Three years into its tempestuous tenancy on Main Street, the versatile fiber disregarded by economists the world over keeps prospering in Colorado’s horticulturally-friendly highlands. Its capital city, Denver, fancifully called “The Queen City of the Plains” in Victorian times, fully merits distinction as “The Mile High City” today. The former cowtown might well be the planet’s premier cannabiz incubator.
Getting there was no simple task.
Pot pioneers’ inroads buck the efforts of a declining oligarchy to maintain its choke hold on cannabis commerce.
Good luck with that: in the Mile High City, dispensaries outnumber Starbucks.
“Cannatax” isn’t a dirty word. The city’s all for it. The county benefits from it. The state’s grateful for it. Yet the oligarchy in question insists that any and all pot transactions remain illegal — but not so illegal that that industry players don’t have to fork over their “ill-gotten gains” in the form of state and federal income tax. OK, then.
Hypocrisy is the operative word.
Even here, with four hundred dispensaries woven into the tapestry of the town, the Colorado Department of Revenue’s Marijuana Enforcement Division (MED, get it?), rules with an iron fist. There is a MED because repealing prohibition — the prelude to free enterprise, pot style — is the grand prize activists left standing at the altar. What they wooed and “won” instead was the marriage of medical and marijuana. The pair is now joined together in unholy matrimony as “medical marijuana.”
Some people, in some places, can buy some marijuana, semi-legally, some of the time — as long as some arbitrary condition is met.
I wouldn’t exactly call that triumph.
So, should we celebrate some semblance of cannabiz employing some thousands of workers, producing some cannatax for some cities, counties, and states . . . or bemoan the fact there’s not nearly enough of it?
Well . . . here at Cannabis Commerce . . . we do both.
Fortunately for us, from whatever angle pundits approach the headline-hogging commodity, the story lines are in abundant supply. The unsettled situation calls for eyewitness accounts, frontlines reportage, and expert cannanalysis.
Who better to perform feats of cannanalysis than a poteconomist ― a new breed of pothead slash economist fluent in pot and socioeconomics?
Providentially, Cannabis Commerce has one in residence. Once again, we turn to Lory Kohn, the pot prophet for pot profit, a one-man-army bound and determined to advance the art and science of cannanalysis. Mr. Kohn has come out of nowhere to rank as The World’s #3 Poteconomist, according to The Washington Post.
In this, his most extensive interview to date, Lory bares his soul for London-based philanthropist Lester B. Stone.
Let’s face it; patients’ rights is synonymous with zero rights for non-patients.
So, yeah, I’m baffled why more people aren’t questioning why each medical marijuana state’s take on partial legalization includes the creation of a royal class — the exact sort of social stratification that the founding fathers fought a revolution to get rid of.
These days, I’m willing to bet you couldn’t find “bunk weed” even if you scoured the countryside looking for it.
The astounding diversity of hash, hash oil, tinctures, extracts, waxes, and medibles on offer at Colorado’s finer dispensaries is literally mind blowing. I concede that’s an admirable development. That’s your upside.
The downside is the litany of highly-charged political, legal, and emotional issues that the words “medical marijuana” and the acronym “MMJ” have come to represent, including [clears throat]:
- Infatuation with patients rights at the expense of repealing prohibition
- Ever-changing regulations that won’t stand still, regulations which borrow heavily from the totalitarian governmental control portrayed in George Orwell’s 1984
- Towns ordering dispensaries, which jumped through every regulatory hoop, to “get out of Dodge”
- A disconnect between state and federal law
- An invitation for local and state prosecutors, along with US Attorneys, to pontificate about how the system is being “abused” every time a potentrepreneur makes a buck
- Moratoriums on opening new businesses
- Interminable debate over whether marijuana is a medicine or not
- Accepting far less rights than any disenfranchised group in the long and storied history of American activism
- Patient rights groups and their attorneys erecting the equivalent of a Berlin Wall between non-patients and their buds
- Keeping the DEA in business
- Keeping 45,000 marijuana “offenders” imprisoned.
There’s more, I mean state regulatory agencies like Colorado’s Department of Revenue can decree that every patient has to eat with chopsticks instead of a knife and fork or forfeit their red cards [licenses]. But that oughta be enough to getcha going. Any of those points seem somehow off to you, Lester?
