America’s industrial ban on hemp is “a poster child for dumb regulation,” argues lazy ass pothead! Wait, sorry, scratch that. Make that Senator Ron Wyden, D-Oregon, introducing an amendment last week to the densely contested 2012 Farm Bill, which is either a subsidies and sustainability savior or callous food austerity, depending on who you ask. But if you ask Wyden, “the best possible Farm Bill” is one that repeals a ban on industrial hemp the United States is already quite busy, and expensively, importing from the few feet it takes to cross the Canadian border.
“I will be urging my colleagues to support this amendment,” Wyden announced last week on the Senate floor, reminding the assembled elected that his plan won’t cost American taxpayers a dime. “I want [them] to know I will be back at this again until there are smarter regulations in place.”
“America needs to get real about hemp, and fast, even if the country continues to fight about ending cannabis prohibition,” National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) executive director Allen St. Pierre told AlterNet. “There is virtually no one on earth who intellectually opposes farmers cultivating industrial hemp, other than anti-cannabis bureaucracies, politicians, drug testing companies and the U.S. law enforcement community.”
That’s some stacked opposition. But the list below provides more than enough firepower for encouraging an overdue repeal of the ban on industrial hemp, cannabis sativa’s low-THC strain.
1. America buys hemp from Canada anyway.
Maybe we should just burn money, too? “We’re already importing a crop that the U.S. farmer could be profitably growing right here at home, if not for government rules prohibiting it,” Wyden argued, reminding listeners that in 2010, Canada subsidized its hemp industry with over $700,000 more in funding, increased crop sizes and “fortified the inroads the Canadians are making in U.S. markets at the expense of our farmers.” All while our hemp imports have grown 300 percent in the last decade, and 35 percent since 2009…