Debunking the Marijuana Myths?

In light of the recent propoganda circulated by the Federal *cough*Vic Toews*cough* and the Alberta governments. Apparently in Alberta grow rooms cause cancer and seizures ...

Sure it kinda adds to the myth that the Green Party is really also the marijuana party, but it's time the Marijuana party realized they should be supporting the greens.

As posted on www.soop.ca:

Pot Facts

A series of educational pages dealing with marijuana myths, facts, and decriminalization. For too long we've allowed ourselves to be informed via myths and propaganda.

You've been lied to!

Minors should never get stoned
That one's a given

Educate and inform yourself ...

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Ne'er the twain shall meet!

Gareth Davies
Nanaimo-Alberni EDA
Parksville, BC

Tell you what, you can rely on Soop.ca for your peace of mind and I'll rely on the facts as I see them.

And ne'er the twain shall meet!

Gareth Davies Nanaimo-Alberni EDA Parksville, BC

Post does Not Represent the Green Party

First off, it's important to stress that the ideas presented in Matthew Smith's blog represent his personal opinions, and do not represent the Green Party. In fact all blog posts on this site are the opinions of the individual posting them, not the Party. The only exception to this is posts from the Leader, the Press Officers of the Party or official spokespersons, such as those in Shadow Cabinet.

For a serious post on this topic read Conservatives Attack GPC: 55% Canadians Side with Green Party's Unique Position at http://greenparty.ca/en/node/2990 .

There are fundamental reasons why marijuana should be legalized in Canada -- but not one serious reason in my opinion appears above.

I want to stress there is only one federal party that since it's inception has called for the legalization of marijuana -- and that is the Green Party. When Adriane Carr was leader of the Green Party of BC she called for legalization on the televised leaders debate in the 2005 provincial election. So I want to state clearly, categorically that the Green Party has always called for the legalization of marijuana -- but that the reasons presented above are not the rationale.

Secondly, I am afraid a number of "facts" presented above are not facts at all. I'll address a few of them below:

Post statement ------------------- My Reply

Marijuana is not dangerous -- it is if you're driving a car impaired.

Pot is not a road hazard -- it is if you're driving a car impaired.

Ganja helps fight cancer -- No. It helps deal with the pain of cancer and the side effects of current treatment methods

The Bible says it's okay -- ????!!!!

Weed doesn't cause crime -- it is currently the source of billions of dollars of revenue for organized crime and biker gangs becasue it is illegal. As such the prohibition of marijuana is a major funder of crime in Canada. So while weed may not cause crime -- the sale of it funds crime.

Marijuana is not addictive -- while it may not be physically addictive it is certainly psychologically addictive

Wanting to get high is normal -- perhaps for a minority of individuals. Some 10 million Canadians have smoke marijuana. Our population is estimated at just over 33 million -- which means that fewer than one in three Canadians has ever smoked marijuana. Of those who regularly smoke it currently is something like two million -- an even a smaller percentage (6-7%). So wanting to get high is not normal -- because the norm by definition is the majority.

Jim Harris
Former Leader, GPC

Greens and BILL C - 26 !

Greetings Greens:

With all due respect Jim , but I would like to comment to your post.

#1) Your point about addiction is irrelevant based on the peer reviewed studies I have seen and even if you are correct in that there is a psychologically addictiveness to cannabis I would say so what? .... as there is the same thoughts to do with TV , sex , food and a host of other harmless activities ... whats the point?
As using a reason like that to justify jailing people as just a way to save them from themselves or from some withdrawals is like using a shotgun to kill a fly. The DEA likes to point out the high number of kids in treatment for cannabis use in the united states but then always fails to mention that if they did not go in to it they went to jail.
I also know there is no treatment for cannabis or any other drugs ....really ...beyond just the individual themselves ultimately.

#2) There are references in the bible widely believed to be speaking about cannabis and its oils ...again ones interpretation is key.
Many , many references out there and I can provide the links or one actually straight to a friend of mine who published a book about that very topic.
That said the whole bible is a matter of interpretation to some people , isn't it?

#3) These driving a car & impaired comments.
Well myself I want impairment legislation as the focus rather than a random bodily fluids search and the resulting national body fluids data bank wasting billions of dollars.
Police can be further trained to just better recognize impairment and already have cameras to prove it.
I prefer that ,for sure instead of syringes , swabs or bottles of urine.
As I have said some would be surprised to find many elderly people impaired even from their own legal pharmaceuticals causing accidents and deaths on the roads.
And as cannabis can stay in the body for a month or more at a time all we are really doing is creating millions more stigmatized so called criminals needlessly as their actual level of impairment is what needed to be addressed or looked at.

# 4) Your comments about cancer and cannabis are also something quite up in the air with me especially after recently losing both my Mom and my best friend over just the last few months and then myself speaking personally with people "cured" of the same exact cancers while I sat and watched them both die. Yes, to me needlessly.

The link to the people I spoke to and have spoken to for years about this is...

http://www.phoenixtears.ca/jcj.html

(Jim is the fellows name here. I have also even sent it to some other Green members)

and the whole site

( you may have to put it directly into your browser, strangely)

http://www.phoenixtears.ca/

As my mom and my friend faded and died I argued with them to try this remedy and in my opinion the illegality of cannabis contributed to the needless deaths of both of them as they both could not get past "the laws the law".

We contacted the Canadian Cancer Society and were told " The Canadian Cancer Society spends 0... THATS RIGHT "ZERO DOLLARS" on natural remedies for cancer".......I was and am still shocked as that one rolls around my mind daily.

The man involved Mr. Rick Simpson is now awaiting sentences for "curing" 30 such terminal cancer patients in Nova Scotia and the Veterans Legion there that helped him even lost their charter(it was in the newspapers)
I have heard that the husband of one of the terminal women he saved has now said he will pay for an appeal.

#5 "Cannabis does not cause crime" well Jim to me that is true.
Prohibition itself causes all the crime and it because of the complacency of the main stream political parties will now get very much worse , mark my words.
Politicians for prohibition are also Politicians for organized crime.
I know of no drive by shootings at liquor stores.
Right now I am helping to organize a National Day of Protest set for Dec 17 2007 at every Member of Parliament's office and working tirelessly to call attention to the fact that Bill C- 26 will , based on just who I have met with in even the Green Party in the last year, qualify quite a few of them as criminals and targets them needlessly.
3 people smoking a joint is now going to qualify as organized crime in Canada.
One cannabis plant or 199 matters little as it is now a guaranteed mandatory minimum sentence for having them...why not grow the 199 then?

Please everyone ask your MP why he wants to target 3 million Canadian cannabis users with criminal records and actually create a real demand for organized crime to then fill.
Just the new money now going to be needed to prosecute and jail all of these citizens, when I know we supposedly have no money for even hospitals or Canada's hungry children yes it disgusts me.
So much more I could say but.....
I wish the Green Party would say something about Bill C-26 to help and yes stop this travesty coming ...and as for the rest .....well...

I would just prefer to leave it at your initial comments !

