Revenue From Marijuana If It Were Legal

State By State Revenue From Marijuana If It Were Legal Infographic

See Also: Is Marijuana Prohibition America’s ‘Berlin Wall’?, Colo. Commission Recommends Lowering Drug Penalties, Portland’s ‘Cannabis Café’ opens to cheers, controversy, Doctor’s re-assess marijuana, Can’t Wait For You Idiots to Screw it Up, Virtually legal, Winning The Drug War By Ending It, Dude, where’s my medical-marijuana ID?, and State Over-Reach: Stripmining the Citizenry for Fun and Profit.

[tags]economic benefits of marijuana, revenue from marijuana, state by state income from marijuana, effects of marijuana legalization, decriminalization, legalize marijuana, revenue, taxes, increased revenue, making marijuana legal, marijuana policy[/tags]


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  1. […] Go here to read the rest:  State By State Revenue From Marijuana If It Were Legal […]

  2. RFWoodstock says:

    Valid medicinal value, it’s a victimless crime, the War on Drugs WAY too costly, too many arrests for simple possession, tax it and use the money to pay for health insurance and to reduce the deficit…Need I say more?

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  3. Tom Degan says:

    Why are we still having this conversation?

    Nearly three-quarters-of-a-century after it was made illegal; half-a-century after it was proven to be practically harmless – why is it still a crime to possess and smoke marijuana?

    Here is a list of ten famous people who died as a result of nicotine abuse:

    Humphrey Bogart
    Edward R. Murrow
    Nat King Cole
    George Harrison
    John Huston
    Noel Coward
    Betty Grable
    Walt Disney
    Gary Cooper
    Peter Jennings

    Here is another list. Ten famous people who died from alcoholism:

    Billie Holiday
    Jack Kerouac
    Truman Capote
    Lorenz Hart
    Veronica Lake
    Bix Beiderbecke
    Montgomery Clift
    Dylan Thomas
    John Barrymore
    Errol Flynn

    Now I’m going to ask you to name for me one celebrity who has died from too much grass.

    Go on, I’m waiting. Is it a “gateway drug” as they never tire of reminding us? Yeah, it probably is. But so is Pabst Blue Ribbon. Let’s get a grip here.

    Tom Degan
    Goshen, NY

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  5. Steve P says:

    Everything has a cost-benefit ratio. If we banned everything that killed people, we would ban driving, drinking, smoking, kitchen knives, airplanes, swimming pools, boats, motorcycles, riding without helmets, sex, speaking in public and pasta. Yes, each of these things has killed people and broken up straight marriages. Should they be banned? If I wanted to commit suicide by pasta, should all pasta be regulated? I currently have the right to eat pasta, smoke, drink, and even embarrass myself. Why should society spend countless wealth and lives trying to prevent my stupidity. Yes, I am saying that drug use is stupid and should be legally stupid. Yes, I am saying that I do not care if someone wants to be stupid and wants to kill themselves by overeating or by taking drugs. Nature has a plan for stupid people and we should not get in nature’s way. If Darwin were alive today, he would be blogging about how it is natural to let stupid people be stupid.

    • JJ says:

      On a primal level, I do agree.

    • Nick says:

      Sad to say, but the government is here to protect you from all enemies, foreign and domestic. Sadly you are your own worst enemy, so we’re going to have to take your pasta away. Except for macaroni, that isn’t a choking hazard due to the holes in the middle.

  6. TC says:

    This graphic fails to take into account the left side of the equation. The amount of tax money wasted fighting prohibition and sending people to prison. I’m sure there is some flawed logic in the idea that somehow locking people up actually contributes to GDP growth. These are the same people that try and tell people building a new stadium will some how benefit the city coffers. It doesn’t.

    • Jameson says:

      The federal and state governments frequently pay private companies to run jails and juvenille detention centers, not sure about the prisons though. Pay is often based on number of inmates housed daily. My local county jail is ran like this and releases inmates at 3 AM to get paid for the next day (used to be just after midnight till someone fell asleep waiting for the buses to run and was subsequently run over.)

  7. spiration says:

    Of the 14 bn spent on reducing drug use and availability in 2009, I wonder how much would still have to be spent controlling use of other drugs in a world where marajuana is no longer controlled. Surely that would be a more meaningful data point.