When you settle for limited, state-by-state MMJ amendments, you designate a minority of sick and dying folks as weed-worthy, while, at the same time, you agree that it’s perfectly all right for the existing drug laws to remain in place for everybody else, and, oh by the way, you indicate that it’s also OK with you if those 45,000 “offenders” in prison, 1,000 of them serving life sentences, keep rotting there. You’re not doing this consciously. But you’re doing it just the same.
If you live in a MMJ state and your governor’s name is, say, Christie, I feel for you. Trying to find a job in medical marijuana will be like climbing barbed wire.
Perhaps you’re catching the drift why I’ve turned into medical marijuana’s biggest critic?
Patient rights groups have brainwashed healthy people into voting for MMJ amendments which exclude healthy people.
But if you’re healthy, and you feel the need for weed, why would you? Why would a healthy person associate with a movement that discriminates against them? Is there a worldwide pot shortage? Does weed need to be rationed out only to the most deserving cases? No and no.
It’s hard for people to assimilate this who aren’t around MMJ on a daily basis. Most people get their information third-hand from reporters who dabble in the industry, but don’t specialize in it. Print media and TV reporters, along with their readers and viewers, are inclined to accept medical marijuana— crippling adjective and all— as a progressive development.
Maybe they live in Pawnee City, Nebraska, a cannabis-free zone a thousand miles away from the nearest MMJ outpost. Maybe they’ve seen a compelling picture of a “patient” in a wheelchair; naturally, they want to do something to help that person out right now, little suspecting that helping that disabled person today pushes the repeal of prohibition into a distant tomorrow — if it comes at all. The patient-centric ethos plays on these sympathies.
Reduced to its essence: As long as we help patients today, we don’t care about anyone else, and we don’t care about tomorrow.
I believe that’s the definition of shortsighted.
Couple that with the patient-centric custom of never mentioning the repeal of prohibition as a viable alternative to statewide MMJ amendments, and . . .
For all intents and purposes, patient rights groups have exiled the repeal of prohibition to The Island of Utopian Ideals.
Getting back to your question, no one’s talking about this because so few people live anywhere near any MMJ hotbeds. There aren’t many of them. I’m fortunate that I get my information from my own eyes and ears; that’s the only reason this corrosive sequence is crystal clear to me. Most people haven’t even noticed the de-emphasis on repealing prohibition. They’re been subconsciously programmed to follow the herd.
And, make no mistake, ever since the words “medical” and “marijuana” became joined at the hip, herb mentality has become herd mentality. The herd’s ambling along, following the bell cow with the green cross. “C’mon girls, let’s line up behind old Bessie. Be prepared to show your red cards at the feed trough.”
Herb mentality has become herd mentality.
It’s really a shame, because medical marijuana started off so promisingly. It’s incredibly ironic that I’m one of the few poteconomists to write extensively about MMJ’s downside; after all, no one else on Planet Earth has benefited more from medical marijuana — the product — than yours truly.
I started living out a fairytale existence, in a cannabis Camelot, where a short stroll brought me to the candy store — I mean my local medical marijuana care center — and its staggering pot-pourri of ingestibles.
Maybe I’d pick up something exotic, like “ear wax.” Perhaps I’d try a seductive strain like The Clinic’s Kosher Kush, trimmed smartly into trichomes-laden love buds, or a pomegranate flavored VapeCartridge which allowed me to fire up at restaurants, concerts, sporting events, movie theaters, tractor pulls, and any and all highbrow and lowbrow events without anyone being the wiser. It was kinda like being turned loose in a harem.
My rolls in the hay with some of the most succulent buds on earth aside, there was something wrong with this picture.
When you’re on the outside looking in, even a skinny, lipstick-smeared roach that’s been petrifying in an ashtray for two months is nothing more than a mirage.
Some of these deprived folks live in, say, Cody, Wyoming — about the last state in the union that’s ever gonna pass an MMJ amendment. A pronghorn will get elected governor before that happens. Now, imagine some cowhand from Cody, with MS, who can barely make it through the day.
What exactly is Colorado’s infamous Amendment 20 doing for him?
The answer is, of course, absolutely nothing. Zilch. Nada. That guy’s out in the cold, along with everyone else in non-MMJ states, at the mercy of Big Pharma and its gaily-colored toxicants.
Let’s ponder Big Pharma’s quality of mercy for a second. What do you suppose Big Pharma values more: your health, your life, or their bottom line? Next time you want to jump off a cliff, read an exposé on the inner workings of the pharmaceutical industry. The cliff is usually the better way to go.
So, isn’t it great that some states have medical marijuana, where no one has to step into a pharmacy ever again?
