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Gary Johnson at CPAC

Gary Johnson is one of the brightest possibilities in the Republican Presidential prospects regarding drug policy reform, and he’s not afraid to talk about it.

He hit it pretty hard in his speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference. Starting at 4:40 and going until about 6:50.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8cuexQ4EV7o

Nice to hear the cheers when he mentioned legalizing marijuana, although it must be noted that a lot of the social conservatives stayed home this year because they were afraid of getting teh gay.

I really hate to say it, but if Johnson is going to have any kind of serious shot at a nomination, someone’s going to have to step in and buy him a new suit that fits and style his hair. It’s a reality of modern politics.

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36 comments to Gary Johnson at CPAC

  • Duane Kimball

    The first step to reducing the debt is through abolishing arcane marijuana laws. This is far better than denying folks health care, food, housing, and heat. Good luck in getting tis message across – and I am a liberal with a capital “L”.

  • Paul

    Ron Paul won CPAC this year. That makes two pro legalization candidates coming up for the Republican nomination. Either of them would make a fine president, as far as I’m concerned.

    The media would love to treat Ron Paul as someone they can ignore, but I don’t think they can just laugh him off this year. They have been inadvertently boosting his name since the last election, and he is going to get quite a bit of attention. Granted, he spends a lot of time talking about gold, but the other 50% of his time is spent on ending our wars and liberty issues, like drugs.

    Johnson has a chance of taking off, but the ironic thing is he’ll be campaigning somewhat in Paul’s shadow. Everything I’ve ever heard of him makes me want to see him become president, too. Johnson’s liberty message is a bit softer than Paul’s, but he genuinely believes in it, too.

    Too bad the Democrats don’t get a chance to field someone new this election. Obama is a real disappointment for our issue, and if he wins this election he’ll be followed with Biden for the next election. Biden isn’t going to end the drug war, either. This means the democrats don’t plan on fielding ANYONE for the presidency that has a better attitude towards drugs for the next 10 years, if they can help it.

    People who usually vote democrat but want to end the war on drugs are going to be in a strange position for the next few election cycles. Too bad about Obama’s broken campaign promises.

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .
      Gold, humbug, way overpriced. Gimme silver or copper, TIA. Did you know they don’t pull as much silver out of the ground as people use every year? All those gold bugs burying gold in their back yards is just supply waiting to be sold at the most inopportune time. I’ve never understood what the point of mining it in the first place is if you’re just going to put it in a coffee can and re-bury it.

      Remember, precious metals go into the IRAs.

      Am I the only person here who actually voted for Mr. Paul for President? He was the Libertarian candidate in 1988 you know. I won’t be making that mistake in 2012.

  • Ron Paul won the straw poll of people actually at CPAC, even though Donald Trump was payed to appear and trash him. Both the right wing and left wing are too addicted to America’s imperial status as the policeman of the world, rather than America for Americans. Try calling into to Hannity or Limbaugh and mentioning any points about Dr. Paul. You will never get past the call screeners. Try posting on a Fox Nation about Ron Paul…you get a popup that your comment must be reviewed by a moderator…and IT WILL NEVER APPEAR.

  • Duncan20903

    I’ve got $100 worth of same as cash coupons from the Men’s Wearhouse. What’s his address?

  • vicky vampire

    Gary Johnson is the kind of Republican,I as a Libertarian could vote for.
    Hey Stop the Presses LADY GAGA: just admitted on 60 minutes show before grammies where she will be apearing also that she is a regular MARIJUANA, and alcohol user when especially writing all those great songs, and who said pot does not strike,that creative spark, you go girl.
    Just watch on Monday I’m sure some in media will be criticizing her for corrupting our youth and leading them astray HAHA!!!!

  • My view on the candidates is that neither Ron Paul nor Gary Johnson have a chance in hell of becoming President.

    Drug policy reform is going to come from the bottom up, not the top down.

    I think Ron Paul has a lot to offer, but if it came down to either Paul or Johnson having a realistic shot at competing in the primaries, I’d take Johnson without hesitation.

    While he’d be unlikely to get the nomination, he’d have a lot of opportunities to be on the national stage and talk about drug policy. That would be a good thing.

    Ron Paul can’t do it as well because he’s already got a mainstream media picture as a crazy person with racist roots and a gold standard hang-up. It doesn’t matter whether it’s true, it’s a fact that will completely hamstring his ability to talk about drug policy.

    The media will have a much tougher time painting Johnson as a crazy person — successful two-term governor, triathlete, etc., and he can bring a dialog about drug policy.

