Drug War

Indiana State Police Chief on Pot: "If it were up to me, I do believe I would legalize it and tax it"

In response to the legalization of recreational marijuana in Colorado and Washington, as well as word that two Indiana legislators will soon introduce legislation to decriminalize marijuana, Indiana State Police Superintendent Paul Whitesell told the State Budget Committee today that he'd like to see marijuana legalized.

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In response to the legalization of recreational marijuana in Colorado and Washington, as well as word that two Indiana legislators will soon introduce legislation to decriminalize marijuana, Indiana State Police Superintendent Paul Whitesell told the State Budget Committee today that he'd like to see marijuana legalized, reports radio station WFPL

"It's here, it's going to stay, there's an awful lot of victimization that goes with it. If it were up to me, I do believe I would legalize it and tax it, particularly in sight of the fact that several other states have now come to that part of their legal system as well," he said.

"Wherein if you are going to imbibe, you would go through there to be recognized
or pay your taxes and keep some sense of it, give us some stats so you could monitor it in some fashion. And if you go around it in some other place, that's where my folks would come in and take issue."

That active law enforcement leaders feel safe calling for legalization represents an incredible tipping point. 

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97 responses to “Indiana State Police Chief on Pot: "If it were up to me, I do believe I would legalize it and tax it"

  1. That active law enforcement leaders feel safe calling for legalization represents an incredible tipping point.

    Now they just need to get to the point where they feel safe letting adults conduct consensual transactions without the need for “some sense of it…some stats so you could monitor it in some fashion…”

  2. That active law enforcement leaders feel safe calling for legalization represents an incredible tipping point.

    I would agree.

    For too many years, former officials were always all too happy to pen Road-to-Damascus editorials about the War on Drugs. When we see current, sitting officials doing it, it gives even my pessimistic ass hope.

    1. exactly. the cynics can fail to recognize the massive sea change that has taken place. but it’s there. right before our eyes. war on MJ is DONE. WA and CO will be successful and more states will follow.

      there is no big pharma pressure like there was with medical MJ, and there is immense popular support, only going stronger.

      WA and CO are leading the way towards freedom, and it IS heartening to see sitting officials speak positively about MJ being legal.

      1. “Them’s some perty federal highway fund you’ve got there. Be a shame if something happened to them.”

        1. ah yes, the cynics speak.

          are you predicting this will happen? iow, are you willing to do more than hint, and put your “money” down so to speak?

          and if the feds withold highway funds do you think that will result in a successful repeal of these initiatives?

          the feds were strongly against medical mj and i didn’;t see highway funds being used this way. what makes recreational marijuana different.

          1. What are the terms and conditions? I’m not saying there won’t be legal MJ in my lifetime but I don’t share your optimism.

            1. we will see legal MJ in a couple of WEEKS (Dec. 6 in WA).

              that aside, the terms and conditions are simple. don’t play silly words games hinting at nefarious federal actions, STATE outright what you will think will happen.

              i am stating the feds will NOT withhold highway funds to WA state.

              furthermore, if i am wrong, i will state that they will be unsuccessful in doing so, iow IF they did so, it won’t result in the repeal of legalized MJ

              simple.

              it’s easy for the cynics to hunt and peck, but how about making definitive statements instead of this mealy mouthed half statements that they can weasel out of when history proves they were wrong?

              that’s all

              1. No, I don’t think they’re going to do it through the highway funds either. I think the response is going to be along the lines of going after perscription pain doctors and medical MJ now. IOW you’ll see prosecutions of recreational MJ providers on Federal charges most likely intent to distribute over state line.

          2. I tried to take that bet, but you kept moving the goalposts.

            1. jesus christ, spare me

              there are no goalposts. just fuckingn take a position vs. offfering cryptic hints.

              iow,

              will happen.

              my prediction is clear

              1) more and more states will pass legalized mj

              2) neither WA nor CO will repeal

              3) the feds will do little against it, such that within two years, there will be next to no federal actions whatsoever

              4) the feds will not withold highway funds to WA state

              1. I figure one or more of three things will happen.

                1) feds will withhold funding of some sort
                2) feds will sue under the Supremacy Clause
                3) feds will just plain ignore the state law and continue to enforce federal law against growers and sellers with lots of stuff to steal

                1. You left out

                  4) Feds will get shot at a lot more in states that legalize

                  and

                  5) Eventually, it will be State Police doing that shooting.

              2. You are right on 1 and 2.

                You are dead wrong on 3.

