Obama’s “evolutions” may include marijuana legalization

posted at 1:22 pm on June 15, 2012 by Dustin Siggins

In the last few days, the theory that President Obama will “evolve” on marijuana legalization has made its way into the national media. One Atlantic piece, for example, compares the issue to what gay marriage was for Bush in 2004, and looks at several states where marijuana legalization could bring dividends for the President.

In 2009 Obama sent guidelines to federal prosecutors regarding marijuana enforcement, essentially telling them to only get involved if people were breaking relevant state laws. I wrote in favor of the President’s position at the time, since state rights on marijuana should be a conservative principle, though I favor states allowing small amounts of marijuana in homes and treating the substance like alcohol. No selling in the streets, etc. but citizens should be able to do what they want in their own homes without fear of invasion. Unfortunately, the President’s guidelines appear to have been mere PR, as he never really followed through on this loosening of marijuana prosecution.

Marijuana policy often brings out a major schism in the conservative movement between libertarian-leaning conservatives and social conservatives. I count myself as a member of both camps, and believe marijuana legalization should be considered an all-around conservative idea. Consider:

1. We have over three million citizens in various jails and prisons, and many of them are arrested or jailed for non-violent marijuana use. Prohibition did not work for alcohol— why do we expect it to work with marijuana laws? It seems like an inefficient use of tax dollars to deny individual liberty by punishing responsible users of marijuana who use marijuana in the same way the rest of us use alcohol: infrequently and responsibly.

In other words, rather than shrink the economic pie and increase the cost of government by throwing responsible marijuana users in jail, marijuana legalization would respect individual liberty and keep good, hard-working people employed while preventing them from sucking taxpayer money out of the system.

2. While estimates on the government’s War on Drugs spending vary, saving a couple tens of billions in law enforcement and the like would be mighty helpful. As Jack Cafferty of CNN noted in a column in March of 2009:

“What do you suppose the total price tag is for this failed war on drugs? One senior Harvard economist estimates we spend $44 billion a year fighting the war on drugs. He says if they were legal, governments would realize about $33 billion a year in tax revenue. Net swing of $77 billion.”

While Cafferty’s number obviously looks at the entirety of the War on Drugs, and I’m not a fan of even more taxation, marijuana legalization would save a substantial number of taxpayer dollars. This is a good thing both in tough economic times and anytime.

3. According to a speaker at a Catholic Theology on Tap event I attended in 2011, 60% of future inmates are the children of current inmates. Two simple philosophical changes in marijuana policy (respecting state rights and allowing people more personal freedom) would have fantastic long-term impacts on the family bonds that are often broken when parents go to jail. Want to keep families intact and have more people gainfully employed? Support marijuana legalization.

Obama may or may not “evolve” on marijuana as the economy continues to suffer and he gets increasingly desperate for votes, but regardless of what he does I hope the conservative movement is able to “evolve” its stated principles of individual liberty and state rights to at least include state rights on marijuana, if not the full legalization of marijuana.

 


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Comment pages: 1 2

He’ll spin like a top.

Philly on June 15, 2012 at 1:25 PM

The illegal alien, pot-smoking, commine, debt spending, and anti-American platfrom.

I sure glad no one exposed his relationships to radicals in 2008.

Oil Can on June 15, 2012 at 1:26 PM

Choooomin’…..on a Sunday afternooooooooooooonnnnn…

Bishop on June 15, 2012 at 1:26 PM

The carrot and the stick. Obama knows how to play this here game.
Kind of sad to watch people eagerly trying to get that carrot in their mouth.

a capella on June 15, 2012 at 1:28 PM

I hope he does evolve on this issue, but I’m still not gonna vote for him.

steel guy on June 15, 2012 at 1:28 PM

“People have free will except when it comes to marijuana. The only reason the USA isnt a nation of 310,000,000 stoners is because possession of certain dried leaves is deserving of incarceration. Decriminalize or legalize marijuana, and suddenly everybody is tokin’ 24/7/365 and society collapses. It will happen!” ~big-government right-wing types

Jeddite on June 15, 2012 at 1:28 PM

Boy, anything to detract from the economy. Make the whole friggin’ country like California. Broke, stoned, and lazy. It’s the American way now apparently.

NJ Red on June 15, 2012 at 1:28 PM

Arugula in every pot and a Choomwagon in every garage!

