Greedy Dispensary Owner Opposes Marijuana Legalization

medical marijuana (courtesy Coaster420 and wikimedia.org)
Via NORML, check out these comments from a medical marijuana businessman who opposes Prop 19:


"I'll give you two reasons," Craig said. "One is big tobacco. Did you know that Phillip Morris just bought 400 acres of land up in Northern California? The minute marijuana becomes legal, they'll mass produce and flood the market. And of course, they'll add the same toxins they put in regular cigarettes to get you addicted, and very little THC, so you'll have to buy more... In short, they're going to ruin weed." He gestured around his beloved shop, with every flavor of every strain, in its purist form, selling for at-cost prices. "I like the way things are now."

I'll bet he does. But while you're making money and having a great time, thousands and thousands of people are being arrested. Conspiracy theories about Phillip Morris don't even begin to justify the war on marijuana, and anyone who advances such mindless speculation – while simultaneously lining their own pockets – is a first-rate jackass.

He even tries to bring children into the debate:


"Two, legalization will mean more fifteen-year-old kids smoking pot. Smoking pot mellows you out, makes you lazy. When you're twenty-one, twenty-five, you can make your own decisions. But California doesn't need its fifteen-year-olds lazier than they already are."

Seriously? Well, let me ask you something, sir. Does your dispensary sell marijuana to 15-year-olds? Do your customers resell your product to young teenagers? I imagine you would insist that this isn't the case, and I can't fathom why you think things would be any different if regulated marijuana retailers were allowed to serve all adults instead of just those with a doctor's recommendation.

Let's not forget: Prop 19 is about so much more than just how marijuana will be grown and distributed. It's about stopping the arrest and persecution of marijuana consumers and reducing the violence and chaos of prohibition. Concerns about how it might affect the market are understandable, but people were nervous about Prop 215 as well, and it's clearly become a miracle for patients and a huge step forward for reform in general.

The bottom line is that anyone who currently sells marijuana in California, medical or otherwise, should be thrilled with the prospect of dramatically reducing arrests for marijuana possession and the vicious consequences that go along with it. All other concerns are secondary to ensuring the freedom of adults to enjoy cannabis without fear of arrest, and Prop 19 will do exactly that. Those who object, those who would fight to continue the war, are enemies of justice. Patients should never purchase medicine from anyone who lobbies to continue the disease of prohibition.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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the freedom of adults to enjoy cannabis without fear of arrest"

Alcohol kills, but cannabis is illegal? That is so not going to work, on so many levels, other than for special interests like the prison industrial complex and the drug lords/corruptos.
Another spring has gone, no garden, another July 4 has gone, solemn pledges of liberty and justice for all made, and alcohol supremacist bigotry still tramples on the self-evident right of cannabis users to prefer a safer alternative to alcohol, the legal drug that spreads so much terror among us. Punishing cannabis users for the crimes of alcohol abusers is sick justice. Stop this nonsense and we can get back to business like we need to.

Greedy Dispensary Owner Opposes Marijuana Legalization

I agree with the guy. No, not about the kids smoking pot stuff. I remember when I was a kid. Legal or illegal, allowed or not, if we kids wanted to get something, soon it was there. So the kid arguement does not work. Seriously, kids can find alcohol tobacco and pot no problem.
Ok, here is one point not one of you pot lovers will like, but that is how life is kids...it never is perfect. Legalize pot, tax it, what ever...it will never be free of charge unless you become a top grower and grow your own and even then it will be your sweat equity making it valuable for you and you will not part from it unless you get paid! In fact, you might end up paying tax on your own homegrown pot even if it is grown for yourself. Hey, do not argue with me. Blame the government and the tax man:)
Oh yes, big tobacco is around the corner looking for an other cash cow. They could make billions of off pot. Cheaper pot? Since when? You people need to go back to school and pay attention at economics 101. Diamonds are like dirt, but it is controlled and its price artificially inflated. If pot is ever legalized. It will be legal for big corporations to sell it to you at the same high price. Several big corporations will form a pot association...yes, the existing ones will be disbanded and disregarded and sued by corporate lawyers...anyway, things are not what you guys imagine.

