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Seat Belt Laws (Laws that Shouldn't Exist)

jimtimmy2
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8/1/2013 12:59:56 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
Safety laws that deprive us of freedom are often framed by advocates (and sometimes opponents) as a simple matter of losing a small amount of freedom in exchange for a large amount of increased safety. Furthermore, they often make utilitarian type arguments that totally disregard freedom as a useful value (not that utilitarianism necessarily disregards freedom but most utilitarians use utilitarian justifications to brush aside any concern about reduced freedom).

Let us assume, for the sake of argument, that freedom does not matter at all. The only thing that matters is safety. With this in mind, let us look at a classic example of laws made for our own "safety": seat belt laws.

Whenever this is debated, it is simply assumed that these laws increase safety. The only objection is that they reduce freedom. And, the elites in charge brush these concerns aside as "dogmatic" and "unenlightened". Yes, the whole notion of going about our affairs without state force is quite outdated according to enlightened elites like Michael Bloomberg (to name a prominent one).

So, since we all know that seat belt laws increase safety, there is no "intelligent" or "pragmatic" argument against them. Well, sometimes what we all know is not so. Sam Peltzman studied seat belt laws and found:

"Holding other factors constant that might change the number of accidents (and this is never easy but he did the best he could with the data at hand), Sam found that mandatory seat belts did indeed cause more accidents. But this effect was roughly the same as the effect in the opposite direction, that accidents were less harmful. So the net number of fatalities of drivers was unaffected by the law. Sam found some evidence that the effect of the law might be to reduce driver fatalities. Unfortunately, because drivers were more reckless, there were more accidents involving pedestrians and cyclists. So their death rate due to cars increased. Total deaths were unchanged."

In other words, when people wear seat belts they tend to be more risky drivers. This means that there are two effects on driver safety going in opposite directions when it comes to seat belts. One is the obvious effect of a seatbelt reducing the chance of fatality when a reck occurs which increases safety and reduces fatalities. The other effect of seat belts is to increase the riskiness of drivers.

Peltzman looked at data and found that these effects roughly offset each other and there was no decrease or increase in deaths from automobiles resulting from seat belt laws.

In other words, seat belt laws caused a loss of freedom with no increase in safety. Also take note that there were other costs associated with seat belt laws like increased enforcement costs, increased automobile costs due to seat belt standards being imposed, etc. So, even without taking freedom into account, the seat belt laws are probably a net loss.

If one does care about freedom, they are a huge loss. Seat belt laws don't pass a standard cost and benefit analysis. They also deprive us of freedom.

The sad part is that seat belt laws are just one of many examples of laws that we are told increase safety at the cost of freedom that, in reality, do not even increase safety.

Link here:

http://cafehayek.com...
jimtimmy2
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8/1/2013 1:23:53 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
By the way, Sam Peltzman is a reputable economist at University of Chicago. I tend to think people should look more directly at research than at the institution the researcher does his or her research more (and their status within that institution), but Chicago is among the most reputable economic departments in the nation (and world).

It may lean right, but many reputable institutions lean left. Just like Princeton leans left but is still quite reputable.

Anyways, I just threw this in so people wouldn't claim this is some nut job from some fringe libertarian group. In fact, this a vey reputable professor at a very reputable institution.
1dustpelt
Posts: 1,970
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8/1/2013 5:10:18 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Agreed.

Same with those soda bans and crap by Bloomberg.
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wrichcirw
Posts: 11,196
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8/1/2013 5:48:11 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Isn't it freedom to be free to restrict freedom?
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
DeFool
Posts: 626
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8/1/2013 6:08:10 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
I simply do not see the "freedom" that is being removed by seat belt laws.

I try my best to justify my leftist position on the ersatz political scale, but I need assistance with this. What is the freedom that is lost when we buckle our seat belts, and require our children to do so as well?

I can see the state-level need to maintain such requirements, these are obvious. To list a few: strains on emergency services, lower economic output as a result of permanent injuries, increased need for disability payments.
jimtimmy2
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8/1/2013 6:16:49 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 6:08:10 PM, DeFool wrote:
I simply do not see the "freedom" that is being removed by seat belt laws.

