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Subject: How to fail at legalizing marijuana rss

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Born To Lose, Live To Win
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Ohio voted down an initiative to legalize marijuana, and it looks like it wasn't necessarily because people are against MJ, they are against moneyed interests trying to codify a cartel/monopoly using the Ohio Constitution. It seems like this is the reason because once this initiative got on the ballot, another initiative was put on to prevent amendments to the constitution codifying cartels/monopolies, including backdated to this election. That issue handily passed. Some saw that as an attempt for the legislature to knock down the MJ law if it passed, but in the bigger picture it is a good law I think, depending on actual wording and scope. Some say it might be vague and used to stifle citizen initiatives going forward. It's hard to say for sure because both sides did a lot of fear mongering that soured the whole process.

For people ignorant of Ohio politics (there must be some), the MJ law would have legalized MJ to the effect that you could grow up to 4 plants for your own use and couldn't sell any. Commercially, only ten entities could be licensed (the financial supporters of the initiative) to sell it. It was an ugly, anti-free market bill that even the most ardent MJ advocates were hesitant to vote for. To me, the most pressing aspect that would have made passing desirable, was immediate decriminalization. That was almost worth it and I think one of the things the moneyed interests were hoping would sway fence sitters.

In the end, it shows that people aren't quite willing to sell their souls to Mammon in order to get high.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2015/11/03/ohio-...
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A law so bad that they couldn't even get people to vote for MJ.
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I'm not a fan of issue #2. I dislike that it gives the ballet board the power to determine if something is a Monopoly or not.

A lot of sentiment I've heard on #3 is that at least it's a start.
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Dispaminite wrote:
I'm not a fan of issue #2. I dislike that it gives the ballet board the power to determine if something is a Monopoly or not.
Yeah, I wasn't really clear on that and needed to do more research. Was it actually the ballot board that did the rejection on that? Additionally, since I didn't read the actual law, was there an appeals process?

One thing that didn't seem such a big deal to me about the Monopoly definition thing is that how often do you have a constitutional amendment that even has subject matter where a Monopoly is a controversy? I would think that the cases are largely cut and dried, but of course I'm no lawyer. I guess I have a hard time imagining language that would be vague enough for them to label something a monopoly that isn't and would be an amendment.

In any case, it might have been a short-sighted, knee-jerk worded bill just so it could be put up in time to oppose issue 3, I'll grant that.
 
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I think decriminalization is the first priority.
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TheChin! wrote:
Dispaminite wrote:
I'm not a fan of issue #2. I dislike that it gives the ballet board the power to determine if something is a Monopoly or not.
Yeah, I wasn't really clear on that and needed to do more research. Was it actually the ballot board that did the rejection on that? Additionally, since I didn't read the actual law, was there an appeals process?

One thing that didn't seem such a big deal to me about the Monopoly definition thing is that how often do you have a constitutional amendment that even has subject matter where a Monopoly is a controversy? I would think that the cases are largely cut and dried, but of course I'm no lawyer. I guess I have a hard time imagining language that would be vague enough for them to label something a monopoly that isn't and would be an amendment.

In any case, it might have been a short-sighted, knee-jerk worded bill just so it could be put up in time to oppose issue 3, I'll grant that.
From my understanding, the ballot did 2 things.

First if the board determines that a monopoly is going to be made from a constitutional amendment, then there has to be 2 ballots on the vote, and both must pass for the the amendment to be adopted.

Second, that Issue #3, even if passed, would automatically be unconstitutional.

The reason I was against it, is because it makes it easier for the big two to neutralize any constitutional amendment that the citizens get on the ballot determining it to be making a monopoly. It takes an already expensive and difficult task and makes it even more difficult.
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dandechino wrote:
I think decriminalization is the first priority.
Issue #3 was flawed. I was wavering on how I was planning on voting for it, because while I dislike how it created a monopoly for the 10 businesses that would have sole growing rights (outside of personal use growing), it was the door opening.
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dandechino wrote:
I think decriminalization is the first priority.
My knee-jerk reaction is to agree, but this was such a bad first step that Ohio could have locked itself into a structure that would have been very difficult to back out of in the future. I truly wish the stupid license restrictions weren't part of it.
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If everyone could grow their own, I have a feeling that enforcement of the monopoly would be very lax. People would begin to skirt the monopolies. There definitely would be no public support for the police to get serious about monopoly enforcement. The biggest thing is to clear the threshold of decriminalization. Sometimes, I think it is appropriate to not let the perfect be the enemy of the tremendous good of legalization.
 
