Federal government’s biggest marijuana concern is…workplace use?

posted at 4:21 pm on December 4, 2012 by Dustin Siggins

On November 6, Colorado and Washington State legalized the use of pot, becoming the first U.S. states to do so. Twenty days later, conservative comedian Steven Crowder launched a video outlining his opposition to marijuana legalization. And now, via FireDogLake, the Department of Transportation (DoT) is making sure the public knows it won’t tolerate workplace use:

We have had several inquiries about whether these state initiatives will have an impact upon the Department of Transportation’s longstanding regulation about the use of marijuana by safety‐sensitive transportation employees – pilots, school bus drivers, truck drivers, train engineers, subway operators, aircraft maintenance personnel, transit fire‐armed security personnel, ship captains, and pipeline emergency response personnel, among others.

We want to make it perfectly clear that the state initiatives will have no bearing on the Department of Transportation’s regulated drug testing program. The Department of Transportation’s Drug and Alcohol Testing Regulation – 49 CFR Part 40 – does not authorize the use of Schedule I drugs, including marijuana, for any reason.

Therefore, Medical Review Officers (MROs) will not verify a drug test as negative based upon learning that the employee used “recreational marijuana” when states have passed “recreational marijuana” initiatives.

According to the much-ballyhooed new CBS poll, the American people are evenly split between Colorado and Crowder – 47% in favor of legalization, and 47% against. As the linked CBS article points out, though, legalization is increasingly more supported in the younger generation:

According to exit polls, legalizing marijuana passed in Colorado and Washington with the support of a majority of younger voters under the age of 45. Nationwide, this pattern continues: a majority of Americans under the age of 45 support legalizing marijuana, while more older Americans – particularly those over 65 – oppose it.

Regardless of their view of legalization, however, a majority of Americans also don’t want the federal government involved in enforcing marijuana laws, including 49 percent of those opposed to marijuana legalization. Though as Ed noted in commenting on the poll, many Americans do want regulations if marijuana is to be made legal.

While national opinion is headed in the right direction, it is long past time for marijuana to be a state issue, and for states to at least consider legalization. As National Review articulately outlined in 2011, the War on Drugs is an abject failure, and as Newark, New Jersey Mayor Cory Booker pointed out this summer, it’s a failure that greatly impacts black Americans in particular. Booker also described a number of areas where improvements in public policy could help those addicted to drugs.

Typically, it is social conservatives who oppose legalization. However, I believe there is a case to be made for social conservatives to support marijuana legalization, or at least state control. As I argued at Hot Air this summer, this case consists of three basic arguments:

First, there are over three million Americans in jails and prisons nationwide, many arrested or jailed for non-violent marijuana use. Prohibition didn’t work for prohibition; why would we expect it to work with marijuana laws? It is inefficient to deny individual liberty by punishing those who use marijuana in the same way most people use alcohol: infrequently and responsibly. In other words, arresting responsible pot users shrinks the economic pie and increases the cost and size of government.

Related, while estimates are varied, billions in law enforcement and other costs could be saved through legalization. In a time of budget crisis at the federal level, this is important.

Lastly, according to a Catholic Theology on Tap speaker who works with inmates and recent inmates, 60% of future inmates are the children of current inmates. As the speaker said, we know who the next generation of prisoners is – the kids of today’s prisoners. If social conservatives want better public policy to keep families intact and have more people gainfully employed, they should support marijuana legalization, or at least state control of marijuana policy.

I am no medical professional, and Crowder’s video includes an interview with a doctor who described negative effects of marijuana on the human brain. However, I don’t think protecting people from themselves is something conservatives should support – otherwise, we are like one of Crowder’s foolish interviewees, who didn’t realize the inconsistency between wanting to ban big drinks in New York City and legalize marijuana.

So far, according to FireDogLake, the federal government has not really stepped up in reacting to the legalization of pot in Washington and Oregon, outside of the DoT and other agencies clarifying policies, etc. This is the way it should be; after all, Americans wouldn’t want a public employee drunk on the job, so of course we shouldn’t want someone high on the job. But other than that and selling on the streets and to children, we really ought to leave such policies up to the states, and support the rights of citizens to make their own decisions.

Dustin Siggins is the principal blogger for the Tea Party Patriots, a national grassroots coalition with more than 3,500 local chapters. He is also a co-founder of LibertyUnyielding.com, and the author of a forthcoming book on the national debt. The opinions expressed are his own.


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Bishop!!

Hey – it’s legal in Colorado now.
Except to the feds – like on military bases where I work. We’ve been warned multiple times since the election that just because pot is legal for Colorado, it’s NOT legal on military bases of for people working for the federal government.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 4:24 PM

And? Does the DOT tolerate alcohol use at the work place? Of course not.

MoreLiberty on December 4, 2012 at 4:25 PM

Do it for the brownies…the edible kind, not the junior girl scouts.

Bishop on December 4, 2012 at 4:25 PM

And the wheat is separated from the chaff…

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 4:26 PM

But other than that and selling on the streets and to children, we really ought to leave such policies up to the states, and support the rights of citizens to make their own decisions.

Finally a reasonable stance in support of federalism and the US Constitution.

MoreLiberty on December 4, 2012 at 4:26 PM

I think Dustin just wants special brownies.

newtopia on December 4, 2012 at 4:26 PM

Do it for the brownies…the edible kind, not the junior girl scouts.

Bishop on December 4, 2012 at 4:25 PM

“are they made from real girl scouts?…”

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 4:27 PM

Our country has gotten soooo much better since drug use has increased.

