Wednesday, November 03, 2004

"The real problem is what to do with the problem-solvers after the problems are solved." Gay Talese

Simon sent me this email. I feel the need to add nothing:

"This just appeared on the FT website:Blair targets chewing gum spittersBy Simon Briscoe in LondonPublished: November 2 2004 18:38 Last updated: November 2 2004 18:38

In a fresh sign that action against anti-social behaviour will play a vital part in the next UK general election, Tony Blair's government on Tuesday identified a new target in the effort to clean-up the country the nation's 28m gum chewers, or at least those who discard gum “inappropriately”. The target was revealed in a 160-page government-commissioned report that divides offenders into those who know it is wrong to drop gum, do it discreetly and feel guilty for doing so and hard-line miscreants the so-called “Bravado” group, who enjoy “spitting and kicking” used gum with little regard for its impact on the environment.

The research says a range of solutions is required to tackle the problem. Specially designed “fun bins” with targets or the supply of cigarette-type papers will work for some it says, while advertising and better education could harness the “guilt and revulsion” of others. The department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs says the deployment of chemicals, machines spraying water jets and even lasers, to clear up gum costs authorities “many millions” of pounds. Peter Gibson of the charity Keep Britain Tidy says each local authority receives an average of 1,600 complaints a year from the public amounting to over 500,000 in England and Wales last year. However the British government will be aware that when Singapore introduced an outright ban on the sale of gum in 1992 it was ridiculed. The city-state was forced to reverse the decision to allow the marketing of gum meant for dental hygiene or as an anti-smoking aid./
Additional reporting by Jack Burton in Singapore.///

A quick visit here http://www.defra.gov.uk/environment/localenv/litter/index.htm will reveal that in October 2003, a "Chewing gum action group" was formed by Defra. You can view the entire 160-page report these bozos have generated from that page, and see how the Gum Droppers Segmentation Survey has evolved since January.

It's lucky comment is unnecessary, because I am literally speechless. Si."


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