Quotes of the day

posted at 11:05 pm on November 14, 2012 by Allahpundit

State legislators in Rhode Island and Maine will announce bills tomorrow to legalize recreational marijuana, a spokesperson for the Marijuana Policy Project announced today…

MPP says that “similar proposals will be submitted in at least two other states — Vermont and Massachusetts.” A ballot iniative legalizing medical marijuana passed in Massachusetts last week with more than 60 percent of the vote. Maine voters voted to expand the state’s 1999 medical marijuana law in 2009 to include dispensaries.

***

Relaxing restrictions on marijuana met with mixed results on Election Day, approved by voters in Colorado, Washington and Massachusetts, rejected in Arkansas and Oregon.

Americans split by 48-50 percent in this survey on “legalizing the possession of small amounts of marijuana for personal use.” Nonetheless that marks a new high in support in polls back to 1985, and the first time opposition has slipped to less than a majority. Support for legalizing marijuana has grown sharply from just 22 percent in 1997.

Despite increased acceptance of the idea, intensity of sentiment is tilted against relaxing marijuana restrictions: Thirty-seven percent are strongly opposed to legalization, vs. 26 percent who strongly support it.

***

Via WaPo:

***

Mexican President Felipe Calderón says the legalization of marijuana for recreational use in two U.S. states limits that country’s ‘‘moral authority’’ to ask other nations to combat or restrict illegal drug trafficking.

Calderón says the legalization of marijuana in Washington and Colorado represents a fundamental change that requires the rethinking of public policy in the entire Western Hemisphere…

Mexico insists the violence from cartels has increased largely because drug consumption and arms smuggled from the United States.

“Why do criminals kill so cruelly and with so much evil? Why do they take so many risks? Because they are that dumb, that violent, that savage? It’s their ambition that then causes an increase in drug prices and demand from the consumer markets,” the president said.

***

This week, Paul also plans to re-engage with Leahy and others about his stance on marijuana, saying it makes little sense to have tough laws against possession that could destroy a young person’s life.

After Colorado and Washington state each approved recreational use of marijuana in ballot initiatives last week, Paul said it “wouldn’t hurt” for his party to take a softer stand on the issue, saying it would show that the GOP is a “little bit rational” and “reasonable” if penalties for pot possession were weakened.

“I don’t think we should put people in jail for mandatory sentences of nonviolent drug crimes, particularly 20-year sentences,” Paul said. “I’d just hate to see somebody’s kid get put in jail for 20 years for making a mistake.”

***

Young Americans are much more open to reform, about 59 percent of Americans under 34 favor legalization, as do 56 percent among those 35-44. Middle-aged Americans are evenly split, while seniors are most opposed 64 percent to 29 percent in favor. However, even a majority of seniors (58 percent) favor medical marijuana prescribed by a doctor.

Religiosity highly correlates with position on drug legalization. Sixty-seven percent of those who attend church weekly oppose legalizing recreational pot, but 58 percent support medical marijuana. In contrast 75 percent of those who never attend church favor marijuana legalization, as do 61 percent of those who only attend church a few times a year…

Interestingly, significantly more tea party supporters than Republicans favor legalizing marijuana (38 percent to 27 percent). Upwards of 55 percent of both Democrats and Independents also support legalizing the drug.

***

It would be a mistake to call these ballot initiative victories “pro-pot.” Most of those who voted in favor don’t use marijuana; indeed many don’t like it at all and have never used it. What moved them was the realization that it made more sense to regulate, tax and control marijuana than to keep wasting money and resources trying to enforce an unenforceable prohibition.

Whether or not the two state governments move forward with regulating marijuana like alcohol will depend on two things: how the Obama administration, federal prosecutors and police agencies respond; and the extent to which the states’ senior elected officials commit to implementing the will of the people. The fact that federal laws explicitly criminalize marijuana transactions, and that the federal government can continue to enforce those laws, means that federal authorities could effectively block the initiatives from being fully implemented. But there are also good reasons why the Obama administration should, and may, allow state governments to proceed as voters have demanded…

Will federal prosecutors and police agents continue to repeat the mantra that “it’s all illegal under federal law” and that the federal Controlled Substances Act trumps all state laws? Yes, of course. But they’re up against a powerful host of arguments that also demand deference. These new laws were passed by voter initiatives, which represent the clearest expressions of the will of the people. The final tallies were consistent with public opinion polls earlier in the year, before anyone had spent a penny on political advertising. Voters clearly knew what they were voting for.

