Burned-down House is Government’s Fault

Liberals have been beside themselves over an incident in Obion County, Tennessee where firefighters allowed a small home to burn to the ground because the homeowners had failed to pay a $75 annual fee for fire protection; an option given to each resident of the county. In typical fashion, the blame for this has been summarily placed on conservatism, libertarianism, and even Ayn Rand. The real culprit here is the government, not the private sector.

 Most people expressing anger over this unusual incident have not been honest with the details about this incident; and their demagoguery is not going to rebuild the home that burned down. 

The homeowners did call the fire department once they realized the blaze could not be put out with a garden hose; the call was ignored. Firefighters did respond to a call from a neighbor, who had in fact paid their fee, once the flames threatened their property. By this time, the fire had consumed most of the non-payer’s home.

Here are the facts that seem to have been ignored by many on the left. The fire department was not privately owned. It was contracted by Obion County from the City of South Fulton. This is a government-run monopoly, not a free-market enterprise. These firefighters were following the policies set in place by the local government, not edicts laid down by arguably uncaring capitalists.

This is not a failure of capitalism or of limited government; it is a failure of government. As Thomas Firey, managing editor of the Cato Institute’s Regulation magazine, notes, a private company would have likely put out the fire and sent the homeowner a bill.

While there is a legitimate argument to be had for local and county governments to provide services such as these, paid for by whatever taxes they choose, the unfortunate incident that took place in Obion County, Tennessee cannot fairly be laid at the feet of limited-government advocates.

130 comments Add your comment

skydog

October 20th, 2010
6:16 am

zzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Get a job Bob.

Eric

October 20th, 2010
6:22 am

Actually, the fault can be laid at libertarian types who hold positions in government. It’s a little of both, Bob. The choice to pay or not pay for fire protection services never should have been given in the first place.

Eric #2

October 20th, 2010
6:32 am

I thought the government (federal, state, local) was supposed to protect people. With all the expansionary taxes, I can’t believe Obion County couldn’t afford to help ONE of its citizens. It’s not like there’s wide-scale fires everyday. Thanks for nothing!

bo

October 20th, 2010
6:47 am

Barr couldn’t be more wrong. This is a perfect example of a citizen being allowed an opportunity to divorce himself from big bad government, to make the payment for and use of government services optional. Since Barr is placing blame, the only one at fault is the guy who refused to pay the fee.

Realist

October 20th, 2010
7:10 am

Spot on, bo. As sad as it may be now, the homeowner had a “choice”, HE made the “choice” NOT to have fire protection in the event of a fire. HIS choice is the mistake here.
I do agree with Bob, had the fire services been with a private company, I believe they would have helped the homeowner, and sent them a bill.

GB

October 20th, 2010
7:12 am

Interesting fact, that the fire department is a government owned entity. But the essential question remains: was this “failure” really a failure at all?

Whether the department was public or private, the key fact is that the homeowners did not pay the required fee. If the fireman put out fires for peope who have paid no fee, why would anyone pay the fee? Lots of people would try to get a free ride, there would be little money to fund the service, the service would cease to exist, and no one would have fire protection.

carlosgvv

October 20th, 2010
7:29 am

It seems obvious this kind of option should never be offered to anyone. Some Government protections must not be optional because if they are, disasters will follow.

Smart like a Fox

October 20th, 2010
7:38 am

if 7 dollars was added to everyones monthly power bill, as a fire protection charge this would never have happened. please please….Got Brains?

Dave Briggman

October 20th, 2010
7:39 am

Eric, all citizens pay for fire protection services either through real estate taxes or directly, through the $75 fee the city government charged county citizens. Realist and GB are both quite correct with their statements.

Duh

October 20th, 2010
7:44 am

Are some of you folks really saying that fully competent adults should not have a choice about some of the services they want or do not want? Really?!?
That being said, if the fire dept had an idle truck that night they should have put out the fire – it’s just the right thing to do.

Buford Sowega

October 20th, 2010
7:47 am

Quite frankly, this is a case of poorly functioning government (that happens to be managed by those who think they understand conservative principles) and a place that doesn’t quite seem to understand the true meaning of community.

Fire is much like invasion or earthquake or floods. You do what needs to be done to contain the damage and help your neighbor, then sort out all of the causes and liabilities afterwards, when heads are clearer and cooler.

Community cost? What about fire insurance rating? What about the potential for more widespread damage if you can’t contain the blaze? And what about trust between citizens, that once lost, is very hard to regain?

Malti-Poos Rule

October 20th, 2010
8:01 am

And when conservatives get blamed for stuff, Bob gets all uptight. My gosh.

Skip

October 20th, 2010
8:02 am

Buford. you describe a great country, I wonder if it ever existed?

sharecropper

October 20th, 2010
8:04 am

Normally, though you are a right wing quack, I give you some credit for intellectual honesty. But this is a depth of shallowness I’m not accustomed to. You nut jobs don’t want to hold anybody responsible for anything. Who the hell do you think is “the government”? It is us. And somebody in Georgia is not responsible for a truly ludicrous personal decision made in Tennessee by somebody sworn to protect and serve. The fellow was right: get a job. And stop blaming “the government” for fires, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes and bed bug infestations.

Buford Sowega

October 20th, 2010
8:09 am

Skip, I doubt if it ever existed, but I’ve seen bits and pieces of good communities, with governments that do more to provide services the best that they can. I’ve also seen trust between members of a community be broken and never recover, well not in my short lifetime.

Just because the notion of community might be idealistic doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t work hard to build it. That makes me an optimistic fool, but hey, I gotta be me.

Ragnar Danneskjöld

October 20th, 2010
8:11 am

I fix responsibility with the home-owner who, exercising his free right of contract, chose to not so contract. There is no bad guy here – simply a bad choice, and the consequences of that choice are visited on the decider.

The mirror of the same evil exists in ObamaCare, wherein the government now determines that we have no right to not contract. Thus we surrender freedom to the judgment of the overlords, personal choice gone forever.

EDIMGIAFAD

October 20th, 2010
8:11 am

Duh – Wrong. Your concept is that YOU do not have topay for anything until YOU need it. The setup and maintenance costs appy to everyone else but not YOU. YOU do not need to pull any weight until YOU need the help. While I do agree with YOU on the first paragraph, YOUR second paragraph serves as the MO for too many people in this country – it’s all about YOU.

P.S. – One of the more liberal counties in the US, Pima County (Tucson, AZ) operates in just this same matter and the fee is $500/year, not $75.

interested observer

October 20th, 2010
8:15 am

No Bob, it is not a failure of government. It is a failure of the individual to take responsibility to care for his or her property. The property owner chose not to avail himself of the government service. Then he faced the consequences.

