law."Marijuana" tax stamps = sneaky law.Prohibiting research on medical cannabis benefits = sneaky law.Sneaky Laws, sneaky puffs.Legalize it!
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Comment #24 posted by Paint with light on April 27, 2010 at 23:46:09 PT
We're all bozos on this bus
Someday the clowns will run the circus.Memories from Firesign Theater.Squeeze the wheeze!That is our sacred mount.It's a beaut.No it's a mount.Legal like alcohol.
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Comment #23 posted by Hope on April 27, 2010 at 20:46:36 PT
Sensimilla Jones
:0)
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Comment #22 posted by Sinsemilla Jones on April 27, 2010 at 19:54:35 PT
You're quite welcome, Hope
Always happy to get someone back to their political roots.:)
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Comment #21 posted by IIzzaacc on April 27, 2010 at 15:39:39 PT:
Ford invents wheat/hemp plastic body panels
Popular Mechanics, December, 1941Over in England it's saccharine for sugar; on the continent it's charcoal "gasogenes" in the rumble seat instead of gasoline in the tank. Here in America there's plenty of sugar, plenty of gasoline. Yet there's an industrial revolution in progress just the same, a revolution in materials that will affect every home. After twelve years of research, the Ford Motor Company has completed an experimental automobile with a plastic body. Although its design takes advantage of the properties of plastics, the streamline car does not differ greatly in appearance from its steel counterpart. The only steel in the hand-made body is found in the tubular welded frame on which are mounted 14 plastic panels, 3/16 inch thick. Composed of a mixture of farm crops and synthetic chemicals, the plastic is reported to withstand a blow 10 times as great as steel without denting. Even the windows and windshield are of plastic. The total weight of the plastic car is about 2,000 pounds, compared with 3,000 pounds for a steel automobile of the same size. Although no hint has been given as to when plastic cars may go into production, the experimental model is pictured as a step toward materialization of Henry Ford's belief that some day he would "grow automobiles from the soil." When Henry Ford recently unveiled his plastic car, result of 12 years of research, he gave the world a glimpse of the automobile of tomorrow, its tough panels molded under hydraulic pressure of 1,500 pounds per square inch from a recipe that calls for 70 percent ofcellulose fibers from wheat straw, hemp and sisal plus 30 percent resin binder. The only steel in the car is its tubular welded frame. The plastic car weighs a ton, 1,000 pounds lighter than a comparable steel car. Manufacturers are already taking a low-priced plastic car to test the public's taste by 1943.
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Comment #20 posted by ezrydn on April 27, 2010 at 05:20:15 PT:
Research, Please
The writer of this column made a glaring mistake. He said no foreigners were involved with alcohol prohibition. I guess none of the hootch came out of Canada nor Mexico, eh? You can plant and tend grass anywhere. Stills and distilleries are another animal entirely.Isn't Logic 101 still required in the US to get a degree? 
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Comment #19 posted by Hope on April 27, 2010 at 03:59:31 PT
Thank you so much, Sensimilla Jones
You reminded me, this fine morning, of where I stand politically. I'm a Marxist. Groucho Marxist.
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Comment #18 posted by Sinsemilla Jones on April 26, 2010 at 21:50:22 PT
Everything You Know Is Wrong
Yes, and Communism was invented by Groucho Marx and John Lennon.Which proves my premise that comedy and rock music are communist plots.After all, I did thorough research after reaching my conclusions....I looked at some Firesign Theater album covers for a few seconds.(Sorry, I lied. I didn't even look at the Firesign Theater albums, and just now looked them up on the internet to find I was wrong in thinking that Everything You Know Is Wrong had Marx and Lennon on the cover. It was actually How Can You Be In Two Places At Once When You're Not Anywhere At All, but don't let that dissuade you from believing everything I made up.)
