Tag Archives: 55 MPH Speed Limit

Driving 55, Again? By Eric Peters

Driving 55 mph on a freeway is like listening to a Biden or Harris speech. You know it will eventually be over, but every minute seems more like ten as your mind wanders to far corners of the earth. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

If it feels like 1974 all over again – for those who remember 1974 – just wait. Soon we may be driving like it’s 1974 again.

As in 55.

Or even slower.  Maybe not at all. 

Among the ways being floated to deal with the deliberately engineered doubling – perhaps soon tripling – of the cost of a gallon of gas by a regime that promised it would do exactly that is to bring back the National Maximum Speed Limit of 55 MPH.

Or something very much like it.

Millennials and younger won’t remember what it was like to take a walk on the highway. To drive slower on the highway than one drove on many secondary roads. For a 200 mile drive to take four hours rather than three. To live in constant fear of being hassled and mulcted by an armed government worker for driving at speeds that had been legal speeds.

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What the Failed 55-MPH Speed Limit Law Tells Us about COVID Lockdowns, by Ryan McMaken

Just because government passes a law doesn’t mean people will obey it. Often they have good reasons for breaking it. From Ryan McMaken at mises.org:

During the oil crises of the 1970s, Congress attempted to lower gasoline consumption by mandating a lowered speed limit for vehicles on all highways. But the efforts quickly evolved into a national campaign to increase traffic safety through lowered speed limits. Government data showed that thousands of lives could be saved per year by enforcing lower speed limits.

Millions of American motorists, however, were unimpressed. Widespread noncompliance resulted as many Americans concluded it was better to accept higher risk of death on highways—for themselves and for those around them—than to travel at reduced speeds. Government propaganda efforts such as the “55 Saves Lives” slogan proved ineffective, and the national speed limit was repealed in 1995.

The experience may be instructive today as many American policymakers insist that Americans must accept ongoing mass lockdowns and stay-at-home orders in the name of reducing deaths from COVID-19. Yet given that Americans have proven to be unwilling to reduce highway speeds—even in the face of the threat of traffic citations and deadly accidents—it is likely that they will soon be generally ignoring the lectures from “experts” and policymakers about the righteousness of destroying businesses and livelihoods in the name of safety.

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