Follow the money

The July 21-28 issue of The Nation has a cover story on “Guess Who’s Profiting from Pot Prohibition

Ironically, both CADCA and the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids are heavily reliant on a combination of federal drug-prevention education grants and funding from pharmaceutical companies. Founded in 1992, CADCA has lobbied aggressively for a range of federal grants for groups dedicated to the “war on drugs.” The Drug-Free Communities Act of 1997, a program directed by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, was created through CADCA’s advocacy. That law now allocates over $90 million a year to community organizations dedicated to reducing drug abuse. Records show that CADCA has received more than $2.5 million in annual federal funding in recent years. The former Partnership for a Drug-Free America, founded in 1985 and best known for its dramatic “This is your brain on drugs” public service announcements, has received similarly hefty taxpayer support while advocating for increased anti-drug grant programs.

The Nation obtained a confidential financial disclosure from the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids showing that the group’s largest donors include Purdue Pharma, the manufacturer of OxyContin, and Abbott Laboratories, maker of the opioid Vicodin. CADCA also counts Purdue Pharma as a major supporter, as well as Alkermes, the maker of a powerful and extremely controversial new painkiller called Zohydrol. The drug, which was released to the public in March, has sparked a nationwide protest, since Zohydrol is reportedly ten times stronger than OxyContin. Janssen Pharmaceutical, a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary that produces the painkiller Nucynta, and Pfizer, which manufactures several opioid products, are also CADCA sponsors. For corporate donors, CADCA offers a raft of partnership opportunities, including authorized use of the “CADCA logo for your company’s marketing, website, and advertising materials, etc.”

The article goes on to talk about a variety of financial interests of those opposing legalization, including asset forfeiture and other sources.

This isn’t a surprise to us. We’ve long talked about the fact that the most ardent supporters of prohibition are either sadomoralists or financially profiting from the drug war (or both).

You can read more about Big Prohibition here.

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39 Responses to Follow the money

  1. Duncan20903 says:


    OK, are there still people who don’t understand prohibitionist propaganda? Last time:

    This is your brain: {{{}}}

    This is your brain on prohibitionist propaganda: {null}

    Any questions? [Good, because there’s a grand slam breakfast at Denny’s with my name on it. Mmm, fried eggs!]

  2. The Urban Dictionary

    1. sadomoralist

    An official with power who derives pleasure from inflicting personal moral judgments on others. A sadomoralist obsessively promotes punishment, often through the criminalization of personal behavior, and will not even consider alternative approaches, or evidence of the ineffectiveness or harm of punishment.

    “The Congressman is a sadomoralist who is convinced that marijuana is immoral, and is thrilled by the arrests of medical marijuana patients.”

    • Windy says:

      Perfect description of the US Attorney who is behind the prosecution of the Kettle Falls Five (as well as others in other States, some female, some male).

  3. Jean Valjean says:

    Seems to be behind the Nation’s paywall.

  4. kaptinemo says:

    What else would anyone with three brain cells to click together surmise? Only those who profit from an unpopular public policy like cannabis prohibition would dare front for it. “Whose bread I eat, his song I sing.”

    Just one problem, now: we, the taxpayers, don’t want to supply the ‘bread’, anymore.The biggest civil supporters of drug prohibition, Grammaw and Grampaw, are politically nullified. Those for whom the ‘war’ was (ostensibly) fought have almost unanimously turned thumb’s-down on it…and they pay the taxes now.

    More and more the fig leaf giving the DrugWar its ‘social immunity’ (anything goes since it’s all for the kids!) which kept it from being heavily scrutinized for its real modus operandi (maintaining various ‘anti-drug’ bureaucracies and attendant parasitic industries serving this wholly artificial niche) is being stripped away.

    The tall grass that hid the prohib’s game is being cut down by the Grim Reaper’s lawnmower…and nothing is replacing it. And with each swathe cut down, more and more corp-rat logos can be seen. No surprise to us.

  5. Jean Valjean says:

    I wonder how much the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids are funded by Sandoz or the other manufacturers of Ritalin? Wouldn’t that be an irony? Guess Hillary was right… there’s just too much lovely money in it to stop…
    would love to have read more about asset forfeiture and all the rest of the blood sucking prohibitionists…would someone who has access to the article please cut and paste?

  6. Servetus says:

    The companies that market OxyContin, Vicotin, and Zohydrol appear as if they’re bribing the federal government to keep their synthetic opiates from being Quaaluded, in other words taken off the market.

