Until we legalize weed nationwide…

…folks won’t stop inventing new ways to deliver pot.

…The impossible sounding, high-octane story of a sophisticated smuggling network that used skydiving planes to sneak millions of dollars worth of weed and cash across state borders in the United States from 2010 to 2014. In what was termed one of Colorado’s “largest and most sophisticated criminal enterprises” since medical marijuana was legalised in 2000, a smuggling ring operated from the throngs of the legal weed business in Denver, running an extremely profitable and illegal side-business.

Over the course of four years that the drug trafficking ring was alive, a team of more than 71 individuals operated a highly sophisticated smuggling network that used skydiving planes to sneak 12 million dollars worth of weed and cash across state borders. One of its most intriguing aspects was that it operated smack in the middle of Denver’s most popular and profitable legal weed growing warehouses, its growers posing as medical caregivers to evade regulation and taxation.

Of course, like most highs, it didn’t last too long.

Interesting story. Absurd in a supposedly modern nation that still treats growing and using cannabis as a creation of Satan. Courtesy of our archaic “states rights” it will probably only take another half-century for (almost) all this nation to go legal. Not that Congress is anymore advanced than most local politicians. They just get paid more.

State revenue from marijuana is hazy at best

…Now that 10 states and the District of Columbia have legalized recreational marijuana, officials are grappling with projecting collections from a new sin tax. Forecasting revenue from a product that was illegal just a few years ago, and remains so under federal law and in most states, presents a unique challenge for state budget planning. For example, in Nevada’s first six months of collecting marijuana taxes, revenue came in 40 percent higher than budget officials expected, but in neighboring California revenue was 45 percent below projections in the first six months of collecting marijuana taxes.

And with more states considering legalizing marijuana, forecasting and budgeting difficulties for revenue from recreational marijuana taxes are likely to become widespread. These challenges have consequences: If tax collections come in below forecasted amounts, for example, programs that are funded by these dollars could suffer.

The Yellow Brick Road may be paved with nothing more than yellow bricks instead of the gold forecast by libertarian optimism. Don’t spend it before you get it, folks!

Canada’s legalization of cannabis is a success story

A highly regarded British think tank focused on reforming drug laws thinks Canada’s legalization and regulation of cannabis has gone well.

Transform has been monitoring Canadian reform efforts for some time, and advised the Canadian government and some provinces on how to develop regulations prior to legalization. Its positive views of Canada’s initiatives is a significant contribution in assessing our journey away from criminalization of simple possession and use of recreational drugs…

Transform also raised the need for amnesty for those convicted of simple possession and use when cannabis was illegal.

Criminal records dog these individuals, affecting everything from employment opportunities to travel to foreign countries.

While there have been some few pardons, the process is erratic, bureaucratic and doesn’t erase records causing follow-on negatives. Amnesty across the board would erase a problem past it’s sell-by date.

Oregon grew too much weed. What can they do?


Farmer Giles in charge of weed burns

❝ Five years after Oregon legalized recreational marijuana, its lawmakers now are trying to rein in production, fearing the state’s big weed surplus will tempt some licensed businesses to sell their products out of state or on the illegal market.

❝ Oregon’s surplus, though legal, is something of a cautionary tale for other states as they try to manage marijuana supply and demand. Enough recreational cannabis sat on dispensary shelves, in warehouses and in processing plants this January to satisfy buyers for more than six years, according to a report from the Oregon Liquor Control Commission, the state agency that regulates recreational marijuana.

❝ Like California, Oregon has a long history of illegal grows. And while some states, such as Colorado and Washington, limit the production licenses people can hold and the number of plants businesses can grow, Oregon has made it easy for people to harvest a lot of weed…“They underestimated the number of people that would be willing to convert to the legal market or would want to participate in the legal market…”

Poisonally, they should do what patriotic price-conscious American farmers have done for decades when confronting overproduction. BURN THEIR CROP. I’d suggest trucking it to the Caja del Rio mesa here in New Mexico just upwind of Lot 4…And burning it all. Slowly.

