Category Archives: Finance

On The Money; What Middle-Class?

On The Money

Economics for the 99%

What Middle-Class?

 middle class

If you took a drink every time you heard a politician say “middle-class”, you could have stayed smashed since last January. Isn’t it strange that here in the US, where “Marxism” “communism” or even “socialism” have become foul language, the Marxist concept of an expanding middle-class remains hugely popular. So much so, that every politician in America constantly promises to help grow the middle-class.

drinking contest

For a while in the US, we had a real middle-class. Strong labor unions organized workers and wages rose for workers as a result. Thanks to unions like the Teamsters, the AFL-CIO and the UAW, working people enjoyed home-ownership and considerable creature comforts. This was the age of Levittown houses and populux consumerism, and a brand new vision of widespread middle-class affluence that came to be known as the American Dream.

american_dream

Just like Marx predicted, workers organized, took control of the means of production, demanded higher wages, and the middle-class was born. And, for a while, it persisted, until capitalists found plenty of cheap, unorganized labor in China. Today, that middle-class has mostly retired. Thirty years of union-busting, outsourcing, downsizing, and wage stagnation have exacted a huge toll on the middle-class. In fact, you’d hardly recognize it today.

chinese_labor

Today, instead of an economy based on manufacturing, we have a service based economy brimming with low-wage, high-stress customer-service jobs. Facing lower wages (the “new normal”), higher housing, food, energy and health-care costs, the standard of living for most American workers has plunged precipitously in the last twenty years. Strangely, we still think of ourselves as middle-class.

MiddleClassPoll

Hey, our parents were middle-class, doesn’t that automatically make us middle-class too? Like it was genetic or something, but no, you are not middle-class anymore. The fact that you have three roommates helping to pay the rent should clue you in to that. The middle-class has vanished.

middle-class stinking

In the crater left by the imploding middle-class, we find the bourgeois. That is, the landlords, lawyers, cops, and businessmen, the people who most directly serve, and emulate the super-rich, the ones who already had money before the middle-class was born. These people are happy to be rid of the riffraff, and glad to have a whole new underclass of people to exploit.

landlord wannabe

That’s why you hear politicians talk so much about “the middle-class”. They know that the term only really applies to retirees from that bygone era, and their bourgeois, landlord/cop/lawyer/businessman supporters whose asses they already kiss. They know that a lot of people, who do not own property, or stocks, or investment income, but instead work for a living, at low wages, still identify with the middle-class, even though they got kicked out of the club decades ago.

middle class

When politicians promise to help the middle-class, they don’t mean that they will help you become middle-class. They mean that they will hold you down so the bourgeois can fuck you over. If you don’t like this old French term, call them the gentry, or the property owning class, or better yet, the landlords. Would you vote for a candidate who promised to help landlords? How about a candidate who promised to punish landlords? Now we’re talking, am I right?

landlord gets his

We have good reason to despise landlords, as we do cops, lawyers prisons and politicians, and they have all earned our contempt. Don’t dress them up in picket-fence-leave-it-to-beaver imagery, and then pretend like you live there too. The middle-class, Marxism, and the Berlin Wall all crumbled to dust a long time ago. It’s time to face facts, and call a spade a spade. The middle-class is dead, or at least retired, and the bourgeois are not on your side, and the politicians who promise to help them are not your friends. There’s a view of the middle-class that’s On The money.

american-dream


On The Money; An All-Cut Solution to the Budget Impasse

On The Money;

Economics for the 99%

An All-Cut Solution to the Budget Impasse

While a strong consensus exists among the American people to tax the rich, the rich themselves have enough political clout to insure that they won’t pay any more in taxes, unless they also see drastic cuts to the social safety net, already the weakest in the developed world. So really, what’s the point?

If all of our tax dollars will go to pay for more cops, prisons, guards, bombs, soldiers, drones and high-tech surveillance equipment, while it leaves millions of Americans homeless and out in the cold, why bother? Why throw good money after bad? I say it’s time to cut our losses, cut the crap, and cut to the chase.

Yes, it’s time to cut to the bone, through the bone, the spinal column, the carotid arteries and the windpipe, and the time to do it is NOW!!! There’s never been a better time, and no one has ever deserved it more. It’s time to AXE THE RICH!!

Really, what have the rich ever done for you? If you work for them, you know those jobs suck, and that they will work you to death, and destroy the whole world just to take a little more for themselves. It’s time to rid the world of this sickness called greed, and to do it, we must cull the herd. We must exterminate those already terminally infected with this pathogen so they don’t infect others, and this bloodletting will help inoculate the rest of the population.

As long as we live in a culture that protects, rewards, and celebrates greed, we live in a culture bent on ecocide. Every sustainable culture on Earth punishes greed, and every culture that fails to do so, also fails as a culture, and fails to survive. If you examine the cultures around the world that have endured for more than, say, 40,000 years, without depleting their resource base, you will find egalitarian societies that maintain their equality by punishing greed.

Sustainable tribal cultures treat greed as a childish tendency, to be scorned. Those who refuse to grow out of their childish selfishness are driven out of the tribe, or killed, though this is rare, because the benefits of living in an egalitarian society, far out-weigh any benefits one can achieve living alone with their avarice.

That is how sustainable cultures deal with greed. They recognize that violence is a natural part of life, and while they do not undertake it lightly, they do not shy away from it when violence becomes necessary. For them, violence is sometimes necessary to feed and clothe themselves and to preserve their culture and way of life. Sustainable cultures embrace and celebrate this kind of violence, but they do not tolerate greed. If we wish to live sustainably on this planet, we should emulate the people who do it best, and have been doing it the longest.

We cannot afford to continue to coddle, cultivate and incubate the most virulent disease to ever afflict humanity. We must wipe greed off of the face of the Earth, and we need to do it now. We can learn to live differently, but we must first stop the spread of this plague. If we love our children, and want a better future for them, we must not shrink from this responsibility.

That, my friends, is a plan to solve our budget crisis, entirely with cuts, that’s On The Money.


On The Money; What’s Weird About Health Care in America

On The Money

Economics for the 99%

What’s Weird About Health Care in America

 

I don’t read the New York Times because New Yorkers have all lost their minds. If “the Gray Lady” ever published an above the fold headline proclaiming “We’re Live in a Cockroach Infested, Piss Drenched, Rat Maze and We Fuck the World Over by Remote Control, for What? Spiderman?!?” I might believe New Yorkers had finally come to their senses, but I don’t see that happening any time soon.

I don’t watch Fox News, or Comedy Central. I’ve seen Bill O’Reilly and Steve Colbert. One’s a little scarier and ones a little funnier, but it’s all the same idiocy, and that gets depressing, so I don’t bother with them. I don’t look at The Economist, The Wall St. Journal or Barron’s, because I figure that as long as they’ve got something to write about, we’re all doomed.

However, I do think it important to stay informed about the world around me, so I always make a point of reading Chuck Sheppard’s News of the Weird, and so should you. If you had read News of the Weird this month, you would have read the following story, which tells you everything you need to know about health-care costs in America. The following paragraph appeared in News of the Weird this month, under the heading:

Leading Economic Indicators

Scorpion anti-venom, made in Mexico, sells in Mexico, for about $100 a dose, but for a while over the past year, the going rate in the emergency room of the Chandler (Arizona) Regional Medical Center was $39,652 a dose, charged to Marci Edmonds, who was stung while opening a box of air-conditioner filters. She received two doses by IV and was released after three hours, to later find a co-pay bill of $25,537 awaiting her (with her Humana plan picking up $57,509), according to the Arizona Republic newspaper. The Republic found that Arizona hospitals routinely retail scorpion anti-venom for between $7,900 and $12,467 per dose – except for Chandler. Following the newspapers report, Chandler decided to re-price the anti-venom at $8,000 a dose, thus eating a $31,652 “loss.”

This was no typo or computer error. That was the real price Chandler had set for a dose of scorpion anti-venom in their ER. You’ll notice that Humana didn’t bat an eyelash about paying almost $60,000 for a three-hour hospital stay. They were quite happy to simply pass those costs on to you, in the form of higher premiums. It was only after The Arizona Republic reported the story, that the Chandler Regional Medical Center reduced its price for a dose of scorpion anti-venom to the lower end of the range of astronomically high prices charged by other Arizona hospitals.

Just for reference, a pound of marijuana also sells for about $100 in Mexico, but only retails for about $1,000 in Arizona. That’s because, compared to hospitals and insurance companies, Mexican drug cartels are run by good honest businessmen.

