In the 60s, the only people to believe that marijuana would save the world were the hippies. The world scoffed at them openly, calling them burnouts and even degenerates. Today, it appears that those so-called “lazy hippies” just might be onto something: under scrutiny, it appears that marijuana just might save the economy if and when legalization is done right.
States Supporting Marijuana
The list of States where marijuana is not only allowed (either for medical or recreational use), but taxed for income is growing:
- North Dakota… and more
Although not all of these states have legalized marijuana for recreational use, all are currently reaping the benefits. For example, Colorado’s total tax revenue from marijuana in 2015 amounted to a record-breaking $125 million or more — enough to begin lifting the state up from its previous slump.
On a national scale, the marijuana movement also seems to be fiscally sensible. CNCB estimates that the industry “will balloon to $21 billion by 2021.” To compare, the U.S. Publishing industry cleared $28 billion in 2015, while oil and gas refineries made just $18 billion dollars. The gun and gun manufacturing industry made $13.5 billion dollars for Americans. Even the video game industry, one of the most quickly-growing sources of cash for tech companies, was on par with marijuana, making approximately $23 billion dollars throughout the year.
What all of this means is that marijuana, a steadily-growing industry, could potentially continue to blossom into a $100 billion plus industry over the next 20 years. The sheer volume already demands attention; to ignore it is to light that potential cash on fire and watch it burn away.
Marijuana revenue could pay for healthcare, social services, education, job creation, the alleviation of poverty, and an endless list of potential societal issues plaguing America for the last 50 years.
Other Economical Benefits
No matter what you think about recreational use, marijuana is, indeed, a cash cow. States that have legalized either medicinal or recreational use are seeing widespread financial and economic benefits, and not just with regard to cash income or taxes. The industry also creates jobs–some of them in areas where jobs may be scarce.
From running dispensaries to cultivating government-monitored marijuana for cancer patients and even regarding the production of textile hemp, legalizing marijuana does so much more than get people high on a lazy Saturday afternoon.
Think all cannabis-related jobs are that of dealers or pushers? Think again. CNBC estimates that these five jobs net between $75,000 and $100,000 per year. Considering that the industry as a whole shows more job growth by 2020 than the manufacturing industry, that makes it one of the healthiest industries for job prospects in America today.
Savvy finance analysts know the time-proven formula by heart: more jobs = more money into the economy. Everything else aside, that could be America’s saving grace all by itself.