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Today: Marijuana Debated at Aspen Ideas Festival (12:20PM)

  • by Allen St. Pierre, NORML Executive Director July 1, 2013
    In what should be an interesting debate today at the Aspen Ideas Festival today at 12:20 (eastern) Drug Policy Alliance director Ethan Nadelmann is debating former DEA administrator Asa Hutchinson.
    Youtube has live stream starting @ 12:20PM (eastern)
    Having debated Asa numerous times, and having worked with Ethan for twenty years, this is a decidedly unfair debate as Ethan has forgotten more about cannabis policy than Asa will ever know, and Asa brings all of the enthusiasm and intellectual commitment to the debate as a corporate lawyer. His m.o. of  parroting DEA-provided talking points is what I find so disappointing ‘debating’ Asa.

    Having cannabis legalization debated at this venerable Aspen Institute forum is another socio-political ‘tea leaf’ indicative of the mainstream discussion underway to reform cannabis laws.

    22 Responses to “Today: Marijuana Debated at Aspen Ideas Festival (12:20PM)”

    1. Miles says:

      Ethan Nadelmann is a real American hero in my humble opinion. I believe history will be very kind to him. As for Asa and the so-called drug-czars, history will bury them in a similar manner as Hitler!

      The biggest difference between Ethan and Asa is that Ethan is more like Mother Teresa (e.g. caring, intelligent, compassionate) and Asa is more like the Nazis (e.g. do as I say whether it makes any sense or not or we’ll put you away).

      I continue to wonder what it will take to get people like Obama on board with legalization; besides a huge pile of money… One would hope that simply doing the right thing would be enough.

    2. MajorRoadRage says:

      That is complete bs. This president does NOT uphold our constitution by defending PRISM.

      That statement carries no weight.

    3. MajorRoadRage says:

      Treatment leads to the assumption of addiction for lawmakers. That is how this got illegalized to begin with.

    4. David says:

      Well spoken Mr. Nadelmann. It seemed the other sides rhetoric was just that rhetoric.

    5. QuaxMercy says:

      High hopes dashed – no new ground broken. I thought Ethan let Asa off too easy around the health issue. Asa dropped in the reference of “medical use” as cover for eventual legalization, citing as well teens minimizing “dangers” when it can be used as medicine. Well, in fact, it is a health benefit, whether you’re eating raw hemp seed, or raw bud. Asa & Kerlikowske as well don’t want this discussion even though it is exploring the facts, the truth of the matter – and it’s just preposterous that discussion of the issues should be limited in America.

    6. johnny d says:

      Drug Czars……………why is it that the people appointed to such posiions,are the people who know the least about ‘drugs’? I have an ongoing challenge that says your typical 5th grader knows more about drugs than oh, lets say Michelle Leonhart….all this used to bother me,but if our government wants to keep cartels in business, and minorities incarcerated at ridiculous rates….NO PROBLEM BARRACKI…Im like every other US citizen that has no problem finding an ample supply of yummy weed,and no fear of retribution…..HILARIOUS!!

    7. Delgato says:

      Conservatives doesnt want it legalized because it creates more bureaucracy…thats infuriating.

    8. Dave Evans says:

      There are two main types of individuals which into this “Nazis” personality type. We probably should try to avoid calling them nazis, as the nazis-folks probably have the same disorders. Otherwise compentent people that display traits in common with Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder, Narcissistic personality disorder and Histrionic personality disorder. Someone most of us know that displays all three: Ann Coulter. And she has made millions selling people her special blended brand of craziness.

      The drug craz-folk tend toward the Obsessive-compulsive personality and Narcissistic personality disorders. We need to figure out how to keep people with these traits from positions of authority. They literally don’t understand you have rights too!

    9. John Bradley says:

      One idea they did not bring up is if the U.S. does set a world standard, this is another reason for legalization. My wife is from Taiwan. It would be terrible if I forgot a joint in my suitcase (from local travel) and it was discovered upon my arrival in Taiwan customs. I really don’t want my finger nails and head chopped off. We should show the world what reasonable reform is. People around the world should not be chopping peoples heads off for this.

    10. Donna says:

      Moderator:
      Hmm the history of Marijuana with no mention of Nixon? Well researched…

    11. So Mr. Hutchinson, when we legalize marijuana, would you start using it? NO? Then why do you think everyone else will?