I try my best to justify my leftist position on the ersatz political scale, but I need assistance with this. What is the freedom that is lost when we buckle our seat belts, and require our children to do so as well?

I can see the state-level need to maintain such requirements, these are obvious. To list a few: strains on emergency services, lower economic output as a result of permanent injuries, increased need for disability payments.

Quite frankly, we are losing the freedom to be able to drive without wearing a seatbelt.

Freedom is all about choice. That includes the freedom to make choices you might not think are very good. That part seems pretty obvious to me.

But, you seem to have missed the point of this thread entirely. The point is that even if you don't care about seat belt laws taking away freedom (or don't think they do), they still aren't good even from a utilitarian standpoint.

Statists often claim that they really aren't for more state power everywhere, but only where it is pragmatic. But, seat belt laws aren't even pragmatic. They don't reduce traffic related deaths and actually increase accidents.

In other words, the statists are just as (if not more) dogmatic than the non statists because these laws do increase the power of the state but do not increase safety.
jimtimmy2
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8/1/2013 6:18:49 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 5:48:11 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
Isn't it freedom to be free to restrict freedom?

Freedom is a touchy subject, and as I have mentioned before it may not exist objectively. Still, to me, I think state force is always undesirable, especially if the only people the state is trying to protect is the people who are breaking laws (they should be able to put themselves at risk).

Anyways, the point of this thread was not about the morality of seat belt laws but the practicality.
jimtimmy2
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8/1/2013 6:19:11 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 5:10:18 PM, 1dustpelt wrote:
Agreed.

Same with those soda bans and crap by Bloomberg.

Agreed. Bloomberg is awful.
wrichcirw
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8/1/2013 6:21:47 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 6:16:49 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:08:10 PM, DeFool wrote:

I can see the state-level need to maintain such requirements, these are obvious. To list a few: strains on emergency services, lower economic output as a result of permanent injuries, increased need for disability payments.

But, seat belt laws aren't even pragmatic. They don't reduce traffic related deaths and actually increase accidents.

I'd love to see this disagreement resolved.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
jimtimmy2
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8/1/2013 6:26:32 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 6:21:47 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:16:49 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:08:10 PM, DeFool wrote:

I can see the state-level need to maintain such requirements, these are obvious. To list a few: strains on emergency services, lower economic output as a result of permanent injuries, increased need for disability payments.

But, seat belt laws aren't even pragmatic. They don't reduce traffic related deaths and actually increase accidents.

I'd love to see this disagreement resolved.

My argument on this is in the OP. Defool certainly can make a case, but he needs to offer some more evidence.
Khaos_Mage
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8/1/2013 6:33:18 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
I would make the argument that seat belts "save" lives, in the sense that the death toll or ratio is lowered (same deaths over more accidents = "safer" ratio).

I would also argue that I have no freedom on other's property, and since the state owns the roads, they can make the rules to drive on them. This is similar to paying a toll to use a private road.
My work here is, finally, done.
wrichcirw
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8/1/2013 6:38:02 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 6:26:32 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:21:47 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:16:49 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:08:10 PM, DeFool wrote:

I can see the state-level need to maintain such requirements, these are obvious. To list a few: strains on emergency services, lower economic output as a result of permanent injuries, increased need for disability payments.

But, seat belt laws aren't even pragmatic. They don't reduce traffic related deaths and actually increase accidents.

I'd love to see this disagreement resolved.

My argument on this is in the OP. Defool certainly can make a case, but he needs to offer some more evidence.

Well, I'm certainly more partial with deFool on this one.

An argument against Peltzman I would offer is that concurrent with the seat belt laws, speed limits were also raised, so it's possible that the number of accidents increasing was due to the higher speed limits (harder to properly stop), while the seat belts lowered the fatalities from these accidents and thus were a net benefit.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
jimtimmy2
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8/1/2013 6:38:10 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 6:33:18 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
I would make the argument that seat belts "save" lives, in the sense that the death toll or ratio is lowered (same deaths over more accidents = "safer" ratio).

I would also argue that I have no freedom on other's property, and since the state owns the roads, they can make the rules to drive on them. This is similar to paying a toll to use a private road.

First, using that logic, seat belts end lives in the same way that they save lives.

And, first off, I don't think the state has any legitimate claim to the roads as their property.

