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Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 07:30 PM
From the divergence here (http://www.bautforum.com/off-topic-babbling/77472-why-peta-evil-13.html#post1301391), that seems to have eaten that thread like cancer.
I imagine that it would be a Moderator nightmare to disentangle all that, so thought I would link both to both and try to at least get the two divorced equably.

The Backroad Astronomer
2008-Aug-13, 07:32 PM
I guess you can necer know where I thread will go around here.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 07:38 PM
Watch- the topic's gonna die now.

No one ever wants to post in a thread that that danged Neverfly started.

It's like a grown man going to see PowerPuff Girls: The Movie at the theater... The Shame! THE SHAME!

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-13, 07:40 PM
They are not as real and tangible as you are making them out to be.

No. Actually they are. Unless you refuse medical treatment completely and try to recover on your own at home, there will be real expenses incurred in the diagnoses and treatment of injuries that an individual sustains in an accident. Somebody will have to pay these expenses. Typically we ask the insurance company of the at fault party to pay these expense. The insurance company is offering a premium rate that assumes people follow the law and their expenses will be similar to those that occur in others when they wear their seatbelts. I'm certain the insurance company would like to know if you do or don't wear your seatbelt.

I don't have any intention of dictating how others live their lives. In this particular case, however, we are talking about public roads being driven on by those who have met certain minimum qualifications in order to have the privilege of operating a motor vehicle on them (as well as their innocent passengers). We're not talking about things that people do in the privacy of their own home.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-13, 07:51 PM
On the topic of insurance/safety:

The problem with litigating personal safety to mitigate insurance costs is that you will never please everyone. Forcing everyone to get health insurance will cause a burden on the poor, making it harder for them to pay their bills, maybe forcing them to get a second job.

This is actually BAD for health, causing more stress and leaving less time for exercise and recreational activites. They'll soon need to collect on their health insurance by going to the hospital, and the whole benefit of the law gets cancelled out.

Since ANY law that is put into place will displease a certain portion of the population, I say that it's unwise to argue for laws that sacrifice personal freedoms at the idol of public safety. We don't live in a world covered in bubble wrap and we shouldn't pretend that we do to make us feel better and try to pay a few cents less per month in insurance.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 07:52 PM
A
You don't see many she-wolves running into burning buildings. Their instincts tend to tell them: fire, bad! So they'll run away.

But I was talking about * humans * and what they'd do in our little hypothetical situation. There are no she-wolf psychiatrists.

Your guess is not accurate.
Animals, do indeed, place themselves into danger to save their young or others.
Down to and including simpler life forms than wolves even, such as a mother bird on a nest refusing to leave the nest while a predator prowls around it. She will instead confront the predator with lots of loud squawking and wing flapping- but won't leave.
This isn't always- some DO flee. Some don't.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-13, 07:56 PM
Yeah, I'm pretty much done on this. Sorry.

Driving privilege not right, blah blah blah

Personal freedom, blah blah blah

Costs insurance and taxpayers money, blah blah blah

Personal freedom....

Public roads....

round and round we go.

Gillianren
2008-Aug-13, 07:57 PM
. . . I thank the cows for it.

Me, too. The cows give us dairy products, for which I am grateful; bovines in general give us beef, for which I am grateful. Pigs give us pork, for which I am grateful. And so forth. I am also grateful to whatever animals were experimented on so that I could have my meds. Isn't it better to acknowledge these things than to take advantage of them, especially that last, and go on about others causing animals suffering?

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 07:58 PM
I'm just afraid to enter this debate. :)

You know... I was thinking last night about how I do that Line Item by Line item breakdown of posts- that seems to encourage more arguing.
I don't know if that's just a perception I just thought of- or real or not yet.

I was thinking about how Jason and I ended up making really long breakdowns, nipping at segment after segment.
Maybe If I try (keyword) to not do that...


On the topic of insurance/safety:

The problem with litigating personal safety to mitigate insurance costs is that you will never please everyone. Forcing everyone to get health insurance will cause a burden on the poor, making it harder for them to pay their bills, maybe forcing them to get a second job.

This is actually BAD for health, causing more stress and leaving less time for exercise and recreational activites. They'll soon need to collect on their health insurance by going to the hospital, and the whole benefit of the law gets cancelled out.

Since ANY law that is put into place will displease a certain portion of the population, I say that it's unwise to argue for laws that sacrifice personal freedoms at the idol of public safety. We don't live in a world covered in bubble wrap and we shouldn't pretend that we do to make us feel better and try to pay a few cents less per month in insurance.
But we are pretending to be and the trend is getting stronger and stronger as the years go by.
People seem to think we can create a perfect world.
Firefly's "Serenity" anyone?
The Matrix?
The PETA argument actually does tie into this one- Our Animal Nature prevents perfection.

It's part of the reason I am proud of it.
NATIVE AMERICA BABY!!

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 07:59 PM
round and round we go.

Well, all you gotta do is admit that I'm right...:doh:
http://us.i1.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/i/mesg/emoticons7/106.gif

Gillianren
2008-Aug-13, 07:59 PM
Firefly's "Serenity" anyone?

Um . . . I think you're thinking of Miranda. Serenity Valley was far from a perfect world.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-13, 08:01 PM
Since ANY law that is put into place will displease a certain portion of the population, I say that it's unwise to argue for laws that sacrifice personal freedoms at the idol of public safety.

By golly your right. I've always wanted to drive on the left hand side of the road. Silly laws for public safety. I'm doing it on the way home. I may or may not be back tomorrow to tell you how it went.

Along those lines, a man is on the way home from work and gets a call from his wife. "Hi honey, just wanted to tell you to be careful on the way home. On the news they said somebody is driving the wrong way down the freeway." Man says, "Somebody!?! It's EVERYBODY!!"

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 08:05 PM
Um . . . I think you're thinking of Miranda. Serenity Valley was far from a perfect world.

No.
After Firefly was canceled, Wheedon made the movie and named it "Serenity."

I was differentiating it from the show.


By golly your right. I've always wanted to drive on the left hand side of the road. Silly laws for public safety. I'm doing it on the way home. I may or may not be back tomorrow to tell you how it went.

Along those lines, a man is on the way home from work and gets a call from his wife. "Hi honey, just wanted to tell you to be careful on the way home. On the news they said somebody is driving the wrong way down the freeway." Man says, "Somebody!?! It's EVERYBODY!!"
Inaccurate.
Driving on the wrong side of the road is not personal freedom, anymore than blowing up a building is.
Wearing your seatbelt or not is.
The only way you can try claiming it isn't is to dig up vague and somehwat possible tax pennies.

meanwhile, driving on the wrong side of the road is absurdly clear.

mugaliens
2008-Aug-13, 08:06 PM
So... That's the PETA thread, and this will be the seatbelt thread?

Let's see...

What does this have to do with IP addresses?

Well, the original model for IP addresses involved every network device having it's own IP address. With a network overhead of 20% (routers, hubs, switches, SANs, etc.), that gives us about 204 possibilities per octet, or 1,731,891,456 computers.

Assuming more than half are personal computers, and the rest are server farms or other large aggregated computing efforts, that leaves us with a cool Billion personal computers.

That's not enough. Not nearly enough for all humans older than, say, three, and certainly not enough for the other Internet devices, such as personal weather stations, printers, scanners, microwaves, refridgerators, home A/C systems, TV, stereo, and Mr. Coffee.

Enter IPv6, which sports 40,000 times more addresses. Yeah, I'd say that takes up the slack.

It also enables your car's seat-belt system to communicate with your car's router, along with your gas usage and the inertial sensor, which then buys Insurance on a statistically-adjusted, continuously variable rate based upon your driving habits, how closely you're following traffic, the air pressure in your tires, and based on the bio chip in your hand, how much you've had to drink, your fatigue level, glucose, general level of fitness (which the gym's network faithfully uploaded to your public profile (as mandated by general order 827736524)).

This is not only possible given current technology, but if you're one of those who eats well, exercises regularly, doesn't live on a flood plain or in tornado alley, and happily drives with carefree restraint, you're likely to save a boatload on insurance. Naturally, those who don't live the risk-averse life that you do will foot the bill, commensurate with their statistically greater chance of incurring a payment liability.

And, like it or not, it's already here, in the form of an onboard computer which monitors your driving habits. Those with good driving habits will pay lower rates. Those with lousy habits will likely incur higher rates.

The main flaw I see with this is that there's a lot more that goes into the liability equation than mere behavioral patterns.

For example, I used to race motorcycles, where crashes were common. However, when living on the verge of a crash, one tends to learn to pay attention to more senses, such as hearing and peripheral vision. Avoiding accidents on a split-second, many-times per race basis translates directly to the road, when it comes time to brakehardsteerrightpumpthroughgravelsteerleftavoid signmisspedestrianclearvehiclebackinlane and we're driving again, no one's the worse for wear, save that I never stopped whistling while my ex nearly broke her fingers gripping the window handle and had begun screaming.

"Honey, why are you screaming?"

"Car! That car!"

"Yeah, I know. He almost hit us, but I went around him."

You get the picture.

My point is that such driving would probably have me paying max rates, without considering the fact that I just avoided an insurance liability.

When the technology matures to the point where it can determine the near-accident was his fault, and jack his rates while determining that I avoided the accident and crediting my account with what they just charged him...

I'm all for that!

mugaliens
2008-Aug-13, 08:07 PM
Watch- the topic's gonna die now.

No one ever wants to post in a thread that that danged Neverfly started.

It's like a grown man going to see PowerPuff Girls: The Movie at the theater... The Shame! THE SHAME!

Wow.

You waited eight whole minutes between your OP and the post above. Number two in the thread, mind you.

Wow.

:lol:

Don't worry, Neverfly
We won't let it die!

(I feel a song coming on...)

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 08:11 PM
, when it comes time to brakehardsteerrightpumpthroughgravelsteerleftavoid signmisspedestrianclearvehiclebackinlane and we're driving again, no one's the worse for wear, save that I never stopped whistling while my ex nearly broke her fingers gripping the window handle and had begun screaming.

"Honey, why are you screaming?"

"Car! That car!"

"Yeah, I know. He almost hit us, but I went around him."

You get the picture.

Been here a couple times:p
The irony was that afterward, she was FURIOUS with me for never losing my calm!
http://us.i1.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/i/mesg/emoticons7/24.gif


Wow.

You waited eight whole minutes between your OP and the post above. Number two in the thread, mind you.

Wow.
LOL
Well, it's the usual trend- I really don't care if the topic dies or not.

I was just thinking what an irony it would be if it did right at the split.
It's like "Great!":rolleyes:

But yeah, the threads I have started seem to have a morbid history of suffering short lifespans- the last one got slammed shut- and I kinda had plans for it.

Fazor
2008-Aug-13, 08:21 PM
The irony was that afterward, she was FURIOUS with me for never losing my calm!


Jeeze... a few weeks ago when we headed up to Maine, I had to drive around NY City. Never got that close to it; but close enough to get the outbound night-time traffic. My g/f was yelling and cussing at just about every car on the road.

"THEY CUT US OFF!"
"Hon, they had thier signal on..."
"They're going soo fast!"
"Yeah, because it's a highway."
"Look at them dart from lane to lane!"
"You know what? Just go to sleep."

This after being on the road for 12 hours straight...It's too bad I didn't have any sleeping pills to spike her drink with on the way home. Ugh.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-13, 08:22 PM
By golly your right. I've always wanted to drive on the left hand side of the road. Silly laws for public safety. I'm doing it on the way home. I may or may not be back tomorrow to tell you how it went.

Along those lines, a man is on the way home from work and gets a call from his wife. "Hi honey, just wanted to tell you to be careful on the way home. On the news they said somebody is driving the wrong way down the freeway." Man says, "Somebody!?! It's EVERYBODY!!"Complete straw man argument. The need to drive on one side or the other isn't even something that needs to be on any law book. The roadbuilders got together one day, hundreds of years ago (even thousands of years ago if the Romans had a direction policy, I don't know), and said:

"Well, you know, we've got an awful lot of traffic milling around on our streets.

It seems to flow better when people yell at each other, "Hey, you take that side, I'll take this one!" So why don't we put up a sign that indicates which side of the road people should stay on? Then traffic would always flow well!"

Thus was born the first traffic direction sign. I'm sure people were free to ignore the direction then too, but only if they felt like running head-on into a chariot coming the other way.

So the direction sign becomes a policy of Rhodes or whoever, the policy becomes a Roman rule, the rule becomes a law, and the law becomes involate.

Why I even got into that I don't know, your argument is so clearly of the straw man variety that it deserved no response.

It's about the same as arguing that being pro-civil liberties means I'm against standards that require chip makers to cause electrons to flow a certain way in their designs. Sure, people could choose to disobey those standards and/or the laws of physics, but they won't sell any chips if they do.

Trocisp
2008-Aug-13, 08:24 PM
Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't it difficult to drive from the passenger seat?

I mean, sure, if you've got really long arms you could... but silly me, I was under the impression you should stay in the drivers seat when the car is moving! :p

I couldn't care less whether or not the passengers weren't buckled, but if you're behind the wheel stay buckled.

Whether or not it's legislated, it's so difficult to enforce that I can't see it being a reasonably high priority for Police?

korjik
2008-Aug-13, 08:24 PM
I think the big conflict here is where do the public good and personal rights trump one another.

Spock Jenkins example of driving on the left side of the road is a good example. The chaos of early roadways combined with more and more drivers forced society to place restrictions on traffic. I doubt anyone thinks that most traffic laws should be optional.

Seat belt laws are a bit fuzzier. Seat belts dont prevent accidents, they act to reduce the injuries from accidents. Does the driver have a responsability to reduce the injuries sustained in an accident? Does society have a right to demand that a driver act to reduce his injuries?

Then it can get even more complex. If society can demand that a driver act to reduce risk of injury, can that be applied on a larger scale? Should skydiving be outlawed because accidents severly injure or kill? Should trans-fats be illegal because they can cause heart attacks? Where does this slippery slope end?

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-13, 08:26 PM
Well, all you gotta do is admit that I'm right...:doh:
http://us.i1.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/i/mesg/emoticons7/106.gif

You gave the first sign of weakness in the other thread when you indicated my argument was good and you hated me for it. I won, then you went back to same tired argument.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-13, 08:37 PM
Inaccurate.
Driving on the wrong side of the road is not personal freedom, anymore than blowing up a building is.

I disagree. There is no law against blowing up your own building if you get a permit and take reasonable safety measures. Now blowing up somebody elses building with people inside and no permit - then we've got problems. Driving on the wrong side of the road is only wrong because the law says it's wrong. In the interest of the greater good and public safety, laws were enacted that dictated which side of the road everyone should drive on. These laws compromise my personal freedom but provide for my greater safety and enjoyment of the public roads. Likewise, albiet less clearly, seatbelt laws were enacted for the benefit of all who wish to take advantage of the public roads. Granted this benefit isn't as easy to see at face value, but it does exist.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-13, 08:43 PM
Complete straw man argument.

Not a complete straw man. We're talking laws for the greater public safety that compromise personal freedom. Initially there may have been a gentlman's agreement as to which direction traffic flowed, but at least then I was free to ignore it. Now that it is law, my freedom is compromised and I can face jail time and hefty fines if I try to ignore it. Same with safety belts. Laws were put in place for the greater good that infringe on personal freedom. The benefit of seatbelt laws isn't as obvious as directional laws, but the reason for enacting them wasn't simply to be difficult.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 08:46 PM
You gave the first sign of weakness in the other thread when you indicated my argument was good and you hated me for it. I won, then you went back to same tired argument.
Not really, I was complimenting you and reducing tension;)
It doesn't mean that I started agreeing or admitting to failure- it only meant that your arguments sounded good and I was now having to think instead of posting on autopilot.


Driving on the wrong side of the road is only wrong because the law says it's wrong.
Incorrect. Driving on the wrong side of the road is wrong because you place other people at high risk.
Not JUST yourself.

In the interest of the greater good and public safety, laws were enacted that dictated which side of the road everyone should drive on. These laws compromise my personal freedom but provide for my greater safety and enjoyment of the public roads. Likewise, albiet less clearly, seatbelt laws were enacted for the benefit of all who wish to take advantage of the public roads. Granted this benefit isn't as easy to see at face value, but it does exist.
Your comparison is totally invalid.

It's like me saying that I should be allowed to rape pillage and commit murder if you say that you have the right to set mousetraps up in your house.

Larry Jacks
2008-Aug-13, 08:47 PM
I won't move my car from the driveway into the garage without putting on my seatbelt. The habit is just too ingrained to change even if I wanted to. That said, I don't think laws against generally stupid behavior are a good idea. If someone wants to ride a motorcycle without a helmet (ER Nurses call them "organ donors"), then go right ahead. Likewise, if someone wants to drive a car without wearing a seatbelt, that's their decision no matter how much I might disagree. Ultimately, Newton's First Law (http://www.ic.arizona.edu/~nats101/n1.html) will trump any law passed by government.

Every object persists in a state of rest or uniform motion in a straight line unless compelled by an external force to change that state.

If your car suddenly stops, your body doesn't until acted on my an outside force. You really have a choice - that outside force might be a seatbelt or it could be your face going through the windshield on it's way to hitting something else. Me, I prefer the seatbelt.

The tendency of the nanny staters is to forbid behavior that they don't like and to assume that anyone who disagrees is stupid.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 08:51 PM
Not a complete straw man. We're talking laws for the greater public safety that compromise personal freedom. Initially there may have been a gentlman's agreement as to which direction traffic flowed, but at least then I was free to ignore it. Now that it is law, my freedom is compromised and I can face jail time and hefty fines if I try to ignore it. Same with safety belts. Laws were put in place for the greater good that infringe on personal freedom. The benefit of seatbelt laws isn't as obvious as directional laws, but the reason for enacting them wasn't simply to be difficult.

My previous example clarified why it's a straw man. As well as a red herring.

Jason
2008-Aug-13, 08:55 PM
Should we also discuss whether it should be illegal to talk on a cell phone while driving? Or would that just add too much fuel to the fire?

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 09:00 PM
Should we also discuss whether it should be illegal to talk on a cell phone while driving? Or would that just add too much fuel to the fire?

Right.
The cost of fuel is pretty high these days:whistle:

I can see cell phones, although I don't agree with making yet Another Thing Illegal... I can see why folks might think they can be dangerous to Other Drivers.

Seat Belts, however, I cannot.
Come to think of it
Eating, drinking, radio etc all can be distractions while driving too.

I'd rather take the risk that other drivers are chewing a fast food pick-up or jammin' to led Zeppelin (Old School! :lol:) then set us further down the path of restrictive malarkey.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-13, 09:01 PM
Not really, I was complimenting you and reducing tension;)
It doesn't mean that I started agreeing or admitting to failure- it only meant that your arguments sounded good and I was now having to think instead of posting on autopilot.


Incorrect. Driving on the wrong side of the road is wrong because you place other people at high risk.
Not JUST yourself.

Your comparison is totally invalid.

It's like me saying that I should be allowed to rape pillage and commit murder if you say that you have the right to set mousetraps up in your house.

Proud to be among the honored few who have made Neverfly think. But there was no tension on my part. I enjoy a good discussion.

The wrong side of the road is only wrong because a law says it's wrong. Of course the law had to step in and do this for the greater public good, but there is no absolute moral standard that says which way is the right way. Just a law. And without a seatbelt, you do place society at the high risk of shelling out cash that we otherwise wouldn't have had to if reasonable safety percautions had been taken. Financial pain hurts too. Just ask those caught up in the mess of forclosures. Just because a person doesn't need a cast, doesn't mean no harm is done. I for one think that the cost is great enough and the infringement on personal freedom minimal enough that the laws are acceptable. It's not like they are forcing me to kiss the road before taking the wheel. Now that would have no measurable benefit.

pzkpfw
2008-Aug-13, 09:02 PM
... (great post snipped) ... motorcycles ... (great post snipped) ...

Given seat-belts are mandatory, it's surprises me sometimes that I am allowed to ride a motorcycle. (2005 Kawasaki Z750S)

In this country motorcycle helmets are compulsory (but proper gloves, boots and gear are not!), and bikes have to meet certain standards with regards to lights, brakes etc, but once we get on one and ride there's not a lot of "crumple zone" or "side impact protection" and such.

It already appears sometimes that motorcycles are second-class citizens on the road - maybe one day they will be "illegal"; outlawed due to the danger to individuals and the public good.

(I'm having trouble putting this in words - it's about the contrast between car and motorcycle safety, and the possible contradiction in what is legally and socially perceived as permissable? Or something. Maybe.)

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 09:07 PM
Proud to be among the honored few who have made Neverfly think. But there was no tension on my part. I enjoy a good discussion.
HEY!
I think quite a bit thanks.http://us.i1.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/i/mesg/emoticons7/33.gif



The wrong side of the road is only wrong because a law says it's wrong.
No, it just makes sense to do.
I do it while WALKING and there's no law there...

And without a seatbelt, you do place society at the high risk of shelling out cash that we otherwise wouldn't have had to if reasonable safety percautions had been taken.
How much "Cash"?
Demonstrate line by line with numbers, that It's costing me a Small Fortune eh?

Financial pain hurts too.
Yeah those no seatbelt tickets are expensive!

Just ask those caught up in the mess of forclosures.
Which, incidentally, is costing you tax money!
Make it illegal to buy a house?

Just because a person doesn't need a cast, doesn't mean no harm is done. I for one think that the cost is great enough and the infringement on personal freedom minimal enough that the laws are acceptable. It's not like they are forcing me to kiss the road before taking the wheel. Now that would have no measurable benefit.
Not really- it's a slippery slope.
As Jason just asked about cell phones.
At first- I could see it.
But upon further reflection...
I realized that it leads down the path of more and more control.

So I draw the line- this far
NO Farther!
Otherwise- Nanny wuvs me berry much.
It doesn't happen in a day. It happens over time as people become more and more accepting of surrendering more and more freedom.

Gillianren
2008-Aug-13, 09:33 PM
No, it just makes sense to do.

As does wearing seatbelts. Don't you think it's possible that the reason it makes sense to you has something to do with tradition? (For one, "right side of the road" laws go back thousands of years in one culture or another.) I agree that it does, and I agree that it simplifies traffic, but why does driving on the right make sense to you? Driving on the left makes sense to a lot of people in other countries. We had to pick a direction, and that choice became law. There's no reason beyond certain historical factors that favours one side of the road over the other.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 09:44 PM
As does wearing seatbelts.
So what?
Where driving on the wrong side of the road is clearly going to get someone hurt, my wearing a seatbelt or not is clearly going to only affect me.
There may be some rare exceptions to each case- but over-all- reality dictates that one is a personal choice and the other harmful to others and therefore not a personal choice.

