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Uruguay breaks the taboo
December 10, 2013 5:11 PM   Subscribe

Today Uruguay became the first country to legalize the growing, sale and smoking of marijuana.
posted by Tom-B (60 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite

 
Isn't it already legal in North Korea? As much as anything is ever legal there, at least.

Upon looking up firsthand reports, I'd call the evidence inconclusive.
posted by Copronymus at 5:25 PM on December 10, 2013


Colonia makes for a fun day trip from Buenos Aires.
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 5:29 PM on December 10, 2013 [2 favorites]


A doobieous achievement.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 5:31 PM on December 10, 2013 [41 favorites]


you are sentenced to life without parole in pun prison
posted by elizardbits at 5:34 PM on December 10, 2013 [20 favorites]


The punitentiary?
posted by jason_steakums at 5:44 PM on December 10, 2013 [40 favorites]


I knew weed see this day.
posted by GrammarMoses at 5:45 PM on December 10, 2013 [14 favorites]


1 million years dungeon!
posted by elizardbits at 5:50 PM on December 10, 2013 [7 favorites]


Let the Montevideo games begin!
posted by any major dude at 5:50 PM on December 10, 2013


I am picturing elizardbits as the Red Queen, decapitating us left and right.
posted by GrammarMoses at 5:52 PM on December 10, 2013 [6 favorites]


You guys are reminding me of this dead-on Onion report.
posted by zardoz at 5:52 PM on December 10, 2013 [2 favorites]


I am picturing elizardbits as the Red Queen, decapitating us left and right.

Well, something sure has her nose out of joint.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 5:55 PM on December 10, 2013 [4 favorites]


I'll pour her a cup of tea from this pot.
posted by GrammarMoses at 5:57 PM on December 10, 2013


Gay marriage, also legal in Uruguay as of this year, I believe.
posted by Sequence at 6:00 PM on December 10, 2013 [3 favorites]


She'll be fine. It's just tokin' resistance.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 6:00 PM on December 10, 2013 [12 favorites]


Uruyay!

I'm not doing this right, am I.
posted by Etrigan at 6:02 PM on December 10, 2013 [6 favorites]


If you want to read some local Uruguayan news about it, look here:

El Pais
El Espectador

Both links are in Spanish, but Google Translate does a passable job.

(They're also both really REALLY excited about their country qualifying for the World Cup, so you can get your fill of La Celeste news as well!)
posted by spinifex23 at 6:06 PM on December 10, 2013 [3 favorites]


Uruyay!

hip hip

hooruruguay
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 6:06 PM on December 10, 2013 [13 favorites]


"You might hear "Uruguay" and think of football, yerba mate, beef, tango or, now, marijuana. But this tiny country of just over 3 million people has a history of remarkable political reforms and a strong human rights ethos.

Just last year, Uruguay legalized same-sex marriage and abortion. It has long been at the forefront of progressive policies, being one of the first nations in the region to grant divorce rights for women in 1912, instituting the eight-hour workday in 1915 and including women's right to vote in its Constitution in 1917. It has never criminalized prostitution and has legally regulated it since 2002. In 2009, Uruguay granted adoption rights for same-sex couples and the legal right to choose one's own gender identity."

posted by gingerbeer at 6:10 PM on December 10, 2013 [37 favorites]


I ruguay, you ruguay, we all are gay for Uruguay.
posted by GrammarMoses at 6:11 PM on December 10, 2013 [7 favorites]


I've gone to Uruguay in my mind. Obv.
posted by GrammarMoses at 6:11 PM on December 10, 2013


As I tell my friends when I gush about Diego Forlan, Uruguay is Awesomeguay.