However, assuming they do, you still have rights so long as you don't affect their property directly.
jimtimmy2
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8/1/2013 6:39:27 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 6:38:02 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:26:32 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:21:47 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:16:49 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:08:10 PM, DeFool wrote:

I can see the state-level need to maintain such requirements, these are obvious. To list a few: strains on emergency services, lower economic output as a result of permanent injuries, increased need for disability payments.

But, seat belt laws aren't even pragmatic. They don't reduce traffic related deaths and actually increase accidents.

I'd love to see this disagreement resolved.

My argument on this is in the OP. Defool certainly can make a case, but he needs to offer some more evidence.

Well, I'm certainly more partial with deFool on this one.

An argument against Peltzman I would offer is that concurrent with the seat belt laws, speed limits were also raised, so it's possible that the number of accidents increasing was due to the higher speed limits (harder to properly stop), while the seat belts lowered the fatalities from these accidents and thus were a net benefit.

Peltzman controlled for speeding.
DeFool
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8/1/2013 6:40:07 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 6:26:32 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:21:47 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:16:49 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:08:10 PM, DeFool wrote:

I can see the state-level need to maintain such requirements, these are obvious. To list a few: strains on emergency services, lower economic output as a result of permanent injuries, increased need for disability payments.

But, seat belt laws aren't even pragmatic. They don't reduce traffic related deaths and actually increase accidents.

I'd love to see this disagreement resolved.

My argument on this is in the OP. Defool certainly can make a case, but he needs to offer some more evidence.

I am building situational awareness - not attempting to argue any particular position. I understand that your argument is, "seat belt laws oppress those who wish to disregard them."

I will carefully consider any utilitarian justification for this, as I consider myself a convinced utilitarian, with caveats. But, perhaps this freedom can be described more precisely?

Is there also a freedom to eat broken glass? I am not being snide; I am asking.

It seems to me that seat belt laws are a means of taxation; I do not want to energetically defend them. But, these laws were universally passed with strong public support. It seems that most people want a portion of their income to go to the state in this way. Or for another reason.

Shouldn't the fact that these laws have been enacted argue against your resolution? Silly laws get through legislatures, but I am not certain that there isn't public support for this particular one.
jimtimmy2
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8/1/2013 6:49:59 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 6:40:07 PM, DeFool wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:26:32 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:21:47 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:16:49 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:08:10 PM, DeFool wrote:

I can see the state-level need to maintain such requirements, these are obvious. To list a few: strains on emergency services, lower economic output as a result of permanent injuries, increased need for disability payments.

But, seat belt laws aren't even pragmatic. They don't reduce traffic related deaths and actually increase accidents.

I'd love to see this disagreement resolved.

My argument on this is in the OP. Defool certainly can make a case, but he needs to offer some more evidence.

I am building situational awareness - not attempting to argue any particular position. I understand that your argument is, "seat belt laws oppress those who wish to disregard them."

I will carefully consider any utilitarian justification for this, as I consider myself a convinced utilitarian, with caveats. But, perhaps this freedom can be described more precisely?

Is there also a freedom to eat broken glass? I am not being snide; I am asking.

It seems to me that seat belt laws are a means of taxation; I do not want to energetically defend them. But, these laws were universally passed with strong public support. It seems that most people want a portion of their income to go to the state in this way. Or for another reason.

Shouldn't the fact that these laws have been enacted argue against your resolution? Silly laws get through legislatures, but I am not certain that there isn't public support for this particular one.

Did you read the OP?

The entire OP was not even about freedom or anything of that sort. It was a utilitarian criticism of seat belt laws because they fail to actually save lives on net. Read the OP.
ClassicRobert
Posts: 2,487
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8/1/2013 6:50:37 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
I think that a lot of people seem to be mistaking the issue here. Legislation being beneficial does not mean that it is the role of government to enact that legislation. The role of government does not extend to choosing the individual's actions when the individual is the only one effected.
Debate me: Economic decision theory should be adjusted to include higher-order preferences for non-normative purposes http://www.debate.org...

