Nevada Conservatives Against the War on Drugs 

Nevada Conservatives Against the War on Drugs 
Posted by CN Staff on August 11, 2006 at 12:05:01 PT
By Sasha Abramsky 
Source: Mother Jones 
Nevada -- Voters have been losing their taste for the war on drugs lately; in the past few years, states from Arizona and Alaska to California and Hawaii have moved toward making marijuana, in particular, a low priority for law enforcement, with first-offense possession cases often dismissed with small-time fines and medical-marijuana measures on the books in several states. But the initiative voters in Nevada will be considering this fall goes much further: The “tax and regulate” measure, whose supporters got it on the ballot by collecting 86,000 signatures, would allow anyone over 21 to possess up to one ounce for personal use, would set up a system of pot shops (at a specified distance from schools), and would tax marijuana in a manner comparable to alcohol.
What’s intriguing about the measure is not just that it could turn Reno and Vegas into American Amsterdams, but that its most enthusiastic champions are folks like Chuck Muth. A burly, crew-cut, 47-year-old meat-and-potatoes man—during dinner at the Glen Eagles restaurant, to which he has driven in a beat-up, 15-year-old station wagon, he opts out of the salad and never touches the vegetables that come with the steak—Muth runs a conservative networking organization named Citizen Outreach. Inspired by a course designed in Newt Gingrich’s office that he took in Washington, D.C., in 1996, he also leads message-honing seminars that have trained many successful Republican politicians and public figures including the state’s current first lady, Dema Guinn; his electronic newsletter claims 15,000 daily readers nationwide.Nevada went for Bush in 2000 and 2004, but not by much. It is a land of desert and mountains, conservative in an old-fashioned, western sense. And that, says Muth, who grew up in Baltimore and was arrested for pot possession in a city park late one night when he was 19 years old, makes it the perfect state to say no to the war on drugs. “Live and let live,” says Muth. “If I’m not bothering anyone else, don’t bother me.” The politician he most idealizes is Barry Goldwater, another Republican who took on his party’s sacred cows.What if Nevada were to pass the measure and the feds swept in? “Bring it on,” Muth exclaims, so excited his large fist literally thumps the table. “This country has needed a big fight over federalism for a long time. I’d love to see it here. If the feds came in, you’d start to see a backlash against the drug war and the federal government. The war on drugs is a total failure. It’s time to bring the troops home.” It’s a hallmark of how much has changed from a decade ago, when Democrats and Republicans were clamoring for ever more tough-on-drugs measures, that the war on drugs will likely be undone (if it ever is) in the red states, by conservatives like Muth, his friend Grover Norquist (the conservative guru at Americans for Tax Reform), writer William F. Buckley, Jr., economist Milton Friedman, and former Secretary of State George Shultz, all of whom have a sort of Nixon-going-to-China advantage in turning soft on pot. Across the nation, says Bill Piper, director of national affairs for the Drug Policy Alliance, about a quarter of Republicans support marijuana legalization, and the numbers are creeping up. “The next generation of Republicans is much more libertarian than social conservative,” says Piper. “At its core, conservatism is supposed to be about free markets, the rule of law, and smaller government—and you can’t have any of those when you have a massive war on drugs.” At last year’s Conservative Political Action Conference, Drug Policy Alliance director Ethan Nadelmann got enthusiastic applause when he called on Republicans to move away from the lock-’em-up approach as a drug-prevention strategy. For Nevada, this is not the first attempt to pass a legalization measure. Four years ago, advocates got an initiative on the ballot that would have permitted possession of up to three ounces of marijuana; the initiative gained the support of the Nevada Conference of Police and Sheriffs. “We’re saying we should be spending our time protecting and serving the public,” asserted the organization’s then-president, Andy Anderson, before pressure from members forced the conference’s leadership to abandon its support. On Election Day, the initiative polled 39 percent. This time around, despite early polls showing 56 percent of voters opposing the measure, supporters are hoping that they’ll do better come Election Day. Across the state, says Neal Levine, who leads the campaign for the measure, more and more conservatives are getting interested in reform for pragmatic as well as philosophical reasons; attempting to stamp out marijuana usage through incarceration, argues Levine, “is the biggest, costliest policy of failure this side of Iraq.” The D.C.-based Sentencing Project estimates that it costs America more than $4 billion annually to arrest, prosecute, and lock up marijuana offenders. Levine, who lives in Las Vegas, maintains ties to many activists inside the Republican Party. The campaign’s press officer is a Log Cabin Republican. The measure’s most fervent backers, besides Muth, include Earlene Forsythe, a former military nurse who now specializes in caring for cancer patients. Forsythe, 56, chaired the state GOP during the 2004 presidential election season and has framed photos of herself with Laura and George Bush on her office walls. But she’s lost patience with her party over the issue of medical marijuana. “If my patient wants to go out and smoke a joint,” she shrugs, “I say, ‘Why not?’” Besides, argues Muth, what better state than Nevada to launch a drug-reform movement? “It’s got to start somewhere,” he says. “The first domino has to fall.” Note: News: If passed, a fall ballot initiative with some unlikely supporters could turn Reno and Vegas into American Amsterdams. Source: Mother Jones (US)Author: Sasha Abramsky Published: August 11, 2006 Copyright: 2006 Foundation for National ProgressContact: backtalk motherjones.comWebsite: Articles & Web Site:Regulate Marijuana in Nevada's Time To Enact New State Marijuana Policy Endorses Nevada Pot Initiative
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Comment #26 posted by museman on August 15, 2006 at 12:45:35 PT
you can quote me on it.
