Home > Uncategorized > Holy Crackdown, Batman!

Holy Crackdown, Batman!

It’s been an active week in the world of Humboldt County marijuana, but now the Feds are hitting the brakes on a number of dispensaries in California.

A letter from the Dept. of Justice warns medical marijuana dispensaries to shut down within 45 days or face prosecution and forfeiture of property. The Lost Coast Outpost has links and details.

This is from the Wall Street Journal:

The Bush administration sent similar letters to landlords five years ago, lawyers and dispensary operators said. “Nothing ever came of it,” said Roger Diamond, a lawyer representing dispensaries in San Diego and Los Angeles.

The effort comes at a time of legal turmoil among local city officials and pot advocates, as both sides wrangle in court and in city council over exactly how far local authorities can go in limiting the number and location of pot dispensaries.

Both Arcata and Eureka City Councils re-hashed their marijuana dispensary ordinances this week, with questions ranging from whether ditch local regs or stay the course. Arcata City Attorney Nancy Diamond was especially prescient at Wednesday night’s meeting in which she described the Federal government as “increasingly frustrated” at what it sees as an increase in illegal activity.

“They will make a move,” Diamond said.

  1. Ponder z
    October 6, 2011 at 8:56 pm

    Well, this is not the Bush administration this time. No!!! Now you have the Hope and change gang. The jack booted NKVD and ACORN members of the Obama regime. The same bunch that set up Solyndra, and Gunrunner. Yeaa they know a thing or two. They know they want a piece of this action. But they only want to help you growers.

  2. Local
    October 6, 2011 at 9:46 pm

    Ponder z: you’re a fool.

  3. tra
    October 6, 2011 at 9:51 pm

    Well as fucked up as this dispensary mess is, at least we’re not in Kansas City, where, citing budgetary constraints, the county has stopped prosecuting domestic violence cases (offenders are jailed briefly, then released without charges).

    And now the Kansas City is considering doing away with their ordinance on domestic violence entirely, because the city “can’t afford” to prosecute either.

    http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2011/10/06/338461/topeka-kansas-city-council-considers-decriminalizing-domestic-violence-to-save-money/

    Now that is just sheer, howling, gibbering insanity.

  4. tra
    October 6, 2011 at 9:53 pm

    Sorry, that’s Topeka, Kansas, not Kansas City.

  5. Plain Jane
    October 6, 2011 at 10:00 pm

    That’s an outrage, Tra. But there are still people who think domestic violence, child abuse and incest are private family matters and violence against a “loved one” has always been treated as a lesser crime than violence against a stranger.

  6. skippy
    October 6, 2011 at 10:10 pm

    To note, California Watch reported:

    “The (February 2011) memorandum sets thresholds that make investigations more likely to be prosecuted. Those include distributors caught with at least 200 kilograms of marijuana, including distribution near schools, playgrounds and colleges; cultivators with gardens of at least 1,000 plants that are not on federal land and at least 500 plants on federal or tribal land or where there is significant damage; and dispensaries that sell more than 200 kilograms or 1,000 plants annually.

    200 kilograms is just under 441 pounds. That’s a lot of weed; perhaps as much as a $2 million distribution/dispensary operation for the DOJ’s threshold purposes.

    We’ll see what the U.S. attorneys from California’s four federal districts unveil in the coming days as their coordinated statewide marijuana enforcement strategy.

    (Hat tip to Anonymous for pointing out the above memorandum on the ‘No Moratorium’ thread)

  7. pot math
    October 6, 2011 at 10:40 pm

    441 lbs / year = 154 1/8 oz customers per day

  8. Walt
    October 7, 2011 at 6:47 am

    “Feds are hitting the breaks” Didn’t know you could hit breaks. Does that make them more broken?

  9. Observer
    October 7, 2011 at 7:02 am

    This is only going to drive up black market prices!

  10. longwind
    October 7, 2011 at 7:55 am

    Today the feds will roll out their whole year-long propaganda and harassment campaign in Oakland. It won’t slow until after the November elections. And like last year’s last-minute BS barrage, it will discourage people from voting for legalization.

