MEXICO CITY — A study released Wednesday by a respected Mexican think tank asserts that proposals to legalize the recreational use of marijuana in Colorado, Oregon and Washington could cut Mexican drug cartels’ earnings from traffic to the U.S. by as much as 30 percent.

UPDATE: Colorado First State to End Marijuana Prohibition.

Opponents questioned some of the study’s assumptions, saying the proposals could also offer new opportunities for cartels to operate inside the U.S. and replace any profit lost to a drop in international smuggling. The ballot measures to be decided on Nov. 6 would allow adults to possess small amounts of pot under a regimen of state regulation and taxation. Polls have shown tight races in Washington and Colorado, with Washington’s measure appearing to have the best chance of passing. Oregon’s measure, which would impose the fewest regulations, does not appear likely to pass.

The study by the Mexican Competitiveness Institute, “If Our Neighbors Legalize,” assumes that legalization in any state would allow growers there to produce marijuana relatively cheaply and create an illicit flow to other states, where the drug could be made available at cheaper prices and higher quality than Mexican marijuana smuggled across the international border.

The report, based on previous studies by U.S. experts including those at the RAND Corporation, assumes that Mexican cartels earn more than $6 billion a year from drug smuggling to the U.S.

It calculates the hypothetical, post-legalization price of marijuana produced in Oregon, Washington and Colorado and sold within those states and smuggled to other states. It then assumes that purchasers around the U.S. will choose domestic marijuana when it is sold cheaper than the current price of Mexican marijuana. That choice will lead to a loss of $1.425 billion to the cartels if Colorado legalizes, $1.372 billion if Washington approves the ballot measure, and $1.839 billion if Oregon votes yes, the study says.

At least when I vote for this amendment today, I won’t feel the need to throw up.



  1. Taxed Enough Already Dude says:

    The prohibition is analogous in that relation, but the danger to society of making drugs as available (and marketable) as alcohol requires its legalization be partial….

    To rob the cartels etc of income…but make it unattractive…uncool…to use it. Government should run the distribution making it almost inevitable getting it will be an unpleasant experience.

    • Dallas says:

      Your cut/paste skills are awful but I hear Honey Boo Boo said something like that.

      • Taxed Enough Already Dude says:

        Honey Boo Boo should be warned if you were close enough to hear what she said.

    • McCullough says:

      If that happens, and you may be correct, people will return to the black market.

      But one of the upsides to this is that people lives won’t be destroyed by being sent to prison for the PERSONAL decision of using something much less harmful than alcohol.

      • Taxed Enough Already Dude says:

        I agree some black market might survive…but it won’t be funding the cartels like now.

        Its immoral we not legalize…given the harm prohibition is doing to both Mexico and the USA.

      • Taxed Enough Already Dude says:

        And as you said, the illogic of jailing people for what they eat or drink.

        Along with legalization should be waivers for public medical treatment…they’re on their own.

        Then the argument against legalization wouldn’t have any sound grounds.

        But I’m sure churches would step in the aid those who harm themselves…it would be a good ministry for us…to save the lost.

        • NobodySpecial says:

          Smoke? – no treatment for lung cancer

          Drink? – no treatment when you wrap your car around a tree and a life sentence for drink driving.

          Overweight? – no treatment for heart disease

          • ReadyKilowatt says:

            And everyone who consumes those products takes a mental calculation of the risk/reward equation. Granted, our lizard brain likes to skew the result toward immediate gratification in favor of future detriment, and we’re all terrible at calculating odds anyway, but at the end of the day no one is pushing that drink down your throat with a turkey baster, you pick up the glass.

          • Taxed Enough Already Dude says:

            Its all moot now, a brave new America with Obama’s election.

            No one is personally responsible for their behavior…the rich will pay for it, or else.

            Lets just hope they don’t decide to move, sometimes they do that…before we can get’em.

          • McCullough says:

            Exactly, a few more.

