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I [Heart] WA with Marijuana leave instead of a heart.
Toward a more responsible future
Smart:
Washington will haul in nearly $150,000 in excise taxes from the first three days of legal marijuana sales — and that doesn't include state and local sales taxes.
Randy Simmons, the state Liquor Control Board's project manager for legalized marijuana sales, points out that there are still only a few stores open, which means these numbers undoubtedly will rise. A lot.

The "War On Drugs" is a monumental public policy failure on every level. If government officials actually care about budgets and about people, it's time to start proving it. Marijuana should be legalized, regulated, and taxed. Everywhere.

Originally posted to Laurence Lewis on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 10:36 AM PDT.

Also republished by Seattle & Puget Sound Kos, Koscadia, DKos Cannabis Law and Drug War Reform, and Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  From "Heads n Feds" to "Farmers n Revenooers" (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BigAlinWashSt, Odysseus, Jon Says, ozsea1, glb3

    How long before cops start checking our baggies for the tax stamp?

    How long before they pass a law dictating what constitutes a legal dope container? (There have been laws in the past about containers of alcohol needing to have stamps etc and it was illegal to have alcohol in an unmarked jar-like all the growers and smart kids keep their pot in...)

    How long before cops go back to breaking your door down for growing pot because you're a tax-evader?

    How long before Corporate Cock-Bites lobby their way into being the only legal source of pot (individual growers turned from dope-growing criminals into dope-growing criminals-the investigators from the Narco Squad get nice new badges from the state revenue agencies)

    Authoritarians and Rich-Fucks have always been allied against the rest of us, so-called "legal" pot provides these assholes with a whole new revenue source and new opportunities to oppress us for fun and profit.

    Pardon me for being cynical.

    "Ronald Reagan is DEAD! His policies live on but we're doing something about THAT!"

    by leftykook on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 10:57:54 AM PDT

    •  it's working (11+ / 0-)

      state officials are helping it work.

      The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

      by Laurence Lewis on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 11:06:05 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Oh I don't doubt it. (3+ / 0-)

        But the Corporate Cock-Bites are watching, and there's a stream of income they don't have their filthy hands on, and since they are like giant insects that respond reflexively to the presence of money, they WILL find a way to fuck this up.  

        Mark my word, they WILL strive to control distribution and possession of pot.

        Doesn't take much of an imagination to think of ways they can STILL criminalize us over pot while making money selling it.

        "Ronald Reagan is DEAD! His policies live on but we're doing something about THAT!"

        by leftykook on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 11:18:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I believe that very thing, Lefty. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          angenette

          But first they'll have to flip-flop on the issue. Right now it's organizations like the Chamber of Commerce and large corporations who's fighting to try to keep it illegal in states where it is, as well as get it overturned in states where it's legal.

          However, as Wall Street begins to take note of the growing pot business and how much money there is to be made with a product that isn't very expensive to produce and could yield a great profit, the rich and big corporations will take notice and come running to get their slice of the pie--which is a nice way of saying they'll try to take the whole damn thing.

          Personally, I have very bittersweet feelings about that. On one hand, they'll destroy many small businesses with large chains and probably even hurt the quality of pot itself as they tend to favor quantity.

          On the other hand, if there's one way to get legalization to spread faster than spraying rocket fuel on a forest fire, get the 1% involved in a situation where they stand to make train loads of cash. Because as sad and unfair as it is, our government always listens to the 1% over the 99% on everything else, why would be different?

    •  Exactly, the war is far from over. A new kink (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      leftykook

      in the war is the IRS.  Taxes.

      "Fragmented and confused, we have no plan to combat any of this, but are looking to be saved by the very architects of our ruination."

      by BigAlinWashSt on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 11:14:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Spare me (11+ / 0-)

      OK, so weed goes corporate.  

      And we stop arresting poor people for it.

      I'm totally good with that.  Whether the Feds eventually freak out or not, this is a monumental "no" to the drug war and all it has brought us.  

      I'm not sure what is wrong with tax stamps and legal containers.  I mean, yes it is hard on existing cottage industry, but I voted for regulation of weed the same way booze is regulated.  Nobody loves that, but it sort of works.  Sort of works is good, and infinitely better than the status quo in 48 other states.