Effectively implemented, the new laws could offer fiscal benefits in terms of reducing criminal justice costs and increasing tax revenues, public safety benefits in terms of transforming a criminal, underground market into a legally regulated above-ground part of local economies, and public health benefits in terms of regulating the quality and potency of substances consumed by millions of Americans. They also, it must be said, advance the cause of freedom.

***

Both initiatives abolish penalties for adults 21 or older who possess up to an ounce of marijuana and for state-licensed growers and sellers who follow regulations that are supposed to be adopted during the next year or so. Pot prohibitionists such as Asa Hutchinson, former head of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), argue that allowing marijuana sales violates the Controlled Substances Act and therefore the Constitution, which makes valid acts of Congress “the supreme law of the land.”

But the Supremacy Clause applies only to laws that Congress has the authority to pass, and the ban on marijuana has never had a solid constitutional basis. If alcohol prohibition required a constitutional amendment, how could Congress, less than two decades later, enact marijuana prohibition by statute?

***

The White House is surprisingly uncool when it comes to toking up: A Reuters piece that Charles C. W. Cooke noted on the Corner last week reports that the victories are largely symbolic. Ken Sabet, former assistant to Obama’s drug czar, said that state leaders “are facing an uphill battle with implementing this, in the face of . . . presidential opposition and in the face of federal enforcement opposition.” In other words, the Obama administration cares more about maintaining the concentration of federal power than preventing thousands of bored college students from getting arrested for doing exactly what the president did when he was a bored college student.

For the GOP, this is more than just an opening; it’s a magical messaging moment, which, to paraphrase Rahm Emanuel, conservatives shouldn’t let go to waste. “This is a classic example of where they can walk the walk,” says Tim Lynch of the Cato Institute. This isn’t really a drug-legalization issue; it’s a states’ rights issue and a limited-powers issue. All conservatives have to agree on is that the federal government might have better things to do with its freshly printed money than try to enforce a nigh-unenforceable law that local voters and leaders think was a bad idea in the first place…

If the GOP is going to be competitive in 2016, it has to communicate to young people that intrusive federal government makes their lives worse. It has to communicate that it’s the party that respects personal choice and individual responsibility. And it would probably help to communicate that when in doubt, the GOP doesn’t automatically take the side of the insanely expensive branch of the federal government that breaks into people’s homes, shoots their dogs, and imprisons them because they added a funny ingredient to their brownies.

***



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I suspect there will be a large increase in traffic accidents in CA, CO and WA as well in other states. And child abuse cases are likely to grow along with other tragic consequences. (Does anyone else think little Caylee Anthony might have drowned in the pool becuase her negligent mother was high on drugs?) Overall, there will be more tragic train, plane and automobile accidents in these states in addition to workplace accidents.

I hope to be around in 5 years to either say I told you so or I was wrong. We shall see.

metroryder on November 15, 2012 at 6:01 AM

Nice speculation there, can I play? “Does anyone else think little Caylee Anthony might have drowned in the pool becuase her negligent mother was high on drugs drunk?”

HarryBackside on November 15, 2012 at 8:31 AM

Tell that to all the people killed by drunk drivers or in workplace accidents where some stoner cared more about getting high than safety.

There is a case to be made about “responsible use” but your absolute statement is as stupid as anything else you parrot from the racist nutjob you adore.

Happy Nomad on November 15, 2012 at 8:29 AM

That’s a different matter altogether, but as usual you rely on personal attacks because you are unable to form logical, intelligent arguments.

Dante on November 15, 2012 at 8:34 AM

There will be unintended consequences. We just don’t yet know what they will be. If alcohol is any guide then we are in for a bumpy ride.

IdrilofGondolin on November 15, 2012 at 8:36 AM

There will be unintended consequences. We just don’t yet know what they will be. If alcohol is any guide then we are in for a bumpy ride.

IdrilofGondolin on November 15, 2012 at 8:36 AM

What about the unintended consequences of prohibition? The black hole of spending, the growing police state, the incarceration of nonviolent people who never infringed upon anyone else? The smuggling and deaths?

Dante on November 15, 2012 at 8:41 AM

That’s a different matter altogether, but as usual you rely on personal attacks because you are unable to form logical, intelligent arguments.

Dante on November 15, 2012 at 8:34 AM

Says the guy who makes stupid absolute statements instead of acknowledging all the facts.