    • Ben

      Mitch Daniels will be the Republican nominee anyway. He was arrested for pot, maybe he’s capable of being a reasoning human being?

      • fallibilist

        Prior to watching some stuff from CPAC, I was about 90% behind Daniels and 10% behind Johnson.

        Now I’m 100% behind Daniels.

        It’s a shame that Pete took a cheap shot at Johnson by focusing on his haircut and suit. (Still love you, Pete.) The guy is a self-made millionaire and if that were really all that was between him and the Presidency, it would be easy.

        Look, Johnson is a no-compromises, no-apologies libertarian. (The only exception I can detect is a bizarre soft-spot for aid to Israel.) That’s just not going to wash with The American People.™ Johnson is basically staking his claim by being a Libertarian Party candidate and putting an (R) in front of his name. Even The American People™ aren’t that stupid.

        Mitch Daniels cuts a much more impressive figure (except phsyically, where Johnson is tan, tall, and has a full head of hair, Daniels comes in at 5’7 and almost totally bald).

        Daniels begins by really driving home the existential threat of the debt. It’s almost impossible to overstate this, but let me put it this way: compared to our national debt, the specter of Islamic terrorism isn’t even as disturbing as a fly on the other side of a large room.

        Once Daniels hammers home the extreme urgency of the debt problem, he emphasizes that no expenditure can be off the table. Yes, that includes entitlements (Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security) and Defense.

        If you can get people to accept the idea that their is SO MUCH pain that must be endured, then it has to be spread around as widely as possible.

        Look, the Drug War is nothing if not a wasteful government program: it’s ineffective; it’s expensive; it’s counterproductive. It also happens to be unconstitutional. That’s the conservative argument against it.

        Liberals will focus on the fact that it’s unjust. That’s true. But conservatives and liberals fundamentally differ on the definition of “justice.”

      • fallibilist

        Ben, what makes you so confident?

  • Shap

    No doubt that the suit needs to fit. But if that’s the only negative thing to say about a person in politics, that’s pretty good.

    • fallibilist

      He admitted to smoking pot in the recent past. While you and I know that that’s not necessarily a big deal, there’s no way that American’s are going to let a medical marijuana user have his finger near the nuclear button.

  • […] and losersWashington PostRon Paul Wins US Conservative Poll, Romney Finishes 2ndVoice of AmericaGary Johnson at CPACDrug WarRantYahoo! News -Examiner.com -Los Angeles Timesall 733 news […]

  • vicky vampire

    Oh God Duncan your humor is incomparable.

  • fixitman

    Yes on the new suit and hair. It’s not something I care about but, I have to agree that todays environment demands it.
    Over at TPM http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/02/cpac-throws-pro-legal-pot-libertarian-off-stage.php?ref=fpc (sorry I don’t know how to make that pretty)
    the story being told by McMorris-Santoro is that Johnson was booted from the stage. Looks to me like he just ran out of time.
    As for the Pauls (father and son) I don’t think you can call yourself a libertarian if you don’t support a woman’s right to the sovereignty of her body.

  • malcolm kyle

    Fixitman, thanks for posting that link to TPM

    I left this:

    My dear Mr Evan McMorris-Santoro, you’re either an ethically challenged journalist who’s willing to blatantly lie in order to generate hits on your severely misleading article, or you’re just another drug war shill who’s willing to blatantly lie to uphold the dangerous moronothon of prohibition. Either way, if you keep your job here at TPM, it’s reputation for fair and honest reporting will be irrevocably tarnished.

    I’m sure that many of you here can beat that!

  • ezrydn

    Someone might correct me on this but wasn’t Biden heavy handed in writing the CSA? If so, he’d be a definite NO-NO for President.

  • malcolm kyle

    I believe you’re quite correct Ezrydn!

    “(12) shall ensure that no Federal funds appropriated to the Office of National Drug Control Policy shall be expended for any study or contract relating to the legalization (for a medical use or any other use) of a substance listed in schedule I of section 202 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 812) and take such actions as necessary to oppose any attempt to legalize the use of a substance (in any form) that–
    (A) is listed in schedule I of section 202 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 812); and
    (B) has not been approved for use for medical purposes by the Food and Drug Administration;”

    It was Joe Biden who authored this act, who wrote those words and then pushed this abhorrent law (which created ONDCP, the position of “drug czar” and the mandate to lie thru their teeth) thru congress.

    So, unless he goes down weeping on hands and knees and apologizes to the whole nation while promising to reimburse all his victims, he can forget it!

