Gov’t Ruined 653,249 Lives Over Cannabis in 2016 Because 5 Corrupt Industries Paid Them To

By Matt Agorist

In the land of the free, citizens found in possession of a plant — that grows wild on every continent except Antarctica — can and will be kidnapped, caged or killed. In fact, in just the short time it took you to click this article and read this first paragraph, someone was just arrested for cannabis.

According to the most recent FBI statistics available, an American citizen is kidnapped and caged for cannabis — on average — every 48 seconds.

An estimated 653,249 American citizens — who harmed no one — had their lives ruined in 2016 for possessing this plant, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s annual Crime In the United States (CIUS) report.

“Arresting and citing over half a million people a year for a substance that is objectively safer than alcohol is a travesty,” said Morgan Fox, director of communications for the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP). “Despite a steady shift in public opinion away from marijuana prohibition, and the growing number of states that are regulating marijuana like alcohol, marijuana consumers continue to be treated like criminals throughout the country. This is a shameful waste of resources and can create lifelong consequences for the people arrested.”

Arresting people for cannabis is good for business — police state and big pharma business, that is. If we look at who’s lobbying to keep cops kidnapping people for a plant, we see that it is money, and not morals, that motivates this issue.

The prison-industrial complex makes obscene amounts of money kidnapping otherwise innocent people and throwing them in a cage for possessing a plant. Big pharma is also scared to death of pot because it is a cheaper, safer, and often more effective solution to sicknesses than their chemical alternatives.

According to a report out of US News, lobbyists work hard to secure for police departments millions of dollars in federal grants towards eradicating weed. Pharmaceutical companies compensate leading anti-marijuana researchers in order to keep their customers on painkillers over cannabis, which is cheaper. The prison-industrial complex would like to keep making money on building more prisons to fill with non-violent grass-smokers.

It’s not just cops and big pharma either, legal drug distributors in the alcohol and tobacco industries need to keep cannabis illegal in order maintain their monopoly on ‘taking the edge off.’

According to the report, the alcohol and beer industries have also lobbied for years to keep marijuana illegal because they fear the competition that legalized weed would bring. Howard Wooldridge, an anti-drug war activist and retired cop told the online publication Republic Report: “Marijuana and alcohol compete right today as a product to take the edge off the day at six o’clock.”

Despite the myriad of evidence showing the harmful economic and societal impacts of arresting people for cannabis, cops, prisons, big pharma, and the alcohol and tobacco industries continue to push for illegal weed. As they lie about arresting people for a plant in your best interests, the police state is wreaking havoc on liberty, freedom, and the economy. It is deadly, too.

While there’s never been a documented overdose from cannabis, if the CDC calculated the number of deaths inflicted by police while enforcing marijuana laws, that number would certainly be shocking and could even be deemed a risk to public health. Marijuana is, indeed, dangerous, but only because of what can happen to you if the police catch you with it — just ask the 653,249 people who had their lives ruined for it last year.

Nothing highlights the hypocrisy, immorality, and sheer idiocy of the drug war quite like marijuana prohibition. Here we have a medicine that kills cancer cells, saves the lives of countless epileptic children, heals broken bones, relieves pain, treats PTSD, is not dangerous, and exhibits a variety of other incredible benefits – yet the State will kill you over it.

Keeping cannabis illegal also creates more crime.

In the study, titled, “Going to pot? The impact of dispensary closures on crime,” researchers Tom Y. Chang from the USC Marshall School of Business, and Mireille Jacobson from The Paul Merage School of Business at UC Irvine, looked at what happens with the government forced medical marijuana dispensaries to close. What they found was immediately following a closure of a dispensary — crime rates went up.

“Contrary to popular wisdom, we found an immediate increase in crime around dispensaries ordered to close relative to those allowed to remain open,” Jacobson told Science Daily.

Also, in 2001, the Portuguese government decriminalized all drugs, and their crime rate dropped. Sixteen years later, drug use, crime, and overdoses have drastically declined in Portugal exposing the cruel reality of prohibition.



“Regulating marijuana for adults creates jobs, generates tax revenue, protects consumers, and takes money away from criminals,” Fox said on behalf of MPP. “It is time for the federal government and the rest of the states to stop ruining peoples’ lives and enact sensible marijuana policies.”

We agree.

The good news is that the tide is shifting. As MPP notes, there are currently eight states that regulate marijuana similarly to alcohol for adults, four of which voted to do so in November 2016. Marijuana possession is also legal for adults in the District of Columbia. Twenty-three states and D.C. considered legislation in 2017 to regulate marijuana, including in Vermont where the legislature approved such a measure before the governor vetoed it.

