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HelicopterOff Topics News & Politics › news about legalizing pot
12-28-2009 01:26 PM  7 years agoPost 1
helibuyer lesodell3

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updated 5:02 a.m. ET Dec. 28, 2009
Politics
High expectations? States eye marijuana reform
Wash. mulls 15 percent tax as two dozen others consider legislation
The Associated Press
OLYMPIA, Washington - Washington is one of four states where measures to legalize and regulate marijuana have been introduced, and about two dozen other states are considering bills ranging from medical marijuana to decriminalizing possession of small amounts of the herb.
"In terms of state legislatures, this is far and away the most active year that we've ever seen," said Ethan Nadelmann, executive director of the New York-based Drug Policy Alliance, which supports reforming marijuana laws.
Nadelmann said that while legalization efforts are not likely to get much traction in state capitals anytime soon, the fact that there is such an increase of activity "is elevating the level of public discourse on this issue and legitimizing it."
"I would say that we are close to the tipping point," he said. "At this point they are still seen as symbolic bills to get the conversation going, but at least the conversation can be a serious one."
Opponents of relaxing marijuana laws aren't happy with any conversation on the topic, other than keeping the drug illegal.
"There's no upside to it in any manner other than for those people who want to smoke pot," said Travis Kuykendall, head of the West Texas High Intensity Drug-Trafficking Area office in El Paso, Texas. "There's nothing for society in it, there's nothing good for the country in it, there's nothing for the good of the economy in it."
Legalization bills were introduced in California and Massachusetts earlier this year, and this month, New Hampshire and Washington state prefiled bills in advance of their legislative sessions that begin in January. Marijuana is illegal under federal law, but guidelines have been loosened on federal prosecution of medical marijuana under the Obama administration.
Even so, marijuana reform legislation remains a tough sell in some places. In the South, for example, only Mississippi and North Carolina have decriminalization laws on the books.
"It's a social and cultural thing," said Bruce Mirken, spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project, a Washington, D.C.-based marijuana advocacy group. "There are some parts of the country where social attitudes are just a little more cautious and conservative."
'Pros and cons'Rep. Mary Lou Dickerson, a Seattle Democrat who is sponsoring the legalization bill in Washington state, said that she "wanted to start a strong conversation about the pros and cons of legalizing marijuana."
Under her bill, marijuana would be sold in Washington state's 160 state-run liquor stores, and customers, 21 and older, would pay a tax of 15 percent per gram. The measure would dedicate most of the money raised for substance abuse prevention and treatment, which is facing potential cuts in the state budget. Dickerson said the measure could eventually bring in as much to state coffers as alcohol does, more than $300 million a year.
"Our state is facing a huge financial deficit and deficits are projected for a few more years," Dickerson said, referring to the projected $2.6 billion hole lawmakers will need to fill next year. "We need to look at revenue and see what might be possible."
Allen St. Pierre, executive director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, said that tough economic times across the country have lawmakers looking at everything, and may lead even more states to eventually consider the potential tax value of pot.
"The bean counters are now reporting back to their elected officials how much money is being left off the table," he said, adding that billions of dollars worth of pot is going untaxed.
Ron Brooks, president of the National Narcotics Officers' Associations' Coalition, said that he feared that, if legalized, marijuana would contribute to more highway accidents and deaths, as well as a potential increase in health care costs for those who smoke it.
State lawmakers, he said, need to ask themselves "if they believe we really will make all that revenue, and even if we did, will it be worth the suffering, the loss of opportunities, the chronic illness or death that would occur?"
Legalization isn't the only measure lawmakers across the country are weighing. About two dozen states, including Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Wisconsin, are considering bills ranging from medical marijuana to decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana, St. Pierre said. Washington state is among the states that are considering decriminalization, with a bill that would reclassify adult possession of marijuana from a crime with jail time to a civil infraction with a $100 penalty.
Voter-driven initiativesFourteen states, including Washington state, already have medical marijuana laws, and 13 have decriminalization laws on the books, St. Pierre said. About two dozen cities across the country, including Seattle, make marijuana offenses a low law-enforcement priority.
Marijuana advocates said that while increased activity in the statehouse is heartening, change most likely will come at the ballot box through voter-driven initiatives.
"Inevitably, the politicians are going to be behind the curve on this stuff," Nadelmann said, noting that almost all of the medical marijuana laws came about by initiative.
This month, a group campaigning to put a marijuana legalization measure before California voters said it had enough signatures to qualify for the 2010 ballot.
That proposal would legalize possession of up to one ounce of marijuana for adults 21 and older. Residents could cultivate marijuana gardens up to 25 square feet (2.3 sq. meters). City and county governments would determine whether to permit and tax marijuana sales within their boundaries. And in Nevada earlier this month, backers of a move to legalize marijuana there filed paperwork creating an advocacy group aimed at qualifying an initiative for the 2012 election.
Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
 

