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Trash by the Pound Coming to Charlotte?


The article starts out: “As Charlotte weighs a new proposal to charge residents for how much garbage they produce…..”

In a curious turn, Charlotte is contemplating charging taxpayers who create garbage. Is something wrong with producing garbage? Actually, it’s a fairly simple situation but says much about government bureaucracy’s relationship with taxpayers.

In all fairness, disposing of garbage, even though one of the primary responsibilities of city governments, is a difficult undertaking. First, the garbage must be picked up. This part is simple: buy trucks, hire truck drivers and have them pick it up. Ah, but then it must be disposed of. There are very few ways this can occur. Recycling helps to some extent, the rest can be burned or buried. Recycling is a great idea and works to some extent, but NIMBY raises its head whenever burying or burning is considered. Which makes disposing of garbage more and more difficult. This leads to the desire to have those creating the garbage to recycle more.

So what does Charlotte do to encourage more recycling? So far as I know, nothing. If you take a few bags of recycle to the recycling center, you get to dump it for free. Great. One spends time to collect, sort, and then take it to the center and all you get for doing so is nothing. The same holds true for those who put their recyclables in those special containers, except they don’t deliver their goodies to the center. The city/county sells these recyclables, but do you get anything for them? No! So why should someone recycle? Because we should? If the holier than thou bureaucrats want us to recycle more, why don’t they encourage recycling? Why doesn’t Charlotte pay people to recycle?

Because that doesn’t seem to be the way governments work. Bureaucrats being the holier than thou people they are, believe they are supposed to threaten the taxpayers for not doing what the bureaucrats want, so they are now contemplating charging people for having garbage. Excuse me, but isn’t that what taxes are for?

This garbage proposal is a perfect example of what is generally wrong with government. Government bureaucracies come to think of the taxpayers as objects to be manipulated and used. The people are to be punished for not doing what the bureaucrats demand, yet the bureaucrats are paid by the people to provide particular services. The city of Charlotte supposed to provide police, fire, garbage, roads, water and sewer services. The county takes care of social services, schools, parks, court houses, jails and the sheriffs office. Taxes are paid for these services so what is the problem?

The problem is a bureaucracy with too much power and too little oversight. The problem is a city council led around by the nose by the bureaucrats.

As people elsewhere have already pointed out; charging people for creating garbage is going to cause problems. Already people take their garbage and throw bags of it out for other people to pick up. That problem will increase. But that is not the basis of the problem. The basis of the problem is a government which believes the people are here to serve it.


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