Obama's new Drug Czar budget tilted 2-1 for law enforcement vs. treatment

(The Raw Story via InfoWars.com) “We’re not at war with people in this country,” [US Drug Czar Gil] Kerlikowske told The Wall Street Journal in May.
However, if the Office of National Drug Control Policy’s (ONDCP) budget for fiscal year 2011 is to be believed, Kerlikowske was full of hot air.
According to 2011 funding “highlights” released by the ONDCP (PDF link), the Obama administration is growing the drug war and tilting its funds heavily toward law enforcement over treatment.
The president’s National Drug Control Budget also continues the Bush administration’s public relations tactic of obscuring the costs of prosecuting and imprisoning drug offenders. “Enron style accounting,” is how drug policy reform advocate Kevin Zeese described it, writing for Alternet in 2002.
The budget places America’s drug war spending at $15.5 billion for fiscal year 2011; an increase of 3.5 percent over FY 2010. That figure reflects a 5.2 percent increase in overall enforcement funding, growing from $9.7 billion in FY 2010 to $9.9 billion in FY 2011. Addiction treatment and preventative measures, however, are budgeted at $5.6 billion for FY 2011, an increase from $5.2 billion in FY 2010.
In short, the Obama administration’s appropriations for treating drug addiction are just short of half that dedicated to prosecuting the war.

The problem, of course, is that when you have declared drugs to be illegal, you must expend resources to arrest, try, and convict the people who manufacture, transport, sell, buy, and use drugs. It’s really less about the the people who use drugs than it is about the people whose jobs depend on arresting the people who use drugs.
We’re in the middle of a recession. Jobless numbers are through the roof. If marijuana were regulated like alcohol or tobacco, you suddenly add a whole bunch of DEA, police, prosecutors, wardens, guards, and more to the unemployment line. Then add in the young people who have found marijuana growing and dealing to be the only living wage job they can find, now suddenly unemployed by marijuana re-legalization, and you’ll see unemployment figures that would guarantee an Obama re-election defeat in 2012.
Yes, a legal marijuana market would open up many jobs and industries and tax revenues heretofore unrealized, but transitioning to that market is going to take time. In the meantime, what jobs are open for former drug cops and pot dealers?
We bring this up to temper our disappointment in a man who in 2004 said our “War on Drugs is an utter failure and we need to rethink and decriminalize our marijuana laws” but in 2010 has turned into just another prohibitionist president.
(Find more information on this contradiction between the Obama Administration’s lip service toward treatment over incarceration, complete with quotes and informative graphs, at Pete Guither’s informative DrugWarRant blog.)

0 thoughts

  1. President Obama would not talk to the American people of why he is doing this. How come?
    There is no way he will be re-elected in 2012. No way.

  2. I’m so over this fucking government. Its time to take our shit back and stop playing around. We all need to exorcise our rights to own a fire arm, before its taken away. When the time comes we can get rid of these fuckers once and for all.

  3. “We’re in the middle of a recession. Jobless numbers are through the roof. If marijuana were regulated like alcohol or tobacco, you suddenly add a whole bunch of DEA, police, prosecutors, wardens, guards, and more to the unemployment line. Then add in the young people who have found marijuana growing and dealing to be the only living wage job they can find, now suddenly unemployed by marijuana re-legalization, and you’ll see unemployment figures that would guarantee an Obama re-election defeat in 2012.”
    Awwwwwwwww, poor Obama won’t have a job in 2012. Ya that’s a good reason to expand the drug war, throw more innocent people in jail, and spend way too much money doing so. You are such a disappointment.

  4. You expected more from Obama?
    Ron Paul 2012
    [Editor’s note: Why be delusional that a libertarian-leaning Republican (who, if elected in 2012 will be 77 years-old) that is unpopular in his own party [How many Republican primaries did he win? What percentage of support did he garner? Paul can’t pull more than 5% from Republicans, support is even less from Democrats and Independent voters. How does the LP candidates, like Barr, do in national elections?], specifically Ron Paul, is ever going to be elected president by a majority of national voters?
    Ron Paul’s legacy is not going to be president of the U.S. What it appears to be is that he is a very popular political figure, who is a clear-minded and full-throated voice for personal liberty, constitutional values and fiscal responsibility. For this he deserves immense credit for spending his time on earth going to almost anyplace–big or small–to spread the message of Libertarianism.
    NORML is a non-partisan organization that sees merit in having a political system that is not effectively a duopoly. However, this does not change the fairly clear reality that Ron Paul will not be elected president of the US in 2012 at 77 years-old running as a libertarian-leaning Republican or as a Libertarian.]

