Marijuana

I Became a Pot Felon at 18. I'm Owed More Than an Apology.

Maybe reparations from the federal government are in order.

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When asked why I advocate for legalization of recreational drugs, I give a simple answer: Because the government doesn't know what's best for me or others. But there's another reason, and it's far more personal. Twenty-five years ago, as a college freshman, I was arrested by undercover cops for selling $80 worth of marijuana to fellow students. I was convicted of two felonies: distribution and possession of a narcotic. I spent a month in jail.

Long after the ordeal, I feel resentment at the United States government and the old conservative guard who still mostly run it. It's important to understand that becoming a felon, even for a minor non-violent crime, is no small issue when you're 18 years old. In addition to the government taking away your voting and gun rights, and forcing you to submit to random drug tests, a felony makes it extremely difficult to ever get a normal job. A criminal rap is a serious and derogatory social badge.

You'd think there would be some consolation that since my run-in with the law in 1992, America has been slowly withdrawing from its conservative anti-drug fervor. Currently, 28 states allow medical marijuana use, and eight states now have made recreational use legal. Eventually, pot will likely become legal everywhere, including $80 amounts to students on college campuses.

So all is well, right? Wrong.

Millions of other minor drug offenders like me are left holding the bag. It wasn't just the defamatory criminal sentence many of us received. The government confiscated my Jeep Comanche and my beloved Honda motorcycle during the ordeal. What little money I had I spent on lawyers and judicial filings in our convoluted court system. My total financial loss a quarter of a century ago was $20,000 dollars. Had I been able to invest that money in the stock market, for example, I'd have over $100,000 now.

The American Civil Liberties Union reports that 8.2 million people in America were arrested between 2001 and 2010 for marijuana offenses. The Washington Post says at least 137,000 people sit in US jails on any given day of the week for weed.

Now that the country is on its glacial way to likely legalizing marijuana and taxing the sale of it like it does beer, where is the official apology, to me and all those others? For many of us, an apology—and the government's inevitable mea culpa when they likely make pot legal across the land—won't be enough.

Some of us also want compensation for the financial damage forced upon us—for the literal theft of our property. Maybe that means a class action lawsuit insisting on government reparation for all damage caused, maybe in the form of tax credits or proceeds from the sale of unused Federal land, so as not to abuse the American taxpayer further over the drug war. It's safe to say—given the damage caused and the lives affected—such a suit would likely be in the billions of dollars.

Whatever happens, don't expect minor drug offenders to forget the harm Uncle Sam has caused now that smoking a joint is finally becoming legal and acceptable.

NEXT: How to Pull Air Traffic Control Out of the 1960s!

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  1. Long after the ordeal, I feel resentment at the United States government and the old conservative guard who still mostly run it.

    The drug war will do that to its victims. But you should at least take consolation and maybe some pride of the small part you played in the extra votes politicians got and the overtime some criminal justice workers collected.

    1. Reparations? We need war crime trials.

      1. They did insist that it was a war…

      2. They will be held in my cabin in the woods.

    2. Drug prohibition wasn’t primarily a conservative issue, it was a progressive issue, the same kind of evil nanny-state crap we still keep getting from progressives.

      1. Keeps the (unionized) prison guards employed and that’s all that matters.

  2. *lights the blunt*

    (who am i kidding, I’m white, I smoke bowls)

  3. This is often ignored in legalization debates. It will be interesting to see if any of the states that have legalized cannabis will do anything about it.

    I’m pretty sure that when the feds get around to legalizing it they will just say “tough shit” to the people already screwed over by it.

    1. Partially decriminalizing weed and giving complete exonerations for people convicted of drug crimes are very different political minefields.

      If I was president for the day, I would pardon every federal criminal except murderers. I would urge the federal courts to give them a new fair trial.

      If I was Governor for a day, I would pardon every state criminal except murderers. I would urge the Judiciary to give them a new fair trial.

      Give everyone a second chance to fly right and any new misdeeds are on them not a broken criminal system.

      1. Do you think murderers have unusually fair trials or something?

        1. No. Their trials are probably as unfair as most defendants.

          Its mainly their crime being murder that I would not just let them go. I think a new fair trial would be a decent thing to do even though they had been duly convicted already.

          I bet not a single murder convict would contest a new fair trial to determine guilt.

      2. If I were president for a day, I’d push for a constitutional amendment restoring voting rights to convicted felons who have served their sentences.

    2. As they should. He broke the law at the time and got caught, Tough shit if that law is changed the next dam day.

      If they raise the speed limit on an existing road should all the people who were caught speeding on that road get off?
      Of course not.

      That dude just needs to get over it.

      1. As far as the law goes, I’m sure you are right. At least if it’s just a change in the law and not a finding that the whole thing was unconstitutional (which is not something I expect to happen although it’s something that should happen regarding federal drug laws).