As more and more states refuse to kidnap and cage marijuana users, the drug war will continue to implode. We must be resilient in this fight.

If doing drugs bothers you, don’t do drugs. When you transition from holding an opinion — to using government violence to enforce your personal preference, you become the bad guy. Please, for all that is good, don’t be the bad guy and do your part to stay on the right side of history.

Matt Agorist is an honorably discharged veteran of the USMC and former intelligence operator directly tasked by the NSA. This prior experience gives him unique insight into the world of government corruption and the American police state. Agorist has been an independent journalist for over a decade and has been featured on mainstream networks around the world. Agorist is also the Editor at Large at the Free Thought Project, where this article first appearedFollow @MattAgorist on Twitter, Steemit, and now on Facebook.

Image Credit: The Anti-Media


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35 Comments on "Gov’t Ruined 653,249 Lives Over Cannabis in 2016 Because 5 Corrupt Industries Paid Them To"

  1. It’s time for a lengthy multi-episode Netflix series on just a single CIA Government flight into the USA carrying tons of heroin or cocaine (actually, it was the DEA which took over Pablo Escobar’s routes, but the Agency did handle the epic Mena traffic). From one episode to the next, trace the ruined lives brought on by this insanely hypocritical Government’s crime wave. And don’t leave out where the money went from the purchase of those drugs – it went to kill innocent children and others around the world. NOW we can properly discuss personal marijuana use. Geeeezus.

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          • Alice On Morphine | September 28, 2017 at 1:01 pm |

            isn’t that the (Virginia) number for Bob’s Bathroom Service? He does work for the CIA when their toilets overflow at Langley.

    • I was UDT (Seal) during Vietnam assigned to “protect” CIA drug routes through the “Golden Triangle”. Fortunately, my team felt the same as I and less than 50% of the convoys made it through. We also had a record of “losing” the majority of our CIA “advisors” in the jungle.

      • hand clasp, bro….did almost three years overseas back then, U.S. Army here, was invited to work for the Agency (didn’t do it), became a target of overt and surreptitious Government crime over the years afterwards. It’s no joke, and I’ve tried with only limited success over the years to help others understand what’s really going on, including their collusion with Hollywood (and some Indie and foreign productions), which in several cases laid out the 911 attacks years beforehand. It’s all been real, and still is.

  2. I don’t see the benefit of regulating marijuana to grow the State, which should just stay the fuck away from what we ingest, by whatever route we choose. That’s called freedom – which is supposed to be the main reason for America.

  3. Its time we stop the lobbyists from influencing congress. I mean, its so obvious that these politicians are being bought to vote a certain way. The paid vote many many times does not benefit the citizen but rather corporate interests. Its time we stop this practice. Look at what the lobbyists have done to marijuana legislation. These congressmen are getting rich with the money given to them and the citizenry going to jail. Not good.

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  4. It should be completely obvious to our governments, after more than 40 years of dismal failure to suppress illegal drug use, that their policies in this area do not work and will never work. It should be completely obvious, a simple logical step, to realize that by decriminalizing drug use, and making the supply of all drugs available to those adults who wish to use them through legal and properly regulated channels, we could, at a stroke, put out of business the vast criminal enterprise that presently flourishes on the supply of illegal drugs.
    It ought to be obvious, but somehow it is not.
    It appears to be a natural human urge, as deep-rooted as our urges for food, sex, and nurturing relationships, to seek out and explore such “altered states of consciousness.”
    Instead the powers that be continue to pursue the same harsh and cruel policies that they have been wedded to from the outset, ever seeking to strengthen and reinforce them rather than to replace them with something better. Indeed the only “change” that the large, armed bureaucracies that enforce these policies has ever sought since the “War on Drugs” began has, year on year, been to demand even more money, even more arms, and even more draconian legislative powers to break into homes, to confiscate property, and to deprive otherwise law-abiding citizens of liberty and wreck their lives. In the process we have seen our once free and upstanding societies— which used to respect individual choice and freedom of conscience above all else—slide remorselessly down the slippery slope that leads to the police state. And all this is being done in our name, with our money, by our own governments, to “save us from ourselves”!
    Winners and Losers
    Who benefits from this colossal stupidity and systematic wickedness? And who loses?
    The beneficiaries are easy to spot.
    First, the large and ever-expanding armed bureaucracies, funded with large and ever-growing sums of public money to suppress the use of drugs, have benefited enormously. Everyone who works for them, including the PR people and spin merchants who concoct the propaganda used to sell their policies to us, including their subcontractors both public and private, and including the (often privately run) prisons stuffed to bursting point with their victims, are the beneficiaries of this catastrophic failure on the part of our governments to think laterally, generously, and creatively. Whether you are a Drug Enforcement Administration agent or a prison guard, you naturally have a deeply vested interest in maintaining the miserable status quo, justified by the “War on Drugs,” that keeps you in your job, that ensures your monthly paychecks continue to come in, and that continuously expands your budgets.
    The second main category of beneficiaries is—of course!—the criminal gangs and cartels that the present misguided official policies have empowered as the sole source of drugs in our societies. Over the past 40-plus years they have earned countless billions of dollars from the sale of illegal drugs which, had they only been legal, would not have earned them a single penny.
    Who are the losers? First and most directly those millions upon millions of good, nonviolent people in our societies who have been jailed or otherwise punished for the possession and use of drugs. And second (regardless of whether or not they use illegal drugs themselves), virtually everyone else in our societies as well. For the quality of life of all of us has been diminished by the growth of the police state and by the murderous activities of the criminal gangs enfranchised, and kept in business, by the blind and mindless perpetuation of this failed and bankrupt “War on Drugs.”
    So, in summary, the criminalization of drug use has brought no positive effects, only negative ones, and it has not stopped or even reduced the use of dangerous and harmful drugs. On the contrary, we have been so little “saved from ourselves” by this phony war that the use of almost all illegal drugs, far from decreasing, has dramatically increased during the past 40 years.

