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Let's Privatize the Fire Department

Posted: Sep 26, 2009 6:15 pm
by Gary
The fire department is a government-run organization which means the private sector could offer better efficiency and cost.

Fire departments are just a BIG GOVERNMENT program of wasteful spending and higher taxes. I don't want the government putting out a fire at my house!

Once private companies and corporations take over the role of fire fighting, everyone will need to figure out which private fire fighting company they want to use. Some may be closer to your home, others may be farther away. The level of service may vary from different companies, but the free market will sort that out, so don't worry.

You'll probably want to get special fire fighting insurance from an insurance company.

Some policies may offer fire fighting services from a company that is far away from your home because the one closest to your home is "out of network".

You won't know how good your fire fighting insurance is until you have a fire. When you do have a fire, the fire fighting company will first have to call your fire fighting insurance company to see if you are covered for just water, or if your policy will allow the use of liquid foam. They will also need to check and see if you are covered for rescuing your children and pets from your burning home.
Note: Ladder charges may not be covered with some policies.
This should add no more than 20 minutes to the response time before fire suppression can commence.

At any time, your fire fighting insurance company may cancel your policy (possibly while your home is ablaze) if they feel that your home had a "pre-existing condition" such as faulty wiring or a shake shingle roof.
But don't worry, you can file a complaint with the insurance commissioner, or file a lawsuit against the insurance company. As soon as you prevail in court, the suppression of fire will re-commence on your home.

If you do not have fire fighting insurance, and a fire starts in your home, you will need to pay up to $50,000 for the services. If you cannot pay, your credit will be ruined and you may need to declare bankruptcy. You may lose whatever is left of your home.

The insurance company will pre-negotiate a rate of $10,000 to put a fire out. This will be a great benefit because it will keep costs down and profits up (for the insurance company). Your premium for insurance will be about $800 per month for your household. This will be very cost-effective if you have at least one major fire at your home per year.

Everywhere in this country, we have SOCIALIZED FIRE FIGHTING. Obviously after reading the above statements, you can understand why privatizing the fire departments will be better for everyone. Let's make fire fighting in this country operate just like health care!


PS: If you missed it, this whole article, while a realistic portrayal of how privatized fire fighting would work, is very cynical and sarcastic. It should not be taken seriously, nor dismissed.

For those that think Health Care Reform is unecessary...

Posted: Sep 26, 2009 8:26 pm
by Gary
If you are wondering why I wrote that bit about privatizing the fire department, here are some reasons:

10 months into a health insurance policy, Blue Cross of California declared that my wife's pregnancy was a "pre-existing condition", and declined to pay any of the costs.

When she fell unconscious for no apparent reason and I took her to the emergency room, Blue Cross declared it to be "pregnancy-related" and denied payment.

Another parity diagnosis made for the first time, several months after the policy was issued, confirmed by 3 doctors, was also declared a pre-existing condition. Apparently we should have known about all undiagnosed conditions or potential future conditions and noted them on our application form.

Blue Cross later denied payment for my annual physical exam claiming that it was "unnecessary". It was my first "annual" physical in 4 years.

Years earlier, Blue Shield offered a policy that featured a flat $75 copay for an emergency room visit. I was working in a metal shop at the time, and a shard of metal became lodged in my eyeball on a Saturday. I went to the emergency room to have the shard removed from my eye with very minor surgery.
Blue Shield denied payment of those services because it was a "non-emergency" which should have been taken care of via my primary care physician's normal business hours the following Monday. What?

This is how health insurance companies treat people and small business owners like me who buy policies on the open market.

Due to complications with my wife's last pregnancy, and regardless of the fact that she's had surgery to prevent future pregnancies, we cannot get health insurance.
Most companies just decline to offer coverage. The one policy offered to us has a premium of $2300 per month with a $5,000 deductible.

Let's see... Our gross household income is around $4000 per month.
We spend $1000 for rent, $1200 for childcare, $200 for utilities, $500 for food, diapers and sundries each month.
Without considering any other expenses, that leaves less than half the amount of that insurance premium.

So we go to the local Chinese medicine doctor which costs about $50 per visit including all treatment and herbal "prescriptions".

And, we know we are just one bad accident or illness away from bankruptcy.

People with jobs that include health benefits are the ones making claims about "death panels" and are fighting any health care reform (as if the system is not broken). As the cost increases, most companies and corporations will either stop offering such benefits or put more of the burden on the employees. Eventually, many of you will be in my position. You won't like it.