Undernews is the online report of the Progressive Review, edited by Sam Smith, who covered Washington during all or part of one quarter of America's presidencies and edited alternative journals since 1964. The Review has been on the web since 1995. See main page for full contents

August 22, 2009


It is time to open the fire department up to private industry.. . .There are private companies (Halliburtion etc.) who could step in tomorrow and take over every fire department in America and charge the consumer directly.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

This burns me up...

The true cost of this country's fire departments has been born on the backs of volunteers, moderately paid professionals, and tax payers over many, Many years.

I don't care what they might pay for any one, single fire department... it wouldn't be enough. And then they would probably turn around and charge a Lot if you happened to need to use Their services.

This Repug phylosophy is just plain Wrong. They aren't concerned about the safety and well-being of the Public, they merely see an opportunity to make some money. Also, it's wrong for them to privatize drinking water companies and already-existing highways too.

They just want to move in on an already built service structure, make lots of money, sell any possible assets, then if/when money is scarce they will go to the local taxpayers for a 'bailout'.

We already know what happens when the government transfers it's responsibilities to companies like Halliburton, Dieboldt, and Blackwater (Xe). There is no longer the same rules that apply, no longer the same amount of transparency. The same as when these companies were used to replace our military in Iraq.

Public Services should remain just that... Public.


August 23, 2009 10:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This seems on the surface to be a satirical comment about the state of health care, but it is also dangerous. I wouldn't be a bit surprised if this inspired Halliburton execs to start pressing for privatized emergency services.

It's already been done to our water, electricity, gas, and trash pickup (BEGIN SARCASM ALERT), and look how that has lowered costs and improved service for everyone (END SARCASM ALERT).

August 23, 2009 11:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wish the federal gov't would provide free internet and cable TV. And big screen TVs. And buttered popcorn (not that microwave shit).

August 23, 2009 12:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And Haliburton could be come a modern Crassus'


Crassus grew up as the son of a consul and distinguished general.
His career to fame and phenomenal wealth began as he started purchasing the houses of Sulla's victims. Had Sulla confiscated all their belongings he sold them off cheap. And Crassus bought and made sensational profits when selling them on.
Using his wealth he also kept a troop of 500 slaves, all skilled builders, on stand-by. He would then simply wait for one of Rome's frequent fires to break out and would then offer to buy the burning properties, as well as the endangered neighbouring buildings. Using his team of builders he would then rebuild the area and keep it to draw income from rent, or sell it on with a large profit. At one point Crassus was said even to own most of the city of Rome. There was no doubt some who wondered, if some of the fires started in Rome might not actually have been his doing.

August 23, 2009 3:09 PM  
Anonymous Mairead said...

Carefully looking at the site from which this is taken, I'm fairly sure it's intended to be awful sarcasm.

It's a horrifying commentary on the state of our nation, though, that so many of us aren't sure whether it's meant to be sarcasm or a plan.

August 23, 2009 3:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Take a look at the history and origins of the NYFD.

August 24, 2009 3:39 AM  

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