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The President has heard us loud and clear

This morning, a large number of people got an official White House letter from David Plouffe, Senior Advisor to the President.

It was a letter to talk about the success of the “We the People” online petition initiative from the White House and to encourage more involvement. The opening of the letter was just what I had hoped for…

Good morning,

It’s part of my job to make sure President Obama gets to hear the voices and perspectives of people outside Washington – and lately, that’s not been difficult.

Everywhere the President goes, he gets the same message:…

Ah, here it comes. Finally. Acknowledgement from the White House that in every forum of this kind, drug policy reform is not only the top message, but usually the top 10.

Americans just want folks in Washington to work together to build an economy that works for the middle class, not just the wealthiest – and is based on rewarding responsibility, hard work and fairness.

Wait. What?

Let me read that again. I must have accidentally skipped the words “marijuana” and “drug policy”… nope.

OK, I get it. He wants a chance to promote his agenda first, and then later in the letter he’ll discuss specifics that have come through the petition process.

Then, he’ll mention how thousands of citizens have signed the petition for drug policy reform, and how he understands the issue based on his experience with drugs in his youth, and that he has gotten the message loud and clear.

Let me scroll down further through the letter…

Ah, here it is!

In the past month, thousands of citizens signed a petition about

See, I told you.

student loans. These individuals rightly pointed out that the weight of this debt is preventing graduates all over the country from achieving their dreams.

It’s a message received loud and clear and one that President Obama – who spent almost a decade paying off his own student loans – understands.

 

Sigh.

 

So what else do you have? What’s the next issue you think needs attention? Make sure your voice is heard in our government:

http://www.WhiteHouse.gov/YourIdeas

We can’t wait to see what you have to say.

Sincerely,

David Plouffe
Senior Advisor to the President

[Thanks, Dan]

… just for clarification, I’m just having fun with a completely and thoroughly expected letter content by the Administration.

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33 comments to The President has heard us loud and clear

  • JDV

    Hate to say it, but these petitions are pointless. They’re going to cherry pick petitions that already match with their agenda. By the way I think the petition to acknowledge alien contact got more signatures than ours.

    • Of course, they’re going to cherry pick petitions. Duh! They’d be idiots if they didn’t. But they’ll have to answer all the ones that meet the criteria, or the press WILL make fun of them.

      And no, the alien contact one has 11,542 signatures. There are six drug policy petitions with more signatures, including the top signature petition so far: “Legalize and Regulate Marijuana in a Manner Similar to Alcohol.” with 73,545 signatures.

      • Bear

        Any sign that the media is covering petitions? I haven’t heard very much about it… it took Change.org’s marijuana petition an insane number of votes before anyone even acknowledged it.

        That’s what I’m concerned about. Who’s really covering this?

        • The media covered the petitions when they started and there was a fair amount of mention of the top vote-getter out of the gate. Then there was a natural lull while we waited for responses. Now that the government has finally responded to one (the student loan one), a couple of the media sites out there will get interested again, and if the White House hasn’t dealt with the number one vote-getter in a week or two, they’ll start asking questions.

          Of course, the petition itself isn’t going to accomplish anything, but it’s one more way that some conversations will get started, and it will add to overall coverage.

          Months from now, there will be reporters in passing mentioning how the administration has avoided really dealing with this issue in every forum.

  • Chris

    As a 24 year old student currently employed in my field of study, I have some student loan debt. The biggest issue in my life is the potential drug stigmatization/arrest that hangs over every aspect of my life. Not because the drugs have any negative affects on me whatsoever – but because I would have almost no rights if anyone cared to target me. Even with my state’s medical marijuana law.

  • Ziggy

    The gravest problem for any of us is the constant eroding of civil rights in the name of policts. “I”m tough on drugs” so it’s okay that your daughter was inadvertantly busted at a party with drugs, she was probably taking them anyway.

    Until all of us look around, realize that if DC is now the per capita richest city in America, that the parasite is in office, sucking us dry, maybe we’ll fix it.

    Personaly, I would love a lottery government. Hey, you, over there, you’re in the House, you, the Senate. One term, lottery again. Shirley Jackson with a fun side, and maybe the whole place would be stoned!

