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Monday, July 6, 2009

Portland strategy: Get people to buy less stuff

And they're about to hire a marketing consultant at $40K or so to come up with a way to sell it to you. The big hook: climate change.

Nowadays everybody will tell you that if you do what they want, it will help reverse climate change. I wish this gimmick had been around when I was hitting on girls back in my high school days.

Comments (7)

The introductory paragraph of the RFP made me cringe: "The Bureau of Planning has had an outstanding record of guiding Portland's growth and development toward the thriving, livable city that it is today. The Office of Sustainable Development has pioneered many policies and programs that integrate environmental, economic, and social benefits. The merger is one example of Portland’s strengthening position as a global center of sustainable practices and commerce. This new bureau builds on the outstanding history of planning in Portland, and will ensure that sustainability principles are thoroughly integrated into the core of Portland's planning, urban design and government operations." Outstanding. Thriving. Pioneering. Global center. Less self-congratulation would seem appropriate for this type of document. A definition of sustainability, "sustainable practices," and "sustainable commerce" seems necessary and is, of course, absent.

The RFP lists a requirement listed that seems at odds with their mission: Submit one (1) original and (3) complete copies of the Proposal to....

Here's a free suggestion for them: If you have the skills to post the RFP online, you can also accept electronic bid submissions, and expect staff to likewise evaluate them online. All without a single tree being slayed.

ABout the only thing interesting about these is looking at the registered vendor list to see who is feeding at the public trough still.

In my "paperless" office, I use about 2 reams of paper a year. Almost all of it is used to prepare multiple copies of proposals for the City of Portland.

The pathetic thing (in my mind) is that the majority of rubes in the city will buy whatever is being pushed. Wrap it in a nice neat lie of 'it will help stop global warming' and you can sell 10 times more of it. Read ALL the data folks, don't just go off sound bites and abbreviated MSM stories.

Also, I always get a kick when I download a PDF that says, "Printed on recycled paper."

Not only is the City sustainable, it's clairvoyant.

Gee, and I thought the recession was already causing people not to buy as much.

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