Do you really believe that? Or not? If you believe it, you should man up and defend it in a debate. -RoyLatham

My Pet Fish is such a Douche- NiamC

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jimtimmy2
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8/1/2013 6:53:17 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 6:50:37 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
I think that a lot of people seem to be mistaking the issue here. Legislation being beneficial does not mean that it is the role of government to enact that legislation. The role of government does not extend to choosing the individual's actions when the individual is the only one effected.

Yes, but if the legislation isn't beneficial, then it definitely shouldn't be enacted.

Seat belt laws aren't even beneficial.
ClassicRobert
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8/1/2013 6:54:19 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 6:53:17 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:50:37 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
I think that a lot of people seem to be mistaking the issue here. Legislation being beneficial does not mean that it is the role of government to enact that legislation. The role of government does not extend to choosing the individual's actions when the individual is the only one effected.

Yes, but if the legislation isn't beneficial, then it definitely shouldn't be enacted.

Seat belt laws aren't even beneficial.

How so?
Debate me: Economic decision theory should be adjusted to include higher-order preferences for non-normative purposes http://www.debate.org...

Do you really believe that? Or not? If you believe it, you should man up and defend it in a debate. -RoyLatham

My Pet Fish is such a Douche- NiamC

It's an app to meet friends and stuff, sort of like an adult club penguin- Thett3, describing Tinder
jimtimmy2
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8/1/2013 6:55:05 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 6:54:19 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:53:17 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:50:37 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
I think that a lot of people seem to be mistaking the issue here. Legislation being beneficial does not mean that it is the role of government to enact that legislation. The role of government does not extend to choosing the individual's actions when the individual is the only one effected.

Yes, but if the legislation isn't beneficial, then it definitely shouldn't be enacted.

Seat belt laws aren't even beneficial.

How so?

Read the full OP where I explain how seat belt laws actually increase the number of accidents and have no net effect on traffic related deaths.
ClassicRobert
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8/1/2013 7:00:13 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 6:55:05 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:54:19 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:53:17 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:50:37 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
I think that a lot of people seem to be mistaking the issue here. Legislation being beneficial does not mean that it is the role of government to enact that legislation. The role of government does not extend to choosing the individual's actions when the individual is the only one effected.

Yes, but if the legislation isn't beneficial, then it definitely shouldn't be enacted.

Seat belt laws aren't even beneficial.

How so?

Read the full OP where I explain how seat belt laws actually increase the number of accidents and have no net effect on traffic related deaths.

Yeah, I read that, but I don't buy it. I think that it's confusing causation and correlation.
Debate me: Economic decision theory should be adjusted to include higher-order preferences for non-normative purposes http://www.debate.org...

Do you really believe that? Or not? If you believe it, you should man up and defend it in a debate. -RoyLatham

My Pet Fish is such a Douche- NiamC

It's an app to meet friends and stuff, sort of like an adult club penguin- Thett3, describing Tinder
jimtimmy2
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8/1/2013 7:04:36 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 7:00:13 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:55:05 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:54:19 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:53:17 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:50:37 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
I think that a lot of people seem to be mistaking the issue here. Legislation being beneficial does not mean that it is the role of government to enact that legislation. The role of government does not extend to choosing the individual's actions when the individual is the only one effected.

Yes, but if the legislation isn't beneficial, then it definitely shouldn't be enacted.

Seat belt laws aren't even beneficial.

How so?

Read the full OP where I explain how seat belt laws actually increase the number of accidents and have no net effect on traffic related deaths.

Yeah, I read that, but I don't buy it. I think that it's confusing causation and correlation.

Based on what?

The author studied changes occuring after seat belt laws...
DeFool
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8/1/2013 7:05:08 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 6:53:17 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:50:37 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
I think that a lot of people seem to be mistaking the issue here. Legislation being beneficial does not mean that it is the role of government to enact that legislation. The role of government does not extend to choosing the individual's actions when the individual is the only one effected.

Yes, but if the legislation isn't beneficial, then it definitely shouldn't be enacted.

Seat belt laws aren't even beneficial.

I agree that actions that impact only one individual should be very sparingly enacted. We should be allowed to keep our own council in how we can obtain the best joy from this life.

However, it manifestly is the "role of government" to enforce these laws, even the useless ones. LGBT marriage prohibition is one topical example of a nonsensical restriction that should be removed immediately. The same is true for marijuana use.

