Marginal charges, maximal outrage: the Sun takes on bag fees
We noted yesterday that the Toronto Sun, in high dudgeon over city councillors’ spending habits, was busy making a mountain out of a few molehills. Well, today’s offering from the Sun makes yesterday’s trivialities look like the Washington Post’s Watergate coverage. Having pilloried councillors for thousand-dollar French lessons, the Sun is now moving even lower down the food chain, attacking David Miller and the city’s five-cent bag fee.
Sue-Ann Levy swings the axe thusly:
A few days ago, a reader called me, outraged that a store in Thornhill’s Promenade Mall was charging what he called (Toronto Mayor) “David Miller’s 5¢ plastic bag fee.”
Knowing that Thornhill hadn’t put in place a bylaw similar to Toronto’s, he asked the manager of the As Seen On TV store, why they were doing it…. “I was really, really dumbfounded,” said the man, who requested anonymity.
Putting aside the baffling notion that this person somehow required anonymity, we should point out that the Sun did put in some legwork here, calling up the five leading candidates and asking whether they’d rescind the bag fee. Rob Ford and Rocco Rossi say yes, George Smitherman, Sarah Thomson, and Joe Pantalone say no.
Levy runs down a list of complaints about the bag fee, but pondering each of them would be too long and too boring. Instead, we’ll just note that retailers outside of Toronto may be charging a nickel a bag, even where there’s no law forcing them to, because there was this minor recession (heard of it?), and businesses might think they can cover part of their costs this way.
Hey, we’ve got no problem with asking the leading candidates questions about minor issues, but the Sun is coming off as cranky. Can’t wait for tomorrow’s headlines. What will they be? “Kids keep playing on our lawn” or “Matlock not on enough channels”?