Western Standard

The Shotgun Blog

« Pierre Lemieux: The most dangerous consumer product | Main | Is Barack Obama a Marxist? »

Monday, April 14, 2008

Break the costly government med-pot monopoly

938022marijuanaposters_2 Someone call the Competition Bureau! A monopoly provider is gouging healthcare consumers on their medicine.

It was reported today in the Calgary Sun that Health Canada is charging medical marijuana users a 1500% mark-up on pot produced by Prairie Plant Systems, the government contractor responsible for growing government-certified marijuana at an abandoned copper-zinc mine site in Flin Flon, Manitoba.

While the Competition Act doesn’t explicitly prohibit price gouging, the Bureau says that “high prices are a concern under the Act when they are the result of anti-competitive conduct.” And there is nothing more anti-competitive than a government monopoly.

But don’t bother making that call to the Competition Bureau complaint line. Governments are exempt from the Competition Act, which means medical marijuana users will have to look elsewhere for price relief and quality medicine.

Jason Wilcox of Victoria looks to the “illegal underground” for his medical marijuana, which he uses to treat nausea and pain. (He calls the costly government-certified marijuana “crap.”) But until its legal to grow marijuana, medical users like Wilcox will face high prices and the risk of violence in the black market.

Another source of THC-based therapeutics (THC is the active ingredient in marijuana) may come from Cannasat Therapeutics. Cannasat is developing cannabinoid-based pharmaceutical products that could provide an alternative to smoking marijuana. Led in part by media legend Moses Znaimer, Cannasat incorporated in 2004 and is still in phase one of their clinical trials, which means a product won’t be on the market for a long time.

According to a national survey conducted by Maritz Research, “80 per cent of Canadians believe that adults should be allowed to legally use medical marijuana if recommended by a physician.”

When it comes to the health benefits of medical marijuana, I'm a sceptic. But if the government is going to make an exemption in the law for medical marijuana use, they should also allow a free market solution for the supply of marijuana.

Posted by Matthew Johnston on April 14, 2008 | Permalink


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Break the costly government med-pot monopoly:


Is there any more questions as to why marijuana is still illegal in Canada...? Colice !

Legalize the dam thing before putting more great people in jail for "not being sick" while smoking (not your) weed.

What a joke this country is.
This might be "funny" now but...the more you educate yourself on fascism, the less you laugh.

Posted by: Marc | 2008-04-14 5:15:27 PM

"Jason Wilcox of Victoria looks to the “illegal underground” for his medical marijuana, which he uses to treat nausea and pain"

I do the same from time to time to treat the nausea and pain caused by our idiotic government.

There is no reason to risk violence from the underground dealers, there are college kids and mom and pop ops selling it in a more gentile way to put gas in their cars and food on their tables.

Wise up Harper, the time has come to stop the bullshit. People want to be free to live their lives as they want to. In the adult world ... and yes some of us are adults, pot is harmless and even helpful to many.

Consider that if pot was as difficult to produce as say Prozac, it would be legal and Squib or some such would be selling it for 20 bucks a joint. That's why it's not legal folks.

If the right folks can't make billions on it and it the government can't control it ... then you can't have it.

Posted by: John West | 2008-04-14 5:56:30 PM

And I thought the USA was the country who had it all wrong when it comes to marijuana medically or personally. (forget Saudi Arabia and all the mideast countries, they're all messed up anyway, they should use some of there own Afgani heroin and OD out of this world.) Which is an immpossability on Cannabis. Opiates are painfully addictive you won't die but you will want to, whereas cannabis is not addictive, I smoked it daily for 27 years then quit due to boredom and I suffered no withdrawal effects at all. My sleep cycle wasn't even disturbed. whereas I did heroin for 3 days straight and went through terribly painful withdrawals. I guess Sen Tom Harkin (D-Ia., as well as the Feds) is wrong you can't lump marijuana in with heroin, cocaine and meth simply because they are physically addictive (moreso with opiates than any other drug) and cannabis/marijuana is not addictive. If anyone feels any withdrawal effects from cannabis they are confusing some other mental or physical problem. Fact: Cannabis is not addictive it is extremely theraputic. end of fact.

Posted by: Jeff | 2008-04-14 7:41:21 PM

For those interested in bidding, this is the entry from MERX:


Posted by: Tim | 2008-04-15 6:25:37 AM

I'm not sure it's a good idea, Tim.
Those who loose the bid might receive a visit from those moustache people.

Posted by: Marc | 2008-04-15 10:18:38 AM


You have it right. Very funny.

Posted by: John West | 2008-04-15 10:36:31 AM

pot's medical efficacy is without question. the science is well-documented and widely available, but not in the mainstream media.

Recent laboratory science even shows cannabis to have cancer fighting properties in that it stimulates the body's production of TIMP-1, which protects healthy cells from cancer invasion.


Posted by: Russell Barth | 2008-04-15 2:19:03 PM

The pros and cons of marijuana, medical or otherwise, is irrelevant. If someone chooses to eat fries, not excercise, smoke pot, or watch too much TV, is not my business. Anyone who thinks otherwise wishes to impose their beliefs on others.

Posted by: TM | 2008-04-15 10:54:50 PM

Dear North Americans,
Why not allow Marc Emery, Michelle Rainey, and Greg Williams to overgrow this continent with cannabis as they have so graciously attempted to do. The only thing that is keeping them from doing this seems to be the government of North America and luckily for BC3 fans the government is nothing more than other individuals with their own beliefs, interests, and ambitions. Are their beliefs, interests, and ambitions different than mine in the sense that they can not be influenced? I see no reason to believe that this is true. So all that needs to be accomplished in order for the BC3 to be granted the freedom to over grow the world with cannabis is for some individuals to choose to pursuade other individuals in the North American government to allow it to happen. Wouldn't that be a good alternative to sending them to their deaths in US Prison?

Posted by: Jack McGuirk | 2008-04-16 12:01:38 AM

I have been advocating for the past year to try and get Health Canada to cover the cost of vaporizers for marijuana patients. That's where there focus should be. Preventing harm from smoking it. Marijuana is the only thing that works for me, but I don't need the trade off of one chronic disorder for another. My blog has good personal responses from Jack Layton, Dana Larsen and Lt. Gov. Onley, as well as Libby Davies. I also have studies on the Volcano vaporizer.

Posted by: Mary Crow | 2008-04-22 1:37:33 AM

The comments to this entry are closed.