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Pay as you go

I am having ambivalent thoughts about the guy in Tennessee whose house was on fire and he called 911 but they wouldn't respond because he hadn't paid his fire-fighting fee.

I hope the fire captain sleeps well.

OTOH, if you decide not to pay for fire protection, and then build a trash fire that gets out of control, can you really call yourself a victim?

OTOH, would it have killed the fire dept. to take care of it and bill him later?

OTOH, given the Bubba locale, would they ever have gotten paid?

I wonder what would have happened if he had claimed an illegal immigrant had set the fire?

I wonder how many people in that county are going down to the courthouse today to pay their fire protection fee?

That's the problem with people who keep demanding that government should be run like a business.  Government provides services that have to be paid for up front and kept ready in case of need, but in business you only buy what you need at the time you need it.    A major reason for a government is protection (from fire, crime, invasion, epidemic, ... ) but business doesn't give a damn about you if you haven't paid the bill.



Oct. 6th, 2010 03:42 pm (UTC)
Is this a common practice in the US? I've heard of it in past ages, but not as a cueernt thing.
Oct. 6th, 2010 03:48 pm (UTC)
'Fire protection districts' that are supported by a special fee are, I think, fairly common in rural areas. In the cities and the 'burbs, fire protection is covered by your property taxes. Usually.

IINM, this guy lived outside the town that was covered automatically, and didn't/hadn't/wouldn't pay the fee for protection outside the zone.
Oct. 6th, 2010 10:01 pm (UTC)
What we need is an organization that will fight fires for those who cannot afford the 'fire-fighting' fees, those who are vulnerable to loss. Oh, wait...Benjamin Franklin invented the volunteer fire department already.

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