Posted by: sweeneyblog | February 20, 2015

Friday Odds and Ends: Crazy Uncle Joe, and Terrified Dispensaries

Hello Loyal Readers,

Time to get rolling with this week’s Odds and Ends. All the news that’s fit to print, but not important enough to justify its own post.

Frequent readers of this blog will remember my theory that Vice President Joe Biden is actually a Leslie Nielsen character in disguise. Yes, you can say, “Leslie Nielsen passed away in 2010,” but I just point to things like this:

Tell me that’s not the guy from Naked Gun

In case you’re curious, that’s the swearing in of the new Secretary of Defense. And that’s the vice-president being overly schmoozy. Just remember, these are the highjinks we know about. I can’t wait for this administration’s tell-all book that will come out sometime in 2017.

Meanwhile, the medical marijuana community is seeing their (*second) worst fears realized. During the campaign for legal, recreational marijuana many in the medical community feared the state would clamp down on their largely unregulated and definitely untaxed business. Now, those fears are being realized. The Stranger has a great breakdown of the legislative efforts proposed to fold the medical community into the current recreational market.

The medical marijuana community is desperately in need of oversight, and now that we have (**somewhat) working legal framework, it makes sense to start auditing the medical community.

Tomorrow, my analysis of Sen. Doug Ericksen’s legislative efforts will go live. It is definitely an all-you-can-eat buffet of corporate goodies and local oddities.

*Their worst fear is either the reinstatement of marijuana prohibition . . . or a giant angry Hershey’s bar chasing them down in a dark alley and demanding revenge.

**The recreational market still is somewhat unavailable by public transit (because of the zoning restrictions) and there are many communities still lacking an accessible store.



  1. From Thom Hartmann’s web site: “Currently, there are two competing bills sitting in the Washington State senate that both seek to address that state’s medical marijuana market. One of the bills is from a Republican state senator, and the other is from a Democrat state senator.

    “The Republican measure, introduced by State Senator Ann Rivers, would put much of the control of Washington state’s medical marijuana market in the hands of a few very wealthy individuals. Those very wealthy individuals, led by millionaire Martin Tobias, a former Microsoft executive, are behind the Washington CannaBusiness Association.

    “That group, also known as WACA, lobbied heavily for the Republican-backed legislation, and gave multiple donations to Republican lawmakers in Washington state. The WACA-fueled measure would essentially destroy independent growers and non-profit growing co-ops, retailers and sellers who have been around since the birth of Washington State’s medical marijuana program in the late 90’s.

    “Meanwhile, there’s the proposed legislation from Democratic State Senator Jeanne Kohl-Welles. Her bill wouldn’t put control over the medical marijuana market in just a few hands. Instead, it would allow anyone in Washington state who’s 21 years or older to grow up to six marijuana plants and to share up to an ounce of marijuana with other adults, as long as money isn’t exchanged.

    “The Democrats’ bill would also pave the way for more marijuana growers to be licensed and for more retail shops to pop up across the state – you know, let a thousand small businesses grow!”

    More here:

  2. If you’d like to interview possibly the most knowledgeable Legal cannabis manufacturer locally who is paying an amazing amount of taxes and is actively promoting equal and fair regulation of the industry as a whole, call Danielle Rosellison: 360- 319-4576. She can break down this issue like no one else.

    • And she wont be biased at all, just because she has a huge amount of skin in the game.

  3. Uh – Washington wants to get taxes based on the same prices as the narco-cartels from Mexico and Canada charge, BUT they don’t want to allow the product (weed) to be as good. This is the victory of petit bourgeois bureaucracy. It’s kind of like the bureaucrats from the Liquor Control Board are still mad that we took away their state liquor store scam.

    • Is that one of your farm crops Walter?

  4. I get that legally licensed marijuana distributing organizations are nervous and perhaps skeptical of the legislative measures threatening to regulate (monopolize?) medical marijuana. Regardless of the outcome of proposed legislation, I believe the black market will remain viable and strong as long as prices and taxes are high.

  5. Seems there will be crony monopoly takeover in almost any industry… but I think that some legislators want to fold “medical” customers into the regular statewide legal access now, since they don’t need a special medical justification to legally obtain and possess anymore. Bus stop in front or not, someone can go get it for them… point is, it’s legal now.

    • It maybe be NOT legal for long. The Colorado law is being challenged and Washington will be next.

      I marvel at the fact that the same people that help ban traditional smoking in public places including beaches and one’s backyard, NOW are for smoking pot legally (in public places I assume).

