We shouldn’t laugh too hard at France for voting against basic math and the iron laws of economics this past weekend. In wide swaths of America, voters keep electing leaders who keep regulating our own businesses out of existence while they govern more by anecdote and emotion than by reason or cause and effect.
In Los Angeles, for instance, the city council is set to ban plastic bags because of the city’s unsightly litter problem. The ban will kill jobs and may even lead to more landfill waste and unsanitary food handling. But they’re pressing ahead with the ban anyway, despite a workers’ plea to stop.
The humble plastic bag has become a target of the left, despite the fact that they’re 100% recyclable, employ hundreds of people in the LA area to manufacture them (and 30,000 work in plastic bag manufacturing across the entire US), and the reusable alternatives tend to be made overseas and can host nasty bacteria and toxic lead.
San Francisco banned plastic bags in 2007, and saw no reduction in plastic bag waste in its landfills at all.
So plastic bags are recyclable, sanitary and employ thousands of people. Banning them doesn’t really help anything. But LA is fooling around with this ban while failing to keep its firefighters effective on the job.