Articles Tagged: signatures

Lets repeal the first amendment to stop the racist tea party comments about Obama

July 31st, 2013 | By Pirate

Yesterday I was musing on how citizens initiatives get passed, things like I-502 which are so terribly negative in ending cannabis prohibition in the USA.

After my blog post, I got reading more about Mark Dice, and he is an interesting film maker.  I have to admit, I don’t know a lot about him.  But I was not shocked to see this second video of where Mark Dice got a bunch of signatures to “Repeal the First Amendment”.   His premise was “the tea party people and republicans are saying mean things about Obama, and they don’t have the right to do that – in these tough times”.

I am sorely disappointed with the outcome of this video, because of how willing people are to simply sign something.  Even after having explained to them over and over that this will “repeal the first amendment”.

I say it again, it is no wonder that things like I-502 get passed.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SpHOaW99ST4  < repeal the first amendment?

 

Comparing Initiative 502 to the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937

October 28th, 2012 | By Pirate

In this article I will explain how Washington’s Initiative 502 is similar to the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937.
There are differences, because we are now in a post Controlled Substances Act era, and this initiative is being touted as the initiative that will “legalize marihuana” (yes I spell cannabis as marihuana in this article similar to the way they did in 1937 for the marihuana tax act).
The similarities that I am noting have to do with the tax, and the proposal for a legal/regulated market.  The differences in the two are only related to the post 1970 Controlled Substances Act era.

My proposal in this article is that Initiative 502 is not legalization, it is just a clever way of retaining prohibition at a time when Hempfest is at its all time height of attendee’s, when a group with a shoe-string budget in Washington collected hundreds of thousands of signatures on a mostly volunteer basis to get cannabis legalized in Washington.
On March 18th 2012, sponsor of I-502 Pete Holmes said after a long speech about how he believe in decriminalization of marihuana, that “a people’s initiative (to legalize marihuana) scares him terribly“.

They (the prohibitionists and lawyer profiteers) realized that a people’s initiative passing was a reality and they fought desperately to thwart those efforts.  Pete Holmes, Alison Holcomb, the ACLU and many of the law enforcement officials all publicly denounced the efforts of thousands of volunteers to collect hundreds of thousands of signatures to legalize (remove the prohibitions) from marihuana laws in Washington.  (see  www.sensiblewashington.org)

At the end of my summary I will post the texts of the two law proposals (The Marihuana Tax Act 1937 and Initiative 502).  What’s also interesting to note, is that I-502 is far larger in size/text than the original prohibition proposal The 1937 Marihuana Tax Act.  I am just going to give links to the I-502 initiative because of its enormous size.

Lets start off with a few points.

  •  The Marihuana Tax Act of 1937 was not designed to create a market, despite what the text said.  Rather it was designed to create prohibition of cannabis.  See this article, the intro is a great description regarding how TMTA-1937 created prohibition:  http://www.druglibrary.org/schaffer/hemp/taxact/mjtaxact.htm
  • The title of the act, and the words in the act appeared to create a taxable and regulated market.  But after the act passed in 1937 very few stamps were issued.  During WWII many stamps were issued to fuel the war efforts.  But after WWII very few were ever issued again.

It is noted:

“Shortly after the 1937 Marihuana Tax Act went into effect on October 1, 1937, the Federal Bureau of Narcotics and Denver City police arrested Moses Baca for possession and Samuel Caldwell for dealing. Baca and Caldwell’s arrest made them the first marijuana convictions under U.S. federal law for not paying the marijuana tax.[19] Judge Foster Symes sentenced Baca to 18 months and Caldwell to four years in Leavenworth Penitentiary for violating the 1937 Marihuana Tax Act.”

If we compare this to Initiative 502, which is something touted by law enforcement and other sponsors as a way to reduce crime in the black market, and to create safer roads in Washington.

As described by the Secretary of State’s office, the measure would “license and regulate marijuana production, distribution, and possession for persons over twenty-one; remove state-law criminal and civil penalties for activities that it authorizes; tax marijuana sales; and earmark marijuana-related revenues.”

