Posts Tagged With: Washington State


Jim sent me an email from the Seattle newspaper about pot sales taxes and suggested I write a letter toGovernor Jerry Brown to get on the bandwagon and cure California’s budget woes by legalizing marijuana. Hmm. Sounds good on the surface of it. Here is a copy of the piece from the news:

SEATTLE (AP) — Washington will haul in nearly $150,000 in excise taxes from the first three days of legal marijuana sales — and that doesn’t include state and local sales taxes.

Randy Simmons, the Liquor Control Board‘s project manager for legal pot, says that’s not bad, considering the market is in its infancy, with only a few stores open statewide.

The law voters passed in 2012 to legalize pot for adults specifies that excise taxes of 25 percent are imposed when producers sell their product to licensed retail stores, and another 25 percent is imposed when shops sell to consumers.

All excise taxes due from the first day of sales Tuesday totaled $61,604. The figure dipped to $30,924 on Wednesday, and rose to $55,728 on Thursday, for a total of $148,256.

If there was more to the article, it didn’t I didn’t see it. Not exactly in depth news.

I’ve personally had misgivings about marijuana use and believe medical marijuana is a good idea, but I’m wondering about the full legalization of marijuana. It is an addictive substance and people can drive impaired just like using alcohol.  I looked on several websites about growing marijuana for medical use in California. Nothing much about how it is grown. And, most of it is grown by the person for personal use, I expect. It isn’t very clear.

But what is clear, California growing regulations for Marijuana mention nothing about the actual cultivation, except the number of plants and a background check for growers, and on and on about stems and leaves and carrying it, and so on. Of course, recreational users can loop hole themselves around the regs. The problems is, California’s marijuana harvest is vast—and getting vaster all the time.

According to Mother Jones, “To meet demand, researchers say, the acreage dedicated to marijuana grown in the Emerald Triangle has doubled in the past five years. Like the Gold Rush of the mid-1800s, this “green rush,” as it is known locally, has brought great wealth at a great cost to the environment.

Whether grown in bunkers lit with pollution-spewing diesel generators, or doused with restricted pesticides and sown on muddy, deforested slopes that choke off salmon streams during the rainy season, this “pollution pot” isn’t exactly high quality, or even a quality high.

“The cannabis industry right now is in sort of the same position that the meatpacking industry was in before The Jungle was written by Upton Sinclair,” says Stephen DeAngelo, the founder of Oakland’s Harborside Health Center, a large medical marijuana dispensary. “It simply isn’t regulated, and the upshot is that nobody really knows what’s in their cannabis.”

Washington State has well thought out regulations that tracks the use from seed to sale at State stores with a stamp that it is state produced. Legalizing marijuana is beginning to sound better and better to me. People are going to use it whether it is legal or not, that is very clear. But, it is still smoking and we know so little about marijuana’s affects on the body. What few studies are available say that no long lasting affects of impairment remain when the person quits using. And, people with mental or psychiatric disorders are more likely to be negatively affected by marijuana use. Hmm.



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The legal marijuana law went into effect in Washington State today. Being in possession of  an ounce of marijuana is no longer unlawful. The new law has been crafted rather carefully.

For at least a year, Washingtonians won’t be able to legally grow or sell the pot they can now legally buy.

And, hanging over it all, federal authorities still won’t say whether they’ll play ball as state leaders in Olympia attempt to put in place the truly revolutionary piece of I-502 – a state system which licenses growers and dealers while taxing the heck out of pot.

I hate the stuff and don’t like the smell of someone smoking it. The bill makes it illegal to smoke in public places. Illegal on college campuses. Illegal to drive under the influence and a test for marijuana can now qualify over use. Occupations that involve driving can still screen for marijuana and randomly drug test employees for use just like alcohol.  Factories where people use precision equipment can choose not to hire marijuana users and can screen potential employees. It can’t be sold near schools or to teens and the usual education against smoking cigarettes of any kind will apply to marijuana.

While I hate it, I absolutely defend and approve of decriminalizing weed. In my community where medical marijuana is legal and the people dependent on it for pain are legitimate users of a drug that helps people tremendously without having to depend on a constipating and addictive narcotic drug. Ingesting it, instead of smoking it, should also be part of the medical package.

And, while I hate it, I hate even more seeing our prisons fill up with young people who now have a criminal record for carrying a relatively harmless substance. Some of those young men and women, have families and could be supporting their families instead of filling up the jails.

And, I hate the idea that the South American drug cartels smuggle tons of the stuff into the U.S. and have their  slimy fingers all over ghetto neighborhoods recruiting young kids to peddle an un-taxable substance that should be grown right here, regulated and taxed.

It will be interesting to watch and see how it works out in Washington State before the legalize marijuana initiative comes up again in California and other places. Obviously, after all this time, pot use isn’t going away on its own, I think it will be a good thing if raw marijuana can be possessed and sold, but not in cigarette form for commercial manufacture. I’d hate to see a whole new population of people  stopping into their 7-11 and bringing it home along with their nicotine before more testing of marijuana is done.  Kids will steal cigarettes at a young age in a heartbeat.

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Adventuring out for the first time since arriving in Washington once again, we ferried to Orcas Island. The island has a State Park, a falls, several lakes, and one main community, East Sound, which isn’t very big.  Artsy, touristy, friendly, a lovely place to visit. Jim thought I’d like the two other main communities of Rosario Resort and Olga, so we took the Bronco over.

The ferry, Yakima , loads a couple of hundred cars and some trucks & trailers, a motor home or two. The ferry system here is part of Washington State transportation. For a  neophyte, the ferry is an adventure in itself. The ride over was about an hour. We idled around the outside decks and took foggy pictures.

The first picture of the nose of Yakima headed out to open waters was clear.

