Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Your Secret's Safe With Portland Disposal And Recycling Company

The Oregon Supreme Court came down on the side of Liberty the other day, and meth cooks are jiggling their teeth loose celebrating.

They found in favor of a couple of methamphetamine dealers and threw out their convictions based on the notion that Oregonians have a right to expect privacy in the matter of the garbage they leave out on the curb. Because it's in an opaque bin with a lid on it, a universal sign for Not Yours, Mister Man.

Oddly enough, this conclusion is at odds with the big-boy Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., even though they're way fatter fans of Liberty when it comes to things like the freedom of corporations to purchase congressmen and things like that.

In the Oregon case, police were suspicious of the couple when their trailer kept blowing up and highly unattractive people were coming and going and Walter White's name was on the reserved parking space, so they had the garbage company hold out their garbage for inspection. Without a warrant. Which the court now says they should've had one of.

I'm a huge fan of this kind of decision. Big ACLU proponent, here. Unreasonable search and seizure is an important concept in a free country, but I draw the line somewhere the other side of my garbage. I do not, personally, feel I do have a right to privacy when it comes to my garbage. I'm throwing it out. That's why it's called garbage. If you don't want someone finding something in your trash can, go dump it in a restaurant dumpster like a grownup.

Maybe people should be required to go through our garbage. And I don't say that because I have nothing to be ashamed of. I'm deeply ashamed of mine, and you should be too. Everything in our garbage can is evidence of our failure to conduct our lives in a sustainable manner. We did buy all that packaging. We did dump that appliance that only worked for a year. We did own a plastic singing fish.

The Oregon Court says even the garbage company isn't allowed to look at your garbage. If your garbage man happens to notice a bunch of blood-stained bundles of meat that might plausibly be rearranged into a human being, he is expected to overlook it, and if it upsets him, he should've taken up typing. Because your private garbage is still your private garbage even though you've given it away.

The one dissenting justice thought this was nuts, and he said a garbage company should be able to take your garbage and "gift it to the police." I object to that too. Nobody ever needs to "gift" anybody anything, for Pete's sake, as long as the word "give" is still loitering around in the language. I'd be perfectly happy to instruction them about that later.

26 comments:

  1. Back when Paul and I were first living together, we practically furnished our apartment by dumpster diving. The local university students would jettison all their belongings during graduation weekend, and we would take the truck and make a day of it. Sometimes we would even find liquor, pot, and small amounts of money.

    Since this only happened over Memorial Day weekend, for a time we would cruise apartment complex dumpsters at the end of the month, also finding some nice things that could have been donated to Goodwill rather than consigned to the landfill. We basically lived like crows, and we were quite happy, so it's no wonder we have a special affection for this bird.

    Occasionally, mostly old people, would yell at us to "get out of their yard" so to speak. But most people were only too happy, if they spotted us at all, to know that someone else could make use of their old stuff.

    Once, while spotting a policeman around, Paul asked about the legality of dumpster diving. The cop said that if it's in a bin and out on the curb, it's fair game -- not stealing. So if people have something to hide, they should probably invest in a paper shredder or put their questionable trash in their least favorite neighbor's trash.

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    1. The Husband is a dedicated dumpster diver - and we marvel at the stuff the UVA students throw away - especially when they're leaving town. Absolutely astonishing. He has had a few encounters with apartment complex managers who take objection to his rummaging through their dumpsters. We don't know if the police around here think it's fair game or not - but so far he hasn't been arrested.

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    2. See, this is where it gets confusing for me. I am all for warrants and the legal niceties. But trash? Seriously, if you want to keep your trash secret, you've made a bad move, in my opinion. You have GIVEN IT AWAY. And hurrah for all the dumpster divers out there. Dave was one. I call them gleaners.

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  2. My sis who lives in Colorado in a city routinely puts stuff out for the homeless and others in her alley next to the garbage.

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    1. We early on learned to separate our cans and bottles to make it easier on the gleaners.

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  3. Nowadays I just go ahead and assume that garbage - and recycling too - are open books for anyone and everyone, especially identity thieves. Anything with my name on it gets shredded or torn up and buried in the messiest compost possible. I may be paranoid, and/or my identity might not even be worth stealing, but that doesn't stop me. lol

    Wouldn't finding body parts in the garbage be exempt from that ruling??? Lordy.

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    1. To be fair, at that point it should be easy to get a warrant. But. Yes. I am veering away from the ACLU on this point (among very few) because GARBAGE.

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  4. Our government makes a habit of examining human waste - to see what is the drug du jour in the area.
    So far they haven't (as far as I know) tracked it back to source and gifted the police with their smelly findings.

