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Open Thread

bullet image We were one of the few reporting sites that showed restraint and skepticism regarding Holder’s announcement of forfeiture “reform.” Yes, it’s a good step, but it’s not a solution.

Jacob Sullum continues to report: Despite Holder’s Forfeiture Reform, Cops Still Have A License to Steal

But I worry that the widespread confusion about what Holder did will undermine reform efforts by creating the false impression that the problem has been solved. Legislation is necessary not only to prevent cops from evading state reforms but to give property owners more protection under state and federal laws. Ideally, legislators should require a criminal conviction prior to forfeiture and keep cops from getting part of the proceeds, a policy that perverts their priorities and fosters corruption. It would be a shame if such reforms were killed by complacency.


bullet image The Supreme Court’s massive blind spot – Radley Balko with some outstanding reporting on just how out-of-touch the Supreme Court is with what actually goes on in the criminal justice system.

What’s missing from that career trajectory is any real experience in criminal law. Of our current Supreme Court lineup, only two justices — Samuel Alito and Sonia Sotomayor — have significant experience with criminal law. Both are former prosecutors. Alito spent time as an assistant U.S. attorney and a U.S. attorney. But even that misses a huge percentage of the criminal justice system: The overwhelming percentage of criminal cases in America are at the state and local level. Only Sotomayor has real experience with a local, day-to-day criminal justice system, and even that experience isn’t all that overwhelming: She spent four and a half years as an assistant district attorney in Manhattan, thirty years ago.


bullet image Speaking of Sotomayor, she seems to be one of the only Justices even aware that there’s a Fourth Amendment problem…

Sotomayor to Justice Department Lawyer: ‘We Can’t Keep Bending the Fourth Amendment to the Resources of Law Enforcement’ — Sonia Sotomayor stands up for the Fourth Amendment in drug-sniffing dog case.

Sotomayor went so far as to suggest that the Court’s recent Fourth Amendment jurisprudence was flying off the rails due to its pro-police deference. Here’s a sample of what Sotomayor told the government lawyer:

I have a real fundamental question, because this line drawing is only here because we’ve now created a Fourth Amendment entitlement to search for drugs using dogs, whenever anybody’s stopped. Because that’s what you’re proposing. And is that really what the Fourth Amendment should permit?

…we can’t keep bending the Fourth Amendment to the resources of law enforcement. Particularly when this stop is not—is not incidental to the purpose of the stop. It’s purely to help the police get more criminals, yes. But then the Fourth Amendment becomes a useless piece of paper.

Precisely.

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64 comments to Open Thread

  • Frank W.

    Those justices like Sotomayor are alway sad and puzzled about the end of the 4th amendment because they don’t understand that this is a Police State. Scalia never looks puzzled because he KNOWS it’s a police state. Have a fine weekend, Pete. If you visit the masseuses, don’t leave your pants on the chair, they’ll steal your wallet.

  • claygooding

    The ruling that an animal that is trained by the arresting agency that has become increasingly dependent upon federal grants as part of their budget,,including overtime,,moves us back to the Salem witch hunt days,,where animals were used to designate guilt,,that we have no way to challenge the states witness and get an intelligible answer on a witness stand is also a violation of my right to challenge my accusers in a court of law.

    Yes,,it appears the retiring AG did kick up some more empty dust but it gives us ammo when confronting law enforcement when they oppose reform.
    It allows us to ask just how much funding the war on drugs and seizure laws has their agency received,,opening up the discussion of what role marijuana arrests play in those grants.

  • Spencer

    Pete, did you see this takedown of Kevin Sabet on Reset.me?

    I thought about you when I read it. Surprised you haven’t blogged on it yet, given that the man is practically your nemesis.

  • Francis

    A few days ago Servetus mentioned a recent University of Alabama study that found that the lifetime use of certain psychedelics is associated with a reduced incidence of suicidal thoughts and behaviors. Here are the key findings from that study:

    Hendricks and his team looked at responses from over 190,000 participants in the National Survey on Drug Use and Health. They found people who used psychedelics like lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD, aka acid), psilocybin mushrooms, and mescaline (found in the peyote cactus) at least once in their lives were 19 percent less likely to report past month psychological distress, 14 percent less likely to report suicidal thoughts in the past year, 29 percent less likely to plan a suicide in the past year, and 36 percent less likely to attempt suicide in the past year, PsyPost reported.

    Most of us here are probably also familiar with the study that found that a state’s passage of a medical marijuana law was associated with a 5% reduction in the overall suicide rate and a roughly 10% reduction in the suicide rate for young men.

