As a former firefighter this pisses me off to no end:
Officials with the Federal Wildland Fire Service Association, representing thousands of federal firefighters, complained this week to the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee after learning that some committee staffers ran an office pool to guess how many acres are burned by wildfires each year.
The contest, run since 2003 by veteran staffer Frank Gladics, was open mostly to Republican staffers on the House and Senate energy and appropriations committees that oversee federal firefighting operations. While no money exchanged hands, Gladics would bequeath the winner one of several hats in his office, including a Wizard hat, a “When Pigs Fly” hat and the mechanical “Holly-Jolly Christmas Hat.”
News of the contest was first reported last week by the environmental news service Grist.org, which quoted the committee’s Republican spokesman, Robert Dillon, as saying the contest was for the benefit of eastern lawmakers less familiar with wildfire season.
Frank Gladics used to work close with former Senator Conrad Burns. Remember this one from him?
"See that guy over there? He hasn't done a God-damned thing. They sit around. I saw it up on the Wedge fire and in northwestern Montana some years ago. It's wasteful. You probably paid that guy $10,000 to sit around. It's gotta change."
"Bullshit!" Says Burns. "They're lazy, overpaid bums."
That was this sorry sack of shit talking about firefighters who had been battling huge wildfires for weeks.