      2. Actually, yes. If the law was wrong, all those harmed by it should be compensated and issued an apology suitable for framing and hanging on their walls.

    3. Precisely.

      In law, when one is convicted of a crime, even when the criminal acts is later made legal, people in prison serve out their sentences.

      Suppose, for example, a state has an “age of consent” set at 18. A person has sex with someone who is under age… say 17. The law changes the next day. The individual can still be arrested, tried, convicted, sentenced and required to serve out their full sentence.

      In the case of pot – those in jail for possessing pot do not “get out of jail free” when it’s legalized. Suppose someone is serving a 5-year term for possession with intent to distribute. A year into his sentence, the state legalizes pot. His brother comes up with enough cash to buy a pile of pot and opens a STORE to distribute it. Too bad. The brother in jail stays there for four more years.

      My torts instructor said it best (quoting Mr. Brumble from Dicken’s in Oliver Twist)… “The Law is a Ass”.

      I’ve never been a user of illegal drugs – but I fundamentally believe that it’s the right of individuals to do whatever they choose to themselves. We don’t penalize people for getting tattoos, overeating, or having bad haircuts. Why should we fret when they decide to improve/poison themselves by taking drugs?

      To make a change to this approach to law might require violent revolution, so ingrained it is into our current system.

  4. If it’s any consolation (and I know it isn’t much), I believe in stealth jury nullification. If I ever get called to jury duty, and if I can’t see real harm (assault, theft), then the evidence will be fishy and nothing will change my mind. I will never convict someone for violating legislation, only for violating natural law.

    1. Key words- reasonable doubt that the crime happened.

    2. I imagine that in a small-time case like this, you wouldn’t have to hold out for long. Most jurors would just want to wrap things up quickly and return a not guilty verdict.

      1. There are always asshole state-lovers who think the government should always get their conviction.

    3. I’m sure that’s a comfort to the 0.0001% of these cases that ever involve juries.

      1. You’ll need to provide a citation for that.

        Since you are wrong, I am sure you will not be citing anything.

        1. It was hyperbole, but 90% of all criminal trials don’t go to juries, and I don’t know the exact percentage for drug crimes but it’s undoubtedly even fewer.

          1. That’s pretty accurate – conservative, actually. In Federal court 97% do not go to trial. In state courts, it’s more like 94%. Most are resolved via plea bargain or by dismissal of charges.

            If every criminal case went to trial, the entire criminal legal system would collapse. Imagine every criminal defendant demanding a jury trial and exercising their right to speedy trial! In most cases, “speedy” trial isn’t all that quick – but it’s still usually on the order of a year, give or take, for a felony. So in the Federal realm, if the case load suddenly increased by a factor of THIRTY, and in state courts it increased by a factor of SIXTEEN, it would be all over.

            Prosecutors would be forced to prosecute only the most serious crimes. 90% of defendants would walk.

            So why don’t criminals go to trial?

            Well, the game the prosecutors play is, “If you plead guilty, you get a month in jail on a misdemeanor and 1 year probation. If you are convicted at trial, you get 10-15 years in prison and a felony record.” In fact, the system is already so overloaded that even criminals who have committed serious crimes often plead out to trivial punishments. Unfortunately, the same level of coercion is often applied to both the guilty and the innocent. Additionally, penalties often have no relationship to the seriousness of the crime. A person can get less time for stabbing someone than for selling some drugs to a friend.

  5. “It’s important to understand that becoming a felon, even for a minor non-violent crime, is no small issue when you’re 18 years old. In addition to the government taking away your voting and gun rights, and forcing you to submit to random drug tests, a felony makes it extremely difficult to ever get a normal job. A criminal rap is a serious and derogatory social badge.”
    So you didn’t just use illegal drugs, you sold them. Not one crime but two. I am sure you sold to younger than 18 year olds in college too. Real class act you are. But hey you’ve done the crime and your time- second chances and all.

    I am sure you have been on the front lines trying to get drugs legalized ever since.

    Having a 25 year old felony does not make getting a good job difficult. If you are that worried about it, never tell the potential employer. Most back ground checks only go back 7 years. You were convicted before the internet ruled everything, so only a good FBI check will usually find your old record.

    I think drugs should be legal but I really don’t have any sympathy for people who are more worried that they got caught violating the law than changing the law.

    Maybe this article will change all that.

    1. WTF is wrong with you?

      This a libertarian site for people who love liberty, you fascist prick.

      1. WTF is wrong with you?
        This a libertarian site for people who love liberty, you fascist prick.

        Also rule of law you fascist prick.

        Drugs are currently illegal as far as the federal government is concerned. Change the laws and then I will be 100% on having sympathy for drug users and drug sellers.

