Tilray, Tweed, Mettrum, CannTrust, Green Organic Dutchman Holdings, RedeCan Pharm and Delta 9 Bio-Tech wrote a letter to the government asking them to discard the idea of strict tobacco-style marketing and advertising.

They fear that while they may be subject to plain-packaging, the “black market” at the dispensaries will be free — absent state coercion — to promote themselves and their products.

The LPs are concerned that their multi-millionaire warehouses have been a mistake. That producing an agricultural product like a pharmaceutical makes no financial sense, especially when the competition is free from strict Harper-era rules.

The LPs may have the stock-market, but the odds are against a bull market in 2018. The Fed is slowly inching up its rates, and the BIS is predicting a Canada-wide housing bust with recession to shortly follow.

The LPs want a normal, smooth legalization process that allows them advertise and profit. They want relief from the free market competition and burdensome government regulations. They want their stocks to keep rising.

But nothing ever goes the way you plan. The LPs are alarmed that cannabis connoisseurs openly break the law. The competition doesn’t care about being patient, they’re willing to go to jail for a cause.

The LPs are stock market connoisseurs, the weed business is an afterthought. And they’ve proven that most of them don’t know what they’re doing, sending tainted product to sick patients.

BC Bud no longer fears the LP regime. It is doomed to fail. The best gift the Liberals can give the industry is strict nanny-state regulations on advertising and branding. BC Bud will ignore it and the LPs will continue to find themselves caught between the rock of big government and the hard place of open resistance.

Whatever happens, unless cannabis is a tax-free subsidized medical good, recreational LP cannabis will remain a luxury, and in a downturned economy, spending $10-a-gram on pesticide-ridden bud doesn’t make sense.

Also keep in mind that people will be growing it, and there will be no way to stop cannabis connoisseurs from sharing and selling amongst themselves as they’ve had for centuries. More plants will just lower prices and personal dealers and fellow growers are always likely to give you a better deal than your retail-dispensary.

Who wants to buy LP weed in this environment? If a century of cannabis prohibition has done anything, it has made people paranoid of government-regulated strains.

Conspiracy theory, of course, say the LPs. There will always be a market for their shit.

But what if that isn’t true? What if there is considerable consolidation in the Liberal-approved industry post-financial crisis? Are the LPs ready to accept that most of the valuations are, like the rest of the stock market, bunk?

At least the craft cannabis connoisseurs of Canada are providing value. What are the LPs providing that’s not government-mandated?