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The Word ‘Monopoly’ To Stay On Ohio Ballot For Marijuana Legalization Initiative

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Responsible Ohio LogoThe ResponsibleOhio marijuana legalization initiative has created a lot of controversy due to a provision that gives the exclusive rights to grow marijuana for profit to just ten entities. Some people refer to this as a ‘monopoly’ on marijuana cultivation, while others have said that it’s not actually a monopoly because it involves ten entities, so it should be called a ‘ten-opoly.’ The ResponsibleOhio campaign tried very hard to ensure that the word ‘monopoly’ was not on the ballot when voters vote yes or no on whether to approve marijuana legalization in Ohio. Unfortunately for the ResponsibleOhio campaign, the effort did not work. Per Cleveland.Com:

Backers of a constitutional amendment that would legalize marijuana in Ohio failed to convince the Ohio Supreme Court that the title tacked on the top of Issue 3 should not include the word “monopoly.”

But they won a partial victory Wednesday from the court as justices struck four provisions they found to be misleading.

As a result of the ruling, the Ohio Ballot Board will have to reconvene and revise the ballot language for the four provisions. But the name selected by Secretary of State Jon Husted — “Grants a monopoly for the commercial production and sale of marijuana for recreational and medicinal purposes.” — will remain.

Having the word ‘monopoly’ on the ballot title will definitely hurt the chances of the initiative being passed. However, it’s worth pointing out that it won’t be the only thing that contributes to a ResponsibleOhio loss if that proves to be the case. Buddie the marijuana mascot will hurt the campaign more than the word ‘monopoly,’ in my opinion. That mascot is the worst marijuana politics tactic I have ever seen, and will no doubt be a thorn in the marijuana movement’s side during future reform efforts, which is why I support the #NoMarijuanaMascots social media campaign, and why I urge others to do the same.

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Johnny Green

24 Comments

  1. Ohinas voted down a pot monopoly, not legal pot.. maybe next time, the non-greedy can write a real bill.

  2. I have little faith that the peoples wishes will override corporate wishes. Passing the monopolized marijuana bill could take another 70 years to remove the monopoly. I think our thoughts are mutual. I can’t tell. I’m against issue 3 because it’s harder to get corporations out of our legislation than it is to let them in.

  3. They get 15% of the taxes as a slush fund, or about 100+ million split. 7 ways if they make rules but DON’T fund them because they only MAY fund not SHALL.

  4. The MCC will be a department of the state government, the leadership of which will be hand picked by an anti-cannabis Governor.
    The MCC’s relationship to the ten growers will be more antagonistic than cooperative.
    It most certainly will not act as a central organization for any cartel.

  5. MPP was not behind cannabis reform in Oregon when we passed MMJ or when we passed legalization. MPP was also not even in existence when we passed MMJ in California in the 90s. Additionally they had little influence in the Alaskan initiative as well.
    I was just curious if they were driving the bus with the Ohio creation as it seemed to emulate some of the things Washington did wrong. I can’t keep up with all of the reform and who it is being written by, I have a house to refurbish and work to tend to.

  6. “It took over 7 decades to “amend” prohibition because of corporate greed”

    lol…. yes corporations were one of the 3 entities who created the war on cannabis for their benefit. But your 2 sentences make no sense together as you clearly understand who started this BS and are complaining about it yet you seem to support letting corporate greed continue to benefit and 99.9% will still be in harms way of all the bad things the drug war brings….until anyone can grow, sell or consume the safest therapeutic substance known to man for any reason, then the war continues….have you no faith in yourself or do you think only rich people can grow, sell or consume the tree of life?

  7. “Just about every state with legal cannabis, whether medical or full
    legalization, has a finite number of authorized growers, and no one new
    can get in. This is no different.”

    That does not make it right or just.

  8. “Well, Kathleen, I hate to break it to you, but ResponsibleOhio did, in fact, outspend the MPP.”

    Oh your not breaking that to me…. I am well aware. MPP is responsible, imo, for showing every wealthy person that you can write and fund ‘decrim’ language that benefits a handful and keeps 99.9% of Americans out of the ‘program’ and in harms way of loss of: employment/occupational licenses, child custody, gun rights, unemployment compensation, all assets, student loans, housing, insurance, banking, any gov aid, freedom etc.—so nothings changed in CO except who people buy their pot from….instead of getting a bag from your friend, now it’s only ‘legal’ for we the people to buy from already rich, who have more than enough to afford attorneys or pay off (extortion) fee’s from the regulatory models that merely continue the drug war. MPP/DPA/Soros are responsible for the RE-BRANDING of 1937 prohibition–now it’s called “legalization”, “legalization like alcohol”.

    We seem to forget WHO the perpetrators of the drug war were: Big Business, Mass Media and Intrusive Government….same players who control the ‘legal’ market today……

  9. Jon Husted is not fooling anyone with his “everybody understands the word monopoly” ploy. We all recognize, even the folks adamantly opposed to issue 3, that Husted is simply exploiting a linguistic technicality – a vernacular interpretation – in order to advance his own anti-cannabis agenda.

    We all realize that “oligopoly” is much closer to the correct term – and I would argue that even that term is inaccurate, as oligopoly implies membership in a central group, or cartel-like activity.
    After November 3rd, the only group of which they are all currently part, ResponsibleOhio, an Ohio PAC, goes away, and we’re left with ten completely independent companies that will all be competing with one another for cannabis market share.
    Just about every state with legal cannabis, whether medical or full legalization, has a finite number of authorized growers, and no one new can get in.
    This is no different.