Philly on June 15, 2012 at 1:28 PM

Legalize pot – and all other husseinallucinogenics!

Many people are still confused about the massive support for “You Lie” choom hussein from the young. Hey, dude, it’s simple – we want somebody that appreciates drugs as much as we do! hussein is the MOST LIKELY to legalize the weed, he is the MOST LIKELY to de-emphasize prosecution of drug use, he is the MOST LIKELY to allow “medical” use of marijuana, he is the MOST LIKELY to soften sentences for coke (his favorite refreshment) and he is the MOST LIKELY to abolish the DEA. He’ll even set-up San Francisco-style “pot clubs” in every federal office throughout America. He’s our kind of toker!

A VOTE FOR HUSSEIN IS A VOTE FOR DRUGS!

And as for those massive tax increases he’ll enact – h*ll, as slugs and slackers we don’t pay no taxes and we’ll definitively get some of those massive welfare handouts he’ll provide so we can buy even more drugs and booze. Dude, we can’t lose with this guy!

TeaPartyNation on June 15, 2012 at 1:30 PM

I suspect this WILL happen. We are watching a tyrant in FULL PANIC! MODE…

This is what I thought would start happening in October, not June. He’s finally woken up to the mortality of his Regime.

The REAL question is where does he stop? Will he declare himself President For Life? It’s possible.

wildcat72 on June 15, 2012 at 1:30 PM

you need to put a doob in that monkey’s mouth…

ted c on June 15, 2012 at 1:30 PM

I don’t smoke the crap but let the pot heads have their dope. I’m tired of paying for it.

That having been said, this is what happens when you let a president (or any elected figure) get away with over-reach: they reach even further.

Browncoatone on June 15, 2012 at 1:30 PM

We have over three million citizens in various jails and prisons, and many of them are arrested or jailed for non-violent marijuana use. Prohibition did not work for alcohol— why do we expect it to work with marijuana laws? It seems like an inefficient use of tax dollars to deny individual liberty by punishing responsible users of marijuana who use marijuana in the same way the rest of us use alcohol: infrequently and responsibly.

Well then let’s legalize crack, and LSD, and Ecstasy!

Hey, let Barry legalize pot. They’ll forget to show up on election day.

GarandFan on June 15, 2012 at 1:30 PM

The youngsters will celebrate by getting stoned the day before the election and end up sleeping through it.

Bishop on June 15, 2012 at 1:30 PM

Congratulations, Barockhead. You’ve managed to invent an ‘evolution’ that is even MORE laughable and MORE stupid than the Darwinist nonsense they ‘teach’ in ‘schools’.

MelonCollie on June 15, 2012 at 1:31 PM

Legalize it, tax it and then use some of the money to toss illegals and sterilize Democrats.

IlikedAUH2O on June 15, 2012 at 1:31 PM

Boy, anything to detract from the economy. Make the whole friggin’ country like California. Broke, stoned, and lazy. It’s the American way now apparently.

NJ Red on June 15, 2012 at 1:28 PM

Marijuana does not make you lazy…But a lot of lazy people do smoke marijuana.

steel guy on June 15, 2012 at 1:31 PM

While Cafferty’s number obviously looks at the entirety of the War on Drugs, and I’m not a fan of even more taxation, marijuana legalization would save a substantial number of taxpayer dollars.

Try not to think of it as “new taxation”. All it would be doing (absent an excise tax on cannabis, which is arguably likely to happen) would be bringing a product and the income derived from that product into the taxable realm, which would be taxed otherwise absent the black market brought about by prohibition.

JohnGalt23 on June 15, 2012 at 1:32 PM

How is Michelle going to Get America Movin’! if they’re lazing out on a couch with a can of Pringles! I mean, stop harshing my mellow, man!

Greek Fire on June 15, 2012 at 1:32 PM

Speaking of problem offspring..

Meg McCain was just on MSNBC advocating the decrim or legalization of weed.

I wish someone would play the remarks made on that network about her dad for her. This would have been a good time, with Father’s Day coming, and all..

IlikedAUH2O on June 15, 2012 at 1:34 PM

Gay marriage, illegal immigrants, 0bama-money, government health care, might as well go for marijuana. Let him get rid of the federal laws and put it up to the states. I would really like to see that. If Texas legalized it, I might move to a state that didn’t.

