The Noose Tightens

Discussion in 'Marijuana News' started by AK Infinity, Apr 13, 2006.

  1. For everyone out there that thought Canada was a relatively safe haven for smokers on the USA side of the world I'm sure have been getting a wake up call over the last few months. Never underestimate the paranoia of the general populace and their desire to annihilate Marijuana consumers. Our community needs to pull together and evolve because the persecution is not going slow down much less stop. While we're peacefully puffing away in hopeful anonymity there are sober, conniving, and manipulative hypocrites plotting to wipe us off the motherfucking planet through unreasonable drug enforcement policies. They're out for blood and guts, shouldn't we be too?
    Watch your backs brothers and sisters because I guarantee you, if you don't the government will.
    New tool for cities to bust grow-ops <O:p</O:p
    By Robert Freeman
    The Progress

    <FONT color=#000000><FONT size=2><FONT][COLOR=#000000><FONT]CHILLIWACK class=inlineimg title="Stick Out Tongue" alt="" border="0" src="images/smilies/tongue.gif" smilieid="17" ST1<img font]< size][ color][ [ />Apr 11 2006

    BC Hydro will be required to give municipal governments information about residences with unusual power consumption after new legislation announced by the B.C. government last week. "It will help local governments target and shut down marijuana grow-ops," Rich Coleman, the minister responsible for housing, told The Progress on Thursday. "(Grow-ops) pose a danger to our neighbourhoods and we're determined to shut them down."
    Power consumption data was previously considered confidential and protected by privacy legislation, putting it out of reach of authorities.
    B.C's privacy commissioner David Loukidelis has expressed concern about the new legislation, saying such initiatives "amount to a form of surveillance" and he asked the government to re-word the law so only city inspectors can use it - not police to launch criminal investigations.
    Solicitor General John Les, former Chilliwack
    mayor, says the legislation is not aimed at criminal activities, but those that pose a safety hazard to communities. He cites one case encountered in <ST1:pSurrey</ST1:p
    where the pilot program that preceded the legislation was held. Consumption data revealed a homeowner using four kitchen ranges at the same time - not for any illicit purpose, Les says - but a safety hazard that was resolved with an electrical upgrade.
    "This is not a criminal proceeding, this is simply a civil power to deal with uses causing an unsafe condition, and get rid of that condition," he says.
    "I don't have any problems with people interested in civil liberties taking a critical look at this legislation," he adds. "It's always important to be balanced and not tread on personal privacy any more than absolutely necessary. I think we have struck that balance."
    Les says Chilliwack</ST1:place can ask BC Hydro for a list of homes with "unusual consumption," and based on safety concerns; give the homeowners 48-hours notice of inspection.

    Grow-ops can be taken down quickly, he agrees, but the safety hazard will go with it and the city can declare the residence unsafe for occupation under an existing bylaw and order the owner to restore it to health and safety standards. Both Les and Chilliwack Mayor Clint Hames say they have no quarrel with criticism that the legislation may infringe on civil liberties, but say a balance must be found between citizens' privacy and the safety of neighborhoods. "If laws are being broken and communities are being hurt ... we need to think about giving up some civil liberties to ensure safety," says Mayor Hames. "I appreciate what civil libertarians are saying, but help us out here," he says, to find a solution that protects residents living near grow-ops, and society in general from the marijuana industry that "bankrolls" other criminal activities.

    Legalizing marijuana would remove the profit motive that makes it attractive to criminals, the mayor agrees, but that is a federal government matter and would not likely deter the criminal element moving to other hazardous activities like crystal meth production. "If they can't make a profit with marijuana ... they'd increase the number of meth labs," he says. "As a society, you have to say, 'where's the line drawn' and make the best of it." And should the federal government ever legalize pot, Hames believes it would simply put Canada</ST1:p in the same position that it was during the U.S. </ST1:p
    prohibition on alcohol when it became a huge black market for illegal sales.
    "You can't be the island among nations that makes marijuana legal," he says. "From a community perspective this is a war on unsafe conditions, and a war against organized crime."<O:p</O:p


    Here's my questions to John Les and Clint Hames: Name three instances in 2006 where grow-ops actually caused damage to other residences? And what instances specifically made this legislation necessary? (If there were an epidemic of electrical fires by all means create legislation but if it's persecution designed to look like a safety concern law well...)

    "All that is necessary for evil to succeed is that good men do nothing."

    ~Edmund Burke~

    Stay safe and stay green!

