Sunday, December 23, 2007

Blowback from the Nannystate

Over in England, a new "sport" is gaining popularity: Burning or destroying traffic cameras. There's a website that talks about it (from

"Motorists Against Detection, the vigilante anti-speed camera group have announced a summer of MADness which will see them target for destruction all speed cameras in the UK. It’s now going to be a period of zero tolerance against all speed cameras, said their campaigns director Capt Gatso. (((A remote descendant of General Ludd, I reckon.)))

"The group claims speed cameras are just money-making machines and they have given the authorities long enough to prove their worth. The first camera to fall in the summer campaign is in south east London on the A2 at the Sun in the Sands roundabout on-slip heading northbound towards the Blackwall Tunnel.

Of course, speed limits are a fact of life in United States. I'm of the opinion that speeding tickets are just too great of a revenue stream for many cites and states to get rid of. What is interesting is, there are some experiments in other parts of Europe that are doing away with speed limits, traffic signals and traffic cameras entirely, with good results.

How does THAT idea work. From the Spiegel article:
"The many rules strip us of the most important thing: the ability to be considerate. We're losing our capacity for socially responsible behavior," says Dutch traffic guru Hans Monderman, one of the project's co-founders. "The greater the number of prescriptions, the more people's sense of personal responsibility dwindles."
With the following conclusion:
Strange as it may seem, the number of accidents has declined dramatically. Experts from Argentina and the United States have visited Drachten. Even London has expressed an interest in this new example of automobile anarchy. And the model is being tested in the British capital's Kensington neighborhood.
I don't know if the "automobile anarchy" model would work in this country, it would be a tough sell to the "safety nazi" crowd as well as probably the "eco-nazi" crowd as well (not mention, again, governments have a vested interest in keeping that revenue stream going). But then again, maybe we still have a relatively lower threshold of acceptance for the nanny state in this country compared to Europe.

Sphere: Related Content
Digg this

No comments: