Hose Heroes?

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Law enforcers aren’t “heroes”  . . .  but what about firemen?

Are they Hose Heroes?

People are pressured to regard them as such. Much as they are pressured to genuflect, North Korean funeral-style, before the Presence of a law enforcer.

You are probably forced to pay for fire “services” in your community. Just as you are forced to “help” pay for law enforcement – even if you yourself feel no need for either service and would rather opt-out, if that choice were available to you.

But of course, you have no such choice.

And because you are forced to pay, there is no check on what is spent. The formerly small-scale local all-volunteer FD becomes professional – with salaried full-time firefighters who have contracts guaranteeing them large salaries and, of course, benefits.

Multiple ladder trucks and other such vehicles  usually appear – the costs shuffled onto the backs of the taxpayers in the area, who no longer have much, if any, say as regards the need for all this elaborate equipment. Since appearances must be maintained, all this elaborate, over-the-top equipment is often sent out en masse to cat-in-a-tree calls, with much show of emergency lights, special costumes, cones being set up and traffic stopped in its tracks.

Thus, the FD becomes another services-at-gunpoint bureaucracy. And the primary mission of any bureaucracy is to preserve and perpetuate itself.

Expanding itself if possible.

Always, via the use of force.

The fighting of fires becomes of secondary importance, very much as protecting the persons and property of citizens has become secondary to the enforcement of laws.

Firemen write and enforce fire codes – bureaucratic edicts dictating to a private business owner how many customers he may serve in “his” (in quotes to emphasis the irony)  establishment. If the owner balks, the Hose Hero will summon other heroes – heroes with guns – to enforce compliance.

Whether a building is a “fire hazard” – as defined by a Hose Hero – is not the issue. The issue is whether the building is someone else’s private property – and whether the Hose Hero  or any other costumed hero – has the right to interfere in any way with the owner of the private property.

By insisting otherwise, the Hose Hero is asserting an ownership claim over someone else’s property. By what right does he do this?

No one ever asks – much less answers.

Hose Heroes have also been known to prevent actual heroics. For instance, there was an incident a few years back where a man was forcibly restrained by Hose Heroes and prevented from attempting to save his child, who was trapped inside a burning house. Ryan Miller was Tazered for “disobeying the orders of fire officials” who decided on his behalf that the life of his three-year-old stepson was not worth attempting to save. When Ryan Miller ignored them, ” the fire chief then made the call to have Miller handcuffed and taken to the police station” . .  (see here).

Who was the Hero here?

Whether Miller’s actions put him at risk of being hurt or even killed is not relevant – unless you take the view that Miller is your child or your property and you have the right to exert parental/ownership rights over him.

Hose Heroes – like the other form of Hero – believe in exactly such a right.

But Miller’s life was his to risk for the sake of his child. The Hose Hereos at the scene – whose own children were safe in their beds – understandably did not wish to risk being burned alive to save someone else’s child. Which by the way would have been heroic. But it is obnoxious in the extreme for them to interfere with a man willing to put his own life at risk, by his own free choice, in order to try to save his child.

Or his cat, for that matter.

The same arrogance that characterizes law enforcing Heroes also suffuses the mindset of Hose Heroes. They know best – and it is our duty to step out of the way, defer to them, and do as ordered.hero hose man 2

Or else.

Always, underlying everything, there is the threat that violence will be done us if we do not obey.

If these fire fuhrers restricted themselves to offering help there would be no problem. But they do not confine themselves to merely offering.

They insist.

What does it tell you about the nature of their “services”?

When you are no longer free to say no to any “service,” then it is not a service but a racket.

Whether it does some good is beside the point. The essential cretinhood of the fictional mafia thug Tony Soprano or real ones like government workers with badges and guns is not transformed into something benevolent because they occasionally helped out a deserving neighborhood kid.

Just as occasionally catching an actual criminal (viz, someone who has actually harmed another human being) in no way washes away the sin of abusing people who have affronted some arbitrary statute, such as those decreeing what a person may and may not do with their own corpus – which the state asserts an ownership claim over thereby.