    The War on Consciousness
    Graham Hancock
    by Graham Hancock

  5. Alcohol has ruined so many lives and is way more addictive.
    Might as well outlaw Pepsi and Coke products.

    Move to Colorado and imbibe whilst watching gorgeous sunsets with your friends.

    • Alex Richardson | September 28, 2017 at 7:12 am | Reply

      fibromyalgia, crps/rsd,carpel tunnel in both wrists, tendonitis, chronic migraine. mj has been effective in controlling my pain, spasms, tension and ive even had a slight improvement of my depression BECAUSE much of my depression is because of the medications i was taking AND the new limitations, changes in capabilities and problems that my body has brought on.All these thanks to Dr Mark Donald for providing me with CBD/low THC Cannabis Oil ratio 2 : 1(10): 3-4 puffs per day .Get to him via his number 313- 923-7690

      • I was referred to him an expert in both medical and recreational marijuana and byproducts(THC, CBD oils, wax very good strains, seeds ,medical marijuana card etc). I placed an order and it arrived before i even new it. My health has improved remarkably all thanks to this good Dr. and also thanks to him, i’m able to grow my own plants from seed i got from him.Please for all your inquiries contact him via or you can call or text +1(313) 923-7690 and experience first hand quality of his products and services.+1(313) 923-7690

  6. Governments are the instruments of criminal psychopaths.

  7. “the alcohol and beer industries have also lobbied for years ” This is surprising to me because hops, a main beer ingredient, is a member of the cannabis family. I use to graft hops stalks to MJ roots to grow unrecognizable (by police) marijuana plants.

    I have had four ophthalmologists lament that they couldn’t prescribe marijuana to help control my glaucoma.

    • to bad that grafting trick won’t work with kudzue

      • 🙂 Every old hippie (like me) would move to Georgia in a heartbeat! I lived there for 7 years and that stuff grows over a foot a day (seriously) and nothing Monsanto has ever devised will kill it!

  8. Cry me a river, people doing illegal things. It ruined the lives of all those kids they got on drugs, you jerk.

    • Legalization is a better solution for all concerned. Punitively prosecuting crimes without victims – except collaterally because of criminalization – only hurts the families of the perpetrators. If there is a strong education case to be made for abstinence, then societal resources should focus on that instead & it would be far more beneficial. In the current system, only the private prison industry, profiteering sides of law enforcement, and drug traffickers are benefitting from the public policy.

    • Legal shops don’t sell to kids, illegal drug dealers do, Einstein!

  9. the drug testing companies actually do false positives on purpose to prove their worth and destroying careers with little recourse or compensation.

  10. All I can say is, if your gov’t insists on imprisoning me for my use of cannabis, and a jury of my peers agrees, you’d better find a way to keep me there forever. I won’t be nice anymore when I get out.

  11. The plain truth you will never escape is that:
    People want to use marijuana
    99% of them cause no problems at all
    They’re not going to let you continue to brandish the red X of stigma
    Millions of Americans smoke pot
    And they don’t care if you know.

  12. I got relief from pains and depression from meds and hemp oil i got from Dr Mark Donald via his number (313) 923-7690

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