Bruce Barbour - August 2021
It should be a crime for companies to waste food and other items.
Supermarkets and other food manufacture and handling industries
will have to put in systems to ensure that food does not go to
waste. It has to be sold or given away before it goes off.
Similarly it will be a crime to throw away manufactured items,
including new electrical goods and new clothing.
These crimes will be punishable by company fines in the first
instance, getting higher for subsequent waste events. If the
waste crimes continues the general manager and directors will
become personally liable for payment of fines, which will not be
able to be reimbursed by the company.
(This is to counter appalling recent (2021) instances where some
large resellers have thrown out perfectly good new items
(electrical goods and other items) in order to not flood the
market and to keep prices high. It has probably been going on for
years. They were systematically dumping at the tip/landfill
millions of dollars worth of goods monthly, and even sacked staff
if they dared to take any thrown out item for their own use. Who
ever said that capitalism was efficient was wrong. Efficiency
means nothing, it is only profits that count in capitalism
and if that means throwing away perfectly good items to maintain
scarcity and therefore price that is what they will do.)
Outlawing Planned Obsolescence - and Shoddy Manufacture
Also in a similar vain I would outlaw planned obsolescence. This
is where a manufacturer designs and manufactures an item so that
it will breakdown after a couple of years (after the warranty
period has expired!) forcing people to buy a new item. And of
course there is virtually no economic repair option available.
Personally I think this is a flawed approach by the manufacturer
because if this happens to me I certainly won't buy another of
that item from the same manufacturer. In fact in the future I
probably won't buy any item from that manufacturer. However it
seems to be a thing. You see it a lot in the mobile phone market,
where manufacturers were hard-wiring in the battery so when the
battery went the phone was no longer usable and had to be
The only way to do this is to mandate long warranties and a
longer period where the manufacturer has to support and repair the
product that they supply for the cost of the materials and a
nominal handling charge (at least for a break down that is not
caused by the user). So at least a five year warranty and a ten
year support period - upping those time periods over time.
Mandating long warranty should also cut down on just plain shoddy
manufacture, whether it is planned obsolescence or simple
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