Jax wants to know what's in it for his crew. The answer? Pope suspends the 50 percent cut and adds another $100,000 to each run. So in one conversation, Jax could turn his club's $50,000 net into a $200,000 net. Except... "My crew wants out of the drug game," he says. Pope replies quietly, "What do you want?"
And here goes Pope, offering all sorts of valuable leadership advice via one-liners. He tells Jax to talk it over with the rest of the unwashed heathens in his crew while he does the heavy lifting with the Mayans, the Niners and Lin the weapons guy. If Jax decides it makes sense for SAMCRO to quadruple their earnings on the same amount of risk, then take the meeting. If not, feel free to keep making these runs for $50,000 while the club fumes over the set-up. Jax nods. Then Pope throws in one more tiny incentive: "I'll also kick back two percent of my profits on the 30 keys -- to you. Gentlemen's agreement, just between us." (Oh, he's goooooood.) Jax is boggled by this: "You make millions in real estate and other legit trade. Why are you still in this? Is it the rush?" Pope smiles, "I'm just a businessman, son. And my most profitable and most reliable business is narcotics. It always has been. I've learned how to do it the right way. With the right people, there is no risk." Jax looks very thoughtful upon hearing this. Perhaps he's mentally reviewing his people and realizing how very few of them are equipped to successfully order a meal from McDonald's drive-thru, much less build a consequences-free crime empire.
And let me interject again: Pope is gooooooood at taking people down. Because what are the two biggest threats SAMCRO can bring to the criminal ecosystem? A fanatical sense of brotherhood and a very smart president. But the president is due to overthinking, so get him musing on how useless his "brothers" are -- and further divide him by giving him a secret profit pipeline that he knows will displease the rest of the club if they learn of its existence -- and it's only a matter of time before the club's falling apart and there's a smart gangster in need of a new organization to serve. I'm going to enjoy seeing how Pope continues to manipulate Jax into destroying his own club.