Wednesday, November 08, 2006


Cognitive Dissonance

Within two minutes of each other on the Simon Mayo programme on 'Five Live' yesterday.

A spokeswomen for road charity Brake (who I've complained about before):

'One young person dies every hour on Britain's roads. In the time it takes us to talk about this, one young person will have met their death'.

A spokesman for some union or association of driving instructors:

'Two young people die per day on Britain's roads'.

Obviously the young people perishing are those who were going to grow up to be statisticians.

All of this guff was supporting some typically monstrous proposal to prevent seventeen year olds from learning to drive, and for people just past their test to be limited in the number of passengers they can carry. Obviously this rubbish should be opposed for being impractical and illiberal, and also contradictory to the always-ignored fact that actually road deaths in Britain are on the decrease, but my real question is how all this fits in with this new legislation banning age discrimination? Mixed messages, perhaps?

And the example of the hysteria inducing killer 17 year old is often, when you scratch beaneath the surface a little, some tearaway in a stolen hot hatch with a charge sheet as long as your arm and who was banned for driving when they were 13.

This herbert is the "reason" why everyone else should suffer.
Here in the States "Graduated Driving Permits" are all the rage.
When a 16 year old first gets his learner's permit, he must drive with an adult.
Then he must not carry passengers, and must not be on the road late at night.
Gradually, with good behavior, the restrictions ease until he's college aged and ready to go get high at a dorm party.

In the USA driving is considered a "privilege," and not a "right". Therefore the States have great leeway in deciding who can and can't drive with no regard to fairness.

On the other hand, the statistics regarding youth driving and accidents here are astonishing. Aside from drunkards, young drivers are the most dangerous drivers of all--even worse than blue-haired old ladies! And the danger increases exponentially as the number of young passengers increase.

I, for one, should NOT have been on the road when I was 16. I'm lucky to be alive considering the crap I got into back then.
Only two per day? Gosh, that must be nice. :)
one per hour seems a bit much..
~9000 a year. UNLESS...
in a bid to cut waiting lists, instead of moving patients to corridors, hospital managers now move them to central reservations.
And, not related to the driving nonsense (I passed my test under a year ago and now zoom around the terrifying streets of North London with not even a scratch yet, so us newbies can't all be dangers to ourselves and others):

How do the new age discrimination laws affect the minimum wage laws? As it stands, the minimum wage for people under 21 is less than the minumum wage for those over 21. Is this now illegal then?
I have no objection to the green L plate for new drivers, though I see no real need for it to be enforced.

Other than that if the kiddies are too thick to work out that driving is risky and 1-2 die a day, it would seem that natural selection is alive and well.
Mark - Couldn't have put it better myself.

SafeT - The problem with the system you describe is that delaying how old people are by a couple of years before they can drive on their own seems unlikely to help. I have absolutely no evidence to back this assertion up, but it seems like letting drivers alone for the first time at college age when they're *just* discovering alcohol might not be the smartest . . .

Matt - Lol!

Paul - Good question. The answer is no, because - ingeniously - the government have made themselves immune from the age discrimination legislation. It's only the private sector that discriminates, though, obviously . . .

Clairwil - As I always say, if you think it's too risky, don't do it. It's the implicit assumption of automatic incompetence that annoys me in all of this.
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