            Ride a Motorcycle – tough shit, tag him and bag him

            Scuba dive – you should have known the dangers

            Skin Cancer – you stayed in the sun too long sorry

            Skiing accident – lets not even go there

            on and on

  2. Glenn E. says:

    Oh No! We can have a domestically grown product, unfairly competing with an illegal import. What would the international bankers, behind it all, do for money to buy their ivy back scratchers? Vote against this so the intl. money men can afford to buy back scratchers. Which themselves are an illegal trade item.

  3. McCullough says:

    I think your right, the banks that launder the drug cartels money, Wells Fargo, BOA, etc…are not going to let the states get away with this. Whoever becomes their bitch, either Obama or Romney, will just lick their boots.

  4. Shubee says:

    It’s crazy to classify marijuana as a schedule 1 drug because the National Cancer Institute admits that cannabinoids may be useful in treating cancer.

    http://everythingimportant.org/cancer

    • soundwash says:

      Back in the early to mid 80’s during the BBS days, there were several text documents that provided some very detailed research data that was going on in Argentina around 1972 courtesy of some U.S. based Universities that showed major shrinkage of brain tumors in rats (or mice, I forget which) as well as outright removal when THC was fed to them.

      The “problem” they had at the time was that any versions of synthetic THC they fed them would not work, -only the real stuff..

      IIRC, this issue has now been solved. -which is why in the last year or so, we now see Obama letting loose the Feds all over previously unmolested pot dispensaries in California, Colorado and others.

      The patents have been expedited for the BigPharma companies that have synthetic THC and CBD based pills that now cure all this stuff. -It’s time once again to rub out the little man with the natural solutions so BigPharma can sell overpriced meds to cure his woes..

      -just some thoughts..

      -s

  5. NobodySpecial says:

    Never mind Mexico – what about the damage it would do to the economy of Vancouver!

  6. Public says:

    Road trips to co and wa!

    Univ of wash better staff up. A sea of new applications is coming, I predict

    This may be the stuff of songs to be written

  7. Sea Lawyer says:

    It is still a violation of federal law, and Obama has heretofore not shown any desire to scale back the war on drugs.

    • NobodySpecial says:

      Anybody from Washington feel like going to rural Oregon and telling them that they don’t have any state rights?

  8. SPOCK says:

    i’d personally rather pay a little extra from a shop where the customer could receive verified strains. nobody wants to go through dodgy dealers. and i don’t mean to speak as someone who is a pot-head with one too many baked brain cells, but someone who smokes in moderation, and does think about personal and societal impacts, etc. but in the end, i do feel legalization is a smart move if people can handle it ‘responsibly’, but that will be the question.

  9. What? says:

    Big Alcohol is afraid of losing money to Pot?

    • Shubee says:

      It makes sense to me that Big Alcohol is afraid of losing money to Pot. Or do you believe that Big Alcohol contributes money to the war on cannabis because they’re morally outraged that American citizens seek an altered state of mind as a form of recreation?

  10. orchidcup says:

    The error seems not sufficiently eradicated, that the operations of the mind, as well as the acts of the body, are subject to the coercion of the laws. But our rulers can have authority over such natural rights only as we have submitted to them. The rights of conscience we never submitted, we could not submit.

    We are answerable for them to our God. The legitimate powers of government extend to such acts only as are injurious to others.

    … Was the government to prescribe to us our medicine and diet, our bodies would be in such keeping as our souls are now. Thus in France the emetic was once forbidden as a medicine, and the potatoe as an article of food.

    — Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), US Founding Father, drafted the Declaration of Independence, 3rd US President
    Source: Jefferson’s Notes on Viriginia, Query XVII (1781-1785)

  11. orchidcup says:

    I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.

    The majority, oppressing an individual, is guilty of a crime, abuses its strength, and by acting on the law of the strongest breaks up the foundations of society.

    If the people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny.

    — Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), US Founding Father, drafted the Declaration of Independence, 3rd US President

  12. deowll says:

    I don’t care if it is legal as long as using it can still be considered grounds for termination.