Sorry, but it’s only great if you’re a keyholder in an exclusive club.
And casual observers haven’t yet noticed that while the party’s raging in some of the bigger cities like Boulder, Denver,
and Ft. Collins — whoops, I forgot Ft. Collins told MMJ to get out of Dodge — half the communities in this MMJ state have booted MMJ out, their prerogative under Amendment 20.
Opt-out clauses are built into every MMJ amendment in every MMJ state.
Let’s imagine for a moment that you’re a cancer patient and you live in city that opted out right in the middle of your chemotherapy treatments. Maybe you’re willing to drive to the closest dispensary to pick up a little releaf — two hundred miles away — with a vomit bucket in the van. It’s a lot more likely that you’ll just revert right back to the outlaw economy. Remember that? Your friend knows a friend who knows a friend who …
As someone who came of age in the sixties when the antiwar movement and the civil rights movement changed the course of history, I’m just plain stupefied that people actually voted for a ludicrous system like this. It’s like saying, “Can I have a ball and chain, please?” Excuse me if I’m not dancing the Charleston with a lampshade on my head.
Look, Cannabis Commerce is all about supporting unlimited opportunity for everyone who wants it, in a field they love, in a predominantly dormant economy. I’m talking about fighting the good fight for the full monty of herbal rights: medical, recreational, and industrial, gaining the maximum economic benefits for the greatest amount of people. That’s my worldview.
A lot of people currently working in dead-end jobs, constantly reminded how replaceable they are, in constant fear of losing their jobs, treated like numbers by huge, uncaring corporations, would love nothing more than to find their way into a field they love.
Cannabis Commerce is here to help:
- Unlock the cannabis economy
- Transition from the misery of restricted MMJ to the unbridled joy of cannabiz unchained
- Identify cannajobs and potentrepreneurial opportunities to help people find where they fit in
Then they can start making a living instead of making a dying.
Those are the ideals that Cannabis Commerce stands for.
Compare this unlimited, egalitarian worldview with the restricted, elitist mindset espoused by patient rights groups and their attorneys, who, if they were birds, would be buzzards. Which option works best for you?
I mean, really, if you’re not willing to devote one weekend of your life to the magical herb, you don’t deserve full and lasting legality. Keep paying $500 an ounce, voting for patient rights initiatives that exclude you, and whining about the aftereffects as soon as whatever constricted rights package you settled for gets whittled down to nothing.
Alternatively, you can get back on the path.
No less an activist than Martin Luther King said, “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”
My fondest hope is that a miracle takes place and someone half as intelligent, inspirational, and dynamic as Martin Luther King emerges to steer the herbal rights movement onto a more sensible course.
As things stand today, on June 27, 2012, the marijuana industry has become reduced to medical marijuana. That’s like the chocolate industry being reduced to Malted Milk Balls.
You could also imagine herbal rights as a crumb cake. Settling for the crumbs would be bad enough, but the gutless wimps in the herbal rights “movement” can’t even bring themselves to hold out for the crumbs. They settle for the sprinkling of powdered sugar on the top — which would be fine if they were a powerless minority.
But they’re not. In reality, herbal rights supporters form an overwhelming majority, one that’s incredibly powerful. They just don’t realize it. This is true all over the world! When pot proponents realize how much power they actually have, prohibition will topple once and for all.
But … once again … paradigm change takes lotsa bodies on the Capitol Mall in “the sweltering summer.” Masses of humanity are hard to ignore. They have to be dealt with — unlike batches of electronic signatures emailed to some congressperson’s inbox that are ridiculously simple to delete.
When you get down to it:
Revolution rarely takes place in the virtual realm.
It would be premature and inaccurate to say that Cannabis Commerce is leading the charge away from medical marijuana and back to repealing prohibition; but we certainly pitch in wherever and whenever we can.
A: I’m just mirroring the whole scene. In 2010, when Cannabis Commerce launched, free enterprise ruled. The “green rush” was in full force. One intersection, two blocks from my home, set a world record for dispensary density: three corner shops were flying the green cross over locations that were vacant the week before. In six months, those thirty dispensaries sprang up that I could walk to. Things were fun, fresh, and frenzied around The Queen City of the Plains [Denver]. Cannabis conventions were mobbed. It was like living in a parallel universe, with that long-lost Woodstock magic in the air. Cannabis commerce seemed like exactly what the doctor ordered, in a dismal economy. At that point, Cannabis Commerce was all about celebrating marijuana’s appearance on Main Street. What was there to bitch about? I never thought I’d see retail marijuana in my lifetime. And I never thought I’d find myself living in the epicenter of its biggest hotbed.
