Daily Illuminator

April 24, 2012: Junk Mail

Yesterday my mailbox was full of catalogs and other junk mail. No real mail at all. Nothing interesting enough even to look at. I weighed it. A pound and 15+ ounces of dead trees. Including two credit card solicitations pre-filled in with enough personal info that I had to shred them. How much gas did they burn to get this wastepaper to my door?

And the Post Office encourages this. Without it, they lose money. Baaaad business plan. No cookie.

I know that the junk subsidizes my LEGO-by-mail orders, but I'd rather they saved the trees, saved the gas, and charged me what it actually costs to deliver my toys. In the alternative, I'd be willing to opt out of the USPS entirely, and just use FedEx. How doable is that? I suppose I could move, give the IRS the business address as the target for their Send Us All Ur Monies forms, and not fill in any other change-of-address forms at all . . . hmm. That would just mean the junk would bounce. More gas would get used to take the trash back to a dead-letter office. </rant>

It turns out that there is a no-junk-mail list. I can't say how effective it is, but I signed up: www.dmachoice.org. I know it won't stop the banks I've dealt with from sending me weekly credit card offers, but maybe an asteroid will fall on them or something.

-- Steve Jackson

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