The Kapi-Mana News told me that some 20,000 motorists per year are legally obliged to pay a road toll for driving on Whitford Brown Avenue.
The Whitby Newsbrief told me that NZTA has a “commitment to the local community” that they will “demolish the existing Paremata Bridge and remove the clearways through Mana in conjunction with the opening of Transmission Gully motorway, and following appropriate public process,” according to a Paremata Residents Association Inc. report.
Without government, who will demolish the road bridges?!
This is crazy stuff. Notwithstanding that NZTA isn’t actually committed to the bridge demolition, it’s only committed to considering it as a serious option! Read the full Whitby Newsbrief article here.
Now let’s cut to the chase. What really needs to be demolished immediately is the speed camera installation on Whitford Brown Avenue.
The Whitford Brown Ave speed camera is the country’s busiest, having clocked up more than $1 million in fines in nine months last year.
Figures released by New Zealand Police show that in the first nine months of 2015, 15,273 infringement notices were given to motorists caught travelling faster than 54kmh. That put $1,139,490 into the Government coffers.
The second most lucrative camera in New Zealand was the one in Ngaruanga Gorge. It collected $1,070,000 from 14,200 notices.
After complaints from residents, Kapi-Mana News last February asked police for the number of fines resulting from the Whitford Brown camera, and the highest speed clocked along the road, but we were refused that information.
We were told that “due to a technical recording error, [police] could not provide information relating to specific cameras”.
Also, releasing data on speeds risked “glorifying such behaviour and could promote copycat behaviour… thereby creating a public safety risk”, even though incidents of speeding was regularly in the media”.
The police have now chosen to release the information.
I.e., the police lied initially about being unable to provide the information. But I digress.
I’m a safer than average driver. (I collect 1 speeding ticket per 7 years on the road on average.)
I seldom drive Whitford Brown Avenue but I’ve been pinged once. Whereas, I often drive the Ngauranga Gorge and I’ve never been pinged once.
YMMV but, arguably, the speed camera in the gorge has less to do with extorting revenue from the citizenry and more to do with road safety. Whereas, arguably, the speed camera on Whitford Brown Avenue has next to nothing to do with road safety and everything to do with replenishing the troughers’ coffers by means of an arbitrary road tax.
The speed camera on Whitford Brown Avenue must go.
I fantasise about how to wreck the wretched thing as a service to the community.
A hacksaw at the base would surely fell it, but I might be seen sawing and also I’d risk electrocution.
Some explosives wrapped around the base and detonated remotely would see it go out with a bang, but I’d risk the loss of life and limb if I were to dabble in recipes from the Anarchist Cookbook.
A large truck would come off best in any collision with the installation, even at the legal speed limit of 50 kph. If stolen (from the government), it could be abandoned for a quick getaway. So this would be my preferred option.
Lord, lead me not into temptation, but deliver me from evil!
Ace of Spades… Lemmy the Legend … The rock wild man who made Keith Richards look like a choir boy: As Lemmy dies two days after being told he had aggressive cancer, it is only surprising that the hard-drinking Motorhead frontman managed to make it to 70
Read it >>>> here<<<<
”The new one would like to know when does the bar open….”
Motörhead – Ace of Spades. The Young Ones, Bambi, 1984
“The lads from Staffordshire … We met in London when I was in #DEEPPURPLE back in the 70’s …when you made friends with Lemmy , you Made friends for life …thru thick & thin.. Thru it all … Lem was someone who told the truth .. No bullshit …he had #NOFEAR …the truth will set you free… Bless you lad … You will live forever … & that my friend is the truth … hughesy …???”
” To look at Lemmy, you’d never think he was as educated as he was. People look at the music we do and the way we look, and they go, “Oh, this bunch is a bunch of yobbos. They don’t know what they’re doing. They’re bad people.” But it’s not true. Lemmy looks like an old biker, but he was so well read. He was very up on a lot of things. He was a very clever guy. On his bus on the first tour, he had a plaid suitcase and all he had in there was a pair of knickers and a pair of socks, and the rest was books. When he stayed with us, he’d stay in the library for three days, reading fucking books. And if I got up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night, he’d still be reading. And I’d go, “Why don’t you sleep?”
