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Invisibledwpineal
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Seven Years for Bong Water
    #11338977 - 10/28/09 04:27 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

http://reason.com/blog/2009/10/28/seven-years-for-bong-water

Seven Years for Bong Water
Jacob Sullum | October 28, 2009

Last week the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled that bong water is an illegal drug. Under state law, a controlled substance includes any "mixture" containing that substance, "regardless of purity." The consequences of reading that definition literally can be severe. In the case before the court, a woman whose bong contained 37 grams of water with traces of methamphetamine will now be treated as if she possessed 37 grams of speed, which converts possession of drug paraphernalia, a petty misdemeanor punishable by a $300 fine, into a a first-degree drug offense, punishable by seven or more years in prison. Three dissenting justices wrote that the majority's interpretation of the statute "misapplies the plain-meaning rule...runs counter to the legislative structure of our drug laws, does not make common sense, and borders on the absurd."

This sort of absurdity has a long pedigree. Back in 1993, I wrote a piece for Reason in which I highlighted the ridiculously unjust results of including the "carrier medium" for LSD (typically blotter paper) in calculating the drug's weight for sentencing purposes:

    Under federal sentencing guidelines, selling 100 doses of LSD in pure form triggers a minimum sentence of less than a year, but selling the same amount on paper will get you a sentence of at least two years, three months. And if you were old-fashioned enough to drop your acid onto sugar cubes, you will end up behind bars for no less than 15 years, eight months.

Like the Minnesota ruling, this interpretation of the law elicited amazed dissents. "All this seems crazy," the 7th Circuit's Richard Posner wrote in 1990. "To base punishment on the weight of the carrier medium makes about as much sense as basing punishment on the weight of the defendant." The arbitrary, incomplete fix that the U.S. Sentencing Commission devised for that problem—counting each dose in a carrier medium as 0.4 milligram to avoid "unwarranted disparity among offenses involving the same quantity of actual LSD"—is still in force, to judge by this 2006 sentencing manual (PDF). Many states also include "mixtures" in their definitions of illegal drugs; the earliest example I found was New York in 1969.

Rereading that 1993 article, I was also struck by the discussion of the disparity in sentences between crack and cocaine powder:

    Julie Stewart, president of Families Against Mandatory Minimums, says the Sentencing Commission's proposed LSD amendment will probably take the pressure off Congress. Especially if the change is retroactive, the families of LSD defendants will be less noisy, and judges will find the sentences they're forced to impose less disturbing.

    Stewart is more optimistic about the possibility of a legislative solution for crack offenders. Federal law treats crack cocaine as if it were 100 times worse than the powdered form of the drug, cocaine hydrochloride. Thus 500 grams of crack triggers the same penalty as 50 kilograms of cocaine hydrochloride. A first-time offender with 20 grams of cocaine hydrochloride faces a minimum sentence of 10 months, while a first-time offender with 20 grams of crack faces a minimum of six years, six months.

As I noted a couple weeks ago, it looks like the remedy that Stewart was optimistic about 16 years ago is finally coming to pass.


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InvisibleThat Cenex Guy
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Registered: 10/22/09
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: dwpineal]
    #11339034 - 10/28/09 04:32 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

Well lucky me, i live in Minnesota. These laws just get more ridiculous with each new one passed!


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OfflineSolemente
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: That Cenex Guy]
    #11339095 - 10/28/09 04:39 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

:lol: glad I'm moving from MN in 3 days.


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InvisiblePolk_Audio3
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: Solemente]
    #11339130 - 10/28/09 04:44 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

I wouldn't never drink that shit..


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InvisibleLobsterSauce
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: Polk_Audio3]
    #11339154 - 10/28/09 04:47 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

3 men here were caught with 660 million euro worth of coke here about 2 years ago.

They got about 25 years each.

Compare the two. The results will be staggering.


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Offlinewowitch17
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: LobsterSauce]
    #11339791 - 10/28/09 06:09 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

what kind of police force tests the bong water


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Offlineicanttype
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: Polk_Audio3]
    #11340357 - 10/28/09 07:19 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

Quote:

PolkAudio2 said:
I wouldn't never drink that shit..



so you drink it all the time then?


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GGTBod - "Sounds great, get trippin get naked and get animalistic make her laugh and piss all over you, i see no problems here :blush:"


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OfflineMHbound
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: icanttype]
    #11340473 - 10/28/09 07:37 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

:facepalm:


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InvisibleAnnapurna1
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: wowitch17]
    #11340494 - 10/28/09 07:41 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

i can understand the courts' reasoning..but im worried that it could create incentives for pigs to tamper with evidence...for example..they could just throw in a microgram of meth to trigger a heavy mandatory prison sentance.. and an equally heavy kickback from the prison company...


