I was having a discussion, on cannabis law issues, with a senior NZ activist. The following issues ‘came to light’ :
1) most in the ‘movement’ would like to see the arrests stop.. esp. for personal & medicinal cannabis/herb use
2) there seems to be disputes on actual method/content of possible law reform: age limits, licensed commercial cultivation/supply, home grow, social dealing etc.
3) many activists are working at ‘the grass roots’ BUT seem hesitant to join the main political parties (that have law reform policy/agendas) because it potentially restricts, their personal agendas
4) BUT.. here’s the biggest/most contentious issue: MONEY from the black-market. It seems that their in real concern that if cannabis in Aotearoa/NZ was legally regulated (as in other OECD/western countries) ‘the bottom would fall out’ ie the price would plummet. It sounds like many, in the movement are hesitant about this happening. (self-interest, again)
I think I mentioned this in an old post, I had a friend in Australia who said the exact same thing; many ‘small time dealers’ like to buy an ounce (about $350-400), then break it up into ‘tinnies’ & maybe double their money (on the black-market).. most do not really want to see this end. Hence the talk of ‘social dealing’ amongst family/friends, outside any possible commercial structure.
SO.. this is a main ‘conflict.. of interest’. How do we ‘End the Drug War’ & retain a black-market price structure ?
* I actually think, that’s what happens in Holland; its legal to buy & use cannabis in the coffeeshops etc. BUT not to grow it commercially (still Illegal, black-market) except under strict license ??
I suggested that they have a very limited number of Govt. issued licenses.. with a high annual fee & tax take, returned to the Govt.. Then the price can be set, at similar level to the current prices; aprox $15/gram.
oh dear.. “What a dilemma !!”