  5. YET ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF HOW WE CAN NOT TRUST THE GOVT AND THE PEOPLE WE ELECT IN TO POWER, NO MATTER WHAT THE FACTS ARE.
    IS OBAMA REALLY JUST DOING THIS FOR THE “JOBS” THAT ARE AT RISK
    ALSO
    I DONT THINK THAT DECRIMINALIZATION WOULD LEAD TO FEWER COPS AND CORRECTIONS OFFICERS
    POLICE WILL BE ABLE TO FOCUS ON MORE IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF LAW ENFORCEMENT WHICH WOULD BE TO PROTECT AND SERVE AND NOT “JUST PROTECTING US FROM OURSELVES”, BUT FROM THE CRIMINAL WE FEAR, IN FACT A CHANGE IN PRIORITY FOR MANY POLICE DEPT. WOULD BE A POSITIVE THING A FOCUS MORE ON CRIMES WHERE THE VICTIM AND CRIMINAL ARE TWO DIFFERENT PEOPLE
    ITS BECOMING CLEARER THAT WE MUST ESCALATE THIS MOVEMENT

  6. doesn’t gold ever run out i mean 15 billion just on 1 subject which shouldn’t be a subject anyway
    Where’s the gold backup
    and from who we’re borrowing from and their plans.
    spending trillions each where’s the gold to support this
    I say we use marijuana for new currency,really
    literally at that
    fucking gov’s. gonna cause us to be money less in 10 years…
    probably not but only because they “think” we ” think” there’s endless gold :smh:

  7. doesn’t gold ever run out i mean 15 billion just on 1 subject which shouldn’t be a subject anyway
    Where’s the gold backup
    and from who we’re borrowing from and their plans.
    spending trillions each where’s the gold to support this
    I say we use marijuana for new currency,really
    literally at that
    fucking gov’s. gonna cause us to be money less in 10 years…
    probably not but only because they “think” we ” think” there’s endless gold :smh:

  8. Then they can go arrest coke and meth dealers, drugs that actually kill people. they’ll quit wasting money catching millions that use marijuana. Then you start growing pot, 60 days and you have product. then you sell it in shops that people who want to make money will set up. free market enterprise would make it a great business. now people can finally buy what they want without going through the black market

  9. Obama has to go and all those in congress that opose legalization. Boycot Youtube as well. The refused to ask the number one question in their interview which was, you guessed it, legalization.I voted for Obama and will never vote for a conservitive. What’s going to happen is most librals are going to stay home next election and unfortunately the conservitives will be back in power. I’m getting too old for this crap, and to think I used to believe when my generation got in power things would change. Well I should have known better, since the hippies sold out, that most would lie to their kids and become corporate ditto heads.

