# Fire Fighters Refuse to Fight Fire, Homeowners Forgot to Pay Fee

Discussion in 'Politics' started by spidergoat, Oct 6, 2010.

1. ### NasorValued Senior Member

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Do either of you really think that there's a single animal cruelty law anywhere in the USA that obligates people to rescue other people's pets from fires? Really? If you can find me even a single example of such a law, I'll cheerfully admit that I was wrong. But I would be astounded if you can find one.

3. ### countezeroRegistered Senior Member

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5,590
You, along with several other posters, seem so invested in making relative comparisons that ignore the unique morality at stake here. We're not talking about insurance. We're talking about public services that have been put in place for public safety and the public good, not for-profit enterprises that are discretionary in nature.

So, in others words, you're endorsing the Chief's unspoken "I'll show him" and "I'll set an example" bureaucratism? Good for you. Now all we need to do is get priests and doctors to adopt similar attitudes and then society can truly be a hopeless collection of the damned and the afflicted.

That's not quite how it works.

I am not absolving the man for his stupidity, but as I am sure you are aware, public services go toward the stupid as well as the intelligent. Or, to pick a metaphor since everyone seems so fond of them, the lifeguard at the public pool dives in to save the strong swimmer who has been overcome as well as the non-swimmer who decided to dive in the deep end.

This is another dumb attempt at a metaphor that in no way applies to what has happened here.

I think you missed my larger point, which was that if we're going to have a world where public servants are loyal only to the contracts they sign with their employers and political overseers, then it's going to be a pretty shitty place to live. Public servants are public servants. They are supposed to serve the public, not an organization and an elected body.

Look, this isn't complicated. At school, we did Kennedy School of Govt. Case Studies all the time in which you discover something or something happens and you have to either inform the public or serve the organization or find some middle road. Heck, Ibsen wrote about it in Enemy of the State. I suggest you read that play to see what I am talking about. You don't want to live in a world, I imagine, where these employees constantly say, "we'll I've been told not to do X by my boss," even when X obviously is harming the very people they are charged withs serving.

And they were horrible, hence the creation of professional emergency services.

People can make all kinds of conscious decisions that impact the public, like not wearing a condom and not throwing away their garbage. That doesn't mean the public doesn't have an incentive not to intervene. To stick close to the subject, what if this guy lived between two houses who did pay for the coverage? Are the firemen going to let his house burn, hoping it doesn't spread, and intervene only after the fire spreads? That seems pretty damn silly, doesn't it? Also, last I checked burned out homes impact property values of their surroundings, and hence tax collections...

But all of this theory of govt. stuff avoids the very simple moral choice the firemen themselves had. Either they could act morally and responsibly and put out the fire, which is presumably why they became public servants, or they could stand there and point to some rule. They made their choice.

You really are on a roll with inapplicable metaphors aren't you?

5. ### MacGyver1968Fixin' Shit that Ain't BrokeValued Senior Member

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I'm curious to how this law would apply to apartment complexes, duplexes or rented property. Would the renter be responsible for the fee or the owner? If the renter were responsible..what happens if not all the tenants pay? If the owners are responsible, and don't pay, are the renter just S.O.L and have to watch their belonging burn?

Last edited: Oct 6, 2010

7. ### joepistoleDeacon BluesValued Senior Member

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22,910
Here is the deal Nasor, try to understand it. If the fire department had not responded, you could make an arguement that the city was under no obligation to rescue the animals. Because the fire equipment was needed to cover the city.

But that is not the case, the city responded and sat on their hands while the animals roasted. Do you see the difference?

Once the fire department took responsiblitly for putting out fires in the county they obligated themselves. It is kind of like being half in and half out. In this case the fire department is either in or out...not both.

http://www.nehumanesociety.org/site/PageServer?pagename=laws_Reporting_Animal_Cruelty

What Omaha Law says is Cruelty
The following information is paraphrased from Omaha City Ordinance Chapter 6 which deals with all animal related city laws. For a complete version of chapter 6 click here:

Physical Mistreatment. (You can’t leave an animal in a situation that causes suffering) It is unlawful for any person to knowingly, intentionally, or negligently cause or allow any animal to endure unreasonable or unjustifiable pain, suffering or injury

Two if you don't like the animal example, replace the animal with a human or a group of humans.

8. ### NeverflyBannedBanned

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3,576
Insurance...

The fee was not insurance.

That is not what it was and for those of you trying to claim it was- Look it up.

