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posted by on Thursday March 02 2017, @05:44PM   Printer-friendly
from the ideology-vs-scientific-analysis dept.

The Center for American Progress reports

On [February 27], days after White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters to expect stricter enforcement of federal pot law, Attorney General Jeff Sessions recycled discredited drug war talking points in remarks of his own.

"I believe it's an unhealthy practice, and current levels of THC in marijuana are very high compared to what they were a few years ago, and we're seeing real violence around that", Sessions said. "Experts are telling me there's more violence around marijuana than one would think and there's big money involved."

In reality, violent crime rates tend to decrease where marijuana is legalized.

Denver saw a 2.2 percent drop in violent crime rates in the year after the first legal recreational cannabis sales in Colorado. Overall property crime dropped by 8.9 percent [PDF] in the same period there, according to figures from the Drug Policy Alliance. In Washington, violent crime rates dropped by 10 percent [PDF] from 2011 to 2014. Voters legalized recreational marijuana there in 2012.

Medical marijuana laws, which have a longer track record for academics than recreational pot legalization, are also associated with stable or falling violent crime rates. In one 2014 study of the 11 states that legalized medical pot from 1990 to 2006, there was no increase in the seven major categories of violent crime and "some evidence of decreasing rates of some types of violent crime, namely homicide and assault."

[...] Elsewhere in his remarks, Sessions unwittingly made the case against treating pot activity like serious crime. "You can't sue somebody for drug debt". he said. "The only way to get your money is through strong-arm tactics, and violence tends to follow that."

Legalizing, regulating, and taxing the sale of marijuana is the surest way to remedying that exact tendency for pot commerce to trigger violent score-settling. Legalization invites pot business into the light, granting cannabusinesses at least partial access to official modes of recourse when they are defrauded.

8 states and the District of Columbia have legalised marijuana for recreational use.
Ever see anyone use cannabis and become more aggressive rather than more mellow?

Note: ThinkProgress redirects all accesses of their pages and will attach tracking numbers. I have made sure that those are not in the URLs.


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  • (Score: 1) by Scruffy Beard 2 on Friday March 03 2017, @05:13PM (3 children)

    by Scruffy Beard 2 (6030) on Friday March 03 2017, @05:13PM (#474449)

    One problem with strategic voting is that polls are wrong 1 time out of 20 (corollary to being within the margin of error 19 times out of 20).

    Canada has 308 ridings. Last election somebody was advocating strategically voting for the candidate most likely to win in about 12 "close" ridings. The only problem: 308 x 0.05 (5%) = 15.4 or 15 ridings. You would expect the polls to be wrong in that many ridings.

    Polls often ignore third-party candidates as well.

  • (Score: 2) by tangomargarine on Friday March 03 2017, @05:19PM (2 children)

    by tangomargarine (667) on Friday March 03 2017, @05:19PM (#474450)

    I'm not talking about strategic voting. Voting for a third party that has virtually zero chance of winning doesn't do anything other than make a statement.

    In voting methods, tactical voting (or strategic voting or sophisticated voting or insincere voting) occurs, in elections with more than two candidates, when a voter supports another candidate more strongly than his or her sincere preference in order to prevent an undesirable outcome.[1]

    It sounds like in order to qualify as strategic voting, there has to be a chance in hell of the candidate you're voting for actually winning.

    --
    "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
    • (Score: 2) by Scruffy Beard 2 on Friday March 03 2017, @05:53PM (1 child)

      by Scruffy Beard 2 (6030) on Friday March 03 2017, @05:53PM (#474471)

      If all you are doing is making a statement, why vote for a candidate you don't like?

      ... the best way IMO is to vote for the third party that's doing the best in order to push them towards that 15% threshold, regardless of whether you agree with them or not.

      How do you know which third-party is "doing the best" without polls?

      • (Score: 2) by tangomargarine on Friday March 03 2017, @06:00PM

        by tangomargarine (667) on Friday March 03 2017, @06:00PM (#474474)

        If all you are doing is making a statement, why vote for a candidate you don't like?

        in order to push them towards that 15% threshold

        The televised debate/campaign finance one.

        a candidate you don't like

        regardless of whether you agree with them or not.

        How do you know which third-party is "doing the best" without polls?

        Oh, *that's* what you meant. I wasn't sure why you were replying to me from my first reading of your post.

        --
        "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"