Jun 142022
 

This weekend, Terrapin, a national marijuana giant, announced that they will be closing all of their operations in Michigan effective immediately.

Terrapin was one of the wannabe cannabis monopolists operating under the umbrella of the Michigan Cannabis Manufacturing Association. They are one of the many big money firms who thought they could waltz in, take over and rake in the cash while putting their competition out of business with government force.

They thought wrong.

Many individuals with business sense (or common sense) who have been in the cannabis industry for longer than a cup of coffee could see this coming a mile away. If the corporate cartel had any foresight, they could have taken simple supply and demand into account. Instead, they were too busy trying to gangrape the industry at warp speed to take a second and think straight.

When I founded Evergreen Management along with my partners in 2015, we fought the good fight to stabilize the medical marijuana industry. There was an attempt to regulate the caregiver system out of commission, and it was rapidly gaining momentum. We were able to insert ourselves in the process and throw a wrench into it. It’s what we do best. We gummed up the works, and the problematic bills in their initial form were killed.

The legislative process is never perfect, as a matter of fact it is always ugly and muddy. We eventually landed at compromise legislation that enacted some rules and regulations on the medical marijuana industry but none were too onerous and the industry could remain intact. That was a huge victory for us, and one that is often unheralded. We do not like to brag, but we put up the time, money, effort and capital to save the industry. We stepped up when it mattered most.

Another major project for Evergreen was  proposed legislation that would have capped Class C licenses. Some accused us of trying to institute protectionist measures and control the industry. But what we were really doing was trying to save the industry. Too many Class C licenses would allow for an overabundance of product, putting everybody in jeopardy. Without a cap, it would free up every greedy interest to come in and overproduce in an attempt to maximize their profits without taking anything else to concern.

If the proposed Evergreen reforms had gone into place, the caregiver system would have been protected, and there still would have been room for the big money players to come in and make money after legalization as well. Only, they would have had to innovate and provide products and services preferred by the consumers. They preferred the government-granted monopoly route. We remember what lawmakers dropped the ball and folded to the pressure. Shame on you for what your weakness has wrought on a noble industry.

While it would be easy and fun to shit on Terrapin and laugh about their immolation in Michigan, the unfortunate reality is that many people lost their jobs amidst a recession and massive inflation because of their failure. Many more will lose their jobs because of corporate greed and how it is enabled by our reprehensible and soulless elected officials of both parties. Lawmakers in Lansing refuse to pass legislation protecting the caregivers and putting caps on corporate raiders who want to come in and swallow up the industry. It is beyond sickening.

The Michigan Caregivers Association has sent a caregivers’ rights survey to all elected lawmakers and prospective lawmakers during this 2022 election cycle. The MCA wants to make sure that we get individuals into office who care about individual rights and want to save a sustainable industry from being cannibalized by Big Business. The MCA knows the recipe that will get Lansing to break: sustained public pressure and the possibility of losing their cushy jobs in the Capitol.

We learned during the Evergreen Management days that treating lawmakers like they are human beings, talking with them, educating them, supporting them, holding their hands, giving them pleasure rather than pain, is largely a dead end because there is always someone with a bigger checkbook coming in from down the block, and these political whores will get on their knees for whoever has the most money. This is the nature of politics, and every elected official in Lansing, with only exceedingly rare exceptions, falls into this category.

This is why caregivers, medical marijuana patients, and other advocates for this industry need to have the correct mindset. Our lawmakers do not want to learn about the healing nature of the cannabis plant and its transcendent power of the mind. Our lawmakers do not care about the negative aspects of prohibition and why it is a failed public policy that must be stopped in order to save lives. They only care about campaign contributions and getting re-elected. We cannot win the money game, but we can sure as hell make it more difficult for them to get re-elected by lobbying the public with the facts and the hard-hitting information that is being suppressed by the establishment.

