Nederland is met zijn drugsbeleid in de achterhoede terecht gekomen, zo stelt Martin Jelsma. Zo zijn Uruguay en de Amerikaanse staten Washington en Colorado met hun besluit om de cannabismarkt van teelt tot gebruik te legaliseren, Nederland voorbijgestreefd. Ze schenden daarbij de VN-verdragen en lijken daarmee hervorming van het wereldwijde drugsbeleid af te dwingen. Ook vanuit het door drugsgeweld geteisterde Latijns-Amerika wordt de roep om legalisering van de drugsmarkt steeds groter.
De PDF van dit artikel is met toestemming van de redactie overgenomen uit de Internationale Spectator, maandblad voor internationale politiek, uitgegeven door de Koninklijke Van Gorcum te Assen namens het Nederlands Instituut voor Internationale Betrekkingen ‘Clingendael’ te Den Haag.
The accusations from Argentina's tax authority that London-based HSBC laundered over $100 million may pale in comparison to that of the bank's US - Mexico case, but they raise the specter that someone from HSBC could finally go to jail. The charges, announced by the head of Argentina's tax collection agency, Ricardo Echegaray, on March 19 include tax evasion and money laundering totalling up to $120 million.
"Since declaring a war on drugs 40 years ago, the United States has spent more than a trillion dollars, arrested more than 45 million people, and racked up the highest incarceration rate in the world. Yet it remains laughably easy to obtain illegal drugs. So why do we continue down this same path? Why do we talk about the drug war as if it's a success? It's a charade." (See: The house I live in)
The exponential proliferation of the number of associations, clubs and other groups that distribute cannabis among their members and create new spaces for socialising, has surprised even the most optimistic advocates of more reasonable drug policies. In a short time, and in spite of those in government, civil society has provided a response to a problem that realpolitik has been unable to tackle.
Washington’s new pot consultant has one overarching, discouraging message for lawmakers and state budget writers: don’t look at weed as an ATM. Potential tax revenues will probably be less than half of the $450 million that’s been projected, said Mark Kleiman, in a interview Thursday night with TVW’s Austin Jenkins. More important, Kleiman said, to rely on money from pot — like money from gambling, alcohol and tobacco — means relying on abuse and addiction, which are not necessarily desirable state goals.
Colorado's under-construction plan for regulating recreational marijuana nearly came unglued when lawmakers questioned whether the agency that would enforce the rules is up to the task. The plan called for the state's Medical Marijuana Enforcement Division — which regulates medical-marijuana businesses — to transition to the Marijuana Enforcement Division and be in charge of all pot enterprises in the state. But a scathing audit cast doubt on the division's fitness for handling the massive job.
Avec les Cannabis social club (CSC), dont les statuts ont été déposés lundi dans plusieurs préfectures, des militants défenseurs du cannabis bravent l’interdit pour promouvoir la dépénalisation et l’autoproduction et mettre ainsi un terme aux trafics et à la mise en circulation de produits «frelatés»: 15 à 20 clubs ont été officiellement créés, notamment en Loire-Atlantique, Vendée, Creuse, Charente-Maritime, Indre-et-Loire et Haute-Vienne, emboîtant ainsi le pas à la fédération, créée le 4 mars en Indre-et-Loire.
In the 2012 report Profiting from Injustice, jointly published by Corporate Europe Observatory and the Transnational Institute, we boldly asserted that law firms, arbitrators and third-party funders have, over the past two decades, helped maintain an investor-biased arbitration system and have fuelled the rise in investor-state disputes.
Last November ballot initiatives legalizing, taxing, and regulating recreational marijuana use passed for the first time ever in Colorado and Washington state. Now marijuana reform is popping up in state legislatures across the country. Once the pet project of a few fringe figures, it has attracted a new generation of politicians from both parties with credible national aspirations. Even some Republicans see an opportunity to capitalize on a constituency that shocked the pundit class with its financial and grassroots muscle -- not to mention sophisticated campaign tactics -- just a few months ago.
Twelve years ago, Portugal eliminated criminal penalties for drug users. Since then, those caught with small amounts of marijuana, cocaine or heroin go unindicted and possession is a misdemeanor on par with illegal parking. Experts are pleased with the results. Portugal has stopped prosecuting users. The substances listed in Law 30/2000 are still illegal in Portugal -- "Otherwise we would have gotten into trouble with the UN," drug policy coordinator João Goulão explains -- but using these drugs is nothing more than a misdemeanor, much the same as a parking violation.
Fiona Dove, Hans Berkhuizen, Ronald Gijsbertsen, Danielle Hirsch, Ruud van den Hurk, Ineke Zeldenrust
26 March 2013
One of the wishes of the Fair, Green and Global Alliance (FGG) members was recently fulfilled by the Rutte II Cabinet: the trade and global development portfolios have been brought under a single Minister, the Minister of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation.
The EU's launch of negotiations for Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreements (DCFTAs) with four Arab countries in transition – Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia - looks set to entrench an economic model that was one of the root causes of the Arab Spring.
On December 15th 2012 Sombath Somphone disappeared, taken away in a truck by unknown persons after being stopped by police in the Lao capital, Vientiane. Nobody has seen or heard from him since.Today, March 25th 2013, is the 100th day since Sombath’s disappearance.
Cannabis users across France took a high-risk step by registering 'Cannabis social clubs' with local authorities as official non-profit organizations. The stunt is a bid to win public backing but it could land them up to 30 years in jail. In registering their social clubs with local authorities, those behind the stunt hope to illustrate what they see as disproportionate and unfair laws against cannabis use, and force a change in legislation. "We want to remove the sword of Damocles from over our heads, and demand recognition from the public authorities," said Farid Ghehioueche, from the group 'Cannabis sans frontières' (Cannabis without borders).
State regulators charged with watching over Colorado's medical marijuana industry have fallen short on everything from tracking inventory and managing their budget to keeping potential bad actors out of the business, a state audit found. Often lauded as a national model, Colorado's so-called seed-to-sale system of regulating medical marijuana does not exist, auditors found.
Washington state gets ready to regulate legal marijuana with the help of one of America’s top drug policy analysts. Mark Kleiman is professor of public policy at the University of California in Los Angeles, and co-author of Marijuana Legalization: What Everyone Needs to Know. His team at Botec Analysis Corporation earned the contract to help turn Washington state’s vote to legalize marijuana into a reality. TIME talked to him about the challenging job ahead.