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Thursday, March 25, 2010

How Do Pot Advocates Celebrate Huge Victory? Use Your Imagination.

Posted By on Thu, Mar 25, 2010 at 11:59 AM

Hot dog!
  • Hot dog!

Yesterday, we reported that an initiative to tax and regulate Marijuana was all but certain to grace the November ballot.

Well, guess what? Pro-pot voters, come November, you're hooked up.

Needing 433,971 signatures to make the ballot, the initiative -- sponsored by Oaksterdam University and bankrolled by $1.3 million (and counting) from Oaksterdam president Richard Lee -- soared over the hurdle with roughly 520,000 certified signatures.

And how did Team Oaksterdam mark this historic moment? "I got drunk," deadpanned Lee. "Just joking. We congratulated each other. You know."

"You know," is also how Oaksterdam spokeswoman Salwa Ibrahim answered. She then elaborated "In the traditional way -- we celebrate the plant every day."

Neil in Space - Click here for more blooper videos

Starting today, however, Lee and his colleagues are focused on November. He hopes to raise "between $10 million and $20 million, and we hope to do it from the Internet." He's hired Blue State Digital -- which helped to raise metric shitloads of money for Barack Obama's presidential run -- and says he's currently raking in more than $100 an hour.

And, perhaps most importantly, the political winds are at his back. Last year, a Field Poll indicated 56 percent of Californians favored legalizing Marijuana. "We wouldn't have started if we didn't have polling showing a good likelihood of winning," notes Lee.

And while the Marijuana impresario acknowledges that he could rake it in if California legalizes pot, he says that's not his motivation.

He'll only make money "If we don't get busted, you know. If this hasn't pissed off the authorities for retribution. If anything it puts me in more risk and less likely to be successful in the long run personally." So why do it? "Cause it's the right thing to do."

And celebrating is fun.

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About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.


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