Why you absolutely, positively must vote for Gary Johnson

There have been a few questions in comments as to whether it makes sense to vote for Gary Johnson. After all, is it possible that Obama/Romney is better than Obama/Romney when it comes to the drug war? So what if my wasted vote on Johnson causes Obama/Romney to win?

Let’s break it down.

1. Check the electoral maps to see what kind of state you’re in (Here’s one example). If your state is blue, dark blue, red, or dark red, then your vote isn’t going to make a bit of difference in the Obama-Romney question. You’ll just be one more on a vast winning or losing side for the state. After all, it’s the electoral votes that chooses the President, not the popular vote. So you might as well vote for someone who actually cares about you! No brainer.

2. Let’s assume you’re in one of those few swing states, and it actually comes down to the wire in the electoral vote and your state will make the difference, and after all the re-counts and hanging chads, it turns out that one vote makes the difference between Obama or Romney winning… You should still vote for Gary Johnson.

Ultimately, as we have found, Presidents are unlikely leaders in drug policy reform. Even more so with these two. There has been absolutely no interest in talking about drug policy by either candidate, so if they win with your vote, they won’t even have a campaign promise to break. There won’t be a single reason for them to care about you, and so many reasons to support the DEA, Law Enforcement, Pharmaceutical Industries, Drug Testing Industries, Prison Industries, and so on.

On the other hand, if one of them loses and it can be shown that Gary Johnson is why they lost, then that could make a real difference.

3. You must vote for Gary Johnson because he’s the only one giving your message. Johnson has, more than any other candidate in recent knowledge, run largely on his views of the drug war. Sure, he has other issues, but this is his signature issue, and it’s even reflected in his choice of running mate.

If Johnson has a strong showing and even has an impact on a state, then both parties will have to pay attention, and perhaps address drug policy in the future in order to prevent a third party candidate from challenging them. If Johnson does extremely poorly, then they’ll be able to say “He didn’t even get 1% of the vote. The voters don’t care enough about marijuana or drug policy for it to affect their votes, so we don’t have to address it.”

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113 Responses to Why you absolutely, positively must vote for Gary Johnson

  1. Ben says:

    Damn skippy. If he gets 5% of the vote, the establishment will sit up and take notice. And when the Republican Party becomes utterly non-competitive in presidential politics, it will self-destruct, and Libertarianism will be there to pick up some of the pieces.

  2. darkcycle says:

    There will not be one iota of difference between a Romney First term and an Obushma second term (just like there was precious little difference between Bush’s second term and Obama’s first). So your vote for either one of them is a vote for the exact same policies. Gitmo, check. NDAA imprisonment without trial, Check. No Haebeas Corpus, check. Endless wars, Check. Spying on Americans without warrant, check. The list goes on and on. They are two peas in a pod. Coke and Pepsi. Not worth the energy. That’s why Gary Johnson gets my vote.

    • stlgonzo says:

      I cannot stand the wasted vote line that people are always giving me when they see my Gary Johnson sign. A vote for Obama/Romney is a wasted vote, like you said they will be the same administration anyway.

      I believe that if everyone would go ahead and vote for whom they want,Johnson or even Stein, then that would finally make the two major parties stand up and take notice. Although I would like to see the Libertarian Party gain a decent foothold.

      • Plant Down Babylon says:

        A vote for GOOD is never a wasted vote! Gary Johnson = Good.

        In my opinion, a vote for either of the other two dummies is a wasted vote. Just the fact that the media/powers to be refuse to even entertain a third party in the debates tells me that Gary is the one to vote for!

  3. darkcycle says:

    …and Obama….holy crap…this is a CAMPAIGN? Not a single promise, not a single message, not a single policy for this campaign. No record of success to run on whatsoever (and the stuff he DID do was universally bad or inadequate). I can’t believe the Obots think they can re-elect this guy just by scare mongering. But then I look at Romney, and realize they may win after all.
    I think I just hit on another reason not to vote for either of them. It’s demeaning.

  4. goblet says:

    Another reason to vote GJ is that if he does get 5% then the libertarians are invited to the debates in 2016, instead of having to sue to be included like this year. So in this case 5% is a victory.

  5. Dan Riffle says:

    First, this obviously assumes the only issue you care about is the drug war. For me, it’s a big, complicated world out there, and I actually do care about other issues like access to healthcare and having a social safety net for the poor where I’m diametrically opposed to GJ.

    But second, I don’t understand how anyone can say Obama/Romney would be the same. Obama has been no picnic on marijuana, but “I think it’s a legitimate debate” is a hell of a lot better than “I’ll fight medical marijuana tooth and nail.” (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6lTbAI4sP0M)

    To the contrary, he’s allowed a controlled market in marijuana, albeit an all-too-small one. For example, to the commenter above who says Obama is no different from Bush, I don’t recall there being any dispensaries operating outwardly and openly to the degree they do now in Colorado (and Maine, and New Mexico, and soon in NJ, DC, RI, and elsewhere) before 2008. Let alone hundreds of them. Bush/Romney simply would not allow there to be any market like the one we see now in Colorado.

    Also, remember that your vote doesn’t just determine who occupies the Oval Office. We’re talking about the heads of DEA, ONDCP, DOD, FBI and other agencies that fight and promote the drug war. It also determines who sits on the Supreme Court. Who do you think is more likely to fill all those seats with people sympathetic to our cause? The guy who has said that drugs ought to be decriminalized, or the religiously conservative Mormon teetotaler?

    Put simply, while I agree with most everything you write Pete, you’re wrong on this one. While I don’t consider a vote for GJ a “wasted vote” – you’re making a statement with that vote, and an important one – it would seriously undermine the cause of marijuana regulation. If I were in Ohio, I’d vote Obama. I live in DC, so I’ll vote for the candidate who supports marijuana legalization AND whose whose other policies I personally support far more than GJ’s – the Green Party’s Jill Stein.

    Make no mistake: Obama has been a disappointment on drug policy and we should continue holding him accountable in the press as we have been. But just b/c Obama hasn’t given us what we want doesn’t mean he’s just as bad as Romney. He’s not. Romney’s much, much worse.

    • stlgonzo says:

      I guess the assumed right to kill American citizens abroad with-out due process, Obama’s war on whistle blowers, the passing and signing of the NDAA that allows indefinite detention of American citizens that the executive branch deems terrorists with-out due process.

      Also Obama has not allowed a controlled market in marijuana. I guess you missed all of the raids taking place in California, Washington, Colorado?

      As I believe it was Glenn Greenwald that wrote “Apparently if you care about civil liberties you should vote for a Republican, because it is the only time the MSM pay attention to them.

      • Dan Riffle says:

        Actually, if you care about civil liberties, you should do what I said I’m doing (and what GG is doing) and vote for Stein. More to the point, a vote for Gary Johnson would increase the liklihood that Romney gets in. You don’t think he’d keep on with all the abhorrent tactics you just mentioned?

        And yes, I did miss all the raids taking place in Colorado. I saw them in California and Washington, where they don’t comply with state law (at a time when Obama has said DOJ will focus on those not complying with state law). But there have not been widespread enforcement actions in Colorado, and there have been absolutely none in NM, ME, and elsewhere where they’re compliant with state law.

        • stlgonzo says:

          I suggest you do a little more research if you think the Obama administration is only going after the medical dispensaries that are violating federal law. Here is just one example.