You don't know what you're

You don't know what you're talking about.

Really?

That is a great conspiracy theory! And, it has about the same validity of all the others! You almost made, a statement as good as the RAND report!

Yes really. If the law is

Yes really. If the law is written in such a way as to allow people to grow their own and share it without compensation then:

1)You're going to have a large segment of people who DO grow their own and share it so big tobacco isn't going to be able to corner any market.

2) The chemical added to cigarettes is Ammonia. Its not addictive. It dilates blood vessels so you can absorb more nicotine which, being the most addictive drug known, hardly needs the addition of other addictive chemicals. Not that this makes it right but I don't think you'll have this problem with Pot because soaking in in Ammonia is going to make it taste nasty. As long as people can get quality bud the big companies will have to keep theirs up to par.

3) With the price of weed going down so drastically you're going to have to have a LOT more resources in order to make a profit. You won't be able to make much money just selling what you grow in a basement. You'll need large fields and greenhouses, essentially full size farms. That's a good thing, ask any farmer. Yes, we'll have to put up with some bullshit from the corporate world but it won't be as bad as you think. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if they just decided to grow hemp. They'll make a lot more money off a plant that can be completely used instead of one that they have to trim and refine to get the stuff people like to smoke. Plus no hassles with the FDA or DEA.

4) Sorry about being rude before. Guess I was having a bad day and brought it here with me.

Prop 19:

Well said Scott Morgan !

The Friday 8:06 a.m. guy is

The Friday 8:06 a.m. guy is right, Big 2WackGo won't corner any pot market, after legalization one-hitters will also be legal and no one will smoke hot burning overdose "joint" papers anymore; this rational conservative behavior will flood over into the 40-mil. US nigotine $igarette puffsucker population and the oligarchs will find themselves selling 1/15 as much tobackgo.

"Smoking pot mellows you out, makes you lazy."

This guy should know better, but the benefit of an exciting campaign is going to be increased discussion about what the function of cannabis is from the individual, do-it-thyself viewpoint of How to Use It. Anyone can choose to be a cannabis activist (as opposed to mellow, lazy or whatever other slur cliche) by timing tokes so that the 1-4 hours after inhaling are the hours scheduled for strenuous adventurous life (such as trimming dead branches in the park).

Depends on the kind of pot you smoke

Cannabis indica is a pretty heavy high, it can definitely make one mellow and somewhat lazy, if one smokes more than just a toke or two; however, it is great for thinking thru a problem or coming up with creative ideas, really listening to music, floating on a body of water, viewing movies or TV, or just appreciating nature's beauty, both visual and aural. Cannabis sativa is a more active high, smoke a whole bowlful and you'll still probably get up and dance to that music you are listening to, or get outside and weed your flowerbed, or do some other project. There are many cross breeds that lean one way or the other to varying degrees. Most cannabis connoisseurs like to have a variety on hand, because indica makes one creative and sativa allows one to carry out those creative ideas.

I'm pro-choice on EVERYTHING!

Best case

If we are extremely lucky, cannabis legalization will be modeled on how wine is legal in CA.

Large corporate farms will produce consistent mass market branded product at low prices. Small producers will produce gourmet boutique product at higher prices but much smaller market share. That is where all the top product will come from. There will also be some alternate smokeless products (tinctures, eatables). Excise tax will be sensible and that means low (based on THC content as grouped into ranges of per cent and not more than 10% of the retail price) This is necessary to kill black market incentives.
All product labeled as to THC and even CBD content. While it is legal in CA for a household to produce 200 gallons of wine without a permit and tax free, very few people do. The cannabis equivalent to that would be 12-14 lbs of dried clean flower. Homegrowing would be legal up to 12-14 lbs. Unpermitted, untaxed production and distribution is
made not worth doing because legal taxed product is sold widely and at prices that homegrowers can't compete with. Like $10 ozs at Trader Joes or Costco. That price is easy to reach with large commercial farm production.

