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Spin Control

Posts tagged: phosphorous ban

What’s ahead for Oregon phosphate ban?

The Oregon Legislature voted this week to ban automatic dishwasher detergent with phosphorus, to which we in Spokane can say “Welcome to the 21st Century.”

And, “Good luck with that.”

Based on local experience, Spin Control can also predict what’s ahead: 

Assuming the governor doesnt’ veto the law, dozens of people will rush out within 24 hours of the signing ceremony and buy cases of their favorite detergent under the theory it will disappear from the shelves as soon as the ink is dry. They’ll ignore all references to the fact that the law goes into effect in July 2010.

For a year, reporters will tell their readers, viewers and listeners that the ban will take effect July 1, 2010. These stories will routinely mess up the use of phosphorus, which is a noun, and phosphorous, which is an adjective. They will get letters from English teachers and chemistry instructors lecturing them on the difference, and do what they do with all such missives: ignore them.

Next July, shoppers who can’t find their favorite detergent on the shelves of their local Safeway, Albertsons or Zip Trip will call newspapers, radio and television stations to demand an investigation into the conspiracy to get rid of Cascade…

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About this blog

Jim Camden is a veteran political reporter for The Spokesman-Review.


Jonathan Brunt is an enterprise reporter for The Spokesman-Review.


Kip Hill is a general assignments reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

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