Okay, I sorta promised the Friggin Loon some kinda’ post about pot saving America. I’m sure everybody expects some snark and humor, and we’ll get to that. First though, let’s go to POT CLASS 101. In a quick search for some jokes to steal, I came upon much more serious journalism on the subject than anything else. Seems that Cheech and Chong classic bits have been eclipsed by world economists and scientists. Kinda takes the fun out of it. Also for any ‘active’ users out there, let me remind you, today is NATIONAL DONUT DAY. Support your local Donut dealer.
FORBES MAGAZINE, POT & THE ECONOMY: Milton Friedman leads a list of more than 500 economists from around the U.S. who today will publicly endorse a Harvard University economist’s report on the costs of marijuana prohibition and the potential revenue gains from the U.S. government instead legalizing it and taxing its sale. Ending prohibition enforcement would save $7.7 billion in combined state and federal spending, the report says, while taxation would yield up to $6.2 billion a year.
The report, “The Budgetary Implications of Marijuana Prohibition,” (available at www.prohibitioncosts.org) was written by Jeffrey A. Miron, a professor at Harvard , and largely paid for by the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), a Washington, D.C., group advocating the review and liberalization of marijuana laws.
At 92, Friedman is revered as one of the great champions of free-market capitalism during the years of U.S. rivalry with Communism. He is also passionate about the need to legalize marijuana, among other drugs, for both financial and moral reasons.
If the laws change, large beneficiaries might include large agricultural groups like Archer Daniels Midland (nyse: ADM – news – people ) and ConAgra Foods (nyse: CAG – news – people ) as potential growers or distributors and liquor businesses like Constellation Brands (nyse: STZ – news – people ) and Allied Domecq (nyse: AED – news – people ), which understand the distribution of intoxicants. Full article here – http://www.forbes.com/2005/06/02/cz_qh_0602pot.html
THE ENVIRONMENT; Industrial Hemp for Paper: One acre of hemp in annual rotation will produce as much pulp for paper as 4.1 acres of trees during the same twenty year period. Hemp can be grown and harvested every year, unlike trees that take fifty to one hundred years to grow back. Hemp can be grown in more areas of the world than trees. Making paper from trees creates over five times more pollution than making paper from hemp. Since 1937, 70% of our national forests have been destroyed.
Industrial Hemp for Clothing: Hemp produces three times as much fiber per acre as cotton. While cotton is grown on only 3% of the world’s farmland, it uses a devastating 26% of the world’s pesticides per year. Hemp requires no pesticides or herbicides to grow.
Industrial Hemp for Energy. Since pre-industrial times, carbon dioxide levels have risen by almost 30% due to deforestation and fossil fuel combustion. The United States currently burns fossil fuels for 93% of its energy needs and consumes 25% of the world’s supply. The hydrocarbons in hemp can be processed into a wide range of biomass energy sources, including fuel pellets, liquid fuels and gas. Development of biofuels could significantly reduce our consumption of fossil fuels and nuclear power.
Eco-friendly hemp can relace almost all toxic petro-chemical products. Research is being done to use hemp in manufacturing biodegradable plastic products. more here http://www.hamline.edu/personal/dhudson/eng3370/3370s01/lutterman/hemp5.html
Medical Marijuana is frequently beneficial in the treatment of serious medical conditions. Medical marijuana has been deemed legitimate (by at least one court, legislature, and/or government agency in the United States) for treatment of the following medical conditions: AIDS, Glaucoma, Cancer, Multiple Sclerosis, Epilepsy, Chronic Pain. more here http://www.compassionatecoalition.org/mmjinfo/uses