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Will Pot Legalization Help China Defeat America? The National Media Reacts
Westword ^ | Mon., Jan. 6 2014 | Michael Roberts

Posted on 01/07/2014 2:37:38 PM PST by nickcarraway

As we noted earlier today, the national media's response to the launch of recreational pot sales in Colorado suggests a case of news munchies, with the mainstream press, satirists and everyone in between sharing views on the topic -- including pundits and personalities less than thrilled by the development. Most of the latter are doing their best not to come across like drug-war dinosaurs, but that hasn't stopped one observer from inducting the likes of Tina Brown and David Brooks into the "Yuppie Prohibition League." The New York Times' Brooks created the template for high-brow naysayers with a column burdened with the clunky headline "Weed. Been There. Done That."

Brooks begins the piece by making it clear that he has personally inhaled, writing, "For a little while in my teenage years, my friends and I smoked marijuana. It was fun. I have some fond memories of us all being silly together. I think those moments of uninhibited frolic deepened our friendships." However, Brooks continues, he and his buds eventually drifted away from pot -- not because of the many horrible things about it ("it is addictive in about one in six teenagers," "smoking and driving is a good way to get yourself killed," "young people who smoke go on to suffer I.Q. loss and perform worse on other cognitive tests"), but due to the fact that "stoned people do stupid things." After one such incident, he confesses to feeling like a "total loser."

This acknowledgement serves as prelude to his argument that "in healthy societies...government subtly encourages the highest pleasures, like enjoying the arts or being in nature, and discourages lesser pleasures, like being stoned." And while "citizens of Colorado are, indeed, enhancing individual freedom," they are also "nurturing a moral ecology in which it is a bit harder to be the sort of person most of us want to be."

Presumably, Tina Brown, of The Daily Beast fame, agrees with Brooks's sentiment. Yet she took to Twitter to argue that he had been too polite to say that....

MSNBC token conservative Joe Scarborough took a less erudite tack in his reaction to sales in Colorado. In a video shared by Talking Points Memo, he says, "I don't get it, man. I don't get the legalization thing. I don't want to get too much into it, I mean, seriously, it just makes you dumb. Pot just makes you dumb."

Not that he's speaking from personal experience. He says he stayed away from weed in part because everyone who smoked the stuff struck him as a moron.

Here's the Scarborough clip, from his Morning Joe program:

Rolling Stone's Matt Taibbi subsequently ripped on Brooks, Brown and Scarborough in a recent post. Yep, he's the one who coined the "Yuppie Prohibition League" handle -- and it's likely he'd sign up Ruth Marcus as an honorary member.

In a Washington Post op-ed dubbed "The Perils of Legalized Pot," Marcus attempts to preempt critics labeling her a "fuddy-duddy" by not only admitting to prior pot smoking, but suggesting that during her next visit to Colorado, she may well try out some Bubba Kush. Yet she believes that "on balance, society will not be better off with another legal mind-altering substance. In particular, our kids will not be better off with another legal mind-altering substance." She underscores this last statement by spending much of the piece citing studies about the harm done to kids who toke and brushing off the idea that Colorado's law limiting legal consumption to those 21 and over will make the slightest difference.

Fellow WaPo opinion writer Ed Rogers takes a more political slant. In his take, "Republicans, Just Say No to Marijuana," published today, he advises Republicans against jumping on the pot legalization bandwagon.

"Without question, we will face more human tragedy and ruined lives as a result of marijuana legalization," Rogers allows, adding that "if the Democrats think they have found an issue for 2014, let them be the ones to promise more pot to the population. And spare me the talk about personal freedom being at stake here. You aren't more free if you are a pothead and freedom isn't measured by marijuana consumption."

Depends on who's doing the measuring, presumably.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Extended News; News/Current Events; US: Colorado
KEYWORDS: china; colorado; libertarians; medicalmarijuana; msnbc
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1 posted on 01/07/2014 2:37:38 PM PST by nickcarraway
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To: nickcarraway

It is one of the many results of society being dumbed down into accepting absolutely everything


2 posted on 01/07/2014 2:38:38 PM PST by GeronL (Extra Large Cheesy Over-Stuffed Hobbit)
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To: nickcarraway

Depends on whether it becomes just a normal thing like having a beer. If it does, it may hurt productivity. Ironic as China was also once hobbled by substance abuse. If only they had all still been on opium, they might not have bothered to do the Long March.