  • denmark

    Your comment Pete is an echo of mine. A heavy sigh comes over me too as it always appears the ones that would be the BEST president never make it. Ron Paul would be superb, end of story. Gary Johnson would be a huge step forward, huge.
    Unfortunately, … mitt romney has his filthy eyes on the race.

    • Cliff

      “A heavy sigh comes over me too as it always appears the ones that would be the BEST president never make it.”

      It is said that Abe Lincoln would have never been elected POTUS in the age of TV. He kind of reminds me of ‘Lurch’ with a beard,top hat and what’s that on his face…a mole, a big ‘un too.

  • Pete’s bottom-up theory has merit, though for it to work the voters must have a candidate that represents them – and can get on the ballot. We know Obama has left us at the mercy of drug policies he supports (despite his occasional sop to us) and will be the Dem’s nominee. Not sure who will be the Republican nominee, but we can take it to the bank it won’t be Johnson or Paul.

    The Libertarian Party has opposed drug prohibition since its founding in 1971. Should they put forth a credible candidate – always a big task and rarely accomplished – in 2012, a chunk of the 75+ million eligible voters (the overwhelming majority being under 40) that stayed home in 2008 just might go to the polls and make their voices heard. Opinion polls are nice, but the voting booth is the only poll that truly matters.

    • Cliff

      “The Libertarian Party has opposed drug prohibition since its founding in 1971. Should they put forth a credible candidate – always a big task and rarely accomplished – in 2012, a chunk of the 75+ million eligible voters (the overwhelming majority being under 40) that stayed home in 2008 just might go to the polls and make their voices heard.”

      That is our dream, to reach those disaffected voters who believe that they don’t matter and voting doesn’t change anything.

  • fallibilist

    The Libertarian Party always puts a Presidential candidate on the ballot and that candidate never gets more than 1% of the vote.

    You’re right that Johnson and Paul won’t win the Republican nomination. See my posts above about why our best hope to ratchet down the Drug War is Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels.

  • divadab

    At least Mitt ROmney has actually run a successful business, had to make payroll, hire and fire, provide customers with what they want, and watch the bottom line. Unlike Obama, Bush Jr., Clinton, Reagan – none of whom ever had even a real job let alone run a business.

    And it seems to have escaped most people that Obama’s health care plan is simply a copy of what Romney set up in Massachusetts – but Romney did a better job with the details of implementation (since he had some real-world experience, unlike the photogenic orator who’s all talk but no action we have in the White House at present).

    And Biden is an authoritarian police state enabler. And liar – he’s the one who said Mubarak wasn;t a dictator.

    • denmark

      It’s the religious ties that ROmney has that enabled him to grow wealthy. And it’s those same ties that could very well get the guy elected.
      His health care plan for Massachusetts has and still could be argued about by many a professor at any university teaching medicine. He was not popular by a large majority.

  • vicky vampire

    I know mention Lady Gaga and she is a bit polarizing,I just love tons of different music its all great to me I appreciate it all.
    The other day talk show host Michael Medved did not comprehend the great acclaim Bob Dylan has always had hence,he found the Beatles music more melodic and beautiful true that may be but the Beatles I find boring and I find Dylan endlessly fascinating for a humongous variety of reasons. Beethoven gets more acclaim than Chopin and I find Chopin my fav, He’s dark kind of melancholy and goth, mm maybe GAGA is not great but I’m addicted to her MUSIC RIGHT NOW,she fills something that resonates,with me that’ all. and yes the GAGA LIKES TO toke COOL.

  • @fallibilist: notice I said “credible” candidate.

    And what makes you believe Daniels will follow through? He hasn’t seemed inclined to do much to date. Obama, as a candidate, was far more outspoken on drug policy, remember? How’s that working out?

    • fallibilist

      Daniel, I love you, man, but I think you’re off-base.

      The LP put forward Ron Paul–yes, that Ron Paul, a previously elected Congressman–in 1988.

      They put forward Bob Barr (a previously elected Congressman) in 2008.

      These are people who had have won federal elections before. Barr had been a national figure before (during the Clinton impeachment).

      Still, no one has broken the 1% barrier. And you think that an LP candidate–any LP candidate– has a chance at the presidency?

      Look, the American people simply aren’t libertarians.

      This shouldn’t be a shock to anyone.

      • I’ll take love wherever and whenever I can, fallibilist.

        Again, I didn’t say the LP has never put forth a credible candidate (though we could debate whether or not Paul and Barr qualify) – just that it is a rare accomplishment. In my opinion, Harry Browne was our most credible nominee. And as I argued during my 2008 quest to be on the LP national ticket, the future of the LP – and the country – rests with those under the age of 40. The LP will succeed when we develop and articulate policies that directly benefit that demographic.

