Cannabis Policy

Rev. Abby Jo By Rev. Abby Jo, 5th Oct 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Culture

The Kettle Falls Five: a new federal test case seeking to redefine limits for those who grow their own legally.

Taxation without Representation?

The more outrageous the case the more vigorous the debate it stirs up. Unfortunate for these five pioneers who sacrificed their freedom and health for a year or two, so that we can all have fairer policies and open debate. We have in America today a resurgence of "hippies" in the form of gay rights and pot victories. Now, I have never been a card carrying member of either the gay group or the hippy group. I don't have anything against either group. Some do. For each step forward sometimes there is half a step back.

From a law enforcement perspective what's wrong is they advertised sales to patients but they were only licensed to grow for themselves. There is nothing illegal about asking for REIMBURSEMENT of petrol and utility money for a few ounces of extra medicine, in Oregon patients do it all the time. It's a matter of HOW VISIBLE and HOW MUCH. They were BELOW the state limit. But they had SIGNS guiding strangers to their farm. They did not have a retail grow license, required in both Washington State and in Oregon. The license is less than $2000, for someone with 15 BIG plants that might not be hard to come up with. I can't grow 15 big plants because it's all organic and I am not that good at it. I barely grow enough for myself and when I run out of medicine, I go to other patients who are also growers who are better at it than I am. This is a common practice in the Northwest here. So why did the feds bust this little group of five who had below limit legal plants? My guess is because and only because there is a question about whether it is TAXABLE. The medical marijuana programs will be phased out eventually not because of any ethics but in spite of the better ethical practice of keeping them only because patients do not pay TAX on medicine. We pay a tax to the state for the privilege of having the state keep a copy of our current medical records. I give up some privacy for this privilege as well. It protects me from people who wonder what I am doing with even a few plants even in a state that allows six large plants per person as Oregon does. It's nobody's business but if cops come, then I have the permit. For $200 a year and one doctor visit a year, it works for me. Washington State does not have the same practices. Eventually the liquor commissions will take over all marijuana taxation and every grower will just pay a fine or pay for a permit. The permits for commercial grow ops are still new. Eventually they will be common and as easy to get as a beer brewing license. In Oregon, the State PRIORITIZES and goes after large growers first, instead of harassing cancer patients and risking a big wrongful death lawsuit with punitive damages and bad PR. That does not mean the fed won't target anyone growing and not paying tax, but it's not likely to target anyone unless they are real good at it. This is a kind of punishment for success--here five people cooperated and grew 70 large plants with enough harvest left over to share and put a green cross up for anyone who might drive by. The DEA does not like it and discourages this as a practice, by not tolerating it at all, they discourage any small scale independent organic farming regardless of what the crop is. This "policy" has more to do with GMO producing corporate monopolies influencing law enforcement priorities than it has to do with any particular crop. Current policies target all organic farmers equally, without exception for licensed sick people growing their own medicine. The fact is, while they work out their "policy" they create local martyrs. The families will tell the tale whilst neighbors write folk songs and it will create backlash. Hopefully a tidal wave and soon.


Cannabis, Ethics, Medical, Taxes

Meet the author

author avatar Rev. Abby Jo
I am an ordained minister in my 50s. My ministry is online. I practice meaningful written dialogue, truth in all things. Ascending beyond past. I will be here regardless of pay.

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author avatar Fern Mc Costigan
7th Oct 2015 (#)

Interesting post Rev.

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