Sunday, June 01, 2008

I think firefighters are great. They're super brave, daring, courageous, and do something I can't even dream about doing.

Okay, that should immunize me for a couple of paragraphs.

Basically, this commercial for Sprint, just shows a bunch of firefighters turned legislators making legislation seems oh so very easy, just naming things that need to get done (clean water? why not? better roads? let's do that), and then passing them unanimously (of course with the help of their sprint phones).

This is highly impractical. Perhaps it is not clear to the firefighters, but you can't just pass everything you want - there's a question of funding these things. Once you just say you want clean water, it doesn't just make it happen. First, of all you have to decide what "clean" means, in terms of how few of what chemicals are allowed to be in water. Second, you have to figure out the best way to make the water clean - whether by command and control, or by setting up a type of permit system. Third, you need to figure out how to implement the plan - if it's command and control - what technology to use to clean the water, if it's permit based - how to issue permits, and where this is enforced, at sewage plants or at companies that discharge water. Fourth, you need to figure out how to enforce these standards and make sure people aren't cheating them. I know that was long and boring but it was an incredibly long and boring short version of what needs to be done to make a bill effective. Not simply - "sure, clean water." So, sorry firefighters - maybe here, you need a little more experience. And let's give legislators a small hand. Sure, lots of them are corrupt, and irritating, and publicity hounds, but it's not that easy.

Now, for the other commercial in which it shows the firefighters running the DMV a lot smoother, I can't speak.

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