Just Vote No on the Michigan’s Cannabis Initiative: Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol


Just Vote No on the Michigan’s Cannabis Initiative: Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol (November 2018)

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Bruce Cain·Wednesday, June 6, 2018

So it is June 6th, 2018, and it looks like we’ll have another awful Cannabis Initiative on the November Ballot. It is being pushed by the “Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol” (CRMLA). Having reviewed the language of this idiotic Initiative I simply cannot support this personally. And if there were “truth in advertising” it should really be called “Cramming Ridiculous Marijuana Laws up our Asses.” And it sucks so bad that it could probably suck the rust off of a door knob. You can read the news here:

===== Michigan pot legalization initiative dodges Republican meddling, heads to ballot Posted By Violet Ikonomova on Wed, Jun 6, 2018 https://www.metrotimes.com/news-hits/archives/2018/06/06/michigan-pot-legalization-initiative-dodges-republican-meddling-heads-to-ballot =====

You can read the full text of the “Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol” Initiative language here:

https://www.regulatemi.org/initiative/

I’m sorry but I’ve been a Cannabis Activist for well over 50 years and a journalist and activist for over 30 years. I have known every major player in this movement — from Timothy Leary, to Jack Herer to good old John Sinclair. I have engaged in debates with Jodie Emery, Chris Conrad, Ed Rosenthal and many other activists over those decades. And I’m here to tell you: WE ARE BEING SOLD OUT. And I’m not just talking about Michigan but throughout the US, Canada, Europe. The sad fact of the matter is we have been sold out by NORML since they began in the early 90’s. And from there we got sold out by every other corporate Cannabis organization including: DPA, MPP, SSDP, LEAP (Wooldridge). And now in 2018 you see this curious phenomenon where all of these states and countries are slowly turning the screws on home growers.

I’m not saying this to boast but to simply be accurate. There is probably no one on the planet that understands drugs or drug policy any better than I do. Here are a few of my more recent essays that I would recommend:

===== The Global Marijuana March originated with International Drug Policy Day in May 1990 https://www.facebook.com/notes/bruce-cain/the-global-marijuana-march-originated-with-international-drug-policy-day-in-may-/2393282000697774/

Why the Right to Grow Your Own Medical Cannabis Must Be Protected from “Tax, Regulate and Control” State Models https://www.facebook.com/notes/bruce-cain/why-the-right-to-grow-your-own-medical-cannabis-must-be-protected-from-tax-regul/1941658819193430/

The Real Reasons that Cannabis Consumers are getting sick and why State Control is not the solution https://www.facebook.com/notes/bruce-cain/the-real-reasons-that-cannabis-consumers-are-getting-sick-and-why-state-control-/1937440196281959/

You are more than welcome to read the other 230 essay that I have written here:

https://www.facebook.com/bruce.cain.98/notes?lst=100000184321094%3A100000184321094%3A1528324382 =====

I was saying the “Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol” Initiative really sucks as have all of the initiatives since Prop215 passed in California in 1996.

Why in the Hell would we want to treat Cannabis (e.g., Marijuana) like Alcohol which cannot be produced at home. Why not treat it like beer or wine: both of which can be produced in your home without “a card,” zoning restrictions, home inspections, fee’s and a host of other unnecessary bullshit.

So let us take a look at the “door knob” sucking “Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol” initiative for a moment. Here is the summary of what it has to offer:

===== * Legalize the possession and sale of up to 2½ ounces of marijuana for personal, recreational use.

* Impose a 10% excise tax on marijuana sales at the retail level as well as a 6% sales tax. The estimated revenues from the taxes are at least $100 million.

* Split those revenues with 35% going to K-12 education, 35% to roads, 15% to the communities that allow marijuana businesses in their borders and 15% to counties where marijuana business are located.

* Allow communities to decide whether they’ll permit marijuana businesses.

* Restrict purchases of marijuana for recreational purposes to 2½ ounces but an individual could keep up to 10 ounces of marijuana at home.