    So I’ve thought for a while that the drug war likely contributes to a higher suicide rate by restricting people’s safe access to drugs like cannabis and psychedelics that they could be using to treat their depression or other mental health problems. And also by effectively encouraging the use of alcohol, a drug that promotes depression and violent, impulsive behavior and whose abuse is heavily associated with an increased suicide risk.

    But then it occurred to me that the drug war likely also contributes to suicide as a result of the huge amount of stress that’s associated with being arrested or incarcerated for a drug violation. Twenty seconds of googling later, I’m reading this report, “Preventing Suicide in Jails and Prisons” from the World Health Organization, where I learn that “pre-trial detainees have a suicide attempt rate of about 7.5 times, and sentenced prisoners have a rate of almost six times the rate of males out of prison in the general population.” Ok, so that sounds pretty bad, but as the report correctly points out, that doesn’t necessarily tell us much about the causality because inmates are a high-suicide risk group, i.e., the risk factors for being arrested and incarcerated overlap significantly with the risk factors for suicide.

    And then I read this description of the typical profile for pre-trial inmates who commit suicide:

    Pre-trial inmates who commit suicide in custody are generally male, young (20-25 years), unmarried, and first time offenders who have been arrested for minor, usually substance related, offences.

    Ugh. So unnecessary. So tragic.

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .

      Almost 30 years ago I had the misfortune of a 45 day vacation at the Graybar Hotel in Fairfax County VA. During that time I observed that the amount of distress suffered as a result of being newly incarcerated was inversely proportionate to the length of the sentence. A guy coming back to the block from court having been given life+30 years would wonder what was on that day’s dinner menu or bitch about the limited choices offered by the commissary. The guy just given 30 days would be inconsolable.

      When one of the newly sentenced short stays would be whining and crying like a little girl declaring that “I just can’t do 30 days” I liked to point out that the guards and bars were there to assist him in his time of need. My working theory is that the people who were convicted of major crimes knew that they could get a stiff term in prison because of their crimes while the short stays had never imagined that it could happen to them.

      I did see that the article is about pre-trial detainees but those inmates were assigned to a different unit so I can’t speak directly to the emotions of that cohort. But I think that it’s safe to presume that their attitudes would be similar if not an exact match of those of the newly sentenced.

  • warren

    The good ole USA learned a lot of tricks from Nazi Germany. I guess they were not that bad after all.

    • kaptinemo

      Thank Operation Paperclip for that. It wasn’t just technical expertise that was imported; attitudes were, as well. Attitudes that infected our intel agencies that had to work with people who should have been in the docket at Nuremburg. And it spread out from there into American life, as sure as some deadly bacillus can infect your body just by breathing it in.

      Witness your average DrugWarrior’s attitude towards illicit drug consumers, such as Darryl Gates off-handedly, without any seeming self-consciousness of what he was saying, suggesting summary KGB-style executions in the streets for people caught with cannabis.

      Where do you think attitude that comes from? From a government long ago infected with the germs of Nazism.

      Drug prohibition was not a uniquely American aberration, last century; the Nazis practiced it too…while handily placing themselves outside the reach of laws they crafted for others (Hermann Goering was a life-long morphine addict; Joe McCarthy has company in hypocrisy Hell).

      Nazi drug prohibition laws (like American ones) were used to destroy anyone who differed with them. Anyone who challenged their authority. While drug use amongst the Nazi hierarchy and military has been documented in more than one history book.

      But in the end, as is usually the case, the stupidity of the laws were revealed by the mediocrity of those who enforced them. Petty men with enormous power usually can be expected to demonstrate, through the abuse of that power, just how enormously petty they really are. And the term ‘banality of evil’ generally describes such. Today’s prohibitionists are no less banal than their ideological Nazi allies…and no less evil for their similar goals…and desired methodolgies in carrying them out.

  • leanna

    My biggest concearn is that it still condones the “it’s ok to do that to them because they deserve it, but it’s not ok to do that to me” syndrome that plagues our country when it comes to the drug war. That is to say that if a person DOES have a little bit of dope on them then it’s ok to rob them. Exactly what crime can a person commit that justifies seizing everything of value they have? When a guy gets caught buying some personal dope, why is it so darned excepted by the majority that it’s ok to steal all of their money AND their car? I thought it was to take away the earnings of selling drugs. That’s not what’s happening. To say there must be proof of a crime sets us back. “Innocent” people who “didn’t even break the law” deserve it as much as the guy who just bought a small amount of personal stash. That is to say neither deserve to be robbed. But I say that if that “innocent” person still thinks it’s ok to rob the guy for a small amount, deserves to be robbed by the system because he in turn condones, therefor, is guilty of robbery of the drug user. I’m not good with words, but does anyone understand my point. Polite responses are appreciated. Sorry for grammar.

