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Justin Trudeau and the politics of pot

John Geddes explains why the Liberals are experimenting with marijuana policy


 
Poll up a joint

Adam Scotti

As recently as eight years ago, Samuel Lavoie says, when members of the Young Liberals of Canada dared talk about legalizing marijuana, they would draw warnings about how taking on this “fringe issue” would only earn them a reputation as “a bunch of potheads.” They pursued the policy idea anyway. With Lavoie, a Montreal law student, as their president, the Liberal youth wing finally pressured its parent party into passing a pro-legalization motion at a national policy convention early last year. Still, the party’s leadership wasn’t under any obligation to put that expression of the rank and file’s view into the next Liberal election platform. But then, last month, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau signalled he would do just that, speaking out in favour of legalization during a summer swing through British Columbia. To Lavoie, it was sweet vindication. “Public opinion has reached a tipping point,” he says. “As Young Liberals, we were clearly ahead of it, but now we’re in sync.”

Related post: Why it’s time to legalize marijuana

Indeed, polls suggest that North Americans are increasingly open to watershed reforms of the law on marijuana. Last year, 57 per cent of Canadians told the Angus Reid survey firm they support legalization, while 68 per cent deemed the war on drugs a “failure.” Equally important for Canadian policy is the trend in U.S. polling data, because a big change in Canada’s pot law might have bilateral implications. Back in 2005, around the time Lavoie remembers Young Liberals taking flak for any pro-legalization musing, Gallup reported that two-thirds of Americans opposed making marijuana legal. These days, about half support it. Echoing that general opinion shift, Canada’s top cops have adopted a new, softer stance on pot. At the annual general meeting of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police last week, they drew the line at legalization, but passed a resolution asking the federal government to let police issue tickets to those caught with small amounts of marijuana, rather than laying criminal charges.

Against that backdrop, Trudeau’s new policy looked less than radical. Far from touting legalization as a path to pot becoming easier to get, he proposed regulations that would, for instance, require proof-of-age ID from anyone seeking to buy. “In many cases,” he said in Vancouver, “it’s more difficult for young people to get their hands on cigarettes than it is to get their hands on weed.” But if Trudeau set out in late July to frame legalization as a prudent policy, he changed the terms of debate in late August with a personal admission. Trudeau told the Huffington Post that he “took a puff” on a joint being passed around at a dinner party at his Montreal home, after he was elected an MP in 2008. “By flouting the laws of Canada while holding elected office, he shows he is a poor example for all Canadians, particularly young ones,” said Justice Minister Peter MacKay. “Justin Trudeau is simply not the kind of leader our country needs.”

Even before his after-dinner revelation, Trudeau’s legalization proposal was being exploited by Tories in a fundraising email to party members, which slammed him, not so much over the policy itself, but rather for being distracted from the dollars-and-cents issues that matter most to voters. “While the Harper government is focused on the economy,” wrote Conservative party executive director Dan Hilton, “Justin Trudeau has announced one of his very first policy positions as leader of the Liberal party: He wants to legalize marijuana in Canada.”

The Conservatives left little doubt that, despite any broader shift in public opinion, they remain confident that talking tough on pot remains a reliable way to rally their core supporters. Tim Powers, a veteran Conservative strategist and vice-chairman of the Ottawa consulting firm Summa Strategies, says he suspects Trudeau has a similar motivation. The Liberal leader is trying to unite and excite his party’s committed operatives and expand its pool of willing, on-the-ground volunteers. “This appeals to the young, more dynamic part of the base,” Powers says. But he contends that, even if Trudeau succeeds in grabbing the attention of activists, he will pay a price by confirming the doubts about his seriousness already planted in the minds of many other voters. “The risk is that he gets nailed as not being ready for prime time,” Powers says. “It plays into the flaky, flighty, inexperienced leader narrative that the Conservatives and others have put out there.”

Painting Liberals as soft on marijuana is nothing new for Tories. Back in 2010, when then-Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff was in favour of decriminalizing possession of small amounts of the drug—a far more incremental reform than Trudeau’s call for full legalization—Conservatives accused him of “pandering to the drug users” rather than “getting tough on traffickers and producers.” In only a few short years, though, perspectives on marijuana might have shifted enough to render that line of attack less potent. Major developments are unfolding south of the border. Many states are allowing marijuana for medical use, or looking at decriminalizing possession, and residents of two states—Colorado and Washington—voted in referendums last fall to legalize pot for recreational use. Those two states are now moving forward with laws and regulations to implement the will of their voters. In his comments in B.C., Trudeau alluded to following the lead of Colorado and Washington, and a senior Liberal official confirmed that the third-place federal party’s intention is to watch them closely and “try to replicate their successes and avoid their mistakes.”

The new laws in Washington and Colorado differ on key points when it comes to regulating marijuana. For instance, Washington plans to allow outdoor growing, but Colorado will ban open-air cultivation. The two states also propose different rules for businesses that sell pot, although both propose to put limits on advertising, require health warnings on labels and impose taxes on sales, while forbidding selling to anyone under 21. Trudeau’s Liberals haven’t yet come close to sketching such a full regulatory approach, but party sources said a more complete policy will be outlined before the expected 2015 federal election.

Not getting too far ahead of American opinion and policy, at least in some key states, might help avoid any friction with the U.S. authorities. Steven Duke, a Yale University law professor who has written in favour of liberalizing American marijuana laws, doubts there’s much danger of a serious backlash from Washington. “The relationship of Canada and the U.S. is far too intimate, too interactive, too fundamental to let an issue like marijuana legalization create serious friction between them,” Duke said in an email. “Besides, a majority of Americans, or nearly that, favour legalization. They would be outraged if the U.S. were to punish Canada for taking such a sensible approach to the problem.”

Before Trudeau gets a chance to experiment with marijuana policy at the federal level, fresh developments at the provincial level might well have pushed the discussion into new territory. In B.C., a non-profit group is now organizing to gather, between September and November, the more than 400,000 signatures they would need under the province’s rules to prompt a referendum next year on decriminalizing marijuana possession. So it was no accident that Trudeau chose B.C. for a midsummer test drive of his pro-legalization message.

The unequivocal reaction of the Conservatives was predictable. The NDP response, though, sounded less straightforward. The party’s deputy leader, Halifax MP Megan Leslie, called it a “complicated issue” and criticized Trudeau for failing to fully consider the impact legalization might have on Canada’s relationship with the U.S., particularly on managing the border. The NDP has often appeared uneasy in recent years about how far to go in advocating reform of marijuana laws. The late Jack Layton, leading the party in the 2011 campaign, called for an “adult conversation” on the issue. Last year, Thomas Mulcair, Layton’s successor, seemed to assert that decriminalization would be a mistake, since “the marijuana that’s on the market is extremely potent and can actually cause mental illness.” A party spokesman later explained that Mulcair was really only against legalization, and didn’t think anyone should face criminal charges for possessing small amounts.

Powers contends that Trudeau’s legalization gamble is mainly a bid to get out ahead of Mulcair, rather than a move aimed primarily at Harper. “This is about playing to the so-called progressive vote,” he says. “It maybe opens the minds of some potential New Democrats and other switchers to come to the Liberals.” Lavoie largely agrees. “It has cross-party appeal,” he says. “I’m not sure if it’s going to be the wedge, but it does show the Liberal party as bolder. Obviously, it’s something that catches people’s attention.” Lavoie adds that some “libertarian Conservatives” might be tempted, even if they’re staying quiet on the issue so far, to vote Liberal in support of legalization.

On the other hand, Trudeau will now have to work to keep marijuana from becoming too predominant an element in how voters see him. He stressed that his dinner-party toke wasn’t typical behaviour. “I think, five or six times in my life that I’ve taken a puff,” he said. “It’s not my thing.” Lavoie said even Young Liberals who championed legalization want Trudeau to campaign mainly on economic opportunity. “I think Justin’s been very clear about that,” he said, “very focused on how we can have a thriving middle class and ease the burden on the middle class.”

But drug policy has undeniable potential to spark controversy and attract attention. It resonates strongly with centrepiece Conservative law-and-order themes, but also with Trudeau’s push to emulate President Barack Obama by boosting youth voter turnout. As well, predicting the course of public sentiment on sensitive subjects that relate to traditional moral codes has proven to be extremely difficult. In interviews on the marijuana question, both Liberals and Conservatives cited the swing toward acceptance of same-sex marriage, first in Canada and, not far behind, in the U.S., as a lesson in how fast-evolving popular perspectives can throw political strategists off stride. Trudeau is betting that, on marijuana, like marriage, voters won’t recoil from what once seemed like outlandish ideas. Harper will counter by making the case that just raising the legalization option shows Trudeau has his priorities all wrong. Canadian voters, it seems, can look forward in the next election to being offered a clearer choice on the issue than ever before.


 

Justin Trudeau and the politics of pot

  1. Twitter and Facebook do not represent all public opinion

    • Neither do the whitterings of the 40% of he population misguided enough to vote for Harper.

      • “witherings”? misguided? – I guess freedom of choice is ok, as long as it agrees with what you choose,eh? your party lost, get over it, quit bitching and prepare for the next election. thats the way our Country works, right…

        • Your point makes no sense.
          I never attacked freedom of choice just the explained the fact that 40% of the population represents public opinion as much or probably less than the people on facebook and twitter.
          Oh and I’ve never been a party member – parties are inherently corrupt and usually criminal enterprises.

          • @harebell, I like you approach of never having been a party member. It’s a bit like never committing in order to ensure you’re never on the wrong side of any argument. You’re like Andrew Coyne, except for the commitment part.

          • Not really, as most other folk are part of a party organisation, especially the squeaky wheels, then that would mean I’m always on the wrong side of any argument at least in terms of those whose loyalty is to the party.

          • So we all join a party and ‘commit’ to it – is there a length of time we have to stick with it – or must we stick with even if it turns out to be a fraud?

          • The Liberals I choose over the NDP. The Left should unite!!! The young could share their new ways of social intercourse. Trudeau represents New and Young … and hope for the future.
            As a father of four, a 60ish hipster, retired, a consumer of the herb for the last 40 years, I heartily endorse any move towards the sanity of legalization and away from the anal dictates of the Inquisition Conservative.
            Kids get drunk, get sick, get drugs, have sex and sooner or later get arrested (I did when I was 18 for possession of a couple of roaches). Children could easily be taught moderation at home. Rent a hookah, a six-hoser; find a chunk of good Afghan and have it out – have a glass of wine with it, if you like … or eat it. Wow!!!