    The result? It makes me numb and dumb to say it, but we could spend the next 40 years like we have the last 40, multiplying gray areas to make money in while policymakers and snake charmers babble.

    Oh yes, while tens of thousands more Latin Americans die, and hundreds of thousands of (unfortunately colored) North Americans are imprisoned and assimilated into the perpetual-parole industry, every year, into eternity. It’s a business plan! The ugly alternative, political leadership, turns out never to have been an option.

    Ghastly.

  11. Anonymous
    October 7, 2011 at 8:08 am

    Longwinded and full of crap. Where in South America are 10’s of thousands of people dying? WHERE? Dying from What? Did you read this in the NY Times? See it on CNN? MSNBC? WHERE?

    You just make up this crap as you go. There is no merit to anything you say when you make up these wild lies! That is Ghastly!

  12. Plain Jane
    October 7, 2011 at 8:19 am

    From the drug war, doofus. 35,000 people have been killed in Mexico in the past 4 years, over 15,000 in 2010 alone and that isn’t counting all the deaths in other Latin American countries.

  13. Plain Jane
  14. October 7, 2011 at 8:23 am

    If the Feds succeed in closing dispensaries then everyone will go back to slinging nugs on the corner and it will be the wild west.

    Maybe the Feds want the same kind of chaos here as there is in Mexico.

    have a peaceful day,
    Bill

  15. October 7, 2011 at 8:38 am

    It’s the economy, stupid.

  16. Anonymous
    October 7, 2011 at 9:02 am

    Walt! that made me laugh!

    But with the dispensaries closing does that mean black market prices will go up again? Or does that mean there will be less people buying weed so product will outweigh demand and prices will go down?

    I need to know whether or not to invest now!

  17. October 7, 2011 at 9:32 am

    It’s pretty clear that the Obama Administration has declared war on the California economy. There must be a half a million people making their living in the legal medical marijuana business around the state, when you add in all the growers, the hydro shops, the dispensaries, and the seasonal ag workers.

    have a peaceful day,
    Bill

  18. Down the Road
    October 7, 2011 at 9:43 am

    I would much rather have dispensaries in town, than the grow house, which was owned by one of the past committee members
    of the redevelopment commission, next to me. We went through
    hell. Buyers, all times of night, pit bulls, and everything that goes
    with dope dealers. We were unable to do anything about it, until
    just recently. By the way Virginia, I went to you for help when you
    were mayor. But, no, this guy was a friend. I’ll let you know when I
    think I’m even.

    Can we sue the government for not stopping the Mexican Cartel?
    Is the government anywhere around to protect us from the
    criminals?

  19. Farmer
    October 7, 2011 at 10:27 am

    The times, they are a changin’.

  20. Eric Kirk
    October 7, 2011 at 11:00 am

    If they ever actually made good on a threat to a landlord, that would trigger a Congressional debate about federal laws and enforcement, and I don’t think the DOJ really wants to go there.

  21. tra
    October 7, 2011 at 11:34 am

    Eric,

    I agree with you that the U.S. attorneys are probably going to be reluctant to start going after a lot of landlords, and the same may be true about making good on one of their threats to start suing and/or arresting city and county elected officials, staff members or local law enforcement agents.

    I think it’s unlikely that they’ll go after state or local officials, or even landlords to any great extent, but I wouldn’t say it’s outside the realm of possibility.

    I could see them trying to “make an example” out of a landlord, especially if they could plausibly make the case that the landlord’s role in the dispensary or grow was more than just a passive role.

    But if a more rabidly anti-medical-cannabis administration were to take power, I wouldn’t be all that surprised if they actually did go after one or two counties or municipalities. In that case, a city like Arcata and a county like Humboldt could appear to be rather attractive targets, simply because the Feds know we won’t have as much money and political clout to fight back with as, say, Oakland. If they were able to get a large fine and/or large judgement against a city like Arcata or a county like Humboldt, they might be able to leverage that precedent as a more-credible threat against some of the larger cities and counties.