Here are the points being debated

  • State law currently requires a prosecutor to prove impairment in court for DUI, after I-502 impairment is not the measurement it is a rather un-scientific blood limit of THC (5nanograms of active THC).  This targets heavy users, specifically patients that are legally recommended by a doctor to use cannabis under Washington state laws
  • The excise taxes are extreme, 25% at each point of the market with local and state taxes on top of that equaling a rough 90% tax on cannabis, thus keeping it in the black market (even if the market was remotely possible under this proposal)
  • All to help alleviate the 10,000 or so possession arrests per year in Washington state.  When many of those arrests will happen anyway since the largest demographic of cannabis consumers are under the age of 21, and many of those arrests will happen anyway because a lot of those arrests are for over one ounce (the allowable limit).
  • The offset of these arrests are the potential for a lot more arrests via the provisions in Sec. 31., Page 46

My summary is.  The two of these law reform proposals have similar goals.  They both looked really good for the community before they were voted in, and were being proposed as something different than what the language contained in them defines.   We know now that the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937 was certainly the gateway to extreme marihuana prohibition.  But what about I-502.  I propose that this is also a gateway to more prohibition.  It does not at all in anyway say “legalization” to me.   In fact where I am in California anyone over the age of 18 can possess an ounce of marihuana without committing a crime, and there were no new and restrictive driving provisions installed when SB 1449 was passed, and there is no more mayhem on the roads than before.  There are over a dozen other states that have decriminalized in the same or similar ways.

I-502’s proposal for state liquor board regulated cannabis stores, and cooperation with the federal government including FBI fingerprints and background check for cannabis distributors is a sure sign that there will be no legal market, and this proposal for a ‘legal market’ will crash and burn just like SB 5073.

One more thing to note is that Washington has sufficient driving regulations to protect the roads against impaired driving.  Both DUI and Reckless Driving laws.
With Reckless driving the officer does not need to prove impairment, but only needs a visual observation that a person is driving Recklessly to issue penalties and possibly arrest.  The penalties of Reckless Driving rival and in some way are even stricter than DUI.

RCW 46.61.502: Driving under the influence

RCW 46.61.500: Reckless driving

There are also many other laws that work similarly such as

RCW 46.61.5249: Negligent driving

Washington didn’t need more restrictions on driving for this initiative to pass.  It just needed to be clear when educating about current laws regarding driving and cannabis.

More references:

Comparing Initiative 502 to the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937

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HempFest 2012 Protesteval

August 22nd, 2012 | By Pirate

There was a lot of emotion at Hempfest this year.  There are several initiatives that were collecting signatures, there was also two camps that were there to represent for one side or the other on I-502.  In fact that was pretty much the main topic this year.
But aside from all of the politics, it was an oasis for nearly 300,000 attendees who were there to support the cannabis culture as they have for 21 years!

I was sad that we couldn’t be there.  We celebrated our sons first birthday and we had business to take care of here in Northern California.  Plus we are caring for my 90 year old grandmother and she would not have faired well in the heat.

But I was encouraged to watch a King5 news report to see a sign that we made hung proudly at hempfest.  We got the idea for the sign from a picture that I found on facebook some months ago.  It said  “Freedom Can’t Exist If Nature Is Illegal” and we attached two cannabis liberty symbols with the message “Don’t Tread On Me” below the statue of Liberty and a cannabis leaf, that Kimi designed in 2011 for Don Skakie.  We donated these signs to Jared Allaway to use for whatever legalization event that may be happening, and we were elated that they were used at HempFest!!!  Thanks Jared!

It made me feel like I was their in proxy, and it also made me miss our HempFest family.
We will not be missing next year!

Here is the photo and the article of where I found it.   Made me smile ear to ear to see this!

http://www.king5.com/news/politics/At-Hempfest-some-arent-too-hot-on-legalization-166662886.html

 

 

THANKS TO VIVIAN MCPEAK AND ALL OF THE VOLUNTEERS AT HEMPFEST!!

RE: Charges filed against naturopaths for marijuana authorizations at Hempfest

August 7th, 2012 | By Pirate

“The state medical marijuana law protects medical professionals from criminal or disciplinary charges if they follow a set of rules, including completing an exam and documenting other ways used to treat “the terminal or debilitating medical condition” other than marijuana.”

Charges filed against naturopaths for marijuana authorizations at Hempfest

 

This is also something important to learn about SB 5073, and how the doctor/patient relationship changed after this passed.
Everyone thinks that the worst thing about SB 5073 is the veto from the governor, but that is not the case. The biggest issue is how the law changed in relationship to the doctor patient relationship.

This from a post I made on the subject in February 2012.