Don't you think it's possible that the reason it makes sense to you has something to do with tradition?
Nope. I don't.

(For one, "right side of the road" laws go back thousands of years in one culture or another.) I agree that it does, and I agree that it simplifies traffic, but why does driving on the right make sense to you? Driving on the left makes sense to a lot of people in other countries. We had to pick a direction, and that choice became law. There's no reason beyond certain historical factors that favours one side of the road over the other.

Irrelevant. You're the first one to comment on it being right or left. The rest of us have talked about sticking to one side- one direction.

This is a Total straw man and a red herring and completely irrelevant.

Disinfo Agent
2008-Aug-13, 09:47 PM
Seat belt laws are a bit fuzzier. Seat belts dont prevent accidents, they act to reduce the injuries from accidents. Does the driver have a responsability to reduce the injuries sustained in an accident? Does society have a right to demand that a driver act to reduce his injuries? Which driver, the one who causes the accident, or the one who sustains it? Assuming only one driver is responsible.
What about innocent passengers in both cars?

Moose
2008-Aug-13, 09:50 PM
Actually, the driver being strapped down means the driver has a fighting chance to regain control of the car in a skid, possibly mitigating or avoiding a collision. Strapping in is not about personal choice. It's part of the driver's responsibility as a driver.

Doodler
2008-Aug-13, 09:56 PM
Watch- the topic's gonna die now.

No one ever wants to post in a thread that that danged Neverfly started.

It's like a grown man going to see PowerPuff Girls: The Movie at the theater... The Shame! THE SHAME!

Nothing personal, mon ami, but I doubt this topic on its own could avoid becoming at least mildly political, no matter how you slice it.

Don't get me wrong, it'd be a great debate, just not here.

slang
2008-Aug-13, 10:01 PM
Where driving on the wrong side of the road is clearly going to get someone hurt, my wearing a seatbelt or not is clearly going to only affect me.

With one exception. My brakes fail (despite proper maintenance). I hit your car. You're dead. Seatbelts would have saved you.

Now your kids don't have a daddy (mommy? what was it? :razz:) anymore. Your mom and dad are beyond grief. Your spouse sees his/her life collapse.

And I caused it. Rationally.. it was an accident, stuff happens, sad situation, too bad. But emotionally? I think it would hit me pretty hard.

(Didn't read the other thread. Don't know if this is a repeat comment. Nag me on that and I might add that it wouldn't hit me so hard if you had your BAUT name tattooed on your forehead :) )

Doodler
2008-Aug-13, 10:04 PM
OK, in spite of my earlier post, I'll put this in.

Had a buddy of mine refuse to wear them for years, even to the point of accepting the reality of tickets for not using them.

Why? A friend of his who died screaming in a burning car trapped by a damaged seatbelt.

His belief was, "[Expletive] that, let me die instantly."

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 10:09 PM
With one exception. My brakes fail (despite proper maintenance). I hit your car. You're dead. Seatbelts would have saved you.

Now your kids don't have a daddy (mommy? what was it? :razz:) anymore. Your mom and dad are beyond grief. Your spouse sees his/her life collapse.

And I caused it. Rationally.. it was an accident, stuff happens, sad situation, too bad. But emotionally? I think it would hit me pretty hard.

(Didn't read the other thread. Don't know if this is a repeat comment. Nag me on that and I might add that it wouldn't hit me so hard if you had your BAUT name tattooed on your forehead :) )
Very much a repeat argument.
It doesn't justify absolute control.

Let's take your analogy and change it
Following in quote box:


With one exception. My brakes fail (despite proper maintenance). I hit your car. Your seatbelt breaks from the sheer force of the impact. You're dead.

Now your kids don't have a daddy (mommy? what was it? :razz:) anymore. Your mom and dad are beyond grief. Your spouse sees his/her life collapse.

And I caused it. Rationally.. it was an accident, stuff happens, sad situation, too bad. But emotionally? I think it would hit me pretty hard.
Ok so now what?
Same exact results.
Someone, seriously, demonstrate to me that the Insurance issue is as real as you're making it out to be.
Because in real life, I have seen insurance cover drivers who were unbuckled- they just didn't PAY AS MUCH!!!

It's not like all cases of unbuckled drivers End up on Food Stamps and Welfare!

I'm sure most these folks have or get jobs!

Sheesh... The argument is such an exaggeration of what actually happens...

slang
2008-Aug-13, 10:14 PM
Very much a repeat argument.

Very well, then I won't pursue it.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 10:16 PM
Very well, then I won't pursue it.

Aww nuts....:p

Jason
2008-Aug-13, 10:59 PM
It was my argument earlier. I give you permission to pursue it further.

If seat belts reduce injuries as well as prevent deaths then they reduce medical costs, which reduces insurance costs, which provides a definite benefit to society. The obverse is that not wearing seat belts increases injuries, which increases medical costs, which increases insurance costs, etc.

If total accidents go up then total insurance payments also go up, as the insurance companies that are paying out more increase their premiums to cover their pay outs.

Jason
2008-Aug-13, 11:00 PM
The Mythbusters did a test on cell phones compared to drinking. Cell phones proved to be worse for driving quality than being drunk.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-13, 11:03 PM
It was my argument earlier. I give you permission to pursue it further.

If seat belts reduce injuries as well as prevent deaths then they reduce medical costs, which reduces insurance costs, which provides a definite benefit to society. The obverse is that not wearing seat belts increases injuries, which increases medical costs, which increases insurance costs, etc.

If total accidents go up then total insurance payments also go up, as the insurance companies that are paying out more increase their premiums to cover their pay outs.

If driving was illegal, it would reduce these costs into numbers that might actually be noticeable to the individual tax payer.

Let's ban driving.


The Mythbusters did a test on cell phones compared to drinking. Cell phones proved to be worse for driving quality than being drunk.

Although I enjoy the show, the show isn't exactly scientific evidence.

I find it very hard to believe that cell phones are worse than drunken driving.

Moose
2008-Aug-13, 11:13 PM
Both performances were pretty bad. Thing with the cellphone, they weren't hands-free so they were driving one-handed, and they had to do concentration tasks rather than just gabbing. The driving tests were tough enough that neither Kari nor Adam did very well on the control in any case.

But yeah, the test was statistically meaningless. There weren't anywhere near enough trials to come to any sort of reasonable conclusion.

It's probably safe to say, however, that cellphone use can be problematic. How problematic is something best left to the actual research.

HenrikOlsen
2008-Aug-14, 12:25 AM
Enter IPv6, which sports 40,000 times more addresses. Yeah, I'd say that takes up the slack.
Where did that 40,000 number come from, it's slightly off by a factor 1,980,704,062,856,608,439,838,598?

While IPv4 uses 4 byte address, IPv6 does not use 6 byte addresses, it uses 16 byte addresses for a whopping 79,228,162,514,264,337,593,543,950,336 times as many addresses.
Admittedly, most of the current allocation schemes only look at the upper 64 bits, but that's still 16 billion times as many addresses as IPv4.

Or to see it another way, that's 68,056,473,384,187,692,692,674 IPv6 addresses per square foot of earth surface, I think that'll take a while to be exhausted.

HenrikOlsen
2008-Aug-14, 12:48 AM
Watch- the topic's gonna die now.

No one ever wants to post in a thread that that danged Neverfly started.

It's like a grown man going to see PowerPuff Girls: The Movie at the theater... The Shame! THE SHAME!
I've tried to move all posts on this topic that where made in the old thread after the split over here, I expect I'll have to repeat a couple of times.

As for the PowerPuff Girls I used to be a fan back when they wheren't dubbed, but then danish television started dubbing them instead of subtitling, and as the quality of the voice acting is really bad I stopped watching them.
That's the reason why I didn't watch if in the theater, since the movie was dubbed as well.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-14, 12:50 AM
I've tried to move all posts on this topic that where made in the old thread after the split over here, I expect I'll have to repeat a couple of times.

As for the PowerPuff Girls I used to be a fan back when they wheren't dubbed, but then danish television started dubbing them instead of subtitling, and as the quality of the voice acting is really bad I stopped watching them.
That's the reason why I didn't watch if in the theater, since the movie was dubbed as well.

You're drawing me out here but umm...
I've been entertained by PPG many times...http://us.i1.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/i/mesg/emoticons7/9.gif


As well as Dexters Laboratoryhttp://us.i1.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/i/mesg/emoticons7/4.gif


Note that I moved those seatbelt posts that where made after neverfly announced the new thread (http://www.bautforum.com/off-topic-babbling/77685-seatbelt-enforcement-personal-choice.html) for them over to their new home. any new posts on that subject should go over there.

The industrious Mod has been found.

ginnie
2008-Aug-14, 01:35 AM
Let's ban driving.
Let's ban driving to users who don't wear seatbelts. How 'bout that? :lol:

Neverfly
2008-Aug-14, 01:39 AM
Let's ban driving to users who don't wear seatbelts. How 'bout that? :lol:

The problem was that banning driving solves the problem of car accidents happening at all.

Some might claim that a driver not wearing a seatbelt is less likely to get involved in an accident than one who is;)

HenrikOlsen
2008-Aug-14, 01:48 AM
Some might claim that a driver not wearing a seatbelt is less likely to get involved in an accident than one who is;)
So we're back to my 2" spike on the steering column, no speed limits and a seatbelt ban for the driver idea?

Neverfly
2008-Aug-14, 01:51 AM
So we're back to my 2" spike on the steering column, no speed limits and a seatbelt ban for the driver idea?

I think this might cause more problems than simply banning driving in general.

Sure, some folks will be bitter about the ban.

But after we explain to them that it's for their own good, and show them how much money they are saving, they'll thank us.

Gillianren
2008-Aug-14, 01:55 AM
OK, in spite of my earlier post, I'll put this in.

Had a buddy of mine refuse to wear them for years, even to the point of accepting the reality of tickets for not using them.

Why? A friend of his who died screaming in a burning car trapped by a damaged seatbelt.

His belief was, "[Expletive] that, let me die instantly."

Do you know how statistically improbable that event was? According to the site I referenced earlier, fire and drowning make up less than one-tenth of one percent of all motor vehicle fatalities. Whereas someone in the car and wearing a seatbelt is four times more likely to live than someone thrown out of the car.

Ronald Brak
2008-Aug-14, 02:05 AM
Make seatbelts compulsory and give free suicide booth tokens to anyone who wants them. Problem solved.

Tobin Dax
2008-Aug-14, 02:44 AM
This is an anecdote and maybe even a hit-and-run post, but I'm still going to post it.

I hit a deer with my car this summer, and I was doing about 60 mph when I saw her and hit my breaks. I felt my seatbelt restrain me as the car decelerated. Without it, I likely would have been thrown around and lost control. My seatbelt was definitely useful in that accident, and this is a common one. I've always buckled my seatbelt, but I really see the need for it now. I wasn't really hurt in this accident, but would have been without my seatbelt on.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-14, 02:50 AM
This is an anecdote and maybe even a hit-and-run post, but I'm still going to post it.

I hit a deer with my car this summer, and I was doing about 60 mph when I saw her and hit my breaks. I felt my seatbelt restrain me as the car decelerated. Without it, I likely would have been thrown around and lost control. My seatbelt was definitely useful in that accident, and this is a common one. I've always buckled my seatbelt, but I really see the need for it now. I wasn't really hurt in this accident, but would have been without my seatbelt on.

Tobin Dax, you're going to hate me but...
I find this anecdote to be more than a little suggestive.

You didn't give clear details really, all you said was that you slammed on the brakes. Did you swerve? Did you have to turn the wheel sharply and wildly? Did you go off the road?

I feel a seatbelt restrain against me even if I decelerate from a slow speed, without slamming on brakes.
That's normal. It doesn't necessarily mean you would have gone flying around the car cabin without it.
Most likely, you tensed up as you slammed the brakes. Your arms were Gripping that wheel hard, and your feet were pushed up against pedal and floorboard.

ginnie
2008-Aug-14, 02:52 AM
The problem was that banning driving solves the problem of car accidents happening at all.

Some might claim that a driver not wearing a seatbelt is less likely to get involved in an accident than one who is;)

I hate driving. I wish I was banned. :lol:

Neverfly
2008-Aug-14, 02:55 AM
I hate driving. I wish I was banned. :lol:

No problem...
I BAN THEE!
...from driving...

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-14, 04:24 AM
I've tried to move all posts on this topic that where made in the old thread after the split over here, I expect I'll have to repeat a couple of times.

Don't know if you missed any posts in the other thread, but you moved one here that shouldn't be here - my post concerning humans running into a burning building to save an animal vs saving a baby. And the response to that post.

Both on pg1 of this new thread.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-14, 04:29 AM
And, like it or not, it's already here, in the form of an onboard computer which monitors your driving habits. Those with good driving habits will pay lower rates. Those with lousy habits will likely incur higher rates.

I would sooner walk ten miles than drive in any car which recorded my activities. That's * exactly * the kind of Big Brother scenario I'm talking about when I discuss a slippery slope.

The government, the police, and the insurance companies have absolutely no business knowing what my driving habits are - how often I drive, how fast I drive, and where I'm going to when I drive.

That is why creating new laws in the name of "public safety" is so dangerous, because it makes people complacent and willing to accept more extreme violations of civil liberties that are marketed under the same idea, "public safety."


When the technology matures to the point where it can determine the near-accident was his fault, and jack his rates while determining that I avoided the accident and crediting my account with what they just charged him...

I'm all for that!

Some technology is better left alone. Any power that can be used for good can just as easily be abused.

In reference to cell phones, I think that the wireless technology has advanced to the point where it's a good idea to have a hands-free device. But as with seatbelts and air bags, I think if we want to legislate safety for cell phone users in cars, it should be done at the manufacturing end.

How about requiring car manufacturers to provide a speaker for any new car phone? Or a berth in new car models that a cell phone can be connected to, which will route the call into a speaker/microphone combination embedded in the dashboard?

Neverfly
2008-Aug-14, 05:05 AM
I would sooner walk ten miles than drive in any car which recorded my activities. That's * exactly * the kind of Big Brother scenario I'm talking about when I discuss a slippery slope.
Winston would roll over in his grave...

The government, the police, and the insurance companies have absolutely no business knowing what my driving habits are - how often I drive, how fast I drive, and where I'm going to when I drive.
According to many of the responses in the thread(s), many people would disagree.
They seem to think that in knowing all this pertinent information, they can save a buck or two on their insurance.

It's nice to know that the freedom I would kill and die for
That my forefathers suffered so greatly for...

Is worth a coupla bucks:neutral:

And if you think I'm being a weirdo extremist in saying that- I'm Not.
Read Drunken Plantitarians points carefully about the Big Brother Scenario. It seems plausible that such a concept could be incorporated into a car now doesn't it? It seems perfectly reasonable that a great many people might mistakenly thing it's a good idea... How Frightening!
That slippery slope is nothing more than a Yes slope.
Yes- take it
Yes- take that too...
Yes, it's good for me.
Yes, you may have some more...

I have to live in this world, My son has to grow up in this world too.
I cannot tell anyone what to do.
But I can try very hard to convince you and ask you...
to think ...
THINK HARD!
about how your justifications ALSO affect other people.


In reference to cell phones,
Intoxicated Herbivore, did you know that Cell phones can be tapped to listen and record to what you are doing or saying- even if, not only the phone's not in use... But if it's powered off?
100% true.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-14, 08:06 AM
I do not believe the residual power when it is off is enough for audio recording purposes.

It is, however, plausible that GPS functions in the device might still operate in power-off or standby mode, providing a perfectly usable location to whoever wants it.

In any case I use prepaid phones purchased with cash. They do not bear my name, and they do not have GPS functionality either.

However you are correct in your implication - every new technology expands the capability for a future totalitarian government to be, well, total. It is the darker, less often discussed corollary to the gigantic benefit of each new technological advance.

With nuclear power came the nuclear bomb. With space travel came rocketry, and the ability to launch thousands of nukes at countries on the opposite side of the planet within 30 minutes.

With the advent of the PC age it is now possible for governments to monitor the life of any (or, if they choose, all) citizen(s). With cell phones, they can track their physical location without the need for surveillance teams, intercept all phone calls without need for a physically planted wiretap, and even, as you are suggesting, have a mobile audio bug recording the events in that person's life in real time.

And worst of all they have an * excuse * now - the war on terror.

I'm far from a technophobe - I love technology and have a devout sense of gadget love, and provide tech support both as a job and a hobby. I also like to try out new technologies and build new hardware and software.

But I realize that the price for our incredible progress as a civilization is vigilance against those who would turn those tools against us.

The Backroad Astronomer
2008-Aug-14, 08:14 AM
Well, all you gotta do is admit that I'm right...:doh:
http://us.i1.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/i/mesg/emoticons7/106.gif
never

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-14, 08:30 AM
Out of curiosity, a multiple-choice question for everybody:

I used to work at a pizza joint doing deliveries. When I started there was a "30 minutes or less or it's free" policy. Because the managers refused to hire more inside help or decrease the radius of their delivery area, this time limit could not be met by the drivers without breaking speed limits.

Since too many freebies meant the money started to come out of the driver's paycheck, the drivers were motivated to speed to get there on time. Now, who's responsibility is it to clear up this problem and promote driver safety?

A: The managers
B. The drivers
C. The legislature
D. A and B
E. All of the above.

Tinaa
2008-Aug-14, 11:28 AM
A.

geonuc
2008-Aug-14, 11:58 AM
A. Although it is the owners of the pizza company that will be held responsible for the policy, should any damage or injuries result from speeding drivers.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-14, 12:49 PM
According to many of the responses in the thread(s), many people would disagree.
They seem to think that in knowing all this pertinent information, they can save a buck or two on their insurance.

You're deliberately overstating or unintentionally misunderstanding the view of your opposition. I don't need to have a hidden camera in an individuals car to know that in general, seatbelt wearers will have better outcomes in the event of an accident than non-seatbelt wearers. I don't need to have a direct feed to my insurance company monitering my driving habits to know that speeding is more dangerous than driving with the flow of traffic. If you are a speeder and never get caught and never have an accident - as the insurance company - I don't care. It doesn't cost me anything if you never get caught and never have an accident. Monitoring it daily does cost me - so I'd rather leave that to the police and assume that you're obeying the law until I'm notified otherwise.

If I'm an insurer, it's far cheaper to simply operate under the assumption that most individuals will obey the law and wear their seatbelt so I can set my premiums according to that. It would cost far more to invest in the employees and the systems to monitor each individual driver than it would benefit.

Let's see if I'm understanding the deer story from Tobin Dax correctly. His point seemed to be that his arm strength alone was insufficient to combat the g-forces generated by his bringing the vehicle to a rapid stop. His seatbelt provided enough resistance that his arms will left free to maintain control of the steering and lessen the severity of the accident as well as his own personal injury. That would seem to be a tangible benefit of wearing a seatbelt beyond just potential outcome cost that I've been focusing on.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-14, 12:54 PM
You're deliberately overstating or unintentionally misunderstanding the view of your opposition.

Not at all. The justifications used remain the same.
The justification does not change.
It seems and sounds "reasonable."

Considering your posts, Spock Jenkins, if someone asked my opinion if such a thing would cross your line of a reasonable limit, I would say, "Yes, I think so."

But where it's crossing your line, it is not going to cross many others who think with the same process of justification. Those people can also be persuaded... to bump the line back a little further in the name of safety...

KLIK
2008-Aug-14, 12:58 PM
In Britain seatbelt wearing is mandatory and eating, drinking and using hand-held mobile phones are illegal.
in Britain there are approx 3000 fatalities annually per 60 million population.
In the USA there are approx 40000 fatalities annually per 300 million pop.

So is that because your driving standards are worse or because more people die in what in Britain would be a survivable accident?

Why do you all put up with a 55mph speed limit when Britain's is 70mph on motorways and 60 on any non urban road?
I think the difference is that we have a National Health Service so road deaths have an impact on all of us (bad pun), and it is cheaper for all of us if people survive. A death on the roads in Britain costs the economy over 1 million pounds nowadays (emergency services, loss of earnings, insurance payouts etc).

I don't really see being made to wear a seat belt a loss of freedom any more than a 55mph speed limit, it's not as though you need to be unconstricted while driving.

I also don't have a problem with people dying for their freedoms as long as it doesn't cost me money.

Like Pzkpfw I ride a bike and have to wear a helmet, occasionally I've ridden across Dartmoor without it; It feels very fast, unsafe and the engine sounds terminally ill.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-14, 01:03 PM
First off you seem misinformed.


In Britain seatbelt wearing is mandatory and eating, drinking and using hand-held mobile phones are illegal.
in Britain there are approx 3000 fatalities annually per 60 million population.
In the USA there are approx 40000 fatalities annually per 300 million pop.
Now where the heck did you get these numbers and from when?


Why do you all put up with a 55mph speed limit when Britain's is 70mph on motorways and 60 on any non urban road?
Wrong!
It's not 1985 anymore. Speed limits here are the same. Between 65 to 70-75 on highways- 60- 65 in rural areas.



I also don't have a problem with people dying for their freedoms as long as it doesn't cost me money.
This is probably the most horrifying statement I have ever read.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-14, 01:08 PM
In Britain seatbelt wearing is mandatory and eating, drinking and using hand-held mobile phones are illegal.
in Britain there are approx 3000 fatalities annually per 60 million population.
In the USA there are approx 40000 fatalities annually per 300 million pop.

So is that because your driving standards are worse or because more people die in what in Britain would be a survivable accident?

Why do you all put up with a 55mph speed limit when Britain's is 70mph on motorways and 60 on any non urban road?
I think the difference is that we have a National Health Service so road deaths have an impact on all of us (bad pun), and it is cheaper for all of us if people survive. A death on the roads in Britain costs the economy over 1 million pounds nowadays (emergency services, loss of earnings, insurance payouts etc).

I don't really see being made to wear a seat belt a loss of freedom any more than a 55mph speed limit, it's not as though you need to be unconstricted while driving.

First misconception. Most of our states have 70 mph speed limits, with I believe at least Montana having a "reasonable and prudent" speed limit. Some have 65 mph. One or two might still keep to 55 mph - but we're talking tiny states at that.

The difference in fatalities is two fold. We have a greater percentage of our greater population that actually drives, and when we do drive, we tend to be in our vehicle for longer times and longer distances.

Your health care idea would appear counter-intuitive at first glance. If people knew they were covered no matter what the cost - they would be more inclined to take risks because their out of pocket expense isn't as immediate and tangible. Besides - health care providers tend to pass the buck to the auto-insurers when the injuries are accident related.

