Washington's Bumper Crop of Pot


A.P. reports that last year the value of marijuana seized by state and federal authorities in Washington state, estimated at a record $270 million, exceeded the value of the state's eighth biggest legal crop, sweet cherries. Depending on how good the government is at seizing marijuana, the total value of cannabis grown in Washington may even exceed that of apples, officially the state's biggest agricultural commodity and worth $963 million in 2004. (That would be the case if, for example, the government manages to find one in four plants.) These numbers, of course, are testimony neither to the relative demand for marijuana as compared to cherries and apples nor to the efficiency of the state's drug warriors but to the perverse effects of prohibition, which makes a dried weed worth half its weight in gold (or more).

[Thanks to sage for the link.]