Happy Nomad on November 15, 2012 at 8:52 AM

Says the guy who makes stupid absolute statements instead of acknowledging all the facts.

Happy Nomad on November 15, 2012 at 8:52 AM

Having a drink of alcohol or smoking a joint does not affect anyone else at all. This is a fact.

Driving under the influence of any drug may affect others. Using the drug isn’t affecting others; driving while impaired may. In your example that was devoid of any logic, drug use didn’t affect anyone; driving impaired did. They are two separate actions. Ingesting a drug of any kind does not affect anyone other than the person taking it. This is an undeniable fact.

Dante on November 15, 2012 at 9:00 AM

Oh thats Marijuana? I thought: why is this guy holding a turd into the camera?

Valkyriepundit on November 15, 2012 at 9:06 AM

Nice speculation there, can I play? “Does anyone else think little Caylee Anthony might have drowned in the pool becuase her negligent mother was drunk?”

HarryBackside on November 15, 2012 at 8:31 AM

I admit that I am not on the winning side of this conversation, but it’s not about winning to me anyway. It’s about wanting to live in a society that thrives on life without turning to a crutch for a means of having a good time. I’m thinking of my children and grandchildren.

I am a strong believer in liberty and freedom. I actually would like to live in a society where people are pretty much free to do as they please, with guidelines attached to protect others who don’t go beyond what’s reasonable for a free society to exist. What prevents any society from existing with few constraints on liberties is the unwillingness for people to take responsibility for their actions.

For those that advocate the legalization of cannabis, more power to you. But as I mentioned in an earlier post, you should be prepared to face severe consequences if your desires to be stoned interfere with the life or lives of others. If you can go about your daily lives without affecting the lives of others in any way, so be it. If you lose your employment due to your need to be stoned, man up and face the consequences. My tax dollars should never pay for the treatment of those too weak to overcome the desire to be stoned or drunk. If smoking weed or consuming too much alcohol ever has any negative consequences on the imbibers, they’re on their own as far as I am concerned.

metroryder on November 15, 2012 at 9:07 AM

I am a strong believer in liberty and freedom. I actually would like to live in a society where people are pretty much free to do as they please, with guidelines attached to protect others who don’t go beyond what’s reasonable for a free society to exist. What prevents any society from existing with few constraints on liberties is the unwillingness for people to take responsibility for their actions.

metroryder on November 15, 2012 at 9:07 AM

You’re holding conflicting views.

Everyone claims support for freedom. But too often it’s for one’s own freedom and not for others. Too many believe that there must be limits on freedom. They argue that freedom must be directed and managed to achieve fairness and equality thus making it acceptable to curtail, through force, certain liberties.

Some decide what and whose freedoms are to be limited. These are the politicians whose goal in life is power. Their success depends on gaining support from special interests.

Some strong reading material for metrotryder, who claims to be a believer in liberty and freedom

Dante on November 15, 2012 at 9:12 AM

Having a drink of alcohol or smoking a joint does not affect anyone else at all. This is a fact.

Dante on November 15, 2012 at 9:00 AM

That is an ignorant and disputable statement. Tell that to the children and spouses of stoners and drunks. One drink doesn’t make a drunk, but one powerful joint can turn a father or mother into a non-caring individual only absorbed in themselves. I know that firsthand. So my guess is you’re not a parent and that is a good thing.

metroryder on November 15, 2012 at 9:18 AM

Dante on November 15, 2012 at 9:12 AM

I’m convinced you are an anarchist…sad.

metroryder on November 15, 2012 at 9:21 AM

That is an ignorant and disputable statement. Tell that to the children and spouses of stoners and drunks. One drink doesn’t make a drunk, but one powerful joint can turn a father or mother into a non-caring individual only absorbed in themselves. I know that firsthand. So my guess is you’re not a parent and that is a good thing.

metroryder on November 15, 2012 at 9:18 AM

At least you’re consistent in your use of logical fallacies.

Dante on November 15, 2012 at 9:23 AM

it’s not about winning to me anyway. It’s about wanting to live in a society that thrives on life without turning to a crutch for a means of having a good time. I’m thinking of my children and grandchildren.

metroryder on November 15, 2012 at 9:07 AM

When in human history have we not consumed some form of drug to have a good time? I do understand where your coming from, but what has drug prohibition done to change that? Since the inception of the drug war, drug usage has sky rocketed, despite spending $15B a year. All prohibition does is move the banned product to an underground market where it is controlled by criminals. While drug prohibition has done nothing to decrease drug use, it has been a boon for violent, organized criminals. The drug war is also a war on freedom. If you believe in liberty and freedom as much as you say, you should read up on the asset forfeiture some times.