      • I am quite opposed to smoking of any kind in public spaces.

      • It is not about smoking pot in public places Wayne. It never has been. The initiative was all about not allowing the police to bust into your house and haul you off to jail and ruin your life for having a joint.

        Of COURSE the dim bulbs in Olympia and the Liquor Control Board want to spin it into something else. That is why they are failing.

      • I don’t disagree with you, however are you against a person smoking a joint while watching on of our beautiful sunsets.

        They want the tax dollars for more welfare programs for the Occupy a Hammock people.

      • Wayne – Again with the phony rhetorical devices! Here is how it works – and both liberals and rightwingers use it by the way. Take a specific example (smoking a joint while watching TV for instance), spin it to a general case (only smoking in private), take it out to a logical absurdity (not being able to smoke a joint while watching a beautiful sunset at the beach) and then you stand back and say, “Hah!” It doesn’t prove anything. It doesn’t wash.

        Really Wayne, I call you on it all the time. I will probably continue to do so. Why don’t you roll up a big spliff and come up with some new ideas for better rhetoric – like a real argument – for a change?

    • Richard- “legal” ya right – we have a free market now and they propose to eliminate it in favor if their State Capitalist monopoly. Why do they hate freedom and the free market so much and love Comrade Stalin’s I502 monopoly? Because they are greedy bribe-takers who want to punish anyone who doesn’t want to pay their unjust taxes. They can go to hell!

  6. So does that mean you smoke in private places?

    Do you know that there is a movement to ban all smoking in homes, condos and apartments?

  7. The prohibition of cannabis is an insult to any definition of freedom, to the free men of the Continental Army who wore hemp uniforms, and to the millions for whom it is medicine they can grow in their own gardens. That the State Senate is acting in direct violation of the express will of the people of Washington State in favor of a soviet-style profiteering system which guarantees the black market will continue is disgraceful. That they propose to take away the right of people to grow their own medicine shows them to be as ignorant and corrupt as any federal bribe-taking congressman who serve monopoly capital – parasites sucking the juice from the body politic.

  8. What about FDA approval, should that be required?

    • It’s a herbal medicine and as such not subject to FDA approval – just ask Sen Orrin Hatch, who was a prime mover in exempting herbal medicines from FDA oversight. Of course, Sen Hatch is against cannabis herbal medicine because the children , but hypocrisy in high places will surprise no one.

      And the rank hypocrisy of our State senate in passing 5052 is breathtaking- cannabis is non-toxic and less addictive than coffee, but they tax it at 3 times the rate of toxic, highly addictive and judgment-destroying liquor and deny us the right to grow our own. They are worthy of disrespect and I don’t say this lightly.

      • Winston Churchill helped when WWII while drinking Cognac. Hemingway wrote his greatest books while drunk. Dean Martin sang his best songs while crocked.

        As Woody Woodbury used to say to me at the Bahama Club in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, “booze is the only answer”

      • Booze may be the only answer but what is the question? What substance indulged in habitually will cause depression, brain damage, and has a 10% chance of addicting you totally? What substance is the leading cause of liver pathologies (along with Tylenol)? What substance is the leading cause of automobile deaths? The answer to all is booze. It is toxic, highly addictive, causes sever impairment of judgment, and is a depressant.

        Not for me, at least in any quantity – I prefer a non-toxic, mildly addictive, cancer-suppressing, brain-preserving, plant medicine – Indian Hemp, Cannabis Sativa Sativa, AKA the dreaded merrywanna. NO hangover either. Why not? Because it doesn’t kill brain cells like alcohol does.

  9. Again, “are you against a person smoking a joint while watching on of our beautiful sunsets”.

    Walter, can’t you answer a simple question without making to very tiring condescending remarks? You are reading to much into to this.
    Humor me for a change.

    • Okay. I will humor you. I am not against it, but I am also not for it. ! ! !

      • Thanks for the equivocation Walter.

      • It is just precise logic Wayne. That is why I am so down on you Tea Party folks (and some of you liberals too). Your logic is not precise so your thinking is confused. Here is two examples:

        “If you are not with us in the war on terror, you are against us.”
        – President George W. Bush, October 2001

        “If you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem.”
        – Eldridge Cleaver, March 1968

        What is hilarious is that George W. Bush cribbed one of his signature lines from a Black Panther!