      ...j'ai découvert que tout le malheur des hommes vient d'une seule chose, qui est de ne savoir pas demeurer en repos dans une chambre.

      by jessical on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 11:42:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  So there HAS to be a way... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jessical, bunsk, ozsea1

        ....to accommodate the unnecessary nanny-ist impulse to "manage" and "regulate" EVERYTHING and people who just want to grow their own pot, and if their next-door neighbor wants some of it, they ought to be able to sell it or give it to him if they choose.

        Most of the attached buzz-words to legalization like "Regulated" and "Controlled" are merely kow-towing to the underlying assumption, that is, that pot is a VICE and WE MUST control it, heaven knows what'll happen otherwise.

        I got a great idea. Leave it to the people to deal with it, let the market handle issues of strength, contents, labeling, using the laws we already have, and the taxes should be handled the same way, you sell $22,000 worth of pot you grew, you report your income to the various govt entities and pay your taxes.

        I really believe the corporate swine and the impulsive authoritarians will try very hard to prevent you from growing your own pot and disposing of it as you please.

        There's no reason to treat a pot grower any differently than an organic hop-farmer or anyone else who shows up at a farmer's market with produce from their farms.

        "Ronald Reagan is DEAD! His policies live on but we're doing something about THAT!"

        by leftykook on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 01:11:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Sure (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ten canvassers, leftykook, Piren

          Though craft brewing is arguably a better analogy.

          The world is full of authoritarians though.  This doesn't seem like a bad compromise.  I don't think it fully registered on me until I realized that this echoes in places where the drug war is in full swing.  This is stuff people are machine gunning each other over in other parts of the world, where we cultivate markets for machine guns...and here you can just go to the corner store.  Well, after they restock and get the kinks out.

          Weed isn't a symbol of freedom, it's just another intoxicant.  So you can't grow it without a raft of licenses?  Lots of things are that way, some for the good and some for the worse.  There are a lot of ways this could have been a more perfect law, but this is an honest to goddess whole state (well, the left half) voting to end the least rational part of the drug war.  

          Even if it means that eventually Costco corners the market :}

          ...j'ai découvert que tout le malheur des hommes vient d'une seule chose, qui est de ne savoir pas demeurer en repos dans une chambre.

          by jessical on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 01:29:41 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  So whats the penalty going to be for growing weed? (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ozsea1, jessical, RadGal70

            Once its legal? You won't go to jail in OR for small grows now: ticket, fine they take your stuff. What's it going to be like when pot's legal here? (A consummation devoutly to be wished)
            Too many people growing it now and holy smoke!! Legalization hasn't brought the price down for legal weed, I've been hearing from $20-25 per gram
            THATS $560 to $840 per freaking ounce!!
            You betcha the black market will be going on for some time at that price. In places in ORegon you can get good ozzes of bud delivered to your house for $150, or so I'm told.
            Costco will never corner the market on this, they haven't cornered the market on cigarettes, booze or anything else. You'll be getting artisan pot.

            Happy just to be alive

            by exlrrp on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 07:13:15 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I, er, a friend of mine I mean (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Schneewolfe

              just paid $27.50 for 1/8oz the other day. It is 'medical', so not subject to the "excise tax" CO slaps on the recreational demon weed. And that price was then subjected to State sales tax...just like Fig Newtons.

              The better I know people, the more I like my dog.

              by Thinking Fella on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 07:11:08 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  We still have specialty wine, coffee, tea, (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Schneewolfe, leftykook

            and cheese dealers. There are some even in small towns like mine, alongside the natural foods stores, the supermarkets, and the chains in the cities, as various as BevMo, Trader Joe, and Whole Paycheck.

            Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

            by Mokurai on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 10:02:46 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Currently states have to regulate pot growing (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          leftykook

          and distribution heavily to keep the Feds from bringing charges of money laundering and worse. Presumably, once legal Federally, pot will get its own equivalent to ATF, or just be added to it, because there will continue to be a motive to evade the fairly high taxes on pot.

          Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

          by Mokurai on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 09:58:10 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  pardon me but that comment fully lives up to... (6+ / 0-)

      ... your userID.