    The bottom line is that if the Feds choose to follow through on any of these threats, decentralization and minimal government involvement may turn out to be a safer way to go, as opposed to a “target rich” centralized, bureauratized system such as now in place in Arcata (and underway in Eureka).

  22. tra
    October 7, 2011 at 11:38 am

    But either way, the medical cannabis genie ain’t gonna fit back in that old prohibition bottle. They try to force it in, that old bottle might shatter. And they know this.

  23. High Finance
    October 7, 2011 at 11:51 am

    Decent law abiding folks all over California are applauding the crackdown.

    We wish it was harsher and much, much sooner.

  24. October 7, 2011 at 11:55 am

    True lovers of freedom are weeping all over California.

    It is time to seriously consider indepenence from the empire.

    have a peaceful day,
    Bill

  25. October 7, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    HiFi 11:51

    The drug-war has been a failure for decades now,
    do you not welcome a change?

  26. Walt
    October 7, 2011 at 12:01 pm

    Hi Fi sez: Hey, I know, let’s put em ALL in prison, warehouse owners, growers, smokers, city council members! Then, since they’ll all end up in The Pink House, we’ll build ANOTHER Pink House on the Balloon Tract! I think he’s on (to) something!

  27. October 7, 2011 at 12:35 pm

    If we put ‘them’ all in prison,
    who’ll shop at Walmart?

  28. High Finance
    October 7, 2011 at 12:47 pm

    I do not welcome “change” for changes sake George.

    The drug war has caused a lot of problems but not fighting the scourge of drugs would cause even more.

  29. Not A Native
    October 7, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    i read a quote somewhere by a DOJ person who said they are mainly concerned about dispensaries that are fronts for diverting medical pot to the black market and out of state and they thought that was widely occuring. That’s consistent with previous policy statements.

    Personally, I don’t think an ill person has any legal concerns if she’s either growing only for her own use or is part of a collective that recoups only its material costs and whose members personally use the provided pot.

    Question is: what fraction of people and collectives comply with the pot-for-patients intent of 215, not pot-for-profit?

  30. Me
    October 7, 2011 at 1:27 pm

    highboldtage says:
    October 7, 2011 at 9:32 am
    It’s pretty clear that the Obama Administration has declared war on the California economy. There must be a half a million people making their living in the legal medical marijuana business around the state, when you add in all the growers, the hydro shops, the dispensaries, and the seasonal ag workers.

    The problem is there is no “legal medical marijuana business” Everybody knew all along that Federal law trumps state law.

    I am fine with medical marijuana but you have to admit the real reason for the explosion of dispensaries was, and is, profit.

  31. SmokeMonster
    October 7, 2011 at 1:51 pm

    Its funny I always assumed high finance was a play on words for his grow op.

    When do you want to deal with the “scourge” affiliated with alcohol hi-fi?

  32. Carrie Nation
    October 7, 2011 at 1:57 pm

    This is great news! Shut down all of the dispensaries, bust some of the BIG growers and hopefully our price per pound will rise and the economy will improve. HiFi and Ponderz have a lot more in common with most growers than they think!

  33. anonymous
    October 7, 2011 at 3:11 pm

    Anyone watch Prohibition on PBS this week? Any lessons to be learned? All drugs are easily available to anyone who wants ’em and will continue to be despite the billions spent on this wasteful drug war over the decades. Government cannot legislate morality.
    Legalize them all. Treatment, not jail is the answer. No ODs on pot ever yet cigarettes which kill 450,000 are still legal? Doesn’t make sense to me.

  34. anonymous
    October 7, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    that would be 450,00 ANNUALLY!!

  35. WhatNow
    October 7, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    “High Finance says:
    October 7, 2011 at 11:51 am
    ‘Decent law abiding folks all over California are applauding the crackdown.

    “We wish it was harsher and much, much sooner.””

