Cannabis Freedom vs. Crony Capitalism

Cannabis Freedom vs. Crony Capitalism

Could marijuana be the cure that breaks the stranglehold of crony capitalism?

Reviled across the spectrum of political philosophies, crony capitalism is yet resilient, and poses a threat to the future of legalization.

Crony capitalism is the world’s principle governmental and business system. Monied elites hold sway, both as businessmen and their tightly entwined political clan, in controlling commerce.

This is the opposite of the “free” or “natural” market, in the sense of using unfair versus fair business practices. “Fair,” of course, is one of those words whose definition varies from person to person. For our purposes here however, I’ll define it as prospering by selling a better product, or at least by advertising it better. An unfair business practice is one where the owner prospers by conniving with lawmakers or bureaucratic regulators to write rules which either help them, or which hurt their competitors. Fair commerce inevitably results in lower prices for the customer.

Unfortunately, even now as our dream of the end of prohibition is at hand, cronyism raises its ugly head. It is moving rapidly into the legalized marijuana realm, whether medical, or “other.” Monied interests seek monopoly control. If we are not careful, cannabis will become a “vice” commodity like alcohol or tobacco, regulated by corrupt politicians, and sold by a small number of large corporations. We’re heading down that road.

But legalization activists *could* be the ones to turn this tide. Our success with marijuana could lead the way for everyone, from Occupy to the Tea Party, taking the battle all around the globe.

The key to everything is not putting up with over-regulation; specifically not allowing the right to “grow your own” to be restricted, nor the right to give it away freely to your friends.

A saving grace of our Movement is that prohibition for cannabis has gone on for 76 years, as opposed to the 13 for alcohol, allowing the culture of defiance to put down deeper roots. It also made the quest for freedom into more of a spiritual struggle against cultural oppression.

I know, in Massachusetts at least, a victory of this magnitude is our goal. The Bay State Repeal committee, which will be running the actual campaign for a voter initiative on ending prohibition, is devoted to making the ensuing rules as simple and least restrictive as we can. And to do it, if at all politically possible, without calling on any bureaucracy for a “licensing” scheme.

When we pull this off, it will be a model for the nation — and the world.

Op-Ed by Terry Franklin

  • guest

    Wow. Someone with brains. Kinda stunned here, but in a good way. I want everyone in the anti-prohibition movement to know that in Washington State, growing a single cannabis plant will get you a $25,000 dollar fine and ten years in jail. All the while it is “legal” but not available for sale. How much more blatant can your support of cartels get? Ol’ Al Capone was kinda dumb, he should’ve just slipped some cash to the politicians and this country would still be buying booze from his “criminal” gang.

    • HempShare

      As more people who aren’t stoners begin to cure their loved ones with this miracle food, fuel, medicine & shelter, a few LEA Zealots we be shot, and eventually the other LEAs will decide it isn’t worth getting killed to take a plant from people.

  • Little Ricky

    Tea started the American Revolution… Just Saying..

    • massvocals

      don’t be afraid to state this < I agree WE the people who are awaken know this our rulers our by our servants and not by the people this claim to drug law as the most threat to our republic is true but in the way of there perspective those persons have unleash a police war in our streets on our people on our liberty on the millions Too the making of such policy enforce by lies and money WE The people should rise up and put them out of office make them fear US as we are the people WE must take back our liberty form the scum who continue this way The history of lies is well enough I agree being a patriot to no other resolve we should declare 2ed American Revolution due to Cannabis , by the way please note ; its was a money issue that cause the republic to revote not the tea Tea was just a act of tax rebellion and if you bought it in many towns you could be sentence to death for it was clear they we all had to suffer in no patriotism and to do other was act of treason a death sentence

  • HempShare

    Hemp / Cannabis – Food, Fuel, Medicine & Shelter – Like a Federal Reserve Printing Press – in your garden!

  • Mike

    “…the right to “grow your own”…”

    This is the yardstick against which all proposals to end prohibition must be judged. Anything else is just prohibition-lite. Why?

    If you have the right to grow your own, then there is no excuse for breaking down your door to violate your rights. This includes protecting the rights of not only those who do intend to grow, but EVERYONE else’s, too. Why?

    So long as the police have a reason to go around busting down doors over personal grows, it threatens the rights of every citizen to be safe and secure in their homes. The Fourth Amendment has been all but abolished in the name of the “war on drugs.” It’s time to restore it, not continue the lame excuses to suppress our rights as Americans.

    When it is legal to grow one’s own and to transfer it without charge to others, that eliminates all but commercial size grows from enforcement action. Those should be licensed. Note that I do not oppose some sort of modest, reasonable license fee to grow at home. This will be necessary in order to sort out what are genuine personal use grows and which are ones that are likely not. Pay your fee and the cops have no reason to bother you at all over your grow.