- First, the DOR [Colorado Department of Revenue], whose Marijuana Enforcement Division was staffed with holdovers from its Gaming Enforcement Division, placed a moratorium on opening new dispensaries. That’s ridiculous in and of itself. Since when have state governments put moratoriums on convenience stores, cellphone stores, or Starbucks? Since never. That one move essentially prohibited thousands of people dying to work in the industry from doing so. Expense to taxpayers for carrying hordes of them on the unemployment rolls: incalculable.
- Then the same organization virtually eliminated “caregivers.” Caregivers are licensed growers who can “legally” cultivate plants for people who are physically unable to grow their own or choose not to. There used to be no limit to the amount of people a caregiver could grow six mature plants for at a time for. Now they can only grow for a handful of folks. Before that, caregivers regularly strolled into dispensaries hawking duffel bags full of buds. It was a vibrant scene, that could have taken place in a Persian bazaar, harkening back to the very roots of free enterprise. At that point, things had been settling into a nice, natural economic equilibrium. That was too much for the DOR. From its perspective, a situation like that was way too free, way too uncontrollable. Changes were afoot.
- The DOR soon put its unique stamp on the proceedings. Act One was introducing a succession of creative licensing fees so stiff that existing businesses were forced to either consolidate or close up shop, spending a small fortune on legal fees in the process. I’ve got nothing against assessing a few fees here and there. In fact, I’m on record as being all for them. But, sheesh, don’t price them so high that existing businesses struggling to stay afloat are forced out onto the street!
- By the middle of 2011, it was debatable whether what there was of “the industry” was shrinking or expanding. I knew for certain that many of the familiar faces I was used to seeing on dispensary row were no longer there.
- The DOR next ordained that dispensaries had to grow seventy percent of the buds they sell. That set off a mad scramble to locate industrial grow space fast enough to meet an impossibly quick deadline.
- Then we were treated to the DOR’s Big Brotherish concept of tracking product “from seed to sale.” Its roots in the gaming industry were showing. Enough surveillance cameras to cover every inch of a facility had to be installed in every dispensary, cultivation center, and medibles kitchen. Understandably, many freshly-minted “patients” weren’t wild about smiling for Cannabis Camera — especially since a camera had to be strategically placed by every cash register.
- Next, we began learning the hard way that Colorado Amendment 20 offered any city or county the right to opt out of the medical marijuana program. Accordingly, witch hunts were held in communities you wouldn’t expect to see them, including the aforementioned Ft. Collins, a college town, Loveland, an artist’s colony, and Paonia, an organic farming paradise in the middle of nowhere.
- Then, last October, the four California US Attorneys made their presence known, reinforcing the supremacy of federal law over state law by shutting down hundreds of dispensaries from San Diego to San Francisco. The attorneys rationaolized the need for drastic action by self-righteously dredging up old chestnuts about how dispensaries running amok were destroying our nation’s youth. I could counter that living in a hyper-violent society with a rapidly declining middle class, being stuck in an overstrained, creaky education system that’s failed to keep pace with changes to society, and the disintegration of any hope for the future are notable factors that may actually have something to do with warping the minds of the future leaders of tomorrow, too. But let’s not let the facts get in the way of mythology.
- The Colorado US Attorney, John F. Walsh III, isn’t nearly as militant as his California counterparts, but there was pressure on him to demonstrate that federal law is enforced in his district. This winter, Walsh sent twenty-five Colorado dispensaries cease and desist orders. Not one of them was crazy enough to challenge them. In April, another twenty five Colorado dispensaries bit the dust. That seems to be it. For now.
I could keep going, but you get the idea.
You’d think a succession of acrimonious skirmishes like those might change the patient rights tune. You’d think they’d draw the rational conclusion that they should have been working to repeal federal prohibition all along.
They just bitched harder about federal intervention in MMJ states.
It was all those group emails from Steph Scherer and her Americans For Safe Access that really pushed me over the edge. I wrote about that in Big Changes Coming. Thanks to ASA’s pissing and moaning, I began to see that the problem wasn’t that “patients” didn’t have enough rights; the real problem was the fact that organizations like hers were seeking rights for patients only.
A year later, the folly of accepting limited MMJ versus the wisdom of repealing prohibition has become impossible to ignore.
