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View Diary: As Marijuana becomes legal here in Washington I'd like to say thanks to Ben Masel (95 comments)

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  •  Thanks Lefty Coaster. Yes, Ben Mazel's courage (17+ / 0-)

    and passion was, and still is, an inspiring to many of us.  I feel inspired to redouble my efforts in support of legalization of marijuana. It high time we took a more sensible, compassionate, and more cost-effective "harm reduction" approach.

    I have to get ready for a trip back up to Boston for medical appointments on Monday, but I will try to do several posts on the exciting development

    My understanding is that we are spending over $69 billion a year to incarcerate about 2% of our population, nearly half for drug related offenses, a higher fraction than any country in the world.

    With 5% of the worlds population we have 25% of the worlds prisoners, (our own people.)  

    It cost $50,000 per person, per year to incarcerate those in jail for marijuana related offenses, and despite peoples feelings that this isn't really an issues anymore I believe last year over 800,000 were arrested for marijuana possession.

    I've been advocating that President Obama ask that all parole boards review the status of all non-violent drug offenders to verify their suitability for a massive pardon, and amnesty.

    Even if this were only 500,000 of current prisoners at $50,000 per year per person thats $25 billion dollars we could put on the table instead of the chained CPI for Social Security, and Medicare.

    Additionally, by executive order President Obama has the power to reclassify marijuana as a Schedule 3 substance ( I think this is the right number) instead of 1 (which incorrectly states it has  no acceptable medical purpose), and instruct the DOJ to leave enforcement of marijuana laws to the states and stop hassling state legal, and licensed medicinal operations.

    The means is the ends in the process of becoming. - Mahatma Gandhi

    by HoundDog on Thu Dec 06, 2012 at 04:46:59 AM PST

    •  This is it (6+ / 0-)
      by executive order President Obama has the power to reclassify marijuana
      Until this simple administrative step is taken, it is difficult, nay, virtually impossible for researchers to investigate the medical benefits and alleged harms of marijuana.

      Up to you, Mr President. Please proceed.

      •  But that'd be impeachable, ya know. (1+ / 0-)
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        It actually really would- I know that anything is an impeachable offense for a Democratic President, but there'd actually be a fairly strong legal case that the treaty violation was impeachable.

        Ya know, I'd really like to get some other things done with his second term...

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