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Gary Johnson getting ready to announce

Gary Johnson Knows He’ll be Labeled the “Pot Candidate”

Presidential hopeful Gary Johnson knows his support for legalizing marijuana will be used against him by opponents of his quest for the GOP presidential nomination. The libertarian-leaning former Governor of New Mexico will announce his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination on April 21st in New Hampshire.

Before delivering the keynote speech at the High Times Cannabis Cup in Denver, Colorado, Johnson told Fox News he is prepared to be attacked on the pot issue.

“I just want you to know I caught a lot of flack on this as governor, and I more than survived,” Johnson said. “I’ve debated this issue more than any politician on the planet. And this is an issue that under the light of day does really well.”

Johnson really has it together. He doesn’t have any other potential fringe baggage that can be exploited (no gold standard, no racist newsletters, etc., etc.), so the only thing they’ll really be able to come after him on is pot. And he’s ready and willing to take that head on.

Let’s hope that he can stay in the race long enough to generate some good discussions.

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32 comments to Gary Johnson getting ready to announce

  • Windy

    If he runs, I’ll vote for him.

  • strayan

    He needs a good tailor. Desperately.

    • malcolm kyle

      Together We Can Sew It!

    • malcolm kyle

      Or alternatively:

      If WE Can Dream It, WE Can Sew It!

    • Duncan20903

      Every bit of clothing ought to make you pretty
      You can cut the clothing, grey is such a pity
      I should wear the clothing of Mr. Walter Mitty
      See my tailor, he’s called Simon, I know it’s going to fit

      Here’s a little piece of advice
      You’re quite welcome it is free
      Don’t do nothing that is cut price
      You know what that’ll make you be
      They will try their tricky device
      Trap you with the ordinary
      Get your teeth into a small slice
      The cake of liberty

      —Ian Dury and the Blockheads
      Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gBLeVcP_JQg

    • Rick Steeb

      George Zimmer would be happy to help out… I guarantee it!~

      =D

  • Buc

    Ha, advocating the gold standard is baggage? Didn’t know knowledge and advocating a sound monetary policy is baggage.

    Really, how many people do you think voted for or against Ron Paul based on that?

    • Buc, it’s not whether it’s a good policy or a bad policy. It just doesn’t work politically. Opponents paint him as some kind of weirdo, and when the media asks Paul about gold standard, he’s eager to talk at length about it, and immediately the voters (who haven’t been educated on monetary policy at all by our government or media) tune out because they don’t understand it. Since they don’t see anyone else talking about it, they assume it’s some kind of fringe thing. It’s not that they voted for or against him because of his stance — it’s that he never had a chance to reach them on issues they cared about.

      Pot legalization is also baggage. But it’s baggage that people want to talk about.

      • Buc

        Alright, I buy the argument that talking at length about the gold standard isn’t exciting and isn’t going to win over many voters that don’t care about that issue.

        I still buy it as solid policy, though.

      • Buc

        Okay, forget that last comment, here’s the actual, ‘I-couldn’t-edit-it-in-time’ version.

        Alright, I buy the argument that talking at length about the gold standard isn’t exciting and isn’t going to win over many voters that don’t care about that issue. I also agree that the government hasn’t educated the people at all regarding monetary policy. Why would they? The current system works just fine for those in power.

        I still buy it as solid policy, though, and less baggage in that it won’t make people vote against you either. Unfortunately, I think that being against cannabis legalization in most areas will still give you more support than being in favor of it. Of course, it’s only a matter of time until education catches up with people and that changes. My hope is that one day, even far in the future, people will be clamoring to go back to the gold standard. With how central banks are currently running things, I feel it’s not totally out of the question.

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .
      Well it’s a darn good thing we had the gold standard in place in 1929. Because otherwise we might have had a freakin’ great depression or something.

      Any monetary system backed by a specific commodity can be debased just as easily as fiat currency. I seem to recall someone known only as FDR debasing a currency backed by gold. Are you under the impression that there is a fixed amount of gold in the world? Even if there was do you actually think it would matter in a time of fiscal crisis? It most certainly didn’t matter in 1933 when at the behest of that FDR guy the government forced everyone to turn in their gold and paid them $20.67 a troy ounce. Then shortly after completing the process Congress revalued gold to $35 a troy ounce. It would have been a great trade if it wasn’t a spun from whole cloth legal fiction.

      Do you have a clue as to how long there was money backed by seashells? It worked fine for thousands of years until one morning someone woke up and said, “what the heck is so special about a flippin’ sea shell? The beach is littered with them.

      While I didn’t vote “against” Mr. Paul for president because of his being a gold bug, if I could go back to November 1988 for a mulligan I would indeed withdraw my vote for Mr. Paul based on economic understanding that I didn’t possess in 1988.

      The gold standard is one of the most ridiculous monetary systems devised by men. Grizzled miners spend all day digging up pretty yellow metal. Then they sell it to people who dig a hole in the ground to store it for safekeeping. When it comes to stimulus money people make fun of the concept of paying people to dig holes and then to back fill them.