Ronald Brak
2008-Aug-14, 01:39 PM
The difference in fatalities is two fold. We have a greater percentage of our greater population that actually drives, and when we do drive, we tend to be in our vehicle for longer times and longer distances.

The UK has a lower road toll than the US per vehicle kilometer traveled. There are 7.62 deaths per billion vehicle kilometers in the UK and 9.38 deaths per billion vehicle kilometers in the US. In the UK 23% of travel is on motorways (freeways) vs. 24% in US. One factor influencing road safety is the smaller average car size in the UK compared to the US.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-14, 02:07 PM
The UK has a lower road toll than the US per vehicle kilometer traveled. There are 7.62 deaths per billion vehicle kilometers in the UK and 9.38 deaths per billion vehicle kilometers in the US. In the UK 23% of travel is on motorways (freeways) vs. 24% in US. One factor influencing road safety is the smaller average car size in the UK compared to the US.

16.15% higher rate in the U.S. vs. a 166.67% higher rate (populations being equal) as suggested by KLIK's post. Statistics are fun. How much of that difference is impacted by freeway travel depends on where the fatalities are taking place. If the fatalities are primarily driven by highway speeds - then at least a portion of the difference is addressed by the amount of time spent traveling at highway speeds.

Additionally - addressing it as per billion vehicle miles still doesn't do justice to the amount of time spent traveling by vehicle in the U.S.

In the U.K. – 60,000,000 people cover 393,700,787,401.57 miles annually based on the 3,000 deaths at a rate of 7.62 deaths per billion miles. In the U.S. – 300,000,000 people cover 4,264,392,324,093.81 based on the 40,000 deaths at a rate of 9.38 deaths per billion miles. So we cover 10.83x as many miles with 5x the population. We’re in our cars 2.17x as much as the average U.K. citizen. This is as either driver or passenger. Feel free to double check my math or tell me why the math I’m using is completely wrong. Considering we’re in our cars over 2x as much, I would say our fatality rate being only 16% higher is pretty good. Must be because U.K. drivers take more risks due to their national health care system.:whistle:

Cougar
2008-Aug-14, 03:22 PM
Seat belts dont prevent accidents, they act to reduce the injuries from accidents. Does the driver have a responsability to reduce the injuries sustained in an accident?

Is this the right question? Why would a driver want to intentionally increase his exposure to serious injury when means to significantly reduce that exposure are available?

Whirlpool
2008-Aug-14, 03:42 PM
Out of curiosity, a multiple-choice question for everybody:

I used to work at a pizza joint doing deliveries. When I started there was a "30 minutes or less or it's free" policy. Because the managers refused to hire more inside help or decrease the radius of their delivery area, this time limit could not be met by the drivers without breaking speed limits.

Since too many freebies meant the money started to come out of the driver's paycheck, the drivers were motivated to speed to get there on time. Now, who's responsibility is it to clear up this problem and promote driver safety?

A: The managers
B. The drivers
C. The legislature
D. A and B
E. All of the above.


First before they implement the 30-minute rule on delivery service , they already make a time study and considered that it is feasible to meet the time without speeding , and its including the area of the town they will be servicing this rule.
So the drivers won't be needing to speed up with the chance that they might get caught by the cops or have an accident.

For it is both A & B. Given that all are feasible .

The managers who will oversee that this rule is followed and will be responsible if anything happens provided that the driver is not a slacker.
The driver who will abide by the rule, follow it properly from the time he leaves the store up to the house of the customer.

And there are exceptions to the rule.

Like if there was major accident or road construction that causes major traffic, Heavy rains / hurricanes.

Gillianren
2008-Aug-14, 03:53 PM
One factor influencing road safety is the smaller average car size in the UK compared to the US.

The question is, which way does that factor work? Large cars are safer during accidents; small cars get in fewer.

geonuc
2008-Aug-14, 03:55 PM
Considering we’re in our cars over 2x as much, I would say our fatality rate being only 16% higher is pretty good.
I'm sorry, but that doesn't follow. The 'rate' you both are talking about is per mile (billion miles), which factors out the total miles from the analysis.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-14, 04:58 PM
I'm sorry, but that doesn't follow. The 'rate' you both are talking about is per mile (billion miles), which factors out the total miles from the analysis.

Sure it follows. If you're in your car twice as much, that's more opportunity to drive while fatigued, more opportunity to get annoyed by passengers and take your eyes off the road, more likely to make a phone call because you can't wait to make the call till you get there. I'm considering items that might make a difference in the overall fatality rate.

If the smaller car assertion is correct, then drivers in the U.K. should get in accidents just as often but survive more of them. If my assertion is correct, then not only will the U.S. fatality rate be higher, but the general accident rate will be higher in the U.S. as well.

But the bottom line is the difference in fatality rate is really quite minimal compared to the 167% assertion made by KLIK.

SeanF
2008-Aug-14, 06:13 PM
The UK has a lower road toll than the US per vehicle kilometer traveled. There are 7.62 deaths per billion vehicle kilometers in the UK and 9.38 deaths per billion vehicle kilometers in the US. In the UK 23% of travel is on motorways (freeways) vs. 24% in US. One factor influencing road safety is the smaller average car size in the UK compared to the US.
Besides Spock's assertion about driver fatigue, etc., it would also be necessary to include the average number of passengers in the equation - it's not just one potential fatality per vehicle.

Of course, the real problem is that we use miles in the US, not kilometers - that's got to screw up your numbers. ;)


Is this the right question? Why would a driver want to intentionally increase his exposure to serious injury when means to significantly reduce that exposure are available?
It's better than your question. "Why would anybody want to...?" is pretty much always the wrong question in determining whether or not something should be illegal. :)

Moose
2008-Aug-14, 06:28 PM
It's probably significant to the numbers as well that lanes in North America are considerably wider than those in the UK and the parts of Europe I've seen.

tdvance
2008-Aug-14, 07:22 PM
Out of curiosity, a multiple-choice question for everybody:

I used to work at a pizza joint doing deliveries. When I started there was a "30 minutes or less or it's free" policy. Because the managers refused to hire more inside help or decrease the radius of their delivery area, this time limit could not be met by the drivers without breaking speed limits.

Since too many freebies meant the money started to come out of the driver's paycheck, the drivers were motivated to speed to get there on time. Now, who's responsibility is it to clear up this problem and promote driver safety?

A: The managers
B. The drivers
C. The legislature
D. A and B
E. All of the above.


A&B

A--for not matching policy with reality, B for speeding.

C is not necessary--it is already against the law to speed. A new law that essentially says, "...and this time we mean it!" can't be that great.

Moose
2008-Aug-14, 07:28 PM
B is mitigated somewhat by the fact that the drivers have to cover the cost of late pizzas. Yes, they're speeding, but they're caught between a pair of management-imposed alternatives that are untenable in the long term. So the contribution of B is actually caused by the contribution of A.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-14, 10:24 PM
First before they implement the 30-minute rule on delivery service , they already make a time study and considered that it is feasible to meet the time without speeding , and its including the area of the town they will be servicing this rule.
So the drivers won't be needing to speed up with the chance that they might get caught by the cops or have an accident.

They * should have * done a study before implementing the policy, but I have no idea whether they actually did. You're assuming that being a manager or restaurant owner automatically makes a person rational. It doesn't. Plus it was a national chain, so the policy had different results in different areas.

The policy was unwise for several reasons:

1. It brought in more business because people want their pizza fast, but created unrealistic customer expectations so that they'd be dissatisfied if it were there in 31 minutes, and dissatisfied if it were there in 29 and they had to pay.

2. In areas where 30 minutes simply wasn't possible, it motivated unsafe driving.

3. The policy was also unfairly enforced because if the pizza was late it was taken solely out of the driver's paycheck. No consideration was given to how long it took to make the pizza and get it into the driver's hands.


C is not necessary--it is already against the law to speed. A new law that essentially says, "...and this time we mean it!" can't be that great.

Yet that is exactly what happened. A law was passed forbidding 30 minute guarantees, to promote public safety. It was a local ruling but it affected the policy of the entire corporation.

That is why when you see ads suggesting your pizza will be there in about 30 minutes, it carries the disclaimer, "30 minutes is just an estimate and not a guarantee."

korjik
2008-Aug-14, 10:36 PM
Is this the right question? Why would a driver want to intentionally increase his exposure to serious injury when means to significantly reduce that exposure are available?

Yes, my question is the right question. I am asking wether the driver has a responsability to everyone else to act rationally. Wether a person should be forced to make a choice, when not making the choice is not optimum.

For full disclosure: First, I cant even sit in a running car without the seat belt on. I would sooner run around naked. Second, I consider not wearing a seat belt kinda silly. There is far too much evidence that seat belts save lives and reduce injuries. Third, I dont think there should be laws to protect people from their own silliness. If you want to do something that hurts you, but no one else, go ahead.

So, to me, the driver making an intentional choice that hurts himself should not be against the law. The seat belt is there, he chose not to use it, he is dead, not my problem. On the other hand some people might think it a bit odd that if that same person survived the wreck without his seatbelt, but his two kids didnt, because they werent wearing their seatbelts, then I think he should go to jail for 2 counts of vehicular homicide, child endangerment, and anything else the DA could pin on him. The driver has the choice to hurt himself, but he has to protect his kids.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-14, 10:39 PM
That is why when you see ads suggesting your pizza will be there in about 30 minutes, it carries the disclaimer, "30 minutes is just an estimate and not a guarantee."

This is true in my area as well. And I'm right down the street from the Pizza Shop.
The local Dominoes here has a manager that prioritizes safe driving with his drivers, not because he cares about speeding tickets- but because he doesn't want any accidents.
That particular shop has ReMade my order if they couldn't get it out in a time when the pizza was still hot, rather than to rush the driver.

Whirlpool
2008-Aug-14, 11:29 PM
Well .. here in my country . We don't have the 30-minute delivery rule "outside" of the store. They do it inside , after taking your orders at the counter and it isn't 30-minute but 30sec rule.



< i'm not sure if it's 30secs or 60secs - i'll go check that tonight>


:D

KLIK
2008-Aug-15, 12:59 PM
oops! thought my post might be a bit controversial.
the figures were off the top of my head (connected to work)'
http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/statistics/datatablespublications/accidents/casualtiesmr/rcgbmainresults2007 (18kb) (ok; 2946 fatals in 2007)
http://www.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/customs/questions/population.html (31kb)
population of Britain 60,587,000 in mid2006
http://www.car-accidents.com/pages/stats.html (18kb) 42,636 persons died in USA in 2005
http://www.census.gov/main/www/popclock.html (5kb) USA pop 304,876,935 (today 12:57 GMT.)


OK. Banged to rights on the 55mph - too much old film watching.;-( (although it might drop again with the price increases...


Run out of lunchtime; will deal with the rest on Monday as I try not to tip-and-run too much.
rgds klik

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-15, 01:09 PM
oops! thought my post might be a bit controversial.
the figures were off the top of my head (connected to work)'
http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/statistics/datatablespublications/accidents/casualtiesmr/rcgbmainresults2007 (18kb) (ok; 2946 fatals in 2007)
http://www.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/customs/questions/population.html (31kb)
population of Britain 60,587,000 in mid2006
http://www.car-accidents.com/pages/stats.html (18kb) 42,636 persons died in USA in 2005
http://www.census.gov/main/www/popclock.html (5kb) USA pop 304,876,935 (today 12:57 GMT.)


OK. Banged to rights on the 55mph - too much old film watching.;-( (although it might drop again with the price increases...


Run out of lunchtime; will deal with the rest on Monday as I try not to tip-and-run too much.
rgds klik

Apples to apples - it was 3,201 fatalities in 2005 for the U.K.

http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/statistics/datatablespublications/accidents/casualtiesmr/rcgbmainresults2006

samkent
2008-Aug-15, 02:31 PM
The government, the police, and the insurance companies have absolutely no business knowing what my driving habits are - how often I drive, how fast I drive, and where I'm going to when I drive.


You are forgetting one important fact. Driving is a privilege not a right. As such you have to abide by all of the rules whether you like them or not. If using a seat belt is just too mentally stressing then ride a bus. You don't have the option when flying and you don't in the car.

We all accept that injuries are worse without seat belts. That puts the added medical costs onto the insurance companies AND the tax payer when the injured doesn’t have any insurance.

Example:
If I am sitting at a light and I get rear ended pushing me into cross traffic. I will still be sued for the injuries for all parties in the other car. Yes I may be second in the lawsuit but I will still be sued. The injuries are certain to be greater and my chance of being out of pocket greater. Especially if the car that hit me has no insurance.

Is it your right to endanger your children by allowing them to ride unbuckled? Why should I be held responsible for preventable injuries that you failed to mitigate? Perhaps the laws should be changed to eliminate liability, if the injured was not wearing seat belts. That might do more to increase the percentage of belt use that tickets.

As a side note being a motorcycle rider, I would support banning cell phone use in cars. It’s obvious to anyone that drives cell phones are distracting to drivers.

SeanF
2008-Aug-15, 02:52 PM
You are forgetting one important fact. Driving is a privilege not a right. As such you have to abide by all of the rules whether you like them or not.
That's a rationalization, not a reason. By that logic, they could pass a law requiring you to wear a blue shirt when you drive, and you couldn't object because "driving is a privilege."


If I am sitting at a light and I get rear ended pushing me into cross traffic. I will still be sued for the injuries for all parties in the other car.
Non sequitur. Anybody can sue you for anything they want to sue you for. But it is very unlikely that any jury in the US would actually hold you responsible for injuries in your hypothetical.


Is it your right to endanger your children by allowing them to ride unbuckled?
I don't think anybody in this thread arguing against seatbelt laws is arguing against child restraint laws.


Why should I be held responsible for preventable injuries that you failed to mitigate?
If you cause the collision, you should be held responsible for the consequences of the collision. I shouldn't have to "mitigate" your bad driving.


As a side note being a motorcycle rider, I would support banning cell phone use in cars. It’s obvious to anyone that drives cell phones are distracting to drivers.
I would support banning cellphone use in cars long before I'd support mandating seatbelt use.

But here's a question for you as a motorcycle rider. Riding a motorcycle is considerably more dangerous than riding in a car without a seatbelt. So let's say a car runs a stop sign and hits a motorcyclist. Since the motorcyclist did not take steps to "mitigate" those "preventable injuries," do you believe the vehicle driver should not be held responsible?

Doodler
2008-Aug-15, 02:52 PM
Out of curiosity, a multiple-choice question for everybody:

I used to work at a pizza joint doing deliveries. When I started there was a "30 minutes or less or it's free" policy. Because the managers refused to hire more inside help or decrease the radius of their delivery area, this time limit could not be met by the drivers without breaking speed limits.

Since too many freebies meant the money started to come out of the driver's paycheck, the drivers were motivated to speed to get there on time. Now, who's responsibility is it to clear up this problem and promote driver safety?

A: The managers
B. The drivers
C. The legislature
D. A and B
E. All of the above.

B, by reporting A's actions to the police and having them prosecuted under the RICO laws for establishing an organized criminal enterprise for profit.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-15, 09:36 PM
You are forgetting one important fact. Driving is a privilege not a right. As such you have to abide by all of the rules whether you like them or not. If using a seat belt is just too mentally stressing then ride a bus. You don't have the option when flying and you don't in the car.

The difference between a car and a plane is that I own my car, the airline owns their plane. It is their right to dictate the usage of their own equipment and behavior of their customers. The "We reserve the right to refuse service to any person at any time for any reason" rationale applies.

I am not a business. I am not driving as a service to someone else. If I were driving commercially or acting as a chaffeur, that would be different. But I'm using equipment that I personally own and as such I have the right to use or modify any of the components of the vehicle in any way I see fit.

If I feel like yanking out the chip that stores diagnostic data for my car because its an unnecessary power drain, that's my right. If I choose to remove the navigational/GPS system, that's my right.

Your rationale could be extended in some pretty absurd ways. How about, the Internet Domain Name registry is owned by ICANN. Any computer that is connected to the Internet must have a chip installed that can record keystrokes and diagnose issues in realtime (to assure the smoothest Internet experience possible), as well as running active antivirus software. This data will be automatically uploaded to ICANN or an agency that it outsources its data processing to.

It's all for the public good. We're preventing the spread of harmful viruses and malware from computer to computer. Since ICANN owns the Internet DNS system, they've got the right to impose this demand on anyone who uses that system.

Despite the obvious and glaring privacy invasion issues.


We all accept that injuries are worse without seat belts. That puts the added medical costs onto the insurance companies AND the tax payer when the injured doesn’t have any insurance.

How, exactly, does breaking my leg without medical insurance take money out of * your * pocket?

A: IT DOESN'T!

It simply means that I will be paying the full amount, out of pocket, and if I don't happen to have that amount at the moment I'll be making payments to the hospital for the rest of my life, or else have my credit ruined and be essentially unable to function in our society.

Your checkbook doesn't come into the equation. At any point.

And if you caused the injury, you should be paying for it in any case, regardless of whether I happen to have insurance or not. That's just common courtesy. You screw something up, you fix it.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-15, 09:42 PM
How, exactly, does breaking my leg without medical insurance take money out of * your * pocket?

A: IT DOESN'T!

It simply means that I will be paying the full amount, out of pocket, and if I don't happen to have that amount at the moment I'll be making payments to the hospital for the rest of my life, or else have my credit ruined and be essentially unable to function in our society.

Your checkbook doesn't come into the equation. At any point.

And if you caused the injury, you should be paying for it in any case, regardless of whether I happen to have insurance or not. That's just common courtesy. You screw something up, you fix it.

Exactly- something a lot of people have been claiming.

Even if it DID factor into a few pennies per year out of their taxes- that does not give then the right to dictatorship.

mugaliens
2008-Aug-16, 11:55 PM
Exactly- something a lot of people have been claiming.

Even if it DID factor into a few pennies per year out of their taxes- that does not give then the right to dictatorship.

Not so fast...

Uninsured motorists have risen from 12.7% in 1999 to 14.6% in 2004. Mississippi has the highest rate, at 26%, while Maine has the lowest, at 4%. (http://www.insurancejournal.com/news/national/2006/06/28/69919.htm)

Who foots the bill for the 12.6% of uninsured motorists?

You do. I do. Everyone who's insured does. In some states it's an optional addition, and in other states it's mandatory. In essence, I'm paying an additional premium so that if the other guy isn't insured, my own insurance company will cover the damage he does to my car.

Absurd? You bet.

Now - if you thought that without this problem my annual premiums would be $500 and with it they're $563 dollars (500*1.126), you'd be wrong. The why is simple - uninsured motorists are significantly more likely to get into an accident than insured motorists. In fact, many uninsured motorists are uninsured simply because they can't afford insurance due to their prior traffic violations.


"Even though most states require drivers to maintain insurance, the
problem of uninsured motorists persists," explained Elizabeth A. Sprinkel, senior vice president of the IRC [Insurance Research Council]. "Responsible drivers who purchase insurance end up paying for injuries caused by uninsured drivers." - Elizabeth A. Sprinkel, senior Vice President of the IRC

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-17, 12:05 AM
I can see the argument for car insurance (who pays when you crash?) but it always puzzles me when people talk about anyone without health insurance as though they're taking money from everyone else's pockets. It just ain't so.

Jason
2008-Aug-17, 12:13 AM
When someone without health insurance and no means to pay for treatment goes to the emergency room and gets treatment, who pays for the treatment?
The hospital.
The hospital has to make up the expense of treating patients they don't get any money for somewhere.
Result: hospital costs go up incrementally for everyone else.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-17, 12:46 AM
When someone without health insurance and no means to pay for treatment goes to the emergency room and gets treatment, who pays for the treatment?
The hospital.
The hospital has to make up the expense of treating patients they don't get any money for somewhere.
Result: hospital costs go up incrementally for everyone else.

I'd rather pay that tiny increment than be told what to do.

What a small price to pay.

Jason
2008-Aug-17, 01:34 AM
The question was "how do the uninsured take money from the pockets of those who are insured?"
Whether it's a small price to pay or whether we should be paying that cost is a different issue.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-17, 01:44 AM
The question was "how do the uninsured take money from the pockets of those who are insured?"
Whether it's a small price to pay or whether we should be paying that cost is a different issue.

True, and in this post, I wholeheartedly agree with you.

Part of the trouble ( I Hope I'm not treading to heavily into politics here) with socialized medicine as that it has a pretty extensive effect of freedom in general.
A totally capitalistic form of medicine can cause harm too. Those who cannot afford medical care can suffer without.

Whirlpool
2008-Aug-17, 02:18 AM
When someone without health insurance and no means to pay for treatment goes to the emergency room and gets treatment, who pays for the treatment?
The hospital.
The hospital has to make up the expense of treating patients they don't get any money for somewhere.
Result: hospital costs go up incrementally for everyone else.

First, the main purpose and objective why Hospitals are established is to treat sick people. In order for the hospital to continue fulfilling their main objective , they need money. Health Insurance are part of where they get the funding for their operations.

The expense they get when people who goes there who don't have health insurance or can't afford to get a health insurance is already part of the risks in every hospital.


The question was "how do the uninsured take money from the pockets of those who are insured?"
Whether it's a small price to pay or whether we should be paying that cost is a different issue.

Are you talking about the people who are bums? Or those poor people who can't afford to pay health insurance.
Your statement sounds "selfish" IMO, the people who are uninsured didn't take the money from those who are insured . That's why there are taxes , part of where the taxes goes is to these Medical Services and Social Welfares.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-17, 02:24 AM
First, the main purpose and objective why Hospitals are established is to treat sick people. In order for the hospital to continue fulfilling their main objective , they need money. Health Insurance are part of where they get the funding for their operations.

The expense they get when people who goes there who don't have health insurance or can't afford to get a health insurance is already part of the risks in every hospital.



Are you talking about the people who are bums? Or those poor people who can't afford to pay health insurance.
Your statement sounds "selfish" IMO, the people who are uninsured didn't take the money from those who are insured . That's why there are taxes , part of where the taxes goes is to these Medical Services and Social Welfares.

Both of these points are exactly what I have alluded to several times- Just not said as clearly.

The fact remains that we pay taxes that are allocated toward these purposes.
What's the breakdown? What percentage- out of my pocket directly- Do I pay toward NASA?
What percentage toward Food Stamps?
What percentage toward health care?

Is it even possible to break it down?
Funds are allocated as needed- not by a set chart. [ETA: To clarify- yes there is a sort of chart but it's very general and does not help in breaking down the percentages.]

So what it comes down to is, I would be paying the same in taxes anyway.
There are several reasons that taxes might go up over time- the vast majority of which would be the implementation of more social welfare and social programs that we already know are going to have the effect of a general loss of freedom.

