Cannabis Taxes

Rev. Abby Jo By Rev. Abby Jo, 5th Oct 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>News>Business

The Obama Administration has vowed not to continue to waste the taxpayers' money in selective prosecution of sick people who grow their own medicine. A new case in Washington State seems to contradict this stated policy.

Taxation without Representation? The Kettle Falls Five.

My opinion as an American observer is that it's obviously a test case, the very Draconian sentences will be overturned but probably not until the defendants are sicker and they can't get the time back and they won't be compensated for their increased suffering. The feds are hoping to stir up local outrage with this case to test the new limits set by the Obama Administration, which has many vocal opponents now (google "Trump" or "The Donald" for example). Some of the people still in charge don't like hippies, gays or pot-heads and would like to turn the clock back to pre-Obama. So they pick on folks like the Kettle Falls Five in order to stir up the sentiments leading to vigorous new arguments in federal court, where new policies are created.

So why these people who are obviously law abiding? Because the more outrageous the lawsuit the more vigorous the discussion it stirs up. Think about Rosa Parks. From a law enforcement perspective what's wrong here with this group is they advertised sales to patients but they were only licensed to grow for themselves. There is nothing illegal about asking for REIMBURSEMENT of petrol and utility money for a few ounces of extra medicine, in Oregon patients do it all the time. It's a matter of HOW VISIBLE and HOW MUCH. They were BELOW the state limit. But they had SIGNS guiding strangers to their farm. BIG signs. Signs visible from the air. So drones fly over the farm, DEA and NSA find some good screen shots, send them over to DOJ and the new federal test case is born.

The Kettle Falls Five did not have a retail grow license, required in both Washington State and in Oregon. The license is less than $2000, for someone with 15 BIG plants that might not be hard to come up with. I can't grow 15 big plants because it's all organic and I am not that good at it. I barely grow enough for myself and when I run out of medicine, I go to other patients who are also growers who are better at it than I am. This is a common practice in the Northwest here. So why did the feds bust this little group of five who had below limit legal plants? My guess is because and only because there is a question about whether it is TAXABLE. The medical marijuana programs will be phased out eventually not because of any ethics but in spite of the better ethical practice of keeping them only because patients do not pay TAX on medicine. We pay a tax to the state for the privilege of having the state keep a copy of our current medical records. I give up some privacy for this privilege as well. It protects me from people who wonder what I am doing with even a few plants even in a state that allows six large plants per person as Oregon does. It's nobody's business but if cops come, then I have the permit. For $200 a year and one doctor visit a year, it works for me. Washington State does not have the same practices. Eventually the liquor commissions will take over all marijuana taxation and every grower will just pay a fine or pay for a permit. The permits for commercial grow ops are still new. Eventually they will be common and as easy to get as a beer brewing license. In Oregon, the State PRIORITIZES and goes after large growers first, instead of harassing cancer patients and risking a big wrongful death lawsuit with punitive damages and bad PR. That does not mean the fed won't target anyone growing and not paying tax, but it's not likely to target anyone unless they are real good at it. This is a kind of punishment for success--here five people cooperated and grew 70 large plants with enough harvest left over to share and put a green cross up for anyone who might drive by. The DEA does not like it and discourages this as a practice, by not tolerating it at all, they discourage any small scale independent organic farming regardless of what the crop is. This "policy" has more to do with corporate monopolies influencing law enforcement priorities than it has to do with any particular crop. The fact is, while they work out their "policy" they create local martyrs. The families will tell the tale and the neighbors will write folk songs and it will create backlash. Hopefully soon.


Cancer Treatment, Cannabis, Marijuana, Taxation

Meet the author

author avatar Rev. Abby Jo
I am an ordained minister in my 50s. My ministry is online. I practice meaningful written dialogue, truth in all things. Ascending beyond past. I will be here regardless of pay.

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