"There are fundamental reasons why marijuana should be legalized in Canada."

I agree..thank you!

Cheers

juror.ca

endprohibition@telus.net

Sober politics needed to change to drug policy

Perhaps it is fun to think of that list as 'facts' when you are high.

The truth is that pot activism in the form displayed by the NDP candidates who resigned, and in the post here, does more harm to the cause than good. It would be like trying to end the prohibition of alcohol in the twenties by taking a Congressman to a roaring slophouse as an example of the joys of drinking. And I do get that it's part of a culture, a 'counter-culture', and all of that, it's part of the idea of freedom from state judgment over our choices. But, as a counter-culture, like with any culture, you are limited by it's expectations. Pot activism has all of the trappings of that.

The great many ordinary people who can carry on their lives while smoking marijuana in various patterns that are comparable to alcohol use, and with overall less damage in many ways than alcohol, makes part of this case and the public support for legalization. However, the best advocates of drug legalization are often those who don't use, or at least don't confuse personal interest in indulgence with a serious policy position.

The issue is whether criminalization of drugs is a failed public policy. In the case of marijuana it is quite clear that it is.

As regards other drugs, including hard ones, they are more politically difficult to argue, but there is perhaps even stronger evidence that criminalization fails with more severe consequences for crime, the economy and public health. One cannot argue this point by doing cocaine in public to show how fun and safe it is. It is perception that shapes the decision-makers selection of what 'evidence' to use, and what to ignore, even if on the balance they are getting it wrong.

If pot activists capture the focus of this debate by speaking out through a cloud of smoke, they diminish the chance that we get good public policy that will save lives and money, and help people overcome addiction to drugs, for harm reduction, and for the freedom from criminalization of both innocuous and problematic drug use. Free to speak, yes, free to speak in a more effective way, that is another choice. To grow up. or just to grow.

arif

Arif Jinha

Not Christian or Jew or Muslim, not Hindu,
Buddhist, sufi or zen
...only that breath breathing human being
(credit of my signature goes to rumi's poem).

Arif Jinha Not Christian or Jew or Muslim, not Hindu, Buddhist, sufi or zen ...only that breath breathing human being (credit of my signature goes to rumi's poem).

New propaganda?

"However, the best advocates of drug legalization are often those who don't use, or at least don't confuse personal interest in indulgence with a serious policy position."

Can I see your studies to show this?
I suppose it was non gays who changed things here in Canada?

I didn't know your comments were here and with Christmas and all I will attempt to reel it in a tad.

"If pot activists capture the focus of this debate by speaking out through a cloud of smoke, they diminish the chance that we get good public policy that will save lives and money, and help people overcome addiction to drugs, for harm reduction, and for the freedom from criminalization of both innocuous and problematic drug use. Free to speak, yes, free to speak in a more effective way, that is another choice. To grow up. or just to grow."

Now to me this is a complete racist discriminatory violating comment and because the majority of Canadians have the same sort of non use ignorance I will not bother.

You have obviously met some pretty insignificant cannabis people...something tells me though for this to be true you would agree that many you have met to you are insignificant

I object to your post as hate mongering and propaganda.

Yeah I know welcome back John....I am sure those of you will get it perfected next time.

Cheers

(disclaimer:do not be confused and think shavluk is the green party talking...hahha)

http://shavluk.com/

juror.ca

endprohibition@telus.net

Debunking the Marijuanan please Help!

Its time to put Marijuana   and in my mind the number one killer Tobacco produsts sold only at our local LCBO stores.

 I dont smoke tobacco as I had to watched  as it took my  mothers life a way from me and my 3 younger brothers (rip) , lungs shinking like a dried up grapes. 

How can Marijuana be any worse then that ? and alchol as it sucked the life out of my friend Harry L. (rip) as his kidney,s  stoped doing their job and he too shut down. 

All three are bad for you, band them all or sell them all! 

I can go to the local milk store and buy tobacco products  full of cancer chemicals,  rolling papers and I can go up town Orangville On. and buy 20 differant kinds of rolling  papers,pips or water bottles for marijuana but   I hate having to look for the Marijuana to buy, the places I have to go and the peaple I have to deal with ! I'd grow in my back yard ! but because some peaple  think its bad and against the law  My wife wont let me .   please help .

Shawn T.G.Crockatt

And those facts are? Matthew

And those facts are?

Matthew Smith
CEO - Green Party of Canada - Saskatchewan PD
msmith@greenparty.ca / soop@soop.ca
http://www.soop.ca

Matthew Smith CEO - Green Party of Canada - Saskatchewan PD msmith@greenparty.ca / soop@soop.ca http://www.soop.ca

Facts on Marijuana dependency

Gareth Davies
Nanaimo-Alberni EDA
Parksville, BC

Read this column that appeared in today's media, then read on afterwards on further facts, which I prefer to accept than anything I have read on Soop.ca.

Give it a real read. I am not asking you to believe what I believe. You must believe whatever you determine is best for you. How could it be otherwise? But I profoundly disagree with your views and the views of others that are similar to yours, just as, no doubt, you disagree with my views.

Friday » February 23 » 2007

U.S. drug czar pushes Canada to get tougher on marijuana

Melissa Arseniuk
CanWest News Service

Friday, February 23, 2007

OTTAWA -- American drug czar John Walters wants Canadian officials to crack down on marijuana use, stop the export of "B.C. bud" to the U.S., and co-operate with extradition requests.

That tough approach to drugs was tempered somewhat yesterday by the director of the U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy, who thanked Canadian officials and law enforcement in Ottawa for their "outstanding co-operation" in the war against drugs.

"Today in the United States, more young people are dependent on marijuana than any other illegal drug," he said, adding, "More teens seek treatment for marijuana dependency than all other illegal drugs combined, more than alcohol."

However, Walters credited a 23 per cent drop in drug use among American teens to a variety of controversial initiatives, including random marijuana testing of high school students, a practice Liberal Senator Larry Campbell called "ethically repugnant."

Walters said the U.S. will be looking to Canada to help crack down on the international flow of drugs -- including the export of marijuana, particularly that which is grown in B.C.

People who export drugs to the U.S. from Canada "think the border will either protect them from risk of being arrested, or if they're arrested, they'll face lesser consequences than they would if they were caught in the United States," he said.

That means the country will continue asking Canada to extradite its citizens who have been charged with drug-related offences in the U.S.

----------------------------

Marijuana usage

If grown persons wish to indulge themselves in whatever activity, including smoking pot, that is their business (as long, of course, as they are not hurting someone).

Furthermore, marijuana use should be made accessible, under medical prescription, without charge to persons suffering chronic pain.

Also, I believe that use of marijuana should not be an offence under the Criminal Code, nor should simple possession.

Finally, the NDP estimates some 600,000 persons have criminal records for simple possession. These persons should receive a complete amnesty.

Persons who grow, manufacture, transport and sell or push marijuana should get minimum jail terms of at least 10 years.

----------------------------

Report of the Senate Special Committee on Illegal Drugs, Summary Report, September 2002, pages 13-18.