                4 is iffy, but not unlikely.

                1. This was in reply to Dunphy

                  1. Sarc is also right on all 3 counts, but the feds lose in the end. There you have it, quote me on this one.

                    1. OK, I’ll try again. Damn squirrels.

                      If the feds let the states overturn federal policy regarding recreational marijuana, this opens the door to the states nullifying other federal policy.

                      That’s some serious shit.

                      It won’t happen without a fight, if at all.

                    2. Will be a fight, and feds will lose in the end. Other states are already plannning on following the example of WA and CO. There is not enough federal money to stop this. Let them try, really, let them spend, spend, spend and get totally overwhelmed and bogged down in a huge quagmire, and totally piss off a lot of people in the process, can’t wait, I am loving it.

                    3. I hope I’m wrong, but there’s the whole principle of federal supremacy at stake here.

                      They’re not going to just lay down and let states nullify federal law.

                    4. They’re not going to just lay down and let states nullify federal law

                      I know, and I don’t want them to, I want a knock down drag out shit storm.

              3. 3) the feds will do little against it, such that within two years, there will be next to no federal actions whatsoever

                I don’t share that optimism. IF there is a chance for corruption, it will be taken.

                I seriously doubt the Feds will withhold any funds. However, I wouldn’t doubt we’ll see lots of EXTRA money doled out to the states that play ball with the Fed. And you can bet that corrupt cesspools like Illinois will go along to get the money. It’s going to take about 20 states doing this on their own to turn the rest of them, and throwing bonus bucks at states is a way to prevent a whole bunch of states from becoming part of the 20.

          3. Exactly. If they were gonna go the hostage-highway-funds route, they would’ve done so 16 years ago.

        2. You mean like they did with the minimum drinking age:

          The National Minimum Drinking Age Act of 1984 (23 U.S.C. ? 158) was passed on July 17, 1984 by the United States Congress as a mechanism whereby all states would become thereafter required to legislate the age of 21 years as a minimum age for purchasing and publicly possessing alcoholic beverages. Under the Federal Aid Highway Act, a state with a minimum age below 21 would be subjected to a ten percent decrease in its annual federal highway apportionment.

          1. dunphy is an ADD retard. You shouldn’t enable him.

            1. wow. a personal attack. that’s about as high-speed the type of content i expect from you

              1. wow. a personal attack. that’s about as high-speed the type of content i expect from you

                Learn to write and then we will talk. Until then, your constant pressing of the ‘enter’ button and your inability to respond coherently means I can safely write you off.

                1. In reply to Randian:

                  Your ad hominem attacks on Dunphy are utterly unwarranted, and make you look stupid.

                  I disagree with him often, but he posts in good faith and adds to the conversation.

            2. You shouldn’t enable him.

              Probably not, but in this case I hope he is correct. I simply think he underestimates the vindictiveness of the Fed Gov. The *only* saving grace I can see in this is it was passed as a constitutional amendment here in CO, and not legislatively. So not much the CO reps can do about it.

              1. Like constitutions have ever prevented anything they’re supposed to.

                1. Like constitutions have ever prevented anything they’re supposed to.

                  Nope, constitutions have no enforcement mechanism within them. What I meant is that the law was not passed in legislative session so it cannot be repealed by legislators. This means that IF the Fed Gov pressures CO to overturn this, they will have to find some other way.

                2. yea , your right. it’s not like case law routinely shows suppression of physical evidence due to 4th and 5th amendment violations, or that we have the freest speeech in the world (1st amendment), or that we have a system strongly steeped in rule of law (which situational ethicists here deplore only when it works against their result, but applaud it when it works for their result).

                  the constitution, all its flaws of implementation is doing pretty damn well on the local level. federal level, not as much, i would agree

              2. i have a fair amount of experience dealing with federal law enforcement and the federal govt. i’ve spent about 160 hrs training with DEA agents, and many more “hanging out”

                i am hardly ignorant of their vindiciveness. i am also aware they are pragmatic when forced to be, and h ere they are forced to be

                this is a fight the feds WOULD lose and they know it

                1. i am hardly ignorant of their vindiciveness. i am also aware they are pragmatic when forced to be, and here they are forced to be

                  this is a fight the feds WOULD lose and they know it

                  I hope you are right.

                2. I’m still trying to figure out why the feds (with local connivance) have shut down hundreds of medpot retailers and suppliers, but no such thing will happen with funpot retailers and suppliers.