* Allow the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA), and not the politically appointed licensing board that will regulate the medical marijuana side of the market, to regulate and license marijuana businesses, ranging from growers, transporters, testers and dispensaries.

* Set up three classes of marijuana growers: up to 100, 500 and 2,000 plants =====

So here is my brief critique of “Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol” initiative:

===== * Why is there any limit on how many ounces of Cannabis you can buy? Last I checked there is no limit on the number of cases of beer you can purchase or the number of bottles of wine you can purchase.

* Why are we allowing any tax of Cannabis when it is a medicine and no other medicines are taxed?

* Splitting the revenue is a ruse. Because we allowed the legislature to gut the 2008 initiative they are now setting up what I call “Corporate Cannabis State Monopolies.” So just as shit seems to float to the top, the profits are being taken away from small growers whose profits went directly back into the local communities. Now it will go to the State government and the rich millionaires that pushed all the small growers out of business. Oh, and you will now pay a 16% tax on all purchases which we’ve never had to pay before. Such a deal! Now the same state government, that has been persecuting consumers and growers, for the last 50 years, have decided to put the small grower out of business so they can take all the profit. So I should be overjoyed that the state has finally seen the light and has now decided to become our drug dealer? It was not even 12 years ago when our legislature was fully behind criminalizing Cannabis because it was dangerous. Hey like Cindy Lauper once said “money changes everything.”

* Why do we need regulation at all? Why do I have to have the right medical condition to use Cannabis?

* How dumb do these people think we are? =====

So then today Adam Brook, longtime Master of Ceremonies for the Hash Bash in Ann Arbor, indicated his support for the initiative. He is now selling “VOTE YES” pins in support of the initiative. I do like Adam as he had let me speak at the Hash Bash some 15 times between 1990 and 2012. So I voiced my disagreement and asked longtime activists — Kathleen Chippi (Colorado) and Timothy Locke (Abrogate Michigan) — to join the discussion. Kathleen provided some insights into what is going on in Colorado in the wake of thier “Corporate Cannabis State Monopolies.” Basically they are now going after home growers in order to maximize revenue to the state. Tim was rather succinct in his disapproval when he said “Vote Yes to Increase Arrests.” And I think they are both right.

To be clear this flew in the face of the glowing prounouncements by Adam Brook and Howard J. Wooldridge (Head of LEAP: Law Enforcement Against Prohibition). Again I like Adam. I really don’t like Wooldridge for many reasons beyond the scope of this essay. Let’s just say I wish the whole organization would go LEAP off a very high cliff.

So as the criticism of the “Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol” initiative began to dominate the discussion: suddenly the discussion was no longer directly accessable and some of the comments had been deleted.

“Kathleen Chippi ??? did the thread comments just get deleted?”

I have no idea whether Adam really did anything to hide the discussion but a number of people did wonder where the discussion thread went. In any case this might be a good strategy for us “True Legalizers” in the future. Engage those that you disagree. Try to be nice as you make your points. Don’t engage in “trollish” behavior or insult those that you disagree.

At any rate I’m going to end this essay now and simply provide a transcript of what I could recover from the discussion that Adam initiated. But first my opinion of the “Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol” Initiative.

Just Say NO! to the “Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol” Initiative

Just Vote NO! for the “Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol” Initiative in November 2018

The Legislature destroyed the 2008 Medical Marijuana Initiative in just 10 short years.

No reason to make it even worse by voting in even more regulations, more busts, more taxes etc.

Perhaps these supporters should spend more time on other thing relating to Cannabis Policy:

* Make it legal for Cannabis growers and consumers to own guns. Right now they can’t. * Stop Child Protective Services from taking children away from parents that are medicating them effectively for diseases such as epilepsy, chrons disease, parkinson’s etc.

I mean there is a lot you could be doing. Unfortunately this initiative is something we wish you were not doing.