He was a serious friend to us. He was very loyal. And if he had something to say to you, he wouldn’t mince about it. He wouldn’t yell at you. He’d just say, “That pissed me off.” That was very rare. I don’t think he said that to me, but he was just everybody’s friend.”
I’ll miss him so much. We all will. There’s a big hole in the music industry as far as I’m concerned.
He was a character. There ain’t many characters in music today. I mean, you’ve got Miley Cyrus, OK, but there’s not many characters in the game anymore. But he was definitely a character. An original. He lived the lifestyle. Sex, drugs and rock & roll, that was Lemmy.
You know what? There goes a hero for me. He was my hero. He was fucking great, a good friend. I’m missing him already. I’ll never forget him. I don’t think a lot of people will forget Lemmy. He’ll be so missed in my camp. He was a good guy, a good man, a good friend of mine. He was just a fucking great dude, man. Not enough time for him.
God bless you, Lemmy. I’m so honored to have you a part of my life.”
Beware my friends, It’s that time of year when shysters seek to relieve you of your hard earned cash… and I’m not talking about the marketing Gurus of the Warehouse or Briscoes.
You think the Santa parade is a good show?
Well the Police also enjoy performing their own Pantomimes… yet they are not that entertaining.
We all suffer the anguish of Xmas commercialism and the Police arn’t shy of cashing in too.
Out of the goodness of their hearts, the Police have already implemented their 4km in-tolerance for the months of December and January.
They have already started writing themselves cheques at our expense, and acting out the charade that they are doing their bit to keep us safe on the roads by pinging us at every opportunity they get… Funny Buggers… the joke is on us… because as we are all painfully aware… this strategy is Bogus!
They are making millions… This is Tax gathering disguised as Law and order… they are literally using the carnage and Mayhem on our roads to justify their extortion racket!
Yet still…. like so many other weekends and holidays that this Rapine has been imposed, our Roads are just as drenched in blood and guts … maybe even worse!
7 people died in traffic accidents this weekend. Read about it > Weekend road deaths ‘heartbreaking’
In a recent article … Motorong editor rubbishes campaign
The police’s reduced speed tolerance will be of little benefit to road safety over December and January, say Clive Matthew-Wilson, editor of the car review website dogandlemon.com.
“However much the government tries to massage the figures, the reality is that about 80% of fatalities occur at speeds below the legal limit. Therefore, to claim that ticketing mildly speeding drivers will substantially lower the road toll is simply nonsense,” Mr Matthew-Wilson says.
Think about this:
Some people believe *Principles* are important, irrespective of what negative consequence may arise as a result of them.
They say it is best for society to remain true to these ideals… in spite of any chaos that ensues because they believe that justice is absolutely above everything else… and ultimately also expedient.
*That there is no valid contradiction between Just policy, and the best outcome.*
In Law, a prohibition which the people do not find legitimate, will never work but cause the Law to stink.
Some people dont believe in principles, instead they are pragmatists who believe almost any means is justifiable… if it gets a desired result.
They like to think of themselves ‘as Realists’.
A realist ought to think twice when they begin to see their experiments have failed.
Then you get the complete idiots.
They dont bother with principles either, yet they dont even take into consideration pragmatic realities, but death-grip onto any absurd notion even after it has proven to be worse than useless.
They are hell bent on persevering with failed ideas out of a sheer incapacity to think.
They cannot fathom any possible alternatives… esp if the alternatives require a complete about face and the courage to try a new direction.
Now ask yourself in respect to this ongoing failed and heavy handed strategy regarding stricter Speed-limits…. are you one of these complete Idiots… or are you one of the other two types of thinking people?
If you claim you are not a member of the Idiots, then I ask why so many of you are not spitting the Dummy over the travesty of 4km intolerance on Speed on our roads, given that it has proven to be a complete farce?
Why do you allow yourselves to be molested at times of celebration by an army of parasites, who hide in the shaddows like Villains ready to pounce?