The fee was an ADDITIONAL fee. We can all agree that little $75 fee would not have covered the costs. The fee remains the same, unlike insurance premiums. The fee is nominal, because the taxes and county covered the Majority of the bill. The fee is additional to get that Extra Push over the edge to ENSURE all costs are eventually covered. 9. ### adoucetteCaca OccursValued Senior Member Messages: 7,829 No These people lived in the COUNTY. The fire service was paid for by the CITY. COUNTY residents don't pay CITY taxes. Nothing in anything yet posted showed that the County paid anything for this service from their tax base. It is funded EXACTLY like insurance.$75 wouldn't cover the costs, but $75 from most of the residents in the County would indeed cover their costs for the few fires they had to put out. That's how the City figured out that what the charge needed to be. i.e 2,000 residents in the County =$150,000 per year, 1 fire per 100 residents per year = 20 fires per year . Average cost of a fire + equipment depreciation = $7,500 X 20 =$150,000 per year. (just for example)

Which, when you add a bit of profit, is exactly what an insurance company does when it sets its rates.

A lot of people pay a small cost to get coverage and then a very few get a fire (sick) the fire dept (doctor) comes out and puts the fire out (cures them).

Arthur

10. ### spidergoatLiddle' Dick TaterValued Senior Member

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It shouldn't be optional, it's paid for through property taxes, and not even that much. Why make it optional if everyone only saves less than a quarter per property owner? It's nuts. And now everyone's property values go down in the neighborhood because there's a burnt down house there.

11. ### quadraphonicsBloodthirsty BarbarianValued Senior Member

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I'm going to go out on a limb and hazard that "refusing to risk life and limb by entering a burning structure to evacuate animals" is neither "negligent" nor "unreasonable." Even if those animals are humans, in fact.

12. ### quadraphonicsBloodthirsty BarbarianValued Senior Member

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Hey, at least they didn't have to pay for any damned freeloaders to have their burning houses put out. Apparently that's worth more than the dent in property values and general ignominy now associated with the community, or something.

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14. ### countezeroRegistered Senior Member

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5,590
So how do they determine what is life threatening?

Presumably, they drive out there and see. So at that point, the manpower has already been committed. What's the cost of pumping the water onto the fire? Probably, not that much...

15. ### spidergoatLiddle' Dick TaterValued Senior Member

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And now that family is homeless! But I bet they can't get any homeless services, there was probably a homeless insurance fee.

16. ### adoucetteCaca OccursValued Senior Member

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Most people would probably tell the truth.

If you say Grandma's in the house and a fire fighter dies trying to save your ficticious relative you could go to jail for a LONG time, even if it is just in the drive out there and yes, that is a risky part of responding to fires.

Arthur

17. ### adoucetteCaca OccursValued Senior Member

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Actually the house was insured.

"Well, I don't mind the home. I know it can be replaced, but other things I got in there can't be," Gene Cranick said. "Other than that, we're doing fine, nobody got hurt that's a good thing, everybody is okay. We're going to live over this."

Arthur

18. ### spidergoatLiddle' Dick TaterValued Senior Member

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And what if it wasn't? How is this moral? Republican policies are completely without compassion or empathy, unless you are a foetus.

Last edited: Oct 6, 2010
19. ### CowboyMy Aim Is TrueValued Senior Member

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So people are entitled to services they haven't paid for?

20. ### visceral_instinctMonkey see, monkey denigrateValued Senior Member

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I don't understand what point you're trying to make. ?

21. ### spidergoatLiddle' Dick TaterValued Senior Member

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53,966
If it's a residence that's on fire, yes, it should be put out. But I know I'm some kind of radical socialist that hates America. If you love America, you would let it burn.

22. ### quadraphonicsBloodthirsty BarbarianValued Senior Member

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Actually, this suggests an interesting possible moral hazard to the pay-for-service model of firefighting. I.e., you may not care if your house burns down, provided it is insured. And so, everyone might just insure their homes and then decline to pay for the firefighters. And then there would be no firefighters, and all of the houses would burn down. Classic tragedy of the commons.

Presumably the insurance companies would get wise to this and start jacking up premiums for people without fire response services, or even refuse to insure anything in the town at all. And the costs of this should exceed the costs of just paying for fire control in the first place... The point being that collective action on this stuff saves everyone money (and houses) in the long run.

23. ### CowboyMy Aim Is TrueValued Senior Member

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3,707
So if it's okay to provide services to people that they haven't paid for, why is tax evasion a crime?