      It's lefty kook stuff.

      The traffic in bootleg alcohol is minimal, and people can lawfully brew beer, make wine, and even produce distilled spirits, for personal consumption.  People can grow their own tobacco and smoke it.  This will be no different for marijuana.

      We got the future back. Uh-oh.

      by G2geek on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 08:15:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  As long as interstate corporations (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wu ming

      are scared of Fed. reprisals for involvement in the weed trade, the local economies, credit unions, and small businesses will get the bulk of the financial benefits of this business, and keep it in state.

    •  I don't know about that, leftykook-- (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ybruti, Schneewolfe

      In CO, you are able to legally grow your own--no tax due. Up to 6 plants, 3 of which may be 'flowering'. It isn't until you sell or grow for a reseller that taxes come into play.
      Also, you may possess--but not smoke in public-- up to an ounce, legally, on your person. No stamp or receipt needed.

      The better I know people, the more I like my dog.

      by Thinking Fella on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 07:06:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  most ATF agents are guys with clipboards. (0+ / 0-)

      counting stock on the shelf, counting shipments vs
      tax collections and inspecting tax stamps.

      not the most heinous sorts.

  •  Gotta love all these little laboratories... (13+ / 0-)

    of democracy.

    "If one would give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest man, I would find something in them to have him hanged." - 17th-century French clergyman and statesman Cardinal Richelieu.

    by markthshark on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 10:59:46 AM PDT

  •  Not all weed should be taxed and I hate to see (7+ / 0-)

    that used as the reason for legalization.  It's a regressive tax with the poor people being the ones less able to afford it as usual.  
    In Colorado the people voted to allow growing your own up to six plants, three in the flowering stage.  That weed should not be taxed.  A three/three grow cycle nets about 6-20 oz every 2 months depending on where, how and what is grown.  
    In Washington we made the very serious mistake of not including grow your own in the referendum.  Who knows how long that will take to rectify.  Probably as long as it will take to get Single Payer.  
    People should be able to grow their own weed without it being taxed and people should be able to buy weed without paying exorbitant taxes on it.  

    "Fragmented and confused, we have no plan to combat any of this, but are looking to be saved by the very architects of our ruination."

    by BigAlinWashSt on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 11:13:34 AM PDT

    •  it's taxed in shops (4+ / 0-)

      most people aren't going to grow it.

      The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

      by Laurence Lewis on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 11:20:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Oh I know, there's a shop right down the road (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bunsk

        from my house here in Vancouver, WA.  Same store I've been going for years except before it was just a head shop.  
        Most people don't grow, but more do than you might think.  It's as easy as growing a tomato plant really, same thing, same plant food, same water, same sun.  
        But my point is I'm not celebrating the tax thing.  They've set the tax rate of recreational weed higher than the tax rate on medical weed, which has been legal here since 1999.  I certainly don't agree with that.  

        "Fragmented and confused, we have no plan to combat any of this, but are looking to be saved by the very architects of our ruination."

        by BigAlinWashSt on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 11:31:17 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  we can debate the rate (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Tonga 23, Calamity Jean

          but i think absolutely it should be taxed.

          The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

          by Laurence Lewis on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 11:33:55 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Really? I live in Orchards. What store is it? I... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          BigAlinWashSt, ozsea1

          Really? I live in Orchards. What store is it? I didn't think anywhere but Seattle metro had legal dispenseries yet.

        •  I also live in Washington State (0+ / 0-)

          FWIW I think the tax on marijuana, like all sin taxes, should be set so that those who indulge pay through the nose.  When the sales figures come in for a few quarters, the legislature should use them to raise the weed taxes.
           I think that funding K-12 education adequately in part from the revenue increase from taxes on marijuana  is clearly something that should be done.  At least the weed tax revenue will let the legislature fork over a small downpayment on what the State Supreme court thinks is necessary to fund the McCleary decision.

          And I voted to de-criminalize weed twice-in 2012 in Washington and in 2010 in California.