Legalization would have to be well planned and implemented as it would take a few years to shake out supply/demand market forces.

Good job

That's a truly workable model for legalization.

I'm pro-choice on EVERYTHING!

Best Case: Well thought out!

Excellent. We should all hold this vision!

interesting post, smorgan,

interesting post, smorgan, although i think maybe u assume wrongly that greed is the primary motivation for this opposition to legalization. interesting comments as well. all will be moot, however, if legalization is voted down.

i'm just excited it has a chance. maybe if it passes, it'll open a floodgate to legalization elsewhere. for someone like me who's become very cynical and jaded about politics, it's something to follow closely, a reason to care about this election (besides the usual longshot hope that people will finally get wise to the false choice between democrats and republicans, and go green instead.)

the virgin terry

I agree with almost everything you wrote

except for wanting people to vote green party, that party is just as big government authoritarian as the Democrats and Republicans, they are just authoritarian on different issues.

If you truly want real freedom (instead of the illusion of freedom that is our current situation), vote for the libertarians on your ballot and never, ever cast another vote for anyone with a D or R behind their name, even if that means you leave some races unvoted. If all voters were to follow that plan, the very tiny percentages of the total ballots voted that D & R candidates would receive might even make the power elite sit up and take notice of the masses, for a change.

I'm pro-choice on EVERYTHING!

This is the reason why

This is the reason why companies like Phillip Morris buying land to overtake the California Cannabis market - it's extremely profitable and that is all they care about. They will massive produce low-grade plants with controlled potency to cause you to buy more and at such a rate uneducated American Idol distracted consumer Americans will not realize what they are doing to Dispensery Owners and Growers who have built this industry from the grass roots stages and completely kill them to a corporate giant from the South. Think about it - do we want this to benefit Californians or the Southern Tobacco Industry? You are all stupid and crazy if you think we should allow these companies to continue to purchase land in Northern California. Here are the reasons Cannabis is fairly priced and distribution methods are fine the way they are:
1. Not that many people smoke pot - yes, a lot of people have, but not many do occasionally
2. Cannabis is not an easy grow - have you ever tried growing dispensery quality cannabis? it takes 3 months of research, care, knowledge and effort to produce the best quality... and depending on the style - yields can vary from an ounce to a pound depending upon technique.
3. Dispenseries provide security and privacy that people appreciate
4. Dispenseries choose which cannabis to buy and whom to buy from - this means that dispenseries (e.g. Harborside Health Center) actually has a research lab in which they analyze all cannabis to inspect for molds/fungus/disease/pests that could possibly be harmful to humans. With all the factory call backs and corners corporations like to cut these days - who wants these Southern CEOs in charge of our industry? Let the dispenseries have the control - they keep cannabis safe and at a top quality.
5. Dispenseries will provide jobs and as well be able to generate money to a community of growers, hasheesh/extract makers, cannabis/hash based bakery goods, etc.

As legalization efforts intensify and we try to knock down the doors of prohibition - Californians cannot sell their souls and destroy the ones who have been the spine of this movement!!!

I don't see how this man is

I don't see how this man is "greedy". Companies like Phillip Morris and these Southern Tobacoo Companies are the greedy ones. This man has no more desire than to own his own dispensery and live happy off his small buisness. Phillip Morris is going to continue to try to take out small buisnesses and other fat corporate pigs to gain control of the industry - like any other supply and demand product. You need to put into perspective who the greedier person is - the CEO who wants the whole industry or the small buisness man who has no intentions of running the guy across town out of buisness.

Vote NO on Prop 19!