The MCA’s tactics have worked at getting monopoly bills HB5300-02 stalled in the State House. The lobbyist agenda was exposed. The issue went from being about “public safety” to being about a crony corporate takeover. No mercy should be given while operating within this den of vultures. Only once we are feared will we be respected. Once we have cultivated that fear, the lawmakers will fall in line, and the caregivers shall be protected. This is the only model of success that is achievable. This is the only path toward victory, and I hope you will walk it alongside me.

Remember: These corporate cannabis kingpins will take down every small grower in their pursuit of the almighty dollar if we let them get away with it. They will blow the whole thing up because their indulgence is limitless. They will not stopped until there is a law in place stopping them, or if the public forcefully says no more. There is absolutely no reason why we should be gentle with these monsters, and the lawmakers who they control. We can sleep soundly at night only knowing that we used every tool at our disposal to win this battle. There is no honor in accepting defeat to the forces of pure evil. The time for war is now. Let’s be smart, let’s be cunning, let’s be ruthless, and victory shall be ours.

 

Viva la revolución,

Big George

Apr 262022
 

The Michigan Cannabis Manufacturers Association (MCMA), the “Big Weed” monopoly gang that is working to crush the medical marijuana industry in our state, has announced their new big lobbyist who will be working to realize their industry takeover.

After Steve “Dr. Evil” Linder was kicked to the curb (even though he is being kept in a nominal position in order escape public disgrace and humiliation), he has been replaced with Mark Fisk, a journalist turned political operative and communications expert. His firm, Byrum & Fisk, has handled communications for the MCMA for quite some time. Fisk will be taking an expanded role in the MCMA day-to-day operations after Linder failed. Essentially, Linder will be sat in the corner and emasculated in shame while Fisk really runs the show.

As I have frequently noted, Linder was the dark money pimp tugging at the strings of the corrupt Republican Party establishment for many years. Linder was wheeling and dealing with the likes of incest-accused scoundrel Lee “Coke and Hookers” Chatfield, helping Chatfield and his GOP partners make it rain nightly at various gentleman’s clubs on the 8 Mile strip. Fisk represents the other side of the political sewer in Lansing, serving at the pleasure of various Democrats.

Fisk was communication director for U.S. Senator Gary Peters when he served in the state senate during the early 2000s. He also served as press secretary for former Congressman David Bonior and was the political director for the majority caucus when the Democrats ran the state house after the 2006 midterm elections. He is renowned for his connections and his pull within state Democrat politics. He served as a spokesman for Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer as recently as last year. He will no doubt be leveraging his deep connections in his attempt to crush the caregivers.

>You see, the MCMA thought that Linder and his avalanche of dark money could grease the wheels and get the legislation destroying the caregiver through while we were all sleeping. This did not work. We rose up. We brought the pain to lawmakers who were dancing with the devil known as Linder, and scared them off from supporting the gangster monopoly legislation. Now, they are trying a softer and gentler approach. They are going to work Democrat lawmakers and try to pull the wool over their eyes. There will be a new song and dance from this Fisk character, but we will not fall for it.

“We look forward to continuing our work with Stephen and the MCMA over the coming months to help ensure all Michigan patients and adult-use customers have access to safe, tested and high-quality cannabis products,” Fisk said in the MCMA press release announcing his hire. “Working together, we will continue to advocate in a bipartisan way for consumer and product safety and entrepreneurship in Michigan’s burgeoning regulated cannabis industry.”

Fisk is attempting to leverage his former work as a communications consultant for Proposal 1 in 2008, which was approved in an overwhelming margin by the voters to enact the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act and create the compassionate caregiver system, to dupe the public. Fisk may have done the right thing then, but then he sold his soul and went over to the dark side. He has been working with the MCMA for many months as they have worked to destroy everything that is good about the medical marijuana industry, pushing dishonest messaging in an attempt to enact a large-scale power grab. Fisk is a bad actor and cannot be trusted.

