So, Paris Hilton is busted for DUI. All she wanted was a burger! She didn’t claim, at least, to own Malibu or whatever.
I can imagine this getting me into more shit than even some of the quasi-bolshevik ideas I sometime post, because it isn’t really on anyone’s political axis, but. . .
Is DUI really such a threat to our way of life? Are DUI deaths any more or less tragic than any other? Is this truly something worth ignoring the Constitution for? (It’s ok to give your blood, breath, and urine, because driving’s not a “right” it’s a “privilege,” according to the pedantic, condescending bullshit they tell you.)
I’m not suggesting that DUI should be legal or condoned–but the severity with which it is punished seems rather silly to me. Dram shop liability for bartenders who serve people who turn around and drive (still no tobacco litigation against supermarkets!), loss of license, fines, jail time, and serious stigma.
Are all of the resources poured into this saving the most lives per dollar possible, or is there something more we can do with them to save even more lives? My guess is “yes.”
But DUI is just a small part of the traffic ticket racquet.
Traffic laws operate in an extra-constitutional world, where you do not have (for some undetermined reason) the same constitutional rights as in other worlds. No public defender. Nope, all you get is traffic school, if you’re lucky.
Why is that? Why are all of these repeat offenders and hardened criminals getting away with a slap on the wrist and 30 minutes of web browsing? Why? Because no one cares if you pay.
Traffic tickets are about funding local agencies, the highway patrol, and the DMV. They are aboslutely not about safety. Safety-related laws would enforce lane discipline, not speed limits (the easiest violation to prove). It’s a scam that would amont to the biggest organized crime ring in the world if it weren’t perpetrated by dozens of state and local governments.
It sounds trivial, right? I should just shut up and pay my tickets and let the damn drunk drivers rot in hell, or at least in jail, right?
Well, if were are able to let fear-fnords absolutely whitewash our constitutional rights with respect to something that has no real, direct relationship to our safety (speeding) that is only meant to fund unnecessary government–then why should anyone be surprsied that terrorism leads to the same thing writ large.
Yup, the CHP could learn a thing or two about generating revenues with fear from Halliburton.