 

“Patient and doctor relationships became more complicated as there are now restrictions and penalties for doctors for recommending cannabis, where as doctors were completely excluded from legal penalties;
ref: The effects of Section 301 (SB 5073)

Read more: http://xcannabis.com/2012/02/promises-from-washington-aclu-when-passing-marijuana-laws/#ixzz22uHyXoYO


The ACLU makes way too many hasty compromises.  The WA branch of the ACLU has lost my trust, especially with I-502.  I mean it took them over 75 years to even attempt to join the fight.  They have yet to even support a real legalization initiative in WA despite that many have gained hundreds of thousands of signatures.  But they support stuff like SB 5073 and I-502?
What took them so long to get active in this civil rights issue, and why when they get involved they propose regressive changes?

Washington and now Colorado on per se DUID limits – Just say no to new penalties!

February 28th, 2012 | By Pirate

This has always been obvious to me that a precedence would be set, or a trend would follow if one state is successful with DUID laws or proposals.   I was blogging about this last year and ever since about Washington’s I-502’s DUID limits.

Before Washington started their proposal for DUID limits, Colorado had shot down the DUID limit proposal in HB 1261.   I was hopeful that would put an end to it.  But the beat goes on with NAW (I-502) just months later.

I have to admit I was shocked that I-502 got as many signatures as they got at first, until I followed the money and found out that pretty much all of their signatures were paid for, and that most of the signature gatherers were from out of state.

From my prospective I have kept a watchful eye on which locals are participating in these proposals.   There are very few locals participating in this.

I have also begged and pleaded with everyone I know with a few bucks to spare to invest in the real deal when it comes to legalization..   Unsuccessfully though, because low and behold as it goes in America, corporations and lawyers tend to get their way.

Population demographics suggest that there are  more lawyers in the USA than anywhere in the world.
Roughly 37% of all lawyers in the world are in the USA.  (active lawyers)

That lawyers and politicians are driving these DUID laws is not surprising to me either.

I have been concerned that we the people are allowing for these additional prohibitions to enter a freedom movement.

Why not follow the Portugal model, or even the Holland model at very least?  These are systems that work well, and have been proven over decades of trial and studies.  They haven’t beefed up their DUID limits, and there are fewer problems with drugs over all, including driving than before decriminalizing/legalizing.

Why do we need new per se DUID limits, when we have functioning DUI laws already as well as Reckless driving laws?

These are the questions that I would suppose the legalization lobbyists/orgs are asking.  Are they?

This statement echos my concern:

Marijuana activist Corey Donahue, who was credited with helping to derail last year’s bill, testified again last night, declaring the measure unconstitutional. “Why are the only people supporting a bill that would essentially imprison and arrest innocent people, the same people enforcing our laws?” he asked. “And I’m just questioning this because this whole thing seems as if the state and the law enforcement officials of the state are trying to criminalize people’s conduct with no science to back it up.”   Westword

These are the references that I found to site the references above:

Questions about Washington initiatives

November 13th, 2011 | By Pirate

Ive heard recently about people collecting signatures for a number of petitions in WA.  Specifically interested in the conversation that Gina Cargile brought up about the petitions that her brother saw getting signed, for NAW (I-502).
I am curious why so many activists follow whatever legislation has the word “marijuana” in it.  Do they read it?  Do they realize how much they are sacrificing for such little reward?
Why sacrifice?  Why give in to peer pressure?  Why not READ the initiative and apply some critical thinking.
Then of course I see the city council meetings in Spokane.  Im curious about that.  There are a few people I know, albeit not very well, going to these city council meetings and asking for a “legal review” of some local cannabis initiatives.  Now while these initiatives seems promising for local recognition Im curious how effective they will be and seeing how much time is spent on them, and will they ever get out to the signature process?  The council president made some good points about these laws not being applicable in regards to state and federal law, and we saw this same thing earlier this year that despite state law, 40+ dispensaries were shut down anyway.

So this leads us back to, what to do about state law?

Do we rally behind SB 5073?  As I told everyone all year from the beginning that SB 5073 would screw patients and it most certainly did that.  Screwing up the “one patient at any given time” provision, hindering the doctor patient relationship with new requirements and regulations, etc..

Or….  Instead of being so willing to sacrifice our rights, in exchange for new ones.  Why don’t we just address the problem head on, as we have attempted with SW in the past?

I-505 is good law.  I-1149 was good law.  I-1068 was good law.
Its not like there aren’t better options to SB 5073 and I-502.
There are plenty of better options.

So why split support between bad law like I-502 that makes highly restrictive and highly dangerous DUID limits, and good law like I-505 that simply ends penalties period?