Come on, Cons, this is the 21st Century…Man.

Dr. ZhivBlago on December 4, 2012 at 4:28 PM

Ricky Gates, January 4, 1987, Chase, MD. Amtrak’s P&W line, CP GUNPOW

listens2glenn on December 4, 2012 at 4:29 PM

Lastly, according to a Catholic Theology on Tap speaker who works with inmates and recent inmates, 60% of future inmates are the children of current inmates. As the speaker said, we know who the next generation of prisoners is – the kids of today’s prisoners. If social conservatives want better public policy to keep families intact and have more people gainfully employed, they should support marijuana legalization, or at least state control of marijuana policy.

What?

Dustin Siggins, have you ever been high?

Axe on December 4, 2012 at 4:29 PM

Why can’t it be sold on the streets, it’s just a friggin PLANT, right?

Farmers Markets might actually become fun.

Bishop on December 4, 2012 at 4:30 PM

I’ve had to warn my kids that although pot may be legal according to the state, since it is NOT legal according to the feds I cannot have pot ever being stored, transported or used in my house or any of my cars. My security clearance and job are gone if the military drug dogs alert on me or my car coming on base.

However, I almost voted for it. My biggest objection was putting it into the state Constitution. This issue is not worthy of changing the Constitution – it should just be handled legislatively.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 4:32 PM

I don’t like pot, but the issue here is federalism. One minute you faux conservatives are crying about states rights and the federal government, then next you want them to tell others how to live their lives.

MoreLiberty on December 4, 2012 at 4:33 PM

First, there are over three million Americans in jails and prisons nationwide, many arrested or jailed for non-violent marijuana use.

This has to be wrong. Even the link you provide doesn’t support it. “arrested or jailed”? Virtually no one is incarcerated for pot use or possession alone. Most people doing time are there for dealing or for violating parole on something else. If you want to push for legalization that’s great. Don’t start doing it with bogus stats.

Rocks on December 4, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Don’t do drugs illegal drugs.

Just doesn’t have the same ring to it.

newtopia on December 4, 2012 at 4:35 PM

Related, while estimates are varied, billions in law enforcement and other costs could be saved through legalization. In a time of budget crisis at the federal level, this is important.

many Americans do want regulations if marijuana is to be made legal.

No,nothing will be saved. Police will simply be enforcing new regulations. Probably mostly to try to keep people from growing their own so the government can collect the billions in taxes that will never materialize and arresting the same drug dealers for dealing pot without paying the taxes.

Rocks on December 4, 2012 at 4:38 PM

The DoT is an employer.

Like any other employer they can require that you do not use mind altering substances on the job if you fall under the category of ” safety‐sensitive transportation employees”.

I’d say they’re free and clear on this one until someone gets caught high or fails a drug test, claims to be a pot head, gets suspended, is treated, and is redeployed in another “safety-sensitive” role.

Good luck going with that lawsuit – you’ll be facing an army of federal lawyers who could easily outspend every 2 bit pro-weed and ‘human rights’ organization in the country.

CorporatePiggy on December 4, 2012 at 4:39 PM

Dustin Siggins’ new favorite song: “Everybody Must Get Stoned” by Bob Dylan.

Bitter Clinger on December 4, 2012 at 4:40 PM

Virtually no one is incarcerated for pot use or possession alone. Most people doing time are there for dealing or for violating parole on something else. If you want to push for legalization that’s great. Don’t start doing it with bogus stats.

Rocks on December 4, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Okay – I have a 23-year-old step-son who evidently did two months in the county jail for, I dunno, I guess breathing.

I hope someday he’s no longer a virtual no one…

beatcanvas on December 4, 2012 at 4:40 PM

Dustin’s article is so-con concern trolling dressed up in libertarian guise.

Scary that he claims to represent tea party folks…I guess tea party folks are just Ron Paul supporters.

newtopia on December 4, 2012 at 4:40 PM

Prohibition didn’t work for prohibition; why would we expect it to work with marijuana laws?

Same argument can be made for crack cocaine, LSD, or meth. If laws prohibiting their use aren’t working, why not make them all legal? And, if we go that far, why not succinyl choline, oxycodone, Percoset, etc.?

a capella on December 4, 2012 at 4:41 PM

Dustin Siggins’ new favorite song: “Everybody Must Get Stoned” by Bob Dylan.

Bitter Clinger on December 4, 2012 at 4:40 PM

I think Colorado has made “Rocky Mountain High” the official state song….

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 4:42 PM

Lastly, according to a Catholic Theology on Tap speaker who works with inmates and recent inmates, 60% of future inmates are the children of current inmates. As the speaker said, we know who the next generation of prisoners is – the kids of today’s prisoners. If social conservatives want better public policy to keep families intact and have more people gainfully employed, they should support marijuana legalization, or at least state control of marijuana policy.

That’s the reasoning of the guy who says about a car wreck:

“the solution to car wrecks is to wreck the cars.”

I think, legislatively, that, yes, the issue of “drug legalization” SHOULD be left up to each state to decide, but, there’s gotta’ ALSO be some federal legislation that establishes inter-state goings on.

A great deal of the “prison generations” are due to DEALING AND TRAFFICKING in illegal drugs, not mere smoking or otherwise using them.

But to the stoners, it’s a case of EVERYONE being “persecuted” even when they’ve been hauling five tons every three months for the last five years into the US from Mexico.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 4:43 PM

Do it for the brownies…the edible kind, not the junior girl scouts.

