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Q3 Podcast Highlights

October 5, 2019

Episode 445 – U.S. Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton

  1. “The fact is that across this United States, the final verdict is in. So, Congress should just catch up. The police have caught up. You won’t find the police arresting people unless it’s out in the open, smoking almost in your face.”
  2. “I don’t believe that if you are in public housing or public lease subsidized housing, you should be treated any differently from any other American citizen. And this is the first time I’ve ever heard that you should be. In fact, the way it is now it is risky.”
  3. “The best way to make the other side know you’re fair is to defend their rights to say anything they want to say, just as you want the right to say anything you want to say. So, I’ve defended George Wallace when the City of New York tried to keep him from speaking at Shea Stadium. I’ve defended racists. Now people are used to people like me defending all of us on the right side. But the lesson I’m trying to teach, such as it is, is that we can’t have free speech unless they do. It’s a pretty simple lesson, and it works for this country.”

 

Episode 446 – Paige Figi

  1. “[CBD is] really a wellness product, and I should have access to it – and I shouldn’t have to be dying, or have cancer, or epilepsy to take it to curb my inflammation or my hangover.”
  2. “I would like to see the regulations loosen so people can take care of themselves, and we don’t have to have the helicopter of politics over our shoulder constantly.”
  3. “It’s super important to take care of yourself, and you got to figure out what makes your eyes go big, and what makes you smile and grin, and to just make space in your life for time for that. You have to do that.”

 

Episode 447 – U.S. Congressman Ro Khanna

  1. “I’m for the Marijuana Justice Act being the goal. I’m also for taking incremental wins, and if the incremental wins are, the state should be able to legalize marijuana and that they shouldn’t have the interference of the federal government to do that, fine. I mean, you can’t let the perfect be enemy of the good.”
  2. “We have to still make the case to the broader coalitions – some of the moderate Democrats – that this is worth doing, that we need to do it, and then we have to pick one or two bills that, really, leadership will push and that we’ll get across the finish line.”
  3. “It’s all about education. I would have universal preschool education, childcare, tuition-free college. We’re living in an economy with artificial intelligence, where cognition and the ability to have an educated person is going to be critical to future jobs and we need to make that investment.”

 

Episode 448 – Charlie Bachtell, Cresco Labs

  1. “I get what happens when government bodies or government agencies have to regulate something for the first time. Especially on the heels of subject matters that have kind of controversial pasts, the pendulum can swing a little bit too far, regulation can go a little bit past the point where it needed to, but […] sometimes, it’s, I guess, to be expected, and to a certain extent it’s okay, because then you realize where the line was, and then you can always back it up.”
  2. “If you do things the right way and if you’re thoughtful and if you’re thinking about what is in the best interest of the purpose of what you are doing, whether, you know, not everything is black and white. If you always have the best interests of the overall perspective, of the overall purpose of what’s trying to be accomplished, you’re putting yourself in as good of a position as you can.”
  3. “The objectives of the state are to make sure that you are tracking everything from seed to sale, that you are putting out as consistent and safe of a product as you, possibly, can, every time. The consistency is there, that the benefit of the patient is always first and foremost, to the point where, again, while most things are black and white, there’s also some things that are gray. But, if you’re doing it for the right reason, for the right purpose, addressing the intent of that regulator, of that administration, chances are, they’re going to be okay or they’re going to work with you or they’re going to realize that, maybe, they didn’t have an answer for that question yet, and you just gave them the answer that made the most sense.”

