I've been reading this forum (awesome one!) for a while and now that it is my country in the eye of the storm, I decided to shed some light on the topic here.
This was undoubtely the most discussed issue this couple of days in the country.
What has been said so far and a brief explanation of what the government (President and Minister) has shared so far:
The plan is, basically
, that the government plant, harvest, quality-test and distribute pot in certain spots, where each citizen willing to buy, must register to this 'system', and -info leaked- with a limit of 40 joints (don't ask if they're going to sell rolled, or how are they going to measure that, no idea, no-one has) for each person, each month. The price will be fair (tending to cheap) and will have some taxes devoted to the treatment of addicts in need (of any drug, I guess).
So that, they aim at destroying illegal traffic, but also have a strict control over the distribuition and the product, which seems nice.
This, as you can see, is still highly undetailed since they have to present the law-project to the senators and stuff yet to be approved, and all we have are some words thrown in conferences by the previous mentioned politics.
Some needed background of Uruguay's pot situation:
- Weed as you (rest of the world) know it (natural), is really hard to get (expensive, too much), so 90% of the market here is dominated by 'prensado' (translated 'pressed', or 'under-pressure', something like that, sorry) which is weed along with other filling stuff (not healthy, at all) including branches, grass sometimes, etc. put under pressure mixed with a little of whiskey in order to shrink it, and make more profit out of a certain amount of real pot. (Yeah, it totally sucks!), this is consumed not only here but in Argentina and Paraguay (where this product is 'manufactured') at least, maybe I'm missing some other latin american country. The resulting smell of the 'prensado' is less natural, but the effect is almost the same though. (I've tried both, of course) So the idea of getting good quality pot straight from the state, legally and at fair prices, is thrilling Uruguayan hearts these days
- There's 'pasta base' (aka. 'paco' in Argentina) here which is a highly addictive and deadly drug here made out of the worst leftovers from cocaine production, causing the consumers to end up robbing even their families and selling own stuff, killing for a few bucks, turning violent, etc. so then they can buy or trade the drug for stolen goods or money. The government feels and claimed that this marijuana measure will help those people (or prevent future others) moving to weed and stay cool, based on proven things like the Netherlands experience with coffee-shops(controversial, huh? trying to stop a drug with the allowance of another drug, this is the main weakspot used by oppositors). (This is also why pot will be cheap, this low-class people should afford it).
Now, personally, I think this is a good decision taken, and I feel this country is moving and transforming towards a more tolerant society not only in this matter. I would be glad to buy this weed from the gvt. Seems like the best solution to the tedious and violent black market we have now, and assures the quality of the dunk smoked by the population, instead of the damaging 'prensado'. However, I don't feel this will be as effective as in Netherlands in their fight against cocaine, since 'pasta base' is much more damaging and will be cheaper anyway, plus I don't think no 'pasta base' consumer would replace it with weed.
I hope this helped a bit to explain the current situation and feel free to ask any questions! Sorry for my English level, I tried my best!
I leave a link to a picture where 'prensado' is shown, for you to see how it looks like:http://k.min.us/ijPy7S.JPG