For the same price as her three hour IV drip in the ER, Marci could have spent the whole night in a luxury suite in a Las Vegas resort hotel, and enjoyed the services of sixteen Elliot Spitzer class, $5,000 a trick prostitutes, with enough money left over to cover the mini-bar bill and cab fare home.

Instead, she had the misfortune of being stung by a scorpion in a rural part of Arizona, where they have a lot of scorpions, but only one hospital, and she lives in a country where the whole health care system is set up to fuck you the hardest when you are the most vulnerable.

Scorpions only sting in self-defense, but hospital administrators and insurance executives intend to eat you for dinner. There’s a view of Health Care in America that’s On The Money


On The Money; Soaring Over the Fiscal Cliff

On The Money;

Economics for the 99%

Soaring Over the Fiscal Cliff

Here we go again. Last year we hit “the debt ceiling” this year we go over “the fiscal cliff”. It’s like Congress has devolved into a game of Super Mario Cart, and any minute we’re going to slip on that banana peel called “entitlement reform” and go careening out-of-control. It’s ridiculous. There’s no cliff, there’s no ceiling and there’s no such thing as “the debt crisis”.

Don’t get me wrong. We have crisis. We have plenty of real crises that demand our immediate attention. Here’s a short list:

Global Climate Change

Global Ecosystem collapse

Human Overpopulation

Loss of Biological Diversity

Loss of Cultural Diversity

Nuclear Proliferation/Waste

Homelessness/Poverty

Out-of-Control Health Care Costs

Call me when you get a handle on those, will ya. I mean, if you got nothing better to do, put your attention where it might do some good.

Seriously folks, we didn’t mind sailing right past the tipping point on global warming. We barely blinked when human population surpassed 7 billion, and over a hundred species of living creature disappear off of the face of the Earth every single day without any acknowledgment whatsoever.

It’s not like these crises don’t have real implications for us, our future, and our kids future. Life will get harder. The crises they face will be greater. Their standard of living will suffer and we will leave them a much less beautiful and more poisonous world.

And it’s not like things are so much better for us because we ignore these real crisis. Wages continue to decline, housing costs continue to rise, and health-care costs go through the roof because how we live makes us sick. We’re already killing ourselves, to kill the planet to make the greediest one-tenth of 1% of our population even more obscenely rich, but that doesn’t bother us. No, the real crisis, they expect us to believe, is that someday… someday, China might not loan the Federal Government enough money to fight another stupidly adventurous, unpopular foreign war, unless we chop what’s left of our social safety net, to bits, now. Either that, or we could tax the rich, but that seems to be a non-starter, unless we cut the safety net too.

Either way, Congress set a deadline, and unless we meet that deadline, a lot of people will lose their jobs, a lot of people will lose their benefits, and everyone else’s taxes will go up, and since none of those people are congress-people, there’s not much chance that Congress will meet that deadline.

Unless…

Obama can put together a “Grand Bargain”. Watch out for this “Grand Bargain”, where the rich pay a little bit more in taxes, they stick an apple in the mouth of the middle-class, and the poor and the young take a spit up the ass.

It’ll be just like Obamacare. It’ll take a complete ripoff, and make it mandatory. Obamacare didn’t reign in health-care costs, Obamacare just fed the healthy and the young to the insurance industry sharks. When politicians talk about serving the American people, that’s what they mean. Politicians serve us to the 1% for dinner, and that’s what this imaginary “fiscal cliff” is all about.

So forget about it. Forget about the “fiscal cliff”. Do you own any Treasury bonds? Then what are you worried about. If someone is buying you drinks, what do you care about their credit rating, and if they’re not buying you drinks, why hang out with them. If government isn’t doing anything good, why throw good money after bad.

Don’t worry about burdening your kids with a huge national debt. You’ve already stuck them with enough real problems, and sold them so far down the river that you’d better hope they grow up as stupid and gullible as their parents, or else you are going to have a lot of explaining to do. There’s a view of the “fiscal cliff” that’s On The Money.


The Most Important Holiday Blog Post in the World

This Thanksgiving, I’m thankful for the abundance that I have enjoyed this past year, but I am aware that many in this world go without. Thanksgiving also harkens in the Christmas shopping season, and many of you will spend a lot of money on stupid gifts no one really wants or needs. This Thanksgiving, I’m asking my readers to cut me a slice of that pie by supporting this important cause.