          • What a wonderful role model you are. Are you perhaps a brain surgeon, an air traffic controller, a person making life and death decisions? Yep – Sure – give me a stoner and his supporters to run our country. Why do we need these serious, sober, stable types when we can have Jeff Spicoli calling the shots…..

          • glad you are not in charge

          • You’re sort of a literal type aren’t you.. Irony is so lost on the young. Bet you’re too young to know who Jeff Spicoli is (a wonderfully memorable Sean Penn character) right?

          • old school! remember 77 sunset strip?insulting those who partake of medicine shows me you got issues .witha plant yet ! lolol Do you hate other plants too ?i bet you go into the garden and chew out the begonias chastise the carrots . spare us your infantile anal ysis

          • Ooooookaaay then. You have a nice life. I have absolutely no idea what you’re babbling about, but it does seem to have something to do with something you ingest.. Later.

          • you hate a plant pal . thats whacked lolo Tennessee3 cantread0

          • Do you use the herb, crackers2010? Have you ever tried it? Have you ever had strong liquor? 160 Proof maybe? Are air traffic controllers, and surgeons and people making life and death decisions allowed to drink, in your Brave New World? You’ve never smoked a joint, have you …?

          • Arrogant response. You my friend show stereotypical bias; stigmatization of ‘potheads’ does not paint you in a good light. What you don’t realize is that you have become the minority, and a bitter one at that. Policy and public opinion shifts through the ages…lynchings and stoning does not take place in this current day, but I bet you that your camp would love to revisit those traditional values, should you get the opportunity.

          • lol

          • “40% of he population misguided enough to vote for Harper”
            my point was that you chose to insult the people who freely voted for their choice to lead us, as if it was not up to your standard. Does it hurt your back to swim like that?

          • Damn right I choose to regard them as idiots.

            Making a mistake is human, trying to justify it retrospectively by repeating it is indicative of a feeble mind.
            It was not up to any rational persons standard because it was premised on lies and criminal behaviour.
            How should I view folk who will re-elect the inept and criminal?

          • really, a minute ago you were saying oh I was just talking about facebook and crap, I wasn’t talking specifics about who voted for what. obviously you were not around for the 30+ years of Liberal leadership – speaking of criminal behavior – yet still re-elected. Just look at Ontario, McLiar, now Ms Wynne – no leader or party has been more criminal than the Ontario Liberal party over the past decade+, yet you idiots keep re-electing them. Something to keep in mind – most politicians are inept and have criminal intentions, that’s why they are at the tax payers feedbag – they don’t have the talent or imagination to do something creative on their own.

          • I live in Alberta
            So Ontario’s woes perceived or otherwise are nowt to do wih me so stop projecting. I could just as easily and erroneously blame you for the idiocy prevalent here with respect to the Alberta Tea Party and the corrupt Conservatives.
            When you resort to “but they did it too,” or blame folk for anything and everything you are flailing.
            As Conservatives have repeatedly asserted that they are better than the other two and have promised to show that but failed miserably; I’m going to assume that Cons are either devious liars or they are plain stupid until someone explains the discrepancy between intent and reality to me.

          • you must be in politics to twist my words such – at no point did I say “but they did it”; my point was its not the party its just politicians A good politician is quite as unthinkable as an honest burglar. Henry Louis.
            so relax, take a bill and sell your oil….

          • Yet it’s the party that raises cash to reelect them. I’d call that enabling their criminality.
            The party demands that it and it’s needs be placed ahead of that of the people who vote, therefore corrupting the representative system.
            As for the oil, we’re not holding those who pollute accountable nor getting the best price for our resources; but you can bet we’ll be picking up the tab for the damage done by the corporations and the corrupt rightwing parties that excuse it.

          • love the use of the “right wing parties” – do you think PM Jean/Martin and other Lib leaders have not counted on the great natural resources this wonderful Country of ours has to offer and have not helped clean up. PM Jean let the U.S. off when it came to the disaster of Gander airfield – not just “right wing parties” – again loosing credibility – you dislike of the Conservatives takes away from your argument.

          • Your ability to flit from a provincial affair today to hat ever you think you can dream up of yesteryear is impressive.
            You blame me for the Liberals in Ontario even though I’m in Alberta.
            You then ignore the fact that I was describing my dislike of the Federal and Provincial firesale of Albertan resources to totalitarian, communist interests and whip me back in History move and me to the maritimes.
            The Albertan oil being given away today is being enable by Conservatives at all levels. The pollution in Alberta being ignored today is being ignored and enabled by by Conservative parties at all levels. That doesn’t change because you want to wave your hands and insist but they did it too.
            Parties are criminal enterprises created to excuse graft and corruption at all levels and never more so when it is by the ruling party. Today that party is the Conservatives and they promised not to do it; but they lied.

          • its obvious to me that you are unable to follow a multi topic conversation. You were the one to bring “right wing parties” into it – I was just pointing out that this is incorrect, as its an all party problem – corruption and criminal intent – at no time did I blame you for Ontario’s problem, that’s ours and we own it, and will shortly fix it, ok maybe not shortly – but my main point was almost in agreement with some of what you stated – my main issue is with your attack on the “right wing party” as they are solely responsible for Canada’s negative issues – although we have way more positive issues than not – so have yourself a great day…

        • Harper is for the rich people only …Justin Trudeau will win the next election mark my words!

          • Sure.
            When pigs learn to fly Markmy.

          • So Trudeau (who is rich) and Harper (who is very middle class) are going to switch places because of what….class? So you want a rich trust fund guy who has nothing in common with the middle class just now wants to get a new job as PM vs. a “use the bus” middle class policy wonk who eats, breathes, sleeps policy for the last 3 decades. Which is why Trudeau will tell you in a couple of YEARS what he thinks should be done with the country vs. the guy who releases yards of policy on what he is doing with the country right now. Wow – low expectations there “words”?

          • breathes policy lol what policy transparency proroges billion $ photo ops mandatory minimums muzzling scientists no Kyoto accord? lol

          • no way we could meet Kyoto accord, this was a PM Jean screw up and an accord set up by a criminal organization named the UN and was a money laundering scheme which did not include the U.S., India, China or Russia – over 90% of all GHG emissions between them – muzzling scientist – really – that’s just repeating Susuki and other screwy environmentalist, and you are confusing Canadian Conservatives with U.S. Tea Party – Prorogue Parliament was done 4x by PM Jean – its a way of doing business, or not doing business. Billion dollar photo ops??? – Even the people who vote Conservative are concerned with PM Harpers lack of transparency, since it was a platform issue – Mandatory minimums was a platform issue and he was voted in on it – although not all of us like the idea of filling prisons with small amounts of pot possession – which could be up to the Police when the arrest is made, they can be let go with a warning. You are ill informed and repeater of the left wing media – read a book and think before speaking (typing). thanks and good-bye…

          • no im right and only a biased Trudeau hater with a hatred agenda would try to justify harpers misdeed and do such a poor job of it lolol

          • wow…

          • figures its beyond yer comprehension lolol see a shrink and go to anger management and youll be ok

          • what about Jr’s $1,000,000.00 car that he drives – you know the one he said in an interview was an old used mercedes, yeh he’s middle class…

          • funny thing, only two parties to be fined for robocalls were Libs and NDPQ. hmmmm

          • Yet…
            The sharks are circling and someone will squeal in a deal to avoid prison.
            The longer the criminal investigation into nefarious deeds in the PMO goes on the more I’m enjoying it. Out of Duffy, Harper and all the other Reform bottom feeding criminals, I don’t care who wins I’m just hoping for injuries.

          • If Elections Canada can’t find anyone who is willing to step forward – not one single person – to claim that they couldn’t vote as a result of the so-called Conservative robocalls – doesn’t there have to be a victim in order for a crime to be committed? How do the snarks justify “widespread abuse” without a single abused? More lefties trying to defy the laws of gravity.

          • You do realise that a crime doesn’t actually have to succeed for a crime to have been committed don’t you?

            Just because someone escapes from a robbery attempt without loss or injury doesn’t mean that a crime didn’t happen, even if that victim doesn’t want to press charges.
            Fraud is a crime whether it succeeds or not, it is the intent that matters. In other words the concept of a free and fair election is the victim. The incompetence of the fraudster is immaterial in deciding if a crime has been committed, although it may be taken into account on sentencing.

            Jeez, what is it with wing nuts and their desire to think that the law is what they say it is?

          • You do realize that without any evidence of a crime, and no victims of a crime, the crime didn’t happen. Elections Canada, the Council of Canadians, the Liberals, the NDP and a huge bunch of media hounds have tried and tried and tried to find, fabricate, and promote a story of a huge, PM -mandated robocal scheme and nada. Bupkis. Michael Sona may have done something. And the only ones convicted of robocall malfeasance: NDP and Liberals. One of these days I would like to read a real story written by an actual journalist doing his job that would tally the charges against the Harper Government and what actually happened. The frenzy out of a molehiill of the nothing that was the the Conservative robocall thing is a prime example.

          • You seem to be forgetting the in and out election fraud admission of guilt, subsequent fines and the pay off of two Senate seats to those who took the fall.

            It also strikes me as odd that those who insist that the totally legal vikileaks thing must have been a massive conspiracy also insist that Sona acted alone. They insist this even though he didn’t have clearance to access the Conservative data that the judge in the CoC case said must have come from the CIMS system.

            How is it in the alternate reality of yours?

          • With respect to the two Senate seats, they needed to be filled, an idiot would fill them with people who are not aligned with the Party, and Harper in a hugely democratic process, offered all Seats in the Senate to be voted in by Provincial vote – a very Conservative thing to do. Too bad not many democratic minds in the Provinces….

            So – my same question: a real clear case of Harper fraud please? Not some nuanced partisan bullshit.

          • “In and out” like I said above and you ignored.
            As for the Senate seats he filled them with two admitted election fraudsters, something which wasn’t a real Conservative value until Harper.

          • read below – I didn’t ignore you at all since you seem to have something to say.

            Which seats are you talking about? Wallin and Duffy? If so, can you show us where Harper met with both these veteran reporters and asked them and the others in the Senate – like Harb – to deliberately defraud the folks with expenses? Thanks.

          • The in and out scandal involved Finley and Gerstein both of whom became Senators for their troubles.

          • The desperate Liberals and NDP just can’t seem to land a punch do they, try as hard as they are. Maybe because they see their own reflection, and hope that the Cons are as corrupt and rudderless as the Oppos are.