 

Episode 449 – U.S. Congressman Denver Riggleman

  1. “I think all but three states have either cannabis-related legislation for medical marijuana, recreational marijuana. I think we need to get in front of this, and I think we’re to a point now that we need to let the economy work, get the federal government out of the way, and let the states dictate how they want to deal with cannabis.”
  2. “There’s a lot of confusion at the federal and state level with what we are supposed to do with marijuana. I think we need to start simplifying this – let’s not make people criminals that shouldn’t be criminals, especially those in states where they may be some issues based on federal statute, the scheduling of the drug itself. Let’s do the right thing.”
  3. “If we’re going to have this sort of disjointed way of looking at things, it’s not fair to those who’ve been participating in the economy, in business, not to have a little more clarity on what’s illegal and what’s not illegal, but actually what they can and can’t do. I think that’s where we’re going now.”
  4. “When you’re looking at PTSD, which I’m very aware of on too many levels, and when you’re looking a suicide rates, telemedicine and telehealth, I don’t know why we can’t have marijuana dispensaries or something out in front with opioid addictions and other types of drug addictions. I don’t know why we can’t look at marijuana as an exit drug.”

 

Episode 450 – Former U.S. Congressman Carlos Curbelo

  1. “[Immigration] is the most important issue in our country, because it has an impact beyond immigration policy. This is the issue that is dividing the country in the most visceral way. Immigration and debates and arguments and fights about immigration lead to scapegoating. They lead to people being extremely resentful, xenophobia, all those raw human emotions that oftentimes represent the worst in us.”
  2. “Solving immigration is important because we need workers. We need an immigration system that’s compatible with our economy. It has to be fair. We’ve always been a welcoming nation. It speaks to our values. But, most importantly, if we solve immigration, that’s when we actually start healing our country’s politics, healing our society. That not only is healthy but will make it easier to reach consensus on other issues like cannabis reform, like climate change and what to do about that. Like the public debt and how to build a fiscally sustainable government. So, immigration, in my view, is the key to getting our politics back on the right track.”
  3. “A lot of people say, ‘Well, [the STATES Act is] not enough. We need to do more, and we need to do right by all those people who have been punished over the years as a result of our incoherent unfair cannabis laws.’ True. We need to do that. But does that mean that we just double down on the status quo until we can get everything that we want? No. That does not make sense. That’s not how our government is designed to work. The all or none approach in our government 99% of the time means none – means nothing. And that’s not fair to the millions of Americans and veterans and patients who rely on cannabis products. It’s certainly not fair to the 200,000 workers and their families who rely on the industry, because as long as we do nothing, the entire industry is exposed.”

 

Episode 451 – U.S. Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard

  1. “One of the biggest obstacles that stands in the way of progress is how many myths and misinformation and stigma there still is around cannabis. It is most often used as the excuse for why people refuse to support passing any kind of reforms or legislation. So [the Marijuana Data Collection Act] very simply commissions a neutral study by the National Academy of Sciences that will collect information from across the 33 states, plus D.C., who have legalized cannabis in one form or another so that we can have data and facts and statistics that show what the impacts of that change in policy has had on people, on our economy, on our criminal justice system, on our education system across the board.”
  2. “[The Marijuana Justice Act] very appropriately addresses those who unfortunately have been victims of this failed war on drugs. And that’s something that we, as a country, need to recognize – that this war on drugs that’s gone on for too long is an abject failure. And it has torn families apart, cost people so much in their lives, leaving them with criminal records and things that impact their ability to get a job, to get an education, to contribute in the way that they would like to, to our society. And our society suffers as a result.”
  3. “As leaders, we have to have the courage to meet with both friends and adversaries in the pursuit of peace and security. You don’t achieve peace by sitting around in a room with your friends. The reality is, unless we do this, unless we are willing to have those conversations, the only alternative is war.”

