01/08/08 - Marc Emery

Marc Emery, Canada's "Prince of Pot" discusses his forthcoming extradition hearing to send him to the US for a potential life sentence for exporting marijuana seeds + Paul Wright, publisher of Prison Legal News.

Program: 
Century of Lies
Date: 
Tuesday, January 8, 2008
Guest: 
Marc Emery
Organization: 
Cannabis Culture Magazine
Download: Audio icon COL_010808.mp3
Share

Comments

Drug Truth Network, Century of Lies, January 8, 2008

The failure of Drug War is glaringly obvious to judges, cops, wardens, prosecutors and millions more now calling for decriminalization, legalization, the end of prohibition. Let us investigate the Century of Lies.

Prince of Pot. The U.S. versus Marc Emery. A Canadian marijuana activist battling extradition to the United States where he could face life in prison.

Marc Emery: They say I am responsible for 1.1 million pounds. I hope its true. I hope its true. That would be great. That would be my legacy. I produced my marijuana than anyone else on the planet except God himself.

Marc Emery intentionally moved illegal drugs into the United States knowingly. He did that, he violated the laws of the United States government and he was arrested for that.

Marc Emery: (unintelligle) justice minister signed off on sending me to the United States for the rest of my life and let me assure you if you, the Canadian people, allow me to be extradited you will never see me alive again.

That’s Prince of Pot. Next time on the Lens.

Hello my friends. Welcome to this first Century of Lies of 2008, at least live in the studio, and via the telephone we’re going to be hearing from Mr. Marc Emery, the Prince of Pot. What you heard there was a promo for the movie that had its broadcast debut late last year up in Canada: The Prince of Pot, but today we’re going to be talking to the man, a man of courage, a man of conviction, Mr. Marc Emery are you with us Marc?

Marc: Yes, pleased to be here Dean.

Dean: Thank you, glad to have you with us. Marc, there is so much information these days breaking about marijuana, medical marijuana, the drug war itself. U.S. presidential candidates actually talking about it, at least a few of them are, and its time for people to awaken to this need for change, to reexamine what we’ve been up to, is it not?

Marc: Well at the very least I hope the people in New Hampshire get out and vote for Ron Paul today. I’m hoping that we can certainly see some wonderful results in the primaries regarding the drug war, and when they asked him the other day on CNN, Wolf Blitzer asked Ron Paul, what would be your first act domestically as president, he thought about it, after talking about what do you do in foreign affairs, bringing the troops home, what have you, he actually said he would immediately order the Justice Department to stop attacking sick people over medical marijuana and it was the first thing he said he’d do as president. So you know, there is good days ahead when we have candidates who consider that their first act domestically so good luck to Ron Paul today here in New Hampshire.

Dean: And speaking of that, Ron Paul: this is not something he just woke up with today, thinking or in this campaign. He’s been talking about it for years. I’ve got a little two minute segment I want to share with the listeners about Ron Paul.

TV Reporter: You are very clear: You want to ultimately abolish the income tax, you want to bring all American troops home from foreign countries, you want to legalize drugs. Let’s start with that because the polls say its such a big issue on many peoples’ minds, the drug problem. What is the case, your case for legalizing drugs.

Ron Paul: The first thing is, the best way to state it is we want to legalize freedom of choice, freedom of choice in intellectual pursuits, freedom of choice in religious pursuits, the freedom of choice in what we take into our own bodies and so therefore it’s a principle of liberty. Most of our history we did not have anti-drug laws, they’ve only occurred since 1914 so we see this as something new, the prohibition of alcohol certainly didn’t work. We don’t like drug dealers, and drug dealers will be out of business if you take away all their profits.. The crime rate’s double what it would be if you didn’t have the drug laws. I, as a parent and as a physician, have come to the conclusion that the worse thing you can do for the young people are have these drugs laws. It literally encourages kids to be involved. Its a lot easier taking a job at $400 at day than $4 an hour in the drug business. So, I think all these laws backfire. We want responsibility on the individual, we want responsibility on the family, we want responsibility on the church. We don’t believe the drug laws work but we can’t brush off our personal responsibility to our children. We teach our children to watch out for the dangers of automobiles, fire and water. Why is it that we can’t teach our children that drugs are very dangerous? When you look at alcohol and cigarettes, 450,000 people die a year from alcohol and cigarettes, we subsidize tobacco, the state governments sell the alcohol and here it is: we’ve practically thrown the constitution out the window with an obsession on the hard drugs, at the same time the dealers need the laws this way, the terrorist nations need the prices up and I’m sure the CIA doesn’t mind too much either because they wheel and deal on the drug trade too, so, I think there’s a definite reason for the drug laws to exist and those who are anti-drug, which I am, many of them inadvertently become allies of the drug dealer by supporting these laws that are unenforceable and do a great deal of harm.