Let the states put as much of 0bama’s agenda into law as they want. And pay for it with state money. Bring back the tenth amendment and let the states compete for the population.

cozmo on June 15, 2012 at 1:35 PM

regardless of what he does I hope the conservative movement is able to “evolve” its stated principles of individual liberty and state rights to at least include state rights on marijuana, if not the full legalization of marijuana.

Evolution pre-supposes that there is something outdated and wrong with the current position. I don’t see it that way. I see pot as a gateway drug no matter what Ron Paul nutjobs claim and, as a gateway drug, is something less benign to society than is being falsely claimed by potheads on both sides of the political spectrum.

Happy Nomad on June 15, 2012 at 1:35 PM

Oh yes, he’s evolving, with a little help from his friends.


Emanuel: Decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana

And so it begins.

JPeterman on June 15, 2012 at 1:35 PM

Meg McCain was just on MSNBC advocating the decrim or legalization of weed.

I wish someone would play the remarks made on that network about her dad for her. This would have been a good time, with Father’s Day coming, and all..

IlikedAUH2O on June 15, 2012 at 1:34 PM

She’d probably need to be shown a picture of her paternal progenitor, just to know which “John McCain” MSNBC was referring to…

Jeddite on June 15, 2012 at 1:36 PM

JohnGalt23, I was looking at it solely from a “marijuana-focused” tax, not a tax through the existing tax code. Interesting point. Thank you.

Dustin Siggins on June 15, 2012 at 1:37 PM

If true, this will really test the intelligence of the American electorate…and I’m worried. Is it more important to choose a presidential candidate supports weed legalization with no chance of it passing congress while the country continues to decay? Or, a president that opposes legal weed but may actually give you a better (however sober) life?

The Count on June 15, 2012 at 1:37 PM

Sittin’ on the dock of the bay, tokin’ my time and my life away.

- Barack Obamuh.

OhEssYouCowboys on June 15, 2012 at 1:37 PM

Free crackpipes and bongs for everyone!

Coming soon, release everyone incarcerated, give them a $10 bag and a map to the nearest voting precinct.

fogw on June 15, 2012 at 1:37 PM

1 – He won’t evolve on this.

2 – Marijuana is relatively irrelevant in the big scheme of things. I favor the decriminalization and regulamentation of the usage and commerce of the the entire spectrum of recreational drugs. Legalizing marijuana doesn’t do anything except making a gateway drug more accessible.

joana on June 15, 2012 at 1:38 PM

I have always thought marijuana should be legalized. I think incarcerating people for possessing small amounts is a waste of scarce resources. I know plenty of people who are successful in their business who smoke recreationally in the privacy of their homes at the end of a day (no not me). Doesn’t seem to have hurt them.

HawaiiLwyr on June 15, 2012 at 1:39 PM

The youngsters will celebrate by getting stoned the day before the election and end up sleeping through it..

One major problem with it is that the second hand smoke and fumes do have an immediate effect on those near the stoner. Thanks to Los Angeles medical MJ centers, we have scores of youthful 20something stoners, evidently in such condition as requiring prescription MJ and faithful adherence to it, using the stuff in public and on the LA Metro light rail. The cars often reek of the foul sickening odor. We don’t need legalization of such a product that will encourage more such open and flagrant usage in public. Heaven help anyone on the roads around stoners behind the wheel.

hawkeye54 on June 15, 2012 at 1:40 PM

“I hope the conservative movement is able to “evolve” its stated principles of individual liberty and state rights ”

Trade pot for overturning Roe then?????????

hhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

Eph on June 15, 2012 at 1:40 PM

“Legalizing marijuana doesn’t do anything except making a gateway drug more accessible.”

+1

Eph on June 15, 2012 at 1:41 PM

Legalize it. Then I can sample the good stuff.

steel guy on June 15, 2012 at 1:41 PM

Next step is emptying the prisons so the “disenfranchised” can vote.

DarthBrooks on June 15, 2012 at 1:41 PM

Obama’s “evolutions” may include marijuana legalization

“But then with me the horrid doubt always arises whether the convictions of man’s mind, which has been developed from the mind of the lower animals, are of any value or at all trustworthy. Would any one trust in the convictions of a monkey’s mind, if there are any convictions in such a mind?” ~Charles Darwin

davidk on June 15, 2012 at 1:43 PM

I wonder if Joe Friday comments on HotAir?