Again, I understand where you are coming from. You want to live in a moral world, with moral people. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that, but is government really the means to that end?

HarryBackside on November 15, 2012 at 9:25 AM

I’m convinced you are an anarchist…sad.

metroryder on November 15, 2012 at 9:21 AM

Darn! Did describing myself as an anarcho-capitalist and advocating for liberty give it away?

Dante on November 15, 2012 at 9:25 AM

BIG GOVERMENT – FOR THE CHILDREN
LESS LIBERTY – FOR THE CHILDREN
STATUS QUO – FOR THE CHILDREN

Jeddite on November 15, 2012 at 9:29 AM

Some strong reading material for metrotryder, who claims to be a believer in liberty and freedom

Dante on November 15, 2012 at 9:12 AM

I already read Ron Pauls’ farewell speech at Breitbart. What is your point?

metroryder on November 15, 2012 at 9:31 AM

BIG GOVERMENT – FOR THE CHILDREN
LESS LIBERTY – FOR THE CHILDREN
STATUS QUO – FOR THE CHILDREN

Jeddite on November 15, 2012 at 9:29 AM

Yep. One of the most egregious of logical fallacies, and a popular one of the left. It is always used not to defend liberty, but to defend the curtailing of liberty.

Dante on November 15, 2012 at 9:33 AM

I already read Ron Pauls’ farewell speech at Breitbart. What is your point?

metroryder on November 15, 2012 at 9:31 AM

I wanted you to see what a strong defense of liberty and freedom actually looks like.

Dante on November 15, 2012 at 9:37 AM

Drugs used to be legal in America. They were called patient medicines. Didn’t work out so well. Same with other countries. Socialized medicine to pay for it by those who don’t imbibe. As a child of the 60′s who never once used I have seen the effects of those who did. If you want to try dying of exposure in an outhouse on a construction site use pot for a starter and throw the dice.

BullShooterAsInElk on November 15, 2012 at 9:54 AM

Drugs used to be legal in America. They were called patient medicines. Didn’t work out so well.

+1 for the reference…I wonder how many other people my age know about this. With the way they ‘teach’ ‘history’ these days, probably not many.

Socialized medicine to pay for it by those who don’t imbibe.

Folks, this is the real issue. Do you honestly think that with our current political setup that we won’t end up paying for the consequences of legalization?

Do you?

As a child of the 60′s who never once used I have seen the effects of those who did. If you want to try dying of exposure in an outhouse on a construction site use pot for a starter and throw the dice.

BullShooterAsInElk on November 15, 2012 at 9:54 AM

Best anti-drug message I’ve seen in a long time? Watch episodes of “Beyond Scared Straight” and listen carefully to just how many inmates tell stories that begin with “I started smoking pot, then it went to X, and then Y…”

It’s not propaganda that pot is a gateway drug that leads to bad things. It’s not some old wives’ tale that ‘recreational’ drug use can destroy your life in the space of one day.

MelonCollie on November 15, 2012 at 10:06 AM

Let’s get something straight – while the MM issue was defeated in Arkansas, it can hardly be categorized as “rejected”. It ended in a 52-48 split in a firmly established red-state that ushered in Republican majorities in the legislature.

Legalization…or at least decriminalization of marijuana should be the wish of every conservative in America.

If not, alcohol prohibition should be added to the GOP platform.

Al-Ozarka on November 15, 2012 at 10:09 AM

Legalization…or at least decriminalization of marijuana should be the wish of every conservative in America.

If not, alcohol prohibition should be added to the GOP platform.

Al-Ozarka on November 15, 2012 at 10:09 AM

Because the usage of pot (and soon after other drugs) has hundreds of years of precedent in Western culture…

Oh wait, it doesn’t, you’re just an idiot.

MelonCollie on November 15, 2012 at 10:13 AM

metroryder on November 15, 2012 at 9:18 AM

Yeah but, mind your own business.

Akzed on November 15, 2012 at 10:30 AM

Melonhead,

Please explain how criminalization of a substance that is harmless in relation to the legal substance , alcohol, is a conservative position to hold.

Please explain whyin your perverted worldview, I am an idiot for holding such a position.

Remember – Obama was defeated approximately 60-40 in a state that “rejected” med-mar by only 52-48. Seems like there are a lot more conservatives who you’d call idiots in Arkansas.

