I have been reading a lot of the advice of Senate Republicans over the last few months.
They have argued over and over that the government must do more with what it takes in.
At first I thought it was unfair to force cuts in spending on things like health care and education and housing for our least well-off citizens.
But then I realized there is one area where we can certainly do more with what we take in.
In fact, if we use our resources wisely, California may soon be able to fund nearly all of our most essential budgetary needs.
Each year the federal government confiscates about 2.4 million pounds of marijuana, according to the Library of Congress. This marijuana is later burned at costly "drug burns."
All we have to do, as citizens of Los Angeles, is convince the Republicans in D.C. to box up and send us the marijuana that is scheduled to be burned. We can even pay for the shipping.
We will make sure it is burned (just a little more slowly).
We could sell the confiscated pot here, as medical marijuana. Two and a half million pounds of pot, sold at $300 an ounce should earn the city more than a billion dollars -- that is enough to pay the entire budget of the LAPD! (Please note: I do not know how much pot costs but "a friend" purchased some in Venice and that is how much they charged "him.")
If we sell the marijuana confiscated by the state's CAMP program ($17 billion worth, according to CAMP) we could pay for all LA expenses, pay off the city's debt and still have plenty of money left over for after school programs, adult education and meals on wheels! Libraries could stay open later than ever.
Eventually perhaps the mayor could work with officials in New York, D.C., Boston, and Philadelphia (where pot is still prohibited) and get them to send us their marijuana, too!
We could stop paying real estate taxes!
You may call it a pipe dream but I say it would help us to fund the community colleges and hospitals!
Some say that we should end the war on drugs. But I say, that as long as we make good use of all of the drugs that are confiscated, why end the war?
If a war is making a profit, shouldn't we keep fighting?
Next week I will try to find out how much money defense contractors are making off of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq in order to determine whether those wars should really be ended. Hopefully things will work out in Korea!