                  Maybe you’ve explained this, and I missed it, but I see little reason to believe “this time will be different”. I hope so, but I’m not betting on it.

          2. so what? this isn’t the minimum drinking age. everybody knows they did this for the minimum drinking age. they did NOT do it for medical mj, and there is no rational reason to think they’d do it for recreational mj

          3. And the various seatbelt laws. And the .08 DUI standard.

            1. and those are DIFFERENT

              the fact that you fail to recognize the differece is telling

              there is immense empirical data and NHTSA and other studies to support seatbelt laws and DUI standards.

              our traffic fatality rate is 1/5 what it was at its peak, and we have made immense strides in traffic safety

              recreational mj is WHOLLY *dis*analogous

              1. Dunphy, if our drug laws were driven by rationality, I would agree with you completely.

                But, they’re not. Maybe the feds will lay off the highway funding for funpot (you’re right, they didn’t use it for medpot; I wonder if it was ever floated?), but if so, it won’t be because Our Masters suddenly grew a cerebral cortex.

        3. “Oh, take our highway funding? Fine, we’ll stop collecting federal gasoline excise taxes. Or just keep it for ourselves.”

          1. That would require state legislators with balls. Most of them will not want to give up the Feeb money.

            1. so, sage are you PREDICTING the feds will do this with highway funding? or is this more mealy mouth half-assed non predictions, so you can backpedal when it turns out not to be the case

              1. I think they’ll try it, Dunphy. My comment above is what I would like the response to be. They wanted to do it with cell phones in the car, ffs.

            2. Most of them will not want to give up the Feeb money

              Not sure if anti-Semitic or not…

          2. This. I never understood why states didn’t just do this all along – like when the Feds were going to withhold $ from any state that didn’t keep the double nickel.

            “Fuck you. You’re just sending back money we sent you in the first place. So we just won’t send it to you.”

            “Oh. While I’m thinking about it, no, fuck you, cut spending.”

        4. Them’s some perty federal highway fund you’ve got there

          That’s spelled ‘purty’. I just came back from Windianer visiting the kin folks for Thanksgivin, so I should know.

  3. tipping point – good term.

    like i said, the day they were passed, the war on mJ is *over*. it has TIPPED. legalized MJ will gain momentum, state after state. the feds, at worst, will do a little posturing. it’s over. turn it over. done. war on MJ

    CO and WA initiatives will be successful. they will not be thwarted by the feds. and more initiatives, and even laws passed by state legislatures will follow.

  4. Holy crap, I live right next to Indiana. I might get legal pot 30 minutes away. I might move. My chickens are finally coming home to roost, and it’s about damn time because they owe me money.

    1. Fucking chickens! You owe me for build Shitty Wah, keep out fucking Mongorians!

      Now pay up or I make chicken friend lice out of you, fucking chickens!

      /Shitty Wok

    2. If they gave me free beer for life or anything else, there is not enough of it to make me live there. I own a house there, looking for a renter…

  5. Yeah, boy, it’s all downhill from here! Tipping point and all that! Woo hoo! Let the good times roll!

    I’ll believe it when I see it.

    1. are you willing to make a prediction to the contrary then? and stand behind it?

      1. Don’t know what “predictions” have to do with this, derpfee.

        Once more, really slowly:

        I’ll. Believe it. When. I see it.

        That is all.

  6. “Wherein if you are going to imbibe, you would go through there to be recognized or pay your taxes and keep some sense of it, give us some stats so you could monitor it in some fashion. And if you go around it in some other place, that’s where my folks would come in and take issue.”

    Can anyone parse this?

    1. “The important thing is that we maintain control over it.”

      1. It could be like the pseudoephedrine (sp) crap. If you imbibe *too much* over a specified time, then you move from user to trafficker; jail for you.

  7. Sometimes you just gotta roll with it.
    http://www.Anon-Goes.tk

  8. Why is it always “legalize and tax“? Why is it so important to tax it? They just CANNOT let go, can they?

    1. this is where the idealist loses to the pragmatist.

      i doubt it would have PASSED without the tax provision. and implore those who buy it in WA and CO to buy it through means where it IS taxed. let the state coffers show MEANINGFUL tax receipts and public support will be that much stronger.

      sure, taxed marijuana is suboptimal to taxfree mj

      but it’s a million times better than CRIMINAL marijuana.

      1. Got to side with Dunphy on this one. One step at a time.

        Eventually it will be like beer. You will be able to legally grow enough for yourself and a couple of friends maybe. Once it’s been legal for a while, that is inevitable because it would be impossible to control.

