Fireys quit

lemaChet 16 March 2007 89

[First filed: March 15, 2007 @ 20:20]

Scores of ACT Rural firies resigned today.

40 vehicles and 100s of fire fighters resigned in protest against the restructure of the Emergency Services department.

And how lame does Corbell look in that Emergency Services Jacket. Looks clearly like a media grab for me.

(PS – i stole this, mostly word for word, from WIN news)

vote +1 for the guy who said he’d happily be a volunteer, but would not serve under the current infrastructure.

(My wording may need to be cleared up a bit, it’s not entirely what I mean to say. Sorry about that)

[Ed – Louise sent in this story as well, here are her words]:

That’s the reason I’m quitting, if the community doesn’t care about it and the politicians don’t care enough about it

The report of a mass resignation got a bit buried in assembly politics. But the real news is that the ACT seems to have few, if any, remaining volunteer fire captains. They’ve all resigned. This follows hot in the tracks of the resignation of top fire official, competent bloke and all-round good guy David Prince.

Problem is, the community does care about it, but the govt. can’t seem to work out how out-of-touch it really is.

Other problem, is the fire captains chucked all their keys in a bucket. They are, I am told, not labelled at all. So some poor person had to go through and match keys to trucks. I wonder how long that took?

[ED: we had held off on the Prince resignation as there was no clear sign as to the truth of his reasons for quitting. This mass resignation suggests that Simon’s “Everything is OK” line was, at best, poorly informed.]

UPDATED: Here’s the astonishing footage (from both WIN and the ABC) of this mass insurrection by the volunteer workers against being taken for granted, if you missed it last night the images will amaze you:

ANOTHER UPDATE: The Canberra Times has more on this.

FURTHE UPDATE: Thanks to plane for the heads up, the Woden SES unit has pictures of the protest on their own web page (complete with ACT Government logo).

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89 Responses to Fireys quit
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Fred Fred 11:27 pm 22 Mar 07

Ha Ha you guys are funny, This didn’t start with the Stanhope Gov’t. It has been a continous battle between the people of the ACT and the Bureaucracy that hide behind the politicians voted in to supposedly make amends from the previous Gov’t that became arrogant and out of touch with the people and the cycle continues. Thirty plus years ago when the Feds were operating ‘us civilians’ under the Dept of Territories etc. These face Bureaucrats handed down the baton from one generation to the next and each time the fall guys were the gov’t of the day.
The same faceless executive level mentality continues to exist today well after self gov’t (the concept that took them three times to get up) The previous liberal led LA retrenched forestry workers and the fire trails were not maintained along with the second rate tankers that were then dragged out of the boomdocks and placed in the city. At the same time the Bruce Stadium debarcle, how much money was that again? The Royal Canberra Hospital exploding spectacular etc…. So we got rid of them too. Those out of touch arrogant elected faces.
So who remained behind the scenes in their executive positions ??
JaCS, ESB ESAgency, ESAuthority, ESAgency ESA MkIII.
So what if there are new cardboard cutouts in the Legislative Assembly shop front on London Cct that we can heckle because they were voted in by me or you or them.
What are the heads of Departments upto now??????

teddy bear teddy bear 11:15 pm 22 Mar 07

I haven’t seen too much of anyone being accountable to the community, ingeegoodbee, particularly any elected officials or, for that matter, the paid bureaucrats.

Maelinar Maelinar 8:27 am 21 Mar 07

whingeegoodbee, what you are posting completely goes against the fabric upon which our society is built.

Lets take the RFS/SES out of this picture under a hypothetical situation. Replace them with St Vincent De Pauls volunteers. Wouldn’t you be questioning if the SVDP ladies decided it wasn’t worth doing any volunteer time because of the nonsense they had to put up with ?

You are more than welcome to come and discuss your opinions on volunteering considering themselves with hysterical martyrdom with myself and Thumper any given Friday. Bring your own first aid kit, as the pub only has rudimentary equipment.

We are both qualified to administer first aid – an additional skill we obtained via volunteering.

manchowder manchowder 11:36 pm 20 Mar 07

Ingee: Did someone steal your toy firetruck as a child? It would go a long way to explain your vehmence strewn with big words.

Al Al 12:50 pm 20 Mar 07

Nyssa: literally saw it on a bumper maybe 8 years ago.
But a “nice littl’ earner” for any printers out there, I’d suggest. Specially given the local Libs…

Ingeegoodbee Ingeegoodbee 11:52 pm 16 Mar 07

…And another thing Firey, don’t try and tell someone whose done their fair share of both salaried and volunteer firefighting that they wouldn’t have any idea – it serves you no purpose, and simply makes you look silly.

Ingeegoodbee Ingeegoodbee 11:43 pm 16 Mar 07

In all honesty I can’t see how all you lefty wankers have to band together against change in the RFS. It’s staggering that my, by my own admission, hard line right-wing view is seen by some as ‘the party line’ (what the f#%K are you on mate?) and the simple observation that the RFS can not be quarantined from organisational change (go and actually read the “wrapped in cotton wool” statement dipshite) unearths a torrent of irrational bile and psudo-indignation.

