Brickbat: Stick a Fork in It


plastic utensils
Lim Seng Kui /

The Malibu, California, City Council has banned plastic cutlery and straws. The city will provide each restaurant with a box of paper straws to help with the switch.

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  1. Fucking morons. I’m old enough to remember just how shitty paper straws are.


    1. The plasticized paper straws work pretty well though.

  2. That’s forked up.

    1. I happen to like the little pieces of plastic in my food when the tip of the tine breaks off…

  3. But will the paper straws come with visual instructions? And warning labels, what about warning labels? Jesus, I hope the people tasked with managing this are okay. The stress alone…

  4. It’s okay. None of Malibu’s trees will be cut down to accommodate the council’s feelgood scheme. That deforestation crime against Gaia will be someone else’s to commit.

    1. It’s Malibu so they can afford old growth teak.

    2. It’s Malibu so they can afford old growth teak.

    3. Dammit, I’ve told you guys to be careful with your “jokes.” Some Californian is going to read that and the next thing you now we’ll be hearing about “paper offsets” and “sustainable straws.”

      1. and what about high capacity straws…yea or nay?

  5. Is paper in a landfill any different than plastic?

    1. This is a pet peeve of mine. The whole idea behind modern landfills is to encapsulate the trash and make darn sure it doesn’t leach into the groundwater, etc.* These yo-yos who harp on “biodegradable” trash act as if we toss everything out into fields and forests.

      *I’m old enough to remember, from decades ago, that professor who would explore landfills like ancient ruins to see how they worked. His big shtick was to pull out a 30 year-old newspaper and show that it could still be read.

        1. “Rubbish!” pulls the rug from under a number of popular misconceptions about what experts call the “solid-waste stream.” It reports that disposable diapers, plastic and foam account, by volume, for perhaps 3 percent of the nation’s landfill waste. “If you could wave a magic wand and make all the plastic and the disposable diapers disappear overnight, landfill operators wouldn’t even notice,” said Mr. Rathje . . .

          “Paper, on the other hand, counts for more than 40 percent of landfill volume, and like the guacamole, it stubbornly resists biodegradation.”

          1. When I was a kid, we never put newspapers in the trash.

            Like all the other houses on the street, we had a burn pit at the back of the yard next to the alley and we would periodically take all the accumulated newspapers and burn them.

            But of course that sort of thing is verboten now because we can’t have people burning their trash.

            1. soon we’ll be eating our trash…that’ll fix every thing!

          2. Interesting article. I wonder what the actual data shows between landfills in, say, California vs. Alabama.

            His past studies have shown that people will describe their behavior to satisfy cultural expectations, like the mothers in Tucson who unanimously claimed they made their baby food from scratch, but whose garbage told a very different tale.

            You betcha.

            1. From Wikipedia: Garbology

              Copenhagen, Denmark is the most efficient city in the world with garbage. 3 to 4 percent of the city’s waste ends up in landfills. When compared to the 69 percent of the US’s average, this is a very small percentage. Trash is largely incinerated and in the process used to generate electricity. Six out of ten Danish homes are heated this way.

              Emphasis mine; but we can’t incinerate garbage and use it for electricity because of carbon. We have to instead let it rot (which it doesn’t) and hope the carbon goes out naturally (which is different).

  6. The council’s vote on this was unanimous. There was no one on the council who had any objection that they had the authority or the wisdom to do something like this.

    1. Well, to be fair, they know who elected them.

  7. paper straws

    Do you know how I know CA is a shithole?

  8. “The city will provide each restaurant with a box of paper straws to help with the switch.”

    Trump just got knocked out of his position as top troll in the country.

  9. Couldn’t they have outlawed car accidents instead? Car accidents are a LOT more of an environmental hazard, spilling oil and gas at times, causing wastes of resources and what-not… Car accidents bother a LOT of people more severely than plastic forks and straws! They block traffic, too! (That’s probably on the “plus” side in the minds of some proggies, who think we should all take the mass-transportation or walk or take a bike). Come on, CA politician heroes, pass some laws that will actually HELP us!

    1. Great idea!
      And they can repeal 25% of the law of gravity to make the cars (now accident free and not needing as much mass) lighter to get better fuel economy.

  10. Exactly what Constitutional authority does a local government have enact such laws in the first place?

    1. FYTW!

    2. For the US Constitution, government has zero authority to ban anything without a constitution amendment like the 18th. I doubt any state constitution currently says that government can ban products and services.

      Most politicians do not understand that constitutions have to provide authority for government to do things like bans.

      1. The US Constitution does not apply to city governments. You can try to apply the commerce clause to plastic straw, but be careful not to break it with all that twisting.

        1. I hope you’re being sarcastic.

      2. Correct for the federal government. For the states, and localities, you have to deal with this: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”
        So the states and localities can ban anything they please, as long as the federal constitution does not specifically prohibit that ban (see guns; second amendment)

  11. Didn’t Elaine Benez, on Veep, find out that paper spoons disintegrate in soup?

    1. Well yeah, there’s that…

      Then there’s the deal, for horribly addicted cocaine whores such as myself… When other people snort coke through straws, we like to cut open the discarded straws lengthwise, and lick out the residual cocaine. That works a LOT better with PLASTIC straws, than it does with PAPER straws!

      And I thought that the proggies were all about sympathizing with us poor and addicted folks!!!

  12. Mr. Treehorn draws a lot of water in this town. You don’t draw shit, Lebowski. Now we got a nice, quiet little beach community here, and I aim to keep it nice and quiet. So let me make something plain. I don’t like you sucking around [with plastic straws], bothering our citizens, Lebowski. I don’t like your jerk-off name. I don’t like your jerk-off face. I don’t like your jerk-off behavior, and I don’t like you, jerk-off. Do I make myself clear?

    1. came here for this. thanks ska.

      “get the hell out of malibu deadbeat!”

  13. Comrade-Mayor and Comrade-Governor trying to trying to upstage one another on their hatred for plastic bags. At this point their hatred for each other is the only thing keeping this place from turning into California.

  14. Why not make them out of hemp?

    1. Is there anything hemp can’t do?

  15. Everyone knows what state Malibu is in Chuck.

  16. So, I go to KFC and pick up food to go. Am I supposed to eat the mashed potatoes and baked beans with my hands? How can I drink my chocolate shake with a paper straw? It will collapse. These people live in unicorn land.

    1. No.
      You will not be allowed to order mashed potatoes or baked beans; too many carbs anyway. You must eat organic free range carrot sticks using your fingers.

  17. This is actually a pretty conservative approach.
    They allow some straws to be manufactured and sold. (maybe they need the sales tax?)
    A real California city would have just banned straws altogether.
    Anyone who cannot drink without a straw would have to get a permit, and be provided free glass straws by their medical insurance policy for home use and reuse. And, if necessary, a free dishwasher to clean them.

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