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dandechino wrote:
If everyone could grow their own, I have a feeling that enforcement of the monopoly would be very lax. People would begin to skirt the monopolies. There definitely would be no public support for the police to get serious about monopoly enforcement. The biggest thing is to clear the threshold of decriminalization. Sometimes, I think it is appropriate to not let the perfect be the enemy of the tremendous good of legalization.
You could be right, but I think you underestimate the laziness of the average human being. We could all have stills in our garages too, but the State liquor stores seem to be doing OK, even with lower-power alcoholic beverages being sold much more liberally license-wise.

It would be worse with a private monopoly, because they will be able to use their profits to put pressure on the government to protect them from upstart competition and their petitions.

Having said that, I did vote for 3 because of the decriminalization aspect, I just wasn't comfortable or happy with it. As such, when it failed, I wasn't devastated.
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It's rare for Ohio counties to unanimously agree on something.

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TheChin! wrote:
It's rare for Ohio counties to unanimously agree on something.

You're making some assumptions about why people voted the way they did -- how many people simply don't want recreational marijuana to be legal, vs. people who do want it to be legal but didn't want to vote for the licensing racket?
 
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Terwox wrote:

You're making some assumptions about why people voted the way they did -- how many people simply don't want recreational marijuana to be legal, vs. people who do want it to be legal but didn't want to vote for the licensing racket?
I'm sure there is a combination of both, but polling shows Ohioans leaning towards legalization in numbers sufficient to legalize. So, the monopoly concerns must have been enough to sway some away, if polling can be believed.

Sure, the hard core conservative counties would probably vote no regardless, but the monopoly thing just made that an even easier decision for people who are more fiscal conservative than social conservative.

So, to the general point of legalizing MJ, you have to be able to appeal to liberals and fiscal conservatives to pass. The social conservatives, depending on their particular quirks, are pretty much going to be no votes regardless. I'm thinking that would be the majorities in the very light colored counties.
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Terwox wrote:
TheChin! wrote:
It's rare for Ohio counties to unanimously agree on something.

You're making some assumptions about why people voted the way they did -- how many people simply don't want recreational marijuana to be legal, vs. people who do want it to be legal but didn't want to vote for the licensing racket?
Polls seemed to indicate majority support for legalizing marijuana, so it seems reasonable to conclude they changed their minds when the issue of this monopoly came up.

http://www.cleveland.com/open/index.ssf/2015/10/ohio_voters_...

Quote:
In a new Quinnipiac University poll, 53 percent of Ohio voters support legalizing "small amounts of marijuana for personal use" while 44 percent oppose it.
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I wish all states would at least vote to decriminalize in 2016. I am guessing it would pass in the majority of states in a high-turnout election.
 
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TheChin! wrote:
Dispaminite wrote:
I'm not a fan of issue #2. I dislike that it gives the ballet board the power to determine if something is a Monopoly or not.
Yeah, I wasn't really clear on that and needed to do more research. Was it actually the ballot board that did the rejection on that? Additionally, since I didn't read the actual law, was there an appeals process?

One thing that didn't seem such a big deal to me about the Monopoly definition thing is that how often do you have a constitutional amendment that even has subject matter where a Monopoly is a controversy? I would think that the cases are largely cut and dried, but of course I'm no lawyer. I guess I have a hard time imagining language that would be vague enough for them to label something a monopoly that isn't and would be an amendment.

In any case, it might have been a short-sighted, knee-jerk worded bill just so it could be put up in time to oppose issue 3, I'll grant that.
The thing is, we didn't even need Issue #2 to negate Issue #3. Issue #3 was essentially dead on arrival once people got a chance to vote on it.

Regardless, Issue #2 was not prompted by the MJ thing, but instead it grew more out of the casino thing. The casino Monopoly is now hard-wired into the Constitution, and no other competing interests can join the gambling bandwagon. I think the Ohio General Assembly (GA) realized that and started working on a fix to prevent such a monopoly set up ever again. Thus, Issue #2. Had the MJ lobby done their diligence the first time around, Issue #3 would have been on the ballot last year, and the "fight" against Issue #2 would not have occurred.

As it stands, the Ohioan voters are either a.) Anti-marijuana, or b.) Anti-monopoly. The fact that Issue #2 passed 53/47, but Issue #3 got a resounding 65/35 kick in the ass lends me to believe that Ohio is still too conservative of a state to want to legalize marijuana.

