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Sauschuck forsakes redemption

9:40 pm in Uncategorized by acmerecords

cross posted at mLaw

This week Americans in several cities and small towns decided to stop waiting for their putative “representatives” (whether in DC or their local statehouses) to, you know, “represent” their interests by legalizing cannabis for consumption by adults. We are all aware – and for some time now – that a majority of Americans seek the end of the violence inducing, life destroying, bigoted, wrong-headed and not in the least effective prohibition of cannabis in the US.

We also have seen push back by self-appointed cultural custodians and propagandized law enforcement who fear losing a raison d’etre for their discompassion, their smug self-righteousness, their bigotry, their orgies of taxpayer-dollar funded militarized storm-trooping police equipment procurement, their drug bust quotas, their tacit support of the dangerous and debilitating drugs tobacco and alcohol and their blithe shit-canning of arrested and convicted cannabis users as not-possibly-able-to-contribute-to-society. It is important to remember that such people are liars, who have supported societally harmful lies for nearly a century.

The comments by police chief of Portland Maine, Michael Sauschuck (an appointed by the mayor public service position in that city, which voted overwhelmingly to allow adults to consume cannabis for recreational purposes earlier this week) exemplify the predictable but tragic ‘sore loser’ mindset of these prohibitionists who are facing their own extinction. Sauschuck stipulated that his police force will not take into consideration the will of the electorate, you know, as in American Democracy, but will rather continue to arrest Portlanders who, following the local laws, choose to use cannabis recreationally.

Sauschuck personally wants to make sure that Portland residents who carefully follow the recently enacted law and possess 2.5 ounces of legal in Portland cannabis for personal consumption but who are arrested by his coppers will be fined between $350 and $1000 and given an arrest record. And, Sauschuk wants everyone to know that he ensures that, should his patrolmen decide to consider that the Portland residents who are arrested because they are in possession of legal in Portland cannabis may have thought of selling the substance, well then that criminal will be charged criminally and face possible jail time and a lifetime of being an ex-con. That is brave Sauschuck’s threat, and he wants you to know it. He assures that the only reason for his harsh application of laws that the electorate of the city he was hired by just days ago rejected out of hand, is because of his respect for the law, the state law that outlaws the use of cannabis. That is the only reason that Sauschuck will forever damage the unlucky college kid’s life. It is, after all, his duty.

There is an alternative, as in Michigan, where cannabis use by adults was legalized in 3 cities (Lansing, Ferndale and Jackson) and where local police have advised the people who they protect that they will honor the “will of the people” and cease arresting cannabis users (and instead use their resources to protect the citizens of their towns from actual crime).

Sauschuck, who was appointed as Portland Police Chief in 2012, was lauded by city councilman Vern Malloch, who said that the city council “couldn’t have made a better choice” upon Sauschuck’s appointment because he’s “fair, he’s compassionate, and he has the utmost respect of everyone inside the Police Department” and because he said he would not speak ill of his fellow police officers. All of which, I suppose, would make Sauschuck a fine work peer. But his job as the police chief is actually to be “fair,” “compassionate” and “have the utmost respect for” the citizens of Portland-not members of its police force.

Another of the confused as to who he is supposed to serve&protect copper Sauschuck’s credentials that propelled him to his position from which he commands that he will simply disregard the will of the people of the fair city of Portland, was his receipt of the Enrique Camarena Memorial Award from the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency. This award, according to the MDEA, is granted to a “unit or individual that through outstanding effort continued the battle for which Special Agent Camarena gave his life” – that being “trying to protect his fellow citizens from the too often violent and seedy world of narcotics”.

Now, I don’t want to throw a wet blanket on award winners and the ‘awards’ that they are given- but I have to stipulate that cannabis users are not violent, that is a simple fact. They don’t steal things to support their usage (as opposed to addiction) – and, by the way, cannabis is not addictive (well, less so than caffeine). Prohibition is the cause of violence, not cannabis. And, I just have to point out that the award giver’s description of the “violent and seedy world of narcotics” to describe cannabis users in the United States is fanciful at best if not sleazily bigoted on its face. I suspect that our dry doper presidents would likely have their Secret Service goons tackle and arrest a MDEA member if they had walked up to Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama and called them violent and seedy…although if I had the chance I would probably choose “violent” as one of my personal descriptors for these narcissistic war criminal baby killing machines.