        1. Murder has also been legal in various forms throughout American and human history. Changing the law isn’t required to act morally. Also, changing the law is difficult, and may not ever happen int he manner you believe best. Demanding others stop violence/theft (enforcement) towards you is a stupid bet, frankly.

        2. Where does your beloved Constitution give the DEA the authority to write the laws? The Nuremberg defense?

          1. DEA did not enacted the controlled substances act, congress did. There is no enumerated power to ban substances in the constitution, so that is what you argue not that “drugs should be legal”.

        3. “loveconstitution1789” – Have you ever read the Constitution? Are you familiar with the concept of “enumerated powers”? (If not, go educate yourself before reading further.)

          Back?

          Good.

          Now show me the part of the Constitution that gives the Federal Government the authority to regulate pot. Go look. I’ll wait.




          Well, I’m not going to wait forever!!
          Find it?

          No – you didn’t. It’s not in there.

          In fact, if the Feds were to going to have the legitimate authority to regulate drugs, they would have to do what they did when they (foolishly) tried to regulate alcohol… pass an AMENDMENT.

          Until they do, the very act of passing Federal Drug Laws is ultra vires. It’s a fraud. A sham. A lie. A cheat. It’s an offense to the Constitution and to liberty.

          Buy a clue.

          The whole canard of Federal drug authority hinges on the holding of Wickard v. Filburn which determined that interstate commerce included growing wheat on your own land for your own use – not one grain of which would ever even leave the farm, let alone be bought or sold. That’s right. Going what on your own land for your own use is “Commerce BETWEEN THE STATES!” Look it up.

          Now, don’t you feel like a dumb ass for championing unconstitutional Federal actions?

          You’re welcome.

          1. Goddamn auto correct “Going what” = “Growing wheat”.
            Reason, when are you going to add an “edit” feature?

      2. So we can break any laws we don’t agree with?

        You can be against criminalization of marijuana use and still have zero sympathy for someone who complains even though he surely knew the consequences of breaking the law.

        1. Except when the law itself is an UNCONSTITUTIONAL exercise in power.

          Then it’s not law. It’s totalitarianism. Fascism. Slavery.

          I view the Constitution as not only setting up the legitimate powers of the Federal Government – but as a contract between the government and the People. When one side of a contract does not perform, the other side is generally freed from their terms of the contract. If you offer to paint my house for $1000, and I accept, your failure to paint relieves me of my obligation to pay.

          By the same token, a government that does not honor the Ninth and Tenth Amendments to the Constitution is directly violating the contract between the government and the People. The People should then be free from their part of the contract – which includes honoring ANY Federal laws.

      3. This a libertarian site for people who love liberty, you fascist prick.

        And how does it promote liberty to force me at gunpoint to cough up money to give to this guy? That’s what you are defending “you fascist prick”.

        1. If the taxpayers don’t want to be liable for reparations they can repeal and refuse to enact evil laws. Your tax money isn’t being used – the prohibitionists’ tax money is. Ypur tax money is going to something else. It’s all collectivized.

        2. Well, I’m not sure I’d be up for paying “damages”, but even if one were, I’d expect those to come from taxes on the sale of pot. After all, those who approved banning pot should morally NEVER be allowed to profit from it.

    2. There’s no better motivator of opinion than experience. You guys should be all over giving felons the right to vote. What could be a better way to boost meaningful public sentiment against the US’s police state and drug war monstrosities?

      1. Good point.

        1. GOD DAMN IT! Now he will never shut up. see below.

      2. And in general, I am. Basically, when someone leaves prison, they should have a clean slate. And that means, for most purposes, no criminal record. (The exception would be in determining punishment in the case of repeat offenses.) That means if someone commits murder and gets out in 7 years, they don’t have to tell everyone they committed murder. If that’s not satisfactory, then make the sentences longer. The crap about making “sex offenders” register for life is pure nonsense. Given them a sentence, let them serve it, and then let them reset and try again.

        Repeat offenders get heavier sentences.

        I’ve long thought that most prison sentences were too long and too pleasant. Humans can adapt to almost anything – it’s what we’re best at. So use sentence to SHOCK the offender. First offense burglary? 6 months in HELL! Put them in a tent prison in Arizona. Let Arpaio run it. Same food every day. No diversions. Nothing. Just tents and cots and pink underwear. At the end of six months, turn them loose. Maybe even give them some rehab training. Clear their record. Let them know that next time it’s 5 years in solitary confinement in a 6′ x 8′ concrete cube.

    3. He can always apply for an expungement. Depending on the state he’s from, now that it’s legal he might qualify for an expungement.

      He’s just fucking lazy and wants free money.

      1. He deserves the “free” money. He paid for it in hardship.

    4. Ok, maybe I caught carried away with my last post. But I am appalled by your complete complete lack of empathy for somebody who got totally fucked over by the government for something that should be legal. He was put in a cage, suffered a huge financial loss and had his reputation and career prospects greatly harmed. For something less intoxicating than a glass of beer. But hey I guess it’s no big deal if it’s not you.