Despite the need to repeal these laws, they must be enforced by the governing body within a society. Otherwise; societal breakdown resulting from my enforcement of atheism and hedonism, and your prevention of the enforcement of drinking and driving laws.

Right or wrong, there must be an arbitrating body that can resolve these conflicts that is respected and is able to impose its will.

When this arbitrator is wrong, as it often is, it can be corrected through collective democratic power, or through brilliant logical application. Considering my dark view of Texans here in my home state, I think it best that we first resort to collective democratic demands, and simply hope for intelligent discourse.
ClassicRobert
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8/1/2013 7:14:53 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 7:04:36 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 7:00:13 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:55:05 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:54:19 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:53:17 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:50:37 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
I think that a lot of people seem to be mistaking the issue here. Legislation being beneficial does not mean that it is the role of government to enact that legislation. The role of government does not extend to choosing the individual's actions when the individual is the only one effected.

Yes, but if the legislation isn't beneficial, then it definitely shouldn't be enacted.

Seat belt laws aren't even beneficial.

How so?

Read the full OP where I explain how seat belt laws actually increase the number of accidents and have no net effect on traffic related deaths.

Yeah, I read that, but I don't buy it. I think that it's confusing causation and correlation.

Based on what?

The author studied changes occuring after seat belt laws...

Exactly. When you're just studying changes before and after, all you are looking at is a correlation. Take, for example, gun ownership. When the assault weapons ban of 1994 was passed, violent crime went down as gun ownership went up. This, however, is just a correlation. It would be fallacious to assume that gun ownership caused the decrease in violent crime, just as it would be fallacious to assume that the ban caused the violent crime to decrease.
Debate me: Economic decision theory should be adjusted to include higher-order preferences for non-normative purposes http://www.debate.org...

Do you really believe that? Or not? If you believe it, you should man up and defend it in a debate. -RoyLatham

My Pet Fish is such a Douche- NiamC

It's an app to meet friends and stuff, sort of like an adult club penguin- Thett3, describing Tinder
ClassicRobert
Posts: 2,487
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8/1/2013 7:18:24 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 7:05:08 PM, DeFool wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:53:17 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:50:37 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
I think that a lot of people seem to be mistaking the issue here. Legislation being beneficial does not mean that it is the role of government to enact that legislation. The role of government does not extend to choosing the individual's actions when the individual is the only one effected.

Yes, but if the legislation isn't beneficial, then it definitely shouldn't be enacted.

Seat belt laws aren't even beneficial.

I agree that actions that impact only one individual should be very sparingly enacted. We should be allowed to keep our own council in how we can obtain the best joy from this life.

However, it manifestly is the "role of government" to enforce these laws, even the useless ones. LGBT marriage prohibition is one topical example of a nonsensical restriction that should be removed immediately. The same is true for marijuana use.

Despite the need to repeal these laws, they must be enforced by the governing body within a society. Otherwise; societal breakdown resulting from my enforcement of atheism and hedonism, and your prevention of the enforcement of drinking and driving laws.

Right or wrong, there must be an arbitrating body that can resolve these conflicts that is respected and is able to impose its will.

Holy crap, it's a Leviathan.

When this arbitrator is wrong, as it often is, it can be corrected through collective democratic power, or through brilliant logical application. Considering my dark view of Texans here in my home state, I think it best that we first resort to collective democratic demands, and simply hope for intelligent discourse.

Basically, of course government should enforce it's own laws, but certain laws that overstep the role of government should not be there in the first place, and should be repealed.
Debate me: Economic decision theory should be adjusted to include higher-order preferences for non-normative purposes http://www.debate.org...

Do you really believe that? Or not? If you believe it, you should man up and defend it in a debate. -RoyLatham

My Pet Fish is such a Douche- NiamC

It's an app to meet friends and stuff, sort of like an adult club penguin- Thett3, describing Tinder
wrichcirw
Posts: 11,196
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8/1/2013 7:23:27 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 7:14:53 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
At 8/1/2013 7:04:36 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 7:00:13 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:55:05 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:54:19 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:53:17 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:50:37 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
I think that a lot of people seem to be mistaking the issue here. Legislation being beneficial does not mean that it is the role of government to enact that legislation. The role of government does not extend to choosing the individual's actions when the individual is the only one effected.