    • our responses are generally always polite here leanna… welcome to Pete’s couch

    • DdC

      We’re not just singled out to lose our homes to forfeitures, where a thug or robber just commits a crime and serves their time. Also to confiscate our belongings and cash where a murderer only goes to jail and awaits trial. We are also exclusively excluded from any public assistance in some places where even welfare cheats aren’t banned for life from benefits.

      Sometimes Vets lose medical assistance and several have lost their lives because they signed a medical card for pot and are now removed from organ transplant lists. Banned or evicted from section 8 housing if corporate property management denies use on federal grounds, even in states with legal status. Another is to admit to past drug arrests that can eliminate your chances for tuition assistance and even Pell Grants they happily give to the drug gossip groups.

      Then there are the bargains the state or feds make to curtail jury trials. They put gag orders for the defense that prohibits the use of the word medical in cannabis cases. For wasting the courts time, if the jury thats forced into ignorance, finds you guilty. It becomes a mandatory minimum sentence. So it is no wonder most (95%) take a plea bargain with mandatory urine tests and rehabilitation asylum stays, probation and ankle bracelets.

      We are excluded from partaking in our safer stress reduction with Ganja over booze or pills by employers testing our urine showing positive weeks after indulging. Then to even drive we are profiled and pulled over for certain decorations or bumper stickers as probable cause. Field tested and loss of a license when we have been proven to be safer drivers in most cases.

      They have stolen children from their parents for simply advocating to legalize. Let alone if they find something. Kids harassed by DARE bullies without a word from the teachers if you are suspected. Locker raids and dog sniffs kicking you out of school in zero tolerance situations.

      That is all before taking your chances buying on the street with no quality assurance or guarantees it is what you ordered, or if it is adulterated or bastardized with harmful ingredients. Then if it is poison you may be charged if you seek medical attention, that will go into a DAWN file to show how much stronger todays pot is. Proven by the ER visits regardless of why you actually went to the ER.

      Or the latest showing how drug related traffic fatalities have risen even if a drunk crosses a 50 feet median strip of highway and plows into your parked car and kills someone in the back seat who has toked a bowl, makes it into the books as another victim testing positive in a fatal crash. Probably make the headlines as decades of bias headlines have swayed opinion to keep it from legality and a trillion tax dollars into the prohibitionists pockets.

      Then we have 13% of the medical schools actually mentioning cannabinoids, none have a department of Cannabinoid Science set up so the future doctors can graduate as ignorant as the past doctors. These they pick to write policy, with cops and Sabet-eurs and others with absolutely no knowledge of cannabis. DEA stalling research and arbitrary and capricious rulings backed by NIDA gutter science. Come to think of it, with the lopsided just us system and prevailing ignorance. Maybe it is more dangerous than getting legally drunk. But not enough for me to stop.

  • Unintended victims in the drug war
    By Leonard Pitts
    http://tinyurl.com/nm5wtda

    “Ask your local law enforcement officials if they will be following Holder’s lead. And if not, why not? Because — and this should go without saying — in a nation with a constitutional guarantee against “unreasonable searches and seizures” there is something obscene about a practice that incentivizes police to, in essence, steal money from law-abiding citizens and leaves said citizens no reasonable recourse for getting it back.”

    We need more machismo that a memo from Holder to stop this asset forfeiture abuse. Holder’s memo sounds good, but how will it actually stop this? The truth is that it won’t. Cartel bosses and their minions are not the ones suffering from this ill conceived policy of letting LE take property without a charge or conviction.

    Add the dogs for a final insult and you have a winning formula for harassing the public in search of treasure. If this is all that we can expect from the Supremes, and the congress keeps sitting on its thumbs, we can resign ourselves to this new “Bill of Wrongs”. Just don’t ask me to salute.

    Does anyone feel safer? I think Frank is right about the police state. These unusual solutions meant to win a drug war have destroyed our constitution. We need it back.