          “What makes this event stand out is Harborside’s unparalleled reputation for safety, security and compliance with local laws. The decision to target them contradicts an April interview in which President Obama told Rolling Stone that enforcement efforts focused only on dispensaries that illegally sold marijuana for non-medical use.”

    • Pete says:

      Dan, I understand the notion that there are other issues that guide your vote. Obviously, you have to take those into consideration. I’m writing this post from the perspective of drug policy.

      I, too, have other issues. While I am interested in health care and a social safety net, among other things, those absolutely pale in comparison to other deal-breaking issues for me that also say I should vote for Johnson.

      Also, remember that your vote doesn’t just determine who occupies the Oval Office. We’re talking about the heads of DEA, ONDCP, DOD, FBI and other agencies that fight and promote the drug war.

      You mean, like Bush appointee Michele Leonhart?

      Supreme Court? How did Raich break down as far as Liberal and Conservative Justices? We could get somebody good with Obama, or we could get Lisa Madigan (who gave us Caballes).

      Four years ago, I would have believed that Obama would be better than Romney on drug policy. Today, I just simply don’t know. And don’t care.

      Take a look at the blowback that Obama is getting for his bad drug policies. If Romney goes worse than Obama, he’ll start feeling the heat. Both will be bad, but there’s a real limit to how much worse they can get because the public is becoming energized because of what we’re doing at the grassroots level.

      • Dan Riffle says:

        “You mean, like Bush appointee Michele Leonhart?”
        That’s one of many bad decisions by Obama, and one reason why he’s not getting my vote. But there have been good appointments too. Gil, for all his faults, is miles ahead of Bennett, McCaffrey, and Walters.

        “Four years ago, I would have believed that Obama would be better than Romney on drug policy. Today, I just simply don’t know. And don’t care.”
        I don’ get that. It is readily apparent that Romney would be much, much worse.

        The last part of your comment is so true, and is exactly why I disagree with the post. The public is coming around on this issue, and for that reason will hold whoever is elected accountable for drug war excesses. The question is, would we rather continue holding someone accountable who has good rhetoric but somewhat bad policies, or someone who has telegraphed that he will be maybe the worst imaginable? I’ll take the former; the devil I know.

    • darkcycle says:

      Dan, you’re dreaming. Bush didn’t raid as many dispensaries as Obama, but they certainly were around before Barry. If you recall, this proliferation of dispensaries happened after Obama promised hands off those obeying State laws. He LIED. He’s busting them all as fast as he can get agents to them. Regardless of compliance, he’s going based on SIZE.
      He has continued every policy of Bush. Gitmo is open, he increased the level of spying on Americans, he signed the NDAA. He escalated the drug war and extended it. His undeclared wars in Somalia and Yemen and Pakistan continue. He took for himself the right to act as Judge Jury and Executioner of AMERICAN CITIZENS. No due process whatsoever. I could go on and on, in fact, I have, in other posts.
      You’re drinkin’ you some Kool-Aid, boss.

      • Dan Riffle says:

        Of course Bush didn’t raid as many as Obama. There were hardly any dispensaries around to raid back then. There were some, but now there are thousands. And that’s the point. Obama has allowed a limited market to flourish, where Bush/Romney/McCain clearly would not. When you have leaked DOJ memo’s out there saying to ignore dispensaries that have less than a certain number of plants…you think you’d see that kind of lax enforcement under Bush/Romney? http://blogs.laweekly.com/informer/2011/11/marijuana_doj_policy_prosecution_guidelines.php

        But more to the point, what kool aid are you talking about? I’ve already said I’m not voting for Obama. Now, that’s based on the fact that I live in DC which affords me the “right” to make a statement with my vote, but if I lived in FL, CO, OH, I’d have to take the electoral calculus into account. Does anyone not remember 2000?

        And to the commenter above, I research Obama administration enforcement tactics for a living. Harborside is a model of responsible medical marijuana business practices, but it is not “in clear an unambiguous compliance with state law,” which is the admin’s standard. No dispensary in California is. That’s a problem with California law, not the president.

        • darkcycle says:

          Yes, and he’s feeding these people one at a time into the maw of the criminal justice system. I hate repeating myself, but: If you recall, this proliferation of dispensaries happened after Obama promised hands off those obeying State laws.
          Which arguably makes what Obama did WORSE.

        • darkcycle says:

          “And to the commenter above, I research Obama administration enforcement tactics for a living. Harborside is a model of responsible medical marijuana business practices, but it is not “in clear an unambiguous compliance with state law,” which is the admin’s standard. No dispensary in California is. That’s a problem with California law, not the president.”
          I see. You simply wish to find a reason to excuse this conduct. Well, I’m not buying that sack of lies. Barry has control of his Justice Department, yes? Where did his Ogden memo state “Clear and unambiguous compliance with State laws.”? You can’t comply with laws that DON’T exist! You can only attempt to do the best you can with the restrictions that are in place. How is a business owner to comply with nonexistent laws? I’m in the MMJ biz, maybe you should enlighten me as to what I SHOULD be doing that I’m not.

        • claygooding says:

          Obama’s failure to have marijuana re-scheduled is his biggest miss on marijuana reform,,he doesn’t need congress or any committee to approve an executive order to AG Holder to move cannabis to any other schedule,,he may not be able to just legalize pot outright,,but he could certainly remove control of the studies and research allowed from the agencies charged with keeping it illegal.

          Let science and physicians decide,,not cops and politicians.

          And voting Republican is right up there with slapping myself in the forehead with a ballpeen hammer,,,feels good when you quit.

        • Windy says:


          A Challenge to Republicans
          And An Opportunity For Gary Johnson
          by L. Neil Smith

          Attribute to L. Neil Smith’s The Libertarian Enterprise

          This election season, like so many others since I turned 18 and first marked a ballot, it has been carefully arranged so that I have nobody to vote for. My own presidential candidate was illegally and immorally cheated out of his chance by a system so thoroughly corrupt that it shines in the dark like a pile of rotting fish. As Boss Tweed famously put it, “I don’t give a damn who votes, as long as I do the nominating”.

          On the one hand, poor, battered America cannot survive another four years of a president who is more and more obviously a communist, with a thoroughly communist background, and thoroughly communist intentions.

          On another hand, I refuse to vote for what amounts to a European- style Christian socialist—especially the one who is guilty, along with his minions, of keeping my candidate off the ballot—simply to thwart the commie. Better to get it over with at once, like yanking the bandage off quickly, rather than a torturous tiny little bit at a time.

          I guess I ought to add that this candidate’s running-mate’s “plan” for repairing America’s deliberately sabotaged economy, and restoring our nation to a place of respect in the world—over a ludicrous and disgusting period of eight to twelve years—is nothing but elephant manure.

          On the third hand (I can do that—I’m a science fiction writer) I am extremely disinclined to vote for any candidate who claims to be a libertarian—theoretically bound by the Zero Aggression Principle—but who claims he has a “better plan” to tax me. Exactly like you, I have been a slave to the state all my life, and I won’t vote to let it continue. Taxation is theft; taxation is slavery; taxation is the fuel of war. It is long past time that the Libertarian Party took a moral stance against the ancient and evil institution in all its forms.

          My intention, then, is to “cast a blank”, to vote on every one of the ballot issues and any positions where there is a candidate I can support, but to leave the choice for president unfilled. I will also persuade as many others as I can to follow my example. This is the only moral action available to me. Believe me, I would like to have somebody to vote for, but only if they will refrain from the lying, cheating, and stealing they have done for two hundred and twenty-three years.