May need to wear my La Celeste shirt around town. Yes, in football, I follow the National Team of Uruguay. Have for years now. Now I have even more reasons to pay attention - and I wonder how their pot legalization process will compare to that of Colorado and Washington State.
posted by spinifex23 at 6:14 PM on December 10, 2013


And, not to interrupt the weed jokes, but Al Jazeera had a really good article today, too.
posted by gingerbeer at 6:16 PM on December 10, 2013 [6 favorites]


Name three reasons I should not move there tonight, Go.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 6:16 PM on December 10, 2013 [1 favorite]


Ganja believe this shit?
posted by Behemoth at 6:18 PM on December 10, 2013 [1 favorite]


Buzzfeed has 21 Reasons Why You Need To Move To Uruguay In 2014
posted by gingerbeer at 6:19 PM on December 10, 2013 [1 favorite]


Name three reasons I should not move there tonight, Go.

You need proof of an income source. You need proof of an income source. You need proof of an income source.

Also, the new pot legalization may not apply to you until you get citizenship, which takes a minimum of three years.
posted by localroger at 6:22 PM on December 10, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm holding out until they reinstate Alvaro Fernandez to the National Team. El Flaco needs another shot at international glory, and El Maestro Oscar Tabarez should realize that. (I have priorities!)
posted by spinifex23 at 6:23 PM on December 10, 2013


Name three reasons I should not move there tonight, Go.

1) It's late. You need your sleep.
2) Pot is now legal there, but Funyuns are not.
3) Uruguay may not actually exist. At least it's not on any map of America I can find.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 6:26 PM on December 10, 2013 [8 favorites]


One of the conservative networks was on at the gym and covering this and Colorado and Washington and one of the guys said, essentially, "Look, we said marijuana was bad for decades and if we come out and say we were wrong on that we'd have to reconsider everything and I am not comfortable with rethinking what's bad and wrong." Which was like a perfect encapsulation to the objections to MJ and many other things.

Anyway, 420 smoke weed everyguay.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 6:26 PM on December 10, 2013 [38 favorites]


I have been a fan of Uruguay for some years now, for all kinds of reasons. I hope this policy helps to show the world that marijuana prohibition is wasteful and counter-productive.
posted by erlking at 6:27 PM on December 10, 2013 [2 favorites]


At least it's not on any map of America I can find.

You need the one prefixed "South."
posted by localroger at 6:27 PM on December 10, 2013


One time I won a middle school geography bee by guessing Uruguay. That is my Uruguay story.
posted by jason_steakums at 6:36 PM on December 10, 2013 [3 favorites]


If you listen closely, you can hear the bells of freedom. Bong, bong, bong!
posted by Benny Andajetz at 6:54 PM on December 10, 2013 [13 favorites]


!
posted by Jacqueline at 6:54 PM on December 10, 2013


Isn't this sort of thing already legal in Washington?
posted by KokuRyu at 7:24 PM on December 10, 2013


Name three reasons I should not move there tonight, Go.

Ross Packingham has three - The frequency of U in their name, that soccer incident and their coat of arms.
posted by unliteral at 7:32 PM on December 10, 2013


Meanwhile, the Denver Post has appointed its first pot editor, the slightly eponysterical Ronaldo Baca. (MeFi's own? I do hope so.)

Among the highlights of that piece, which include the Post's HR line on getting righteously monged - not in the office, and if you have to do it in the course of your duties, don't drive over anyone in a hazed GTA:Denver moment - is the Q&A. It covers the obvious ("Do you partake?") and some discussion about what correspondents will be appointed to help fill out the Post's new section.

"Q: Will you hire a pot critic?
A: We are absolutely hiring a freelance pot critic. And a freelance pot advice columnist. And a freelance video game writer. "

I hope this revelation will lead to a general rejigging of video game review scores... "4/10 straight, but after a blaze... 11..."
posted by Devonian at 7:42 PM on December 10, 2013 [3 favorites]


"that soccer incident..."

In Uruguay, munchies get YOU!
posted by Chitownfats at 7:52 PM on December 10, 2013 [1 favorite]


so Uruguay is the Langoliers is what you're saying
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 8:06 PM on December 10, 2013 [1 favorite]


gingerbeer: "You might hear "Uruguay" and think of football, yerba mate, beef, tango or, now, marijuana. But this tiny country of just over 3 million people has a history of remarkable political reforms and a strong human rights ethos."