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Comment #25 posted by museman on August 15, 2006 at 12:20:11 PT
Once upon a time..
In the beginning, God made Adam and Eve. They got kicked out of the garden for reasons which are still up for debate to this day.Anyway they had two sons; Cain and Abel.Now God really liked Abel, and when the two brothers set altars up to worship God, HE favored Abel, and pretty much ignored Cain.After a time, Cains anger got the best of him, so he lured Abel out into the desert and murdered him thinking that if Abel was out of the way, God might pay more attention to him.He did the deed, buried his unfortunate brother in the ground, and was on his way back home feeling quite clever, when God spoke to him."Where is your brother Cain?"Cain must've jumped ten feet in the air, but he was after all a clever man, thought quite highly of himself, so he answered snidely,"Am I my brothers keeper?"God replied,"The blood of Abel cries out to me from the ground. You have murdered your brother! For this I will make you a pariah, a cast out. I will put a mark on you that all nations an people will know that you are Cain -the murderer."Cain got so scared, he turned white.
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Comment #24 posted by whig on August 15, 2006 at 12:01:20 PT
Richard Zuckerman
You wrote:Monday, August 14, 2006, page B1, the LOCAL section, I was quoted as having said that "Mexicans breed like rats." I meant that!Why do you say these things, Richard? It's one thing that you think them, irrational generalization as they may be. But if you really dislike people then leave them alone and don't be antagonistic. What do you possibly expect to accomplish with your anti-Hispanic, anti-Black rants? Do you think if you are mean enough to people they will be nice to you?
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Comment #23 posted by Richard Zuckerman on August 15, 2006 at 11:02:03 PT:; Ron Paul is in favor of removing the criminal penalties of "Marijuana". Unfortunately, his toll free hot line recording now says he will not run for election this coming November 2006 because he and his family have received DEATH THREATS! Didn't H. Ross Perot receive death threats? It sounds like the Bush/Rockefeller team at it again! Congressman MacDonald issued a letter to Americans warning about the conspiracy by the Rockefeller team to economically enslave us and eliminate our individual freedoms! Congressman MacDonald was subsequently shot down in Korean Airlines Flight 007, under suspicious circumstances!! U.S. Senator Wellstone's airplane went down under suspicious circumstances after George Herbert Walker Bush called him a "chickenshit"! The September 11, 2001, World Trade Center airplane disaster was an inside job. You bet there is a conspiracy! Psychiatrists have diagnosed me as "Paranoid", in the past. As one of my brothers once told me: "Just because you are paranoid doesn't mean they are not out to get you!" Vote for Libertarian Party, Ralph Nader, or, Green Party, political candidates on election day. Voting for Republican/Democrat snake head political candidates or not voting at all merely contributes to the mess we are in today! Exercise jury nullification to veto bad law if you become a jury. Do not waive your constitutional Right to keep and bear arms,!!! Americans better wake up or the Mexicans and other foreign invasions will continue to move in on us. David Rockefeller and the Council on Foreign Relations wants to build a NAFTA SUPER HIGHWAYS, according to last month's issue of, which will burden us poor and middle class Americans even more with property taxes, emminent domain, and accomodating millions more illegal Mexicans!!!!! In yesterday's Home News Tribune,, article entitled "Human-rights fight for legals or illegals should always remain civil," by Gina Vergel, gvergel, Monday, August 14, 2006, page B1, the LOCAL section, I was quoted as having said that "Mexicans breed like rats." I meant that! Federal law encourages pregnant illegal immigrants (read: MEXICANS) to somehow make it into this country to obtain INSTANT CITIZENSHIP!!!!!!!!!! Every day I proceed down Livingston Avenue, New Brunswick, New Jersey, I see pregnant Mexicans and Mexican women with infants and children by their side. I asked Congressman Pallone last Thursday, August 10, 2006, who pays for them. He said the government does not pay for all of them, that private charities pay for some of them. I say illegal immigrants should be barred from having children! ZERO POPULATION GROWTH OF ILLEGAL ALIENS!! NO SOCIAL SERVICES FOR ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS. Too many hospitals have suffered for giving free medical care to illegals, to much government subsidies given to illegals, and all they do is take low level jobs; The cost of sustaining them and their every growing number of families outweighs the revenue they produce for us!!!!!!!!!! Perhaps Congress wants to use them for cheeeep labor to build those aforementioned NAFTA SUPER HIGHWAYS. Congressman Pallone agrees that "free trade agreements have never benefitted Americans." Yet you lessor of two evils people will vote for Democrats, who want to take our Right to keep and bear arms away from us and spend more on teacher unions instead of improving the curriculum of public schools!!!!!!!!!!Richard Paul Zuckerman, Box 159, Metuchen, N.J., 08840-0159, richardzuckerman2002, (Cell phone)(848) 250-8879.