Why do you allow your wallets to be emptied… and your pleasant travels to be rudely interfered with by Bullies and robbers with badges?
If in the light of all the evidence you still insist this predatory extortion racket is for the public good…. well then I say you are an Idiot…because and I repeat…the facts are indisputable…. all the heavy handed fines and impositions (such as the lower drinking limits) are not reducing the carnage on the road one iota!
You are like the Police (and government)… bereft of New and better strategies… and too scared to tell them to back off, and quit their harassment.
The whole roading safety strategy needs a rethink, and a change in focus.
I’m not advocating anarchy, but smarter approaches… using the tools available.
Such as more No overtaking lines where obviously there is limited visibility for a distance, yet also having more overtaking lanes, and slow vertical lanes so that people can safely get past on stretches where crossing the white line is hazardous.
Not only does this present obvious safety advantages, but less obvious if combined with the police *not being so Fascist about speed, and the government passing reforms that allow even greater speeds on the best sections of highway, this will generate *more respect* from users, and a safer culture of driving to the conditions… understanding the logic that a Smarter road strategy allows people to go faster where appropriate, and reduces the stretches where slow moving vehicles can provoke rash maneuvers by people anxious to get past.
Make the best roads faster and you will get less speeders on the country back roads.
Get away from the ‘Cops are your enemy’ mindset that heavy handed ticketing is all about.
*Bust REAL dangerous drivers only*.
People who do dangerous/ reckless maneuvers, leaving others traveling at speed in obviously ideal conditions alone.
These are just a few ideas that could be an alternative to the current rapacious bully tactics of the police that is not only a failure, but as a result generates a severe disrespect for them and the law.
We should be brave enough to try!
The definition of folly is doing the same thing over and over yet expecting different results.
Dont you think it’s kinda ridiculous to even believe the idea that the Police *can bring down the road toll*???
Where did that nutty idea even come from?
Did they themselves assume this roll like superman?
This whole business was nothing more than a ruse from the start… to wrangle more power for themselves.
It’s a gimmick to fool the dopey into accepting being being hounded and fleeced like sheep.
It simply cannot be the Polices job to ‘End the carnage on the road’… and it certainly is not their job to treat us like cash cows… remember they work for us and we have the right to enjoy the use our roads free of molestation.
The police need a serious attitude adjustment.
And realistically we must accept that accidents will happen.
No amount of social engineering can eliminate the human factor.
If we really want things to change, then we must start voicing our demands at every opportunity… create/ join lobby groups that protest against the Status quo.
Write to AA, Write to your Mp’s, demanding they put a stop to this mickey mouse behavior of the police.
Demand they show us all more respect.
Demand a Culture change within the Police force, and stop voting for Nanny Statists whom have no fresh ideas… but love flogging that dead horse… of Less freedoms, Heavier fines…
Spend time thinking up ways to bring in reforms rather than more mutton fisted misery.
I must add some balance.
I am sure many police sincerely believe their activities are just, after all… they are following what their bosses say is supposed to help keep us safe.
I’m sure that some are well aware that this strategy is a failure… yet they are expected to dish out their quota of infringements.
All this exposes the systemic problems.
Any caring police officers should be working within the system for reforms, and should not support further impositions upon the people they serve.
It was never the lower drinking limits that were the problem.
It was never the people doing 120 along the motorway either.
I hope my blog at least stimulates some dialogue and debate.
I personally have had a guts full of the current extortion and Pig headed attitude we get from Parliament on down to those we employ to catch Robbers and rapists.
This Xmas Commercialism must end.
New Zealand Biker.
A picture speaks a thousand words of wisdom, that many who need those lessons cant be bothered to read.
The Pic above show why Helmets are Cool, and no helmet is Dumb.
Yet still there ought to be *No Law* imposing their use as not only is that a corrupt Nanny State over-reach, We need to foster a society of *intelligent self-responsibility*…. where common sense prevails…. Good Ideas ought not to need Laws but be readily embraced voluntarily because of their obvious utility and virtue.
