View Full Version : Terror Pot. Far Out, Man.

Keith Millea
11-19-2010, 05:50 PM
Well it's friday,and time for a good chuckle.

11.19.10 - 10:30 AM
Terror Pot. Far Out, Man.

by Abby Zimet
Over 250 federal, state and local officials carried out a counter-terrorism drill (http://www.redding.com/news/2010/nov/17/practice-makes-safety/)in Northern California wherein "Red Cell" terrorist pot growers planted a "bomb," took "hostages," and "commandeered" a major dam to "free" an imprisoned comrade. The exercise took 18 months to plan and cost $500,000. Marijuana advocates (http://stopthedrugwar.org/chronicle/2010/nov/18/federal_and_state_police_conduct)thought it was kinda stupid. No word if the "terrorists" were giggling as they worked.


Keith Millea
11-19-2010, 05:59 PM
http://stopthedrugwar.org (http://stopthedrugwar.org;/)

Northern California pot growers bomb a car and a bus, then take over Shasta Dam in a bid to free an imprisoned comrade. It sounds like the plot to a very cheesy Grade-B thriller, but it was actually the premise for a day-long terrorist attack drill conducted by 20 state, local, and federal law enforcement agencies Wednesday.

http://stopthedrugwar.org/files/imagecache/300px/shasta_dam_fullsize.jpg Shasta Dam (courtesy US Bureau of Reclamation)

According to an account published in the local paper the Redding Record Searchlight (http://www.redding.com/news/2010/nov/17/practice-makes-safety/), the Shasta Dam scenario had the "Red Cell" pot grower/terrorists blowing up the car and bus to create a distraction and then taking over the dam. Holding three people hostage, the terrorist pot growers then threaten to flood the Sacramento River by opening the flood gates unless their imprisoned comrade is freed.

The drill was part of the US Bureau of Reclamation's Critical Infrastructure Crisis Response Exercise Program, which started in 2003. It identified six dams, including Shasta, the nation's second largest, as possible terrorist targets. Similar exercises took place at Utah's Flaming Gorge Dam in 2003, Washington's Grand Coulee Dam in 2005, and Hoover Dam on the Arizona-Nevada border in 2008. But none of those exercises identified pot growers as the putative terrorists.

According to bureau spokesperson Sheri Harral, the drill took 18 months of planning and cost the bureau $500,000. The other emergency and law enforcement agencies that participated paid their own expenses.

As of press time, Harral had not returned a Chronicle call asking why marijuana growers were selected as the terrorists. Northern California is home to thousands of pot growers, many of them doing it legally under the auspices of California's medical marijuana law. There are no known incidents of pot farmer terrorist attacks on critical infrastructure.

Dale Gieringer, head of California NORML (http://www.canorml.org/) and an observer of the state marijuana scene for decades, told the Chronicle he was unaware of any California pot grower terrorist cells—ever. "No, never," he said.

Nor was he impressed with the pot grower as terrorist scenario. "That was so stupid," he sighed. "I don't know what inspired it. I can see the need to do better pat downs for air travelers to make sure they're not holding joints in their underpants, but this? It sounds like something some yahoo red county sheriff would dream up."

Neither was the Marijuana Policy Project (http://stopthedrugwar.org/chronicle/2010/nov/18/www.mpp.org) amused. "This is a classic example of law enforcement's utterly inaccurate stereotype of who is involved with marijuana," said the group's communications director, Mike Meno. "For decades, they have villianized users and people involved in the industry to such an extent that they now equate them with terrorists. It might be laughable," he said, "but it gives us real insight into the drug warrior mentality and what they think of marijuana people."

http://stopthedrugwar.org/files/imagecache/300px/o_reefer_madness_wsdw1936-thumb-250x187.jpg "Red Cell" plotter? No, just more Reefer Madness

"The whole idea that they would equate growers with terrorism is absurd and insulting," sputtered NORML (http://www.norml.org/) founder Keith Stroup. "This is too ignorant to take seriously. It's hard to imagine that in this time of fiscal crisis, someone would have the nerve to propose spending money on such a ludicrous exercise. My goodness! Of all the potential violent criminals out there, the idea that they would focus on pot growers shows that this is a political game," he said.

"People will be laughing about this for decades," Stroup continued. "You have almost half the people in California voting for marijuana, and on the other hand, this. It's hard to believe this is going on.