      1. Bingo!

      2. I agree that drugs SHOULD be legal but they aren’t.

        If pot smokers spent as much voting for people that would repeal drug laws and/or run themselves as they do smoking, we might have more legal drugs by now.

        I mean the federal drug laws are unconstitutional. There is no enumerated power that authorizes the federal government to ban substances. In fact, even the people who made alcohol illegal knew that and got a constitutional amendment ratified.

        1. You blame minorities for majority belief. Stupidity.

        2. You blame minorities for majority belief. Stupidity.

        3. “General welfare”
          “Interstate commerce”
          The list is endless, if you want to ban something.
          You can even ban stuff directly “protected” by the constitution.
          You can even take stuff from folks that is entirely legal to own, and do not even have to charge them with anything. So cry me a river.

          1. Sorry there is no case of the Founders ever banning a substance. Even alcohol was taxed to prevent use not banned.

            Even the Alcohol prohibition movement knew the constitution did not authorize banning a substance, so they amended the constitution. Why would they do that if banning substances was permissible for government?

          2. Sorry, but both examples you list are wrong.

            The “general welfare” clause is a limit on federal power; it says that the federal government may only act for the purpose of the general welfare (as opposed to the benefit of individual states or groups).

            The interstate commerce clause has been perverted; its function until the end of the 19th century was to limit states in interfering with interstate commerce.

            Please continue with your “endless” list.

      3. But I am appalled by your complete complete lack of empathy for somebody who got totally fucked over by the government for something that should be legal.

        I get “fucked over” every April 15 by the US government. If I didn’t comply with the law, I’d get fucked over even more, and nobody would shed a tear for me or “pay me restitution”.

        We don’t live in a libertarian paradise, we live in a progressive welfare state. If you violate its laws, you suffer the consequences. Deal with it. And pretending that other people are responsible for the bad choices you make is not a libertarian view, even if those bad choices involve violating non-libertarian laws.

      4. Slave reparations too?

        Who should pay?

        My ancestors came from Britain after slavery ended. You want my tax money too?

  6. I Became a Pot Felon at 18. I’m Owed More Than an Apology.

    You want your weed back?

    1. You were the narc?

  7. Reparations for pot-heads!

    Affirmative action for stoners!

    1. Just throw them some snacks and problem solved.

      1. Great idea! Like a special ‘food stamp’ card, but only good for munchies?

  8. “If you can’t do the time, don’t do the crime”
    News flash! Felonies are NOT ‘minor crimes’.
    A better lesson to have learned in college is to get the laws changed first, then smoke to celebrate.

    1. Is your entire definition of right or wrong based on what the government tells you?

      1. Hang on…the government hasn’t emailed back the answer to your question yet.

      2. No but it is based on freedom of choice.
        He chose to break the law of the day with full knowledge of the consequences of his actions and got caught.
        And he’s still crying about it?

        Or does libertarian ? Personal responsibility anymore?

        He made his choice.

        If they raise the speed limit on an existing road are all speeding tickets on that road now invalid?

        Shit changes, but you play to the rules of the day.

        1. Playing by wrongful rules is a practical choice not a moral one. The moral issue is that those harmed by wrongful laws deserve reparations regardless if they with full knowlege “chose” not to comply with said wrongful law. Society actually IS to blame.

      3. Nope. My definition of right and wrong is based on my personal belief system.
        But I stay aware of where my system, and the system of the man diverge, and am fully aware of the possible consequences for any ‘right’ act in my system that is ‘wrong’ in his. And will accept the results if I am careless.

    2. Sure, don’t do what’s right… wait till there’s enough others to believe it’s right? Foolishness.

    3. The law was and is still wrong. The wrongful law is the evil, not non-compliance with the wrongful law.

    4. News flash! Felonies are NOT ‘minor crimes’.

      That used to be true.

      It’s not anymore.

      (you’ll have to remove the spaces from the URLS – Stupid Reason restriction on “word length”)
      Five years in prison for throwing out junk mail!
      Felony for trying to find arrowheads!
      http://marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution /2013/06/no-one-is-innocent.html

      You receive fish that’s packaged in plastic instead of paper.
      You called in sick when you really weren’t.
      You get lost in a blizzard.
      You tell someone about a problem with computer security.
      https://mic.com/articles/86797/8- ways-we-regularly-commit -felonies-without-realizing-it#.4qxygmPXc

      Gibson Guitar Raid
      http://humanevents.com/2014/05…..ins-behind -the-gibson-guitar-raid-are-revealed/

      There’s a whole book on the subject: “Three Felonies a Day”

  9. Sorry to hear about how you were too dumb to get away with something that almost everyone does, but you lost my sympathy when you asked for reparations.