    Findings of fact

    The production of cannabis is largely controlled by organized crime for starters and they have increased the concentration of the active ingredient of cannabis, THC, from 3% to as much as 30% and the finished product is often laced with other unknown street drugs. Smoking pot can be very dangerous.
    THC readily spreads in the innervated brain tissues with psychoactive effects lasting for up to 7 hours after use, with the immediate effects being characterized by feelings of euphoria, relaxation and sociability, accompanied by impairment of short-term memory, concentration and some psychomotor skills.

    10% of users will become addicted, more so with young teenagers maybe 12%.

    There can be negative psychological consequences for users, in particular impaired concentration and learning and, in rare cases and with people already predisposed, psychotic and schizophrenic episodes.

    A significant percentage of impaired drivers test positive for cannabis and alcohol together, the effects of cannabis when combined with alcohol being more significant than is the case for alcohol alone.

----------------------------

Marijuana addiction and its causes

Furthermore, it is easily verifiable that there are some 1.5 million users of marijuana in Canada according to the medical profession. Of these, at least 12% are addicted. That makes about 125,000 persons addicted to marijuana.

Addiction has psychological causes as well as physiological. Consider these definitions by medical experts:

Addiction defined

Addiction: A person who cannot resist a habit, especially the use of drugs or alcohol, for physiological or psychological reasons.
(Sources given at foot of web page.)

http://tinyurl.com/2bo4wv

ojjdp.ncjrs.org/PUBS/drugid/glossary.html

American Heritage Dictionary - Cite This Source
ad·dic·tion (ə-dĭk'shən) Pronunciation Key
n.

1. Compulsive physiological and psychological need for a habit-forming substance:

http://tinyurl.com/2k65hm

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/addiction

----------------------------

Personal observations

As a family law and child protection lawyer I came into contact with hundreds of drug addicts, many of them hooked on serious narcotics. It was heartbreaking to see how this destroyed the family unit, leaving children quite alone and frightened.

Every now and then I would have a client who smoked marijuana. No surprise there, but some of them were quite definitely addicted, losing all access to their children rather than give up smoking pot.

Obviously, the facts are that not everyone who smokes pot gets hooked, but denying that marijuana is addictive to some degree is turning a blind eye to the problem.

----------------------------

Narconon

Narconon is a substance designed to help persons addicted to marijuana. This is what they say on their web page:

    Marijuana is both emotionally and mentally addictive. Once an individual becomes addicted to marijuana it develops into part of who they believe themselves to be. Avoiding their friends who do not use, the addict will gravitate to others that do.

    Marijuana is a topic that is always on their mind, whether it be thinking about the next time they will be able to get high or where [they're] going to get their next sack. When someone is addicted to marijuana eventually their friends and the people close to them only know how they act when [they're] stoned because they no longer do anything without first smoking.

    Their constant abuse is due to the misconception that marijuana is what they need to solve their problems. Sometimes addicts will take their stash with them wherever they go, just in case an opportunity arises and they are able to take a couple hits. They may even go through several dealers in order to make sure they always have a constant supply of marijuana.

http://tinyurl.com/2mefsn

http://www.marijuanaaddiction.info/

----------------------------

Marijuana Anonymous

Who can deny a statement from persons who declare themselves to be addicted to marijuana? Read on:

    Who is a Marijuana Addict?
    We who are marijuana addicts know the answer to this question. Marijuana controls our lives! We lose interest in all else; our dreams go up in smoke. Ours is a progressive illness often leading us to addictions to other drugs, including alcohol. Our lives, our thinking, and our desires center around marijuana---scoring it, dealing it, and finding ways to stay high.

http://tinyurl.com/n3kvx

http://www.marijuana-anonymous.org/Pages/basic.html

----------------------------

University of Wisconsin

The University Health Services offers this advice to its student body:

    By the twenty-first century, the answers to these questions are clear. Tolerance does develop to THC (the active chemical in marijuana). Moreover, withdrawal definitely occurs in some users. The effects of this withdrawal are generally the opposite of the effects of intoxication: anxiety and insomnia instead of relaxation; loss of appetite rather than hunger; excessive salivation instead of dry mouth; and also decreased pulse, irritability, and sometimes tremor. People who have used marijuana as a way to control underlying anger may also experience irritability, increased mood swings, and even an increase in aggressive behavior, as symptoms of withdrawal.

    Final comment
    Although marijuana use has been common in many segments of the American population for two generations, and many adults and teenagers know marijuana users who have not developed addiction even to prolonged use, the potential for the development of addiction is almost certainly greater today than in the 1960s or ’70s. The marijuana of today is different. It’s not just much more expensive; it also contains significantly more THC. In fact, the THC content of today’s pot is several times higher than that of even strong “weed” from the ’60s. This makes it more potent, but also more likely to induce tolerance and true addiction.

    Written by Michael Miller, M.D., of Meriter Hospital, and Brian Glueck, editor, UHS.
    Michael M. Miller, M.D., is Medical Director of the NewStart Alcohol/Drug Treatment Program at Meriter Hospital in Madison, WI. For other NewStart articles about drug addiction, as well as many related links, visit the Meriter chemical dependency page.

http://tinyurl.com/377mr6

http://www.uhs.wisc.edu/display_story.jsp?id=736&c...

----------------------------

Drug and Alcohol Resource Center

This organization speaks from experience:

    Nationwide Alcohol and Drug Addiction Rehab Information

    Marijuana Addiction
Marijuana is the most commonly used illicit drug in the United States. Marijuana is addictive. While not everyone who uses marijuana becomes addicted, when a user begins to seek out and take the drug compulsively, that person is said to be dependent on the drug or addicted to it. In 2002, over 280,000 people entering drug treatment programs reported marijuana as their primary drug of abuse, showing they needed help to stop using.

    According to one study, marijuana use by teenagers who have prior serious antisocial problems can quickly lead to dependence on the drug. That study also found that, for troubled teenagers using tobacco, alcohol, and marijuana, progression from their first use of marijuana to regular use was about as rapid as their progression to regular tobacco use, and more rapid than the progression to regular use of alcohol.

http://tinyurl.com/ywpq2z

http://www.addict-help.com/marijuana-addiction.asp

----------------------------

Brown University

This esteemed University offers advice to its student body on the addictiveness of marijuana:

    Health Education

    Is marijuana addictive?
No one would argue that marijuana is as addictive as alcohol or cocaine. However, it's wrong to say that it is not at all addictive. More and more studies are finding that marijuana has addictive properties. Both animal and human studies show physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms from marijuana, including irritability, restlessness, insomnia, nausea and intense dreams. Tolerance to marijuana also builds up rapidly. Heavy users need 8 times higher doses to get the same effects as infrequent users.

    For a small percentage of people who use it, marijuana can be highly addictive. It is estimated that 10% to 14% of users will become heavily dependent. More than 120,000 people in the US seek treatment for marijuana addiction every year. Because the consequences of marijuana use can be subtle and insidious, it is more difficult to recognize signs of addiction. Cultural and societal beliefs that marijuana cannot be addictive make it less likely for people to seek help or to get support for quitting.

http://tinyurl.com/9wh9d

http://www.brown.edu/Student_Services/Health_Servi......