Bad/ dictatorial Laws can actually generate dopey rebellion… like all Nanny state laws… there are always unexpected and inconvenient negative consequences.
So you get “Rebels’ whose natural lust for defiance of silly Nanny state drives them to flout not just the law… but common sense… and you get legions of little black sheep who also think such Helmet-less rebels ‘are cool’ … fueling the Myth.
Ultimately how you choose to peacefully live your life is up to you.
I could post pictures here of what happens when riders hit face first wearing open face helmets, yet they are far too grotesque.
So Full face helmets are essential.
Always buy the best quality Helmet you can afford… Don’t skimp!
Always ensure your visor is not dulled, and dirty.
Get Anti-fog ‘Pin lock’ ‘double glazzing’ to reduce fogging.
Get a retracting sun visor, or shades that are shaped to comfortably fit your head inside your helmet ready for riding into the sun as sun strike is a killer too.
New Zealand Biker.
Update: My rave solicited this response in favor of Compulsory Helmets…
“The trouble with allowing people to voluntarily adopt sensible practices is that most of them don’t…hence the intervention of the state to protect people against their own stupidity.”
I replied : ” Yet all that does is create a cotton wool society scared of freedom, and with no sense of self responsibility.
The very evils you say your laws are supposed to fix.
We have a State ‘Education system’ with mass produces morons.
The fact is that once a person hits 16… they should be a fully functioning Adults… yet with your ever- expanding Nanny state laws the generations are getting dopey-er and dopey-er.
To the degree that now some folk *Never become* self-responsible individuals.
We need to reverse this trend.”
My argument is a consistent philosophy of Liberty, Self responsibility, and clearly defined limits to Government intervention that stops busy bodies imposing their beliefs on others and leaves people free to reap what they sow.
This does not mean we cant work to get a better culture of safety.
It simply means we need to use persuasion rather than Jackbooted Compulsions.
My argument *tends* towards self-responsibility… whereas Nanny State *tends* towards abdication of self-responsibility.
The big mistake is thinking Compulsions work.
These folk dont love liberty enough.
You simply cant fix stupidity with a Truncheon.
There is a body of data which suggests bicycle helmet laws are making cyclists more reckless…. Think about that.
Bad/ short sighted Compulsions dont work…. even though simplistic minds cant see past their own noses.
^^^ Pictures like this Fuel the deceptive Romance of Risk… I love this pic as it reeks of fantastic sex… Humans are so easily led to destruction… in droves.
* A Real Man* would not risk a babes life like this.
I would like to speak against the currently extortionate ACC levies being born by Kiwi bikers via Motorcycle Registration, and make 3 points aimed to make the system fairer.
Though I personally would rather abolish ACC all together in favor of a Free-market in accident insurance, and that this would make for the best deal for ‘consumers’, I know this is not ‘on the table’ at present…. I make this small disclaimer for the record.
Clearly current Draconian method’s of ‘Zero tolerance’, lower drinking limits, etc have failed.
It’s time New directions are considered, which promote self-responsibility rather than mindless compulsions, and so I submit that ACC needs a new Game plan…
How Ironic…. This officially titled ‘ Safence’ is known as ‘Cheese cutters’ in Biker circles.
Like so many Safety issues…. eg in Industry… The Main hazards are generated on the drawing board… and could have been solved/ greatly reduced from the get go.
From a Bikers perspective it’s clear from the sections of Expressways in the Waikato, and BOP, and in general, that road design in New Zealand takes virtually no consideration for Motorcycles.
They are forever putting up Obstacles.
Dangerous Cable barriers are proliferating… not only on the median, but also often dangerously close on the outside as well… leaving no lane in which a motorcyclist can distance themselves from these vicious hazards.
They leave no room for bikers to take evasive action, and even at slow speeds any otherwise minor error can and does result in a catastrophic accident…
No doubt these cables work well for cars.
No doubt they are cheap to construct, yet as part of my submission, I would like to suggest that such poor designs, and short sighted cost savings on construction are born by bikers…barriers which may protect occupants of cars, are lethal to bikers.