Bishop on December 4, 2012 at 4:25 PM

I got kicked out of the Boy Scouts for eating a brownie.
#*@%&
Rimshot goes here.

D-fusit on December 4, 2012 at 4:46 PM

Lastly, according to a Catholic Theology on Tap speaker who works with inmates and recent inmates, 60% of future inmates are the children of current inmates. As the speaker said, we know who the next generation of prisoners is – the kids of today’s prisoners. If social conservatives want better public policy to keep families intact and have more people gainfully employed, they should support marijuana legalization, or at least state control of marijuana policy.

Yes, because the children of drug users won’t become drug users. Nothing says intact families and gainful employment like regular drug use.

Listen, other than regulating the import or export of pot I don’t see any reason for the federal government to be involved in it so it should be a state issue. That being said I am tired of hearing the so called upside of this argument. If you legalize something you will have more of it. The only thing resulting from legalizing pot for sure will be many, many more pot users and I don’t see how that can be spun as a good thing. There is only one reason to legalize pot and that’s liberty.

Rocks on December 4, 2012 at 4:46 PM

Same argument can be made for crack cocaine, LSD, or meth. If laws prohibiting their use aren’t working, why not make them all legal? And, if we go that far, why not succinyl choline, oxycodone, Percoset, etc.?

a capella on December 4, 2012 at 4:41 PM

I really wouldn’t mind people mainlining heroin on the corner of Main st and anything, as long as 1) cops and armed citizens are allowed to put them down like rabid animals if/when they behave like rabid animals, and 2) my tax money isn’t milked for governmental health programs that pay for their rehabs.

Archivarix on December 4, 2012 at 4:46 PM

Prohibition didn’t work for prohibition; why would we expect it to work with marijuana laws?

Same argument can be made for crack cocaine, LSD, or meth. If laws prohibiting their use aren’t working, why not make them all legal? And, if we go that far, why not succinyl choline, oxycodone, Percoset, etc.?

a capella on December 4, 2012 at 4:41 PM

I agree with “a capella” — merrywhanna *is* a gateway drug whether many users of it will admit it or not (and that’s evidence that it is, indeed, a gateway drug, that users can’t recognize that).

It’s like when people abuse alcohol. They claim “everyone does” and that “everyone I know drinks” and on and on, same with MJ users. THE REALITY is that everyone *they* know and/or associate with is in the generally same condition they are, BUT IT DOESN’T MEAN that general humanity is in that condition (which is lost on users).

“All I see are…” which means, it’s an issue of that individual’s vision or ability to view, not that the world is as that statement describes.

Slippery Slope…

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 4:47 PM

I got kicked out of the Boy Scouts for eating a brownie.
#*@%&
Rimshot goes here.

D-fusit on December 4, 2012 at 4:46 PM

That’s cuz it wasn’t ripe yet…..
You have to let them mature more.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 4:48 PM

Okay – I have a 23-year-old step-son who evidently did two months in the county jail for, I dunno, I guess breathing.

I hope someday he’s no longer a virtual no one…

beatcanvas on December 4, 2012 at 4:40 PM

He did that solely for possession? Not with “intent to sell”? Not with other charges? No resisting arrest? No public intoxication or DUI? No parole violation of probation for some earlier offense?

Rocks on December 4, 2012 at 4:49 PM

There is only one reason to legalize pot and that’s liberty.

Rocks on December 4, 2012 at 4:46 PM

Good enough for me, bro.

Archivarix on December 4, 2012 at 4:49 PM

Dustin’s article is so-con concern trolling dressed up in libertarian guise.

Scary that he claims to represent tea party folks…I guess tea party folks are just Ron Paul supporters.

newtopia on December 4, 2012 at 4:40 PM

I agree.

He speaks the language of defeat: give in to it, nothing will change, it’s all so depressing, just do what they want, you can’t win, you’re a loser, you’ll always be a loser, everyone’s a loser, no one’s worth it, yaddayaddayadda…

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 4:50 PM

He did that solely for possession? Not with “intent to sell”? Not with other charges? No resisting arrest? No public intoxication or DUI? No parole violation of probation for some earlier offense?

Rocks on December 4, 2012 at 4:49 PM

Purely possession. He wasn’t charged with anything else. We left him in there to help him get sober, which he did.

beatcanvas on December 4, 2012 at 4:50 PM

How would one know if a d used? It is hard to tell if they did or didn’t because they don’t have two brain cell to rub together to make a spark? bho comes to mind!
L

letget on December 4, 2012 at 4:51 PM

weed was legal and used for centuries for its medicinal qualities. It’s been banned for sixty years and now we have a whole butt load of problems. Not with weed, with prohibition.

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 4:52 PM

I wonder how many lines of cocaine obama does a day.

ChunkyLover on December 4, 2012 at 4:52 PM

Why can’t it be sold on the streets, it’s just a friggin PLANT, right?

Farmers Markets might actually become fun.

Bishop on December 4, 2012 at 4:30 PM

I crossed it with a flower from the same biological branch. That way it’s legal and I can grow it in the garden. I’m scared to try it — but I keep catching honey bees hanging out at my patio table, munching Cheetos’ crumbs and listening to Zeppelin.

Pretty cool guys. :) I’m a little worried about their winter though; they don’t seem all that “busy” anymore.

Axe on December 4, 2012 at 4:53 PM

What’ll Obama’s new definition of “workplace violence” be? Not enough Schrooms in the cafeteria so there’s a rumble about it?

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 4:54 PM

Axe on December 4, 2012 at 4:53 PM

Best laugh I’ve had since the election.