Do not trust any of the public relations spin doctoring that will come out of the MCMA in the days and weeks to come. Do not accept any half measures. If there are Democrats connected to Fisk who suddenly start spewing the MCMA talking points, they must receive an immense amount of pressure in order to make it clear to them that they have no alternative but to stand strong on behalf of the medical marijuana industry and the caregivers. Fisk will no doubt be working his Democrat connections to rally support on behalf of Big Weed bills HB5300-02, and we must stop his deceptions and his tricks before they take root.

Regardless of where you stand on the political spectrum (Republican, Democrat or anything between), Fisk is not a man worthy of respect or admiration. He is the mirror image of Linder, even though he hides his dastardly deeds under a smoother veneer. Fisk led the infamous Committee to Keep Pot out of Neighborhoods and Schools, an anti-legalization campaign that spread propaganda to the public in order to keep prohibition intact back in 2018. He called for Republicans to legalize marijuana as a ploy to keep the question off the ballot, which would have allowed the legislature to come back and rescind their measure at a later date. Fisk pushed this sneaky plot, which was ultimately rejected by Republicans, as a pretense to deny the people their voice in order to satisfy his lobbyist backers.

Fisk is especially dangerous because of his continued involvement with Governor Gretchen Whitmer. He has not only served as her spokesman, but also as a front man of her affiliated dark money groups. Fisk served as spokesman for the Progressive Advocacy Trust, which spent $2 million to help Whitmer get into the governor’s office. Another dark money group, Build a Better Michigan, was cited for major campaign finance violations back in 2018. It has since been rebranded and reformatted as “Road to Michigan’s Future” for the upcoming election cycle, and Fisk is once again involved in these efforts. It should therefore be assumed that Fisk will be using his influence with Whitmer to harm the rights of caregivers.

We cannot take our success and momentum for granted. Yes, we got Steve Linder removed after exposing him, sullying his reputation, and now his balls have been cut off and he has to get coffee for his replacement after losing so hard. But the monopolists will never stop. That is why the Michigan Caregivers Association is establishing a permanent presence in Lansing, and we will be expanding greatly next year. We know nothing short of eternal vigilance will preserve our rights. Fisk will be working the Democrat angle in a similar manner as Linder worked the Republican angle. But these lobbyists, once exposed, cannot stop the people once we are activated. We will fight, we will succeed, and we will go on the offense against this attempted siege of our sacred freedoms.

Sincerely,
Your Friend
George Brikho

Apr 212022
 


Friends,

I have some great news that should give hope to every activist in the state who cares about freedom, liberty, democracy and accountability in government.

The Michigan Cannabis Manufacturers Association (MCMA), the “Big Weed” lobbying firm that is working to destroy the medical marijuana caregivers system in order to seize a monopoly, has fired Steve Linder, the dark money kingpin who had been working behind the scenes to coerce lawmakers into passing HB 5300-02.

The Michigan Caregivers Association (MCA), a group which I founded to protect the rights of the caregivers, put Linder at the forefront of the policy debate – considered a controversial move at the time. We plastered his greasy mug all over ads, billboards, and made him the focus of the debate, comparing him to Dr. Evil from the Austin Powers flicks. Our heavy-handed tactics changed the debate from being centered around Linder’s phony talking points on “patient safety” to the Big Weed takeover that was actually taking place. We made a lot of noise, and it paid off.

Rats like Linder do not like when the light is shined directly upon them. They prefer to work in the shadows and make their dirty dealings without scrutiny. It’s called “dark money” for a reason. These lowlifes want their money and influence hidden from the public. We took the battle to the public. Linder cracked under the pressure. He made a fool of himself repeatedly. Lawmakers no longer wanted to be associated with him. His legacy is permanently tarnished as a result of our due diligence. The age of gangsters like Linder controlling the legislature are coming to an end.

