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Offline runawayjimbo

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #540 on: July 28, 2017, 02:08:20 PM »
Almost makes the 10 month long winter worth it. Almost.

Also, suck it Jeff Sessions.

http://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/344343-massachusetts-governor-signs-bill-to-allow-recreational-pot

Quote
Massachusetts governor signs bill to allow recreational pot

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker (R) has signed a new measure that sets in motion a nearly yearlong process to legalize marijuana for recreational use, after months of negotiations with the state legislature.

The law comes nine months after voters in Massachusetts and three other states approved ballot measures to allow recreational marijuana. The first recreational pot shops are set to open in July 2018.

“We appreciate the careful consideration the legislature took to balance input from lawmakers, educators, public safety officials and public health professionals, while honoring the will of the voters regarding the adult use of marijuana,” Baker said in a statement.

The new legislation makes significant changes to the initiative Bay State voters passed last year, increasing sales taxes on legal marijuana from 12 percent to 20 percent. The state will levy a 17 percent tax, while municipalities will issue their own 3 percent tax.

Massachusetts anticipates generating as much as $83 million in tax revenue from marijuana sales during the first year of legalization alone, the state Department of Revenue estimated earlier this year. Sales during the second year are expected to top out at more than $1 billion, generating tax revenue of up to $200 million.

Question 4 won approval from nearly 54 percent of Massachusetts voters last year. In a first-of-its-kind provision, local governments in cities and towns that voted against the ballot measure will be allowed to ban marijuana stores. In cities and towns where Question 4 passed, any bans on marijuana stores must be approved by voters.

Baker, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey (D) and state Treasurer Deb Goldberg (D) must now appoint five members each to a state cannabis advisory board by Aug. 1. They have another month, until Sept. 1, to appoint members of the Cannabis Control Commission, the board tasked with writing rules and regulations for the legal marijuana industry.

The new law gives the commission until March to issue those regulations, covering everything from public advertising to cultivation, manufacturing, testing and sales of edible marijuana products.

Recreational pot shops may begin applying for licenses by April, and the first licenses will be issued in June, just weeks before the first stores are set to open.

Legal marijuana backers said they hope for a speedy regulatory process and an absence of further delays.

“We take elected officials at their word that there will be no more delays in implementation of the legal sales system,” said Jim Borghesani, a spokesman for the Question 4 campaign.

The other three states that passed recreational marijuana laws last year have moved faster than Massachusetts to set up their own legal frameworks. Pot sales became legal in Nevada last month, just seven months after voters approved a ballot measure last year. California plans to allow its first recreational sales in January 2018, while the first pot shops in Maine will open in February.

Marijuana is already legal for recreational use in Colorado, Washington, Alaska, Oregon and the District of Columbia.

Offline pcr3

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #541 on: July 28, 2017, 02:29:55 PM »
Almost makes the 10 month long winter worth it. Almost.

Also, suck it Jeff Sessions.

http://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/344343-massachusetts-governor-signs-bill-to-allow-recreational-pot

Quote
Massachusetts governor signs bill to allow recreational pot

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker (R) has signed a new measure that sets in motion a nearly yearlong process to legalize marijuana for recreational use, after months of negotiations with the state legislature.

The law comes nine months after voters in Massachusetts and three other states approved ballot measures to allow recreational marijuana. The first recreational pot shops are set to open in July 2018.

“We appreciate the careful consideration the legislature took to balance input from lawmakers, educators, public safety officials and public health professionals, while honoring the will of the voters regarding the adult use of marijuana,” Baker said in a statement.

The new legislation makes significant changes to the initiative Bay State voters passed last year, increasing sales taxes on legal marijuana from 12 percent to 20 percent. The state will levy a 17 percent tax, while municipalities will issue their own 3 percent tax.

Massachusetts anticipates generating as much as $83 million in tax revenue from marijuana sales during the first year of legalization alone, the state Department of Revenue estimated earlier this year. Sales during the second year are expected to top out at more than $1 billion, generating tax revenue of up to $200 million.

