Coming into another cannabis harvest season in New Zealand and the government is once again missing out on capturing any revenue from the hundreds of thousands of cannabis sales about to take place on the black market, thanks to their continuation of the failed policy of prohibition.
While cannabis legalization is no doubt coming to New Zealand, its coming very slowly, at least not until after the election, which may even be postponed due to the outbreak of COVID-19. Not only that, but the current drafts of the legislation are grossly restrictive, even prohibiting online sales of cannabis and accessories.
With the sudden outbreak of COVID-19 however, the world as we know it is now obsolete. We have all suddenly being thrust into a new era, where people are self isolating and practicing physical distancing. Online sales of anything are now preferable including cannabis and accessories, legal or black market. In fact, New Zealand must legalize cannabis right now and allow online sales to survive the coming recession.
By legalizing cannabis right now the government can capture the revenue from this seasons harvest and use it to support help New Zealand through the recession. If they wait 8 weeks they will miss out.
Continued online sales of cannabis and accessories throughout the recession can allow small business to continue to bring in revenue, feed their families, employ staff and pay a special cannabis tax to help the country during recession. Cannabis can also help replace many of the common drugs like paracetamol and anti-depressants which are now in short supply.
Far more dangerous drugs like alcohol and tobacco are already sold online. Party pills with piperazines (BZP and TFMPP) and synthetic cannabinoids were sold online for many years, yet 99% of the problems associated with these substances were happening within meters of price-point brick and mortar stores.
Online sales have always attracted a more sophisticated and responsible clientele. Customers simply provide a copy of their ID before they can purchase. Legalization will also allow accurate harm reduction information to be included with the sale and sales monitored so problematic use can be identified and support offered.
Come on New Zealand, it's time to cut the politics and act for the good of our country. Let's do this!