  8. I like the graphic and statistics – very cool!

  9. Marty Davis says:

    I agree with ending prohibition now.

    And you’ve misspelled “possession” a number of times in the graphic.

  10. […] Revenue From Marijuana If It Were Legal [Random] […]

  11. Joe Smith says:

    I have not found a better viewpoint then this one in regards to plant life on this planet.

    “11 Then God said, “Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds.” And it was so. 12 The land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed according to their kinds and trees bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good.”

    If God sees that all the plant life He created is good then why can’t we?

  12. Anonymous says:

    FYI: $446.81/per second = $446.81 per per second

  13. Feldwebel Wolfenstool says:

    It’s because of all the politicians, lawyers, judges, cops and jailers are hopelessly addicted to PAY CHEQUES.

  14. thinkaboutit says:

    look at marijuana anonymous website and notice that the states that have legal marijuana have the most meetings for recovering addicts. sure marijuana is thought to be harmless but just look at the number of meetings in states where its legal. obviously it is a problem for several people. now look at alcohol anon site and look at the thousands of meetings all over the country. legalizing marijuana has more consequences than just the benefits of tax revenues….

    • Tom says:

      Correlation doesn’t equal causation. Increased access to care such as AA and MA groups is part of the reason for legalizing MMJ. It’s obviously harder to get a bunch of people together to talk candidly about an illegal activity than a legal one. Also, the link could be made that because there are fewer users in jail, they are seeking help on their own. I could go on but I have a joint to smoke.

    • Dave says:

      It is not the governments job to decide whether something is unhealthy or addictive; I can decide that for myself, the feds don’t need to tell me what is right and wrong. Personal consequences of legal or illegal drug use have never been the reason that prohibition laws were enacted; at the end of the day there is one thing that makes the world go around: Money. That is what buys votes and dictates law in the “land of the free”.

      Almost any psychotropic has the potential for abuse; just because there are a couple Cannabis Anon meetings doesn’t mean that it should be prohibited for others. I frankly don’t give a shit if people have a problem with herb, booze, heroin or cocaine; if I want to do it, it should be my choice…not the fat cats in DC.

  15. […] This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. ← Welcome to the Iowatokes Blog! […]

  16. heavenssaints86 says:

    Yeah go mj. Yur almost here.

  17. […] Marijuana revenue if it was legalized […]

  18. Tony Lopez says:

    This graph is completely off-base. People are NOT arrested for simple possession when NOTHING else was happening. People get arrested for marijuana IN CONJUNCTION with other crimes. IT IS MISLEADING to claim otherwise!

    The legalization lobby is alive and well, and lying as usual. We can’t handle the problems with booze and cigarettes — and they are legal for cultural reasons — why would we add more problems?

    • Captain Teamwork says:

      The problems with booze and cigarettes? Alcohol is far more dangerous than marijuana, and cigarettes are outright poisonous, so why are they legal and marijuana is not? The only reason that either of those are legal is because congressman drink and smoke, but it’s still to scandalous for politicians to openly use marijuana.

      People should be trusted with their own personal safety and health. It warns the health and safety risks of using alcohol or cigarettes on every package of cigarettes and every bottle of beer. If they want to turn their lungs into ash or wrap their car around a streetlight, I don’t care as long as no one else gets hurt; frankly, it’s just Darwinism at work.

    • tb says:

      I was arrested for simple possession. Blow it out your straightedge ass.

    • Mike D says:

      With a last name like Lopez, I’m shocked you honestly believe that crap right there. Yes I have been taking in for possession, and no other crime was being committed by me, ohh yeah sorry I forgot I was being black on a Sunday night.

    • SH says:

      Like speeding and other minor traffic offenses?

    • Rdub says:

      What dense, moldy rock are you living under Tony? THOUSANDS and THOUSANDS of people are arrested for simple possession in conjunction with NOTHING ELSE every year. I was arrested for possession of 1 gram because the police in my town had an undercover officer waiting in a convenience store to sic his buddies on any person who bought rolling papers!! And this is not conjecture , they told me themselves. Look at the statistics on how many simple possession arrests there are in comparison to arrests of big-time dealers. Get a clue Tony bag o’ donuts.