These barriers serve as but one example that to improve statistics on Motorcycle accidents… Road design ought to be a priority.
Thus ACC and the Government who sign off on road designs need to take responsibility for the increased risk we Road users (motorcyclists) unfairly carry, and reduce our Levy’s… and instead spreading the cost across all road users (I also own 2 cars).
Though I personally think ACC should be shut down, while it behooves me to pay ACC I believe that it would be a farer system for ACC to spread all Road user accident expenses collectively… because of factors in my argument above about road design.
My second submission is that on State Highways that are of the best standards that The speed limit for motorcycles be raised to 120 kph.
I believe this would help lower Motorcycle accidents, by encouraging Bikers to enjoy using these ‘Better roads’, rather than thinking they are smart avoiding Mr Cop.… doing 140kph out on country lanes… where the roads are not well designed, and there are more ’Agricultural obstacles ‘ about…. From Cows to Milk Tankers.
I submit that if the Main Highways had a 120kph speed limit that this would result is safer riding… less accidents.
My Final submission is I that ACC itself implement a Bureaucratic cost cutting exercise, and significantly reduce the costs of running ACC.
Reduce the size of the Corporation, and abolish as much Red tape as possible…
This would obviously be expected to result in significantly lower Levies.
Thank you for taking the time to read my submission,and I am available to front up to make a verbal submission.
The Other World…
There are humans who live eventually,here and now.
And there are humans who decided to live in another world.
Being a member of a motorcycle club is an attitude towards life.
Truth and respect at the forefront outlaw bikies are proud and it’s an honour to be an outlaw biker.
Some find fellowship, brotherhood,and solidarity thats why they join a club.
If an outlaw biker gives his word he keeps it. If you behave like a man you’ll be treated like a man.
If you behave like an asshole you’ll be treated like an asshole.An outlaw biker can be your best and loyal friend.
But can also be your worst nightmare.
Its not about breaking the rules or fighting the system.Its about freedom that is fixed in the mind.The government doesn’t like that, they don’t like a strong group because they can’t control them so easy.
So of course the police handle the outlaw bikies differently, aggressively portraying them as the boogey men of our society.
The scary monster man that sells drugs to school kids from the back of his Harley,who rapes and murders at will,the lowest of the low who has no moral compass whatsoever or so they will have you believe …
Due to conditioning, through the government’s advertising arm, the media, threatening and intrusive governmental action is not denounced as dangerous but lauded as a positive step toward security a safer society. This concept–government psychologically shaping its citizens to comfortably accept authoritarianism.
Complex social circumstances in a progressive society like ours always determines and should determine the curtailment of civil liberties.Bikers do not want to be controlled from above,there’s already enough people in a free society who feel this kind of need.But that doesn’t mean that they are criminal organisations.
Those that give up freedom for safety will lose both in the end.
(extracts from various sources.)
— with Eddie Mendez.
^^^The above is a Biker Credo which I ‘Liberated’ from an ‘outlaw’ Biker FB site…
Some people may think it is a poor show for me to glorify Outlaw bikers like this, yet I want to propose that *Outlaw Gangs* are to a large degree a reaction to all the BULLSHIT that passes for civil society these days.
They are a reaction to the monumental hypocrisy.
They are a rejection of all the Petty Tyrannies… all the Legal corruptions… all the ridiculous ‘Social norms’.
All the Religious Bigotry.
As a Person whom has spent over 15 fruitless years trying to reform the system via the democratic process, what … when the system has proven to be a self protecting charade…is a person like me supposed to do next?
Am I expected to just roll over, and accept the perpetual Sodomizing like a good little Slave?… am I supposed to be grateful?
Now I’m not about to join a gang…, nor am I about to surrender…. yet I want to make the point as to why many good people reach the conclusion that joining an Outlaw Biker Gang is actually *a good thing to do*
FUck the system!
I can relate to that… esp when … upon futher investigation you discover that Biker Gangs are not absolutely Lawless… they have their own codes of Honor… and they have strong views on *Natural justice*.
