This post is about the attitude of large corporates towards the laws of the countries in which they operate, eg the laws prohibiting cultivation of marijuana. (Click the image to go to an enlarged version in which the text is easier to read.)
Below are the last few paragraphs of a story entitled "How to spot the hallmarks of a 'hydro house'" (referring to hydroponically grown marijuana) published on July 26 in Sydney's Daily Telegraph:
Police have formed Strike Force Zambesi to combat the cultivation of cannabis across southwest Sydney.And here's the text of one of the "ads by google" that appeared below the story:
Since it was established in April last year, the strike force has shut down 136 hydroponic set ups and confiscated $53 million in cannabis.
Police have uncovered drug houses spanning Rosehill, Ashfield, Bankstown, Cabramatta, Fairfield, Green Valley and Campbelltown.
They have charged 51 people with 139 offences including drug cultivation, drug possession, fraud and electricity theft.
As well as the large amount of cannabis, officers have confiscated and destroyed hydroponic, electrical and lighting equipment as well as chemicals.
Some things to look for if you suspect a drug house in your area include increased security measures such as roller shutters, fences, guard dogs; locks on the electricity meter; condensation on windows; and large amounts of garbage.
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Whether or not marijuana should be legalised, the fact remains that cultivating, possessing, using or selling marijuana is against the law in Australia. So it seems a bit odd for that particular ad to appear in an Australian newspaper. In fact, you'd have to conclude that the Daily Telegraph is equally as concerned as Google is to ensure the content of ads is aligned with the laws of the land!
[My opinion BTW is that marijuana should be legalised. For starters, the hemp plant is a gift from the heavens especially in these times of ecological and environmental catastrophe. For thousands of years, people have been cultivating hemp to make excellent paper, rope, fabric and other stuff. Sure beats cutting down old-growth rainforest.
But for me, the killer argument emerges when you compare alcohol and marijuana. Drunk people tend to get loud, aggressive and violent. The opposite applies to people stoned on marijuana: they're happy to sit quietly in a corner listening to music.
Heavy alcohol use severely damages the brain and liver. Heavy marijuana use affects short term memory.
In many if not most countries, alcohol is legal and marijuana is not. Go figure.]
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