3 posted on 01/07/2014 2:40:50 PM PST by Viennacon
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To: nickcarraway

We could start a rumor that the Chinese intend to outlaw Doritos.


4 posted on 01/07/2014 2:42:25 PM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: nickcarraway

Scarborough was correct in his simple analysis. Yes, I know many people who have smoked pot, particularly as youth. But any adult I know who is a regular pot-smoker I do find to be unemployable, lazy morons.


5 posted on 01/07/2014 2:42:44 PM PST by PGR88
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To: Viennacon

It’s been one long downhill slide since alcohol was legalized.
The great downfall of the U.S. has already happened, while pot has been illegal everywhere.


6 posted on 01/07/2014 2:45:11 PM PST by Wolfie
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To: nickcarraway

The idea that pot legalization will be a major factor in China’s overtaking of America seems pretty hard to consider that seriously. The fundamental issue is how many of our manufacturing jobs they have, how effectively they are building up their military under everyone’s noses, including those who are trusted to keep track of all the nations’ armies and how much of our debt is owed to them. At the moment, the proof is not really there that legalizing weed will lead to a mass decrease in productivity any more than legalizing alcohol did after prohibition. Committed weed users have often been using it anyway regardless of its legality. Many an American between the ages of 18-30 can asses how easy it is to get the stuff even when it is supposedly illegal.


7 posted on 01/07/2014 2:47:53 PM PST by freedom462
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To: Wolfie

Do you really think it was wrong to make alcohol legal and end prohibition? Are you aware that prohibition is widely recognized as a dismal failure by reliable, rational analysts on all sides of the political spectrum?


8 posted on 01/07/2014 2:52:02 PM PST by freedom462
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To: nickcarraway

So many don’t care about crap anymore. Just their big fat guts, their genitals and dope.


9 posted on 01/07/2014 2:53:50 PM PST by dforest
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To: nickcarraway

Uhh... The Chinese have Obama in president you know? They don’t need a nation of potheads with Obama.


10 posted on 01/07/2014 2:53:51 PM PST by Organic Panic
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To: PGR88

Pot has an effect that seems difficult to pinpoint, yet is evidenced in the ancient Cannabis cultures of the Middle East and that portion of the orient and in the modern awareness about the extraordinary uniformity of “potheads”, the use of pot so suddenly seems to create a somewhat new person, and not for the better.

The alcohol based West has always rejected Cannabis as an intoxicant, for thousands of years it has done so. From the Greeks to the Crusaders, and up until just the last 20 or 40 years, cannabis was seen as a threat to what Western man aspired to be.


11 posted on 01/07/2014 2:54:55 PM PST by ansel12 ( Ben Bradlee -- JFK told me that "he was all for people's solving their problems by abortion".)
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To: PGR88

I know a lot of people in very prominent business positions who are regular consumers of marijuana. I don’t find them unemployable, lazy morons, but I will say that I believe every single one of them could be living up to a MUCH higher standard and work ethic.

I know I am personally capable of great and amazing things. That’s been proven in my current role as an engineer, as I am seen as the senior to all of my peers and consistently referenced for in depth analysis. When I was smoking pot 5 - 10 years ago, I had that same potential, but as a regular user, there’s no way I would’ve ever achieved it.

I believe it makes the dumb into morons, the average into the unmotivated, and the intelligent into the uninspired. It takes us down a notch, and with a serious intellectual and intelligence deficit in this country, we don’t need drugs exacerbating an already poor situation.


12 posted on 01/07/2014 2:59:19 PM PST by rarestia (It's time to water the Tree of Liberty.)
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To: nickcarraway
...response to the launch of recreational pot sales in Colorado suggests a case of news munchies,

It seems even just writing about marijuana turns people into slack-jawed adolescents.

13 posted on 01/07/2014 3:02:11 PM PST by hinckley buzzard
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To: rarestia

Doe sit make people that much more unproductive than those who use significant amounts of alcohol or tobacco on a regular basis? I do not think there is much reliable info and truly objective studies on this. I think drugs of any kind inhibit people from achieving their true potential.


