Cannabis / Marijuana, STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
Can the market handle legal marijuana?
By Daily Bell Staff - March 23, 2016

Nixon Aide Reportedly Admitted Drug War Was Meant To Target Black People … pulls back the curtain on the true motivation of the United States’ war on drugs.  –Huffington Post

The Huffington Post article, excerpted above, blames the Nixon administration for the “war on drugs” and is based on a cover story in Harper’s magazine by Dan Baum.

Baum’s long article eventually makes the case for federal activism when it comes to reforming drug criminalization.

But both the HuffPo article and Baum’s extended analysis in Harper’s seem to make the distinction between a “good” kind of federal government and a “bad” one.

The Nixon, Republican kind is “bad.”

In fact, whenever the US federal government is involved, the situation tends to disintegrate.

Every problem looks like a nail to the Feds. And every solution involves a hammer sooner or later.

The US federal government is repressive and authoritarian no matter who runs it.

In this particular case, the war on drugs predates Nixon (which Baum does point out in a brief aside). It was initially propounded under Roosevelt – something both articles neglect to mention.

The article does go on at length about former aide John Ehrlichman, who told Baum that the war on drugs was actually a political scheme to disrupt Nixon’s opponents: black people and the “antiwar left.”

Baum comes to this conclusion: “In other words, the intense racial targeting that’s become synonymous with the drug war wasn’t an unintended side effect — it was the whole point.”

Now there is no doubt Nixon and his administration were corrupt, brutal and anti-black in a number of ways, as is the US intelligence community and US civil policing.

But let’s dig deeper.

The modern war on drugs actually started in the 1930s and was supposedly justified by “degenerate” Mexican drug use.

The real reason to criminalize marijuana was twofold: DuPont had just invented what would soon be known as “plastics” and hemp in various forms was the prime competitor.

The second reason was that hemp made a tough, durable paper that was economically superior to paper produced from trees.

William Randolph Hearst owned vast forests that he wanted to monetize by producing paper for his newspapers. Banning hemp provided Hearst with the opportunity to substitute one paper for the other.

The twofold combination was irresistible. Hearst blasted marijuana in his newspapers; DuPont used its considerable corporate influence to agitate for criminalization.

As a result, the federal government of the day under FDR criminalized cannabis. And after marijuana was effectively criminalized, other “drugs” were gradually accorded the same treatment.

Today governments are moving in the other direction. As they gradually cave into the pressure to legalize, the new question is what their level of involvement will be.

Baum states clearly in his article that he doesn’t trust the marketplace to deliver a rational and competitive drug industry. He wants the US federal government to organize it.


A government monopoly would be the least expensive and most flexible way to legalize drugs. It would generate the most revenue and — more important — it would protect public health. Until Congress reschedules marijuana, heroin, and cocaine, and until we get over the idea that government can do nothing right, we’re stuck with second best: state-size experiments that ignore the federal ban on marijuana and license private industries. Colorado is the furthest along that path, and its experience is instructive.

We’ll grant that Baum’s argument is likely a realistic one, given the mess of current legal parameters in the US. But we’re just not comfortable with this sort of argument generally. It presumes that the federal government operates as efficiently as a private business.

In fact, in the early 21st century, what we are seeing in the US is a degeneration of the federal government scheme. Nothing that the US administers on a federal level seems untouched by bias, opportunism and widening corruption.

One may wish to make the argument that getting drugs legalized at the federal level is the most efficient action to take. But any sort of cheer-leading for federal government involvement seems woefully misguided to us. Whether it is the IRS, the Bureau of Land Management, the Department of Education, we can see that federal government involvement for the most part is counterproductive and ultimately anti-freedom.

Involving the US government in rationalizing and redirecting the US policies toward drugs is unfortunately a necessity in terms of getting cannabis moved away from its criminal past. But after that, one would want to minimize government involvement as much as possible.

Conclusion: The idea that the federal government can do a better job than a truly competitive and untrammeled marketplace is erroneous on numerous levels. Marketplace solutions are always better because they allow people to use their own judgment and they don’t involve price fixing and the subsequent distortions and manipulations that inevitably occur as a result.

You don’t have to play by the rules of the corrupt politicians, manipulative media, and brainwashed peers.