At least, they could have called it the "Green cell."

Redding, CA United States

Jan Klimkowski
11-19-2010, 07:03 PM
Keith - fantastic. :canabis:

The drill was part of the US Bureau of Reclamation's Critical Infrastructure Crisis Response Exercise Program, which started in 2003.

I beg your pardon. Volkland Security in its pompous mode. :viking:

Terror Pot is like a surreal flight of fancy in Pynchon's Reagan-era Vineland, published in 1990, which explored the deep, largely unacknowledged, power and psychological structures of the Counterculture and the dark shadow of the secret detention camps of REX 84.

From The Satirist's review of Vineland:

The Reagan-Bush Repression: The War on Drugs

The War on Drugs in Vineland is shown to be the latest chapter of the government's Repression, which stretches far into the past, but grows in intensity over time. It is here that Pynchon is politically engaging, for how many novelists have been willing to address this perpetual war against civil liberties? Many find it difficult even to criticize the War on Drugs, perhaps because the "debate" has been framed in such a way that those opposed to it are seen as condoning drug use. The mainstream press joins the chorus of praise for drug busts, instead of discussing the loss of civil liberties, or criticizing government excesses.

The CAMP (Campaign Against Marijuana Production) offensive of the government is disturbingly portrayed. In the past Zoyd was set-up by Hector with a huge monolith of pot planted in his house. The War on Drugs is so prone to abuse by police power, precisely because mere possession of controlled substances is an offense, and so easy to orchestrate, to “plant the evidence.” Its villains, notably Brock Vond, are irrational tools of the powerful.

The victims of the War on Drugs are people like Zoyd, an average doper of the Sixties, depicted as an honest, hard-working caring father and musician, who smokes pot all the time. Zoyd even builds his own house, bit by bit over the years, only to have it confiscated by the government under civil RICO. After he is framed for growing marijuana, he seeks legal counsel, and is told:

“What about innocent ’till proven guilty’?”

“That was another planet, think they used to call it America, long time ago, before the gutting of the Fourth Amendment. You were automatically guilty the minute they found that marijuana growing on your land.”

“Wait — I wasn’t growin’ nothin’.”

“They say you were. Duly sworn officers of the law, wearing uniforms, packing guns, bound to uphold the Constitution, you think men like that would lie?” (360)

Not only does the government frame suspects, bribe informants, burn marijuana plants, seize property, the final irony is that they are a ultimate source of drugs. Agent Roy Ibble, tells Flash that:

notice how cheap coke has been since ’81?…Harken unto me, read thou my lips, for verily I say that wheresoever the CIA putteth in its meathooks upon the world, there also are to be found those substances which God may have created but the U.S. Code hath decided to control. Get me? Now old Bush used to be head of CIA, so you figure it out? (354)

The “you figure it out” recalls DL’s admonition to Prairie about the detention centers, to “check it out.”

So the War on Drugs in Vineland is shown as a perpetual attack by a corrupt government upon its people. Agent Ibble is even seen gambling with government money.

Although Pynchon cannot resist satirizing the counterculture along with its fascist oppressors, there is no doubt on which "side" he is on the struggle. Many of the main characters take drugs, including Zoyd's marijuana use, Takeshi's amphetamines, Ernie Triggerman and Sid Liftoff’s cocaine use, even Hub and Sasha's Benzedrine inhaler. (290) Vineland's cover shows a burning forest, suggestive of the government's attempt to stamp out marijuana use, a great nation’s war on a botanical species.

Vineland is the story of the repression of the counterculture, and the origins of the wider culture wars. The War on Drugs is central to the current repression, and an important battlefield on which civil libertarians must defend their liberties.


Keith Millea
11-19-2010, 07:34 PM
Thanks Jan,
Still haven't read my copy of Vineland.All of my books are boxed up and in storage from my recent move.It's #1 on my reading list,you betcha.

David Guyatt
11-19-2010, 09:59 PM
I'm tying to decide.

Should I toke one and ponder this far more deeply?

Or should I just, you know, toke one and be done with it? http://www.sherv.net/cm/emo/funny/2/rasta.gif

Or maybe do both and thereby fully engage in my citizens democratic right to further inflate the DEA's black budget via the "cut" they take from the sanctioned narcotics distributors protection racket?

Hard to decide. :smokin: :evil: