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News ::
Fight Big Oil At Home (english)
11 Apr 2003
While we watch the Iraq oil "war", another part continues here at home in the prohibition of cannabis. It has a LOt to do with oil...which is why the Bush League intensifies the pressure. Pay attention to, and act on, this Mass. legislation. Q: Are Judges and jurors invested in corporate competitors to hemp/marijuana?
The message just below is from the MPP...Marijuana Policy Project. It's an important issue, but...below their message is a personal addition to their oddly weak and possibly incorrect argument. Those who believe that this barbaric, scientifically-groundless "war on marijuana" is a failure, haven't given a thought to the Other Side. It's about MONEY. Follow that trail. It's easy enough to smell.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Please distribute this memo widely. Forward to family and friends who
live in Massachusetts, or ask them to visit http://www.mpp.org/MA
======================================================================

TO: Massachusetts residents
FROM: Larry Sandell, MPP assistant director of state policies
DATE: Thursday, April 10, 2003
SUBJECT: MPP needs your help to reduce marijuana penalties in
Massachusetts

======================================================================

On April 9, the Joint Committee on Criminal Justice held a hearing on
marijuana bills S.B. 207 and H.B. 2392. A vote should take place in
the next few weeks.

These identical bills would reduce the penalty for possession of less
than one ounce of marijuana to a $100 civil fine. If one of these
bills becomes law, simple possession of marijuana would no longer be a
criminal offense in Massachusetts.

The first step in improving Massachusetts' marijuana law is getting
the legislation passed through the Joint Committee on Criminal
Justice.

Please call and e-mail the chairs of the Joint Committee on Criminal
Justice and urge them to support these marijuana bills.

Please call Sen. Thomas McGee (D-3rd Essex and Middlesex) at
617-722-1350 and Rep. James E. Vallee (D-10th Norfolk) at 617-722-2575
and tell them:

"My name is _______________. I understand that the Joint Committee
on Criminal Justice is considering marijuana bills S.B. 207 and
H.B. 2392. Please support these bills. I believe that arresting
and prosecuting people for simple possession of marijuana is a
waste of precious police resources and state funds."

If a legislator is not available to take your phone call, leave the
above message with his answering service.

Please visit http://www.mpp.org/MA/action.html now to send a pre-
written letter to the committee chairs. Please select the link
labeled "Contact Committee Chairs." After you choose your favorite
pre-written letter and type in your address, our site will
automatically e-mail your letter to them ... all with the click of a
few buttons. The whole process takes less than two minutes, but it
makes a world of difference.

To view the text of the bills, see http://www.mpp.org/MA/bills.html .
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

If I may continue the above letter just a bit:

The failure to require judges and jurors who have conflicts of interest, or appearance of conflicts, to recuse themselves from court constitutes a basic violation of Due Process.
That is, if they, or immediate family, are economically linked to entities which benefit from cannabis prohibition, there is little or no chance of fulfilling requirements of the US Constitution. Some conflicting interests may be: Oil, pharmaceuticals, paper, logging, pulp, chlorine, plastics, synthetic fabrics, cotton, real-estate "growth", and all of their investors...which, often, may be insurance corporations. And...Religious bias must be considered.

Conflicts explained briefly, in order:
OIL: hemp does not require pesticides, petroleum-based or otherwise; hemp could compete with oil-based synthetics, lubricants, fuels and so forth; marijuana laws create "excuse" for US military to insert itself in oil producing lands such as Columbia and Venezuela.

PHARMACEUTICALS; this is another pesticide industry; and this industry does not care to compete with unpatentable natural substances for medical use.

PAPER/LOGGING/PULP: Hemp, of course, a superior source of paper/paneling cellulose, and therefore a "threat" to tree-based paper.

CHLORINE: Source of extremely deadly dioxin by-product. Not needed for bleaching hemp paper or fiber, not needed for making hemp-based plastics, not needed as part of the pesticide industries. AND...comparisons of chlorine-contaminated agricultural areas AND waste sites vis a vis Hemp vs. Chlorine would serve to indict the chlorine for health and extensive environmental damages...where hemp "waste" is not only benign, but usable as compost.

PLASTICS: Hemp plastics are non-toxic and compostable; petroleum based plastics are Hazardous Waste. This comparison, plus the regular marketing competition areas, are points of important consideration.

SYNTHETIC FABRICS: See "Plastics" above. Plus...hemp fabrics for rugs and other home/office use would not cause noxious and harmful fumes...thus making the synthetics look bad and, rightly, lose sales...and even face liabilities. Plus...synthetic industry has profit motive to eliminate competition from unpatentable plant fiber.

COTTON: drenched in pesticides like nothing else, outside of tobacco.

REAL ESTATE etc: With a viable hemp crop, there would be no need to close farms to have them turned into "developments". With viable hemp agriculture, forest lands would be less likely to be cut to also make way for "development" or pesticide-intensive vineyards or etc.

INVESTORS/INSURANCE: Top insurers INVEST in most if not all of the above and have huge motive to oppose hemp/cannabis/marijuana, for purely business reasons. No science or medicine need intrude.

PRISON INDUSTRY: obvious...with more than two thirds of 2,000,000 US prisoners incarcerated for "drug related" "crimes".

RELIGION: Some fundamentalistic religions have strong bias against natural drug use (but no problem, oddly, with corporate drugs). This must be questioned.

Therefore....it is imperative that judges and jurors be free of conflicts of interest in these areas.
They must certainly be asked about this so that the questions are raised and answered and dismissed, if possible. If they can say that, "..although my investment in Chlorine Company X or Insurance Company Y benefits greatly by ban on hemp, I will not let that affect my decision" ...let them try, in public, under oath.


Thank you.. ..............

PS: Please....arresting and imprisoning marijuana offenders is NOT a "waste" of funds or police time etc.
It's only a waste from PEOPLE'S point of view. It's quite different from private corporate view. The economic advantages to certain private BUSINESSES are considerable.

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