          "Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen." Hebrews 11:1. Keep the faith.

          by Tonga 23 on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 11:51:38 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Well I don't. And raising taxes will just make (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Jon Says, Calamity Jean

            the war on weed last longer.  The black market, which is thriving in this state, will way undercut the prices if they get carried away.  It already is.  I don't know anyone, and I know a lot of people that smoke weed, that will be buying "legal" weed at those prices.  

            "Fragmented and confused, we have no plan to combat any of this, but are looking to be saved by the very architects of our ruination."

            by BigAlinWashSt on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 12:04:05 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  It's a dumb tax system in WA, (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Jon Says, Calamity Jean, ozsea1

          25 percent at each point of sale excise then 8 percent sales on top of that. That's an 83 percent tax all together. Also due to it being tied to weed pricing tax revenue will ruse and fall with the price of weed. If prices are higher in shops than on the black market what is the point?

          Some people do not argue in good faith. Their only purpose is to disrupt and cause strife. Best to not engage them.

          by Drewid on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 12:03:55 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  the point (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Drewid, duhban

            is that whatever the market dynamics, it added 150k to the state in its first few days. it would seem that some are buying it.

            The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

            by Laurence Lewis on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 07:08:19 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Yeah, I agree LL, (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Laurence Lewis

              but if prices remain as high or higher thab black market or grey market sales than it will hurt the bottom line on revenue generation. I don't think there should be no taxes.

              Some people do not argue in good faith. Their only purpose is to disrupt and cause strife. Best to not engage them.

              by Drewid on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 09:37:55 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  i'm sure there will be some black market (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Sandino, Drewid, iKento

                and some will continue to grow their own, but i do think the vast majority of people will go for the simplicity and legality of authorized shops. i think there are a lot of casual pot smokers who don't want the hassle or worry. maybe it will even help microsoft be more inventive rather than mostly just fiercely business savvy...

                The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

                by Laurence Lewis on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 09:42:09 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Yes, (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Laurence Lewis, BelgianBastard

                  I just think they are doing it wrong. I think moving forward States that legalize should look at revamping their medicinal laws too. Washington started from scratch almost. States that have medicinal will also generate grey market sales if medicinal is signicantly cheaper than legal sales. I think true medicinal sales in legalized states should be partly subsidized by legal sales for those on disbility and or those with a valid medical need. It's a whole big can of worms that is being opened state by state.

                  Some people do not argue in good faith. Their only purpose is to disrupt and cause strife. Best to not engage them.

                  by Drewid on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 10:00:02 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  to me (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Drewid, wenchacha

                    medicinal is part of the whole big pharma mess. people shouldn't have to suffer to pay for their medicines, and corporations shouldn't be able to bleed people who are suffering.

                    medicinal pot should be free to those who genuinely need it, but strictly regulated, so the state isn't hurt too much by the grey market.

                    The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

                    by Laurence Lewis on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 10:08:31 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  There is anti legalization sentiment from (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Laurence Lewis, karma13612

                      Medicinal users and personal growers I know here. Haven't looked into it but someone said some agribusiness was trying to buy the rights to strains. Keep Pharma out of it, it is a flower.

                      Some people do not argue in good faith. Their only purpose is to disrupt and cause strife. Best to not engage them.

                      by Drewid on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 10:24:34 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  heh (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        reflectionsv37

                        there are a lot of people in northern california who oppose legalization, and not because they don't want people smoking it. after all, it is the state's number one cash crop. i think people who want to make the effort should be allowed to grow a small number of plants, but the motives of some who oppose legalization are no more clean than that of prohibitionist types. it's a question of who controls and benefits from the revenue stream. i favor the money serving the common good.

                        The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

                        by Laurence Lewis on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 12:08:00 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                    •  Clearly medical pot should be part of (0+ / 0-)

                      Medicaid, CHIP, Medicare, Tricare, the VA, and the ACA. That means we have to take the House and abolish gerrymanders, voter suppression, and the Senate filibuster on legislation, so that we can make the victory stick. Then we can delist pot from Schedule I, and do the needed additional medical research under FDA rather than DEA supervision.

                      At that point, a lot of other stuff happens, and we can discuss where to go from there.