Al-Ozarka on November 15, 2012 at 10:32 AM

The stuff can be lethal and I post from experience working with a pot smoker that would have walk off scaffolding 55 feet in the air if I hadn’t grabbed him. Not just once but many times. Maybe he would have died falling from 55 feet but what would happen if he hit someone else on the ground or knock someone else off on the way down. I stay away from druggies as much as I can and hope there isn’t one above me toking on a joint.

mixplix on November 15, 2012 at 10:42 AM

The stuff can be lethal and I post from experience working with a pot smoker that would have walk off scaffolding 55 feet in the air if I hadn’t grabbed him. Not just once but many times.

mixplix on November 15, 2012 at 10:42 AM

You’ll pardon me if I say that you are full of shiite.

JohnGalt23 on November 15, 2012 at 10:46 AM

The puritanical moral progressives that want to sanction everything that they don’t do is the rotting corpse of the culture war of the sixties, particularly when it comes to marijuana prohibition. If they were worried about car accidents they would be pushing for Alcohol prohibition since the effects on the driver are much much worse for alcohol than cannabis. They have resorted to pretty much the spaghetti against the wall aproach for an excuse as to why hippies can’t smoke weed.

LevStrauss on November 15, 2012 at 11:17 AM

We should ban smartphones. They cause car accidents. They have cause people to walk into wading fountains. They have caused pedistrians to get hit by cars. Just think of all the nasty stuff children can access if they ever got their hands on a smart phone.

LevStrauss on November 15, 2012 at 11:21 AM

Doritos and cheese balls hardest hit…

Galtian on November 15, 2012 at 11:43 AM

“Nonetheless that marks a new high in support in polls back to 1985,”

Ha ha, that’s funny.

Too bad drug use is not.

It is not a surprise that the majority of democrats support this kind of thing. They need more brain-dead people to vote for them.

Sterling Holobyte on November 15, 2012 at 11:51 AM

Calderón says the legalization of marijuana in Washington and Colorado represents a fundamental change that requires the rethinking of public policy in the entire Western Hemisphere…

Uh Huh …
Like who is going to pay off the local cops, the military, and the hordes of corrupt politicians? LOL That pud can’t be serious – or can he?
Mess’ko is a Third World dump.
ANY American who chooses to travel there deserves whatever happens to them.
Legalize marijuana and tell the Mess’kans to STFU.
~(Ä)~

Karl Magnus on November 15, 2012 at 12:08 PM

Legalization wouldn’t be much of a problem if the leftists hadn’t removed most of the consequences to personal irresponsibility, as well as teaching our children moral relativism. Freedom to choose means you must be responsible for your choices. Remove the responsibility and you loose the freedom. Marijuana, guns, junk food, it’s all the same.

Socratease on November 15, 2012 at 12:22 PM

I like the worry of people who think that Mexican drug cartels will be doing more business in Washington and Colorado.

What makes more sense: that a legal method of growing and selling marijuana by licensed growers and sellers (Washington) and/or private citizens growing in their homes (Colorado) will make cartel profits increase, or decrease?

sobincorporated on November 15, 2012 at 2:06 PM


The stuff can be lethal and I post from experience working with a pot smoker that would have walk off scaffolding 55 feet in the air if I hadn’t grabbed him. Not just once but many times. Maybe he would have died falling from 55 feet but what would happen if he hit someone else on the ground or knock someone else off on the way down. I stay away from druggies as much as I can and hope there isn’t one above me toking on a joint.

mixplix on November 15, 2012 at 10:42 AM

Good point – mixplix knows a guy who is irresponsible. And catastrophe can befall the irresponsible. Ergo, Jeddite‘s liberty should be trampled.

( which I guess I shouldnt mind too much since I do not partake of MJ — yet, I do mind )

Jeddite on November 15, 2012 at 2:25 PM

Conservatives should support decriminalization because it represents the states standing up to a power-grabbing Federal Government.

Seriously, the “War on Drugs” is merely the FedGov’s method of getting conservative, liberty-leaning types to embrace a police state. If one really wanted to end drug use, one would rely on institutions like the church and the family that could actually do something about it. The Federal Government is, as in every other of its endeavors, incompetent with regard to ending drug use (assuming that was truly the goal, which it is not. Establishing the legal and logistical framework for martial law is the true goal of the “War on Drugs”).

cavalier973 on November 16, 2012 at 8:47 AM

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