Putting out a fire doesn’t make amends for shuttering a business on the basis of a “code violation” and violently assaulting a man for attempting to rescue his child from a blaze.

Fire protection services ought to exist on a voluntary/free-exchange basis. Just like dairy farms or restaurants or any another other provider of a genuine service.

If a service is objectively valuable to people, it is never necessary to force them to pay for it.

When force enters the equation – and you’re no longer permitted to say no thanks – you’ve been enslaved and degraded.

And so, when you think about, have they.

Heroism – the real thing – is a profoundly voluntary act. It is not something one is paid to do, much less something one forces others to pay you to do. It is an act of consciously choosing to put oneself at risk of physical harm for the sake of someone else, without any expectation of compensation.

It’s too bad for us – and for them – that fighting fires (and keeping the peace) has become a rent-seeking authoritarian racket masquerading as “heroic.”

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  1. A few years ago a former Delco building in Anderson, In. was being used to make magnesium housings for the car industry. It had a required water spray fire fighting system that was good for making of cars.Except that water and magnesium make for a tremendous fire. Well, one day a fire starts and was almost put out until the fire system activated, spraying the magnesium with thousands of gallons of water. $750 million of plant and product burned to the ground, and brought the US car industry to a halt for a week. When the plant owners informed the local fire dept of the conflict with magnesium and water, the fire dept said the sprinkler system still must be used. So much for their knowledge of fighting fires. It seems that most government workers in these first responder roles are arrogant pigheads who feel that only they know what is “safe” and “lawful”

  2. https://www.google.com/maps/@41.80588,-87.6712926,243m/data=!3m1!1e3 Do you know what would happen if a building in the upper left corner caught fire on a windy day and there was no one to put a stop to it in a quick and efficient fashion? That whole neighborhood of 2 1/2 story frames and wood garages would be no more faster than you could imagine. https://www.google.com/maps/@41.7846153,-87.6382698,643m/data=!3m1!1e3 It could look more like this. This was a slow motion deconstruction process of the urban negro…even with some of the best firemen in the world working in this neighborhood.

  3. Montana fire depts. are over 90% volunteers. I served 12 years with our rural neighborhood VFD before I retired to reserve. We are funded about 50% by donations and about 50% by our share of the county budget which is wildland fire protection only. Technically we don’t even have structure fire protection out here, but we have upgraded with training and some used equipment for limited response to structure fires. The county seat VFD will respond and we can haul a LOT of water to support them.

    We don’t have any special priviledges except the right to “trespass” to fight a wildland fire that would by nature endanger a large area. We highly encourage rural fuel mitigation and “defensive space” but don’t/can’t mandate anything. The bottom line is if you haven’t done fuel mitigation then we aren’t going to even try to save your house because it is a lost cause and too much risk.

    Though there are a lot of potential hazards and we face serious risk every time we lace up our boots, as volunteers we are under no obligation at all to risk our lives to save property. Wildland fires are generally fought by containment rather than by extinguishment. I don’t care that your trees are burning; we cut a dry or wet line around the fire to prevent it from spreading to more valuable property, and then mop up as appropriate. But if the fire is small and hasn’t crowned, we just march right in and essentially mop it up on initial attack.

    Unfortunately, the 99 small fires that we put out don’t get much notice – just the one that gets away and burns dozens of houses.

    I don’t doubt that there are excesses and abuse of rights committed by big city FDs.

  4. Eric, your brush is just right. When a forest fire was heading towards our property in Bastrop Tx, we showed up with 9 people, two trailers, and a privately owned american la france pumper truck full of water, two bulldozers and two skid loaders, chain saws, shovels – etc… and the wonderful HERO’S stopped us and refused us access to defend our OWN property. The next day we Lost 3 houses and 4 barns that were horribly underinsured. Why were they underinsured? Because we own a firetruck. Little did we know the HERO’s would pull guns on us and force us to watch our place burn to the ground. It reminds me of the Monte Python skit where the woman is having birth – and the Doctor tells her “Your not qualified!”.