----------------------------

Health policy

The Green Party of Canada stresses the need for healthy living. People need clean air to breath, clean water to drink and clean earth in which to grow organic foods. Sucking in smoke into one's lungs hardly qualifies for healthy living, whether the smoke be from tobacco, marijuana or someone else's second hand smoke. Putting the brain to sleep instead of putting it to work is also a non qualifier.

But there, it is a matter of personal choice whatever another may think about it.

I am definitely not in favour of regulating other people's behaviour (unless that behaviour causes another harm).

I have nothing further to say on this subject, so I shall not repeat myself. The floor is all yours. Adios!

Gareth Davies Nanaimo-Alberni EDA Parksville, BC

Skepticism of facts

Gareth and I respectfully disagree regarding marijuana. He is right to point out that we should be skeptical of the sources of facts. I do not trust the facts of soop.ca, even though I would like to. I also do not trust some of the facts offered by Gareth. I'll list them here:

1. US government is unhappy with Canadian weed crossing its border (source: US government official). This is true - marijuana is a huge agricultural export for Canada. This fact is valid, and earns Canadians money.

2. Weed sales are controlled at the highest level by organized crime (source: Senate Report). I believe this to be true too. This is an argument for legalization of marijuana to force sales from the underground to legal venues.

3. Weed in Canadian markets is of variable quality, THC quantity, and may be mixed with other drugs (source: Senate report). I trust this fact. It also supports legalization of marijuana to ensure quality standards. eg, in The Netherlands customers can select which type of weed to buy, able to trust the consistency of standards.

4. Weed can be addictive (sources: Senate Report, various US government-funded officials). Physiologically, weed is not very addictive. But psychologically it can be. Most of the craving 'addicts' have for weed is for the lifestyle and social aspects. This is in contrast to nicotine, alcohol, crystal meth, etc which build physiological dependence in users.

5. 'Addicts' who stop using weed can have side-effects (sources: Senate Report, various US government-funded officials). This is likely true, but most of the side-effects listed are harmless, and it seems clear that most people do not suffer any effects of giving up weed. If one is to argue that marijuana sales should be illegal because of its side-effects upon cessation of taking it, then we should also ban tobacco, alcohol, and almost every over-the-counter and prescription drug. We should also ban things such as gardening and sports, because long-time users who are forced to give these things up also experience periods of depression and anxiety.

6. Drunk drivers can also have weed in their systems, making them even worse drivers (source: Senate report). I do not know if this is true or not, but I'm inclined to believe it. People should not be under the influence of anything while driving: alcohol, weed, or cell phones.

7. Marijuana makes people monsters (source: a company that sells products to cure people of marijauna addiction). This source is not credible - they have an obvious conflict of interest. Their claim is laughable.

8. Some marijuana users are bad parents (source: Gareth's professional experience). I believe this. Humanity is full of such people. If you took a population of tomato-growers, for instance, you'd also find some of them are horrible parents. I am skeptical that a population of weed-users would have any higher frequency of bad parents than non-weed-users.

I agree with Gareth that the government should avoid regulating peoples' behaviour, unless that behaviour causes proven harm to others. Decades of government-sponsored research hoping to prove harm of marijuana has failed to reveal anything of substance. Meanwhile, negative effects of other drugs more acceptable to society have been proven scientifically, yet remain legal. This is a double-standard.

*********************
Jay Fitzsimmons
Ottawa-Vanier, ON

********************* Jay Fitzsimmons Ottawa Centre

Green Party should have no part in promoting the use of pot

Lambton Kent Middlesex EDA (SW Ontario)
Pot has some medical benefits and those who need those do not need our encouragement to use it.

Pot has a reputation for reducing family violence when that violence is alcohol related, if the alcohol user weans off alcohol to pot, but we are dealing with an addictive personality already. If there is a risk that some individuals will become addicted to pot, then the alcohol addict is a prime candidate. The family of the addict may well prefer the pot addiction to the alcohol addiction.

We are not sure that shrinking gonads is a problem induced by pot, that could be an urban legend.

To strike a blow against organized crime, we would like to remove all profit from pushing all drugs. The war on drugs attempts to do that by severe penalties, but does not appear to have made headway with that approach. Some have suggested that the needed strategy is to increase the probability of conviction even if that means dropping the penalties.
In any event, this attempt to constrict the flow of drugs is the activity that produces high profit margins as well as high incentive to avoid detection.

To cut out the profit from pushing we have to reverse the process, and let users buy without a profit markup, or where feasible, grow their own. That is the outcome most harmful to drug pushers.

But along with zero profit drug availability we need to make sure that our treatment facilities are ready to help people get off drugs, including alcohol, excess sugar, and tobacco.

Lambton Kent Middlesex EDA (SW Ontario)

Of tomatoes and weeds!

Gareth Davies
Nanaimo-Alberni EDA
Parksville, BC

Jay, I have said that I shall not repeat myself, nor shall I, standing by what I believe to be the facts of the matter.

But I do wish to say that you have made some excellent points and I accept some of them, like some tomato growers make horrible parents and people get depressed when quitting sports or gardening.

Without involving myself further in the debate, let me just say that when I saw some of my clients lose all access to their children because of their refusal (for whatever reason) to quit using marijuana, I felt it was the marijuana talking, as it were. I doubt if you could say it was the tomato talking in the case of tomato growers.

You are correct in your conclusion, though, I concede that much. But it still makes me very sad when I think about it.

Thanks for sharing your views, Jay.

Gareth Davies Nanaimo-Alberni EDA Parksville, BC

cannabis and the election

Hello everyone.

my opinion is that this issue encompasses more than just cannabis.
For me it is about the prohibition of all drugs and the attitude that runs this country.

The greens can and will do very well by coming out with a sane view in regards to this issue. its time is now
for all of you that don't realize,,,the biggest supplier of cannabis to the USA is the USA ,we only provide 2%.

if any of you want or need info please write and i will provide tons of information.
you can read these links and see what i have said and realize i am knowledgeable about this issue.

http://www.rabble.ca/babble/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get...

http://enmasse.ca/forums/viewtopic.php?t=6965

as well as many other threads here at enmasse or cannabis culture.

johnshavluk@gmail.com

endprohibition@telus.net

Drug policy in general

I think as a group of greens we should really not be debating harm or morality in regards to drugs. Especially using the tidbits of news clippings from this place or that place....
This is like arguing who's god is best or scriptures...

In regards to marijuana:
If we look to our senate now, we (Canadian taxpayers) have already paid for this study in 2002. The medical facts have been weighed, the legal aspects were visited and the committy went to Amsterdam Netherlands for a first hand look at a country who has been tolerant towards this for over 30 years.
Their recommendation was to legalize it.

England has stricken the marijuana laws from their books completely which is ironic as they are more conservative then we are, and many European countries do not see this as an issue.

