HIGHTOWER: Drug Czar Gets Goofy on Hemp

Time for today's "Gooberhead Award" ... conferred on those whose tongues are going 90 miles an hour ... but don't seem to have their brains in gear.Today's Goober is Barry McCaffrey, the former general who is now the Generalissimo of America's Infamous and Ridiculous Drug War. This so-called "war" is nothing but a sponge for our tax dollars -- McCaffrey now spends $17 billion a year on assorted schemes that have done little to deal with America's drug problems and much to infringe on our civil liberties.The Generalissimo is also a stranger to common sense. Take his goofy opposition to growing hemp. This would be a terrific crop for farmers, our environment, the economy -- it's easy to grow, requires little water or pesticides, aerates the soil as it replenishes soil nutrients, and is profitable for the growers. But hemp is a cousin to the marijuana plant, so McCaffrey says the push to grow hemp is [quote] "a subterfuge" for efforts to grow and legalize marijuana. His office recently proclaimed: "These poor farmers are being conned by the marijuana legalization groups."What a Goober. He should actually get out and talk to some real farmers. Hemp is bred and grown entirely different than the pot plant, looks completely different in the fields, and contains practically none of the THC that gives marijuana smokers a high. As North Dakota's state agricultural economist -- not exactly a pot-smoking hippie -- recently said: "Among people in agriculture, the myth of [hemp] being the same thing as marijuana is long gone. You'd croak from smoke ... before you'd get high on hemp."This is Jim Hightower saying ... Meanwhile, the farmers of England, Germany, Switzerland, China, Australia, and Canada -- among other nations -- are happily growing hemp and capturing the profits that our farmers could be enjoying ... except for the Gooberhead Generalissimo who heads our goofy drug war.

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