January 27, 2010 The Economic Benefit of Marijuana and the Zero Loss
Who is to blame for this? The Nixon Administration? Lumber industry? Well both actually.
See, it was originally found that hemp could be used as a cheaper and more renewable source of paper. The Lumber industry became very threatened by this and the U.S. Government began a campaign against it. That’s just the short story.
Before I continue with this post, I just want to make you aware and informed that I am not a pot smoker, never have, never will be. I have smoked before and I do not enjoy it. Now that it is clear that I don’t intend to legalize marijuana for the use of smoking it, I will continue with the post.
First thing is first, marijuana is a product. A product just like tobacco and alcohol, can be taxed, and taxed significantly. Taxes=money used to reduce the 12+ trillion dollar deficit, or money used to “stimulate” the economy, or money to do something useful.
There is another problem that is increasing costs for all citizens: “Driven by the Drug War, the U.S. prison population is six to ten times as high as most Western European nations.” This was from the NORML website, a pro marijuana advocacy group with the goal to reform marijuana laws.
It is true that the prisons of America are filled with people who committed non violent crimes. It is absolutely absurd that someone should go to prison for something that had no intentions of harming someone else. Granted, the proper counter argument would be to say: “Well consuming alcohol is legal, but the impairment can hurt someone, i.e. DWI.”
I can argue that there is research to prove that alcohol and tobacco is actually WORSE for you than marijuana, but that is not the point (mostly due to the fact that it was banned on scare tactics and ridiculous ad campaigns to position marijuana as the demon drug) . The point I want to make is lawmakers are completely overlooking the fact that if marijuana is legalized, costs will go down TREMENDOUSLY from the release of prisoners who were incarcerated for possession or trafficking of marijuana. There are tax incentives that will be able to control the supply/demand of it and the government will have a huge source of revenue.
I’m not saying we should legalize all drugs nor do I think it will lead to that route, but this first step is a necessary one. YES THERE WILL BE CONTROVERSY and CRITICISM. But that is how it works out. You debate about issues. I don’t mean to be biased but if this became the next big issue for lawmakers to decide on, I can see many overly concerned citizens crying out that marijuana will corrupt our youth (Nixon Administration did it once already, mostly because they felt all the youth in America was going to drop out of school, but in actuality, they blew it out of proportion, not many students did, and most of them came to their senses). There are social aspects to think about, true. This isn’t the place to argue nor talk about that.
To debate, you must have facts, objective and justifiable proof, not your opinion. I just debated that there are lot of benefits to our economy and we will save our country a lot of tax payers dollars if we just come to our senses and legalize it.
This post will have a follow up with my next post will be about legal philosophy, and what laws protect: people from themselves, or people from people.
I also encourage people to visit the NORML website to find out more: www.NORML.org