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Comment #22 posted by Hope on August 12, 2006 at 09:09:27 PT
They need to be speaking at every venue possible in Nevada and Colorado!
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Comment #21 posted by ekim on August 12, 2006 at 09:06:04 PT
Aug 16 06 Kiwanis Club of Las Vegas 12:00 PM 
Aug 16 06 Kiwanis Club of Las Vegas 12:00 PM Jay Fleming Las Vegas Nevada USA 
 With the state abuzz about the possiblity of marijuana being legalized during the upcoming November elections, Speaker Jay Fleming meets with members of the Kiwanis Club of Las Vegas to discuss this and other drug prohibition related issues.
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Comment #20 posted by mayan on August 12, 2006 at 05:51:38 PT
Guest columnist: Arrests for marijuana use ruins lives needlessly:,,TCP_24463_4910975,00.htmlPlacentia planning 45-day ban on medical marijuana outlets: on "liquid terror"...Latest London Terror Plot a Blair Hoax? (Aug. 11 entry): TERROR: Training People To Act Like Subservient Slaves - Terrorists planned to mix liquids so why are they all being poured into airport bins? Terror Threat - More Government Foreknowledge: a f*cking crock:
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Comment #19 posted by whig on August 11, 2006 at 20:02:34 PT
John Tyler
You got it brother.
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Comment #18 posted by FoM on August 11, 2006 at 19:59:23 PT
John Tyler
I see it! I understand!
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Comment #17 posted by John Tyler on August 11, 2006 at 19:53:41 PT
off topic a bit
This is a little off topic, but I was thinking about this while I was walking my dogs the other night...especially in light of the constant Middle East problems etc., etc. Peace, love and understanding, may make you laugh, but its alternative, war, hatred, and misunderstanding will surely make you cry.It's in the news all the time. I don't know why more people can see this. It's all around, if we could but preceive.   
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Comment #16 posted by whig on August 11, 2006 at 18:38:53 PT
Unless they can keep cannabis prohibition, they can't keep all the marbles. But I do want to say that we aren't trying to capture the marbles for ourselves, or at least I am not and others like me. I don't think I would be a particularly good person if I had to be in charge of something like the United States. It would be too corrupting to give the kinds of orders and have that kind of power. We can't trust our friends with it any more than our enemies, because anyone can abuse power. The whole system needs to change in a way that power isn't too concentrated, people have freedom to live their lives and help one another without being compelled by threat or fear of starvation and death.
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Comment #15 posted by mayan on August 11, 2006 at 18:17:41 PT
A Race Against Time
“The next generation of Republicans is much more libertarian than social conservative,” says Piper. “At its core, conservatism is supposed to be about free markets, the rule of law, and smaller government—and you can’t have any of those when you have a massive war on drugs.”One reason that the neo-cons did 9/11 when they did is because they knew they were running out of time. With the progresive boomers moving into positions of power and the nation's conservatives adopting a more libertarian ideology, agendas like PNAC and the WOsD just wouldn't fly in the near future. 9/11 was a pre-planned,last ditch safety mechanism to turn back the calendar to the 1950's before the children of the 60's became affluent.It now becomes clear why the neo-cons engaged in such dirty,desperate tactics to get Bush into the White House in 2000 (Florida) and keep him there in 2004 (Ohio). Without him the PNAC agenda and the neo-con takeover would never have happened as it did. It was a race against time for them, as it is for us. This current power struggle is for ALL of the marbles.THE WAY OUT IS THE WAY IN...Alex Jones' Warning: A CALL TO ACTION! (video): Government's 9/11 Facade is Crumbling: Trade Center Premieres, 9/11 Truth Movement Responds: the Historical Record: With Terror Alerts? In the Bush era, the timing and quality of "arrests" and "warnings" have a suspicious ring:,8599,1211369,00.htmlFormer NSA Official: Terror Plot Cooked by Bush Blair Mafia: The Modern History Of Staged Terror In The United Kingdom (mp3):’s thwart 'the Big One' now: Pentagon's "Second 911":
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Comment #14 posted by FoM on August 11, 2006 at 17:51:59 PT
Now For Some LWW Today News
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Comment #13 posted by FoM on August 11, 2006 at 17:33:36 PT
This will be the very first time that my husband and myself are voting in a non presidential election. We are both voting for all the Democrats and I would not vote for a Republican ever and I mean it. I made a mistake and voted for Reagan. First time shame on them. Second time shame on me. There will never be a second time.
