Wednesday, May 13, 2009

NORML's Daily Stash Takes Exception With This Blog

Connecticut NORML's Seat at Table TAKEN AWAY.
Seems that the folks over at NORML are upset with this blog's stand on their decision to throw the Connecticut NORML Chapter under the bus of political correctness. (see their rebuttal) The long and the short of their rebuttal was blah, blah, blah...political correctness, damage control, blah, blah and blah. There were the usual hints of PREVIOUS PROBLEMS with the chapter that we/I could know nothing about, a claim the chapter is so new that it was best to kill the chapter and START ALL OVER AGAIN in the fall, coupled with a complaint that I should have used spell check.

Said it yesterday, and will say it again today...NORML was and is wrong to trash the entire Connecticut chapter for the actions of ONE MAN, and further what happened to the, "innocent until proven guilty" concept of justice, and the concept of Freedom of Speech?...let me guess, does not apply to the inner political workings of the NORML organization? NORML Chapter genocide is OK in the name of protecting political correctness, in the name of staying on the good side of politicians? What happens if the criminal complaint is dismissed, or the man charged WINS his case? Will NORML apologize and reinstate the chapter...we all know the answer too that rhetorical question.

Curious...could it be that the now DEAD decriminalization bill in Connecticut could have made it out of committee if NORML had been working behind the scenes in Connecticut instead of doing their best to KILL A CHAPTER? Further, just how far has NORML's National Agenda gotten us in all these years? Maybe it is time for a bit of confrontation, time for a National Marijuana Legalization March, time for us to take more of a "too the streets civil rights approach" to this war? After all, we have seen how many millions of Americans have been made into Criminals as NORML's national strategies have failed over the decades to decriminalize marijuana? Where were grassroots activists being deployed to a sit in of the office of the New Canaan Republican bill killer yesterday...surely NORML saw the filibuster coming?

I seem to recall reading a while back that some 20 million Americans have faced some kind of criminal charges related to Cannabis since 1985, yet we have not seen much real change in NORML's approach too legalization in that time. Where is a NATIONAL CALL TO ACTION? Illegal Aliens put 500,000 in the streets of LA, and hundreds of thousands more into the streets in other cities in the name of their AMNESTY AGENDA, and it propelled them onto the national news almost every night, but we have 20 million Marijuana Smokers nationwide and get maybe a few hundred folks to show up at protest events...those are not the kinds of numbers that can claim a mandate for change. If NORML got every Marijuan smoker to make a one time donation of $100 to a Marijuana PAC, that would be a $2.5 Billion dollar WAR CHEST. That kind of a war chest would allow us a WORLD CLASS public service announcement campaign that would end DARE, and expose the DEA for the Gestapo like secret police organization that they example, they are paying out reward money to our high school students, encouraging them to snitch out their friends...Drop A Dime on them, repackaged, alive and well in 2009.

One person made a very unfortunate mistake in sending a letter that should not have been sent. That person RESIGNED his position with the Connecticut NORML, and that should have been enough, but NORML has shown their smallness of heart in abandoning the Connecticut Chapter, tossing them under the bus...lets hope that the other state and local chapters are watching closely, waking up to the reality that THEY COULD BE NEXT. Maybe, just maybe it is time for the ENTIRE NATIONAL NORML BOARD TO TURN IN THEIR RESIGNATIONS so that we can bring fresh faces and views to this fight, bring in soldiers willing to take to the streets to replace appeasers willing to sell out to politicians for small victories that amount to nothing in the big picture of ending the War on Drugs.


  1. Let's hope the other chapters ARE watching closely, so they learn that sending emails threatening violence is just cause for sacking their chapter. You characterize it as "an unfortunate mistake", which supposes that had the email been sent to its intended recipient, rather than a state legislator, it would've been A-OK. You think we should be standing by a nascent chapter where threats of violence are acceptable email topics among executive staff?

    If you can't understand the difference between "political correctness" and "criminal threats of violence against a state legislator", then we're never going to see eye-to-eye on this. You characterize this as "appeasement" (I won't assume you mean the WWII reference, lest Godwin's law be violated, though with such hyperbole as "chapter genocide", perhaps you are equating us to Neville Chamberlain's negotiations with Adolf Hitler), as if terminating our relationship with the chapter is some sort of favor to Rep. Boucher, rather than the appropriate response when a vice president of an organization threatens a state legislator, appears in a mug shot in an inappropriate t-shirt, and no one from the executive staff calls the national organization to give a heads-up about the impending media disaster coming days before a critical decrim vote.

    However, maybe you are right about the need for more forceful and direct leadership in the cannabis reform movement. You write about getting every marijuana smoker to send in $100 and getting hundreds of thousands to march in the streets. You sound like just the person with all the right ideas and motivation to get that done. When you raise your first $10,000 (you only need 100 tokers' Benjamins) and host your nationwide march on the capitol with over 1,000 people, give me a call and I'll be glad to donate $100 and march side by side with you.