It’s a tough call, but the government has a fiduciary responsibility to the citizens as a group. Providing services for those who refuse to pay is detrimental to the whole. That’s not the ideal way to fund fire protection, but consider it fire insurance. Try not paying your premium to State Farm and see how much sympathy you get when you have a claim.

Common Man

October 20th, 2010
8:22 am

I wonder if he chose the option to insurance his house? Sometimes it just takes common sense to come in out of the rain.

PR

October 20th, 2010
8:22 am

Bob Barr is an angry old man who is clueless. Once he got thrown out of his cozy, cushy job in Washington DC where he was ripping of the taxpayers while posing as a U.S. Senator he got pissed off and wants to blame the govenrment for everything. Bob, you need to go back to the elderly rest home and get back on your medication.

David

October 20th, 2010
8:24 am

Consider places out west where there are counties and areas that 2 or three houses for 100s of square miles … there are areas that people choose to live that cannot be protected by the almighty govt. and Obion county is one of those places. There is not enough people to tax to the point they can create their own FD, so the only option is “Pay to Spray” from a neighboring jurisdiction.

I’m sure Obion has held their own meetings and “the people” chose to operate this way. The people of Obion are their own govt. and they set their own rules.

Though I would have made the residents sign something that said “I fully understand that not paying this fee … yada yada yada”

PinkoNeoConLibertarian

October 20th, 2010
8:26 am

The problem here was that the government was allowed to charge an added fee for what is one of the very few services they should be required to provide. The main function of a government is to provide for the safety of its citizens at home and abroad. This is not optional. That is exactly what taxes should be paying for.

I’m guessing that a lot of these folks here that are defending the government in this case would also agree that it would be just fine to make police protection “optional” as well. You just got mugged/assaulted/raped/whatever? Did you pay your protection fee? No? Oh well, take two aspirin and call someone who cares.

David

October 20th, 2010
8:27 am

@Common Man … tha man said he was insured when the article came out.

analogy time

October 20th, 2010
8:28 am

Seems to me this imposed annual fee to cover fire protection is analogous to the Federal requirement to have health care insurance. So I guess those opposed to that system are o.k. with more houses burning down?

skydog

October 20th, 2010
8:34 am

You righties do realize if Bush had gotten his way and privatized Social Security we ALL would have lost trillions. The only place to put our money would have been the stock market which crashed within months of Bush plan.
Big government is bad, thieving pirates like Bush are worse.

This man in Tenn. took a gamble and lost.

If we were given our SS, we would have lost.

John

October 20th, 2010
8:42 am

Bob,

Please name the liberals that have claimed the fire department was privately owned. I have watched this story unfold and not once heard anyone make this claim. What I have heard was the truth that the county provides this service for a fee for those residents. I have heard liberals say government services should not be only rendered for a fee…these should be provided for via taxes. For instance, we should not have cafeteria services where we choose protection such as fire, police, emt service where we pick and choose what services we want and pay a fee for each we choose.

And conservatives such as Glen Beck claim the system worked…that if you don’t pay the fee, you don’t get the service. According to Glen Beck and others, who favor privatization, it wouldn’t be fair to respond to a call to someone if they didn’t pay the fee, even if the person is willing to pay after the fact. Think about it, how would a private fire department survive if everyone chooses not to pay for a contract and only choose to pay for the service after it’s rendered? Would a private company be able to survive and pay their bills if everyone choose not to take out a contract and the number of fires is extremely low?

David

October 20th, 2010
8:42 am

The govt is required to provide protection for the people, NOT THEIR STUFF.
The owner has said when the call was made to 911 he said that there was no one in the house, and in turn the FD has said that if anyone WAS in the house, of course they would have made all effort to save the person.

THE DUDE ONLY LOST STUFF BECAUSE HE CHOSE NOT TO PAY.

skydog

October 20th, 2010
8:43 am

Ragnar said,
“The mirror of the same evil exists in ObamaCare, wherein the government now determines that we have no right to not contract. Thus we surrender freedom to the judgment of the overlords, personal choice gone forever”

Not true Rag. If you don`t have insurence and get sick, WE pay through higher emergency room prices, higher insurence, or state/local taxes.

If your house burns down, we just look over at your tent and say what a dummy you are. Big difference.

John

October 20th, 2010
8:54 am

@David

“THE DUDE ONLY LOST STUFF BECAUSE HE CHOSE NOT TO PAY.”

3 dogs and 1 cat were killed in that fire. Should the department or those making the decision for letting that house burn face charges for animal cruelty?

bo

October 20th, 2010
9:00 am

there is a big difference with health. if you need emergency care, you will get it no matter what–it would be malpractice for a doctor or hospital to do otherwise.

Mike

October 20th, 2010
9:14 am

Burned-down House is Government’s Fault get ridd of all this Gov.
They only look out for there self.

Kingston sets date for layoff

With Kingston city administrators at odds in matters of finance, the council acted on their concerns Monday for the financial stability of the city by voting in favor of layoffs. Initially a vote was taken effective immediately before a revision was made to delay the decision.

Approving a decision that has been debated in recent meetings, the city council voted to get rid of two full-time maintenance workers and move two police officers to reserve status. The motion was made by Councilman Miklas and approved despite the reiteration by Mayor Jones that financial matters are stable and the confusion is a result of improper bookkeeping.

“In a short time, the city is not going to be able to pay the bills,” Miklas said. “If we continue to transfer the money unabated we will deplete our water accounts. Then if a major breakdown occurs in our water system, there will be no money to make the repairs promptly. This will create a severe hardship for the people of Kingston. In addition, in just two and a half months, the city council will be faced with approving a new budget for 2011. How are we going to approve this new budget when both accounts would be depleted? It is obvious the city is overstaffed and underfunded. The expenditures exceed the incoming revenues by a substantial margin.”

After the decision was made, the mayor and council met in executive session discussing personnel matters in the company of City Attorney . Returning after about an hour of closed session discussions, the council voted to amend their decision by adding that layoffs would be effective Nov. 9 as opposed to the immediate action voted upon originally.

Councilmen spoke of the decision with heavy hearts, expressing their displeasure in having to make such a choice. The difficult decision was expressed by the council as a necessary action to curtail expenditures.

“I think that we’ve got to do something. I don’t know the right decision to make but I know that if we keep doing what we’re doing, we’re not going to make it,” said Councilman Wise.

In response to the council’s vote to layoff city employees, Jones stated again his confidence in the city’s financial strength and the common practice of transferring funds from enterprise funds. He also rebutted Miklas’ statement regarding the ability to repair the water system in case of a catastrophic occurrence with the existence of a sinking fund for such an occasion.