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Comment #12 posted by FoM on August 11, 2006 at 17:28:23 PT
Just a Comment
Sometimes I really don't know what to say about an article. I hope I'm wrong but I don't think it will pass. Alcohol rules in Las Vegas. The one time I was in Reno they kept offering free drinks and I didn't know why at first because I thought that might make people act foolishly with their money and be sorry the next day. I stayed with the nickel slots and broke even after playing for a day and didn't consume anything but Diet Coke. Cannabis would help a person use better sense with their money so why would they want it out there?
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Comment #11 posted by MikeEEEEE on August 11, 2006 at 17:22:53 PT
For the record
The conservatives have been in power for the last couple of years and we're all seeing how screwed up things are.I really don't care what they say. What I'd like to hear is that people are waking up and voting them out this Nov.
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Comment #10 posted by goneposthole on August 11, 2006 at 17:04:57 PT
He's dreaming
Cannabis legal in Nevada? Dream on. Then again, dreams do come true. I remember travelling along the Oregon coast in 1985. My wif and I stayed a night in a motel in Seaside, a beautiful place. I thought I had left some cannabis in the hotel room. I hadn't left it anywhere. I still had it on my person.It was a dream come true.California Dreaming? Legal cannabis in Nevada.Freedom or slavery? Unencumbered free choice or subjugation? One is a dream come true, the other a nightmare.The US gov is a nightmare these days. It's dreaming if it thinks this can all go on like it is. It can't.
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Comment #9 posted by global_warming on August 11, 2006 at 16:47:34 PT
your mind and soulfor your everlasting journey
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Comment #8 posted by global_warming on August 11, 2006 at 16:39:23 PT
So, whats it going to be?
Do you believe that food and existencehas anything to do in the middle east,in this america?Cannabis can heal you,
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Comment #7 posted by global_warming on August 11, 2006 at 15:55:00 PT
re: meat and potatoes
I would enjoy the opportunity to arm wrestle Muth, after a few beers,I agree, Nevada is as good a place to square off, like they said, “The first domino has to fall.”, "“It’s got to start somewhere,” Let it begin...
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Comment #6 posted by Had Enough on August 11, 2006 at 14:59:50 PT
No Evidence of U.S.-Based Threat Found
Aug 11, 5:12 PM (ET)By LARRY MARGASAKWASHINGTON (AP) - Investigators have uncovered no signs of U.S.-based terrorists linked to a plot to blow up airliners headed to the United States, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff said Friday.and...
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Comment #5 posted by FoM on August 11, 2006 at 14:02:06 PT
I don't know much about what is going on in Canada. I am on a list and Cannasat has been mentioned. I wish them the best.As far as the Mother Jones article I am the kind of person who always gives a person a second then third chance but I no longer can believe that this is more then trying to stay in power come election time. 
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Comment #4 posted by afterburner on August 11, 2006 at 13:45:54 PT
FoM #2: Credit Where Credit Is Due
"Hilary Black, Director
Communications, Medical Marijuana Information Resource Centre"There's a familiar activist name in Canada. Thank you, Hilary, for all your hard work."The Canadian AIDS Society (CAS) and the Medical Marijuana Information
Resource Centre (MMIRC) are co-hosting the exhibit. The MMIRC is sponsored by
Cannasat Therapeutics Inc."
 "Cannasat Chairman Moses Znaimer" There's another familiar name in Toronto, father of the CITY-TV empire, king of schmooze. "We [now] have ... friends in a high society." --fulfilling Bob Marley's wish. Thank you, Moses, for all the great TV and for your vision, leadership, entrepreneurship and compassion. 
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Comment #3 posted by afterburner on August 11, 2006 at 13:29:41 PT
Muth exclaims, “The war on drugs is a total failure. It’s time to bring the troops home.” 
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on August 11, 2006 at 12:16:46 PT
Press Release from Canada News Wire
First Medical Marijuana Exhibit at the XVI International AIDS Conference: Canada Leads the Way
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Comment #1 posted by FoM on August 11, 2006 at 12:06:39 PT
Just a Comment
I think the jumping ship to a more liberal base is too late. Like the song says: The needle and the damage done.
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