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Comment #17 posted by The GCW on April 26, 2010 at 19:25:10 PT
IIzzaacc,
Right on.The hemp part of this issue is potentially bigger and more important than the cannabis issue.Mind blowing.It seems like the root of every problem We face can be traced back to cannabis prohibition Biblically. That's because We were told God created all the seed bearing plants saying they're all good ON THE VERY 1ST PAGE OF THE BIBLE. And since powerful people ignore that, all We get is problems from then on.Cannabis / hemp prohibition is the original living sin from the beginning.-0-We have been getting screwed by evil ever since.If the devil were to create one blanket seperation between God and His "spirit of truth" to seperate the most people from God / The Ecologician, where would the devil start?Not in the New Testament. Not page 312 or page 100. The devil would want to separate the most people as soon as He could; that would be PAGE ONE! And that's what's happening.Then after separating the most people on the 1st page, they are lost and stumbling and by time they get to page 3 where the teachings of do not kill / murder start, they are already stumbling; so they then kill and murder too.The people are mostly lost and stumbling from the beginning.Now Our factories are gone since hemp isn't grown, We don't need the factories associated with hemp fields.And although communist Chinese farmers grow hemp, free American farmers may not. -And America's largest foreign debt is with China.That's GROSS.It's time to RE-introduce hemp as a component of American agriculture.But the devil will not allow it.
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Comment #16 posted by FoM on April 26, 2010 at 16:29:16 PT
What I Think Will Happen
When cannabis is legal to possess and grow people who have a yard will grow it in their vegetable gardens and share it with neighbors. That part of the population will be in good shape. For those who have lots of money and don't want to have a garden or live in an apartment and can't have a garden the tobacco companies will move in and mass produce it to be sold for less money. That was what most people thought back in the 70s when we were getting close to legalization. People were even kiddingly picking names for what the tobacco companies would call it.
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Comment #15 posted by IIzzaacc on April 26, 2010 at 16:18:54 PT:
One more point for legalization
In the articles I have read, the industrial side is rarely or never mentioned. I was wondering if the tax dollar amounts have include the industrial side of it. Their is more to legalization then recreation side of it.
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Comment #14 posted by augustwest on April 26, 2010 at 16:08:32 PT:
always a market
How likely are pot prices to remain at their present level of $100 per ounce or more? Not very, if every pot user can suddenly grow his or her own in a backyard or a window box. Which means estimates of the tax take from legalization are probably higher than it would be.I don't believe enough people will grow their own to drop the price below a 100 an ounce. There will still be a commercial market because some consumers will only buy the corporate brand. McCannabis is coming. Like it or not.
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Comment #13 posted by The GCW on April 26, 2010 at 16:07:58 PT
GeoChemist,
The whole "moral" consideration regarding cannabis is an issue that has been misused. It seems as though it's misused by people who have not quite thought about it and only identify with the basic idea that to have good morals people should not use cannabis. It goes further when people believe good morals includes making and keeping cannabis illegal. That is all pretty stupid.To help expose that ignoid thinking I like to present the micro-reality of it. Since often moral decissions equate to Christian type thought patterns...I ask if it is ok to put people in a cage for using a plant. -And I try not to just ask but rather push this conversation with a good tone of voice.That helps show bad morals.It is badevil morals for one human to cage another human for using what God indicates He created and says is good on the 1st page of the Bible.I've confronted Christians with this process and it wakes them up.They don't want to hear themselves say they want to cage a person for using a plant.So let's force the ignoids to think.Sometimes I feel as though I'm helping chase evil spirits out of people.
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Comment #12 posted by RevRayGreen on April 26, 2010 at 15:55:01 PT
(poll)Do you think the state of Iowa should
Do you think the state of Iowa should legalize medical marijuana? (55% for right now)http://www.kcci.com/index.htmlTV-8 is also doing a two-part story on California Medical MJ on 4/29, 4/30 10 pm news.....Videos Posted by KCCIhttp://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000041880628&ref=profile#!/video/video.php?v=398374092272
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Comment #11 posted by GeoChemist on April 26, 2010 at 15:46:16 PT
Need I say more?
"None of that even mentions the moral and medical questions often raised both by doctors and police"1. Morality is a point of view, a society cannot regulate morality
2. the words "medical", "moral", and "police" should never be used in the same sentenceWhat is the role of law enforcement again? These people are so far behind, they think they're in front.
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Comment #10 posted by FoM on April 26, 2010 at 14:34:39 PT
Hope and Everyone
I believe in thinking things thru thoroughly. I don't believe in talking points. When I hear anyone say anything about freedom I cringe. Freedom is something that we can have if we choose to think like we are free. We can be enslaved even if we live in a country like ours in our own minds. Prohibitionists just rattle off talking points but never honestly connect the dots. There is a commonality in many people who just don't want people to be allowed to be different then what fits their own personal norm.
