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In Britain, Fire Extinguishers = Fire Hazards

God Save the Nanny State
View External Link [www.thisisdorset.net]
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2887.gifAlex - Who controls the past now controls the future
03/13/2008 @ 06:18:53 PM
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We don't need no fire extinguishers, let it burn. Then we can all get checks from the insurance company. It'll be sweet (except for everyone who's not retarded and has fire extinguishers in their house whose insurance rates will go up).

You can't regulate common sense and you can't save people from themselves.
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fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - Always thinking of, but never about, the children.
03/13/2008 @ 06:31:49 PM
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Dorset Fire and Rescue's protection policy manager Pete Whittaker agreed with this stance. "If the fire extinguishers in the common areas are for the use of the homeowners, this suggests that they would have to leave their flats to pick one up and then return into their homes to tackle the fire," he said.

"This is contrary to advice to Get out, stay out and call the fire service out' so is not a practice we would encourage.


I don't know, I can buy this. It sounds silly, but really does make sense if you think about. The article isn't about fire extinguishers in your home.

What they are saying is by the time you would get to the communal extinguisher and get back to your place to put out the grease fire you started it's more likely than not you are no longer equipped to handle the fire. Putting the extinguishers there implies they want you to take a crack at it first, which isn't the case.

Ever seen one of those demonstration videos where a room starts on fire? It's a hellish inferno in a matter of 30 seconds, and you'd be wasting time you don't have to try and fight it.
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newalex.jpgAlex - 3618 Posts
03/13/2008 @ 07:29:55 PM
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Well, I guess I'd rather keep my options open and think for myself instead of have someone else regulate my life. If the hallway is a giant fireball, I'm getting out of there. If someone lights a paper bag full of poo on fire in the hallway, I'm grabbing the fire extinguisher and putting that shit out. Having extinguishers available for use implies that you'd rather not have the building burn down if a small fire starts and there is someone around who could use the extinguisher to put it out. Removing the extinguishers implies that no one in the building is smart enough to use the extinguisher or to know when to use the extinguisher.

What if someone uses the extinguisher and is able to slow the fire but they end up not being able to get out alive, yet the extra time they gave to the other people in the building allowed 5 more people to get out alive?
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matt.jpgMatt - 3354 Posts
03/13/2008 @ 08:15:32 PM
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From the comments at the bottom of the article:

PokesdownMark says, "The assumption that people are stupid, that they will always make bad decisions is the most troubling aspect of this. The thinking that people are incapable of making a sensible decision. The idea of treating every individual like the lowest common denominator."

I agree.
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Matt messed with this at 03/13/2008 8:15:50 pm
fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - 8953 Posts
03/13/2008 @ 10:43:44 PM
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Alex Wrote - 03/13/2008 @ 07:29:55 PM
Well, I guess I'd rather keep my options open and think for myself instead of have someone else regulate my life.


And that's why you personally bought your floor a fire extinguisher? Luckily you don't have to because someone "regulating your life" made a rule saying there had to be one there.

Anyone could figure out how to use a gun too, I'm sure the police would still prefer you not take crime into your own hands, avoid the situation if possible, and call them.

Matt Wrote - 03/13/2008 @ 08:15:32 PM
From the comments at the bottom of the article:

PokesdownMark says, "The assumption that people are stupid, that they will always make bad decisions is the most troubling aspect of this. The thinking that people are incapable of making a sensible decision. The idea of treating every individual like the lowest common denominator."

I agree.


You agree with his implied indignation or his statement? People are at their worst/dumbest when they are panicked. The realization something is actually on fire? 5-30 seconds depending on if you start it or it just happens, freaking out about fire while lading tiny cups of water at it in vein before deciding this is beyond the control of 4 ounces of water every 10 seconds and a good towel beating? 30 seconds. Remembering where the extinguisher is? 10-20 seconds. Getting it: 1-2 minutes. Panicked fumbling with it before anything comes out: 30-40 seconds. Time it takes for a fire to get out of control (by which I mean the extinguisher has no effect at all, not that your valiant effort killed you but saved the nunnery down the hall) 20 seconds to a couple minutes. If a fire happens in your kitchen you would have a fighting chance, if it happened anywhere else you'd be screwed. Modern curtains/furniture/etc wouldn't light up faster if they were made of gasoline. Now granted you could argue you should be able to make that call, but you could have an extinguisher in your kitchen and it probably happens often that someone else entirely comes running in with it, not knowing the situation.