        That won’t cut into commercial growers or retailers profits any because most folk just do not have the skill, space, or patience to grow quality herb.

        1. That’s fine, but until a few weeks ago, dunphy was out there cracking open potheads just like the rest of his ilk, so his glee here is suspect at best.

          1. Well, for all I know, he is Leonharts personal toady out here trolling for more heads to break. I’m not arguing that, just agree with him that the legalization movement cannot be stopped.

        2. most folk just do not have the skill, space, or patience to grow quality herb.

          Dude, it’s a weed. Anyone can grow it. The quality depends on the seeds or cuttings that you start with. All you need is a few months of sun and adequate supply of water. Even a caveman could do it.

          1. wrong, not everyone can do it and it depends on a lot more than that. Sure anyone can grow it, as a weed, but not everyone can produce qquality bud. Sure, if you live in Hawaii and have some good seeds and throw them out in some rich volcanic soil and go back a few months later, maybe you get lucky. But what about folks living in an apartment or a state where the growing season is only a hundred days? Dude, I know people who kill cactuses in a matter of weeks.

            1. But what about folks living in an apartment or a state where the growing season is only a hundred days?

              As I said in a lower post, I’m in Maine and people grow quality stuff outdoors to full maturity. Same latitude as WA. Some do it using five gallon buckets as pots on their back porch.
              Sure you need a sunny spot that isn’t surrounded by trees or buildings, but if you’ve got full sun you can grow killer herb.
              All you need is a bucket, soil from the store, Miracle Grow, and a good seed or cutting.

              I’ve seen it done with my own eyes. Do I believe you or my lying eyes?

                1. You’re just wrong. There’s been a revolution in growing since the medical stuff came along. Strains bred for short growing season, or whatever other obstacle your location gives you. Sorry, but you don’t know what you’re talking about.

              1. Also, you said porch, as in protected from frost. The light hours will need to be down to a certain length to induce budding. In most latitudes above 40 degrees north in the midwest(I can’t comment on Maine, never lived there), hard frosts will kill the plants in early Oct., well before budding matures. Everyone I knew in the midwest who grew, to produce quality, did it inside with high wattage lights, for exactly the reason I just stated. Maybe seed strains that bud at longer day lengths have been produced since then, it has been more than a decade since I have heard this discussed by a grower, so I will conceed that a possibility.

                1. A few points:

                  (1) The revolution in pot genetics predates medpot, by a lot. Just sayin’.

                  (2) Growing top-shelf weed is not as easy as all that, mainly because top-shelf is seedless, and there can’t be a male plant for a considerable distance around. You have to be able to identify and get rid of the males if you are indoors. If you are outdoors, well, good luck.

                  Other than that, its roughly comparable to growing tomatoes. Which a surprising number of people can’t manage.

      2. Don’t get me wrong. I agree that taxation (which is just a different kind of criminalization of certain kinds of sales) is a million times better than full criminalization.

        I just don’t understand the knee-jerk “and of course tax it” (often “tax the HELL out of it”) qualification. Why is it so important to tax it? Why does that get people on board?

        I can imagine some reasons, and they’re all ugly at their heart.

        1. Because they are statists and more money for the state is something that motivates them. Look at the the reluctance of the Republicrats to reduce spending in the face of a budget that is obviously stretched beyond breaking point. More taxes means more money (look, they’re economically illiterate, ok?)

  9. Every day that we get closer to December 6 with no word from the fed just makes this so much more exciting! I’m not as cynical as some here but my prediction is they do nothing this year, when it gets close to the point when store might start up then I think the DEA or DOJ or someone might try something; but ultimately I think they are going to cave. It’s kinda how I feel on what gun control was in the early to mid 2000s. People still complain and some assholes still try some bullshit, but they’re losing.

    1. yea, gun control is a good analogy methinks. both done primarily at the state level, and with broad popular support

      and a weak-ass federal response

  10. When is a state that can actually produce weed, going to legalize? I am talking about outdoors on a scale that could make it a net exporter. WA, mabye in the coastal region, but doubt the quality, too little sunny days and not enough warmth. I think CO is far too cold, the plants would get frosted before they could bud. Indiana, if they would legalize… well don’t look to be driving through soonn and expect to see huge corn fields replaced with weed, growing season too short.