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  5. But—but—everyone has a plastic singing fish—-

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  6. When I lived in the Big City I was able to get rid of mattresses, old magazines, broken fishing rods, etc. by putting them in the alley. Now our local recycling center has an attached second hand store that takes care of many things that would otherwise be tossed out.

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    1. I've seen a really good version of that! And it's good...but we really need to quit buying some of this stuff in the first place. And we would, if the environmental cost of the plastic etc. was factored in.

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  7. We have once a month big junk pickup day where you can put out stuff that don’t fit in the can and the county will haul it away. I wonder if this applies to the folks who drive around and pick up our “don’t-want-anymore” junk and resell. And, wtih recycling, do they get to look to see if you put a type 4 plastic in a container for only 1, 2 & 5... Just wonder... Enjoyed your take on the Portland news.

    www.thepulpitandthepen.com

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    1. Wow! We can get the garbage company to pick up the big stuff for a fee. And the recycling is very specific and doesn't relate to the numbers on the containers. Some is recyclable and some ain't. There's SOMEWHERE that will take all the numbers the city won't, but it's that much more fussy to track it down. And we STILL need to NOT CREATE AND BUY IT. Easier said than done.

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  8. Oh, yes! Please instruction those people whose education on the subject fell short.

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    1. I ain't a educator. 'Cause I didn't have kids, and nobody else is my business.

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  9. So all those CSI type shows I watch have it wrong when they are able to collect fingerprints and DNA off discarded items like soft drink cans a cigarette butts? I honestly think that garbage falls under the 'discarded' label and no search warrant should be needed. At least the police now know these people should be suspect and may keep an eye on them. Well, that's what I hope anyway.

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    1. Theoretically, they can get a warrant pretty easily. And because it's that easy, I would think it should be the default position. Because it's GARBAGE.

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  10. Well, goodness me --- "we don't need no frickin' warrant"! Before the interweb, before really unobtrusive wiretaps, before covert camera eyeglasses....Washington kept informed on what was really happening in world politics by newspaper reporters who would routinely go through the trash at 3018 Dumbarton St. NW (Henry Kissinger's house) and 3017 N St. NW (Jackie Onassis' house). Think of it -- without that kind of intel, the Vietnam War may have turned out differently. Snooping through other people's trash -- either for treasures or intel -- is as American as apple pie.

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    1. Thank you, Ed. And might I bring up now the untapped intel of the American Letter Carrier? Gawd, I knew stuff.

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    2. You know, Murr, I kind of wonder whether mail carriers sometimes "profile" people by the mail they get... just to alleviate boredom, mind you. I go to garage sales and tag sales a lot, and I sometimes profile people from what they have. I once slightly freaked out a recent bride by asking her how she enjoyed her honeymoon in Aruba. "How did you know that?" she asked. I just gestured to her table with all its discards from both.

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    3. Profile "sometimes?" We know everything about you.

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  11. Heisenberg... his name was Heisenberg.

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  12. شركة المثالية للتنظيف

    شركة المثالية توفر علي ربة المنزل عناء التنظيف، والمواظبة علية بإستمرار، خصوصا وأن ربة المنزل الآن يكون عليها مهام كثيرة شاقة ولا يكون لديها مساحة من الوقت للقيام بمهام التنظيف، وليس فقط التنظيف هي من مهام الشركة بل أن الشركة أيضاً تُقدم مجموعة مُختلفة من الخدمات الأخرى التي تخدم راحة عُملائها، بالإضافة إلي تقديم مُستوي عالي من الكفاءة في تنفيذ الخدمة. خدمات شركة المثالية: ولأن شركة المثالية تقوم علي راحة عُملائها في تقوم بتوفر مجموعة مُختلفة من الخدمات مثل: • تنظيف الستائر. • تنظيف المفروشات. • تنظيف السجاد والموكيت. • تنظيف الكنب. • تنظيف المجالس. • مُكافحة الحشرات. • رش مُبيدات. • تسليك مجاري. حيثُ أن لدينا مجموعة من أكفأ العمُال والأيدي العاملة، بالإضافة إلي اننا يوجد ليدنا أحدث أنواع الأجهزة والماكينات التي تُساعدنا في عملنا، بالإضافة إلي أن المساحيق المُستخدمة في عمليات التنظيف نقوم بإستيرادها من الخارج، وهي مُصرحة من وزارة الصحة ولا ضرر عليها. كما أن شركة المثالية تستقبل تليفونات عُملائها علي المدار اليوم لإستقبال طباتهم وإستفسارتهم بإستمرار. عزيزي العميل نُحاول أن نوفر لك جميع ما تحتاج إلية، علاوة علي ان أسعارنا لا تقبل المُنافسة.

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