The federal government continues its war on business, often in the name of the War on Drugs.
Lynnette Shaw owned Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana in Fairfax, California. For 15 years she sold pot to customers who had clearance from a doctor.
Medical Marijuana is legal in California, as it is in 16 other states. That didn't matter to the feds, who shut her down in December.
In 2009, the Department of Justice sent a memo to all U.S. Attorneys that emphasized that they, "... should not focus federal resources... on individuals whose actions are in clear and unambiguous compliance with existing state laws providing for the medial use of marijuana."
Before that, President Obama said, "I'm not going to be using Justice Department resources to try to circumvent state laws on this issue."
But this fall, U.S. Attorneys held a press conference in Sacramento to make it clear that they will enforce federal law over state law.
Shaw's business was not just legal under state law, but the community actively supported her. Fairfax's mayor wrote Melinda Haag, the U.S. Attorney for Northern California, that "The Marin Alliance has been a model."
The town council unanimously passed a resolution in favor of Marin Alliance.
Haag stated that marijuana dispensaries like Marin Alliance are dangerous to children because they are near places where children gather. Shaw's dispensary was near a baseball field, but the Planning Commission for the town of Fairfax, "... found no material instances in which Marin Alliance's business had interfered with Little League Operations or posed a risk to youth."
Shaw never had trouble with crime. "We had never any violent incidents. In fact, because I could call the police, all the thugs and ruffians, they went away...Call the police; take away the bad guys, like any other business."
The state legalized it, the town liked it, but federal officials, many of whom once smoked marijuana themselves, shut it down.
Entrepreneurs, sick people, and harmless recreational drug users are punished because zealots will not give up on a failed policy.
This Week's Show -- July 10, 2014
CENSORSHIP AT CBS: Investigative reporter Sharyl Attkisson has a similar story. She explains why she left CBS after it became "harder and harder to get stories on television" that criticized this government and "any powers that be."
IS STOSSEL BIASED?: Years ago, journalist Howard Kurtz criticized me for not being objective. I said it's impossible for any journalist to be completely objective. Now that Howard Kurtz is on Fox, we debate again.
THE OBJECTIVITY MYTH: Andrew Kirell of Mediaite.com says, "every journalist has a point of view and they don't just magically check it the minute they walk in the newsroom door."
NEW MEDIA: Reason TV's Remy Munasifi uses music videos and parodies to complain about things like politicians' spending. One of his latest parodies highlights the scandal surrounding the VA hospitals. Munasifi discusses his videos, which have gone viral on YouTube.
RETRO REPORT: It's great there's a new media organization called Retro Report, which reveals media hype of the past ("crack babies," America's landfill "crisis," the "superpredator," etc.) and corrects stories everyone in the media got wrong. I discuss the new show with its executive producer, Kyra Darnton.
REAL OR FAKE?: Sometimes people in the media say things that are so bizarre, you'd think they were made up. Kennedy of The Independents quizzes FoxBusiness.com's Kate Rogers, Fox Business host Charles Payne and me to see if any of us can tell which quotes are real, and which were made up by my staff.
MY TAKE: I used to report on lots of scares. CBS even ran an ad for me where someone called me a "guardian angel."
That's bunk. The only guardian angel is a free and open society. That's what allows innovation, gives people longer lives, and lifts billions out of poverty. But these gradual improvements aren't newsworthy. Scares and disaster make the news.
News is broken not just because we're biased but because most good and important news happens slowly.
9PM ET on Fox Business Network