Question 4 won approval from nearly 54 percent of Massachusetts voters last year. In a first-of-its-kind provision, local governments in cities and towns that voted against the ballot measure will be allowed to ban marijuana stores. In cities and towns where Question 4 passed, any bans on marijuana stores must be approved by voters.

Baker, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey (D) and state Treasurer Deb Goldberg (D) must now appoint five members each to a state cannabis advisory board by Aug. 1. They have another month, until Sept. 1, to appoint members of the Cannabis Control Commission, the board tasked with writing rules and regulations for the legal marijuana industry.

The new law gives the commission until March to issue those regulations, covering everything from public advertising to cultivation, manufacturing, testing and sales of edible marijuana products.

Recreational pot shops may begin applying for licenses by April, and the first licenses will be issued in June, just weeks before the first stores are set to open.

Legal marijuana backers said they hope for a speedy regulatory process and an absence of further delays.

“We take elected officials at their word that there will be no more delays in implementation of the legal sales system,” said Jim Borghesani, a spokesman for the Question 4 campaign.

The other three states that passed recreational marijuana laws last year have moved faster than Massachusetts to set up their own legal frameworks. Pot sales became legal in Nevada last month, just seven months after voters approved a ballot measure last year. California plans to allow its first recreational sales in January 2018, while the first pot shops in Maine will open in February.

Marijuana is already legal for recreational use in Colorado, Washington, Alaska, Oregon and the District of Columbia.

About fucking time.  However, knowing how things work in MA, that timeline is beyond aggressive.  Inching our way to the finish line up here...
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Offline mattstick

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #542 on: July 28, 2017, 02:40:33 PM »

July 1, 2018 is the day Canada legalizes too - everybody must get stoned.

Offline kellerb

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #543 on: July 28, 2017, 04:07:37 PM »

July 1, 2018 is the day Canada legalizes too - everybody must get stoned.

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Offline runawayjimbo

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #544 on: August 30, 2017, 03:34:05 PM »
Amazing thing on the way to legalization:  ending the black market has resulted in a significant drop in wholesale weed prices. Magic!!

https://www.wsj.com/articles/buzz-kill-for-pot-farmers-lower-prices-1504094410

Quote
Buzz Kill for Pot Farmers: Lower Prices
After decades of dodging law enforcement and fighting for legalization, U.S. marijuana growers face a new challenge: falling prices.

After decades of dodging law enforcement and fighting for legalization, U.S. marijuana growers face a new challenge: low prices.

From Washington to Colorado, wholesale cannabis prices have tumbled as dozens of states legalized the drug for recreational and medicinal uses, seeding a boom in marijuana production.

The market is still tiny compared with the U.S. tobacco industry’s $119 billion in annual retail sales, but the nascent cannabis business has grown to more than $6 billion a year at retail, according to data from Euromonitor International Ltd. and Cowen & Co..

For marijuana smokers, the price drop is sweet news. Recreational users and those prescribed cannabis for health reasons have seen prices decline as wholesale prices have fallen, though some retailers have pocketed part of the difference, according to New Leaf Data Services LLC, which researches the U.S. cannabis market.

At Hashtag Cannabis, a Seattle-based retailer running two dispensaries, co-owner Jerina Pillert said wholesale price declines show up on the plastic vials holding green-and-tan nuggets of “Super Silver Lemon Haze” marijuana produced by Longview, Wash.-based Bondi Farms. A gram sells for about $10 currently, down by a third from the $15 a gram it fetched in September 2015, she said.

But for growers—ranging from high-tech warehouse operations to back-country pot farmers gone legit—the price drop has been painful.

Since peaking in September 2015 at about $2,133 a pound, average U.S. wholesale cannabis prices fell to $1,614 in July, according to New Leaf. That is the sort of market decline that hit Midwestern corn and soybean growers in recent years after a string of record-breaking crops.

“There is an increasing recognition, on the part of the industry and those that grow and dispense, that this market is a commodity,” said Jonathan Rubin, New Leaf’s chief executive.

In response, some producers are taking a page from the food industry, where farmers and food companies increasingly appeal to health- and environment-conscious consumers. Growth in organic food products for years has outpaced conventional grocery sales, and products made without genetically modified crops, gluten and artificial flavorings can command premium pricing and shelf space.