    1. Are you against government paying for the injustice it committed and damage it caused on principle, or is it just the connotation of the word “reparations” that bugs you?

      1. “government paying”

        Yeah, I am against that because where does the government get their money? My taxes. Fuck that. This prick can play the lottery because he’s got a better chance of getting that money than mine (by proxy through the government).

        1. Money is a convenient shared fiction. Like justice.

          1. Money, get back
            I’m all right Jack keep your hands off of my stack
            Money, it’s a hit
            Don’t give me that do goody good bullshit
            I’m in the high-fidelity first class traveling set
            And I think I need a Lear jet

          2. Money is a convenient shared fiction. Like justice.

            If money and justice are fiction, why do you keep demanding them from other people?

      2. I would favor reparations if the expense could be limited to those responsible… for example, the politicians who passed the legislation, the cops and judges who knew it was unconstitutional. That sort of thing.

  10. Is nobody going to make a “Dude Where’s my Car” reference… really!?!?!?!?

    1. Hey, “Get Al a Limo” worked for Al Franken and Bernie.

  11. Some of us also want compensation for the financial damage forced upon us

    dude I’m forever grateful, but reparations aren’t the answer. feel free to stop by any time and I’ll share. live for today.

  12. You’ll get your financial compensation after the Indians, Blacks, Japanese, and whomever else feels that they got fucked over and are now owed something.

    Get in the back of the fucking line.

  13. The war on drugs is and can only be a war on the American people. That said, when the author was selling marijuana he knew it was against the law and was aware of potential penalties. He is the only person responsible for his taking that risk and its outcome. Seems he’s a candidate for governor in California. He’ll fit right in. California is full of pussies who want to blame everyone else for their own mistakes.

    1. First thing in office; raise taxes on the rich.
      Second thing in office, pardon himself.
      Third thing in office, dump the pretense he is a Libertarian.

      1. raise taxes? He’s libertarian. He won’t do that. It can be taken out of other things like law enforcement and prison budgets. Take it out of narc pensions. If the taxpayers don’t want to pay reparations, they can refuse to enact evil laws.

  14. I think this place is being taken over by stupid conservative rednecks. Moral condemnation of a guy because “he knew it was against the law!” on a pro-drug legalization article? What garbage is this? Oh well. *Cracks fingers.* All the more fun for me!

    1. It’s not a moral question it’s an actuarial one. If you run across a field chances are good you’ll do so safely. If you run across a freeway chances are good you’ll get hurt. The cars on the freeway aren’t ‘good’ or ‘bad’, they’re a known danger. Regardless of whether laws are just or unjust willful violators of them often incur known risks. Should marijuana use be completely legal? Absolutely. What people are condemning him for is being a pussy who doesn’t take responsibility for his own informed actions. His next article will probably be about taxpayers paying reparations for his losing lottery tickets.

      1. He went to prison and spent tens of thousands of dollars and is permanently disadvantaged in the job marketplace. How the fuck did he not take responsibility?

        The whole purpose of having a pro-legalization opinion is because you notice how monstrously unjust the current law is. How can you blame a victim of that unjust regime for being a victim of it?

        1. He wants to have his unlawful behavior reimbursed by the taxpayers.

          As a taxpayer, I say fuck him and change the law to legalize drugs.

          You lefties and your victimization. Whine wine wyne.

          1. Are you against someone wrongfully imprisoned for 40 years for murder being reimbursed by the government as well? You’re on a libertarian website and “Oops, sorry” is enough from the government you?

            1. Strawman argument. Apples and oranges. Libertarianism is about fully informed, consenting adults being free to make their own decisions, good or bad, and then live with the consequences. It isn’t about the government robbing people at gunpoint to compensate people who knowingly made bad choices.

              1. If dealing weed is a bad choice people should avoid making, how would we get weed?

                1. Push the elected douches to legalize it. Or get he courts to declare it the unconstitutional prohibition that it is.

              2. Great! A looter conservative prohibitionist infiltrator in here to lock horns with a looter socialist infiltrator. Neither realizes that the Libertarian party has to do with alternatives to the initiation of force as understood by an immigrant writer while conservative Christian socialists were stretching ropes at Nuremberg.

            2. Are you against someone wrongfully imprisoned for 40 years for murder being reimbursed by the government as well?

              I certainly am against that. They should get reimbursed by the prosecutor or his malpractice insurance. Taxpayers should not be on the hook for that.

          2. If the taxpayers don’t want liability for evil laws, they shouldn’t be enacting, enforcing or refusing to repeal them. Taxes don’t have to be raised. Just take the reparations out of law enforcement, prison and foreign intervention budgets. Take out of all the expeditures the drug prohibitionists love. And tough shit if the drug prohibitionists are forced to pay taxes that go to reparations rather than the shit they love. Fuck them.