  10. Well, Kathleen, I hate to break it to you, but ResponsibleOhio did, in fact, outspend the MPP.
    If the MPP had come in to help in Ohio – a state where they admitted it was too expensive for them to have an impact – then RO wouldn’t even exist.
    The MPP is just as responsible as the Ohio legislature for creating a vacuum that The Strategy Network stepped in to fill.

  11. It took over 7 decades to “amend” prohibition because of corporate greed. I don’t think it’s worth risking another 70 years to wait for a proper amendment.

  12. Ya know what…..let those people who put up their $$ make their cash…..the law WILL be AMENDED as most are…..let me grow my 4 little plants @ home! Mine will be better than what they will be sellin anyways!! I can grow 1 plant & easily pull 10+ zips off of it! I say thanks!

  13. “I think folks should vote for this suspect law anyhow though. At the end of the day I keep coming back to bad cannabis reform is better than no cannabis reform” Geezus…your advice sucks and NORML agrees with you…

    “If this does pass the first thing that needs to be moved on to get removed is the licensing for home grows”

    lmfao–you realize to this is a constitutional amendment and there are no changes that can happen after it passes? Apparently not. Yeah if this passes then the only way to remove a home license provision is to spend 20 million to again admend the Constitution.

    “Is it true though that MPP has been the main driver behind both the Washington and now Ohio reforms? If so they need to be removed from the pool of reformers creating legislation. They are not acting in the best interests of the movement and instead are catering to big businesses.”

    MPP is the main driver behind all cannabis ‘reform’ (other than the original gay rights/AIDS activists writing/passing compassionate language in CA and DC back in the 1990’s.) MPP is DPA is George Soros. Soros is the main funder of MPP/DPA/NCIA/ASA/SSDP/sensible CO/SAFER…. Wake up and smell the coffee…MPP IS BIG BUSINESS. In order to “remove them from cannabis reform” you have to out spend them….which none of us can…

  14. “We’re going to limit cultivation to a select few investors who got together and crafted this ballot measure, but let’s not call it what it is : a monopoly.”

  15. Until the unveiling of the marijuana mascot, I thought Responsible Ohio had a great chance at getting the initiative to pass. Now, it’s too close to call. I would vote yes on 3, due to any legalization being better than prohibition, but I don’t live in the buckeye state. I still have my fingers crossed, but the mascot blunder, combined with the ballot language, leaves the issue very much in question. A great start, but petered out in the end…

  16. its not going to be only 10 dispensaries. those are the sites spread throughout the state that can grow alot more in bulk than the actual 10,000 dispensaries allowed themselves. dispensaries are only allowed to grow a certain amount and the 10 commercial sites much more.

  17. I would not vote for it. Bad laws are NOT better than no laws. At this point in history, there’s no reason to settle for a law like this.

  18. The article comments written about 5 minutes ago, I said, “EVERYONE is anywhere”, I should of written, “EVERYONE is aware”

  19. EVERYONE is aware, not only Colorado, where I live, but Oregon, Washington State knows that the business with medical and retail marijuana is not the dispensary, but understand the money is in cultivation.
    Wholesales of marijuana, 448g sales for as much as $2800 x 15% state tax. That’s $7.19 a gram, your COST, in order to make a profit it will be necessary to sale one gram for $15.00? Who will pay that? Not many. 1 gram sales for as high as $10.00 a gram and these dispensaries have no traffic, very weak sales.
    Other dispensaries sales 1 gram for $8.00 and the more grams they purchase the price can drop to $4.00 a gram simply buying 1/4 gram of an ounce. The difference between the two dispensaries is, cultivation. When you grow and harvest your own plants the savings is passed to your customers.
    Here is another very important financial fact. Growers are Legal, production outlay is tax deductible in respect to IRS. A cultivation center is able to write off the cost to cultivate and harvest the dried flower and leaves.
    A retail marijuana outlet or medical marijuana dispensary cannot deduct 1 dime on the IRS 1040, meaning a retailer must pay the IRS 35% (+/-) for every gram sold. At $15.00 a gram * 35% that’s $5.25?
    To make real money you must cultivate… if you plans to make any money… Your brick and molder dispensary has a level of security of any FDIC bank or a Jewelry store… If you rent your business outlet, less that 800sq ft. will cost you $1,700 a month.
    Gil Wall
    CannabisPOS
    waanet@outlook.com
    http://britestarPOS.com

  20. I can foresee problems if only ten are allowed to produce…..Feds come in, shut one down, nine growers left on the wall, feds come in shut one down, eight growers left on the wall………..

    Within a short time the feds can shut down all ten.

    If ONLY those “named” 10 can produce, then what?

  21. It is an oligopoly not a monopoly.
    I think folks should vote for this suspect law anyhow though. At the end of the day I keep coming back to bad cannabis reform is better than no cannabis reform. If this does pass the first thing that needs to be moved on to get removed is the licensing for home grows. You don’t need a license to brew beer at home, why for cannabis? That addition was purely political and nothing more.
    Is it true though that MPP has been the main driver behind both the Washington and now Ohio reforms? If so they need to be removed from the pool of reformers creating legislation. They are not acting in the best interests of the movement and instead are catering to big businesses.

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