  10. First things first: Is it really that bad that drug warriors be put out of work? I mean the whole “saving the government enforcement tax dollars” thing exists because we’d be removing the cost of paying for these assholes’ salaries. Second: the drug war will not end because cannabis is legalized. The existing resources will simply be re-allocated towards combating drugs that actually do damage, like tobacco, alcohol, meth, heroine, cocaine, etc.
    “Yes, a legal marijuana market would open up many jobs and industries and tax revenues heretofore unrealized, but transitioning to that market is going to take time. In the meantime, what jobs are open for former drug cops and pot dealers”
    Just as the transition into a new market will take some time, so too will the transition out of the old one. Plenty of time for drug cops and cannabis dealers to find jobs in the new improved America. The cops will continue being cops, and if they are let go because their department feels they are no longer needed, well.. join the club! This is a recession, we all have to bite the bullet at some point or another. Maybe they can open up a pot shop? Or get a job with their local Retail Cannabis Regulator’s office (similar to ATF or ABC). As for cannabis dealers, well now they can go legit! Open up a delivery service or something of the like.
    The Drug War as a whole needs to be ended.. cannabis and non-lethal psychedelics like LSD, psilocybin mushrooms, mescaline, DMT etc should be legal for adults to purchase at a store. Hard drugs that actually kill people should be given to addicts through addiction treatment centers. At any point in time, the addict can choose to not put the needle in their vein (or pipe to their mouth or straw to their nose.. whichever), and tell the administering nurse that they’d like to enter the free treatment. As the addict weans themself off the drug with the help of qualified medical professionals, and progress is shown, the treatment center can get them involved with the community by involving them in outreach programs to keep kids off drugs, and once the addict stays clean for a certain amount of time then the treatment center can help the addict find a job, if they dont already have one. By giving the drugs away for free, and not charging anything for the treatment, there will be no incentive for the addict to steal or deal to support their habit. As the years go by, and we start PROPERLY educating the new generations of kids about drugs, kids will be less likely to try them, especially at as young of an age as they are now. By treating addiction as a disease rather than a rebellious thing to do, we remove the “cool” factor. No kid actually WANTS to get a disease, right?
    Now my hypothetical situation isn’t perfect but this is along the lines of what should happen. This will remove most, if not all, of the black market from the equation. All the current DEA agents will be responsible for overseeing the production and distribution of the drugs. All money that was spent on interdiction and enforcement before will be put towards the program. Any money leftover will be spent on properly educating the public about the health effects of drug use, so as to discourage new users. So you see, those jobs aren’t really lost. Their purpose is just adjusted. The cost savings come from turning what were previously crime- and addiction-addled drug users into productive, tax paying members of society who are also no longer a burden on our health and welfare systems, as well as the cost savings from keeping those people out of jail. With cannabis legal, it is unlikely that many would choose such a risky drug as heroine or meth instead of cannabis.
    Again, this idea isn’t perfect and to work out all the kinks would take many many pages of typing and legislation and years of experience.. as we experience kinks we find ways to fix them you know? What do you think of this idea NORML?
    Don’t fear legalization because THEY might lose a few jobs.. they certainly weren’t concerned about our jobs when they decided to give us criminal records, throw us in jail, and take away our driving privileges, thus making it nearly impossible to get a decent job ever again. At least they’ll have the option of getting a new job! Change isn’t an event it’s a process and in this case it’s a process I very much look forward to taking part in.

  11. Obama will be a one term president if he keeps this up. I would love to see a Conservative, a true Conservative, run on a platform with the idea of ending this failed drug war. Ron Paul is truly the man for the job but real, honest politicians like him are thrown under the bus. The dumbed down majority of Americans only see the R and D after a empty suits name. They don’t understand what a Libertarian Conservative is and what good people like this could do for this country.

  12. hi, i’m doing a personal search on places where cannabis is almost legal … i know coffee shops in holland, cannabis social club in various european countries, christiania in denmark, Metelkova in slovenia, coffee shops in canada, cannabis dispensaries in various parts ofthe usa, and nimbin in australia… there are other places? thanks

  13. Yeah I Think Obama himself is full of HOT AIR, AND SHIT, he will Defineatly not get my vote again but he’s said himself he dont care if he gets in again me either how bout a veto

  14. Bah! If you ask me he has a chance in hell of being re-elected anyways, unless his opponent is Mothra or some Fabled monster of the deep.
    Tho Mothra might do a better job anyhow.

  15. Its all about maintaining the status quo and protecting the rice bowl. Heaven forbid we look up from that rice bowl, open our minds and see that the benefits of legalization, regulation and taxation may just give us bigger and better rice bowls.

  16. go figure having to resort to saelling drugs, when the economies crashed and the black market thrives…amazing

  17. wow this royally sucks just leagilize doent obama see this if its leagalized we then have more jobs to cure this recession think about it first we need someone to grow the seeds so thats one job then we need someone to cultivate those fully grown plants then we need someone to package box and load those goods onto the trucks then we need someone to drive those trucks to a store then someone to unpack and stock those good so that four jobs now lets say 100 people sign up for each job thats 400 ppl for one factory now lets say we turn this into a big busines and we open 100 factories throughout ohio thats 4,000 jobs for ohio alone now open that in all the states thats 200,000 jobs open to people around the world plus the people never mentioned liek who will repair that stuff when it breaks down i have no ida if what im saying makes and sense at all im slightly out of it but yes leaglize my meds are 300 $ without insurence for keppra and anti convulsent and thats only for one month i can get a quarter for 90 $ and that can last two months 3 if im lucky but still thats better than the 300 $ wow sorry for rambling on and i have no idea what im taking about anymore lol sorry