D-fusit on December 4, 2012 at 4:55 PM

Purely possession. He wasn’t charged with anything else. We left him in there to help him get sober, which he did.

beatcanvas on December 4, 2012 at 4:50 PM

You left him there. So in other words he couldn’t pay the fine or took a plea bargain to get the state to pay for his rehab? He could have paid a fine and walked no?

Rocks on December 4, 2012 at 4:55 PM

The war on debt is a failure

Give Obama the power to raise it to whatever

/s(?)

tomg51 on December 4, 2012 at 4:56 PM

If social conservatives want better public policy to keep families intact and have more people gainfully employed, they should support marijuana legalization, or at least state control of marijuana policy.

This has got to be one of the most stupid things I’ve read today.

The family that gets stoned together stays together???? This is nothing more than some idiot with a jailhouse ministry that thinks that there really are innocent people being held behind bars (just ask them). There are many things that social conservatives can do to support better public policy. Listening to the insane rants of Ron Paul’s supporters is not one of them.

Happy Nomad on December 4, 2012 at 4:57 PM

Everyone should be concerned about its use in the workplace. When you forget steps in a procedure because your short term memory is fried you are a danger to your fellow employees and a drag on productivity. I had a fellow employee years ago who used on lunch break and he had to write copious notes about everything in the afternoon or he forgot it all. I also had three users who blew up their casting station three times because they kept forgeting simple steps. The PI we brought in got the goods on them thank goodness but that was lots of money and a lot of scars from molten metal burns later.

KW64 on December 4, 2012 at 4:57 PM

Bishop on December 4, 2012 at 4:30 PM

.
I crossed it with a flower from the same biological branch. That way it’s legal and I can grow it in the garden. I’m scared to try it — but I keep catching honey bees hanging out at my patio table, munching Cheetos’ crumbs and listening to Zeppelin.

Pretty cool guys. :) I’m a little worried about their winter though; they don’t seem all that “busy” anymore.

Axe on December 4, 2012 at 4:53 PM

.
So that’s what’s happening to our honey bee population.

listens2glenn on December 4, 2012 at 4:57 PM

weed was legal and used for centuries for its medicinal qualities. It’s been banned for sixty years and now we have a whole butt load of problems. Not with weed, with prohibition.

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 4:52 PM

“…weed was legal and used for centuries for its medicinal qualities…”

For “medicinal” purposes, not every five minutes about 12 hours every day.

Used as some special treatment due to a particular physical concern, and then not used when the concern dissipated or disappeared. Like with peyote use, used for ceremonies, for “special situations” NOT USED as daily fare.

The thing is, people who use or mostly use MJ do so habitually and increasingly more often as time passes. I know, I’ve known many who do and they’re never able eventually to view what they’re doing with any objectivity.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 4:58 PM

Obama looks at England’s Laffer curve failure and thinks – Tax the Rich.

It’s the same failure of logic to see prohibition as a terrific effin’ idea!

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 4:59 PM

Please toke only in designated toking areas. Thank you.

Ward Cleaver on December 4, 2012 at 5:00 PM

Axe on December 4, 2012 at 4:53 PM

.
So that’s what’s happening to our honey bee population.

listens2glenn on December 4, 2012 at 4:57 PM

On a serious note, the troubles that Honey Bees are experiencing is mostly due to infectious, parasitic mites. They attach themselves to the back of the Bees’ heads, in between the head and the body, and then suck the life out of them until they perish.

That problem and the problem of fungal infections in their hives.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:00 PM

First question to be asked by any so-called “conservative” who pretends to be more than a Bible-thumping troglocon: however well meaning the Prohibition on marijuana may be, is it Constitutional? Is your answer is “no” and you still support the prohibition, well, you might be just a wee two-faced.

Archivarix on December 4, 2012 at 5:01 PM

weed was legal and used for centuries for its medicinal qualities. It’s been banned for sixty years and now we have a whole butt load of problems. Not with weed, with prohibition.

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 4:52 PM

I agree with your implication about prohibition. But at various times in history, cocaine, heroin, opium, absynthe, and many other chemicals/drugs were also perfectly legal and used for “medicinal purposes” – in fact there have been many “snake oil” type substances that did not really do what doctors and sales people claimed they did. In most cases, over time their various effects were documented, leading people to decide they had to be stopped for the good of society. That doesn’t necessarily mean anything or everything should be legalized – or made illegal.
However, given the nature and effects of pot as compared to alcohol and tobacco, I don’t object so much any more to pot being legalized.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:01 PM

He speaks the language of defeat: give in to it, nothing will change, it’s all so depressing, just do what they want, you can’t win, you’re a loser, you’ll always be a loser, everyone’s a loser, no one’s worth it, yaddayaddayadda…

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 4:50 PM

And if it works for getting pot legalized it will work for rewarding illegals with amnesty. Nevermind they broke the law, there are those who had to do it the hard way (and spent thousands), and that there is a whole distribution network for drugs manned by some of these illegals……. We should just give in to rewarding these Hispanic criminals, it’s all so depressing, just do what the administration wants, we won’t win anyway….

Happy Nomad on December 4, 2012 at 5:01 PM

The thing is, people who use or mostly use MJ do so habitually and increasingly more often as time passes. I know, I’ve known many who do and they’re never able eventually to view what they’re doing with any objectivity.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 4:58 PM

I listen and all I hear is Burn the Witch! Or in this case, Ban the Witch.

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 5:01 PM

Obama’s workplace environment:

“It’s three o’clock, where’s the report I asked you to complete?”

