gives Canada a boost
But trouble is afoot...
If you've been paying attention to
some of the more peculiar side-effects of the global recession,
you may have noticed that Canadians have been behaving
uncharacteristically uppity of late.
This is a result of Canada having the "least-bad-rich-world-economy" –
an honour that would
be rather unimpressive if the rest of the G8 wasn't so persistently
While most wealthy economies are still stagnant, in decline or
disrepair, the Canadian economy
has outpaced allcomers and will avoid the possibility of a double-dip
recession that continues to
haunt the US. But beyond the chorus of self-congratulatory backslapping
coming from Ottawa,
there has emerged a threat of economic crisis that is being ignored by
This November, in an effort to increase tax revenue, California will
hold a referendum on whether
or not to legalise the cultivation and use of marijuana. If passed, the change in law would be
devastating to the Canadian
economy, halting the flow of billions of dollars from the US
into Canada and eventually
forcing hundreds of thousands into unemployment.
Over the past 20 years, Canada has developed a substantial and highly
profitable marijuana industry
that is almost completely dependent on the US market. Between 60 and
90% of the marijuana
produced domestically is exported to the US via cross-border smuggling
operations. It's exactly like
the alcohol prohibition of the 1920s, only far more sophisticated and
more profitable. The establishment
of a legal industry based in the US would likely cripple these exports
Due to its contraband nature, it's difficult to determine exactly how
much marijuana contributes to
the Canadian economy, but economists have estimated about $20bn per
year, making it Canada's
single largest agricultural product. The bulk of production is based in
British Columbia, where it
employs a labour force of 250,000, roughly one in 14 adults. Although
strict financial controls are
often credited as the source of Canada's economic resilience, it's
worth pointing out that marijuana
production often insulates communities from larger economic phenomenon.
So, the "threat" is that American
money would stay in America?
Common sense drugs laws? Are you kidding
Oh, is God gonna be pisssed when he
hears about this.
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