    • Totally agree!

      Our VFD works with non-FD responders. They are often on scene before we are. We will refill their ranch water trucks from our tenders. We do try to gently direct their efforts for effectiveness and their own safety.

  5. Cops and firemen are usually “second” responders. The citizens on scene are the First responders.

    With modern construction, there are fewer and fewer structure fires. That is why you see the move to give EMS to the Fire Departments. Locally, our EMS is provided by a private service owned by the two local hospitals.

    My town is on the Ohio River, the City Commission had the good idea to train the city FD in installing the flood gates in the town’s flood wall. The Fire Union threw a fit. Expecting those prima-donnas to do the work to install flood gates would “take from their training, exercise and rest time”. They ended up training the garbage truck drivers to do it.

    • Dear Chris,

      “Cops and firemen are usually “second” responders. The citizens on scene are the First responders.”

      Amen to that! For years I’ve been making that point whenever I see the “heroic first responders” BS appear.

      This is especially true for violent crime. The real first responders are the Mere Mundanes who are concealed or open carry defenders of gun rights.

      The hero cops show up a day late and a dollar short. Worse, they shoot and kill you when they arrive because you are carrying and they “feared for their lives”.

      • In my rather short lifetime I happen to have been “right place right time”, and have put out FOUR house/vehicle fires before the local fire boys could arrive. One fire, involving the entire kitchen in a wooden house a mere ten feet from MINE, was quite involved, but I hopped the fence with MY garden hose, kicked in the back door, came in hunkered down low, kicked in the kitchen doior and began spraying water all over. It was under control by the time the fire siren sounded, and all but out before the crew arrived. Anohter car fire was similar.. the car was restorable. They came round to help push it to the side of the road. Two chimney fires were out before anyone even called the hose boys.

        These days, the “government as god” meme is what puts these eedjits “in control”. I’ve been pretty disgusted when I’ve seen two pumpers, a big ladder truck, the batalllion hooh hah’s Suburban, and three cop cars show up to the “scene” where a small car had hopped the kerb and run up onto the front lawn of someone’s house. He probably could have hopped back in, startted it, and backed it back onto the street, but NO, all the “impo’tunt” bigshots in costumes had to waste a few thousand tax dollars when one cop car likely was overkill.

  6. Eric, sometimes you paint with too broad a brush.
    I served as both a volunteer and a professional firefighter/emt here in Florida. Florida certification is one of the most widely recognized and highly respected in the world. At the age of 71 I still volunteer.
    As with all professions, faiths, ethnicities and nationalities, there are a few bad eggs that embarrass the rest of us.
    There have been numerous attempts to consolidate fire, ems and police into one public service and most attempts have conceded that fire and ems readily consolidate but policing takes a different type of personality. It does — and it’s not me.
    Chief 3, our Fire Marshall, in charge of the law enforcement end if the fire service, wanted me to come over and work for him. He explained a lot to me. All the fire codes come from the city, county or state governments. Inspections simply insure compliance. Exit signage and outward opening doors resulted from horrendous loss of lives in fires like the Triangle Shirtwaist fire in New York City where the exits had been chained shut to keep the women from sneaking out to take a break.
    An Inspector may find hundreds of dollars, even thousands of dollars worth of violations during an inspection, enough to break a business. He also has the discretion to advise the owner that he may fix one of the violations on the list and if completed in thirty days will get another thirty days and another thirty days, etc., until all the items are taken care of.
    Yes, a portion of your taxes pay our salaries so we want you to stay in business and prosper. Safely.
    As for the cat in the tree thing, we usually sent a service truck out with one man who advised the cat owner to open a can of cat food and put it on a lower branch and when the cat gets hungry enough, it will come down.
    Human nature being what it is, we will never be out of work. Even on Sunday, someone will be putting up or taking down his Christmas lights and fall off the ladder. Cleaning his tools in the garage with gasoline and light a cigarette. That is why professional firefighters work a 24 hour shift.
    We have an 8 hour work day like everyone else. We perform daily, weekly and monthly truck checks. We make sure everything is working properly and where it is supposed to be. Our own lives may depend on the apparatus and equipment working properly.
    We cut the grass, wash the windows, clean the house and go out and paint hydrants. We cook our meals and wash the dishes.
    Yeah, we lift weights and exercise on the clock but that is so we can quickly get that fat guy down three flights of stairs on a back board and into the ambulance after he has a heart attack at 2 AM.
    Most of the firemen I’ve known donate blood four or five times a year. I still do.
    I’d like to close with a quote from a man just doing his job.
    On 9/11/01 at 0921 hrs, Captain Patrick “Paddy” Brown radioed in from the 35th floor of the North Tower of the WTC, “This is 3 Truck and we’re still heading up.”
    We all know what happened next.
    God bless and stay safe.

