Taking the war right into the bastions of the federal anti-marijuana lobby, marijuana advocates saw voters approve measures for the use of recreational marijuana in Washington and Colorado on Tuesday. Since marijuana, in contrast to alcohol, nicotine or heroin, rarely makes the body metabolism dependent on the stimulant, its legalization has been a bane for tax collectors and economists around the world, who cannot depend upon lifetime users.
And that is bad for federal economics which believes in long-term projections. There’s no assurance of a marijuana user today continuing to be one tomorrow, since he/she is not bonded by physical dependency. So, wherever marijuana use has been legalized by states, (and that includes 17 states already, and six more gone to ballot) the federal government has continued belligerent raids and shake ups. But now, the marijuana-use warfront moves close to Capitol Hill, right into the state of Washington, and there’s no beating around the bush here, voters have said they want to smoke pot for fun. Period.
In Colorado, voters passed a measure for the recreational use of marijuana, but Governor John Hickenlooper remains skeptic. Fox news reported the Governor saying “The voters have spoken and we have to respect their will … This will be a complicated process, but we intend to follow through. That said, federal law still says marijuana is an illegal drug, so don’t break out the Cheetos or Goldfish too quickly.”
The Colorado measure allows adults over 21 to possess up to an ounce of marijuana, or have six marijuana plants for personal use. In Washington State, the Initiative 502, would legalize production and possession of marijuana through proper stipulations and impose a 25 percent tax on every step of the transaction from grower to customer.
However, in states like California, where medical marijuana has been legal since 1996 by popular vote, federal authorities continue intermittent raids, and last year federal prosecutors sent warnings to landlords of clinics selling marijuana to evict their tenants or face prison.
So, things are still a long way from chilling out with a chillum in Seattle. But it’s moving that way – Boomshanka.