German Living Tip of the Day Part 1

I know in Kentucky (and Colorado Springs), it can be difficult to recycle if you live in certain counties. In fact, in some places, they charge a fee. If you ask me, this is one of the things that Germans, as backwards as they may be sometimes, got right. They only charge a fee if you don't recycle. It must be pretty hefty too because our German landlords make us get rid of our trash on the army post because they worry that they'll be paying a fine if we incompetent, wasteful and careless Americans forget to recycle something. Yup, that's right, they charge a fine for not recycling. I'm sure it pays for any costs that go into recycling too.


CGrim said…
Any time a government restricts legitimate freedoms, they're not "getting it right."

Someone else said it far better than I can: "If people want to recycle regardless—simply because it makes them feel better about themselves—that's their right. But let them spend their own time and money to do it."

Penn & Teller use slightly different language.

I generally avoid recycling anything (other than metal). Do I hate the planet? Of course not. In fact, many environmentalists take the same position as me. Am I incompetent, wasteful, careless, ignorant? Only as much as Sweden is - an environmentally crazed country that is recognizing the futility of recycling.

I don't recycle because it's a financial drain on the communities that implement it which could better be spent elsewhere (education, for example). Not only that, but it's junk science (PDF) that has little to no benefit to the environment it supposedly intends to protect. In the end, I'd rather give business to American paper companies raising vast tree farms, than to Middle Eastern oil sheiks.

Mandatory recycling is wasteful and shortsighted. Hundreds of U.S. cities used to implement mandatory recycling in the 70s and 80s, but as they were losing money faster than a Kennedy in a bar, many of them (much like Sweden) began turning their recycling boondoggles over to private companies, or eliminating them altogether. NYC and Seattle, unfortunately, with their cult of environmentalism, probably won't follow suit. And sadly, Germany is so lost in its backwards welfare labyrinth that it can no longer recognize common sense.

Recycling uses resources we have in limited supply (electricity from oil, coal) in order to recycle other resources that are plentiful (paper, glass, etc). Does this make sense? I personally think we should adopt Waste-to-Energy. It takes something we can't use (garbage) and turns it into something we can (energy).

But I don't think government should enforce my personal whims. And they ought to keep their greedy fingers away.

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