We hadn’t even cleared the dock before the weather was showing its misty character.  Coming from Murphys’ steady 90 degree weather, I was bundled with a sturdy jacket, a scarf and hat while many Washingtonians are quite comfortable in shorts and a sweater.

Even the baby has short sleeves.

Islands in the distance poke up out of the fog layer.

As you pass close to an island, you see it around the mist. There are many un-named small islands in Puget sound.  Or perhaps they have names on some geological map, but because they are unoccupied, they are anonymous clumps of beauty set there deliberately, no doubt,  by some tourist association.

This one reminds me of a cupcake. In fact there are a number of  perfectly round little islands of different sizes peppering the sound.

It’s hard to beat a day out on the sound with such beautiful scenery all around.

I took a lot of pictures because I bought a new camera and I’m experimenting with its various settings and features, which are many.

The colors seemed much cooler than those taken with my old Cannon and the foggy conditions left everything looking pretty gray and drab. That is reality.  I ran these pictures through a Picasa edit and pressed the saturation button to bring up a bit of color. Not quite sure yet what I think about them.  I have ten days to return the camera if I’m not happy with it.

Here we are, destination Orcas. I’ll report on Olga and Rosario Resort subsequently. We have set a  leisurely pace for this summer and  the next phase of my China journal from old notes must be typed.  I want to remember and share China from 2006 on these pages this summer as well. You know, part of my many unfinished projects I’ve talked about.

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Weight Watching…

No…not mine…the motorhome and Bronco II.

General consensus, as read on the Internet, is that more than 50% of the motorhomes going down the highways of the United States are overweight…that is over the manufacturer’s rated specifications. Severe problems can result from overloading such as broken axles, transmissions, engines, etc…  The prudent RVer should occasionally check his vehicle(s) weight.

Last Monday I had the opportunity to use a scale at a Washington State Commercial Weigh Station in Anacortes, Washington. The weigh station was actually closed, but they leave the scale turned on, so anyone can drive up and weigh their vehicle. I had the feeling all was well, but it never hurts to confirm.

Heres a photo of our motorhome and Bronco II as photographed at Thousand Trails Soledad Canyon RV Resort at Acton, California.

Below are the results…RC indicates Rated Capacity and AW indicates Actual Weight in pounds…

For the motorhome…


Front axle…RC 6,500…AW 4,760

Rear axle…RC 10,500…AW 8,940

Total load…RC 16,000…AW 13,820

Tow capacity…RC 5,000…AW 3,840

Gross Weight (motorhome and towed Bronco II)…RC 22,000…AW…17,170


For the Bronco II…


Gross weight (including driver and passenger)…RC 4,160…AW 4,170…

which means I need to lose at least 10 pounds. I’m working on it! 🙂


Since I’m a full-time RVer, everything I own in the world is either in the motorhome or the Bronco II which serves as my rolling storage bin. That is why it weighs as much as it does.

I really like not having my life cluttered up with a lot of “stuff”!

All original material Copyright – Jim Jaillet 2011
For more information about my three books, click this link:

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Yesterday, I took a last walk around this beautiful park.

Took the recycling to the bins, and stopped on impulse to play on the swing. I can’t resist a good high flyer.

It replaced my swim. My travel tip for you.  A plastic bag works well to take a wet swimsuit in a suitcase,  but only  if you have the place and opportunity to remove your suit  and dry it as soon as you arrive at your destination.

I’m going to miss the beauty here, but not the cold. My luck, the sun will shine as soon as I leave, though it is raining as I enjoy my morning tea.

More lush rhododendrons.  Yesterday, we had a beer at the Eagles. We were served by a cute young bartender who had one blue eye and one brown eye. I’ve seen it in humans previously,  but its rare. On our way through town, I saw a sign on the Keg And Cue, that related this message:


I arrive in Orange County at 2:30 in the afternoon.

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I have four blogs, so my response to yesterday’s post brought up some questions, like why didn’t I post a picture of the Porquepine? The article on gas2.0 was written by and if she has an archive, you will find it there. It is a sleek metal sheathed vehicle that, when parked, many little wings covering the car spring out to catch the sun. Its kind of rounded and resembles a porquepine with all these metal projections. Remember, its a prototype, its not on the road.

I received two emails from a friend about energy alternatives happening in the U.S. One at this address: about Seattle getting 2500 electric vehicle plug-in stations, and
another at this address: This one documents a huge solar array going in on a hill-top in Washington State, combining technology and jobs.
Since I’m at it, I may as well talk about Debord, Kentucky’s brag. Debord sends NOTHING to landfills. Garbage is incinerated for power. Glass is ground up and used in Concrete-block manufacturing. Metal recycling is standard, now. Plastics and syrofoam are converted back to gas in about an hour. They love their natural beauty and intend to keep it that way. 7,000 homes are powered by steam and off the grid. Pretty nifty.
Planning into the future is smart. It costs more up front, but will cost a lot more later if the planning is put off. Smart companies know their bottom line will be met with future planning. Now, I have to ask: What in hell is wrong with Calaveras County?
Several years ago, when a new hospital was on the drawing board, former Supervisor, Jack Burns went to Tahoe and studied their solid waste burner that powered a hospital and several municipal buildings. His hard work was totally ignored. The new hospital was built to standards without any regard to “future energy planning.”
Now, money has been secured for a badly needed new jail. Are they building in any “future energy” innovations? Not to my knowledge. Here is their chance to save millions in future electrical bills for we taxpayers. But, nada! They turn a deaf ear to solar as though we didn’t live in a climate just rolling with sunshine in the summer, fall and spring. Even in winter, my solar panels provide good return. You just want to smack ’em a lick and say WAKE UP! The future is here. Half the money comes from the state when the current governor is a champion of solar. And, we keep electing these dummies.

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