  2. The Williams Lake Tribune

    Apr 13 2006

    If you are a crime and punishment kind of person, then you'll probably hail the province's latest tool to bust grow-ops. If you're a civil libertarian, then you'll shudder at the plan. Victoria has amended the Safety Standards Act in an attempt to target and shut down marijuana grow operations. Under the new regulations, electricity companies will be required to give municipalities information about residences with unusual power consumption, so local authorities can target grow-op houses more efficiently. "Grow-ops are more likely to catch fire, more likely to have guns inside and are more likely to be robbed," said Rich Coleman, minister responsible for housing. "They pose a danger to our neighbourhoods and we're determined to shut them down."

    Fair enough. But do we really need to snoop in people's personal information to combat crime? Is it really necessary to have someone keep an eye on your hydro bill to see if you are a possible criminal? What's next, having Big Brother eyeball our credit card bills to see if we're buying grow-op equipment, or maybe down at the sporting goods store to see if we're buying a lot of ammunition. Why not just come right in to our houses and snoop around to see if we're up to no good?
    There is validity to the argument that grow ops are a fire hazard which, in turn, creates a risk for law abiding citizens.

    The principle behind checking Hydro bills is the same as when Victoria wanted to access to Costco records in order to snoop around and find out who was avoiding the PST by shopping in Alberta. You'll remember that plan backfired. Grow-ops are indeed a huge problem, but what can we do? Tips from the public remain the best source of information for police about potential grow-ops. Here are several ways to identify possible grow operations: Entry to the home is usually through the garage or a back entrance to conceal activity. Windows are boarded or covered and may have a layer of condensation. Equipment such as large fans, lights and plastic plant containers is carried into the home. Sounds of construction or electrical humming can be heard. Strange odours (a skunk-like smell) emanate from the house. The neighbourhood experiences localized surges or decreases in power. We can all do our part, perhaps without infringing on our individual rights.


    "Those who profess to favor freedom and yet depreciate agitation, are people who want crops without ploughing the ground; they want rain without thunder and lightning; they want the ocean without the roar of its many waters. The struggle may be a moral one, or it may be a physical one, or it may be both. But it must be a struggle. Power concedes nothing without a demand; it never has and it never will."

    ~Frederick Douglass~

    Stay free!
  3. Grow-ops are more likely to catch fire, more likely to have guns inside and are more likely to be robbed," said Rich Coleman, minister responsible for housing. "They pose a danger to our neighbourhoods and we're determined to shut them down."


    Fire? We line our houses with 120 volts of electricity, we have giant oil tanks just waiting to explode, we have natural gas lines running into our house...

    Reptile breeders use a lot of lights, and their power consumption is enormous, not to mention it could catch fire.

    Guns? Since when do guns cause crimes? Criminals cause crimes, and I'd like to see a statistic that says marijuana growers are more likely to own guns. Smoking weed has turned me away from guns, actually.

    Robbery? Please.Legalize it and people wont have to buy guns, they wont have to get robbed, and nobody would have to have grow ops.
  4. Lol I also find it funny how they compared legalizing weed to US prohitibtion. Prohibition caused crime because organized gansters had something to sell, legalizing weed would mean that the gangsters would try to sell something else, so it wouldnt make a difference. Might as well legalize it, that way tax payers dont waste money on all those marijuana arrests. And when they say how there will be more crystal meth labs, well if weed was legal they could focus more on finding and persecuting meth labs, a better way to spend our money I say.
  5. Guns + Mary Jane = 0
  6. No i think since this is all going on in Canada (it is right?) then they mean that if they leagalized it in Canada then the situation there would be like the one in Canada during prohibition in the US. Unfortunately for Canada i have to agree.
  7. They can't make the sun illegal, and weed still grows outside...

    A setback for Canada for sure, but unfortunatly for your cousins to the south, we already have to deal with everything you're panicing about. Our electric bills do get scrutenized, and people do get arrested for it. We also have our credit cards monitored by Big Brother and a few other private agencies (technically the govt isn's spying... the credit card companies sell your information to a third party, and the govt buys it from them). We also have laws about ammunition: in some places you can't just go and buy like 10 boxes of bullets without red flags being thrown.
  8. I think your overreacting a bit. Its not such a big deal. Its just anouther fly, buzzing around...
  9. that may be true, but there are people who take this seriously, and unfortunately the ones who have influence arent on our side. this type of publication only feeds the fire.

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