          There is still a possibility left—a very small one,to be sure, but nevertheless, a possibility. You see, I have a plan of my own, to let America live in peace with the world, in peace with itself, to restore the Bill of Rights, get progress back on track, and achieve the prosperity for which America was admired in my childhood—in the space of about twelve months. To that end, I am publishing below a chapter from my book Down With Power: Libertarian Policy In A Time Of Crisis.

          I will vote for any candidate who adopts it—and for nobody else.

        • stlgonzo says:

          Just to clarify, but I always intended to vote for Johnson. The comment from Glenn Greenwald was in reference to the amount of attention paid to the wars and civil rights abuse since there is a Dem in office. Can you imagine if Bush would have claimed the right to indefinite detention or the ability to kill US citizens abroad?

        • Liam says:

          Assuming that you’re the Dan Riffle of MPP (Marijuana Policy Project), I’m curious as to why you find GJ’s stance on healthcare, social programs and civil liberties so abhorrent?

        • Duncan20903 says:


          Way cool Windy! Life just hasn’t been the same ever since the communist bloc’s economy failed. Today’s youth think that Marxism is a style of slapstick comedy popular in the second quarter of the 20th century.

          Now I’m off to practice my duck and cover technique. You never know when you might be in the general vicinity of an atomic bomb when it explodes! It’s worse than sunburn!!

          Better dead than red!!!

        • divadab says:

          @Windy – thanks for posting this – it’s a window into the delusional “thinking” on the right. As someone who knows what a Marxist is in real life, I just shake my head that anyone, even a brain-dead dupe of Faux News, could think Obama is a Marxist. I mean, is there another more complete tool of corporate rule than Obama? (Except the opposing corporate tool, ROmney, he of spats and monocle).

          Only an ignorant dupe could believe Obama is a Marxist. Just shows how sophisticated and complete the corporate mind control apparatus, the TeeVee, has become.

    • Rick Steeb says:

      As a matter of conscience, it is Johnson – Gray, All the Way.

      The only ones willing to end the atrocity get MY vote.

  6. claygooding says:

    OT,,but I need link to “drug czar required to lie” and the article on it from Pete’s blog

  7. claygooding says:

    Founded it,,thnx,,new pooter and having to replace links in notepad for quick reference/posting ;<)

    9 Signs That Pot Legalization Is Coming Soon

    Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/lists/9-signs-that-pot-legalization-is-coming-soon-20120928#ixzz28ACKfA2z

    ""When even a federal judge appointed by Ronald Reagan calls the criminalization of marijuana "absurd," you know we've come a long way from "Just Say No." As many as three states could vote to legalize pot this November, and not just for medical purposes – for straight-up getting high purposes. There’s always the chance they'll chicken out, like California voters did in 2010. But sooner or later, and probably sooner, a state will go green. Read on for nine signs that pot legalization is coming to the U.S.""

    And I still intend to vote Johnson/Gray even if I have to write it in.

  8. Dan Riffle says:

    Dark Cycle – you ask, “where did his Ogden memo state ‘clear and unambiguous compliance with state laws?” End of page one, onto beginning of page 2 (http://www.scribd.com/doc/59151827/Ogden-Memo). As for what you can be doing, you’re right that you can’t comply with laws that don’t exist. If you’re in California, what I’d be doing if I were you is calling Asm. Ammiano’s office and lobbying like hell next year to get a regulatory bill passed. That’s what’s insulated dispensaries in NM, ME, and for the most part, CO from federal enforcement.

    stlgonzo – Like I said, “there have not been widespread enforcement actions in Colorado, and there have been absolutely none in NM, ME, and elsewhere…” There has been some, very limited (compared to MT, WA, CA) enforcement, but most of those folks are people who are in violation of state law. Admittedly, not all.

    I’ll say it again – Obama has not been good on this issue. But if you can’t see that he’s been better than we can expect from Romney, you’re willfully blinding yourself to the facts. There are hundreds of dispensaries up and running in Colorado right now. They’re advertizing, they operating openly and transparently. That would never happen under any previous president, save for maybe Carter, and would never happen under Romney.

    • stlgonzo says:

      I am not arguing that Mitt would be better on Medical than Obama. Obama lied. Plain and simple. One of the many lies from him.

      “And to the commenter above, I research Obama administration enforcement tactics for a living. Harborside is a model of responsible medical marijuana business practices, but it is not “in clear an unambiguous compliance with state law,” which is the admin’s standard. No dispensary in California is. That’s a problem with California law, not the president.”

      I could not disagree with this statement more. You are looking to excuse the behavior of his administration.

      And the argument that “look he’s not raiding all of them” is not a good one.

  9. Dan Riffle says:

    No, it’s not. And he’s not a good president on this issue. But to risk putting someone like Romney in office because Obama hasn’t been as good as he should be is to cut off your nose to spite your face.

    • allan says:

      I don’t know… maybe it’s just me but Rmoney has as much chance of being elected as I do. The man is a putz and it’s painfully obvious. The most support for Rmoney comes from the anyone-but-Barack camp. And when your support isn’t support for you but against your opponent? That’s sad stuff. Willard is an uptight, lily white and tightly puckered asshat. And a clueless one to boot…

      Johnson – Gray in 2012!

    • stlgonzo says:

      I would think Gary Johnson would steal more votes from Mitt then Obama. Stein would steal more votes from Obama then Johnson, yet you say that you are voting for her.

      • Dan Riffle says:

        I live in DC. Who cares who I vote for? I would only vote for Obama if I lived back home in Ohio.

        Again, the question at hand is not whether Obama is bad (he is) or whether Mitt is a putz (he is) or who you should vote for if you don’t live in a swing state (who cares).

        There are two candidates with a plausible chance to win the election: Obama and Romney. The question at hand is which of the two would be better on the drugs issue. If, like Pete, you think they’d be the same then vote for Gary Johnson or Jill Stein, both of whom have made marijuana legalization a central part of their platform. If, like me, you’ve seen enough to think Romney would be significantly worse on the drugs issue than Obama, then you should vote for Obama.

        • allan says:

          As has been said before by myself and others, this election is about far more than drug policy. To vote at the Prez level for either a Dem or Repub is just acquiescence to the continued rape of the body politic…

          “… yes sir, do me again,” just doesn’t work for me.

          The only wasted vote is the one not cast.

        • Matthew Meyer says:

          “There are two candidates with a plausible chance to win the election…”

          This is an important point when it comes to the discussion I’ve seen here about presidential politics and drug policy.

          Like money, such statements are true as long as we collectively believe in them, and no longer. It seems like a number of folks on here (and elsewhere in the country) are tired of having only two real options because of the way it tends to lead to a political form of collusion against the people, a politics of tiny differences.

          In this light, I find sensible the suggestion that enough votes for a Gary Johnson (or a Jill Stein) might move things in the direction of a real third (fourth, fifth) choice in presidential elections.

          As a California voter, I have the opportunity to help this happen. Personally, if I lived in a swing state I would probably vote for Obama, despite it all and largely in agreement with Dan’s analysis.