                      Back off, man. I'm a logician.—GOPBusters™

                      by Mokurai on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 10:16:36 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                •  Cast a wide net. (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Laurence Lewis

                  Make it cheap enough and good enough and you will generate more revenue. I am just across the river, I know someone that just got a lisecence for his grow business in WA. OMMP shops post their prices online and of course anyone with the money can get a card pretty much. Whole new can of worms.

                  Some people do not argue in good faith. Their only purpose is to disrupt and cause strife. Best to not engage them.

                  by Drewid on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 10:07:58 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

        •  I need an address (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          BigAlinWashSt

          Is it close to the bus barn perhaps?

        •  The tomatoes I grow are better than I can buy (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          BigAlinWashSt, RMForbes

          I doubt it would be the same with marijuana.

    •  B-b-but what if it makes people smarter? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jessical, iKento, Chinton


      ___________
      For an idea that does not at first seem insane, there is no hope. -- Albert Einstein, Professional Non-Centrist

      by Pluto on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 06:34:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Is The Word (Failure), Omitted From This Sentence? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Laurence Lewis, Gooserock
    The "War On Drugs" is a monumetnal public policy every level.
    Oh, and, BTW, great news.
  •  Is There an Estimate of Cost per Day / Month of (7+ / 0-)

    the arrest, investigation, prosecution and punishment of new MJ offenders at common rates in WA prior to legalization?

    In other words, in addition to what the state is now earning, how much are they also beginning to save by not handling the definitional criminals of this behavior.

    Obviously they're stuck with the legacy costs of everyone presently being punished for older offenses.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 12:22:02 PM PDT

    •  Good comment. This is really the key point, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jessical, Thinking Fella

      though I don't care what the precise numbers are.  The point is, we're avoiding a lot of unnecessary police, court, and prison expenses (not to mention the human side of all that).

      I don't expect the tax revenue ever to be big enough to make a significant difference.  As best I can figure, liquor taxes provide about 1% of WA's state revenue (data here).  Most people I know spend a lot less on marijuana than they do on liquor, and I don't expect that to change. So once everything settles down, we're talking about a fraction of 1% of the state's budget. The revenue will help, but the avoided police/court/prison expenses are a bigger deal.

  •  This can't be said enough: (4+ / 0-)
    Marijuana should be legalized, regulated, and taxed. Everywhere.

    If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

    by CwV on Sun Jul 13, 2014 at 01:26:49 PM PDT

  •   I will return to Vancouver (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Laurence Lewis, ozsea1

    When I'm able to get around by bus and go to a legal outlet to at least interview.

  •  I'm more interested in how much is saved by the (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    duhban, NWTerriD, RMForbes, reflectionsv37

    Police, judicial system, and prison system as a result of legalization. I realize it well take several months if not years to determine that but it has to be substantial.

    •  Exactly (7+ / 0-)

      Taxing the stuff is just a bonus.  It can be tax-free and the financial savings from ending the idiotic "war on drugs" would still make it worthwhile.

    •  It would be saved overall...BUT... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Schneewolfe

      You also have to remember your local police department would lose a lot of money that they get from the federal government from all these arrests to help fund their police department. This is why police unions are scared of legalization. Because they know they'll make far less arrests on things like meth, coke and heroin and they'd get less money from Washington.

      On the federal level you have the DEA, who worry about it because minus marijuana and the so-called drug problem becomes exponentially less severe. That means budget cuts and maybe even the DEA getting folded into the FBI.

      Overall, it saves money but it also does it by taking money from the prohibitionists who are squealing the loudest now.

      •  Local police don't get $$ from feds for arrests. (0+ / 0-)

        Far from it. If my county busts someone for pot and it's decided they need to got to jail (more likely than prison), it's the county that needs to pay for that inmate's jail time. That adds up to some real money really fast.

        That's one reason that counties are looking at alternatives like drug courts. Most of the time, in my neck of the woods, you get a municipal citation for possession (equivalent to a traffic ticket). We can't afford sending people to jail anymore, and the cops don't have the time to take people to jail for booking.

        Screw John Galt. Who's John Doe?

        by Mike Kahlow on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 08:48:07 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The reason I said that was this... (0+ / 0-)

          http://www.whydontyoutrythis.com/...

