Tag Archives: Safety

Will the Pandemic Panic Card Win in 2020? by James Bovard

Lock yourself in a padded cell while wearing a straight jacket and you’ll be safe. There’s more to life than safety, but some people vote as if that’s all that mattered. From James Bovard at aier.org:

People want to be safe,” Joe Biden repeatedly declared in Tuesday night’s debate. The 2020 presidential race could turn into a referendum on whether vastly increasing government power can provide “freedom from fear.” This has been a recurring theme in recent American history that consistently brings out the worst in both politicians and voters.

The 2020 presidential campaign thus far has plenty of unpleasant parallels to 9/11 and the 2004 election. The terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 were the biggest intelligence failure by U.S. government agencies since Pearl Harbor. The Central Intelligence Agency and the Federal Bureau of Investigation ignored bushels of evidence of an international conspiracy and a bucket of warnings that Arabs with terrorist connections were receiving pilot training inside the U.S. Yet, after the attacks terrified the nation, polls speedily showed a doubling in the percentage of Americans who trusted government to “do the right thing.” The media fanned this blind faith as if it was the high road to public safety. President George W. Bush exploited that credulity to seize far more power and to deceive the nation into war against Iraq.

While Bush is now being lionized by the establishment media (thanks to his criticisms of Trump), few people recall that he ran the most fear-mongering presidential reelection campaign in modern American history. Bush 2004 campaign ads showed firemen carrying a flag-draped corpse from the rubble at Ground Zero in New York and a pack of wolves coming to attack home viewers as an announcer warned that “weakness attracts those who are waiting to do America harm.” One commentator suggested that the ad hinted that voters would be eaten by wolves if John Kerry won.

Just before 2004 Election Day a senior GOP strategist told the New York Daily News that “anything that makes people nervous about their personal safety helps Bush.” People who saw terrorism as the biggest issue in the 2004 election voted for Bush by a 6 to 1 margin. Moises Naim, editor of Foreign Policy, observed that the Bush campaign was “using the fear factor almost exclusively. This is a highly researched decision with all the tools of public opinion management. It’s nothing but a reflection that it works.”

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The Red Flag Act, by Eric Peters

The human race never has and never will achieve “absolute safety,” and that’s a good thing. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

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It can be hard to push back against Sickness Psychosis.

People who know it is a psychosis are social-pressured to comply with such outrages as being expected (and increasingly required) to dress up as if it were Halloween every day for reasons that are exactly the same in principle as driving their car no faster than 5 MPH with the flashers on at all times because someone fears “speeding” cars. That they might get run over – or run into – if cars were allowed to go any faster.

Such neurotics temporarily got their way more than 100 years ago, when the first cars appeared and threatened the delicate nerves of the velocity averse.

The Red Flag Acts (including the Highways and Locomotive Act of 1878) imposed a 4 MPH maximum speed limit in the country – 2 MPH in the city –   and required that the vehicle be preceded by a man walking at least 60 yards ahead of it waving a red flag to warn all in the path of the vehicle that it was coming . . . very slowly.

They got their way again in the early ‘70s, when the maximum lawful highway speed – which had risen to an alarming (to the velocity-averse) 70-75 MPH – was temporarily throttled back to 55 MPH. This was initially presented to a public terrorized by propaganda about artificial fuel scarcity as a necessary fuel conservation measure that oleaginously morphed into a saaaaaaaaaafety measure . . . very much as “flattening the curve” greasily morphed into “stopping the spread,” the latter having no end.

The common denominator being the weaponization of fear.

The difference being that the velocity averse were overruled by those who wanted to get places in hours rather than days and minutes rather than hours and – the key thing – rejected the neurotics’ assertion that their fear of movement gave them the moral right to restrict it so absurdly or even at all.

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The Bill of Safety? by Eric Peters

Try as we might, SLL cannot find a public health exception to the Bill of Rights. Neither can Eric Peters, at ericpetersautos.com:

Will Americans resist being forcibly vaccinated?

The worry is that most Americans have already accepted being force-vaccinated . . . in principle. They did so more than 30 years ago, long before WuFlu Fever – when they accepted being ordered to wear a seatbelt/helmet and to show “papers” on demand – but without probable cause – at “checkpoints.”

They endorsed it when they amen’d forcing people to buy car (and then health) insurance. When they accepted the government telling them they would no longer be permitted to buy new cars that didn’t meet government’s “bumper impact” standards.

Told they would have to buy air bags – and didn’t rise in outrage. 

They gave their implied consent when they didn’t object to their “consent” being implied … when they accepted being forced to assume the degrading I surrender pose at airports and – even more degrading – spread their legs and let a government worker run his hands around their privates. Around the privates of their wives and children.

