Friday, March 5, 2010

Paper Waste

In a previous blog, I discussed the use of "10 percenters" by our MPs in Ottawa. When I discuss "10 percenters" with some of my friends, they get a blank look on their faces and have no idea what I'm talking about. Here is an example of a "10 percenter" that I got in mid-February. I live in a riding (Malpeque) that the Conservatives see as "vulnerable" so I tend to get a lot of these in the mail. Each "10 percenter" has a return addressee on it, in my case, it's always a Conservative MP somewhere in Canada. In this particular case, David Anderson MP (Conservative) from the riding of Cypress Hills - Grassland in Saskatchewan was so kind as to send this propaganda all the way to my home in humble Prince Edward Island. I'm certain it was at his own, personal expense and that no taxpayer funding was involved! I've been sending him emails asking him that question (and several others about the program) but, for some reason, he's been unresponsive thus far.

In 2008, between 30 and 50 million of these 8 1/2 by 11 inch sheets of paper were sent to Canadian households. A breakdown of these mail outs will put the amount of waste into perspective.

A ream of 20 pound 8 1/2 by 11 inch paper contains 500 sheets and weighs 5 pounds. If we take a midpoint number of 40 million sheets being used in 2008, that's 80,000 reams of paper for a total weight of 400,000 pounds or 200 tons of paper. If you go to your local Staples or Business Depot, you'll see cases of paper containing 10 reams each. Canada's MPs used at least 8,000 of those cases to mail propaganda to your house in 2008!

Several questions. Did you or anyone in your household or, for that matter, anyone you know read any of the "10 percenters" that came to your household? Do you think that this is a colossal waste of both paper and your tax dollars? Do you think that it is moral that your tax dollars are being used by the Conservative (primarily) and Liberal Parties to campaign for the next election that hasn't even been called?

As I suggested before, mail your "10 percenters" back to the Prime Minister's Office. I just mailed a collection of them to Mr. Harper with an accompanying letter. I also make it a point to contact the MP on the return address by email.

As a reminder, the address for the PMO is:

Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
K1A 0A2

Postage is free!

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