  10. Outlier says:

    I’ve been wrestling for a while over whether to vote for Johnson or Obama and ultimately decided to go with the latter. While I respect the hell out of Gary for bringing the complete failure of the drug war and civil liberties to light and making them centerpieces of his campaign, I don’t believe that voting for him will help move us forward on either. When Ralph Nader and Ross Perot were deemed spoilers, the two parties didn’t self evaluate and adopt their policies. They scorned them and blamed them for their respective losses.

    The best way to get the outcomes we want is to start organizing more and talking to our friends and neighbors about these issues. Send them links to stories from Pete and from stopthedrugwar.org. Invite your friends to see Eugene Jarecki’s new documentary “The House I Live In”. Call your local candidates about these issues, they take them seriously. Get involved with your local Dem or GOP party and urge them to adopt drug policy reform as part of their platform. It’s not sexy but it leads to us having legislatures that will stop arresting our citizens for nonviolent crimes and a more free society.

    • yahoo says:

      Right on the money, from voting rationale to organizing on the ground. “Teaching them a lesson” can teach them a lesson alright, and it’s hardly ever the lesson you’re trying to impart.

    • Windy says:

      “Get involved with your local Dem or GOP party and urge them to adopt drug policy reform as part of their platform. It’s not sexy but it leads to us having legislatures that will stop arresting our citizens for nonviolent crimes and a more free society.”

      I and a few thousand other people tried that in 2008 and this election in our county at the caucuses and county convention. Some were able to be delegates at the State convention. Just as with the national convention in Tampa, our delegates at each level were steamrolled over by the old guard and deprived of our chance to have any effect on the local, State or national candidates or platform. That kind of action obviously does not work, either. So we have withdrawn from the GOP, seeing any change there as a lost cause, and are supporting Gary Johnson as the 2nd best possible candidate for president (Ron Paul having been the best).

  11. darkcycle says:

    I disagree, Dan, and I’ll leave it at that. I intend to vote for policies I support. I can no more vote for O than I could have for W.

    • darkcycle says:

      BTW, I’ve looked at Romney good and hard. And this is what I found. He’s not that scary. He was a centrist Governor and his policies, while I did not agree with them (I find I seldom agree with the policies adopted by this government, democrats or republicans notwithstanding), made better sense than those of quite a few of his peers. I also discovered he panders and lies like no one else, and will say whatever he thinks his audience wants to hear. But his policies as executed could have been a lot worse. So I don’t buy the Fear of Romney argument one bit.

      • allan says:

        I agree on the not fearing Willard statement. Mr Rmoney spookiness comes from his just being the weird white guy he is (see my comment above).

        I think maybe 1/2 my reasoning for voting Johnson – Gray is that they are not machine politicians. And living in OR I’ve twice now witnessed what can happen when this disassociated menagerie of wandering cats forms an actual herd and does something.

        In 1998 we handily beat back re-criminalization and passed our mmj bill. This summer we took a machine beholden candidate for AG (with an initial lead in polling) and kicked his ass by 2 to 1 and we sent a message

        The treatment of Johnson during the Repug debates was, well, repugnant. But then that’s the republicans right? We know what a collection of blue meanies they’ve become and Gov Gary was right to jump ship. He is as qualified a candidate as Willard Rmoney or Barack Obummer, so I sacrifice nothing there by supporting Gary Johnson and Jim Gray.

        And Mr Obama… we know what he has said in the past re the drug war’s failure, he’s well aware it’s a travesty. To oppose it, end the CSA fiasco, etc, he need only point to the readily available facts. He could I suppose, still oppose pot/drug use “morally” while letting reality do the heavy lifting in public. I mean he’d be on the same side as Pat Robertson… hardly a hippie he.

    • damaged justice says:

      The only wasted vote is one that goes against your principles.

  12. I completely agree with you Pete. A vote for Gary helps show we’re tired of being stuck with two parties who ignore us, and that we demand to be heard.

  13. Klay says:

    To say the least, he should be part of the debates and I will be voting for him come November. Not just for his position on the War on Drugs, but NDAA, bringing the troops home, and other libertarian issues that neither Obama or Romney care about.

  14. War Vet says:

    Pete -you’ve convinced me.

  15. Peter says:

    Either way we’re screwed for the next 4 years. Better to send a message to the dempuglicans that a sizable and growing percentage has seen through their bull and is looking for an alternative.

  16. n.t greene says:

    I think the “lesser of two evils” vote is what got us into this mess in the first place. The ultimate casualty of the current bipartisan system is legitimate choice.

    I am a firm believer in the power of voting for the person you believe to be best suited for office, regardless of actual odds. Remember that it is this very tactic of sidelining outsiders that is used to corral people into the status quo.

    Minorities, after all, often become the vehicles of greater changes. A small group that makes enough noise will gain recognition beyond their own numbers.

    But shh, that makes them rebels, and rebels can never be trusted. shh.

  17. claygooding says:

    I think a modern day tea party is called for,,instead of tea maybe we can burn a DEA warehouse.

    • thelbert says:

      just the knowledge that there are people enjoying the benefits of cannabis without asking leave of the police will torture the kind of lawman that sees himself as a boss rather than a servant. i predict more alcoholism amongst the frustrated prohibitionists. that will mean the public foots their rehab bills. their world may fall apart, who knows? that would be revenge enough for me. so my kind of tea party would be one where the tea is taken inward to the mind, not burned in a warehouse.

  18. n.t greene says:

    But that would ruin their version of the Andes that’s made entirely of cocaine!

    I mean, that’s high culture if I have ever seen it.

  19. yahoo says:

    This requires me to assume that:

    a.) “Punishing candidates by withholding votes moves policy in the direction I want.”

    b.) That I’m a single issue voter

    c.) That he is “giving my message.”

    Thanks for your concern, pete. If your morals require you to keep your hands clean, that’s fine. My morals tell me I have to oppose the modern Republican Party with every fiber in my body. So, we just have a different moral outlook.

    • yahoo says:

      Also, GJ is an economic lunatic. If you’re advocating for someone all-around, someone who isn’t an economic lunatic and also cares about the drug war, why not endorse Jill Stein?

      • Jeff Trigg says:

        “Economic lunatic” is a simple-minded characterization that is simply wrong. The status quo that Obama represents is the real economic lunacy. Reckless borrowing and spending is economic lunacy, and both Obama and Romney will continue down that road to economic collapse. Jill Stein is even worse that Obama/Romney on fiscal matters as she would take us down the road to ruin like Europe even faster.

        Liberals, for some reason, believe that even if someone proposes just $1 is cuts from the federal budget they are out to destroy the so-called “safety net” and are economic lunatics. That belief is not based in reality, and we’re all doomed if we continue following that faulty logic. Leaving the children born this decade with a huge mountain of debt, as Obama is doing, is complete insanity. Thinking that the federal government is the ONLY and BEST way to provide a safety net for all 350 million of us, is complete insanity. Passing along the massive bill to our children is to shatter their chances in the land of opportunity that previous generations enjoyed. The spending/borrowing/printing that Obama will continue shows that Obama is an economic lunatic, if you must use that term. Heck, just look at Obama’s home state of Illinois.

        In 2018, EVERY taxpayer in Illinois will be on the hook for $28,000/year just to pay for existing pensions. That’s insane. The City of Chicago just announced they’ll need $1.5 Billion/year to pay pensions starting this year. Divide that by the number of taxpayers in Chicago. Over the next decade that burden will grow from $1,300/year to $3,000/year just for pensions alone. Obama will leave our children with mountains of unsustainable debt and take away their chance at the American dream. THAT is economic lunacy. Can liberals and Democrat loyalists do math beyond Republicans are more evil than Democrats?