 

Episode 452 – Kayvan Khalatbari

  1. “25% of the people in this city are considered rent burdened, which means they spend more than a third of their income on housing, and without having any investment from the city, without having policies to curb some of the bad practices by developers and in this land rush that we’re seeing in urban areas across the country, and without any consideration for maybe spending some of these cannabis tax dollars on some of these issues that we say are created by cannabis. We’ve seen this issue become one that we finally have to address.”
  2. “There’s a lot of creative housing solutions I think we can use to stretch the money a lot further that we already have – this very little money – but, ultimately, we need to spend more money.”
  3. “It is three times more money to put somebody in jail and to house them there than it is to simply subsidize their housing outside of jail. It is far less expensive to provide housing, to provide social services, to provide what people really need outside of jail, than it is within it.”
  4. “All these big companies here in Colorado, if they want to be treated better by the community and by the governments that regulate them, step outside and do something, and start spending some of that money in a place where that matters – and in a way that you can deduct if off your taxes, too. I think the private industry solutions need to be there regardless of what government does. That’s what I’d like to see these businesses focus on.”

 

Episode 453 – Don Fertman

  1. “I’ve got some friends that are addicts, and alcoholics, who are using things like CBD oil to help exacerbate pain. There is a medical use for marijuana. There are medical uses, multiple, I think, and there are different permutations of this. So, I think it kind of has this wide variety of uses. It’s like Heinz, 57 varieties.”
  2. “When it comes to willingness to accept help, part of my willingness to accept that help when I was in the throes of my alcoholism was understanding that there’s a power greater than me that can help me out, and it’s not me. Because no matter how hard I tried, and used whatever power I had within Don, I was not able to quit drinking.”
  3. “I’m grateful for my sobriety, but I don’t get to keep my sobriety unless I pass it on and share it with others, because I cannot be selfish with this thing. I can’t keep it to myself, I can’t keep it secret. I was keeping a secret with my drinking. This is not a secret. This is recovery. This is a good thing.”

 

Episode 454 – Catherine Sandvos

  1. “Well, we are really in close touch with Germany, and also we, as the Netherlands, we like it that other countries are trying to set up their own OMC because we, as the Netherlands, don’t think that we should deliver to whole world or all of Europe. So, we really support that countries are setting up their own regulation and their own production process, and we are willing to help and to give information.”
  2. “There’s still not much studies have been done or not much clinical studies with placebo and double randomized and all the names. And we don’t collect information from patients, and that’s something if we look back, then we should have done that to collect information from patients, because we don’t have that.”
  3. “I’m happy to see that countries are coming together and are in touch and exchanging information. I think, in the beginning, it was every country for itself, and now you see much more like you’re one of the examples to bring people and regulators together. And that’s good to see because we’re all dealing with the same issues.”

 

Episode 455 – Kevin Murphy

  1. “It’s not a zero-sum game. This is a monster business with monster opportunity, and the more good, credible folks that are getting involved, really, the more credibility it adds to the entire business in general. So, we really don’t look at all the folks that are in this space as our competitors. Our competition is really more the black market and where we compete on selling our goods and paying taxes.”
  2. “Whether I’m a conservative Republican, or a Libertarian, or even a liberal Democrat – pick your way in – I care about veterans. I care about rights. I care about people and compassionate care. And I also care about the 10th Amendment of the United States of America, which says, ‘Leave it to the state.’ So, whether you’re conservative, whether you’re a liberal, doesn’t matter. We cater to all.”
  3. “Once the exchanges are allowed to participate with U.S. cannabis providers, and the Bank of Americas, and the Wells Fargos are able to lend and be involved with the business, I think that’s really the trigger event.”
  4. “There’s really no difference between the medical and the recreational market today, it’s whether you want to go get a card and, frankly, pay less taxes, or just pay the tax and buy it recreationally. But wait until insurance company start to reimburse for the drug. That will really bifurcate the marketplace again, and you’ll really see a distinct difference between the medical side of it and the recreational side of it.”