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"anchor blocks counteract the process of pontiprobation..while omalean globes regulize the pressure"...


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Invisibletyrannicalrex
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: icanttype]
    #11340537 - 10/28/09 07:45 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

Quote:

icanttype said:
Quote:

PolkAudio2 said:
I wouldn't never drink that shit..



so you drink it all the time then?






:laugh::laugh::congrats:


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OfflineMorgenstern
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: dwpineal]
    #11340592 - 10/28/09 07:56 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

Is this the same subject, place and everything where an officer said people will drink and inject bong water?

:facepalm:


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We're the last in the line,
Of the prey that walks the earth





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OfflineSandoz
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: Morgenstern]
    #11340776 - 10/28/09 08:29 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

:facepalm:............:facepalm:


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InvisibleThat Cenex Guy
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Registered: 10/22/09
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: Morgenstern]
    #11341320 - 10/28/09 09:54 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

Quote:

Mataspore said:
Is this the same subject, place and everything where an officer said people will drink and inject bong water?

:facepalm:



Yup, same one. Why does that matter though? All that means is that we can no longer save our used bong water for another day, which shouldnt be a big deal, i like to chug mine down as soon as im finished smoking for that one last rush anyway, isnt that what everyone else does?


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Offlineemeraldlife88
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: That Cenex Guy]
    #11341418 - 10/28/09 10:09 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

How infuriating...

This ignorant government and their squad of merry pigs have to be stopped at once!


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OfflineRazzleCap
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Registered: 10/28/09
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: emeraldlife88]
    #11341723 - 10/28/09 11:03 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

I don't think I've heard something that retarded in a long, long time.

So what exactly happens when a police officer just....fills up your empty bong and BAM! you have 90 grams of "death water?"

Each law eats just a little more freedom...


--------------------
"If the words 'life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness' don't include the right to experiment with your own consciousness, then the Declaration of Independence isn't worth the hemp it was written on."

"Let us declare nature to be legitimate. All plants should be declared legal, and all animals for that matter. The notion of illegal plants and animals is obnoxious and ridiculous."


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InvisibleThat Cenex Guy
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Registered: 10/22/09
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: RazzleCap]
    #11341741 - 10/28/09 11:06 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

The "best" part is, is that while theyre actually debating total legalization in Cali, we're over here going in the total opposite direction still trying to find more dumb ways to send people to jail :frown:


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InvisibleLe_Canard
The Duk Abides


Registered: 05/17/03
Posts: 94,392
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: dwpineal]
    #11341746 - 10/28/09 11:07 PM (7 years, 11 months ago)

That's ridiculous. I thought Mn. was pretty liberal about weed.


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OfflineAlan RockefellerM
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: dwpineal]
    #11342803 - 10/29/09 01:37 AM (7 years, 11 months ago)

Quote:

  Julie Stewart, president of Families Against Mandatory Minimums, says the Sentencing Commission's proposed LSD amendment will probably take the pressure off Congress. Especially if the change is retroactive, the families of LSD defendants will be less noisy, and judges will find the sentences they're forced to impose less disturbing.





What proposed amendment is she referring to?

Are they thinking about changing LSD sentencing guidelines?


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Offlinemakaveli8x8
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: Alan Rockefeller]
    #11343229 - 10/29/09 03:28 AM (7 years, 11 months ago)

i guess this will force those bong water drug dealers to keep higher quality bong water.  no more of that .0001 percent water


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We were sent to hell for eternity :hellfire: Ø:omgawesome:h®
We play on earth to pass the time :foreheadslap:

Over-population the root of all Evil-brings the Elites Closer to the gates.


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Invisibledwpineal
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Re: Seven Years for Bong Water [Re: Alan Rockefeller]
    #11343583 - 10/29/09 07:05 AM (7 years, 11 months ago)

Quote:

Alan Rockefeller said:
Quote:

  Julie Stewart, president of Families Against Mandatory Minimums, says the Sentencing Commission's proposed LSD amendment will probably take the pressure off Congress. Especially if the change is retroactive, the families of LSD defendants will be less noisy, and judges will find the sentences they're forced to impose less disturbing.





What proposed amendment is she referring to?

Are they thinking about changing LSD sentencing guidelines?




That was part of a 1993 article in Reason that it is referencing. That was when they changed the sentencing to be based on 400ug/hit instead of the weight of the paper/liquid.


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