I'm not saying I agree with this 100%, but you'd have to concede it sends mixed messages to Johnny Wanna-be-hero when the "official" stance of the fire department is simply "get out as fast as possible as soon as possible" but there's the "tool" for fighting a fire, but if you get to it within under 30 seconds, and know to aim at the base.
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Jeremy messed with this 3 times, last at 03/13/2008 10:52:54 pm
newalex.jpgAlex - I was too weak to give in Too strong to lose
03/13/2008 @ 11:07:57 PM
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Well, obviously laws in the US that require fire extinguishers are implying that lawmakers would rather have us burn to death trying to put out fires then get out of the building since it's apparently a bad idea to have extinguishers available.
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thumbnailCAW1I0O3.gifMatt - 3354 Posts
03/14/2008 @ 12:56:12 AM
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Jeremy Wrote - 03/13/2008 @ 10:43:44 PM
Matt Wrote - 03/13/2008 @ 08:15:32 PM
From the comments at the bottom of the article: PokesdownMark says, "The assumption that people are stupid, that they will always make bad decisions is the most troubling aspect of this. The thinking that people are incapable of making a sensible decision. The idea of treating every individual like the lowest common denominator." I agree.
You agree with his implied indignation or his statement?


Is it possible to agree with one, but not the other in this case?

Jeremy Wrote - 03/13/2008 @ 10:43:44 PM
People are at their worst/dumbest when they are panicked. The realization something is actually on fire? 5-30 seconds depending on if you start it or it just happens, freaking out about fire while lading tiny cups of water at it in vein before deciding this is beyond the control of 4 ounces of water every 10 seconds and a good towel beating? 30 seconds. Remembering where the extinguisher is? 10-20 seconds. Getting it: 1-2 minutes. Panicked fumbling with it before anything comes out: 30-40 seconds. Time it takes for a fire to get out of control (by which I mean the extinguisher has no effect at all, not that your valiant effort killed you but saved the nunnery down the hall) 20 seconds to a couple minutes. If a fire happens in your kitchen you would have a fighting chance, if it happened anywhere else you'd be screwed. Modern curtains/furniture/etc wouldn't light up faster if they were made of gasoline. Now granted you could argue you should be able to make that call, but you could have an extinguisher in your kitchen and it probably happens often that someone else entirely comes running in with it, not knowing the situation.


I'd like to see the apartment where it would take 1-2 minutes just to run out into the hall and back.


The problem with removing the extinguishers is that I doubt it would change people's behavior much anyway. I think most people would still follow their instincts as to when a fire could still be put out and when it couldn't be. If they think they can put it out, they are going to try and do so with whatever tools they have available until it gets to a point where they run. So assuming this behavior, but now with no fire extinguishers, you have two new ways this plays out.

A small fire starts:
1. You try and fight the fire, but are limited to ineffective tools. The fire quickly spirals out of control and you die or get harmed.
2. You try and fight the fire, but are limited to ineffective tools. Your internal fight or flight calculus has shifted due to no extinguishers and you bail.

In both cases, the building burns down and maybe some old person a few doors down dies as well because you lacked access to the most effective tool that you could have.