===== Partial Transcript of Adam Brooks discussion of the “Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol” Initiative:

Adam L Brook Marijuana will be on the Nov ballot. Get your VOTE YES pin now! $10 +$3 shipping…

Walt Williams Won’t legalization hurt some folks

Adam L Brook Yes, cops & prosecutors!

Walt Williams What about people who can’t grow being forced to get from provision center commercially grown?

Howard J. Wooldridge And current marijuana dealers will be hurt badly

wolf Neal Smith It’s going to kick big pharma and private prisons right in the wallet.

Howard J. Wooldridge William u r allowed 12 plants…that is not enuf? Willie Nelson can’t smoke that much…or u are currently an MJ grower and dealer in the black market?

William Yeah right on Adam let’s let Monsanto make some Frankenstein GMO cannabis that kills everybody who smokes it just like tobacco.

Ron Klug Howard J. Wooldridge You trying to dry snitch em out?

William Ron Klug that wouldn’t surprise me one damn bit. He used to be a cop. You know what they say about old dogs and new tricks right?

Kathleen Chippi Howard J. Wooldridge who the fuck are any of you to decide how many non-toxic plants a person can have or needs? Not sure why people don’t see the FAKE ‘legalization” rules/fee’s/prohibitions are BASED ON THE SAME LIES, PREJUDICE AND GREED as 1937 Reefer Madness???

William When I joined this movement it was about growing your own medicine. Now everyone wants big business to make their medicine for them because they’ve been told by the TV to ask your doctor about every goddamn pill under the fucking sun. What the fuck are your brains made out of Jell-O or what?

Adam L Brook When you joined our movement you should have asked more questions…… I never heard about medical until long after the concept of a PRA (Personal Rights Amendment) was not able to get the signatures to get on the ballot….. and when medical was proposed I never said it was anything more than a foot in the door. THIS is about moving the ball forward and changing attitudes…..we have a long way to go….. and you can think the Black Market is racist (which I agree and that’s why I use the term, as people should never forget) but it has been perfected over the last 80+ years, 40 of which war was declared against us, and will always be here for those who can’t or won’t deal with the “system”…I for one think that once we can get another 10years down the road the laws won’t matter as the old guard will have died off and the new generation doesn’t care about a safe substance like marijuana (another racist term I use in homage to my brown brothers and vipers of the past)……

No reason to be a keyboard warrior my old friend…. you attack the wrong side of this battle…. go after the pigs or the assholes in the legislature, but attacking fellow activists only hurts the progress we are making….

William Adam L Brook I’m not attacking other activists. I’m attacking sellouts.

Adam L Brook William not one of these people has sold out. To do that you have to have changed your opinion in exchange for something…..they have believed in this from the get…of course lots of polling was done in order for many of these folk to feel comfortable in putting this forward…..had we done the polling back in the PRA days we would not have wasted our time… Believe it or not but this was a winner before the first signature was collected…..again its about changing attitudes…..its one of the few things that keeps me fighting to stay alive…I hope to live long enough to see the laws the way I want them….

William Adam L Brook I was involved in the movement 12 years before PRA. I personally never felt the need to go to Hash Bash until Schmid decided to use Hash Bash as a kickoff event. I just want to be left alone to grow my own but with these greedy motherfuckers passing stupid laws I know eventually they’re going to come after my garden, and when they do I’ll look for Tom and Rollie on the other side and tell them you said hi.

Adam L Brook William please do. I miss the fellas dearly…. let them know I kept my promise and we are moving the ball forward….matter of fact being gay is no longer an issue (they’d be much more comfortable in public these days) and hopefully like I said before growing /smoking marijuana will not be an issue once the laws making weed illegal change to a regulated system…I can remember my father making wine and not giving a shit that he made 500, which was twice the legal limit, as no one cared…. the police chief didn’t accept his case of wine and then investigate how much was being made, he said thanks and when and drank his wine….

Unfortunately I could go on and on and I know I won’t change you mind, but maybe your attitude will change once you see no one is coming for your garden…

William Of course they’re going to come for my garden. How else are they going to corner the market? Let’s face it anybody can grow the stuff so why would anybody need to buy it?