Yes, but if the legislation isn't beneficial, then it definitely shouldn't be enacted.

Seat belt laws aren't even beneficial.

How so?

Read the full OP where I explain how seat belt laws actually increase the number of accidents and have no net effect on traffic related deaths.

Yeah, I read that, but I don't buy it. I think that it's confusing causation and correlation.

Based on what?

The author studied changes occuring after seat belt laws...

Exactly. When you're just studying changes before and after, all you are looking at is a correlation. Take, for example, gun ownership. When the assault weapons ban of 1994 was passed, violent crime went down as gun ownership went up. This, however, is just a correlation. It would be fallacious to assume that gun ownership caused the decrease in violent crime, just as it would be fallacious to assume that the ban caused the violent crime to decrease.

My understanding of jimtimmy's rebuttal to this is that Peltzman controlled for other correlations, meaning that if you only had one event correlating to his statistics, chances are very high that correlation is causation.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
donald.keller
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8/1/2013 7:25:36 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
I would like to say... If you get rid of the law, how many people will stop wearing their seat belt? You'd still have a large number of reckless seat belt wearing drivers, and a large number of at-risk non-seat belt wearers... And their non-seat belt wearing children.

You don't decrease accidents by a lot, but you do increase the number of non-seat belt wearers involved.

Instead of taking away the law, how about holding real classes for Driving lessons, instead of a book, and 40 hours of (usually) unconfirmed driving practice.
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ClassicRobert
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8/1/2013 7:30:34 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 7:25:36 PM, donald.keller wrote:
I would like to say... If you get rid of the law, how many people will stop wearing their seat belt? You'd still have a large number of reckless seat belt wearing drivers, and a large number of at-risk non-seat belt wearers... And their non-seat belt wearing children.

You don't decrease accidents by a lot, but you do increase the number of non-seat belt wearers involved.

Instead of taking away the law, how about holding real classes for Driving lessons, instead of a book, and 40 hours of (usually) unconfirmed driving practice.

Like I said, it's more an issue of role of government than anything.
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DeFool
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8/1/2013 7:30:53 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 7:18:24 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
At 8/1/2013 7:05:08 PM, DeFool wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:53:17 PM, jimtimmy2 wrote:
At 8/1/2013 6:50:37 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
I think that a lot of people seem to be mistaking the issue here. Legislation being beneficial does not mean that it is the role of government to enact that legislation. The role of government does not extend to choosing the individual's actions when the individual is the only one effected.

Yes, but if the legislation isn't beneficial, then it definitely shouldn't be enacted.

Seat belt laws aren't even beneficial.

I agree that actions that impact only one individual should be very sparingly enacted. We should be allowed to keep our own council in how we can obtain the best joy from this life.

However, it manifestly is the "role of government" to enforce these laws, even the useless ones. LGBT marriage prohibition is one topical example of a nonsensical restriction that should be removed immediately. The same is true for marijuana use.

Despite the need to repeal these laws, they must be enforced by the governing body within a society. Otherwise; societal breakdown resulting from my enforcement of atheism and hedonism, and your prevention of the enforcement of drinking and driving laws.

Right or wrong, there must be an arbitrating body that can resolve these conflicts that is respected and is able to impose its will.

Holy crap, it's a Leviathan.

What is this?

When this arbitrator is wrong, as it often is, it can be corrected through collective democratic power, or through brilliant logical application. Considering my dark view of Texans here in my home state, I think it best that we first resort to collective democratic demands, and simply hope for intelligent discourse.

Basically, of course government should enforce it's own laws, but certain laws that overstep the role of government should not be there in the first place, and should be repealed.

Here, we agree. However, this conclusion is a bromide, and not likely to encounter much controversy.
Citrakayah
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8/1/2013 7:45:25 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/1/2013 7:18:24 PM, ClassicRobert wrote:
Holy crap, it's a Leviathan.

Hobbes thesis was that an entity with absolute power was the only thing keeping society from totally collapsing and that humans were incapable of any selflessness.

Basically, of course government should enforce it's own laws, but certain laws that overstep the role of government should not be there in the first place, and should be repealed.

And what determines the role of government?