          • Wow – one guy in one place that seems to be a cesspool of across Party irregularities (Guelph) and out of that you get that the entire country was won by robocalls? Are you simply not that smart, or, come on now, you’re doing the LIberal trick of hyper-extrapolation of a single event into a global conspiracy, aren’t you Tommy boy?

        • You aren’t arguing for freedom of choice, you are asserting your right to take that freedom from others.

          • My recollection of the ‘In and out” issue was a legal one, in which a judge actually agreed with the Conservatives, and was then overturned on appeal. If you believe that an honest dispute between the very partisan Elections Canada and the Conservatives on the issue of whose funds belong to which part of the Party is a clear indication of malfeasance and dishonesty (the Conservatives were clear what they did with the funds, believing, as other un-indicted parties did previously, that the money was theirs nationally with the co-operation of the local EDA) I vastly prefer my reality to yours.

            And all persons signing up to work in an elections office of a Conservative EDA have access to CIMs once they are vetted and sign confidentiality documents. Of course Sona, like thousands of volunteers in hundreds of EDA across the country could have access to CIMS. You may also not have gone through the heavy duty reading of the riot act from the people in charge of the Campaign Office to its volunteers of what they can and cannot do in EDA campaign offices of all political stripes. Volunteers take this seriously. And if you think that in hundreds of offices across the country Conservatives secretly meet to plot robocall malfeasance, then its time to readjust your tin foil hat. The Conservatives didn’t and don’t have to resort to dirty tricks to win elections. It’s too easy, for instance, to let people like Dion and Iggy to shoot their own party in the foot.

          • My recollection is that the Harper Party pleaded guilty to breaking election law. So it doesn’t matter about you parsing what the judges said, they admitted guilt and paid the fine so are guilty of election fraud.

          • There was as I mentioned above a fundamental dispute of both the issue, and the timing of the issue – the retroactivity of the change in the rules, and the ruling of one partisan judge over another. If one disputed “in and out” in one instance in one party is all there is, you got nothin’. There is no way you can make the leap that the Senate appointments were tied to this. Finley was the master planner of many Conservative victories. With so many hacks, media, NDP and Libs just trying so hard to find corruption where it doesn’t exist, and this is all you have….pathetic.

            Libs robocalls

            NDP campaign finance scandal.

            Where’s our $40 million Adscam theft.

            There are real, undisputed frauds. In and Out – not so much. Who got hurt?

          • There was no fundamental dispute when they admitted guilt and paid $52k in fines. They said they were guilty and they paid. Just like the NDP did with the campaign finance issue. But for some reason because your boys did it it is somehow different.

            So the two guys who copped to the crime were made Senators, I, like many a cop, havery. a hard time with coincidences.

            Hacks, media, NDP and Libs…You left out the Crown and RCMP but i’d expect that from a hack like you.

            The reason I don’t join parties is because they are inherently corrupt and the Harper party is no different, They have lied repeatedly and have changed nothing except the size of our national debt and the polarisation in our count

          • Changed Nothing?

            “Today, the World Economic Forum ranked Canada’s financial system as the safest and soundest in the world. This is the sixth year in a row that Canada has earned a first-place ranking.

            Our Conservative Government is focused on what matters to Canadians: jobs, economic growth and long-term prosperity – including ensuring a sound financial system.

            The continued first-place ranking of Canada’s financial system as the soundest in the world by the World Economic Forum is yet another sign that our plan to promote economic growth is on the right track.

            Indeed, Canada’s sound financial system is a model for countries around the world – as we were the only G-7 country that didn’t have to bail out its banks with taxpayers’ money during the recent global recession.

            Despite Canada’s continued leading economic performance, we are not immune to the challenges beyond our borders. That is why our Government remains squarely focus on the economy, including ensuring our financial system remains the safest and soundest.

            While we are focused on the economy, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau openly admits to not having a single idea about the economy and NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair keeps pushing his $21 billion carbon tax that would hurt our economy and kill Canadian jobs.”

          • Propaganda and lies – aka PMO talking points.
            Canadians are not stupid they know about the misleading ads that the Cons made them pay for and they know about the theft and graft rife in the Harper government; your attempted smokescreen won’t alter those facts.

          • tell that to the unemployed lol

        • While that is the way our country works, it is clearly not working for the majority of Canadians. A democratic country is supposed to be governed by a government that the majority of the people voted for. At present we are being dictated to by the minority ( and not a very bright bunch at that ). We desperately need electoral reform in Canada.

      • This comment was deleted.

        • wow what a snappy rejoinder, stay classy Doreen

          • Hey pompous Liberals were elected with less than 40%. CPC had 40% the remaining 60% was split four ways. Didn’t pass Grade Two Math,eh?

          • Still not relevant to the point was it?
            God you are so dimwitted it’s almost painful to observe.

          • I am not the one who can’t comprehend ratio and proportion

          • Actually you are one of the many wing nuts who can’t follow a thread and seek to derail any conversation thread. You, Francien and Rick Omen are kind of a club hey?

          • Aren’t you the head of Welfare Case Windbag club?

          • another snappy reply bwa ha ha

          • Better snappy than long winded, redundant and boooooooooooring

          • How do either of you stand yourselves?

          • me.. well I’m gorgeous and that helps :))))

          • Irony is like coppery but made of iron to you isn’t it?

          • Wow. That’s kinda lame. Um, sorry…snappy reply.

          • ooow, that one wounded me.
            Isn’t it past your bedtime?

          • Doreen is EmilyOne’s alter ego. Her evil twin.

          • Really…

        • You would know

      • 40%? More like 27% (of voting aged people, at that). Let’s not give extra credit to those misguided few.

      • I hope I dont get arrested for saying this. I know drug pushers who wont vote for Justin trudeau because there afraid trudeau is going to run them out of the pot business. that is a fact jack.

  2. Economics is the primary focus for this government? They’ve got a handful of very minor free trade agreements with smaller developing nations and lowered corporate taxes. Contrary to their assertion, they have been per-occupied with law and order issues more than anything else. Perhaps if they spent less time on law and order issues and more time actually accomplishing something on the economy, Harper’s personal numbers wouldn’t be so low.

    • Their endlessly-promoted Economic Action Plan also includes a unilaterally designed Canada Jobs Grant scheme that requires co-funding by the provinces and, so far, has zero buy-in from them.

      Harper is like the wizard of Oz. When you look behind the curtain, there’s nothing there.

      • so your point on legalization is???

        • My point on legalization? Thanks for asking. I guess it would be that, IMO, Harper and his enablers are sadly out of touch regarding popular opinion on the matter.

          But I was responding to another commenter. Butt out.

          • open board, all comments are open to discussion, if you want a private talk, make a phone call…
            If PM Harper were an enabler, he would be for legalization. Just because the loudest group wants something, does not mean it should be given. This is a very difficult discussion and it would have a major impact on our U.S. relations – so it takes more than Jr speaking out. 60% of the population wanted capital punishment brought back last year, should PM Harper have brought that back?
            But I do agree that the gov’t is on the wrong side of this and should decriminalize it, no one should go to jail for small amounts. But lets also keep in mind, this is a multi-billion dollar industry run by bad people.

          • The only reason it is run by bad people is pretty much the same reason that bad people made cash out of booze back in prohibition – the demand cannot be controlled by prohibitive means.

            If you want to take bad people out of the equation completely then don’t drive people into the arms of bad people through bad laws.

            Did we learn nothing from 20/30s bootlegging and the fact that we have spent billions on a war on drugs, that hasn’t decreased the supply one little bit?

          • really, a large country with small population of 35 million people legalizing pot will take the bad people out of the business. I find that comment a little naïve. If legalizing this is such a good idea then how come Europe, a very left thinking place in need of more revenue tools has not fully incorporated this idea. Sure they have a lax view on it and most of the European countries treat it like alcohol, but have not legalized it and taxed it. So do you seriously believe Canada legalizing pot will make much of a difference. Also tough to quantify, but how would some of our allies and trading partners who are fully against this view us. Many variables involved in this and for a leader of a major party to just throw it out there after being on the record voting against it, needs a whole lot of thought…

          • The bad people who run the pot business, yes indeed.
            You use the word left to describe Europe, I do not think that word means what you think it does. Financially Europe is a every bit a corporate culture that is fond of austerity measures and supporting the criminal banksters just like N America.

            Socially they may be a little more live and let live but in business they are just as rapacious a bunch of capitalists as anywhere else. And that’s the reason why they, like N America have resisted the legalisation of pot/hemp – vested business interests.
            This last point explains the worry about what our allies would think – firstly they are beholding to the same vested business interests; secondly nobody want s to risk showing up the others in a bad light for adhering to such a flawed, wasteful and counter productive policy. They especially don’t want to upset the heavily armed if somewhat simple minded and extremely petulant USA.

          • yes I was thinking more socially than corporately. Majority of European countries are more socialist than us so it stems to think they would be more open to it, but are not. We should also be concerned about upsetting the U.S. They are in a hole right now, but still the largest economy on this planet and we as a Country are very dependant on them. So lets not legalize pot and loose all our jobs. but then again, being a bit stoned may take the edge off of unemployment. cheers…

          • The reason why many Europeans are not open to it is because the corporate point of view still outweighs any social considerations, so the socialist nature of some European nations is not a factor.

            As for annoying the US, well Harper seems very happy to look for new markets for his bitumen, surely we could follow his lead after all his priority is the economy and he doesn’t appear worried.
            You could also view it as a way to support those states in the US who have already moved to decriminalise pot and maybe create a boom export industry in hemp/pot products.

    • “Today, the World Economic Forum ranked Canada’s financial system as the safest and soundest in the world. This is the sixth year in a row that Canada has earned a first-place ranking.

      Our Conservative Government is focused on what matters to Canadians: jobs, economic growth and long-term prosperity – including ensuring a sound financial system.

      The continued first-place ranking of Canada’s financial system as the soundest in the world by the World Economic Forum is yet another sign that our plan to promote economic growth is on the right track.

      Indeed, Canada’s sound financial system is a model for countries around the world – as we were the only G-7 country that didn’t have to bail out its banks with taxpayers’ money during the recent global recession.

      Despite Canada’s continued leading economic performance, we are not immune to the challenges beyond our borders. That is why our Government remains squarely focus on the economy, including ensuring our financial system remains the safest and soundest.

      While we are focused on the economy, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau openly admits to not having a single idea about the economy and NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair keeps pushing his $21 billion carbon tax that would hurt our economy and kill Canadian jobs.”