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Bubble-Wrapped Americans: How the U.S. Became Obsessed with Physical and Emotional Safety, by Sam Jacobs

America has become a nation of pathetic wimps. From Sam Jacobs at ammo.com:

In America we say if anyone gets hurt, we will ban it for everyone everywhere for all time. And before we know it, everything is banned.”

It’s a common refrain: We have bubble-wrapped the world. Americans in particular are obsessed with “safety.” The simplest way to get any law passed in America, be it a zoning law or a sweeping reform of the intelligence community, is to invoke a simple sentence: “A kid might get hurt.”

Almost no one is opposed to reasonable efforts at making the world a safer place. But the operating word here is “reasonable.” Banning lawn darts, for example, rather than just telling people that they can be dangerous when used by unsupervised children, is a perfect example of a craving for safety gone too far.

Beyond the realm of legislation, this has begun to infect our very culture. Think of things like “trigger warnings” and “safe spaces.” These are part of broader cultural trends in search of a kind of “emotional safety” – a purported right to never be disturbed or offended by anything. This is by no means confined to the sphere of academia, but is also in our popular culture, both in “extremely online” and more mainstream variants.

Why are Americans so obsessed with safety? What is the endgame of those who would bubble wrap the world, both physically and emotionally? Perhaps most importantly, what can we do to turn back the tide and reclaim our culture of self-reliance, mental toughness, and giving one another the benefit of the doubt so that we don’t “bankrupt ourselves in the vain search for absolute security,” as President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned us about?

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God Bless Mother Government, from The Burning Platform

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The Mafia is Disappointed . . . in Millennials! by Eric Peters

I’m a sucker for any article with “Mafia” in the title. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

The insurance mafia just conceded the obvious – that sssssssaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety systems are dangerous – and then faulted people for disabling them.

A PSA created by the Liberty Mutual “family” – listen to it here – says that many drivers are “not embracing”  technologies such as Lane Keep Assist, Automated Emergency Braking – and so on – “due to their distracting sounds and lights.”

Italics added.

We truly live beyond the looking glass.

In the same mouthful, the soy boy consiglierieof the “family” who did the voice-over for the PSA admits that it is “distracting” – and distractions are unsafe – but bemoans the fact that drivers are taking steps to turn off these distractions.

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Defunct Nuclear Power Plant on California Coast Is a ‘Fukushima Waiting to Happen’, by Carey Wedler

Yet another reason to leave California. From Carey Wedler at theantimedia.org:

(ANTIMEDIA) San Onofre, CA — A nuclear power plant in Southern California that was shut down in 2012 continues to leak radioactive material and poses a threat to nearby communities.

The aging San Onofre, located in San Clemente, CA, was shut down in 2012 amid a leak that occurred due to malpractice. According to a report released in 2016, the plant “operated the reactor outside the allowable limits for pressure and temperature, causing the radiation leak that shut down the facility for good,” the San Diego Tribune noted. The shutdown also launched extensive investigations that implicated both the power company and state regulators.

Though the plant is out of operation, it still stores 3.6 million pounds of lethal radioactive waste, and according to a worker who blew the whistle on the plant just last week, a near catastrophe just occurred. As local outlet the Dana Pointer reported, plant worker David Fritch explained what happened at a public meeting:

On 3 August 2018, a 100-ton canister filled with highly radioactive nuclear waste was being ‘downloaded’ into a temporary transport carrier to be moved a few hundred yards from inside the plant to a storage silo buried near the world-famous San Onofre beach. As the thin-walled canister was being lowered into the transport cask, it snagged on a guide ledge four feet from the top. Crane operators were unaware that the canister had stopped descending and the rigging went completely slack, leaving the full weight of the heavy canister perched on that ledge by about a quarter-inch.

“Had the ledge not held for the hour or more it took workers to realize and address the error, the thin-walled canister of highly toxic nuclear waste would have fallen 18 feet to the ground below.”

Each canister reportedly has as much radiation as was released during the infamous Chernobyl nuclear disaster.

To continue reading: Defunct Nuclear Power Plant on California Coast Is a ‘Fukushima Waiting to Happen’

Cars That Parent Us, by Eric Peters

Cars have become the mobile embodiment of the nanny state. From Eric Peters at theburningplatform.com:

One of the reasons for liking old cars is they don’t try to parent you. The new stuff won’t quit trying to.

The 2018 VW Golf GTI I am reviewing this week, for instance. When you put the transmission in Reverse, the radio’s volume’s is peremptorily turned down – apparently because someone decided it wasn’t saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafe to back up while listening to the radio.

One can almost see the liver-spotted hand of your mother-in-law adjusting the volume control knob. Many new cars have this “feature” – not just new VWs.

It’s incredibly obnoxious. More so because it’s not your mother-in-law and youcan’t slap her liver-spotted hand down or – better – hit the unlock button and tell the old bag to get out now if she can’t mind her own business.

