One man can save a town. A faceless, self-serving and rule-bound bureaucracy considers charging him with a criminal act for doing so.
OK, so he has not been fined after six months, and I cannot imagine a dozen of his fellows will ever convict him, but Eric Notley’s story is a great parable.
One man sees the fires approaching, and realises he can do something about it if he acts quickly. He takes a bulldozer and builds banks to stop the fire. However he did not ask. The bureaucracy that owned the machine (and was conspicuously not using it to save the town) did not have chance to ponder his action, fill out forms in triplicate and make a safety case. They order an investigation.
The Department of Sustainability and Environment (lovely Orwellian title) owned the bulldozer. Only a corporatist bureaucracy of a large company, NGO or government, could have an investigation long enough to last until a reporter could be told about it. My investigation consists of three questions. Was there ill intent? Was anyone hurt? Was the town saved? If it is ‘no’, ‘no’, ‘yes’ then the case is closed.
This is why I am a libertarian. One man, free to act, does what he can in a tight spot under pressure. A committee not only fails then, but after the pressure is off compounds the failure by blindly following its procedures.
Hat tip Instapundit again.