        In Illinois, everyone who calls themselves a Democrat is either evil or ignorant, that is a simple, indisputable fact. 25 years without even one independent able to get on the ballot for the state assembly. The election laws Obama and his cohorts implemented in Illinois were anti-democratic and abhorrent. Obama’s election laws were ruled they violated the 1st and 14th Amendments of independent voters in Illinois. Democrats, like Obama, who knew our election laws violated the US Constitution and harshly discriminated against independents are just pure evil. Democrats who didn’t know they so-called Democratic Party no longer believes in democracy or free and equal elections are just pure ignorant. Therefore, Illinois Democrats are all evil or ignorant, Obama included.

        Vote for someone who wants to lock me in a concrete cage for doing something he did himself and who could care less about democracy and the Constitutional rights of independent voters? That’s insane. We deserve a President who actually believes in holding democratic elections, unlike Obama. The very fact that Obama refuses to debate all of his opponents proves Obama is evil and does not deserve the massive power the Presidency now holds. Republicans are more evil than Democrats is a horrible reason to vote for Democrats. Its like having Stalin versus Pol Pot on the ballot and giving your vote to one of them because one of them will win.

        A vote for Obama is a vote to lock me in a cage at everyone else’s expense. I deserve better than that and so do our fellow Americans. Makes we want to punch every Obama apologist/voter in the face for selfishly using the power of their vote to promote policies that put innocent people like me behind bars. Voting for Obama just proves that the voter could care less about their fellow citizens.

  20. Voting for Obama would amount to giving him a mandate to continue doing what he has been doing with vigor-continuing the drug war.

    I agree with you whole heartedly Pete.

    Vote for Gary Johnson.

  21. Pete says:

    I find it strange (but sadly not surprising) that a number of the critiques of my suggestion have countered along the lines that Gary Johnson “is an economic lunatic.”

    It’s a ridiculous response to this piece in that:
    1. Nobody here thinks Gary Johnson can win. It’s about getting his drug war message out further. So being afraid of his budget cuts message is nonsense.
    2. If, for some reason, both Obama and Romney self-destruct by having affairs with underage hookers and Gary Johnson ends up as President, the notion that he’ll be able to institute drastic budget cuts is ludicrous. Both the Democrats and Republicans will still have Congress and they’ll spend like drunken sailors, as they always do.
    3. Most of these panicked concerns over completely impossible fiscal policy implementation are from Obama supporters, who apparently have no similar concerns over Presidential kill lists, the killing of civilians in Pakistan, or a host of other civil liberties and foreign policy nightmares. As someone who campaigned for McGovern and protested the Vietnam War (and who supported Obama 4 years ago), I find it horribly sad that so-called liberals are more concerned with fiscal policy than civil liberties and are willing to stand idly by while the U.S. kills in their name.

    • yahoo says:

      1.) Again, Stein is just as good. Why favor Johnson over her?

      2.) I take it you haven’t seen Johnson’s record as governor? I firmly believe he would veto every bill passed on his desk, and push this country into a financial crisis as a result. You’d be deluded to think anything otherwise would happen.

      3.) Not impossible (see 2). Sure, I have concerns. But I don’t really have many concerns over drones “killing civilians.” Civilian deaths from drones are not really high on my bar when it comes to concerns with drones. I’m far more worried about the rule of law and any oversight over the program. Furthermore, focusing on drones takes the conversation away from the broader U.S. foreign policies that create the targets of drone attacks.

      4.) “Killing in my name” is such a silly moniker in this context, pete. How many people will die “in your name” due to Johnson’s views of the welfare state? Or does it only matter if they’re foreign lives?

      Frankly, I’m shocked you supported Obama in 2008 but are now shocked he’s doing what he said he would do wrt war.

      This is all silly anyway. If you protested Vietnam, you should know as well as I do that issues like these aren’t decided in the ballot box. They’re decided based on the ground game.

      • darkcycle says:

        Stein is not just as good. The Green party platform explicitly rules out legalization and endorses decriminalization. Two very different things. With decrim you retain the black market and the criminal control of drugs. It does nothing to curb the violence and it is revenue negative rather than revenue positive through taxation. Furthermore it is exponentially easier to attach penalties to something that is already illegal, than it is to make something currently legal and widely available, illegal. Decrim is not the answer.
        As Pete said, any President will have his views on economic policy and spending tempered by the fact that the major parties will remain entrenched and congress controls the purse strings.
        How is vetoing every bill that comes across his desk any different than a feigned inability to get anything enacted? That’s right I said feigned. The Democraps set up the supermajority rule specifically to hamstring any progressive agenda that snuck through, and to give themselves cover when this election came around and all they got done was finishing GWB’s last unfinished job: emptying our treasury into the pockets of the Banksters.
        Dude, you’re a rube. You’ve been rolled and you don’t even know it. It was the DEMS that set this shit up.

        • Dan Riffle says:

          That’s just not true. Here’s Stein (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RDVuLwSgSbo): “Decrim was a step in the right direction, but it hasn’t stopped the flow of money in to the black market, doesn’t stop horrific street violence, and doesn’t recoup millions in tax money we’re leaving on the table….The time has come to bring marijuana into the appropriate legal framework.

        • darkcycle says:

          From the official platform of the Green Party:
          e. Prohibit property forfeiture and denial of due process for unconvicted suspects.

          f. Establish freedom on bail as a right of all defendants charged with non-violent crimes. Incorporate mental health and social services in bail agreements.

          g. Increase compensation for jurors and provide childcare for those serving jury duty.

          h. Protect victims’ rights. Ensure the opportunity for victims to make victim-impact statements. Consider forms of restitution to victims.

          4. End the War on Drugs

          a. End the “war on drugs.” Redirect funds presently budgeted for the “war on drugs” toward expanded research, education, counseling and treatment.

          b. Amend the Controlled Substances Act to reflect that drug use in itself is not a crime, and that persons living in the United States arrested for using drugs should not be incarcerated with those who have committed victim oriented crimes.

          c. Legalize possession of cannabis/marijuana.

          d. Strike from the record prior felony convictions for marijuana possession.

          e. Grant amnesty and release from confinement without any further parole or probation, those who have been incarcerated for the use of marijuana in federal and state prisons and in county/city jails, and who otherwise are without convictions for victim oriented crimes, or who do not require treatment for abuse of hard drugs. Provide the option for drug treatment to those leaving confinement.

          f. Implement a step-by-step program to decriminalize all drugs in the United States.

          Now tell me I’m wrong. I’m tired of this. You’re from the MPP, you’re supposed to KNOW this stuff. AND I’ve been giving you guys MONEY??? Geez.

        • darkcycle says:

          …a further clarification. It somewhat peeves me that when I specifically wrote “drugs” in the above referenced comment, you read “marijuana” and launched into your response. Once upon a time I was all for the legalization or decriminalization of marijuana, but I was tepid towards the idea that ALL drugs need to be legalized.(when I first got HERE, the Kap’n and a few others might recall) These folks right here set me straight. They pointed out the harms caused to society and to individual users by the prohibition of ANY drugs.
          So, any scheme that legalizes marijuana, but does not sensibly regulate and monitor ALL drugs simply does not go far enough (at least as an end game, I will support incremental change, but that must be the goal). That is why the Greens lost my support.
          I’m also the father of an African American son. And the drug laws are the single biggest obstacle to him reaching adulthood and becoming the productive citizen he can be. SO the drug laws are my primary concern for multiple reasons. Just FYI.