  18. It’s ok, our policing of actual crime — the kind with victims — could really use a shot in the arm. There are plenty of bad guys out there for the police to catch, and plenty of money to send their way for doing so. We can pay them for activities other than locking up innocent citizens, and maybe get solve rates higher than the mid-60’s on violent crimes.
    And I don’t see why some political sensitivity to unemployment numbers — something that, to my knowledge, hasn’t been brought up by Obama publicly relating to drug policy — is a reason to “temper” our disappointment. If we take 800,000 people per year out of the criminal justice system and put just as many on the unemployment line, we’re still far better off. I get that the guy is highly constrained, but he still needs to be held accountable for his actions and decisions.

  19. But the DEA agents who wouldn’t be needed in a legal cannabis world could have their jobs be re-dedicated to actually protecting and serving the people. There’s plenty of other crime out there for them to fight.
    It’s still bullshit though.
    Here’s the part I don’t get…
    As more and more states legalize medical cannabis use (PA, NY, MD and a few others out there) doesn’t that mean that we’re going to need less enforcement? (I guess not).

  20. I’m done and have been done with our federal government for some time now. I am, however, working hard with people in my state to make changes on the state level. That’s where 100% of my efforts are going towards. I will never EVER look to the feds to do the right thing.
    Obama is most certainly not getting my vote in 2012.
    Don’t fall for campaign promises to legalize when re-election comes up! He’s lied to us and continues to lie! Don’t fall for it!
    He could have at the very LEAST explained to America why he thinks marijuana should not be legalized. We all deserve that much.

  21. so, he still has done nothing in over a year. the dea and cronies of theirs are still busting medical patients in states that have laws enacted to protect them.
    nothing has changed, in fact, it’s getting worse.
    go fucking police yourselves, government… you are the problem, not us…

  22. We criticized the Bush administration for being a bunch of right wing neo-fascist totalitarian police state nazis and we were right. Now we all voted for Obama and we have a Bush-lite. Obama had the biggest Change sign that anyone has ever printed and yes all of it has turned out to be hot air. This country will never reform, the government doesn’t have a progressive bone in it’s body!

  23. I know most people don’t believe this..but the more our government lies to us, and the more they ignore us. The more I believe that there is a plan to create a NWO and enslave the people.

  24. NORML you are so out of touch it isn’t funny. Nice non-partisan back peddling Obomba excusing blog article. If a republican was president, do you think the tone of the article would be a little different? And Ron Paul / Liberty supporters don’t think Ron Paul could or ever should be president. With hardly any support in congress, it would be a useless presidency. That’s why liberty organizations like Campaign for Liberty are getting everyday citizens involved in local government. We’ve already place hundreds of people in local/state governments, on top of campaigning for various liberty congressional candidates that are the top pullers in the state. Then look at the enormous success of HR 1207, the Audit the Fed bill. If you talked about touching the Federal Reserve anytime 2 years ago and beyond you would have been laughed at. That has all changed because of the LIBERTY MOVEMENT, that you constantly say is not viable. The funny thing too is that a lot of Liberty activists are NORML members… But you constantly put us down when we want to work with you, telling us we are not viable. If you knew anything about HR 1207, our congressional races, and the grassroot campaign to put people in local government elected positions, you could not possibly defend your harsh critisisms of us. Maybe NORML is the one who is not viable…
    [Editor’s note: NORML is non-partisan. Period. Pox on ALL of their houses and sad sentiments to those who delude themselves about America being a libertarian country. Self-evidently it is not.
    NORML’s amalgam of supporters consists of progressives, conservatives, greens, libertarians, gay, straight, rich, poor, young, old, educated, uneducated, pro-meat, anti-meat, etc….]

  25. Maybe I’m not reading into this right, but Drug Enforcement budget doesn’t directly correlate withe the gov’s Cannabis Policy. Obama and his administeration has already paved the way for legalized/decriminalized Cannabis by telling federal enforcers to abide by state laws. The extra money may be for enforcement against the Mexican Cartels and gang wars along our border….maybe I’m just naive.