    By donating to the drug war, the companies acquire an aura of moral righteousness that makes it seem as if they care what happens to people who consume too much of their product. The drug war is devoted to prohibition, not free marketing, so the onus for the drug war ultimately falls on herbs such as marijuana, magic mushrooms, and so forth, not just raw opium and coca leaves.

    The money Big Pharma donates to keep the drug war going is a pittance compared to what they get in return: exclusive intellectual property rights and legal access to the painkiller market. Another benefit is they don’t assume responsibility for the people who fry themselves on one of their synthetic opiates or stimulants. It becomes the responsibility of the taxpayer to pay the damages.

    • “The companies that market OxyContin, Vicotin, and Zohydrol appear as if they’re bribing the federal government to keep their synthetic opiates from being Quaaluded, in other words taken off the market.”

      We should be clear here. I am not against pain killers nor do I advocate their PROHIBITION. My wife just broke her wrist into small pieces in a fall, and were it not for opiates this type of situation would be intolerable and unbearable.

      The hypocrisy of these drug companies is the blatant effort to monopolize their products by criminalizing the use of anything that might compete outside of their corporate circles.

      Corporate criminals have no morals or ethics when it comes to protecting their profit margins.

  7. ezrydn says:

    Those people (the prohibitionists) would turn to grave robbing if they thought some nickels were available. Sad!

  8. DdC says:

    Profit on treatments, outlawing cures and prevention.
    Cannabis Shrinks Tumors since 1974

    Drug Worriers preferred methods of treatment…

    Trillion spent on the Ganjawar is a Trillion in the Pockets of Prohibitionists.


    Shame on the Drug Worrier Profiteers…

    • DdC says:

      “A great deal of intelligence
      can be invested in ignorance
      when the need for illusion is deep.”
      — Saul Bellow

      Police Profit From Marijuana Arrests In U.S. The Young Turks
      Police departments in America have a government backed incentive to arrest people for drug offenses (smoking or selling pot for example) rather than pursuing violent crimes. Ana Kasparian and Cenk Uygur of The Young Turks break down a new report from The Huffington Post.

      Driven By Drug War Incentives, Cops Target Pot Smokers, Brush Off Victims Of Violent Crime huffingtonpost

      Are Ex-DEA Reform Opponents Profiting from Prohibition? mpp

      4 Industries Getting Rich Off the Drug War –

      The vast majority of prohibitionists
      profit on the drug war,..
      … and that is their only motive.

      NeoConflicts of Interest
      MJ Research Cut as Support Grows

      Profit on Misery they create, the form it takes doesn’t matter. Start with the cops, then the judges selling kids for cash. Wall St selling guns and concussion grenades, while keeping Hemp seed away from meat, dairy and fish. Big Pharma and X drug czars and every prohibitionist politician getting their cut. Funding crusades, a corporate tax dodge. Banks inbedded with Cartel’s aren’t new. As stated, many know and they have been exposed. Still, just a great big secret.

      Google results: drug war profits
      The drug war’s profit motive – The Washington Post
      How profits help drive the war on drugs | MSNBC
      How Massive Profits Are Being Made Out of Mexico’s Bloody Drug War
      Archive – Who Profits From Drugs? Public Broadcasting
      (FY2014 Federal Drug Control Budget)
      Policing For Profit: The Drug War’s Hidden Economic Agenda
      The “War On Drugs” Is A $2.5 Trillion Racket
      Just how old IS the DRUG WAR, and WHO Profits ?
      How the Drug War has profitted the ruling class. … The London “Times”
      Who profits from the ‘war on drugs?’ – Nogales International

  9. allan says:

    1967, Steppenwolf’s Monster (


    The spirit was freedom and justice
    And its keepers seemed generous and kind
    Its leaders were supposed to serve the country
    But now they won’t pay it no mind
    Cause the people grew fat and got lazy
    Now their vote is a meaningless joke
    They babble about law and order
    But it’s all just an echo of what they’ve been told

    Yeah, there’s a monster on the loose
    It’s got our heads into the noose
    And it just sits there watchin’

    The cities have turned into jungles
    And corruption is stranglin’ the land
    The police force is watching the people
    And the people just can’t understand
    We don’t know how to mind our own business
    ‘Cause the whole world’s got to be just like us
    Now we are fighting a war over there
    No matter who’s the winner we can’t pay the cost

    ‘Cause there’s a monster on the loose
    It’s got our heads into the noose
    And it just sits there watchin’

    America, where are you now
    Don’t you care about your sons and daughters
    Don’t you know we need you now
    We can’t fight alone against the monster

    America, where are you now
    Don’t you care about your sons and daughters
    Don’t you know we need you now
    We can’t fight alone against the monster


  10. DannZoidal/to the rescue says:

    “..would someone who has access to the article please cut and paste?”

