Strangest OpEd of the week

This is an incredibly self-righteous and contradictory OpEd by Yoni Goldstein in the Huffington Post: I Smoke Pot, But Don’t Make it Legal

I don’t have time to do it justice right now, but check it out and do your thing.

I love this…

First, he says that legalization is bad because it’ll make it available to kids

The most important reason is kids. Children are the least likely of us to have access to pot or pot dealers.

Of course, that’s just nonsense. Read the facts and you’ll realize that kids have an easier time finding pot than just about anything. And, of course, under legalization, you can have age regulations, which you don’t have under criminalization.

But now he says that if pot is legal, the kids will suddenly be able to find the drug dealers.

If pot becomes legal, drug dealers won’t sell it anymore, obviously. Which means they’ll be peddling harder stuff (or pot laced with harder stuff) like cocaine. So when kids go looking for something illegal to do, as they are wont to do, they’ll no longer have the relatively mild pot as a rebellion option.

So with marijuana illegal, kids don’t get exposed to pot. With marijuana legal, kids will no longer be able to get pot and so will buy cocaine… Surely his head should explode just from writing that.

Without even beginning to think through the entire problem, Yoni opines:

Pot rules are perfectly fine the way they are right now. It’s illegal enough to make kids think twice before smoking and keep our cities clean and active, but not illegal enough to stop sensible people from enjoying a nice toke in private. Makes perfect sense to me.

Sure, he doesn’t see all the destruction of prohibition in his nice little privileged cocoon now does he?

Just goes to show that in any group – even potheads – you can find someone who is a complete moron.

[Thanks, Tom]
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55 Responses to Strangest OpEd of the week

  1. claygooding says:

    He is probably a chemist at the state drug lab,,protecting his source.

  2. Peter says:

    id never wish for anyone to get busted but in yonis case i just might make an exception

    • Francis says:

      My thoughts exactly. Maybe then he’d realize that “illegal” is not just a word. Cannabis prohibition is not just a way of “sending a message.” It’s state-sanctioned VIOLENCE. And that violence has real-world and frequently-devastating consequences for the individuals who are unfortunate enough to be its victims.

  3. Peter says:

    Perhaps Yoni should be reminded of this case next time he plans a trip to the US:

  4. allan says:

    I’m assuming his name is Jewish and not Sanskrit. Tho’ his attitude makes me think the Sanskrit fits better…

  5. N.T. Greene says:

    I am pretty sure I’ve smoked way more than that guy… and I still can’t find the logic in his argument.

  6. Taylor says:

    Nice job! Way to give Yoni a good fisking.

  7. Benjamin says:

    Not a damned word about incarceration, the costs of the policy he advocates, or the people who get hurt. This guy lives in a pretty insulated world.

  8. Francis says:

    “So when kids go looking for something illegal to do, as they are wont to do, they’ll no longer have the relatively mild pot as a rebellion option.”

    Yikes, that whole thing was just bizarre. And re: the above, I’m pretty sure that cannabis will still be illegal for kids post-reform. Don’t plenty of kids today get their rebellion kick from legal-for-adults booze and cigarettes? And if we took his “logic” seriously (and I’m using that word loosely), doesn’t that mean we should ban something even more innocuous than weed* to make that the de facto “rebellion option”?

    *I was trying to come up with an example, but frankly it’s not easy. My first thought was chewing gum, but then it occurred that more people had probably died as a result of choking on gum than have ever been killed as a result of enjoying cannabis.

    • Duncan20903 says:

      Actually Francis, youth use of drinking alcohol and smoking tobacco is at 30 year lows, with cannabis at the other extreme. Hey, we still haven’t found any examples of Francis’ Law being broken, now have we?

      This appears to be a modification of the argument that we need to keep pot illegal because otherwise the organized criminal syndicates will get into real mischief. Apparently the highest and best use of cannabis in the [minds?] of prohibitionists is to keep [criminals] busy.

      • allan says:

        the highest and best use of cannabis in the [minds?] of prohibitionists is to keep [criminals] busy.

        Well duh…

        Can you just imagine the cartels without pot? Oh the mischief they could cause!

  9. Duncan20903 says:


    I don’t for a minute believe that this clown enjoys cannabis. There’s no doubt in my mind that the Know Nothing prohibitionists’ department of hysterical rhetoric recently approved prohibitionist posters posing as potheads in order to establish credibility. Every trick in the book except for the truth.

    • allan says:

      hmmm… I think you’ve struck a chord there Duncan. I was just thinking that HuffPo is continuing it’s downward slide in content quality. But your supposition feels right.

      And I haven’t read Yoni’s piece, sometimes I just don’t want to put on my irrigation boots for yet another wade thru a manurical, senseless and stupid opinion.

