Those were the now-prophetic words written by this author in March of this year in a story describing the surreptitious implantation of microchips in the
trashcans of 2.6 million Britons ostensibly to encourage them to
recycle. The monitors were placed in the bins without the knowledge of
the owners, and the data collected from them were transmitted to local
government computers and collated with additional personal information
gathered from other sources.
Not content with sending us their cheddar cheese and their tea, the English have now exported their terrifying trash technology to the
United States. In a story almost too chilling to believe, The Cleveland Plain Dealer exposed a new program that the City of Cleveland is set to roll out next year to make sure residents are going green.
On August 18, the Cleveland City Council announced that it had approved a $2.5 million budget request for the high-tech carts for
25,000 customers. The recycling carts will contain a radio frequency
identification (RFID) chip that will send a signal to the city’s waste
management department every time the recycling cart is rolled to the
curb. If too much time passes without a signal being received, the city
will send out a “trash supervisor” to rifle through the trash in search
of recyclable items.
If the rubbish regulators find that the regular trash cart contains more than 10 percent recyclable material, then a $100 fine could be
imposed on the guilty planet haters.
In response to questions about the program (begun in a limited roll out in 2007), city officials stated that 25,000 RFID-embedded carts
would be delivered every year until every one of the city’s residents
have one. If the funds are there, moreover, the city will retrofit older
carts with the chips so that no one’s garbage-disposal habits escape
The Plain Dealer piece mentions that the monitoring devices are already in use in other American cities (Alexandria, Virginia, for
example) and in England.
Officials in Cleveland, as those in England before them, assured residents that the RFID chips were being attached to the carts in order
to improve efficiency. “Recycling is good for the environment and the
city’s bottom line,” Cleveland city leaders told The Plain Dealer.
The final paragraph of the article published in The New American over five months ago is particularly timely in light of the
developments in Cleveland and elsewhere. As Americans, we must be wary
of the unblinking eye of government being cast on us at every turn. We
must boldly refuse to slouch along the constantly monitored path to
serfdom. As was said in March:
We must vigilantly watch for any such proposals that percolate up from our local authorities and heed well the wise words spoken over
2,000 years ago by Cicero, the famed Roman orator and defender of
liberty, “An evil is most easily killed in its infancy.”