A lot of positive/interesting things have happened under Mujica. On the other hand, Uruguay only returned to civilian rule in the mid-80s, which makes me raise an eyebrow a bit at "history of remarkable political reforms."
posted by Chrysostom at 8:06 PM on December 10, 2013


My firm has an office in Uruguay, and have recently had one of our employees (which sounds cold while typing...he's a friend now) come to Dallas to learn our Architecture ways.

I had a client meeting in Austin last week and decided to make the drive instead of the inane Southwest flight. The drive down 35 was pleasant, we talked about Thanksgiving and what he did, which is a whole other story, but he filled me in on life in Montevideo.

He explained that he has lived in multiple places in Europe and the US but Montevideo always seemed like home. It is ridiculously expensive there. Think like 8.00 a gallon for gasoline and electronics over twice to three times what we pay in the US. His laptop was dying and he was excited about checking out stores to get a replacement.

On the way back to Dallas, I took him through the hill country on 281 through Marble Falls and Lampassas. We were both exhausted, and continued to chat. He commented that Uruguay looked alot like the hill country, and the vibe in Texas was similar but not as laid back. We talked about drug legalization among other things, and his attitude was...meh...alcohol is legal.. who cares...I agreed.

I have nothing to add to this thread other than I'm visiting my new friend there. For sure.
posted by Benway at 8:14 PM on December 10, 2013 [7 favorites]


TODOS LOS DÍAS
posted by save alive nothing that breatheth at 8:33 PM on December 10, 2013 [2 favorites]


Colonia makes for a fun day trip from Buenos Aires.

Given that Colonia is basically UNESCO-listed liquid Xanax already, a very light toasting might well render it an earthly paradise. Just hope it doesn't turn into a 'weed tourism' destination.
posted by monocyte at 8:33 PM on December 10, 2013 [3 favorites]


Potomac Avenue: "Name three reasons I should not move there tonight, Go."

Because you're not entirely sure which wobbly-bordered South American country it is without looking on Wikipedia, and then when you do look on Wikipedia, you go, "Huh. I could have sworn it bordered on Paraguay."

Also congratulations Uruguay on your recent large investment in college student tourism!
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 9:07 PM on December 10, 2013 [1 favorite]


I love it when Uruguay and Paraguay play each other in soccer.

The matches are guayt.
posted by spinifex23 at 12:16 AM on December 11, 2013 [3 favorites]


He kicks! He punts!
He lights up all the blunts!
Luis Suarez! Luis Suarez!
posted by PenDevil at 12:48 AM on December 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


There are some European countries like Spain in which possession and growing marijuana for personal use are legal. Spain has growing clubs that all grow their plants together and hire gardeners, etc., eliminating like all the work involved. Outright legalization sounds better for commercial experimentation though, ala baked bakeries.
posted by jeffburdges at 2:06 AM on December 11, 2013


The penitentiary?

aka "the joint"
posted by reprise the theme song and roll the credits at 2:07 AM on December 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Just an aside, there is a law against holding a security clearance if you've done any illegal substances in the last year or two.

Anyone applying usually knows they cannot continue doing illegal substances, but merely telling em' about recent past use disqualifies you.

As I understand it, the armed services work around this, either by telling the soldier to lie, or by assigning them unclassified tasks. Ain't like they're gonna quit!

There are no such options at the NSA, CIA, etc. however, so if you know any young math, physics, comp sci., etc. geniuses then pass em' the bowl. ;)
posted by jeffburdges at 2:45 AM on December 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


You know what you are
Do you know what you are?
Louis Suarez
Does anyone really know what they are, I mean when you get down to it, makes you think.
posted by fullerine at 3:10 AM on December 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


Just an aside, there is a law against holding a security clearance if you've done any illegal substances in the last year or two.

Anyone applying usually knows they cannot continue doing illegal substances, but merely telling em' about recent past use disqualifies you.

