Investing in Cannabis: How to Make Money by Shaking Down a Cannabis Grower
Don Fanucci and the Great Bureaucratic Shakedown of the Cannabis Industry
Without a doubt, The Godfather is one of the greatest movies of all time.
One of my favorite scenes is where Don Fanucci threatens Vito Corleone because he and his friends aren’t giving Fanucci a piece of the action. Check it out …
Don Fanucci: [to Vito Corleone] This is my neighborhood. You and your friends should show me some respect. You should let me wet my beak a little. I hear you and your friends cleared $600 each. Give me $200 each, for your own protection. And I'll forget the insult. You young punks have to learn to respect a man like me! Otherwise the cops will come to your house. And your family will be ruined. Of course, if I'm wrong about how much you stole, I'll take a little less. And by less, I only mean - a hundred bucks less. Now don't refuse me. Understand, paisan? Understand, paisan?... Tell your friends I don't want a lot. Just enough to wet my beak. Don't be afraid to tell them!
There are two types of people in this world who can get away with such a threat: Mobsters and politicians. Although it could easily be argued they’re one in the same. And there’s no better evidence of this than the Governor of Guam, Eddie Calvo.
About two weeks ago, Eddie Calvo proposed the legalization of cannabis.
Sounds good, right?
Not so fast.
The legalization proposal came with a caveat of “heavy taxation.”
Calvo made the following statement to reporters …
I want us to look at how states navigated into recreational marijuana. Let’s figure it out and then tax the heck out of it and use those taxes to help fund our hospital, public safety and education.
The truth is, the battle against prohibition is one being fought and won by placating prohibitionists. Don’t think for a second that the burden of heavy taxation on the cannabis industry isn’t the primary reason more and more states are legalizing. And make no mistake, the road to legalization will be a long one, peppered with potholes created by bureaucrats and opportunists looking to “wet their beaks.”
Eddie Calvo is no exception.
You see Calvo’s legalization proposal came just one week after he vetoed a bill that would’ve allowed sick folks to grow their own cannabis at home. And truth be told, that bill wasn’t particularly favorable to those who value the basic fundamentals of liberty as it would’ve require permitted patients to have their homes subject to routine inspections by law enforcement.
If that’s not a recipe for a shakedown, I don’t know what is.
Calvo noted that under the terms of that bill, law enforcement agencies would find their already-strained resources depleted. And he’s right. But instead of coming back with a version that would’ve just allowed patients to grow their own medicine without the involvement of law enforcement, he instead chose to dangle the legalization carrot which has been dipped in the promise of new funding for schools, hospitals, and public safety.
Of course, I get it.
While I certainly maintain that taxation is theft, it doesn’t mean that it’s going to end. But why is it that the cannabis industry faces a heavier taxation burden than any other industry?
Over the past few years, with the legalization of cannabis in various states, we’ve seen increased economic activity and job creation.
We’ve seen kids with severe epilepsy have the opportunity to treat their seizures with cannabis with great success.
We’ve seen our men and women in uniform have the opportunity to treat their PTSD with cannabis, also with great success.
With legalization, we’ve seen cannabis help athletes treat their chronic pain, grandmothers treat their arthritis, and even a former police officer treat his Parkinson’s disease.
And this is what should be heavily taxed?
More people are hurt or killed by consuming alcohol, cigarettes, and fast food, yet it’s the folks providing a natural remedy for sick people that are getting shaken down the worst.
As we head into 2017, the legalization movement will continue to chug along.
More states will be proposing legalization, more sick people will be able to medicate without the threat of violence from the state, and more investors will be able to profit from what is clearly one of the most important socially-responsible investment opportunities of the 21st century.
Yes, the dead weights of taxation and bureaucratic buffoonery will slow progress, but they won’t stop it. And no matter how hard the prohibitionists try to fight legalization, they’ve already lost the battle. Soon they’ll lose the war.