The Michigan Caregivers Association claims the proverbial scalp of Linder. This is just the beginning. This is not an aberration. We are growing rapidly and building the infrastructure to expose the bad guys like never before. We put all other Linder wannabes on notice: You will be next. You will be pissed out of Lansing in disgrace just like Linder. You will be exposed, you will be righteously vilified, the public will view you as the pariah that you are, and then your Big Money backers will toss you out unceremoniously like a used condom from a strip club backroom session with Matt Hall, Lee Chatfield and taxpayer-funded escorts. 

We know that the MCMA and the wannabe cannabis monopolists are not throwing in the towel just because Linder is history. They will continue to agitate against small home growers, medicine providers, cancer patients, small business owners, and others who stand in the way of swelling their bottom line. MCMA board chair Shelly Edgerton is expected to take a more substantial role in the organization after Linder’s ouster. Edgerton, while certainly a less odious and grotesque figure than Linder, has the same establishment Republican and Lansing bureaucratic ties as Linder and is pushing for the same agenda. She wants to crush the little guy and pave the way for a monopoly. She will be thwarted as well.

It has been proven that the current testing regime is a joke and potentially-contaminated weed will always make its way on the shelves when the big players want to make profits. State regulators have focused on restricting caregiver product, and this has caused tremendous damage to the cannabis industry in Michigan already. Now, tons of inferior product are being flooded onto the streets, including contaminated flower, and the industry is in shambles. If this continues, the compassionate caregiver system that produces life-saving medicine for thousands of patients across the state will be crushed forever. This is economic terrorism by the corporate machine. It will not be tolerated. 

The Michigan Caregivers Association will enjoy this victory and this momentum we have built, but we will not take our success for granted. We know this is a never-ending fight to sustain our freedoms. If we take our eyes off the ball, that will allow the MCMA and their new henchwoman, Edgerton, to come closer to achieving their marijuana monopoly. Cannabis cannot become corporatized and corrupt like every other industry. This is the final frontier where the little guy can thrive in a free and fair market based on their ability to grow the best product. We demand a broad and shared prosperity. Nothing else is acceptable.

Be on the lookout for legislation that is in the works in Lansing that will prevent municipalities from adopting ready-made ordinances created by the MCMA and their cronies to destroy the caregivers at the local level, now that their monopoly bills have stalled in Lansing. We are going on the offense and beginning to roll out our Caregivers’ Bill of Rights that will give additional opportunities for superior caregiver product to be enjoyed by Michigan residents. Cannabis is now an unstoppable powerhouse, the nation’s #1 cash crop, and the individuals who put their lives on the line to create this essential industry ought to reap the full rewards of their blood, sweat and tears.

Keep fighting!

Your friend,

George Brikho

Please consider donating to the cause here.

Oct 222021
 

Friends,

I know there is a tremendous amount of uncertainty within the caregivers community due to the Linder monopoly bills and the threatening aspect of this cartel legislation that intends to wipe us all out.

I know you are worried about going back to the dark ages of prohibition, of being scared that a uniformed goon will show up and put a gun in your face for growing medicine. This is very understandable.

But we cannot give up.

The caregivers are the backbone of the Michigan economy, providing independent wealth that spans across many industries. It is not just the hydro stores like mine that rely on you to put food on our family’s plate. It is electricians, plumbers, carpenters, HVAC technicians, and so forth, and this money spreads into many other industries. 

Our economy is suffering, due to the pandemic, due to corruption, due to many reasons that I will not get into right now. By slowing down or shutting down due to fear, we not only give into the bad guys but also kill the engine that is keeping our country afloat during tough times.

This is why I implore all of you to continue your grows and continue producing medicine. They cannot come after us all. The people are on our side, and they are being alerted to the real problem. 

The real problem is Big Weed, the marijuana cartel, that would corporatize marijuana products. The caregivers system is based on relationships, sustained by the compassion of the grower. As everyone in the industry knows, there is an abundance of caregivers who will give marijuana away to cancer patients, epileptics, the pain stricken, and others who desperately need it FOR FREE!

