Far-right local government lets family's home burn

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Have you wondered what it would be like, in real life, to adopt ultra-conservative, low-taxes, “every man for himself” tea party-type ideas about government? Well, here's a chance to see it in action. Caution: It’s not a pretty site. ThinkProgress reports today on a house fire in Obion County, Tennessee that is causing anger toward the local, GOP-dominated government’s radical-right policies.

When Obion County resident Gene Cranick’s home caught fire, neighbors called the county’s firefighters. The firefighters showed up, but refused to put it out because Cranick hadn’t paid a $75 fee to “subscribe” to fire protection service. The fire continued for hours, and when it spread to another house, the firefighters put out that blaze because the owner had paid up. The Cranick home, though, burned completely to the ground.

The mayor’s reaction was that the Cranicks are basically out of luck, and compared the situation to auto insurance: “If an auto owner allowed their [sic] vehicle insurance to lapse, they would not expect an insurance company to pay for an unprotected vehicle after it was wrecked.” Which would make sense if fire protection, unlike auto insurance, wasn’t a universally recognized essential service of any local government worthy of being called a government. Americans may not like taxes, but they sure as hell don't want to go back to the frontier days, either. Watch local news station Local 6’s report on the fire:

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