What Marijuana Legalization Means

The economist looks at how legalization of marijuana will impact the bottom line of the cartels:

As a result, it estimates that Mexico’s traffickers would lose about $1.4 billion of their $2 billion revenues from marijuana. The effect on some groups would be severe: the Sinaloa “cartel” would lose up to half its total income, IMCO reckons. Exports of other drugs, from cocaine to methamphetamine, would become less competitive, as the traffickers’ fixed costs (from torturing rivals to bribing American and Mexican border officials) would remain unchanged, even as marijuana revenues fell.

Legalisation could, in short, deal a blow to Mexico’s traffickers of a magnitude that no current policy has got close to achieving. The stoned and sober alike should bear that in mind when they cast their votes on Tuesday.

Wish they included the potential tax revenue gains for states that legalize, regulate, and treat marijuana like alcohol and tobacco. Now that Colorado and Washington have done so, if the effort is a revenue/law enforcement success, I would think many states will follow suite.

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