Dean: Congressman Ron Paul, who is running for president under the Republican banner, is no stranger in these calls to end the drug war. That was recorded on the McNeil/Leher Hour in 1988.

OK, Marc, yeah, as I said he didn’t just wake up and come to this stance and its kind of eerie how his statement about bringing the troops home is exactly the situation we have now as well.

Marc: Well, its quite something that after 20 years it still seems like the same Ron Paul and its refreshing to know that he’s been at this for a long, long time and hopefully good things will happen. I’m hoping he’ll be third or maybe a close fourth tonight in New Hampshire and I’m hoping that all people in the Granite State get out to vote. They’re expecting a record turnout today and I hope Ron Paul can get 35,000 votes in New Hampshire.

Dean: Well, I find it just horrible, the situation that these broadcast major media networks take it upon themselves to who is a viable candidate and who should be allowed on these debates and its just an outrage, is it not?

Marc: Well most times it is in normal elections but Ron Paul has been really steadfast and really good at getting on all the debates and all the shows and getting a fair bit of coverage. I mean, actually a person with his point of view, his contrarian pro-constituationalist, you know, liberty pro format and policies is going to be a little prejudiced against. I mean, its a big threat to the military industrialist complex, the pharmacy industrial complex, and all these kinds of corporate integrated things in America today so Ron Paul’s doing just fantastic, the best candidate we’ve had in fifty years for president and its quite a historical election we’re watching.

Dean: I find it also interesting that because he believes in the constitution he’s considered a ‘wacko’.

Marc: Yeah, that’s interesting. All the principal candidates are often considered ‘wackos’ because he’s completely candid about any issues, he never dodges a question, he’s never afraid to tell you the truth on any issue unlike most candidates who are really weighing the odds of whether it means to say this about this issue or whatever. In contrast, Barack Obama hasn’t said anything about any of his policies and yet he’s got these devoted fans, appreciating him as if they know what he stands for and I find this very unusual. Barack Obama isn’t good for the drug war, isn’t good for the pot people. He’ll maintain the marijuana laws. The only thing he won’t do is maybe raid a few of the patients, the DEA won’t be raiding patients perhaps. He said it’s a waste of resources; a pretty lame excuse for not raiding the pot people and he won’t have any black people released from jail as a result of ending the drug war like Ron Paul would so, I often tell people, Ron Paul is the black man and woman’s best friend forever. He’s going to liberate tens of thousands of them from jail by ending the federal war on drugs.

Dean: I won’t get into that. That’s a sticking point at times. I wonder why there are not more black organizations getting behind the end of this drug prohibition but I’ll leave it up to them to decide when they should. You know, Marc, we brought you on at this time, its only been I guess three months since you’ve been on our shows but I think its important that the American people are reminded or made aware of your situation, forthcoming extradition hearing. Let’s talk about that. How does that stand at this point?

Marc: Well, on January 21st I have an extradition hearing and its all expected that they’ll rubberstamp the U.S. extradition request and its possible that in six months to a year I could be
being taken by force to the United States to stand trial for what I did which was sell seeds to consenting adults over, ultimately shipped over an invisible line called the U.S. border so that’s as much as I’ve ever done. I provided seeds to people so they could be self-sufficient in marijuana and these were all consenting adults, people who wanted to do that and people I encouraged to do that. I mean being self sufficient and growing your own marijuana is a great goal of mine for the people of the United States and the world so they wouldn’t have to be dependent on schwaggy pot and paying outrageous sums of money for bad marijuana and thousands of people over the years I did this were very desperate and in bad need and in terrible physical and mental health and the marijuana was very helpful to them. They didn’t have to buy it or go into the inner city or buy it on the street or support terrorists or anything like that. They were able to grow it themselves in the United States for their own benefit and for that I am being persecuted by the United States Justice Department.