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12-28-2009 02:17 PM  7 years agoPost 2
Aaron29

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USA

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Uhm, I guess after he slept with the prostitute he lit up a doobie?

LOL I think you pasted wrong.

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12-28-2009 02:22 PM  7 years agoPost 3
MrNiceGuy

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Yeah that's not the article I was expecting

Yesterday is History, Tomorrow is a Mystery, Today is a GIFT

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12-28-2009 02:31 PM  7 years agoPost 4
GyroFreak

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Orlando Florida ...28N 81W

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legalizing pot

I think about the hereafter. I go somewhere to get something, then wonder what I'm here after ?

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12-28-2009 02:37 PM  7 years agoPost 5
helibuyer lesodell3

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ok try this

look under lesodell3 for feed back info

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12-28-2009 05:36 PM  7 years agoPost 6
dilberteinstein

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OLYMPIA, Washington - Washington is one of four states where measures to legalize and regulate marijuana have been introduced, and about two dozen other states are considering bills ranging from medical marijuana to decriminalizing possession of small amounts of the herb.

'Pros and cons'Rep. Mary Lou Dickerson, a Seattle Democrat who is sponsoring the legalization bill in Washington state, said that she "wanted to start a strong conversation about the pros and cons of legalizing marijuana."
Under her bill, marijuana would be sold in Washington state's 160 state-run liquor stores, and customers, 21 and older, would pay a tax of 15 percent per gram. The measure would dedicate most of the money raised for substance abuse prevention and treatment, which is facing potential cuts in the state budget. Dickerson said the measure could eventually bring in as much to state coffers as alcohol does, more than $300 million a year.
First off, as far as medical marijuana goes, the FDA has not done the rigors on "prescription medical marijuana". If the FDA did the rigors, the report might not be good.

Second thing. If any state decided that the FDA route was not a good way to go and would just legalize (kinda like tobacco, alcohol, tofu), then the state should be responsible for future health issues caused by marijuana.

This is an odd legal subject because California (ultimate liberal state) likes to label paints, solvents, or anything that is suspected of causing cancer in rats. Yet the rush to embrace something that is consumed like tobacco seems strange.

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12-28-2009 05:38 PM  7 years agoPost 7
gian

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AZ

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Yeah, I wouldn't trust the FDA either though. Just another corrupt, bought-off agency...

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12-28-2009 06:06 PM  7 years agoPost 8
dilberteinstein

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Yeah, I wouldn't trust the FDA either though. Just another corrupt, bought-off agency...
touché

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12-28-2009 07:09 PM  7 years agoPost 9
Stet

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Key Largo FL

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Here in CA

Dope = cool, CO2 = totally way uncool doode

I expect the measure to pass and you will have to explain to your kid what that gnarly smell is coming from the adjacent picnic bench in the public park.

Maybe if they grow their own, the cartels will get out of the business of contaminating our public parks with their booby-trapped and illegally pesticided gardens.

Better have a fence and an alarm on your garden, might have some midnight munchkins come harvest your crop early.

keepin' it real

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12-28-2009 07:45 PM  7 years agoPost 10
AcidKindred

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Stet,

That is one of the good things that would come out of this...put the cartels out of business.

As far as people being responsible for the health risks it should be the users just like those that smoke tobacco and drink alcohol.

Weed is definately not as bad as alcohol in regards to causing accidents and death.