    Seriously though, our fabric is falling apart. We have a rouge justice department, or worse, one that looks rogue but is orchestrated. We have people orchestrating gun sales to pay for assinations, sort of, though nothing really is solid there.

    What we have is government run amok. Really amok. If 50% of the population thinks we should legalize marijuana, the last thing a smart person would do would be persecute the medical users.

    Enough said. Smart people aren’t involved.

  • Rookie

    To Chris the Student..

    I am sorry that you have to live in a Country that treats it’s adults as children. I am a 52 year old non college grad working stiff, that has seen the days as a young adult that we could smoke whatever we wished in our spare time and never worry about the ramifications. As a young adult we laughed out loud when we heard rumors about a test where they could check your urine and see if you have smoked in the last month.. We banded together and laughed out loud about this saying we will never give them our urine… ILLEGAL SEARCH AND SIEZURE!!!!! However the Wealthy Employers, Insurance Company’s and Government, took away our freedoms and demanded urine for paychecks and the majority of Americans rolled over and gave it to them. Now we are facing the loss of all Freedoms, given over to the Wealthy, in return for food and shelter. We are a pathetic country and I am sorry that you will have to endure the loss of more freedoms as you age…Those that took the attitude that I do nothing wrong so I have nothing to hide played right into the plan. NO WE DONT HAVE ANYTHING TO HIDE, ITS OUR RIGHT!

  • Bear

    I had the same EXACT reaction, Pete. I then laughed sardonically at “We can’t wait to see what you have to say.”

    If they can’t wait to see what we’ve been saying (for the past, what? Three and a half years?) about drug policy, why has Obama laughed at us, mocked us, ignored us and frankly treated the entire issue as some sort of blow-off joke?

    If you’ve been keeping track of Obama’s responses like I have, there isn’t much hope that he’ll think intelligently about this issue (or even keep his promises).

    Now I’m looking at the GOP candidates. I’ve heard good things about Gary Johnson and Ron Paul… I actually sent you an email asking what candidates were for ending the War on Drugs, Pete. I hope you can shed some light on that.

    Enjoying your content as always.

    • Francis

      As far as I know, Gary Johnson and Ron Paul are the only two candidates at the presidential level who oppose the war on drugs. I had high hopes for Johnson since he seemed to offer a more credible (I thought) version of Ron Paul’s principled libertarianism. By that I mean that I hoped that his two terms as governor of New Mexico would make him harder to dismiss. Unfortunately, he hasn’t exactly caught fire. *sigh* If only he had Romney’s hair. My plan is to vote for Paul or Johnson in the primaries. (I’m still deciding.) Most likely that will be followed by a protest vote in the general. Possibly a write-in for Cheech Marin or Tommy Chong. (Again, still deciding.)

      • Bear

        It’s that “as far as I know” bit that I want to analyze.

        • Francis

          Ha ha, yeah I hear you. But my hunch is that if Michelle Bachmann or Rick Santorum had come out Ron Paul-syle for legalized heroin, I would have heard about it.

      • Windy

        Don’t bother with Johnson this election, he truly hasn’t a chance this election, he hasn’t had enough coverage, hasn’t been in any of the so called debates, hasn’t had any face time with the people or on TV and doesn’t have a huge following from a previous run for the presidency. So this time around please vote Ron Paul (hopefully with Johnson as his VP), next time vote for Johnson (especially if he makes VP this time, he’ll have an even better chance then).

        But if everyone who is on that fence (no matter what party they supported until now) and all those who truly support the end of the federal drug war, or are anti-foreign war, or pro free market, pro freedom, and pro a Constitutionally limited federal government falls onto the RP side this time around, RP will win the nomination, hands down, and if he wins the nomination he will win the election, too.

        Again, the way to do this in your State can be found here:
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zy6c6WFeQyU&feature=share

    • Drwoo

      Ron Paul wants to legalize everything.
      Gary Johnson wants to legalize marijuana. He will also cost benefit analysis every aspect of the federal budget including the war on drugs. I registered Republican yesterday for the first time in my life. I have been independent since the ’96 election when I was 20. Now I am in a new state with a closed primary. Which ever of those 2 have the best chance of winning Louisiana’s primary I will be voting for.