    Describing yourself as “decent” is in itself an indecency,”MighThai”.

  36. October 7, 2011 at 4:47 pm

    Lets all remember that our local law enforcement must still follow California law, so unless your “medical garden” is larger that 1000 plants, and you have less than 200 kilograms of pot, and you are not running a storefront 1000 feet from a school, you should probably be ok.

  37. October 7, 2011 at 4:58 pm

    We can build prisons OR
    We can build universities.
    Ironically, we’ll fill either.

    but, what we build says it all,
    for the children.

    If we follow HiFi we’ll need to appropriate education
    monies to house tokers, thirty years of this so far,
    can you dig any deeper HiFi?

  38. pot math
    October 7, 2011 at 6:19 pm

    700k Californians buying 1/8 oz 100 times per year = 546k lbs

  39. Anonymous
    October 7, 2011 at 10:49 pm

    I like pot math :)

  40. Bolithio
    October 8, 2011 at 8:46 am

    Lets all remember that our local law enforcement must still follow California law, so unless your “medical garden” is larger that 1000 plants, and you have less than 200 kilograms of pot, and you are not running a storefront 1000 feet from a school, you should probably be ok.

    Im i the only one who thinks that is fing crazy? Im pro pot and all but, wow….

  41. pot math
    October 8, 2011 at 9:51 am

    200kg = 0.08% annual mmj demand

  42. October 8, 2011 at 10:26 am

    This action is to give power to the local fascists who are more loyal to a distant government, than they are to their own neighborhood and state. Now they can use this to be the enforcer for the feds.
    With Citizen’s United in place, this election will signal the end of any semblance of a free and open democracy. It’s basically over. You watch, every organization that uses that Socialist word: “Public” will be dismantled and sold off to the highest (lowest?) bidder.
    All it took to take over the United States was a corrupt supreme court. Hitler would be so proud. Stalin would be envious. Musollinni (?) wished he could accomplish something like this. Franco could only dream of it….
    There’s been a coup. and the “Jews for Hitler” so called: “conservatives” have made it all possible.
    My card:
    Have Pitchfork; will travel.

  43. October 8, 2011 at 10:28 am

    Ooops!
    Try again……

    This action is to give power to the local fascists who are more loyal to a distant government, than they are to their own neighborhood and state. Now they can use this to be the enforcer for the feds.
    With Citizen’s United in place, this election will signal the end of any semblance of a free and open democracy. It’s basically over. You watch, every organization that uses that Socialist word: “Public” will be dismantled and sold off to the highest (lowest?) bidder.
    All it took to take over the United States was a corrupt supreme court. Hitler would be so proud. Stalin would be envious. Musollinni (?) wished he could accomplish something like this. Franco could only dream of it….
    There’s been a coup. and the “Jews for Hitler” so called: “conservatives” have made it all possible.
    My card:
    Have Pitchfork; will travel.

  44. dwayne montane
    October 8, 2011 at 11:56 am

    It’s odd how a story about the feds likely to bust dispensaries draws comparisons to Hitler, Stalin and Mussolini. Movie Dad, don’t you think you might be overreacting a bit? I agree with the person who earlier said this might actually improve our economy and not deter it. The only people who should worry are the owners of the dispensaries and their property owners. Who are the people who actually go to these dispensaries and pay those prices? I can understand in LA or SF, but in Humboldt?

  45. Jay Toker
    October 8, 2011 at 12:08 pm

    Improving our economy is not a good excuse for throwing people in prison for a non-crime.

    If that is the way we think there is no difference between us and Haliburton or Lockheed.

    The Humboldt pot economy will survive legalization.

  46. Anonymous
    October 8, 2011 at 12:57 pm

    I am tickled pink. Clean up humboldt and take it back from the greedy growers!

  47. longwind
    October 8, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    I’m down with Jay Toker.