  • signs of changing times… I’ve just unsubscribed from OR’s dpf list after 16+ years. New voices that whine and a group myopia focusing solely on cannabis and mostly on mmj has forced my hand. But betwixt the couch and FB there aren’t many ahead of our learning and activity curves. As always mates, proud to sit amongst yoos

  • Servetus

    Geneva, Switzerland, onetime home of Zwingli and Calvin, is considering legalizing the growing and selling of marijuana. The right-wing Swiss People’s Party (UDC) promises to oppose the idea.

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .

      Did you catch this part Servetus?:

      /snip/
      Swiss children and teenagers top the European table for experimenting with the drug, according to a 2013 UNICEF report that found that the more liberal a country’s drug laws, the less likely its children were to try marijuana.

      The prohibitionist parasites are getting beaten to a bloody pulp. Gosh this is really getting to be fun.

      • Duncan20903

        .
        .

        …according to a 2013 UNICEF report that found that the more liberal a country’s drug laws, the less likely its children were to try marijuana.

        …except that I can’t figure out where they got that idea in the first place. Last night I figured that my old, tired and [5th Amendment invoked] eyes just weren’t seeing it. But now I’m wide awake, bright eyed and bushy tailed but to me that list looks more like supporting evidence for the assertion that the harshness of a county’s cannabis laws is irrelevant to the youth use rates. Could somebody please tell me what the heck I’m missing?
        http://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/683

        We really can’t afford to put out misinformation when “the children” are the object. The prohibitionist parasites keep “the children” dancing like political pawns & puppets. Their sycophants can’t look at the situation without their manufactured hysterical propaganda driving their “reasoning.” Oh, another thing is that report is 2001 through 2010. I think it likely that even if it were correct that it would be discarded without fanfare by the ugly bags of mostly water who sit on the other side of the table.

        Do you know why prohibitionists are forever parroting “Have you seen the latest research which proves that cannabis…?” It’s because the studies that they like have a very short shelf life before being debunked. One of the more amusing dynamics is that a not insignificant number of sycophants have come to believe that the “latest” research is vastly more credible than ancient research which has withstood the test of time.

        Way, way off topic but <blockquote"3D-printed human body parts on the way, say Japanese scientists
        1/16/2015

        Hmm, does anyone think that we could we arrange brain transplants for Kev-Kev and Stupidpatrick ? Not Kev-Kev’s brain into Stupidpatrick and vice versa but with working units. Even Abby Normal’s brain would be a significant improvement.

        • I say Kev Kev’s brain goes to Jar Jar Binks and Patrick’s goes to a Wookie. At least keep them in character a bit.

          Even AI would be an improvement in an upgrade. Just better programming this time. Something that makes sense this time, please.

  • Here is one that adds insult to injury:

    Army Warns Washington Marijuana Stores To Not Sell To Troops
    http://tinyurl.com/n65m6au

    See the letter here: http://tinyurl.com/nr37bcj

    I guess retail establishments and dispensaries better start checking and asking patrons along with the ID.

    • primus

      I would offer an armed forces discount at my dispensary.

    • Tony Aroma

      That letter refers to “substances similar to marijuana,” twice. It does not actually say anything about selling marijuana. Are they talking about Spice? Doesn’t sound like this letter was sent to a dispensary. The only penalty for not complying appears to be that service members will not be allowed in the store.

    • Crut

      That is funny. The military is having a problem with their troops following orders, so they try and order the civilians around too…

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .

    When the heck will the SCOTUS make public their decision to hear or not hear the Oklahoma/Nebraska v. Colorado nonsense? It’s more than a month since they filed. C’mon, yes or no, how hard is that to decide?

  • Mr_Alex

    I would like to add, it is time to ask Kevin Sabet on what was his involvement with Mel Sembler who founded the straight group or program which Lee Fang wrote in the nation exposing Straight which is now known as Partnership for a Drug Free America which was involved in torturing cannabis users and other drug users, this is not just vile, it’s pure evil. If kevin won’t talk, it’s time to make him talk

  • Daren

    Even more truth

    “Where we seem to disagree is that you seem to be falling into this trap of assuming that everyone who is vulnerable has already had access to drug and therefore broad legalization wouldn’t affect anything. There is no support for your hypothesis. None. Within a given population, legal drugs are used by more people than illicit ones. The Portugal whitepaper shows quite clearly that you cannot make comparison across societies which differ in their base rate. Until and unless you identify and account for the reasons for those base-rate differences.
    Availability in the “market” is correlated with population incidence (again, despite the cannabis/MDMA advocates who argue that their drugs of choice are empirically better than nicotine and alcohol. I’m willing to buy the assertion but then you have some ‘splainin to do about your hypothesis that anyone who really wants illicit drugs gets them anyway). There are large fractions of nonusers who cite legal status as a significant motivator of their use patterns.”
    -DrugMonkey

    • You wouldn't know truth if ....