Now, I will concede that there would be some non-zero number of people who would go back into a futile situation because they have an extinguisher that otherwise wouldn't. But I would be willing to bet that this is far outweighed by the increased loss of lives and property that would come from people running at the first sign of a flame. And if I'm wrong, shouldn't all fire extinguishers be outlawed, not just the communal ones. If people's instincts are so bad that more people will die trying to put out a small fire than would be saved by the timely use of an extinguisher, then it should be illegal if you don't run out the door the minute you see a flame, and all the people who recommend you have fire extinguishers in your home should be sued for gross negligence.
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Matt screwed with this 2 times, last at 03/14/2008 12:58:30 am
fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - 1.21 Gigawatts!?!?
03/14/2008 @ 09:44:46 AM
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Matt Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 12:56:12 AM
I'd like to see the apartment where it would take 1-2 minutes just to run out into the hall and back.


Getting out of your apartment, down the hall/around the corner 50 or so feet, getting it off the wall/breaking the glass, making your way back with what I can only imagine is a fairly heavy object that at the very least would stop you from sprinting, and getting back to the fire. I would put that at easily a minute.

You don't think they had a good statistical backup for doing this that states that communally positioned fire extinguishers are overwhelmingly more likely to do you harm than good? What do they possibly have to gain by doing this? The fire department just doesn't want amateur competition for the fire business? I don't think you should run at first sight either, but I would be willing to believe that all that goes into getting a communally placed fire extinguisher to that flame renders them statistically more likely to do you harm than good.

In fact add in the fact that your first instinct shouldn't even be to run and get that thing (when you should just put the lid on the pan or get it to the sink, or stomp it out, ect) and I bet they become even more statistically worthless. In other words, small fires you should have handled got out of control and burned the building down because you freaked and ran and got the fire extinguisher and now that newspaper that caught on fire you could have quickly carried to the sink has half the room on fire.
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jeremy.jpgJeremy - 8953 Posts
03/14/2008 @ 09:57:19 AM
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All this fire talk makes me want to try out our fire pit we've had forever. Sarah and I have Super Smash Bros Brawl and Guitar Hero 3 coming sometime next week. We'll have to play some Nintendo and then go sit by the fire.

Edit: Jon's beloved Toys R Us had a deal where you got a Wii game half off if you bought Brawl. Most of the games were 2nd rate games already like $40, So you only saved $20-$25. Then someone saw it worked with GT3 and posted that on Slickdeals.net. So we 'saved' like $50. Since I actually was close not too long ago to getting GT3 before deciding against it in a way we got Brawl for free.

Edit2: Looks like Monday.
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Jeremy perfected this 2 times, last at 03/14/2008 10:02:54 am
2887.gifAlex - But let history remember, that as free men, we chose to make it so!
03/14/2008 @ 12:44:17 PM
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Don't the chances of someone being near a fire extinguisher when one was needed increase as the number of fire extinguishers increase?

Although after reading the article again my blood pressure has dropped back down since it was only a recommendation that they be removed and "the responsible person in each premises" still gets to make the final decision.
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matt.jpgMatt - 3354 Posts
03/14/2008 @ 02:17:11 PM
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Jeremy Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 09:44:46 AM
You don't think they had a good statistical backup for doing this that states that communally positioned fire extinguishers are overwhelmingly more likely to do you harm than good?


Says the man who apparently believes that no one in the entire music industry has ever done an analysis into price structure and profits. emoticon
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Matt edited this at 03/14/2008 2:17:31 pm
matt.jpgMatt - Washington Bureau Chief
03/14/2008 @ 02:21:37 PM
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Jeremy Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 09:57:19 AM
All this fire talk makes me want to try out our fire pit we've had forever. Sarah and I have Super Smash Bros Brawl and Guitar Hero 3 coming sometime next week. We'll have to play some Nintendo and then go sit by the fire. Edit: Jon's beloved Toys R Us had a deal where you got a Wii game half off if you bought Brawl. Most of the games were 2nd rate games already like $40, So you only saved $20-$25. Then someone saw it worked with GT3 and posted that on Slickdeals.net. So we 'saved' like $50. Since I actually was close not too long ago to getting GT3 before deciding against it in a way we got Brawl for free. Edit2: Looks like Monday.