Of course Some Biker Gangs are full of Scum… Rapists, Thieves, and Murderers, yet by far the greater percentage of Bike Clubs don’t tolerate scum, and have codes of honour.
and Ironic as it may seem… within Limits, they have a Right to do exactly that!
Herbert Spencer was an incredible prophet and a magnificent defender of laissez-faire. Among his numerous works is The Man Versus The State, first published in 1884. That book launched one of the most spirited attacks on statism ever written. He ridiculed the idea that government intervention of any kind “will work as it is intended to work, which it never does.” He drew on his tremendous knowledge of history, citing one dramatic case after another of price controls, usury laws, slum clearance laws, and myriad other laws which, touted as compassionate policies, intensified human misery. Below is one of his essays that explores the principles of self-government, which Henry David Thoreau defended in his seminal essay, Civil Disobedience.
The Right to Ignore the State
1. The Right to Voluntary Outlawry
As a corollary to the proposition that all institutions must be subordinated to the law of equal freedom, we cannot choose but admit the right of the citizen to adopt a condition of voluntary outlawry. If every man has freedom to do all that he wills, provided he infringes not the equal freedom of any other man, then he is free to drop connection with the state — to relinquish its protection, and to refuse paying toward its support. It is self-evident that in so behaving he in no way trenches upon the liberty of others; for his position is a passive one; and whilst passive he cannot become an aggressor. It is equally self-evident that he cannot be compelled to continue one of a political corporation, without a breach of the moral law, seeing that citizenship involves payment of taxes; and the taking away of a man’s property against his will, is an infringement of his rights. Government being simply an agent employed in common by a number of individuals to secure to them certain advantages, the very nature of the connection implies that it is for each to say whether he will employ such an agent or not. If any one of them determines to ignore this mutual-safety confederation, nothing can be said except that he loses all claim to its good offices, and exposes himself to the danger of maltreatment — a thing he is quite at liberty to do if he likes. He cannot be coerced into political combination without a breach of the law of equal freedom; he can withdraw from it without committing any such breach; and he has therefore a right so to withdraw.
Many years ago I herd a very interesting theory, which immediately struck a chord.
Simply put … It made much more sense than the common assumptions.
What is un-questioningly accepted as Scientific Fact and ‘Common wisdom’ is patently absurd.
What am I on about?
Oil and Gas are falsely assumed to be a fossil fuels…. the reality is *there are no Fossil Fuels!*
They are all simply naturally occurring accumulations of Organic compounds of which the Earth is made.
The idea that Oil and gas reserves are the remains of Prehistoric Creatures and vegetation which were somehow buried in massive deposits before decomposition is quite frankly Ridiculous!
Apart from the fact that you can make make oil, gas, and coal via industrial processes from Wood, etc,
the delusion that Oil and Gas are ‘fossil fuels’ was argued from the fact that oil samples under a microscope revealed ‘cellular’ materials.
Yet it later turned out that these Biological ‘bits and pieces’ are not the remnants of Dinosaurs and trees (as supposed, and taught to the Masses) but are the remnants of Bacteria which have since been discovered to live in the Oil deep down below the surface of the Earth.
And recent discoveries in Space exploration are now rendering the Fossil fuel hypothesis even more untenable.
Surely the Lie cannot continue much longer… can it???
Just recently vast quantities of liquid “hydrocarbons’ have been discovered in places like Saturn’s moon Titan … and because there have never existed living creatures on theses moons…. it proves that Hydrocarbons form in abundance within our solar system via other natural processes… On Earth carbon is converted internally under heat and pressure etc.
On Titan, it is the cold which liquefies the naturally abundant Gases and ‘Oils’ rain from the sky and form lakes, etc.
All it takes is the right conditions… no Dinosaurs… no forests required.
Suspicion that Oil was not a Fossil fuel has been suspected for Decades… even longer, yet the belief persisted and is perpetuated because it suits the Oil companies to sell it at a premium, and to the Doomsday Greenies whom cry out that ‘fossil fuels’ are a Non-renewable resource that are being Rapaciously consumed… that there is an Oil crisis ahead… and so Capitalism must be stopped, and that heavy handed State control of these ‘limited Resources’ was essential to prevent the eminent ‘Dooms Day’ … The collapse of modern civilisation and Technology…. and a reversion back into the dark age.