So the only reason it is STILL illegal in Canada is the USA lobby and weak Canadian governments who are afraid to self rule, they always look to our bordering trading partner to see if it is OK to create our own social policies.

In regards to harder drugs such as cocaine, heroin etc yes they are quite addictive but we again are deciding what is legal and illegal in regards to drugs, when actually it is only human to consume drugs.

Outragious...NO. READ ON Please......

In order to put all this into perspective then we must look at ALL drugs including pharmaceuticals.
This includes caffiene, this means chocolate too, and so called soft drinks.
The technical terms for drugs are any substance that changes our body chemistry, feelings or behaviour.

The fact is many pharmaceuticals are distributed freely with little regard to the patient, how about ridilan for children? and trying to get off them is actually as dangerous as getting off cociane actually in the case of anti-depresants and anxiety pills it could mean stroke or death if a sudden stoppage happens, so there is no balance or logic here.
Just because a medicial authority who is "sponsered" and put through university by a drug company scholarship doesn't mean he's unbiased, take a look at the freebies he gives out ... boy what a coincidence its the company who gave him the scholarship.

So the bottom line here is we are all hypocrites in the worst way. We all take drugs but point the finger at those who WE deem to be using so called bad drugs.

Fact:
Many pharmaceuticals actually contain cocaine and herion but since they are teamed with other substances they are renamed and registered as a NEW drug when in fact it is a version of the same old drug repackaged.

I personally know high level people who work in the pharmaceutical manufacturing industry and all this true.

So what do we do as a group to be fair in regards to drugs?

I do not want to see people strung out and dying, I don't think anyone enjoys this. But picking on drugs is not the answer.
Its the person who takes drugs.
What is fundamentally wrong for them to slip so low? Well I think the answers are much more complex then drug exposure it usually involves the hopelessness of peoples lives not drugs themselves and if we are to get aywhere with this is it not illegislation it is social policy in general that needs improving. Stopping poverty is the main factor.

Not too many doctors or lawyers or cops, yes cops....who use cocaine regularly have these issues .....its the poor.
The people above do it for kicks and have good jobs so they are not hopeless.
OR poor.

In regards to addiction:
This can be anything from a workaholic to someone who drinks a case of coke each day, we all have it in us.

So I think tolerance is key here.

You are not stopping the flow of cocaine now with all our laws and police.
You are not stopping any of the drugs with this method.
Even through increased funding, more police, stiffer laws and greater efforts the effects of prohibition become worse not better.
All we are doing is spending money trying to enforce drug laws that are ineffective.

The USA war on drugs is a miserable failure. But it is meant to be ... more later on this topic as it is a doosy.

Which brings me full circle to should any substances be available to adults?

I say yes even the hard drugs, but the hard drugs should be regulated, and distributed by the government - this is in regards to Cocaine herion etc.

The fact is NO drug dealer can make a living selling to an addict or anyone if the government is there to sell it cleaner, safer and cheaper.
The black market only exists when profits are high and the demand is there.

So you completely shut down that element of the black market and it also stops the people who import huge quantities and make billions tax free while we pay to prevent the same distribution and use, while we make ourselves feel better as concerned citizens.

Prohibition of any substance does not work, alcohol has proved this point very well 80 years ago and we still have not learned.

Prohibition creates black markets.
Once a market is estabilshed the only way to get rid of it is for someone like the government to take it over.

Fact:
Just because it is available does not mean everyone will be hooked.
Are all people alcoholics?
Do all people smoke cigarettes?
Are all people addicted to gambling?
Are all people addicted to porn?
NO.
The same argument was used in most cases above when they were brought out of prohibition.
Some people are addicted but they would be even if it were illegal and when it was illegal.
So it is not the duty of anyone to interfer with other persons vices, they only will stop when they want to, and that is a fact. No person or group can force anyone to stop what they do.

They may delay it, they may prevent it for awhile but the people they hope to stop always return to do it over and over again.
This includes alcoholics, only the ones who truly want to stop , actually stop. I was one of them and only when I decided is when I actually did stop, and it was not because of a program ... I made the decision and I did it cold turkey.

Same with cocaine use, so I do know what I am talking about.

So drug policy should be one of distribution control and quality control.

Yes you will see people come out of the closet with their usage just as we did with gambling etc as presently most drug use is hidden.

If the usage was as high as its deemed to be (and it is) then there are alot of people who use drugs now and live their lives without counsellers or incident.

If this were not true then the case loads would be so heavy then we would see a crisis of epic proportions. And the society we live in would grind to a halt.
So the picture is not as bleek as it is said to be.

AGAIN:
Tolerance is the best policy.

What do we do in the case of violence and (ALL) drugs(including alcohol)?

If people hurt others while intoxicated they are responsible for their actions. Plain and simple.
This point should never become blurred or fuzzy.
Even in the worst intoxicated manner you are still somewhat in control of your body and your thoughts.
So as adults if you are old enough to indulge then you are also old enough to be held responsible.
So the licence to have freedom does have a price.
So if anyone is reckless and has no regard for others, then they are held accountable.
There are many laws on the books now that deal with violence.
So drug distribution and use have no loopholes in regards to public safety.

It provides a safe market and products for those who do use drugs and it is less of a burden on those who don't use drugs but pay health care costs that are drug related.

Its also cost effective in we would not spend millions per year to stop human behaviour.

We would also add additional millions of new tax dollars from those who do use drugs which we do not collect now.

This is the path we should be following, is it mature, it allows personal freedom under the charter, and it protects other citizens rights to safety.

We should not become dependent on sin tax on drugs.

Lambton Kent Middlesex EDA (SW Ontario)
Even the very high tax on tobacco intended to curtail consumption had almost no effect until smokers wanted to quit because it became socially unaccepatble in public and a recognised life shortenter.

But all the while people were paying that tax, they could feel entitled to go right on smoking, and bootleggers could feel justified in helping people to avoid that punitive tax.

Selling tobacco to raise tax dollars coud count as a social service.

Tell people something honest that will persuade them to avoid the product, give them every assistance to get off it, and don't provide an incentive for people to push the product as to bypass taxation.

Lambton Kent Middlesex EDA (SW Ontario)

what if they simply enjoy it?

Sin tax, is a matter of perception. First if the person(s) do not feel they are sinning and they have full rights to live as they wish then who are you (figuritively speaking)to judge them?
OR a group of people who are simply bored to judge them?

So taxing the use to compensate for regulation is not sin tax but a tax for administrative costs to provide safety.

One of the main myths here is drugs and consumption of drugs is a disease. OR it is bad.

Alcohol is a narcotic. Everyone enjoys a sip of wine or beer once in awhile even if it is only at Christmas or during a meal.

You can provide / spend countless amounts of money but at the end of the day people will do what they want.
Even if its unhealthy. Its our choice.
Pot is easier to consume for some and not easy for others, some people can smoke tobacco some can't, some can drink alcohol, some can't etc etc

If the day comes and this is removed from our society then we are in a dictatorship, even if this is done by democracy. Once you loose your rights to be secure and live as you wish as long as you hurt no others then laws will simply be ignorred.