It will be interesting to see if a new MJ lobby pops up and starts a new grass roots effort to legalize it some other way. Mike DeWine (the Ohio AG) has already said that medical marijuana is on the horizon.
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chrisnd wrote:

Regardless, Issue #2 was not prompted by the MJ thing, but instead it grew more out of the casino thing. The casino Monopoly is now hard-wired into the Constitution, and no other competing interests can join the gambling bandwagon. I think the Ohio General Assembly (GA) realized that and started working on a fix to prevent such a monopoly set up ever again. Thus, Issue #2. Had the MJ lobby done their diligence the first time around, Issue #3 would have been on the ballot last year, and the "fight" against Issue #2 would not have occurred.
I'm not so sure, but I don't know the whole Issue 2 timeline. That it had a specific provision that said, "This also applies to any Issues (wink, wink) passed on Nov 3rd, 2015" and not backward to the dumb Casino issue makes me think that it might have been more "Oh no, not this crap again" from lessons learned from the Casinos. So possibly, any issue built like Issue 3 might have put the fire under an Issue 2 initiative, but in this case it was the MJ issue that forced it.
 
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TheChin! wrote:
chrisnd wrote:

Regardless, Issue #2 was not prompted by the MJ thing, but instead it grew more out of the casino thing. The casino Monopoly is now hard-wired into the Constitution, and no other competing interests can join the gambling bandwagon. I think the Ohio General Assembly (GA) realized that and started working on a fix to prevent such a monopoly set up ever again. Thus, Issue #2. Had the MJ lobby done their diligence the first time around, Issue #3 would have been on the ballot last year, and the "fight" against Issue #2 would not have occurred.
I'm not so sure, but I don't know the whole Issue 2 timeline. That it had a specific provision that said, "This also applies to any Issues (wink, wink) passed on Nov 3rd, 2015" and not backward to the dumb Casino issue makes me think that it might have been more "Oh no, not this crap again" from lessons learned from the Casinos. So possibly, any issue built like Issue 3 might have put the fire under an Issue 2 initiative, but in this case it was the MJ issue that forced it.
You could be correct (which would make me wrong - gasp!), as ballotpedia.org indicates that Issue #2 was created "in response to Issue #3." Regardless, I am not surprised. The monopoly that would have been created had Issue #3 passed would have been worse than the actual game called Monopoly.
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I can't figure out why the people behind Issue 3 thought it would be a good idea to have it on the ballot during an off-off-year when the turn-out of young (and presumably more pro-legalization) voters is at its lowest.
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It is a tough call, some might think that the next election cycle will really bring out the conservatives since the presidency is up for grabs and they were hoping legalization would bring out proponents largely unopposed. The monopoly aspect may have dampened that motivation.

In general I think you are right though, the money spenders definitely came off as tone deaf on many levels.
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Shampoo4you wrote:

I wish all states would at least vote to decriminalize in 2016. I am guessing it would pass in the majority of states in a high-turnout election.
Even better would be to see decriminalization accompanied by the release of everyone imprisoned for possession.
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I got this stupid sticker.



I voted against allowing constitutional monopolies and for the pot law, so my first vote negated the second. It was my largest accomplishment of the day.

(I also voted for a different brand of gerrymandering in Ohio, which I believe was actually the most important issue).
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Wait, how the hell did you vote legally in Ohio? You're from Latvia!
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49xjohn wrote:
(I also voted for a different brand of gerrymandering in Ohio, which I believe was actually the most important issue).
This was so very necessary, that it was one of the few pieces of legal rules making that had overwhelming support from every political spectrum. There were no organized campaigns against Issue #1 whatsoever. I think that if it works the way it was written and intended to work, it has the potential to become a model used by all of the other states.
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chrisnd wrote:
49xjohn wrote:
(I also voted for a different brand of gerrymandering in Ohio, which I believe was actually the most important issue).
This was so very necessary, that it was one of the few pieces of legal rules making that had overwhelming support from every political spectrum. There were no organized campaigns against Issue #1 whatsoever. I think that if it works the way it was written and intended to work, it has the potential to become a model used by all of the other states.
I haven't heard about this part yet, which actually sounds interesting. Did they swap to an algorithmic solution to gerrymandering, or are they using a non-partisan source, or something else?
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