The problem with America

I know what’s wrong with America.  It has nothing to do with immigration, or taxes, or education, or terrorism, or anything else the media blathers about.  It’s this:

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By way of explanation, a confession.  I’m a reader.  I don’t just read books.  If my brain has a spare second and there are words within sight, I read them.  I read cereal boxes, elevator permits, warnings, instruction manuals, whatever passes before me.  The other day I was fueling the tractor and noticed this:

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Can you see the problem?  If not, I don’t blame you.  It made my firefighter’s brain itch, and sent me Googling to double check what I thought I knew.  You see, #2 Diesel is not flammable.  It’s combustible. It’s a scientific distinction, but an important one involving flashpoints and the level of hazard.  Diesel must be atomized and/or heated in order to burn.  That’s why Diesel engines have glow plugs and can be hard to start in the winter.  But we can’t expect the average Joe to know what combustible means or to respect it properly, so we replace it with DANGER EXTREMELY FLAMMABLE.  Which is untrue.

My big, scary, yellow can is not going to explode.

But wait, read on:

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So, don’t use this can for FLAMMABLE LIQUIDS.  That’s OK, because Diesel is only COMBUSTIBLE.  Oh, wait. . .

The problem with America today?  We coddle our idiots. We’ve lost the common sense to know that liquid fuel can be dangerous.  Then we employ the same idiots to write our warning signs.  How did I ever survive this long?

Stay safe out there, and don’t smoke around the fuel cans.

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