      Gee – wasn’t Harper the PM for all of those 6 years. Maybe an economist is important to have as PM, vs, say, a theatre teacher.

  3. It would be great if they legalized it, but I’m too cynical to believe it will happen. Decriminalization is the best I can hope for, and we are talking years from now, if Justin can even lead his party out of the backbenches in the next election, even then, could he do it with any thing less than a majority?

  4. Justin is not going to put anymore policy out there until the conservative party has their convention in October. and then if he does do it, it will be another agenda stealer. its only the media wants to know about the policy, real liberal supporters are o k with the approach on policy by Trudeau. the cons and dippers are good at stealing other parties policies when it suits them.

    • Harper didn’t announce his policies early, now did he.

  5. “This appeals to the young, more dynamic part of the base,” Powers
    says. But he contends that, even if Trudeau succeeds in grabbing the
    attention of activists, he will pay a price by confirming the doubts
    about his seriousness already planted in the minds of many other voters.
    “The risk is that he gets nailed as not being ready for prime time,”
    Powers says. “It plays into the flaky, flighty, inexperienced leader
    narrative that the Conservatives and others have put out there.”

    Welcome back JG.

    It must be a difficult balancing act, hanging suspended between party loyalty and objective pundity…Powers isn’t all that good at it.

    From a small town perspective i have doubts about how effective legalization will be in terms of keeping the stuff out of the hands of young people. Granted regulations that require id and just getting it out of the hands of the criminal element will be a step forward. But we have a big problem up here with bootleggers; they already bootleg booze to minors, i’m sure they wont draw the line at pot.

    It’ll take a holistic approach to get the job done, involving parents,church, police, the courts and govt and community resources working together in creative and cooperative ways – not merely bringing out the MM big stick. Legalization will not be a magic bullet, nor an easy fix. There’s a deeper societal malaise at work here. One that goes well beyond whether a substance is legally available or not. I hope JT will take a look at the big picture, not just frame it as a matter of rights lost or won.

    • excellent point, grass roots is the only way – communicate, explain and discuss.

  6. Justin Trudeau Born Leader…… Canada’s New Prime Minister !!!

    • “born leader” of what, his drama class. no past leadership ability has been proven or shown. he may be party leader, but it was similar to Iggy getting the job, the Lib’s wanted a celebrity leader and they got one. do we want a celebrity PM, like the U.S. has a celebrity President I don’t think so. it takes more than a wedge issue such as legalization of pot to be a leader. if this is his first platform issue, then he has a very long way to go. Perhaps in 6 years, he may have matured a bit more to become a possible leader. not today…

      • At least JT had a real job. what real job has Harper ever had outside of wing nut welfare prior to being made leader after a betrayal of the PCs?
        Let’s face it whoever beats Harper could never mess up as badly as he has done
        so bring on the celebs as far as I’m concerned.

        • This comment was deleted.

          • So he didn’t teach then?
            You do realise that the world doesn’t change to suit your spittle flecked view of reality don’t you?

          • This comment was deleted.

          • What a twisted person you are.
            As for being in the real world, I’ll consider the source and say anyone you disagree with might have a decent enough grasp of reality.

      • Let’s se Harpers qualifications. Lying about the Social Security and transparancy in govt, 1.3 billion dollar photops,160 or so billion more in debt after a surplus .prorogues .tarnishing our reputation, mandatory minimums, muzzling scientists selling companies to communist China and more. These are not the leaderhhip qualities we want

        • This comment was deleted.

          • lolol how so? seems like the cons had 8 years to work their magic but funny. i see no signs of that

          • This comment was deleted.

          • blame someone you dislike stead of the cons they dont have their act together and are effifn up the country and not doing a good job like they promised. grow up

  7. We could be debt free in a couple years if we legalized pot. Not to mention you can use the hole plant, its one of those things its a win win, if someone is alowed to go out to a night club get completly wrecked and do only god knows what then i think its perfectly fine for marijuana users.

    • How much money do you honestly think the marijuana industry could bring to government coffers? Are you seriously suggesting that we could pay off about $600 billion in debt in just a few years if we only legalized it?

      This isn’t an issue either way for me but I find that ridiculous. The pro-legalization camps strongest argument is that keeping marijuana illegal unnecessarily restricts their liberty for very little reason. You’re reducing the legitimacy of the pro-legalization crowd by pulling economic numbers out of a hat.

      • Firstly you have to create an entire department to deal with legal pot, decide how it should be distributed and taxed and where it can be sold. The startup costs are in the millions and you are not likely to see return on investment for years.

        • good point – how many bureaucrats would it take to run that machine – holy crap, it would be a nightmare and any money earned would be sucked into the dark hole of the civil servants.

          • It’s not a good point.

            Do we have an entire department to look at alcohol and yet another one to look at nicotine? No we don’t.

            Industry grows it and the legal system regulates it, with the Customs folk making sure tax is paid.
            Adding any pot regs to those already in place for tobacco would be easy.

          • It’s a bad point because I mentioned it. States like Colorado that sell it legally say its a bureaucratic nightmare

          • That isn’t so. While many of the points you make are indeed profoundly bad, the fact that you make a point doesn’t make it bad per se. I agreed with one of your points yesterday so to me that point wasn’t bad.

          • this is a much more touch subject and yes I believe it would require a separate department to run it. who is going to grow it, who controls it etc…

          • And who sells there was a story about stores that sell marijuana legally in the USA the amount of paperwork they have to submit to the State government is beyond belief.

          • We don’t have a separate department of tobacco do we?
            The reason why individual States are finding it a nightmare is because it’s not nationally decriminalised. so they have to deal with many different points of view. Similar to booze in Canada where each province has its own regulatory authority, although there are many national suppliers.
            With pot, the feds could legalise its production and supply, letting the market decide on who would survive and prosper and set the CRA on the producers and sellers to collect their share. A few more tax officials is all that would be required.

          • well there it is, you know I sorta agreed with a few things you stated but with this statement you prove you are out of touch with what the gov’t would do. The deep dark hole we call the gov’t bureaucracy would jump on the opportunity to regulate the crap out of the legalization of pot, especially if the Libs were in charge at the time. It would grow to become one of the largest sink holes for our tax dollars ever. Just think of the 2 billion PM Jean and his crew lost with the long gun registry, remember that was only suppose to cost a couple of million or perhaps even make us money. that would be eclipsed by this. have a nice day…

          • Still remember when the government promoted the GST as quick and easy for business a few years ago. Same logic.

          • skip the drama. it doesnt need any more regulations than liquor

          • In your mind I guess it’s Joe the 70 year old Hippie selling a few buds out of a rented shack downtown. Would think its more likely that the legal marijuana shops would be run along the same matter than you run a pharmacy . Thinking that there isn’t going to be paperwork when you are dealing with the health,revenue and human resources to begin with and then dealing with all their rules and regulations of those departments afterwards. To think this is a quick fix is simplistic thinking at its best and being totally delusional at its worst.

          • After legalisation you mean?

            No in my mind it is the likes of Imperial Tobacco, Phillip Norris etc. who will industrialise production by transferring their knowledge of the tobacco industry into the new field.
            They will declare earnings just as they do now with their existing product and the pack of 20 will appear in shops just as they do now. The only difference might be that gas stations wouldn’t be able to sell them, just like with booze.
            Pharmacies don’t sell tobacco products so I can’t see them selling pot either.

          • partly right ,smaller producers and home growing too and importing .from other countries concentrates are the future tho

          • been done in 2 states and is ok. gonna be legal in Uruguay soon

          • well grow our own and skip all that. most of usanyway and give it to others

      • It took 40 yrs. to build up that debt, since the mid 70’s decision to finance the country through debt to commercial banks rather than using the BOC. Give the economic benefits of legal pot the same time and see what happens.

        • ittll help but not so much as to get rid of out nat. debt

      • You got a point .but if if was legal every sick person could afford it, no more cops chasing stoners and so on .Some economocal benefits not that much .A lot of people in the pro legalize crowd thing that but the price will plummit

  8. Its by far the least of our worries, i know ill be voting for him!

  9. Election is still years away. He has lots of time to develop and promote other policies. I assume he has enough professional advisers and strategists around him to know that he needs to develop other ideas. It is a little early for his critics to say he will run on this issue alone. It was smart to put this out there now, any controversy will die down by election time and people and political pundits will have moved on to other topics.

    • of course they will, because the will all be voting Liberal or NDPQ. his advisers are made up of environmentalist and they are going to crush us with new “revenue tools” that will make what McLiar did as kindergarten stuff…

      • you are a Trudeau hater

    • “I assume he has enough professional advisers and strategists around him to know that he needs to develop other ideas.”

      That’s your man in a nutshell. Who would say the same about Harper? (And that’s your problem. That and your candidate captured with his arm around an excellently generic ‘Wayner’ Canadian. Keeper pic.)

      • I wasn’t really advocating support for him or not. So he’s not really my man. I just think his critics are too early in saying he will run on this issue and nothing else. I do support legalization but it’s not my main concern in life and won’t influence my vote too much. I think it was smart politically to get it out there now, rather than in the middle of a campaign. Just a political observation rather than a suggestion I will vote for him or that others should.

        • Fair enough. But JT’s ‘advisors and strategists’ really have hamstrung him with this thing. Not wise in the long-term, and it benefits the Tories by clearly indentifying which journos trot out the “He’s honest” window dressing. (Kudos to Rob Ford’s…brother for appreciating the opportunities this ‘issue’ presented.)

          Odd how things play out.

          • Liberal Party of Canada ran an internal vote on the issue, and legalization passed with 90% of the vote. And three months prior to that Liberals had a vote on whether members can adopt policies through vote, and it also passed.

            Justin simply bows to his party members here. Those same guys who voted him a leader in the first place.

    • How about mandatory (6 months) service (military or foreign) for 18 to 21 year-olds; also, remote Gulags for federal prisoners?

  10. Justin Trudeau’s “middle class” outreach program. First Chrystia Freeland, and now Stephen Bronfman! It looks like Justin is following Barack’s playbook. Nice speeches for the masses. Govern for the banksters and the 1%.

    In his first by-election, he parachutes in a 1%’er groupee from the States. So much for open nomination meetings.

    • Classic wingnut duplicity.
      Get rid of the party per vote subsidy so that all that is left is raising money from the rich and corporate interests at 75% tax relief of course (the rich and powerful need their choices subsidised by the rest of us.) Then complain when those who are trying to look out for the rest of us are forced to appeal to the rich and powerful for funds to do just that.
      It’s just as when Clement and Harper claimed to be interested in data supported policies, right after they destroyed the data collecting capacity of the government.