Will that happen if the caregivers model is destroyed? Of course not, despite their assurances otherwise. They are trying to buy off medical patients with a proposed government subsidy, one that can be cut off at a moment’s notice, but that pittance is not worth selling out our freedom, our dignity and our self-respect.

I want to let the homegrowers know that myself, other business leaders, and the entire cannabis community are fighting for their rights. We are going to war with the monopolists everyday in Lansing. They know we are serious. We are hitting them with billboards, ads, calls and constant pressure to expose them. We are not lobbying the lawmakers, we are lobbying the PEOPLE against this takeover and the people’s eyes are opening. Nobody wants a corporate cannabis cartel.

We will come out victorious at the end of this. They were expecting that we would be celebrating post-legalization and relax, take our eyes off the ball, and allow this takeover to happen without much resistance. They have found that they were dead wrong. 

In the meantime, keep doing what you are legally allowed to do in our democracy through the Medical Marihuana Act of 2008. It is your constitutionally-protected freedom to grow medicine under the sensible regulations approved in overwhelming margin by the voters. Exercise your rights freely. We got your back.

Sincerely,

George Brikho

Oct 202021
 

Friends,

I have embarked upon a journey in recent months, through my organization, the Michigan Caregivers Association, fighting corruption in Lansing.

Sadly, there are members of both major political parties that are engaging in this illicit and unlawful process. Certain Republicans and Democrats are in on it and taking money from the bad guys to sell out the industry.

This is why House Bills 5300, 5301 and 5302 are moving at a lightning pace through the process. These monopoly bills have bipartisan support, with Democrats and Republicans down on their knees for reviled lobbyist Steven “Dr. Evil” Linder, the Chamber of Commerce, and other villains out to steal the marijuana industry from the caregivers, medical patients, small businesses, and other entities that have built it into an economic powerhouse.

This is a takeover by the interests that have opposed marijuana for decades. They fought for prohibition until they saw dollar signs after the marijuana industry started to take off. A great example of this phenomenon is former Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof, a Republican who opposed marijuana until he realized he could enrich himself through the industry. Then he whored himself out to the highest bidder while probably breaking the law while doing so.

Meekhof appointed Rick Johnson as chairman of the Michigan medical marijuana licensing board. As part of what appears to be an evident quid pro quo, Johnson gave three licenses to medical marijuana concerns that had bought off Meekhof. He admitted in emails that were obtained through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) that he was in communication with Johnson during the licensure process that ultimately favored Meekhof’s clients.

This seems to be in apparent violation of a 2016 law barring representatives of medical marijuana applicants from lobbying licensing board members. Meekhof’s clients, Chesaning Elite, Lapeer Infused and Power Play Sports 2, benefited from paying off Meekhof and his lobbying associates. Their licenses went from being denied to being approved. This is part of the same money-driven agenda of unfairness that is driving support for HB5301, HB5302 and HB5303.

A Detroit News article noted that Meekhof aligned “with the Michigan Chamber of Commerce on 93% of its top issues in 2017 and 2018.” It should come as no surprise that the Chamber, a crony-capitalist institution that lobbies for corporate dominance, was at most recent committee hearing lobbying for the Linder monopoly bills. It is such an incestuous network and they all work together in concert to preserve the corrupt system because they know it benefits them at our expense at the end of the day.

Keep in mind that this is not anything new. These revelations did not come out yesterday. This has been open knowledge for years. It has been widely reported since 2019 that one of the most prominent Republican leaders was involved in an apparent pay-to-play scheme to abuse the rules, in a possibly illegal but certainly immoral act, in order to create a marijuana monopoly. There has been no accountability from the attorney general on this issue as well.