  19. […] revenue. $14 billion on the drug war. The real cost of keeping marijuana illegal in America.Source: Aug […]

  20. Wildhack says:

    “In strict medical terms, marijuana is far safer than many foods we commonly consume … Marijuana in its natural form is one of the safest therapeutically active substances known to man.” — DEA Administrative Law Judge, Francis L. Young 1988

  21. JimmyCracksCapricorns says:

    This information is SO OLD!!! We’ve been at this for what now, 40 wrecking lives so we can employ uniformed thugs with batons, badges, and guns playing Cowboys and Indians in souped up squad cars on the taxpayers dime…..all to chase our own countrymen….our own citizens….to harass, incarcerate, throw in jail and ruin lives….to satisfy the political needs of the GOP….right wing haters and fear mongering bible thumpers. America home of the free….my ass.

  22. God says:

    I dont get what your trying to say?

  23. jdesmo says:

    What is this chart? Medical only, med and recreational, estimates of industrial use?

    It is so juvinile I dont know where to begin. According to my estimates, these people only missed it by more than 99%. The total rax revenue that could be generated by recreation weed would be in the neighborhood of $100 billion annually. That includes $2 per gran federal excise tax ($30 billion), federal and state income taxes and FICA tax on profits and earnings in the industry ($40.3 billion), state sales tax ($14.8 billion), property tax ($2.2 billion), ancillary businesses ($13 billion). A little more than $100 billion per year. Plus if you do it right, 2.5 million jobs, $56 billion in real estate with guaranteed rent, a million construction workers for five years. The list goes on and on, just like a box of chocolates, but you have to do it right.

    Get real or go home.

  24. taxass says:

    why don’t they tax and eradicate poison ivy. jack herer was adamant that hemp not be taxed.

    from: Deitch, Robert. Hemp – American History Revisted: The Plant with a Divided History. Algora Publishing, New York, NY: 2003.

    p. 25 – “Sowed hemp at muddy hole by swamp” (May 12-13, 1765), indicates he was growing it away from the hemp he grew for fiber.

    “Began to separate the male from female plants at do [sic] – rather too late” (August 7, 1765), and, “Pulling up the (male) hemp. Was too late for the blossom hemp by three weeks or a month” (August 29, 1766), indicates that he was trying to grow female plants.

    The Diaries of George Washington, Hougton Mifflin Pub. 1925.

    p. 26 – Thomas Jefferson (also a hemp farmer) noted in his diary that he smoked hemp for relief from migraine headaches

    it was a common practice fro colonial Americans to smoke Cannabis, of varying degrees of potency, in lieu of tobacco, for recreational and for medicinal purposes, and the practice probably lasted until well after the Civil War. It was readily available, and free – you could simply pick it, dry it, and smoke it.

    Washington reportedly preferred a pipe full of “the leaves of hemp” to alcohol, and wrote in his diaries that he enjoyed the fragrance of hemp flowers. Washington and Jefferson, both known to have grown medicinal hemp, are said to have exchanged smoking blends as person gifts. In a letter, Washington wrote, “The artificial preparation of hemp, from Silesia, is really a curiosity.” Monroe, apparently began smoking Cannabis while he was Ambassador to France and continued using it to the age of 73.

    Andrew Jackson, Zachary Taylor, and Franklin Pierce reportedly smoked Cannabis with their troops and wrote home of the pleasures of smoking hemp.

    Abe Lincoln, who grew up poor and probably couldn’t afford tobacco, reportedly said he liked nothing better than sitting on his front porch smoking from his hemp pipe.

    quoted from: The Hohner Harmonica Company found a letter in its archives from Abraham Lincoln, stating that he liked nothing more than sitting on his porch, playing his harmonica and smoking hemp from his corncob pipe. Also, Michael Meyer’s video, The Drug Cartel, The Control for World Economics, Copyright 1993. Len Bauman Productions.

    p. 30 – George Washington told his gardener “Make the most of the Indian hemp seed, and sow it everywhere!”

    Note to the gardener at Mont Vernon, 1794. The Writings of George Washington.

    • bet that says:

      any they didn’t pay any taxes on it and wouldn’t have supported paying taxes on it either.

