It’s become painfully obvious that the Liberal government’s legalization scheme is becoming just that, a scheme, to completely take over marijuana sales in Canada. Think about that for a minute: just how much weed is sold here? To be honest, in the market that exists today I’m afraid to even try to guess how much pot is sold in a week, never mind in a month. But one thing that does seem clear is that the government wants no part of the cannabis community in the soon-to-be legal market.
First the Liberals insulted us by appointing Toronto’s ex-head cop Bill Blair to be point man on the legalization file, a person who spent years parroting the government’s anti-pot stance and jailing hundreds if not thousands of marijuana users, growers, and dealers.
This is the same goon who was in charge of the G20 fiasco that saw widespread abuse of police power go unchecked and who made excuses for it; he was Harper’s attack dog at the time. Blair has used terms like “strict regulation,” has called dispensaries “reckless,” and has even said “[non-licensed producers] don’t care about kids.” Excuse me, Bill, but who do you think brought in the first set of standards for dispensaries? The cannabis community, that’s who.
This man is no friend to marijuana users and scowls at people like us.
By now, I have also heard PM Trudeau repeat the same tired bullshit line “we have to heavily regulate and control marijuana to protect young people’s developing minds” so many times I can almost write it verbatim. This or a slight variation of it was his answer to NDP MP Tom Mulcair’s query as to why he keeps saddling young people with criminal records and didn’t decriminalize at once although he plans to legalize within a year. Trudeau and his advisors have answered almost every question about legalization this way.
This response is an added snub to pot users, and we also have to question the logic behind this move: what good can come from keeping a policy, which the very government that can remove it admits hurts Canadians and has promised to change but allows to continue doing damage to young people? I thought the plan was to protect kids, I don’t see giving them criminal records that will bar them from entering the USA or from getting certain jobs as much help at all.
First he insults us, then he snubs us, and now here comes the backhand right across the face…
Cue Anne McLellan, former Justice Minister, Minister of Public Safety, and Minister of Health — among other folios — under Jean Chrétien and Paul Martin’s Liberal governments. During her tenure as Health Minister in 2002 she was quoted as saying she felt “a certain degree of discomfort” around the issue of medical marijuana. This was the person who was put in charge of handling the file of ill and suffering Canadians seeking relief from HIV/AIDS, cancer, diabetes, eating disorders, multiple sclerosis, severe arthritis, and scores of other illnesses. But she was feeling “discomfort”? Really, Anne?
Trudeau has appointed her to head the task force that will report to Bill Blair so we have to start asking ourselves why? It sure as hell isn’t for her expert, unbiased history on the subject. I was in the government’s failed medical marijuana program from 2001 to 2015 so I’m no stranger to McLellan and her ridiculous comments about marijuana. For instance, in 2005 she called marijuana “a dangerous substance,” and said “we know it is a more potent carcinogen than smoke tobacco.” Even in 2005, researchers were aware this conclusion wasn’t supported by evidence.
Or how about in 2003 when she pulled this one out of her ass: “I have made it very plain that until we are able to effectively deal with illegal ‘grow ops’ in this country, we have a major, major problem.” The Allard decision proved that to be false, home growing is as safe as hot tubs, saunas, and home theatres are … unless you see personal growing as a threat to your profit margin.
(Might I add that both government expert witnesses that testified about the dangers of home grows during the Allard trial were found by the presiding Justice to have no credibility at all, none, zero.)
Anne McLellan can be summed up as a blue Liberal, with her views to the right of centre. Having been elected in the riding of Edmonton Northwest, even if narrowly, shows that her appeal was to the average right-wing conservative Albertan at the time, and her comments about marijuana reflect that. We need to be asking her what she thinks of cannabis now, does she still think it’s worse than tobacco?
To anyone watching from the sidelines, things got very clear a month ago when Toronto Police Service executed Project Claudia, raiding 43 dispensaries and arresting 90 people while seizing medicine and property. This is now a very real power struggle over control of a thriving business model that’s been set up and developed at a time when it’s against the law to do so. Because of a greedy, overbearing government that, rather than admit the war on drugs was a total failure, is trying to act like it knows best so is calling for strict regulations and controls while making the cannabis community out to be deviants and thugs.
Cannabis Culture opened it shops in Toronto a day after the raids and it took four weeks for the cops to finally go and close them down and make arrests. Marc Emery flew out to Toronto the next day to reopen the store himself, and was all over the news that night vowing to stay open as long as they can and to fight these unjust laws and overbearing restrictions.
I find it unbelievable that a person with Justin Trudeau’s level of intelligence would think he could just take over and restart an entire industry that’s been around as long as prohibition — over ninety years — that his government is going to solve all the problems by next year with “strict rules and regulations,” and this somehow will keep marijuana away from kids? How can anybody take this man seriously on this issue?
Even with the LPs growing as much cannabis as they could in the amount of space they have, my personal feeling is that if all the illegal growers were to shut down the government would run out of weed in two weeks or less. Not to mention that cannabis grown in huge batches is generally of a lower quality than craft cannabis grown in smaller crops by people who love marijuana. Combine these with the unpleasantness of buying marijuana in a liquor store or drugstore, high prices, high taxes, and low selection and the black market is sure to expand and flourish.
The underground economy exists because it undercuts regulated pricing and quality, and let’s not forget quantity. A strictly regulated government scheme will be sure to include low buy limits. You want a quarter pound? Forget it.
August 24th is coming up fast and the government must respond by that day with what they have planned for the medical end of their scheme, but Allard allows us to grow our own so we’ll see what kind of limits that will bring. I predict this much: a huge surge in ‘screen of green’ or SCROG growing by med users. If they say five plants, then we should grow each plant under a 4×4 screen. That’s sixteen square feet of buds. Times five plants equals eighty square feet of budding area….
This writer is happy with the moniker “Outlaw for Life.”