      The US National Prohibition Act of 1919 was implemented in early 1920 and ran until 1933. According to the U.S. Census Bureau “deaths from chronic or acute alcoholism” increased 400% between 1920 and 1927.
      Source: “Vital Statistics Rates in the United States” by Forrest Linder and Robert Grove
      From the exact same data (the U.S. Census Messrs) Linder and Grove found that prior to prohibition (during the period 1907-1920) the rate of “deaths from cirrhosis” actually fell by 52.027%.

      So you see, the claim that ‘prohibition lowered alcohol consumption’ is totally false!

      Not only did alcohol Prohibition in the 1920s increase usage http://i.imgur.com/Ga1Gs.png it also exacerbated all other related problems while bootleggers, just like many of our present day drug lords, became rich and powerful folk heroes as a result.

      “It has made potential drunkards of the youth of the land, not because intoxicating liquor appeals to their taste or disposition, but because it is a forbidden thing, and because it is forbidden makes an irresistible appeal to the unformed and immature.”

      — That was part of the testimony of Judge Alfred J Talley, given before the Senate Hearings on Alcohol Prohibition in 1926

      • DdC

        All vice prohibitions are fronts for profit or power.

        Al Capone and Watergate

        “I am against Prohibition because it has set the cause of temperance back twenty years; because it has substituted an ineffective campaign of force for an effective campaign of education; because it has replaced comparatively un-injurious light wines and beers with the worst kind of hard liquor and bad liquor; because it has increased drinking not only among men but has extended drinking to women and even children.”
        — William Randolph Hearst,
        initially a supporter of Prohibition,
        explaining his change of mind in 1929.
        From “Drink: A Social History of America”
        by Andrew Barr (1999), p.239.

        Cover-Ups, Prevarications, Subversions & Sabotage

        • Windy

          W.R. Hearst after he decided he didn’t support prohibition of alcohol after all then turned around and supported the prohibition of cannabis, what an ass.

    • Duncan20903

      .
      .

      So what was it that kept them from being drunken stumble bums? Perhaps I missed the part where the survey was taken down at the A.A. club house?

  • primus

    Daren: You began your analysis in 1986. The drug war, in some form has been ongoing for about 100 years, not the 28 years you covered. When prohibition of alcohol and drugs was begun, the stated goal was to eliminate their use. If you go way back to before prohibition, you will find that use of these substances is about the same now, or more. Not less. Your position seems to be, that prohibition has been a success because, “What about all those who were ‘saved’ from drug use by prohibition?” This is a red herring. It cannot be verified. It is conjectural hyperbole and without substance. The fact is, the drug war has not ended drug use, as prohibition of alcohol (also a drug) did not end its use. The fact is, we as a society have given up many freedoms in the quest to end drug use. If the program had been successful, if drug and alcohol use had ended, then one could say it was a success. Any other measure, such as the one you espouse, is a fraud, intended to distract from that core question; Is it sensible to give up freedom when the goal is not achievable? I assert that it is not sensible. A further question; If a society embarked on a social experiment with an ultimate goal, and pursued that goal relentlessly for 10,000 years without success, never varying their policies, but rather doubling down again and again, you would call them a society of fools. If a society did the same thing for 1,000 years, you would render the same verdict. 500 years? Same. 400? Same. 300? Same. See where I’m going with this? IOW those who, after 100 years of supporting a failed policy, who make excuses and cast red herrings, must inevitably be called fools. QED.

    • thanks for that reply primus

      that’s the second time in recent days I’ve seen this card played. I realize the prohibs are desperately clutching at straws but their pool of logic is a shallow one indeed and I’ll wager a big organic homegrown phatty that we’ll see this theme repeated in days and weeks ahead.

      You can paint a turd any color you want, put wings and glitter on it and spray it with parfoom and the fact remains – it’s still a turd.

      They have to keep up with periodically waving these false flags so things like Straight Inc, or the too-many WOD caused deaths like Peter and Donald Scott and the Bowers… don’t become visible to that vast majority that has never paid attn to drug policy.

      There is an accounting that is way past due and advocates on the side of Prohibition seriously ought be nervous.

      As popular as doc Gupta’s program last year was we have yet to see prohibition and its collective harms receive the same level of exposure.