Those folks complaining that a person who chooses to not wear a seatbelt are causing their taxes to go up are basically just blowing a whole lot of Hot Air. It's justification for a belief but the numbers don't justify it.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-17, 02:33 AM
If I don't agree with my taxes on welfare, or disability, or NASA, or Department of Defense- does this give me the right to tell all of them what to do?

No, it doesn't.

It gives me the right to VOTE, perhaps... But not to dictate.

If I was an 'Anti-Military' type that hated the military and spoke out about Peace and Love here- claiming that the military should be totally disbanded ...

... and justified it by claiming that I have a say so since my tax dollars are used- those using that justification now would have a very strange 180 in how they perceive that justification.

Whirlpool
2008-Aug-17, 02:37 AM
We cannot please everybody.
There will be those who will oppose and there are who will agree.

Rules, Laws are implemented. What would happened if there were No Rules , Laws to follow?

It will sure be a Chaos.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-17, 02:41 AM
We cannot please everybody.
There will be those who will oppose and there are who will agree.

Rules, Laws are implemented. What would happened if there were No Rules , Laws to follow?

It will sure be a Chaos.

I can deal with chaos much better than I can deal with oppression.:neutral:

Whirlpool
2008-Aug-17, 02:50 AM
We live in this Complex World.
Living and surviving isn't easy.

No one is perfect.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-17, 09:12 AM
The question was "how do the uninsured take money from the pockets of those who are insured?"
Whether it's a small price to pay or whether we should be paying that cost is a different issue.

I'm still confused here. Are you suggesting that someone without health insurance won't have to pay for their medical bills? I'd certainly like to live in this socialist utopia that you're describing. Okay, not really.

What actually happens is that the hospital bills the patient who is expected to pay. If he doesn't, it goes to a collections agency. The collections agency makes money from the hospital, and collects the fees from the delinquent payee. Eventually the hospital gets its money.

If the hospital chooses to take tax money to "cover the costs" of treating the patient now rather than waiting until they have the money to hand it directly over the counter, that's their bad policy. It should be taken up with the hospital, not with the poor ******* who has broken a leg or contracted an illness.

Whirlpool
2008-Aug-17, 12:31 PM
If the person cannot pay, the hospital will call the Social Welfare to turn-over the patient and the Social Welfare will take the case and pay the bill on their behalf. But of course there will be assessment on the patients status of living.

I am speaking about the system in my country.

I don't know about the US system.

:neutral:

Veeger
2008-Aug-17, 01:13 PM
I won't move my car from the driveway into the garage without putting on my seatbelt.

So why DO we park in driveways and drive on parkways? Or should I start a new thread?

Whirlpool
2008-Aug-17, 01:29 PM
What do you think why we DO that ?


:neutral:

mugaliens
2008-Aug-17, 03:52 PM
...it always puzzles me when people talk about anyone without health insurance as though they're taking money from everyone else's pockets. It just ain't so.

It's ok, but only provided those people are "self-insured," ie, they have enough cash to cover their own bills, as most rich people do, nearly all governments do, and quite a large number of companies do.

It's also ok if you're willing to incur a hefty debt which you will honor by repaying it before you die - but only if you pay it before you die.

If you don't, or if you pop into an emergency room without insurance and once treated melt back into society without paying the debt, something interesting happens: Your debt is written off.

This doesn't mean it disappears, however! It simply no longer belongs to you. However, the hospital must still at least break even, so a curious thing happens each fiscal quarter. Budgets are reviewed, along with profit and loss statements to determine how well the hospital is doing. Adjustments are made, either in reducing some health care options or in raising rates.

Since hospitals are competitive, reducing health care options isn't desirable, as it makes them less marketable. However, so does raising rates. Thus, they'll try to raise rates to the maximum extent possible that the market will allow before they begin loosing business (when the net profit curve turns back downward).

And who pays for those increased rates?

I do. You do. We all do.

People, please stop :wall:

Take an econ class, or a business management class. All 2 and 4 year financial institutions have an insurance 101 class. I highly recommend people take it. If you can't afford it, see if you can audit the class.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-17, 04:00 PM
Ah, excellent point, I was not considering what would happen in the event of death.

Although, perversely enough, some financial institutions, etc, can collect a debt even after the debtor is dead. Even if the spouse of that person did not co-sign for the line of credit, he or she can still be forced to pay the bill after their spouse's death if they are the inheritors of the estate. And in many cases "estate" is a misnomer and the spouse is inheriting only debt, no assets.

badchap
2008-Aug-17, 05:06 PM
A person in a car that crashes who is not wearing a seat belt easily becomes a missile that can in turn hit and injure another person, either within that car, or another car, or cause further crashes when they come flying out the front or rear window unexpectedly, into the path of oncoming traffic.
Not wearing a seatbelt does affect other people, not just the individual who makes that choice.

I'm not sure I understand the discussion about health insurance - here we have a system and and that will largely cover most hospital costs, but even then, taking up space in a hospital bed when it could have been avoided, (or at least a hospital stay shortened ) = one less hospital bed available.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-17, 05:09 PM
A person in a car that crashes who is not wearing a seat belt easily becomes a missile that can in turn hit and injure another person, either within that car, or another car, or cause further crashes when they come flying out the front or rear window unexpectedly, into the path of oncoming traffic.
Not wearing a seatbelt does affect other people, not just the individual who makes that choice.


The supposed 'human missile' issue has been covered and found to be minimal risk- it's highly unlikely that a 'human missile' will endanger anyone but himself.

Your claim fails for the same reason that same claim has repeatedly failed throughout the thread.

If you drive AT ALL, while wearing a seatbelt, you are taking a risk that can affect other people. There really is no decision that doesn't have the potential to affect other people.
You releasing excrement affects other people. Should taking a dump be illegal?
By that claim- Everything a human could do should be made illegal as it can have the potential to adversely affect others.

Jason
2008-Aug-17, 05:23 PM
If you argue that all activity endanger others, then you are either arguing for taking no actions at all, or agreeing that what is and isn't legal should be made on a cost/benefit basis.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-17, 06:46 PM
If you argue that all activity endanger others, then you are either arguing for taking no actions at all, or agreeing that what is and isn't legal should be made on a cost/benefit basis.

Not at all.
I was pointing out the fallacy of the claim that "Since such and such might have the potential to affect me- then I have a say so in how it all goes down."

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-17, 09:51 PM
^ By the same argument, it is perfectly acceptable to chip all cars to record speed, frequency of oil changes, frequency of brake pad and tire changing, locations drove to and number of miles logged. And to have those cars automatically transmit that information over WiFi whenever it picks up a wireless hotspot.

These are all things which could conceivably affect public safety. But they are also things that no one has a right knowing.

The problem isn't seatbelts being there. I think it's great that they are standard on all cars. But I think fining people who forget to wear them is essentially just a police fund raiser. They really don't give a damn about public safety, but they know that invoking that as the issue is the only way that we'll accept such an intrusion.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-18, 12:17 AM
^ By the same argument, it is perfectly acceptable to chip all cars to record speed, frequency of oil changes, frequency of brake pad and tire changing, locations drove to and number of miles logged. And to have those cars automatically transmit that information over WiFi whenever it picks up a wireless hotspot.

These are all things which could conceivably affect public safety. But they are also things that no one has a right knowing.

The problem isn't seatbelts being there. I think it's great that they are standard on all cars. But I think fining people who forget to wear them is essentially just a police fund raiser. They really don't give a damn about public safety, but they know that invoking that as the issue is the only way that we'll accept such an intrusion.

SLAM! Excellent points!

Whirlpool
2008-Aug-18, 02:04 AM
But I think fining people who forget to wear them is essentially just a police fund raiser. They really don't give a damn about public safety, but they know that invoking that as the issue is the only way that we'll accept such an intrusion.

Because we know that being buckled up is safety. Maybe they need to think of another way how to inform motorists without them feeling oppressed and intruded.
Since everyone's life is his owns personal responsibility. Don't wear , or wear it , it's their choice , face the consequence , and we know that the consequences are fatal.

Gillianren
2008-Aug-18, 03:06 AM
So why DO we park in driveways and drive on parkways? Or should I start a new thread?

Or spend two minutes searching etymology. "Park," in this case, is not a verb. It's a noun--well, an adjective, but it comes from the noun. A parkway is scenic. And the word "driveway" initially referred to those great sweeping things leading up to somebody's country manor. You did drive on those; you still drive on your driveway. Just not very far.

Jason
2008-Aug-18, 03:33 AM
All the police officers I know really do care about public safety. They hate to pull people over and ruin their day but they want them to be safe.

Whirlpool
2008-Aug-18, 04:43 AM
Yep. Same here . There are still Good Cops exisitng who are after the people's safety and just not after the money.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-18, 07:29 AM
All the police officers I know really do care about public safety. They hate to pull people over and ruin their day but they want them to be safe.

Which is totally irrelevant to their required quota, ticket giving bonuses etc.

Whirlpool
2008-Aug-18, 07:40 AM
Which is totally irrelevant to their required quota, ticket giving bonuses etc.

Sounds selfish . Not All cops are after the money. I know some who wanted to erase the people's impression about that cops don't care , that they are corrupt and can be bribe.
They stand for what they are called for. To protect the civilians and to keep them from harm against bad people, and to keep the people from following the laws implemented for their own personal welfare and safety and not only doing it because of quota.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-18, 07:45 AM
Sounds selfish . Not All cops are after the money. I know some who wanted to erase the people's impression about that cops don't care , that they are corrupt and can be bribe.
They stand for what they are called for. To protect the civilians and to keep them from harm against bad people, and to keep the people from following the laws implemented for their own personal welfare and safety and not only doing it because of quota.

I am not denying that there are good cops etc- but quota's remain the same. And there are just as many cops that like busting people and even a few dirty cops too.
The motivations of the officer really aren't the point.
They have a job to do and that job DOES require that they give out a certain amount of citations, make a certain amount of arrests etc.

Here in the US, just watch police activity at the end of each month, quarter and year.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-18, 08:36 AM
They have a job to do and that job DOES require that they give out a certain amount of citations, make a certain amount of arrests etc.

Here in the US, just watch police activity at the end of each month, quarter and year.

QFT. The patrolmen do not set policy, they just have to enforce it, no matter how ill-advised it may be.

Trocisp
2008-Aug-18, 08:43 AM
I'm sorry, but show me evidence that cops have to reach quota's.

I'm pretty sure that they're illegal, and when they're used they make the news (like teachers who have sex with students, the rarities that seem common). If an officer goes a month without giving any tickets, obviously their boss is going to ask if they're watching TV on the job, but baring an unreasonably low or high amount of tickets there shouldn't (not isn't, shouldn't) be any action taken against the officer.

And cops do deserve respect, some of them are jerks, however some of every profession are jerks.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-18, 08:52 AM
And cops do deserve respect, some of them are jerks, however some of every profession are jerks.

They do deserve a tremendous amount of respect. They deal with the worst elements of society on a daily basis, are expected and required to lay down their lives to protect those they don't even know, work long and unpredictable hours, and barely get paid more than a schoolteacher. And for their trouble, they are ultimately hated by 90% of the community.

That there are * any * of them that are not cynical, trigger-happy maniacs is a testament to the endurance of the human spirit.

I always treat cops with respect unless they first show me that they are in fact anal retentive skinheads. I just wish all the good cops out there had bosses that had more interest in fighting crime than fundraising.

I think it's a bit naive to assume quotas do not exist. Especially with the economy as it is. Police departments are underfunded throughout the country. They have to make up the money somehow and their golden paycheck has always been and will continue to be the issuing of tickets.

Even if they are an ethics violation in some jurisdictions (I doubt they are "illegal") I am sure plenty of police chiefs ignore that rule because they are desperate.

badchap
2008-Aug-18, 11:00 AM
The supposed 'human missile' issue has been covered and found to be minimal risk- it's highly unlikely that a 'human missile' will endanger anyone but himself.

Your claim fails for the same reason that same claim has repeatedly failed throughout the thread.

If you drive AT ALL, while wearing a seatbelt, you are taking a risk that can affect other people. There really is no decision that doesn't have the potential to affect other people.
You releasing excrement affects other people. Should taking a dump be illegal?
By that claim- Everything a human could do should be made illegal as it can have the potential to adversely affect others.

A human missile who only does damage to himself still can take up health care resources unnecessarily. Unrestrained people can and do get thrown from vehicles in event of collisions. Even being thrown about within the confines of the vehicle without being checked by a seatbelt brings contact with the interior of the car and other passengers that could have been minimised or avoided by a seatbelt.
Seatbelts fitted and worn correctly often make the difference between a collision being a minor one, or a major one.

Some laws are for protecting people from others, and some are for protecting people from themselves.

LotusExcelle
2008-Aug-18, 12:29 PM
i think it depends on if you like having your face/body in more or less one piece or not. Crash physics are well known now and the one-in-a-million chance of a seatbelt not *helping* in a crash is not an argument against using one -at all times-. There are plenty of pictures available of people who did not use a seatbelt. I suggest you don't eat lunch before looking for them though. One of the worst I've seen is of a girl missing the top half of her head - unrestrained and without an airbag her face went at high speed into the steering wheel and she was half-decapitated.

I won't even begin to bring airbags into this though. That is a whole different line of argument (partly to do with how poorly people set up their seats in relation to the steering wheel. You should meet the airbag after it inflates - not get punched by it... informally I would say that more than half the population sits too close to the steering wheel)

Anyway the point is that seatbelts are not only for first-person safety. Anything not tied down in an accident is, as others have pointed out, a projectile. The Swedish car companies seem to know more about this than anyone - it was Volvo that developed the 3-point harness in the first place and Saabs (9-5's at least) have rear seats that can withstand a high-mass object impact from the trunk... so a tool box for example *can't* encroach into the passenger compartment and tear you in half.

And then there is the human projectile. You don't need a degree in physics to understand what happens when a human goes from 60-0 and meets the dash or windshield or worse - is ejected.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-18, 12:47 PM
The difference between a car and a plane is that I own my car, the airline owns their plane. ....

.....If I feel like yanking out the chip that stores diagnostic data for my car because its an unnecessary power drain, that's my right. If I choose to remove the navigational/GPS system, that's my right.

However, you are driving your car on public roadways which are owned by the municipal, state, or federal government. It is their right to set the laws and requirements that allow you to use their road ways. When driving on your own property - you are correct. Most of the time you are driving on somebody elses property.

Try yanking out your catalytic converter or muffler and see how the law responds should you be caught.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-18, 12:55 PM
I'm still confused here. Are you suggesting that someone without health insurance won't have to pay for their medical bills? I'd certainly like to live in this socialist utopia that you're describing. Okay, not really.

What actually happens is that the hospital bills the patient who is expected to pay. If he doesn't, it goes to a collections agency. The collections agency makes money from the hospital, and collects the fees from the delinquent payee. Eventually the hospital gets its money.

If the hospital chooses to take tax money to "cover the costs" of treating the patient now rather than waiting until they have the money to hand it directly over the counter, that's their bad policy. It should be taken up with the hospital, not with the poor ******* who has broken a leg or contracted an illness.

You should look over the financials of a hospital sometime and see the amount of "bad debts" they write off before you assume they eventually get their money. No matter how many times a collector calls on a $60,000 bill, some people will just never have $60,000 to pay. Some bad debts are finally written off as uncollectable. We all pay to cover the cost of this write off each year. Not to mention the amount we pay to cover when medicare or medicaid says, "Sorry - we say you can only charge $30,000 for that $60,000 service." So the hospital says, "Okay, then it's $70,000 for everyone else." But that is yet another tangent.

KLIK
2008-Aug-18, 01:01 PM
Hi Neverfly
Just wanted to finish off my responses to your points;
I don't see that wearing a seat belt is particularly against your freedoms as you are sat in the car seat with the belt next to you anyway, it is inertia reel so you can lean forward, tune the radio, open the glove box etc, about the only thing you can't do with it on is climb into the back seat. :-)

I was wrong about your max speed limit but my reasoning still applies; why accept a 70mph speed limit? isn't that against your personal freedom?

I was underhand when I quoted the fatal accident rates as for all I know every one of those fatals might have been a dead pedestrian or cyclist and nothing to do with wearing/not wearing seatbelts. (Nice thing about statistics as Spock Jenkins and Ronald Brak noted).

In Britain a fatal road traffic crash is treated by the police as a major crime scene - possible murder; therefore a road with a fatal RTC is closed at the scene for 6-8 hours while they carry out a full crime scene investigation, this affects every motorist, delivery lorry etc, with diversion routes also being affected. With serious injury crashes the road is only closed for the length of time it takes the casualties to be taken away, the scene to be measured and the wrecks and debris cleared.
So someone dying through not wearing a seatbelt can have an effect way beyond just themselves ((as far as I'm concerned anyone who wants to commit suicide can; but I would be very anti them doing it off a motorway bridge/in front of my vehicle).

I accept that an F1/Rally driver or fighter pilot can easily use a mobile phone while driving through a crowd or complicated junction without any deterioration in their driving skills but many people can't (some I know can't even do washing up while talking, they stop to talk), so there has to be a trade-off between personal freedom and public good - most people argue about where the line should be.





This is probably the most horrifying statement I have ever read.
Surely not, you flatter me! ;-)

I meant that specifically in relation to freedoms that adversely affect other people; not the deeper more fundamental freedoms everyone should be allowed.
Expanding that point I'd say that I would not fight for your freedom to shoot balloons outside my property at 3 in the morning because you want to and I'd probably want a law to stop you.

will finish tmrw. out o time.

SeanF
2008-Aug-18, 01:16 PM
I had asked a question specifically of samkent earlier, but I'm going to throw it out there for everybody - everybody who supports seatbelt laws, at least. :)

All of the concerns about unseatbelted vehicle occupants - life risk, medical expenses, loss of control of vehicle, "human projectile" - apply just as much (moreso, for most of them) to motorcycle riders. And, yet, is is perfectly legal for someone to go out riding around the roads on a motorcycle for no reason other than their personal enjoyment.

Why should that be?

EDIT: Before anyone brings up helmets as a safety feature, I should point out that all those risks are still greater for a helmeted motorcyclist than they are for an unseatbelted car occupant.

LotusExcelle
2008-Aug-18, 01:21 PM
Motorcyclists-as-projectiles (I'm grossing myself out) pose little danger to the occupants of a car - whereas an in-car projectile is rather hazardous to anyone in the vehicle. (Throw a can of soda at someone as hard as you can, hitting them anywhere, and see how they react. That is low mass and fairly low-speed. Now imagine high-mass and high-speed)

I doubt highly that a motorcyclist will make his/her way into a vehicle in a car-on-bike crash. 9/10 times if the speed is high enough that person will simply fall apart in the process. The projectile danger is mostly in-car. (Deer also rarely make their way through the windshield but it *does* happen from time to time.)

Whirlpool
2008-Aug-18, 01:29 PM
You cannot go out on a motorbike without the Helmet on. Just as the same as the putting on seatbelt when driving a car.

Riding a motorbike is used only for personal enjoyment? I don't think so, here , because of the high price of Gas , people prefer to ride a motorbike instead of a car, another thing is, it gives you flexibility on the road , especially when there is a heavy traffic, you can pass in between cars and shortcuts, and it saves space in the parking lot.
And in Vietnam and India , motorbikes are used to earn a living.

Moose
2008-Aug-18, 01:43 PM
All of the concerns about unseatbelted vehicle occupants - life risk, medical expenses, loss of control of vehicle, "human projectile" - apply just as much (moreso, for most of them) to motorcycle riders. And, yet, is is perfectly legal for someone to go out riding around the roads on a motorcycle for no reason other than their personal enjoyment.

Generally speaking, bikers on bikes are far safer when they are not strapped onto their machines. And more importantly, a bike isn't all that much of a threat to the occupants of a car. For an adult driver of a bike, it mostly is about a competent decision to accept a certain amount of risk in the guise of the mantric "personal freedom".

While seatbelt and helmet laws are at least partially about protecting the driver/passengers from themselves (something I've never really been all that fussed about), I have no problem with laws that try to find some balance between "personal freedom" and the responsibility to not unduly endanger those around you by your voluntary actions.

Laws that prevent you from popping balloons with a gun at 3am isn't about the unwelcome noise (although that's part of it). It's about who hasn't volunteered to catch those bullets of yours when they hit downrange.

Your freedom ends where mine begins. You don't have the freedom to endanger my safety through deliberate action or negligence. Nor do I have the freedom to endanger yours.

The basis behind consumer protection laws is the distinction between your right to consume dangerous goods, and my legal responsibility to make available only products that won't injure or kill you when used in an "appropriate" manner.

LotusExcelle
2008-Aug-18, 01:45 PM
Not every state has helmet laws here in the US. It is scary. In fact I always wear a helmet even on my bicycle. It takes *very* little to damage your head and at the speeds I ride at even a moderate crash could land me in the vegetable farm.

I think what we have to think about is LCD. Lowest Common Denominator. Cars, motorcycles, in fact any vehicle (forklifts, Segways, unicycles, big-wheels) are all fairly dangerous things when you get right down to it. The human body has a hard time withstanding the inertia such vehicles can induce. Most people *suck* at operating them, in fact. I won't name names but I know several people that literally have a hard time talking and driving. I mean having a basic conversation with someone in the car.

In fact for as much as I'd like to say I'm a good driver I still screw up. Do I want all protection the car has to offer? Or do I want to take off the *one* thing that holds me in that car?

I'll put it another way - nearly every motorist completely ignores their tires. But they are the *only* part of a car designed to touch the road. Do you really want to skip neglect them? Do you really want to neglect the only thing keeping you from smacking into your steering wheel/windshield/roof/b-pillar/etc?

SeanF
2008-Aug-18, 01:52 PM
You cannot go out on a motorbike without the Helmet on. Just as the same as the putting on seatbelt when driving a car.
I'll assume you had started typing this post before I made my edit. (Apropos of nothing, where I live, you most certainly can go out on a motorbike without a helmet on. And that'll never change so long as a certain event out west continues. :) )


Riding a motorbike is used only for personal enjoyment? I don't think so, here , because of the high price of Gas , people prefer to ride a motorbike instead of a car, another thing is, it gives you flexibility on the road , especially when there is a heavy traffic, you can pass in between cars and shortcuts, and it saves space in the parking lot.
And in Vietnam and India , motorbikes are used to earn a living.
But it's not legal only when there's a necessity.

A hypothetical - I have a car, while my neighbor has a car and a motorcycle (let's say both cars are hybrids or electrics to minimize or eliminate any fuel savings).

We both decide we're just going to go out for a joyride. No real reason, no particular destination, just the fun of the ride. We both have option A - use the car, with our seatbelts.