14 posted on 01/07/2014 3:03:23 PM PST by freedom462
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To: nickcarraway

We will make good slaves.


15 posted on 01/07/2014 3:05:26 PM PST by right way right (What's it gonna take? (guillotines?))
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To: nickcarraway

What does this article have to do with China?


16 posted on 01/07/2014 3:09:08 PM PST by eclecticEel ("The petty man forsakes what lies within his power and longs for what lies with Heaven." - Xunzi)
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To: freedom462
The one achievement of prohibition that has been conclusively documented is that it led to a drastic reduction in the amount of alcohol consumed. The general public health benefited significantly with reduced instances of alcohol related illnesses.

In other words, prohibition succeeded in its stated aims, although it generated other problems along the way. To say it was a "dismal failure" is to deny history, not that many partisans haven't done so. It was a political failure, eventually, which is why it was repealed.

If alcohol was discovered or invented today, and all its negative effects were known, including thousands of deaths every year, do you think it would be legalized?

17 posted on 01/07/2014 3:09:54 PM PST by hinckley buzzard
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To: freedom462

I think anti depressants are doing more harm to our society than Pot but being stoned does not help anyone be productive. Damn sure yup.


18 posted on 01/07/2014 3:13:20 PM PST by right way right (What's it gonna take? (guillotines?))
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To: hinckley buzzard
Aspirin wouldn't be allowed today, because of the nanny state.

We have too much government for our own good.

/johnny

19 posted on 01/07/2014 3:14:09 PM PST by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: rarestia
I believe it makes the dumb into morons, the average into the unmotivated, and the intelligent into the uninspired. It takes us down a notch, and with a serious intellectual and intelligence deficit in this country, we don’t need drugs exacerbating an already poor situation.

The same could be said about the public school system, and liberalism in general. All you have to do is swap out the word drugs.

20 posted on 01/07/2014 3:15:50 PM PST by DeepInTheHeartOfTexas
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To: JRandomFreeper

Wait until the government gets money for drugs. If you thought the Zetas were bad, wait until pot is legalized, and the government gets money from it...


21 posted on 01/07/2014 3:15:57 PM PST by nickcarraway
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To: eclecticEel

Read it.


22 posted on 01/07/2014 3:16:11 PM PST by nickcarraway
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To: nickcarraway

All I have to go by is my experiences during the latter days of the Carter administration, and it’s permissive attitude towards drugs: “amnesty boxes” for drugs and paraphernalia in barracks. Areas of the ship where officers could not go because “a party” would be in progress. Basement areas of federal office buildings “off limits” to security personnel, for the same reason. Carrier pilots crashing on deck. Subsequent autopsies revealing marijuana and cocaine in their systems. Accident and death rates at work sites across the nation at an all time high due drug use..., but no it won’t be the end of the world or this country as we know it. Yes, there will be a high price paid for the party. And, I suspect we will once again have to learn the hard way why the stuff was made illegal in the first place.


23 posted on 01/07/2014 3:16:25 PM PST by PowderMonkey (WILL WORK FOR AMMO)
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To: nickcarraway
Will Pot Legalization Help China Defeat America?

I have a better question: if china nukes that fever swamp on the Potomac during the state of the union show, would the appropriate response be a full retaliatory nuclear strike, or should we just send them a thank you note with a nice fruit basket?

24 posted on 01/07/2014 3:18:03 PM PST by Orangedog (An optimist is someone who tells you to 'cheer up' when things are going his way)
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To: hinckley buzzard

Well first of all, I would need to see the studies that supposedly show how it led to a decrease in consumption of alcohol. It would be hard to find trustworthy studies given the extent to which alcohol consumption during prohibition was done under the table and that those who were selling alcohol during that time were not exactly open about publishing their sales records.

And as for alcohol’s effects, well even if the science behind its effects were not as exact as they are now, the effects of alcohol, and the horrific damage it can do if used incorrectly, were widely known for centuries around the world and yet it remained legal. Which is why I don’t think one could assume that if it was discovered now and people knew its effects it would necessarily be outlawed. And if it was, we would likely give up on it in due time for the same reasons we did during Prohibition.