        Of course both statements are nonsense. For example, in the Afghan War, when NATO assumed control in 2003, there were 43 countries actively supporting the US mission. Yet there are 192 countries in the world. Does that mean 149 countries were against us in the war on terror? Of course not. It is just vacuous logic. As I say, unless your logic is precise, you are confused.

      • What percentage of the population uses “precise logic” Darwin?

      • Wayne – Most of the population are not spouting rubbish as a tactic on blogs.

      • Answer the question instead of evading it please.

        Perhaps you unable to do anything but BLOVIATE.

      • Wayne – I did answer your question. I am not against smoking marijuana in public, nor am I for it.

        A statute or common law is a proactive tool. It is specific. If you strike down a bad law – the law criminalizing marijuana for instance – you are just removing a specific thing that is generating a lot of crime, heartache, wasted lives, racism, and fascism. The anti-marijuana laws in the US are the single biggest reason we have the highest incarceration rate in the developed world.

        After removing parts of this bad law from the statute books in Washington, people now have a tiny bit more freedom to do what they want. It is a little bit better than it was before. If people want to smoke pot in public, I don’t really give a rip. But I am not encouraging them to do so.

        So what is so difficult to understand? Remember, I am not the one busting your door down because you might have a bag of weed. Nor am I going to be the one busting down your door because you DON’T have a bag of weed.

      • Walter you did NOT answer my question: What percentage of the population uses “precise logic” Darwin?

    • Oh, that question! I would guesstimate between 1-5% of the US population uses precise logic. In other words, if we accept an alpha of 5%, it is basically random whether someone uses precise logic or not. We could probably say the same about rational behavior. Depressing ain’t it?

      • Thankyou, that is interesting while depressing.

  10. Riley, it’s not cool to make fun of medical cannabis users… I’d also like to point out that I’ve yet to hear of CBD products and high CBD strains being sold in recreational outlets (seeing as they don’t get you high, I wouldn’t expect that to change) . Restricting and further regulating the medical industry will only make it more difficult for patients to obtain these items. Is all the regulation and tax worth it if even one epileptic child goes without CBD treatment and suffers seizures or worse? By taking the establishment party line here you’re losing the social empathy that democrats are known for.

    • Though don’t get me wrong, there’s a lot of people misusing the medical system. The fault there lies in doctor’s prescription SOPs, not in patients seeking treatment.

      • WHat’s your evidence of this, Nick? Indian hemp is medicine, has been for thousands of years of co-evolution with humans. Why else would we have cannabinoid receptors in our brains?

        Don’t fall prey to the lies of the prohibitionists, who as you know are the enemies of freedom and the friends of monopoly capitalism and unjust dominion, making criminals of free people for profit. It’s maddening that a majority of our State senators are in this camp – making law based on ignorance and greed and the desire to punish those who dare to disobey a stupid and unjust prohibition.

      • Mr. Camp, I’m not sure where you got the idea that I’m a prohibitionist. I support both a recreational and medicinal industry. I just don’t want them lumped together because they’re completely different products. I also think that doctors should be a bit more judicious and discerning in who gets a medical card so that the two markets can serve clients and patients more appropriately, rather than having the general public take advantage of patient services.

      • Mr. Kunkel – you made an unsubstantiated assertion (“there’s a lot of people misusing the medical system”) – and I asked for evidence. SO far, you have provided none – and then make another unsubstantiated assertion (“having the general public take advantage of patient services”) – again – do you have any actual evidence of this? For someone claiming up and down they aren’t a prohibitionist, you sure argue like one.

  11. WASHINGTON: In his weekly radio address, President Barack Obama reaffirmed his love of country, telling the nation, “I love America—even its idiots.”

    Expanding on this theme, the President said, “America is made up of all kinds of people: young and old, weak and strong, smart and dumb. And when the really dumb ones get up and act like total clowns, I still love them, because they are part of America. In fact, a really big part.”

    In a call for unity, the President concluded, “Let’s all work together for the United States of America. And if that means putting aside our differences—including our sometimes vast differences in intelligence—so be it.”

  12. Walter you did NOT answer my question: What percentage of the population uses “precise logic” Darwin?

    • See above.

    The Psychological Causes of
    Political Madness

    By Lyle H. Rossiter, Jr., M.D.

    • From a review of this book on Amazon:
      “I was eager to read the book so I could get a deeper understanding of the reasons liberals have their world view. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get past the author’s ponderous writing style. I gave up after 15 pages and returned the book. I’m glad that Amazon has a great return policy because I got my money back right away.”

      • I guess you aren’t a Psychologist.

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