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Will Obama decriminalize pot?

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Famously, Franklin Delano Roosevelt saved the United States banking system during the first seven days of his first term.

And what did he do on the eighth day? "I think this would be a good time for beer," he said.

Congress had already repealed Prohibition, pending ratification from the states. But the people needed a lift, and legalizing beer would create a million jobs. And lo, booze was back. Two days after the bill passed, Milwaukee brewers hired six hundred people and paid their first $10 million in taxes. Soon the auto industry was tooling up the first $12 million worth of delivery trucks, and brewers were pouring tens of millions into new plants.

"Roosevelt's move to legalize beer had the effect he intended," says Adam Cohen, author of Nothing To Fear, a thrilling new history of FDR's first hundred days. "It was, one journalist observed, 'like a stick of dynamite into a log jam.'"

Many in the marijuana world are now hoping for something similar from Barack Obama. After all, the president-elect said in 2004 that the war on drugs had been "an utter failure" and that America should decriminalize pot:

In July, Obama told Rolling Stone that he believed in "shifting the paradigm" to a public-health approach: "I would start with nonviolent, first-time drug offenders. The notion that we are imposing felonies on them or sending them to prison, where they are getting advanced degrees in criminality, instead of thinking about ways like drug courts that can get them back on track in their lives -- it's expensive, it's counterproductive, and it doesn't make sense."

Meanwhile, economists have been making the beer argument. In a paper titled "Budgetary Implications of Marijuana Prohibition," Dr. Jeffrey Miron of Harvard argues that legalized marijuana would generate between $10 and $14 billion in savings and taxes every year -- conclusions endorsed by 300 top economists, including Milton "Free Market" Friedman himself.

...

Some of Obama's biggest financial donors are friends of the legalization movement, [NORML executive director] St. Pierre notes. "Frankly, George Soros, Peter Lewis, and John Sperling -- this triumvirate of billionaires -- if those three men, who put up $50 to $60 million to get Democrats and Obama elected, can't pick up the phone and actually get a one-to-one meeting on where this drug policy is going, then maybe it's true that when you give money, you don't expect favors."

Another member of that moneyed group: Marsha Rosenbaum, the former head of the San Francisco office of the Drug Policy Alliance, who quit last year to become a fundraiser for Obama and "bundled" an impressive $204,000 for his campaign ... "I'm hoping that what the administration will do," she says, "is something this country hasn't done since 1971, which is to undertake a presidential commission to look at drug policy, convene a group of blue-ribbon experts to look at the issue, and make recommendations."

But ultimately, Rosenbaum remains confident that those recommendations would call for an end to the drug war.

http://www.esquire.com/the-side/richardson...lization-122308


Man is made by his belief. As he believes, so he is.

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I'd support this move.


"The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can’t pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies."

Senator Barack Obama
Senate Floor Speech on Public Debt
March 16, 2006



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Filed: Timeline
Will Obama decriminalize pot?

I doubt it.

Even if he were to attempt it - I don't think he would get very far with it.

Agreed. Given his extremely ambitious agenda(s), any move towards decriminalizing pot would give the opposition WAY too much ammunition. He's got much bigger fish to fry.

If it's going to happen, the states need to take the lead. The Federal government is never going to decriminalize pot until there's a tipping point of pressure from the states.

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Brazil
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Besides, potheads aren't exactly a loyal voting block. Good luck getting them to the polls.

:lol: true!


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Make all drugs legal and let the tabacco and drug companies start commericalizing. The government could tax the hell out of them and pay off the national debt in two weeks :P

Edited by jasman0717

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"Life is hard; it's harder if you're stupid." John Wayne

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Filed: AOS (apr) Country: Spain
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Besides, potheads aren't exactly a loyal voting block. Good luck getting them to the polls.

Whaddah yuh meen man...I was sposed to vote today???


All done for the next 10 years...

Now more then ever..."and Miles to go before I sleep and miles to go before I sleep"

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Make all drugs legal and let the tabacco and drug companies start commericalizing. The government could tax the hell out of them and pay off the national debt in two weeks :P

And then bail them out when they go bankrupt.

From using their own product :blink:


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United States & Republic of the Philippines

"Life is hard; it's harder if you're stupid." John Wayne

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Filed: Other Country: United Kingdom
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Make all drugs legal and let the tabacco and drug companies start commericalizing. The government could tax the hell out of them and pay off the national debt in two weeks :P

The government could legalise and tax drugs, but the downside to that is that it doesn't give people the incentive to buy "legal" when you can still get it from the black market. Unless of course the US Government got in bed with the Taliban or the South American Cartels.

Interesting idea - but it sounds like it would cause an incredible ethical scandal.

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The problem with this whole scenario is that Congress passes legislation up to the president to be signed into law.

This same lame wish list was bantied around before Jimmy Carter was sworn in and it went nowhere. Read his Playboy interview from the 1970's if you can still find it. Carter said a lot of things too.


"Credibility in immigration policy can be summed up in one sentence: Those who should get in, get in; those who should be kept out, are kept out; and those who should not be here will be required to leave."

"...for the system to be credible, people actually have to be deported at the end of the process."

US Congresswoman Barbara Jordan (D-TX)

Testimony to the House Immigration Subcommittee, February 24, 1995

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The problem with this whole scenario is that Congress passes legislation up to the president to be signed into law.

This same lame wish list was bantied around before Jimmy Carter was sworn in and it went nowhere. Read his Playboy interview from the 1970's if you can still find it. Carter said a lot of things too.

He was lusting in his mind :devil:


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United States & Republic of the Philippines

"Life is hard; it's harder if you're stupid." John Wayne

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Egypt
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Carter did campaign on the decriminalization of pot but once in office there was a drug scandal among his own administration that caused him to back down on his prior agenda so that he didn't look soft on drug policy. Just this year a bill was proposed to the house for the decriminalization of pot and to regulate it like alcohol. However there are lots of issues to address with this piece of legislation such as all the people that are in prison currently who will appeal their verdits. Sadly prisons are a money making system for the states who are overbooked and overcrowded in their prison systems and looking to build more. The legislative branch is not looking forward to the headache this bill would cause if passed. But with the majority of Congress being Democrats and having a Democratic President there is a very real possibility that the bill proposed has the potential to be passed. However if the people (sober or not) do not mobilize and contact their representatives in each state to support it I do not see this bill passing. Obama's interview in Rolling Stone mearly mentions that he is open to passing this piece of legislation but it does not mention he has the initutive to change anything with it. I think he has more pressing things on his mind right now in this particular time. And let us not forget to mention that Marlboro already has the patent on a Marijuana cigarette.

Edited by Olivia*

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