“Hey, man, be cooool, I’m jus chillin out here for another few hours, don’t be hatin’.”

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:02 PM

The thing is, people who use or mostly use MJ do so habitually and increasingly more often as time passes. I know, I’ve known many who do and they’re never able eventually to view what they’re doing with any objectivity.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 4:58 PM

I listen and all I hear is Burn the Witch! Or in this case, Ban the Witch.

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 5:01 PM

Whoa. I think you’ve used too much of your product. Man.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:03 PM

Obama’s workplace environment:

“It’s three o’clock, where’s the report I asked you to complete?”

“Hey, man, be cooool, I’m jus chillin out here for another few hours, don’t be hatin’.”

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:02 PM

Time for a cookie break!

Ward Cleaver on December 4, 2012 at 5:03 PM

Whoa. I think you’ve used too much of your product. Man.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:03 PM

that or too much Monty Python or both, my prohibition loving friend

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 5:04 PM

Everyone should be concerned about its use in the workplace. When you forget steps in a procedure because your short term memory is fried you are a danger to your fellow employees and a drag on productivity. I had a fellow employee years ago who used on lunch break and he had to write copious notes about everything in the afternoon or he forgot it all.

KW64 on December 4, 2012 at 4:57 PM

One of the more annoying things about Ron Paul’s supporters is their assertion that pot should be legalized because it is “harmless.” Well, it is a medical fact that pot changes the way your brain connects itself. That doesn’t sound harmless to me. Especially if the individual using pot hops behind a car, operates heavy machinery, or otherwise can kill or maim others.

Happy Nomad on December 4, 2012 at 5:05 PM

Axe on December 4, 2012 at 4:53 PM

ROTFLMAO!!!
I’ve got the munchies now just from reading that….

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:06 PM

First question to be asked by any so-called “conservative” who pretends to be more than a Bible-thumping troglocon: however well meaning the Prohibition on marijuana may be, is it Constitutional? Is your answer is “no” and you still support the prohibition, well, you might be just a wee two-faced.

Archivarix on December 4, 2012 at 5:01 PM

It’s an issue of crime involved and contingent upon, etc.

Drug trafficking, drug trade, related violence, associated violence and the public good.

Which is why a lot of “things” are legislate. We have driving limits on public roadways contingent upon conditions and surrounding environ because it’s recognized that there is the liklihood of “crime” involved without those limits (wrecks, assaults, various other misdeeds that harm individuals or the “public”).

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:06 PM

Which is why a lot of “things” are legislated.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:07 PM

He did that solely for possession? Not with “intent to sell”? Not with other charges? No resisting arrest? No public intoxication or DUI? No parole violation of probation for some earlier offense?

Rocks on December 4, 2012 at 4:49 PM

Purely possession. He wasn’t charged with anything else. We left him in there to help him get sober, which he did.

beatcanvas on December 4, 2012 at 4:50 PM

That doesn’t sound quite right. What did he have to get sober from? Marijuana use? Alcohol dependency? Other drug dependency? Sounds like he had a severe problem (other than pot use) and maybe the amount he got popped for was more than what the authorities term “personal use.”

Mitoch55 on December 4, 2012 at 5:07 PM

On a serious note, the troubles that Honey Bees are experiencing is mostly due to infectious, parasitic mites. They attach themselves to the back of the Bees’ heads, in between the head and the body, and then suck the life out of them until they perish.

That problem and the problem of fungal infections in their hives.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:00 PM

There is also a wasting disease virus that seems to have been inmported into the US when we opened imports for a time because farmers said there were not enough honeybees for pollination. The disease has spread with disasterous consequences. Short term gain long term pain.

Speaking of wasting or waisting, why are progressives so intent on legalizing drugs but equally intent on restricting sugar, salt and fat?

KW64 on December 4, 2012 at 5:08 PM

I keep catching honey bees hanging out at my patio table, munching Cheetos’ crumbs and listening to Zeppelin.

Axe on December 4, 2012 at 4:53 PM

LOL!

Happy Nomad on December 4, 2012 at 5:08 PM

Whoa. I think you’ve used too much of your product. Man.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:03 PM

that or too much Monty Python or both, my prohibition loving friend

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 5:04 PM

I’m not a lover of prohibition and I’m not your loving friend.

And you missed MY quotational use of another film’s dialogue.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:08 PM

Which is why a lot of “things” are legislate. We have driving limits on public roadways contingent upon conditions and surrounding environ because it’s recognized that there is the liklihood of “crime” involved without those limits (wrecks, assaults, various other misdeeds that harm individuals or the “public”).

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:06 PM

Hey, if we’re going to lift the idea of legislating anything I want to invoke my Second Amendment rights and get an RPG. Somebody keeps parking in my spot.

Happy Nomad on December 4, 2012 at 5:11 PM

I’m not a lover of prohibition and I’m not your loving friend.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:08 PM

coulda fooled me. You and Bloomberg should talk.

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 5:14 PM

The thing is, people who use or mostly use MJ do so habitually and increasingly more often as time passes. I know, I’ve known many who do and they’re never able eventually to view what they’re doing with any objectivity.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 4:58 PM

Yes and no. I’ve known a lot of people who smoke or smoked pot. Some have maintained a use rate equivalent to getting home from work and having a joint to relax after work – just like I often have a glass of wine or beer or margarita. Others have gotten hooked and gone overboard as you describe. But I’ve known just as many people on both sides of that equation with respect to alcohol too. Shoot, when I was in high school, my dad would often spend 8 hours in the bar drinking while I worked an 8 hour shift as a dishwasher in the same restaraunt. Before I got my license, you wouldn’t believe how many times I saw the double yellow lines off the passenger side of the car on the way home.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:14 PM

Speaking of wasting or waisting, why are progressives so intent on legalizing drugs but equally intent on restricting sugar, salt and fat?