Any lawmaker who forgets this is failing society.

Its like a lawyer who "papers his file", whats the point....

Money is wasted and a police state is the reality, policing for being human.
Where does it end? Honestly?

In regards to being socially unacceptable yes it could be argued that smoking tobacco or other things could be just that.
I do not enjoy someone smoking a cigarette while I am trying to eat, so not having to deal with that anymore is nice for me.

BUT I do think if they want to indulge (its their body) that I have NO right to stop them.

But they should have to do it in an area as they do now so they do not hurt my lungs or throat. Thats fair.

The only factor that effects others now is healthcare. Specifically health care costs.

Since I was raised to NOT go to the doctor, (farm raised) I do not use our healthcare system at least up to now.
We are fortunate to have healthy kids and again we do not use our healthcare system very often.
And when we do it is the basics.

So if someone who chainsmokes for 50 years needs costly attention because of their addition or habit for that matter.

They should have been required to pay more into the health care system based on their use of a substance that is known to carry a high medical cost.
Doctors can tell if they are consuming substances.

This is how society works. You pay for what you use.

So keeping that in mind if someone smokes pot or cigarettes or other drug use they should have to pay a higher premium.

Its like driving a car if you have a good clean record then you pay less to drive.

If you speed, etc then it costs you more but you are still able to participate in society.

It can be argued a speeding driver is a menace to society by they still are able to drive but they pay more. they are just as likely to kill someone as a smoker etc. BUT they have NOT killed someone and that is the difference.

There should never be at any time a requirement or law for people to live 100% natural lives. Its a nice concept, but we all have various reasons for indulging and not all of them are bad.

If this is so, then I must say then this should be an equal deal for all of society, no drugs at all, in food, perscriptions, (hey ... many of them are simply not needed)no diet drugs, no nothing.

Or stop the finger pointing and be just in delivering a secure place to live where all can do as they want as they long as no one gets hurt.

This is more easy to impliment and live with, make the cost fair to all and leave people alone!!!!!!

Government sticking their noses into our bedrooms and livingrooms is not freedom.

BUT providing a safe place to live for all, is.

Another concept here is the 30%+/- of Canadians who do use drugs pay taxes on many levels, they have regular jobs, families etc, they do not fall into the catagories of the various programs out there and don't hurt anyone except themselves (over long term use) ....yet they are not allowed to enjoy what they want. Legally.
Their own tax dollars pay the police to track them down and charge them, single them out and persucute them for simply being who they are.
Being charged for guilt by association.
Possesion while going through a ride spot check (they were not driving).
Neighbour rats them out because they smell something funny.
Neighbour gets a cash reward.
Is this fair?
Is this freedom?
Is this democracy?

Democracy only works when it is allowed to work, by those who are in power, it is a concept, it is a fuzzy ellusive dream for those who rights are always passed by so others can feel better that they have saved THEIR world.

Because in democracy the best lawyer wins, just like in court.
He who provides the best argument, sways opinion, gets votes, and the will is done...
But its not democracy.

Democracy would be a surprise question, answered on the spot honestly.
By the masses.
No ads, no spin, no interference.

Kevion sin tax is a generic term not a judgement

Lambton Kent Middlesex EDA (SW Ontario)
I could care less for your eternal soul if you have one, so your sin is of no concern to me, nor anyone else.
But we should not be applying taxes large enough to almost dissuade users, but still keep them on the hook. That is unethical.
Conventioally government puts on sin taxes to rais money, after all nobody dares object.

A service charge to provide safety is not a sin tax. It is when we attempt to maximize the take, the total revenue, that we know that what we are dealing with is a true sin tax.
We can not toy with the lie that we are applying a tax to limit consumption while all the while evaluating the highest tax we can assess and not lower our total tax take. When we are not really trying to cut down on usage, our real motives will become obvious and our hypocracy so clear to all.
The term sin tax has been used so long that it has become a significant expresion and has absolutely nothing to do with sinning in a theological sense. If it comes close to anything it would be an indulgence tax. But the term is part of our culture, and it is not judgemental to use it.

If you think you have a soul to save, feel free to save it, but do not assume that anyone in politics really cares about your sole. That is not what the concept of sin tax is about.

Lambton Kent Middlesex EDA (SW Ontario)

This is a dangerous issue for us, but can be won ...

We Greens have to stick to the economics and crime-fighting side of this issue and stay well away of spurious "health-related" language. Green Policy will take money out of the pockets of drug dealers and derail their gravy train. Conservative policy makes their "products" more valuable and makes them more money. The conservatives are enriching drug dealers. They don't understand the marketplace they claim to belive in.

Remember, people do not vote completely rationally. They have vague concepts of policy details and tend to support a party based on the personality and likeablity of the leader and overall "feel" of the party. For a lot of people, where I live (Manitoba) the Green Party is the party of "pot-smoking hippies" and the Conservatives are playing up this lie whenever they can. Look for the NDP to do this, too, as they fight for the left wing of the progressive vote. So we need to go on the offensive and remind people that Stephen Harper is the best thing that ever happened to the Hell's Angels. He's going to make them richer, than ever.

Everything's connected My views are not to be taken as the official position of the Green Party of Canada

This issue is VERY dangerous for the Green's

I wanted to voice my agreement with Kelly's post. Regardless of an individual's decisions regarding marijuana, if a Green Party candidate comes out and says that we are for legalizing pot...the sound bite remembered and reported is not likely to include the rationalization for why we do. This may resonate with voters in BC (stereotypically), but will sink candidates in other ridings.

Answering direct questions about crime by discussing how to hurt them economically (including legalization of
marijuana in certain situations) could work.

Answering direct questions about marijuana by saying that it we do not believe in regulating the day to day decision making of a drug whose impact is no more negative than alcohol, we recognize that it has a tremendously negative impact on the lives of thousands of Canadians, and want to focus on addiction prevention and treatment (or something to that affect).

Anyways, I believe the words "we support the legalization of marijuana" would be very dangerous, and potentially very harmful to candidate electability. Canadians need to see us as more than the party of the environment and pot, and we can overcome the challenge of shaping that message.

Sincerely,

Robert Routledge

Sincerely, Robert Routledge

I totally disagree!

Greetings

Funny even you see we are now known for more than the environment as cannabis is and will be our blessing in the coming election.

When we were just known for the environment we got what 4.5 % of the vote and now are polling at 13%..why? I think you better re read this one.

"For a serious post on this topic read Conservatives Attack GPC: 55% Canadians Side with Green Party's Unique Position at http://greenparty.ca/en/node/2990 ."

This comment...
""Answering direct questions about marijuana by saying that it we do not believe in regulating the day to day decision making of a drug whose impact is no more negative than alcohol, we recognize that it has a tremendously negative impact on the lives of thousands of Canadians, and want to focus on addiction prevention and treatment (or something to that affect).""

Greatly disturbs me actually. What negative impact ? JAIL !!!!

