Nanny state or Totalitarian Dictatorship?

It's a fine line...

Nanny state or Totalitarian Dictatorship?

You’d think they’re miles apart from the sounds of them, but as the picture above suggests it’s a fine line between being a Nanny State and a Totalitarian Dictatorship. One just sounds more caring than the other but in essence the result is the same – people are restricted from doing things we are perfectly capable of deciding and doing for ourselves, and in many cases have been successfully and safely doing so for years.

Being generous, maybe the Nanny State evolves from a misplaced ideology of someone who is flying a desk and doesn’t really appreciate all the implications of what they’re interference will cause. A potential example of this is the Welsh Government’s decision to change the default speed limit for roads with street lighting from 30 mph down to 20 mph.

https://gov.wales/uk-first-welsh-senedd-gives-green-light-20mph-legislation

The reason given of course is that it will reduce accidents and deaths and there’s no doubting that injuries are going to be less at a slower speed … in the zones, but I would imagine it will encourage faster driving on faster roads to make up the time lost crawling through villages and towns, often where there are no pedestrians on the pavements for much of the day except for school drop-off and pick-up times when 20 mph zones often kick in around schools anyway, so what’s the real benefit? Maybe if the Highway Code hadn’t been changed to encourage people to cross roads willy-nilly expecting cars to just stop for them they would be in less danger. The better idea would have been to increase the number of zebra crossings in safe places if busy roads required them, rather than encourage people to step into the road at junctions where traffic finds it more difficult to predict and react. Poorly thought-out legislation leads to more poorly thought-out legislation!

There is a petition to get this Welsh Government ruling reversed before it comes into national adoption in Sept 2023. Both the AA and RAC research concluded against such a change down to 20mph but some politicians clearly think they know better and are more concerned about being able to win votes by seemingly “caring” for their constituents than what the real life implications will be.

There is no appreciation within this legislation that braking distances have massively reduced as brake technology has improved. The argument that slower speeds reduces pollution doesn’t hold either for a number of reasons.

1. Vehicles going 20 mph take 50% longer to drive through villages than when doing 30 mph so pollution lasts longer.

2. Vehicles that have to use a lower gear and higher revs churn out more pollution, especially when going up and down hills – because Wales is so flat of course!! Going slower downhill is also harder on the brakes. Going slower doesn’t therefore necessarily reduce pollution per unit time, and in some cases may increase it.

3.  Lorry drivers are only allowed to drive for a certain length of time within which they need to be able to complete their shift/delivery round unless they have a co-driver. Reducing their average speed will mean they cannot complete their current delivery route within the same time. This means that either they will need a co-driver, or it will take 3 journeys to do the same deliveries that 2 used to manage and will increase lorry mileage and pollution as a result. In both cases it will add to the delivery costs that get added onto the food and goods prices you and I ultimately have to pay.

The overall effect of the above points will be to increase fuel usage and pollution. If you take into consideration the push towards more electric vehicles then the lower speed will have no reduction in pollution, which will still occur at the power stations used to generate the electricity. Driving so slowly at 20 mph when there is no other traffic also means that drivers will have to spend more time monitoring their speedo which means less time watching the road and pavements for people who just decide to step out into the highway. Rather than improve safety I suspect the opposite result may occur.

The new legislation that came into force for new vehicles earlier this month that requires speed limiters it will be argued will make the control of speed more easy. This article by Parkers explains the implications and objections

https://www.parkers.co.uk/car-advice/speed-limiters-what-they-mean-for-you

What speed limiters do is to prevent you driving above the speed limit whatever zone you are in. Although “voluntary” to begin with it is only a matter of time (2024) before being made compulsory by which time no doubt the gremlins and issues with this technology will have manifested. Part of the same legislation is the requirement for Autonomous emergency braking (AEB). I forgot to include this in my blog  My car is programmed to killl me but I have this on my Audi A6 and I hate it despite the fact that it has supposedly prevented 25% of collisions. I don’t know how they can prove that accident reduction is due to this and not better brakes for example I don’t know!

Coming back to why I hate AEB, it may work well on open roads and motorways etc, although I suspect if there’s a crash too close in front of you nothing will prevent you joining the incident as was found with autonomous cars – a good reason to avoid them like the plague too! Where it really annoys me (very mild description of what actually occurs!) is when I’m driving down a quaint village very narrow road with cars parked on both sides, or bends in the road requiring you to weave your way along. The AEB will suddenly, for no reason slam on the anchors and break hard. Who is to blame for such action causing an accident? Audi because their tech took control of my car without warning? The driver behind who would obviously be too close but quite legitimately doesn’t expect the car in front to put in an unnecessary emergency stop even at slow speeds?! What if they just happened to look down at their speedo to make sure they’re doing 20mph at the precise time my AEB brakes unnecessarily? What if it throws in a cheeky stop when you’re going down a narrow country road with high banks or hedges and you pass very close to someone coming the opposite direction that requires passing within whatever distance triggers the AEB? It could be possible judging by how my AEB has triggered when I wasn’t close to a car going through a bit of a chicane past parked cars. Add onto that the speed limiter misreading a number on a vehicle ahead as speed limit that suddenly slows you down too and we aren’t far off the recent scenario that indicates autonomous cars are far from being anywhere near ready and safe.

https://interestingengineering.com/tesla-honda-crash-self-driving-cars-unsafe

So if we flip this over from the nanny state perspective to the totalitarian dictatorship angle these changes in legislation will further bankrupt society as prices increase and drivers are taken off the road due to their driving data having been passed to the police and/or your insurance company who make the decision that your driving style has invalidated your insurance despite decades of accident-free driving behind you doing 40k miles pa.

Where does this monitoring stop? Who else gets access to your data? How is it processed and assessed? Are you profiled in such a way that your employer decides you’re out of a job? Is the intention to take lots of drivers off the road because there will never be enough electric cars to replace fossil fuel ones? Is this yet another angle to collapse the economy and drive us towards UBI because so many jobs are lost? Is it coincidence that the UBI trial happened in Wales too?! Once UBI is in, then Social Scoring is around the corner. Don’t think it won’t happen here after the recent admission that Jeremy Hunt and the Tory Government considered introducing a CCP-style lockdown and citizen removal policy during the recent COVID plandemic.

Of course, such monitoring can only occur with the bandwidth provided by 5G. Such widespread deployment of 5G has huge implications for the health of us, our pets and the environment too on top of the surveillance. My audiobook EMF Bible gives you all the information on this and more too! It’s just under 3 hrs 20 mins of research-based facts that’ll get you up to speed with what is coming down the track. Please buy and listen. As well as being informative on aspects of EMFs that most people have no idea about, it helps support all the work, Blogs and posts I (and Boots!!) do on FB too.

In the meantime, enjoy driving whilst you can! Stay safe, and watch out for melting tarmac in the coming days in areas where 40°C is predicted….

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