 

Episode 456 – Lori Ajax

  1. “It’s important that, early on, we engage our stakeholders and the community and making sure we are working on them very quickly. When we started the process of regulation, we were having that engagement, having those talks, listening to them. I think that was probably the biggest thing I learned. Listening, learning, and not coming in like we know it all as regulators and really taking to heart what they’re saying and really coming up with comprehensive regulations. And that can’t stop once you put regulations in place.”
  2. “Not everything that we write on paper and try to implement works, and I think it’s okay to say, ‘Okay that didn’t work. Let’s go back and see what can work,’ and I think that’s extremely important. See, we can’t let egos get in the way, right? And it’s about the industry and the state being successful and working together to ensure that.”
  3. “I always say for those of us that are involved with cannabis regulation all the time, we tend to forget that your average consumer doesn’t know how to recognize what’s a legal retailer versus somebody that’s not legal.”

 

Episode 457 – Bruce Linton

  1. “I think a really good business plan fits on one page. So, if you start putting a lot more pages in and you start making stuff up to fill the pages, then you convince yourself what you made up is probably true. The next thing you know is you’re actually doing what you wrote down just because you were supposed to write a whole bunch of pages.”
  2. “We keep talking about how fast the cannabis pace is growing, which is great, but we should really be talk about where it’s growing, because most times the best place to produce, manufacture, grow, all that extracts cannabis is usually the place they will let you and welcome you. And most happen to be places that are really downtrodden.”
  3. “I think we’re going to see really amazing acceleration in Spain and Greece, Denmark, Germany, Czech Republic, Poland. All these places are regulated and running, and most of them have socialized medicine. Most of them see it as an economic generation. They import so they don’t have to determine where they grow where they can get drugs. They don’t have obligation; they have control and processing in country for extraction and it’s how far do you want to go.”
  4. “An iconic thing will be as simple as having hemp fiber biodegradable straws, because then everybody will be able to talk about all the other applications. How far are we away from a global industrial market truly that competes with plastic, that competes with cotton, that competes with paper?”

 

Episode 458 – U.S. Congressman Mark Amodei

  1. “It ought to be a special account because you don’t want people laundering money no matter what business you’re in. So, it ought to be a special account that the regulators have access to, just like they do for licensed gaming people, just like they do for tobacco people, just like they do for distilled spirits people. Treat them the same way as all those other ones, which means I can look at your account without having to lawyer to death to get access because it’s a special-privilege license.”
  2. “Let these people deposit their cash. Let them use all the financial tools that any other business would use. Treat them a little differently in terms of they got to have a separate account. And treat them a little differently in that, hey, it’s a privileged business license. So, by allowing you to bank like everybody else, which is a federally regulated thing for the most part, we want our tax cut, too. Other than that, it’s like, let them bank like everybody else, credit cards or whatever the heck, because then you get to the public safety thing, which is, ‘So, seriously? We’re going to have people carrying around large amounts of cash?’”
  3. “It’s harder to defend nothing than something. So, I’m going to do something. I’m going to try to make [the SAFE Banking Act] perfect. But if I fail, I’m not going to pick up my marbles and go home.”

 

Episode 459 – Dr. Ethan Russo

  1. “As far as the medical community and the regulators, meaning the Food and Drug Administration are concerned, we need clinical trials to prove anything. It’s very different for the public. The public is already on board in the 80-90% range in believing that cannabis is medicine. So, we still have the severe mismatch between the illegality of cannabis in any form on the federal level versus public belief.”
  2. “In the current Western model, a medicine is a single compound, what’s called a “new chemical entity”. However, for the vast majority of our time on earth, for humans, medicines came from plants. We are actually returning to that point of view, because in many instances these plant medicines are better and safer than these single synthetic molecules.”
  3. “It is not the case that we’re starting from scratch at all. Cannabis is actually very likely the most studied drug in the history of mankind, because there have been decades of research on it, mainly focused on its harms. We need to transition now into leveraging that information towards therapeutic use.”