The concession to enact the decision at a later date was in hopes of clearing the picture on the city’s financial matters. The audit, which is months late due to improper records according to Jones, may also be available by next month’s regular meeting on Nov. 8.

“As far as the city being broke, like I’ve stated in the past, that simply is not the case,” Jones said. “We will practice different standard accounting principles in the future to avoid this situation.”

Employees to be laid off were not determined in open meeting. The reserve status of officers would place them in a volunteer position if they choose to continue serving the city in such a capacity.

The city council also voted to begin advertising an open position for City Treasurer vacated by last week.

Duh

October 20th, 2010
9:15 am

EDIMGIAFAD – Read more carefully – we’re on the same side. Fully competent adults should have a choice about the services they want or do not want. Period.
However, if I lived across the street from this guy I’d drag my garden hose over to help him out.

David

October 20th, 2010
9:20 am

@John
“3 dogs and 1 cat were killed in that fire. Should the department or those making the decision for letting that house burn face charges for animal cruelty?”

In the eyes of the law, animals are “stuff” the owner’s son burned down the house by burning leaves to close to the house. The govt is not, nor should they be, required to save your pets with no expense spared. It is emotional, but there has to be limits … what if it was a lizard? a parakeet? Dogs and cats are in the same category.

There was no animal cruelty involved, it was an accident caused by the homeowner.

Al Gore

October 20th, 2010
9:30 am

I think everyone is ignoring the real crime here. By letting that house burn, the fire department was contributing to global warming.

John

October 20th, 2010
9:33 am

@David
“In the eyes of the law, animals are “stuff” ”

So are you saying we can dispose of pets like we dispose of any other “stuff”. Say, throw them in the trash or burn them as we do with other “stuff”. Try using that as a defense in a court of law.

Jim

October 20th, 2010
9:42 am

I guarantee property taxes or other local taxes are funding the fire department on top of any $75 fee. As a homeowner, your taxes are supporting local fire and police. Not to mention the fire departments moral duty to the community. The fire department should have extinguished the fire and then sent the homeowner a bill. I am sure the homeowner would have been happy to pay a $1000 fee after the fact.

retiredds

October 20th, 2010
9:47 am

when all else fails, blame the nefarious government

David

October 20th, 2010
9:52 am

The animal were not thrown away nor were they abused, they died in an accident.

But as far as them being seen as “stuff” … If someone accidently at fault killed your dog, purely accidently, you could sue for the retail value of the dog, you would receive no emotional loss compensation, nor should you.

But in a sense also, yes, if your dog accidently dies in your care, you can legally dispose of them as you wish, burn ‘em, bury ‘em whatever the almight govt allows. It is your emotional choice.

You can’t cruelly kill or destroy them, there are local laws against that, but this was an accident and the “stuff” was susequently destroyed.

skydog

October 20th, 2010
9:52 am

Duh,
If fire services are readly available, what duha$$ would decline?

Nobody. So why make it an option? Would you also make police protection an option?

If you are THAT afraid of socialism then be consistant and stay off the interstate roads.

Jefferson

October 20th, 2010
10:01 am

Watching a young girl being molested because they didn’t pay protection money wouldn’t be nice. Gov’t should be FOR everyone, thats called civilization.

David

October 20th, 2010
10:05 am

@skydog “Duh, If fire services are readly available, what duha$$ would decline?”

1) there was no local fire service available, it would have added thousands per year per resident for this county to have their own.

This sparcely populated COUNTY had (by the residents choosing) contracted with an underfunded “volunteer dept” from a neighboring jurisdiction.

The residents are the govt and they make the rules.

2) this duma$$ declined

Duh

October 20th, 2010
10:30 am

Thanks David, didn’t get back here in time to respond to SD.

John

October 20th, 2010
10:38 am

Notice how all conservatives have jumped to the conclusion that this “duma$$” man declined coverage. Have any of you watched interviews with this man. According to him, he didn’t decline the coverage and unwillingly not pay the fee. He claims he overlooked the bill and forgot to pay it…nothing more. It wasn’t that he was against the fee. I guess conservatives have never overlooked a bill but have always paid every single bill on time. The electricity company may cut someone power if they hadn’t paid their bill and then charge a fee to cut it back on. This man offered to pay whatever it would cost to save his home. His neighbors also offered to pay…but the fire department would not accept it.

Now his insurance will pay for the damages and then potentially will raise premiums on everyone’s insurance to cover the cost and spread it to all policy holders.

skydog

October 20th, 2010
10:51 am

I`m ok with an option in rural areas where it may be too expensive. Then you roll the dice.

Are ya`ll saying this option should also be available in areas that have established fire protection at reasonable prices?

Like Jefferson said above, that`s not socialization, that`s civilization

JohnC

October 20th, 2010
11:29 am

I think David is the only one here who understands that the homeowner lived in an unincorporated area of Obion County which has no fire department. He had an option to pay a city government to provide fire protection services even though he lives outside of the city limits and does not pay taxes to the city. This is a very rural area of the state and I’m sure both the city and county operate with very limited budgets. The city simply can’t afford to provide services to the residents outside of the city limits without the funding that comes from the $75 fee.

Gomer

October 20th, 2010
11:32 am

“Mr. Insurance man…my house burned and you should pay up. Please ignore the fact that I forgot to pay my bill and the insurance lapsed. I just over looked it.”

What a world we live in

October 20th, 2010
11:32 am

While we all sit and type out our theoretical/political arguments and take positions based on “what ifs” and such, where in the hell did common sense and just plain decency go? If the fire had been put out, the guy could have paid the $75 right after. He tried to pay it while they were there. The slippery slope argument, the one where others would not pay since this guy got a free pass(which again he offered to pay) is weak. This would have been a better wake up call to the neighbors without all the harm, death, and bad blood. I don’t care that he did not pay on time, I care that the firefighters we deified in 2001 sat there and did nothing to help a fellow human. Once all of you get of your high horses and quit trying to be the next big political thinker, just ask yourself if you would have helped the guy. Would you have stood there, hoses in hand and not done anything because of a 75 dollar fee? Would you be able to look him in the eye as you see him in the grocery store? Church? Wherever? Lord help you if you answer yes. This makes me sick no matter what side of the left or right you argue. There is right and wrong and that is more important than limited gov’t or heavy handed gov’t. Go to church and and ask your pastor or rabbi or leader what should have been done. I hope the power/lord/god I believe in looks at this with a shaking head wondering where his creations went so wrong.

What a world we live in

October 20th, 2010
11:43 am

Oh, and has anyone taken the time to figure out that it costs more than 75 bucks to send out trucks, pay the firemen and all the things that go into putting out a fire? Say you had 3 in a year? But all you have to pay is 75 a year. So it has to be subsidized in some way, correct?