KW64 on December 4, 2012 at 5:08 PM

Ya – that’s one of the big lib/Dem hypocrisies I just can’t understand.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:17 PM

Expect unions, electricians, transpo, service, food, shipping, etc to feel pressure from their dues-paying members to relax testing restrictions due to the length of time pot stays in the system.

Also, any entrepreneurs out there I would pay you well and regularly for a THC test that could determine how recently a person smoked.

If you want to do business with the feds or even supply a vendor who does business with feds you need to meet specific drug-testing protocols. These will be challenged by potheads and their unions.

Protect me as an employer from being forced to hire a pothead.

Capitalist Hog on December 4, 2012 at 5:17 PM

that or too much Monty Python or both, my prohibition loving friend

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 5:04 PM

I have to admit, Monty Python is much funnier after a few drinks. No idea how much better it might be stoned….

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:18 PM

Virtually no one is incarcerated for pot use or possession alone. Most people doing time are there for dealing or for violating parole on something else. If you want to push for legalization that’s great. Don’t start doing it with bogus stats.

Rocks on December 4, 2012 at 4:34 PM

That is simply not true.

Most jurisdictions in this country, in cases of cannabis possession, will affect an arrest. This arrest may result in a bench appearance… but it may not. That case may have to make bail before being released. And it may take a few days to make bail.

Now, multiply that over hundreds of thousands of arrests, and you are looking at hundreds of thousands of man-days of incarceration. And that adds up.

And sure as hell it doesn’t come for free…

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:18 PM

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:00 PM

There is also a wasting disease virus that seems to have been inmported into the US when we opened imports for a time because farmers said there were not enough honeybees for pollination. The disease has spread with disasterous consequences. Short term gain long term pain.

Speaking of wasting or waisting, why are progressives so intent on legalizing drugs but equally intent on restricting sugar, salt and fat?

KW64 on December 4, 2012 at 5:08 PM

Thanks for the information. I love HoneyBees, needless to say.

If you’re familiar with the abortion industry, you’ll know it’s not about those lone females “just trying to put food on the table” or “stay in school” we always hear/read about when the deed is being promoted. It’s about an industry and about eugenics, a goal of some very grotesque politics and social plans.

Same with “legalize drugs” thing. It’s not about the individuals who fancy the sofa more than they do the running track, it’s about an industry and some very violent, and grotesque, politics and social plans.

I understand “medicinal use” of plants and that includes MJ. But note that within a very, very short time of legalizing “medicinal use” of MJ, it’s become a full blown exploitation route to ramp up the imports of, abuses of, profiteering illicitly of, much more than mere “medicinal use” plants.

Many who support restrictions on the use of certain substances do so because we’re practically minded. People, like water, will seek the lowest point of least resistance and then bore their way through it quickly until it’s a raging hole of access. And when they harm themselves, their liabilities harm others.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:19 PM

Before I got my license, you wouldn’t believe how many times I saw the double yellow lines off the passenger side of the car on the way home.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:14 PM

yikes! I hope you lived in England.

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 5:19 PM

Virtually no one is incarcerated for pot use or possession alone. Most people doing time are there for dealing or for violating parole on something else. If you want to push for legalization that’s great. Don’t start doing it with bogus stats.

Rocks on December 4, 2012 at 4:34 PM

That is simply not true.

Most jurisdictions in this country, in cases of cannabis possession, will affect an arrest. This arrest may result in a bench appearance… but it may not. That case may have to make bail before being released. And it may take a few days to make bail.

Now, multiply that over hundreds of thousands of arrests, and you are looking at hundreds of thousands of man-days of incarceration. And that adds up.

And sure as hell it doesn’t come for free…

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:18 PM

“Rocks” is right.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:20 PM

Speaking of wasting or waisting, why are progressives so intent on legalizing drugs but equally intent on restricting sugar, salt and fat?

KW64 on December 4, 2012 at 5:08 PM

Out of curiosity, where exactly is this big push for legalism you claim is coming from the Left?

The most prominent people I see arguing for legalization are on the Right…

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:21 PM

Dustin Siggins’ new favorite song: “Everybody Must Get Stoned” by Bob Dylan.

Bitter Clinger on December 4, 2012 at 4:40 PM

That’s “Rainy Day Women #12 & 35″/pedant

Look, as someone who’s smoked a lotta pot, I mean a whole lot, more than my fair share and yours too, it’s not a good thing, I mean, maybe if you’ve got cancer, okay, but no, it’s not something that needs to be legalized and normalized.

And Prohibition did work, not as perfectly as hoped but it cut consumption in half and that’s a good start.

JohnBrown on December 4, 2012 at 5:21 PM

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 4:58 PM

Yes and no. I’ve known a lot of people who smoke or smoked pot. Some have maintained a use rate equivalent to getting home from work and having a joint to relax after work – just like I often have a glass of wine or beer or margarita. Others have gotten hooked and gone overboard as you describe. But I’ve known just as many people on both sides of that equation with respect to alcohol too. Shoot, when I was in high school, my dad would often spend 8 hours in the bar drinking while I worked an 8 hour shift as a dishwasher in the same restaraunt. Before I got my license, you wouldn’t believe how many times I saw the double yellow lines off the passenger side of the car on the way home.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:14 PM

ANY substance used habitually represents a habit.