 

Episode 460 – U.S. Congressman Charlie Crist

  1. “The whole country has evolved. We’ve seen it state by state, by state. I think the number is up to about 33 states that either have medicinal marijuana and/or recreational. I think that trend is only going to continue. The thing I’m interested in, very much so, is getting the federal government caught up to speed with where the people throughout our country already are.”
  2. “Of all people that we owe so much to, certainly it’s our veterans. That’s a big part of Florida. It’s a big part of the country. About 22 veterans are found to have committed suicide every day. Every day. That’s just gut-wrenching to realize that. Any way that we can ameliorate that pain and that suffering and give hope we have a duty to do so for these brave people.”
  3. “It’s important to work together. It’s important to understand that we’re all children of God, that the needs and wants of each and every one of us are not that dissimilar. We all want a great education for our children. We all want to protect the environment for the future. We all want to have a good economy so that we can have productive effective lives and safe communities and a safe country. The things that we want are almost all the same, just maybe a different thought process of how to get there. Once we can boil it down and realize that, I think we’ll be much better off.”

 

Episode 461 – Josh Hendrix, U.S. Hemp Roundtable

  1. “You still have to go as a farm; you can’t just go out and plant hemp. You can’t find some seed in your barn that somebody left years ago and go out and plant it. Can’t grow it in your backyard. If your state is participating in the Hemp Program, the USDA Hemp Program, they have to go get approved. Once they’re approved, you will have to fill out a form, go through their licensing process, make sure that you actually have a farm – that you have a plan.”
  2. “What you’ll see is, in terms of the agriculture side, you’ll see a race to efficiency, which will naturally develop more consistent varieties and types of hemp and just less risk on the farmer, less risk of going hot, and things like that. Probably a shift towards more of a commodity type market.”
  3. “Now that we’re in 2019, the Farm Bill’s passed, within the next two to three years, you’ll start to see the hemp fiber infiltrate the marketplace.”

 

Episode 462 – U.S. Congressman Dwight Evans

  1. “When I started out in Pennsylvania legislature, we had 5,000 people in prison. Then up in 2007 we had over 55,000 people in prison. And really, this issue obviously was a part of the whole aspect of the so-called war on drugs, which has been a failure in the first place. In my view, I thought we needed to reevaluate the way we were approaching this, and obviously, marijuana is one of those issues.”
  2. “Here you have a huge industry that was on the backs of poor people and people of color. The reality of it is it was strange that we would not let them participate in this new frontier that we have that will be well-regulated. So, where the Small Business Administration comes in, we want to make sure that the capital is available, that there’s access to capital in this discussion. “
  3. “At the end of the day, we need to have what I call, what Martin Luther King called, Dr. King called, teach-ins – teach-ins within the country. A teach-in can be conducted anywhere. It doesn’t necessarily mean a school with borders or walls. More teach-ins, in my view, raises the consciousness. An informed citizen is the best weapon in a democracy, an informed citizen, meaning that they are knowledgeable. We all are not going to agree. Right? But we don’t have to act disagreeable.”

 

Episode 463 – Dr. Ryan Vandrey

  1. “We’re trying to understand, in the scenario of a single exposure, what happens from a number of different lenses, number of different angles. So, we’ve been focused early on with route of administration, because that’s a big variable and potentially big impact.”
  2. “If you are using a drug where you’re trying to manage some chronic symptom like chronic lower back pain or neuropathic pain, a route of administration where you’re looking for a longer, more sustained level of drug effect – an oral administration – is going to be better than inhalation.”
  3. “If we take somebody who uses cannabis frequently and they don’t use for 24 hours, they have as much THC in their blood as the person who’s eating a 50-milligram edible and is highly impaired. So, blood THC levels are incredibly complicated. What you have is a high likelihood of erroneous assumptions based on blood THC levels.”