Dean: And again, I forget what that promo said, how many million pounds did they say you’re responsible for?

Marc: Well, the DEA on Lou Dobbs went on and said I’m responsible for a hundred thousand pounds of marijuana for each year I was in the seed business. I was in the seed business 11 years so that would make it 1.1 million pounds of marijuana which is, you know, a lot of marijuana to be responsible for because when you’re brought before the U.S. criminal justice system you’re looking at the high end of the potential punishments that they’re going to give me and its anywhere from ten, twenty, thirty, forty...multiple years in jail possibly for the rest of my life, likely for the rest of my life all for the simple act of distributing seeds to people who wanted the seeds to grow their own marijuana.

Dean: There’s been a bit of, I don’t know, a situation in Canada where some of the history, the truth, of how you went about your business model and how you wrote “Marijuana seed distributor” on your income tax forms whereby you paid, I guess, hundreds of thousands of dollars to the nation of Canada and they never objected until the U.S. DEA got involved. Right?

Marc: (*) sure they never objected, they certainly ,,, took the money, they always took it. They were glad to get it. I negotiated with the income tax people frequently about how they could get more money from me. They were always well aware of where all my cash went and where all my, everything to do with my business they were aware of it and I told them. Its very transparent because I was paying personal income tax on this money, I was declaring it. I was, you know, all my cash flow through my various accounts simply to keep everything above board and transparent here in Canada. I didn’t ever want to be accused of income tax evasion or avoidance or have these kind of things so I made a point of paying all of my taxes. Remember the whole point was to raise a lot of money and give it away so we did, you know, and from 1995 to 2005 we gave out over $4 million to groups advocating peaceful democratic change in the world, to drug addiction clinics, to just so many wonderful things that money was given to. It was never meant to provide personal wealth for me or to give me some kind of great standard of living personally. It was never designed that, it was designed to do, to have money raised to be given away for the movement and that’s what it was, that’s what we did with it. We did wonderful, wonderful things. We paid for class-action suits against the U.S. federal government, Supreme Court challenge. We paid for ballot initiatives in Washington, Arizona, Colorado, Alaska and various states. The money was used to pay for the global marijuana march around the world, finishing posters in several languages, distributing them around the world and so, you know, over a period of ten, eleven years we gave away over four million dollars.

Dean: I want to tell the listeners out: Marc is a generous man. He understands this need for change and he’s been willing to give up millions of dollars in order to help bring that change about. I had a chance to visit with Marc about two years ago, I came up, he loaned me an apartment, he gave me winter clothes which I needed up there and in every way across the board he has been giving of himself and of his work efforts to the movement and to, …, just this is his nature. And Marc, is there any way that folks could, is there a petition, anyway that they could get involved in showing support for keeping you in Canada?

Marc: Oh, yeah. Its very unusual that a Canadian who never been to the United States would be getting extradited so if people want to help out, there’s many ways to do that. Go to nonextradition.net. That’s a website to check out, it has all sorts of good suggestions, a recitation of my history, and reminds people that the best thing American’s can do is get out and vote for Ron Paul in these primaries. This is going to be the most helpful thing to me because, not only would he pardon all the pot people and free the pot people from jail and end the federal war on drugs, he would rescind the indictment against the BC three and that’s very important to know that he, as president, would not prosecute me or extradite us and this would be a benefit to all the pot people. He wouldn’t be doing it just for me, he’d be doing it for all of us. He’d withdraw the DEA from places around the world, he’d abolish the DEA, abolish the entire federal war on drugs so the most important thing any American can do for me and Greg Williams and Michelle Rainey, the BC three, is support Ron Paul and then after that is go to noextradition.net and write the Canadian Minister of Justice and tell him not to extradite Marc Emery.

