More questions than answers in bag debate
August 31, 2011
Sheldon Fingerman’s recent article in the Aspen Daily News provided good incentive to address this fee-on-bags issue as it was a true expose.
Andre Salvail’s article in The Aspen Times about the imposition of a 20-cent fee on grocery bags, “Questions abound regarding Aspen’s proposal to charge for grocery bags,” begged for even more questions – this time from a pesky consumer.
If I were before the esteemed councilmembers in Aspen, this is what I would ask:
1. There seems to be evidence that after all this fuss, plastic bags may be the greenest after all. Isn’t the 96-page unpublished UK government report showing evidence of just that worth some consideration?
2. Isn’t it noteworthy that public officials get to decide what private companies make on such flimsy and silly objectives such as this? Seriously, is it about bags or is it about additional regulations on any plastic in products in the future? (What a windfall that would be!)
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3. Why would environmental health specialist Ashley Cantrell be consulted on what to charge private industry for the bags? Is this a good example of the thinking process at the city council level?
4. Then there’s Nathan Ratledge with CORE – no agenda there. He thinks the only objectors to this issue are loud, uninformed people (probably the “little” people). General consensus, he says, of the 20-cent charge is what the-other-than-loud people like.
5. Re: educating consumers on plastic bag use, please refer to No. 1 above for consideration.
6. Councilman Torre doesn’t seem to have a problem at all visiting these restrictions on citizens with an outright ban, and make that sooner rather than later, says he. (No evidence of thought-process here.) Does he now vote for the masses? Are we now “We the ‘sheeple,'” Councilman Torre?
From one liberty-loving consumer who is amazed at the hubris of both those who govern and those who publish, edit and write newspapers.