It is our policy!

Maybe the conservatives can use some of our Good ol boys that still want to continue beating up Canadians! hahhaha
Treatment eh? wow yes jail me again for cannabis because at 50 I must be silly to think I have rights.

juror.ca

endprohibition@telus.net

Respect the voter

I respectfully suggest that the statement, "Remember, people do not vote completely rationally" might be a touch incomplete.

People generally don't become irrational unless given irrational alternatives... i.e. presented with ideas that are not contradictory and forced to choose, or bombarded with mostly extraneous or false noise etc.

Plausibly, voters may:

A. feel the alternative is worse, or
B. feel the issue is irrelevant to what is important to them, or
C. know they are being lied to but don't know who is doing the lying, or
D. feel they are being lied to, or
E. cannot see how the national interest is served, or
F. cannot see how their interest is served, or
G. have loyalties that they feel go beyond the issue at hand, or
H. they just plainly disagree with the issue as presented.
etc.

Give the voter respect, communicate clearly, caringly, and be human... and you will be trusted.

Cheers,

Walkswithcoffee

Cheers, Coffee (aka Walkswithcoffee)

It's not what you say ... it's what people hear.

The Republica ... er ... Conservatives are ahead of the other parties on this. Frank Luntz, the Republican wordsmith and pollster has worked with them on the concept that "it's not what you say, it's what people hear". Everything the Conservatives do is geard toward making people think they are "just like ordinary Canadians." They're painting Stephan Dion (and by extension all Liberals) as snobs who eat their hot dogs with a knife and fork. They're painting the NDP as Latte Lefties who represent "special interests" who want to take money from hardworking ordinary taxpayers and spend it on their whining lazy friends. They're portraying the Greens as crazy, pot-smoking tree-huggers who want to wreck the economy and steal jobs from hardworking loggers, farmers and oil workers. Worse yet, they want to slap a big tax on gasoline and take "take away your freedom".

I've spent the holidays in small town Saskatchewan. I have had people tell me with a straight face that, "There's no such thing as global warming -- it's just an excuse to make everyone into greenies. Besides, 100 years ago there were millions of buffalo on the prairies producing more greenhouse gas than all the cars in the world do right now." I'm dead serious. People vote for candidates and parties that seem to be "just like them." The problem for the Conservatives and the opportunity for us is that people think Harper is mean -- and hopefully -- an arrogant know-it-all who thinks he's smarter than everyone else -- even his own caucus. We need to remind people of this. Harper is nothing like them. Elizabeth May, on the other hand, is our biggest asset. People believe her. People still don't trust Harper, except for his core constituency. But now I'm getting off topic ...

Greens have to ensure we look and sound like the mainstream party that millions of Canadians want us to be. And by Mainstream I mean the REAL mainstream. Responsible Canadians who realize everything is connected and that we need to think of the future of our children and grandchildren, instead of screaming for a short term tax cut we can spend on another TV. Reponsible Canadians who worry about how they're gong to heat their homes in the future after we've burnt all the natural gas in Canada extracting tar from Northern Alberta. Responsible Canadians who wonder why it's OK to overspend on the military, while cancelling deals with First Nations, Provinces (on Daycare) and ignoring cities and affordable housing.

The Green Party is the only party who understands everything is connected and that we need to change the system so we can secure the future for our children and Grandchildren. We are the only responsible party and , therefore the only progressive party that has moved beyond steam-age left-right ideology.

Everything's connected My views are not to be taken as the official position of the Green Party of Canada

Reinforcing stereotypes

What Robert Routledge is saying about this being a very dangerous issue holds a lot of water fro me. I don’t know many older people who would support legalization based purely as an enhancement of personal freedoms to do what you want. We also do a lot of things that are expensive, that in itself is not an argument to stop doing them.

I personally believe that our justice system is broken, it is costly, doesn’t seek the truth etc. While I am against legalization of pot, I would be willing to consider wholesale changes to our legal system to make it so we are soft on soft offenders and are hard on hard offenders. This needs to be part of a more of a complete approach to the way we practice legal justice in this country and how we want to take out crime and I don’t think our platform is very comprehensive on that yet. Legalization of pot is ultimately a winnable issue for those who want it, but I question how winnable it is with current tactics. Right now it is just a legalization of drugs issue and does not encompass a bigger picture.

The big thing that I found appealing about the green party was it did not want to fall into the traditional left/right political spectrum. The environment has traditionally been seen as a leftist issue so people already think we are a left party whether we are or not. If we continue to only take/make policies that are from the left then contrary to what we say, then we are a left wing party. I don’t think that people who have been traditional conservative voters can’t be wooed to take the green party for a spin. With the current Conservatives parties’ stance on environment, many red Tories can be shook loose but why do they vote conservative in the first place? If you are going to show voters that you are (in their minds at least) weak on drugs you need to show them that you are not weak on crime as a whole. Maybe we need to make/borrow a policy that would appeal to conservative voters like targeting repeat offenders or something else along those lines. Think of it in terms of our carbon tax, the tax is not to get more revenue, but a shift where we take the revenue from so as to not alienate right wing voters. Right wing voters want their pound of flesh, lets make sure we are taking the pound where it needs to be taken and not criminalizing 3 million voters as some posts above have stated.

I really hope that the green party does not become a party dominated by the interests of Toronto/Vancouver and Montreal. People in the big cities must realize that people in different areas of the country may want a different shade of green, but in the end its still green. We must exercise great care to balance the interests of a left/right split as well as those of rural and urban or regional as Robert points out. I think the best asset we have right now with respect to that is having a leader from N.S.

Prohibition is funding organized crime and terrorists

@Dean Carnduff

If you support prohibition you are supporting organized crime, violence, disease international terrorism and an open under ground drug market that is not regulated or controlled.  i.e.  your kids have unlimited access to it! unlike regualted drugs like Alcohol and tobacco.

All drugs must be Controlled and regulated in a legal market. That is the only way to get organized crime etc. out of this market. There is no market which has higher profits than the illegal drug market. It is extremely stupid to allow criminal drug gangs to control this market.

Education  here   >>>>  www.leap.cc   learn something.

Stop all wars End prohibition on Cannabis now.

Conservative spinmeisters

I agree entirely with Kelly. The Conservatives have studied and learned from Republican political successes, and are applying the same methods in Canada. Some of those methods include:

  • Repetition - repeat the same thing often enough and many people will believe or at least accept it. This effect is multiplied if multiple people convey the same message, or if it comes from authority figures, or if your opponents tacitly accept it.
  • Put the opposition on the defense - Attack, attack, attack.
  • Co-opt the language - the Republicans never say "media," they always say "liberal media"; they market-test phrases to see how they'll resonate with people and also be very difficult to counter: "family values" and "tax relief" are two examples
  • Pretend to be the good-guy underdog - the Republicans, starting with Mr. Reagan, painted themselves as the champions of the average family who is disgusted by political corruption
  • Portray yourself as strong and incorruptible, and promise to clean up government

The problem with much of the Republican/Conservative approach is that much of it is lies. The Republicans care about rich people, and the vast majority of their actions have been to further enrich their cronies. They also don't care if they have to lie and cheat to achieve their ends.

