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Poverty plan
The interview with Samuel Bowles raised a few issues on which I would like to comment.

Whilst I would agree that there is a trade-off between income and equality, there is little or no opportunity for encouraging any realistic or sustainable local economic development given the poor state of educational achievement in this state. The problem also is not so much the surplus of so called "guard labor," but the ever growing, and by definition unproductive, pubic sector employment.

Finally, giving people handouts at age 18 may satisfy equality of opportunity, but it presumes equality of ability mitigated only by luck. Economic development can generate wealth for all as the history of the industrial revolution has shown, but it is generally measured by scarcity value. If Bowles is for greater efficiencies, then surely introducing no-strings handouts is likely to lead to further dependencies on state largesse and further economic decline (eg, subprime loans). Overall too much theory and unsupported data.

Unfortunately, as FDR said, capitalism (be it demand or supply driven) does result in inequalities of wealth, however, socialism (or social democracy) results in an equal distribution of poverty.
David Brown
Santa Fe

Web Comments

There are at least 21 certified patients in rural San Miguel County where I live, but the Health Department will not help us to find each other for mutual support. Also, medical marijuana caregivers can be licensed by the DOH to "manage the marijuana for up to 4 patients"—but the rules prohibit those caregivers from helping debilitated patients grow their own and they prohibit caregivers getting paid anything to do it—while the licensed growers can hire people and pay them whatever they want to pay them, charge whatever price they want to charge, sell only to the richest folks in Santa Fe or Albuquerque and just forget about the patients in rural areas that really need the medicine and have nowhere to get it.
—posted by medicalmarijuanapatient

If the government were to at least decriminalize it, it would be easier to obtain. On another note, if it were to be legalized and taxed, the government would gain billions from it and subside the so called recession. I think the [Santa Fe Institute of Natural Medicine] cares more about the money and glamour than the needs of the patients. The government and the dispensaries should keep in mind that higher costs [don't] eliminate the black market and may cause patients to look to the black market for their medicine. I believe Compassion Clubs would be a better idea. Someone needs to open a dispensary here in Las Vegas. They also fail to realize that so many "hobby gardeners" have become self-learned expert botanists on the plant and have contributed so much to the overall genetics that the ones with the degrees are left clueless. I myself wonder where SFINM obtained the seeds from, being that they can't be shipped to the US. I think a small dispensary in Las Vegas would be the answer. It would take care of the patients' needs and definitely not to where it would cost $400 an ounce.
—posted by outlook1

[Health Secretary] Alfredo Vigil, you need to pull your head out and realize you don't know what you are talking about and step down and let someone qualified take over. You repeatedly turn down conditions approved by a board of eight doctors. Cannabis should be used before any synthetic drug, which you can overdose on or become addicted to very easily. You are ruining our society by prescribing other drugs and not allowing cannabis. Stop!!!!!!!!!!! there are people out there suffering; don't you care?? Doesn't look that way.
—posted by chance

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