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Old 05-02-2009, 03:13 PM   #181 (permalink)
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The only time that a black market distribution of a substance has flourished in this country has been during times when use and possession of that substance has been illegeal. The prohibition era is a perfect example of this.
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Old 05-02-2009, 03:21 PM   #182 (permalink)
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But Satch, taxing A is not necessarily like taxing B. Sure people sell moonshine still, but it's pretty hard to make beer as good as the big breweries or wine as good as the wineries .. Forget about whisky, cognac and tequilas. You can forget about rolling your own "cuban" cigars too. For marijuana, it's much more feasible for "entrepreneurs" to compete with the government than it is with alcohol/tobacco.

The point is alcohol/tobacco/marijuana is not the same. Taxing one is not going to be exactly like taxing one of the others.
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Old 05-02-2009, 04:12 PM   #183 (permalink)
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But Satch, taxing A is not necessarily like taxing B. Sure people sell moonshine still, but it's pretty hard to make beer as good as the big breweries or wine as good as the wineries .. Forget about whisky, cognac and tequilas. You can forget about rolling your own "cuban" cigars too. For marijuana, it's much more feasible for "entrepreneurs" to compete with the government than it is with alcohol/tobacco.

The point is alcohol/tobacco/marijuana is not the same. Taxing one is not going to be exactly like taxing one of the others.
This response really only reinforces my argument.
DO you know how much a grower gets for a pound of marijuana? Somewhere in the area of $3200 dollars. Yes, that's thousands. If you compare that to the cost of production the profit margin is astronomical. It's this profit margin which allows the grower to accept the risk of what he's doing. He 's making a boatload of money!
What's the actual cost of producing a pound of marijuana? Well, lets err on the high side and factor in a gov't administrative and distribution costs and say $5. The gov't would be able to quadruple their profit ad on a tax that's 300% the cost of production (pretty substantial) and still offer a product at a price that 300X less the cost of what the private grower is currently selling the product for. There's not a black market in the world that would go through the hassle of trying to compete with that, Especially with possession being legal, all possible legal sanctions would be directed directly at him and not the user, or the distributor (dealer) who would be missing from the picture all together because the grower would have to cut out any middle man to even dream of making any money.
The government could tax there product through the roof and still not have to worry about a grower trying to compete. For a grower wouldn't be worth it when weighing the increased risk of production with the signifigant decrease in profit.
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Old 05-02-2009, 04:23 PM   #184 (permalink)
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That might make sense, but there's still a significant problem here. The government will only have control as long as they sell their marijuana really cheap. Maybe that's acceptable in America, but it sure wouldn't be here. Cigarettes are taxed really high because they're damaging to health. If they were to sell marijuana for 1/10th of the price of tobacco, that would just be paradoxal.

If the only way to have control of the market is to sell cheaper than the homegrowers, then it's not really control at all.
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Old 05-02-2009, 04:50 PM   #185 (permalink)
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If the only way to have control of the market is to sell cheaper than the homegrowers, then it's not really control at all.
To an extent you're right,and the hypothetical example I provided above was exaggerated for the purpose of illustrating my point.

It is control if you look at the current situation and see what needs to be controlled.

Distribution needs to be controlled and taken out of the hands of criminals who sell the drug on the street to our children. Production needs to be regulated. And the focus of our law enforcement needs to be more directly aimed at the source of illegal and unregulated production and distribution. Our national debt needs to be controlled. The overpopulation of our prisons needs to be controlled as well as the administrative costs that the overpopulation incurs.

I fail to see how the casual user presents a huge detriment to society, and I think the health risks associated with marijuana use have been grossly exaggerated. The majority of casual to chronic users of marijuana that I know, including myself, are healthy and contribute positively to the welfare of society, and by and large have a very strong work ethic. The image of "us" that's been portrayed by the media is simply a false and propagated stereotype.
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Old 05-02-2009, 05:07 PM   #186 (permalink)
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In your post, you mention stuff that needs to be controlled. All this need for control will cost society. If weed gets legalized, most articles I've read predict that consume will rise drastically. The many negative effects of marijuana will also cost society.

You don't believe in negative health effects, I do. However, you mustn't forget that running over a child because you were really high while driving is also a cost of marijuana. A child having a comparatively worse childhood because his parents were high all the time is also a negative cost on society.