      We are also witnessing a rising of the children’s army with younguns like Alexis Bortell standing up for the kids. Alexis is one of my new heroes. And when her generation begins to come of an age where they begin learning the suffering caused by an enforcement of cannabis ignorance and bigotry… I pity the fools.

      • NorCalNative

        allan, and Primus.

        For some historical perspective see Daren’s initial link. About 10 or so comments down our own PETE GUTHIER has something to say from July 2008.

        Responsible drug use is a boon to society and the sooner we learn that lesson and “kill” the drug-free message the better off we’ll all be.

    • DonDig

      .
      In the SOTU speech the other day, President Obama said that any policy that was pursued for 50 years without positive result should be abandoned. (I paraphrase, and he was referring to the blockade on Cuba.)
      I wish he and others of our politicians would take that same stance regarding the war on drugs.

  • Since Brookings institute was just named the worlds #1 thinktank by survey, here’s something from the Brookings blogs: http://tinyurl.com/pympot8

    Marijuana Policy in 2015: Eight Big Things to Watch
    by John Hudak

    “Those considering a run for the White House have been able to remain mum or offer hints at their policy views on marijuana. However, as candidates declare, journalists begin looking for news hooks, voters start meeting those running, and debate moderators start peppering would-be presidents with questions, marijuana is sure to become a serious issue in a way that it has not in prior presidential campaigns. The next election will not simply be a discussion of whether a candidate has inhaled in the past, but about how a president will treat those who choose to inhale in the future.”
    http://tinyurl.com/ko472jq

    • kaptinemo

      And, isn’t that just what we’ve been saying here would happen, all along?

      “2 election cycles”, we said. And it came to pass. The pols are on notice. No more shucking and jiving; it’s in their faces, no matter which direction they turn, we’re gonna be there, and we’re not taking “No” for an answer.

      No more pol’s dismissive, contemptuous wave-offs, like swatting at an annoying fly. Try that, now, and your career may wind up getting swatted by an electorate tired of elitist antics from their public servants in the legislatures.

      For decades, the prohibs have busily sent messages to a public increasingly distrustful of them…but they never bothered to listen to any, imperiously ignoring them.

      Now, an impossible-to-ignore message from the public has been sent. Very simply it’s this: “We’re paying the bills now, and we don’t want your DrugWar, that’s a gun aimed at the heads of our children you say you want to save, but whom you maim or kill with frightening regularity. Enough, already! And if you don’t get that, then we’ll see if your comprehension is improved by unemployment.

      And, if any pol has any sense, they will immediately begin to scrub from their Webpages any ONDCP or DEA supplied propaganda used to ‘justify’ continued prohibition. They must prove they ‘got the message’ and are themselves serious by taking that crap down: No more intelligence-insulting, half-assed rationales for maintaining a policy most Americans don’t want and are sick and tired of paying for

      We see that happening, and maybe those pols who do so have a chance. But it’s our turn, now. And after all we’ve been through, I’m not inclined to take prisoners. The olive branch we extend has a ‘best use by’ date. A clock is ticking, Entropy’s herald counting down the eventual demise of their political careers if they think they can laugh off drug law reform now. And I would dearly love to see some of them try to be brazen now after we’ve drawn blood in at least 2 occasions. There’s nothing like making those who lumped reformers in with pederasts and murderers be forced to walk backwards while making ever shriller – and impotent – threats; music to my ears.

      • kaptinemo

        Oh, and BTW, we scooped Brookings on this. Ahead of them by at least 3 years. Not bad for a bunch of ‘amotivated’ ‘stoners’, huh?

        Mebbe we should form our own company. With our track record so far, I’m sure we could do much better than bullshite BOTEC…

    • kaptinemo

      The author of this statement is not entirely correct:

      ” The next election will not simply be a discussion of whether a candidate has inhaled in the past, but about how a president will treat those who choose to inhale in the future.”

      No, it’s the other way around; At well over 50% of the country favoring re-legalization, the discussion will center on how the cannabis-savvy electorate will treat the President…by determining just who will be President by dealing forthrightly with this issue on the campaign trail.

      The political Dodgeball days of ducking the issue are over; it’s medicine-ball-time for the pols, now, right in the chest (Uh-oof!).

    • Windy

      Just posted that on the FB page of the congresswoman who “represents” my district.

  • kaptinemo

    Completely off-topic with anything having to do with drug law reform: A product of aimless and ‘augmented’ YouTube surfing.

    Like these ladies, I’ve seen some weird sh*t. This certainly counts as such.

