Greetings Cannabis Commerce fans from five continents!

Things have been too quiet here for the past few months. It’s time I emerged from the silence to fill you in on what’s been going on.

After a year covering the cannabis “industry” [quotes because I don’t count a crippled industry as much of an industry; read on], certain truths have become self-evident to me that the rest of the world has been slow to catch on to. I have had the choice of revealing them — and these viewpoints will be seen as radical — or towing the company line, that everything is great in the magical world of medical marijuana, where everyone with a state-issued license is a “patient,” not a person.

I can condense these truisms into one-sentence: medical marijuana is cannabis commerce’s ball and chain.

In the marriage of “medical” and “marijuana,” joined together into “medical marijuana,” “medical” is a crippling adjective. Until “medical” is divorced from marijuana, we’ll have five percent of the cannajobs created that could be created, five percent of the cannatax collected which could be collected, and five percent of the contribution to DP (Gross Domestic Product) which could be contributed.

That’s costing the USA $67 billion in cannatax a year.  If you don’t live in the USA, similar repression — or should I say persecution — is costing your country a proportionate amount.

Additionally, in an ironic twist, research into the healing properties of cannabis will remain halted, as approving medical marijuana initiatives gives tacit approval to marijuana’s longstanding status as a Schedule One “drug.” That means researchers chomping at the bit to, say, find a cure for cancer, can’t conduct tests on humans.

You’ll have to forgive me or not forgive me for pointing these realities out. There are actually many, many more negative impacts to legalizing medical marijuana as opposed to just plain marijuana. It’s all gonna come out over the next few months.

In other words: I’m about to become the most vocal medical marijuana critic on earth.

Another reason things have been quiet around here is that I’ve got a gut feeling that the Home page needs to express the site’s mission better than it does now.

Generally, pot prophets don’t concern themselves with design considerations. They just yak away on the godawful design they’ve put up with for the last decade. Well, I’m not generally.

For a site with so many fresh and unique slants on “the industry,” our WordPress theme looks too canned So I’ve been poring over various submissions for redesigns. I’m about to choose one of the worthy contenders.

[Update 8/14/2012: Or so I thought. It took over a year. Yikes!]

I’m also been resisting offers from prospective backers to turn CC into a trade publication for the medical marijuana industry. Nothing could bore me more than reporting the endless legal twists and turns as people swallow what Martin Luther King called “the tranquilizing drug of gradualism.” What’s that? Effecting quasi legalization state-by-state, instead of repealing prohibition at the federal level — which brings legalization to all states in one fell swoop. Isn’t that just a little easier than winning elections several times over in fifty states?

Last, but not least, the top non-fiction literary agent on earth, one Jeff Herman, has had my book proposal, which he requested, since the end of 2010. So I’ve been suppressing information I would normally post on CC because I didn’t want to devalue the book to publishers [“Why should we buy your book when you’re giving all the information away for free on your web site?]. If the aforementioned agent doesn’t get back to me by my dramatic deadline —420 — I will finally release lots of good stuff that I’ve been saving up.

I’ve spent quite a bit of time in reflection over these realizations, options, and developments. Which explains the recent lull.

I could go on, as frequent visitors know is my wont, but I’ll stop here since it’s been said, “brevity is the soul of wit.” I would like to give a shout of thanks to all our visitors. I vow to shock and dazzle you more in the imminent future.

But first up, reprinted courtesy of Rooster magazine, my feature article for their 420 issue. It’s a straightforward piece entitled Cannatax Demystified. —Lory Kohn