          Also, I wish I could find where I read it, but just the other day I read where a local police department was getting money from some kind of federal justice grant for enforcing marijuana prohibition, to pay for more equipment and hire new officers. So I most definitely believe some of them are definitely getting something from it, not including asset seizures.

          But is it enough to cover the cost to arrest, prosecute and jail these people is another matter that probably varies, as do how much they might get.

  •  Was driving home to Portland yesterday... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jessical, fb, Bryce in Seattle

    one of those programmable highway signs read:

    "Drive high get a DUI"

    It's a new world...

    Freedom isn't free. That's why we pay taxes.

    by walk2live on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 06:43:10 PM PDT

  •  hell yeah (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    karma13612

    And as that number grows I'm sure more and more states will be willing to do this if only for purely more tax money.

    Der Weg ist das Ziel

    by duhban on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 06:50:58 PM PDT

  •  I want to know how much is saved... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mike Kahlow

    ... in less cost in the criminal justice system... Or to know what the resulting benefit is if police departments keep all of the funding and apply it to other law enforcement.

    How about some white collar law enforcement, hmmm?

  •  And if the Democrats wanted to drive up turnout (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RMForbes, karma13612, reflectionsv37

    They'd be out in front of this in a big way.
    Unfortunately being out in front on much of anything populist just isn't their way.

  •  Laurence, I'd give you 420 Recs. if I could :) (6+ / 0-)

    "Onward through the fog!" - Oat Willie

    by rocksout on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 07:05:07 PM PDT

  •  Absolutely, but the entire cannabis genus (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fb, SparkyGump, reflectionsv37

    of plants and all the 50,000 uses of this extremely versatile plant must be liberated. Smoking the dried female flowers and leaves of the cannabis plant is but one use and not even the most valuable.

    Once the cannabis hemp plant is completely liberated our domestic productive economy will see an even more significant positive impact than we already are seeing with the current legalization of euphoric cannabis products. We are looking at the reestablishment of a cannabis economy.  

    Really don't mind if you sit this one out. My words but a whisper -- your deafness a SHOUT. I may make you feel but I can't make you think..Jethro Tull

    by RMForbes on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 07:07:45 PM PDT

  •  the excise taxes won't be huge, what's huge (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    karma13612

    is letting out a lot of non violent hippies from jail.

    that's big.

  •  Prohibition never works practically (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    karma13612

    and ideologically, who can argue with "Mind your own goddamn business"?
    This kind of BS just drives me batty.

    Our liberties we prize and our rights we will maintain.

    by Midwest is best on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 07:23:19 PM PDT

  •  I'd frame my grow permit. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SillyMama, RMForbes, Mike Kahlow

    I have a few plants going for the RA in my spine. I live in constant fear they're going to kick my door down and shoot my dogs because of it. I'm tired of being afraid for using the one pain med available without the GI side effects of opiates or the liver and stomach damage from NSAIDS. Legalization has been a long time coming and is finally on the horizon.

    •  kinda the same here (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mike Kahlow, SparkyGump

      I buy MMJ for my daughter who has a lot of pain and other things. Would love to get into the growing but just like they might outlaw her best medicine (butter) I fear they would decide the growing is illegal, even for medical patients, especially if it is done by proxy, not the actual patient.

    •  I have restless leg syndrome (RLS). (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RMForbes, SparkyGump

      Which sounds like some kind of designer disease... but my legs kick/twitch nearly every minute at night. Unmedicated, I've gone for as much as a week without sleeping.

      After some incredible adventures in pharmacopia (drugs which caused weight gain, forgetfulness, complete and utter confusion), I'm on a nightly dose of a pretty powerful opiate. That's what worked the best with the fewest side effects. I've got incredible hoops to jump through every month to get my prescription renewed - which I understand. I've had to sign a form saying I consent to random drug tests to make sure I don't abuse it. This is some dangerous stuff I've got.

      Marijuana appears to have some potential to ease RLS. Is it too much to ask to allow researchers to see if it works? Or to allow me to try it myself in lieu of opiates?

      I'm completely with you, Sparky. This (legalization) needs to happen.

