Fire Survival: Oakland, Dead Right There

Entry Img

The “Ghost Ship” The death toll in this weekend’s fire at an Oakland, CA, warehouse being used as an entertainment venue is at 33 and may rise higher still. Ten of the 20 deadliest fires in US history have occurred in similar venues. In the aftermath it’s commonplace to dwell on the poorly maintained building […]

Response Times: Canada

Entry Img

IAFF vs CUPE The Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) is none too happy with the Ontario Professional Firefighters Association’s move to begin providing fire-based EMS first response. According to the CBC, Jeff Van Pelt, chair of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), which represents more than 6,000 paramedics in Ontario, said, “The move […]

Pensions: A Texas Haircut

Entry Img

Rookies Get the Shaft As previously reported, the pension fund for Dallas firefighters is lurching towards insolvency because of bad decisions by the trustees, but they have a fix for that. For those of us wishing to learn from their disaster, it’s crucial to note that a greedy and ethically unsupportable deferred retirement option plan […]

Pensions: Disaster in Dallas

Entry Img

That Firefighter Brotherly Love? The Dallas Police and Fire Pension Fund needs a $1.1 billion dollar bailout from the city in order to avoid insolvency as a result of a combination of actions all rooted in fiduciary recklessness over a 23-year period. From a guaranteed 8.5% annual interest rate on DROP accounts to pie-in-the-sky investment […]

“America’s Most Alarming Story”

Entry Img

The Bear Interferes The Washington Post has an opinion piece by Eric Chenoweth,  co-director of the Institute for Democracy in Eastern Europe, upbraiding us collectively for our failure to be appropriately outraged at Putin’s supposed meddling in the 2016 presidential election. Chenoweth suggests we should have mouths agape at “the successful effort by a hostile foreign […]

Boots on the Ground: Senior Chief Petty Officer Scott Cooper Dayton

Entry Img

Killed on Thanksgiving Chief Scott Dayton was killed on Thanksgiving Day as part of US Special Forces fighting ISIS in Syria. The Times reports that he died in “Ayn Issa, a town halfway between Raqqa and the Turkish border.” Dayton is the first publicly disclosed US casualty in Syria. Special Forces are training and preparing […]

Christmas Crisis

Entry Img

Lives Wrecked The Guardian reports that the prestigious medical journal Lancet Psychiatry has published an article detailing the potential harm associated with gaming the wee ones over Old Saint Nick. It’s about the moral compass, you see. They say, “lying to children, even about something fun and frivolous, could undermine their trust in their parents and […]

Firefighter Pensions: 297 Millionaires

Entry Img

Got a Spare $1.1 Billion? About a year ago the Dallas Morning News reported that 297 vested members in the Dallas Police and Fire Pension System had Deferred Retirement Option Plan (DROP) accounts valued at $1,000,000 or more. One account was worth more than $3,000,000. This past week the New York Times reported that the […]

November 22nd

Entry Img

9/11 Moment Today marks 53 years since President John Kennedy was shot and killed in Dallas, Texas. The president had gone on a campaign trip there and was accompanied by vice-president Lyndon Johnson, a Texan who had political troubles in his home state. Kennedy got caught up in a squabble between Texas Senator Ralph Yarborough […]

Trump, Bannon and Schaitberger

Entry Img

Coming Home to Roost Stephen Bannon, Donald Trump’s pick for Senior White House strategist, despises the IAFF generally and Our Dear Leader, specifically. Several years ago, his Breitbart News published a scathing series detailing Schaitberger’s choice to lead the IAFF’s Pension Operation, saying, in part, “Fire fighters’ union General President Harold Schaitberger flaunted his power […]

Page 1 of 5912345...102030...Last »