Dean: All right Marc, thank you. And now let’s talk about the BC three. I mean you are the, quote, alleged kingpin of all of this but you have Michelle and Greg filling orders or.…

Marc. And Greg was just at the counter one day when the DEA came to buy some seeds (they came to buy seeds from me on three occasions) and they bought seeds from Greg directly once, just over the counter like was very common, and that’s his only involvement in this so-called conspiracy and Michelle was a true believer, is a true believer, an activist that helped me out for a number of years and thought she was doing a great thing to promote the movement and she’s been drawn up in this too, so they charged my good friends and associates to try and put pressure on me to make some kind of deal so that’s all that’s… it’s a tragic thing that people nearby are dragged in and accused of these charges to put pressure on people to make concessions.

Dean: Its just another example of comparability to the Inquisition of old. You know, tell us what you know and we won’t dunk you...

Marc: Yes, exactly.

Dean: Its such a, … I'm embarrassed, I’m ashamed really, that the U.S. government has gone so far done this road of prohibition and that they’re trying to reach across, as you say, that invisible line to drag you down here to face their inquisition.

Marc: Yeah, but I’m proud of what I did. I’m proud of everything I’ve stood for. I’m proud of all the thousands of people I’ve helped who are crippled up and sick and infirm, I met more people who needed medical marijuana than almost anybody who’s ever met them because they all wrote me, tens of thousands of people over the years have written me and, in terrible shape and crippled up and desperately needing some help with cannabis, and I was there to provide it for them. I’m really happy about that. I’m really proud of it and no matter what happens to me, if I get put away in jail for many, many years I know I’ve helped thousands and thousands of people and done great things with both the money people sent me and the cannabis I sent them in the form of seeds for them to prepare so I’m very happy with what I did and can’t say that I’m contrite or regretful or in any way want to turn back the clock. I don’t.

Dean: Well, I understand that side of it Marc but again I’m embarrassed about my nation, their mindset that allows this to go forth.

Marc: Well, we’re going to make Ron Paul president and who knows, maybe the American people will liberate the people of the world and bring this drug war to a conclusion in a very sudden fashion, by supporting Ron Paul for president. We have these very pivotal days ahead of us in the next five to six weeks where we could see Ron Paul become the Republican nominee if enough people want to get together and make it happen. So, I have to believe that the American people still care enough to want to do that.

Dean: Right. To want to get back to the Constitution.

Marc: Absolutely and Ron Paul is the best candidate Americans have had to choose from in fifty years.

Dean: You betcha. Now Marc, that promo I played at the beginning. Last time we had you on we played some segments from that movie, The Prince of Pot, but I understand its going to air again in Canada?

Marc: Its going to be rebroadcast in a few weeks as well. Its available at YouTube, that wonderful movie called The Prince of Pot: U.S. versus Marc Emery. You can go to youtube.com/princeofpot and its there in five parts and it will be on Canadian television again in the next few weeks.

Dean: Well that’s great. Now Marc, as I understand it they have, the U.S., the DEA has not busted any other of the seed vendors up in Canada since when they came after you.

Marc: Oh no. They’re still everywhere, all the seed vendors in Canada are still around and if you come up here there’s one across the street and there on the corner and all sorts of, around my neighborhood they’re all over the place and certainly there are still mail order seed companies and it hasn’t really interrupted the business at all. It made them a little more cautious perhaps and a little more secretive or subtle in the way they promote but otherwise its all gang-busters in Canada for seed selling, just like it is in most places in the world. Most places its legal like Europe and Holland and England so of course seed sales on going on there as well. They’re completely above ground and legal, where as, and here they treat it like they’re legal except in my case because I had attached politics to the sale of seeds and that’s probably the most serious offense you can do regarding the DEA and the United States Justice Department is be successful promoting marijuana like I am.