So, if my recent articles for Cannabis Commerce seem more serious and purposeful than they did two years ago, when we were starting out — and you’re right, they probably are — it’s because times like these call for cautionary tales, cautionary tales warning against the perils of accepting partial legality for patients only.
There’s nothing like a few trillion in lost taxes to stiffen the sinews and summon up the blood.
Cannatax was and still is very much a main theme. That hasn’t changed at all.
If people had any idea how much cannatax we’re not collecting, not to mention how much of it we haven’t collected since prohibition went into effect in 1934, the hue and cry over prohibition would be amplified a hundred fold. Politicians would be forced to react. Prohibition would fall. Legalization Day will be the most delirious day on Planet Earth since D-Day.
However, as long as patients-only initiatives constrict the industry to a fraction of what it could be, wants to be, and needs to be, exploring how much cannatax there could be in a truly legal and regulated landscape is no more than a rhetorical exercise.
I’d add the following:
The more you study what conventional media ignores, that is, how much money isn’t being made on the books, how much cannatax isn’t collected, how many budgets aren’t balanced, how many cannajobs there aren’t, and how much countable contribution to Gross Domestic Product there isn’t, the more upsetting MMJ’s hold on the nation becomes.
Once you put all that under the microscope, if you have a conscious, you do what you can to shock the nation out of its lethargy with a series like Ten Reasons Why Medical Marijuana is Cannabis Commerce’s Ball and Chain.
A bit of detective work revealed that Dr. Miron had penned a series of academic white papers sometimes referred to as “The Miron Reports.”
The Miron Reports have their merits, although readability cannot be counted among them. They’re not exactly what I’d call “page-turners.” In fact, after wading through most of them, I’m surprised No-Doz hasn’t named Dr. Miron its national spokesperson.
That said, I’d temper that remark by noting that the decadent circles I’ve traveled in are far removed from Professor Miron’s Ivy League, ivory tower environs. So …
While the “stoners” in my circles may have had a rough time demystifying the metaphysical skepticism implicit in Immanuel Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason, they could generally distinguish a rolling paper from a Post-it note. The same can’t be said for Dr. Miron and the graduate assistants who perform the yeoman’s share of his research.
Conversely, I’ve spent a lifetime surrounded by buds and babes who thrill to the gooey, gunky, stony, skunky goodness of a fine Afghani indica — the same substance faculty members in good standing recoil from in horror. Their fear? Getting too close to the pungent temptation jeopardizes their hard-won tenure.
Is this too much detail?
I’d watch, mesmerized, as the same enterprising dorm-mates broke up ten or so fifty-pound bales into five hundred, one-pound Ziploc freezer bags. Week after week. Month after month. Year after year.
I remember watching one guy painstakingly subtracting precisely one gram — measured on an Ohaus Triple Beam Balance, they didn’t have digital scales back then — from each of his five hundred, one-pound Ziploc bags, and place it in an empty Ziploc. At first, I didn’t get what he was doing. Gradually, as the bag filled up, his madness became clear: no one would ever miss one gram out of the 454 grams in a pound, but each pinch multiplied by five hundred added up to over a pound of pure profit. That probably worked out a little better for my friend than the university’s work-study program.
Why wasn’t I shocked? I figured this was all just part of college life. I was sixteen when I went away to college. I didn’t know any better.
In those days, bales of Colombian Red, often transported by “couples” driving rented Winnebago RVs, roamed about the country. There was a steady parade of them cruising a regular route between Ft. Lauderdale and Colorado. Similar expeditions ran Mexican bricks from Tucson to Boulder. Why Winnebagos? You could squeeze a ton or more into one of those babies.
What I’m getting at is that even thirty years ago, demand was pretty much insatiable.
That’s why something seemed off with
Jeff’s I mean, Dr. Miron’s proclamation that the total amount of marijuana sold annually in the United States was only $11 billion.
That amount just seemed awfully low — especially in light of what I knew certain green-thumbed potentrepreneurs were up to a few years later, that is, cultivating ten-inch purple “donkey dicks” behind ten-foot fences on one-acre plantations within the City of Boulder limits. One guy with no experience grew $100,000 worth of 1981 money in his own back yard. That’s one guy, one yard, one city.
Even though I’m just a lowly mister of poteconomics, not a doctor of economics, I also couldn’t help noticing Miron’s conclusion that $11 billion in total sales would yield $6 billion in cannatax was almost entirely dependent on “sin taxes” being assessed at a whopping fifty percent.