Prop 19 is a poorly written bill that contains new ways for the police to arrest cannabis users. It is a land grab by a few large organizations, mainly Richard Lee of Oaksterdam. It forbids any smoking in public, any smoking in your own home if minors are present (Have kids? You're out of luck.) It INCREASES the penalty for giving cannabis to anyone 18-21 to 6 months in jail.

It also prohibits possession of cannabis that did not come from an "approved" supplier. Better keep your receipt in case the cops demand it!

Read this thorough debunking and find out why Dennis Peron and the late Jack Herer both strongly OPPOSE Prop 19:

http://votetaxcannabis2010.blogspot.com/2010/07/why-pro-pot-activists-op...

Shame on Stop the Drug War for continuing to propagate the lie that Prop 19 is a "legalization" bill. It most certainly is not. Being caught with less than 1 oz is already NOT an arrestable offense in California so this bill will in no way reduce arrests. But it does give the cops new ways to arrest the folks they don't like.

This is not a step in the right direction. If this passes, people will continue to be arrested for the next 20 years. Please vote NO! Hold out for a true legalization bill in 2012.

No on prop 19

Peacelove I completely agree on everything you have written, I just hope there is a way to let thousands of simple minded people know it's not gonna be what they think If this prop passes. we need to network and get out what the true outcome will be if this prop is successful which I'm not ready to just sit back and watch big business monopolize and take over something we the people of California built.

there are some

vicious me first attitudes among potheads apparently. are you guys going to support fighting against the drug war machinery after phillip morris is growing cannabis on 10,000 acre plantations? (and i hope they do, why not) ??? will you still fight police state tyranny and tactics after you get your way?

It's not about GREED

This is a huge money and land grab opportunity for the Prop 19 creators and big tobacco. It's all about tax revenue and helping the rich get richer...which always seems to be the case. Small collectives providing quality meds in flower, concentrates, etc. is working well. People need to stop thinking about low priced bud and think less selfishly about the Californians who have worked so hard to create businesses and jobs for California. Don't let this particular bill pass. I run a collective in the Bay Area. I can tell you that after 6 months of working very hard we have not made a dime. No return on our investment of the remodel of the building, no income etc. Not yet anyway. We work so hard at customer service and our patient count is growing. Eventually we'll make a profit. Nothing crazy...but it will generate jobs. (I won't always be the one working there) plus people get to take there time and look closely at buds under magnification etc. Mass market pot will make Phillip Morris more rich. It will cut out a lot of smaller operators as well. Plus, like in Oakland, they'll have three grow warehouses...as I understand it. Montel Williams has applied for a permit to be ONE of the THREE main grows in Oakland. The rich get richer...

borden's picture

The current system you've

The current system you've described is doing a good job of providing marijuana to the patients who are part of it, but it's not working very well for the enormous number of people being arrested for marijuana throughout California every day.

Other than the fact that a massive government war against marijuana and people who use and provide it has continued largely unabated, with countless lives being destroyed by it all the time, the system is working pretty well.

I respect the work that you and others in your community have done, which has advanced things greatly, and at some risk to yourselves. But you and your collective members are not the only people of concern here.

As for the Oakland situation, that's an unrelated issue. The city council has promised to return to the matter in order to add a framework for including small- and medium-size growers. Hopefully they will keep that promise. If they don't, it will be an injustice, but this has nothing to do with Prop 19.

Californians

First let me say that Californians did found Marijuana, and are not entitled to dominate this market. Indians/Native Americans were smoking pot long before we stole their land and made it illegal. However, I don't think that big business and/or out of state businesses should be allowed to take over this market. To this end I propose that California add some safeguards to this bill, such as. Growers must be have been born and reside in the state of California, Marijuana may not be imported or exported to or from any other states or countries, Large tobacco companies may not participate in the the growing or selling of marijuana. I am not from California, in fact, I live in Ohio so I have no vested interest in this industry. I do however believe that states need to protect their jobs and markets as individual entities to keep the federal government at bay. In these current times with large scale discussions about civil war and the break up of the United States, it is increasingly important for all states to control their local markets.  

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