So, expect to be taken out of context, to be deliberately misquoted, or even to have complete fabrications made up about you as a candidate, or about the Green Party.

Never say "We support the legalization of marijuana." Never. Even if you're in BC like me. As Kelly says, the Conservatives will try to portray us "as crazy, pot-smoking tree-huggers who want to wreck the economy and steal jobs from hardworking loggers, farmers and oil workers." If you use the phrase I just mentioned, with or without justifications and reasons and so forth, you are reinforcing the stereotype the Conservatives are trying to create in the public mind about us."

Instead, say that the Green Party wants to clean up our streets by rooting out the causes of crime and drug addiction, rather than building and filling more jails, as Mr. Harper wants to do. We want to wipe out the organized crime that operates the grow-ops and exports to the U.S. We want to create a society were people don't feel the need to self-medicate with pot or Prozac or any other substance, legal or not. Find what works for you, and use it.

Brian Gordon
Nominated Candidate, Esquimalt-Juan de Fuca
Green Party of Canada

Trained Presenter
An Inconvenient Truth

People - Planet - Prosperity
The New Green Economy

Brian Gordon Nominated Candidate, Esquimalt-Juan de Fuca Green Party of Canada Trained Presenter An Inconvenient Truth People - Planet - Prosperity The New Green Economy

I suppose we should say we

I suppose we should say we want to get tough on crime by taking away the drug market from organized crime gangs. ?

or

We favor a harm reduction approach to drugs. ?

or

we support drug policy reform ?

or

we want to control the drug market by use of a legal framework of regulations ?

Stop all wars End prohibition on Cannabis now.

In a noisy room, "hearing" and the "speaking" disconnect

Bottom Line: Winning political parties become known (rightly or wrongly) as reliable sources of myth busting, vetted sources, and interesting messages spoken loud enough to be heard.... all others get ignored, and hence lose.

You must have a team that knows content, facts, and communication strategies that directly address opponent messaging and gets back on message immediately.

Today, going up against the CPoC media machine (that is still being built up) means you will face attempts to drown you with volume-noise, changing the channel, mockery, and just plain propaganda. You are up against paid experts that will bluster, evade, exaggerate, and just plain tell stories to put your message under.

To counter, you must become known as a reliable source of myth busting, vetted sources, and interesting messages with decibels enough to be heard on a crowded and noisy playing field .... otherwise, you will be ignored.

Cheers,

Walkswithcoffee

Cheers, Coffee (aka Walkswithcoffee)

With regards to

With regards to decriminalization, I have pushing the points that decriminalization allows our police to focus on more meaningful crimes, keeps revenue out of gangs, will allow us to recoup, in taxes, whatever social/health costs we are already paying (such as they may or may not be), and will allow half of Canadians to stop feeling like criminals. I think it is important to strike a position that the law-and-order set will be hard-pressed to deride. How can you argue in favour of funding criminals, or keeping our police focussed on pot, in such a dangerous world?

decriminalization ?????

You mean legalization don't you ?

Decriminalization does NOTHING to stop organized crime or drug gangs. Because it does not take the market away from them.

The drug market must be in the hands of government and/or licensed regulated companies.

Stop all wars End prohibition on Cannabis now.

Oh Kelly, you seemed to be

Oh Kelly, you seemed to be having trouble saying RepubliCons. =D Ok, sorry, I couldn't resist.

What happened to Jack Layton?

He went from supporter of legalization, to Mr. Law and Order, overnight!
Read my blog for more:
http://www.greenparty.ca/en/node/7239

Jack who ?

This is the Green Party of Cananda.

Stop all wars End prohibition on Cannabis now.

Decriminalization vs legalization of marijuana comment repeated

The issue of criminalization vs legalization requires some clarity. Our society has certain thresholds in which it does not generally criminalize the harm one does to oneself. We do however subscribe to prohibiting the harm one does to others.

For example, currently society does not criminalize cigarette smoking even though it causes untold suffering and in excess of 40000 deaths per year. We in fact legalize cigarette production in spite of the evidence. We are complicit in this suffering through its legalization and in fact profit from it through taxes, and pay for it in our health care system. This “does not even make good nonsense” to quote Mark Twain or whoever said this.

So what road are we going down with this marijuana issue? The same road???

I suggest that determining the harm that marijuana does or does not do, is the purview of objective and competent medical and psychological authorities and peer review processes, not users. If medicinal value exists, like morphine, then we control it like morphine. Until we know the extent of harm or good for sure, it may be prudent to decriminalize personal use, (harming oneself) and invoke the ethic of care, shifting the issue from the criminal code to the civil code (similar to a fine or parking ticket, without a criminal record), but to retain criminalization for traffickers or growers for trafficking (potentially doing harm to others).

In the interim, I suggest we suspend judgement on legalization until evidence can be evaluated, that we support user decriminalization (transfer to civil code), and continue to prosecute traffickers and organized crime involved in the supply chain. I even suggest we begin to look at tobacco legalization in a different light and begin a process of social change to rid this ourselves of this cancer in our society. It is morally wrong to profit from suffering. A good ethical action requires a good intention, good means and expectations of good results.

So let us get the language right. Legalization is not what we went here. If the ethic of care is a value we cherish, then let us view this issue through this lens. We are not in the business of harm in any way. We owe this to our children. If we are about tomorrow, let us walk the talk here.

Paul Maillet

We owe this to our children

What are you a moron ?

Your children have un-fettered access to an un-regulated black market in dangerous drugs operated by international organized criminals and local drug gangs and 100 years of prohibition has just increased all negative aspects to drug use and added criminal penalties on top of that.

Go join the NeoCons, you know, Harpers evangelical whack job party.

Stop all wars End prohibition on Cannabis now.

Virus discovered in this thread...LOL

"So let us get the language right. Legalization is not what we went here. If the ethic of care is a value we cherish, then let us view this issue through this lens. We are not in the business of harm in any way. We owe this to our children. If we are about tomorrow, let us walk the talk here.

Paul Maillet"

Sorry Paul I didn't see your attempt to turn us into a different party.
Or to side track or ruin this thread.
I do remember responding directly to you when you posted this elsewhere and you responded calling me the same kind of names...LOL

Now if you are still here and not now just a small part of Harpers team of bullies I will remind you again that RE-LEGALIZED CANNABIS IS PARTY POLICY !! NOW !! and I would also tell you how to change party policy...er...maybe..emmmm nope ....but GOOD LUCK !!

I know myself and my team and the thousands we have brought will leave instantly if your kind of non policy ever sees the light of day.

Maybe get with the program instead of trying to split this party where based on feed back here most agree with doing something about all the gun violence.

If you know zero about cannabis why use that to try to drive us away?

Cheerio

(disclaimer:do not be confused and think shavluk is the green party talking...hahha)

http://shavluk.com/

juror.ca

endprohibition@telus.net