        2. “How can you blame a victim of that unjust regime for being a victim of it?”

          He’s not being blamed for being a victim. He’s being blamed for trying to make others (some who weren’t even born at the time) pay for the cost of his choice to take the risk he took.

          Supposing he was never caught and went on to profit handsomely from his pot sales. Do you think he’d be writing an article expressing gratitude for his good fortune, and offering to give away some of the money he earned?

          I didn’t think so, either.

          1. But there was nothing wrong with the choices he made, only the consequences for them.

            1. There is nothing inherently wrong with Russian roulette, only the consequences for it.

              1. In what other ways do you think the government should refrain from acting in the interest of achieving justice? What about when they intervene after someone breaks into your house? Those are my tax dollars paying for that, you layabout!

            2. “But there was nothing wrong with the choices he made, only the consequences for them.”

              Wrong or not, irrelevant to the subject. He was harmed by the predictable consequences of his choice and now he wants others to make him whole. Which will harm those forced to do so, who will have no choice in the matter. Who do they turn to, to be made whole for the harm caused them?

              1. Oh please it won’t harm anyone. There’s not going to be a tax hike on you specifically to pay for this. Maybe we can not build one fighter jet and pay for it.

                1. If paying the cost of his choice won’t harm others, how is it harming him?

                2. There definitely won’t be any tax reductions because of people like you.

                3. Good point: reimbursing victims means less money left to spend on making new victims, and less incentive to victimize people as well – as long as it’s not used as an excuse to raise taxes. For the same reason an inefficient, wasteful state is preferable to an efficient and effective one: less funds and competence for their continuous scapegoating of people and prosecution of wars on them.

              2. The drug warriors will make him whole. Take the reparations out all the things they love without raising taxes – like law enforcement, prisons and fpreign intervention. Redirect all the drug war money and narc pension money towards reparations. That way, it will be the drug prohibitionists who will pay with their tax money.

        3. “He went to prison and spent tens of thousands of dollars and is permanently disadvantaged in the job marketplace.”

          Ah, THAT’S why he’s running for Governor of California. He can’t find a job.

    2. Well, there are a few smart rednecks in the mix.

  15. When I was much younger, I was pulled over by the CHP for no front licence p!ate. I had just lawfully bought the car, and I had the front plate, but the bracket was broken, and I was on my way home to fix it.
    Anyway, the officer asks to search my car, and being young and naive, I asked, “on what grounds”?
    He replied, (verbatim), ” I have none, but if you refuse consent, you must have something to hide, and thats probable cause”.
    So he searches anyway, and after tossing my stuff in the weeds along the highway, he eventually finds a sandwich bag on the floor that had once held leftover pizza. In the corner, there remained a small remanint of cheese, sauce, and mushroom.
    0.6 of a gram, I would come to find out.
    He took me to jail, not for ‘shrooms’, but for felony possession peyote!
    Being a home schooled pastors son, I didn’t even know what that was!
    He also relieved me of valuable, lawfully owned property, while explaining what scum I was, and how smart and highly trained he was!
    After stubbornly refusing many plea deals, and spending thousands of dollars, and missing work and sports practices to appear at many court dates, all of a sudden, the charges were dropped.
    Gas Chromatography /mass spectrometry results proved what I had said all along!
    To this day, I have a felony drug arrest record!
    That retarded, incompetent, thieving, self described “hero”, did however, provide me with my first libertarian moment.

    1. You were a victim of a system that routinely abuses innocent people to the point of mental, physical, and financial exhaustion such that they’re willing to take any ‘deal’ just to make the bad men go away. Thankfully you didn’t let them win. Kudos to you.

      1. I wouldn’t want to re-victimize the tax paying citizens whom were forced to fund my initial ordeal, but I would certainly enjoy being ‘made whole’ again, (via a lawsuit) against the statist retard whom falsely kidnapped, robbed, and held me for ransom, (bail).
        And whom committed several constitutional violations in order to keep the people safe from me for several hours.
        Alas, I did make such an attempt, but soon learned that the California highway patrol takes dim view of any ‘customer’ complaints, and prioritizes the efforts to con
        vince their employers from making any trouble.
        I was robbed by a highwayman, but having limited law enforcement resources directed at ‘discouraging’ my complaint, proved their true terrorist nature.

        1. And now you know why being a Libertarian minded person is important. Welcome to the measly team that we are.

    2. The Methodist White Terror controlling the Congress in 1929 took the precaution of nullifying the 1st Amendment by banning peyote and its derivatives before Dry Hope Herbert Hoover was sworn in.

  16. From the Libertarian candidate for governor in California’s website:

    “Like many entrepreneurs, I became a libertarian because of one simple concept: reason. It just made sense to embrace a philosophy that promotes maximum freedom and personal accountability.”

