Our War on Drugs is getting to seem more and more futile, especially since it has reached the point where marijuana is America’s most valuable cash crop, worth more to farmers than wheat and corn combined, despite the fact that both of those crops are heavily subsidized.

A new report draws this conclusion based on our government’s own calculations. Even the most conservative estimates show that marijuana production has increased 10 times in the last 25 years, to the point where, for a quarter of the US, it is the leading cash crop. It’s one of the top 5 crops in almost 40 states. California is the state where a third of it is grown. This is amazing, considering that the crop is illegal everywhere and California, where most of it is grown, borders on Mexico, where large smuggling operations regularly transport large amounts of it across the border.

In the Independent, Andrew Gumbel quotes the report’s author, Jon Gettman, as saying, “Despite years of effort by law enforcement, they’re not getting rid of it. Not only is the problem worse in terms of magnitude of cultivation, but production has spread all around the country. To say the genie is out of the bottle is a profound understatement.”

Gumbel quotes Rob Kampia, of the Marijuana Policy Project, as saying, “The fact that marijuana is America’s number-one cash crop after more than three decades of governmental eradication efforts is the clearest illustration that our present marijuana laws are a complete failure.”

Art credit: freeimages.co.uk

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