The Most Important Holiday Blog Post in the World

 

With the holidays rapidly approaching, a lot of us will be looking for gifts for people we don’t really like that much. If you’ve managed to avoid them all year, a gift is the perfect way to say, “Even though I hate your guts, I really can’t afford to have you talking shit about me.” This Holiday season, I offer you the perfect gift for people who you’d like to think well of you, but whom you don’t really know or like well enough to actually get them anything.

For these special people, a gift card from Helper International tells the recipient that you care more about some random, anonymous kids than you do about them. Helper makes sure that your money only helps cute, happy looking, photogenic kids, and we use the money you donate to give them cute, photogenic animals.

Your chosen recipient will receive a card with a beautiful color photograph so packed with cuteness and “Awwww”, that they will hate themselves, for being pissed that you didn’t really get them anything. Really, isn’t that what giving is all about, the feelings it inspires?

Sure, its awfully expensive for a greeting card, but you and your recipient will both know, that the kid in the picture really got to keep that cute little animal, gave it a name, took care of it, and bonded with it emotionally, before his parents slaughtered it and served it for dinner. That’s the kind of emotional enigma that makes the holidays so special.

Here at Helper International, our mission is simple, we use your donations to give highly prolific, and nutritious, live snails, to exceptionally cute children. Then we photograph the happy kids with their snails, print the photos on gift cards and send the cards to your specified recipient. That’s all there is to it.

Does it help? Sure it does. It helps us unload a bunch of snails, and puts money in our pockets. I can’t think of a more important cause than that, can you? You, and your chosen recipient get to share that “awwww” moment during the holidays, and some kid gets a snail. It’s a win win win deal for everybody.

So, please, give them the most important gift you can give. Give the gift of Escargot this holiday season. Help Helper International make the snail shepherding dreams of adorable children everywhere a reality. Only you can make make this miracle happen. No child should ever be denied the this exquisite delicacy and every child should have the opportunity to get to know the delightful little creatures that produce it in abundance.

Send your generous donations to Helper International, P.O. Box 2301, Redway, CA 95560 and make checks payable to John Hardin.  You’ll be glad you did, and so will I.  Thank you, for you support!


Oh Joy, Another F*cking Election

Oh Joy, Another F*cking Election

 

Thus far, I haven’t said anything about this upcoming presidential election, and frankly, I don’t see much point, …of the election, or of commenting about it. I did actually cast a ballot, primarily to honor the hard work of grassroots organizers who put Prop. 37 on the ballot. I think that one deserves to pass, so I voted for it.

As far as the presidential race goes, I cast my vote for Roseanne Barre, not that I think she has a chance, or that she would do any good even if she somehow managed to win. I voted for Roseanne because she’s funny. Funny counts in my book! Don’t tell me about your leadership, your grand plan, your first 100 days or any of that BS. If you expect me to listen to you, you’d better make it funny.

If you can make it funny, I don’t even care if you lie to me, just don’t expect me believe you when you tell me that a strong third party, or anything else for that matter, will save democracy, and turn this country around. Not Jill Stein, not Rocky Anderson, not Roseanne Barre, no one is going to turn this country around. Putting a new captain on the Titanic will not help it change course. We’ve already hit the iceberg, and this nation is headed straight for the bottom of the ocean.

The longer we pretend that we can solve real problems with elections, the worse all of those problems become. Most of the real problems we face as a nation, stem from, and would not exist without, the centralized national government. We wouldn’t have a massive military, which would severely limit the expansion of global capital which would in turn, reign in environmental degradation, inequality, homelessness and poverty. Our nation exists to create, maintain and exacerbate those problems, and to prevent anyone from taking effective action to stop them. So, stop pretending that we can turn this killing machine into something good, just by casting a ballot.

Of course, it might take a while to hit bottom, mainly because so many people continue to invest in “the system”. I have a hard time respecting anyone born after WWII who invests in “the system”. We grew up knowing about DDT and Silent Spring. We saw photographs of the Earth from space. We saw the “Crying Indian Commercial”.

We remember Vietnam, the King/X/Kennedy assassinations, Wounded Knee, Kent State and Watergate. We dropped acid. We heard Timothy Leary tell us to “turn on, tune in, and drop out” and for a brief moment, we understood what he meant, and knew he was right.