I rather think that, as with many well paid and high status promoters of cannabis prohibition in both politics and law enforcement, Sauschuck and other low level drug warriors really don’t give a shit that their entire structure of bullshit science, lies of omission, misrepresentation and conflation and hair-on-fire scare tactics have led to 80 years of prison sentences, ended careers, lost opportunities, broken families and unimaginable pain from disease suffered by Americans from Maine to Hawaii. They are concerned for only their careers and their personal wealth and status in the world of law enforcement tough-guy high school hippy hazers. Oh so dangerous…

But, it is really unfair (and fairly simple) to castigate this low-level city cop drug warrior for failing to recognize his personal role in the world-wide conspiracy of rich private prison contractors, drug manufacturers and tobacco and alcohol sellers, scheming political hacks (see the list from above of our dry doper presidents) and the whole peanut gallery of cultural custodians and finger wagging teachers and clerics – when we all know (including the small minded and wrong-headed Sauschuck himself) that local enforcers of the drug war are simply low level pawns. And, as it is, these local tin-pot dictators’ days are numbered.

The Barney Fifes and the real owners of the ‘drug war’ and its profits reaped both in trillions of black-market cash and electoral successes over the careers of drug warring pols still have the capacity to do great harm while cannabis is legalized in the US, and this is only more harm on top of the years of harm. When cannabis legalization comes to the USA it must include broad amnesty for the arrested and convicted, or we will not have truly “freed the green”.

Will it be modern madness or reefer madness?

6:04 pm in Uncategorized by acmerecords

cross posted at mLaw

Half Ounce of Pot Gets Louisiana Man Twenty Years in Prison

Man sentenced to 3 years for cannabis plea

California dispensary owner sentenced to 22 years in federal prison

Marijuana dispensary operator Aaron Sandusky sentenced to 10 years

Hennepin County sheriff: Lax marijuana enforcement is bad

Homeless man with sign: Give Me Weed, a cop approaches

Is cannabis dangerous to American empire?

For the record, for what it’s worth, and while every (generally assumed to be well intentioned, but still demonstrably) ill-informed, under-informed or outright propagandized ‘stake holder’ is chiming in about how to legalize cannabis, or not legalize as the case may be, we here at mLaw think it is part of our civic duty to express our very real concern, founded as it is upon significant anecdotal experience and ceaseless empirical study, regarding what is, to our minds, perhaps the most frightening and destructive (frightening and destructive to average American families, institutions of higher learning and the halls of power in the US) aspect of a typical American cannabis user’s outlook and mindset that, should cannabis be legalized in the US, could weave its way into the fabric of the American psyche.

As the debate churns on in the US about how to move beyond the prohibition of cannabis it is mostly being carried out by;

• ashamed dry-dopers who are as concerned today about burnishing their “legacies” as they were years ago about ensuring that all of the “choom” is consumed by employing the technique of “total absorbsion”,

• interested private parties who have made scads of booty while cannabis has been illegal (from private prison builders to pharmaceutical manufacturers and liquor distillers),

• propagandized daddies and mommies who fear for their toddlers who someday may choose to put a buzz on and consequently find themselves at ‘rock bottom’ (after taking a frightening and uncontrolled death ride on the devil’s own highway) being elected president of the United States (see the horrific life stories of Ronald Reagan, Bill/and Hillary Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, for example), and,

• members of our respected federal, state and local law enforcement establishment (who worked together to arrest more than 800,000 Americans for drug possession in 2011 and 749,825 last year, with 87 percent being cannabis possessors, and during the same time period arrested just over 500,000 Americans for violent crimes – 4.2 percent of all arrests, compared to drug arrests which comprise 12.7 of all arrests in 2012) who just love throwing scary and dangerous college kids into jail, ruining their lives forever with a criminal record, because they look so good in their body armor and mirrored aviator sunglasses.