  26. Russ Belville, author of this article, would you care to comment on your intent of the light tone? It seems to me you are implying Obama couldn’t cut the drug war.. couldn’t even stop growing the drug war.. because it would hurt the economy and hurt his reelection bid for 2012. Are you implying that we should bare with him because he will fight for marijuana reform his second term? That’s what this article feels like, and judging by comments, others feel the same. Would this article be written in the same manner if Obama was a republican? Is NORML really non-partisan? Isn’t this hope for change from the Obama administration not viable?
    [Editor’s note: NORML = non-partisan. Where were you from 2000-2008? 1992-2000? 1988-1992? 1980-1988? 1976-1980? 1974-1976? 1970-1974? Because if you were paying any attention at all, you’d readily recognize that it does not matter who the president is or from what party, NORML is in Washington, DC representing the interests of cannabis consumers.]

  27. I am so sick of this defeatist bullshit!! Shame on you for making excuses for this president!! There are no excuses for such unimaginative, sad lack of leadership both by people in this movement to not advance ideas on how to keep those officers and dealers employed and working. It’s a no brainer people!!!
    The soaring crime problems, due to property theft, gangs hanging out in abandoned buildings, committing all manner of crimes, like home invasions, and such, all spiking, due to the economic collapse, put those cops to work on that! Put those dealers and growers to legit distribution which is taxed like any other business.
    I am not disappointed in the president, alone here. How pathetic! Might as well work for the other side if you are going to write articles using their framing of the issue. One automatically loses, when one does so.
    If you are going to be in politics for gods sake learn about framing of issues PLEASE!
    Learn not to speak in your opponents frame of thought please! Show some creativity, you counter an argument in this case I would say, by showing the EASY slam dunk alternatives.
    President Obama, could actually put the money where his mouth was during the campaign, and put some money back on main street by legalizing cannabis.
    Allow people to grow cannabis and distribute it to dispensaries which will, regulate it to make sure it does not get into the hands of minors. That creates massive amounts of jobs. It will cause a literal gold rush to the first place that does it and I am betting on California..
    Take the cops that used to bust into peoples houses, for growing a flower born of nature, and put them on the true, HUGE crime problems, most cities are experiencing right now, such as theft, home invasions, gangs, etc etc.. There is MORE than enough work for them to do without chasing people around over a flower.
    I am sick of progressives capitulating at the first sign the other side is not budging . This is not the time to give in this is the time to be innovative, proactive, and for god’s sake stop talking in the other sides frame on these issues, unless you really are working for the other side..

  28. “NORML is a non-partisan organization that sees merit in having a political system that is not effectively a duopoly. However, this does not change the fairly clear reality that Ron Paul will not be elected president of the US in 2012 at 77 years-old running as a libertarian-leaning Republican or as a Libertarian.”
    Is this comment really necessary? You don’t make editor comments when someone says they still have hope for Obama and will vote to reelect him in 2012. Isn’t it a fairly clear reality that Obama is not going to help with marijuana reform, rather he is a status quo establishment politician? If you are non-partisan, why don’t you let us comment on the comment boards and not selectively put down the political comments you see fit? If you are truly non-partisan, you will stop this behavior and let people decide for themselves who is viable and who is not.
    [Editor’s note: If your intent is to come on to NORML’s boards and constantly promote an unelectable presidential candidate (i.e. Ron Paul), be prepared to defend your delusion. The result would be no different if you were promoting Ralph Nader, Bob Barr, David Duke, Lyndon LaRouche, Dennis Kucinich, Jesse Ventura and other unelectable presidential wannabees. People can decide what ever they want, but they’re going to read both sides of a debate when commentor’s are deluded Johnny-One Noters who promote politicos who’ve virtually no chance of being elected president.
    Some people just don’t get that Libertarianism is a political philosophy, a very important one too many, but, unfortunately, not a major political party anywhere in the world that competes with so-called ‘liberal-Democrats’ and ‘conservative-Republicans’.]

  29. The career marijuana cops can chase other crimes. What about all the otherwise law abiding citizens who have lost their jobs due to having a criminal record for drug possession?

  30. Mr. Nobel Peace Prize winner increased the “WAR ON DRUGS” budget to incarcerate more US citizens…..great job Obama!

  31. I have a suggestion to stave off job losses for DEA employees. How about after legalizing marijuana (a first step, all other drugs later) the DEA morphs into the Drug Education Agency instead of the Drug Enforcement Agency, and their funds be redirected to creating education centers, more rehab facilities and helplines for people who need/want help. Arm them with books and classrooms instead of guns and ammo. They could all keep their jobs, they wouldn’t have to change their name, and they could all still wear those cute little black jackets with the big yellow “DEA” printed on the backs–only they’d be able to wear them PROUDLY, knowing they were doing some real good and working toward some real change instead of RUINING LIVES.