 

Episode 464 – Grover Norquist

  1. “I think what people are thinking about is, will somebody else’s using marijuana affect me, and the obvious one is, ‘Would they run into me with their car?’ They may come up and be boring to you at an event. That’s not what people fear. Why would I care if somebody drinks alcohol? If they get in a car and run into me. Other than that, they want to sit in the room and do it, that’s their business. If they want to go to the bar, that’s their business.”
  2. “I think that we’re on track to get STATES Act done, which will solve the federalism question for taxes, tax policy, and banking policy. There is legislation or an amendment being put forward to tell the feds, the feds will leave you alone, and not go after you, DEA and so on if you’re in a state where it’s legal. That doesn’t have a commitment on a vote or anything. But it’s building support, and I think once you’ve taken taxes and banking off the table, the feds have less interest in that whole thing and less capacity to interfere.”
  3. “Democrats say they’re against deficits when they mean they want to raise taxes. Republicans say they’re against deficits when they want to reduce spending. They each one sounds to the poor guy in Iowa going, ‘I’m hearing this debate. They seem to agree,’ they’re talking about two completely different things.”
  4. “With 50 states, if one state does something phenomenally stupid, everybody watches them go over the cliff. They clammer back up, and everyone goes, ‘Don’t do that.’ Somebody does something that works really well, states are watching to see what ending cannabis prohibition means. And it’s making the case that it is not the scary problem that people thought it might be. In fact, there’s an argument that it’s off-ramp from opiate users, not an on-ramp for drug use.”

 

Episode 465 – Steve Hawkins, MPP

  1. “I think many more things are possible at the state level than the federal. And where I don’t want government intrusion is at the federal level. I want states to have the capacity to work this out and legalize cannabis either through ballot initiatives or state legislative work.”
  2. “The War on Drugs resulted in millions and millions of marijuana convictions over a 40-year period. You don’t make a dent with 25 thousand expungements. You make a dent with 750 thousand expungements. That begins to make the kind of change that, I think, hopefully we’ll see replicated elsewhere.”
  3. “Cannabis has already generated 220,000 jobs that are plant-touching and another 70 thousand that are ancillary. And it’s on its way to generate a million jobs for this economy. That’s a lot of good middle-class jobs, a lot of ways to create interesting pipelines to make sure that our work force in this space reflects the diversity of our country.”

 

Episode 466 – Shanita Penny, MCBA

  1. “When we talk about equity, we want to be clear that we are really leveling the playing field, that we are addressing the harms of communities and individuals that were impacted by the war on drugs. And so, it’s not just an industry thing, and oh, when there’s a business coming to town that we’re going to address some of these issues. It’s about ensuring that we address the social justice and criminal justice reform aspects, that we make sure small businesses and minority-owned businesses have a place in this industry, and that we also create patient access that is real and true and that will not impact you as it relates to veterans benefits or housing or anything.”
  2. “It’s so important for us to have the conversation in conjunction with every other aspect of legalization, because it doesn’t just impact someone who wants to be a part of the industry. It is impacting and has impacted for a long time, people that just want to get a job but have to check the box; people that want to access federal financial aid. And so when you start to remove these barriers that have impacted people for decades, now you can start to improve those communities. Now you truly empower those communities and they become a benefit to the overall economy.”
  3. “Sometimes you’ve made enough noise, and what feels like a loss is really progress, and it’s only progress for those who care about those people who need their records expunged. But I think that’s important because now we’re understanding the priorities, and we’re understanding the urgency with which we have to address these issues.”
  4. “There’s a huge opportunity. I tell people to identify what value you bring to this industry, and a particular opportunity, and make it worth your while. It’s not going to be easy. There’s going to be sacrifices involved. And even the biggest, of those MSOs are at the table advocating and lobbying and showing up to move the needle, as it relates to legalization and equitable legalization.”