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Posted in Cannabis / Marijuana, STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
  • alaska3636

    One of the justifications used for government monopoly is the need for extensive capital infrastructure. How many entities can effectively supply water to home is a legitimate question.

    Cannabis is a crop, the cultivation of which requires land, sunlight and water…Government monopoly also presupposes uniformity of a good, such as electricity or cable television. Cannabis enthusiasts will wax on and on (and on) about the various strands and effects of cannabis in terms that can only bespeak a preference for variety.

    And public health! Well we might as well clutch our pearls right now because a serious “What about the children” is right around the corner. And how is that public health been doing recently anyway? I read the other day that less the ten percent of people live healthy lifestyles by the governments own guidelines.

    The Department of Agriculture still recommends the false assumption that dietary cholesterol effects blood cholesterol.

    (That is an annoyingly hard link to find btw)

    Also, from the Climate Desk:
    Climate Change is like gonna kill you

    ““Among the top experts, there’s a pretty strong agreement that we’ve reached a point where this is truly urgent,” he said.

    So Hansen is frustrated once more with the failure of humanity to respond adequately.”

    This is super-cereal guys. Humanity needs to like drive more Prius’. But that’s not enough. Eventually, we will need to go back to the trees and caves and try and conserve oxygen by not breathing so heavily.

    ““I think scientists, who are trained to be objective, have something to offer by analyzing the problem all the way to the changes that are needed in order to address it,” he said on a press call. “That 6 percent reduction [of emissions]—that’s not advocacy, that’s science. And then I would advocate that we do that!”

    Trained monkeys are more objective.

    Did I mention that Climate Change is like super-scary:

    “Carbon is pouring into the atmosphere faster than at any time in the past 66 million years—since the dinosaurs went extinct—according to a new analysis of the geologic record.”

    Of course the irony is that all those dead dinos killed by mysterious warming forces lead directly to the “fossil fuels” which are directly warming the Earth today.

    • dave jr

      10,000 years ago, Clovis man with their CO2 spewing campfires, caused the climate to start warming. The glaciers began receding and ever since innocents drown from flash sea level rises. Damn those spear chucking bastards! Why did they need to progress anyway?

    • Webforager

      If one is willing to entertain the chartalist notion that “taxation drives demand for the currency” and the DB assertion that TPTB are striving to implement a new global currency, then the climate change rationale begins to make more sense of what the real agenda may be. Especially given the recent climate change accords and the turmoil in energy markets. We’re saving the planet! *display tongue in cheek*. What greater justification can the mystified masses get behind?
      Of course, I don’t have a crystal ball or read minds, but when viewed from this lens the analysis makes sense, no?

    • Pater Tenebrarum

      Marxism and Environmentalism: The Unholy Alliance

      • alaska3636

        Thanks for the link, Pater.

        I really enjoy your commentary.

  • Praetor

    Well lets face it government involvement in anything should be minimal at best and nonexistent most of the time. Cannabis if regulated at all should be like alcohol. A tax on profits to the government should suffice. Government is the largest wasters of recourses and time. Decriminalization over Legalization should have been the goal. Government mucks-up everything it touches, and legalizing cannabis will be no different. Guaranteed!!!

  • Dolph Longedgreens

    As far as I can see most of the states where marijuana is legal already subject consumers and producers to burdensome interventions.

    Repealing existing federal laws makes sense in that it would grant individuals more freedom.

    Creating a state drugs bureau only makes sense if the government wishes to exert even more control over individuals. A federally issued cannabis stipend with your guaranteed basic income? Well, not if you have been naughty.

    Then there is the obvious. If the author’s plan makes so much sense, then why not have the Federal government manufacture and distribute alcohol, foodstuffs, or pharmaceuticals? They’ve already failed miserably with health insurance schemes. I imagine that there would be no shortage of willing bureaucrats for the other options, but they are plainly ridiculous.

    After decades of prohibition the public has a palatable fear of the prohibited plant materials. The resulting fear and ignorance allows Baum to float his ideas for a state monopoly. If not for this camouflage, I doubt he or Harper’s would find it pertinent to make these suggestions.