Adam L Brook William I can’t grow it…I can barely stand…. had I not become “Mr. Hash Bash” with a reputation that causes people to help me out I would be force to the commercial market…. in the last 10 years, ok I was locked up for 2, so in 8 years I have never purchased over the counter weed in this state/country…. (many many times in Amsterdam, but that’s a quasi illegal market, so I felt comfortable). The commercial market has its place in society…..stop the fear mongering… I don’t see anyone coming for personal grows…..again its about the old guard dieing off and the attitudes changing…. in the last election in California there were first time voters who had had legal medical their whole lives, so voting yes on rec was a simple yes vote….. mind you it took cali 20 years, while Michigan will do it in half that time…

William Adam L Brook all you have to do is look at how the medical marijuana law got butchered by the legislature to know that as soon as recreational gets passed they’re going to butcher it too. The first thing that will be hacked out is personal cultivation.

Adam L Brook William they couldn’t get a majority to pass it themselves…. you give them a lot of credit that they can get ⅔ to make changes….. as for them changing the medical law that was done at the behest of Law Enforcement, who by now has seen the writing on the wall and has started to change their attitudes…. trust me, I have been intimately involved with them over the last 10 years and in the last two have been treated differently with each encounter…. Twice had weed handed back to me and sent on my way, once even being allowed to continue on my way when I admittedly should have been arrested, after being recognized as Adam L Brook, weed activist.

Times are a’changin as the great poet once said.

William The times might be changing, but time is a pendulum. History always repeats itself. The legislature will fuck with recreational use laws just like they fucked with medical marijuana laws and stoners and patients alike will suffer.

William Aron Kozin I happen to be disabled. I don’t work. I have a lot of time on my hands. I grow my own and I don’t grow any to sell. If I have extra I will give it away to somebody who needs it. I don’t believe in the commercialization of cannabis. It is a plant that anybody can grow anywhere on the planet except the the North and South Poles. It is ridiculous to think that you can get rich but everybody’s treating this legalization movement like a gold rush.

William Bob Harris personally I ignore arbitrary bullshit like the number of plants I can grow. The older I get the more I’m going to need. For me edibles work better and last longer than smoking. I raise rabbits and use their manure for fertilizer and butcher them for meat. I use a modified version of the beef jerky marinade recipe at Infusedeats.com with my rabbit meat.

William Joe Willey once they shut down home growers they can charge any price they want and get away with it. Why do you think they have an arbitrary plant limit? Nobody believes in a free market anymore.

William Joe Willey the legalizers are proposing a 12 plant limit just like we’ve got under medical marijuana. I don’t obey that law and I sure as hell am not going to obey some fascist law written to help the rich get richer.

Bruce Cain I would not implicate you Adam but you know damn well we have been infiltrated by “sell outs” — those that could give a damn about our right to grow our own — at least as early as 2000. We sat on many of the same committees with Matt Able, Tim Beck, Kevin Zeese who were on the “Tax, Regulate and Control” bandwagon as early as 2000.

For me there have only been 2 important goals since I first started smoking Cannabis in 1968:

* The inalienable right to grow our own: no taxes, inspections, zoning laws, cards.

* A framework whereby the market was dependent on small growers supplying the dispensaries or simply selling to friends and relatives.

I think it insane to be happy with where things are at the moment. Not blaming you. But it is what it is. And it ain’t good.

The Global Marijuana March originated with International Drug Policy Day in May 1990.

https://www.facebook.com/notes/bruce-cain/the-global-marijuana-march-originated-with-international-drug-policy-day-in-may-/2393282000697774/

Manage

William Bruce Cain copying and pasting your comments all over the thread is just annoying. Once is enough.

Kathleen Chippi Adam L Brook Being gay didn’t violate CRIMINAL federal law.

Bruce Cain Kathleen Chippi Yep being gay does not violate criminal federal law but smoking/growing Marijuana still does. Can’t own a gun. CPS takes your kid because you find Cannabis helps with their epilepsy.