        On the contrary, most Americans are libertarians. Most Americans desire the least (but most effective) amount of government control coupled with the highest level of personal freedom. Those who prefer big government and social controls may be the most vocal, but they number in the minority.

  • This is not my America

    In the end, I dont think it matters who runs or wins. If/When this counrty collapses the people will be looking to punish those in government for ruining their comfy lives.

  • DdC

    Oh please, more GOPerverts? Mitch and Mitt make as much sense as polka dot golfballs. if you’re going to gossip at least make it interesting. This same old goofy shit painting republicans as Americans is silly. They’re moneysluts and they will always be serving their money god. Never again!

    American Facing Death Penalty in Egypt for Hemp Oil
    CANNABIS CULTURE – A US citizen jailed as a drug trafficker in Egypt in December after importing a shipment of non-drug hemp oil there was freed from jail late last month when mobs of protestors overran prisons across Cairo, but remains in legal limbo. full story

    Cheney Calls Mubarak A Good Friend, U.S. Ally

    Nixon lied to schedule Ganja #1

    Cover-Ups, Prevarications, Subversions & Sabotage

  • Paul

    Ddc,

    Yes, more GOP is fine. I’ll vote for just about anybody in any party who I think can get the job done and end the drug war. Your Democrat buddies have not just fumbled the ball, they have betrayed you.

    Obama lied about medical mj. He won’t lift a finger to stop raids, and as a matter of fact, appointed Leonhart to the DEA to rub salt into the wound. If re-elected, Obama will not do anything about mj at all.

    Then, after Obama finishes his second term, we will probably get Biden as the nominee. Biden wrote some of the very laws we are trying to get rid of. So if for some reason the country isn’t completely sick of a Democratic white house in 2016, we’ll get another 4 to 8 years of the drug war, guaranteed, in the form of Joe Biden.

    On the national level, the Democrats have completely failed to do anything about mj, and have no plans whatsoever to change course. While getting drunk at political cocktail parties, they tell jokes about stoners and laugh at your misplaced loyalty, not even grateful for the support of useful idiots like yourself, just taking it for granted, because, well, who else are you going to vote for, Republicans?

    Wake up! The Democrats do not give a rat’s ass about our cause. Maybe, when we are about to win, they will finally get behind us, but for now they are clearly on the other side of our issue while talking from both sides of their mouth. If a Republican is offering legalization, support him. If a Democrat, (if any can be found) then support. Don’t let them take your vote for granted.

  • PRESS RELEASE

    You Cannot Rehabilitate Criminals In A Failing Prison System?

    “A Story That Needs To Be Told”
    By Author – John J. Pecchio

    This article will inform the mind and startle the soul. Crime and punishment in this country is out of control. Many are in agreement in, how lawmakers and prison bureaucrats are controlling our modern prisons, and turning them into political arenas that operate like a circus of shams and charades.

    When we started building modern prisons in the 1800s, air, food and space was all that the constitution called for when incarcerating criminals. It was understood that prisons were built to punish criminals for their crimes and reform them to live productive lives.

    For two-centuries in this country, we have been processing criminals in our Judicial-System and building prisons to punish criminals. And in all that time, I am appalled, how lawmakers have not revised the system to correct the lack of administrative and prisoner discipline. Nor impeach those who are still contaminating our prison with flaws, embedding them with unthinking, unknowing or corrupted officials and political bureaucrats.

    When politicians run for public office they want to impress taxpayers with solutions to lower the deficit, stabilize taxes and protect public safety. I realize that most politicians have never seen the inside of a prison and the ones who have been were short visit and shown the best parts. It’s appalling and a shameful act, the way so many political officials come into office and start abusing tax-dollars and the legal system by clamming, that closing prisons will lower the deficit. When in fact; it will increases prison violence, spending and crime rate.

    Federal and State Prisons have deteriorated to their worst condition in the history of these institutions? They have changed from being run with dignity and strong security into a hellish nightmare where corruption is the norm. With the loss of positive leadership in our prisons came the increase of prisoner’s power, primarily caused by their ability to hide behind highly-defended “Civil Rights”, which has now taken precedence above all else. These rights allowed them to live without fear of strong retribution for their actions, thereby leading to a breakdown in inmate behavior and resulting in riots, fights, and physical and verbal abuse of prison workers.

    The recidivism rates are now at the highest point in prison history. Prison bureaucrats know that approximately 70% and 80% of repeat felons’ including 90% of pedophiles and sex-offenders are returning in one-to three-years committing the same crimes, which is a sure sign of a failing prison system.

