We often find ourselves cleaning interiors of microwaves and refrigerators; we tend to price either a bit high, because the appliances tend to be grubby; hence, cleaning is time-consuming - think the microwave in which someone has exploded a burrito. Neither the original culprit, not anyone following him, will bother to clean the microwave, but they''ll still use it, so the innards of the burrito are thoroughly baked onto the innards of the microwave by the time we see it. Same with the fridge, with the added benefit of the three week old casserole-based science experiment. Of the various services we provide, cleaning the fridge is not one of the most elevating.
Clearly, what is no-one's responsibility, or property, is - no one's responsibility, or his concern. Known this for the 40 years I've been in the janitorial business. But I'd never thought to use the fridge as a metaphor for the "tragedy of the commons" - the term in economics for land that is owned by no-one, or is owned by the community - the common pasture of the medieval village.
The commons are not maintained by anyone, but are used, and abused, by everyone. Further, one over-grazes the pasture, or over-fishes the sea, because if you don't, your competitor will. Much of Western American range land, to use a local example, has been despoiled for over a century, in exactly this way.
I'd not thought to use the fridge as a metaphor. But one of the contributors to my favorite blog, "Ricochet", has. Enjoy!