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Comment #9 posted by Hope on April 26, 2010 at 14:06:19 PT
This is great. It's so warped.
Prohibitionists are being forced to talk to defend their views and try to sound reasonable. They can't do it. Prohibitionists talking is prohibitionists being revealed for what they are. Nuts!Good. 
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Comment #8 posted by The GCW on April 26, 2010 at 13:17:21 PT
POLL
How should pot be treated in California?
  
 
Illegal (stay the same) (23%)
 Legal (39%)
 Decriminalize (30%)
 Don't care
 Crack down on the stonershttp://www.thejackonline.org/
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Comment #7 posted by FoM on April 26, 2010 at 11:25:28 PT
Only Thing That Made Sense To Me In The Article
Excerpt: How likely are pot prices to remain at their present level of $100 per ounce or more? Not very, if every pot user can suddenly grow his or her own in a backyard or a window box. Which means estimates of the tax take from legalization are probably higher than it would be.***I say when the money incentive is removed cannabis won't be an issue to drug cartels because it will be grown in the USA and we won't need Mexico to smuggle any into the states.
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Comment #6 posted by dongenero on April 26, 2010 at 10:58:32 PT
Ridiculous line of reasoning in this article
"But backyard breweries and distilleries were far more rare than pot gardens are today."They realized the folly of alcohol prohibition in for less time than we have realized the folly of cannabis prohibition. Yes, the problem gets worse over time....hello?"And when it came to larger-scale production, foreigners were rarely involved."Actually when it came to the largest producers, foreign nations were most certainly involved. Canada was a major distiller of alcohol during Prohibition. Those producers went on to become the Canadian brands we know and love today."So it was easier to bring alcohol into the realm of legitimate business than is likely with legalized pot."So????....how so ?????? "Then there's the matter of federal law. When Prohibition ended, so did most federal alcohol raids. But Californians have their heads in the sand if they believe a state vote to legalize pot will end federal raids."Speakeasies were all over New York and finally New York ended prohibition before the Federal ban was lifted.This article is so misguided it finally ends with this gem:"Legalization could bring to California the kind of drug wars plaguing Mexico and Colombia, where gangs and cartels openly defy police."Sure Mr. Elias, just like we have the horrible violence related to liquor store turf wars and shoot-outs between competing microbreweries.This Elias guy is on something that is altering his grasp of reality.
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Comment #5 posted by Vincent on April 26, 2010 at 10:20:04 PT:
Same ol' thing
Is this actually a current article, or is it a rehashing of everything I"ve heard come out of a prohibitionist's mouth from jumpstreet? And, of course the "author" had to mention addiction. No matter how many times it has proven that Marijuana ISN'T addictive, that finding is always ignored by these anti-Marijuana lowlifes. Talk about people being machines, boy, I'm telling you. 
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Comment #4 posted by HempWorld on April 26, 2010 at 08:52:27 PT
What a laughable article!
I got several good laughs out of this piece of ...And this sentence takes the cake: "Legalization could bring to California the kind of drug wars plaguing Mexico and Colombia"Duh, the drug wars or rather prohibition, is causing the violence in these countries! Dummy!
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Comment #3 posted by The GCW on April 26, 2010 at 08:40:50 PT
Re-legalize; it's Biblically correct
RE-legalizing the plant would solve many law enforcement problems, make it safer to smoke pot and also produce a tax bonanza of $1 billion or more per year. Plus make it possible for free American farmer to grow hemp. Make it possible for people to use it for religous purposes. On and on...But another very important reason to RE-legalize the superplant that doesnít get mentioned is because itís Biblically correct since Christ God Our Father, The Ecologician, indicates He created all the seed-bearing plants, saying they are all good, on literally the very first page (Genesis 1:11-12 and 29-30). 
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Comment #2 posted by Sam Adams on April 26, 2010 at 08:20:51 PT
boogie man!!
This is just silly, when legalization happens gangster-types will become an endangered species. btw here is a great socially-conscious vacation idea for August in Spain:http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/entertainment/ROTOTOM-FESTIVAL
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Comment #1 posted by runruff on April 26, 2010 at 08:17:33 PT
Thomas,
Thomas, Thomas, Thomas, my, my!Idiot, liar or misplaced trust?Whatta prognosis....good grief, I'm nearly speachless!
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