  32. @ DB:
    Yes, I agree that Obama should have EXPLAINED his position, but he made a big damn joke out of it.
    I sat at my computer the morning of that big online town hall thing after having spent hours the week before going through the change.gov website and voting up on all the issues I felt needed to be addressed (not just marijuana laws) and must say that I was very excited that the question would have to be asked of him. I EXPECTED an intelligent answer or at least a valid discussion. Up until that point he had spoken seriously, clearly and intelligently. When the question came up and I saw that smirk on his face… and then heard the answer and the laughter, I immediately logged off and my mind was definitely changed about this president. His reaction was so childish, so irresponsible and so STUPID. I could scarcely believe that he brushed off millions of people and left the impression that a bunch of stoners had “hijacked” his site to ask a silly question and take up his valuable time. My husband and I work ALL THE TIME, pay tons of taxes, and support two children with no outside assistance. We’ve never been arrested or cited for anything, and the worst we’ve ever done as far as breaking the law is smoke a little weed back in the day. Obama pissed in my face that day, and I didn’t fucking deserve it–and neither do any of you other good hard working Americans. It was so many different levels of WRONG!

  33. These budget spending ratios are appalling. How long are they just keep going to boot up the Word file, change the date and the dollar figures and stuff, and then print it out year after year?! That is NOT my idea of change. The only way this might work is if there is parallel language that separates cannabis, declaring a framework of cannabis crimes to be non-offenses at the federal level and specifying it as a soft drug in order to separate the hard drugs and soft drugs markets at the federal level, basically an adaptation of the Dutch Opium Law, American style. Something will have to be done to accommodate the District of Columbia medical marijuana law and state medical marijuana laws. The hands over the issue to the states to decide, and makes medical, industrial and recreational regulation a matter for state and local government, as it should be. A leadership state will emerge to guide the federal government on lifting the international ban on cannabis.

  34. These budget spending ratios are appalling. How long are they just keep going to boot up the Word file, change the date and the dollar figures and stuff, and then print it out year after year?! That is NOT my idea of change. The only way this might work is if there is parallel language that separates cannabis, declaring a framework of cannabis crimes to be non-offenses at the federal level and specifying it as a soft drug in order to separate the hard drugs and soft drugs markets at the federal level, basically an adaptation of the Dutch Opium Law, American style. Something will have to be done to accommodate the District of Columbia medical marijuana law and state medical marijuana laws. This hands over the issue to the states to decide, and makes medical, industrial and recreational regulation a matter for state and local government, as it should be. A leadership state will emerge to guide the federal government on lifting the international ban on cannabis.

  35. Here we go again. Obama is the lesser of two evils. Yes, he’s still an idiot puppet, I am completely aware of that. Yes, he panders to old conservatives who think of me as the devil. Welcome to American politics.
    Republicans would skew things 10 to 1 in favor of law enforcement if they had it their way.
    Vote Republican in 2012 and that turns this legal smoker into a criminal again. Remember John Walters??!
    Here is American Politics 101 for you all.
    CONGRESS IS YOUR ENEMY. THE PRESIDENT IS BASICALLY NOTHING MORE THAN A VANILLA REPUBLICAN OR DEMOCRAT; A FIGUREHEAD WITH NO REAL POWER TO MAKE THINGS RIGHT.

  36. [Editor’s note: Why be delusional that a libertarian-leaning Republican (who, if elected in 2012 will be 77 years-old) that is unpopular in his own party?
    1. If someone told you back in 2002 that a black man would be elected president within the next two elections, you’d have thought them delusional wouldn’t you? As to Ron Paul’s lack of party-support? It is because he believes in doing things like, oh I don’t know LEGALIZING MARIJUANA!!! By virtue of this fact alone, I for one think organizations like NORML would behoove themselves to support (at least through aggregation of news mentioning a presidential candidate’s views on legalization) candidates who care less about party-affiliation than they do the AMERICAN PEOPLE!
    [How many Republican primaries did he win? What percentage of support did he garner?
    2. As I recall, Ron Paul had about 11% of the total vote. It wasn’t anywhere near a win, but much closer than anyone who has ever directly mentioned the legalization of marijuana as part of their platform.
    Paul can’t pull more than 5% from Republicans, support is even less from Democrats and Independent voters.
    3.You should have said “Paul “didn’t” pull more”. And again, WHO CARES!! The Democrats have shown themselves to be playing from the same book as the Republicans! If everyone knew it was going to turn out like it has (other than me) Ron Paul would have won by land-slide! It should be obvious by now that both parties are only concerned with their agendas, and don’t care about the will of the AMERICAN PEOPLE. As such, a “true” conservative like Ron Paul, or a candidate of some flavor of Independent are the only real “choices” to be had for those of us more interested in the legalization of marijuana.
    -Oz

