"No experiment can be more interesting than that we are now trying, and which we trust will end in establishing the fact, that man may be governed by reason and truth. Our first object should therefore be, to leave open to him all the avenues to truth. The most effectual hitherto found, is the freedom of the press. It is, therefore, the first shut up by those who fear the investigation of their actions." --Thomas Jefferson to John Tyler, 1804.


You have to wonder if the bags will become a kind of tipping point, one way or the other: Either they tip people in the direction of reuse and recycling, or they tip a revolt.

Its just that this new plan, adopted today in Seattle, of requiring a fee (small, at 20 cents a bag, but still) for each bag obtained at a store, really is a daily-invasive kind of thing. It’s inescapably in your face, in a way most recycling-type activities aren’t. Attitudes could harden on this one.

It feels like a big thing, too, in whatever direction. Seattle is just part of the wave. San Francisco adopted it a while back, and if statements in the last few days from Portland Mayor-elect Sam Adams are any indicator, the Rose City will be on board before long. Nor is that all. Really notable was a sidebar story in the Oregonian indicating that a bunch of mayors and council members in the suburbs ringing Portland also are interested in launching these fees.

We don’t yet know how shoppers are going to react. But we should know before long.

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