    After working in a maximum-security prison for almost three-decades, it’s my firm conviction that “The criminal mind never sleeps”. Our Justice System processes so many criminals throughout the prison systems at taxpayers’ expense, and they still continue to rebel against the system by violating prison rules and regulations, breaking laws and committing more crimes.

    Each year, taxpayers’ are spending over $450-billion dollars on our Justice System to fighting crime in this country, and approximately $50-billion dollars of that money is spend on the Department of Corrections.

    In 1966 when I started working in the prison system our prison security was intact and ran well because administrators were in control. Three years later we started getting a new breed of administrators from Central Office, (the main headquarters for all prisons in the state) they were politically orientated, inexperienced, arrogant and controlling. Their goals were plain and simple; they worried more about pleasing their superiors and prisoner’s rights then prison safety. That was the beginning of how our prisons went from good to bad and ugly in the last several decades.

    In today’s prisons the lack of prison security has diminished. The security correctional officers, who were the backbone of the prison system, have now been downgraded to glorified babysitters. Now prison staff is forced to move daily between freedom and captivity while walking a delicate line between administrative politics and the threat of inmate violence.

    I was a vocational instructor working and supervising murderers, rapist, pedophiles, and drug-pushers and mentally unstable prisoners. My vocational shop was dangerously filled with trade tools, including shape knives, screwdrivers and machineries. The new administrators ignored security procedures and removed the security officer from all the vocational shops and tripled their workload to patrol several shops a day, which left me without security for several hours. Needless to say, my inmates became reckless and became a security risk. These new administrators and prison security put me in life-threatening situations. The inevitable happened. Several inmates begin challenging me and setting me up to be harmed. The leader of the gang started pressuring me and violating prison rules and regulations to impress other inmates. He was a mass-murderer serving two-life-terms for killing several people.

    I had written several misbehavior reports when locking this inmate up. Most of those reports were downplayed by prison security leaders because of pressure from above to have fewer incidents and look good to Central Office and feared they would violate prisoner’s rights. Within the month the same inmate wrote a threatening letter to security heads and the superintendent, quote. “Take me out of Pecchio shop or there will be trouble” unquote. I was never warned of the inmate’s letter nor were my misbehavior reports taken seriously.

    As expected, this 280 pound muscular inmate charged me from behind and brutally attacked me. With blood pouring down the side of my face where he hit me, he then picked me up and threw me hard against a 600 pound steel machine; I hit it with such force it moved. I then fell hard to the concrete floor next to my desk on a platform. When he stopped punching me for a few seconds and turned towards the door I reached up with one arm and knocked the phone off the hook and that alerted security. They rushed in and took control. Both the inmate and I were medically treated in the facility hospital. He was taken to the guardhouse and I was transported to the outside hospital for further medical treatment.
    Then several months later, a jury trial found this inmate guilty and added a three-to-seven-years sentence to his two life terms. I was put on a medical disability for the rest of my life. This traumatic experience was caused by a failing prison system.

    MY BOOK TITLES SAY IT ALL. IT IS TIME TO ACT AND I HOPE THE DIVERSITY OF MY TRUE, COMPELLING AND GRIPPING STORIES WILL BE A POSITIVE INSTRUMENT IN PRISON REFORM. “HELL BEHIND PRISON WALLS” WAS MY FIRST BOOK, WHICH IS MY AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF WORKING IN THE PRISON SYSTEM.

    MY SECOND BOOK “THE DEVIL’S DEN OF PRISON AND JUSTICE” IS A LOOK AT HOW PRISONS ARE STILL FAILING WHILE TAXPAYERS ARE SUPPORTING THE HIGHEST INCARCERATION RATE, WITH THE MOST SERIAL-KILLER IN THE WORLD? WE HAVE APPROXIMATELY 2.4 MILLION SCHIZOPHRENICS, WITH MANY BEING BORDERLINE CASES, WHO ARE MIXING IN WITH REPEAT FELONS AND ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS. THEY ARE THE ONES COMMITTING MOST OF THE CRIMES IN THE UNITED STATES.

    My Website http://www.johnpecchio.com contains a prison video to the rights of the screen, along with my guestbook of satisfied readers and their comments on our Justice System.

    You can place a book orders on Amazon.com or contact me directly, at jpecchio@npacc.net I would be glad to answers any questions.

    GOD BLESS THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
    AND A SPECIAL BLESSING, TO THOSE BRAVE MEN AND WOMEN FIGHTING FOR OUR
    FREEDOM, LIBERTY AND JUSTICE FOR ALL