Fella.

OhEssYouCowboys on June 15, 2012 at 1:43 PM

I don’t care if marijuana is legalized, but it strikes me odd that we have demonized cigarette smokers and outlawing large soft drinks. This is nuts.

bopbottle on June 15, 2012 at 1:43 PM

Legalize it. Then I can sample the good stuff.

Use it contentedly in the comfort of your home, and be sure to gargle, wash and rinse before leaving the house as a courtesy to others. Thank you.

hawkeye54 on June 15, 2012 at 1:43 PM

Prohibition did not work for alcohol— why do we expect it to work with marijuana laws?

While drinking alcoholic beverages has been legal (for people over 21) since 1933, it is still illegal to DRIVE while drunk, due to the increased danger drunk drivers pose to other drivers.

If possession of marijuana was legalized, would driving while under the influence of marijuana still be illegal? Could employers still fire people who came to work high on marijuana, or would that constitute discrimination? Do we really want to open this can of worms?

“What do you suppose the total price tag is for this failed war on drugs? One senior Harvard economist estimates we spend $44 billion a year fighting the war on drugs. He says if they were legal, governments would realize about $33 billion a year in tax revenue. Net swing of $77 billion.”

How much of the War on Drugs is directed against marijuana, and how much against more dangerous drugs such as cocaine, LSD, heroin, or bath salts? Should we still try to prevent people from taking drugs that incite people to violence and/or cannibalism?

Out: Harry Potter. In: Barry Pothead.

Steve Z on June 15, 2012 at 1:44 PM

Of course you can’t sterilize people. They have rights. But…In response to hate mail about sterilization of liberals/Democrats, I ask:

“Is it no less Draconian to encourage programs creating a dependency cycle and constant entitlement growth in the name of ‘rights’?

Just kidding about sterilization.

IlikedAUH2O on June 15, 2012 at 1:44 PM

“I hope the conservative movement is able to “evolve” its stated principles of individual liberty and state rights ”

Trade pot for overturning Roe then?????????

hhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

Eph on June 15, 2012 at 1:40 PM

Dude(tte?)! That would put knots in their knickers.

davidk on June 15, 2012 at 1:44 PM

Next step is emptying the prisons so the “disenfranchised” can vote.

Nah, its really easy to set up a polling place in a cell block, and there is always the fallback of mailing in an absentee ballot.

hawkeye54 on June 15, 2012 at 1:45 PM

I think legalizing marijuana would be worthwhile if only to see the libs’ heads explode when suddenly all the pot is being produced by eeevil corporations. Given the economies of scale involved, it would happen.

sadarj on June 15, 2012 at 1:45 PM

…soon JugEars will be “evolving” on beastiality…so you can HAVE your dog and eat it too!

KOOLAID2 on June 15, 2012 at 1:45 PM

Use it contentedly in the comfort of your home, and be sure to gargle, wash and rinse before leaving the house as a courtesy to others. Thank you.

hawkeye54 on June 15, 2012 at 1:43 PM

Deal

steel guy on June 15, 2012 at 1:45 PM

I say we skip marijuana and get everyone in DC hooked on bath salts. Wall off DC until they’ve all eaten each other, then go in and start from scratch.

The Rogue Tomato on June 15, 2012 at 1:46 PM

This entire post is 100% brilliance….what’s going on with Hot Air…

libfreeordie on June 15, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Will new ObamaDoesn’tCare mandates include no co-pays on “medicinal” marijuana?

Fallon on June 15, 2012 at 1:47 PM

The Commies would just love a population that is as dependant on grass, as it is on the State.

Somehow, they seem to go hand-in-hand – just like vodka and the Soviet Union.

Zero has a motive on this one.

OhEssYouCowboys on June 15, 2012 at 1:48 PM

Choom gang all in…

rubberneck on June 15, 2012 at 1:48 PM

While drinking alcoholic beverages has been legal (for people over 21) since 1933, it is still illegal to DRIVE while drunk, due to the increased danger drunk drivers pose to other drivers.

If possession of marijuana was legalized, would driving while under the influence of marijuana still be illegal?

Do you even read your own words?

libfreeordie on June 15, 2012 at 1:48 PM

Now he’s going for the stoner vote.

How low can he go?