Stephen Jensen, who secured a state license to grow cannabis in Washington in 2015, has yet to turn a profit. He is promoting what he described as natural growing methods.

“We needed to give people a reason to select us,” said Mr. Jensen. He said his Green Barn Farms eschews synthetic pesticides and relies on natural light over high-powered lamps, which he said helps his cannabis stand out among more than 1,100 other Washington farms.

Because cannabis remains illegal under federal law, growers can’t get their crops certified as organic, a label that can only be bestowed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Cannabis farmers instead have turned to alternative labels such as SunGrown Certified, which requires that growers use sunlight and water-conservation practices. They hope such labels will entice smokers and secure shelf space in the 29 states where marijuana is legal in some form.

Another label, Clean Green Certified, is modeled on U.S. organic standards. It bars synthetic pesticides and emphasizes what the program deems fair-labor practices. In May, Washington State passed a law that would set up a state-level organic-certification program, though it may need to use a label that doesn’t use that word.

That push to differentiate is splitting pot farmers into rival camps.

Indoor-grown cannabis, where climate controls and high-powered lights allow several crops per year, typically is of a more consistent quality, industry officials say. Its dense, often bright-green buds catch consumers’ eyes, often fetch a higher price and can be costlier to produce.

Proponents of marijuana grown outdoors and in greenhouses say indoor facilities rely on synthetic fertilizers and heavily consume electricity. They point to a 2012 paper by University of California Senior Scientist Evan Mills, which estimated that indoor cannabis production accounted for 1% of national electricity use, though some growers have been adopting LED lights, which consume less electricity.

Jeremy Moberg, owner of Riverside, Wash.-based CannaSol Farms and head of the Washington Sungrowers Industry Association, says marijuana smokers will come to care about the environmental cost of their high.

“The socially conscious, premium customer is going to want us because we’re sustainable,” he said. “It only takes me 30 seconds to convert somebody wearing Patagonia and driving a Prius that they should never smoke indoor weed again.”

At Hashtag Cannabis in Seattle, Ms. Pillert said customers occasionally ask for pesticide-free or sun-grown varieties. Smokers’ main fixation, she said, is the potency rating for the key active ingredient, tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC: “They want to make sure they are getting the biggest bang for their buck.”

Many in the emergent industry expect marijuana to eventually resemble the beer business, where pricier craft brews have built followings in the shadow of cheaper mass-market beers like Budweiser and Busch.

While high-quality strains and specialty brands may secure premium prices, more low-quality marijuana will be processed into oil used in vaporizer cartridges or adult-oriented baked goods like brownies and cookies, growers and retailers said.

Mr. Jensen, the Seattle cannabis producer, said he hopes that his sun-grown, naturally produced plants over time will yield a 20% to 30% premium over the average market price.

“I always buy organic products at the store and think there is a future for that in the [cannabis] industry,” said Mr. Jensen. But, he said, “it’s a battle getting that awareness out.”
« Last Edit: August 30, 2017, 03:37:20 PM by runawayjimbo »

Offline runawayjimbo

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #545 on: January 04, 2018, 10:42:25 AM »
Fuck this guy. Hard.

https://apnews.com/19f6bfec15a74733b40eaf0ff9162bfa

Quote
US to end policy that let legal pot flourish

WASHINGTON (AP) — Attorney General Jeff Sessions is rescinding the Obama-era policy that had paved the way for legalized marijuana to flourish in states across the country, two people with knowledge of the decision told The Associated Press. Sessions will instead let federal prosecutors where pot is legal decide how aggressively to enforce federal marijuana law, the people said.

The people familiar with the plan spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss it before an announcement expected Thursday.

The move by President Donald Trump’s attorney general likely will add to confusion about whether it’s OK to grow, buy or use marijuana in states where pot is legal, since long-standing federal law prohibits it. It comes days after pot shops opened in California, launching what is expected to become the world’s largest market for legal recreational marijuana and as polls show a solid majority of Americans believe the drug should be legal.

