Feds Say They Will Go Easy on Banks 
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Feds Say They Will Go Easy on Banks 
Posted by CN Staff on September 01, 2013 at 06:47:04 PT
By April M. Short
Source: AlterNet
Washington, D.C. -- During the groundbreaking phone call on Thursday, August 29 in which U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder told the governors of Colorado and Washington the federal government would not attempt to intercept regulated legal marijuana in their states, he also said the Department of Justice (DOJ) is “actively considering” how to oversee the relationship between banks and marijuana shops.According to the Huffington Post, Holder told the governors as long as marijuana shops “operate within state laws and don’t violate other federal law enforcement priorities” the DOJ is looking to regulate those interactions as legal.
Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-Colo.), a senior member of the House Financial Services Committee, released a statement on Thursday calling for a hearing to discuss his proposed bill, Marijuana Businesses Access to Banking Act (HR 2652). In the statement, he raised concerns over "public safety, crime, and lost tax revenue associated when these legal and regulated businesses are operating in a cash-only system." He continued:"We need to provide financial institutions certainty they can make their own business decisions related to legal, financial transactions without fear of regulatory penalties. Currently, under federal banking laws, many legal, regulated legitimate marijuana businesses operating legally according to state law are prevented from maintaining bank accounts and accessing financial products like any other business such as accepting credit cards, depositing revenues, or writing checks to meet payroll or pay taxes. They are forced to operate as cash-only enterprises, inviting crime such as robbery and tax evasion, only adding to the burden of setting up a legitimate small business.”To that regard, a senior DOJ official speaking on a condition of anonymity told Huffington Post “the department recognized that forcing the establishments to operate on a cash basis put them at greater risk of robbery and violence.”CNN warned in a report that since the new guidelines do not change federal money laundering laws, some large banks might “still be leery of doing business with marijuana producers and sellers.”Along with Holder’s announcement on Thursday came a memo from Deputy Attorney General James Cole, addressed to U.S. attorneys nationwide. The memo outlines eight priorities intended to serve as strict guidelines the attorneys are required to follow as federal marijuana policy when prosecuting in the states where it is legal.According to the Huffington Post , the anonymous DOJ official said, “For now, financial institutions and other enterprises that do business with marijuana shops that are in compliance with state laws are unlikely to be prosecuted for money laundering or other federal crimes that could be brought under existing federal drug laws, as long as those pot businesses don't otherwise violate the priorities.” In addition, the Huffington Post reported, the official said he “would not rule out prosecution in any case, but the new approach is a reversal of a DEA policy that had warned banks not to work with marijuana businesses.Washington Governor Jay Inslee and the state’s attorney general, Bob Ferguson thanked Holder for his efforts to work with the states’ decision to legalize and regulate pot, and called Holder’s announcement “good news” in a statement on Thursday.“Attorney General Holder also expressed a willingness to work with the states on a financial structure that would not run afoul of federal law,” they said, calling the news an “affirmation of good work” by the state Liquor Control Board, which the state put in charge of designing a system of regulation and implementation for the new marijuana laws.They continued, “We can assure the Attorney General that Washington state will remain vigilant in enforcing laws against the illicit marijuana market.”April M. Short is a Bay Area journalist focusing on social justice reporting. Newshawk: The GCWSource: AlterNet (US)Author:   April M. ShortPublished: August 31, 2013Copyright: 2013 Independent Media InstituteContact: letters Website: -- Cannabis Archives
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Comment #12 posted by runruff on September 03, 2013 at 12:33:43 PT
Hi ekim!
I will never forget the kindness you show'd me while I was in lock-up.I never forget a kindness done to me!
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Comment #11 posted by ekim on September 03, 2013 at 09:15:55 PT
thank you FoM and Stick --man 98:)
now we need lawmakers that will stand up for the Farmers,for jobs. and tell the people what other Countries havebeen doing with Hemp for years.You posted this in 99 and the list of products have grown.Just imagin how many could be thought up here in the USA.
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Comment #10 posted by FoM on September 03, 2013 at 04:35:54 PT
Canis420 andSwazi-X
You're both welcome. We are winning. I wanted CNews to help put together how we are progressing over time. I wanted people including me to learn and grow and help to be the change we want. I have learned what I believe and what I don't believe. It has been a great education for me.
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Comment #9 posted by Swazi-X on September 03, 2013 at 02:54:06 PT
Right Direction
I get angry at the heel dragging and lies from our government, and at how many lives have been lost and destroyed directly and indirectly as a result of keeping this miracle plant out of the hands of all of us, so when I read of more promises from our masters my initial reaction is to flat out not believe it.That said, this is good news and I agree we're going to see sanity replace this brutal prohibition eventually. I agree with museman too - we need to take whatever they give us and work it from every possible angle to make true headway. Even a journey of quarter and half-steps will get us there in time.FOM - thank you for hosting this site and for all the work you put into it. This sort of place is what drives change and helps energize all of us in the good fight. It helps spread the truth - and that is really all we need to do.If everyone knew the facts - the real facts - about cannabis, it would be legal in the next election cycle. What politician could deny us the cure for diabetes and cancer if the truth were known? One of the emerging twists is to eat it like a vegetable - fresh or fresh-frozen, undried and unheated, it's not psychoactive at all but the health benefits are off the chart. It might be the cure for arthritis - this is from not only me but friends who've been eating flowers regularly as well. I have a little site with more info about this at It's non-commercial, not selling anything, just wanting to spread the word.Also - once you freeze it, if you'd rather smoke you can always just defrost and dry/cure it as if it were fresh. A bit darker color, but from my experience no loss of power. 