    12:57, your best move against greedy growers is to legalize it with no ifs, ands or buts. Anything else is price support, and they know it. Why don’t you?

    ps, thanks PJ for the fast facts yesterday morning on incarceration and death directly attributed to the War on Cheap Pot across our hemisphere. It’s sick beyond words how some people say what kills and imprisons millions of others is good for us. No it isn’t. It isn’t good for anyone.

  48. Anonymous
    October 8, 2011 at 4:14 pm

    Hey longwind. 12:57 here. I voted yes to legalize it. It is the greedy dopers here in arcata and Sohum who voted 80 percent to keep it illegal. So until it is legalized I say “way to go feds.”

  49. Walt
    October 8, 2011 at 4:38 pm

    Laws grind the poor and rich men rule the law.
    —Oliver Goldsmith

  50. Anonymous
    October 8, 2011 at 4:47 pm

    Walt. What are you some whacked out anarchist?

  51. Anonymous
    October 8, 2011 at 5:13 pm

    Greedy dopers indeed. Did you see the research on their carbon footprint? No excuse for it.

  52. Anonymous
    October 8, 2011 at 5:23 pm

    If we put ‘them’ all in prison,
    who’ll WORK at Walmart?

  53. Anonymous
    October 8, 2011 at 5:51 pm

    I could care less who works at walmart. As long as our land and housing stops getting exploited and people pay their fair share. The dope growers are making Hurwitz look like a saint and I am sick of this.

  54. SmokeMonster
    October 8, 2011 at 6:49 pm

    Take back Humboldt…Lmfao

    Humboldt has been based on marijuana since there was sustainable commercial fishing,but most of you talking about greedy growers dont remember,because you weren’t here.

    Go spend some time in the numerous hydro stores,you see people from ALL walks of life shopping. Go out in the hills you see the same,from BLM rangers(federal) with gardens on their property to 70 year old rednecks that have been growing for years. People not involved in the industry are in the minority in Humboldt county and are known not to be trusted. You won’t win, you knew or should have known before you moved here. Its like moving to LA and complaining about strip malls while thinking I could rid the area of them

  55. Anonymous
    October 8, 2011 at 7:15 pm

    I didn’t move here dude and you suck. So do all the polluting, resource raping, tax evading growers.

  56. Bolithio
    October 8, 2011 at 8:50 pm

    The problem cant be “greedy” growers. If there are greedy growers, and they had to stop growing, they would still be greedy. And who cares. No law can prevent greed.

    The tax evasion thing is worth talking about though. With out a doubt the condition of roads in areas – where the primary use is cultivation – are the worst in the county. The portions of these roads that are public or county are maintained by their respective agency, with predictably thin budgets. Private roads may have road associations, but the roll-your-eyes at type growers live on cluster fuck mountain. Whats the mitigation for un-drained roads and unstable surfaces? You guessed it: Bigger Tires!!!

    Driven the Blocksburg road lately? Pot math; how many fuel, soil, and water trucks drive that road weekly? How much do those loads weigh? The answer is a shit-ton. Why should non-growers have to pay for the road they destroyed?

    I dont think all or even most growers are greedy. But many of them are not paying their fair share of the pollution burden they cause. Its not their fault really, but the greediest certainly have found ways to exploit the situation to the max.

    I support some sort of revenue recovery for all the fucked up roads, silty creeks, and crime pot growing brings to our community.

  57. pot math
    October 8, 2011 at 11:11 pm

    Bolthio

    Road wear ∝ load^4

    wear from 1 5 ton load = wear from 625 1 ton loads

  58. Dan
    October 9, 2011 at 6:32 am

    Pot Math am I reading that right?

    one five-ton load equals the wear of
    625 one-ton loads?

  59. Anonymous
    October 9, 2011 at 8:46 am

    How about the ripoff with electricity? Lifeline rates as well as the carbon footprint.

    Greed and sloth. Again not paying their fair share.