    Nobody said you had to wait for us to legalize pot. Go right ahead and do it, we're not stopping you. If you'd like to organize Connecticut activists to employ your allegedly superior political tactics, knock yourself out, it's a free country. I'm spending 12 hours a day six days a week trying to organize marijuana activists in fifty states and a few foreign countries, so if you can pass a decrim bill in Connecticut, that would be a huge help to me.

    NORML should have been "working behind the scenes in Connecticut"? Love it. "Excuse me, Sen. Boucher? Hi, I'm Russ Belville from NORML. No, not the NORML that threatened to 'go postal' on you; I'm from the National office. Well, yes, that email did come from one of our people, but he's resigned now. We'd really like it if you'd let our decrim bill pass. What? Yes, I know that in this age of terrorism and especially with the recent spate of mass shooting homicides in America that the email seriously frightened you, but I assure you, we're not really like that, we're peaceful people. Now would you please pass our marijuana bill?" How exactly do you think politics works? What do you think we'd be able to do "behind the scenes" that would have rescued that bill?

    Finally, I've already received emails and calls from rank-and-file members and board members of the defunct NORML CT stating that "we didn't really have a choice but pull the plug on the chapter", agreeing with our actions, and eagerly asking how they can rebuild a new chapter in its place. So if the people actually affected by this decision agree with it, what's your beef?

    Russ Belville
    NORML Chapter Outreach Coordinator

    P.S. You still need spell check.

  2. Russ:

    You are right...we are NOT going to see eye to eye on this. You are too busy tweeting your own skin flut to listen to anything that runs contrary to how YOU SEE THE WORLD through your particular brand of rose tinted glasses.

    How many members of Congress have broken laws, are guilty of ethics violations? Should we disband Congress every time a bad apple appears in their midst? Foley is one example, then we have the one from California that was taking bribes from a defense contractor, and of course we had what, three of Obama's cabinet nominees guilty of evading taxes...maybe we should have tossed Obama and his entire cabinet?

    I understand the difference between political correctness and a criminal threat, and I also understand the difference between ALLEGED threat, and someone TRIED AND CONVICTED of making a threat. I also understand a man verse a chapter making a threat, know enough to read between the lines and realize that NORML nationally DID NOTHING to try to save that Connecticut Bill this week, were far more concerned about closing thier ranks and protecting national NORML's vested self interests, just the way Greenpeace, Sierra Club and other national organization would do when they are far more interested in playing politics than they ought to be. What NORML did was let a spoiled rich bitch win.

    "By stopping this bill today, we could send a clear message that you do not win by employing threats and that we do not allow anyone to silence the democratic process," said Sen. Boucher.

    I see, punish an entire movement because of the alleged actions of one man? Talk about a callous cold hearted spoiled cunt apologize if that language and my sentiments offend, but I could give a rats ass about being politically correct.

    Maybe it is just me, but seems Boucher had a plan all along, and one that has been used before by politicians. Have a friend of mine in the Anti Nuclear movement who was falsely accused of making threats...the charges were eventually dismissed, but just like in this situation, the person filing the charges had already gotten what she wanted. Seems NORML has let Boucher win in this situation, and trashed a state chapter as her icing on the cake.

    As too to share with everyone just what NORML's budget is? Seems I recall reading somewhere that one of the duties of being a NORML chapter is holding at least one MAJOR fund raiser a year locally, with a significantly portion of the funds being FUNNELED up to the national group as a priviledge cost of flying under their banner...we'll call it a FRANCHISING FEE. Your sisteen hours a day you are putting in as Chapter Outreach Coordinator...are you doing that out of the kindness of your heart, or instead being HANDSOMELY REWARDED as a paid employee of NORML? Do not want to hazzard a guess here, but Oregon starts their annual membership fees at $35...does NATIONAL get a cut of that? Further, what are national NORML's membership fees, and how members do they have. Thinking it would be interesting to know just how much money NORML national is spending each year while accomplishing almost nothing on the national political front.

    Not trying to say you are undeserving of a salary, but do find your snide little fund raising rant rather humorous...every one knows that the National Organizations suck all the money up into the vortex that is Washington, then complain they don't have enough funding, while chiding folks like me to go out and raise my first $10, is a clue...everything I am doing right now is SELF FUNDED, and I do not have someone writing me out a payroll check once a week or twice a month like I am guessing you do.

    Your claim that you have recieved letters from members inside the Connecticut NORML is a typical self serving RED HERRING on your part. Further, ratehr ODD that you are in communications with board members, but never gave it a second thought when Chapter Genocide was exercised...would seem to me that a CHAPTER OUTREACH COORDINATOR who is still in communication with BOARD MEMBERS could have figured out a way to play this situation better, held a JOINT PRESS CONFERENCE decrying the actions of the offending person, rebuking them to the press while at the same time making a pitch for the decriminalization bill. making a pointed statement aimed at Boucher wherein NORML apologized, expressed their regrets, and hoped that Senator Boucher was a big enough person not to punish the Medical Marijuana patients of Connecticut because of the wrongful actions of one person.

    Have a feeling there is FAR MORE HERE than meets the eye, and that NORML national is not telling us THE WHOLE STORY.