Mr. Spock

October 20th, 2010
11:59 am

If the guy didn’t pay his $75 but offered to pay it on the spot, then why should everyone else pay their $75? They can just wait until their house catches on fire and then pay the $75 when they need to actually put out a fire. Then no one would pay.

Jawga

October 20th, 2010
12:03 pm

Why can’t we do the same with health care (i.e., if you don’t have health insurance, don;t expect to get treated in the ER when you are injured or think you are sick)?

Mrs. Norris

October 20th, 2010
12:12 pm

In most unincorporated areas people are required to pay a special services tax to cover fire and police services. It’s required! That’s the way it should be. Some things a government should do in a civilized society.

Peter

October 20th, 2010
12:13 pm

It is a Christian issue…….. The Baptist Mayor said…..”Let it Burn” essentially……

Jesus and God would have it burn since they didn’t pay at the Temple !

Love thy neighbor……….. but NOT…….. if they don’t pay up !

John

October 20th, 2010
12:19 pm

Thanks for pointing that out What a world we live in. I find it strange where we live in a society where so many claim we were founded on Christian principles and clamor for more Christian values but then choose to live very un-Christian like. My Christian teachings have taught me to look after my neighbor, to help the less unfortunate. Unfortunately, so many have become so selfish and self-centered that we have lost these values. Instead of helping, we tend to blame the less fortunate or those going through tough times by saying it’s their fault…they need to take care of themselves. I’m not so naive that I don’t believe there are some abuses…but not every person who is unemployed, homeless or can’t afford basic necessities find themselves there because they choose to be there. We have a movement going on calling for less taxes, cut spending and decrease the size of government. But the problem becomes on what should be cut. People want to cut services they personally don’t benefit from but at the same time would fight tooth and nail against cutting those services which they do personally benefit from.

skydog

October 20th, 2010
12:23 pm

Great plan Jawga!
Get back to yor WWF.
You still have to pay someone to scoop um off the curb at the emergency room and take um to the dump.

World we live in:
It is not as black and white as you make it seem.
Everyone would help in a fire.
What is the fire dispatcher to do next time when the fire is farther out in the country? At some point, someone has to make the decision. We can`t come.

John

October 20th, 2010
12:25 pm

Mr. Spock, why charge anyone the $75? Why not tax everyone and spread the cost and therefore cover all residents? This is basic service, just as police services are as well.

SonnyFab

October 20th, 2010
12:27 pm

There was a clear failure of something in this case. I don’t keep a plumber on retainer in case my toilet overflows. I wait for the clog, then get out the yellow pages because in a capitalist system, I can buy the services that I require when I require them. I can also buy insurance to cover the costs of things I do not want to risk having to pay for out of pocket. However, having to pay in advance for something I almost definitely will never use, and then NOT BEING A BLE to pay for it if I do happen to need it is DEFINITELY a failure. The failure here was that the government was the only entity with the equipment to fight fires, and the policy that it chose to put in place was that you had to pre-pay for its potential services or you could not get them. That is a lousy system.

John

October 20th, 2010
12:29 pm

@Ms. Norris

“In most unincorporated areas people are required to pay a special services tax to cover fire and police services.”

Would you be fine with the city of Atlanta saying they can’t cover the cost of police and fire services any longer; therefore, the city tell residents they must pick and choose which services they want and pay for each individual service?

Swede Atlanta

October 20th, 2010
12:32 pm

Government services should not be offered on an a la carte basis. The whole idea behind being part of a community is to pool your resources to provide basic services such as fire and police protection. No one knows when he or she might need those services. The fee should not have been optional.

It would be as if I could optionally pay that portion of my federal income tax that goes to national defense because I believe that the likelihood the bad guys are going to invade Atlanta are small.

John

October 20th, 2010
12:41 pm

Something to think about. Since the man didn’t pay the $75 fee beforehand, the fire department did not respond when he called. They only responded when the neighbor, who paid the fee, called and it was to save the neighbors home only. What if the neighbor was not home, or even worse, asleep in his home unaware of the fire next door. The fire spread to his home and he died in the fire. He paid his fee, did not get the service and as a result he lost his life. Would conservatives then feel there was a flaw in the system? Should anyone be held responsible for that? Or would people still blame the man who didn’t pay the fee?

carlosgvv

October 20th, 2010
12:42 pm

Has it occured to anyone there might have been small childred in that house? If we have reached the point where, because of money, we are willing to let small childred be burned alive, our Country is well on the way to the scrap heap of history.

UpstandingCitizen

October 20th, 2010
12:54 pm

The guy’s son was burning leaves too close to the house… so all this spewing is over some redneck teenager who isn’t smart enough to compost??? I say we go back to survival of the fittest and let the stupid people just kill themselves.

skydog

October 20th, 2010
12:55 pm

This guy was out in the country where there were no fire services. He had the option to pay the nearest fire dept. if he elected.

John

October 20th, 2010
12:59 pm

@skydog

“This guy was out in the country where there were no fire services.”

So living out in the country should be a reason to not have basic services provided for? Does he have police services?

Swede Atlanta

October 20th, 2010
1:03 pm

Upstanding Citizen

I thinnk your poast @ 12:54 suggests why your screen name is totally wrong.

One of the reasons why we have fire and other emergency services are to provide protection when accidents occur. The son may indeed have been burning leaves too close to the house given the circumstances. But we all make mistakes. So simply because he made a mistake we should let their house burn down?

What if you fell off a ladder in your home because you leaned over too far to paint a wall. Should we just let you lay there and bleed to death rather than have EMS services respond?

John

October 20th, 2010
1:04 pm

@UpstandingCitizen,

“I say we go back to survival of the fittest and let the stupid people just kill themselves.”

The sad thing is you probably actually belief that.

David

October 20th, 2010
1:30 pm

@carlosgvv … “Has it occured to anyone there might have been small childred in that house?”

Yes it did, and 911 asked if anyone was in danger and the owner replied “NO”

This whole issue is about a FD refusing to save his stuff, they were full ready to go out if anyone was in danger.

The guy lost stuff and no one was in danger.

David Shivers

October 20th, 2010
1:34 pm

Maybe next we’ll start billing crime victims or their estates for being robbed, assaulted, murdered, etc.

