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On shopping trolleys and human nature

Posted By johnboy On 29 December 2011 @ 10:53 am In Community,Environment,Featured,Life & Style,Shopping | 49 Comments

shopping trolley

2011 saw some considerable idealism [1] from the Greens as they pursued their dream of getting Canberra’s lazy bogans to live like Germans, in particular on the subject of shopping trolleys.

As it happens shopping trolleys have been occupying my mind recently during my weekly outings to the Aldi at Jamison (free open air parking, cheap dog food and beer, something tricky to try and BBQ on the Weber, and what will the special be this week?).

It started with general curiosity as to why the serried ranks of Aldi trolleys were just so vast:

aldi trolleys

And then a few weeks ago, having dutifully deposited my dollar coin into a trolley I was cleaned up by a guy rushing through the entrance from the Coles next door.

Which was when I looked around and realised that every single other shopper in Aldi was pushing a Coles trolley.

Not some, not a majority.

Every single shopper had decided that rather than engage in coin return in exchange for the use of an excellent trolley they’d grab one from Coles with wonky wheels and dump it in the car park.

So not exactly a rousing success for shopping trolley reform, but a big win for laziness, mendacity, and cultural inertia.

Rather than learning to carry a coin or token and wheel the trolley back a whole 30 odd metres over smooth tarmac the shoppers of Jamison (with the exception of one lonely noble blogger) just nick one from Coles and dump it.

And then yesterday I got the trolley pictured above.

For the sake of a dollar (possibly two) someone has decided it’s easier to vandalise the trolley than wheel it back to the supermarket rank.

There’s a person out there, voting, driving on our roads, with a first instinct to hack up a trolley for a dollar rather than return the trolley.

What’s the point of all this?

Betting on people’s good nature is for suckers in this town.

Education is never going to bring change absent enforcement.

We need to keep that in mind as the ACT Government makes ever more rules without paying for inspection, regulation, and enforcement.

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[1] considerable idealism: http://the-riotact.com/tag/shopping-trolleys

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