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Rick Steves: I Will Match Your Donation To The Maine Legalization Initiative


maine marijuana campaign 2016By Rick Steves, NORML Board Member

I’ve worked hard to help legalize, tax, and regulate marijuana for adult recreational use in Washington State (where I live) and in Oregon. This November, Maine voters will have the opportunity to approve a ballot initiative that will end prohibition and replace it with a sensible marijuana policy in their state too.

As a NORML Board Member, I am proud to announce that NORML is endorsing this initiative. And to demonstrate my commitment, I am going to match every donation up to $50,000, dollar-for-dollar. This October, I’ll be visiting Maine to speak about the initiative and help build support for legalizing, taxing and regulating marijuana in the state.

If you donate $50, $100 or even $500, I’ll double it. Click here to make a donation through the campaign website today.

Through my travels in Europe, I’ve learned that pragmatic harm reduction makes much more sense than legislating morality. And I believe in civil liberties. Responsible adults should be able to use marijuana, just as they can use alcohol. Washington, Oregon, Colorado and Alaska have demonstrated that it is possible to build a system of marijuana control and regulation that works.

This isn’t about being “soft” or “hard” on drugs. This is about being smart – and controlling and regulating marijuana the right way.

Please consider making a donation today. Together, we can make history in Maine. (And I hope to see you in October!)

For Immediate Release
Wednesday, May 25, 2016

David Boyer, Campaign Manager, Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol
207-274-4633, dboyer@regulatemaine.org

Nation’s Oldest Marijuana Policy Organization – and One of Its Most Widely Recognized Board Members – to Throw Support Behind Initiative to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol in Maine

In an email announcing NORML’s endorsement, internationally renowned travel writer and television personality Rick Steves said he will match up to $50,000 in contributions to the campaign and visit Maine in October to help promote the ballot measure

PORTLAND, Maine – Internationally renowned travel writer and television personality Rick Steves announced on Wednesday that he and the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) are throwing their support behind the initiative to regulate marijuana like alcohol in Maine. Steves serves on the board of directors for NORML.

In an email announcing NORML’s endorsement to initiative supporters, Steves offered to match every contribution to the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol dollar-for-dollar up to $50,000. He also said he plans to visit Maine in October to help promote the ballot measure, which would end marijuana prohibition in Maine and establish a system in which marijuana is regulated and taxed similarly to alcohol.

“Through my travels in Europe, I’ve learned that pragmatic harm reduction makes much more sense than legislating morality,” Steves said in the email. “And I believe in civil liberties. Responsible adults should be able to use marijuana, just as they can use alcohol.

“Washington, Oregon, Colorado and Alaska demonstrate that it is possible to build a system of marijuana control and regulation that works,” he continued. “This isn’t about being ‘soft’ or ‘hard’ on drugs. This is about being smart – and controlling and regulating marijuana the right way.”

Steves actively campaigned in support of the ballot initiatives that successfully ended marijuana prohibition in Oregon in 2014 and his home state of Washington in 2012.

“NORML is pleased to be working with the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, and with our colleague Rick Steves, to help ensure that Maine joins the growing list of states to legalize the responsible adult use of marijuana this November,” said NORML Executive Director Allen St. Pierre. “Our board of directors has enthusiastically endorsed this measure and we will continue to work for its passage.”

NORML, founded in 1970, is a national organization with state and local chapters operating throughout the country. It is the nation’s oldest and most widely recognized marijuana policy reform organization.

“NORML has spent decades educating the public about marijuana and advocating for sensible marijuana policy reform,” said campaign manager David Boyer. “We are proud to have their support, and we are very grateful for Mr. Steves’ exceptionally generous offer. A lot of celebrities express support for ending marijuana prohibition, but few put their money where their mouth is.”

# # #

The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol is supporting a 2016 statewide ballot initiative to end marijuana prohibition in Maine and replace it with a system in which marijuana is regulated and taxed similarly to alcohol. For more information, visit http://www.RegulateMaine.org.