    1. No chance for Iowa; can’t make ethanol out of weed.

      1. In 30 years maybe we’ll be seeing mj subsidies and outrageous sin taxes on it at the same time.

        1. [whimpers] I hurt just thinking about that.

    2. It grows well outdoors in all fifty states. They don’t call it “weed” for nothing.

      1. Yes, but it won’t produce buds that will produce a high in most of those states, it will get frosted before the day length is short enough for mature budding. It might be useful for hemp product, but not for smoking.

        1. Here in Maine a huge field was just busted in the northern part of the state. Acres of some seriously potent and fully mature bud.

          Northern Maine.

          If it can be grown to maturity at this latitude, it can be done most anywhere.

          1. I have heard tell that the supply of local pot for around here comes from Michigan…

            1. Grown indoors no doubt, by people who know what they are doing.

              1. My best friend and I grew all our own in mid-Michigan from the late 70’s-80’s. Outdoors. Miracle Gro? and water in good soil. Outdoors. W eharvested POUNDS – all for our own use 🙂

                The college kids we shared it with (never sold) thought it was redbud or “Acapulco Gold” or whatever was cool at the time. They were convinced “Michigan ditch weed” must be shitty.

                They were mistaken. As are you.

                1. I confirm Almanian’s point. I was trying to hint at my long ago gardening adventures in Indiana without directly fessing up 🙂

    3. Hyperion you are wrong, weed grows exceptionally well here–I am a Hoosier– during WW2 my entire county was planted with hemp. The ditch weed still lingers everywhere. The growing season is plenty long enough for MJ; what it’s too short for in the northern part where I live is tobacco…that needs a greenhouse start.

      1. I have never seen good herb grown outside there and I lived there for 10 years. Planted outside, it will get frosted before the buds are mature. Sure ditch weed grows there, it gets freaking huge, but you can’t smoke it. Ok, you can, but you don’t want to, really.

        1. I’ve only seen good stuff grown outdoors in Maine since they legalized medical mj a couple years ago.
          Until then I would have agreed with you. In fact I was surprised when I found out. Your information is outdated as was mine.

          1. Must be that. Back when I knew growers, the frost would kill the plants before they matured in upper midwest latitude. Of course, the seeds were probably from Columbia, or Mexico. So adaptability has probably been acheived since then.

            1. Still, most people that I know will kill any plant that they have to grow in a pot, including weeds, cactuses, or anything else. So there will be only a limited amount of folks who can grow their own.

  11. What stops the feds from continuing to vigorously prosecute federal drug laws in Colorado and Washington? The attorneys general of those states? What personal stake do federal prosecutors put up pursuing charges? What incentive do they have to quit doing what they’ve been doing?

  12. What incentive do they have to quit doing what they’ve been doing?

    The states say it is legal, the people voted for it. There will be resistance to federal intervention. The incentive will be, finally, that they don’t have the resources to continue the fight. That is it. If they could they would continue forever. They will try, no doubt, but will fail in the end.

    1. The states say it is legal, the people voted for it. There will be resistance to federal intervention.

      Just like medpot?

      The incentive will be, finally, that they don’t have the resources to continue the fight.

      I don’t see why their budgets will be cut just because some states legalized pot.

  13. “This is your State Police Chief. This is your State Police Chief on Pot.”

  14. And yet taxing it, while keeping users out of trouble, will do nothing about the crime problem. The Mafia makes a lot of money on bootleg cigarettes because they are taxed so highly.

  15. 1) Federal law is still supreme. Feds can still bust people for possession in WA and CO. I am sure those federal district judges can’t wait to see cases for an oz of weed. Any federal lawsuit that contends that the supremecy clause means that the states have to maintain a certain criminal law, IMHO, are doomed to fail. It is a perversion of the supremecy clause ideal. However, with fucksticks like Roberts of SCOTUS, any interpretation of the supremecy clause is possible.

    2) Feds could withold highway funds or some other form of financial duress. But they havent’ done so yet. Are they going to include medical state? If not, will that be seen as a green light for med marijuana? If they do include med weed, what will be the reprucussions? More people wanting to succeed from the union.

    3) Fed will continue to enforece fed law. This is a no brainer. But the feds in those states have way more cases than they can prosecute. So only the big time cases are going to get persecuted.

    1. http://seattle.craigslist.org/…..11939.html

      This why we have turned the corner. Pretty soon, there will be ads for buyer and sellers. And if not on craigs list, one will come into existence. There is a market for it (getting buyers and sellers together) and the market abhors a vacuum.

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