I’m not lecturing you or anyone else, just trying to be frank in addressing the evasive words and concepts many use to try to justify behaviors.

I think your comments represent the liabilities I’ve been referring to.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:23 PM

That is simply not true.

Most jurisdictions in this country, in cases of cannabis possession, will affect an arrest. This arrest may result in a bench appearance… but it may not. That case may have to make bail before being released. And it may take a few days to make bail.

Now, multiply that over hundreds of thousands of arrests, and you are looking at hundreds of thousands of man-days of incarceration. And that adds up.

And sure as hell it doesn’t come for free…

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:18 PM

It may be because I was high at the time, but I never saw once anyone without an existing record get arrested for possession. I’m not saying what you are saying is untrue, just that I have no reason to believe it.

Are their stats? Arrests for simple possession?

Axe on December 4, 2012 at 5:23 PM

*there

Axe on December 4, 2012 at 5:24 PM

“Rocks” is right.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:20 PM

Your evidence for this, please. Because we already have people here claiming cases to the contrary…

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:25 PM

The most prominent people I see arguing for legalization are on the Right…

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:21 PM

No, it’s coming from George Soros and the other liberals.

Most of Ron Paul people are Liberals of one variety or another. And after reading their repetitive hostilities for years now, it’s apparent that their primary incentive for supporting Ron Paul is for the legalization of MJ if not “drugs” in general.

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:25 PM

The most prominent people I see arguing for legalization are on the Right…

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:21 PM

SoCons equate weed with evil and evil with progressives. Thus they think it’s the liberals.

Ironically, these people whom don’t trust the Government, buy hook line and sinker the Reefer Madness BS peddled by that same Government.

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 5:25 PM

The most prominent people I see arguing for legalization are on the Right…

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:21 PM

That’s not who pushed it and voted for it in Colorado.
But a lot of libertarian type conservatives I know did vote for it because of the whole prohibition slant.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:26 PM

Same argument can be made for crack cocaine, LSD, or meth. If laws prohibiting their use aren’t working, why not make them all legal? And, if we go that far, why not succinyl choline, oxycodone, Percoset, etc.?

Same argument could be made for making alcohol illegal. Some girl in Indianapolis just killed a guy during the Thanksgiving holiday in a hit-and-run accident while under the influence. This wasn’t a victim-less crime. It was completely caused as a result of her access to a legally regulated, but completely recreational, drug. Granted, it was illegal for her to drive drunk, people do it everyday in the US. If your rationale for keeping pot illegal is to protect people from themselves and more importantly from other people, seems you would have the same attitude towards alcohol. To say that pot is a “gateway ” drug is a cop out. I can assure you I’ve made way more bone-headed decisions under the influence of booze than pot. As a former bartender of many years, I can also speak to the bad decisions of others. I’m sure the young lady who caused the car accident would agree. Arbitrarily stigmatizing pot is hypocritical and obviously has been a major failure in terms of drug policy. Instead of calling yourselves conservatives (which I proudly consider myself to be) perhaps the term “hypocritical moralist” would be a more fitting term for many of you.

mazer9 on December 4, 2012 at 5:26 PM

It may be because I was high at the time, but I never saw once anyone without an existing record get arrested for possession. I’m not saying what you are saying is untrue, just that I have no reason to believe it.

Are their stats? Arrests for simple possession?

Axe on December 4, 2012 at 5:23 PM

I’ve got a half a dozen friends who have done time in county lock up across the country waiting for bail adjudication. Which, unfortunately, there don’t appear to be good statistics on. If you can find them, I’d appreciate it.

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:26 PM

Lourdes on December 4, 2012 at 5:25 PM

No, it’s coming from George Soros and the other liberals.

Okay. I know, for a fact, you are incorrect on this one. Soros pulled his support for the movement, as did Peter Lewis. Whatever political money they are spending, it isn’t going to legalization advocates.

Most of Ron Paul people are Liberals of one variety or another.

Grow up.

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:29 PM

I’ve got a half a dozen friends who have done time in county lock up across the country waiting for bail adjudication. Which, unfortunately, there don’t appear to be good statistics on. If you can find them, I’d appreciate it.

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:26 PM

I would guess / suggest that WHERE in the country this happens may have a lot to do with it. There are still parts of this country where people spend at least a few hours in jail awaiting judgement by a local judge for questionable speed traps as well. Those are the kind of places where simple small scale possession, or just about anything they can tag you with, is likely a major source of revenue for the locals – especially if you’re not a local.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:33 PM

That’s not who pushed it and voted for it in Colorado.
But a lot of libertarian type conservatives I know did vote for it because of the whole prohibition slant.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:26 PM

And I’ll be the first to admit that there appears to be a split between the leadership and the rank-and-file, on both sides of the aisle, concerning this issue.

The fact is that most Leftists who pretend to worship at the altar of civil liberties have no interest in picking up the banner on this one, Barack Obama and Bill Clinton included, despite the feelings of their base. And the Right excoriates its own members for arguing for legalization, even though the number standing against prohibition in leadership is growing, if for no other reason than the federalism argument.

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:33 PM

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:14 PM

And that is why the comparison between pot and booze is bogus. It takes time to become impared using booze. Not so much with pot where your brain starts re-connecting itself immediately.

There is too much proof that pot is not a harmless weed you can indulge in at lunch and still be productive in the afternoon. Yes, you can say the same about booze but there are cultural and physical reasons why the comparison is off.