Source: NORML - make a donation


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Johnny Green


  1. Uh, ya — you do know that a poll with 14% undecided doesn’t imply a 22-point lead, right? The margin of error was +/-4.2% — with 14% undecided that makes it an optimistic lead, not a hard 22. You did read this right? Or were you just hoping I wouldn’t read it? Did you just subtract B from A solving for X? You can’t ignore the undecided responses, let alone the poll’s margin of error. We’re doing statistics, not algebra.

    The poll says 54% in support with a margin of error of 4.2%. Prop 203 garnered 50.1%, which is within that margin. The ballot results are 100% consistent with the poll’s numbers. With 14% undecided that could go either way and a 4.2% margin of error, declaring a firm 22 point lead is fallacious, which is why nobody (except you) ever said Prop 203 led by 22 points. Given the poll’s numbers, it was conceivable that Prop 203 could have failed with only 49.8% in favor (54 – 4.2 + 0 = 49.8) and 50.2% against (32 + 4.2 + 14 = 50.2). See how that works? It’s no wonder I didn’t find anyone spiking the football for Arizona. Percentages must always sum to 100, my friend — no more, no less. That’s why you can’t subtract one thing from another in a vacuum.

    Honestly, I can’t figure out if you simply don’t understand how to interpret poll numbers, or if you deliberately manipulate information to suit your bias, or if your fractured mind does some weird hodge-podge of the two (your bias AND your lack of comprehension feed and complement each other). In this case, I’m willing to give you the benefit of the doubt and assume your knowledge doesn’t extend very far beyond junior high math, so you just don’t know any better.

    But your bias has always been obvious, too. I’m starting to believe you’re the perfect specimen of the uninformed, easily manipulated public. All I have to do to gain your trust is appeal to your preconceived notions, no matter how baseless they are, and no matter how much evidence there is to the contrary. You not only buy anything that syncs with your prejudices, you seek out anything that plausibly supports them. And when that fails, your mind takes the extra step by constructing wholly unbelievable concepts by stringing together misinterpreted information to support them, fabricating fallacious arguments from disparate notions. Basically, you argue like the host of a talk radio show. That’s incredible! You fundamentally lack all objectivity. It’s astounding.

  2. LOL — You don’t organize your thoughts, do you? You’ve posted a bunch of links and failed to make a point! I understand that you’re a bit off-kilter because I keep wiping the floor with you, but you should at least attempt to put in some semblance of effort into these nonsense replies. Seriously. You’re not even defending a single point or attempting to rebut my own. This reply is… it’s nothing. There’s not a single topical thought within it. I mean, we were talking about Maine. Your reply isn’t even from left-field — it’s not even from the parking lot.

    So as much as I’d like to keep repeating myself (because, honestly, I do enjoy rubbing your nose in facts), in this case, I cannot do so in good conscience. Your scrambled mind caused you to start an argument about Florida and post links about nine other states when we were discussing Maine. The fact that you can’t even keep straight which argument you’re having proves how nonsensical your opposition has become. Your poor addled mind can’t handle it. Keeping up this facade of yours has broken you.

    I am sorry, I do feel bad about it, but I can’t help being a little amused by this “response” of yours. With allies like you in Kevin’s corner, he doesn’t need opposition. No kidding, I’m *trying* to give you the benefit of the doubt, to piece together the argument you’re trying to make, but it’s too discordant. We were talking about Maine! Your reply is practically a manic brain-dump of random information, evident by the many typing and spelling errors and the stark fact that your mind can’t even keep straight which state you’re talking about, anymore. You’re *literally* all over the map.

    This is usually where I recap all the arguments you failed to address, but I’ll just skip that. I mean, would there be a point? I’m not the least bit confident you’re capable of understanding the summary. This particular reply of yours is proof that you’ve become totally unhinged. I almost regret rubbing your nose in so many facts and evidence. I guess weak minds are easily shattered. Or maybe you’re trying to hide the fact that I exposed your thinly veiled, poorly constructed manipulations by acting crazy. Either way, you haven’t made an argument for me to address, so I guess all there’s left to do is to (once again) declare victory.

    Well, there is one more thing. I will keep asking this question, even if I never get an answer: Why are you trolling TWB? Clearly, it’s not healthy for you. Your replies have become so incomprehensible that it appears as if you’re clinging to sanity by a single blade of grass. This particular word-salad you sputtered is more like a drunken rant than a coherent argument. I know I’m a tough opponent, but try to keep it together, buddy.

