@NS, interesing point about motivation vs. dangers on job vis-a-vis salary.
Salaries should not be based on motivation or amount of motivation. Teachers and firefighters and police can be equally motivated to join their profession and just a motivated to do a good job.
In terms of the job hazard: yes, fire and police work is more hazardous. But, these inviduals know of the hazards up front and accept them as part of the job. Also, if salary is based on hazard then truckdrivers and construction laborers should have higher salaries as these rate more hazardous than fire or police (based on dept of labor statistic). And these workers may be just as motivated as fire and police. http://www.bls.gov/iif/oshwc/cfar0020.pdf
Thus, I am not sure that hazard or motivation should be the determiners of pay. At this point, I don’t know what should be. One answer may be to let the market determine the salary, but assure all salaries are a living wage.
Should a “lawyer” who sits around all day posting crap on the Internet in an air conditioned room get paid more than those who make our children fit for the world or risk their lives protecting them? That’s what I’d like to know.