  7. An authentic “hero” would have to be Lenny Skutnik: The guy that dove into the icy waters at the Air Florida Flight 90 crash in DC back in 1982 and saved that woman.

    If I’m not mistaken, there were plenty of phonies standing around that watched Skutnik dive in.

      • Dear Steve,
        Didn’t realize he was the whistleblower for My Lai.

        Now that took real guts, real moral integrity. He must have really “feared for his life” after his testimony. Fragging was not uncommon back then.

    • Dear Johnny,

      Let’s not forget the LEOs. They too are no slouches when it comes to standing around doing nothing.

      Man Gets Stabbed on Subway. Guess How Helpful the Cops Were.
      Robby Soave
      Oct. 22, 2014 11:06 am

      Answer: Not very.

      Joe Lozito, a Philadelphia resident and stabbing victim, shared his unforgettable story with Cracked.com. Lozito encountered Maksim Gelman—a deranged spree killer—on a New York City subway train on February 12, 2011. Gelman stabbed Lozito in the face with a knife; though grievously wounded, Lozito was able to subdue Gelman. Then the police appeared and made the arrest.

      But Lozito explained to Cracked.com that the cops were present all along, hiding behind a door during the fight to the death, because they were too afraid to confront the stabber until he had been defeated.

  8. Firefighters, especially volunteers, have become officious douchebags who love “playing army”.
    I have commercial property and they loved popping in for unscheduled inspections.
    10 years or so back, I grew tired of this and started telling them to bugger off when they showed up; told them they could make an appointment or, if they felt empowered to invade my property, show up with a warrant. I wrote a letter to the chief about it. They avoided my place after that.

  9. Eric
    You are spot one my friend. I have felt this way a long time about being a public school teacher. I went into this with a heart to teach literature and help kids with the lessons that great literature teach us. All I have become is a government clown lock-stepping govt. policies to make kids ignorant and stupid. When President Trump said the education system deprives kids of ALL KNOWLEDGE he was not kidding – it really does.

    • Thanks, Robert!

      Agreed. I owe my parents a tremendous debt for not sending me to a government school and for providing me with books – good ones.

      PS: I notice your handle; old Eagle Scout here!

  10. Wonder if we would have firemen, or even policemen, if it were not for mandatory insurance. In our current debt based society, the banksters cannot tolerate a loss of their collateral. Eric has written often about the situation where, automobiles in my example, cannot be financed beyond a certain age because they are not worth the debt: Upside down.

    As for “first responders”

    The fired department protects the collateral of the bank. Insurance companies, force fed to us like police and fire, and a thousand other requirements, protect the Money Mongers.

    People cannot understand, much less accept the Fascism under which we are organized. But this article tells the tale. We are in it, and the Devil can take the hind parts…

    Banks issue fiat money, lend at usury, keep the profits, write off to the national debt all uncollectables.