Dean: Well, and Marc, I read something last week in an article up in Canada talking about the fact that for years you sent copies of your magazine, Cannabis Culture, to every member of parliament and contained within every issue was a seed catalog, so.…

Marc: Everybody in Canada knew what I was doing. We promoted everywhere and certainly every member of parliament got a copy of my magazine, at least their assistant would have seen it or read it or have been able to every issue and so I never got a complaint or a letter from anybody in parliament for ten-twelve years that we were giving them the magazine. I never once received a phone call, a letter, a cease and desist order, anybody ever complaining, from any level whatsoever, never (*) this, nobody ever complained. My phone number has always been listed, I was always easy to find and, like I said, we never received any complaint from any citizens, American or Canadian, regarding our seed selling activities. It was used to finance massive meetings that the mayor of Vancouver went to, like Beyond Prohibition 2004 where he was the keynote speaker. It paid for conferences, all sorts of activities by which straight people, the leader of the New Democratic Party, the third largest party in (*) the leader came to my home and filmed an interview, asking for my help in the federal election in 2004. The mayor of Vancouver would come to our conferences as a paid speaker and so we were doing these events all the time and mainstream politicians participated and nobody ever thought of me as a drug dealer they couldn’t be seen photographed with or going to conferences with and such so the Justice Department has tried to demonize me but it hasn’t been effective but it may yet be effective in bringing me down there and having me spend my life, the rest of my life in a U.S. jail simply in helping out U.S. citizens in getting themselves self sufficient in marijuana.

Dean: Lord, I hope that doesn’t happen. Marc, we already have enough, we have enough people behind bars here in America, some, I think its 2.3 million now, a huge percentage of that is there directly because of drug usage, baggies in their pockets if you will. Its not as bad in Canada in general is it? And a whole lot better in Vancouver, is it not?

Marc: That’s a good assessment, yes. We still have places like in America in kind of like in Saskatchewan. I spent three months, I got a three month sentence for passing a joint to a consenting adult so you can get very Draconian sentences here in Canada for the most trivial acts. I know I was really disturbed to spend 67 days cleaning toilets, washing floors and being the janitor to the administration center of the prison I was in, Saskatoon correctional, when I was sentenced to three months for that one joint. So crazy things can happen in Canada, they have punishments here that are not fair but there are not people spending years and years and years in jail here for marijuana like you can find in the United States, like I will suffer in the United States if I get sent down there.

Dean: As I understand it, in the controlled substances act they keep changing the levels of punishment but at one time, for the number of seeds or plants, as they’d like to say you provided it was the death penalty. That’s no longer on the table is it?

Marc: Well, no, because they want to extradite me and they couldn’t have the death penalty but if I was an American I could very well face the death penalty because if you help produce over 60,000 plants, or 60,000 kilos which is 132,000 pounds of marijuana then you face the death penalty whereas they’re accusing me of being responsible for 1.1 million pounds of marijuana which is about eight times the amount, the threshold needed to get the death penalty so if I were an American I might well be looking at the hangman’s noose or lethal injection. Instead I’m merely looking at hundreds of years in jail. And certainly because I’m over 50, anything over 15 years is the death penalty for me so, you can literally get death on the installment plan simply for selling seeds to a consenting adult. Its craziness. Its like a medieval inquisition or the witch burnings brought to the modern era and applied to hundreds of thousands of millions of Americans.

Dean: And as you said.…

Marc: And one Canadian.

Dean: Aw its...

Marc: And three Canadians really.

Dean: Yeah. Marc, I’m...I find it just intolerable that this lack of cohesion to logic and commonsense still exists right here in America.

Marc: It does indeed but on March 4, you’re in Texas, Dean, I think you will be voting in the Texas primary and it will be your opportunity to tell others what you’re doing on the airwaves and get them out to vote for Ron Paul, best opportunity we’ve had in fifty years to repeal the drug war.

Dean: Well I’ve been in contact with Congressman Paul’s office. We hope to bring him on the airwaves soon for another interview. He’s a man of great conviction and deep seated knowledge that I think we should pay attention to.

Marc: He is a brilliant, wonderful, decent man. Its just too good to be true that such a man like him is viable running for the President of the United States. Its just wonderful. I hope you’ll continue to encourage everyone to get out and vote for Dr. Paul for President of the United States.

Dean: Well, all right my friends. We’ve been talking with Mr. Marc Emery who some call the Prince of Pot up in Vancouver, Canada, Marc, you’re publisher of Cannabis Culture magazine...