    • Sam Fox

      Cannabis should be left alone like beer.
      If ya get drunk or stoned & do a bad, sure, it’s arrest time. Otherwise let cannabis alone & ONLY let STATES [NO feds] take care of the real dangerous stuff like meth & heroin.
      If cannabis was really dangerous, I wouldn’t use it for pain & sleep.
      I made it through my stint in the 60’s as a hippie addiction free. I like that personal record.
      Which is another reason I won’t touch Rx stuff.

      • Dolph Longedgreens

        The regulations on consumers and producers of alcohol are a disaster. As you say, if you get drunk and make a problem, then perhaps the someone should sort you out. However, just consuming alcohol in public is illegal in most places. The state can charge people with the crime of public intoxication without the individual in question even considering causing a ruckus.

        Then look at the burdensome license regimes imposed on breweries and wineries. Another example of regulatory capture. Compare those excessive fees to the quality of the drinks produced by the mega-corporations.

        Yes, leave cannabis alone. While we are dreaming, lets leave beer alone too.

  • Silverado

    Well good. Now that we know where it came from when do we kill what’s left of it?? I’m in Washington state so by legalizing cannabis we kind of got rid of at least part of it. It’s the world class part I’m sampling this very minute called Snoop’s Dream (purchased at $150 per ounce the price is low and the quality is high – really high) that I’m most glad we…changed oh yes I am. So ya anyway we here in this state can handle it just like we’ve been doing for almost 4 years now…

  • Bruce C.

    If ‘hemp makes a tough, durable paper that is economically superior to paper produced from trees’ then why hasn’t any one anywhere done this? I’ve long heard about the qualities of hemp but I never have seen them manifested. Surely other countries like China could care less about “the dangers” of producing so much “cannabis leaves” and their potential “abuse.” Besides strains of hemp exist that have very low levels of THC, etc.

    • paul crosley

      The declaration of independence is on hemp paper.

      • Sam Fox

        The US Founders are a riot!!
        At one of the early celebrations the Founders threw, there was a LOT of alcohol. I saw the list some time back.
        Some of the Founders also smoked Indian Hemp & one said to make the most of the hemp seed & spread it everywhere.
        LOL!! ;-D, a humorous case could be made that the USA was founded by drunk stoners….

        • paul crosley

          “Fast Times at Independence Hall” or “George and Toms’ Excellent ADVENTURE”!

    • william beeby

      You are exactly right. Did you know that the US Constitution is written on hemp paper ? It is still illegal to grow hemp though even for paper making etc. as it would still be competitive with all sorts of plastic and wooden products , even food and fuel can be got from this plant. It needs the law to be changed for Hemp as an agricultural crop . Monsanto will soon step in though to ” modify ” it genetically which could prove a big mistake.

  • dlw2010

    The failure also is in not recognizing that it also competes against cotton as another source of apparel. As for all the taxation, this is pure baloney. It is past time to start doing away all of the regulatory, excise taxes which is placed on way to many items that consumers purchase every day or use in staying alive, like gasoline, telephone, etc.

  • As this is a top-down transnational edict what – really – do you expect?

    I recently came across a US Gov patent for medical marijuana (just google it) that reveals that of course so much is known of the mechanism of disease and cure that is in effect withheld and screened off with toxic treatments scam billions at cost of health just as the banks and corporations suck up the Commonwealth and health of the Planet.
    However, I have to ask where the power to do all this ‘comes from’ and see that in a sense we give ours away and then suffer it to be used against us. It is a pattern within consciousness that projects denied hatred and then suffers to be split off from wholeness and integrity of being – and dedicates to the persistence of such a split sense of ‘control/survival’.

    In Mythic terms, Lucifer operates a loveless mind – that masks and mimics any form so as to turn it from the movement of Life to a psychic substitute of conformity and control. To a lovelessness all forms are the same – excepting their temporary use in stamping out the absurd and idiotic delusion of ‘love’.

    If it offends thee – pluck it out. But see – of course – exactly WHERE the offence lies. Yet isn’t that what offence is designed to obscure?

    Happy Easter!
    if you dont have a corresponding receptor for that nutrient – then may a sense of blessing rise in a form you can recognize and appreciate. Your body-mind is already a rich pharmacopoeia of communication. It is already operating your mind’s prescription in which what you take to BE your mind, is a symptom of the distortion and filtering of Communication. True self acceptance is freedom from the fear-pharma.

    • rahrog

      Wonderful!!! I hope you saw the email from PEERS that laid out a little of The Way. It made my day!