      • Leonard Junior

        Louisiana’s primary is closed? Eff. I was planning to vote in it, too. If you live on the Northshore, my best advice to you is move; these piggies have too much time to do nothing, and are too well funded with too many crazy toys. I’ve seen St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s troop trucks, refueling trucks, boats, helicopters and plenty more, most of it non-swat stuff. They like to run convoys, will pull you out of your car for not signaling, ALWAYS plan to search whoever they stop, and love to look hard when they do it. I’ve been thrown on a car for handrolled tobacco and put in cuffs. Not a nice place; these cops are really nazis.

    • Windy

      Ron Paul is the only one with any chance at the nomination who would end the federal government’s involvement in the drug issue:
      https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=936887417943&set=a.909946378003.2374086.200034&type=1&theater
      You might not be able to view that link if you are not a member of facebook, I’m not certain what privacy setting the owner of that page has set up for pics, if it is “public” anyone can view them.

  • darkcycle

    Of course it was expected, it’s just going to compound the public outrage that already exists at every aspect of this corrupt system. I know it’s compounding mine.

  • Francis

    God, this is ripe for ridicule. Hopefully Stewart or someone like that will have some fun with this.

    • Bear

      Jon Stewart seems to stay away from the War on Drugs (aside from occasionally making jokes about “Legalize it!” signs) on his show. I’ve always wanted to attend his show and ask him why this is.

      There’s a lot of policy news to ridicule and Stewart seems to ignore every single mention of it. Quite disappointing, really.

  • stickynugs

    Hey change the threshhold to 25,000 signatures also. Norml has a new petition up. Its about keeping the feds out of CA MMJ.

  • guy fawke

    I’ve been in the trenches for years, and for that I have nothing but a broken record that can only be looked at as classic. I’ve planned and compromised for those in power only to be deceived. I’ve found my loss is with everybody–I was your rights you so entrusted. Your rights—goodbye.

  • Bear

    (@Francis, I can’t reply to your… reply, so I’m quoting you down here)

    “Francis
    October 26, 2011 at 8:12 pm
    Ha ha, yeah I hear you. But my hunch is that if Michelle Bachmann or Rick Santorum had come out Ron Paul-syle for legalized heroin, I would have heard about it.”

    I just wonder if the question has even been asked yet of those candidates. I want to hear their specific answer to how they feel about drug policy.

    I know it’s unlikely that they’ve ever said anything about this (or that they ever will), but I’d rather ask the question than be silent regarding it.

  • darkcycle

    Oh puhhleeez…
    That petition site is just like the “door close” button on the elevator, or the “push to cross” button at big city intersections…it’s just there to give you something to do while you wait, and to lend the impression that you’re actually doing something.

  • claygooding

    The petition to remove cannabis from schedule 1 is the one I am waiting to hear.

    It will make Obama cut bait or fish on medical marijuana.IMO

  • It will be interesting to see how many of us “punish” Obama by voting for him again in 2012. I can hear the excuse now: “Well, he’s better than the Republican…”

    • Swooper420

      Unfortunately, Obama (the creature) is better than having any Rethuglian ( Gary Johnson excepted) in the office. Rethuglians are hypocrites (to a greater degree than Demorats) with their ‘small gov’t except when it comes to your bedroom or what you use for social or medical use’ mantra.

      Gary J. doesn’t stand a chance. He needs to do something that would shake up the establishment in order to get the publicity his campaign needs to be viable.

      R. Paul’s attitude towards cannabis is somewhat reassuring, but his other political stands make him unsuitable for Pres. He also stands no chance. Surprising, he can’t seem to get rolling while a Pizza guy is leading the polls now. The rethuglian party scares me!!!

      • Well, it didn’t take very long to hear the excuse I suggested…

        The Republicans may very well want to regulate the sex inside our bedrooms, but both the Democrats and Republicans don’t want you smoking a joint to make good sex even better.

        It is simply stunning to me that you, or any other thinking individual, believe Democrats are any better (or different) than Republicans.