While any sentient being can see that the debate is hopelessly tilted toward ill-conceived and dangerous support for maintaining federal prohibition by these highly vested parties, we have to remember the deep and ever metastasizing psychological and philosophical toll exacted on our country’s body politic when our citizens choose to use cannabis. Because of this, the editors of mLaw want to go on record to state our belief that:

The use of cannabis by otherwise law abiding, thoughtful, intelligent, productive US citizens is in fact a threat to our current society in general and modern America in particular…

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“Things are going to be hell for you”

12:14 pm in Uncategorized by acmerecords

cross posted at mLaw

Cannabis Leaves

The drug war turns a plant-based medicine into a hellish struggle.

We live in a country where the sick are denied comfort, relief and even cures because of cannabis prohibition. And, if you are a Parkinson’s patient, shuffling slowly across your disability payment bed-sit to re-catheterize yourself, because a former cannabis user is vain, weak and calculating,

“Things are going to be hell for you.”

We live in a country that arrested over 800,000 citizens last year for cannabis related offenses, primarily small scale possession. Those unlucky enough to be convicted, and of course this means primarily Black and Latino Americans, will be stigmatized for their entire working lives, having their ability to contribute to our society be compromised forever. If you are a young American who uses the same natural substance recreationally that was used by honored and lionized Americans including George Washington and Thomas Jefferson,

“Things are going to be hell for you.”

We live in a world where thousands of our neighbors are being slaughtered every year in horrific fashion because prohibition creates a black market that is estimated to be worth trillions of dollars and that is controlled by brutish criminals. If you are an honest law enforcement official in Mexico or an innocent 8 year old niece of a drug smuggler,

“Things are going to be hell for you.”

What is it that leads otherwise rational and progressive Americans to not see in abject clarity that the Obama administration is pathologically committed to ensuring that cannabis be illegal for consumption by American adults during his presidency and that afflicted and dying American’s will not be able to receive the medically proven benefits of medicinal cannabis following the recent pharmacy raids in Washington state?

Obama’s body-armoured representative thumb nailed the administration’s approach to continuing the suffering and pain of our afflicted, continuing the racist jailing and lifelong stigmatization of our youth, continuing to cynically deploy dishonest and misrepresentational propagandic talking points, continuing to dishonestly hide from what he knows from his significant use of the natural substance cannabis- that it is both harmless and helpful, continuing to trumpet and support discredited pseudo-scientific studies and medical quackery, continuing to blaze a path in the opposite direction of compassion, morality, humanity, science and the rest of the industrial world when he said,

“Things are going to be hell for you.”

If standing by our political team in some freakish “Friday Night Lights” sports game of a partisanship slap-fest is more important than our sick and dying sisters and our unfairly arrested and prosecuted brothers who suffer on the sidelines – then we have all uttered the horrible and discompassionate threat,

“Things are going to be hell for you.”

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holder’s hackery holds little hope for an honest hearing on hemp

4:58 pm in Uncategorized by acmerecords

cross posted at mLaw

The recent Senate hearings about President Obama’s declared authority to execute Americans with no trial, charges, lawyer, ability to question witnesses, ability to be informed of evidence (otherwise known as ‘due process’) where Attorney General Eric Holder was questioned were revealing as the Justice Department winds down its ‘review’ of the ballot initiatives in CO and WA that legalized cannabis for recreational use by adults.

The style of legal pettifoggery deployed by Holder throughout the entire drone-American-style debate that ended in spectacular fashion when libertarian senator Rand Paul and a group of brave but clearly marginalized senators filibustered against the a-constitutional notion that a president can assassinate Americans in the US (or anywhere) with no judge,  jury or charges is what anyone paying attention over the past four years would expect. 

When Holder’s reasoning was not specious it was circular. Most frighteningly Holder’s entire defense of the program took as a predicate that America is in lock-down mode because it is in a permanent war state where citizen’s rights are, you know, necessarily suspended for the duration.  Though slimy and lowbrow, the message was clear - Eric Holder advises the President with supreme, one may even say god-like confidence that the US President has a legal right to blow the pancakes out of you and me at any moment, for safety reasons.  We have previously seen Holder arguing in this style.  An example that can’t go unmentioned was his comments last March in Chicago where he asserted that due process was not judicial process; see v2 at the demise for a take on that statement that is informed by recent history. 

