Garbage collection was free as the collector would pick through the garbage and resell items....wow! There was a garbage dump immediate behind the Signal Compound barracks and there were men, women, and children there daily trying to find items from the dump...I saw this right behind my room there. This was 1965, so hopefully things have changed since then?
Actually, I've been to overseas military installations in different parts of the world in recent years where trash is still picked up for free. I was doing some work at a base in Turkey just a few years ago and there were local families who lived at the base landfill. They spent their days combing through the trash and selling whatever they found.
Go to China and place a plastic water bottle or soft drink can in any public garbage bin and see how long it takes before someone comes and grabs it. Usually it's a matter of seconds.Today in Taiwan you must sort your garbage into seperate containers before it is collected for recycling purposes. People might collect cardboard or scrap metal but no one will go picking through the dump for it.I don't think anyone collects 'night soil' anymore either ;-)
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