While Sessions has been carrying out a Justice Department agenda that follows Trump’s top priorities on such issues as immigration and opioids, the changes to pot policy reflect his own concerns. Trump’s personal views on marijuana remain largely unknown.

Sessions, who has assailed marijuana as comparable to heroin and has blamed it for spikes in violence, had been expected to ramp up enforcement. Pot advocates argue that legalizing the drug eliminates the need for a black market and would likely reduce violence, since criminals would no longer control the marijuana trade.

The Obama administration in 2013 announced it would not stand in the way of states that legalize marijuana, so long as officials acted to keep it from migrating to places where it remained outlawed and out of the hands of criminal gangs and children. Sessions is rescinding that memo, written by then-Deputy Attorney General James M. Cole, which had cleared up some of the uncertainty about how the federal government would respond as states began allowing sales for recreational and medical purposes.

The pot business has since become a sophisticated, multimillion-dollar industry that helps fund schools, educational programs and law enforcement. Eight states and the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana for recreational use, and California’s sales alone are projected to bring in $1 billion annually in tax revenue within several years.

Sessions’ policy will let U.S. attorneys across the country decide what kinds of federal resources to devote to marijuana enforcement based on what they see as priorities in their districts, the people familiar with the decision said.

Sessions and some law enforcement officials in states such as Colorado blame legalization for a number of problems, including drug traffickers that have taken advantage of lax marijuana laws to hide in plain sight, illegally growing and shipping the drug across state lines, where it can sell for much more. The decision was a win for pot opponents who had been urging Sessions to take action.

“There is no more safe haven with regard to the federal government and marijuana, but it’s also the beginning of the story and not the end,” said Kevin Sabet, president and CEO of Smart Approaches to Marijuana, who was among several anti-marijuana advocates who met with Sessions last month. “This is a victory. It’s going to dry up a lot of the institutional investment that has gone toward marijuana in the last five years.”

Threats of a federal crackdown have united liberals who object to the human costs of a war on pot with conservatives who see it as a states’ rights issue. Some in law enforcement support a tougher approach, but a bipartisan group of senators in March urged Sessions to uphold existing marijuana policy. Others in Congress have been seeking ways to protect and promote legal pot businesses.

A task force Sessions convened to study pot policy made no recommendations for upending the legal industry but instead encouraged Justice Department officials to keep reviewing the Obama administration’s more hands-off approach to marijuana enforcement, something Sessions promised to do since he took office.

The change also reflects yet another way in which Sessions, who served as a federal prosecutor at the height of the drug war in Mobile, Alabama, has reversed Obama-era criminal justice policies that aimed to ease overcrowding in federal prisons and contributed to a rethinking of how drug criminals were prosecuted and sentenced. While his Democratic predecessor Eric Holder told federal prosecutors to avoid seeking long mandatory minimum sentences when charging certain lower level drug offenders, for example, Sessions issued an order demanding the opposite, telling them to pursue the most serious charges possible against most suspects.

Offline VDB

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #546 on: January 04, 2018, 11:31:29 AM »
Congress has been and will continue to be happy not to go on the record on this as long as there's nothing ugly to countenance. Let Sessions run up hard against regular, legit business owners, customers and public sentiment and perhaps we'll finally see some legislative movement.
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Offline mistercharlie

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #547 on: January 04, 2018, 11:46:11 AM »
That fuckin' kebler elf needs to get his racist ass back to the cookie tree.
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Offline Hicks

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #548 on: January 04, 2018, 12:10:40 PM »
Ugh and I just bought some MJ stock yesterday.    :frustrated:

Time to buy more I guess. 
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Offline rowjimmy

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #549 on: January 04, 2018, 12:14:01 PM »
https://twitter.com/COSenDem/status/948948921694302209
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Quote
We'll give Jeff Sessions our legal pot when he pries it from our warm, extremely interesting to look at hands.

Offline runawayjimbo

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #550 on: January 04, 2018, 01:04:14 PM »
Congress has been and will continue to be happy not to go on the record on this as long as there's nothing ugly to countenance. Let Sessions run up hard against regular, legit business owners, customers and public sentiment and perhaps we'll finally see some legislative movement.