As I understand it, the armed services work around this, either by telling the soldier to lie, or by assigning them unclassified tasks. Ain't like they're gonna quit!

There are no such options at the NSA, CIA, etc. however, so if you know any young math, physics, comp sci., etc. geniuses then pass em' the bowl. ;)


The FEDCAS clearance FAQ makes it pretty clear that there is no hard and fast rule about this; it's a function of the severity of the drug, the nature of the use, and the amount of time since you last used it. If you want to keep those young math, physics, and comp sci geniuses out of the NSA you'd be better off passing them a syringe than a bowl.
posted by Going To Maine at 7:47 AM on December 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


The Uruguayan law looks like it specifically discourages cannabis tourism. Just come to Washington instead next year!
posted by Joe Chip at 8:08 AM on December 11, 2013


In Uruguay, pot is priced less like a rare herb and more like a common weed.
Just goes to show you the insane profits that accrue from the US war on drugs.

From the Al Jazeera article:

"Mujica says the law will snatch the black market from drug traffickers, the drug war’s biggest profiteers. To do so, the government would sell higher-quality marijuana at a lower price: $1 per gram, as opposed to the $1.40 per gram for black-market marijuana that comes primarily from Paraguay. By doing do, Uruguay would tap into the marijuana black market, estimated at $40 million a year, and drastically reduce the $80 million the state spends annually to combat drugs."
posted by etherist at 8:22 AM on December 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


I assure you they have required a year long period of abstinence for an interviewee who used marijuana at most once per year over a couple year period and had never purchased marijuana. Any experimentation with marijuana delays a security clearance process by about six months from last usage, even if the drug was legal where taken.

Actually, I'd suggest passing them magic mushrooms or MDMA because shrooms are the safest recreational drug and MDMA is quite safe and either would significantly increase any clearance delays. You might offer em' speed and call it an Erdős party, although that's considered more dangerous than marijuana.

In practice, youngsters who know both math and software should find another interesting job before those six months run out. And it's IDA that hires the "best & brightest" for classified work, not the NSA. NSA jobs sound extremely similar to what Facebook, etc. do, albeit perhaps more varied.
posted by jeffburdges at 8:48 AM on December 11, 2013


But do they have a Bong Recreation Area?
posted by MtDewd at 9:06 AM on December 11, 2013 [1 favorite]


I assure you they have required a year long period of abstinence for an interviewee who used marijuana at most once per year over a couple year period and had never purchased marijuana.

Sounds like you have some anecdata! I have some similar anecdata that yield an opposite conclusion.

Any experimentation with marijuana delays a security clearance process by about six months from last usage, even if the drug was legal where taken.

This was covered in the FEDCAS stuff, but would still seem to be a pretty low bar. That is to say, you smoke up, you take a lie detector test the next day, and in five months plus 30 days you'd have yr. clearance. It is in no way prohibitive.
posted by Going To Maine at 9:30 AM on December 11, 2013


The FEDCAS clearance FAQ

That list is fascinating, especially the mortgage question. Also I can't decide if I actually believe their claim that they have no investigators permanently assigned abroad.
posted by elizardbits at 9:36 AM on December 11, 2013


Also I can't decide if I actually believe their claim that they have no investigators permanently assigned abroad.

Bear in mind that these aren't criminal investigators, or even like PI-type investigators. They're really more interviewers, and their mandate isn't so much trawling through people's trash as it is just basic vetting to make sure that the obvious criminals and lunatics don't make it through the clearance process. The vast majority of people who become spies do so well after they've been cleared, for reasons that didn't exist when they got their clearance (divorce, money, radicalization).
posted by Etrigan at 9:43 AM on December 11, 2013


The name Uruguay means river of the beautiful birds.
The president drives himself around in an old VW bug.
Why would you not want to go there?
posted by charlesminus at 10:31 AM on December 11, 2013


Uruyay!

I'm not doing this right, am I.


So close. Unfortunately, the correct answer was 'Urujay'.
posted by FatherDagon at 11:28 AM on December 11, 2013 [2 favorites]


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