    How does expecting reparations for the consequences of one’s voluntary actions fit into “embracing a philosophy that promotes personal accountability”? Looks more like evading personal accountability, if you ask me.

    1. Isn’t constantly bitching about taxes the same as declaring that you want to evade one of your most basic responsibilities?

      1. Libertarianism 101: ‘Taxation is theft’.

        1. Is Libertarianism 102 “For the love of God, everybody run and hide, it’s fucking anarchy everywhere! Oh my god they’re eating my daughter! *Shoots self*” ?

          1. Nope. Libertarianism is ‘oh my God, they are coming to eat my daughter! *daughter and self both shoot attacker and reload*.

            1. So just a bunch of insane wish-fulfillment bullshit.

      2. Tax laws are “monstrously unjust” (your words).

        1. Well when you’re eliminating them be sure to start with the ones that affect very wealthy people first. Aw, I don’t have to worry, of course you will!

          1. Since 90% of tax laws affect “the wealthy” the most, not a problem. Statistically speaking, the poor don’t pay taxes.

            You’re too poor to pay taxes.

          2. Since 90% of tax laws affect “the wealthy” the most, not a problem. Statistically speaking, the poor don’t pay taxes.

            You’re too poor to pay taxes.

            1. The poor pay many taxes. Every time they buy something. Payroll taxes if they work. And it tends to hit them harder what with them being poor.

              But as I indicated, I knew you were going to say that.

              1. *shrug*

                I’m not wealthy. But you assume (because you’re a liberal) that everyone acts in the same disgusting self-interest that liberals do.

                I’m a business owner, so I pay TWICE the amount of payroll taxes that you do. A payroll tax cut is just fine with me.

                1. But your initial instinct was to completely ignore the taxes poor people pay as if they don’t exist and then actually defend government caring more about the great burden that the ultra-wealthy must bear.

                  1. No, because, as I said, if you’re a business owner, your payroll taxes are much higher.

                    Your employer matches what YOU pay in payroll taxes, and gives that to the government. Now count up all the employees. Take the payroll taxes that they pay out of their wages. Your employer ALSO pays that amount to the government. For each and every employee.

                    Payroll taxes affect small business owners far more than they affect the poor and middle class.

                    The poor get FAR MORE back from the government than they pay in taxes. How do I know?

                    Born and raised in Detroit. And any naive fool that thinks “welfare queens” are a myth are invited to visit and see it first hand.

              2. Depends on the state. The poor may avoid sales taxes on many foods. The really poor do not pay sales tax on gasoline, or gasoline taxes, because they cannot afford a car.
                All the payroll taxes I know about are flat rate, so they do not affect the poor more than others.
                Income taxes, being biased against the better compensated, affect them LESS. And often offset the taxes the ‘poor’ do pay through ‘refunds’ of money not paid.
                I’ve been what you consider rich, and I’ve been what I consider poor. I paid more taxes when rich.

                1. But you didn’t prefer to be poor, did you?

                  1. Hell no; that is why I went out and got rich.
                    All by my lonesome, without a single dime from any government at any level.
                    And now I sit here and hope Tony has a job so his Social Security taxes go straight into my pocket the next month.

      3. I bitch about taxes and vote against them. I don’t evade them.

        I’m sorry if you don’t understand the difference.

    2. How does expecting reparations for the consequences of one’s voluntary actions fit into “embracing a philosophy that promotes personal accountability”? Looks more like evading personal accountability, if you ask me.

      You did say he is running for office, right?

    3. If I say I’m going to punch you in the face if you smoke weed, and then you smoke weed and I punch you in the face and break your nose, I think I probably at the very least owe you repayment for your medical bills.

      I don’t see any difference between this and people being punished for drug offenses by the government, morally speaking.

      Legally you are probably right. But morally you don’t bear accountability for the harm you suffer when people violate your rights, even if you could reasonably predict that those people would violate your rights.

      1. You’re incorrectly assuming that in a libertarian world, he could have smoked weed without consequences. In fact, in a libertarian world, there would likely be other mechanisms for punishing him for his use of weed: his insurance company might drop him, his landlord might kick him out, his employer might fire him, etc.

        1. Sounds fantastic……..

          1. Well, it’s a lot better than the socialist alternatives, as I can tell you from first hand experience.

            1. If you can’t smoke weed without consequence in a libertarian world, what the goddamn fuck is the point?

              1. Your actions always have consequences. Libertarianism simply opposes the arbitrary consequences imposed by the state, nothing more.

    4. Because his voluntary actions were right and the taxpayers voluntary actions in voting for and enforcing unjust laws were wrong.

  17. This guy is going to be a great candidate for governor. But only in California.
    He spent over $20,000.00 on a losing drug case. And can’t get over it.
    Fits right in with the high speed rail and all, doesn’t it.
    If he wins, maybe he will be the one to finally get secession done.

  18. Fuck off slaver. No one owes you shit.

    More and more these days I feel like the majority of “libertarians” really just want to smoke pot and couldn’t give less of a fuck about limiting the role of government in general. If Obamacare started covering blunts you know they’d all be singing the praises of that in a hearbeat.

    1. Ah! The mystical conservative argument from Prophesy of the known Future as Revealed by God.

  19. Some of us also want compensation for the financial damage forced upon us

    Are you kidding me? You want to take my money today because a few decades ago you made a conscious choice to violate some meaningless but valid laws?

    You’re not a “libertarian”, you’re a statist a–hole.

    1. Valid is strong word that I don’t think many would agree with when describing drug laws.

      1. In what sense are drug laws legally invalid?

        1. They are morally wrong. The issue is moralty not legality.

          1. So, they are valid laws then.

  20. To me, it’s not a question of government not “knowing what’s best for me,” as the article starts off. Whether something is good, bad, or indifferent to me — it is none of their damn business.

    This is the problem with the whole tone of pot legalization these days. The argument is usually that it’s not that unhealthy and is safer than alcohol. Who cares? The argument should be that there isn’t any victim. All kinds of choices I can make are patently unhealthy for me but I am free to make them if I want to be stupid. Say I decided to eat chocolate cake and nothing else but that for breakfast lunch and dinner. Health wise, that would probably be not too far off from being going on heroin, yet the only victim would be me – of my own stupidity. And the baker selling me a couple of full size cakes each day wouldn’t have to worry about prosecution. That is as it should be. It comes down to freedom for adults to make choices for themselves, even if those choices are ill-advised.

  21. Lets start looking at the idea that the federal government is delegated no authority to regulate what a person ingests.

    1. Aegis: When some are given the power to make rules for all, enforce them, and decide if they have done so in a just manner, within limits they swore to abide by, then they become tyrants. For proof, see every govt.

      The often heard complaint of “no authority” or overreach is useless against TPTB. It is the self enslaved begging the master to be less coercive. It is the failure of the victim to take responsibility for his/her part in the ruled/ruler paradigm. If you want justice, rights, social stability, peace, and prosperity, then you have to stop supporting govt. by force and start demanding a voluntary society.

      1. Whats’ TPTB?

  22. 1992?! A month?! Spare a thought for veterans of the Summer of Love. When Tricky Dick Nixon was sworn in, any 18-year-old caught with a fistful of hemp seeds or roots was easily up for five years in the slammer! And if I were still living in the Haight I would definitely support and vote for Zoltan. California was the state most ruined by asset-forfeiture looting, and most betrayed by the National Democratic Party’s fixation with carbon taxes and energy bans RATHER THAN repeal of prohibition laws such as stopped America’s economic collapse in 1932. It’s time Democratic voters realize they’ve been betrayed by Ecological National Socialist fifth columnists, get hip, and git a rope!

  23. Jo napot Istvan,

    I am sorry you were treated badly and you surely didn’t deserve it, but there is no legal process available to compensate you and others who are victims of the war on drugs. The best any of us can do is to speak out and help end the insanity.

    There are few people in the US who can’t claim to be victims of violence from the government, in one form or another. There is no remedy for past wrongs.

    Good luck!

    Paul

  24. Jo napot Istvan,

    I am sorry you were treated badly and you surely didn’t deserve it, but there is no legal process available to compensate you and others who are victims of the war on drugs. The best any of us can do is to speak out and help end the insanity.

    There are few people in the US who can’t claim to be victims of violence from the government, in one form or another. There is no remedy for past wrongs.

    Good luck!

    Paul

  25. I would hope all victims of govt. coercion would learn (or in my case, relearn) that govt. is not reason but exploitive violence. Asking the beneficiary of the violence to appologize is irrational, especially if you forfeited your sovereignty (voted) to be ruled. Without sovereignty no rights are possible.

    Voting to be ruled is a mistake but it’s your life and your right to be self destructive. It’s not your right to believe your choice is universal becasue you are in a big group. The 99% can not violate the rights of the 1%, morally, only physically by brute force. Might does not make you right. It makes you a statist, an authoritarian, and an asshole.

  26. Legalization of a drug or all drugs is recognization of the authority of some to control what everyone ingests. That law can be reversed. Once control is conceeded, no principle, no basis for complain about the consequences can invalidate the harm done. The controller can always cite the authority and claim good intention, while continuing the harm.

    Decriminalization of an act is recognition that no authority exists in relation to that act. Govt. will NEVER voluntarily relinquish authority. Power breeds power, until it destroys the society that granted it, that let itself be ruled.

  27. The government apologize for the drug war? Sure, that’ll happen. When they deliver that apology will they be riding their unicorns or floating on gossamer wings?

  28. What you did was illegal then and you knew you were breaking the law, you are owed nothing.

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