SAT time:

L : Writer :: T : Hero
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jon.jpgJon - 2847 Posts
03/14/2008 @ 02:24:42 PM
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Maybe the British fire department should start a "Don't be a hero" campaign. They could call it DBAT.
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jeremy.jpgJeremy - Always thinking of, but never about, the children.
03/14/2008 @ 02:28:01 PM
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Matt Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:17:11 PM
Jeremy Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 09:44:46 AM
You don't think they had a good statistical backup for doing this that states that communally positioned fire extinguishers are overwhelmingly more likely to do you harm than good?


Says the man who apparently believes that no one in the entire music industry has ever done an analysis into price structure and profits. emoticon


Right...almost the same thing.
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jeremy.jpgJeremy - 8953 Posts
03/14/2008 @ 02:30:01 PM
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Matt Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:21:37 PM
Jeremy Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 09:57:19 AM
All this fire talk makes me want to try out our fire pit we've had forever. Sarah and I have Super Smash Bros Brawl and Guitar Hero 3 coming sometime next week. We'll have to play some Nintendo and then go sit by the fire. Edit: Jon's beloved Toys R Us had a deal where you got a Wii game half off if you bought Brawl. Most of the games were 2nd rate games already like $40, So you only saved $20-$25. Then someone saw it worked with GT3 and posted that on Slickdeals.net. So we 'saved' like $50. Since I actually was close not too long ago to getting GT3 before deciding against it in a way we got Brawl for free. Edit2: Looks like Monday.


SAT time:

L : Writer :: T : Hero

Ha

http://www.granturismo-3.com/
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reign_of_fire.jpgMicah - I'm on a boat! Everybody look at me cause I'm sailing on a boat!
03/14/2008 @ 02:31:40 PM
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Matt Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:17:11 PM
Says the man who apparently believes that no one in the entire music industry has ever done an analysis into price structure and profits.


I have no idea what you're referencing, but I just read a study that showed that downloading has no statistically significant effect on album sales. You can feel free to cross-reference this with the RIAA thread.
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reign_of_fire_150.jpgMicah - 584 Posts
03/14/2008 @ 02:31:55 PM
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Jeremy Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:30:01 PM
Matt Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:21:37 PM
Jeremy Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 09:57:19 AM
All this fire talk makes me want to try out our fire pit we've had forever. Sarah and I have Super Smash Bros Brawl and Guitar Hero 3 coming sometime next week. We'll have to play some Nintendo and then go sit by the fire. Edit: Jon's beloved Toys R Us had a deal where you got a Wii game half off if you bought Brawl. Most of the games were 2nd rate games already like $40, So you only saved $20-$25. Then someone saw it worked with GT3 and posted that on Slickdeals.net. So we 'saved' like $50. Since I actually was close not too long ago to getting GT3 before deciding against it in a way we got Brawl for free. Edit2: Looks like Monday.
SAT time: L : Writer :: T : Hero
Ha http://www.granturismo-3.com/


Isn't that game like $3 now
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jon.jpgJon - Nutcan.com's kitten expert
03/14/2008 @ 02:32:14 PM
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Jeremy Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:28:01 PM
Matt Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:17:11 PM
Jeremy Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 09:44:46 AM
You don't think they had a good statistical backup for doing this that states that communally positioned fire extinguishers are overwhelmingly more likely to do you harm than good?
Says the man who apparently believes that no one in the entire music industry has ever done an analysis into price structure and profits. emoticon
Right...almost the same thing.


I think it's apt.
You're giving the benefit of the doubt to one organization that they surely did the research and assuming one is stubbornly avoiding/ignoring such a thing, even at the expense of larger profits. Just because it's not literally the same situation doesn't disqualify it. Objection overruled!
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jeremy.jpgJeremy - I believe virtually everything I read.
03/14/2008 @ 02:37:28 PM
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It couldn't be less apt. The music labels and artists would make a boatload more under the 'bulk' system, but have distribution rights and agreements. The music industry has to care about keeping many many people that make a living off cds happy and take a million other things into consideration.