Gary

October 20th, 2010
1:37 pm

In my mind this is a failure of morality. The question is was it sound moral judgment for the county to direct those firefighters to allow this family’s house to burn down over 75 dollars? Was it sound moral judgment for this man to risk his family by not paying the fee? And was it sound moral judgment for those firefighters to obey an order that damaged another person in this manner? Being moral requires us to do the right thing even if the other party has done the wrong thing. So, I have this question then…is it moral to look at this and choose a side without considering the innocent lives that were devastated by this…the children of that family had nothing to do with any of it, but they were allowed to suffer and used as an example of what happens to people who don’t pay the fee. The county acted immorally…the dad acted immorally…and the firemen acted immorally….and they should all be ashamed of themselves for letting those children down.

John

October 20th, 2010
2:00 pm

@David,

“The guy lost stuff and no one was in danger.”

Did you read my earlier post? The next door neighbor, who paid his fee, could have been in danger had he been asleep and the fire spread to his house.

Mr. Spock

October 20th, 2010
2:21 pm

John…The $75 fee was what his local system set as the rules for fire services. I assume they pay taxes there too. Plain and simple.

John

October 20th, 2010
2:27 pm

Mr. Spock…could you answer to my earlier post. In case you didn’t see it, I’ll post it again.

Since the man didn’t pay the $75 fee beforehand, the fire department did not respond when he called. They only responded when the neighbor, who paid the fee, called and it was to save the neighbors home only. What if the neighbor was not home, or even worse, asleep in his home unaware of the fire next door. The fire spread to his home and he died in the fire. He paid his fee, did not get the service and as a result he lost his life. Would you then feel there was a flaw in the system? Should anyone be held responsible for that? Or would people still blame the man who didn’t pay the fee? What if you where the next door neighbor who paid the fee, should your house be allowed to burn down if you were not home to call the fire department yourself? What if you were not home and someone was asleep in your home, should they be allowed to burn to death because your neighbor didn’t pay his fee and no one from your home called the fire department?

Swede Atlanta

October 20th, 2010
2:34 pm

The amazing thing about this whole discussion is that when services are covered by taxes you aren’t denied services because your taxes have not been paid. The taxing authority will take action to enforce tax collection including lien, levy and seizure but the police would respond if you called them and the fire department would come and put out a fire.

Why should this service be optional?

carlosgvv

October 20th, 2010
2:39 pm

David

If there was no 911 call or the caller said “no children” but was mistaken, would you still advocate letting the house burn down?

A. J. C . Smith

October 20th, 2010
2:44 pm

Sounds fair to me. There ain’t no free lunch, except in Washington.

Swede Atlanta

October 20th, 2010
2:45 pm

Where is the free lunch?

Swede Atlanta

October 20th, 2010
2:45 pm

Where is the free lunch?

skydog

October 20th, 2010
3:03 pm

John said,
So living out in the country should be a reason to not have basic services provided for? Does he have police services?

John,
There are a lot of places in the country that don`t have fire services. Some have volenteer services.
Everywhere has police service although it may take um 1/2 a day to reach you in Wyoming.

I work for a large construction company who had a large project in Tennesee. There was a 40+ car pileup on the interstate in the fog right outside our gate. My co-workers immediatly started driving cranes and fork lifts out of the gate to unpile cars and save lives.
Each was told he would be fired if he took equipment off site.
Nobody stopped and they were fired later that day.

All got rehired when the Governor came down to award placks.

You have to do what is right and damn the BS.

John

October 20th, 2010
3:14 pm

“You have to do what is right and damn the BS.”

Couldn’t agree with you more. That’s my point, allowing a house to burn down and potentially putting lives at risk because someone didn’t pay a $75 fee is not the right thing to do.

skydog

October 20th, 2010
3:32 pm

Not right John, but it is a business.

What about the next time a dispatcher gets a call from a non paying member?
Does he let the trucks roll and get fired?

I let um roll and get fired, but I am one of those crazy libs.

John

October 20th, 2010
3:50 pm

Government is not a business. In this case, the fire services are provided for by the city but instead of paying taxes for the service, these people have to subscribe for the service and pay a fee for it.

Swede Atlanta

October 20th, 2010
3:53 pm

What a country we live in.

“Oh, there is a burglar in your house? Well let me see, oh no I don’t show that you paid for police so you are on your own” Click….

Fire protection is as much about protecting the property of the rest of the community as it is the person whose home or property is on fire.

skydog

October 20th, 2010
3:53 pm

Sounds like bad planning by county officials.
At the very least have an understanding that they will come to your house, if available and back charge you for the services.

Or maybe they have the system they want in place. No pay No service.
Like another poster said, If you miss a house insurance payment and your house burns, they will not pay, period.

Almost the same decison as health care. Do we let um die on the curb at the emergency room or fix um up? Right now we pay and try to recoup cost.
The money is there right now for healthcare. The powers just can`t figure out how to get there share if we change the system. The money is being paid right now, every day, for a new crap system. What we had was worse. 26% increases the last 5 years. CEO of United Health Care made $123 million dollars last year. One man who shuffles paper for a living. No band aids, no cranes.
That ain`t right. Total BS

skydog

October 20th, 2010
3:56 pm

No John. Their city has normal service, but thus guy live in the country where there is NO service. The city said they would cover county folks for a fee. They said this guy didn`t take the option.

Hillbilly Deluxe

October 20th, 2010
4:01 pm

I’m not a fireman and never have been but if I’d been on the scene, I think I would have tried to put the fire out and worry about the paper work later. Seems to me it would have been the decent thing to do.

skydog

October 20th, 2010
4:12 pm

Swede, You and John need to take a ride around this country.
There are thousands of places that don`t offer any services. The states/counties can not afford these services in remote areas.

John

October 20th, 2010
4:15 pm

Actually skydog, in this county five surrounding municipalities respond as needed, with three others responding only to subscribers. It’s not the city that said they would cover county folks for a fee…it’s the county’s policy. These people pay county taxes so why should they pay additionally for fire services.

Over the objections of firefighters and many residents, the Obion County commission voted 15 to 3 to expand subscription-based service throughout the county. Beginning July 2011, all fire departments in the area – including the five that have answered calls at no charge for the past three decades – will require residents to pay the annual fee. Fire chief Bob Reavis of Hornbeak, one of the municipalities in the county, had opposed the expansion of the “pay to spray” policy, arguing that more houses would burn. “It’s a public-safety issue,” he said. “Subscriptions should be left to newspapers and magazines.”

Here is the full article about they county commission’s vote to expand subscription-based service throughout the county.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/time/20101020/us_time/08599202644500

John

October 20th, 2010
4:19 pm

Yet statistics show that in communities that have subscription fees for firefighting, less than 70% of people pay subscription fees, and that number is as low as 40% in the early years of a subscription campaign. In 2006, firefighters responded to 245 rural calls in Obion County. Assuming a 30% nonparticipation rate, Reavis said as many as 75 homes could have burned. The fire department of Rives, one of those responding as needed in Obion, does not charge a subscription fee but sends a $500 bill after it has rendered services. Reavis says, however, that half of the homeowners fail to pay.