        • DdC

          Oh everybody knows Republicans poison, prison and kill people for money and have fetish’ about fetus’ and preventing fun in others before it hits home. Democrats feed people and work. Neocons rule. But as long as people think it’s a two party seism. Who ya gonna call? Kochbusters! Go Obombo! Go find a Democrat. Anything G-20 corporatist obstructionist, right of center should be ground up into Redneck Blue Blood Soilent Green. Eat the Rich seems simple enough. At least a few as a deterrent. Those trying to write policy in Utopia should do lots of shrooms and have chicken parts thrown at them. Turn the churches into homeless shelters. Foreclose on Wall St casino’s and fix the infrastructure. Divide the rest among the tax payers. Move to the country and grow Hemp and Ganja. As long as I keep growing my hair. Peace will guide the planets and Love will steer the stars.

          Pat Robertson thinks GOP candidates are getting too extreme
          Those people in the Republican primary have got to lay off this stuff,”

          Robertson: GOP Base Too Extreme – YouTube

          This guy thinks the base is full of crazies, who’s to argue?
          He speaks from years of experience, if anyone knows GOPerverts, it’s Pat.

          It also speaks volumes of how far Ganja truth has reached. To the point that all of the signatures on every petition to the white house combinrd, added up less than the Ganja Petitions sigs. There is no rational argument left to permit the C.S.A. to remain as a blight on this country and its people. When Pat Robertson says legalize look for a fat lady singing or a hippy like dude tossing dung worriers into the Lake of Fire.

          Pat Robertson, the conservative media baron and icon of the Religious Right, appears to support legalizing (or at least decriminalizing) Marijuana

          “How can there be peace when drunkards, drug dealers, communists, atheists, New Age worshipers of Satan, secular humanists, oppressive dictators, greedy money changers, revolutionary assassins, adulterers, and homosexuals are on top?”
          ~ Pat Robertson, The New World Order, p.227

  • Dante

    The solution is obvious.

    Vote Obama out. Yes we Can!

    Doesn’t really matter who gets in, because they are all the same. Exactly the same.

    Make sure to send him a letter telling him why you won’t vote for him. Make sure to tell him that, if he changed his position on this issue, you would have voted for him.

  • DdC

    Doesn’t really matter who gets in, because they are all the same. Exactly the same. Voting Obama out doesn’t really matter because they are all the same. Making sure to send him a letter doesn’t really matter because they are all Exactly the same. Telling him why you won’t vote for him doesn’t really matter because they are all the same. Exactly the same. Making sure to tell him that, doesn’t really matter because they are all the same. If he changed his position on this issue it doesn’t really matter because they are all the same. You would have voted for him? Doesn’t really matter because they are all the same. Exactly the same.

    Booshammy, Koch’s and the Dick Armey?
    Exactly the same? Doesn’t really matter because they are all the same.

    DC vote blocked by Barr, Obama it’s not. Needle exchange.
    Pressed by the right and whiners from the left. Hilary care and Gays, again.
    Reversing what they demanded Bubba enact. Wasting more time when i have no recollection of SWAT tanks knocking down sodomite bedroom doors. Profiling or large numbers busted for possession of paraphernalia. As long as money rules justice lags behind…

    Koch pain A.L.E.C. Drug Detention Centers

    Birthers Officially Full of shit, Censorship still sucks!

    Are the Teabogs Traitors, Serving a Southern Neoconfederacy?

    • Windy

      One of them is NOT the same:
      Ron Paul is the ONLY candidate who is squeaky clean, and the ONLY one whose voting record matches his Constitutional principles, 100% of the time. With Ron Paul, the voters can be 100% assured that they will get a president who will never compromise those Constitutional principles, because his record proves he never has. This is something no voter alive today has ever experienced.

      Ron Paul has refused to receive the lucrative congressional pension, this is something no other member of congress has done.
      He also returns the unused portion of his congressional office’s budget to the treasury EACH YEAR, something else no other member of congress does.
      He’s honest and thrifty with taxpayers’ monies, something no other member of congress can claim.

      Ron Paul says if he becomes president he will end the federal WoD, he always does what he says he will do. Ron Paul IS our answer, but ONLY if we ALL help him win the nomination and vote for him in the election.