The Morning Rant

Centrally planned economies…why don’t they work? Well, according to the bien-pensant, they just haven’t done quite enough commanding!

So California, flush with Wuhan Flu windfall is going to double down on the spectacularly stupid and discredited policy of picking winners and losers in the grand game of economics. And of course, because this is California, they are choosing marijuana!

But it gets better! The reason — according to the mandarins in Sacramento — that the legal pot industry is failing is because of the byzantine and draconian rules governing pretty much everything in California, and the answer is to provide state money to municipalities to assist the pot sellers with the licensing requirements.

I swear I am not making this up!

California offers $100 million to rescue its struggling legal marijuana industry

Many cannabis growers, retailers and manufacturers have struggled to make the transition from a provisional, temporary license to a permanent one renewed on an annual basis — a process that requires a costly, complicated and time-consuming review of the negative environmental effects involved in a business and a plan for reducing those harms. As a result, about 82% of the state’s cannabis licensees still held provisional licenses as of April, according to the governor’s office. The funds, including $22 million earmarked for L.A., would help cities hire experts and staff to assist businesses in completing the environmental studies and transitioning the licenses to “help legitimate businesses succeed,” Ting said. The grant program is endorsed by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, who said in a letter to legislators that the money is “essential in supporting a well-regulated, equitable, and sustainable cannabis market.”

So the state is gong to choose some businesses and provide assistance navigating the insanity that is the regulatory state in California. Instead of simply streamlining the regulations, or even better just getting rid of them, they are going to spend taxpayer money on their pet businesses!

It is a wonderful glimpse into the chaotic and mushy thinking of the 21st century bureaucrat. “We made this situation as bad as it is, so we are going to spend your money to make it slightly less bad but possibly even worse.”

I was in California recently, and let me assure you, its problems have nothing to do with marijuana storefronts. Bums, filth, obscene regulatory schemes, ridiculous taxes, an out-of-control legislature and an even worse administration.

But maybe marijuana is the salvation of California. Everybody can get stoned and maybe they won’t notice the decay of what once was the greatest economic engine in the country.

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