      Why not get rid of any tax relief fro political and religious clubs and then see who will still donate? Better still why not outlaw parties altogether they are at the root of all political corruption in Canada after all.

  11. This whole ‘coming out’ on having used puffed on pot 5 or 6 times in the past is a simple ruse being employed by Junior. Lot’s of press coverage, and, just before the Liberal policy convention. Gee, what a coincidence.

    • If that is true (and I don’t believe it), then it was effective, so good for him. Way to get the attention focused on you, Mr. Trudeau. Well done.

      Thank god you did not propose stealth snowmobiles….

      • LOL. How do you work ‘stealth snowmobiles’ into a discussion about Junior puffing on some ‘wacky tobaccy’ Gayle? At least you’re entertaining.

        • thats insulting to Trudeau and to a medically beneficil plant you you are not entertaining

  12. Justin Trudeau isn’t a leader. He’s a pretty face for the young girls.Plus, we had one Trudeau mess up this country, sure as F don’t need another one.

    • hes better looking than you lol

  13. Leaders MUST have higher standards (otherwise I should be a leader, too, because I have beautiful natural white streaks, or should I have a famous last name)?. I do not like most the of the Harper’s things (such as hiding things, being undemocratic). But he will have my vote, instead of these potheads.

    • insulting people who are not hurting you belittling medicine and cuz of jealousy about our next P.M. makes you appear foolish in the eyes of others

  14. Legalize the ganja!

  15. While the Harper government is focused on destroying the economy, wrote
    Conservative party executive director Dan Hilton, Justin Trudeau has
    announced one of his very first policy positions as leader of the
    Liberal party: He wants to legalize marijuana in Canada to pay off the massive debt created by the CRAP’s mismanagement of the economy.

  16. Justin McGovern.

  17. How much news coverage can this whole pot legalization story get? We get it – he smoked pot – big deal, not many people care. He wants to legalize it – whoopdy-doo. Can we move on to more important issues now ? Unless of course Trudeau’s finally going to explain how legalization is going to work. I’d rather decriminalization – we all know once the government gets involved in anything they just screw it up.

    • Pierre Trudeau, a graduate of The London School of Economics, plunged Canada into a huge deficit because of his ruinous economic policies. Junior’s grasp of the economic issues facing the country is tenuous at best. Do not under any circumstances let this mental midget get into power.

      • It’ll take more than nice hair, a flashy smile, a famous last name and “charisma” (puke) to get my vote. So far, IMO, JT has shown himself to be light on any real policy, has flip-flopped/corrected himself on several occasions, and is a hypocrite. His “transparency” does not impress me because it is all politically calculated. He and the Libs will be transparent so long as it suits them. Sure he’s going to ask his MP’s to post their expenses…. starting now. If he really wanted to be transparent, ask his MP’s books for the past 5 years to be opened up. That’s transparency I’d like to see. Then we’d get a true picture of what, if anything, has been going on. Doubt we’ll ever see that though.

        • Wasn’t harper’s cry for transparency and accountablity also politically calculated — oh, and also false?

          Why don’t you and metropika just post your real feelings: that no matter what the policy roll out from JT over the next two years, you don’t vote Liberal? Why be coy?

          • I’ve been a card carrying Liberal for longer than you’ve been alive Patchouli. But that doesn’t mean I have to give Junior my personal endorsement. He’s all talk and no substance. More photo-ops than Stephen Harper could ever hope for. He’s as slick and phony as Michael Ignatieff was. Thank god that pathetic putz went back to teaching. Maybe Junior should too.

          • I didn’t think I was being coy at all – I called him a hypocrite. Nothing coy about that. At this point in time, you’re right – nothing JT could say or do at this moment would change my opinion of him. However, I am open minded enough to see what he’s going to do over the next year and half…. so far though, I’m not impressed in the least and have a very hard time understanding why so many Canadians appear to be so enamoured with him.

      • ill bet you can read his mind or did you dream that up all by youself ? lolol grow up

      • regale us with your exploits genius lolol

  18. It’s both hilarious and tragic that the media are interpreting honesty in a politician as calculated and underhanded.

    • Matthew,
      We’re all waiting for what Junior comes out with next so that we can all have a really good laugh. This guy’s hilarious. If he didn’t have his Liberal leader gig going he’d be a shoe-in for stand-up comedian.

    • Do you really believe it’s not calculated. Trust me, just about everything a politician does is planned and calculated. You’re not that naïve. Like I’ve said before, if JT wants to be so transparent, why doesn’t he get his MP’s to post their expenses for the past 5 years instead of just going forward. That would be real transparency.

      • As the great skeptic and cannabis consumer Carl Sagan once advised, I try to remain both skeptical and open minded.

        I don’t really care that JT has partaken. I don’t really care whether JT is advocating cannabis law reform because it is the right thing to do, because it is what the majority of Canadians want, or both.

        If JT’s motivations are sincere, he is capable of changing his opinions in the face of evidence and reason. This would be a good thing, and not something we are used to seeing from the CPC.

        If JT is merely pandering to the majority, but still privately believes that cannabis prohibition is good public policy (I doubt it), then at least he respects democracy.

        I’d be happy if Harper tried to cynically win my vote by reforming cannabis laws as well, even if he still privately believed that cannabis prohibition makes our communities safer, and that cannabis was prohibited because of the harm it causes to individuals and society. Do you really think the CPC believe that? If they do, they’re ignorant. If they don’t, they’re dishonest.

        • I don’t care that he’s smoked dope either. I do care that he did it while in office when he’s sworn to uphold our laws – I do care that he doesn’t seem to care that he broke the law – I do care that he’s made a 180 degree turn on the issue in such a short time (people can change their minds when presented with new info, but there was no new info about pot) – I do care that he was a hypocrite for voting for minimum sentences for pot possession when he was sitting at home smoking the stuff. If JT was sincere he wouldn’t have voted for min sentences only a few short years ago – he would have stood up at that time and been “honest”…. but it’s only now he choses to be honest – when it’s politically advantageous to be “honest” (and I use that word loosely).
          As far as the CPC, their position on the subject is even dumber than Trudeau’s. The right thing to do is to decriminalize it – not to tax, regulate, and sell it at the corner store or to outright ban it. Trust me…. you won’t see weed legalized for a very long time, if ever. If Trudeau was honest and transparent he’d tell you the same thing.

          • excellent post – honest and straight forward, too bad our politicians don’t have more of that. I agree its the hypocrite position that people don’t seem to connect with – the Conservatives may be on the wrong end of this but they have been consistent about it.
            I also agree that it should be decriminalized, but not legalized…

          • Thanks Dawg,
            I’m not a Con supporter either, but I agree with you that at least they’ve been consistent. While I may not like everything they do, at least I’m pretty sure I know what to expect from them. With Trudeau, I have absolutely no idea. The number of times he’s put his foot in his mouth or had to go back on TV to “clarify” what he really meant and his flip-flopping on issues scares me. I just don’t feel like I really know what Trudeau would do if elected. Unfortunately we’re stuck with 2 lame horses – Canadians seem to believe there are only 2 parties. We put Libs in until they screw us so bad that we put Cons in….. until they screw us so bad we put Libs back in…. until they screw us so bad that…. well, you get the picture. Wouldn’t it throw everyone off it we all voted for a “fringe” party – send the message that we’re sick of both the Libs and Cons? Everyone wants to give JT a “chance” – heck, if we’re giving people “chances” why not give Elizabeth May or someone else a “chance”? Ugh…. Canadian politics.

          • I know, it makes you dizzy how many times the Cons and Libs switch positions. problem being Ontario voted the fringe once because both parties pissed us off and we ended up with Rae Days. The green, although Ms May is growing in the respect department with me personally, the taxes they would send our way would just kill us. That’s another thing Jr is working on, cap/trade or other green taxes “revenue tools” – he is going to hit us hard on those, mark my words. if we think gas is expensive at 1.33, just wait. cheers…

          • May not like his stance on legalization but Harper has never altered it to win voters and to Mulcair’s credit his point about weed being 40 times as strong as that the stuff he smoked while in high school is a good one. Compare their opinions to Trudeau and he is the one looking “wishy-washy.”

          • pots the same as 40 years ago they got nothing today comes close to Black Sheba

          • swat teams. property seizures ,mandatory minimums, taking kids away not allowing people to get it as medicine, persecution over a plant are the reasons decrim doesnt work

          • That JT broke the law prohibiting cannabis possession doesn’t bother me. I’m sure most MPs have exceeded the posted speed limit and failed to come to a complete stop at a stop sign in recent memory. In this case, the law has no legitimacy. It was based on xenophobia and only remains on the books due to political cowardice and stupidity. I’ll call it a crime after I read the victim impact statements from Trudeau’s dinner party … maybe.

            I agree that JT voting for C-15 was wrong. Mind you, the CPC went to great lengths to assure us that C-15 was meant to target drug kingpins, not people in simple possession.

            Yes, the evidence that cannabis prohibition is a bad policy has been around since long before JT was born, but it’s quite possible he never gave the issue serious consideration.

            Anecdotally, I’ve witnessed many people “evolve” from being prohibitionists to decriminalizers to legalizers as they become more educated. Consider, for example, Sanjay Gupta’s recent enlightenment, or the attorney who prosecuted Marc Emery.

            Regarding decrim vs legalization, I recommend you read the Senate Special Committee on Illegal Drugs report, “Cannabis: Our Position for a Canadian Public Policy.” The nonpartisan committee unanimously recommended legal regulation, and explicitly advised against decrim, tickets and fines, for several reasons, including the fact that decrim does nothing to deal with the problems caused by the black market, that it doesn’t allow for taxation and regulation, that it amplifies existing enforcement disparities and it hits the lower classes harder than the upper classes.

            I’ve seen cannabis legalized in WA, CO and Uruguay. I don’t expect it to happen in Canada under the CPC, and when it happens here, it will probably be spun as a way to make life more difficult for bad guys, not easier for cannabis consumers. In other words, it will be “tough on crime.” The CPC could spin it that way, while appealling to their libertarian supporters, but again, I don’t expect that to happen. Their supporters seem to value consistency over evidence and reason.

            @LDawg05:disqus, I don’t consider being consistently stupid a virtue.