      • Indeed I did. The recognition of the nature of the act of definition as a determination of meaning, in fixed or conceptual terms needs to recognize that it is not an act of power over – but an extension of freedom to – according to the active purpose being engaged in.

        For the mind-in-service can serve to embody felt meanings – but the mind in judgement over, attempts the conforming or imposing of ideas removed from the context of serving communication within relationship, to the role of dictating or controlling the narrative and in that sense – the form of the relational outcome.

        This is simply the loss of communication and relationship to a conceived sense of power – whether seemingly winning or leading – or seemingly losing – or indeed using the form of losing to manipulate the delusion of the winner. For power against itself weaves an infinite web of deceits.

        Attention can be released from personality obsession arising from identity in judgement, by willingness and desire to know the truth – that is – to be receptive to the noticing of what is in fact being communicated or extended as social manipulations – beneath the mutually agreed definitions, which operate beliefs and investment in power over – and consequent fear of loss of power to that which being robbed or denied – is expected to deny.

        Jesus extended the invitation of a willingness for knowing truth, in which who you really are is set free of what a false sense of power, limited and defined you to be. As long as we agree to define such power outside our self, we embody an assertion of powerlessness that then competes to align with or exploit wherever it seems to be.

        Perhaps Jesus would have rather found acceptance in a like willingness for communication and relationship than denials in which he chose not to join with – preferring to know the truth than kill it to feed self-illusion. But that ‘passion play’ imprints the core conditioning of a masquerade of power that must deny and indeed crucify, love, in order to seem to exist in judgement over and apart from Life’s Meaning.

        The reflection of the activity of our mind to our own notice – is our whole way out from self-conflicted identities that cannot afford honesty or actually grow trust. But only if that noticing abides wordless in the heart’s knowing without being sacrificed to a guilting script.

        When guilt insinuates itself in our thinking – it poisons all else to serve a hidden agenda – for it must stay hidden for a part of who it allows you to be – to mitigate or temporarily escape its pain. It puts down and casts out in the name of your protection.

        Discerning deceits so as to no longer use them as the lens of our thought, is a primary responsibility of our freedom to think or define, perceive, accept and act from.

        This is most practical information to any who desire freedom from a deceit that robs us at our very foundation. But first one has to notice that something is out-of-true and honestly enquire as to the true – as the context in which to know the difference – and act upon it.

        Whatever the circumstances that bring one to a moment of or stirring in true noticing – celebrate the noticing without defining it in association with the conditions – excepting of course – in gratitude.

        As an Easter treat I’ll share something I found inspiring that may hearten readers here “open dialogue” – you can start with Daniel Mackler’s youtube documentary
        and follow your interest. Perhaps actually people are more interested in the dynamic of conflict and the fascination with evil. When it really comes to it is all the talk of ‘freedom’ a way to persist in perpetual war? Or is living unto the freedom of others as yourself a willingness to communicate and open genuine relationship? What we give out – is what we get back.

        Forgive yourself your judgements for they know not what they do. Only a wholeness of being knows its purpose without hidden or denied underside. Wholeness of being may not be definable – but that does not been it is unrecognisable or unfelt. Wherever you feel and know the true of you – is where your life unfolds to you.

        This is not coercive upon anyone. The coercive sense of will arose from mistaken self-definition that then perpetuates itself by persisting the assertion of out-of-true as its foundation. A foundation that depends on being hidden to seem to be a foundation.

        How you read the story is up to you – but you can only meet that which you are willing to be the vibration of. Truth is not killed – but framed out of sight by insistence upon a sacrificial worship of guilt as the guarantee of power.

        No matter how complex a deeply defended lie is – it is no more true than a fib. What you invest in and want to be true is the determiner of how readily an error can be corrected – and of course this is a matter of who you define and accept yourself to be – moment – by moment – by moment.

        But if you recognize that what is – Is beyond definition – excepting as an extension of the freedom to create – then there is a basis from which to notice and align self-defining idea to the true of you.

        Otherwise hidden definitions run old conditioning that believes the true of You is unacceptable.