I, however, choose option B - the car, with no seatbelt - simply because I find it more comfortable and enjoyable than A. No other reason.

My neighbor chooses option C - the motorcycle, with a helmet - simply because he finds it more comfortable and enjoyable than A. Again, no other reason.

Since his choice is more likely to kill or injure him (and incur financial cost to society) than mine is, why is my choice illegal and his not?

More importantly, why should my choice be illegal if his is not?

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-18, 01:59 PM
I had asked a question specifically of samkent earlier, but I'm going to throw it out there for everybody - everybody who supports seatbelt laws, at least. :)

All of the concerns about unseatbelted vehicle occupants - life risk, medical expenses, loss of control of vehicle, "human projectile" - apply just as much (moreso, for most of them) to motorcycle riders. And, yet, is is perfectly legal for someone to go out riding around the roads on a motorcycle for no reason other than their personal enjoyment.

Why should that be?

EDIT: Before anyone brings up helmets as a safety feature, I should point out that all those risks are still greater for a helmeted motorcyclist than they are for an unseatbelted car occupant.

It's not as safe to be strapped to a 500 lb projectile with your body parts exposed to the pavement and other vehicles as it is to be thrown clear of it while wearing a helmet and other protective gear. Still far more dangerous than a car - but no sense in voluntarily making it worse.

http://www.answerbag.com/q_view/72491

I know it's not a study - but it just makes sense. Having done some pretty technical mountain biking on trails, I can agree with this view. When I would lose control of the bike, even though it only weighed 20 lbs. - I would try to jump clear to avoid injury. One of my worst injuries was when my five year old (at the time) stopped right in front of me when we were going very slow. I didn't have a chance to hop off my bike (and I didn't want to leave my bike free to run into my son). I hit my nose on the handle bar and broke my thumb on the sidewalk trying to break my fall and that of the bike.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-18, 05:25 PM
Hi Neverfly
Just wanted to finish off my responses to your points;
I don't see that wearing a seat belt is particularly against your freedoms as you are sat in the car seat with the belt next to you anyway, it is inertia reel so you can lean forward, tune the radio, open the glove box etc, about the only thing you can't do with it on is climb into the back seat. :-)
This has absolutely nothing to to with anything I have said.

The freedom infringement is not in wearing the belt ( I Always wear my seat belt and so does my son)-
It is the Law thinking they have the right to tell me I have to.


I meant that specifically in relation to freedoms that adversely affect other people; not the deeper more fundamental freedoms everyone should be allowed.
Examples?


Expanding that point I'd say that I would not fight for your freedom to shoot balloons outside my property at 3 in the morning because you want to and I'd probably want a law to stop you.
It's affecting you about as much as if I choose to wear a seatbelt or not.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-18, 05:26 PM
You cannot go out on a motorbike without the Helmet on. Just as the same as the putting on seatbelt when driving a car.


Another one I don't agree with.
Here in Texas, it is not the law to wear a helmet.

I think only an idiot would not wear one.
But I don't think the nanny has the right to tell you to wear one.

LotusExcelle
2008-Aug-18, 05:28 PM
Neverfly - in the same vein - what are your thoughts regarding drinking/smoking ages? How about annual vehicle inspections?

Neverfly
2008-Aug-18, 05:37 PM
Neverfly - in the same vein - what are your thoughts regarding drinking/smoking ages? How about annual vehicle inspections?
You're right. So foolish of me.

I am stupid and we all require governmental control in each facet of our lives.

The Backroad Astronomer
2008-Aug-18, 05:40 PM
Here in Texas, it is not the law to wear a helmet.


That would explain so much.

Moose
2008-Aug-18, 05:44 PM
Another thing I'm curious about, for anyone who takes the position that "personal choice" trumps all other considerations, is the distinction, if any, between that thing a few months ago where Pennsylvania (or was it just Philadelphia) banned the use of trans fats in restaurant foods, and the mandatory recall of all foodstuffs made with the plastic-tainted gluten from China.

1) Do you agree or disagree with jurisdictions banning the use of trans fats by restaurants, where there has never been a requirement to report their use (unlike commercial packaged foods)? Why or why not?

2) Do you agree or disagree with the mandatory recall on foods that were exposed to tainted gluten from that company in China? Why or why not?

3) Are these situations different or the same? Why or why not?

SeanF
2008-Aug-18, 06:34 PM
3) Are these situations different or the same? Why or why not?
Different or the same than each other, or than seatbelt/helmet laws? If the latter, then they're different in that they involve one person's safety being affected by the actions of a different person (or company), whereas the seatbelt/helmet laws involve one person's safety being affected by their own actions.

As to whether they're different than each other, there doesn't seem to be too much difference...

Moose
2008-Aug-18, 06:41 PM
whereas the seatbelt/helmet laws involve one person's safety being affected by their own actions.

That has been refuted repeatedly in this thread, Sean, none of which you appear to have acknowledged, let alone addressed.


As to whether they're different than each other, there doesn't seem to be too much difference...

Maybe. I certainly think they're the same situation. Except that I have never seen anybody attempt to defend the Chinese company (or Menu Foods) on their practices, while I've seen a number of people vocally defending what they see as their right to foods with trans fats here on BAUT, and elsewhere when this has come up.

Someone obviously sees a gap that you and I don't, Sean, and I think exposing that gap may help reveal the one that some see between mandatory seatbelts and other protective laws.

SeanF
2008-Aug-18, 06:46 PM
That has been refuted repeatedly in this thread, Sean, none of which you appear to have acknowledged, let alone addressed.
No, it has not been refuted. People keep mentioning "human projectiles" and "losing control of the vehicle," but nobody's provided any evidence that that happens any more often than "seatbelt traps or lacerates" does - certainly not that it happens enough to justify blanket bans.


Maybe. I certainly think they're the same situation. Except that I have never seen anybody attempt to defend the Chinese company (or Menu Foods) on their practices, while I've seen a number of people vocally defending what they see as their right to foods with trans fats here on BAUT, and elsewhere when this has come up.
Both your examples seem to involve "hidden" trans-fats. If you are suggesting that trans-fats ought to be outright illegal, even for somebody to buy at a store and use in their own cooking at home, I'd disagree with you.

Moose
2008-Aug-18, 06:59 PM
No, it has not been refuted. People keep mentioning "human projectiles" and "losing control of the vehicle," but nobody's provided any evidence that that happens any more often than "seatbelt traps or lacerates" does - certainly not that it happens enough to justify blanket bans.

There's a Top Gear clip (I only saw it the once, and I can't remember enough of it to be sure I can find it again quickly) where Jeremy Clarkson was maneuvering (under control) in a car without seat belts, and he actually slides out of his seat entirely. I'll post a link if I can find it again. I think it may have been one of the BBC sponsored clips.


Both your examples seem to involve "hidden" trans-fats. If you are suggesting that trans-fats ought to be outright illegal, even for somebody to buy at a store and use in their own cooking at home, I'd disagree with you.

Actually, no. One involves unreported trans fats in restaurant foods (which was the focus of the bans, as well as the objections to them), while the other involves intentional use of dangerous chemicals that increase measured "gluten" in foodstuffs, which have caused serious injury and death to pets, and a few weeks of cover-up on the part of Menu Foods.

At no point have I commented on the use of reported trans fats in grocery store products.

samkent
2008-Aug-18, 07:34 PM
The difference in me riding with a helmet and you driving without a belt is significant. I am legal and you are not. Personal choice extends only as far as the law allows. Yes I understand that on a motorcycle I will sustain greater injuries that an unbelted auto driver. But I am within the law.

Plus not all riding is for personal enjoyment. Myself this summer, it has been mostly to work due to the high cost of gas. I would wager that cycle riders devote a higher percentage of their attention to the road than most auto drivers.

What about the personal choices of your children? Can they choose if daddy has better odds of coming home?
Look I drove over 25 years without a seatbelt. Then I tried them. I found a couple of autos that had uncomfortable belts. They were made before 1995. But now ALL of the cars I ride/drive have very comfortable belts. The manufacturers have put a great deal of effort in that area. Now I don’t even thing about them, they are buckled without thought. There is no extra time involved. The stories of burning to death due to a stuck belt are anecdotal at best. How many people do you know personally, that were in that position verses how many were in any accident? We all know of someone involved in an accident, but involving a fire?

It boils down to personal laziness not personal choice.


P.S. I have seen motorcyclist in France and the UK. They would be slaughtered on the US roads.
Paris: There is no reason to ride between multiple layers of cars to be first at the light. And then run the light.
UK: To cross the double yellow line to pass slow traffic or riding along side a car in the same lane is just asking for a trip in the long black hearse.

In fact I think it might be legal in Texas to open you car doors on people like that.

SeanF
2008-Aug-18, 07:38 PM
There's a Top Gear clip (I only saw it the once, and I can't remember enough of it to be sure I can find it again quickly) where Jeremy Clarkson was maneuvering (under control) in a car without seat belts, and he actually slides out of his seat entirely. I'll post a link if I can find it again. I think it may have been one of the BBC sponsored clips.
I'm wondering how often it happens in real life.


Actually, no. One involves unreported trans fats in restaurant foods (which was the focus of the bans, as well as the objections to them), while the other involves intentional use of dangerous chemicals that increase measured "gluten" in foodstuffs, which have caused serious injury and death to pets, and a few weeks of cover-up on the part of Menu Foods.
Hmm...and, based on this, you don't see why someone might reasonably conclude the latter was worse? Either way, though, I don't see it as comparable to a seatbelt law.

SeanF
2008-Aug-18, 07:43 PM
The difference in me riding with a helmet and you driving without a belt is significant. I am legal and you are not. Personal choice extends only as far as the law allows. Yes I understand that on a motorcycle I will sustain greater injuries that an unbelted auto driver. But I am within the law.
The subject at hand is not whether it's okay to break the law, but whether this should be the law in the first place.


Plus not all riding is for personal enjoyment. Myself this summer, it has been mostly to work due to the high cost of gas.
But it is legal to drive a motorcycle for personal enjoyment. The law doesn't declare that you cannot take the risk for your personal enjoyment.


I would wager that cycle riders devote a higher percentage of their attention to the road than most auto drivers.
Good for them. It's still more dangerous - and yet still not illegal.


What about the personal choices of your children? Can they choose if daddy has better odds of coming home?
Can yours? How many kids lose their daddies to motorcycle accidents?


Look I drove over 25 years without a seatbelt. Then I tried them. I found a couple of autos that had uncomfortable belts. They were made before 1995. But now ALL of the cars I ride/drive have very comfortable belts.
Good for them. Doesn't justify a law.


In fact I think it might be legal in Texas to open you car doors on people like that.
:lol:

LotusExcelle
2008-Aug-18, 07:44 PM
how many Nascar and F1 drivers refuse to wear seatbelts? It is simple physics... object in motion. If you are not tied inertially to the car by a restraint you *will* projectile yourself into something or someone.

Volvo is currently studying a 4-point harness for cars. Having developed the 3-point in use today I'm confident they will find a 4-point solution AND also confident it will become mandatory.

Put a heavy tool box in the back seat, unrestrained, and hit a wall going 30mph. See what aformentioned toolbox does to the inside of the car.

SeanF
2008-Aug-18, 08:10 PM
How many Nascar and F1 drivers refuse to wear seatbelts?
None of them. They're not idiots.


Put a heavy tool box in the back seat, unrestrained, and hit a wall going 30mph. See what aformentioned toolbox does to the inside of the car.
I didn't hit a wall, but I did once go from 30+mph to a pretty sudden stop when a cat ran in front of my car.

My bowling ball (in the bag) which was in the trunk of my car ended up in the back seat - it actually knocked the folding seat down in order to come through.

(The cat, in case you were wondering, did not survive.)

Moose
2008-Aug-18, 08:32 PM
I'm wondering how often it happens in real life.

In snow country? Often enough, Sean. Often enough.

I've been in a slide (not as the driver) that was recoverable only because the driver was firmly belted in.

I've recovered from something that could have ended up being nasty (loose snow at the apex of a tighter-than-expected highway turn, a bit faster than I should have been going, at night), and the recovery came down to the studs on my tires keeping just enough lateral traction to give me a fighting chance. I still remember the scraping sound. I don't think I could have recovered that unbelted.

I'm just glad there was no oncoming traffic.


Hmm...and, based on this, you don't see why someone might reasonably conclude the latter was worse? Either way, though, I don't see it as comparable to a seatbelt law.

I don't know if someone could reasonably conclude either is more severe.

Other than the company manager who was executed by the Chinese government, no humans are known (by me at least) to have died due to the melamine tainting incident. Only a handful of animals died as a direct result. (Although there were reports of many pet injuries.)

Trans fats are believed to be a major contributor to heart disease. Loads of people are known to have died as the direct result of heart disease. Heart disease is one of the most common causes of death in North America. I don't know how many have died as the direct result of trans fats consumption, but it's probably reasonable to suspect it's >= 1.

But one thing they both have in common: Menu Foods and restaurants in PA were similarly less-than-cooperative when it came time to knock off the practices, and neither volunteered much information about those practices when they came to light.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-18, 08:47 PM
That has been refuted repeatedly in this thread, Sean, none of which you appear to have acknowledged, let alone addressed.

Well, I have addressed and refuted the refutations.

The difference in me riding with a helmet and you driving without a belt is significant. I am legal and you are not. Personal choice extends only as far as the law allows.
Oh really?
So are you Ok with oprressive laws that go too far then?
Not necessarily the example of the OP- but laws in general? As long as there is a law, you are to blindly obey and question nothing?

Yes I understand that on a motorcycle I will sustain greater injuries that an unbelted auto driver. But I am within the law.
whoopdie do.

It boils down to personal laziness not personal choice.

Even assuming that is the case- how does this give others the right to interfere with either?

how many Nascar and F1 drivers refuse to wear seatbelts? It is simple physics... object in motion. If you are not tied inertially to the car by a restraint you *will* projectile yourself into something or someone.

Volvo is currently studying a 4-point harness for cars. Having developed the 3-point in use today I'm confident they will find a 4-point solution AND also confident it will become mandatory.

Put a heavy tool box in the back seat, unrestrained, and hit a wall going 30mph. See what aformentioned toolbox does to the inside of the car.

All of this is utterly irrelevant.
Demonstrate to me (with numbers not a personal video) that human projectiles make up a significant factor in auto accidents.

SeanF
2008-Aug-18, 09:00 PM
In snow country? Often enough, Sean. Often enough.
Oh, well, say no more, then. I'm convinced.

(BTW, it's been known to get snowy and icy around these parts from time to time too, you know)

Gillianren
2008-Aug-18, 09:32 PM
UK: To cross the double yellow line to pass slow traffic or riding along side a car in the same lane is just asking for a trip in the long black hearse.

Actually, I saw something very similar to that happen yesterday. A pair of people on motorcycles were clearly riding together, and one sped up and passed three cars in a go (illegal and stupid), finishing up their passing just as they hit a no passing zone. So the second person followed, starting in the no passing zone. (More illegal and more stupid.)

JohnD
2008-Aug-18, 09:58 PM
I'm sorry, I haven't the time to trawl through this thread, but no one has linked to any of the many crash test videos on line. Here's one from a UK TV programme, Fifth Gear, earlier this year, making the point that while adults MUST belt up in the back of a car, chilren are allowed not to - if the car is a taxicab (London black cab type): http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=BgzbxgEpPOM

Or this one: http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=xU2jrQ4uunU
Or this one: http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=ESLf2m2yt1Q That's not luggage spilling out of the back of the estate car/station wagon.
Or this one: http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=IAMywQwf9yQ It's old - they just don't do crash tests without belts any more. See what explodes the winscreen - yup! Passenger's head.

Fed up with crash test dummies? This is the real thing. People were injured and died in the making of this video.
http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=oSBgd7gyN0g

And finally: http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=T7R4xeKhGhk
That's me, in my car, on the Nurburgring. I was tagged, spun, rolled and crashed. The car is a write off - I'm was not, not a scratch, thanks to being properly belted up (six point racing harness).

JOhn

Moose
2008-Aug-18, 10:26 PM
Thanks, John, I didn't have the time/energy tonight to hunt any good ones down.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-18, 10:50 PM
What's the point?

The question is NOT whether or not people SHOULD wear them.

It is whether or not they should be forced by law to.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-18, 11:30 PM
There are a great many- oh so very many- things that can harm a person.
By harming that one person, it is almost inevitable that others will suffer too.

I chose to join the Army when I was 18.
And had I gone and died in the service- it would have caused other people harm by extension.

And now today, I must think more carefully about the dangerous things I used to do with ease. Simply because I have a very strong reason to live- My Son.
Fortunately for him and I so far- I have managed to stay alive.

But I could be wiped out later tonight. Or tomorrow, or next week. There's just no telling.
Trauma and tragedy are just one aspect, one part of living in this world. And they will always be there.

Even if I make all the right choices, even if I avoid death at every accident and every unlucky circumstance- Even if I watch my health and do all the things doctors say- That day is coming.
I'm gonna die. It's inevitable.

So what really matters in the choices I make? If I affect other people?
maybe life is what counts most.

More than the freedom of death, what might I value while alive?

Freedom.

Without freedom- I may as well be dead. Without it- I feel dead.

How much freedom do I really have? Not much.
Every time I turn on my Air/Conditioner- I am not free.
Every time I set my alarm clock- I am not free.
Every time I look in my rearview mirror- I am not free.

How much freedom am I willing to sacrifice to have certain comforts? How much am I willing to sacrifice in order to have security?

Not
Very
Much!

I would rather confront the the trauma and tragedy of life with the strength of my own single will- and do so freely, than have the security of financial backers, police, courts and lawyers while oppressed.
I would rather defend my home on my own than have police patrolling my hood every night.
Cuz then I have to put up with those overzealous hyperparanoid coppers giving me crap too. The other night, I was harassed by a patrolling deputy for standing in my OWN front yard- on my OWN property at 2am. He asked if I use drugs. He shined his light in my eyes and asked if I was up to any illegal activity.
Yeah, I was up to illegal activity on my own property- Barefoot. I got his badge number.

I would rather suffer trauma and tragedy freely, than to suffer it with enforcement. It's inevitable anyway...
At least then I would have a choice.
The freedom to learn on my own. The choice to suffer or not by my own will and not be dictated to how I will suffer this world at all.

This seat belt example is only ONE example of how this society I live in seeks to impose its will over my own.
Sure, I agree with wearing seatbelts. I think only a fool would NOT wear one.
But I also say a man has the right to BE a fool if he chooses.
And if he suffers or if he grows and learns- that fools has grown into a man by his own will and choice. Or has died or suffered tragedy by his own choice.

If I wanna eat fast food everyday, pig out on trans fats, drive without my seatbelt on, ride a motorcycle without a helmet- If I wanna have high cholesterol, high blood pressure, higher risk of heart congestive failure- I have that right. I can make that choice, I am a grown man. I know the consequences. I know that Trans Fats are bad for me.
Burger King is bad for me. My choice to eat a bunch of McDonalds may be raising Health Care Costs- But at least I have the FREEDOM to Eat that Way!
And I'm willing to PAY for higher health care costs- We already are anyway!
I'm willing to pay a little extra money each year and Mind My Own Business and not stick my nose into what other choices other people make.

If I wanna go hanggliding, skydiving, bungee jumping, cliff diving, base jumping- I Know the risk.
It's bad for me.
Trans fat is bad for me.
BUT I'M ALIVE!
And before the inevitable day of deaths arrival- I wanna LIVE like I'm alive- Free.
I have never wanted to just pig out on Trans fat loaded Ding Dongs so much as when I saw some of the opinions expressed in this thread.
I prefer subway over McDonalds hands down.
But right now- I really want McDonalds.
Someone stop me before I hit the drive thru- I might raise your health care premiums....

Jason
2008-Aug-19, 01:01 AM
So cost/benefit. What is the worst that can happen to you with a seatbelt on? How likely is that compared to what is likely to happen to you if you're not wearing it?

Neverfly
2008-Aug-19, 01:23 AM
So cost/benefit. What is the worst that can happen to you with a seatbelt on? How likely is that compared to what is likely to happen to you if you're not wearing it?

Again, this is irrelevant to the argument.

We all are well aware that not wearing a seatbelt is bad for you.

So is trans fat.

My argument is that the choice has been denied.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-19, 01:36 AM
Another example of law trumping personal choice: Jaywalking.

It is illegal to cross a street if not at a crosswalk and moving while the light is green in the direction you are going.

But plenty of people do it anyway. Occasionally, someone gets a ticket for doing so. Now, who is being endangered by crossing the street? Primarily the person crossing, because if they are hit they will most likely die. The worst they will do to the car is cause a dent in the fender and hood.

Certainly, it can become a safety issue for others when the car that hit you stops and the driver gets out to help. Someone coming from behind could easily smash into the back of that car. But the main danger is to the person who decides to cross without a light.

It is a personal choice to do so. Should it be illegal to do so? I'd argue that * circumstance * is important, but it is not reflected in the law. It is just as illegal to cross a street at 1 in the morning when there is not a car in sight, as it is to cross in the middle of rush hour. I happen to live in a town where the cops are VERY bored (a suburub of Denver) and they've actually ticketed me for jaywalking at 1 in the morning when there wasn't a car on the road.

To me that is completely ridiculous. If I'd been crossing when there were cars, I'd see their point. But I'm not going to walk a block and a half out of my way to use a crosswalk when it is unreasonable to expect that anything can hit me at that time.

The problem with personal safety laws is they have no latitude. They do not take individual circumstances into account, and as such they blanket everyone with unreasonable restrictions. *Any* affront to personal freedom is wrong in my opinion, but since I know those restrictions won't go away, the least we could do is show some common sense when we're drafting the laws.

Jason
2008-Aug-19, 01:56 AM
Again, this is irrelevant to the argument.

We all are well aware that not wearing a seatbelt is bad for you.

So is trans fat.

My argument is that the choice has been denied.

Add personal choice into the cost/benefit analysis. How much is the ability to make a fool of yourself worth? Is it a greater benefit than the ability to be saved from death in a car crash?

Neverfly
2008-Aug-19, 02:08 AM
Add personal choice into the cost/benefit analysis. How much is the ability to make a fool of yourself worth? Is it a greater benefit than the ability to be saved from death in a car crash?

YES.

Gillianren
2008-Aug-19, 02:28 AM
But I'm not going to walk a block and a half out of my way to use a crosswalk when it is unreasonable to expect that anything can hit me at that time.

Aren't all intersections legal crossing places there? Here, not only do you not have to have a crosswalk for it to be a legal crossing at an intersection, but if neither of the nearest intersections have stoplights, you can cross in the middle of the street. Obviously, reasonable caution should be employed. My own street doesn't have a stoplight for about a full mile, but it's still safer to walk down to the crosswalk from certain places because of the way the road curves.