    This is some wild mix of New Age beliefs, Buddhist sectarianism, Edgar Cayce-style Atlantis/Lemuria stuff, Sitchin’s ancient astronaut writings, that and more, all dumped into a bowl and vigorously mixed into…something, I don’t know what. Kind of like the last 10 minutes of the old 2001; not much of a light show except in places, but just as confusing.

    Get ripped before watching, but don’t try to follow it, you’ll hurt your brain.

  • Servetus

    A local news show features Washington, D.C. Police Chief Cathy Lanier, who comments on the new voter initiative that legalizes recreational marijuana in the nation’s capital, where between “2001 and 2010, arrests for marijuana possession increased by 61.5 percent. The number of marijuana arrests in D.C. in 2010, 5,393, surpassed those in Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and Miami-Dade counties in 2010. And in 87 percent of cases involving marijuana arrests, charges for separate crimes were not made ”:

    “Marijuana possession has never been a big arrest category. If you’re arrested for possession of marijuana, typically we get it because there’s some other charge and then we find the marijuana in a search upon arrest.” According to Lanier, possession has led to few arrests in the past few years, since people are rarely prosecuted. Subsequently, “It saves us from having to charge someone for small amounts of marijuana now, because it really never was productive to begin with. It’s a little bit easier for us, actually.”

    Never really productive to begin with? Now she tells us. How are the 5,393 people arrested in 2010 supposed to feel about their pointless and unproductive arrests? What’s it like being the last casualty in a war?

  • I would like to say that if the Feds impose a 50% federal tax on marijuana sold legally in the States on top of all the other state taxes, doesn’t that put things in a prohibitionist stranglehold?

    You can take the “hurting the cartels” out of the equation with a 50% tax.

    What a completely brainless move this would be.

    “IRS Advice On Marijuana: Deduct It…But Prepare For 50% Tax”
    http://tinyurl.com/nzp9r6q

  • DdC

    Oh Bama…
    http://i59.tinypic.com/16kvt5x.png

    What I am doing at the federal level is asking my Department of Justice JUST to examine generally how we are treating nonviolent drug offenders…

    “You’re enough of a pro,” Nixon tells Shafer, “to know that for you to come out with something that would run counter to what the Congress feels and what the country feels, and what we’re planning to do, would make your commission just look bad as hell.”
    – Richard Milhouse Nixon

    What we have done is instead of focusing on treatment…
    we’ve treated this exclusively as a criminal problem,

    “Marijuana does not lead to physical dependency, although some evidence indicates that the heavy, long-term users may develop a psychological dependence on the drug”
    The Shafer Commission of 1970

    I think that it’s been counterproductive, and it’s been devastating in a lot of minority communities.

    “You know, it’s a funny thing, every one of the bastards that are out for legalizing marijuana is Jewish. What the Christ is the matter with the Jews, Barack?

    It presents the possibility at least of unequal application of the law, and that has to be changed.

    Once-Secret Nixon Tapes Show Why US Outlawed Pot
    http://endingcannabisprohibition.yuku.com/topic/1650

    • Windy

      The US outlawed pot long before Nixon, all he did was make that prohibition worse by authorizing the DEA and suppressing his own commission’s report, Reagan took it even further and Biden created the ONDCP which also made things worse. Much as I dislike the man, we cannot put all the blame on Nixon.

      • DdC

        Nixon created the drug war after Timothy Leary had the MTA overthrown as Unconstitutional. The MTA didn’t outlaw Hemp or Medicinal by request of the AMA. It was only temporarily scheduled#1 until research could be evaluated. Still waiting. Nixon in essence only changed the title and lumped in Hemp and Ganja Rx. He will go down in History as one of the leaders of the Scum of the Earth. His grave is going to be one of the first on tour to piss on. Obama is doing nothing much, literally. Not changing a damn thing except lowering the class for Fat Pharma to sell their patented cannabinoids. Whole plant Ganja is still a schedule#1.

        Leary v. United States
        395 U.S. 6 (1969), is a U.S. Supreme Court case dealing with the constitutionality of the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937. The Marihuana Tax Act ultimately was repealed by the U.S. Congress in the Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act of 1970

        “You’re enough of a pro,” Nixon tells Shafer, “to know that for you to come out with something that would run counter to what the Congress feels and what the country feels, and what we’re planning to do, would make your commission just look bad as hell.”
        – Richard Milhouse Nixon
        Once-Secret Nixon Tapes Show Why US Outlawed Pot

  • primus

    Something wrong with the comments button at the top of the page. Leads to an error message.

