public policy that is “comprehensive”

20070723: NPR has a segment about recycling of polyethylene terephthalate (variously PET, PETE, PETP OR PET-P). This is the plastic material of which fruit juice, soft-drink and water bottles are commonly made these days.

It is reported that the Boston “professional baseball” stadium contains no visible facilities to the the drinker in anticipation of the time after the bottle, its contents having been drunk, is empty. Beyond then the bottle may be perceived as only a burden to the hand that holds it.

The PET industry is begging, really. Please, they say, give us your old bottles. We will remake them and reuse them.

Suggestion is made that facilities should require only a moment’s reflection from the bottle tosser. Where to put the bottle? Oh, over there, in that nice clean recycling bin. This is the level of engagement we are to expect of fans of professional baseball, for example.

Otherwise they end up in the sanitary landfill. [sanitary + "public policy" see more at expensive]

For the person on the street, it may seem natural to have the direct supplier of the item in question (the bottle) simply be induced to accept it back.

The grocery lobby is strongly resisting. It costs them upwards of $20 thousand a year to maintain their redemption center. Plus it is “dirty”.

The parent of the bottle has rejected its own offspring. And the first accusations are of being “too expensive” and “dirty”. Whether viewed in Freudian terms, theological terms, the taxonomies of sense and subconscious employed by Madison Avenue, K Street or other market specialists, we can see that something is up. Public policy and public money are in play.

From the NPR piece, we learn that a “comprehensive” solution is sought and that yet another case for federalization of public policy has been made. This time it is being organized around the interests of bottlers and grocers.

While I do believe that specific bottling technologies and their concomitant supply chains are certainly of interest to society, at the same time I feel slighted that such issues are being put up on the list of social concerns priorities.

I consult my own list of problems wanting comprehensive solutions, and I find near the top such issues as health care. The health care issue begs for a comprehensive solution. When people are sick, for example, the society as a whole will accept the responsibility of seeing to it that they are cared for. That would be a comprehensive approach.

As for accountability in governance, we might say comprehensively that those who abuse our trust shall not continue in office.

Regarding the blood-sucking tax-sucking vampire of militarism, we might comprehensively come to understand that everyone wants a place under the sky for themselves and for the ones they love. People who spend their days preparing devices and plans in order to annihilate other people, are not doing anyone any favors. Not themselves, and not the rest of us. They are not nice people, not decent people, not good people, not friendly, not patriotic. In them all appearance of human goodness is illusion only. They are sham people. There are no excuses for them. That they should have such a strong hand in determining the fate of world culture speaks poorly about the rest of us. The predominant influence of the global military-industrial complex is a shame upon us all.

The fascist gene complex within human nature could use a comprehensive solution of some kind. No doubt our ability to form gangs and exploit those weaker than ourselves has contributed to our survival success. After all, we ourselves are them that’s left. At least to this point.

Yet we see ourselves so sweetly, and imagine that we can organize ourselves as a humane nation. Humane to ourselves and to others. But, easier said than done. Definite candidate for a comprehensive solution.

Whether we, as a nation, are up to comprehensively solving the problems of PET manufacturers so that the local convenience store patrons may continue to discard their plastic bottles on my lawn instead of returning those dirty, worthless items to the source of their distribution – this is a question that we, as a nation, may try to answer.

But let’s put that question down the list a way. Right now we should be occupied with more profound questions related to our national existence as a sane and humane society.

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