The fire dept has no ulterior motives or outside influences to consider, only the people's safety. If anything Big Fire Extinguisher is pressuring them in the other direction.
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Jeremy messed with this 2 times, last at 03/14/2008 2:52:26 pm
jon.jpgJon - 2847 Posts
03/14/2008 @ 02:38:45 PM
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I said overruled sir!
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fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - 8953 Posts
03/14/2008 @ 02:46:47 PM
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Micah Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:31:40 PM
Matt Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:17:11 PM
Says the man who apparently believes that no one in the entire music industry has ever done an analysis into price structure and profits.


I have no idea what you're referencing, but I just read a study that showed that downloading has no statistically significant effect on album sales. You can feel free to cross-reference this with the RIAA thread.


He's talking about my belief that music piracy would effectively be ended, and that everyone who mattered in the actual production of music would make way more money, if mp3's were so cheap and convenient that no one gave a second thought to paying for them. Essentially moving to more of a 'sell in bulk' model. Who would bother with crappy p2p program experiences and mislabeled/garbled mp3's and whatnot if you had an easy to navigate system that charged like a dime per legit DRM free high quality mp3? His implication is that if there's any truth to my thinking they would already be doing that.
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Jeremy screwed with this 3 times, last at 03/14/2008 2:51:05 pm
jon.jpgJon - infinity + 1 posts
03/14/2008 @ 02:48:15 PM
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I was going to share this story when I first heard about it, but you know how that goes.

Anyway, since the "nanny state" has been referenced, it fits here.

http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-23447869-details/The+street+made+safe+for+texting+and+walking/article.do
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reign_of_fire.jpgMicah - I'm on a boat! Everybody look at me cause I'm sailing on a boat!
03/14/2008 @ 03:08:05 PM
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Jeremy Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:46:47 PM
Micah Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:31:40 PM
Matt Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:17:11 PM
Says the man who apparently believes that no one in the entire music industry has ever done an analysis into price structure and profits.
I have no idea what you're referencing, but I just read a study that showed that downloading has no statistically significant effect on album sales. You can feel free to cross-reference this with the RIAA thread.
He's talking about my belief that music piracy would effectively be ended, and that everyone who mattered in the actual production of music would make way more money, if mp3's were so cheap and convenient that no one gave a second thought to paying for them. Essentially moving to more of a 'sell in bulk' model. Who would bother with crappy p2p program experiences and mislabeled/garbled mp3's and whatnot if you had an easy to navigate system that charged like a dime per legit DRM free high quality mp3? His implication is that if there's any truth to my thinking they would already be doing that.


I would personally probably pay for that. I would pay 20-25 cents a track if they offered a quality lossless format.

So Matt's argument is "Clearly if that were possible they would have thought of it and implemented it by now"?
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Micah edited this at 03/14/2008 3:08:27 pm
jeremy.jpgJeremy - I hate our freedoms
03/14/2008 @ 03:15:48 PM
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He brought it up in here because I made the argument that the fire officials likely have done the leg work to show those extinguishers to more harm than good, but I simultaneously "believe" that the mutlimillion-dollar music industry hasn't done the simple supply and demand calculations that could net them more money.

It's not apt because they are two very different situations.
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jon.jpgJon - 2847 Posts
03/14/2008 @ 04:19:48 PM
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If I remember correctly, I think the general idea that matt and I brought to the table (on and off this site) was that if selling all songs for a dime was as good of a deal for the companies as Jeremy was making it out to be (in the original thread), that they probably wouldn't just be sticking to $.99 a song out of stubbornness or lack of analysis. It's not dismissing Jeremy's point completely. It's more of pointing out that maybe pricing it that low wouldn't bring in money hand over fist like Jeremy proposed it would. (I mean, the fact that all of us consumers like the ten cent price doesn't mean it would work best for the other side.)
And that companies are obviously looking for ways to bring in bigger profits, so there's likely some economic incentive for them to not drop the price that much, or possibly at all.

Jeremy Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:37:28 PM
. The music labels and artists would make a boatload more under the 'bulk' system, but have distribution rights and agreements. The music industry has to care about keeping many many people that make a living off cds happy and take a million other things into consideration.