PattyJ on June 15, 2012 at 1:49 PM

You ever wonder when Obama was smoking grass with his choom gang he would giggle, say he would run for president and eventually legalize it.

rubberneck on June 15, 2012 at 1:49 PM

Trade pot for overturning Roe then?????????

hhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

Eph on June 15, 2012 at 1:40 PM

That’s a win-win, right there.

JohnGalt23 on June 15, 2012 at 1:51 PM

I say we skip marijuana and get everyone in DC hooked on bath salts. Wall off DC until they’ve all eaten each other, then go in and start from scratch.

Brilliant!

hawkeye54 on June 15, 2012 at 1:52 PM

If he has come out of the closet and illegally granted amnesty, pot legalization by EO is small caliber.

The way things are going he’ll have to pull out something really outrageous in October.

Note that he’s only playing to his base with all of this so far – gays, voting illegals (and yes they do vote), and potheads are already in his tent. Given that, it appears he is worried about GOTV and is desperately trying to motivate his own side.

The President of All Americans he is most certainly not, judging by his recent stunts.

CorporatePiggy on June 15, 2012 at 1:52 PM

I don’t believe in the evolution of apes into men. I do, however, believe in the devolution of apes into Commies.

OhEssYouCowboys on June 15, 2012 at 1:53 PM

I think legalizing marijuana would be worthwhile if only to see the libs’ heads explode when suddenly all the pot is being produced by eeevil corporations. Given the economies of scale involved, it would happen.

sadarj on June 15, 2012 at 1:45 PM

There are a lot of people in the industry in California who voted against general legalization for that very reason.

The unkindest cut of all…

JohnGalt23 on June 15, 2012 at 1:54 PM

People will use MJ weather or not it is legal. Some will abuse it but most will not. Just like anything else moderation is the key.

steel guy on June 15, 2012 at 1:54 PM

Just like anything else moderation is the key.

Yup. It’s that “moderation” concept that is lost on far too many people, unfortunately, though.

hawkeye54 on June 15, 2012 at 1:57 PM

This is the one thing I hope Obama does either before the election or in the lame duck session.

ArkyDore on June 15, 2012 at 1:57 PM

Yup. It’s that “moderation” concept that is lost on far too many people, unfortunately, though.

hawkeye54 on June 15, 2012 at 1:57 PM

I am assuming you are talking about food and having too many fat people. That is real substance abuse.

ArkyDore on June 15, 2012 at 1:58 PM

Trade pot for overturning Roe then?????????

hhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

Eph on June 15, 2012 at 1:40 PM

This entire post is 100% brilliance….what’s going on with Hot Air…

libfreeordie on June 15, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Heh.

davidk on June 15, 2012 at 1:59 PM

The way things are going he’ll have to pull out something really outrageous in October.

One can only imagine what other “Hail Mary” desperation plays are in Obama’s campaign strategy handbook that we will no doubt see by October.

hawkeye54 on June 15, 2012 at 2:00 PM

the evolution would be small…just that he’d tell DoJ not to pursue small holders of weed in medical mj states. This might help swing CO

r keller on June 15, 2012 at 2:00 PM

ArkyDore on June 15, 2012 at 1:58 PM

Yup. I refer generally to everything a human can, and often does, over consume, immoderately, by way of ear, eyes and mouth.

hawkeye54 on June 15, 2012 at 2:01 PM

You ever wonder when Obama was smoking grass with his choom gang he would giggle, say he would run for president and eventually legalize it.

rubberneck on June 15, 2012 at 1:49 PM

I think you’re probably correct on this. Kind of a scary thought considering how cold he has been to marijuana for political reasons. I am wondering what other convictions he has stabbed in the back to further his political career.

ArkyDore on June 15, 2012 at 2:01 PM

Fine. Whatever. Then let us hope all those who ‘benefit’ from this will be too stoned to show up and vote.

natasha333 on June 15, 2012 at 2:02 PM

I think legalizing marijuana would be worthwhile if only to see the libs’ heads explode when suddenly all the pot is being produced by eeevil corporations. Given the economies of scale involved, it would happen.

sadarj on June 15, 2012 at 1:45 PM

There are a lot of people in the industry in California who voted against general legalization for that very reason.