  • william beeby

    At this moment in time ( I live in the UK by the way but the same applies ) there would appear to be a near perfect balance of supply and demand which is reflected in the price stability which has been the case for a few years now. There was a big change when what is commonly called ” skunk” was introduced , at first in Amsterdam where it was grown in quantity under lights , and it took over from imported ( mainly Moroccan ) hashish ( the solid form ) . However the prices for both although out of kilter for a while soon settled down and are now constant . Roughly speaking on “street prices ” the difference is £10.00 / gram for green £4.00 /gram solid . People therefore have the choice of both price and quality . Can ANY government replicate this kind of ” natural ” , though currently illegal , market ?

    • Sam Fox

      No William they cannot.
      Skunk? The Brits had a stroke about the Skunk strain. The Reefer Madness propaganda hit over drive there for a while.
      I was laughing every night when I turned off my insomnia with Skunk #1.

      • william beeby

        Yes you are right the Govt adds were showing peo0ple cracking up after smoking skunk. in tv think it made people who knew better laugh as you say . They soon stopped as it was more like an advert but shows how spiteful the govt is when it comes to this subject. The govt lies about cannabis as it has done for years and is gonna look so stupid when it is legalised and advertised like alcohol is now but that`s cool because THEY ARE STUPID !

  • the one

    The federal gooberment has no constitutional authority to control any substance people inside the states grow and consume. It took a constitutional amendment to ban alcohol and another to un-ban it. The Supreme Court refused to hear the law suit by KS and OK and we must wonder why? The states have the jurisdiction in this area, not the feds…

  • Drew

    It’s all about perpetuating government, the tax farmers who want to live off your wealth and labors. It’s also the nanny state, not trusting people to look after themselves as the base excuse to skim off said wealth.

    • Sam Fox

      It’s also about taking down the Bill of Rights & personal liberty.
      Govt been after We The People’s freedom for a long time.
      One of the list of reasons Trump is under attack by the big $$ international & national establishment.
      Speaking of Monsanto, Ted Cruz is in their pocket.

  • Rev. Walking Turtle

    Baum: “A government monopoly would be the least expensive and most flexible way to legalize drugs.”

    Sadly, MISTER Baum, in light of the present state of affairs, the USDC Jurisdiction can NOT be safely trusted with ANY aspect of the public health at this time

    Look at the bigger picture: The CDC owns patents for ebola, SARS and several even more tortuous pathogens of the weaponizable/weaponized sort. The FDA gladly (for the right price) authorizes Monsanto Corporation to carry merrily on with the mass poisoning of the US populace by means of precision-engineered frankenfood crops loaded-up with glyphosate and bt-toxin. (Europe wised-up more than a year back and what of that?)

    Congress evidently only wants another SuperSized Cheeseburger with fries, a Coke and an AIPAC Campaign Dontion. And the Executive Branch reliably lies and lies and lies through its teeth on the topic – when it actually deigns to address it at ALL. The courts? Bought and PAID-for – witness the “Citizens United” decision that put all of the above mass-homicidal madness into high gear!

    Heck – first Obama term, Michelle/Mike Obama’s little organic garden plot on the WH lot was publicly objected-to by Monsanto and just as promptly REMOVED. NEVER spoken-of again – even in the “al;ternative” online press! YEARS noew and we get WHAT? But MonSanto Itself feeds ITS employees ONLY organically-grown food in ITS cafeteria – so what in BLAZES is up with all THAT, HM?

    Well then. What next, HM? Oh yah… Shift to Overdrive. Put Jade at the helm and roll ON, AI-styl;e and NOBODY to arrest nor blame, THEN..

    Already MJ growers in Rhode Island are being TOLD by the State to only plant certain State-supplied seeds – or ELSE. This Old Turtle strongly suspects that the REAL reason for sauch a diktat has NOTHING to do with Public Health/Safety and EVERYTHING to do with stealth-drugging the MJ-smoking/vaping public into a handily compliant non-thinking stuporous passivity by means of GM MJ. SOLVES EVERYTHING! (Wow.)

    It is SO simple. They HAVE the technology! It is clearly being done NOW. So SAVE YOUR BEST SEEDS, grow at home – discreetly as can be – and GROW it RIGHT. It’s the ONLY way to defend one’s health and sanity against the all-too-obvious Enemy Within imvh&observent_o. Ignore at your own peril, Gentle Smokin’ Reader!

    Heads UP! And that is all. 0{:-|o[