  60. tra
    October 9, 2011 at 9:03 am

    “How about the ripofff with electricity? Lifeline rates…”

    There’s an article about that in today’s Times-Standard:

    http://www.times-standard.com/localnews/ci_19075768

  61. pot math
    October 9, 2011 at 9:42 am

    Dan

    Correct. Where X load = 1Y road wear, 2X load = 16Y road wear.

  62. pot math
    October 9, 2011 at 9:46 am

    1 20 ton truck causes road wear of 160,000 commuter cars.

  63. pot math
    October 9, 2011 at 9:58 am

    Could be wrong.

  64. pot math
    October 9, 2011 at 10:02 am
  65. High Finance
    October 10, 2011 at 3:11 pm

    Yes, you could be wrong pot math.

    160,000 commuter cars will weigh something like 240 thousand tons. Those same cars would be driving around 1.1 BILLION miles a year.

    No way can they only cause the damage of one lonely 20 ton truck driving 20,000 miles a year.

    240,000 tons going 1.1 billion miles is 268 trillion pound/miles by the cars. That poor old truck is only 20 tons going 20,000 miles or 400,000 pound/miles.

    Byt hey, you’re good enough for blog work !

  66. pot math
    October 10, 2011 at 5:32 pm

    Road wear of 20 ton truck driving one mile = road wear of 160,000 cars driving the same mile

    One 20-ton truck driving over same one mile 20,000 times causes the road wear of one-ton cars driving same one mile 3.2 billion times. One car lifetime (250,000 miles) = 1.56 20-ton truck miles of road wear.

  67. pot math
    October 10, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    “there is no way”… truck scales are unfair?

  68. Not A Native
    October 10, 2011 at 6:02 pm

    Gee, passenger cars had gone a zillion times on my driveway and it was in good shape. But after one cement truck used it, its cracked in several places. Who’d have thunk it? Certainly not ignoramouses like Hi Fi.

  69. October 10, 2011 at 6:54 pm

    High Finance,

    Did you by any chance surf over to the link provided so thoughtfully by pot math?

    quote:

    “1.The relationship between axle weight and inflicted pavement damage is not linear but exponential. For instance, a 44.4 kN (10,000 lbs) single axle needs to be applied to a pavement structure more than 12 times to inflict the same damage caused by one repetition of an 80 kN (18,000 lbs) single axle. Similarly, a 97.8 kN (22,000 lbs) single axle needs to be repeated less than half the number of times of an 80 kN (18,000 lbs) single axle to have an equivalent effect.
    An 80 kN (18,000 lbs) single axle does over 3,000 times more damage to a pavement than an 8.9 kN (2,000 lbs) single axle (1.000/0.0003 ˜ 3,333).
    A 133.3 kN (30,000 lbs) single axle does about 67 times more damage than a 44.4 kN (10,000 lbs) single axle (7.9/0.118 ˜ 67).
    A 133.3 kN (30,000 lb) single axle does about 11 times more damage than a 133.3 kN (30,000 lb) tandem axle (7.9/0.703 ˜ 11).
    Heavy trucks and buses are responsible for a majority of pavement damage. Considering that a typical automobile weighs between 2,000 and 7,000 lbs (curb weight), even a fully loaded large passenger van will only generate about 0.003 ESALs while a fully loaded tractor-semi trailer can generate up to about 3 ESALs (depending upon pavement type, structure and terminal serviceability). ”

    Do you actually work in management or is “high finance” just a happy little internet joke for you?

    have a peaceful day,
    Bill

  70. pot math
    October 10, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    Bill

    That is more accurate than billions. Road wear of 30,000 lb single axle = 201,000 2,000 lb single axle.

    Loaded trucks country roads = road damage.

  71. skippy
    October 10, 2011 at 10:24 pm

    Road wear and tear? Consider marijuana energy wear and tear.

    The carbon footprint of indoor grows is enormous, Kym Kemp’s Redheaded Blackbelt reports today. Can efficient grows really discount marijuana by 25%? Can medical dispensaries truly be more popular than Starbucks in sunny California?

    The article and answers are at Redheaded Blackbelt: Holy Smokes!

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