25 posted on 01/07/2014 3:18:06 PM PST by freedom462
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To: nickcarraway
Government already is mostly indistinguishable from organized crime/shakedown racket. Government has uniforms, that's the only real difference.

The money from pot isn't a drop in the government bucket.

/johnny

26 posted on 01/07/2014 3:18:28 PM PST by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: right way right

Even so, that something does not help you be more productive clearly does not justify making it illegal, waging a war on it and sending people to years in jail for simply possessing small amounts of it. You may be entirely right but that much should still be self evident.


27 posted on 01/07/2014 3:19:26 PM PST by freedom462
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To: Orangedog
Fruit basket.

/johnny

28 posted on 01/07/2014 3:19:32 PM PST by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: PowderMonkey
And, I suspect we will once again have to learn the hard way why the stuff was made illegal in the first place.

Unfortunately, the history of it is such that the reasons it was made illegal in the first place probably had more to do with the personal ambitions of bureaucrats than with an objective assesment of the drug itself.

29 posted on 01/07/2014 3:25:52 PM PST by tacticalogic
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To: tacticalogic
more to do with the personal ambitions of bureaucrats

Who is Harry Anslinger for $200?

/johnny

30 posted on 01/07/2014 3:27:30 PM PST by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: freedom462

Comparing Western Civilization’s thousands of year relationship and use of alcohol, has nothing to do with using pot, and the part of the world that preferred pot and hashish.


31 posted on 01/07/2014 3:27:30 PM PST by ansel12 ( Ben Bradlee -- JFK told me that "he was all for people's solving their problems by abortion".)
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To: freedom462

Comparing Western Civilization’s thousands of year relationship and use of alcohol, has nothing to do with using pot, and the part of the world that preferred pot and hashish.


32 posted on 01/07/2014 3:27:31 PM PST by ansel12 ( Ben Bradlee -- JFK told me that "he was all for people's solving their problems by abortion".)
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To: nickcarraway

America: land of dope and degeneracy.

No doubt in my mind that this is another step in America’s total cultural rot and decay into oblivion.

Somebody will take advantage of America’s demise. Will it be China? Possibly. Or some other country. Some power will fill the vacuum.


33 posted on 01/07/2014 3:28:54 PM PST by greene66
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To: freedom462
The idea that pot legalization will be a major factor in China’s overtaking of America seems pretty hard to consider that seriously

Not to the people who think it is worth living in a police state to prevent people from smoking it.

34 posted on 01/07/2014 3:32:21 PM PST by RightOnTheBorder
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To: RightOnTheBorder
"Not to the people who think it is worth living in a police state to prevent people from smoking it."

Correction:

Not to the people who think it is worth living in a police state in a fruitless, failed, attempt to prevent people from smoking it.
35 posted on 01/07/2014 3:37:53 PM PST by Jewbacca (The residents of Iroquois territory may not determine whether Jews may live in Jerusalem)
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To: PGR88
But any adult I know who is a regular pot-smoker I do find to be unemployable, lazy morons.

Because with or without marijuana they would be the same way. It's the multitude around you that you have no idea about (because they are adult about it) that would floor you.

36 posted on 01/07/2014 3:38:20 PM PST by Ghost of SVR4 (So many are so hopelessly dependent on the government that they will fight to protect it.)
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To: freedom462

Second hand tobacco smoke will start infants and children (and other adults) on the road to cancers and other health problems.

Second hand pot smoke will mess up the brains of infants, children, and other adults in close proximity.

I guarantee there will be babies testing positive for pot, and I don’t know how much inhaled that way would be lethal to a baby, but I bet it wouldn’t take very much.

I haven’t heard anyone except O’Reilly asking liberal pot-supporters about it - they can’t guarantee that their babies and young children will not be in the same room as the pot smoker.

They will be, count on it. And if they survive, they will permanently damaged, just the way Obama and his band of libs wants our future generation of janitors to be.


37 posted on 01/07/2014 3:42:13 PM PST by SusaninOhio
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To: ansel12

The middle east ancient and now did not consume marijuana the way the west does. They beat the crap out of the plant to knock off the trichom’s and smoke the “hash”, a far more potent “manufactured” drug at that point. Smoking the flower itself without condensing it’s by-product is something different entirely and just smoking a plant.


