Last year the California state legislature wisely voted down a law that would have imposed a state-wide ban on single-use plastic bags in stores, you know, the carry out bags retail stores like Vons, Ralph’s, Home Depot, Lowe’s, and Wal-Mart use to sack the stuff you buy. But a handful of county supervisors, including those in Los Angeles County, have imposed their regional political will by banning those plastic bags throughout unincorporated areas of the state.
And banning plastic shopping bags isn’t enough. Now a Democrat legislator in the city of Los Angeles wants to ban both plastic and paper carry out bags to help cut costs of waste management (see, in the end it’s all about the money -- liberals in government can’t confiscate enough taxes and won’t cut pet programs).
The proffered warm and fuzzy intent of these local tyrannies is to protect the global environment from evil private trash. Yet the myriad exceptions to the rule prove that plastic (or paper for that matter) is not the true concern. If either plastic or paper were truly the environmental equivalent of deadly second-hand cigarette smoke, then these bans should have no exceptions whatsoever. No sandwich bags, no paper lunch bags, no trash bags, no plastic potato chip bags, no plastic six pack cola rings, no plastic packaging for toilet paper and no toilet paper either, and absolutely no medical pharmacy plastic bags!
The laws also force retailers to charge between 10 and 15 cents tax for every recyclable paper bag provided to customers. Ostensibly, this economic punishment will motivate customers to bring in their own re-useable “green” canvas totes (made of locally grown hemp no doubt). Really it is hush money payola to the retail stores to compensate them for going peacefully along with the cost of providing the paper bags and program “education.”
Here’s the good news: Consumers are already one step ahead of the government tyrants. The shopping bag bans do not apply to sales of plastic (or paper) bags. If they did, Hefty and Glad would soon be pulling out of California faster than Amazon. Retailer are just banned from “providing” the bags for free. Savvy patrons are already buying plastic trash bags in the store and using them to sack the rest of the groceries.
Thanks to California Commie Liberals’ red tape tyranny, plastic bag manufacturers now have a huge new market. Retailers can sell pre-packaged single-use plastic bags for a profit at a unit price well below the government mandated paper bag fee of ten to fifteen cents each, e.g. 25 plastic bags in a $1.00 dispensing tube. The new customer is the multi-tasking soccer mom who will be more than happy to pay something less than ten cents a piece to once again enjoy the convenience of plastic bags dispensed from a little “Bags to Go” plastic tube hanging in the check out aisle next to the trashy tabloids. Ownership transfers to the customer at check out who then hands the grocery clerk her newly purchased single use bags to sack groceries.
Find a way to hang the plastic bag dispensing tube from the unused cigarette lighter in the minivan and soccer moms all across California will stock up on extra tubes to sack the post game victory fast food debris and tie up the toddler’s disposable diaper while on the go. “
Color the “Bags To Go” tube bright neon green ... just to irritate the liberals.