When Pot Becomes Legal Next Year, Thank Glenn Beck—& Reason!

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By this time next year, recreational pot will be legal in more states than Colorado, Washington, Alaska, Oregon and the District of Columbia. Thus begins the beginning of the end of the war on pot, which in turn means the beginning of the end of the war on drugs. Whenever it happens, the end of the drug war will have come too late, as it's ultimately not about using or valorizing this or that intoxicant or this or that lifestyle. In all of its iterations, the drug war is an ugly mix of xenophobia, racism, power-mongering, and fear of giving people control over their own minds. It has polluted all aspects of American life and politics, from education to foreign policy to law enforcement.

Even if you don't plan on ever smoking pot, ending its prohibition will be a great libertarian victory. The drug war's underlying causes and its massive negative effects on so many aspects of individual liberty and limited government are why we talk so much about drug policy reform (spoiler alert: the Reason staff, at least in my experience, probably uses drugs less than most groups of similarly situated adults).

And when pot becomes legal, you can in part thank Glenn Beck, whose conversion from a drug warrior to drug peacenik was helped along by the writings of Reason's own Jacob Sullum. Over the past couple of years, Beck has in his own words has become "a libertarian in transit" who is "moving deeper into the libertarian realm." You needn't sign on to all his views (or even any of his views) to admire greatly how Beck has created his own meda platform and community, all predicated on personal responsiblity, civil discourse, and voluntary exchange.

In May, Beck not only read from Jacob's work on drug legalization, he had him on his Blaze radio and TV show and acknowledged his shift in position:

"I would open it up to all drugs [potentially being legalized]," Beck said. "Let the people decide. The closer to the people, the better. And you will be surprised at how responsible people are."…

Beck made no secret of the fact that he is a recovering alcoholic and smoked marijuana almost "every day of [his] life" from the age of 15 to the age of 30, and he doesn't recommend anyone follow in his footsteps in that regard.

"I believe I would have been a better broadcaster today had I not done that," Beck said. "I'm not a fan of drugs. I don't do drugs. I don't recommend anyone does drugs. But I think we are going down this rabbit hole of a war on drugs that isn't working. It's empowering the cartels across the border, and it's causing a lot of problems here inside of our border, much like we had during the prohibition period of the progressive era."

When the drug war has lost Glenn Beck…well, it's time to bring the troops home, isn't it? Given Beck's immense platform and influence among generally conservative, right-of-center folks, there's no question that he may well help sell marijuana legalization in states as far-flung as Massachusetts and California.

And it's not just on the drug war that Beck has come around to our point of view. When we caught up with him at Washington's anti-Iran Deal rally in September, he acknowledged that we'd been right all along about the Iraq invasion. Take a look:

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  1. Damn drug-lovin’, messican butt-sex HIPPIES here at Reason.

    1. *double facepalm*

      They are so…inscrutable.

  2. So who else can’t wait to watch Obumbler shoot every democrat in the dick?

    Any bets on whether or not he finally uses the term ‘radical islam’?

    1. I’m waiting on some redneck conservative type like you to say “radical Christianity” or “Christian terrorist”.

      1. Once they invent them he probably will.

      2. Those things only exist in progressive fan fiction. The kind you jerk yourself off to. Commie piece of shit.

        1. Not quite. There are a few Christian extremists. But they are such a tiny minority – just a few hundred at most – that they are irrlevant today. Back in the 12th Century they may have been relevant, but today, not so much.

          1. I would not have used that particular article to articulate your point. The Man uses sound logic that is fully in compliance with the NAP.

            His final words were “If you believe abortion is a lethal force, you should oppose the force and do what you have to do to stop it,”

            Science as opposed to mystical cults is clear that life begins at conception. The next logical step is to determine if you believe that all human life is equal in terms of basic human rights. From there you must make your choice as to what you would do in terms of your personal choice to act upon the knowledge you have and what direction that action should be. He was very clear in his conclusion about life and the use of force to end it. He accepted his position and acted in a clear and rational manner based upon his conclusions about the origins of life and the basic rights he ascribed to that life.