At the conclusion of the meeting, many firefighters expressed disappointment but said they will abide by the commission’s rules. “It’s not the right thing to do,” said Stan Mitchell, a volunteer firefighter with the Rives Fire Department. “But I’ve been doing this too long to quit.”

“This ain’t the way to fix it,” Reavis concluded. “God save us all.”

skydog

October 20th, 2010
4:21 pm

Down in Morgan, Ga., My grandparents did not have fire protection or water or sewer for that matter.

Those older folks were smarter than us. They knew they were their own protection so they designed and built the kitchens (fueled by wood stoves) seperate from the house. They kept rain water in a cystern for fire fighting use. Their house is still there after 93 years. Water still taste like rust.

Swede Atlanta

October 20th, 2010
4:25 pm

Skydog, I was born and raised in rural Wyoming. I am well aware of the fact there are areas that are not covered.

The difference here is the area was covered under an agreement. But rather than simply assessing the fee as part of the relevant property taxes to include everyone the County Commission is playing games with the lives of people, animals and property.

The fact these firemen let animals die is another reason they need to be kicked in the groin repeatedly with a pair of my cowboy boots. Poor defenseless animals are left to die over $75.00.

The firemen should hang their heads in shame and self disgust.

Mr. Spock

October 20th, 2010
4:25 pm

John … If the man did not pay his fee and someone was in the house when it burned … they should be toast. That’s the consequence of being a cheap SOB or incompetent.

John

October 20th, 2010
4:27 pm

15 county commissioners voted to make all fire services in that county paid subscriptions including those who already have service provided without a paid subscription. Firefighters as well as residents are against it.

As Mr. Cranick has said in interviews, he pays his taxes which he believes part of it goes to the fire departments. If that’s the case, he questions why should he have to have a paid subscription on top of his taxes.

John

October 20th, 2010
4:29 pm

Mr. Spock…I see you still won’t answer my questions. So you don’t have to scroll, I’ll post it here again.

Since the man didn’t pay the $75 fee beforehand, the fire department did not respond when he called. They only responded when the neighbor, who paid the fee, called and it was to save the neighbors home only. What if the neighbor was not home, or even worse, asleep in his home unaware of the fire next door. The fire spread to his home and he died in the fire. He paid his fee, did not get the service and as a result he lost his life. Would you then feel there was a flaw in the system? Should anyone be held responsible for that? Or would people still blame the man who didn’t pay the fee? What if you where the next door neighbor who paid the fee, should your house be allowed to burn down if you were not home to call the fire department yourself? What if you were not home and someone was asleep in your home, should they be allowed to burn to death because your neighbor didn’t pay his fee and no one from your home called the fire department?

Swede Atlanta

October 20th, 2010
4:31 pm

Mr. Spock, you must be from another planet. You are clearly not of the human race.

What if there had been an accounting or record keeping error that showed the guy hadn’t paid?

What kind of value system do you operate under? Don’t tell me you are a Christian because your attitude reveals you are not.

John

October 20th, 2010
4:39 pm

Mr. Spock…you just showed how every conservative I’ve seen report on this thinks. If he didn’t pay, he’s a cheap SOB or incompetent…you forgot freeloader. Could it be possible a bill is overlooked or got lost in the mail? There’s no gray area, is there? Every homeless person chooses to be homeless. Every person who has been laid off and is collecting unemployment is a freeloader who doesn’t want to work. You must lead a pretty miserable life to always think so negatively and not give anyone the benefit of the doubt. Contempt prior to investigation.

John

October 20th, 2010
5:03 pm

@Swede Atlanta

“The firemen should hang their heads in shame and self disgust.”

It seems, according to Gene Cranick (the homeowner), they did. During an interview last week, Mr. Cranick said some were horrified and left in tears. He claimed they were pretty emotional but they were not allowed to help. While so much attention and blame has been directed to the homeowner, not much has been said about how this policy affect the actual fire fighters. As I have posted, the county commissioners have voted to extend the policy even though fire fighters and residents oppose it.

Hillbilly Deluxe

October 20th, 2010
5:12 pm

As I have posted, the county commissioners have voted to extend the policy even though fire fighters and residents oppose it.

Hopefully, the next time there is an election, those folks will be sent packing. And I tend to lean toward the conservative view on most things. Not all of us are heartless. ;-)

Mr. Spock

October 20th, 2010
5:16 pm

They should pay up or burn up. Far less freeloaders to worry about. My religious beliefs are not at issue.

John

October 20th, 2010
5:27 pm

No one made an issue of your religious beliefs. I notice; however, that you can’t defend your position by answering a few questions so you stick to “pay up or burn up”. Why can’t you defend your position and answer a few questions?

Mr. Spock

October 20th, 2010
5:30 pm

Because John… I stated my position very clearly. Becuase you choose not to agree with it, is not my problem. Therefore, John, you are an idiot. To waste time on an idiot is not logical.

John

October 20th, 2010
5:31 pm

Mr. Spock…I know trying to answer questions requiring some thinking and regurgitating what you heard from Glenn Beck doesn’t. But try…it’s not that difficult.

John

October 20th, 2010
5:35 pm

I asked some simple questions but you will not answer. I guess I have to assume you would let the neighbor burn to death, even if he is a paid subscriber if the fire spread from an unpaid subscriber and it was the unpaid subscriber who called for fire service.

skydog

October 20th, 2010
5:39 pm

John,
Contracturaly the county/city did nothing wrong. In rural areas there is no system promised or owed. The whole deal is on the home owner to make arrangements.

Swede,
The city commission may be playing games or the voters may have voted for this set up.???
That is one reason I chose not to live in Morgan Ga.
A bigger concern for me was no Blues music.
No blues? No fire truck. Water taste like rust. I`m gone.

How are we doing Bob Barr? At the risk of being called a socialist I think Bob should split his check with us this week.

Bob?……….must still be on the golf course or shooting range or what ever this dude does?

John

October 20th, 2010
5:40 pm

There you go Mr. Spock. You can’t answer some questions and defend your position so your resort to name calling. A debate works only when you can defend your position.

Swede Atlanta

October 20th, 2010
5:47 pm

I don’t think Mr. Spock believes anything he is posting after I have re-read much of what he has submitted. So I will ignore him going forward.

I for one believe that a human being does not, regardless of the “rules” allow another person’s property or the lives of animals or other humans to be destroyed or placed in jeopardy for $75.00. It is immoral, unethical and inhumane to do so.