38 posted on 01/07/2014 3:44:25 PM PST by Ghost of SVR4 (So many are so hopelessly dependent on the government that they will fight to protect it.)
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To: RightOnTheBorder

LOL, legal pot, the cure for police states.

Gee, that was simple.


39 posted on 01/07/2014 3:46:43 PM PST by ansel12 ( Ben Bradlee -- JFK told me that "he was all for people's solving their problems by abortion".)
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To: freedom462

Where are the laws passed that will keep the second-hand drug smoke out of the lungs and brains of infants and children?

You can’t quarantee that won’t happen and neither can any of the now-legal recreational pot smokers, many of whom will have families.

A generation of stoned children. That’s what liberal America is bent on producing. I don’t give a damn if it is additive or not or whether it leads to harder drugs. Well, I do, but if anyone defends ‘legal pot smoking’ and doesn’t take into account the families who live in the same apartment, including small children, they are shortsighted - or liberals.


40 posted on 01/07/2014 3:46:47 PM PST by SusaninOhio
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To: Ghost of SVR4

Actually they use it in all ways, while the West from ancient times, has always been against it’s use until the movements started in the 1960s.


41 posted on 01/07/2014 3:48:54 PM PST by ansel12 ( Ben Bradlee -- JFK told me that "he was all for people's solving their problems by abortion".)
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To: Ghost of SVR4

Actually they use it in all ways, while the West from ancient times, has always been against it’s use until the movements started in the 1960s.


42 posted on 01/07/2014 3:48:54 PM PST by ansel12 ( Ben Bradlee -- JFK told me that "he was all for people's solving their problems by abortion".)
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To: SusaninOhio

Reefer Madness turned out to be counter-productive.


43 posted on 01/07/2014 3:50:57 PM PST by tacticalogic
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To: JRandomFreeper
Aspirin wouldn't be allowed today, because of the nanny state.

Aspirin, hell. Try orange juice.

That stuff can trigger a rage.

44 posted on 01/07/2014 3:52:07 PM PST by elkfersupper
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To: Ghost of SVR4
Because with or without marijuana they would be the same way.

That is laughable, we have all seen pot heads change instantly,and we all know all about pot heads, we have all seen it many times since the 1960s.

45 posted on 01/07/2014 3:52:38 PM PST by ansel12 ( Ben Bradlee -- JFK told me that "he was all for people's solving their problems by abortion".)
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To: Ghost of SVR4
Because with or without marijuana they would be the same way.

That is laughable, we have all seen pot heads change instantly,and we all know all about pot heads, we have all seen it many times since the 1960s.

46 posted on 01/07/2014 3:52:38 PM PST by ansel12 ( Ben Bradlee -- JFK told me that "he was all for people's solving their problems by abortion".)
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To: SusaninOhio
News for you. People are smoking pot anyway, regardless of the legality. And they are smoking that pot around their children. Now. Regardless of the law.

/johnny

47 posted on 01/07/2014 3:52:50 PM PST by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: tacticalogic
Reefer Madness turned out to be counter-productive.

How? None of us had ever heard of it until almost a quarter century later, when the stoners started watching it and using it, such as in these threads.

48 posted on 01/07/2014 3:57:22 PM PST by ansel12 ( Ben Bradlee -- JFK told me that "he was all for people's solving their problems by abortion".)
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To: SusaninOhio
Second hand tobacco smoke will start infants and children (and other adults) on the road to cancers and other health problems.

Second-hand tobacco smoke cured my younger sister of asthma at the age of 3 weeks.

She had an asthma attack at 2 weeks and my folks took her to the family physician.

He advised my father to blow tobacco clouds at her from a few feet away.

That was her first and only asthma attack. She is now 56 years old and doing better than most of the naysayers.

49 posted on 01/07/2014 3:58:08 PM PST by elkfersupper
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To: nickcarraway
As cannabis is widely legalised, China cashes in on an unprecedented boom.
50 posted on 01/07/2014 4:02:25 PM PST by CtBigPat (Free Republic - The grown-ups table of the internet.)
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