        • darkcycle says:

          I do not come to the positions I hold on critical issues willy-nilly.

        • Dan Riffle says:

          At no point in any of what you copied and pasted up there does it, as you said, “explicitly rule out legalization.” Regardless, you don’t elect a party platform, you elect a candidate, and I assure you Stein supports legalization.

        • darkcycle says:

          So. replace explicit with implicit (the word I was actually reaching for).
          “f. Implement a step-by-step program to decriminalize all drugs in the United States.” Bite me.

      • Well Yahoo, something is decided at the ballot box. That’s my ground game when I go in to vote. Did I miss something or are you just negating everything being said here, including the importance of my vote?

      • Jeff Trigg says:

        Compare New Mexico with Illinois, I dare you. Obama’s rubber-stamping of everything Blagojevich and Madigan wanted has put Illinois in a dire financial condition, unlike New Mexico, IF you really cared about that. Illinois has $8 BILLION is unpaid expenses from last year alone. Illinois would have to collect $1,200 from every single taxpayer in the state just to pay off overdue bills from LAST year’s budget. And you want to complain about Johnson’s record in New Mexico? Gary Johnson often said no to more spending, something Obama has never done. We desperately need a President who will say no to some of the luxurious spending the feds get away with.

        Obama and the Democrats lost my vote forever in 2002 when they refused to reform the worst ballot access election laws in the known democratic world. Obama’s drone-fighting foreign policy where civilian casualties of children are acceptable should make every American sick enough to withhold the massive power of their vote. There is no logical case to be made that warrants Obama getting anyone’s vote, and the only emotional cases to be made for Obama are arbitrary and misguided. “Republicans are more evil” is a stupid reason to vote to kill foreign children with drones and lock up sick Americans for cannabis pain relief. Obama voters deserve to be punched in the face, at the very least. (Romney voters, too.)

        • primus says:

          As the founding fathers noted, the parties are the problem. This is mostly due to the sheeple who don’t think, automatically voting for the party or the leader rather than the ideas and ideals of the candidates. That is how we end up with party animals whose only desire after getting elected is to party on our money and buy enough sheeple’s votes to get re-elected. By voting for the least party-like party, the Libertarians, your vote will actually count. If you vote for one of the main parties, your vote doesn’t count.

    • Dan Riffle says:

      1. I don’t share your assumption that if Gary does well the media will assume everyone only cares about marijuana. They’ll interpret it as support for the candidate, and all his views, not just one of them.
      2. As Yahoo pointed out, he’s got veto power. He can and would veto any bill to raise the debt ceiling. He also gets to appoint heads of treasury, SEC, members of the Federal Reserve, etc…
      3. If you care about kill lists and drones, as I do, then you should vote for Stein who has made ceasing the use of drones a central part of her plank.

      • darkcycle says:

        As I said before, for me, the Green Party’s platform on drugs is unacceptable.
        Dan, simply put, I will NOT vote for anyone who wants to hold me and my family at gunpoint, destroy my home, kill my dog, and put me in prison. Yes there are other important issues, critical ones I know GJ will not address correctly, like global climate change. But here’s the BOTTOM line. I will CEASE to be very concerned about issues like global warming and drone strikes if I am primarily concerned with surviving a prison term. Furthermore, my ability to affect these policies will end the second I have a drug conviction (if you recall, that’s EXACTLY why Nixon started this drug War). For those immediate and very personal reasons, the drug war is the KEY issue I will be voting on. End of story.

  22. stevo says:

    I live in TX so it matters little who I vote for for pres. Stupid TX always goes republican. I hate that we only get two realistic choices. Obama has been a huge let down, but Romney wants to continue all Obama’s bad deeds and add a bunch of new ones of his own. He could have won if he attacked Obama for disregarding the constitution and promised restore it. Neither possible next pres will follow the constitution. Also, one is a hawk and the other a mega hawk. Where’s the PEACE candidate? I will vote for Gary Johnson because the government must have limits to its power. They think they OWN US.

  23. Chris says:

    Wow, lots of comments on here. I’m voting for this guy because he campaigned for my vote as I was smoking at hash bash this April.

  24. SCOOBY says:

    Do you suppose that there are matters in this election far more important than your right to inhale a doobie ??

    • Maria says:

      For the benefit of the slow folks in the back, this silly “right to inhale a doobie” (ie. The Drug War That Isn’t(tm)) is a wee bit inseparable from the following silly themes. Themes and issues which I suppose are important to everyone and not just those pesky selfish doobie smokers?

      – Protection of civil liberties and the right to self-ownership.

      – The implementation of prison reforms and true harm reduction policies.

      – Fiscal responsibility and combating massive budgetary waste.

      – Sourcing and funding sustainable civic and local budgets.

      – Dealing with rampant police and judicial corruption and brutality.

      – The allocation of resources and effort focused on community growth instead of stagnation, decay, and division.

      – Checking and rolling back the graft, theft, and brutality that is done by the government and the government’s deputized private contractors.

      – Championing and investing in the use of hemp for novel and traditional uses in both industrial and commercial applications.

      – The creation of jobs and rejuvenated economic activity and possibilities.

      – Affordable and accessible health care and medicine.

      – Addressing voter suppression and citizen harassment and marginalization.

      – Stopping the ongoing militarization of America and the shredding of constitutional rights.

      – Increasing and supporting domestic security and the internal stability of our nation.

      – Enjoying productive and mutually beneficial international relations.

      Any questions? Now, what is it they say “Smoke ’em if you got ’em”? Yes, I do think that’s it.

    • Jeff Trigg says:

      “Do you suppose that there are matters in this election far more important than your right to inhale a doobie ??”

      To the almost 1 million American human beings and their children, family, and friends who have a Democrat-loaded gun held to their head and are locked up for possessing cannabis each year, NO, there is no issue more important to them. You are implying those human beings don’t matter and it is perfectly fine to ignore 1 million Americans losing their freedom and future prospects every year. Frankly, its just pure evil to ignore those people and to give the power of your vote to Obama who will continue ruining all of their lives for doing something he himself has done many times.

      About the only thing that matters more than giving your vote to a tyrant who will hold a gun to people’s heads and lock them in cages for having cannabis would be giving your vote to a tyrant who will kill innocent children with drones without hesitation because they are in the vicinity of a SUSPECTED terrorist, American citizens included.

      More people have left the Democrat and Republican parties in recent years than at any time since our Civil War. The trend shows people are waking up and becoming more politically independent than ever before. Looks like Pete has headed more than direction too. You may be able to shrug off 1 million Americans as not mattering enough to warrant any attention, but that attitude is quickly losing ground for good reason. The Republican and Democrat parties have failed us and its resulted in more people being independents than ever before. Our future is perhaps more important than cannabis policy, granted, but that is only more of a reason to not vote for Obama. Obama wants us to become more like Greece and Spain and Vallejo, CA and Stockton, CA and Chicago.

      Spending our children’s future income before they are even old enough to work is horribly wrong.

