Marijuana has many benefits. Pain relief, sleeplessness, nausea, fighting cancer… The list goes on and on. While all these benefits are great, in the end, they aren’t what will really sell legalization in the minds of fat cat politicians.
Government leaders have been amassing power and making money off the suffering of commoners since the beginning of civilization. No, marijuana’s greatest benefit is money.
The money the American government has made by keeping pot illegal is nothing compared to the financial windfall it will see when it is finally legalized. Here’s why.
Prohibition is a political tool. It is used to divide the masses against each other. By condemning a behavior or belief that gives the people happiness, they draw power from the fearful in the form of allegiance, taxes and manpower.
They prey on the disenchanted, who would otherwise question the divisions of power, and question authority. If a people are happy and you try to change things, they will fight. If, however, they are miserable, they will always welcome a guiding hand, even if it makes the situation no better. If Machiavelli’s Prince had been a modern politician, he would have taken credit for the exploits of Harry J. Anslinger, Nixon, McCarthy, and their ilk.
Financially, this model benefits those in power by giving a “need” for them to be in power: to protect us from “evil”. They can justify big budgets, increased police personnel, and large salaries. Getting paid to watch people sit in cells, snooping in American lives, and reveling in the power of office all sound a lot better than getting real jobs.
Levying taxes to do all this goes without question, and as long as they tell us they are kicking butt and taking names, we don’t worry about the missing neighbors and low paying jobs. They have to keep us poor, so we don’t have time to educate ourselves about what is going on. (How often can you afford to take off work to go vote?) Propaganda is their money elixir, but it’s effects are slowly wearing off, and we as a people are finally waking up to the fact that we have been played.
The cycle of Prohibition is a downward one. Eventually, there are less taxpayers and more people employed by taxpayer dollars. The prison population holds more and more people who could be contributing but are instead being babysat by the moral authority. Unemployment is up, because of traits deemed unworthy, and that creates even more drain on taxes. Finally, we have a crash or a revolution.
With a legal Marijuana industry, the scenario is reversed. We don’t need the police manpower, or budgets. Crime, real crime, becomes the focus once again, and our efficiency rises. Taxes drop, which means people have more money to spend, stimulating the economy. The economy booms, meaning more tax money, and it (hopefully) gets to go where it is really needed. Career politicians get exposed and ousted, making way for real people to represent the people. Real representatives don’t rely on Congresses overpaid government salaries, and suddenly it becomes cheaper to run the government.
The industry itself works like this… Grow, sell, transport, advertise, make edibles, deliver, make vapor pens, make pipes, make packaging, make ad posters, manage websites, transact sales, make paper, rope, plastics, bio-fuel, lotions, creams, patches, bio-engines, ALL OF THESE ARE JOBS THAT EMPLOY PEOPLE AND PAY TAXES.
Let’s not forget the influence an entirely new industry can have on an economy. Computers, cell phones, the internet… These industries creates hundreds of thousands of jobs and at the same time, provided innovations that advanced not just our society, but our species. Better healthcare, communication, everything.
Now imagine we can do that again. Indoor grows use electricity. They want it cheap. Who do you think will be the big investors in renewable energy, in the environment, in art, culture, peace? Is it the established industries of Big Oil, Big Electric, Big Incarceration, Big Government?
No! These lobby groups want the millions of disposable urine testing cups, the economy control of oil dependence, the huge companies that control the electricity. Allowing the development of an industry that will definitively bring about the decentralization of power is their death knell. But it is our cure. Our cure to unemployment, broken homes, pollution, poor health, poverty, debt, and dependence.
Living simply, watching their carbon footprint, recycling, sharing, protesting war and injustice, eating healthy, meditating, promoting peace, making art, supporting music, using clean energy…. These are some of the stereotypes that have been marked as hippies. These, and smoking pot… So tell me, how are these not ideals to strive for? How would these things NOT help the economy?