Are we REALLY that desperate for change, that we will shoot our selves in the foot?   I don’t get it?
Sometimes lessons come in the form of pain.  As we have saw in 2011 pain has been a lot of the growing process in Washington.

Sensible Washington announced that are PAYING petitioners!

June 24th, 2011 | By Pirate

From the Sensible Washington Facebook Wall:

“We’re happy to announce the ability to pay signature gatherers going forward!
Anyone who sends or hands in signatures before July 5th will be able to receive $.10 per valid signature if they sign the back of the petition with their number or address, with a “pay me” written on the bottom. This isn’t huge, but will hopefully be extra motivation for some on top of knowing you’re helping to end a devastating policy!”

 

(btw- I don’t want the $$, I want the FREEDOM!)

Here is information on sending in your signed petitions, NOW is the time!

https://sensiblewashington.org/blog/uncategorized/time-to-send-in-your-signatures/

Also we found the signatures that we misplaced in our car. One hundred and twenty more (6 sheets) heading to SW.

Doug Hiatt with a solid message about I-1149

June 18th, 2011 | By Pirate

I watched a video Doug Hiatt speaking about the final weeks of signature collection for I-1149.

Doug’s message is simple, powerful and true.  We ALL have the power in a people’s initiative.  We all are leaders!  We are leading the way to cannabis freedom, each volunteer!

In the background you’ll see on the left of the video the box of gear we sent from Emerald Sun to the volunteers of Sensible Washington.   There are several contests for the most signatures.  You’ll want to go to  http://sensiblewashington.org/hq to sign up as a volunteer and get info on how you can score some of this historic gear, and most importantly how you can make history and declare your freedom through getting I-1149 on the ballot this year!

This is the contents of the box we sent.
We are also sending the signatures that we found that we hadn’t sent in. So if anyone still hasn’t sent their signatures in, like we haven’t yet. DO IT NOW! No time left to wait!

You can also write to Jared Allaway @   statecordinator@sensiblewashington.org

Conscious Culture Gathering 2011

June 9th, 2011 | By Pirate

If you are in Washington this is a great place to help get I-1149 on the ballot.
Thousands of signatures can be gathered.
John and Kim Novak, Don Skakie and several other volunteers will be there and they will have petitions to give out.
Coordinate with a Sensible Washington coordinator by signing up at:  http://sensiblewashington.org/hq

http://www.facebook.com/sensiblewashington

Address
Website
Hours
Fri: 10:00 am 12:00 am
Sat: 12:00 am 12:00 am

June 10 &11  2011

Lo and behold, they want to reschedule cannabis

May 12th, 2011 | By Pirate

After discussing a topic with facebook friends and activists I learned that there is a growing desire to reschedule cannabis in Washington state.   I posted my opposition to this yesterday, because after having this idea myself in 2009 and collecting signatures on a petition to do just that, I have learned a lot of things about this process that has made me change my mind.

Now the CDC, Cannacare and other medical marijuana groups in WA are proposing rescheduling.
I thought it was entirely peculiar that so many people were talking about this all at once.
Well, read it and weap, cannabis is about to be changed forever as we’ve known it:
http://cdc.coop/docs/2011_rescheduling_petition.pdf
http://xcannabis.net/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/2011_rescheduling_petition.pdf

Here are my thoughts and at the bottom I will give you some research to consider:

  1. Rescheduling cannabis rather than removing it from the list, will NOT prevent MOST cannabis consumers from going to jail.
  2. Rescheduling cannabis in Washington will not over ride federal supremacy clause via Article VI, etc.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supremacy_Clause
  3. This will open more doors to BIG pharma (not the little guys) for getting into the cannabis business, and leaving the rest of us out.
  4. Once big pharma is involved and once they put their money into cannabis, prohibition will not decrease, they will fight harder to keep it a schedule II, because it benefits them more.
  5. The US government already has dozens of patents on cannabis, and when it is rescheduled those patents will be more effective for them.  Meaning they will further OWN cannabis as opposed to now.   As a schedule I, those patents can’t really be utilized.  Under schedule II they can give their big pharma friends and contributors the rights to utilize those patents
  • I have known about the patent for neuroprotection and anti-oxidants for years now.
    US Patent 6630507
  • There are also many OTHER patents on cannabis:

If you are a supporter of these groups, please write them and explain to them how Big Pharma taking over cannabis is NOT what is good for the cannabis community!

Credit for the image at this website:
http://morallowground.com/2011/04/20/big-pharma-set-to-take-over-medical-marijuana-market/