      Your thunkery makes sense in that the excrementalists have been very busy with their writing as of late. Yes, I know it’s all bad and sophomoronic… but this fits. Surely somebody on this oversized couch can go smoke a bong with Yoni. Or prove him the faker.

    • Maria says:

      Could be, the piece reads like it was written by someone with means who’s naive but who’s smoked a few times socially and sees him/her self as an ironic rebel through a PG-13 lens of impropriety. I lump these people in with the ‘rebel without a cause/clue’ folks.

      They are the one’s who want it to stay illegal because they have a vested interest in maintaining their identity. “Damned be all the innocents being harmed, I got my hipster bad boy facade to maintain!”

      • Francis says:

        Yep, that was exactly the thought I had. Sorry, but his stated motivations can’t be his real ones. They’re simply too stupid. I don’t think this clown is worried about kids losing “relatively mild pot as a rebellion option” — I think he’s worried about Yoni Goldstein.

      • Francis says:

        Yeah, ok, I’m calling it. That’s exactly what’s going on here. Reread his opener:

        It strikes me that in all the recent discussion over legalizing marijuana, no one has actually written about the pros and cons of actually smoking the stuff. I mean what it feels like, what it does to you. This is likely because the people who would write about this subject are in respectable news outlets — many of whom, no doubt, have at the very least dabbled in the stuff — and are worried that doing so would make them look like total stoners. Fair enough.

        So, at the risk of being labelled a pothead, here goes….

        At the risk of being labelled a pothead”? This twit clearly revels in being called a pothead. And he thinks that his experience with cannabis and his “courageous” (in his mind) willingness to discuss that experience provide him with some unique and important voice – after all, he’s providing a perspective that “no one [else] has actually written about.” But if cannabis were legalized, well then, Yoni wouldn’t be special anymore. I hate to break it to you, pal, but you’re not that special now. But yeah, this guy is really just worried about the children. That fact just shines through in his previous column.

        And finally, this link is offered without comment.

        • allan says:

          re your last link… yup, see my first comment above

        • Francis says:

          Ha, no I missed that allan. You made the joke first and delivered it better. Well-played, sir. It IS kind of juvenile to make fun of a person’s name. After all, they didn’t choose it and since other people likely share it, it’s hard to avoid “collateral damage.” But in our defense, this one was pretty hard to resist. 😉

        • allan says:

          good thing his mom took the Labelmaker® away from him… labeled a pot head indeed!

          Some of us have been out for years:

          And if he won’t wear the label he gets no merit badge.

          Hey Francis, it’s the memes man. This couch is flooded with ’em! Grape mines stink alike and all that.

          And no, no offense meant to the young twerp’s name. The name was given, the twerp persona is chosen.

          Altho’… hmmm… is twerpness genetic? Are some just wired that way? In spite of all the good cannabis can do for some, there must be “conditions” – like twerpness (twerpism?) – that pot just doesn’t knock a dent in.

          And really, I mean there are people that I wish didn’t smoke herb and there are some whom I hope never take a puff (Mz T! gack… can you imagine? On our side? Lord, all the years of hard work washed down the drain in just a matter of a few blogs from her…)

        • MemeOnWire says:

          .. or listing as dead cats there above the huddled mass by the water tower and the office buildings, the strip mall in mourning, the bank overgrown with weed. And all the prohibitionists of that once lulled and dumbfound town are dangling now.”

    • Duncan20903 says:


      I have to recant. Not the part about the prohibitionist hysterical rhetoric ministry authorizing prohibitionist pothead impostors, but the part about Mr. Goldstein being one. One of these days I’ll learn my lesson about posting with such certainty without/before being certain of my footing or at least qualifying my statements acknowledging that I’m speculating/could be mistaken/IIRC. I should know better than anyone with more than 20 million of us in the US alone that we’ve got every type of human being in our numbers and that some level of self hatred isn’t that uncommon. Heck, it shouldn’t even be unexpected as it’s a pretty common issue among the marginalized and screwed.
      Maria, my thought after actually reading the piece was Stockholm Syndrome. I’ll let DC weigh in on that one though. I only like the taste of foot on special occasions.

  10. darkcycle says:

    That piece is a complete trainwreck of reasoning. It’s bass-ackwards thinking. If it’s not a prohibitionist in pothead drag, it’s someone who should be paid a nice salary NOT to think.
    I sometimes wonder at the stuff that makes the cut in HuffPo. Did it slip through the editorial cracks somehow? Do they slip a moronic opinion in every once in a while, just to keep readers on their toes? Or maybe they have one really stupid editor they keep around in a dunce cap just to break up the monotony…kinda like a village idiot. Makes one wonder.