Isn't this sort of what we talked about? All the other things they take into consideration to find out that it's not worth it on their end? I mean I kind of think we all have a lot of agreement in this whole situation, we're just putting it in different ways or including or omitting different constraints into the specific "model" in our head and that we are discussing.
It seems like the industry having "to care about keeping many many people...happy" is the kind of thing that we might refer to as researching the price structure and profits and deciding it isn't in their best interest, whereas maybe you (Jeremy) see it as something that is one of the outside forces that is preventing the ideal situation from occuring but isn't part of what I'll call the "ideal price model" that you are working from to argue that 10cents is the best price.
Maybe I'm wrong in this characterization, but it seems like that's where we're all coming from.
Either way, I think we all know that Jeremy blew his chance to get this implemented when he failed to bring it to Sen. Obama's attention.
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2887.gifAlex - 3618 Posts
03/14/2008 @ 06:35:26 PM
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Jon Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:48:15 PM
I was going to share this story when I first heard about it, but you know how that goes. Anyway, since the "nanny state" has been referenced, it fits here. http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-23447869-details/The+street+made+safe+for+texting+and+walking/article.do


Just a few steps away from our own personal anti-bacterial bubbles.
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thumbnailCAW1I0O3.gifMatt - Washington Bureau Chief
03/14/2008 @ 07:14:15 PM
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Jeremy Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:37:28 PM
The fire dept has no ulterior motives or outside influences to consider, only the people's safety.


Conceding that point then, since the fire department's only concern is people's safety, they would try to stop actions that would increase the risk of someone being hurt or killed no matter what. So if a fire starts in an apartment, and getting the fire extinguisher and going back in would increase the risk to the owner by some amount, the fire department would be against it. But unlike the fire department, people do have other factors to consider, even if they may conflict with their safety. It may be worth the added risk to one's own life to act to decrease the risk of losing their possessions or, God forbid, a family member, and it shouldn't be the government's place to try and prevent him from making that decision.
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fry6beeu9.jpgJeremy - Always thinking of, but never about, the children.
03/14/2008 @ 08:38:46 PM
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The government is more likely that not the only reason the extinguisher was ever there.
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thumbnailCAW1I0O3.gifMatt - Washington Bureau Chief
03/14/2008 @ 10:54:42 PM
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Yes, but that's also not relevant to my point.
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reign_of_fire.jpgMicah - 584 Posts
03/14/2008 @ 11:07:15 PM
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Matt Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 07:14:15 PM
Jeremy Wrote - 03/14/2008 @ 02:37:28 PM
The fire dept has no ulterior motives or outside influences to consider, only the people's safety.


Conceding that point then, since the fire department's only concern is people's safety, they would try to stop actions that would increase the risk of someone being hurt or killed no matter what. So if a fire starts in an apartment, and getting the fire extinguisher and going back in would increase the risk to the owner by some amount, the fire department would be against it. But unlike the fire department, people do have other factors to consider, even if they may conflict with their safety. It may be worth the added risk to one's own life to act to decrease the risk of losing their possessions or, God forbid, a family member, and it shouldn't be the government's place to try and prevent him from making that decision.


But what if the fire department calculates that there is a better chance of saving Will Smith than there is his wife or son or whatever and then he spends the rest of his life distrusting firemen even though his hand is cut off and replaced with a fireman's hand and then fireman start to take over the world and attack him in his space car, but no one will believe him except one rogue fireman that still has feelings.
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thumbnailCAW1I0O3.gifMatt - 3354 Posts
03/15/2008 @ 01:55:23 PM
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Well, first Will Smith would need to find a hot scientist who works on firemen, and is also sleeping with Tom Brady. Then, Smith and the rogue fireman would have to convince the scientist that the new firemen are really evil. Finally, they use the scientist's knowledge and access to infiltrate the main fire house HQ and destroy the giant fireman overlord who is controlling all the evil fireman. Simple really.
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