Bag fee measure in the bag?

Over on Publicola, Josh bashes his head against a poll:

A new survey USA poll has some surprising results: The bag fee isn’t a lost cause. In fact, it’s slightly ahead.

Asked: “Would you vote ‘Yes’ to add a .20 fee on disposable shopping bags?” 47 percent said they would. It’s almost a dead heat. 46 percent said ‘No.’

Um, hate to dis Josh on this one (well, actually it’s fun to dis Josh), but those are terrible numbers for the Yes camp. Measures like this tend to break toward the No side. Indeed, if I were running the Yes campaign I wouldn’t feel comfortable with anything less than a fifteen point margin at this point in the process… you know, before the chemical industry floods the airwaves and stuffs our mailboxes with their propaganda.

So actually, if these numbers can be trusted, the bag fee is starting to look like a lost cause.


  1. 1

    Daddy Love spews:

    I have my own cloth bags.

    But this is interesting…

    One version of immigration reform that people have discussed would take a comprehensive approach. It would secure the border, crack down on employers who hire illegal immigrants, and require illegal immigrants to register for legal immigration status, pay back taxes, and learn English in order to be eligible for U.S. citizenship. Would you … Congress passing this proposal?

    Total Support 86%
    Strongly support 58%
    Somewhat support 28%

    Total Oppose 14%
    Somewhat oppose 6%
    Strongly oppose 7%

    This will pass in a heartbeat.

  2. 2

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    I have my own cloth bags too.
    But I still think bag fees are a stupid idea.
    More layers of bureaucracy.
    What is the environmental cost of enforcement and collection?

  3. 3

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @1 It didn’t take young Hitler very long to learn the stupid masses are easy to manipulate if you can hand them a scapegoat.

  4. 4

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @2 “What is the environmental cost of enforcement and collection?”

    None. Retailers will collect the fee at the checkstand. If you’re concerned about the economic costs of enforcement and collection, simply let retailers keep the fee. This isn’t intended as a revenue measure, and doesn’t have to produce revenue; you accomplish the purpose of getting people to stop using disposable plastic bags by making them pay for the bags, and who gets the money is immaterial.

  5. 6

    Sam Adams spews:

    Once upon a time synthetic bags were PROMOTED as a measure to save trees.

    Now they are bad?

    And Global Warming….opps!….”Climate Change?” What happened to global cooling that was preached at me back in the day?

    PLEASE Do me a favor and just STFU !! **After you kiss my @ss that is.**

  6. 8

    ArtFart spews:

    2 Cyn, this is one thing on which you and I are in absolute agreement. Right along with Nickels being a dork.

  7. 9

    ArtFart spews:

    6 “Once upon a time synthetic bags were PROMOTED as a measure to save trees.”

    Riiight…by the plastics industry, which, shall we say, had its own interests.

    In the same way, we’re getting an ever-increasing amount of corn squeezin’s added to our gasoline, even though it takes more petroleum to grow/harvest/distill than it saves…thanks to Archer Daniels Midland’s massive campaign of publicity and bribery…er, I mean lobbying of politicians of all stripes.

  8. 12

    Steve spews:

    Over 40 years pass and the wingnuts still can’t get over how they missed out on the Summer of Love. Let me tell you, it was a blast.

  9. 13

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Mrs. Rabbit Is A Rich Fucking Bunny

    That’s right, wifey got an invitation to pay $495 a year for a Barclays Visa Black Card in today’s mail. If you don’t know what that is, look it up.* The thing I don’t understand is why she got one and I didn’t. I mean, we own the same assets and have the same income. Er, don’t we?? I wonder if Barclays knows something I don’t … maybe I’d better have my lawyer search the new divorce filings.

    * Hint: Paris Hilton has one.

  10. 14

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @12 Yeah, the closest they ever got to Woodstock was jerking off on the throne while reading a book about it. I think there’s some major jealousy going on among that crowd.

  11. 15

    Thorn spews:

    “The green fad” = nothing more than surviving within our means.

    Of course there are those of us that would prefer to fuck up to their hearts content without consequence (to them (in the short term)).

  12. 16

    infidel spews:

    Jealous of missing the “Summer of Love” that makes about as much sense as being jealous of a bad case of hemorrhoids.

  13. 19

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    #17 Speaking of weed the cops raided a residence across the street from me this week. They had 4 squad cars and 7 or 8 cops there, including a couple of undercover guys. They handcuffed the residents and threw them in the back seats of the squad cars. They secured the premises and had it under guard for hours while they obtained a search warrant. Apparently they didn’t find a fucking thing because the residents are back in the house and the police tape is gone. The story going around the neighborhood is a cop knocked on the door to speak to the residents about having too many cars in their driveway (read: zoning violation) and thought he sniffed pot. What a waste of law enforcement resources.

  14. 20

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Plastic bags are not always bad. There are grocery items that shouldn’t be put in reusable bags, e.g. meat and fish packages leaking juice. That stuff, if it contaminates other food, can cause salmonella. I can’t think of an alternative to plastic bags for those items. Can you?

  15. 21

    ArtFart spews:

    20 If the meat and fish were better wrapped that wouldn’t be necessary. That’s how “butcher paper” got its name before it was relegated to having stuff scrawled on it by kindergartners. Some food store meat/fish counters have gone back to where you look in the case and pick out what you want, and the guy wraps it up just for you.

    Something else I’d like to see more of is paper bags in produce departments as an alternative to the clear plastic bags on a roll. The latter is better for stuff like lettuce that may be damp, but a paper bag is fine for apples or potatoes. The paper is biodegradable, and it provides business for our neighbors in Port Townsend.

  16. 22

    mike spews:

    it’s not a lost cause:

    it brought attention to the fact that plastic bags are horrible

    it forced people to at least think about the consequences of what they stick their groceries in.

    we’re seeing lots more customers walking to the local co-op w/ re-useable bags