      Screw John Galt. Who's John Doe?

      by Mike Kahlow on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 09:05:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  there are certain rights and (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RMForbes, Mike Kahlow

    Laws that should be universal throughout the whole 50 states, and this is certainly one of them.

    Legalize it everywhere.

    Period.

    Great diary!!

    I am an Elizabeth Warren Democrat. Hillary is Third way, and it sure as hell ain't MY way

    by karma13612 on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 07:40:04 PM PDT

  •  States should consider the competition for tax $ (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mike Kahlow, RMForbes

    Pot will eventually be legal everywhere. The smart states should look ahead and realize this will happen. For now, there's serious tax money to be made while there aren't a lot of states that have legalized weed. Pot has a lot of pent-up demand.  If I was a governor, I would be thinking, "I want in on this tax money. There's more tax money to be made for states that legalize early. Once it's legal everywhere, the tax money will level out."

    And then there's the travel money. The legal pot states are now travel destinations.

    The states need to think of pot in terms of competition.  Set the tax rates low enough that people will come to your state rather than another one. Make it legal before your neighboring states do.

    "So oftentimes it happens that we live our lives in chains, and we never even know we have the key." --Robb Strandlund and Jack Tempchin

    by Celestia89 on Mon Jul 14, 2014 at 08:52:59 PM PDT

  •  Fair is Fair! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RMForbes

    I think that legislation should be passed that any and all government proceeds from legalized marijuana sales MUST be used locally to improve social services, road/bridge repair, and improving education.

    Why should those who oppose legalized marijuana profit from it?

  •  I have long felt that until Phil Morris & A... (0+ / 0-)

    I have long felt that until Phil Morris & Am Tab Co can control the market Feds won't legalize it. They're probably writing the bills now.

  •  They don't make illegal, regulate and tax herbs (0+ / 0-)

    why pick on this one?  Because Harry Ainslinger said so?

  •  LEGALIZE IT !!! (0+ / 0-)

    Let's get over the ridiculous propaganda of the last 90 years and take advantage of the many positive effects legalizing Marijuana can afford our country. The benefits of marijuana are becoming increasingly apparent as study after study shows numerous beneficial effects of cannabis far outweigh any negative side effects caused by consumption of THC and CBN, just two of the components in marijuana.  And please spare me the legalization for medical use only tactic. Adults should be allowed enjoy the relaxing effects of a substance that is enormously less dangerous than alcohol and nicotine whose powerful lobbies have kept them legal in spite of the overwhelming evidence of their danger to the health of not only their consumers but of those whom come in contact with them. Like the wars in the Middle East, the war on drugs is one we cannot afford and cannot win, lets just declare peace with honor and withdraw, or should I say take inhale.

    Wish in one hand and shit in the other, see which one fills up first. - Sage advice from a Mother to her son

    by DonJ on Tue Jul 15, 2014 at 08:32:51 PM PDT

  •  I've heard some problematic things ... (0+ / 0-)

    ... about the new WA law, and I'm wondering if they're true.  For example, is it true that you are not allowed to share your pot - i. e., that everyone must buy and smoke their own?  That would essentially make passing a doob illegal.  Tough to enforce, too, I'd imagine.

    Also, I've heard that smoking in public is still not allowed - private property only.  Guess I don't have much of a problem with that one.

    OF COURSE the New Right is wrong - but that doesn't make WRONG the new RIGHT!

    by mstaggerlee on Wed Jul 16, 2014 at 10:12:28 PM PDT

  •  At some point... (0+ / 0-)

    Someone will do the math.  There is a "supply/demand" curve for pot.   At a certain point of punitive taxation, people will refuse to buy pot in the legal stores, and states will lose tax revenue.    Once they crunch the numbers, it may start to dawn on them, that by lowering taxes this much, volume will go up this much, etc.   If it drops low enough, most of the illegal trade will go out of business, just as has happened with alcohol.

    Until someone pays attention to what the market will bear, the black market will continue to grow and thrive.

    It's sort of amusing, when you think about the founding of this country, and the Boston Tea Party.     At what point will people get fed up with having to bribe their government with extravagant taxes to respect their civil rights?    Punitive taxation should be illegal in general.  It is similar to usury.  

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