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Comment #8 posted by Canis420 on September 02, 2013 at 18:37:20 PT:
Holy Crap! I had no idea ya'all have been here that long. I did not have my WTF moment till about 5 or 6 years ago when I saw an episode of COPS where they sold a newlywed couple about a gram of cannabis then busted them, took them to jail, and confiscated their vehicle. I was appalled and this happened in Tampa, in my neighboring county. I have very rarely ever put any cannabis in my truck since then. I then started looking for news about cannabis on the internet and literally typed in the search term "cannabis news." This site was the first link on google. I remember reading the comments to the news stories and thought "Holy Crap there are actually ppl out there who feel the same way I do." After the COPS episode I felt the need to speak my piece on a comment thread on CNEWS and was a little impatient on getting approved. I could not get why I was not approved within five minutes of registering... :). To FOM, who I found out is the keeper of the realm here at CNEWS, I apologize for my impatience. Im just glad I found this place so I can experience change with people of like mind. Peace
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Comment #7 posted by FoM on September 02, 2013 at 18:10:36 PT
The Toothpaste is Out of The Tube
It will never go back in again. We have momentum. That is all we have but it is important. We are gaining a good deal of public support. CNews was started in late 1998. I had to look and search and try to find something to post way back in those days. I had no direction at all just hope that we could change the laws somehow and someday. So much has happened just on CNews over the years. Nothing important in life ever comes easy. This is very important and it sure hasn't been easy. We will win someday. Even if I have gone to the great beyond it still will happen someday. This has been an incredible journey with incredible people.
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Comment #6 posted by museman on September 02, 2013 at 17:24:02 PT
"Why should we believe them now?"Well, of course we shouldn't -for all the reasons you mentioned and more.We take whatever concessions they offer, and then keep pushing the envelope. The only reason to accept a compromise is to appear to accept the compromise while more complete action and public instruction circumnavigates their game. They will be negated in proportion to the negation of the power that the people willingly give them.And none should make mistake, the war is not over by a long shot. And presumption that this is not a real war should not be made either.IMOLEGALIZE FREEDOM
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Comment #5 posted by Swazi-X on September 02, 2013 at 16:35:15 PT
This Sounds Familiar...
Just like what they said about medical cannabis dispensaries in MMJ-legal states, a few months before they sent armies of dickless D.E.A. tools to rob and terrorize state-legal dispensaries, looting, smashing, and leaving without charging anyone with breaking a law.It sounds good and I hope this time they really mean what they're telling us, but the possibility that they're setting us up for future sucker-punch-raids is very real. Our government has lied to us for over 75 years about this plant, ignoring science, common sense, history, and the will of the people in favor of the vast cash to be made terrorizing and persecuting those who choose to use it.Just read any government publication or website on the subject - nothing but lies, half-truths, misdirection and just plain nonsense intended to deceive the citizens who look to them for the truth.Why should we believe them now?
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Comment #4 posted by HempWorld on September 01, 2013 at 09:42:20 PT
The Time Has Come To Legalize Marijuana
All Over The World, God Bless!Back By Popular Vote! Thank you God/Yahweh/Elohim!The American public has spoken: It's not about whether marijuana is good or bad. It's about whether prohibition of something, say alcohol or marijuana, or other, is good policy. And that, we can now say, is a horrible racial divide and a societal devastation. See alcohol prohibition from the 20's. But that one, at least, was not as damaging to minorities then, but it certainly was for society as a whole.To say that marijuana has been given a bad rap over the past few decades, is an understatement. If you’re like most Americans, you have been led to believe that marijuana is a dangerous and addictive drug that has destroyed the lives of millions of teens and adults. You have been encouraged to believe that marijuana causes lung cancer and is a “gateway” to harder drugs. The government has even tried to convince you that most people who use marijuana are losers who sit around on couches all day doing nothing. (these are all lies, by the way)Frequently it is something responsible adults choose to do specifically instead of alcohol. And for good reason! Marijuana is, statistically speaking, safer then water! Alcohol is toxic, addictive, harmful to the body, it is more likely to result in injuries, more likely to lead to interpersonal violence than marijuana and alcohol kills, marijuana does not. Let me state this differently; marijuana is not toxic! Marijuana actually has benefits and medicinal properties, it even fights cancer! It is simply something that some responsible adults choose to do because it is better for them without being a nuisance to others. Why would this be a bad thing?Thus, the time has come that we need to regulate/legalize to make it less available to our kids (just like cigarettes and alcohol). And we certainly do not want our kids to grow up, starting as little marijuana dealers, as is the case under the current laws, and this is something that has been going on in US society for decades...In the end, when marijuana is available at your local liquor store, it will be off the streets and into a regulated sales system with checks and balances. Marijuana will lose its appeal and its use will decrease, as it did wherever else it was decriminalized and regulated in the world. (The Netherlands, Portugal, Colorado and Washington states)Rocky, watcha gonna do?The Time has come, the TIME is here! This will change the world forever in a very good way, Jah Bless! I see the light! Thank you all activist all over the world, give thanks and praises!
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Comment #3 posted by HempWorld on September 01, 2013 at 09:22:08 PT
Meanwhile, back in Cali...
"The Drug Enforcement Agency warned armored car companies that dealing with pot businesses could put them at risk of federal prosecution, according to Harborside Health Center, the nation’s largest medical cannabis dispensary. The DEA confirmed to Huffington Post that it ordered security companies in California and Colorado to cease business operations with state-legal dispensaries."From: hand giveth the other taketh... ?What is going on here? Down Rocky, down boy! Is it a rogue agency or not? Is this a plan? Divide conquer?Hey DOJ can you clarify this? Thanks!
Cannabis Shop
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on September 01, 2013 at 08:44:06 PT
Another step. I agree.
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Comment #1 posted by The GCW on September 01, 2013 at 08:03:04 PT
Another nod.
Another step forward that needs to happen. Not the full step, but a step.
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