    12. Dave Evans says:

      Mr. Hutchinson should get real. No one is “hooked on marijuana”. What is with the endless bullshit??? Stop putting marijuana next to crap drugs like meth and smack. It is just as ignorant as racism. Seriously Asa, are you taking logic and murdering it with your dis-connect.

    13. Ed says:

      @ 19.00 is a statement that prove’s Obama is not the guy cracking down on dispensarys.Tired of hearing people say this.

    14. Weed The People says:

      @Delgato
      Consertatitives aren’t running the political show for quite awhile.
      Obummer and his moron minions have done more harm to this once great nation. I’ll take Nixon any day over this lying administration !

    15. Fed-Up says:

      Asa called both the marijuana legislation of two states as well as the medical marijuana state legislations across the country, as a “regime”.

      Let’s not even get started about deaths from legal pharmaceutical drugs compared to cannabis,not only in one year ,but from decades or centuries

      I know a lot of politicians have a vested interest in the stock market.
      But ,come on, People first…I think this is based on fears about the versatility of cannabis as a threat to conventional corporate enterprises. Don’t worry!

      People who smoke pot: will still drink- Pepsi

      People who smoke pot: will still go to -Mcdonalds

      People that smoke pot: will still drink- Budweiser.

      People that commit crimes:(real crimes) will still fill up the Prison-Industrial-Complex.

      The Earth will not spin off it’s axis.

    16. Ben says:

      A petition posted by another to get
      The White House to address this issue

      SIGN IT and lets do this!

      http://wh.gov/lOmFK#sthash.1NicKAgg.dpuf

    17. Gardener says:

      @Weed the people, 5 of the last 8 POTUS have been (R). including that favorite liar of yours, Nixon.

    18. johnny says:

      Obamas not the guy cracking down on dispenseries? MMMMM… I thought Barack Obama was president…wonderr who is…guess its possible…turns out he doesnt know anything about Benghazi, THE IRS, The NSA leaks or anything else.MORE PEOPLE IMPRISONED FOR MARIJUANA USE under Barrack Obama, then Bush and Clinton combined….AND HE was (probably still is)a big time puffer….OH…and if Barracki is FOR marijuana…tell that to the people of Washington and Colorado who are STILL waiting for clarity from……you guessed er Chester ….OUR BOY BARRACK!

    19. lockedoutof theshed says:

      ed….you are so correct! their are voices in the backround my friend, powerful voices with the cash to back them up…its NOT the president people, its so much bigger then that!!.jesus….

    20. Ed says:

      If you listened to the video where I said to,you’d know who is.

      He stated years ago it was not HIS priority to go against people follow state law.The state,and local fed’s don’t have to listen to him,and a lot haven’t…That’s why,and who…

      Benghazi is a useless stupid argument.The republican’s in the house,or senate I forget.Killed $ assistance requested by them for security prior to the killing’s,and now blame dem’s/Obama.You may want to know the subject you speak of a bit better before spouting off.

      Barack Obama is not gonna tie the history of first black president with legalizing weed.Period.How the heck would that look?

      Some people have no common sense.

    21. Cindy says:

      I have a question. i have been doing alot of research on coconut oil and hair extraction. And I was hoping you could apply this to some lab testing perhaps by using this in different ways and put this out there to help others

    22. HmmmSaysDavidHune says:

      Asa squints deeper as he’s crafting his spins and lies. He opens his eyes more when he believes what he says. About the only thing he believes strongly in this debate is that users are losers and should be forcibly treated. Otherwise, they should go to jail, and have their lives destroyed even deeper. His eyes sparkle and don’t blink when he’s arguing this point. When he’s faced with cognitive dissonance beyond his superficial and moralistic belief system, he returns to the furrowed-browed, squinted and stuttered lying that he does, not so much to convince others, but rather to convince himself that his rigid position is ‘right’ and correct.

      This, in the last analysis, is the definition of poor character: holding steadfastly to a worldview that causes vast, irreparable harm, in the face of overwhelming evidence of such harms, in the name of consistency to one’s flawed principles. These steadfast, rigid views are behind ideas like slavery, racism, fascism, totalitarianism, communism, hatred, manifest destiny, organized religion, sexual repression, Salem witch trials, sanitoriums, and any other moralistically inconvenient truth or reality.

      It’s not sad, it’s travesty. Moral bankruptcy. Mass murder. Mass opression of humans. The purest of evil.

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