Cannabis was gonna go from an outlaw commodity taxed at a rate of zero percent to a tax rate higher rate than both alcohol and tobacco? I could tell Professor Miron knew about as much about the pot trade as I knew about the Austrian School of Economics.
Similar assumptions and guesstimates crept into Miron’s white papers. He admitted as much when I interviewed him.
Meanwhile, I kept force-feeding myself enough economics to write about it semi-intelligently, while Dr. Miron continued to eschew any real world interaction with cannabis commerce. The gap between us — at least in the nascent field of poteconomics, if not in overall economics knowledge — was narrowing.
Then I discovered Jon Gettman’s work. His 2007 Lost Taxes and Other Costs of Marijuana Laws was much more in touch with reality. There was a lot of good stuff in that, although it, too, was intended more for academics than public consumption.
So, at that point in my quest to uncover all I could about cannatax, all I had to go on was traditional reporting which barely scratched the surface or academic white papers — often decorated with Greek calculus equations — depicting the magical herb as an imponderable mathematical equation.
If I really wanted to read what I wanted to read about cannatax, in the kind of depth that would be meaningful for me or anyone else who was educated but not overeducated, it was obvious that I’d have to create it.
Sure, Miron undersells the pot phenomenon. But, unlike his contemporaries, he has the cojones to analyze it for the world to read. And he’s the guy who introduced poteconomics to the media and remains its first-call quotemeister.
It’s also true that I bow to Dr. Miron’s superior ability to forecast long-term trends for licit commodities like rutabaga, molybdenum, or Brazil nuts. However, things get murkier when it comes to divining trends for illicit commodities. Like Big Daddy Purps, to cite one example that may or may not still be circulating in my bloodstream.
Professor Miron is an observer and an abstainer. I’m a participant and a fan. That counts for a lot. Miron’s study was an entirely joyless pursuit. Mine was a labor of love. Can you excel at something you don’t put your heart and soul into it? For example, I wouldn’t want to read anything I wrote about deficit spending. It’s a subject that just doesn’t get me going. I’ll stop there.
Anyway, I gave it my best shot. Cannabis Commerce in the USA, with its cannatax theme running throughout, is the result. Readers can decide for themselves if it rings true or not: Dr. Miron’s works are available in the Cannabis Commerce Library for comparison.
I was not expecting what I found at all. The Cannabis Liberation Festival, held in a last-ditch attempt to salvage what freedoms the country was still clinging to before the Christian Democrat party purged them, only drew a few hundred stragglers to Westerpark in Amsterdam.
That renewed my appreciation for the CU Boulder 420 celebrations, where 25,000 “stoners” light up as one organism. When you catch a wave like that, realizations like “pro-pot advocates are way more powerful than they realize” tend to enter your mind.
Other highlights include the deals I’ve brokered for various players who found me through Cannabis Commerce. Being an instigator in the Pot Sauce Willie’s saga, which went viral, and matchmaking a licensing agreement between major activated chocolate suppliers, spring to mind.
Opportunities like these keep popping up out of the blue. Even in a quasi-legal environment, tremendous potentrepreneurial opportunities exist.
Email from Lester B. Stone to Lory Kohn: Now that the Los Angeles City Council has voted out all its remaining dispensaries, here’s your chance to gloat.
Reply from Lory Kohn to Lester B. Stone: I’ll pass. I’m not down on dispensaries, I’m down on the fact that there aren’t more of them. It’s a shame that only a privileged few in isolated pockets of the country and the world can transact in them. The closest dispensary to me, The Clinic, is awesome in every way. You bet I’d miss it if it was subtracted from the retail landscape. I wish there were as many green crosses all over the world as there are Coke signs. You know how you can go into the jungles of northern Thailand, and even two-seat coconut stands have Coke signs in front of them? There should be a hut flying the green cross in that village, too. Dispensary extermination brings no joy to this kid.
So, no, I’m not going to crow about nailing that prediction. If I did, I’d have to crawl about being wrong that a major political race hasn’t hinged on pot issues — yet.
But, seriously, the important thing to take away from all this is that the voters of California gave the LA City Council their express permission to f**k with them any way they choose when they prioritized MMJ over repealing prohibition. It’ s no different from signing up for a credit card. When you agree to their terms, you give Barclay’s, or whoever, your permission to change your rate or terms any time they damn well please. So whose fault is it really when they raise your rates? That’s what rankles me: giving away our power as a pro-pot majority to local and state governments, allowing them to f**k with us from here to eternity. I don’t want to sound like a broken record, but the only way to put an end to the torment is by repealing prohibition once and for all.