The son seems to have taken a prior (and extremely common) teenage interest in “agriculture” and turned it into an actual interest in agriculture. I suppose you could see it as sinister, but I don’t – I think anyone who wants to grow things, even pot, bad enough to move out to the desert and live off-grid is doing something worth taking seriously.
What’s interesting about this video is the observation by the son that because the black market has set the prices, this is an extremely lucrative project for him and his mother. I’ve seen estimates that suggest, for example, that the entire California budget shorfall could be closed within a year or two of legalization, simply through new tax revenues. Legalizing drugs would, eventually, reduce the premium on this – but it makes absolutely no sense to see farmers going out of business by the thousands, with no chance to share in the short-term high profitability of marajuana growth (in 2005, for example, marajuana was the single highest-value crop grown in the United States and we produce a *lot* of it).
In this sense, the drug laws operate not to reduce supply, not to get people to stop using – neither of those things has happened – all they do is make sure legitimate farmers can’t profit, but criminals can. On the other hand, if you grow food in the US, you are automatically under suspicion of daring to grow a fairly harmless high value crop – seriously, put out some row crops someday and wait for the low-flying helicopters to come over.
We can’t afford the war on drugs for a whole host of reasons – I’ve written about them at more length here: http://sharonastyk.com/2009/06/30/the-smart-course-or-the-stupid-one-why-legalizing-drugs-now-is-just-common-sense/. California seems to be gradually heading towards legalization, and that’s a good thing. The truth is that we need more farmers – and we need them to be able to grow high value crops already in circulation. If you could make drugs go away by criminalizing them, we’d have done it already. So why screw farmers (again)?