All of that happened before we turned 21, and most of it happened before we were 12. Today, no one in the entire work force, from the President of the U.S. on down, has any excuse for believing in the system. We knew about the corruption, lies and propaganda. We knew it killed innocent people indiscriminately, and we saw how it treated the planet. We knew. We knew what we were getting into. We didn’t know better, I’ll grant you that, but we knew. We knew that what we knew, was rotten to the core.

Anyone of average intelligence or above should have put two and two together by the time they reached the age that they started making their own decisions. If you were too dimwitted, to figure it out, or too deep in denial to face it, you have a pitiable brain dysfunction. These feeble-minded people are not really capable of making decisions for themselves, let alone the rest of us.

Others however, saw the corruption, the oppression, the violence and the destruction, held their nose, and dove in, feeding the system with their efforts, talent and time. They indulge themselves in consumer goods, and fill their lives with shiny hi-tech distractions. These people suck!

It’s these people, these cynical cowards who know that “the system” is killing the planet, but hope it lasts long enough to indulge their pathetic middle-class expectations, who pretend that voting matters. They make-believe that things will get better if they just vote for the right person. Then, they get right back to work building attack helicopters, mining uranium, or selling us crap we don’t need. Speaking of crap we don’t need, lets add democracy, the federal government, and the cynical cowards who still pretend that democracy might work someday, to the list.


Dirtbags, Miscreants, Undesirables and Low-Lifes pt.2

Dope Yuppies Suck

 

The L.A. Times recently ran a story about Humboldt County and the marijuana industry here, and the story echoed a common myth about this area that really deserves some analysis. You will hear this myth often repeated on KMUD, and reflected in Kym Kemp’s blog Redheaded Blackbelt. They both do their best to disseminate propaganda for the marijuana industry, and between them they’ve done a pretty good job of putting their spin on things. After all, the marijuana industry is still a pretty secretive business, and news gathering has become a relatively passive activity these days, so it’s not surprising that this myth gets so much traction in the press, but it’s about time someone took a closer look at it.

So, here’s the myth: The people who moved to Southern Humboldt in the late 70’s and early 80’s, like to paint themselves as the “back to the land” movement. They moved here to escape Babylon, and built little cabins, grew organic veggies, made arts and crafts, and raised a family. They grew just enough marijuana to pay their taxes, support their favorite non-profit, and put a pair of used tires on their old truck.

On the other hand, the myth continues, if you moved here during the 90’s or, god forbid, this century, you’re only here for the money. It’s these “newcomers” who brought in the big diesel generators, and started these giant industrial mega-grows. It’s these “newcomers” who spill diesel fuel in the creeks, pump our rivers dry, and spread rat poison all over. It’s the “newcomers” who drive like maniacs on our roads, bring hard drugs into our community, and dump trash in the river.

You see, according to this myth, it’s only the people who’ve been here 30 years, not the people whose families have been here a hundred years, or the people whose ancestors have been here for thousands of years, who form the true “community” around here. If you’ve been here longer than them, you are a redneck, if you’ve arrived since them, you are a carpetbagger, but if you’ve been here for 30 years, no longer, and no shorter, you are part of the twelfth tribe of Israel. The myth tells us that the people who’ve been here 30 years, take impeccable care of their land, manage it wisely, and use the money they make to fight injustice all over the world. Don’t they sound like awesome people?

The truth is a very different story:

Back in the 70’s and 80’s, most of the people around here bought their land from a guy named Bob McKee. They all love Bob because he would buy large tracts of logged over timber land, dirt cheap, and then break them up into parcels small enough that pretty much anyone who wanted one could afford one.

You could never make a living logging these small parcels, and there weren’t any jobs, to speak of, anywhere in the vicinity, so this low priced land became attractive to artists, who don’t have to worry so much about their commute, but also don’t make much money. At one time Humboldt County had more artists per-capita, than any county in California. That’s why Summer Arts Fest is older than The Mateel. The artists in SoHum needed that outlet, more than they needed a place to party. That was 37 years ago.

Thirty years ago, Ronald Reagan disrupted the flow of marijuana from South America and Mexico, and very suddenly, people started buying up those cheap parcels, specifically to grow marijuana. Bob McKee got rich, and all of a sudden, almost anyone with a green thumb, and bit of chutzpah, could make a living from the privacy that these forested mountains provide.

So, these people who moved here 30 years ago, all moved here to grow pot. They bought cheap, logged over timber land, built homes with outhouses without permits, diverted streams, and grew marijuana illegally to make money. They made pretty good money growing pot, so they started buying up the parcels around them. Their drug-dealing friends in the city, who came up here for the lavish parties these folks threw, started buying parcels as well.

