Problems in Texas

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  • Howard Beal Provo, UT
    April 28, 2013 8:10 p.m.

    Why was this plant anywhere near residents and schools?

  • The Skeptical Chymist SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    April 27, 2013 10:00 p.m.


    I certainly don't claim that intentional murder is the same as negligent homicide. One is murder in the first degree, the other is a much lesser crime. In this case, however, the lesser crime killed more people. I do think that those who oppose governmental regulation in these things have a lot on their conscience when an insufficiently regulated industry kills people. This fertilizer plant was directly across the street from two schools. I don't know which was there first, but what idiot would permit a plant like this to be built right across the street from two schools? Alternatively, what idiot would allow a school to be built right across the street from a plant like this? With some appropriate zoning, the plant could have been built 5 miles out of town, and everyone would have been much safer.

    Yes, of course fertilizer is crucial to feeding the world, I understand that. But too many people seem to think that government and governmental regulations are always part of the problem. We need smart, effective, governmental regulations to help keep people safe. Your original comment made it seem as if you disagreed with that idea.

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    April 27, 2013 8:52 p.m.

    If a ship was known to sink, plane fall out of the sky, mine dangerous and cars would people knowingly use them? The fertilizer plant does not compare to the Boston Marathon murder. That person murdered someone. Industries for safety and profit make sure things are safe. Industries like fertilizer plants actually save many lives as there products help crops grow.

    Air travel and mines save many lives. Try to prevent accidents. No one in industry tries to cause harm and in fact save lives so the accident to murder is not comparable.

  • Chemist SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    April 27, 2013 9:05 a.m.


    Tell your tales about competition and the free market making things safer to those whose loved ones died in the explosion. There is a very legitimate role for government to regulate unsafe activities.

    Go back in history to the era before effective government regulation.

    Before seat belts, air bags, collapsible steering wheels.
    Before clean water standards
    Before mine safety regulations
    Before required airplane inspections
    Before seismic safety standards were required on new home, school, and business construction

    I hope that you never find yourself having to learn about the need for effective government regulation through bitter experience.

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    April 27, 2013 7:05 a.m.

    We can't stop all accidents. Thing is government is there to keep order. If there is salmonella or other dangerous things than people don't buy things. It also hurts a fertilizer plant financially to have that catastrophe. Competition and a free market makes things much safer.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    April 26, 2013 9:50 p.m.

    Government regulation wasn't dreamed up in a vacuum. It was invented for a reason.

    The trick is to strike the right balance.

    Yes the government has its legitimate role to play and yes sometimes government is the solution.

  • the old switcharoo mesa, AZ
    April 26, 2013 4:54 p.m.

    The builders of the Titanic assured the British government the would "act in good faith" and have an appropriate number of life rafts on their ships.

    Sounds familiar. It's an old game that usually hurts people other than those that make the decisions.

    When I see people in jail, I'll say Texas is good at libertarianism. Freedom AND responsibility.... But instead Texas asks for federal money.

  • airnaut Everett, 00
    April 26, 2013 10:04 a.m.

    The "problem in Texas" is the exact "problem" we keep seeing in Bangledash with buildings collasing or factories on fire.

    Companies putting profits ahead of people.

  • The Skeptical Chymist SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    April 26, 2013 9:58 a.m.

    As many lives can be lost through criminal negligence as through purposeful murder. I'm sure that the Boston Marathon terrorist will either spend the rest of his life in jail or will be executed. What will happen to the business executives who made the decision not to report the many tons of ammonium nitrate to the Department of Homeland Security? What will happen to those who allowed this plant to be built right across the street from two schools and in a residential neighborhood? Will any of these people ever see the inside of a prison cell? I would like to see some prosecutions on charges of negligent homicide at the very least.

  • airnaut Everett, 00
    April 26, 2013 9:46 a.m.

    "It's still too early to pinpoint a cause. But it's not too soon to lament the lax regulatory framework in which the West Fertilizer Co. plant reportedly operated. Public safety is government's top priority, and early indications are that regulation of potentially lethal chemicals and their proximity to residents was far from ideal." ~ DN editorial board


    What the?....

    The Deseret News is trying to pin the blame on this "accident" on the Governement?

    Well, if that don't beat all...

    Whatever happened to the COMPANY - and personal responsibility - and keep BIG Government out of the private sector?!

    When is it a Company's responsibility to assure safety? NEVER?

    This is ridiculous.

    The COMPANY knew it wasn't safe.
    The Company knew it was breaking codes and the law.
    The Company knew it was involved in a very VERY dangerous operation.
    The Compnay put PROFIT ahead of all else,
    and the Deseret News [in it's conservative view of Business can do NO wrong] tries to pin this tradgedy of lack of Government over-sight!

    Go figure...

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    April 26, 2013 9:15 a.m.

    The Libertarian response to this tragedy would be that the very last thing we need to do is react emotionally and think that more government regulation is the answer to fertlizer plant safety issues.

    As Rand Paul put it a few years ago when a coal mining accident killed a number of miners, "people just need to understand that sometimes accidents happen".

    Taking this line of reasoning further, one could say the dead in Texas just paid the price for true freedom, in this case keeping government regulations at bay. They should be honored as true patriots in their sacrifice for the cause of liberty.

    Most other people would say this thinking is just plain nuts, that government should be the watchdog for safety regulations, and that these people died in vain, the result of right wing ideology promoting a rejection of common sense safety regulation.

  • Roland Kayser Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 26, 2013 8:08 a.m.

    The state of Texas has also requested emergency aid from the federal government to pay for this mess. So they want all of us taxpayers to bail them out because of their lack of regulations. Don't they at least require companies that deal in hazardous products to purchase liability insurance?