The unkindest cut of all…

JohnGalt23 on June 15, 2012 at 1:54 PM

Pot is, after all, California’s biggest cash crop, responsible for $14 billion a year in sales, dwarfing the state’s second largest agricultural commodity — milk and cream — which brings in $7.3 billion a year, according to the most recent USDA statistics.
http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1884956,00.html

davidk on June 15, 2012 at 2:03 PM

i hope the govt does decriminalize weed, but it will never factor into whom i’m voting for.

burserker on June 15, 2012 at 2:04 PM

“But then with me the horrid doubt always arises whether the convictions of man’s mind, which has been developed from the mind of the lower animals, are of any value or at all trustworthy. Would any one trust in the convictions of a monkey’s mind, if there are any convictions in such a mind?” ~Charles Darwin
davidk on June 15, 2012 at 1:43 PM

In the Communists’ reeducation camps set up in the former South Vietnam, the unfortunate inmates were exposed to a similar graphic and taught Darwinism before their indoctrination into Communism began.

After all, if people are convinced that their subjects are really just animals, it’s easier to mistreat them for acting up.

Akzed on June 15, 2012 at 2:04 PM

The costs of our phony war on drugs goes well beyond the monetary impact. Look at the erosion of our civil liberties that has come about because of it. From no-knock warrants to GPS surveillance without warrants to impounding of property even tangentially related to the crime. It is time to restore our liberties and put government back in its place!

MJBrutus on June 15, 2012 at 2:06 PM

Too stoned to vote.

Philly on June 15, 2012 at 2:08 PM

I am wondering what other convictions he has stabbed in the back to further his political career.

As many as necessary. They are all expendable, flexible or subject toevolving. The only conviction I want to see related to Obama is one of 20 – Life.

hawkeye54 on June 15, 2012 at 2:08 PM

Even though Dustin is at least on the correct path, the word “Constitution” is once again entirely absent from a blog piece.

Dante on June 15, 2012 at 2:09 PM

Too stoned to vote.

No problem. Acorn, or one of its iterations will gladly assist.

hawkeye54 on June 15, 2012 at 2:09 PM

I’m calling it now, in 2 weeks he’ll go full Oprah, call a press conference and just start yelling that due to an executive order “You get a car, you get a car, and you and you!” as the MSM just starts screaming like 13 year old girls at a Bieber concert.

Speaking of, Peggy Joseph better stay by her phone, she might just get her wish the way he’s polling.

nextgen_repub on June 15, 2012 at 2:09 PM

Pot activists here in CA positively hate obumbles.

They’ll tell you he “betrayed” them.

Tim_CA on June 15, 2012 at 2:13 PM

If Ogabe ends up legalizing weed (decriminalization is just not sufficient as prohibitively high fines aren’t much different from jail time), there WILL be a silver lining to the smelly pile of shit that is Ogabe’s term. Just imagine the major blow to police, DEA, prison, and education payrolls – all of them heavily unionized.

Archivarix on June 15, 2012 at 2:14 PM

Beats me why he would want to evolve his position.

It is safe to say that most changes and adaptations have little or no effect on survival. And if you don’t have some necessary parts, then no matter what else you have ‘evolved’ you won’t get anywhere.

Even worse if you change to adapt to merely temporary changes, and then get a miniscule change in the environment that is critical to all the changes, you see wholesale die-off.

That works with ideas, too. We are living in a hothouse… have been for decades… now the supports are rusting through, the glass falling in and winter is coming, idea-wise. You can evolve your leaves as much as you want, but if you only have ideas that survive in a hot house, then no matter what you change to you don’t make it through what is coming. A long era of Progressive ideas is now finding itself flailing trying to do anything to adapt. Too bad the basic conditions are changing around it and those conditions aren’t too kind to those who can’t add 1 + 1 and get 2… not 5 trillion.

ajacksonian on June 15, 2012 at 2:15 PM

Most marijuana types are not in jail – those that traffic enough of it to get in trouble won’t be allowed to traffic under any statute.

Marijuana however, isn’t a gateway drug.

Leave it up to the states – the feds have no business in it regardless. Let them tax the h*ll out of it. Allow employers to still screen for it and choose to not hire people who use it – or fire those who do use it. Make it subject to all the anti-smoking laws that exist.

Zomcon JEM on June 15, 2012 at 2:18 PM

There are millions of recreational pot smokers in jail?

That’s a canard.

