E-DEMOCRACY | They’re baaaack – Yellowbook Phone Books landing on doorsteps


From: Shelley Leeson Thudding onto doorsteps in Northeast Minneapolis as we speak.  Shelley Leeson Northeast Minneapolis

From: Sheryl Senkiw  Is there any way to stop them?

From: David Tilsen  They are the zombie apocalypse.  They are here to eat our brains if you let them into your house.  There is no known way to stop them.

From: Sheryl Senkiw  I usually take them directly to the recycling bin, since I have no use for them.  But I wish I could tell someone to stop delivering them, so the resources would not be wasted.

From: Kevin Kuschel They thudded (is that a word?) over North a few days ago. I forgot about them sitting on my front steps until after the rain yesterday.  I sure hope the recycling folks take soggy phone books this Friday. I have no use for them.  On the bright side, I can use the plastic bags they came in.  And speaking of Zombies, is anyone as obsessed with “The Walking Dead” as I am? Truly great TV. Magnificent TV!!! Phone books – not so magnificent. 

From: Jack Ferman If you have a yard or patio table with one short leg, they might be useable as a prop.  Jack Ferman email in header 

From: Emilie Quast, SE Como Just a couple of  thoughts:  The country is scrambling to get out of a recession. 

The yellow pages are a source of income for pulp paper industry workers from the land owners, to the loggers, to the paper makers, to the printers and binders. 

They also keep cash rolling as people buy space in them, giving a living to the sales people who sell the space, the office workers who process the purchases of space in the yellow pages, the artists who design the graphics and put the graphics in a form that can be printed on the pages. 

In my own neighborhood, a couple of college students are delivering the thing at X-much income per copy, and to do that they must buy gas, which pays other people to produce the gas for their cars.  Income from delivery is helping those people pay for college (leading to better income in the future on which they’ll pay taxes to help us all support our cities, state and country)  

Others delivering the pages are retired people whose pensions could use a little boost, people trying to support their families by working this job as just one more source of income which they can spend on goods and services, rolling that money back into the economy, producing more taxes to help us all. 

At the other end, I recycle at least the old books after using them as (MARVELOUS) flower presses, giving my recycling truck a reason to come around.  Since it’s pretty high quality paper, it probably gets repulped to be recreated into another kind of paper product or byproduct.  In this way we have money going to the guy who picks up my recyclables, income going to the pulp workers and the corporation that pays them, income going to the salespeople who sell the recycled paper to people who will fabricate that into something they in turn will sell and try to make a profit on so they will pay taxes.  Harvey McKay offers some insight on recycling in his business since he both sells and buys in that revenue stream. 

Now then, what’s the reason to want to derail all this again?   I’m seeing a LOT of lives improved, taxes paid, economic benefits (assuming that the various processes are relatively efficient in manufacturing processes). If the manufacture process is very dirty, I suggest we’d be better off lobbying for bills to make the manufacturers clean up their processes (thereby generating income to the manufacturers and installers of cleaner processes, along with all attendant sales people, inspectors, yadda) 

I suggest that with the many advances in electronics, yellow pages will die a natural death, just like the buggy whip industry, in a decade or so. 

In the mean time, we have an established revenue stream that enhances many lives along the way and generates a LOT of taxes. 

Emilie (who is very left wing but who also believes in the merits of supporting tax revenue streams to pay for our potholes, our kids’ educations, and our many government services)

From: Jaxi Schulz That’s all well and good … but ….  How about the millions of trees that were cut down needlessly to make paper for phone books most of us don’t even look at or use anymore? Mine are walked from the front stoop right to the garage and then out with the next round of recycling.  Tell me that isn’t a huge waste?  I would soo much rather those trees were left to keep growing and making breathable air than to make a phone book I will immediately recycle and that you apparently use to press flowers and that others may use for door stops, or wobbly table props or whatever. 

And what about the people who don’t recycle?  Sadly there are still far too many of them … so what about all the phone books that end up in the land fills? 

I don’t thinks the pros outweigh the cons here.  At least in my opinion.  I have used catelog choice to stop over 90 percent of the unwanted catelogs from coming to me through the mail.  And I have really good friends who are postal carriers and I see what stress the fact that people are using regular “snail” mail less and less is putting on the post office and the employees – lay offs – closed post offices – etc.  But I still don’t want millions of trees needlessly cut down to make paper for catelogs and junk mail I don’t look at or read just so we can feel good about keeping a few more post offices open. 

The recycling truck has plenty of reasons to visit my house as we recycle as much as we absolutely can.  Now with the added plastic recycling I am putting out more than ever before.  Loving that I can now recycle yogurt containers, clamshell containers that fruit or lettuce comes in, and often even the plastic packaging on things that are over packaged but seem to be unable to be bought without it.

I am all for people having jobs.  Shoot mine is grant based and a year to year nail biter.  BUT not at the expense of the environment and not to make stuff that most people don’t use or read and sadly far too many probably don’t even bother to recycle either. 

From: Dennis Hill I’d suggest you drop them off at the front door of the Star Tribune office downtown.  Dennis Hill St. Paul

From: Jeff Skrenes *Walking Dead spoiler alert*  And unless you opt out of phone book delivery, then “we’re all carriers.”

From: Bill Kahn Yes, it is simple; just opt out on the web or by phone. I got a call not long ago asking if I had any unwelcome phone books delivered; I had not.

From: Laura Waterman Wittstock We said no delivery and when the truck came by they asked again. Tricky.  Yes, it is a virus. 

From: Sheldon Mains Why would a company advertise in the “Yellow Book.”  Seems like a waste of advertising dollars

From: James Sanna At least when it comes to Dex phonebooks, here’s how:  http://southwestminneapolis.patch.com/articles/want-to-ditch-the-phonebook-this-year  We did a little story on that back in February.  _ _ _ James Sanna Whittier/SW Mpls Patch editor



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