 

Episode 467 – Neill Franklin, LEAP

  1. “To prevent crime by giving people the tools and the right information, how to protect themselves, and then going after the people who are harming others. Conducting the investigations, finding who’s committing the harm, the robberies, the burglaries, the murders. Finding them and bringing them to justice, not being someone’s parent and telling them what they can use, what they can drink, what they can smoke, what they can’t drink, what they can’t smoke. No, that’s a health issue. That’s between you, your parents, and your doctor, your clergy – not the police.”
  2. “We should not be putting laws in place that are dealing with consensual adult behavior. That’s drug use, that’s buying and selling goods from one another, that is sex work. You’ve got to regulate these things and not put them into our criminal justice platform.”
  3. “There’s no way in the world that we can solve murders, and burglaries, and robberies if we don’t have the cooperation of the public, because they have the information we need. When we respect each other, we’ll share that information, and we can find the people who are doing the most harm.”
  4. “If you’re enforcing the law, it gets enforced among across all demographics, throughout all political parties, whatever your political leaning is. When you’re in this position, you’ve got to be fair and equitable. You’ve got to stay out of politics. Don’t become a politician and a police officer at the same time. Stay out of politics and do your job. Do it fairly and equitably across all communities, and that’s it, man. It’s tough, but that’s what you’ve got to do. If you can’t do it, then find another profession.”

 

Episode 468 – U.S. Congresswoman Deb Haaland

  1. “I can’t see that [the war on drugs] did a whole lot to keep our streets safe, except for putting a whole bunch of brown and black folks in prison. This whole prison infrastructure that we’ve built in this country with the most incarcerated people in the world, it’s just ridiculous. So many people are incarcerated for nonviolent crimes. I’m not saying that some guy who’s, or a girl who’s embezzled millions of dollars from their company should be out on the streets. I’m just saying that for these petty pot crimes, people shouldn’t be separated from their families and their lives thrown into ruin because of that.”
  2. “All you have to do is go out and talk to veterans. You just have to talk to a few of them, and they will tell you, they want to be able to be prescribed cannabis to contend with their PTSD, their pain, their whatever issues they’re having. If you talk to just a few, they will tell you that this is an issue they want help with. It’s a viable issue. I think it’s important, and we should listen to our veterans.”
  3. “[What’s surprised me most about cannabis is that] it’s so versatile. I think that it can ease someone’s PTSD, can ease someone’s pain, it can help create a funding stream where children can have an early childhood education, which is the biggest factor in them having success in life.”

 

Episode 469 – Tjalling Erkelens, Bedrocan

  1. “We already know that what the research will provide – even if it’s a negative result. I’m not afraid of a negative result – then we know, at least. Whatever the outcome is, it always helps us move forward and focus on what is really in the products that can be helpful to patients. That is the most important thing to us as a company.”
  2. “You see that regulations differ from country to country, so that’s something that really needs to be taken care of rather sooner than later. Harmonization is a big thing that needs to happen, at least at a European level.”
  3. “What I saw happening, of course, is that companies that are producing for patients and then getting into recreational, or adult use production, all of the sudden the patient becomes less important. It’s more difficult to produce on the pharmaceutical level.”

 

Episode 470 – U.S. Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez

  1. “One area where we could be impactful is to be able to provide affordable loans that are backed by the federal government. These are loans that will be provided to individuals, and companies that otherwise would not be able to access affordable loans through a traditional means, with the big banks, or independent banks. So, here we have these government backed loans that will put money, that will allow for these businesses to access affordable loans.”
  2. “The economy is working, but not for everyone. Income inequality continues to be an issue. Wage stagnation for the last 15, 20 years is an issue. The fact that many millennials are graduating with a diploma in one hand, and then student debt. So, we have to be more proactive in looking at ways where we can grow our economy, expand our economy, and allow for more people to participate in this economy.”
  3. “We have to make sure that those who bear the brunt of the impact of these policies, and sanctions, and the criminal system, that they have an opportunity to be able to access the capital that they need in order to start up businesses in the cannabis industry.”