Let’s have a cold shower people. It’s now obvious that the so called ‘resignations’ were a farce with the gormless tools simply stepping down from their nominal positions – not actually having the wherewithal to sever themselves from the RFS – so as I said, it really was just a poorly stage managed whinge-fest by people with good on ground experience who find themselves so bereft of useful ideas about management that they are forced to publicly admit that they are incapable of being part of the solution and would rather grand-stand their way to ignominy.

By any rational measure of this situation, as a citizen and tax-payer, it’s almost impossible to fail to reach the conclusion that many RFS volunteers overvalue their contribution to the organisation to the point of almost hysterical martyrdom.

These people may well be volunteers, but they’re sure as hell aren’t elected officials who are at least accountable to the community. It’s obvious that what’s needed is a little more attention to the task at hand and a little less grandiose politicing.

nyssa76 nyssa76 11:24 pm 16 Mar 07

Al, I love it. Do you know if they still make them?

louise louise 5:12 pm 16 Mar 07

ant, the ACT PS isn’t all 3rd rate, but it will be soon. There’s recently been a lot of good people at mid- to senior management, like David Prince, resigning — all for personal reasons, oddly enough! I wouldn’t want to be an incoming govt. having to pick up from that mess. How do you govern when the last mob drove off a lot of the good performers?

Jazz Jazz 4:37 pm 16 Mar 07

The voters of Canberra arent ALL stupid, However they are mostly uninformed. I recall a situation at the last election where the old bird in the booth next to me turnedto her husband and asked who somebody was. His reply was that he didnt know either and he promplty instructed her to vote for Hopeless Stan because they had heard of him.

As an aside i always get a laugh when i hear Jon on the radio. He takes minutes to say what i reckon i could summarise in 5 words or less. It strikes me that its a metaphore to how well this government is run. Extremely inefficiently.

ant ant 4:22 pm 16 Mar 07

they ought to roll all the vollies in gold. These people are the backbone of our emergency services. They’re on call, they do training in their own time, they save our homes and lives in their own time. I cannot believe that they are being screwed around. What a ludicrous situation. The ACT PS is 3rd rate, everyone’s always known it. In charge of dog rego and parking tickets, and they’re overstretched at that. I hope someone swings for this.

Al Al 4:08 pm 16 Mar 07

Yes Qld also suffers from having no checks on its government. The only time it has had one was when independent Peter Wellington was elected and held the balance of power (1999?) – best 3 years in many decades before or since. But all accountability from Beattie went out the window as soon as he got an absolute majority (and his cabinet started self-destructing, but that’s another story…).
But a minority government in Qld is a rare thing, while the proportional representation model in ACT is supposed to make it much more likely. Votes for candidates other than those in the 2 big parties have a much better chance of making a real difference here.

louise louise 3:21 pm 16 Mar 07

Beatty, Kennett, Bjelke-Peterson, Howard, Keating, Stanhope, and they’re just the ones that spring to mind.

Only Stanhope managed to get the RFS to resign, though.

johnboy johnboy 2:44 pm 16 Mar 07

Actually Queensland did away with it’s upper house in the 1920s when the appointed a lieutenant governor with the real Governor out of the country and used him to stuff the house adn then used those numbers to dissolve itself (IIRC).

So crap Government is nothing new.

neanderthalsis neanderthalsis 2:39 pm 16 Mar 07

The ACT is not the only Govt out there with only a single house and no upperhouse to contain the wilder excesses of the Legislative Assembly. QLD pensioned off it’s upper house under Sir Joh in his effort to establish a solid timocracy with only the cronies of the National Party allowed any say in the running of the state. We now have Premier Pete (the modern day Sir Joh only Labor) running the show and it is the Unions and Labor flunkies in charge and no accountability.

Maelinar Maelinar 2:20 pm 16 Mar 07

I’m still yet to meet a liberal voter.

Do they hang out in closet communes or something ?

Al Al 2:15 pm 16 Mar 07

Nyssa: you’d like a bumper sticker I saw once – “Liberals are like cream – rick, thick, and full of clots.”

louise louise 2:00 pm 16 Mar 07

Maybe it’s just everyone who votes in a majority government who’s the problem (for the record: I didn’t vote for either majority party we are now inflicted with).

nyssa76 nyssa76 1:53 pm 16 Mar 07

Ah AD, you detected my secret and tricky ploy to weed out labor voters. And I was hoping it was too subtle for anyone to notice…

Hell I don’t go for subtly, I just call Federal Liberal voters rednecks and ignorant bastards.

Al Al 1:44 pm 16 Mar 07

What I’d like to see Mael is the tossing out of this concept of “Government” and “Opposition”. I haven’t looked admittedly, but are these concepts actually enshrined in legislation or the Constitution?

From my way of looking at it, every single elected rep is part of the “Government”. To do otherwise is to defeat any chance of government by consensus and will only perpetuate the adversarial approach which has never served us well.

I was just listening to a speech by SA Labor Premier Mike Rann (don’t ask…) in which he was complimenting the work done in her portfolio by his small business Minister – who is from the National Party! So they have a Coalition rep actually in the Cabinet. Now I don’t know anything about how things are going in SA, but that’s the sort of cooperative governing I’m envisaging. Is it too much to desire government for the people instead of the parties??? For the issues to take prominance over the personalities?

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