          • I was pointing out consistency not as a virtue but as something I like to see in a Politician. Jr is more like a carnival game where the gopher pops his head up in odd places, only he gets a pat on the back not a slap in the head. If you have read a few of my post you would see I am on the opposite side of the Conservatives on this. Its the hypocrisy that bugs me. Its ok to change your mind once educated on the issue, but this is just pandering to the mob by Jr, nothing else.

          • Exactly…. but it’s typical for a JT supporter to automatically assume you’re a con if you don’t bow to their saviour.

          • The ” Let’s make Weed Legal” rallying cry sells well on facebook and twitter perhaps JT should be looking for a more mature audience

          • Actually, the most recent opinion poll, headlining today at the Mop and Pail, points out that the demographic most likely to support cannabis prohibition are senior citizens. Those who favour cannabis law reform tend to be of higher education and income, and baby boomers, who are getting on, are among them.
            http://mapinc.org/url/j5eG8b4V

          • educate yourself about pot

          • It should bother you an elected official who’s sworn to abide by and uphold the law flagrantly and unapologetically broke it. Sure other politician’s have broke the law…. does that then make it ok in your books?

            Regardless of why the law is there, it’s still there. We don’t get to pick and choose which laws will and will not apply to us.
            Voting for C-15 was wrong. Regardless of how the CPC tried to sell it, Justin’s a big boy with a lot of lawyers around him. I’m sure he had an opportunity to read it. Whether he did or not is another story.
            If you’re saying it’s possible he hadn’t given issue “serious consideration” why was voting for C-15?? Shouldn’t he have given it serious consideration back then? Geez, I don’t know about you, but I like my politicians to give serious consideration to things before they blindly vote for something.
            I’ve seen people evolve too, but isn’t it interesting that he evolved from his own view to the views of the LPC after he was elected leader? It was a rather quick evolution too. Like I said though… he could have made that evolution a long time ago if he had given the matter “serious consideration” when he ought to have when bill C-15 was up (at least).
            I will read the report you’ve cited but I can tell you what will really happen….. gov weed will be weaker and more expensive, so the black market and criminals won’t go away (look at tobacco); kids will still get it like they do today – but it will be even easier to get the expensive crap weed cuz it’s sold at the corner store. Those that normally wouldn’t smoke it or try it (b/c they have no idea where to find a dealer), will now go out and give it a try cuz the gov says it’s ok and you can get it at the corner store. Not to mention the regulatory framework will be a nightmare to deal with.
            Your arguments are weak at best and actually reveal further character flaws with Mr. Trudeau but I don’t expect you to care because you are hellbent on trying to defend his every action. Even when you think he was wrong on C-15 you make up an excuse for him. What is the appeal of JT that makes otherwise intelligent people so dumb? Must be his “charisma” – ugh.

          • A majority of Canadians have broken cannabis laws. I dare say I know a few, and they are, for the most part, good people who respect the golden rule. If sodomy was still illegal and Justin participated in it, I wouldn’t hold that against him either. I see nothing wrong with breaking bad, victimless laws, the keyword being “victimless.”

            Anyone who expects MPs to obey the letter of the law is amnesiac. “Thanks for passing me a joint at my private dinner party, but I’m a legislator and it would be hypocritical of me to take a toke.”

            Again, C-15 introduced MMs for cultivation and trafficking, and not just MMs for cannabis offenses but all illicit drugs. So, technically speaking, there is no hypocrisy in wanting to punish drug kingpins for trafficking while partaking. Who knows, maybe his dinner guest grew less than 6 plants. Maybe they were licensed by Health Canada.

            If you check out the latest opinion poll, the trend is to evolve from being a prohibitionist to a reformer. Why should JT be any different? Neither his having tried cannabis nor his coming around to favouring reform is unusual, and therefore not very suspicious. I’d be more suspicious if he claimed to have never tried it and to have once favoured reform but to have become a prohibitionist, because that would be weird.

            Legal regulation could take several forms. It may or may not be legal to grow your own, and thus avoid the government schwag, if in fact the government requires producers to sell schwag. I don’t expect cannabis to be available in corner stores. More likely at pharmacies or liquor stores, or liquor-store-like establishments.

            Teens find cannabis easier to obtain than beer, and more try cannabis than tobacco, so while our regimes for these drugs is far from utopian, it is better than prohibition. Yes, a relatively insignificant black market for tobacco remains. Raise the taxes too high on any product and that’s what happens. Legal regulation will improve the situation to the extent the legal market displaces the black market, whatever that extent.

            When any teen can obtain cannabis at school between classes, and most refrain from huffing gasoline, availability is a non-issue.

            I’ve never met anyone who would like to smoke weed but doesn’t because they can’t obtain it, or because the government doesn’t approve. “Thanks for passing me a joint, but I have to decline because Stephen Harper says drugs are bad, mmmkay.”

            I’m not a liberal nor a JT groupie. I never paid any attention to him until he called for cannabis law reform. Nor do I assume that everyone who doesn’t like JT is a conservative. I can think of several reasons why tree hugging leftest hippies might dislike him.

          • 1. the majority of Canadians aren’t running for PM
            2. you have very low standards for our public officials and that’s not a good thing
            3. C-15 contained minimum sentences for minor possession – it’s there to be read. If JT was confused, he should’ve gotten help understanding it (“who knows, maybe his guests were licensed?” – really? wow.)
            4. JT’s mom was a pothead, his brother was a pot head – he was probably pro pot all his life but too scared for political reasons to ever say it. He’s simply trying to follow what he believes popular opinion to be.
            5. corner store/liquor store – same thing. I’m just calling it corner stores (LCBO’s are sometimes located on corners) and of course the gov will regulate the production and distribution – how else will they and their corporate friends make money?
            6. Legalizing it may cut into criminals profits, but it won’t go away and it won’t keep it out of the hands of kids…. I think you post pretty much agrees with that.
            7. I’ve been out lots of times with people that wanted to smoke a joint while they were out but didn’t know where to get it. I also know many people (albeit older) that would not touch the stuff cuz they think it’s bad… and they think it’s bad b/c it’s illegal.
            8. You seem like “Justie” by the way you seem to rush to his defence

          • 1) JT wasn’t running for PM when he last partook.

            2) I don’t expect anyone to obey cannabis possession laws, including cops, judges and prosecutors, nor would I respect them more if they did. My white parents deliberately sat at the back of a segregated bus before Rosa Parks did her thing, and I respect them more because of it. Granted, having a puff at a dinner party is not civil disobedience.

            3) You’re quite mistaken. C-15 did not contain MMs for simple possession. MMs were mandated for cultivation of 6 or more plants and possession of relatively large quantities for the purposes of trafficking.

            4) Yes, it’s quite possible JT’s previous objections to cannabis law reform were entirely political. Probably a combination of ignorance about cannabis policy and the common misconception that advocating cannabis law reform is political suicide. Until not that long ago, it was.

            5) Again, teens find cannabis easier to obtain than beer, so proof-of-age requirements are an impediment, however small an impediment.

            6) Agreed.

            7) It is true that on some nights casual consumers who lack connections might fail to obtain cannabis when the urge strikes them. Most will settle for liquor under those circumstances, much to our collective detriment.

            8) On the one hand, I defend JT against the erroneous allegation that he supported increasing penalties for simple possession while breaking that law. On the other hand, I criticized the law professor who made the silly argument that he did not break the law by smoking cannabis.

            JT not only broke the law prohibiting possession if he accepted a joint or pipe that was passed to him, regardless of if he took a toke or just passed it along, he also broke the law prohibiting trafficking if he passed it along, regardless of if the person he passed it to accepted or declined the offer. Marc Emery was sentenced to three months in jail for passing a joint.

            I try to give everyone the benefit of the doubt with respect to their motivations, to never ascribe to malice that which can be explained by incompetence. For all I know, Harper’s heart is in the right place. He might actually believe that cannabis prohibition keeps our communities safe. I also assume that most young earth creationists are sincere.

            The arguments Trudeau has made in favour of cannabis law reform are consistent with his explanation that he has given the matter more consideration, and discussed the issue with activists, such as NORML Women of Canada. He is using activist talking points.

          • There’s getting to be too much to respond to. Another time perhaps.

          • pot head is a bad insult .who are you to insult millions of happy people who never insulted or bothered you. this makes you seem angry and not credible so you posts are a joke

          • Grow up. I know lots of potheads that use the term about themselves and others. What would you prefer I call them… connoisseurs of THC?

          • people you are saying it in a derogatory context to be insulting we get it you hate the trudeaus and pot .pots medicine that’s why pot trolls are so easy to spot they if they ever researched it they wouldnt hate it

          • Who ever said I hate pot? You just made that up. I don’t hate Trudeau either…. I just don’t think he’s PM material.

          • your remarks display your hatred for all the Trudeas .too late to backpedal now

          • Whatever you want to believe.

          • tennessee 6 youbite 0

          • discussing policy and pointing out mistakes made does not imply “hatred” of certain people. this is the problem with the world – if you want to discuss crime in Jane/Finch you are a racist – if you want to discuss sex-ed about minors being taught about gay/tansexual you are a bigot or homophobe – now if you have a problem with Muslim “extremists” you Islamaphobe – where do we go next “Trudeaphobe”. seriously, you need to relax…..

          • saying mean spirited things repeatedly about the Trudeau’s is not discussing policy pal lolol hatred and anger is no way to make your point i suggest anger management Good Luck

          • wow – I can see there’s no anger from you. why can there not be conversation with accusations. “mean spirited” things – where in my last post have I said anything “mean spirited” about Jr. Where in any posts have i attacked Jr for anything other than whats on the record about him. Pointing out the obvious is not mean spirited. sorry if I hurt your feelings, was not my intent. have a nice night…

          • you called his parents potheads and belittled him good luck on your angry journey lol

          • Say that Rob Ford parked illegally on private property 40 miles outside of Toronto near an abandoned warehouse. He’s not hurting anyone ,there is no one around but technically he is breaking the law. The MSM would be on him like”white on rice.”

          • This comment was deleted.

          • sure than can, they just create more “revenue tools”.

          • Pot prices will plummit and well grow our own .Some will buy bit at a store. Is thers a black market for alcohol . you have some isses

          • I can’t debate with someone who can’t spell or use grammar properly. You know less than nothing.

