Monday, December 16, 2013

Where are the morons who put garbage in the recycling?

A story on Page 1 of The Record today suggests many people don't have separate containers for recyclables, above and below, or are so stupid they mix garbage with plastic bottles, cans and other reusable items.

A separate container for recyclables in the kitchen.


The Record's stories on recycling are even rarer than accounts of the daily commute, aircraft noise and Governor Christie's many mean-spirited vetoes.

Today, a front-page story claims many people are mixing garbage and recyclables, and that has led to a crackdown by China, one of the biggest customers for paper, cardboard, plastic bottles and other waste from the United States.

The rejection of bales of recyclables contaminated by "regular trash" may cost North Jersey towns, some of which reportedly make $300,000 to $500,000 on recycling (A-1).

But the story is filled with holes:

Which towns are using so-called single-stream recycling that allows residents to combine paper, cardboard, aluminum and plastic in one container?

According to the story, that leads to contamination with garbage, but the editors never explain why.

White trash

Single-stream recycling is not happening in Hackensack, the most populous town in Bergen County, which, according to the story, ranks first on recycled material among the state's 21 counties.

And where are the interviews with people who are mixing garbage and recyclables? Imagine the possibilities:

"Interviewed at a Jamaican bakery in Englewood, where she was purchasing a black rum cake for the holidays, Editor Deirdre Sykes said, 'What is recycling'?

"Six-figure Editor Liz Houlton was shopping for a new wardrobe at Nordstrom in Paramus, but she said she didn't have time to speak to a reporter about recycling and garbage or catch the many errors in the paper every day."

Are the people who throw garbage into the recycling apartment dwellers? Or are they the same people who drive gas-guzzling SUVs and luxury sedans at insane rates of speed, squandering even more fuel?

No security blankets

On A-3 today, a carjacking and fatal shooting of a male shopper at the "upscale" Mall at Short Hills late Sunday comes more than a month after a troubled 20-year-old Teaneck man invaded Westfield Garden State Plaza in Paramus, fired random shots and then killed himself.

The incidents suggest the Millburn and Paramus malls do not have enough security. 

Maybe mall owners and Macy's, Bloomingdale's and other big retailers can divert some of the millions they spend on advertising to a fund for improving security, such as hiring off-duty police officers to protect shoppers.

Why hasn't The Record reported on whether revenue has fallen at Garden State Plaza stores or shoppers have stayed away in the wake of the Nov. 4 suicide?

The Record's A-3 story doesn't report the death of the shopper. That was reported on WBGO-FM radio news this morning.

Hard of hearing

Here are the specifics of how Road Warrior John Cichowski, in his column last Wednesday, screwed up testimony at a hearing on closing of Fort Lee access lanes at the George Washington Bridge, according to concerned reader:

"Based on testimony from the hearing, Road Warrior indicated in his Wednesday column that an 'ambulance transporting a heart-attack patient crashed.'
"The ambulance for the heart attack patient did not crash. There was another separate incident where a car crashed into a building.
"The hearing indicated that emergency responders were delayed in getting to a heart attack patient and in getting to a car that crashed into a building.
"Road Warrior's Sept. 13 column indicated that emergency responders were delayed in getting to a heart attack patient and in getting to a car that crashed into a building.
"Yet, the Road Warrior combined the 2 separate incidents into one in his Wednesday column.
"Road Warrior is unable to concentrate on what he hears or remember what he has written in the past."

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