These are the same freaks whom also push ‘Climate change’ hysteria…. which also according to them is fast bringing Global catastrophe…. and so…. ‘surprise surprise’… requires the State to seize control of all the worlds resources and restrain Human liberty.
Putting an end to the assumed Decadence of owning your own Gas guzzers with Ginormous ‘Carbon footprints’… etc
Yet there is no crisis (At least not from Green house gasses or a shortage of Oil!)… no need to surrender the world to a Global Fascist/Commy State….alias Leviathan.
Oil and Gas are constantly being made within the Earth’s crust… out of the Earth itself.
Drained reservoirs refill.
The Idea that Oil and Gas are ‘fossil fuels is one of the great myths of our age.
It demonstrates Humanities infinite capacity to swallow Brontosaurus sized delusions and politically manufactured pseudo-science.
Yet because the Fossil fuel myth it is so utterly believed by the great bulk of humanity, I know that not many people reading this will believe me.
They will say I’m Nuts.
How dare I question the orthodox view?
I on the other hand am wondering how long will these Jurassic delusions continue?
Hitler has been sited as saying… “the Bigger the Lie, the more people will believe it.”
Another saying is…
‘… a person is more likely to continue to believe a lie he has herd a thousand times rather than the truth he has herd only once’.
I wonder what sort of Comments this Blog post will elicit
The United Kingdom’s red flag law was one of the Locomotive Acts enacted in the second half of the 19th century, requiring drivers of self-propelled vehicles (i.e., early automobiles) to take certain safety precautions, including waving a red flag in front of the vehicle as a warning.
Firstly, at least three persons shall be employed to drive or conduct such locomotive, and if more than two waggons or carriages he attached thereto, an additional person shall be employed, who shall take charge of such waggons or carriages :
Secondly, one of such persons, while any locomotive is in motion, shall precede such locomotive on foot by not less than sixty yards, and shall carry a red flag constantly displayed, and shall warn the riders and drivers of horses of the approach of such locomotives, and shall signal the driver thereof when it shall be necessary to stop, and shall assist horses, and carriages drawn by horses, passing the same,
The legislators behind the Locomotive Acts well recognised two salient facts. Firstly, that by far the greatest hazard on our roads is other road users. Secondly, that the faster you go the bigger the mess.
The most draconic restrictions and speed limits were imposed by the 1865 act (the “Red Flag Act”) which required all road locomotives, which included automobiles, to travel at a maximum of 4 mph (6 km/h) in the country and 2 mph (3 km/h)in the city – as well as requiring a man carrying a red flag to walk in front of road vehicles hauling multiple wagons.
The 1896 Act removed some restrictions of the 1865 act and raised the speed to 14 mph (23 km/h).
Presumably, the requirement to carry a red flag was removed because of its general inconvenience and also because 23 km/h is a bit too fast to be chasing after someone carrying a red flag not less than sixty yards in front of your relentlessly pursuing vehicle.
Consider two vehicles approaching each other from opposite directions on the open road, each travelling at today’s speed limit of 100 km/h. The difference in relative velocity is 200 km/h. The only things preventing the vehicles colliding is a gap of 2 metres of air and asphalt. With, optionally, a painted line or lines to demarcate the two lanes. Oh, and the driving ability of both drivers. The chances are the the driving ability of at least one of the drivers is below average.
Now consider what a morally reckless and especially stupid idea it is to have vehicles on the same road travelling in opposite directions at high velocity. These days, only a psychopath with a road kill paraphilia would dream of proposing such an idea! But it’s what we’ve got. I guess it evolved that way, and now we’re left with the task of incrementally fixing our roads while continuing to scrape our friends and family members off them in the meantime.
Our roading system, originally built so that vehicles travelling in opposite directions can share the same road, is, was and always will be a disaster waiting to happen.