There are however, many people in jail who traffick in Marijuana. Many of them also traffic in human beings, heroin, cocaine, weapons, and other items of monetary value on the black market.

CorporatePiggy on June 15, 2012 at 2:26 PM

davidk on June 15, 2012 at 2:03 PM

Oh, I have no illusions about why they did so. It just infuriates the libertarian in me that people are taking the position: Make it legal enough that I don’t have to go to jail, but keep it illegal enough that I don’t lose my price support.

Infuriating!!

JohnGalt23 on June 15, 2012 at 2:30 PM

There are millions of recreational pot smokers in jail?

CorporatePiggy on June 15, 2012 at 2:26 PM

At any given time? No.

But there are 750k arrests for possession of cannabis each year. If the average time spent inside is only 5 days (for argument’s sake… I don’t have data on average times), that is 3.75 million man-days of incarceration time each year.

That’s real money and real jail space.

JohnGalt23 on June 15, 2012 at 2:33 PM

Instead of expanding the economic pie, lets bake some marijuana into it. That should work as a stimulus for munchies.

WhatNot on June 15, 2012 at 2:34 PM

Reefer.

Bmore on June 15, 2012 at 2:39 PM

It says something that the majority of people opposed to legalization can only make lame munchies jokes. Have you ever *seen* drunk people in public? They are infinitely more obnoxious than stoned people. And significantly more violent.

libfreeordie on June 15, 2012 at 2:40 PM

If Obama beats us to this issue, we have only ourselves to blame.

We claim to be the side that’s for small government.

thirtyandseven on June 15, 2012 at 2:41 PM

Oh…….and shiny things. ; )

Bmore on June 15, 2012 at 2:42 PM

Now HA is now quoting “Jack Cafferty” how low can we go?

Natebo on June 15, 2012 at 2:44 PM

Don’t let the door hit you on the way out…it’s too late to say don’t pass any dumb laws on the way out…

right2bright on June 15, 2012 at 2:44 PM

They are infinitely more obnoxious than stoned people. And significantly more violent.

libfreeordie on June 15, 2012 at 2:40 PM

Pick and chose much libiot (not a question, we all know you do).

That is desperation. It smells like reefer.

cozmo on June 15, 2012 at 2:48 PM

Pick and chose much libiot (not a question, we all know you do).

That is desperation. It smells like reefer.

cozmo on June 15, 2012 at 2:48 PM

Actually, cher cozmo, its speculation. Your inability to understand that suggests you may have been hitting some “reefer” yourself. Also, my god man/woman, how old *are* you?

libfreeordie on June 15, 2012 at 2:59 PM

Also, my god man/woman, how old *are* you?

libfreeordie on June 15, 2012 at 2:59 PM

Old enough to know better. You, not so much.

You made a statement with a conclusion. Your speculation defense is a blatant and crude lie.

You will learn that when you get to third grade.

cozmo on June 15, 2012 at 3:06 PM

I got your Green Jobs right here! ……. CHOOOOOOOOOOOOOM

maineconservative on June 15, 2012 at 3:06 PM

But there are 750k arrests for possession of cannabis each year. If the average time spent inside is only 5 days (for argument’s sake… I don’t have data on average times), that is 3.75 million man-days of incarceration time each year.

That’s real money and real jail space.

JohnGalt23 on June 15, 2012 at 2:33 PM

I offered that quote as support of what your position is.

I wonder if the issue in the minds of politicoes is whether there is more money to be made in fines or taxes.

I’m still on the fence on the legalization issue. My gut reaction is no, but with the legalization of alcohol and tobacco, reason says criminalization of pot is inconsistent.

It is like seat belts. Law enforcement targets people in air-bagged steel cages, but then allows people to ride motorcycles.

I don’t understand people’s rationale sometimes.

davidk on June 15, 2012 at 3:14 PM

Yet another shiny object.

Still no Christmas Tree.

ajacksonian on June 15, 2012 at 3:28 PM

How many evolutions can one President make?

The only one I care about is evolving to realize that you can’t keep spending on your pet projects without considering the damage it does to the country as a whole.

My belief is that it’s intentional and that he never planned to fix the economy at all.

disa on June 15, 2012 at 3:35 PM

Old enough to know better.

cozmo on June 15, 2012 at 3:06 PM

Its a privilege to talk to methusela’s dad…..

libfreeordie on June 15, 2012 at 3:39 PM

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