I think that if controlled like alcohol is then we would have less issues then if it was illegal because for many they are not interested in other more harmful drugs and this will serve to separate weed from the drug scene.

Overall, i think legalizing marijuana will make things better if you look at the whole picture. Of course if we stopped drinking and smoking period that would be the best thing but we're not going to do that legal or not.

Compass Atom 500
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12-28-2009 08:00 PM  7 years agoPost 11
Stet

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I agree it should be decriminalized, but I do not take the view that it is medicine or good for you, with the exception of those who are suffering from genuine hopeless ailments (1/20 of 1% of those who have the medical "card" here in CA). I also have concerns that we don't want every high-schooler stoned all day long watching their opportunity in life slip.

We had a "dispensary" across the street from where I live. Guys would go in, buy the stuff and stand on the sidewalk outside and sell it. Could not believe it. They got shut down by DEA before Obama took over and called off the federal enforcement effort. The LA city council is struggling to deal with the dispensaries. They wrote a new law to limit the number of them to 150, but there are over 1000 operating.

All the dope going through the dispensaries is coming from the cartels. It's a mess. Maybe this legalization initiative will make the scene better. I know that Obama will not try to enforce federal law in that case, and after a few years, legalization will be the defacto irreversible reality. Fine with me.

keepin' it real

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12-28-2009 08:49 PM  7 years agoPost 12
Hivoltage

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Ohio

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We visited Venice Beach in Ca. and there were people on the beach wanting you to come in to see the "Doc" for a prescription. I would have but we get pissed tested at work and I have not smoked since 2000 to keep my job.

I Dont Have No Stink'in Signature

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12-29-2009 12:51 AM  7 years agoPost 13
helibuyer lesodell3

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Top StoriesReport Clears the Air on European Marijuana Use
26.06.2008

Marijuana is widely smoked across Europe
Cannabis is the drug of choice in Europe, with 13 million people lighting up each month. A new report by Europe's drug agency EMCDDA aims to debunk misconceptions that persist about the drug.
Twenty percent of European adults have tried cannabis at some point in their lives, according to a mammoth 700-page report by the EU's The European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA).
The report examines Dutch dope-selling in coffee shops, hashish smoking in London during the heady 1960s, and the state of Moroccan marijuana production. The report was released on Thursday, June 26, and coincides with the UN's International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.
Getting the facts
The study doesn't push for EU-wide legalization of marijuana, nor does it advocate harsher punishments. Instead, it aims to serve as an authoritative reference work on scientific research, legislation and policy issues associated with the drug in Europe.
"Cannabis is the most-used illicit drug in Europe, but it can also be a major source of division and debate among politicians, scientists, police, professionals and citizens," said EMCDDA director Wolfgang Goetz.
"As a result the public faces a daily flow of information on cannabis, some of it well-founded, but some of it militant and at times misleading."
Titled "A cannabis reader: global issues and local experiences," the report is designed as a "guide to inform research, debate and policymaking on the substance."
Morocco a major supplier
The first volume takes the reader through the history of cannabis, how various governments have changed their approach to the drug, including how coffee shops developed in the Netherlands.
Most European cannabis comes from Morocco, which supplies 80 percent of all resin seized in Europe. The report also looks at emerging supply lines from countries such as Thailand, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Central Asia.
Not that all marijuana is being imported. In Britain, home-grown marijuana accounts for 50 percent of the market, according to the report.
The report also points out the differences between legislation in European countries. Portugal decriminalized cannabis use in 2000 and Luxembourg punishes possession with a fine. Meanwhile both Denmark and Italy have toughened laws.
The second volume of the report looks at health issues related to cannabis. It looks at patterns of European cannabis use and demand for treatment.
It also examines the cost of cannabis, which gets more expensive as one heads north. Cannabis sells for 1.40 euros ($2.20) per gram in Spain while costing on average 21.50 euros per gram in Norway.
The report also claims to debunk the belief that modern-day cannabis is much stronger now than in the past. The report said that is an "urban myth" based on flawed data.

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12-29-2009 12:53 AM  7 years agoPost 14
helibuyer lesodell3

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legal_...e_United_States

a very good read

help in michigan
http://www.michigan.gov/mdch/0,1607...1869---,00.html

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