Yeah, this is where I landed on this issue. You know, once my white hot, I-hope-this-guy-dies-a-slow-painful-death rage passed.

https://twitter.com/COSenDem/status/948948921694302209
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We'll give Jeff Sessions our legal pot when he pries it from our warm, extremely interesting to look at hands.

To VDB's point, here's the GOP junior Senator from CO expressing a similar sentiment (albeit in a far less hilarious way)

Quote
@SenCoryGardner
This reported action directly contradicts what Attorney General Sessions told me prior to his confirmation. With no prior notice to Congress, the Justice Department has trampled on the will of the voters in CO and other states.

Quote
@SenCoryGardner
I am prepared to take all steps necessary, including holding DOJ nominees, until the Attorney General lives up to the commitment he made to me prior to his confirmation.

ETA:  running list of elected officials opposing Session's move. It's mildly disheartening that nearly everyone on that list is from a state that legalized in one form or another, but good to see the pushback nonetheless.
https://www.marijuanamoment.net/lawmakers-react-sessions-anti-marijuana-move/
« Last Edit: January 04, 2018, 01:30:31 PM by runawayjimbo »

Offline VDB

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #551 on: January 04, 2018, 02:04:15 PM »
https://twitter.com/COSenDem/status/948948921694302209
Colorado Senate Dems
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Quote
We'll give Jeff Sessions our legal pot when he pries it from our warm, extremely interesting to look at hands.

That entire thread is quite brilliant and hilarious.
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Offline VDB

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #552 on: January 04, 2018, 02:10:01 PM »
To VDB's point, here's the GOP junior Senator from CO expressing a similar sentiment (albeit in a far less hilarious way)

Quote
@SenCoryGardner
This reported action directly contradicts what Attorney General Sessions told me prior to his confirmation. With no prior notice to Congress, the Justice Department has trampled on the will of the voters in CO and other states.

Quote
@SenCoryGardner
I am prepared to take all steps necessary, including holding DOJ nominees, until the Attorney General lives up to the commitment he made to me prior to his confirmation.

Instead of asking Jeff nicely to look the other way on federal law and then acting shocked – SHOCKED – when he doesn't, how about just pass some different laws? These people do realize they are legislators, right?
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Offline runawayjimbo

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #553 on: January 04, 2018, 03:31:46 PM »
To VDB's point, here's the GOP junior Senator from CO expressing a similar sentiment (albeit in a far less hilarious way)

Quote
@SenCoryGardner
This reported action directly contradicts what Attorney General Sessions told me prior to his confirmation. With no prior notice to Congress, the Justice Department has trampled on the will of the voters in CO and other states.

Quote
@SenCoryGardner
I am prepared to take all steps necessary, including holding DOJ nominees, until the Attorney General lives up to the commitment he made to me prior to his confirmation.

Instead of asking Jeff nicely to look the other way on federal law and then acting shocked – SHOCKED – when he doesn't, how about just pass some different laws? These people do realize they are legislators, right?

It's been so long since they actually legislated instead of the grandstanding circle jerk they've been engaging in for the past decade I'm not sure they remember that.

Offline VDB

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Re: The Political Pot Thread
« Reply #554 on: January 04, 2018, 04:16:26 PM »
Another thought. While I'm more than happy to see people inviting GOPers like Sessions to stand by their avowed affinity for states' rights and popular will, there's a danger in framing the argument too squarely in those (political point-scoring) terms. Namely, that it's all to easy to throw that back in progressives' faces. "Where were you on states' rights and majority rule when we were holding votes on bathrooms and 'traditional' marriage?" It's a bad tactic to try and compel someone into a stance based on an ideological underpinning that they can reasonably accuse you of not even necessarily valuing yourself. (Or at least one where holes can be poked from both directions.)

Gee, would it be too much to ask that people simply talk about legal weed as a liberty issue? Then you'd have nothing to reconcile on the "states' rights" front. Progressives can say they support gay marriage because it means more liberty for all. They can say they support legal weed because liberty for all. Easy. Consistent.
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