  25. John says:

    This is true shit. I happen to live in Texas and everyone i know smokes da herb. Its like a chronic festival up here er’ day. Peace and Love

  26. mike says:

    while i fully support the legalization of marijuana, i enjoy smoking it and i have been on the recieving end of prohibition and now have a record because of it; i still have a differing opinion of what legalization will do. I doubt that the price will remain the same when it is legal, if anything the price will drop significantly. If apples were illegal they would most certainly be more expensive, and maybe more people would eat them…
    With a legal market, people will have more choice where they buy their weed. Just like you can choose where you buy your liquor or cigarettes (except for cubans, but that’s just as stupid as marijuana prohibition). After all it’s just a weed.

  27. […] Revenue From Marijuana If It Were Legal [Prose Before Hos] […]

  28. […] Revenue From Marijuana If It Were Legal [Prose Before Hos] […]

  29. […] Politically, the legalization of cannabis makes sense. Assuming I don’t want it legalized for personal reasons, studies show that the state of California, and hopefully others when they see how Cali will benefit IMMENSELY. The statistics are, upsetting, to say the least. […]

  30. […] Revenue From Marijuana If It Were Legal [Prose Before Hos] […]

  31. Aaron says:

    Pot is plant that grows in the ground, if g-d did not want it it wouldn’t be around. America, separation of church and state.

  32. […] Marijuana revenue and arrest figures arrest, drug war, drugs, economics, marijuana, mexico, pot, private prison, secret ww2 bunkers […]

  33. Libby says:


  34. Cptain Science says:

    I’ll believe nothing until i see a citation in a proper format. Until then you hold as much credibility as if you pulled your numbers out of your ass. Which, chances are, you did.

  35. […] I would imagine many more will follow suit as there is no denying the financial impact taxing this plant will have on the states. Based on a “loose” guestimation, it’s close to $1 TRILLION dollars for the good ol’ US of A!!! ( […]

  36. Anonymous says:

    Marijuana is an easy bust for cops; weed smokers are, for the most part, peaceful people. There were more people arrested in New York city this year than any time in the past. Easy money for the city. Arresting dangerous armed gangsters is a lot tougher and doesn’t pay. Go figure.

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  38. Jimi says:

    More people are killed as a result of fast food diets than the use of drugs, alcohol and tobacco combined every year. FACT!

    Heart disease and obesity account for more deaths than any of them! But, will the government attack this great killer? NO! Because they make too many taxes off of them!

    They should take a leaf from their own book with regard to legalisation as well. For a capilatist country, we don’t seem to have a grasp on that one.

    For those not in the know, marijuana (or hemp as it is more appropriately known) was criminalised not because of the drug but because as a textile the rich (senators, congressman, etc) nearly got their cotton businesses put out of action.

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  40. they really need to make it legal if for no other reason than its medical uses. i suffer from chronic pain and if you look up chronic pain almost everysite saids marijunia

  41. Jeff Balch says:

    I wish infographics and articles like these made a better argument for decriminalization that consisted of more than ‘Jeez, look how much money we could save.’ There are no distinctions in the graphic above which make marijuana seem any different than other drugs or arguing how arrests for possession of marijuana is overkill and counterproductive. Just for a cognitive dissonance argument, nobody–well no rational person–advocates the legalization of heroin, cocaine, or methamphetamines, but we would sure save a ton of money if we did. Hell if all crimes were taken off the books, just think how much we could save! This chart assumes that everyone viewing it already agrees with the premise, but that’s not how arguments are won.

    As a UCSB graduate, avid surfer, and self-declared political junkie, I completely agree with marijuana decriminalization. I just wish these kind of articles demonstrated how legalization would make crime go down, not by subtracting the number of marijuana arrests/convictions, but by noting how many deaths could be avoided by the absence of drug smuggling since a legalized pot industry would 1) not require bootleggers or drug cartels and 2) nearly all of the production would take place in the United States, if not within 100 miles of your home. All legal, all safe, no drug dealers, no cartels.

    Finally, the costs to society of marijuana use, or rather lack thereof, should be clearly marked on a graphic such as this, with charts comparing it to other illegal drugs and some legalized substances like alcohol, tobacco, and firearms. How many deaths are caused per year by pot? How about alcohol? Guns? Automobiles? Fast food? (FYI, on average eighty-six people were killed every single day by firearms in 2009 according to the CDC, not to mention the 183 wounded.) The case to legalize anything must explain why it should not be illegal, in addition to ancillary benefits of decriminalization like tax revenues and law enforcement savings.

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