  3. Florida REQUIRES 60% for its medical marijuana law to pass. NOT a simple 50% majority like most other states. Look at all these other states that got UNDER 60% with NO ORGANIZED OPPOSITION.

    Guam: 56%

    Arizona: 50.1%

    South Dakota (2010): 36%

    South Dakota (2006): 47%

    Colorado: 53%

    Alaska: 58%

    Oregon: 54%

    Washingon: 58%

    California 55%

    These are MEDICAL Marijuana ballots which been had strong support since at 80s or even earlier. The other states BARELY got over 60%. The MOST was 65% in Nevada. Again, NO OPPOSITION MONEY, NO PERSUASIVE OPPONENTS live KEVIN SABET and it still FAILED reach the threshold needed in Florida. Sheldon Aldelson is going to spend millions to defeat Amendment 2 and the same thing as in 2014 will happen again.

  4. LOL. We’ve had this conversation, before — midterms and general election years are very different, so you cannot compare them. Liberals and young people stay home in midterms. Again, CA and AZ were in 2010, the year in which the Tea Party had their big showing. And again, Ohio’s initiative was an oligopoly that rightfully failed at the polls. FL, again, got 58% in a *midterm* — ten points higher than the two major candidates for governor — which is why it has sailed through the approval for the 2016 ballot with no opposition from the FSA and meager resistance from DFF (because Uncle Sheldon’s wallet has been shut, this year). We’ve had *all* of these discussions, before. Don’t these things sound familiar? Do you think I simply forgot that we’ve had these conversations already? You’re kidding yourself.

    So just to recap, you were wrong about the initiatives in 2014 you said would *all* fail. You were wrong about the non-binding question in Maine being a law, trying to make its poor showing in Lewiston bigger than it was. Then you tried and failed to *literally* make Lewiston bigger than it was so you could try (and fail) to make it appear as if the votes of 7,366 people in one small town would be indicative of Maine’s voter turnout in a state with over 980,000 registered voters. And finally, you were wrong about Project SAM having any impact in Maine, as I proved with the polling numbers — they’d be going *down* if your boys were having any effect, not up.

    ALSO, you are now wrong about there being any poll or even an opinion editorial suggesting there would be a 22 point lead for Prop 203 in 2010. Now you’re not even twisting facts. You’re making stuff up. Such a weak move, Trollboy. In fact, I’m a little perturbed that you would stoop to fabricating information, outright. Dirty pool, Trollboy. Of course, you say things that aren’t true all the time, but they’re usually about the future, not the past. You’re debasing yourself with stark, objective lies. Apparently I need to remind you that we have the internet, it existed back in 2010, and that news stories are indexed by date.

    As punishment for your flagrant lie, I’m going to once again point out how pathetic it is that your only catharsis in life is this sad showing of yours: trolling TWB and making a spectacle of yourself. I’m going to remind you that I’ve been ripping down your comments for over two years, from day 1, and you’ve never won a single argument. You’ve been wrong every single time we’ve conversed, and you always drop your sad arguments (like you did this time). Inevitably, you’ll run away with your tail between your legs, just like you *always* do.

    And finally, I predict Kevin Sabet will be unemployed within the next two years because of his dismal record of failures, which will leave you with no hero to worship. Think about that: your life is so small that you lick the boots of some chubby policy wonk who has pretended to be a scientist for so long that he’s laughed at by both the scientific *and* public policy communities. Both you and Kevin will crawl back underneath your respective rocks, soon enough. By 2020, at least 30 states will have safe, legal access to medical cannabis, and at least ten states will have repealed prohibition, entirely. The only person who insists Project SAM is making a bit of difference is *you*.

    Honestly, this was the most disappointing response you’ve ever given. Making stuff up about an initiative that passed six years ago? That just smacks of desperation. So anticlimactic.