    • allan says:


      … at it’s core this is an issue of freedom, of individual sovereignty and cognitive liberty. The doob is but a mild mannered symbol. And as a symbol it illustrates so much of what is wrong today in the U.S… the ignorance/transformation/rewriting of history, the blind adherence to bureaucracy, the ignoring of fact, science and compassion…

  25. Pricknick says:

    Hands down, Dan wins for most responses against his opinion.
    I agree Dan.

  26. darkcycle says:

    I think we need Mr Wiggles to weigh in with the last word here…*banging loudly on ceiling, sending bits of “popcorn” down to land on the couch*
    “Hey Wiggler! What up, Yo? What you think about Voting for Barry?”

  27. claygooding says:

    I was so proud when I turned 21 and could vote but since my first time in the ballot box it has been one vote after the other spent on keeping or trying to keep the other guy out. I am sick of it.

    I want to end our country’s trip into prison land and Johnson/Gray are the only ones even discussing it.

    • Duncan20903 says:


      I find it disingenuous & amusing when people try to trivialize the war on (some) drugs. If it isn’t important and you don’t want to hear about it then repeal these trivial law. We’re just not going to shut up until that happens.

  28. kaptinemo says:

    I’ve not weighed in on this because I figured I’d wait until the usual ‘talking points’ battle died down, because this goes beyond all of that and makes it absolutely clear why Party affiliations are for the hoi polloi, a bad joke foisted on the polity at their great expense.

    Google, if you dare, the following search strings:

    Obama Clinton June 6 2008 Chantilly Virginia

    then google:

    Romney June 6 2012 Chantilly Virginia

    As I keep saying on various so-called ‘progressive’ sites, if you keep feeling a sharp, tearing pain in your anus, and you look behind you and see richly dressed people smiling evilly while brandishing sawed-off broom-handles dripping blood, and you cannot make the connection, then you might be excused as being ‘developmentally challenged’

    But if you won’t make the connection, if you refuse to make the connection, then you have no excuse when it happens again…as it will.

  29. Duncan20903 says:


    One of the more amusing things about this election cycle is how so many supporters of the current administration are warning Libertarian voters that they owe their votes to Mr. Obama. Every year since 1980 I’ve been “stealing” my vote from the Republican nominee. Everyone likes to blame the Y2K election fiasco on Ralph Nader’s supporters but we wouldn’t have ever found out what a hanging chad is if we Libertarians had voted for Mr. Bush in 2000. I’d have rather cut off my ear than vote for Mr. Bush the Lesser but that’s neither here nor there.

    I’d like to suggest that the people here who think they might have something in common with Mr. Johnson’s policies but is just presuming that he supports hard line Libertarian dogma might be pleasantly surprised if you make an examination of his actual position. I’ve been voting Ls ever since 1980. After the 2008 economic fiasco I abandoned the Libertarian Party because the hard line Libertarian would have been waving good-bye and chanting “swim free little sewer trout, swim free” as our economy circled the bowl. I haven’t changed my mind about that either. Mr. Johnson is most certainly a LINO not a dogmatic Libertarian. I’m really not understanding why people don’t get that our government’s deficit spending is unsustainable. We’re borrowing money to pay the interest on money squandered decades ago. That’s deadbeat territory.

    In a lot of ways a vote for Mr. Johnson in November is a vote against hardcore Libertarianism. If Mr. Johnson gets over a million votes that will signal the party faithful that some of the Party’s platform needs to be rethought. If Mr. Johnson gets as many as 5 million votes you can rest assured that the platform will be re-tooled. Note that the Libertarian Party nominees for POTUS in elections past has never gotten a vote total into 7 figures.

    • stlgonzo says:

      I agree with you completely. I have always voted LP or not voted.

      These answers below are why I could never support a Green Party Candidate. I don’t believe in any form of corporate welfare.

      Q and A with Jill Stien


      Q: Do you agree with President Obama’s 2009 Stimulus Plan?

      A: Yes, but it was not big enough.

      Q: Should the federal government subsidize U.S. farmers?

      A: Yes, but include small and organic farmers.

    • Windy says:

      Actually, I DO support the “hardcore (An-Cap) Libertarianism” and the original platform, which never changed for many years. I would not like to see the LP toss that aside. That said, Gary Johnson, even as a LINO he is so much better than either Obama or Romney (or Stein or Goode) and far, far better than Barr was. I’ll take him, since there is no way I can have Ron Paul (who also is not hardcore Libertarian) or Harry Browne (who was), but Johnson is Libertarian enough to form the first bridge from what we have now to a real Libertarian future.

  30. allan says:

    here’s what Calvina is doing for Oregon (a billboard in Portland, OR)

    • darkcycle says:

      Is it me or do I just not get that? A repulsive picture of a attractive child. And that relates to marijuana….how?
      Course, it’s Calvina, so it WOULD HAVE to be repulsive, wouldn’t it? I hope she used her own money (not likely).
      Maybe it’s just me, but I’m thinking it won’t work.
      Haven’t seen that in Washington…yet.

    • kaptinemo says:

      Oh, she stepped in it this time. It just shows how desperate they are.

      (And how self-deluded they are that they think no one will challenge them, particularly on something as crass as that.)

      All one has to ask is how many 9-1-1 calls are for cannabis-caused wife beatings. I’d wager a month’s pay the answer is zero.

      It’s almost enough to make you feel sorry for them. We are definitely winning on almost all fronts this time, and our advance is gaining force by the day. Our time has come…and their day is done.

      I can feel sorry for a defeated opponent…if they are deserving of it. ‘Fighting with honor’ and ‘bridge of silver’ and all that. If they treated their prisoners with dignity, then they’ll deserve that much when facing our sword’s-points.

      But the prohibs broke all the rules. They tortured their prisoners, and still do…when they haven’t killed them outright. They reside in the gutter, and they fight in the gutter…and that’s penultimately where they belong. The only place left after that is the sewer.

    • Plant Down Babylon says:

      Is she implying that while the youth was smoking a doobie, it flew up into her face, giving her a black eye.

      Or maybe, her meth using or drunk parents punched her when they saw her partaking of said doob.

      Of course, I get it, those are taser burns from the swat team that burst into her house upon smelling said doob (after they shot her cute little pomeranian)

      Calvina helps our cause more than hurting it, in my opinion. What if someone ‘accidently’ slipped her a ‘brownie’ which would cause her to see the error of her ways and she became a rabid supporter of our cause?!

      Excuse me while i go enjoy one of those ‘brownies’ smashed up in my ‘bunny tracks’ icecream

      Actually, serious question:

      What percent of the population would see that billboard and believe it? I need real percentages

  31. mr Ikesheeny says:

    Even if straight Inc. gets to set federal drug policy?

  32. Liam says:

    Well, I’m voting for Mr. Johnson because his haircut looks like mine.

  33. stevo says:

    It seems to me that the republicans aught to love Gary Johnson. He is almost everything they say they want: A self made business owner, millionaire, fiscal conservative who wants smaller government, wants more individual liberty, thinks people should take personal responsibility instead of government handouts, and creates jobs (has done much better than Romney at creating jobs when they were governors).

    I suppose his refusal to support the counterproductive wars of aggression, his refusal to support the governments authority to spy on us all and get involved in our bedroom and medical decisions (they would love to overturn Rowe V. Wade and kill gay marriage), and his lack of support for corporate welfare are all deal breakers. What a bunch of hypocrites.

    • Maria says:

      I like to hope that watching him stoically battle it out with the irrational Republican leadership in the run up was eye opening to many republican voters.