    The second live link that pete posted

  11. Pingback: Guess Who's Profiting From Pot Prohibition? - YaHooka Forums

  12. thelbert says:

    retail sales of legal pot in WA starts tuesday:

  13. Duncan20903 says:


    I can’t even come up with a way to make fun of these people in the way they deserve:

    How to fund cops? Town considers marijuana tax
    Brett M. Kelman and Dave Nyczepir
    July 5, 2014

    DESERT HOT SPRINGS, Calif. — A desperate, crime-ridden desert town, reeling from a recent brush with bankruptcy, has turned to an unlikely savior to pay for its embattled police force — marijuana.

    Desert Hot Springs, a city of about 28,000 people in the desert two hours east of Los Angeles, is considering legalizing medical marijuana dispensaries as a last-ditch effort to bolster the city budget so it can maintain its local police department.

    Judy Shea, a longtime city resident who works for a local 12-step recovery program, has urged the City Council to pursue an across-the-board sales tax increase instead of lifting the dispensary ban.

    Shea insists that medical marijuana will do more to boost crime than bolster police, but she concedes that, considering the city’s dire finances, the return of dispensaries is inevitable.

    “Yeah, the city will get millions of dollars in revenue, but it’s going to hurt the overall population,” Shea [regurgitated]. “We’ve worked so hard to clean up this town, and now we’re going to cause more drug addiction.”

  14. claygooding says:

    There are so many trails of money coming off pot it is scary and when you start following them you realize why it is so hard to turn this ship off the prohibition course set by politicians and kept dialed in by greed.

    Add that it is impossible for the government to fool all of America for 8 decades,,,ask us.

  15. Duncan20903 says:


    So here’s a MSM article about the abuse of SWAT teams. Nothing particularly surprising for people who have been following along. It’s because it’s not from any of the usual suspects that makes me think it remarkable.

    Winston-Salem man arrested by tactical team looking for marijuana
    July 6, 2014

    WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Across the United States, law enforcement agencies are becoming more militarized, according to a recent American Civil Liberties Union report. The Journal begins today a series about how the Winston-Salem Police Department and the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office use their respective SWAT teams. Today, we examine the case of Ryan Nicholas. Next Sunday, an overview of the use of SWAT in Winston-Salem.

    The Winston-Salem Police Department was looking for a marijuana plant when 18 SWAT officers launched a raid April 8, 2011, blasting into a house near Miller Park using an explosive device.

    The marijuana plant was a no-show.

    • primus says:

      Could that not be actionable as an ‘unreasonable search’? Or perhaps ‘unreasonable search and seizure’? IOW could one sue the cops for doing such? If there had been some contraband, could one have the case thrown out on that basis?

    • Police Chief Barry Rountree:
      “If the bad guy is in control, we have a bad situation”

      So, 18 SWAT officers launched a raid April 8, 2011, blasting into a house near Miller Park using an explosive device. Looking for Matt Bremer and his pot. He wasn’t there so they arrested the guy that was.

      Matt Bremer is a former Marine who served three tours of duty in Operation Iraqi Freedom. He was not in the house and the pot was his.

      This is who the police chief was referring to as the bad guy.

      The above 2 facts do not reconcile and converge into a sane line of thinking. Its no wonder that SWAT is so insane to use in a neighborhood. A former marine should not be thought of as “a bad guy”. He was way off base right from the start.

      Something is really wrong here. Matt Bremer was probably safer during his participation in Operation Iraqi Freedom.

      At least he wasn’t “the bad guy” then.

      • primus says:

        Actually, YES HE WAS the bad guy in Iraq. They all were. They should never have been there. The US was WRONG to invade Iraq, Afghanistan etc. Those are sovereign nations and the US has no business going in there. The people who sent those troops in should be tried as war criminals.

        • Crut says:

          Sorry, with no offense, I need to say something here.
          Key phrase in your rant:

          The people who sent those troops in should be tried as war criminals.

          I can agree with that to a point. Let’s put the cards on the table (i.e. get whatever classified information exists on their actions in the public sphere, or at a minimum in an accountable, honest courtroom).

          Actually, YES HE WAS the bad guy in Iraq. They all were. They should never have been there.

          I can’t agree with that. Saying this shows that you are either intentionally or ideologically against the military, or are just ignorant. Is the nuclear engine mechanic on an aircraft carrier responsible for where the Captain steers his ship? No, he can privately disagree with the captain’s intentions, but he doesn’t make the decisions; he follows lawful orders, or is replaced.

          The US was WRONG to invade Iraq, Afghanistan etc. Those are sovereign nations and the US has no business going in there.