Jason
2008-Aug-19, 03:07 AM
YES.
Well, when you end up a dead fool we'll shed no tears, knowing that you got what you wanted.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-19, 03:09 AM
Well, when you end up a dead fool we'll shed no tears, knowing that you got what you wanted.

Don't hold your breath.
You asked about the right and the ability- But I always buckle up.

Jason
2008-Aug-19, 03:12 AM
Isn't that something of a disconnect then? I'll fight for the rights of others to die as fools, but as for me I'm buckling up!

Neverfly
2008-Aug-19, 03:15 AM
Isn't that something of a disconnect then? I'll fight for the rights of others to die as fools, but as for me I'm buckling up!

No.
I'll fight for the right to choose.
The freedom of choice.
I choose to wear a seatbelt. That is my choice.

Whirlpool
2008-Aug-19, 05:12 AM
I'll assume you had started typing this post before I made my edit. (Apropos of nothing, where I live, you most certainly can go out on a motorbike without a helmet on. And that'll never change so long as a certain event out west continues. :) )


But it's not legal only when there's a necessity.

A hypothetical - I have a car, while my neighbor has a car and a motorcycle (let's say both cars are hybrids or electrics to minimize or eliminate any fuel savings).

We both decide we're just going to go out for a joyride. No real reason, no particular destination, just the fun of the ride. We both have option A - use the car, with our seatbelts.

I, however, choose option B - the car, with no seatbelt - simply because I find it more comfortable and enjoyable than A. No other reason.

My neighbor chooses option C - the motorcycle, with a helmet - simply because he finds it more comfortable and enjoyable than A. Again, no other reason.

Since his choice is more likely to kill or injure him (and incur financial cost to society) than mine is, why is my choice illegal and his not?

More importantly, why should my choice be illegal if his is not?

It's a matter of personal responsibility whether you choose to ride a motorbike or a car , with or without seatbelts and helmets on.

It's the responsibility that should always be present in a motorists mind everytime he goes out and use his means of transportation , whether it be car, motorbike, or any particular vehicle.

Laws exists because there's a need to come up with one . All of those have rootcauses , where these Seatbelt laws and Helmet Laws are orginated , most probably because before there were a lot of accidents happened and lives are lost easily in a vehicle crash , or in a motorcycle crash . I know that there are other factors and causes why there vehicle accidents happened and this is just one of the factors. The idea of how to lessen lost of lives is what those inventors come up with these Seatbelts and Helmets. I hope you get what I'm, trying to point at .

The condition whether it's Legal or Illegal lies only because it is already A LAW, that us citizens should follow. It is there for us to be reminded to be in order and the responsibility to stay safe not for ourselves but for others too.

Free Will is still there , we still have our Freedom to whatever we wanted to do , just don't forget to be Responsible for every actions that we have to make because consequences are FATAL . We can never take back a LIFE that is lost .

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-19, 10:33 AM
Laws exists because there's a need to come up with one.That's an exceptionally broad generalization. Are you telling me that * all laws * serve a purpose? What about the old ones that are still on the books, forbidding things such as showing your ankles in public, or consuming alcohol on Sundays?

Laws are often the result of panicky, reactionist housewives and preachers who want to look good for their congregation. They often have little purpose behind calming down the housewife and inflating the preacher's ego.


The condition whether it's Legal or Illegal lies only because it is already A LAW, that us citizens should follow. It is there for us to be reminded to be in order and the responsibility to stay safe not for ourselves but for others too.

If the law is wrong, it is our duty as Americans, who are here by right of a Revolution, to ignore that law and cross the line. Quite a few other countries only gained their freedoms by violating the law of the land too.

I personally have nothing against seatbelts. I wear them too. But I recognize that such laws are merely the first step in the road towards further violations of civil liberties. They are dangerous because they get people used to the idea, and when a more eggregious law is on the ballot they might just accept it because they've become complacent because of the "public safety" meme that's been pounded in to them from birth.


We can never take back a LIFE that is lost .

Nor can we ever wrench back a freedom that has been lost to government once it has been ceded to them, without a bloody revolution. And that too will involve deaths - thousands of them.

LotusExcelle
2008-Aug-19, 10:37 AM
Should you be *free* then to use illegal chemicals because you are a grown-up? I mean you can make your own choices so you should be allowed then to snort, shoot, drop anything you want. They take away your freedom of choice when they make certain chemicals illegal.

You can also choose to drink septic tank water. It is not legal to bottle it and sell it but they should offer it on store shelves just so you can have the freedom to choose.

Part of the reason laws exist is to try to protect third parties from suffering the consequences of questionable personal choices. You can have all the personal freedom you want but if it endangers those around you... granted it can go into nanny state territory... but I doubt anyone would argue that plenty of laws really do prevent stupid people from harming others.

The law will not prevent you from never putting on your seat belt. You'll be paying a fine for it if you get caught as its the law to wear one. You still have a choice. but it is an asinine one and if you make that choice you will have to pay for it one way or another.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-19, 10:44 AM
So basically you're saying seatbelt tickets are a "Darwin tax." As in, people who are too stupid to survive should be taxed for their indiscretions.

If that is the case we should also impose a $5 per burger tax on people who frequent fast food places too often and are developing hardened arties and a risk of heart attack.


but I doubt anyone would argue that plenty of laws really do prevent stupid people from harming others.

Agreed.

Whirlpool
2008-Aug-19, 11:31 AM
That's an exceptionally broad generalization. Are you telling me that * all laws * serve a purpose? What about the old ones that are still on the books, forbidding things such as showing your ankles in public, or consuming alcohol on Sundays?

Law by the definition itself , it's an order , a rule of conduct or action prescribed or formally recognized as binding - for whichever purpose it serves.
So, Yes, it serves a purpose. How can a Law be made and recognized if there is no purpose that serves it?
Your example of "not showing ankles in public " lies on the Beliefs of a certain country who are highly influenced by their Religion/Culture.


Laws are often the result of panicky, reactionist housewives and preachers who want to look good for their congregation. They often have little purpose behind calming down the housewife and inflating the preacher's ego.

I believe you are assuming on this one?



If the law is wrong, it is our duty as Americans, who are here by right of a Revolution, to ignore that law and cross the line. Quite a few other countries only gained their freedoms by violating the law of the land too.

IF the LAW is Wrong , Revolution is the last resort.



I personally have nothing against seatbelts. I wear them too. But I recognize that such laws are merely the first step in the road towards further violations of civil liberties. They are dangerous because they get people used to the idea, and when a more eggregious law is on the ballot they might just accept it because they've become complacent because of the "public safety" meme that's been pounded in to them from birth.

But if there are no Law that exists , such as Seatbelts , then there will be more accidents and more lives will be lost .

Imagine if there are No stoplights on every intersection telling to us to "Stop on a Red Light", No Road Sign telling us "Do Not Enter" because it's prohibited , or Slow Down because we are passing a School or a Hospital.

samkent
2008-Aug-19, 11:59 AM
Demonstrate to me (with numbers not a personal video) that human projectiles make up a significant factor in auto accidents.


I don’t have numbers but by 1929 Henry Ford required safety glass in all of it’s cars. Plus here http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Is_auto_glass_safety_glass (http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Is_auto_glass_safety_glass)


Auto Glass is required to meet federal safety standards. The U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards describe the required performance of windshields in these kinds of accidents. Standard 212 is for occupant retention, 216 for rollover, and 218 for passenger side-airbags.

Notice the “occupant retention” part. I have to assume they didn’t enact this requirement on a whim.

Just try seatbelts for a week. I’m sure by the seventh day you won’t mind them anymore then renewing your drivers license.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-19, 12:25 PM
Notice the “occupant retention” part. I have to assume they didn’t enact this requirement on a whim.

Umm, you seem to destroy your own argument with the very evidence you present in favor of it.

Since cars have safety glass to keep people in the vehicle, does that not suggest that it is only a freak anomaly when someone actually makes it through the glass?

KLIK
2008-Aug-19, 12:56 PM
OK, I think some of my differences of opinion are due to different cultures.

I think some laws are so ingrained when people are growing up they don't realise their freedoms are restricted and accept them happily. I can cross any road where and when I want (except motorways), some societies can't.

I can buy and drink alcohol in public from age 18 (16 in Italy) some societies you have to be 21, (some societies alcohol is illegal).

Age of consent here is 16, varies between 12 and 20 in other societies.
So different countries have different levels of freedom.

I think, regardless of the concept of freedom, Society needs a certain number of laws otherwise we have anarchy which benefits very few.
But we all have our own flexible standards: I ride a motorbike and have to wear a helmet, I've never been on an anti-helmet rally but I went on several in London which were anti-leg-guards. (That was one step too far).
I will sometimes refuse to give name and address if stopped by the local police (as is my right) if I think they are just doing a random check.

Viewpoints vary so much; being somewhere by right of revolution is fine, but how do the original inhabitants feel?
We had a revolution and got rid of our king: realised the new lot were worse so got a king back but with extra safeguards.

I've grown up in a country that is very conscious of WWII and fighting for freedom and I've always been grateful to my relatives and all others who took part. And I have a lot of respect for those who continue to fight for freedom; Neverfly and everyone else here who has/does/will.

Couple of quotes I've always believed in:
"I might not agree with the honourable gentlemans views but will defend to the death his right to hold them." (various versions; attr to Voltaire).

"Trade a little freedom for a little security and one day you will wake up to find you have neither." (various versions of a Benjamin Franklin quote).

'When all the dangerous cliffs are fenced off, all the trees that might fall on people are cut down, all of the insects that bite have been poisoned ... and all of the grizzlies are dead because they are occasionally dangerous, the wilderness will not be made safe. Rather, the safety will have destroyed the wilderness.' R. Yorke Edwards

I feel as though Mods are stirring so am a bit worried I'm getting too political.

ps. Neverfly. I'm not trying to take a pop at you or wind you up, just explain (badly) that different cultures see things differently. I like your posts as some make me smile and some make me think, which are 2 of the best things in the world.

Moose
2008-Aug-19, 01:01 PM
I wouldn't suggest that at all, DV. Jason's very first link (from the Fifth Gear show) has a child-weight crash test dummy go through the partition window of a Londonian black cab at 30mph.

One of my professors in college relayed a story about when he'd been in the middle of a many-car pileup on the Autobahn. His eyeglasses went through the rear glass of his car (a Daf, apparently called so "because you'd have to be daft to drive one on the Autobahn") through the front windshield of the car behind him, into that car's back seat. The glasses were, apparently, intact.

I would not, as someone sitting in the front seat of a car, want unsecured backseat cargo/passengers getting catapulted by inertia into the back of my skull.

Nadme
2008-Aug-19, 01:24 PM
I can't fathom why anyone wouldn't wear a seatbelt, considering all the horrific injuries (including ejection) a person can sustain from even a "simple" car crash. It'd be akin to not wanting a fire extinguisher/smoke alarms in one's home, imo.

Should people have the choice not to wear seatbelts? Only if I have the choice, as a taxpayer, to opt out paying medical bills and SSD if they're injured because they didn't...

LotusExcelle
2008-Aug-19, 01:48 PM
Technically the "seatbelt" issue here is a kind of red herring. The argument isn't against wearing seatbelts. its against a law stating you *have* to.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-19, 02:10 PM
My two main points regarding the law stating you have to wear them:

Driving = privilege not right. Driving is not speech, it's not peaceable assembly, it's not trial by jury. It's operating a heavy and powerful piece of equipment that requires a minimum level of verifiable skill.

Roads = public not private. Roads are owned by "the people". "The people" through their elected representatives get to determine what is and isn't reasonable a prudent when operating or riding in a heavy and powerful piece of equipment on the public roads.

Buy yourself a 50 acre plot and put your own road on it and drive however you'd like - but when sharing the roads with other taxpayers - respect the laws that have been passed and limit the risk you pose to other drivers (both monetary and physical). If we don't like the laws - we can elect new legislators with certain regularity, we can lobby the existing ones, or we are free to move.

Moose
2008-Aug-19, 02:10 PM
Technically the "seatbelt" issue here is a kind of red herring. The argument isn't against wearing seatbelts. its against a law stating you *have* to.

Exactly. It's a bit like the expression: "cutting off one's nose to spite their face". If the only reason one can find to oppose the action mandated by a law is that it's mandated by a law, then one must begin to consider whether it may not be the law itself that's wrong.

SeanF
2008-Aug-19, 02:29 PM
Another example of law trumping personal choice: Jaywalking.

It is illegal to cross a street if not at a crosswalk and moving while the light is green in the direction you are going.
I'll disagree on this one. Jaywalking is illegal because it interferes with others' ability to use the roads. Whether I'm wearing a seatbelt or not doesn't contribute to you being in a crash. How I cross the street does.


Should you be *free* then to use illegal chemicals because you are a grown-up? I mean you can make your own choices so you should be allowed then to snort, shoot, drop anything you want. They take away your freedom of choice when they make certain chemicals illegal.
Indeed they do, and a lot of people do object to anti-drug laws. I, for one, would be just fine with drugs being legalized so long as people using drugs can't claim to be non-responsible for their actions.


You can also choose to drink septic tank water. It is not legal to bottle it and sell it but they should offer it on store shelves just so you can have the freedom to choose.
"Should"? No. "Could"? Maybe.


Part of the reason laws exist is to try to protect third parties from suffering the consequences of questionable personal choices.
Exactly. But with seatbelt laws, there's no "third party."


...if you make that choice you will have to pay for it one way or another.
Only because of the law. If there were no law, I could only pay for it one way. :)


I would not, as someone sitting in the front seat of a car, want unsecured backseat cargo/passengers getting catapulted by inertia into the back of my skull.
So refuse to sit in a car with unsecured cargo/passengers. You don't need a law to do that.


If the only reason one can find to oppose the action mandated by a law is that it's mandated by a law, then one must begin to consider whether it may not be the law itself that's wrong.
But nobody - nobody is doing that. We are opposing the mandate, not the action which is mandated.

Moose
2008-Aug-19, 02:43 PM
So refuse to sit in a car with unsecured cargo/passengers. You don't need a law to do that.

My car doesn't move with unbelted passengers. The law greatly reduces my need to argue with my passengers about their insistence on compromising my safety for spurious reasons.


But nobody - nobody is doing that. We are opposing the mandate, not the action which is mandated.

You're opposing the mandate of an action you consider foolhardy, dangerous, and wrong to not do in the absence of that mandate. That is the very definition of "cutting off one's nose to spite one's face".

My cousin, when he was very young, and like many kids, used to refuse to eat his vegetables, not because he didn't like them (he did), but because his parents wanted him to eat them. He'd eat them without fuss if I was sitting for him, or if his parents told him not to. His parents knew what was happening, I knew what was happening, and he knew we knew. He just liked to think he was independent.

SeanF
2008-Aug-19, 02:54 PM
My car doesn't move with unbelted passengers. The law greatly reduces my need to argue with my passengers about their insistence on compromising my safety for spurious reasons.
Keeping your interpersonal relationships on an even keel is not a valid purpose of law. That's your own responsibility. :)


You're opposing the mandate of an action you consider foolhardy, dangerous, and wrong to not do in the absence of that mandate. That is the very definition of "cutting off one's nose to spite one's face".
No, it's not. The correct application of that analogy in this situation would be to someone who opposes the mandate by refusing to wear their seatbelt. To wit:


My cousin, when he was very young, and like many kids, used to refuse to eat his vegetables, not because he didn't like them (he did), but because his parents wanted him to eat them. He'd eat them without fuss if I was sitting for him, or if his parents told him not to. His parents knew what was happening, I knew what was happening, and he knew we knew. He just liked to think he was independent.
He refused to do what was mandated, even though he knew it was the right thing to do. That's "cutting off your nose to spite your face," and it's not what I'm doing.

You're basically suggesting that if I think people should do something, then it ought to be okay with me if the government forces people to do it. Now, it is certainly true that everything I think the government should force people to do is something I think people should do. But going the other way? Not a chance.

(BTW, your cousin's parents would've had a much easier time arguing with your cousing about eating his vegetables if it were required by law - and it's stupid and unhealthy to not eat vegetables. There ought to be a law, eh?)

Moose
2008-Aug-19, 03:09 PM
He refused to do what was mandated, even though he knew it was the right thing to do. That's "cutting off your nose to spite your face," and it's not what I'm doing.

No. He never actually refused to eat his vegetables. He refused to obey his parents, aka, "the law" in a 4yo's limited understanding of the world.

If they ordered him to not eat his vegetables, he'd eat the vegetables. And with a smirk on his face that made his nose seem to vanish.

Oh, and to cover your other point? The law does sternly mandate that his parents do not have the right to neglect his well-being. His well-being requires him to eat a healthy diet, something his mother, being a nutritionist, knows very well. Therefore, my cousin must eat his vegetables, as mandated by law. If that takes ordering him not to, so be it.

He outgrew that, mostly, once he hit 18 and started his vocational schooling where his peer-group suddenly became adults with families.


You're basically suggesting that if I think people should do something, then it ought to be okay with me if the government forces people to do it.

Not quite. Close, but not quite. I think you have every right to think it's not okay to have certain rules, for whatever reasons you think is justified. I simply don't at all share your view of what reasons are justifiable.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-19, 03:22 PM
My cousin, when he was very young, and like many kids, used to refuse to eat his vegetables, not because he didn't like them (he did), but because his parents wanted him to eat them. He'd eat them without fuss if I was sitting for him, or if his parents told him not to. His parents knew what was happening, I knew what was happening, and he knew we knew. He just liked to think he was independent.

Right, so not only are laws which inhibit personal choice wrong in principle, they're wrong in practice too, because they will in fact encourage people to take those actions.

In countries where marijuana is legal or decriminalized, usage is actually far lower than in America with its foolhardy "War on Drugs." People want to do it because it is forbidden. We're creating criminals by making a harmless act illegal.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-19, 03:38 PM
Right, so not only are laws which inhibit personal choice wrong in principle, they're wrong in practice too, because they will in fact encourage people to take those actions.

In countries where marijuana is legal or decriminalized, usage is actually far lower than in America with its foolhardy "War on Drugs." People want to do it because it is forbidden. We're creating criminals by making a harmless act illegal.

Except with the drug laws, one could make a tangible case that the law does more harm than good. I think you'd be hard pressed to make the same case for seatbelts. We don't have an entire industry of illegal beltless cars being created on the bases of these laws. In fact, other than a perceived violation of a freedom that I don't agree is inherent, there is no negative consequence to requiring drivers and passengers in vehicles to wear seatbelts.

Moose
2008-Aug-19, 03:53 PM
Except with the drug laws, one could make a tangible case that the law does more harm than good. I think you'd be hard pressed to make the same case for seatbelts.

... Or, on the other extreme: murder.


We don't have an entire industry of illegal beltless cars being created on the bases of these laws. In fact, other than a perceived violation of a freedom that I don't agree is inherent, there is no negative consequence to requiring drivers and passengers in vehicles to wear seatbelts.

Well said.

In fact, while it might be (and has been) argued that you should have the personal freedom to choose how to behave inside a private vehicle, the argument fails when you realize that what the laws are really regulating is how you can behave while driving on public roads, and that both the private driver and private vehicle must be certified by the state in order to drive on that public road.

What's neat about this is that this is absolutely the identical argument made to try and justify the lack of seatbelts. My vehicle, my rules.

Okay. Fair enough. State's roads, state's rules. Same standard of justification.

Most jurisdictions don't even try to regulate the operation of otherwise uncertifiable drivers or motor vehicles on private tracks.

Gillianren
2008-Aug-19, 04:03 PM
Nor can we ever wrench back a freedom that has been lost to government once it has been ceded to them, without a bloody revolution. And that too will involve deaths - thousands of them.

I encourage you to examine your history books or copy of the Constitution. Most prominent among the examples that will prove you wrong on that is the Twenty-First Amendment.

SeanF
2008-Aug-19, 04:05 PM
No. He never actually refused to eat his vegetables.


My cousin, when he was very young, and like many kids, used to refuse to eat his vegetables...


He refused to obey his parents, aka, "the law" in a 4yo's limited understanding of the world.
Refusing to eat his vegetables is what he was doing (cutting off his nose). Refusing to obey his parents is why he was doing it (to spite his face).

And, again, I am not refusing to obey the law.

But our debate about the applicability of the analogy is getting us off-topic. :)


Oh, and to cover your other point? The law does sternly mandate that his parents do not have the right to neglect his well-being. His well-being requires him to eat a healthy diet, something his mother, being a nutritionist, knows very well. Therefore, my cousin must eat his vegetables, as mandated by law. If that takes ordering him not to, so be it.
Yeah, I realized after I posted that - since I've never objected to child restraint laws - the comparison to your cousin, specifically, wasn't really valid.

However, unless you want the government requiring you to eat your vegetables (do you?), don't require me to wear my seatbelt. Okay? :)


In fact, while it might be (and has been) argued that you should have the personal freedom to choose how to behave inside a private vehicle, the argument fails when you realize that what the laws are really regulating is how you can behave while driving on public roads, and that both the private driver and private vehicle must be certified by the state in order to drive on that public road.
samkent already tried that one. Would you accept as valid a law requiring all drivers to wear blue shirts, because the roads are public?

There is a need to regulate driver behavior to the extent that that behavior would cause problems for other drivers. That's why you've been going on about "human projectiles" and "losing control" and "insurance costs" and what not - you realize that you need to show my choice has some effect on you to justify the law regulating my choice.

Whether or not I wear a seatbelt does not affect you to any appreciable degree moreso than whether or not I wear a blue shirt, so the mandate is not appreciably more acceptable.

LotusExcelle
2008-Aug-19, 04:12 PM
Operating a private vehicle (your personal car) on a public road in an unsafe manner IS against the law. The seatbelt may be a whipping post here but whether or not you *personally* feel safe with the belt off does not change the fact that it is an *unsafe* practice not only for you personally but for others on the public road. Ride with me once without a seatbelt and the first time you slide off your seat I'm pretty sure you'll be buckling up. As a driver you need to stay planted - this is *also* why seats that don't operate properly (i.e. fold/unfold or slide back and forth without locking) are illegal and part of proper DOT inspections. You moving in the car = unsafe. Period. For everyone on the road.

Also merely driving, as stated, is not a right. They are not taking away a right you would otherwise have. Take pilots for example. There are tons and tons of rules, regulations, and yes - laws - regarding piloting. These are not only to protect the pilot himself but anyone in the sky within range of his plane. If it limits his freedom in that plane does that mean the law is wrong?

Moose
2008-Aug-19, 04:21 PM
samkent already tried that one. Would you accept as valid a law requiring all drivers to wear blue shirts, because the roads are public?

