I was at a conference last week and was discussing the boom in the real estate market in Vancouver, BC. I was amazed at how many new high rise apartments and condos that were going up, many right on the waterfront. And they weren’t cheap!
Even with the Winter Olympics slated to happen there soon, I couldn’t help but wonder what would sustain that type of spending past that event.
I was already well aware that Vancouver has become a famous Asian hub. Just my trip through customs demonstrated that I was in the very minority of who was traveling that day. With relaxed immigration laws, money flowed easily from the Orient into BC. But was that it?
Damian, a resident of the area, stated that although the Asian money was and is a factor, you just can’t beat the sheer buying power of a $10 Billion Dollar cash crop pouring into the area. I’m not talking about all of Canada. I’m speaking about British Columbia alone. That cash crop is marijuana.
Damian stated that it’s not that it’s legal to grow marijuana here, there just isn’t any major pressure to control or regulate this; he states the authorities look the other way.
So the money flows without fear from legal hassles for growing for your own personal use or growing to sell. He states that many people expanding their living space just to grow this. And with the profits, people are investing that back into real estate.
Hummm…This one industry has put a major boost to the local economy. Interesting enough…when I was there, I didn’t notice anyone smoking it, nor did I notice the smell. So, use of it not openly defiant.
|I wonder if more Americans knew that, would we have more crossing the border or attempting to become citizens just to start a marijuana growing business where it’s not illegal?
The decline in the buying power of the American dollar has been never more evident than in Canada. I used to trade up 1 dollar Canadian for 70 cents US. Now it’s about 1 to 1 – that loss of buying power occurred in 13 years. And with many boomers facing retirement, that loss of buying power is not good.
With medical marijuana’s passage in selected states, the government is now clearly identified as being a ‘dope dealer’. The question is how far will this go? I’ve talked with many people that have to do with the legal system who feel that it should be decriminalized. Why? Costs!
The jails and prisons are overfull with many other offenses, including real drug crimes related to meth, crack, heroin, alcohol and narcotic analgesics, and is buckling under the rising burden of sex related crimes. The time and energy spent processing and prosecuting these marijuana related cases could be better spent elsewhere.
Yet others say, crime is crime.
With states like California having a serious budget crisis, much of that due to the burgeoning legal and social welfare system (and the 3 strike law), and states like Michigan already way over budget with allocations of $2 Billion Dollars to service 55,000 inmates, well, the pot (no pun intended) will run dry sooner or later…and hard choices will have to be made. One of those may be decriminalizing marijuana usage.
I doubt the US will ever go as far as Canada has gone.
However $10 Billion Dollars, no matter how you slice it, would have a major impact on a LOCAL economy, be it California or Michigan, or as it’s currently having in British Columbia.
There is tremendous pressure to allow the growing of hemp in the US again. This crop has no pharmaceutical use, as there are no psychoactive substances in it. However it is a great source of protein and omega fatty acids, and a great source of fiber not only for the body. This fiber is has industrial uses; it’s used in making clothes, rope and paper. And, this crop can be grown literally anywhere without the need of pesticides or herbicides.
I recently came across an article on the use of vending machines in Los Angeles to deliver medical marijuana. It’s an interesting read on the hoops it takes to get it. It requires fingerprinting and a special access card.
Is this a sign of things yet to come?
Let me know what you think!