Perhaps the moral of this story is that, as long as you are taking it up the ass — figuratively or literally — the government will leave you alone.

But if you begin to complain about taking it up the ass — by the government — expect some problems. LOL

William Y’all are giving your money to criminals if you go to that damn Cannabis Cup. If you see any people from High Times magazine there tell them to give Steven Hager his pension already. I’m boycotting the cup until he gets what he deserves.

Adam Rzepecki Don’t stop with just one hole in your head….buy them all David Beckett. Anyways Im going to go smoke some GMO with Monsanto. Also I am asking anyone I know that’s “cool” for a free ticket to high times, because I don’t support crooks but really want to go. Cool people PM me its my bucket list to meet the great “whacka flocka”

Bruce Cain I would not implicate you Adam but you know damn well we have been infiltrated by “sell outs” — those that could give a damn about our right to grow our own — at least as early as 2000. We sat on many of the same committees with Matt Able, Tim Beck, Kevin Zeese who were on the “Tax, Regulate and Control” bandwagon as early as 2000.

For me there have only been 2 important goals since I first started smoking Cannabis in 1968:

* The inalienable right to grow our own: no taxes, inspections, zoning laws, cards.

* A framework whereby the market was dependent on small growers supplying the dispensaries or simply selling to friends and relatives.

I think it insane to be happy with where things are at the moment. Not blaming you. But it is what it is. And it ain’t good.

Bruce Cain The refrain “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road’ll take you there” was essentially a paraphrase of an exchange between Alice and the Cheshire Cat in Chapter 6 of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland:

“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”

“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.

“I don’t much care where—” said Alice.

“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,” said the Cat.

“—so long as I get SOMEWHERE,” Alice added as an explanation.

“Oh, you’re sure to do that,” said the Cat, “if you only walk long enough.”

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Any_Road

Bruce Cain I’m tinkering with the idea of getting involved in this mess once again. LOL.

So at the moment the only thing I’d be motivated to do is debate ANYONE that thinks we are on the right path with these “Corporate Cannabis State Monopolies.” The fact is there are not many willing to debate this issue with me: especially if they disagree in our right to grow our own under a framework of “True Legalization:” no taxes, zoning, inspections cards etc.

I’ve challenged a number of people lately . . but no takers. Time for Hemp would be a great podcast to have such a debate but I was banned from that around 2009 when I helped the folk in CA defeat Prop19: the first “Tax, Regulate and Control” initiative. I debated Chris Conrad, Jodie Emery and a few others. Casper (Time for Hemp) was told he’d loose his show if they let me on again. There must be a reason for that. LOL

But I’m here. I’m straight. And I’m just waiting for someone to take the bait.

I met with the Senior Editor of Metro Times 8 weeks ago for an article on my view of the Cannabis Movement. Well its been 8 weeks. LOL. He indicated that he was still behind but is still going to publish the article on my views and activism in the Cannabis movement. I’ll believe it if/when I see it. LOL

William Don’t even use the L word. The fascists have corrupted it too much with their greed. They have indoctrinated everybody to believe that legalization means that it will be sold like cigarettes and alcohol. You don’t get rid of prohibition by burying it under more bad laws. You get rid of it by repealing the law that created it in the first place.

Bruce Cain I really don’t care what word is used: Legalization, Re-Legalization, Abrogate, etc. But I well understand your point. What is really important is how we structure the “final solution.” And I think I’ve always made that pretty clear:

* No Cards

* No Inspections

* No Government oversight.

* No licences.

* etc.

Once again . . .

For me there have only been 2 important goals since I first started smoking Cannabis in 1968:

* The inalienable right to grow our own: no taxes, inspections, zoning laws, cards.

* A framework whereby the market was dependent on small growers supplying the dispensaries or simply selling to friends and relatives.

Kathleen Chippi The L word is the successful Re-Branding of the same lies, prejudice and greed as 1937 Reefer Madness/Prohibition. No science, sanity or humanity involved, 80 plus years later.