Secondly when it comes to fire or crime, these phenomenon spread. If the police don’t come and capture the burglar, there is great likelihood he/she will strike at someone else in the community. If you don’t put out a fire you endanger the lives and property of other persons. So even if in this case one person didn’t pay for the service, the interest of the common good dictates that you put the fire out.

Thirdly, a service like this, when it can be provided, should be provided universally in the community and funded not by an optional fee but through taxes. Accounting and other errors can result in someone having paid a fee but being denied a service when it is needed. That didn’t happen in this case but it is the very reason you don’t have a system like this. As I posted previously, if you don’t pay your property taxes you are not denied fire and police protection. The competent authority seeks to enforce collection through levy, lien and up to seizure of the property. If I don’t pay my income taxes the government doesn’t allow bad drugs to be sold to me, they come after me to pay my taxes.

John

October 20th, 2010
5:51 pm

skydog,

“Contracturaly the county/city did nothing wrong. ”

I agree, contracturaly the did nothing wrong but is it ethically right. The city of Atlanta could decide to stop providing fire service and go to a paid subscription as well if they decided and continue to collect the same taxes. Not that it would be popular, but they could stop offering different services. The question becomes, is this good for the city and it’s residents. As fire departments pointed out in this particular county, it’s more about being a public-safety issue. One thing, as I pointed out, if people could choose not to participate and their house catches fire, what happens if it spreads to a neighbor’s house who is a paid subscribed but is either not there or is asleep and does not call for help.

Swede Atlanta

October 20th, 2010
5:52 pm

Skydog, from what I understand this particular policy is highly unpopular but the commissioners voted it in. If the voters are truly unhappy then they should vote the commissioners out. Unfortunately when people go to the polls they are likely to be fooled by campaign promises.

Pay for a service only if you need it…sounds good until you need it.

We have lost our way in this country where we recognize that we all have certain basic common interests. A la carte government is not the way to go. I have no children and never will. I guess I should be able to opt out of paying any school taxes and I should be able to reduce my state income tax by the amount that is used by the state to fund educational programs. That sounds really good to me since I don’t use schools and never will. But the reality is that as a society we need to educate our children. It is what being part of a community is all about – the common good.

Tracy

October 20th, 2010
6:00 pm

My main question is this…..if you elected not to pay the $75 for the service, would the fire department still have stood outside saying “sorry, you didn’t pay” if there was children stuck in the burning house ?

Also, what if your neighbor didn’t pay and their house fire spread to your house. You paid, they came, but the fire still caused major damage to your home. What if the spreading fire to your home killed you or your family. It simply spread too fast to contain (ie..gas line exploded).

Keep in mind the historic NYC fire were a result of this. NYC at the time had a “pay for fire service” system in place and too many non-payers got involved. The fires got out of control and those who did pay got burned.

Swede Atlanta

October 20th, 2010
6:06 pm

Tracy, you are exactly right. Fire is one of those things that are a shared interest by all in the community because it spreads. You don’t want the home of any individual to burn and possibly spread to others. Further as a society there is something in my gut that tells me you don’t let someone’s property (and possibly human or as in this case animal life) perish over $75.00. There are things that our mothers and fathers should have taught us are just wrong. I can feel it in my gut. While I may feel it is also a violation of my religious beliefs it is a question of basic humanity and morality. It just isn’t right.

skydog

October 20th, 2010
6:59 pm

Let the house burn or let them die on the curb of the emergency is an option for some. Sad but true.

Capitalist turn socialist real quick when they realize the person sitting next to them on the airplane was refused treatment for TB because they could not afford it.

Mrs. Norris

October 20th, 2010
8:04 pm

John (at 12:29), Your comment to me has absolutely no bearing on what I said. It’s a shame people lack critical reading skills these days. And for the record, the city of Atlanta does not provide fire or police services to the citizens of Fulton County (Georgia). As I stated, they pay a special services tax to have fire and police services. Perhaps you’ve never heard of Fulton County Fire Dept. or Fulton County Police Dept. This systems has worked very well for the citizens of Fulton County and the thousands of other counties that do the same thing. My point is, that’s the reasonable thing to do.

Swede Atlanta, you made a very good point. What if someone hasn’t paid their property taxes, as many fail to do. Does the fire department refuse to respond? No, that would be outrageous.

Allyana Ziolko

October 21st, 2010
6:23 am

Bo, Barr certainly can be more wrong. Wait for one of his future ramblings.

This proves to me that Mr. Barr’s “Limited Government” has gotten squat figured out when it comes to running a community.

Little

October 21st, 2010
8:36 am

Mrs Oleary’s cow rears her ugly head again. Some of the comments here seem authored by folks who were raised in a barn. When are we, as citizens, going to demand pasteurization, barn-yard etiquette, and mad-cow disease vaccines for all of our farm animals and blog trolls?

IASKEDWHEN!!!

skydog

October 21st, 2010
8:51 am

…………or heaven forbid a country.
Bob helped spend millions on Clintons BJ while America sunk to the depths that we are at today.
I better hush. It says in his bio that Bob was/is/knows CIA.

I know your working for the CIA……..they wouldn`t have you in the Maf i a.
Why can`t we be friends?

That was a great group you missed back in the day Bob, named War.

I`m sure you liked the name if not the song.

Ken Starr

October 21st, 2010
9:00 am

I like Bob, he helped me get my house on the Cape. Well, ok, i bought the whole Cape.

Larry Flynt

October 21st, 2010
9:15 am

Bob,
I have died today just so I can come back and haunt you further from the beyond. See you tonite in your dreams.

We had some times, huh bro?

Larry

Mike

October 21st, 2010
10:16 am

Just a fine example of the fine job the Gov. did for you…

A Gwinnett County grand jury on Wednesday indicted the county’s longest-serving commissioner, Kevin Kenerly, on charges of bribery and failure to disclose a financial interest in two properties the county rezoned.

If convicted of all counts, Kenerly faces up to 22 years in prison.
The indictment says that Kenerly “directly or indirectly” accepted or agreed to accept 20 payments of $50,000 — totaling $1 million — as bribes for arranging for the county commission to buy a piece of unnamed real estate. The deal benefited developer David Jenkins and settled a lawsuit, although specifics about the purchase were not mentioned in the indictment

Steve

October 21st, 2010
10:28 am

Jim@9:42
“I am sure the homeowner would have been happy to pay a $1000 fee after the fact.”
And if he is not, are you going to pay it? If not you then whom? What if the bill is more than $1000?

Per the homeowners indication to the emergency operator, there were no human lives at risk by the fire in this home.
I’m sorry the family lost their home and their pets, but THEY chose not to pay the $75 fee for fire service. While I have sympathy for them, I do not feel much empathy. They rolled the dice and lost.