And BTW, how many people who smoke pot enough to care about this issue abstain from drinking while smoking?

Happy Nomad on December 4, 2012 at 5:35 PM

I would guess / suggest that WHERE in the country this happens may have a lot to do with it. There are still parts of this country where people spend at least a few hours in jail awaiting judgement by a local judge for questionable speed traps as well. Those are the kind of places where simple small scale possession, or just about anything they can tag you with, is likely a major source of revenue for the locals – especially if you’re not a local.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:33 PM

In more ways than you think.

Try to keep in mind, much of law enforcement is just another bureaucracy. People defend their turf, don’t rock the boat, and… above all else… try to increase their budget. If local PD’s can demonstrate to a population who is already inclined to crack down on drugs, that there are lot of drug arrests being made, budgets get fatter.

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:36 PM

You left him there. So in other words he couldn’t pay the fine or took a plea bargain to get the state to pay for his rehab? He could have paid a fine and walked no?

Rocks on December 4, 2012 at 4:55 PM

He broke the law. We decided not to bail him out. Nobody paid for his rehab. There was no rehab other than being away from his sources. He simply stayed in jail until his court date, where it was determined that he was time served and then released on probation.

And you’re changing the subject… the point is, you didn’t know what you were asserting. He was arrested and did time for possession. No other charges. You were wrong.

beatcanvas on December 4, 2012 at 5:36 PM

Out of curiosity, where exactly is this big push for legalism you claim is coming from the Left?

The most prominent people I see arguing for legalization are on the Right…

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:21 PM

It is not the Red states that I see having legal marijuana, it is the blue or purple states.

KW64 on December 4, 2012 at 5:36 PM

I’ve got a half a dozen friends who have done time in county lock up across the country waiting for bail adjudication. Which, unfortunately, there don’t appear to be good statistics on. If you can find them, I’d appreciate it.

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:26 PM

K. Maybe it’s handled in different ways, with different attitudes, in different places. I’m not cosmopolitan enough to know. We went to jail here and there, but we usually got high and then did something stupid. :) It was a two part process. Three, if you count the sober cleanup.

SoCons equate weed with evil and evil with progressives. Thus they think it’s the liberals.

Ironically, these people whom don’t trust the Government, buy hook line and sinker the Reefer Madness BS peddled by that same Government.

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 5:25 PM

No, I’m just not in there anymore and don’t need to defend something that was clearly harmful to my mind, my family (through my fogged-up decisions), and my community, and you are still in there and still making the argument that it’s medicine and anybody who doesn’t get that wants to burn witches.

The federal/state issue is a different thing. And the proportion of the punishment for the crime is a different thing. This is always presented as a tangle with roving goal-posts, so it’s always impossible to get anywhere in the discussion.

Axe on December 4, 2012 at 5:37 PM

Hey, if we’re going to lift the idea of legislating anything I want to invoke my Second Amendment rights and get an RPG. Somebody keeps parking in my spot.

Happy Nomad on December 4, 2012 at 5:11 PM

LOL. I was over an Reason on a gun rights thread about a year ago when I got a gun banner to concede that any weapon I could carry in my pocket would be okay. After I thanked him for allowing me to carry biological weapons in a couple of test tubes in my pocket there was brain matter everywhere.

You can have your RPG and I’ll make some chemical and biologicals to go with it.

chemman on December 4, 2012 at 5:40 PM

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:33 PM

It is a bit of a political hot potato. It’s interesting to me that some liberal politicians who have admitted to using pot (and other drugs), like Barry and Bubba, back away from the issue in public. On the other hand, conservative politicians who push federalism and a smaller less intrusive federal government are also not willing to support this issue.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:41 PM

This is always presented as a tangle with roving goal-posts, so it’s always impossible to get anywhere in the discussion.

Axe on December 4, 2012 at 5:37 PM

lol. that much is true for sure. I usually do it on purpose. I get sick of the same arguments over again from supposed conservatives for Pro-hi-freakin’-bition

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 5:41 PM

He broke the law. We decided not to bail him out. Nobody paid for his rehab. There was no rehab other than being away from his sources.

beatcanvas on December 4, 2012 at 5:36 PM

Jail’s not exactly a surefire method of keeping drugs away from people.

Which, in and of itself, tells you all you need to know about the drug war…

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:42 PM

the drug was is about as stupid as it gets. You’d think we’d have learned that during the alcohol war. You’d be wrong.

Slade73 on December 4, 2012 at 5:47 PM

Try to keep in mind, much of law enforcement is just another bureaucracy. People defend their turf, don’t rock the boat, and… above all else… try to increase their budget. If local PD’s can demonstrate to a population who is already inclined to crack down on drugs, that there are lot of drug arrests being made, budgets get fatter.

JohnGalt23 on December 4, 2012 at 5:36 PM

Yup. That’s pretty much the direction I was trying to go with what I said.

dentarthurdent on December 4, 2012 at 5:48 PM

After I thanked him for allowing me to carry biological weapons in a couple of test tubes in my pocket there was brain matter everywhere.

chemman on December 4, 2012 at 5:40 PM

LOL!

My brother is a scientist specializing in biological stuff. After the anthrax attacks, I made some flippant comment and he started in (seriously) talking about just how inefficient anthrax was compared to all sorts of bad stuff that is out there. But why should it be legislated? Nothing in the Constitution about banning a couple of test tubes that can wipe out a small city!

Happy Nomad on December 4, 2012 at 5:50 PM

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