William Kathleen Chippi like I’ve always said prohibition started with a tax law. What makes them think another tax law is going to end prohibition?

Kathleen Chippi The (Unconstitutional) 12 plant limits passed in CO (17 years after no limits for MMJ) and now what do we have-loss of our 4th Amendment-unwarranted house searches based on basically any complaint about the (constitutional) smell of ‘pot’ and loss of the 5th Amendment with attempting to make people have house inspections by the government and pay for a permit!! to grow even ONE non-toxic plant in some counties. Out of control government/over regulation and no accountability….just like the feds….FUCK FAKE ‘legalization’/”like alcohol”/”tax and regulate” to hell.

Bruce Cain I’m so glad that Kathleen joined this discussion from the great state of CO. I know Adam you really don’t like to get into the politics of this too deeply. I also know you to be one of the best informed activists in the movement. In any case I encourage my MI activists to go to her FB page and simply read about all the bullshit going down in CO. Why? Because it is coming here within the year. With a vengeance. That’s why. LOL

Kathleen Chippi Yeah, Bruce it’s a shame people don’t realize that what THEY promise is the opposite of what you get. CO is witnessing the demise of 2 Constitutional Amendments that legally cannot be altered w/o a vote of “we the people”. Home grow after home grow being raided because some new neighbor who moved here complains about the LAWFUL smell of cannabis or some old neighbor who hates you just calling to ‘report’. Wait until the $1,000 dollar a day fines (per plant) start being ‘enforced’. Never thought I would dream the good old days of straight up prohibition. Now the fools who buy the pesticide/mold ridden state licensed weed put millions into funding (un-constitutional) home grow busts and DARE like propaganda–something we rarely read about is now a daily thing and the call it “legalization”.

Kathleen Chippi imho, states that have not fake legalized (ADDED 1,200 plus pages of new pot PROHIBITIONS) will be in a better position IF the Feds ever repeal prohibition-because you will start with a blank slate–states like CO now have to fund/repeal dozens upon dozens of what where un-necessary PROHIBITIONS….

William A lot of commercial growers are using myclobutanil to combat fungus. It’s safe to use on edible plants but it turns into hydrogen cyanide as it combusts. If you smoke cannabis treated with a fungicide that contains myclobutanil you are inhaling hydrogen cyanide.

Bruce Cain How did the discussion thread get reduced to a photo. LOL. Did you do that Adam? Or did it JUST happen. LOL.

At any rate great discussion. And I do agree with Kathleen: on the whole these initiatives have actually made it worse. If you want to see how it has gone downhill just look at the annual arrests from the 60’s till today. Let’s see if I can find that. At any rate this is not what I would call progress: more like an incremental journey straight to Hell. LOL

http://marijuana-arrests.com/images/1965-2012-marijuana-arrests-chart.jpg

Bruce Cain Oops nothing to read about here. LOL

Kathleen Chippi ??? did the thread comments just get deleted?

Bruce Cain I’m not sure what just happened. “Somehow” you now have to click on the “Cannabis – Vote Yes” pendant a few times and NOW the comments appear to the right of the picture. Did you do that Adam or did it just happen magically. LOL. Could it be you don’t like the direction the discussion went? Or was it magic!

Bruce Cain Let me just say this Adam. It is very disappointing that — because you didn’t like the direction of the discussion — you would basically delete the discussion or make nearly impossible to access. It makes you appear like so many of these idiotic Snowflakes that can’t handle an honest debate. And by the way I would not vote for this piece of shit excuse for a Marijuana Initiative. Either way we loose: whether the State Legislature passes their own bullshit or if this pile of smoldering crap ends up on the ballot. I guess your just showing you True Colors. LOL. Let me know if you did this or is was merely FB Magic. Frankly this has never happened on any discussion I initiated so I’m assuming that you censored it.

Timothy Locke of Abrogate Michigan June 6 at 9:20pm Vote Yes to Increase Arrests. =====

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