Speaking of door locks . . . .

They are just as peremptory. Some can be programmed not to be – but the default is uber peremptory. As soon as you get in and close the door, it locks. All locks. Some cars are incredibly aggressive about allowing access to the car, denying the owner access to the trunk or rear cargo area unless he very deliberately unlocks the locks, which the car slammed shut without him having asked it to.

Again, for saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety.

The latest BMW vehicles will countermand your decision to inch the car backward with the door open – by taking the transmission out of gear and pestering you with a cloying chime that sounds kind of like this: Brrrrring! Brrrrring! Brrrrring!

Sometimes, backing up with the door open makes sound sense. You get a better idea of where the curb is and also the distance remaining between the back of your car and the car your backing up toward using your own two eyes – which have greater depth perception and peripheral vision than any fish-eye camera.

But BMW wants you to use the camera instead. No, check that. BMW insists you use the camera.  The car will not let you back up with the door cracked. The nanny cannot be told off.

There is no Off button.

To continue reading: Cars That Parent Us

The Fragile Generation, by Lenore Skenazy and Jonathan Haidt

Any decent dramatist knows the essence of good drama is conflict and risk. A good life is the same way, and we’re doing our kids no favors when we shield them. From Lenore Skenazy and Jonathan Haidt at theburningplatform.com:

Bad policy and paranoid parenting are making kids too safe to succeed

One day last year, a citizen on a prairie path in the Chicago suburb of Elmhurst came upon a teen boy chopping wood. Not a body. Just some already-fallen branches. Nonetheless, the onlooker called the cops.

Officers interrogated the boy, who said he was trying to build a fort for himself and his friends. A local news site reports the police then “took the tools for safekeeping to be returned to the boy’s parents.”

Elsewhere in America, preschoolers at the Learning Collaborative in Charlotte, North Carolina, were thrilled to receive a set of gently used playground equipment. But the kids soon found out they would not be allowed to use it, because it was resting on grass, not wood chips. “It’s a safety issue,” explained a day care spokeswoman. Playing on grass is against local regulations.

And then there was the query that ran in Parents magazine a few years back: “Your child’s old enough to stay home briefly, and often does. But is it okay to leave her and her playmate home while you dash to the dry cleaner?” Absolutely not, the magazine averred: “Take the kids with you, or save your errand for another time.” After all, “you want to make sure that no one’s feelings get too hurt if there’s a squabble.”

The principle here is simple: This generation of kids must be protected like none other. They can’t use tools, they can’t play on grass, and they certainly can’t be expected to work through a spat with a friend.

And this, it could be argued, is why we have “safe spaces” on college campuses and millennials missing adult milestones today. We told a generation of kids that they can never be too safe—and they believed us.

To continue reading: The Fragile Generation

The Four-Wheeled Patriot Act, by Eric Peters

Eric Peters compares the war on autonomous cars to the war on terror. From Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

Whenever Congress does something unanimously (or nearly so) you can rest assured it’s in their interests, not ours.

The USA Patriot Act comes to mind.

Another is the Safely Ensuring Lives Future Deployment and Research in Vehicle Evolution Act – aka the SELF DRIVE Act – which was rubber stamped through Congress the other day. This is the law that exempts automated cars from the safety requirements that apply to autonomous cars – that is, the cars which are independentof government control and controlled by us.

Just as the Patriot Act was written, not to “fight terrorism,” but to make it easier for government to terrorize us, by circumventing or simply ignoring the Bill of Rights.

Same operating principle behind both.

There is irony – and malevolence – here.

Irony, because the same government that endlessly croons about “safety” – when it suits – is willing to back burner safety when it suits. If a car company dared to even suggest that it might be a good idea to install air bag Off switches in new cars (and it would be a very good idea, if safety is a concern, given how dangerous air bags are; not can be, but are) that company would be the focus of great abuse if not threatened prosecution.

Meanwhile, the SELF DRIVE Act will exempt automated cars from the necessity – under laws that apply to autonomous cars – of having things like steering wheels and brake pedals and other controls by which a human might intervene to save himself in the event the automated car makes a mistake.

It is presumed automated cars will never make a mistake, that their systems and technology are immune to defects, wear and tear and so forth.

You know. Like air bags are.

It’s not very “safe.”

And yet, it slid through Congress like shit through a goose.

It’s worth noting that no one is suggesting commercial airliners – which already have the ability to fly themselves, including take-off and landing – do so without human pilots standing by to step in just in case. Much less have cockpit controls removed and the now ex-pilots told to go watch a movie back in Coach.   

Why is it acceptable to do exactly that with machines that are more dangerous, en masse, than airliners simply by dint of numbers? There are only a few thousand airliners flying on any given day.

How many millions of cars are out there?    

 

To continue reading: The Four-Wheeled Patriot Act