ATF

October 21st, 2010
11:43 am

It seems the local government – that means the local citizens – did not want to make fire fighting part of the local government services. Maybe it would have cost more in local tax dollars to hire firemen, build a fire station, and buy fire fighting equipment than it would be for individual citizens to get that service from another source.

I don’t see how it is a failure of government. It seems more like a kind of insurance – you get fire fighter services when needed if the fee is paid. How is this not just another kind of insurance? Ins/t it okay for citizens of a community to agree to not be taxed for this service and to let each person decide if they will pay for the “insurance”?

Nope, not this time

October 21st, 2010
2:22 pm

So the total cost of running this department lies soley on the 75 per household? I think not. The salaries are supplied from the government taxes and that homeowner pays this. This 75 is a bonus to the fire department. The fire should have been put out and residents should not be paying the 75 fee at all. They pay for this service in local taxes.

Eric #2

October 21st, 2010
4:45 pm

Dave Briggman, I can’t agree with you or the others you cite. Government is meant for the greater good, and pooling money for fire protection is one of those “ethical” services to help all (just like 911 and ambulance service, etc.). Why would anyone want fee-based fire protection–whoever came up with that is crazy. Fire protection should not be privatized like a cell phone service.

Independent

October 21st, 2010
6:02 pm

So why did this county decide that it was not their duty to provide fire service? Would you want your county to “opt out” of providing fire protection? Why did they just not add $75 tax to every house in Obion County to pay for fire protection? Is the next step to make police protection “optional”? So if your daughter is being raped, the police come but refuse to interfere because you haven’t paid your “police fee”? There are some things that should not be optional, I am sorry, that includes fire protection and, yes, health insurance. No one should be able to say “I don’t want to pay for health insurance, if I get seriously ill, just let me die”, while knowing full well they will actually be treated and the costs passed on to us that purchase health insurance through higher hospital bills.

Furious (not liberal)

October 21st, 2010
8:20 pm

Some rescue units are charging now for cutting you out of your car (after the fact). How long will it be before they demand a credit card before they cut you out and leave you in your car to die if your credit card is turned down? I have been on a (volunteer) rescue squad before and we rescued people because they needed rescuing. Those “fire losers” are nothing but money-grubbing, do only what my job requires, moral indigents who deserve to reap as they have sown. I hope every one of their houses burn to the ground and I hope their loved ones are trapped inside.

skydog

October 21st, 2010
9:02 pm

Whoa Furious,

The fire fighters had bosses who told them what to do. The bosses had proceedures to follow from the city politicians. The politicians are doing what the voters instructed.

Your “hope their houses burn down with all their loved ones” comment needs rethinking, if not professional help.

I`d change your nickname from (not liberal) to (not normal).

Furious (not liberal)

October 21st, 2010
9:11 pm

And we should expand the Obion county policy to health care – if you show up at the hospital, you better have an active insurance policy or the cash in hand to pay for your services, or else you should be set on the curb and if you die, well, it’s your fault that you didn’t pruchase insurance.

skydog

October 21st, 2010
9:16 pm

Independent,
There were no county government or services. This is common in rural areas. YOU are the county government and fire department.
This guy had an option offered by the city to sign up for service. The city is not obligated to cover the county folks.This was not an opt out deal. It was an opt in deal.

skydog

October 21st, 2010
9:27 pm

Let um die on the curb is an option Furious. A bad option.

Life is not ALL about the dollar.

Furious (not liberal)

October 22nd, 2010
6:21 am

Skydog @9:18 – So what do we have county governments for if not to provide services? Do they have county schools? Or or those OPt in also? Do they have a county sheriff? Or is that Opt in? Certain basic services should be required. It would have been better if the county just said ” you don’t want to pay taxes for fire protection, so nobody in the county has fire protection, and the city fire department will stop at the city limits”. Or a more reasonable option, if they imposed a $75 fee and expected everyone to pay it, is just add the fee to everyone’s taxes every year. If you don’t pay it they attach a lien to your property. A better question – if a $800,000 house was burning and the fire department found out they had not paid their fee, would they let it burn to the ground? I would bet my right arm that they would put it out. I have happened across two car fires in my lifetime. Since I carry a fire extinguisher in my car, I stopped and used it to put out the fires. I did not ask for a fee or even for them to pay to refill the fire extinguisher. From now on, I am going to ask the person if they are a Republican or Libertarian, and if they say yes, I’ll say too bad, you should have paid for and carried your own fire extinguisher. BTW, I really don’t wish the firefighter’s homes would burn with their loved ones inside. It would be fitting if the county council member’s homes burned (without anyone inside).

skydog

October 22nd, 2010
8:00 am

I didn`t think you were serious on the houses burning down.
One more time.
This county had NO county government, schools, cops, or services!
Nothing but you, a few neighbors, and the trees. This is common in rural areas. The whole country does not have power, water, and service grids already laid out and ready to go. There is NO county government established yet. You said certain services should be provided. By who? A city is not required to provide a county anything.

Let me try this.
If 10 of us moved out to remote Wyoming. Eight of us form a town and set up services that we tax ourselves to provide.
You and Swede want to live 30 miles out in the county where there are no other people, so no county government or services out there, just woods. After Swede, who are you going to elect for county offices?
So you come see us towners and ask can we help? We say we would love to but we only have enough money to cover our town.
We may agree to cover ya`ll for a agreed upon price or not. The state or the Feds are not required to help until a certain amount of people move into the county.

aprpeh

October 22nd, 2010
10:21 am

Bob, I am a conservative. The residents where this fire occurred vote more conservative arguably than anywhere in TN. A few points of logic and some questions…. Had this family paid the assessment before? Did they forget? Were they in financial straights? The conservative radio folks have shown the arrogance the left WANTS them to show and damages our movement. Had the fire department put out the fire don’t you think this family would be the FIRST to pay the assessment next time? Unlike the economic freeloader argument, don’t you think, had the fire department put out the fire that this case is the perfect example as to WHY PEOPLE SHOULD pay their assessment? Do you believe like the Beck logic that people would wait and freeload more often if the fire department put out the fire? Simply insane! We must be thinkers not idiots.

Chris J

October 26th, 2010
12:35 am

This is a matter of public safety. If houses are allowed to burn because people didn’t pay a fee it could spread. This is also the reason why we have building codes, 911, the FAA, and an accreditation system for the universities that our future doctors learn from. In an industrialized society one expects standards for safety.

If we as a country of people that let the houses of our neighbors burn, on 9/11 the terrorist would not have needed to hijack planes. Just buy some properties, don’t pay the fire protection fee, fill property up with poison, and set on fire.