      Does everyone remember that in the 17th century Virginia issued currency backed by tobacco? Well it looks like some Virginia lawmakers are waxing nostalgic for the olden days.

      http://lis.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/legp604.exe?111+ful+HJ557

      http://voices.washingtonpost.com/virginiapolitics/2011/01/delegate_proposes_virginia_min.html#more

      …beaver fur and wampum were used as money in the north for exchanges with the Indians, and fish and corn also served as money. Rice was used as money in South Carolina, and the most widespread use of commodity money was tobacco, which served as money in Virginia. The pound-of-tobacco was the currency unit in Virginia, with warehouse receipts in tobacco circulating as money backed 100 percent by the tobacco in the warehouse.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commodity_money

      Why not go and read the history of the Long Depression that started in 1873 and ended in 1896? A commodity based monetary system ties the hands of the country’s authorities when a fiscal calamity like the Dork President and his faithful ward Dick happen to the US. The most significant reason why I’ve quit the Libertarian party is because in 2008 the Libertarians would have stood aside and let the economy swirl the bowl, perhaps going as far as saying, “swim free little sewer trout, swim free” while the theme from Born Free plays in the background.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_Depression

      If we decided to do the ancient ritual of defining money with a commodity we should at least pick something useful like silver or copper. Gold buggery is nucking futz.

      Having faith in a commodity based currency is much like when the Know Nothings argue in favor of prohibition as if their ends were being achieved. Even proof of the glaring failure of their favored public policy won’t budge them from their irrational belief that it is working. We’ve proven that prohibition doesn’t work. We’ve proven that debtor’s prison is a burden on our society. We’ve also proven that commodity backed currency and a bailment economy is not in the better interest of our financial health.

      No matter how horrid you believe inflation would be, deflation is worse for our collective pocket book by several orders of magnitude. Aside from that it’s now been 20 years since we’ve allegedly been on the verge of hyperinflation which is going to bring the world economy to it’s knees. But what an interesting synchronicity; the economy on the verge of collapse from hyperinflation has been just about parallel to the first time that I heard that the Dutch are on the verge of doing away with their policy of tolerance and returning to absolute prohibition.

      Can someone give me a heads up when the broken clock of predicting hyperinflation is finally right? Hmm, I sure hope that’s not a digital clock.

      • damaged justice

        I assume you don’t believe the state’s propaganda regarding drugs. Why, then, do you believe it regarding money?

      • Duncan20903

        .
        .
        I have no clue what you’re talking about. Are you speaking of the fact that seashells were very valuable in certain societies for centuries and centuries but then became worthless virtually overnight? I do not recall ever seeing any mention of seashell money produced by the US Gov’t. Was that fiction planted in the history books to help propagandize me?

        ..or have I been propagandaed when I point out that a commodity backed currency can be manipulated just as easily as fiat currency? You know, the converse is also true. A fiat currency system can be administered without the currency turning into a Zimbabwean like nightmare.

        Since most of my analysis resides in the history of currencies outside of the United States how in the world did the government propaganda me? Was the Dutch tulip mania fiction spun from whole cloth just to help fool me? Did you know that in Holland during the tulip frenzy that a single tulip bulb could buy a fine home in a great location?

        Your major mistake is in believing that money should/does act as a store of value. Money is a medium to facilitate trade. It is the objects that have value. But if the gold buggerers are correct what difference does it make? If the conspiracy nuttery is true the gov’t owns us already.

        There’s no doubt in my mind that the 20th centuries great depression was brought about by the followers of the Austrian school, and was finally cured when the gov’t was “forced” to go Keynesian by World War II. There’s no doubt in my mind that the economy is stuck in a deflationary spiral. The only reason we haven’t seen deflation comparable to the 1930s is because the gov’t is pumping out enough dollars to keep us steady.

        I don’t buy your theory of currency primarily because it includes a wide spread agreement between the very wealthy in the world and it’s just simply laughable to believe these people are willing or even able to suppress their competitive natures and their inherent greed.

        The propaganda of the drug war is very easily proven to be propaganda by factual evidence. Your ‘new world order’ requires a leap of faith and a belief that human nature can be suppressed.

        PS there’s nothing stopping you and your friends from getting together and deciding to only use gold, silver, tobacco, candy bars, seashells, stinky dog turds or whatever you prefer for trading.

  • Billie Budd

    Well, I say good luck to him. Yes,the others will attack but just having a voice of reason on this matter in the GOP will be like airing out an old tomb…

  • Ben Mann

    He has absolutely no chance, but not because of his drug war stance.

    He’s pro-choice in a Republican primary. He shouldn’t waste his time, or ours.

    • wow… so we should skip all the preliminary efforts, not take advantage of having an anti-Prohibition candidate as a means to raise the level of conversation?

    • Maria

      Way too many say that our whole fight is a waste of time. I’ve heard that often enough. “That whole ‘drug thing’? What a waste of time!” “Aren’t there more important things to be worried about?”