This wacky word-play as constitutional analysis has been seen throughout what little the Obama administration has revealed of it’s legal justifications for abrogating provisions of the US Constitution.  The DOJ’s neo-Orwellian re-defining of the word imminance in it’s leaked drone white paper is an example. When both Holder and his former chief of criminal prosecutions Lanny Breuer argued many times that banking criminals deserve to be treated differently than you and me under the law and when the DOJ judged Aaron Schwartz’s actions as terrorism, Holder is helping his boss justify any action, inaction or Constitutional infraction so the president can do as he pleases. 

And I have to point out, for chain-of-command challenged Democrats, progressives and other critics of George W. Bush who are weirdly mum on our current commander in chief: Holder is an employee of Barack Obama, not some sort of free wheeling individualist forming policy in Washington DC.

As Americans look toward the Obama administration’s forthcoming legal analysis of the people supported, ‘small D democratic’, ‘We the People’ rejection of law enforcement’s and private capital’s bigoted and destructive ‘drug war’ in the popular rejection of the prohibition of cannabis, we should remember that in the current Obama government, as  in previous administrations over the past 50 years both Democratic and Republican, what comes first in America is the political and the commercial, not the will of the people.

While this Democratic administration’s efforts to normalize the anti-democratic and anti-free society pronouncements and actions of the previous Republican power holders are most troublesome and far reaching when they normalize extrajudicial extermination, torture and total surveillance, we have seen its pandering to private business owners almost as much as its pandering to the unaccountable national security state.  Whether it is easing environmental standards for oil exploration and environmental degradation or deeming banking felons to be above the law and granting these private parties trillions of tax payer dollars to prop up their ‘businesses’, commerce always comes before the will of the people in Obama’s world.  And the legalization of cannabis for either medical or recreational use is fundamentally violative of that which Barack Obama has decided in his life to protect at all costs.  It is not the moral (medical marijuana), or the logical (the harms associated with cannabis juxtaposed against those of legal tobacco and alcohol), nor the fair (with hundreds of thousands of otherwise productive Americans languishing in jail) – but rather it is where ‘commerce’ and ’public safety’ intersect as politics, what used to be known as fascism.

So now we are being softened up by former DOJ drug warriors who are bought off by industrialists and are being chicken-littled by international ‘enforcement’ entities about the defilement of ‘treaties’ that were written within the thinly veiled racist and population subordinating constructs of cannabis prohibitionism, being primed for the preordained proclamation of Obama’s DOJ: that the will of the people must be bridled for the sake of ‘international obligations’.  The pettifogger Holder, on this one, will seek refuge for his justifying Obama’s predetermination by squealing his solemn ’adherance to international law’.

Consider if you will: Palestine, Kyoto, torture and rendition, black-site prisons, imperial wars, the threat of death from the skies…sacroscant treaties indeed.  It is you and me, friends, who are being ‘convinced’ by this high school level rhetoric and disingenuous gum-flappery, and it is us who will pay the price for our inaction in the face of this neo-fascist policy framing.  As Sinclair Lewis noted, self-deluded Americans are fond of incanting, “It can’t happen here”.

It ain’t hard to figure what Obama is going to do regarding acknowledging the will of the people, honest and thoughtful American adults, with respect to legalizing the use of cannabis.  All one has to do is simply consider the compassionate, the rational, the just, the intelligent, the safe, the science supported, the popularly supported, the equality uplifting, the violence stemming, the patient saving, the public coffer enriching,  the just plain right and correct alternative…and Obama will do the mirror opposite.

Its not about the suffering of the afflicted, its not about the wasted future of those unfairly prosecuted, its not about the will of the people, its not about free market capitalism, its not about saving public works and the social safety net, its about one thing – the reason America exists in the mind of our current corporate sycophant and careerist narcissist: its all about the burnished legacy of an amoral former user.

Hail to the chief.