When the clientele seems to have become more monolithic, less diverse, we can understand that some companies—and producers in general, to use the economic jargon—would mimic the hierographical hang-ups of their customers. Sometimes, it verges on the pathetic, as we can see in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal (“The Hidden Ways Companies Raise Prices,” February 12, 2022), but competition can still limit the damage:

Some of Marriott International Inc.’s Autograph Collection hotels had been charging a “sustainability fee” of about $5 a night. The company that manages the properties, Innkeeper Hospitality Services LLC, says it covered things like more-efficient HVAC systems.

They stopped charging the fee several weeks ago, “because we understand that while we believe in environmentally responsible stewardship, not everyone cares about our planet’s health,” IHS CEO Amrit Gill said. He said Marriott had asked the company to stop charging the fee. Marriott declined to comment.

Marriott International has presumably realized that some customers are not willing to pay any price to save their, or others’, environmental souls.