  11. Well I suppose it is like it is described in many places, but I have been a volunteer FF for near 50 years and have not seen the abuse stated first hand. Saved a lot of houses and personal possesions from being destroyed, and a few lives also, even a couple of dogs and cats. Never considered myself a hero, just a neighbor helping a neighbor. I do know this, the next fire I go into may be the one that can kill me, most likely due to the new cheap construction, but if there is some one trapped in a burning house I will enter and try to save their life even at the possible cost of mine, if there is no one to save and the house is fully involved I can surround and drown with the best of them.

    • Hi Tony!

      In my writing, you’ll notice a common thread: A loathing of coercion used against peaceful people. This applies generally; fire-fighting is just an example. I have no beef with – and much admire – volunteer firemen. Were it not for the obnoxious random pee-in-a-cup business – without cause; just to control what you do in your private life on your own time and only as regards arbitrarily decreed to be illegal “drugs” (but not alcohol) I would very much like to volunteer myself.

      What I object to is being forced to fund fire services or law enforcement (especially law enforcement; as distinct from peace keepers) and also the conferring of of authority upon any other person to be exercised over me or any other person who desires simply to be left in peace.

      I am perfectly capable of protecting myself and, regardless, well understand that when seconds count, a cop is just 20 minutes away… I resent like hell being threatened by some random guy with a badge and gun because I am not “buckled up” … and having to stop my vehicle and identify myself and prove I am not “drunk”… . And I’d like to be free to pay for fire protection services if I decide I want to pay for it. But not threatened by goons with guns and forced to pay for it.

      Like the character in the ’60s TV show, The Prisoner, I have this strange idea that I am free man, by right at least.

      • As you noted that show was in the 60’s, and it’s orders of magnitude worse now; at least number 6 had a comfortable village as his prison, nowadays he’d be in some CIA “black site” hellhole.

  12. Say what you want.

    But when your door gets blown open at 3:00AM without knocking, and your dog gets shot, and you or another family gets murdered, all because some Heroes “accidentally” got the wrong address……well, it won’t be the firemen who did it. (Granted, it’s a lot easier for fireman to get the right address, because the burning house is a big clue. 😉 )

    If you get murdered because some hero “feared for his life,” probably won’t be done by a fireman.

    If your life actually does get saved by a hero, probably won’t be done by a cop.

    If you look up YouTube vids about citizen abuse by a hero, can you guess which group has about 1000 times more vids than the other?

    So at least relatively speaking, firemen “are” heroes.

    • Maybe not, but they sure depend on the armed enforcers to extort the money they gobble up. Paid fire men don’t have a market value. There is no way to know what the market value of a coerced service is until people are free to pay for it or not.
      Using your example, I am a super hero, relatively speaking.

  13. Here are two stories of firefighter arrogance, and is a good reason why “qualified immunity”should be abolished for ALL public workers and officials:
    A firefighter from a certain southeastern Michigan community claimed to have a “arson dog”–one that could detect accelerents. This “firefighter” and his dog were instrumental in ruining many peoples’ lives by his testimony alone. Insurance companies LOVED this guy as he was able to get them out of paying (valid) claims. People were denied valid insurance claims and prosecuted for arson on the testimony of this “arson dog’s” handler.
    Those who were “burned” by this supposed arson dog’s “handler” had no recourse, because of “qualified immunity”. The firefighter (and fire department) could not be sued.
    Finally one citizen who had been accused of arson fought back by suing to prove the “arson dog’s” ability. The dog was found to have NO special ability. The “arson dog” and his human master’s career was finally over. How many innocent people were convicted of arson and lost everything they owned??
    Another case was that of a plating plant that caught fire. The owners had a fire department “approved” fire plan in place which involved shutting off utilities and shutting down processes in an orderly fashion. The firefighters that responded to the fire pushed the owner out of the way, and told him that they were going to do things “their way”. The building burned to the ground.
    A firefighter’s job (for at least 98% of the time) is not inherently dangerous. This does not take away from the seriousness of their job, which is to be commended. but, firefighter arrogance can be just as dangerous as police arrogance. THIS is why firefighters should be included in the abolition of immunity for public officials.