  11. claygooding says:

    Va. May Study Benefits of Selling Marijuana at ABC Stores

    “”Should Virginia-run liquor stores get into the marijuana business? At least one local lawmaker thinks the idea is worth exploring.

    Delegate David Englin (D-45th) is calling for a study to look at the potential cost benefits of selling pot at Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control stores.

    Englin said the government has been able to manage liquor sales. The same could be possible with marijuana, he said.

    Liquor sales generate millions for the commonwealth.””

    Forward thinking like this will get lobbyist beating his door door down to put a cork in it.

    Which brings up another point,,how long before more American entrepreneurs and money people get interested in the money now available in an established market.

  12. N.T. Greene says:

    It is only a matter of time before policy makers and businessmen realize that they could be MAKING money rather than SPENDING money when it comes to the drug issue.

    I mean, Milton Friedman has been saying this stuff for years… and that guy only won the Nobel Prize in Economics. What does he know though, right?

    • claygooding says:

      I guess since greed created reefer madness,greed can kill it.

      Who knew that DEA pricing of weed and tonnage seized would,in the end,peak the interest of investors.

  13. Bananarama says:

    What an elitist attitude, do as I say not as I do. I think I’ll pack up another round of Purple Kush and laugh at the oped.

  14. Nunavut Tripper says:

    I wonder if Yoni would change his tune if he were subject to an armed raid by the drug piggies.A dozen arrogant mouthy pricks rummaging through your home and making snide remarks about the photos of the children on the wall.Meanwhile the neighbors are calling to see if everything is ok.
    It happened to me twenty years ago and I was lucky as they left empty handed and decided not to plant any evidence.
    I’ll never forget it.
    Kiss my ass Yoni you known nothing little jerk.

    • Francis says:

      Yeah, Yoni wants to keep pot illegal because he likes to feel like he’s doing something dangerous (while knowing that he’s essentially safe). Something tells me that the scenario you describe would make that danger just a little bit too real, you know?

      I think we can add a new species to the prohibitionist taxonomy: clueless hipster douchebags who are willing to ruin other people’s lives in a pathetic attempt to protect their own (entirely imaginary) streed cred. By the way, it might be interesting to map out that taxonomy. The species of the prohibitionist family are many and varied: the not-so-bright true believer (Duncan, what’s the name of your nemesis again?), the hysterical parent who’s convinced that little Johnny will instantly become a meth-head if cannabis is decriminalized, the mercenary who sells his ability to lie semi-convincingly (and his soul) for a paycheck (*cough* Kevin Sabet *cough*). Anyone got any others?

  15. Duncan20903 says:

    Well maybe pot actually does keep serious criminals out of real mischief. Did any one expect to ever hear of a high level Hell’s Angel being sent to prison for mortgage fraud?

    • claygooding says:

      Sounds like a “Capone” conviction,,when you can’t get them for what they may have done,,get what you can.

      PS: Anyone that believes pot will bring peace on earth,,,smoke a joint with a Hells Angel and ask him why he rides a Honda.

      • Duncan20903 says:

        Maybe. Perhaps even highly likely. But he still had to sign the mortgage papers to make the charge stick.

  16. darkcycle says:

    Damn HuffPo. One comment didn’t make it, but there’s no reason it should have been left off and it’s follow up allowed…WTF?

  17. claygooding says:

    Kevin Sabet,

    You took a job with the ONDCP working as an advisor for an agency that is required to do anything necessary to keep marijuana from becoming legal.

    Title VII Office of National Drug Control Policy Reauthorization Act of 1998: H11225:

    Responsibilities. –The Director– […]

    (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;

    Anything necessary includes but is not limited to:

    a. buying false science

    b.cherry picking research data and using statistics out of context or even in opposition of facts exposed in the study

    c. buying propaganda ads and even themes on television and movies to brainwash Americans with your propaganda.

    So,,is this more of the same or how you really feel? And since you took a job that is required to lie to America,,can we believe you now?

    Sent email to Kevin with that in it,,told him I would post it everywhere he shows up and comments are allowed and I will be with him,like a marijuana conviction for millions of Americans,for the rest of his life.

    That should give him plenty if time to think up his defense of why we have a federal agency required to lie to US>

    • Peter says:

      in the cspan debate sabet became indignant when it was suggested he was paid by the treatment industry. does anyone have more info on his consultancy work?

      • Duncan20903 says:

        Perhaps he was indignant because of the insinuation that his paymaster dictates his beliefs. While Upton Sinclair was a master of observation indeed, there really are some people that are getting paid because they actually are true believers, not vice versa. Mr. Sabet and John Walters are two hardcore examples if I’m not mistaken. IMO, they would be the very same foaming at the mouth prohibitionists that they are even if it didn’t line their pockets.

