Sunday, February 14, 2010

Re: Peter Reuter: "Cannabis Policy: Moving Beyond Stalemate"

As truly welcome as this over-do understatement is, merely pointing out the obvious -- that pot laws "don't work" -- ignores the fundamental harm inflicted on organic agriculture. Failure to consider prohibition's enormous impact on food security and nutrition when discussing the effects of drug policy indicates significant and disturbing conclusions. Pot laws are infinitely worse than merely ineffective at limiting supply and demand for marijuana. Blatantly counter-productive to its own stated objectives, marijuana prohibition has simultaneously imposed myriad hardships resulting from prolonged essential resource scarcity, in banning industrial hemp. Recall that it was competition from hemp-competitive industries that employed "Reefer Madness" hysteria as a diversionary strategy to ban industrial hemp and cripple small-scale organic farming.The diversion continues to this day and the economic dynamic remains. "Pot" isn't the point. It's the industrial uses that threaten the status chemical quo.

With notable exceptions of Cannabis activists who address the benefits of both "industrial hemp" and "marijuana," the drug policy reform effort has largely failed to prioritize the strongest arguments. Accountability for the true value of all strains of Cannabis is lacking, to the point of criminal negligence. Progressive comprehensive dialogue has been fragmented by artificial distinctions being perpetuated between therapeutic, nutritional, environmental, agricultural, cultural and economic dimensions of the subject, limiting the scope and diversity of analysis, leading to inefficiency and ultimately the loss of yet another planting season in the U.S.

This postpones the transition to peace and abundance for the entire world, as the roots of the black market and economic disparity lead directly to the drug war. The Cannabis leaf is potentially the most widely available and readily accessible solar energy collector on Earth.

What failure of governance has prevented a rational, timely response to what is known about the harms engendered by prohibition? What does it mean that Cannabis prohibition has persisted for more than seven decades, when the disaster of prohibitionism has been known since the bloody reign of Al Capone? What does it mean that radical global food insecurity and malnutrition continue without reference to hemp seed nutrition and Cannabis biofuels potential, even as the government jockeys for cut of the marijuana trade?

Wanton disregard for truth, history, common sense, compassion, and simple economics disqualifies government from having any rightful, credible jurisdiction over Cannabis agriculture, regulation, taxation, or bureaucratization. The government has no business in Cannabis. Farmers know what to do with Cannabis. We don't need to be taxed before we even get the industry started. Anyone who proposes a tax on Cannabis has taken a wrong turn. Start-up support from progressive communities would be a better choice. There is no unemployment on a farm. Jobs could be created overnight in both urban and rural communities, growing a variety of essential foods, culinary and therapeutic herbs. By far the safest ways for people to get marijuana are either grow it yourself or to buy it from someone you know who grows well.

The market in Cannabis is most effectively regulated by the consumers and producers of Cannabis. Market demand will inevitably favor the most natural products, as the health benefits and lower costs of production, favoring organic and biodynamically grown herbs, becomes more widely embraced. An insolvent, unaccountable bureaucracy that has prohibited free market development and research of Cannabis for seventy-three years does not have credibility on this subject, nor can the government mislead people into believing there's rightful jurisdiction. The true value of Cannabis agriculture, manufacture and trade are widely known. Public acceptance of marijuana is at an all time high. Excuses for banning industrial hemp are irrelevant in the face of looming environmental crises demanding every possible solution be considered.

Absolutely no restrictions or interventions by government are needed. Any regulation imposed is a flagrant violation of our First Amendment freedom of religion, imposing crippling regulatory and economic burdens on a gift from "god." Agriculture is a partnership between man and Creator. Government is too deeply vested in the competition to be objective about Cannabis agriculture. The economic tide is too strong to swim directly against. A radical shift in values is the most powerful tool on the planet for steering out of the trajectory we've determined over decades of prohibition.

What demands objective analysis is Government's unaccountability to the point of criminal negligence in failing to educate people about a known "strategic food resource," recognized as such by seven American Presidents. How is it that the world's most complete food, and a source of all EFAs and essential amino acids, isn't recognized by the UNFAO?

In addition to deconstructing the DEA and the IRS, I suggest increasing taxes on toxic industries to reflect the time value of prolonged environmental harms imposed by them. The urgency for a rapid shift in values is growing as time is revealed to be the limiting factor in the equation of survival.

No bureaucracy, no tax on pot, no limitation on cultivation. The gift of "every herb bearing seed" is a right, not a privilege. Drugs don't make seeds, herbs do. Mankind is far beyond its rightful authority in legislating scarcity of an unique and essential food resource upon which other species also depend for their survival.

Let the government bureaucratize and provide expensive chemical drugs. Leave gardeners alone to grow Cannabis in all of its forms. Let us recognize that prohibition of Cannabis was motivated by the industries in competition with it. Namely, the toxic chemical-based industries. In treating a "strategic food resource" as a "Schedule One drug" we have created imbalances in environment, economics and social evolution that threaten our existence. Mankind must choose active respect for the Natural Order over the spiritless consumption leading us to extinction.