Guest post by Bob Newland

Since my blog, Decorum Forum gets a steady 79 hits a day, why, you ask would I want to pander to the audience of the likes of that which reads South DaCola?

First, because its moderator allows me to do so from time to time. Second, South DaCola recognizes the significance of a campaign of a series of short letters to the folks whom are shortly going to be adding to the panoply of rules, enforced by people with uniforms and guns, that govern every aspect of your being.

People who use cannabis are quite conscious of the “uniforms and guns” part of the deal. Since cannabis poses absolutely no threat to public safety, it must be the presence of the insane Prohibition on its existence within the borders of the USA (and a few other barbaric countries) that is the threat to public safety.

I was checking out current arguments for Prohibition the other day. I asked on Google: “why keep pot illegal?”

Its author proposes, among other equally coherent groupings of words:

Legalized gambling has not reduced illegal gambling in the United States; rather, it has increased it. This is particularly evident in sports gambling, most of which is illegal. Legal gambling is taxed and regulated and illegal gambling is not. Legal gambling sets the stage for illegal gambling just the way legal marijuana would set the stage for illegal marijuana trafficking.

The gambling precedent suggests strongly that illegal drug suppliers would thrive by selling more potent marijuana products outside of the legal channels that would be taxed and otherwise restricted. If marijuana were legalized, the only way to eliminate its illegal trade, which is modest in comparison to that of cocaine, would be to sell marijuana untaxed and unregulated to any willing buyer.

Let me get this straight. That is supposed to be an argument against legalization of cannabis?

Thinking that the preceding words might not clearly state the “mainstream” of arguments in favor of continuing to jail people for cannabis “offenses,” I browsed a few other Prohibitionist sites. I swear, the essay at is the best they have.

So, Why IS cannabis Prohibited?

That’s a question SoDakNORML is asking of current and aspirant South Dakota legislators in a weekly postal letter that asks for their positions on cannabis Prohibition and for their reasoning on the issue. The letters also each present one or two facts about the destruction caused by jailing people for trying to feel better by means of a vehicle not approved by The State.

If you’re interested in liberty and justice and stuff like that, take a look.

It’s also possible that Dakota War College will see this post and get heartburn. That’s the best reason to pander to the audience of South DaCola.


Best regards, Rep. Concise Thinker;

We believe you want what is best for the majority of South Dakotans. We do, too.

That said, we see no benefit in punishing people with criminal laws and prosecution for using cannabis (“marijuana” is the legal term, a slang term chosen from the vernacular for its sinister sound). Further, we see a great deal of harm being done –to the majority of South Dakotans as well as to those directly affected by arrest and prosecution– to no apparent purpose.

Current laws regarding cannabis achieve several effects, none of them beneficial.

1. The prices users pay for cannabis is inflated roughly 1700 per cent by the “risk” factor involved in producing, transporting and marketing the product. This benefits the most vicious people on Earth, while making the distribution of the product completely ungovernable.

2. Distribution of cannabis to minors is therefore inevitable. A legal market in cannabis among adults could allow regulations making it more difficult for children to obtain it. The current system guarantees the opposite.

3. The benefit of cannabis to a wide age of people with a wide range of adverse medical conditions is apparent. While cannabis is easily obtained by healthy, active people, it is much harder for a person in a wheelchair to make the contacts necessary to obtain what might be life-sustaining aid from cannabis. One intense irony of current policy is that it denies access to cannabis most efficiently to those whom are most in need of its benefits.

We believe, for these and other reasons, that it goes counter to any interpretation of sound public policy to maintain criminal punishments for anyone for ingestion of cannabis. We believe that adults have the inherent right to ingest cannabis (or anything else they want to ingest). We believe that those accused of possession of “marijuana” should have the right to present evidence of medical use in court and to have juries determine justice from the evidence. We believe that any steps in the direction of improving South Dakota law along these lines is a step in the right direction and we will vigorously support legislators who undertake those steps.

“We” are SoDakNORML, the South Dakota Affiliate of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. We are comprised of thousands of South Dakotans arrested, prosecuted, imprisoned, frightened, amused, angered, or marginalized as a result of cannabis Prohibition, a policy so absurd in its derivation and results that it defies characterization.

On behalf of any of the folks described above who want to endorse these sentiments, I am

Bob Newland
President, SoDakNORML

P.S. Please read the essay on the politics of cannabis at the following website: (the capital P is important).

Co-signed by:
Jesse Grimm, combat veteran, Hot Springs


From my email box (still laughing about the Republican principals);


This message is going to several blog moderators. I spend a little time on Mt Blogmore and Sd Watch and War College, but I don’t have much browsing time, so I have to admit I am most likely not familiar with the politics of your blog.

I also admit that I have a grudge match going with Pat Powers (War College). Whenever I attempt to have a political philosophy discussion with him, he deletes my questions. The question I ask is, “Who owns you?”

This all stems from the drubbing he took, from lots of people, for his asinine reasons for opposing the medical cannabis initiative in 2006 and, more recently, when he reiterated them a month ago, in an exchange that as totally disappeared from his site, as far as I can tell.

I’m sending this in case you think it’s worth posting for comments. I also invite you to look at the site for the Medical Cannabis Campaign.

Unless you tell me not to send it, I’ll probably regularly send you information about our campaign.

War College currently has some typical hypocrisy posted about what Pat Powers’s (he calls himself PP) idea of being a Republican.

I edited PP’s post, trying to make it ring with a more accurate tone. My additions arein bold.

I, PP the Blogger, Am A Republican Because…

I believe the strength of our nation lies with the individual and that each person’s dignity freedom, ability and responsibility must be honored, except those people for whom government-approved medicine doesn’t work.

I believe in equal rights, equal justice and equal opportunity for all, regardless of race, creed, sex, age or disability, except when said disability is accompanied by  life-threatening muscle spasms or pain that can only be quelled by cannabis.

I believe free enterprise and encouraging individual initiative have brought this nation opportunity, economic growth and prosperity, which we squander prosecuting people whose doctors and they believe cannabis is beneficial for their ailments.

I believe that government must practice fiscal responsibility and allow individuals to keep more of the money they earn, except those individuals whose medicine of necessity is less expensive and less toxic to them than the stuff their doctors can prescribe.

I believe the proper role of government is to provide for the people only those critical functions that cannot be performed by individuals or private organizations and that the best government is that which governs least and has the greatest suspicion that someone, somewhere is medicating (even under a doctor’s advice) with illegal medicine.

I believe the most effective, responsible and responsive government is government closest to the people, close enough to protect them from using non-governmental approved medicine that is safer than aspirin and nearly as miraculous.

I believe Americans must retain the principles that have made us strong while developing new and innovative ideas to meet the challenges of changing times. Those principles necessitate our feigning blindness from time to time.

I believe Americans value and should preserve our national strength and pride while working to extend peace, freedom and human rights throughout the world. Right.

Finally, I believe the Republican Party is the best vehicle for translating these ideals into positive and successful principles. Sure has been so far.

Now let’s take a Prozac and go stick some quarters in video lottery machines and get drunk. In South Dakota, of course.

Merry Weekend Before Christmas, Everyone