    • The hose heroes HATE it, just HATE it, when you note that neither police or firemen are on the top ten most dangerous list.

      I made a joke on facebook once, about why garbage men have more claim to “hero” status then firemen and police as their jobs ARE on the top ten most dangerous list. Dear god the feedback. Never mind that it was a JOKE to begin with, since garbage men aren’t heroes either. Second, the facts were on my side, but no matter. It doesn’t matter to heroes that neither police or fire are on the top ten list of dangerous jobs. Keep in mind this is a list put out by the federal government, and they didn’t even game the list to put them on it.

      No job makes you a hero. Your actions can make you one. And many times when people think others are heroic, they really aren’t. Doing your job doesn’t make you a hero.

      • Agreed richb, my job involved working with high voltage in crappy weather, if I “feared for my safety” I would have chosen a different job, no one was forcing me to do this. If these badged and costumed “heroes” are such scaredy cats they should choose a different line of work.

      • Hmmmph.. the “sanitation engineers” around here drive the trucks solo, there are lift mechanisms that reach out from the side of the rig on the right, just behind the right-drive operator’s position, clamp the big bin, bring it up to dump, then set it back down. The sole operator of the truck never leaves his seat, never lifts a thing, never pushes , puls, or shoves…. let alone lifts, a thing.

        The highhest risk these “workers” face is death by heart attack after thirty years of sitting there. for fifty hours a week. They never even have a chance to dodge the cars as they cross the street to pick up the trash cans on wheels. Because they never leave the belted in and cocooned driver’s seat on their garbage truck.

        Funny world we live in, eh?

    • In the Chicago suburbs there was a place called The Willowbrook Ballroom. One of the last if not the last 1920s-30s dancing venues still in existence and operating as such. Chicago had four major ballrooms, the Willowbrook, the Trianon, The Aragon, and the Melody Mill. The Aragon changed into a nightclub and then into an entirely different venue starting in the 1960s. Still exists, the Melody Mill was torn down for a community center in the early 80s as was the Trianon for urban renewal in the 1960s The Willowbrook being the smallest and least adorned. About the only thing in the suburb where it was worth going there for.

      It lasted until the end of last october when something caught fire on the roof. The hose heros decided that the bow string construction posed too much risk so basically they fought the fire as an effort to keep it from spreading to nearby structures. Also the government water supply failed to provide enough water for the effort. There was practically nothing left.

      I wasn’t there but given the likely nature of the fire and the accounts of the people setting up for a wedding reception at the time it probably could have been stopped with prompt action and entering the building. The dance floor would have probably been ruined but the building saved. The people there left the building and called the fire department and did not attempt to fight the fire. In any case the method chosen and the water problems made it a total loss. I get they don’t want to risk their lives for a building, but then why all the adulation then? For the hard work of keeping fires from spreading? Ok they work hard. Lots of people work hard to do their jobs.

      It seems these days at every turn fire departments have turned from saving lives _and_ property to simply keeping fires from spreading beyond whatever limits they set and preventing people from protecting / saving their own property. Only in government work does doing things by the book to minimize risk to oneself get the hero label.

      • I remember the Willowbrook. One of those places that can’t be built anymore today, even if you had the money and wanted too. It was the very last of the ballrooms in the Chicago area, it basically supported itself as a wedding venue. The Aragon of course still exists as a concert venue, but hasn’t been a ballroom in decades, and never will be again. It’s still an interesting building, and if it is also lost one day, is not replaceable either.

  14. Hi Eric,

    Here in Ill Annoy, they want to make, or have made, a requirement that ALL new construction, including multi and single family homes have sprinkler systems – mandatory, no opt out. I am not sure what a sprinkler system costs, but they cannot be cheap, especially when you have no choice.

    • Just wait till one of those sprinklers goes off accidentally, I’ve had a couple of water leaks in my 40 years in this house; had to replace an entire ceiling. Luckily we were home at the time or the whole place would’ve been ruined.