Yes, if there was sufficient rationale to cause a favorable vote by the representative government elected to represent my interests, and no significant reason to the contrary.

Since they haven't (because there's no such rationale for doing so), it's a non-sequitur.


There is a need to regulate driver behavior to the extent that that behavior would cause problems for other drivers. That's why you've been going on about "human projectiles" and "losing control" and "insurance costs" and what not - you realize that you need to show my choice has some effect on you to justify the law regulating my choice.

This has been done repeatedly, most compellingly in this thread by Jason. That you decline to be persuaded says nothing whatsoever about the persuasive quality of that evidence. Only that your bar is set higher.

And I have to point out your use of the affirmative rebuttal. You've repeatedly made the claim that driving (or being a passenger) without a seatbelt does not affect other drivers or passengers, and as such, the seatbelt laws should be repealed. (In fact, that's the whole OP of this thread.)

That's an affirmative claim you have yet to attempt to justify with anything resembling evidence. The burden of proof for that claim is entirely yours.


Whether or not I wear a seatbelt does not affect you to any appreciable degree moreso than whether or not I wear a blue shirt, so the mandate is not appreciably more acceptable.

It does. It has been shown repeatedly in this thread. That you decline to accept such evidence is not in itself sufficient for a successful affirmative rebuttal.

SeanF
2008-Aug-19, 06:07 PM
samkent already tried that one. Would you accept as valid a law requiring all drivers to wear blue shirts, because the roads are public?
Yes, if there was sufficient rationale to cause a favorable vote by the representative government elected to represent my interests, and no significant reason to the contrary.
If there was sufficient rationale? That's my point. The "public roads" argument is not sufficient rationale - it is not any kind of rationale - and as such is a red herring.

(BTW, can you honestly imagine any "sufficient rationale" for an "anybody driving a car must wear a blue shirt" law?)


And I have to point out your use of the affirmative rebuttal. You've repeatedly made the claim that driving (or being a passenger) without a seatbelt does not affect other drivers or passengers, and as such, the seatbelt laws should be repealed. (In fact, that's the whole OP of this thread.)

That's an affirmative claim you have yet to attempt to justify with anything resembling evidence. The burden of proof for that claim is entirely yours.
Nope. The default position on any activity is "legal." It is those who think it should be "illegal" who carry the responsibility of demonstrating a reason.


It does. It has been shown repeatedly in this thread.
No, it hasn't. It has been shown to be possible - but, then, so is the "trapped in a burning car" scenario. It has not been shown to be anything close to "common" or "likely."

HenrikOlsen
2008-Aug-19, 06:33 PM
Ok, trying to summarize:
Nobody is arguing that seat belts shouldn't be worn.

The main argument for the position that not wearing seat belts can negatively affect others is economical.

The main argument against seatbelt laws is that they are undue interference with free choice in a situation where the harm to others do not outweigh the need for free choice.
The main argument for seatbelt laws is that they are due interference with free choice in a situation where the harm to others do outweigh the need for free choice.

This entire discussion is about how much weight you put on the value of free choice vs. how much weight you put on the value of economical impact in society as a whole.

Since this is fundamentally a discussion about values rather than facts, it can't be resolved by discussing facts and won't be likely to get anywhere with further discussion.

I'm giving you about a page to prove me wrong on this, otherwise I'll close the thread.

Moose
2008-Aug-19, 06:35 PM
If there was sufficient rationale? That's my point. The "public roads" argument is not sufficient rationale - it is not any kind of rationale - and as such is a red herring.

Then kindly drop the "private vehicle" argument you've been leaning on, as they are based on exactly the same rationale and justification. Your car, their roads. You cannot have it both ways.


(BTW, can you honestly imagine any "sufficient rationale" for an "anybody driving a car must wear a blue shirt" law?)

Sean, you've been quoting very selectively in this thread.


Since they haven't (because there's no such rationale for doing so), it's a non-sequitur.

It's still a non-sequitur, a red herring, as you say. But it's your red herring. Not mine.


Nope. The default position on any activity is "legal." It is those who think it should be "illegal" who carry the responsibility of demonstrating a reason.

No. Not when it comes to driving motor vehicles on public roads.

Before you're permitted to drive a car, you must meet safety and competence requirements, register the vehicle, prove it's safe, be insured, etc.

To keep the privilege of driving, you must drive that vehicle in a safe and sane manner, and renew it periodically to keep it from expiring on a set schedule. To keep your car on the road, you must also renew its registration and insurance, which also expire.

The default permissiveness of driving is "not permitted" until you meet the conditions your state has set as prerequisites for certification.

I have the South Dakota motor vehicle manual in front of me. The list of requirements is extensive, 18 pages of PDF, and similar to that in my own province.


No, it hasn't. It has been shown to be possible - but, then, so is the "trapped in a burning car" scenario. It has not been shown to be anything close to "common" or "likely."

Sean. Are you seriously suggesting that you need a statistically-valid study to prove to you that Newton's 1st and 3rd laws hold for objects inside of a car?

Moose
2008-Aug-19, 06:41 PM
Use Safety Belts And Child Restraints

Before you drive away, always fasten your safety belts and make sure all your passengers are using safety belts or child restraints. Also remember to lock the vehicle's doors.

It is important that you and your passengers use safety belts. Studies have shown that if you are in an accident while using safety belts, your chances of being hurt or killed are greatly reduced. In South Dakota, it is illegal to drive or to be a front-seat passenger without wearing safety belts.

If your vehicle has a two-part safety belt system, be sure to wear both the lap-belt and the shoulder-belt. Wearing either part alone greatly reduces your protection. If you have an automatic shoulder belt, be sure to buckle your lap belt as well. Otherwise, in a collision you could slide out of the belt and be hurt or killed.

In addition to protecting you from injury as a driver, safety belts help you keep control of the vehicle. If you are struck from the side or make a quick turn, the force could push you sideways. You cannot steer the vehicle if you are not behind the wheel.

Safety belts should be worn even if the vehicle is equipped with air bags. While air bags are good protection against hitting the steering wheel, dashboard, or windshield, they do not protect you if you are hit from the side or rear or if the vehicle rolls over. And, an air bag will not keep you behind the wheel in these situations.

The law requires that all operators, front seat passengers and children under the age of 18 wear appropriate safety restraints while the vehicle is in motion. Small children should be secured in the rear seat. Never secure a child in the front passenger side, especially if your vehicle has an air bag. If you are in a crash and the bag deploys, your child could be injured. A number of organizations will loan you a child safety device if you are unable to afford one.

You may not believe your state has a rationale, Sean, but they certainly believe they do. Reducing your "freedoms" isn't among them.

Moose
2008-Aug-19, 06:44 PM
Some people still have “bad information” about using safety belts. For example,

“Safety belts can trap you inside a car.” It takes less than a second to undo a safety belt. Crashes where a vehicle catches fire or sinks in deep water, and you are "trapped", seldom happen. Even if an accident such as this were to happen, a safety belt may keep you from being “knocked out”. Your chance to escape will be better if you are conscious.

“Safety belts are good on long trips, but I do not need them if I am driving around town.” Over half of all traffic deaths happen within 25 miles of home. Many of them occur on roads posted at less then 45 mph.

“Some people are thrown clear in a crash and walk away with hardly a scratch.” Your chances of not being killed in an accident are much better if you stay inside the vehicle. Safety belts can keep you from being thrown out of your vehicle, into the path of another one.

“If I get hit from the side, I am better off being thrown across the car; away from the crash point.” When a vehicle is struck from the side, it will move sideways. Everything in the vehicle that is not fastened down, including the passengers, will slide toward the point of crash, not away from it.

“At slow speeds, I can brace myself." Even at 25 mph, the force of a head-on crash is the same as pedaling a bicycle full-speed into a brick wall or diving off a three-story building onto the sidewalk. No one can “brace” for that.

Still skimming...

SeanF
2008-Aug-19, 06:52 PM
Then kindly drop the "private vehicle" argument you've been leaning on, as they are based on exactly the same rationale and justification. Your car, their roads. You cannot have it both ways.
What "private vehicle" argument? The basis of my argument is that actions should not be prohibited by law unless they can be shown to (more than negligibly) infringe upon the freedoms or rights of others. Where are you getting "private vehicle" from?


It's still a non-sequitur, a red herring, as you say. But it's your red herring. Not mine.
No, it's yours. The roads are public so any rules the government puts in place on them are valid. That's your argument.



Nope. The default position on any activity is "legal." It is those who think it should be "illegal" who carry the responsibility of demonstrating a reason.

No. Not when it comes to driving motor vehicles on public roads.

Before you're permitted to drive a car, you must meet safety and competence requirements, register the vehicle, prove it's safe, be insured, etc.
Now you do. But go back a hundred years. No registration, no licensing, no insurance. Why did those laws get passed? Because there were demonstrable effects on others.


Sean. Are you seriously suggesting that you need a statistically-valid study to prove to you that Newton's 1st and 3rd laws hold for objects inside of a car?
No, I'm suggesting that I need a statistically-valid study to prove to me that a driver losing control of his vehicle or becoming a dangerous-to-others 'missile' as a result of not wearing their seatbelt is either common or likely.

Moose
2008-Aug-19, 07:06 PM
The main argument against seatbelt laws is that they are undue interference with free choice in a situation where the harm to others do not outweigh the need for free choice.
The main argument for seatbelt laws is that they are due interference with free choice in a situation where the harm to others do outweigh the need for free choice.

That's a fair summary.


Since this is fundamentally a discussion about values rather than facts, it can't be resolved by discussing facts and won't be likely to get anywhere with further discussion.

And a fair assessment too. I'm prepared to drop this, because I can feel my temp rising more than I'm comfortable allowing it to.

SeanF
2008-Aug-19, 07:31 PM
I'm prepared to drop this, because I can feel my temp rising more than I'm comfortable allowing it to.
Me, too.


Still friends? :)

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-19, 07:37 PM
Awe, come on. I was having fun. One day you'll all see it my way. I just know it!

Moose
2008-Aug-19, 07:38 PM
Still friends? :)

Always, Sean. Always.

Still on for the Nerf pistol duel?

Neverfly
2008-Aug-19, 07:42 PM
Just try seatbelts for a week. I’m sure by the seventh day you won’t mind them anymore then renewing your drivers license.
I always wear my seatbelt- I have always worn my seatbelt. Seatbelts don't bother me in the least.

Technically the "seatbelt" issue here is a kind of red herring. The argument isn't against wearing seatbelts. its against a law stating you *have* to.
Yes, yes, yes....

Ok, trying to summarize:
Nobody is arguing that seat belts shouldn't be worn.
this is I think, the tenth comment made now- addressing what the actual issue is.

I'm giving you about a page to prove me wrong on this, otherwise I'll close the thread.
And I think you hit the nail on the head.
How can a discussion take place if the sides are declaring what the other side is saying even in direct contradiction with what they said?
I'm getting awfully tired of clarifying that I always wear my seatbelt.

OK, I think some of my differences of opinion are due to different cultures.

Couple of quotes I've always believed in:
"I might not agree with the honourable gentlemans views but will defend to the death his right to hold them." (various versions; attr to Voltaire).

"Trade a little freedom for a little security and one day you will wake up to find you have neither." (various versions of a Benjamin Franklin quote).

'When all the dangerous cliffs are fenced off, all the trees that might fall on people are cut down, all of the insects that bite have been poisoned ... and all of the grizzlies are dead because they are occasionally dangerous, the wilderness will not be made safe. Rather, the safety will have destroyed the wilderness.' R. Yorke Edwards

I feel as though Mods are stirring so am a bit worried I'm getting too political.

ps. Neverfly. I'm not trying to take a pop at you or wind you up, just explain that different cultures see things differently.
I don't see how you think I might feel popped at.
This particular post was an excellent one. We may disagree on the principle behind the particular law we are discussing, but you have also clarified some very good points about cultural impact.
Imagine growing up in Singapore.
If I went and tried to live in Singapore right now, I would be executed.

I'm one of those militant, hard core freedom types. This doesn't equate to fighting always, but to always making your stand.
If we are grateful for the freedom provided by the Nazi defeat...
And if we are conditioned to experience freedom differently...

Then how could we say that we wouldn't have felt Hitler brought us our freedom today had the Nazi's won the war then?

If I grew up in the Old Soviet Union, I would be comfortable with the kind of oppression?

You know- I really don't think this is the case. There may be cultural differences in opinion about freedom, but I think freedom as a whole within human nature remains the same. And any cultural will feel oppressed when freedom gets restricted.
If we can refrain from ticking off HenrikOlsen:p- it might be interesting to see where the cultural significance goes.

tdvance
2008-Aug-19, 07:46 PM
HenrikOlsen's summary is about right.

It comes partly down to, what is the role of government? Is it the government that governs least that governs best, or should government be more like a father to people and do things "for their own good"? I argue for the former--the choice is clear at the extremes (very few--though admittedly nonzero--would leave a free country to live in China or the former USSR), but results in argument for the various positions in between the extremes.

One more thing I'll throw out for consideration. We often talk about the "dumbing down" of society in general. There are a lot of reasons for it (e.g. education by fad, like the open classroom stuff) but one reason is conditioning people to trust in someone else to do "what's best" for them. Thinking is hard and people avoid it when they can (as I learned trying to teach calculus to students, some of whom explicitly asked for a recipe for doing the problems mechanically). Seatbelt laws--very small in themselves, but consider them in the context of that entire class of protection-from-self laws--and in fact, restriction of freedom in general (even when justified!)--is necessarily a dumbing-down procedure. I would argue therefore, it darn well better be absolutely necessary for society to function--and it clearly isn't. (Case in point--Eskimo children play with knives without killing each other--because they know better--don't try that with our own kids who are used to a higher level of protection--protecting children is important, but it does slow down learning--it has a nonzero cost).

SeanF
2008-Aug-19, 07:52 PM
Always, Sean. Always.

Still on for the Nerf pistol duel?
Absolutely! :)

mugaliens
2008-Aug-19, 10:10 PM
My, my. I wondered where everyone had been spending their time...

Moose
2008-Aug-19, 10:11 PM
Yeah, Sean and I are still tied at 275 apiece.

mugaliens
2008-Aug-19, 10:23 PM
I see much of the positioning here running along the lines of "they'll take away my gun when they pry it out of my cold, dead fingers!"

The difference is that my owning a gun is several orders of magnitude less likely to grab money out of your pocket than my refusing to wear a seatbelt.

So, let's break things down into privilege, and responsibility, with the idea that if you shirk the responsibility part, you relinquish claim to the privilege.

That's Relationships 101, whether marriage, dating, group, work, community, or society.

Marriage:

Privilege: Companion, less financial burden, splitting/sharing the labor of life.

Responsibility: Home at a reasonable hour, take care of one another/kids, honesty, committment.

Seatbelts:

Privilege: The more people in society wear seatbelts, the lower everyone's premiums.

Responsibility: Buckle up!

It's not that I care about whether or not you buckle up. I do care about you and any sizeable percentage of others who choose not to buckle up and in so doing result in greater carnage to themselves and their passengers, which results in more payouts which results in overall higher insurence rates.

The bottom line is that society just won't tolerate your trying to claim the privilage of unbuckling if you're unwilling to shoulder the responsibility yourself by paying your own higher premiums to match your riskier behavior.

That's Insurance 101, folks, like it or not (I didn't ask whether you agreed with it).

TANSTAAFL, and good night!

(That last was Heinlein 101)

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-19, 10:28 PM
HenrikOlsen's summary is about right.

It comes partly down to, what is the role of government? Is it the government that governs least that governs best, or should government be more like a father to people and do things "for their own good"? I argue for the former--the choice is clear at the extremes (very few--though admittedly nonzero--would leave a free country to live in China or the former USSR), but results in argument for the various positions in between the extremes.

One more thing I'll throw out for consideration. We often talk about the "dumbing down" of society in general. There are a lot of reasons for it (e.g. education by fad, like the open classroom stuff) but one reason is conditioning people to trust in someone else to do "what's best" for them. Thinking is hard and people avoid it when they can (as I learned trying to teach calculus to students, some of whom explicitly asked for a recipe for doing the problems mechanically). Seatbelt laws--very small in themselves, but consider them in the context of that entire class of protection-from-self laws--and in fact, restriction of freedom in general (even when justified!)--is necessarily a dumbing-down procedure. I would argue therefore, it darn well better be absolutely necessary for society to function--and it clearly isn't. (Case in point--Eskimo children play with knives without killing each other--because they know better--don't try that with our own kids who are used to a higher level of protection--protecting children is important, but it does slow down learning--it has a nonzero cost).

http://forums.mystery-axiom.com/images/smilies/repplus.gif

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-19, 10:37 PM
The difference is that my owning a gun is several orders of magnitude less likely to grab money out of your pocket than my refusing to wear a seatbelt.

Have you seen the numbers on crime lately? I'd argue that someone's gun is statistically far more likely to take money from your pocket than for a human missle to suddenly dive through the window of a car and land directly in front of you, causing you to swerve in to a tree. People get robbed every day. The "human missle" scenario is a red herring that constitutes an exception to the rule, not the rule itself.


The bottom line is that society just won't tolerate your trying to claim the privilage of unbuckling if you're unwilling to shoulder the responsibility yourself by paying your own higher premiums to match your riskier behavior.

That's Insurance 101, folks, like it or not (I didn't ask whether you agreed with it).

TANSTAAFL, and good night!

How can you possibly quote The Moon is A Harsh Mistress in a discussion where you are in *favor* of governmental control over free choice? The lunar society was one of complete freedom from government control. Your responsbility was to your fellow man, not to an abstract (and often corrupt) symbol of a government.

The system was called "practical anarchism" and if you ask me would be a perfectly acceptable alternative to our current system.

I will start living up to my responsibility to my government when they begin living up to their responsibilities to the American people. They have been selling us out for far too long and I for one am sick of it. Peaceful protest clearly does not work with the groups in power. They simply don't care what the people want.

toothdust
2008-Aug-19, 10:50 PM
Probably already been said, but the seatbelt laws are hypocritical. Why isn't there a mtorcycle helmet law, or bicycle helmet law? How about a law preventing people from eating fatty foods, or over-consumption of sugar? How about laws against drinking alcohol, or smoking tobacco?

Clearly the government doesn;t really care about our health or safety, they care more about imposing ridiculous laws on a "free" society.

And an abstract thought, why not let people do whatever they want, and let evolution do its own work. If idiots out there don't want to buckle up, wear a helmet, eat fast food 10 times a week, or drink themselves to oblivion, LET THEM (as long as they don't reproduce first....).

Of course if we actually had an education system worth a sneeze in this world, people would be smart enough to make their own choices through reason and critical thinking.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-19, 11:05 PM
^ Couldn't agree more.


I encourage you to examine your history books or copy of the Constitution. Most prominent among the examples that will prove you wrong on that is the Twenty-First Amendment.

A hundred years ago we could get away with that. We didn't have television a hundred years ago. Let me know when that federal amendment getting rid of drug prohibition goes through.

LotusExcelle
2008-Aug-19, 11:11 PM
Probably already been said, but the seatbelt laws are hypocritical. Why isn't there a mtorcycle helmet law, or bicycle helmet law? How about a law preventing people from eating fatty foods, or over-consumption of sugar? How about laws against drinking alcohol, or smoking tobacco?

Clearly the government doesn;t really care about our health or safety, they care more about imposing ridiculous laws on a "free" society.

And an abstract thought, why not let people do whatever they want, and let evolution do its own work. If idiots out there don't want to buckle up, wear a helmet, eat fast food 10 times a week, or drink themselves to oblivion, LET THEM (as long as they don't reproduce first....).

Of course if we actually had an education system worth a sneeze in this world, people would be smart enough to make their own choices through reason and critical thinking.

You are missing something.

Third party collateral damage

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-19, 11:21 PM
Hey, what's good for the goose is good for the gander. If the government is willing to accept hundreds of thousands of people dying as collateral damage when bombing other countries (in the name of freedom), I'm willing to accept a theoretical, occasional bit of collateral damage in the name of freedom from government control.

(Okay, that sounds totally callous and a bit childish - "I don't have to care about people if you don't!" - But I was just making a point.)

Gillianren
2008-Aug-20, 12:16 AM
A hundred years ago we could get away with that. We didn't have television a hundred years ago. Let me know when that federal amendment getting rid of drug prohibition goes through.

A, try eighty. B, there's no Constitutional amendment starting drug prohibition, and you'll note that there's a strong and somewhat successful movement toward medicinal marijuana, if nothing else. C, in some instances, television has benefited those trying for greater freedom. See also the Civil Rights Movement.

HenrikOlsen
2008-Aug-20, 12:19 AM
Probably already been said, but the seatbelt laws are hypocritical. Why isn't there a mtorcycle helmet
law,
Some states have them.


or bicycle helmet law?
Less damage in falling off a bicycle.

As this is about weighing freedom against cost, it is not hypocritical to select for mandatory use when the price is high and for optional but recommended when it's lower.

To have mandatory bicycle helmet laws without mandatory seatbelt laws would be hypocritical, having a seatbelt law and no bicycle helmet law is not.


How about a law preventing people from eating fatty foods, or over-consumption of sugar? How about laws against drinking alcohol, or smoking tobacco?
How about laws against ads for alcohol, tobacco and McD instead?
Companies are not covered by the free speech clause of the first amendment so they have no constitutional right to push their harmful products.

Moose
2008-Aug-20, 12:51 AM
My province has laws mandating helmet use on bikes and... bikes (which I personally find a nuisance.) Canada heavily restricts tobacco advertising, and I think booze ads have some restrictions as well, mostly in relation to proximity to schools.

All that's left is to stop the clown, and we've got a full set.

Neverfly
2008-Aug-20, 01:18 AM
Toothdust,
It isn't just that the law puts a law out- It is that these laws are a Source Of Revenue.

I'll give an example:
Not long after the City of Austin had capped out and announced a huge deficit, the "Click it or Ticket" campaign went into effect.
An officer was posted unmarked at the intersection of US Highway 183 and IH-35.
I pursued no one.
His job was to watch the traffic and call in the cars that he observed with people not wearing seatbelts. Those folks called in were then pulled over by other marked officers posted in each of the four directions- depending on which way they went.

IN a matter of a few hours, APD had made $10,000 for the city of Austin.
This kept up until angry citizens reported this as police abuse of the law. The (then) police chief was pressured by city officials tired of being complained to.
He then (under pressure from other city officials to Make Da Money) moved the campaign every three hours to various locations throughout the city.

