Politically Incorrect Zone: The Feds and Wacky Tobacky

health times;”>Political correctnessBy Kevin Harris

adiposity times;”>In this month’s election, sildenafil voters in Oregon, Alaska, and Washington D.C. legalized recreational marijuana, adding that freedom to other states such as Colorado and Washington State, among others. But that freedom is greatly hindered by Congress, which continues to enforce an 80s-era federal drug tax law (280 E).

Under that law, the government makes more money on the sale of marijuana than the businesses legally selling it. And the massive tax bills levied on those businesses at year’s end threaten their ability to remain in operation… so much so that many business owners feel that 280 E is currently little more than a congressional workaround to state legalization of marijuana.

High tax rates aside, congress also changed the law back in 1982, saying that businesses that sell marijuana can not write-off expenses related to selling their product, such as advertising, rent, utilities and salaries (though costs related to marijuana production remain deductible). So while marijuana itself may be highly profitable, it is generally Uncle Sam who is celebrating.

280 E applies to both recreational and medical marijuana sales. And while we can applaud the voters who exercise their states rights in legalizing marijuana, it seems to me the states and media do a very poor job informing those voters about the tyrannical, financial grip the Federal Government maintains over their local, legal sellers.

When we’re told that marijuana legalization is now a state issue, it seems to me, at least in part, we’re being lied to.

Kevin Harris

Kevin Harris


Kevin Harris is a former reporter, editor and journalist, and previous President of Cal State Northridge’s Society of Professional Journalists. He is now a realtor and videographer, and lives with his two children in Oak Park. 

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