 

Episode 471 – Jeff Rhoades, Oregon Governor’s Office

  1. “We’re anticipating, at the very least, a relaxation of some of the restrictions that we’re seeing federally. And so, we don’t want to do something that’s too kneejerk. We don’t want to do something that’s going to set us up for failure. Oregon wants to be a supplier of this legalized and legitimate product, and we kind of look at it like we look at the wine industry.”
  2. “When we’re talking about equitably dealing with production, really, we want to make certain that there aren’t barriers to entry. We’ve talked about what barriers do exist. Some of those include criminal background checks. We have populations here in Oregon, like other states, that have been disproportionately affected by the drug war and so, we want to make certain that those individuals aren’t barred from entering into this business by virtue of some past conviction that the behavior would be legalized at this time.”
  3. “As the dust settles, we need to take a look at how to preserve the medical program while also propping up our businesses in the legalized adult use cannabis space.”

 

Episode 472 – Mara Gordon

  1. “Opioids just simply do not work on chronic pain. They’re fine for acute. There’s nothing better than them. I mean, give me morphine any day if I hurt something. But if you are in a situation where the pain is the disease state, opioids don’t work.”
  2. “The problem that I see is the genetics that have been historically used on the hemp side have been industrial and not designed for extraction of cannabinoids. So, the carbon footprint of taking an industrial crop to get something that’s only there in tiny minuscule amounts is ridiculous. But the hemp crops that are being grown now that are grown for CBD and not being grown as an industrial product, their genetics are identical to cannabis. Identical.”
  3. “When adult use came into play and the regulations came into play, I started taking a look around at the trends I was seeing in the industry and the trends were all this white labeling, mass produced oil and that doesn’t appeal to me. [It doesn’t appeal to me] because I think that when you do research and everything, you should have this well understood product and everything on the label needs to be there.”

 

Episode 473 – New York State Senator Diane Savino

  1. “In a very complicated public policy like this one, you don’t want a slim majority, because you want to be able to show that you have support from the majority of the members of the legislature. And the reason why that’s important is because if there’s a judicial challenge, the intent of the legislature is something that judges take very seriously. So, if you see a bill pass on a very narrow margin, that’s an indication to the courts that the support isn’t really there.”
  2. “In this business, you can take two paths. You can either allow the perfect to be the enemy of the good and say, no, I’m not going to agree to any compromise, and I’ll live to fight another day. Or you compromise and you start with what you got. And then you spend time working to improve it, because that’s why laws are amendable, right? You can change them every year, you can improve them, you can amend them.”
  3. “We’re going to push to have the Department of Health and the governor’s office begin to implement some of these changes so that we can stabilize this program and grow. We’re up to over a hundred thousand patients now, we can easily quadruple that if we just had more access points.”

 

Episode 474 – Chris Call, North Bay CU

  1. “We’re one of the only financial institutions in the entire Bay Area that is taking cannabis money. And we’ve seen, we’ve certainly heard a lot of stories about operators walking around in the city streets with duffel bags full of cash and trunks of their car and whatnot. And we’re trying to correct that problem.”
  2. “Credit unions are different than banks. They’re community-based. They’re cooperative institutions, so they’re not owned by investors. They’re owned by the members of the credit union. So, it’s more along the lines of supporting our members, our community, promoting causes within our community that are going to help the economy grow and promote public safety. I mean, those are all very important aspects of what we’re doing, as opposed to a commercial bank that is more profit driven, more investor return-driven.”
  3. “There’s still a law that says you can’t aid and abet an illegal operation, which is what we’re doing, technically, but we are actually providing a really significant resource to law enforcement. We’re providing a paper trail that otherwise would not exist. And so, I find it hard to believe that the federal government would come after an institution that’s actually helping them in their job.”
  4. “The big issue in the cannabis industry is money laundering, from a banking perspective, because it is so cash-intensive. We have to really monitor the source and the legality of any cash being introduced into the financial system. And there’s quite a bit of a manual labor involved with that. We’ve implemented some technological tools to help out with that as well, but still there’s a lot of eyeballs on paper that you have to do to make sure that everything is on the up and up. That’s much different than it would be for any other business that we deal with.”