  37. I am beginning to think Obamas should have been busted…..but they do not have drug raids at harvard

  38. Obama shows yet again that he never had any intention of performing the will of the American people. He avoids answering questions about legalization like Superman avoids cryptonite. I’ve come to the conclusion that at this rate, marijuana will be legal when we run out of borrowed “drug war” funds (which should be in a few months).
    -Oz

  39. I love my country but im also ashamed to be an american.. I was arrested with 1 plant in california in my backyard with a medical card and beleive it or not you think thats a legitimate defense but its not ive struggled the past few months crying almost every day to fight for my freedom.its very daunting being 21 and having 2 felonys hanging above you..Ive fought my case hard and still am, ive spent over $12,000 all simply for 1 plant its even put me to the point of where I felt even with a card I was wrong and ive thought about ending my life because the suffering I caused my mom n dad and whole family..I cry right now talkin about this because thats how much this whole issue is out of control….im strong willed and would never cut myself short and end my life but soo many others I know the way I felt some couldnt handel it and they would turn to that…This is THE MOST TRAGIC ISSUE OF ARE TIME

  40. Well once again we see that there is big $$$$ in the war on drugs. I don’t think it will ever end. I would love to see everyone that supports the cannabis movement march on washington or at least become proactive. It seems to me that only about 15% do so. Sitting around talking about it doesn’t help we need to take the necessary steps to push for full legalization. We can only do this by showing our true numbers. We must be loud…

  41. *needed reply to editor’s note on my last comment*
    Have you listened to Ron Paul in one of his many recent television appearances? He has gained an amplitude of credibility since the economic collapse as he forewarned us of the upcoming crises. The media now treats him as a hero instead of a lunatic. At 74 he will start campaigning at the age of 75, next year. And save a major downswing in his health he will appear as he does now in interviews, incredible intelligent, able, and undaunted by old age.
    Secondly, Obama has completely failed with his war stances. He has completely gone against any promises regarding bringing the troops home, in fact he has escalated the endless war. But then again Obama was a senator for less then two years. Why should have anyone believed him? He had no credibility.
    Ron Paul has a voting record, a long one, if he says he is going to bring the troops home, he’s going to bring the troops home. If he says he’s going to end the war on drugs, he’s going to end the war on drugs.
    Thirdly, with the upswing in the “tea-party” movement (started by Ron Paul on December 16, 2007) Ron Paul will garnish many supporters. The republicans are in a major split in deciding what direction they are to go, the 2012 election cycle will be a big part of that decision. If Ron Paul with his new credibility, and popularity are able to form the new image of the republican party, he will be the next president of the United States.
    Had anyone heard of Obama in 2006?
    And why in the world would you compromise your principles and vote for someone just because your first choice doesn’t appear to be a winner at the moment?
    [Editor’s note: Regardless of party affiliation, a 77-year old is not desirable on any level as a presidential candidate. The destabilization of the country is too great to risk when there is a high probability of a president’s health failing or passing away in office.
    From a purely analytical point of view, Ron Paul is no Obama in that he has been giving the same libertarian talking points since 1988, with a resulting 5%-10% support among Republican voters over 20 years later. Apparently what he is selling, the public does not buy. Unlike Paul’s rhetoric and policy making ideas, Obama got to the presidency in short order.
    There is nothing wrong trying to make America a more libertarian-leaning country–which bodes well for cannabis law reform–but, like it or not, your country is not libertarian, and libertarian candidates historically are not elected at the voting booths.
    Political realities confronted everyday by the lobbyists, litigators and activists involved in cannabis law reform shape the organization’s non-partisanship and single-minded advocacy: cannabis law reforms that favor consumers.]

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