I wrote earlier that I don't believe it's a black and white issue. There are many shades of grey and in my mind when I add up all the arguments I've heard, it sounds to me that legalization will come at a net cost to society, not gain.
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Old 05-02-2009, 05:26 PM   #187 (permalink)
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No, government weed would suck.
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Old 05-02-2009, 06:40 PM   #188 (permalink)
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i'm not gonna multi-quote but i'm gonna hit off a few replies to some of the last posts...

my east vs. west thing. i'll chalk that up to environment, it made no sense to me then and it still boggles my mind now. i'm glad he and his peers were an exception rather than the norm.

@thrice and the others going on about hallucinations on weed. i've experienced mild ones myself, like shadows moving along the side of the road. growing up in rural canada a lot of times i'd think some animal was coming out of the woods as we would be driving by. a good friend of mine routinely had visuals after smoking. everyone has a unique brain chemistry and any drug will affect it, the effect is always specific to the individual.

as for the whole growing thing, i'm with satchmo on this. yes, there are plenty of people who already grow their stuff, because there's a huge profit margin. i can't see them selling it for cheaper than tobacco.

@Tore - how much does a pack of cigarettes cost in your part of the world? compared to say a 1/4 ounce (if you happen to know). as for the amount of users going up considerably if it's no longer illegal... is it really new users or just people who are finally comfortable admitting to it?

i don't think anyone here is saying there are NO health risks involved with smoking. you are still inhaling smoke after all. the one i keep hearing is that smoking pot is equivalent to 7 times the negative health effects of tobacco. OK, fine. average tobacco smoker goes through a pack of 25 cigarettes in 1-2 days. i have never known anyone who would smoke that many Js that size that fast. it's not to say there aren't people like that out there, but they DO need help. for myself and my friends that amount of smokable would last 2 weeks instead of 2 days. so if the weed is 7 times deadlier but takes 7 times as long to smoke is it really deadlier?

no offense Tore but have you ever tried it? just curious, don't need to answer in this thread if you don't want to either. your arguments are sound but some of your examples are a little over the top.

@unrelenting - yes, but they're learning their lesson. back when canada first decriminalized it for medical use a lot of people complained about it. some patients even went so far as to mail it back to the government. there was a fair amount of discussion and they gov. realized that just because they didn't have any legal competition didn't mean they didn't have competition and they've since improved their product. it's pretty rare but i've had 'chemo' grade stuff before and yeah, the government has learned how to grow good stuff.
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Old 05-02-2009, 07:03 PM   #189 (permalink)
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@Tore - how much does a pack of cigarettes cost in your part of the world? compared to say a 1/4 ounce (if you happen to know). as for the amount of users going up considerably if it's no longer illegal... is it really new users or just people who are finally comfortable admitting to it?

i don't think anyone here is saying there are NO health risks involved with smoking. you are still inhaling smoke after all. the one i keep hearing is that smoking pot is equivalent to 7 times the negative health effects of tobacco. OK, fine. average tobacco smoker goes through a pack of 25 cigarettes in 1-2 days. i have never known anyone who would smoke that many Js that size that fast. it's not to say there aren't people like that out there, but they DO need help. for myself and my friends that amount of smokable would last 2 weeks instead of 2 days. so if the weed is 7 times deadlier but takes 7 times as long to smoke is it really deadlier?

no offense Tore but have you ever tried it? just curious, don't need to answer in this thread if you don't want to either. your arguments are sound but some of your examples are a little over the top.
Yeah, I have .. however, I gave it up because while it was mostly enjoyable, it did make me a bit paranoid sometimes. Me and some friends did it now and then over a short period in our late teens, but I haven't touched it in almost 10 years now. I much prefer alcohol. That also goes for my friends actually.

A pack of 20 cigs is very expensive here. I just checked on xe.com and I guess it would be just over 12 dollars for a pack. You have to remember that basically everything in Norway is more expensive than in the US, but it's still a lot which was a major motivator for me to give up smoking some 6 years ago now.

I'm not sure how much 1/4th ounce is (more used to grams), but I don't really know the marijuana prices here. Actually also, hashish is much more popular here than marijuana. But neither are really popular compared to what I imagine it's like in the US.
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Old 05-02-2009, 07:45 PM   #190 (permalink)
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hash is pretty popular here too but it's harder to find. i think it's just due to the hassle of making it. those smoke prices sound similar to canadian ones, if i remember right a pack of smokes is still close to $10, a 1/4 is usually between $50-60 depending on quality.

i think the biggest stumbling block with the potential benefits and detriments to this issue is the actual amount of users out there. while i'm fine with being honest about my use of the substance with the majority of people, there are plenty who are not, and only because it's still 'illegal' and therefore 'bad'.

it's cool that you stopped though, there have been more than a few times in the past where i've stopped for a while too, i just like the numbness a bit too much haha.
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