It appears that the powers that be are looking the other way, even though these are Republicans acting in an obvious conflict of interest, in a blatantly corrupt manner, and not even attempting to hide it. Everyone is seemingly lined up at the same trough for the corporate special interests that want to dominate the marijuana industry. This whole incestuous system is incredibly immoral and disgusting, but that is only a reason to fight harder.

There are certainly a handful of Republicans and Democrats who stand for the caregivers against corruption, and God bless them. But there are far too few. This is why the Michigan Caregivers Association does not lobby our lawmakers based on their consciences or their good faith. It usually does not exist. We instead prefer to lobby the people, inform them on what their lawmakers are doing, and then force the legislators to deal with the fallout if they refuse to do what is right.

The Michigan Caregivers Association has set up a web portal making it very easy to oppose monopoly bills HB5301, HB5302 and HB5303 in Lansing. That portal can be accessed at mi-caregivers.com. For additional information, visit our main website where you can make donations to this noble cause and check out our Facebook page where there are daily updates about the fight to prevent a corporate monopoly and stop the Uniparty system from strangling our freedoms and suffocating our livelihoods.

Sincerely,

Your Friend,

George Brikho

Nov 172018
 

Image result for fake newsThere is so much corruption these days within our politics that it could be accurately described as Biblical. Whether it is the end of days or not, I fight for the future of my family, my community and this land that I love. I try to inspire others to fight as well because it’s the only way we can possibly escape this mess.

We have rooted out corruption before and we will do it again, despite the impediments made by corrupt public officials at every level. I like to keep the focus on local and state corruption because it is what directly affects our lives the most, and it is where we can make the biggest difference. Serving as a whistle-blower against local and state corruption is not always easy, as I recently discovered yet again in Bloomfield.

Appearing on ‘Tough Talk with Paul Taros,’ I spoke about what happened in Inkster to me and other dispensary owners. We were strong-armed by a gangster government. They wanted to extort us to do business in their town. These corrupt officials committed many crimes, documented in many audio recordings, and will pay the price in the court of law when this all said and done. This is happening in many other communities throughout Michigan as legalization becomes a reality. Although the people have spoken, government thugs never make the process easy.

Paul Taros, a friend of mine, is a liberty-minded community activist who recently ran for State House. He has diligently called out local corrupt officials in Bloomfield on his public access show for years. Public access is meant to be a constitutional right for citizens to use in order to spread the truth. It is supposed to be a means for us to communicate with each other and discuss important issues outside of the bounds of the corporate-dominated media. Although it is a small and often overlooked venue, it is nonetheless an important one.

The local tyrants of Bloomfield Township yanked Taros’ show off the air entirely, using my whistle-blowing appearance as the excuse to do so. General Manager Greg Kowalski made the decision to stomp on the constitutional rights of Taros in order to better control information throughout the city. Township Supervisor Leo Savoie, who is as corrupt as they come, is no doubt very happy about the muzzling of Taros. Corrupt Inkster Mayor Byron Nolen and corrupt Bloomfield Township Supervisor Leo Savoie may not be acquainted personally, but they certainly know how to protect each others’ scams.

This shows that every battle being waged at the federal level is also being waged at the state and local levels. The fake news maligns the President and stands in the way of making America great again, but that is just one example of many. Thousands of people are suffering because of these professional liars. When they aren’t using the airwaves to defame you personally, they are hampering your ability to get an opposing viewpoint out. Kowalski and Savoie run Bloomfield Community television in the same way the globalists run CNN: with an iron fist against the We the People!

There is a call for President Donald J. Trump to drain the swamp in Washington DC, but that is not nearly enough. There is a swamp not just in Lansing, but also in every community across the state and the country. Until each swamp is drained, America will never be free or great. This is where you need to get involved. It may seem like a daunting task, but we have the numbers on our side. Despite their institutional advantages, the bad guys are extremely unpopular, and we can outwork them to achieve success. We all must get off the couch and crush our local tyrants before more our our rights are violated.