Some of these people were greedier than others, some of them were more competent than others, but they all partied a lot. They brought hard drugs like heroin, cocaine and meth, which have remained epidemic ever since.

They drove like maniacs, like their kids do today, and they made huge messes up in the hills. They buried piles of car batteries. They changed their oil in their driveway, letting the spent oil seep into the ground, and they abandoned thousands of vehicles all over the hillsides of Southern Humboldt, and that was just the beginning.

 

People who’ve owned their property since the eighties don’t really need much income anymore to cover the basics. They paid their land off decades ago, and thanks to proposition 13, many still pay less than a thousand dollars a year in property tax, at least on the parcel they actually live on.

For most of them, however, the basics were not enough. They like to party. They want to go to a dozen festivals every summer, winter in Hawaii, ride around on quads, watch movies on their big screen TVs, and if their local non-profits can pour beer, they want to support them too. You see, they just want regular “middle-class” stuff, and marijuana provides that for them, but it gets to be a chore.

Growing all of that marijuana starts to feel like work. So what do you do if you own a few parcels of land, and you want the income from all of them, but you don’t actually want to do the work of growing the marijuana? You want to hire people, but you don’t really want them show up at your place and punch a time-clock, and you really don’t want to cut them a check every week. You want them to grow pot for you, sell it, and give you the money, and you want some insulation from the risky side of the business. Here’s what you do.

You “sell” them a turnkey business. Here’s how this works. You find an up and coming drug dealer, who’s already moving a lot of weed for you. You teach him how to grow, introduce him to your clone supplier, and help him set up his generator, pump, lights and fans. You offer to “sell” him one of your SoHum parcels for a price based on the expected profits from the weed grown there in the next ten years. You draw up a land contract, and you “loan” him, the money that you expect to be payed for your share of the weed. Then you turn the operation over to him.

You see, you “sold” that parcel, that you originally traded a motorcycle for, for $250,000, to a 28 year old guy with no job, and $50,000 in small bills. There’s now a big ugly diesel scene and a giant, water sucking industrial mega-grow on it. You get all of the profits, and some drug dealing kid from the city takes all of the risk and does all of the work. He’s in possession of the land, should the cops ever raid it, so you can deny any knowledge of what goes on there, and you can legally repossess it, if he ever fails to make the payments.

Not that long ago real estate agents around here sold land, generators and lights together as a package, and advertized them in local papers. For decades now, all of the land sold around here, sells at a price based on the value of the marijuana that can be grown there, and the county happily appraises this land at the inflated prices.

So, if you moved here recently, besides paying through the nose for your land, you likely pay three times what your neighbor pays in property tax. You still can’t make a living from the timber on one of these parcels, and there are still very few jobs in the vicinity, but these parcels no longer sell at prices that artists or writers can afford. No, every parcel sells as a prime marijuana gold mine, with a price determined by how much marijuana the buyer and seller think they can pull out of it.

The people who sign those land contracts, often as not, get busted, shot to death in a drug deal gone bad, or simply fail to deliver the cash, so they lose the property, and we never see them around again. It’s a huge ripoff, and it’s just one of the ways that the people who’ve been here thirty years, feed on young people like vampires, growing ever richer, and more smug about themselves, while they destroy habitat, drive endangered species to extinction, and enslave the young.

Most of the rentals in SoHum work the same way. Landlords expect tenants to grow for them, and use the lease as legal insulation. The dope yuppies who’ve been here thirty years know how few opportunities there are for young people, and they look for desperate young people to take advantage of.

The people who’ve been here thirty years have engineered the marijuana industry here. They employ, and exploit the army of young growers, share-croppers, dealers, mules and trimmers that you see around town. They are responsible for the giant mega-grows, the water diversions, the rat poison, and all of the problems and pollution that goes along with them, and they make sure that no young people today, ever get the kind of deal that Bob McKee gave them.

Its time to legalize marijuana, and drive a stake through the heart of the dope yuppie lifestyle. Legalization would help the salmon. Legalization would help the fishers, and legalization would help everyone who likes to smoke herb, or needs it for medicine. Legalization will only hurt a small clique of people who moved here thirty years ago, got lucky, exploited the land, took advantage of people, and have gotten way too smug about it. Really, no one deserves it more.


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