Legalization is only halfway to justice

❝ Happy 4/20, everyone! Now that pot is legal in 33 states and counting, it’s a pretty heady moment for stoner culture. Fans of cannabis can celebrate 4/20 openly and in style in more places than ever before. And even if you’re not in a state that legalized pot, there’s a still a pretty good chance that the cops won’t hassle you as you spend 4/20 doing your thing.

If you’re a white person

❝ Sorry to bring you down, but that’s the harsh reality. If you love pot AND you’re white, everything is totally awesome these days. In 2017, 81% of cannabis executives were white. Meanwhile, even in states where pot is legal, and even though Black people and white people use pot at similar rates, Black people are still arrested way more often than whites. We love 4/20 and we love legalization, but that’s not OK.

That’s not enough.

RTFA for facts and ideas. No rest without justice.

Walgreens to sell CBD products in select states

Walgreens will sell CBD creams, patches and sprays in nearly 1,500 stores in select states…The drugstore chain will sell the cannabis-based products in Oregon, Colorado, New Mexico, Kentucky, Tennessee, Vermont, South Carolina, Illinois and Indiana. Walgreens declined to specify which brands it would carry…

❝ “This product offering is in line with our efforts to provide a wider range of accessible health and wellbeing products and services to best meet the needs and preferences of our customers,” Walgreens spokesman Brian Faith said in an email to CNBC.

Rival drugstore chain CVS introduced CBD-containing topicals, including creams and salves, to stores in eight states earlier in March. As the non-psychoactive cannabis compound becomes one of the hottest ingredients in consumer products, retailers are carefully evaluating the market.

I have an irksome albeit minor idiopathic quirk which has responded to combinations of CBD and cannabis via inhalation therapy. According to some early studies. Worth waiting around to try [1] if legal beagles decide it fits into Medicare and [2] inhalation therapy means the hospital flavor – not smoking the stuff. I quit smoking about 60 years ago. Ain’t about to resume.

If Alice B. Toklas brownies work – I’m in!

Democratic candidates roll up to support legal weed

Kamala Harris, asked whether she had ever smoked pot: ‘Half my family’s from Jamaica. Are you kidding me?’


Brian Cahn/Shutterstock

❝ Among 2020 candidates, marijuana legalisation is a mainstream issue. Among Democrats, nearly all have expressed at least some degree of support. Even Donald Trump’s lone Republican challenger, the former Massachusetts governor Bill Weld, supports it. Advocates are optimistic that the 2020 election could help bring an end to the federal prohibition of the drug.

“The support for marijuana legalisation has quickly become a litmus test in the 2020 Democratic primary,” said Erik Altieri, executive director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (Norml). “With the upcoming primary, it is also clear that support for prohibition is ultimately disqualifying with the Democratic electorate – and with the American electorate generally.”

If you aren’t supporting legalization – for purportedly moral reasons, some particular religious fetish, political dementia which has your brain locked into, say, the 16th Century – then, you might be missing the simple economics of “sin taxes” derived from social use of cannabis just as they are realized from beer and the hard stuff.

States generally include a proviso to spend all or most of those funds on something beneficial like education. Again, another issue which American conservatives seem honor bound to ignore. Hopefully, voters will learn to ignore stupidity as thoroughly as they’re starting to reject incompetence.

WHO Proposes Downgrading Cannabis Under International Law


Yargin/Shutterstock

❝ The World Health Organization (WHO) is proposing downgrading cannabis under international law for the first time, in light of growing evidence of its legitimate medicinal benefits.

❝ Currently classified by the WHO as schedule IV – the same class as heroin – which is the most strictly controlled category, the WHO Expert Committee on Drug Dependence (ECDD) has proposed to reschedule cannabis, and other cannabis-related products as a schedule I classification. What’s more, they’ve proposed removing non-THC (the psychoactive component of cannabis) cannabis products, such as CBD oil, from international drug controls completely.

WHO spent way too much time paying attention to thugs like Nixon BITD. Overdue at WHO. Overdue in the US of A.