          Wrong or not, it happened. I don’t think you mean to defend the sheriffs actions here, but by advocating the mentality of “killing the messenger”, please don’t become part of the problem…

        • allan says:

          I’m agreeing with Crut here…

          A lesson I’ve learned first hand. As a GI I was helping bomb Cambodia (we were bombing Cambodia?) but it was that participation that turned me into a peacenik (w/ a shove from some good LSD).

          In Doug Boyd’s book Rolling Thunder, they go visit the traditional Shoshone Piñon groves where they witness BLM bulldozers pulling down the sacred trees w/ drag chains. The young idealists want to go stop the bulldozer operators but RT tells them that it isn’t the drivers of those dozers that are the problem, they’re just regular people feeding their families. Rather it is the mindset (and those that promulgate same) that make such actions possible and it’s that thinking that need to be challenged.

          As a SEA vet of the VN era I know (we ALL know) how snafu that was… and Afghanistan and Iraq were no less. GIs go, where they are sent. That’s the duty, not the deciding of right and wrong.

          I know I am not the only vet that didn’t like what I/he/she was doing. But worse today is how many of this current crop of vets were FNGs… they didn’t sign up for combat, they signed with the NG to help here at home. And in that they got screwed.

        • “The US was WRONG to invade Iraq, Afghanistan etc. “YES HE WAS the bad guy in Iraq.”

          You are just as much the bad guy as any American citizen is by those standards.

          We accomplish nothing by blaming the pawns, its time to spotlight the puppet masters and their minions.

          Indicting everyone that participates in their foul games does not solve the problem. Cutting off your nose to spite your face is an expression that comes into my mind to describe it.

          Guilt by association makes every American citizen just as guilty. Those wars are being fought in YOUR NAME. I don’t like it anymore than you do, primus. We need the puppet master names to go with the anger. “US” or “THEM” isn’t good enough. The elections in 2016 is the answer.

      • Duncan20903 says:


        The cohort of former Marines is large enough that it’s just plain silly to think that none of them are Opie gone bad.

        How many former Marines are in Leavenworth Kansas? OK, the correct answer is zero but that’s only because people in prison for UCMJ violation aren’t separated from the military until their sentence is discharged..

        Charles Whitman?

  16. jean valjean says:

    at one time stupid patrick and sham used present themselves as the middle ground between two “extremes” of legalizers and prohibs.he now seems to only talk anout drug reformers as extremists which reveals the true motivation of project sam(e).

    • Duncan20903 says:


      Please go easy on Stupid Patrick. The poor man has a hollow space where most people keep their brains. It’s a miracle that he’s even toilet trained.

      • allan says:


        It’s a miracle that he’s even toilet trained.


        • Duncan20903 says:


          Hmm, Depends are the overlooked “third way” of underwear. I hadn’t thought of that until just now. It certainly is consistent with SAM’s mission statements.

          Well just maybe there aren’t any miracles in this case after all. I must remember that when I hear hoofbeats I need to think horses not zebras. Well that is unless I happened to be on vacation in Kenya.

        • allan says:

          Depends are the overlooked “third way” of underwear.

          I think you meant overloaded… after all the man is completely full of shit.

  17. Jean Valjean says:

    If he’s seriously (LOL) trying to present a “third way” why is he speaking at a forum run by and for the cause of anti-drug reform? (I suppose he couldn’t really insult his hosts/paymasters by calling them extremists to their faces, now could he?)
    As a token of the middle way , I look forward to paytrick speaking to a cannabis reform conference and (correctly) addressing the prohibs as extremists.

  18. allan says:

    gosh, look at that, 23 states w/ mmj (no matter how stilted) now. Welcome NY to the dark side.

  19. Colin Keesee says:

    The fact that the makers of opiate pain relievers are funding anti-cannabis efforts seems rather odd. Whether in a recreational or medical context, opiates and cannabis are not the same nor are they close substitutes.

    Cannabis can amplify the effects of opiates and it can mask mild pain in some folks but most people, who suffer from more serious pain, want and need opiate based painkillers. Cannabis can do a great deal medically but if cannabis is ever legal in all 50 states, its availability would not get rid of the demand for serious pain medication.

    • Windy says:

      You are correct. My hubby suffers severe back pain from disintegrating discs, use of cannabis (which he truly enjoys) causes him to be more aware of the pain, rather than less aware, I have also noticed this effect in myself (arthritis in my lower back). Opioid pain medication sales will not be harmed by cannabis legalization, but it IS being harmed by prohibition, thanks to the DEA’s restriction on how much may be manufactured or prescribed.

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