Girly-Man Cowers Before the DEA

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schwarzenegger toking.jpg

The Drug War Chronicle reports that California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger last week vetoed a bill that would have allowed the state's farmers to grow hemp for fiber, food, and cosmetics. The bill defined hemp as a nonpsychoactive variety of cannabis containing less than 0.3 percent THC. Such plants are grown legally all over the world, and the U.S. imports many products made from them. The U.S. ban on cultivation is a purely symbolic policy that expresses the revulsion of hard-line drug warriors toward anything that resembles marijuana. In addition to hippie-ish enthusiasts attracted by hemp's countercultural cachet, plenty of straight-laced farmers and entrepreneurs support legalization of the crop. For a Republican governor desperately running to the left in a Democratic state, signing the bill would have been a way to demonstrate his independence from the GOP's right wing while staying safely in California's mainstream. Instead Schwarzenegger yielded to the demands of drug warriors who insist, contrary to the experience of every country where hemp cultivation is legal, that lifting the ban would "cause significant problems with drug enforcement activities," which he says "is troubling given the needs in this state for the eradication and prevention of drug production."

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  1. Art Olivier, former mayor of the LA suburb of Bellflower, 2000 LP candidate for US VP, and current candidate for CA Governor, would have signed that bill. He has also threatened to remove funding from any state or local law enforcement agency that cooperates with the DEA so as to stymie Prop. 215. I heard him declare that last in person, when he was the “Friday Guest Speaker” at Empire Academy, a private school for grades 6-12, here in Santa Cruz.

    Word is that both Angelides and girly-man Arnold have refused to debate Mr. Olivier. One must appreciate the irony. Schwarzenegger needed the circus atmosphere of the multi-candidate, wide-open recall election to get elected. Multiple debates were held, each hosting many candidates. As a result, the voting public was better informed, and they proved that they would not only welcome, but pay attention to several, multi-candidate debates, even in the space of the truncated special-election campaign season.

    In 2006, however, after a campaign season that has stretched over the better part of this year, Schwarzenegger and his democrat opponent have only been able to agree to one joint campaign appearance (let’s not call it a “debate”) and have locked out other candidates. (Only six candidates in total qualified for the ballot in the CA governor’s race this year.) After that one brief flare of democratic spirit, we’re back to banana republic contests, controlled by the competing yet colluding major parties.

    Olivier will be debating Green party candidate Peter Camejo on several occasions, including a general third-party candidate debate at the Commonwealth Club at the end of the month. You can see his campaign schedule at http://www.electart.com.

    Don’t vote for any candidate who refuses to debate any of his or her ballot-qualified opponents. Such people are not the servants of the people, but their would-be drovers. Enough of that crap.

  2. Sen. Tom McClintock, Republican nominee for Lt.Governor, voted for the Hemp Bill in the state senate.

    If he is elected, maybe the legislature can pass the bill again, and McClintock can sign it while Schwarzenegger is out of state.

  3. Why hasn’t the Canada experience been trumpeted?

  4. Don’t blame me, I voted for Larry Flynt.

  5. Well, think about it. Most of the photops from “the war on drugs” is cops running up the overtime pulling up ditchweed. Now theyll do photops of them pulling up ditchweed, after shooting the narcoterrorists, only to discover the murdered a farm family & destroyed thier hemp crop. BIG payoff to the survivors, right? So, Arnold is SAVING US MONEY by doing this, you see.
    Can you imagine the havoc in police agencies if hemp was grown legally? Theyd have to, well, investigate.

  6. After watching the Governator turn Green and give a speech about the need to spend a kazillion dollars to fight the threat of global warming, it doesn’t surprise me that he turned yellow and gave in to the drug war hysteria. These CAMP cops don’t want the hemp fiber variety of cannabis legalized for the same reason they don’t want the drug variety legalized; then the’d all have to give up their cool SWAT Team jobs of kicking down doors and pointing guns at American citizens and start acting like real cops. You know, writing traffic tickets, arresting drunks, helping people in distress. What fun would that be?

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