    SO… Given how wrong you always are, and given how weak this particular response was, what are you getting out of this? Why do you enjoy being proven wrong over and over and over and over? What, precisely, do you derive from these little exchanges of ours? You’re not convincing anyone — not even yourself. Obviously you wouldn’t need to twist facts about the non-binding question from one small town in Maine if you had anything *real* to offer. At first, I was willing to give you the benefit of the doubt about the inaccuracies of your first comment. But now, I’m certain you checked the poll numbers, first. You went searching for something negative to say about Maine’s chances, and found almost nothing. Except Lewiston! That’s why you over-inflated the facts surrounding Lewiston’s 2014 referendum: you *know* Maine’s chances are favorable. You don’t *really* believe Maine’s initiative will fail. You’ve tipped your hand! LOLOL Wow, you’re transparent.

    All this begs the question: Why are you desperately trying to downplay any/every initiative? Are you Kevin’s mother and you’re worried about your son’s job security? If so, you’re not helping your son at all. You’re just making it clear to everyone that there is so very little to celebrate when it comes to Project SAM. After all, you have to carefully craft and manipulate information to make it *appear* as if SAM is making the least bit of difference, which to me, is hilarious. Even YOU know they’re not doing a good job, as evidenced by these thinly-veiled manipulations. Despite my smile, I’m really starting to pity you.

    Keep trying to muster a response. I’ll check for it once I’m home from dinner, tonight.

  5. Polls always overestimate legalization support. They predicted Prop 19 in California would win and it lost. They predicted Issue 3 last year in Ohio would win, it lost. They predicted Florida’s medical marijuana amendment in 2014 would get over 70% of the vote and it failed to reach 60. They predicted Arizona’s medical marijuana initiative in 2010 would win by a 22 point margin. It almost lost getting only 50.1% of the vote.

  6. First of all, the 2014 “law” was not a law — it was a non-binding question, and would not have changed state law, as were both Portland votes (hence the 2016 effort to *actually* change the law). There are no provisions in Maine city charters allowing them to set and enforce their own penalties for drug possession, which is why the questions were regarded as only “symbolic” questions to gauge support. This was widely reported.

    Second, Lewiston is the “2nd biggest city,” but it’s a distant second with a population of only 36,299. Also, a mere 7,366 people voted against the non-binding question in 2014. Those 7,366 people are less than 1% of the total number of registered voters In Maine. In 2012, a general election year, 62.1% of the 982,532 registered voters turned out (610,152 voters, total). It’s laughable for you to look at the results from ONE town on a non-binding question and subsequently elevate the votes of 7,366 people in midterm year as an indication of how approximately 600,000 others will vote, this year.

    Third and finally, if SAM was having an impact, why haven’t the poll numbers in Maine gone down? In 2014, the polling said 56% were in favor of legalization in the Pine Tree State. In a poll released on May 12, 2016 59% of Maine voters were in favor of “taxing, regulating and legalizing marijuana for adults.” So once again, you’re wrong. Frankly, I don’t understand how you think playing fast and loose with the facts will change reality. With 59% in favor, which is an improvement over 2014, it will pass this November, and you’ll be proven wrong, exactly the same way you were wrong in 2014 when you said every initiative would fail.

    So here we are again. I’m right, you’re wrong. Tell me, your Trolliness, why do you grace us with your “presence” here at TWB? What, precisely, motivates you to twist facts and misrepresent information here? You can’t be here strictly for my entertainment, right? Not to put too fine a point on it, but proving you wrong is something I enjoy immensely. I’ll be flattered if you come here *just* to put a smile on my face, but that can’t be your only reason.

    Going to respond, or wilt away as per usual? Honestly, I would have responded sooner, but I didn’t see this until today. That’s the downside of having a life — I can only spare so much time for trolls.

  7. Maine is a lost cause. Project Sam is heavily invested there. Remember what happened after 70% of Portland, ME voted to legalize possession? Right after Portland’s vote in 2013, Project Sam started a Maine chapter. They been brainwashing citizens non stop since then. In 2014, Maine’s 2nd biggest city, Lewiston voted 55% against a similar law. Nothing else could explain the discrepancy other than Project Sam damaging public support. Big cities always have higher support for marijuana reform than suburbs and rural areas. If it cant win there, it cant win anywhere. The results in Lewiston should be a wake up call.

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