          • I scanned the report (way too long to read). They recommended people over the age of 16 can get it – which reminded me of the recent studies of pot and teens. If it’s legalize the gov won’t be able to sell it to anyone under the age of probably 25 (b/c of the psychiatric issues seen in teens)…. teens will continue to get it if they want it regardless if it’s legal or not. Legalizing it so people over 25 can get it does nothing to curb teens getting it from dealers – in fact there will be more dealers for them to choose from b/c anyone over 25 could walk into the store and get it for them.
            It seems to me in my reading that the report supports legalization so the gov can tax it and make money. Sure they say we can regulate it better (why though? what are they regulating?) and it will reduce organized crime. As I’ve already said, it will not make organized crime go away – it will cut into their profits, but not make them go away (cigarettes are the example).
            The people I know want it decrim cuz they want to be able to smoke a joint and not feel like they could go to jail or get arrested – they are not interested in the gov trying to control it like booze. Maybe if the state doesn’t belong in our bedrooms they shouldn’t be in our rec rooms (or beside our pools) either?

          • The committee recommended 16 as a base minimum age at the federal level, in part due to the literature on the adverse effects of cannabis on immature brains, and also because the average age of initiation is currently about 13. As you point out, set the minimum age too high and a lot of young people won’t benefit from legalization. However, they also recommended that the provinces be able to set the minimum age higher, perhaps the same as their minimum ages for tobacco or alcohol.

            Tax revenue is just one of the arguments for reform. As you noticed, the report is over 800 pages long. The summary will give you the gist of it, but they recommended legal regulation as much for the benefits of legal regulation as for the costs of prohibition, including the loss of civil liberties, the enrichment of criminals, the waste of finite criminal justice resources, the lack of quality control, the impeding of education, treatment and harm reduction, and so forth. Of course legal regulation won’t make organized crime vanish.

            I’ve been involved in drug policy reform for almost 20 years, and I’ve never met a cannabis law reformer who is in it because they fear arrest. I realize that this is anecdotal, but more commonly it’s the glaring hypocrisy and injustice that motivates them to advocate reform. You’ve got libertarians who think it is none of the government’s business, and bleeding heart socialists who want to see more resources directed toward treatment and prevention. Note that a majority of Canadians favour reform but only a small minority partake.

            Personally, I think cannabis should be regulated like other herbs and natural health products, the way it would be had it not been prohibited. Equality with coffee would be great, but equality with alcohol and tobacco would be a good start, especially if, like beer and wine, consumers were permitted to grow their own.

          • this is not a fial report and no way people 16 will be able to get it .no states or countries allow that

          • nothing was said abour being 25. there wont be dealers cuz the price will drop kids cant get pot or booze from a regulated store you got the basics of the economics of it all wrong

          • You got the basics of reading comprehension all wrong.

          • nowhere in the article or in bizarro world is the number 25 mentioned they did say 21 in col. and wash. lolol Tenessee 2 cant read0

          • 25 was never mentioned

          • Yes, I know. You still don’t COMPREHENDED my post. I said “If it’s legalize the gov won’t be able to sell it to anyone under the age of PROBABLY 25”. The “probably” suggests that this is my opinion. When you put that into the context of the rest of my post you should be able to comprehend that I believe it won’t be sold to people under 25 b/c of the psychiatric issues with pot and teens/young adults.

          • you forget that the article said 21 its like that all over .25 is a laughable opinion no matter what

          • I didn’t “forget” anything. 25 is my opinion…. 21 is laughable. You think the government wants to be associated with psychiatric issues in young adults alleged to have been caused by pot? No, they will take a cautious approach…. that is IF they ever do actually legalize it – and IF they ever do, it won’t be for a long, long time. Try thinking through all the issues before jumping to conclusions.

          • 20 states and portugal and canada and hollandall set the age at 21 the isses about psyhch problems are overblown and only fools believe that lol. VERY soon itll be legal. ten more states are going for it in the next election research before you jump to conclusions. i did already ! yer doing a poor job of trolling good luck lolol

          • We’ll see. When I’m discussing “legalizing” it, I’m talking about JT’s version of legalizing it (tax and regulate it). None of the states are doing that yet. Time will tell.

            “Teenage brains may be especially vulnerable to the harmful effects of cannabis, experts believe. Scientists came to the conclusion after reviewing more than 120 studies looking at the effects of cannabis on the adolescent brain”
            I guess you know more than those experts and the experts who conducted the more than 120 studies. Anyway, the real point is legalizing and regulating it will not reduce teen use….. that doesn’t mean I’m against decriminalization or legalization, that’s just a fact. Booze and cigarettes don’t stay out of their hands so why would pot?

          • common sense dictates that regulating pot like liquor keeps it away from kids . these so called experts dont mention meth or sniffing gas or anything else is also harmful to kids you got 0 common sense. jts plan is not finalised yet

          • Then use your common sense and explain to me how it is underage kids drink booze and smoke? duh. You and JT are in la-la land. If anything legalizing it removes some of the social stigma that still surrounded it and kept some people away from it. But whatever, from our conversations I don’t expect you to be able to get it.

          • regulation puts black market out of business its hard for kids to get itt from regylated stores you bare failing as a troll parents =fail lol Tenessee12 cant read 0

          • Regulation does not put black market out of business. Are you new? When people know they’ve lost, they resort to name calling. Reality wins. Tennesee Tux – dumb redneck that can’t string a sentence or a thought together.

          • once its regulated the price will plummit yo can add economics tp your list of failures Tennessee18 cant read 0 =fail

          • You’re stupid on so many levels. I’m done with you.

          • spoken like losing troll .come after someone less intelligent and knowledgable next time. research is the key not trollng

          • you are losing and sending me messages every 5 minutes wont change that Tennesse 14 cant read still and always 0 LOLOL

          • If you recall, you’re the one that messaged me…… I’m just responding. If you weren’t so annoying I’d feel sorry for you.

          • i just lookes on discus, 3 mor from you lol you are a joke seek professional help and anger management

          • kids cat get pot at regulated stores which would put dealers out of business

          • OR, the government pot is crap so they don’t buy it there.
            OR, the government weed is too expensive from all the regulation
            OR, the dealers do more business because KIDS can’t get it at
            stores (they have to be 21 remember DINGDONG?) and now that it’s more social acceptable, more do it;
            OR those dealers push other things at schools instead of harmless weed
            Ever think of ANY of that? Didn’t think so. You obviously don’t have the capacity to think critically about all the real and potential issues.

          • its 21 all over gro up

          • Are you stupid? Do you understand the difference between opinion and fact?

          • fact is your wrong its 21 will never be 25 thats just plain silly =fail

          • “fact is you’re (I’m) wrong, it’s 21”
            Are you high? Where did I state that it wasn’t?

          • you are nitpicking and lost all credibility send me longer messages next tme

          • lol…. point out your stupidity is not nitpicking.

          • ha ha you lost lol

  19. I love the argument put out by the legalize/decriminalize it crowd that government regulation will eliminate the criminal element and illegal grow-ops from their involvement in the pot industry. Sure. Of course. Whatever you say.

    • Strawman. Few reformers are that unrealistic. Most argue that legalization will merely reduce criminal involvement in the cannabis industry. Decrim would have no effect on the industry.

      Prohibitionists used to say they want, and expect to achieve, a drug-free world. Now that’s delusional.

      • Matthew,
        This whole movement is unrealistic, delusional, and just a lot of hype. Nothing will change. The criminal element will continue to reap huge profits from the sale of pot through their grow-ops. And the government will be powerless to stop it.

        • As I mentioned elsewhere, I’ve been at this for almost 20 years, and although the rate of change is depressingly slow, we’ve now got a political leader being accused of trying to attract voters by conceding he smoked weed three years ago. He would have been run out of town with torches and pitchforks for admitting that 10 years ago. It would have been considered political suicide when Clinton claimed he didn’t inhale.

          You might have missed the news today that Obama is going to let WA and CO experiment with legal regulation, and the 16 or so states with medicinal cannabis regimes will be allowed to develop those as well. A poll just came out once again showing majority support for cannabis law reform in Canada. Same story south of the border. That too is a relatively recent development.

          The only way to remove the criminal element from the industry is to move the non-criminal element into the industry. What percentage of the alcohol market would you say is controlled by criminals? 10 per cent? 20 per cent? I’d guess about 5 per cent. The criminal element will never be 100 per cent supplanted, but to the extent it is, things will improve. Of course, that’s just one of the reasons cannabis should be legalized.

          • Just because some politicians are kissing up to the legalize/decriminalize movement doesn’t mean that it has any real substance to it. I predict that once the hype over governmental regulation losses it’s appeal things will revert back to its original state of affairs. Kids will continue to be exposed to it as their parents habit of lighting up around them won’t change but actually get worse. Bogus.

          • Then you arent paying attention, and it shows. The polls all say the same thing, marijuana will be legalized very soon. The younger voters have no stomach for the disaster that is prohibition. Don’t take it personally, marijuana should have never been criminalized in the first place. We wasted mountains of treasure on this farce, thankfully the end is near.

          • And why not consume cannabis openly; do we hide our alcohol consumption?

      • the price will drop and criminals wont be able to compete with producers

    • The mob doesn’t sell me my whiskey, and drug cartels shouldn’t be in the pot business. When you create a black market, bad people will inevitably take over that market. This isn’t rocket science my man, crack open a history book once in a while.

      • Did you mention the word crack? That’s Rob Ford’s territory Youseff. The mayor of Toronto remember? I suppose that we should legalize that as well. Judging by your argument, that it’s not rocket science, I don’t think you’ve read much history yourself.

        • Crack is as close to marijuana as meth is to coffee. Try again.

  20. Why do I feel that there is Chretien curse on pothead party. And that fate of curly hair may not be different than Dion and Ignatieff.

  21. Marijuana should be legallized and taxed like crazy instead of people going to jail for possession offenses. What a wasted of space in the prison system when rapists, murderers should be instead. People who use Pot, sell Pot and grow Pot do not deserve to be put away for years in jail when there is so much more evil in the world. Alchohol kills more people on the roads and people die of Alcohol poisoning from one night of partying. Yet is legal!! You cannot die of Pot from one night use and I imagine it is much safer to drive under in the influence of pot than alchohol. Then their is cigars and cigarettes which are legal and yet drain our medical system like crazy and yet governments love to tax the crap out of tobacco and alcohol. Please!!! Get it right government and just legalize pot….hurry up!

    • Yeah, we should tax the people who need it for medical reasons most. That way, we’ll be able to tell them that we were doing it to help them as they lose their homes.

      Brilliant idea, Lee!

      FYI: Most medical cannabis users in Canada currently grow their own, but as of April 1st 2014, they’re going to have to come up with an average of about $50,000.00 a year. Since most of them are too ill to work and are living off their pittance of a pension, guess who’s going to have to pay all those extra taxes that ignorant blowhards like YOU seem to think are such a great idea?