  34. stlgonzo says:

    Via The Agitator

    Don’t you want a President that crowd surfs.


  35. Uncle Albert's Nephew says:

    If I was in a safe Obama or safe Rmoney state than I’d go for Johnson. But I’m in Virginia, a swing state, so I have to hold my nose and go for Obama. As bad as he is, the evidence is that Romney would be much worse. I can’t take the chance that Melvin Sembler, or one of his mouthpieces, would be the next drug czar and Humble Pants Mel is on Romney’s team.

    • Dave in Florida says:

      I live on the SunCoast in Florida and I will vote for Gary Johnson!

    • Jeff Trigg says:

      What evidence is there that Romney would be worse on drug policy? Talk? Rhetoric? Hype? Sound bites? Lying shills speaking for Obama? The REAL evidence PROVES Obama is a full on drug warrior perfectly happy throwing innocent human beings in jail. Your vote for Obama is an aggressive and violent vote against me personally to lock me in a cage. You deserve a punch in the nose for voting to lock me a cage. A better human being would not vote to hold a gun to my head and lock me up.

      In Illinois, Obama championed to the push to make the ephedra plant and ephedrine illegal, expanding the drug war yet again. That’s real evidence. Where is your evidence on what Romney did? In Illinois, Obama voted over and over to make prison sentences “tougher” for drug possession. That’s real evidence. In Illinois, Obama continues to endorse Lisa Madigan and Obama publicly praised her for winning Illinois v. Caballes, which says that dog sniffs are not a search. That’s real evidence. Obama could care less about the 4th Amendment and our privacy. In Illinois, Obama’s endorsed Democrats just voted to outlaw flavored rolling papers. Obama and all his friends have no problem holding a gun to someone’s head because they have a pack of strawberry rolling papers. That’s real evidence. Illinois does not have any medical cannabis protections for sick people and Obama did absolutely nothing to change that in the IL. Senate. Illinois’ criminal penalties for possession are more severe than MA and Obama did nothing to change it.

      But all the evidence anyone needs is that Obama has had 4 years to reduce federal drug war spending and budgets and Obama has refused. The evidence proves Obama will spend more money fighting and expanding the drug war than Romney will. The evidence proves Obama will spend MORE federal money fighting medical cannabis in states that have legalized it. The evidence proves Obama has no 2nd thoughts about trying to lock people like Richard Lee in a cage and shutting down every cannabis outlet in this country, against the wished of the people in their state, essentially spitting on the idea of democracy.

      I’m not defending Romney, but ALL the evidence proves that Obama is a vicious drug warrior without any regard for human dignity, personal privacy, or individual Creator given freedoms. If you pull that lever for Obama remember that you are voting to lock 1 million American human beings (mostly minorities) in cages. Those 1 million people and the people who care about them have all the evidence they need to believe you are the scum of the earth voting to make this country an even bigger police state. Don’t believe for a second that you are doing anyone else a favor by voting for Obama, because you are not. You are voting to lock me in a cage, and that makes you scum. Your vote is the same violent act as holding a gun to my head to force me to do what Obama wants. If you, personally, wouldn’t hold a gun to my head and lock me up, then you should not be a chickenshit and vote to give someone else the power to hold a gun to my head.

  36. mr Ikesheeny says:

    Have anyone seen the young Turks. The final straw is pursuit of the grand bargain. I don’t live in a swing state; Pete’s correct. Vote for whoever will show non appreciation of being a bargaining chip!

  37. mr Ikesheeny says:

    I am disappointed that the Greens have no position on Tibet.

  38. darkcycle says:

    Let me be very very clear. I hope Obama loses. I hope he loses by a decent margin, but one that can easily be covered by the “pot head” vote that he is clearly rejecting. I hope the Democrats limp away butt sore. I don’t care if Rmoney gets it, because we will have the same exact government with the same exact policies.
    Because of everything he has done I can no more vote for Obama than I could have for George W. Bush. But especially because of his duplicitous treatment of MMJ and his continued, stated commitment to the drug war. I’m voting Gary Johnson. End.

    • allan says:

      a few elections back the repubs were driven from office across the land. Their prickish arrogance cost them. And the Dems had their chance. We tried to talk to John Kerry, lordie we did, but he rebuffed our advances (jilted again!).

      If a slap down dismissal of a sitting Dem prez is what it takes, so be it. Oppression has been and always will be met with resistance. The harder they push down, the harder we push back (applied social physics).

      Reagan and his f’ing MX missile project (there wasn’t enough water in the desert to mix all the cement required for their elaborate underground system), his nuclear weapons fetish was met head on (and he had virtually nothing to do w/ the Berlin Wall coming down). Whether gender or racial/cultural re/op/pression, political corruption or an oncoming police state, it has never stood for long once momentum against was gained and shall not stand this time.

      I was raised to believe that’s who we are and that’s how we roll (I like that “sweet land of liberty” crap). So the buffoonery of hand waving and exclamatory “he da debil!” each party rolls out against the other in the same old con game just won’t/shouldn’t/can’t fly this time.

      If shuttling Prez Choom out the door is what is called for, so be it. We’ll deal with the other guy just fine.

      And a point I’ve not seen in this thread at least is that what you say in the days before the election need not be what you do w/ your vote.

      If you’re a die-hard Obama loving Dem pot head you can be part of the chorus pointing out the hypocrisy and threatening to withhold your vote right up until the moment you check the Obama box. There will be plenty of us NOT checking the Obama box… but until then, scream bloody murder!

  39. story says:

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  40. Benjamin C. says:

    Good piece Pete. You’ve successfully convinced me that Johnson is deserving of my vote. The commenters, to their credit, have also convinced me that a Romney presidency wouldn’t be significantly enough worse on the issue to make any noticeable difference, so I can rest easier in regards to that aspect.

    That said, I do think the vitriol continually directed at Obama is a misguided use of the brewing anger in the movement right now. I know on paper that he could do a lot of things, such as rescheduling, but we are all aware that you don’t get to be president without first aligning yourself with the party that put you there. Stray too far from the party line, and you will be dealt with.

    I also know that we’ve been polling around 50% give or take in favor of legalization for a bit of time now, but a lot of those people saying “yes” in opinion polls are only in favor on a theoretical level, and when push comes to shove, they are easily swayed from that position by the media. We need to win these people over, and that’s not accomplished by letting our emotions get out of control, but by remaining sober when things get crazy, as they currently are. The President is a figurehead, one who is far more subject to the political forces of Washington than to the human being who stands in his shoes.

    I would hazard a guess that we are at least eight more years from this issue being taken seriously at the federal level, probably more. We will get there, and it make sense that the closer we are, the more anxious everybody is getting, especially when we are dealing with what is, to paraphrase Jim Gray “The worst American social policy second only to slavery.” We’re not in the midst of a revolution, but rather evolution.

    • Pete says:


      A majority of the vitriol directed at Obama here (among other places) is not in terms of his role as Presidential Candidate, but rather in terms of his role as President. That’s a significant difference that’s sometimes lost on those caught up in the either-or, two-party game.

      Quite frankly, I don’t think there’s much of anyone around who thinks highly enough of Romney to say anything about him at all.

      Whoever is President a year from now will also be vilified, unless, of course, they actually do something good in terms of drug policy reform.

      I’ve been directing vitriol at whomever was occupant of the White House for close to 10 years on this blog, and expect to be doing it for some time to come.

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