        Wasn’t Mr. Sabet awarded the Prohibitionist of the Year trophy for the first time when he was 14? maybe 15? A true child prodigy in the art of hysterical rhetoric? A world class performer in the art of lying with statistics? He’s a congenital prohibitionist, no doubt.

  18. darkcycle says:

    You’re correct. Some people are simply convinced it is their right and their duty to meddle in your private affairs and dictate what you can and cannot do. Mr. Sabet is one of those. A genuine junior Anslinger.

    • kaptinemo says:

      And, in what is usually the telling point:

      Mr. Sabet claims to be a member of the B’hai faith, which in many countries is persecuted viciously, often to the point of its’ subscribers being martyred.

      A hallmark of his putative faith is sobriety. Well, the same goes for just about all of them. So long as their precepts are not used as laws to codify their beliefs into secular practice, it doesn’t matter. But, it would appear that for the longest time that the man’s been intent upon inflicting his religious beliefs upon others via the mechanisms of The State. Just as overly religious people did with alcohol Prohibition before.

      Nothing more than a modern-day version of “Mr. Dry”. And he’s as responsible for as much misery and death as his ideological forebears…

      He persecutes us as his own faith is persecuted…and he can’t make the connection. Children, can you say, “Hypocrite”? Suuuuure you can!

  19. allan says:

    hey… brain fart!

    So here we sit, sharing this big couch and all (memes and Pete’s stale lefovers)… we can surgically flail any prohibition argument (or prohibitionist) (using qwertys like ancient sharper-than-metal obsidian)…

    … and we’re mostly a purty smart bunch (even tho’ many of us are potheads *gasp*). Pete’s provided a great forum and even come up with a real Foundation – Prohibition Isn’t Free. I suggest the foundation come up with an annual Prohibitionist of the Year kind of thing. We can design a trophy or banner (the finger, a teeny weeny…) and banter about the nominees like so many badminton birdies. Pete can post the winner with some bloggish hoopla and whoop-de-do. While it may be an exercise in mockery it would also be most sincere. Very sincere…

    And that’s the state of my brain… a scary place. I have however, over these many years, made friends with many of the voices that inhabit that haunted realm.

  20. allan says:

    OT – Russ Belville interviews Dr Lester Grinspoon yesterday:

  21. allan says:

    more OT… and this one may have already been posted, if so forgive the redundancy:

    Congress is moving towards controlling CB1 cannabinoid receptor agonists (“cannabimimetic agents”) as a group. The wording would add to Schedule I even substances with no psychoactive or recreational properties, despite promising medical research into these compounds.

    H.R. 1254, the Synthetic Drug Control Act of 2011, was approved by the U.S. House in December but has not yet been approved by the Senate.

    Along with attempting to ban CB1-agonists based on “binding studies and functional assays”, the bill also seeks to prohibit a number of cathinone and phenethylamine substances that have seen some recreational use over the last few years, such as 4-methylmethcathinone, MDPV, 2C-E, and others.

    Bill Summary & Status — 112th Congress (2011 – 2012) H.R.1254

    The bill was sponsored by Mr. DENT (for himself, Mr. MEEHAN,

  22. Duncan20903 says:

    Uggh. Newt. Pfui.

    • allan says:

      oh c’mon… these primaries are a hoot. Newt? Really? bwahaha… not a chance. He’s an arrogant prick, one step removed from the Donald. I noticed Ron Paul got back about what he put into the state. If ever we’ve had an election in recent history where the political machine’s squeaky wheels have been so obvious, this is it. Let the buffoonery continue I say. This election will give future Firesign Theatre clones material far into the next century. They’re all bozos on that bus!

      • Duncan20903 says:


        It’s the first time in history that 3 different candidates have won the first 3 primaries.

        Scoff all you like but SC has voted for the next POTUS in every primary since 1980. That’s impressive when you consider it includes 2 incumbents (Jimmy Carter & Bush the 41st) running for a second term, and Al Gore’s presumptive in 2000.

        The best thing about this is maybe all those assholes will stop saying that Mr. Romney’s nomination is inevitable. If you pinned me down and made me choose either Newt or Mitt I’d go with Newt on the basis of “better the devil you know than the devil you don’t” and then blow my brains out after you let me up.
        There are signatures being gathered in Nebraska for re-legalization of Cannabis. The initiative will be Proposition 19 if it gets onto the ballot. Nebraskans are ostentatious and write it Proposition XIX.

  23. Servetus says:

    Congratulations are in order. Yoni Goldstein probably holds the current world record for artfully citing every hackneyed and moribund bit of anti-pot propaganda ever to appear in a single essay.

    His grandiose authority on the sociology of marijuana is so pitifully skewed he needs his grandmother to pinch his rascally little ear and fill him in on a few facts about weed.

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