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02.16 Toxic black snow covers Siberian coalmining region [0:49 video; If its killing us, stop doing it]
02.16 Renewable energy will be world's main power source by 2040, says BP [But in America's capitalistic bubble, bribed-to-be-biased media and government defy reality]
02.16 What the pesticides in our urine tell us about organic food [What does inaction tell us about capitalism and our government?]
02.14 Exposure to Glyphosate-Based Herbicides and Risk for Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma: A Meta-Analysis and Supporting Evidence [If its killing us, make it illegal]
02.14 To avoid environmental catastrophe, everything must change [Consider why this headline is laughable or confusing to many, if not most, Americans...]02.13 Study Shows Toxic Pesticide Levels in Families Dropped by 60% After One-Week Organic Diet [2:10 video; Produce and canned vegetables laced with toxic chemicals—from fertilizers and herbicides, too—must be quickly phased out to use safe organic alternatives]
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02.16 We Shouldn't Stick Our Heads In The Sand, But We Do It Anyway [26:46 audio; Fear like Trump & Fox News incite makes us avoid unpleasant information we need to know]
02.15 Samantha Bee: Fox News 'soiling themselves over the Green New Deal' [video clips from Samantha Bee, Seth Meyers and Stephen Colbert]
US Politics, Policy & 'Culture'
02.18 Dictator Trump
02.16 ‘A Parkland every five days’: project tells stories of the children lost to gun violence [What does inaction tell us about capitalism and our government?]
02.16 Rambling Trump calls an emergency in speech that goes on and on and on [1:42 video; an incoherent president just paraphrases lies and distortion from Fox News and Rush Limbaugh...]
02.16 Calling Emergency Declaration a 'Patently Illegal Power Grab,' ACLU Sues Trump [Empathy and fairness are scarce when your President is a psychopath]
02.15 Jayapal Says Medicare for All Bill Coming in Two Weeks as Expert Calls Plan 'Astonishingly Strong' [Corporate control of government and media must be limited to allow efficient programs for the public good]
Economics & Corrupting-Capitalism
02.13 The Green New Deal offers radical environmental and economic change [For the survival of life on earth, capitalism must be effectively regulated or banned]
02.12 Climate and economic risks 'threaten 2008-style systemic collapse' [Willfull ignorance of Trump, Republicans, corporate-media and corporate-Democrats is steadfast, if not worsening]
02.11 Trump offers socialism for the rich, capitalism for everyone else [and the poor will die out like the insects]
International & Futurism
02.18 Hate-Fest in Warsaw
02.15 Who Is Really A Socialist? [Who is really a Republican, etc.?]
02.14 House passes bill to end US support for Saudi war in Yemen [Congress does something good again!]
02.14 Millions Flowed From Venezuelan Oil Firm to Small Bulgarian Bank [Transactions like Manafort performed for Trump. Which Venezuelan political leader is likely behind this—Maduro or Trump-supported Guaidó?]
THE OTHER DUMB WAR:
Marijuana 'Prohibition' on CA's Ballot
Originally published in ConsortiumNews.com yesterday, 13 September 2010
Note from Robert Parry: Families all across America have been touched in one way or another by the 37-year-old drive to eradicate marijuana use. Beyond the prison overcrowding that has resulted, many young people with promising futures have had criminal convictions stuck on their permanent records.
Since the founding of the Drug Enforcement Administration in 1973, 15 million Americans have been arrested for marijuana.
That is more people than live in California’s 25 largest cities – millions more than live in Ohio, Pennsylvania or Illinois.
The DEA has led an aggressive national law enforcement effort that results in a marijuana arrest every 38 seconds, propelling the U.S. to become the biggest incarcerator on the planet, housing one out of four of the world’s prisoners.
Despite mass arrests, incarceration and the tearing apart of millions of families, the war rages on with no end in sight.
Since the DEA’s founding, approximately 90 percent of youth have described marijuana as easy to get in annual federal surveys. It is easier for young Americans to buy marijuana than it is to buy alcohol or prescription drugs which are legally regulated and controlled.
Is there any reason to think that millions more arrests – with costs running into the billions – will win the marijuana war?
Last week every former U.S. DEA head came out against Proposition 19 which would end possession arrests and allow local jurisdictions in California to make marijuana legal.
No surprise that drug enforcement bureaucrats want to defend their marijuana enforcement budgets. They even oppose medical marijuana for people suffering and dying.
But, more important for the voter, this is an opportunity to look at the big picture. Voters should ask themselves:
Has the marijuana war, with more than 800,000 arrests each year, worked?
Will more arrests stop marijuana?
If not, isn’t it time to consider alternatives that could better control marijuana?
Thankfully, the DEA is not the only law enforcement voice. Recently the National Black Police Association came out in support of Prop. 19, following a slew of endorsements from unions, faith leaders and the NAACP.
On Monday, simultaneous press conferences will be held at Oakland City Hall and in West Hollywood Park to announce a letter of endorsement signed by dozens of law enforcers across California.
Joseph McNamara, former police chief in San Jose, California, and Kansas City, Missouri, an active member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, describes the marijuana laws as much worse than ineffective: “they waste valuable police resources and also create a lucrative black market that funds cartels and criminal gangs with billions of tax-free dollars."
Federal researchers find marijuana to be safer than many legal drugs, so why waste precious law enforcement resources on it?
These officers, judges and prosecutors support Proposition 19 because it:
These police views are shared by the California Legislative Analyst which says Prop 19 would enable California to put the state’s police priorities where they belong saying it "could result in savings to the state and local governments by reducing the number of marijuana offenders incarcerated in state prisons and county jails, as well as the number placed under county probation or state parole supervision.
“These savings could reach several tens of millions of dollars annually. The county jail savings would be offset to the extent that jail beds no longer needed for marijuana offenders were used for other criminals who are now being released early because of a lack of jail space."
According to proponents, Proposition 19 is a cautious reform that keeps in mind public safety. It empowers local jurisdictions to decide whether to bring adult use of marijuana within the law and how to regulate it.
It maintains strict criminal penalties for driving under the influence, increases the penalty for providing marijuana to a minor, expressly prohibits consumption in public, forbids smoking while minors are present, and bans possession on school grounds.
In addition to being good policy that sets common sense police priorities and regulates marijuana so it is more difficult for children to get, it will generate $1.4 billion in tax revenue each year, according to California's tax collector, the Board of Equalization.
The opposition by the federal drug enforcement bureaucrats reminds California’s voters that – despite the drug warriors’ best efforts over nearly four decades – the marijuana war cannot be won and that voters now have an opportunity to do what politicians have refused to do: tax and control marijuana.
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This story was published on September 14, 2010.