Marc: Fine and wonderful magazine, I spend all my life with my wife and editor Jody putting Cannabis Culture magazine out. We hope people are able to find it on news stands and they’re able to read it and enjoy it. Its something. I’ve devoted much of my life to that magazine and we pour our heart and soul into it.

Dean: And Marc, I look forward to when they release that movie Prince of Pot. I have some folks, some pledgers down here that are awaiting their copy and I want them to know we’ll get it to them as soon as we can. Marc, give them your website if you would, one more time.

Marc: Cannabisculture.com. Noextradition.net and Pot TV, pot.tv for thousands of videos about cannabis we have made over the years and I certainly welcome people to join me at my websites and join me in my campaign to make Ron Paul President of the United States. Its the most noble, awesome goal we could ever have before us as a culture and we owe everything to Dr. Paul to try and make him the President.

Dean: Marc, thank you so much. Say hello to your beautiful wife Jody.

Marc: I will, and remember: RonPaulIn2008.com.

Dean: This is the editor of Prison Legal News, Paul Wright.

Tell me about your perceptions over the last few years. It seems in some ways we’re making progress but in others there’s just no traction. Your thoughts.

Paul: I’m not sure what you mean by making progress. The bottom line is how we want to slice it, dice it, or look at it. The number of people in prison is growing exponentially and that’s been the case since basically the late 1970s-early 1980’s and that hasn’t changed. There’s been some nibbling around the edges but the increasing expansion and more and more people being locked up every year, something that has not changed in the last thirty years and I don’t see it changing any time soon.

Dean: All right. You nailed down my, you’re right. I guess I see that ray of hope within some of these court rulings that the future might get better. What’s your thoughts on the future?

Paul: Well, unfortunately, I think from the bipartisan criminal justice policy as far as politicians go people forget that it was the Democrats, Tip O’Neill and John Kerry in 1986 who introduced mandatory minimums for federal drug offenses in congress and the senate which Ronald Reagan signed into law. There really is no disagreement within the political system about mass imprisonment, draconian sentences and basically locking up a lot of people. That’s kind of how we got to this disgrace in the first place where we’ve got 2.3 million people in prison. And we’ve seen already in the presidential campaign how candidates are bashing each other as being soft on crime when, if you looked at their objective records, they’re pretty draconian.

Dean: Once again, we’re speaking with Paul Wright, of Prison Legal News. Paul, you have had some success and again, two steps backwards sometimes, in getting this distribution of your magazine within prisons, right?

Paul: Yes, we’ve, right now seven state prison systems operating under PLN court orders or contempt decrees or both in some cases that have been related to the censorship of Prison Legal News.

Dean: Well, I appreciate taking time to visit with our listeners out there. Once again, your website?

Paul: Our website is at www.prisonlegalnews.org and people can see text of the magazine, our breaking news stories and a whole lot more. We’re pretty much the biggest and best source of prison and jail related information anywhere on line.

Dean: I want to thank you for being with us on today’s Century of Lies show. I want to thank Marc Emery up there in Canada for taking time to tell his story and he’s right. You need to get involved, you need to help bring the truth forward to end this inquisition as we were talking about.

On this week’s Cultural Baggage you’ll get more from Paul Wright. We’ll also hear from Karen Garrison and a TV report about the fact that some prisoners in a federal pen up there in Ohio have for seven years been exposed to high levels of Cadmium. We’ll also hear from Allison Holcomb of the ACLU up in Seattle. You know this whole situation describes to us the comparison: The guns, the oil, the drugs and the slaves that still run America. We’ve got several new videos online and I hope you’ll check them out at drugtruth.net and as always I remind you there is no truth, justice, logic, scientific fact, medical data, in fact no reason for this drug war to exist. We’ve been duped. The drug lords run both sides of this equation. Do your part and help end this madness. Visit our other website endprohibition.org. Prohibido istac evilesco.

For the Drug Truth Network, this is Dean Becker asking you to examine our policy of drug prohibition. The Century of Lies.

Transcript provided by Gee-Whiz Transcripts. Email: glenncg@zoominternet.net