      That’s right: WE ALL ARE!

      It’s no wonder Canada’s going down faster than most other countries…nobody in the damned country EVER THINKS ABOUT ANYTHING before they shoot off their completely uninformed idiot cannons.

      The ONLY workable, long-term solution is to REPEAL cannabis prohibition ENTIRELY, REMOVE cannabis from the CDSA, and STOP WASTING TWO BILLION A YEAR ATTACKING PLANT USERS, POSSESSORS AND GROWERS.

      Of course, you’ll be happy to know that if things aren’t done that way BEFORE April 1st, the joke’s on YOU, because the waste is set to balloon to OVER SIX BILLION DOLLARS WE DON’T HAVE. You, of course, have already stated that you think that wasting SIX BILLION we don’t have is a much smarter thing than to STOP WASTING two billion we don’t have.

      You should move to Ottawa. You’re GUARANTEED to get a prominent position with that kind of unthinking anti-logic.

      PS: Cannabis needs to be FREE, not “legal.” That necessarily REQUIRES the REPEAL of all prohibitionary statutes against it’s use, its possession, its transportation, and growing it. Let grandma grow a few plants in her own garden, let farmers grow the best strain for their soil and climate, and then we can replace the DELIBERATE destruction of our old growth forests with hemp, and get the benefits of a safer food supply, annually renewable biofuels (cellulosic ethanol as well as “biodiesel”, which is what Rudolf Diesel designed his engines to run on in the first place!), and we can FINALLY stop “wishing we were energy independent” and just GET THERE.

      The absolutely moronic idea that “in order to fix any problem, we have to create new taxes” is the stupidest anti-logic that politicians and bankers have ever conspired to get wilfully ignorant and unthinking people to buy into.

      Every time you say “just tax it”, thinking that “Hey, someone ELSE will have to pay the taxes”, you NEVER consider the fact that if THEY can’t afford the taxes, the taxes WILL BE OFFLOADED TO YOU one way or another. You only THINK that you’re attacking other people’s wallets…but you really haven’t got a clue about how government or taxes work.

  22. I am given to understand there are different types of Marijuana. Medical Marijuana is milder and some Marijuana is laced with most undesirable drugs. We need to be much better educated about the type of Marijuana we want to legalize.
    Steven Harper has a lot of ‘Social -Conservatives’ in his party and I’m sure he won’t wastes his time on a marijuana debate. The next election is the time to debate the issue and in the meantime lets get educated.

    • I’m sure the “different types” and their undesirables will be debated up to and including the next election.

  23. Cannabis was “legalized” the second they wrote the first statute which made it “illegal”, thereby “importing cannabis into the realm of statutory control and enforcement.” It’s been 100% “legalized” ever since.

    What most people meant to say was that prohibition should be REPEALED. Of course, since nobody ever looks up the meaning of words any more, they think that “decriminalize” or “legalize” or “re-legalize” or “tax and regulate” or “regulate like _____” mean “it’s free again.”

    They don’t.

    “EVERYTHING that people have been begging for” hasn’t resulted in the FREEING of the plant, or your ability to access, possess, or grow it yourself…and yet, the one word that DOES represent what everyone “believes they have been saying” is the one word they REFUSE to say…while wondering why every effort to regain their freedom fails…

    http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/repeal

    re·peal [ri-peel] Show IPA
    verb (used with object)

    1. to revoke or withdraw formally or officially: to repeal a grant.
    2. to revoke or annul (a law, tax, duty, etc.) by express legislative enactment; abrogate.

    noun

    3. the act of repealing; revocation; abrogation.

    Origin:
    1275–1325; Middle English repelen < Anglo-French repeler, equivalent to re- re- + ( a ) peler to appeal

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Repeal

    A #repeal is the removal or reversal of a law.
    There are two basic types of repeal, a repeal with re-enactment (or
    replacement) of the repealed law, or a repeal without replacement. The
    motion to rescind, repeal, or annul is used in parliamentary procedure to cancel or countermand an action or order previously adopted by the assembly. Removal of secondary legislation is normally referred to as revocation rather than repeal in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Under the common law of England and Wales, the effect of repealing a statute was "to obliterate it completely from the records of Parliament as though it had never been passed."[1] This, however, is now subject to savings provisions within the Interpretation Act 1978.

    So now that you've FINALLY actually read the definition of the word that DOES represent what you "believe you were saying" since the 60's…NOW does it make a tiny bit more sense why ALL EFFORTS HAVE FAILED to restore our freedoms so far?

    It's time we REPEALED prohibition. For everyone. Everywhere.

    "More of the same" isn't working. It never did. It never will.

    IT CAN'T…because it was never DESIGNED to.

    Not "decriminalization." Not "legalization." Not "tax and regulate." Not "regulate like _______." Not "government controlled." Not "corporate monopoly controlled." Not even "for approved and specifically licensed medicinal use only."

    ALL of those are just different forms of "specifically delineated" PROHIBITION.

    If you want it over, you have to REPEAL it.

    Unless you really WANT "more of the same?"

  24. Thomas Mulcair: “the marijuana that’s on the market is extremely potent and can actually cause mental illness.”

    Either Mulcair is ignorant and uninformed or he is deliberately spouting propaganda. There are two myths in that short statement. First, he brings up this claim of extreme potency, which is an exaggeration of the facts. Strong, potent cannabis has always been around. While there might be more of it around now, that’s not necessarily a bad thing, since the more potent it is the less people use.

    Second, he makes a common mistake attempting to understand the results of studies. No study shows a causal connection between cannabis and mental illness. Instead, some studies, usually small, unconfirmed or biased, shows associations or links, which is not at all the same thing. So, for Mulcair to claim that cannabis “actually causes mental illness” is either an uneducated mistake or a deliberate fear-mongering lie.

  25. Junior Trudeau is making a stealth cry for mercy.

    The reason for his recent nonsensical remarks is that he is really saying: “I FEEL UNCOMFORTABLE. GET ME OUT OF HERE BEFORE THE NEXT ELECTION.”

  26. Legalized marijuana is so over due. It is a total waste of national resource policing it and
    most studies have concluded it is less damaging than alcohol to the human.
    In the countries than have effectively legalized it (Netherlands, Italy, Portugal and Spain) it has not led to increased drug use, but has greatly reduced the violence, shootings and criminal involvement. Reduced crime and related violence makes the world a safer place to live.

  27. LOL…HE SURE IS HIGH ON SOMETHING…AND WANTS TO BE A ” GROWER ” AND ” PUSHER ” of the next HIPPY GENERATION of FREE LOVE …lol..via DRUGS…and hallucinations that are built up on into more hallucinations…lol..

  28. Let’s fess up!!! Does anyone actually consume cannabis and cannabis products regularly? I do and I love it!!!

  29. I adore Justin Trudeau, I think he’s what Canada needs, new energy, new blood, new ideas, When he speaks it’s always ‘We’ Canada, never ‘I’, I agree with him, Canada should legalize mary jane. It’s been going on long enough, don’t you think ? Put an age barrier on selling it, and TAX it for the poor, social services, etc. We pay him well enough, he should do what he wants. I used to smoke at least once a day, but it no longer appeals to me. But hey, I’m a product of the 60’s – what can I say ?

    Carole Goulet

  30. I will never understand why conservatives have a problem with increased tax revenue, reduction of the impact of the black market, controlled distribution and quality (ie safety and the requirement I.D.) and reduced costs for our Justice system. decades have proven that the war on drugs is expensive and not winnable, why do you insist we continue to throw our tax dollars into a bottomless pit.

  31. Do you think that the Harper government’s aggressive tough stance on marijuana (400,000 arrests) has anything to do with employment stats? Legalization would put a lot more people on the streets, and where would the jobs be for them? Just a thought.

    • I see arresting 400,000 people is actually a social service to help keep them off the street, why didn’t I think of that.

  32. I do not smoke pot, did on occasion when I was younger but not my thing now. I hold a good job make $100,000 plus am in my early 60’s and I only support the common sense party. That party varies from time to time and person to person what I do know is the war on drugs is lost and the only groups in favor of keeping pot legal are law enforcement and the cartels why? could it be for the same reason “money”. Prohibition does not work it only makes gangsters and crooked politicians rich, they tried with alcohol and now with pot. The definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result. As is usual in politics something that in the grand scheme of things is irrelevant becomes the major issue. I will not vote for the flying pig because he is in favor of legalization but because he seems to have a common sense approach and has some sense of honesty to me way more important than being a politician.

  33. Justin’s opinion… legalize pot?, yes. what is your plan for running the country?, don’t know but I will get back to you in a few YEARS. Are we really taking this approach on running the Country seriously? HELL NO. Justin tell us what you are going to do about the real issues in Canada.

  34. The liberals will win the election based on this one topic – for it demonstrates just how out of touch the Conservatives are. Did they not read the earlier Maclean’s article, are they not talking to the majority of Canadians or only to a few rich old contributors?

    Prohibition has never worked and has always cost societies way more in crime and misguided and misaligned punishment. Taxes and tourism are only two items that will benefit from this move. For the conservatives to win they need to turn this around FAST – do the debates and perhaps recommend a poll in the election – if majority of Canadian’s say ‘yes’ – they will fully legalize it… what could be simpler? If they had true courage, they would turn their policy on its head and go one further then Justin.

    • firstly I am on the fence about this and I believe its a much larger issue than what Mr Trudeau has stated. as far as I am concerned its not prohibition – its an illegal substance and not your parents mary jane, lets legalize heroin and opium, it use to be legal, what the heck lets bring it back.
      Majority of Canadians, as per who, who did the poll, what was their motive and what area was polled. We all now what a poll is worth today.
      What will our allies and our treaty partners think of this, how will it affect business dealings.
      This will create a new Fed department which will cost a lot – who regulates THC content, who grows it, who sells it, who keeps an eye on things. If you think this will take the crime out of it you would be wrong – Alcohol and Cigarettes are legal, both a sold illegally and its big business.
      Just last year 60% of Canadians wanted the death penalty back, should we review this also and yes it was a poll, google it.
      as I stated, difficult decision that could have major repercussions across the board for our Country.
      To think the Conservatives will loose the election (2 years way) is unlikely, this is not a wedge issue – economic, health, education and probably another 10 things before legalization of this product. Unless of course the media makes it an issue, which they already have. have a nice day…

  35. Marijuana will be legalized by 2015. No doubt about it.

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