            We can not ignore that this is a very sticky subject in Libertarian circles.

            A better example would be the West Burrough Baptists who do not act in accordance to the Teachings of Jesus but rather more along the lines of Saul of Tarsus. They act in a maleficent manner which opposes the principle of allowing a person the individual choice to respect and follow the tenants of Christianity in that they are supposed to love their enemies.

  3. Boy this is fucking great. A few minutes in and already, “make it harder for people to buy machine gunz.”

    Fuck you, President Golf.

    1. He can’t imagine what the argument would be against preventing people on the no-fly list from buying guns.

      Ladies and Gentlemen, behold: the constitutional scholar who plays 12 dimensional chess.

      1. You know some people study a subject because of their love for it. Others are following the advice of Sun Tsu and knowing their enemies.

        I present that for all of his failures to address real threats to the US he has addressed the one enemy he is certain about and that is The Constitution.

  4. So why are there still anti-smoking/vaping and drunk diving laws?

    And I am so waiting forward to decades of complaining about pot laws.

    And the repeal of Prohibition lead to libertopia didn’t it?

  5. In all of its iterations, the drug war is an ugly mix of xenophobia, racism, power-mongering, and fear of giving people control over their own minds.

    Have you ever met an issue you couldn’t make about xenophobia and racism?

    1. If you don’t know that the war on drugs has always been about racism, you are willfully uneducated. Cocaine was about the blacks, pot was about the Mexicans, and opium was about the Chinese:


      1. Who Know Else Wanted it to be legal for the Chinese to take opium?

  6. Answer: Glenn Beck, Mark Levin, Trump & Michele Bachmann on the Iran Nuclear Deal

    Question: Name four Christo-fascist idiots who prefer war with Iran over a nuclear non-proliferation treaty drafted by the G7.

      1. Let’s not forget false ad hominem. Beck is Mormon. Levin is Jewish Trump is nothing. At least one of them is Christian. All of them want smaller government which directly contradicts the label of fascism which is government on big steroids, but hey it’s great to call your opponents fascists. Fascism, by definition is big brother government, just like the leftists are pushing and libertarians and conservatives are pushing.

        The leaders of Iran can definitely be rightly called Islamo-fascists and they loved, loved, loved the nuclear deal. We can trust them, right? Inspections? Oh, don’t worry about those things.

        1. Fascism, by definition is big brother government, just like the leftists are pushing and libertarians and conservatives are pushing.

          Libertarians are pushing big govt????? You must not read these pages very often, or else your comprehension is poor.

    1. Yes, because that is the ONLY alternative to the shit deal Obama got that probably guarantees a nuclear war in the next several years, right?

  7. Compared to the dogshit MJ regulation we have in WA, the black market is starting to look pretty good.

  8. I am not saying I oppose legalization. But the unintended consequences are a comin’. In Colorado, it’s a business and marketing to kids with candy and confection marijuana is good for business.

    1. Citation needed. Unless you can show that the adults who are buying those edibles are making straw purchases for minors, there is literally no evidence that there is targetting of children going on.

      1. Better outlaw cigarettes as well. Plenty of straw purchases by adults for kids going on there. Add in alcohol too. God forbid some teens get drunk. No unintended consequences could arise from outlawing those two substances, right????

  9. Huh??? A guy can smoke weed everyday for 15 years and still be successful? (not to mention Conservative Republican/Libertarian)

    There may still be hope for some of us…

  10. my co-worker’s sister-in-law makes $71 every hour on the computer . She has been fired for five months but last month her income was $16368 just working on the computer for a few hours. see page………. http://www.earni8.com

  11. my co-worker’s sister-in-law makes $71 every hour on the computer . She has been fired for five months but last month her income was $16368 just working on the computer for a few hours. see page………. http://www.earni8.com

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