"Click it or ticket" is about revenue. Not about safety.

publius
2008-Aug-20, 01:36 AM
Neverfly,

Seatbelt laws largely come from Washington. Traffic laws are obviously not a federal concern, but a state power (well, I'm sure they would creatively interpret the interstate commerce clause to claim federal power, if need be). So what did Washington do? It threatened to take away federal highway funds if the states didn't act the seatbelt laws.

For years we had a secondary seat belt law. The cops couldn't stop you soley for not wearing seatbelt, but could ticket you if they stopped you for something else. So what they would do is come up with some flimsy pretense to stop you if they saw you not wearing a seatbelt.

One tactic was a road stop/license check. I got caught in one of those several years ago. Made me so mad I could spit and I made a stink about it. I called the local Highway Patrol Captain and blessed him out, and blessed out all the politicians as well. The state AG finally ruled that those traffic stops for seatbelt violations were an abuse and ordered them to stop it.

I went all the way to a jury trial with it. I lost, but I was my own lawyer. Too cheap to hire one for that. :lol: But I achieved my goal which was to make the state spend far more time and money tha the fine was worth. I encourage everyone to fight 'em all the way to the bitter end. If everyone did that, it would change the revenue equation greatly. Some Beaufort T. gives you a ticket for this crap, fight him all the way.

But the pressure groups, with heavy lobbying from the highway patrol and other law enforcement got a primary seat belt law passed a while back. I fought it tooth and nail, but it was a loosing battle.

Now, the funny thing was while all that was going on, the motorcyle enthusiasts, the "air through their hair" crowd, were lobbying to *repeal* helmet laws. They succeeded.

At the same time the seat-belt crowd was tightening up the seatbelt laws, they repealed the helmet laws (for everyone over 18 -- still have to protect the children, of course, "For the children").

No one cares as much about the motorcyclist safety -- just isn't on the radar screen of the nanny bunch and so the motorcyclists were able to get it repealed.

-Richard

publius
2008-Aug-20, 04:19 AM
Somewhere a while back, vehicle inspections came up. They repealed that here as well several years back. Before that, every year you had to get your vehicle inspected and put an inspection sticker on the windshield.

Did the state itself inspect them, no they hired out local garages and filling stations, etc, etc to do it. But the fee was set by law at some very low price, and the state got a cut of that as well. It was a losing business to do the inspections, so most mechanics didn't want to do it.

What would happen most of the time was you would go to some shop where you knew the proprietor and mechanics and they knew you well, and they would just slap the sticker on it and collect the fee. If they didn't know you, they'd go through the motions, or send you away if they were busy. Occasionally the state would send undercover agents posing as citizens trying to get their vehicles inspected and make the sure the garage did a proper inspection as required by law. Thus one could get it trouble slapping a sticker on for someone one didn't know

And everyone knew that and realized it was all just a big waste of time and effort and the legislature finally repealed it. At the time, there were some cries about "Our roads will be unsafe!" from the usual suspects who fret over such things, but they didn't amount to much and the repeal went through. That's probably been close to 8 years now, I can't remember.

No detectable difference since then. Had the state allowed the garages to charge much higher fees, the mechanics would've been all for it, and they'd all be extolling the safety benefits of inspections. :) But the wind didn't blow that way and they did the sensible thing.


-Richard

Neverfly
2008-Aug-20, 04:24 AM
They have yet to do that here...

Still have to get vehicle inspections every year.
For older cars, it's a bit of a hassle too, because of the emissions standards.

Many people I know get stickers under the table.

publius
2008-Aug-20, 04:36 AM
The emissions inspections are a different thing -- big federal hand there in the form of the EPA. This was just straight "safety inspections".

The EPA does that on a regional basis, basically city or county. They test the air in a region, and if it doesn't meet the standards, they bring the hammer down. What they do is force the local authority (or state) to implement some measures to get the air quality within the standards through some process.

My county is borderline because of the growth -- they failed the air quality test several times, and it's only a matter of time before we get the pleasure of emissions inspections. And the thing that makes me mad is I live only about half a mile from the county line. Just a half mile and I wouldn't have to worry. :)

-Richard

Neverfly
2008-Aug-20, 04:47 AM
One of the biggest problems I've witnessed..
Mechanics try to deliberately find things wrong with a vehicle so that they can offer a charge to repair it.

One inspection I had done in Oklahoma, I actually stood there and WATCHED the mechanic break my headlight switch and then offer to repair it.
I told him I just SAW him break it- he denied it vehemently.

Moose
2008-Aug-20, 12:29 PM
*nod* I had one [turkey] actually take a crowbar to my tie-rod until he broke it, right in front of me, then insisted he had to fix it or fail the car.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-20, 12:44 PM
No vehicle or emissions inspections here. I know they were going to at one time, becuase there are still a couple abandoned inspection stations that were built around town - but they never got around to implementing it.


Clearly the government doesn;t really care about our health or safety, they care more about imposing ridiculous laws on a "free" society.

Session in congress, "So - how do you think we can send them a message that we're really in charge? I know! Let's make 'em all wear seatbelts! That'll learn 'em!"

Sorry - doesn't pass the most basic of logic tests in my mind. Even if you disagree with the law - you have to acknowledge that it was passed with good intentions and it was based on research with public safety in mind. Of course we've all heard that the road to hell is paved with good intentions. I don't see that as the case with the seatbelt law, but I understand where the expression comes from.

Let's try a wholesale switch to private entities owning the roads and allowing those entities to establish rules for there use. It would be interesting to see what kind of rules they establish. We might actually find them more strict than the rules for public roads.

If I owned a road, I would require seatbelt use and I would have speed limits within reason. I wouldn't want the liability of being sued by a customer if they got injured because I didn't require them to wear a seatbelt.

LotusExcelle
2008-Aug-20, 01:51 PM
Also note that ABS systems are required for heavy trucks now - they literally can't be built without an ABS system. Is that the government trying to impose a law on use lowly serfs? Why are they forcing me to have ABS? Why does my car have ABS?

Personally i *hate* abs systems. I think they lull the driver into a false sense of security and i think its rare that a driver *understands* what ABS is and isn't capable of. but if you've ever seen a heavy truck pirouette on a highway...

Not all laws are designed to oppress freedom. Some really *are* designed to make something safer for general use.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-20, 02:22 PM
The history of improved roads is an interesting thing. Granted, my primary source was wikipedia articles, but I've done a fair amount of reading on some of the historic roadways in the U.S. and how they came about. The Lincoln Highway was particularly interesting.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lincoln_Highway

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Good_Roads_Movement

I know it seems a bit off topic, but I find it interesting.


According to the Association's 1916 Official Road Guide a trip from the Atlantic to the Pacific on the Lincoln Highway was "something of a sporting proposition" and might take 20 to 30 days. To make it in 30 days the motorist would need to average 18 miles (29 km) an hour for 6 hours per day, and driving was only done during daylight hours. The trip was thought to cost no more than $5 a day per person, including food, gas, oil, and even "five or six meals in hotels." Car repairs would, of course, increase the cost.

Since gasoline stations were still rare in many parts of the country, motorists were urged to top off their gasoline at every opportunity, even if they had done so recently. Motorists should wade through water before driving through to verify the depth. The list of recommended equipment included chains, a shovel, axe, jacks, tire casings and inner tubes, tools, and (of course) a pair of Lincoln Highway pennants. And, the guide offered this sage advice: "Don't wear new shoes."

Firearms were not necessary, but west of Omaha full camping equipment was recommended, and the guide warned against drinking alkali water that could cause serious cramps. In certain areas, advice was offered on getting help, for example near Fish Springs, Utah, "If trouble is experienced, build a sagebrush fire. Mr. Thomas will come with a team. He can see you 20 miles off." Later editions omitted Mr. Thomas, but westbound travelers were advised to stop at the Orr's Ranch for advice, and eastbound motorists were to check with Mr. K.C. Davis of Gold Hill, Nevada.


We've come a long way.

samkent
2008-Aug-20, 03:00 PM
The debate between helmets and seat belts is easily answered.

here (http://www.ntsb.gov/Publictn/2000/SPC0003.pdf)

Page 25.

First auto deaths are ten times higher than motorcycle deaths. Hence you get a greater bang for your belt law.

Second seat belts come with every auto so the law does not discriminate. Motorcycles do NOT come with helmets. On that basis a federal mandate to require helmet laws could be considered discriminatory.

Thirdly there are no studies that I am aware of to show helmets would reduce deaths considerably. Only anecdotal evidence and suppositions from the testimony of rescue workers. There were many studies on seat belts. I would expect most of the people ejected from auto crashes would result in deaths. That alone would likely equal all cycle deaths.

Forth the motorcyclists have a better and louder lobby.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-20, 03:12 PM
In rereading the Lincoln Highway stuff - I couldn't help but think how ironic it is to complain about the imposition on personal freedom. This is the same government who's legislation made our vast road systems possible and gave us the freedom to travel from coast to coast in just a couple of days with no restrictions on when you can drive and no requirements to meet when crossing state lines.

Back in the early days of the Lincoln Highway - it took 20 - 30 days of difficult and dangerous travel to make the journey. I'm certain travelors then would trade a little freedom (seatbelts) for a greater freedom (fast and efficient mobility).

Over spring break, the family and I traveled from Michigan to Florida and back and were able to enjoy six full days there. Even 60 years ago - we might not have been able to get there and back in six days. Our vehicle was never inspected on the way. We were never pulled over. The kids were in there car seats / booster seats, we had our seatbelts on with minimal discomfort. Sure we had some construction delays, but those were minor when considering what the travelor had to overcome in past years. Really, the kids are the only ones that have a gripe in this. I remember riding out to California before these laws were in place. That trip would have been rough if we hadn't been able to lay down in the back of the van and sleep, or sit at the table and play games. We were able to trade seats without slowing the whole trip down. The driver is just sitting there regardless of whether the belt is on or not.

If the government is saying that we will allocate a portion of your tax dollars to provide for this great increase in freedom and mobility - we just ask that you obey the speed limit and obide by certain safety requirements - then I'm okay with that.

The blue shirt example being repeated makes no sense at all. There is nothing to gain by wearing a blue shirt as can be argued with seatbelt use. Maybe requiring all cars to be painted bright orange would be a better example. One could argue greater visibility by requiring all cars to be painted bright orange. One could argue a marginal gain in safety as well. You are free to paint your car any color you want, but if you want to use the car on the public roadways, it had better be bright orange. We need to be able to see each other to avoid accidents. It's for the common good.

This one fails as well. What about the bad guys? Unique vehicle descriptions have helped to locate many a kidnapped child or fleeing criminal. The marginal gain in safety would be lost by the increased difficulties in apprehending criminals.

Moose
2008-Aug-20, 03:25 PM
Maybe requiring all cars to be painted bright orange would be a better example. One could argue greater visibility by requiring all cars to be painted bright orange.

I suspect that need has already been covered, and more reasonably, by the many jurisdictions that require cars to have DRLs (Daytime Running Lights). Some require drivers to turn on head/tail lamps in weather conditions with reduced visibility. Last time I was in Pennsylvania, the law required them to be lit in any condition where you need to turn on your windshield wipers.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-20, 03:34 PM
First auto deaths are ten times higher than motorcycle deaths. Hence you get a greater bang for your belt law.

Thirdly there are no studies that I am aware of to show helmets would reduce deaths considerably. Only anecdotal evidence and suppositions from the testimony of rescue workers. There were many studies on seat belts. I would expect most of the people ejected from auto crashes would result in deaths. That alone would likely equal all cycle deaths.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080331172511.htm

The above referenced article shows a significant increase in fatality rates on motorcycles when helmet laws are repealed. It also shows the difference in rates between those states with helmet laws and those without.

If you just consider just automobiles, there are 25.26x as many on the road as there are motorcycles. You are 3x more likely to die in a motorcycle accident then an automobile accident. This doesn't even account for the number of miles traveled in each. Motorcycles are primarily liesure vehicles and not often driven during bad weather (heavy rain, snow and ice).

http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/policy/ohim/hs03/htm/mv1.htm

I found the bus fatalities interesting. Only 58 total in the year that your linked study was conducted. Turns out buses are pretty safe even without seatbelts.

Jason
2008-Aug-20, 03:50 PM
Well that does it then.
I'd love to continue the debate, and I don't mind if my opinions are some of the less popular ones, but when the moderators start looking for excuses to ban you the fun is over. I always thought those guys were a little trigger-happy, closing down threads just when they were becoming really interesting. This latest incident just confirms my opinion.

I bid you all adieu.

P.S. Feel free to chime in with "I thought he'd never leave". I won't be around to read it anyway.

tdvance
2008-Aug-20, 05:19 PM
"Click it or ticket" is about revenue. Not about safety.


I forgot the jurisdiction, but think it was somewhere here in the DC area--a town decided to shut down the red-light cameras because--in light of the cameras, people stopped running red lights and it wasn't making money anymore.

Columbia, and some other towns, I think really were trying to stop fatalities at intersections, as they put the cameras at the intersections having the most fatalities from red-light runners. Baltimore and DC, however, were said by local papers to place the cameras to maximize inflow of fine money--and moving them when people learned which stoplights had the cameras. (Baltimore taxi drivers keep good track of where they were--if there is no camera, it's a bit of a risk to cross the street even with the light in your favor).

tdvance
2008-Aug-20, 05:43 PM
"The above referenced article shows a significant increase in fatality rates on motorcycles when helmet laws are repealed. It also shows the difference in rates between those states with helmet laws and those without."

I think about everyone agrees that seatbelts, helmets, etc. save lives, and that laws requiring them do too. A law requiring life preservers in a swimming pool would as well, as would laws against unlicensed farming or power tool usage or laws against power outlets without locking covers or laws requiring medicines and knives to be stored at least 6 feet off the floor, or (and this was proposed as a regulation 15 or so years ago, and rejected) a regulation on buckets sold in the US requiring them to have a slow leak so that if left full of water for several days, a toddler doesn't fall in one and drown (which happens several times a year).

It's a role of government argument--should we be treated as children, or allow us to be individuals and only moderate actions between the individuals. "Paternalistic Government" is a term used often to describe the former situation. I'd say, if you need a father, at any age, a person is better for the job than a committee or a written law. For most of us, we can think for ourselves--a person only realizes their fullest potential if they do so, as I argued in my previous post in this thread. Some will die--but you know, some will even with the laws--maybe fewer, but a person worried about their own life can simply choose to obey what would be a safety law even if it's not a law. To insist "that's not good enough, everyone else should have to as well" is like that parable of the squirrel who lost his tail and insisted all other squirrels get their tails cut off because "it's so much better to not have to deal with the burden of a tail".

SeanF
2008-Aug-20, 06:15 PM
The debate between helmets and seat belts is easily answered.

here (http://www.ntsb.gov/Publictn/2000/SPC0003.pdf)

Page 25.

First auto deaths are ten times higher than motorcycle deaths. Hence you get a greater bang for your belt law.
Doesn't matter. The helmet law protects an individual motorcyclist to the same extent a seatbelt law protects an individual vehicle driver/passenger. That there are more of the latter than the former is irrelevant.


Second seat belts come with every auto so the law does not discriminate. Motorcycles do NOT come with helmets. On that basis a federal mandate to require helmet laws could be considered discriminatory.
Ah, but the only reason every auto comes with a seatbelt is because the government mandates it. Same thing can be done with motorcycles. :)


Forth the motorcyclists have a better and louder lobby.
This is true. My home state has a seatbelt law but no helmet law, and I will guarantee you the reason is $$$$$.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-20, 06:26 PM
I think about everyone agrees that seatbelts, helmets, etc. save lives, and that laws requiring them do too.

Samkent appeared to be saying otherwise when he said,
Thirdly there are no studies that I am aware of to show helmets would reduce deaths considerably. Only anecdotal evidence and suppositions from the testimony of rescue workers.

I provided statistical evidence that show helmets reduce fatality rates by over 10%. Plus they reduce all that messy clean up. I suppose it is up for debate how one defines "considerably", but I'm guessing 10% would be outside any margin for error.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-20, 06:39 PM
This one fails as well. What about the bad guys? Unique vehicle descriptions have helped to locate many a kidnapped child or fleeing criminal. The marginal gain in safety would be lost by the increased difficulties in apprehending criminals.

I can see this argument, and it's a good one, but it made me think of something else, which I think may be the source of the enormous debate here. Myself and some others might be more than a little cautious about safety laws because of the climate of lawmaking that currently exists.

As it stands our civil liberties are being stripped away one by one, be it wiretaps without a warrant, "rendition" of American citizens, the denial of due process to prisoners, the government requisitioning all cell phone activity logs for certain companies, and even attempting to force Google to reveal its users' activity.

Every time one of these things is allowed it brings us one step closer to losing all our freedoms. And we seem more than eager to give up those freedoms. As I've said before, I do not believe that any freedom, once ceded to the government, will be given back willingly.

But people who "don't mind" such actions always seem to come up with the argument that, "I'm not a criminal, so I've got nothing to worry about!"

Wrong. That's how totalitarianism starts. They begin with one group that everyone universally hates, but by setting the legal precedents to trample on that group's rights, they get their foot in the door to do it to any other group "legally" with no consideration to civil liberties granted by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

Click Ticker
2008-Aug-20, 06:54 PM
I completely understand where you, Neverfly, and others are coming from. As I've stated - seatbelt laws (for whatever reason) just don't cross that line with me.

mugaliens
2008-Aug-20, 08:56 PM
As it stands our civil liberties are being stripped away one by one, be it wiretaps without a warrant, "rendition" of American citizens, the denial of due process to prisoners, the government requisitioning all cell phone activity logs for certain companies, and even attempting to force Google to reveal its users' activity.

The concept of what's considered to be an acceptable level of "civil liberties" has varied wildly throughout history, and between societies. That "acceptable level" has usually been fairly closely tied with the security of the citizens and leaders of the state.

In times of need, those countries which adjust those levels usually survive. Those that don't are usually infiltrated and crumble from within.

HenrikOlsen
2008-Aug-20, 08:57 PM
The above referenced article shows a significant increase in fatality rates on motorcycles when helmet laws are repealed.
This actually also shows a difference between seatbelts and motorcycle helmets when the argument for the law is the economic harm done by people who gets hurt.

A driver without a seatbelt will get more damaged and some will get killed, so without seat belts medical expenses are higher.

A motorcyclist with a helmet is damaged rather than dead as he would be without one, so on average the medical expenses per accident could actually be higher when people use helmets, which may influence why helmet laws can get removed.
That and legislators who think that bikers won't be missed anyway.:whistle:

mugaliens
2008-Aug-20, 09:25 PM
A motorcyclist with a helmet is damaged rather than dead as he would be without one, so on average the medical expenses per accident could actually be higher when people use helmets, which may influence why helmet laws can get removed.

It seems that way... And I believe that's true for the more serious accidents. But there's a lot of less serious accidents, what would be mere "fender benders" between cars. When a motorcylist is involved, however, what would have been a couple of scratches and bruises with a helmet can turn into a traumatic brain injury without one, and TBIs have more serious effects than most people realize, including long recovery times, permanent brain injuries, lowered ability to handle stress, depression, etc.

It's not pretty.

Thus, I'd say that for the average accident, the helmet-wearing cyclist fares much better than those without a brain bucket.

As for the deceased not being a burden on society, I'm not so sure, as who then cares for the widow and their orphans? What long-term effect does loosing one's father have on the children?

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-20, 10:04 PM
The concept of what's considered to be an acceptable level of "civil liberties" has varied wildly throughout history, and between societies. That "acceptable level" has usually been fairly closely tied with the security of the citizens and leaders of the state.

In times of need, those countries which adjust those levels usually survive. Those that don't are usually infiltrated and crumble from within.

America is one of the largest countries in the world. We've got thousands upon thousands of miles of unsecured borders to the North and South, not to mention tens of thousands of miles of coastline.

If a terrorist is intent on getting into the U.S. and attacking, he will get through. That's all there is to it. If we really wanted to protect against that threat we'd be securing the borders, not making ridiculous demands on the TSA, wiretapping American citizens, and trying to monitor all Internet usage.

They aren't protecting us, unless you consider protecting us from ourselves a viable form of defense (which is what this thread is all about).

Have you considered that maybe this is * exactly * what the terrorists want? For us to become paranoid and suspicious of each other. To spend ridiculous amounts of money on the military and intelligence agencies, and leave nothing for social programs, much less a healthy and vibrant economy. To strip away our own civil liberties until we're under a dictatorship no better than those that we oppose.

Perhaps that is why there has not been a terrorist attack on U.S. soil since September 11, 2001. They simply don't need to until we start reversing the self-destruct that we've initiated in the name of protecting against terrorism.

That is the true threat, which may cause our nation to crumble from within if left unchecked. We have met the enemy, and they are us.

Moose
2008-Aug-20, 10:11 PM
Not to be a curmudgeon (again), but I have to question if this is an appropriate track for this discussion.

korjik
2008-Aug-20, 10:25 PM
America is one of the largest countries in the world. We've got thousands upon thousands of miles of unsecured borders to the North and South, not to mention tens of thousands of miles of coastline.

If a terrorist is intent on getting into the U.S. and attacking, he will get through. That's all there is to it. If we really wanted to protect against that threat we'd be securing the borders, not making ridiculous demands on the TSA, wiretapping American citizens, and trying to monitor all Internet usage.

They aren't protecting us, unless you consider protecting us from ourselves a viable form of defense (which is what this thread is all about).

Have you considered that maybe this is * exactly * what the terrorists want? For us to become paranoid and suspicious of each other. To spend ridiculous amounts of money on the military and intelligence agencies, and leave nothing for social programs, much less a healthy and vibrant economy. To strip away our own civil liberties until we're under a dictatorship no better than those that we oppose.

Perhaps that is why there has not been a terrorist attack on U.S. soil since September 11, 2001. They simply don't need to until we start reversing the self-destruct that we've initiated in the name of protecting against terrorism.

That is the true threat, which will cause our nation to crumble from within. We have met the enemy, and they are us.

What cant you do today that you could do 10 years ago?

HenrikOlsen
2008-Aug-20, 10:36 PM
Not to be a curmudgeon (again), but I have to question if this is an appropriate track for this discussion.

You're right, it isn't.

Drunk Vegan
2008-Aug-21, 12:23 AM
I'm wondering where the line is here, and would appreciate if you could clarify Henrik. I am not throwing stones at any political party or group. I haven't mentioned any politicians.

I've only named a few current events that happen to tie in with the theme of this thread, the taking away of civil liberties.

I am certain that getting into a discussion about the war would be very much against the rules, and I don't wish to do so. But I think it's reasonable to discuss civil liberties violations in this area.

I will however refrain from mentioning 9/11 and terrorism again as that is obviously a flash point for many people.

Is that sufficient?