    So what’s the dividing line between personal grows and commercial grows? I believe it should be one generous enough to cover anyone’s personal needs, no matter what their circumstances and how they grow it. Some may want to grow outdoors and are limited to one crop a year by the seasons. Others may want an indoor grow with few hassles and easy operation, using dirt, seeds, and the “sea of green” method of squeezing in lots of individuals stalks. Other may just want to grow a few large plants and take cuttings to go with hydro. Lots of different, legitimate ways to grow your own. I propose that for a flat $100/year, you have the right to grow up to 100 plants at a time.

    That number seems large compared to the 3- or 6-plant limits under some state laws for medical use, or as in Colorado, up to 6 plants for any use. Those numbers might sound good if you look in High Times or online at some of the huge hydroponically-grown plants that can be seen in those places. That takes sophisticated equipment and expertise far beyond the skill set of most. Even if you have the skills, it’s a major investment. My own experience has taught me that it’s far easier to stick to the basics: seeds, dirt, water, light. A 100 plants in “sea of green” under a single lamp will produce somewhere close to a pound of trimmed bud. That’s approximately a 4 month supply + or -, which will tide a single person over until the next harvest in most cases.

    But that’s just my proposal. What is more important than its specifics is that the right to grow is absolutely necessary for any credible legalization scheme to work. If people don’t get the right to grow for personal use, then we just repeat the same cycle we’re in now, where the police can come up with any excuse to violate your rights and its OK with the courts, because then they’ll be going after “tax evaders.” In fact, my guess is that fewer than 10% of marijuana users will go to the trouble of growing. However, if they aren’t protected by law, they will be the next targets after ordinary users no longer are. That makes no sense. I’m OK with taxing commercial sales of marijuana just like similar products are. That’s the way things work in our society and marijuana can’t be in some special category once it’s legalized. But having home grow as a safety valve eliminates most potential causes of conflict over legalization and the state. It won’t hurt tax collection, it will simply make legal what is the legitimate rights of citizens to make these choices for themselves, not by government order.

    • Dusty Relic

      I agree with your basic premise. It’s not legal until everyone can grow their own. I must say though that I prefer square foot or better yet electrical wattage metrics to a raw number of plants metric. One hundred plants grown a certain way (under a “screen of green”) would yield significantly more that those same 100 plants grown by the “sea of green” tek that you describe. It does seem that the true limiting factors are canopy and electrical wattage. The advantage of using watts as a limit rather than sq feet of canopy is that it encourages innovation in the area of energy conservation.

  • massvocals

    The government of the united States and its drug laws have corrupt the world . Its base soul-ly on granting employment though law in enforcement and punishments of millions of uses This cost the world in trillions and in intrusive attacks even death the world is corrupted form this policy. The policy’s inflects bribing other governments . Millions of people used cannabis and other illegal sustains ,there is no crime in that !! It is the money which fuels the very will and soul of this in keeping it illegal history show this , its time to realize the truth people of the world and stop this abuse .
    Cannabis is herb or weed which people used by the millions.To base a legal system on such prohibition is nothing more then introducing a psych pathic disorder , the continue truth in punishing users or sellers for there simply used a plant is outrageous and served no good purpose The world has been lied too scared to realize the truth the bible itself says GOD himself place this herb here , no matter what the purpose the government things its propaganda in lies is the history and we shall have no more of it , WE shall never trust any agency or agent employed . the sooner the world come to legalize and fix this shall liberty take hold once again We shall only then guarantee the safeguards of life the pursuit of happiness, and rights in liberty of every human being , the government must be stop at all measures . They have cause to continue a war which it very well understands is a war out right on its citizen. The federal government by abuse in not ending such continue too allow the death of its citizen by law enforcement over these matters The dividing the people for profit and not respect too there culture and land . This is no more respected then the use of this value plant by the millions yet the government continues its lies because its hook on money grant and public hell it raves I feel at war at all time we shall and will come soon to added the other D in DEA = DEAD for good of the constitution republic and next will be the federal reserved and IRS and state income tax lie the right to labor and be free form any intrusive attack as this must be wage and NOW is the TIME

  • stanton bravermna

    I agree that crony capitalism has been around for thousands of years and in many countries the level of such capitalism is far too high. It is like prostitution. Every country has prostitutes, some a lot more than others, but that does not mean that every woman is a prostitute, What we need to do is to control the level of crony behavior to keep it from infecting the whole system.

  • Data Schmata

    I hope the psychopathic crackdown on cannabis reveals the presence of crony capitalism to those who otherwise don’t think about such things. Something simple, cheap, ubiquitous, and valuable is anathema to those who must cheat and profit on all things at all costs.