    • Here’s the problem with sprinkler systems. Unless they have water flowing through them by regular testing, say once a week, the system accumulates rust from the shit in the water reacting with the metal, combined with an oxygen deficient atmosphere. When the system activated, the rust comes through and blocks the tiny metal heads in the sprinklers. So how can you test one system in your house? Well, you just turn it on, and mop up afterwards. And imagine a false alarm, one night you are asleep and the sprinklers activate and douse you in water, ruining the contents in your household. And of course all that water will be rusty and provide oxygen to the fire!!

      One more way for the state to make your life miserable, by turning a small fire into a houseburning adventure that destroys all that you have accumulated. It seems the first law of working for these gov’t regulators is a hatred of all living beings that have 2 legs.

      • sprinkler systems have or should have drains to flush the system. Those I have been familiar with did. Of course that’s the sort thing that might get deleted in a single family home residential system to cut cost.

  15. We have first responders in Tx. who aren’t firefighters not anything else. I had one save me from getting a bogus ticket when the malfunctioning lights on a RR led to my Volvo being hit by the Northern Pacific as I ran away straight back behind the truck as fast as I could. When the first responder got there he was relieved to find me alive. He said he’s had a notice not 10 minutes before the lights were malfunctioning. He was a very nice guy and only worried about me being injured. He said two weeks before at that intersection they got the driver out from under his rig, the reason I bailed and hauled ass. Damn those train headlights are huge and bright. Then he went to bat for me 30 minutes later when some highly abusive DPS occifers showed up.

    The first people I called was the boss and the foreman who showed up before the DPS. Foreman asks “Is there anything I need to get out of the truck?” Naw, I took care of it.

  16. Multiple municipal and state bankruptcies are the only hope of quenching this fire of tyranny in the name of supposed good.

  17. Fire fighting was once a private sector service. I recall reading that the excuse for making them a public “service” was that they would often fight with each other in competition for who showed up first and sometimes the homes would burn down. I totally agree that they need to go back to privatization and definitely stay out of the fire code enforcement scene. Here in St Paul,MN they recently enacted a new fatwa that that all homes, business, churches would need a range hood. My church ended up spending 10K for a commercial one since they are considered a business. Tyranny in the name of safety.

    • Most people don’t even KNOW it once was a private sector job. Most fire departments were founded by insurance companies not governments. Just one of the many things the government has weaseled its way into.

      My area still has a private fire department. It’s owned by BP (the oil company). No government department has the experience in fighting the chemical fires a major oil company would have. They get called all the time by the public sector departments for help very often.

  18. You’re going to love the new law proposed in Texas, that will allow any first responder to carry a gun. But it’s not intended for them to enforce laws – it’s because they often show up before the cops (who are off writing tickets or something) and sometimes there’s crazy people shooting the place up when they arrive.

    But honestly, I’d much rather have a fireman show up than a cop. While they do have the power of enforcing laws (making you keep brush trimmed back on your land to reduce the impact of wildfires, for example) it’s not their primary job and they don’t go looking for chances to exercise their authoritah like the po-po does.

    • Oh, they most certainly do go looking for chances to exercise their “authoritah”! I was facilities manager for a large corporation with multiple sites across several states. These buildings were private, not accessible to the public. In virtually every location, the FD would show up once or twice a year, uninvited, demanding a tour/inspection of the building, supposedly so that they would be prepared and know what they were up against in the event of a situation. We would be forced to comply with various “requirements” regarding exit signs, alarms, doors, lighting, you name it. Comply or have your business shut down. They’re just as bad as the cops, only difference is they won’t shoot me when I mouth off. Not yet anyway

      • This is from personal experience. Fire marshals have to find something or they get poor performance reviews. In my experience a roughly 30 year old building inspected annually and they were still finding stuff from the initial construction. Logically the inspections are worthless if a item isn’t found through 25 of them and is an actual concern.

      • We had that at the college I went too. They were there all the time, looking over the “buildings”. The joke among many of my friends, was they were there to eye the coeds, but it’s probably true. They rarely came around in the summer time, when there were few students on campus.