Potted economy

August 6, 2010 at 10:22 pm | In addiction, crime, politics, social_critique | 2 Comments

Everybody is talking /writing) about pot, including pot in Canada, it seems. Nothing new, really: every Canadian (especially every British Columbian) knows it’s a resource and a big economic contributor.

Now a recent Guardian article by Douglas Haddow, Marijuana may cause Canada’s economic comedown, prompted even our local press conglomerate to publish a pretty good piece, Could legal California pot send Canadian profits up in smoke?, that takes a closer look at what’s surely a most interesting ecosystem of resource and distribution.

It’s not news to read that marijuana production is a big piece of British Columbia’s economy. And it’s not inspiring to read that we could kneecap the criminal element with the stroke of a pen (by legalizing marijuana production and distribution, and controlling it, the way we control and tax alcohol and cigarettes). I don’t care for pot myself – haven’t smoked it in decades, mainly because it’s not like wine, which goes with food (and I like my pleasures well-rounded!). That said, wine isn’t entirely harmless either, is it?

But wine is legal, and we have a culture of wine – whatever culture of pot actually exists doesn’t yank my chain, but that, too, speaks to the importance of cultures, which are created and nurtured, never given in a vacuum or created ex nihilo.

Right now, we’re creating a culture of pot that’s not exactly desirable.

I’d like to see a rational approach to “soft” drugs like marijuana especially, which would knock the legs out from under organized crime and gangs. And then, by all means, let’s go after the a-holes that produce and spread crack and meth (which imo is total poisonous garbage).

See, my take is this: Lumping all the qualities – the various drugs – together as a similar quantity is a huge, huge mistake. Instead, differentiate and sort the qualities: there are differences between pot versus crack or meth or IV drugs. When the legal system makes these very different qualities into the same thing, no one wins. I don’t want to get into discussions around legalizing hard drugs and garbage drugs – it seems to me (and this may sound cruel) that they affect such a small percentage of the population as to warrant a different approach that excludes accommodation. Marijuana, on the other hand, is total mainstream – has been since I was a kid, and I’m all grown up. Wasn’t a gateway back then for most of us, and isn’t a gateway now – the dastardly bastard organized crime element, however, is: they’re a vector for evil. They’re a gateway, no doubt about it, but it’s one that’s easy enough to close …through legalization.

My two cents.

2 Comments

  1. A timely posting Yule, especially since “harvest” season is nearing for our marijuana farmers. Someone mentioned to me the other day that if you look in the yellow pages under lawyers you will see ads with a little marijuana leaf, indicating that the lawyer specializes in tax law surrounding marijuana trade.

    Comment by Elisa Yon — August 7, 2010 #

  2. I had no idea (re. the little marijuana leaf)…!

    Comment by Yule — August 7, 2010 #

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