From: Bud – December 2, 2012
Defining the black market has become problematic for both police and cannabis consumers and advocates. If you’re saying some patient-growers would play by the rules if they could, but choose not to for fear of the type of persecution being heaped upon the businesses they supply, that’s a fair enough statement.
But it’s equally fair to observe that some patient-growers have no intention of ever paying taxes or taking the baby steps toward transparency that dispensaries have taken. The black market is their bread and butter, and while I don’t wish them ill, neither do I support the continuation of anything-goes cannabis for sale. If you listen closely, that’s exactly what some advocates are pushing for.
If you’re lucky enough to be able to cultivate your own cannabis, you don’t need the dispensaries OR the black market. You reduce market demand by growing your own. That’s a fundamental concept in Prop. 215 and SB 420 that is being rapidly eroded by outdoor growing bans, and those bans are being promoted as a tool to stop certain patient-growers from selling their 99-plant megagardens for profit (not to mention nuisance odors, public safety, citizen complaints, etc.)
There is a distinction that must be made when you grow lawfully as part of a closed-loop collective, or as a black-market vendor who grows on spec and then slings nugs to the highest bidder come harvest time. This latter black market is not worthy of preservation, but it seems it is becoming institutionalized as some distorted version of the family farm. Well, guess what, farmers pay taxes and help lower prices through regulated production and distribution systems. That’s the system we’re striving for, an equal playing field for cannabis providers, not full employment in perpetuity for anyone with a grow lamp. Such a system serves no one.
On Sat, Dec 1, 2012 at 10:49 PM, Starchild