  • Duncan20903

    .
    .

    Have we ever had a conversation about Synanon? Synanon made “Straight” Inc look like a quilting bee. Has Calvina Fay ever put a rattlesnake in the mailbox of someone she didn’t like? Wait a second…she’s in Florida so she probably uses Eastern Coral Snakes.

    Was Mel Sembler tripping on acid after an AA meeting when he decided to found “Straight” Inc?

    At one time in the late 1970s I had the misfortune of living next door to a Synanon clone known as “Group 9”. Those people were friggin’ psychopaths. We had a community recreation center near my home. Pool, tennis courts, baseball field, like that. One day I was sitting on a park bench while waiting for the pool to open. I see two of the Group 9 clowns “walking the walk” walk past. They had walked their walk perhaps 100 yards down the path from me where they stopped, looked at each other and then they walk the walk into the woods. When they reemerged they were carrying a 14 or 15 year old guy who lived up the street. One on either side of the kid holding him under the armpits. Did I forget to mention that those particular 9ers were at least 6’6″?

    But let me cut to the chase scene. They had caught him smoking a joint and decided that they could go ahead an make a “citizen’s arrest” because they felt compelled to try to “save his life.” Oh yea, the kids name was Phil Torrence. I don’t want to forget to mention that while all that was going on those whack jobs were singing a modified version the (late ’70s) Toyota jingle: “You asked for it, you got it, Phil Torrence!”

    I know that Phil caught a break with his dad. Dad was so pissed off with the synanon clones that he didn’t have any room in his mind to be angry with Phil. It all worked out for the best. Phil got grounded for a month, the whack jobs got arrested for “abduction” which is what Virginia calls kidnapping…major felony up to 20 years in the penitentiary, I did a good job of staying invisible so I didn’t have to testify, and a couple of months later “Group 9” moved out hoping to find a more lunatic friendly neighborhood. I have no clue what happened to groups 1 through 8.

    Those idiots really did use amusing phrases “trying to save his life” and “walking the walk” when speaking of engaging in bipedal locomotion. Although I never heard the disposition of the criminal charges somehow I doubt that those lunatics got the stiff term in prison that they deserved.

  • New World Odor Research Council

    One of the revelations tagging along in formation with Pig Pens dirty dust cloud that is stirred up as I infiltrate the venal and phoney War on some Drugs; The Streetwisest Junkie unflinchingly Parrots the Need to Cheer wholesale murder combatting *terrorism* (nasal whine).

    Exactly what the Globalists require and desperatly want. Mouldable, Compliant Puppie-Men and Women who offer no resistance and have astonishingly short Life-Spans.
    Verdict; STINKS

    • Crut

      Can someone translate this for me?

      I think coffee is the wrong drug to get on this level, but that’s all I have and am willing to take on an early Monday morning…

  • DdC

    Calvina Fay Prohibition Inc.
    http://endingcannabisprohibition.yuku.com/topic/1556

    Reuniting People from Straight, Inc.
    https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/Straight_Inc_Alumni/info

    Tragedy in the Wilderness
    In remembrance of all the victims of Straight, Inc.
    http://www.webdiva.org/straight
    At least 10 children have lost their lives as a result of their participation in a wilderness therapy program (AKA “Brat Camps”) who failed them in the worst way imaginable. These are their stories as told through media reports, opinion and commentary.

    THE TRUTH ABOUT STRAIGHT, INC &TEEN CHALLENGE
    http://www.heal-online.org/StraightandTeenChallenge.htm
    Kids Helping Kids began as Straight-Midwest and over time was incorporated into Pathway Family Center (owns/owned 4 known programs). Pathway Family Center was founded by Terri Nissley, a “satisfied” Straight, Inc. cult parent who wants to continue in the torturing and brainwashing kids for profit industry. Kids Helping Kids (a Pathway Family Center program) has closed or is closing according to recent reports. Closing after years of protesting against fraud, abuse, and torture at the Milford, OH location.

    Straight Inc. My (Brother’s) Story
    http://www.webdiva.org/straight/

  • kaptinemo

    Why cannabis is superior to alcohol

    I have never seen anyone on cannabis make such disgusting spectacles of themselves, particularly as seen at 5:14.

    A prediction: after cannabis is legal nation-wide, expect that societal attitudes against public drunkeness will become even more ferocious, once a much less destructive alternative is available. As less people use alcohol, tolerance of the usual social ‘side-effects’ of its enjoyment associated with it will diminish. And, of course, the alcohol industry knows this.