      I could get all existential and argue that the entire drawn out process in which we find ourselves is the sordid waste of time. But, I guess I’m not a utilitarian because I still value the process, even if flawed, even if corrupt, even if puppeted.

      I suspect (cynically) that, yes it is a waste of time. I also suspect that it would be a much larger waste of time to have him run as an Independent or a Libertarian. So, I’d be glad to see him run as a Republican. At this point I would support that campaign and it’s not because I agree with him on all his stances or agree with the party. I would support him because he is respected by members of both parties, because he has proven to be rational and bipartisan, not just in words but in actions.

      He shows that diversity of thought and action are still possible in our system. He’s a republican and a conservative in the best sense of those terms. Not in the current neanderthal like, mud dwelling incarnations of the Republican Party, or for that matter, the delusional, fingers in the ears la-la-la-I-can’t-hear-you incarnation of the Dems.

      But Jesus man… get a better fucking website … http://www.garyjohnson2012.com/ Seriously? It’s not 2001.

    • yes, of course, the last thing the American people should have is CHOICE about anything in their lives — so anyone in favor of people making a choice has no prayer politically.

  • ezrydn

    A waste of time? It’s never a waste of time when the choice is more than two. Politicians have to be reminded, we don’t sway to their breeze. They sway to ours.

  • chris

    I got to see him speak at hash bash in ann arbor last weekend. I agree that this issue holds up well in the light of day, and that was basically his point. Talk to people with reason and logic about this issue.

  • darkcycle

    It’s not important if he doesn’t stand a chance. It puts the Marijuana issue squarely in the spotlight, and makes it an election year issue. Because he’s talking about it and running on it, the others will have to come out and take positions too. The more this issue is debated and covered in the media, the better for us. That kind of focus can only work in our favor.
    Gary Johnson for President.

  • warren

    The moral morons are not ready for someone truthful about the subject.They would rather have smoke and lies blown up their brain portal.A big anthill kick is needed to bring these locked brains around.

  • denmark

    He’s going to be able to bring the drug war and its failure into a greater focus. No wannabe prohibitionist politician will be able to push the dirt under the rug this time.
    Pro Legalization groups are going to be all over this, like we aren’t already. We are always ready, keep it that way and support Johnson.

    by the way, his wardrobe, his appearance, is beyond attractive to some women. Yes, he’ll have to clean it up but don’t you think he realizes that?

    • Maria

      Yeah. Stylists help and he’s got that rough n’ tumble look to him so it’s not too bad. So sure, a stylist would help but what he really needs are media and technology managers. Yes, it’s still early but anyone hoping to ever go up against the Obama branding machine needs to do it right from the start.

  • denmark

    Gary Johnson will have the necessary and visible platform to Rant about the Drug War.

  • Duncan20903

    While he’s not likely to win the general election, if the cannabinoidians would self identify as a voting block and give him substantial support in the primaries it most certainly would send a message to the other politicians that we’re out here and that we’re real. It’s very possible that we could score a major victory even if Mr. Johnson is an also ran.

    Of course this strategy requires registering as a Republican in most States so I’m not going to hold my breath in the meantime. Of course those who hate the GOP might actually enjoy doing that after they realize that doing this would help in marginalizing the other Republicans.

    • David Marsh

      Money talks! You don’t have to register as a Republican to send his campaign money. We have the opportunity by supporting a single candidate to focus the election on our issue. Does it really matter Dem/Rep/Ind. If we could deposit $100,000,000 in Johnson’s account Cannabis would become a real issue. In politics, “only” money talks. Are we going to keep asking, or do you want to start telling!

      Oh well, I guess maybe getting 5,000,000 people to send $20 is too much to ask…..?

  • Adam W.

    I’d vote for him! But gold standard is fringe baggage?

  • […] at Drug War Rant today Pete was praising Gary Johnson, who looks like he’ll be running for the presidential nomination in the Republican Primaries. […]

  • paul

    If both Paul and Johnson run in the primary, it will be an interesting dynamic. First, Paul will make Johnson look a little more centrist, since the gold standard thing has a kooky taint to it. It may actually be smart (I’m not sure), but the perception is kooky.

    Second, that will make 2 Republican candidates in favor of legalizing ALL drugs, not just MJ. (Johnson is in favor of full legalization of some sort, right?) And the Democrats will have NO candidate that wants legalization, since their candidate is the president, and he’s already a proven liar on the topic. Obama is the prohibitionist, here.

    Both Paul and Johnson are also strong financial conservatives, which makes them very appealing to people like me. Some of the other, “serious” candidates are really just big government social conservatives–not a nice combination. Although unlikely, Johnson has a chance because he is only a turn off to social conservatives, but will be seen as highly electable to swing voters, also because of his social stances.

    I know that all sounds very optimistic. But these are very tough, dangerous times. It could be we’ll get someone who has genuine, sincere ideas on how to fix the financial mess we’re in and maybe, just maybe, also end the drug war.

  • vicky vampire

    Gary’s sexy and he toked for a while he’s got my support for now.