April 12, 2018
There is the saying, “Banana Republic” which is used to describe corrupt Third World regimes with economies based on the export of crude resources and reliance on industrialized, civilized nations for all their revenue.
California is approaching that status fast.
But is it fair to call it a “Banana Republic”? Perhaps the term “Weed Oligarchy” is better?
In the first two months of cannabis legalization, consumers bought an estimated $339 million worth of marijuana products from retailers in California, 13 percent less than state projections, according to a leading analytics firm.
The state has estimated that retail cannabis sales for the remaining six months of this fiscal year would be $1.15 billion, or $383 million every two months.
BDS Analytics of Boulder, Colorado, provided the firm’s data to The Bee. Greg Shoenfeld, vice president for operations, said the company collects sales data from dispensaries and uses statistical modeling to project statewide sales. BDS Analytics also collects and analyzes such data in the three other states with recreational marijuana: Oregon, Washington and Colorado.
In other words, California’s last ditch effort to stay solvent – becoming a narcostate – is running up against unforeseen obstacles.
The low sales figures come as the cannabis industry has been complaining about how high taxes and local-government bans are driving consumers to the black and gray markets.
“Sales are happening but they’re not happening in the regulated market,” said Kristi Knoblich, board president of the California Cannabis Industry Association and co-founder of Kiva Confections, a manufacturer of edible cannabis products.
Black and gray market sales are available to anyone with an internet connection. Many unlicensed cannabis retailers advertise on Weedmaps, an Irvine-based company that’s been called the Yelp of weed.
Basically, what smarter people were saying for a long time has come to pass: black market weed consumed predominantly by blacks would always be cheaper than brick and mortar businesses.
And since the drug trade is dominated by criminals, they aren’t going to be so keen to start paying taxes lol.
Like, imagine the mentality of someone getting into the drug dealing business. Do you think that these are the type to dot every i and cross every t with the IRS or are these the type of people who don’t pay taxes and contribute to society?
Lol. Just lol.
Besides, all these weed warehouses are basically boomer-run hobby shops staffed by liberal arts degree hipsters being paid in bong paraphernalia. They serve White people who are tired of having to deal with “sketchy” drug dealers.
Get this though, the state can’t even enforce its drug monopoly.
The state Bureau of Cannabis Control has sent letters to about 1,000 unlicensed cannabis companies, ordering them to obtain licenses or stop sales. It also has notified Weedmaps that it needs to stop advertising unlicensed businesses, but Weedmaps has said the state lacks the legal authority to force a nonlicensed technology company to comply.
Lmao. If you’re going to run a Banana Republic or Weed Oligarchy or whatever, you need to know how to shut down the competition.
Other than hook-up apps, grapes, and weed, California doesn’t have much going for her. They can’t even tax their stoners to escape insolvency. Very bad news for the once proud state.
If they were smart, they would just start state-run snack shops and cash in on stoners out for a munchies run instead of trying to compete with weed dealers with no overhead.
Also – there is a serious case to be made against legalization from the perspective of what is healthy for the Republic. Libertarians, you can stop reading now, this will only trigger you.
If you allow former drug dealers to become “legit” overnight by becoming businessmen, you open the door for them to start getting involved in politics as well. Overnight, you create a new class of political players that are now considered “ok” to have dealings with for politicians.
By allowing criminal money to suddenly become legal money, you allow criminals to suddenly become influential voices in society.
This is what happened in the USSR when all the black market smugglers specializing in blue jeans and Walkmans were suddenly proclaimed titans of industry. They became the Oligarchs and almost ran Russia into the ground.
If America ever really allows full legalization of Weed or god forbid an even more profitable drug, you will have Tony Montanas suddenly calling the shots in politics. And then, all jokes aside, the US will indeed become a Banana Republic.