Bike helmet laws shown to reduce number of injuries

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Re: Bike helmet laws shown to reduce number of injuries

Postby BigBallinStalin on Thu Mar 14, 2013 11:56 am

TA1LGUNN3R wrote:So we've established that I have no right to self-determination in regards to what is perceived as concerning public safety. Never mind the details of whether this is true or not, but let's take it at face value. Let's take this discussion as a scaled version and apply it internationally.

I don't have the right to not wear a helmet or seat belt because it may have consequences on the psychological or financial burden of the community at large (or, alternately, I'm too stupid and therefore it's the responsibility of better educated persons to look out for me). So do we then have the right to enact legislation that concern countries that believe they may be autonomous, but really aren't? Are we obligated to protect these countries whose actions may affect us, regardless of their sovereignty?

Was the war on Iraq justified as one of its main goals was to bring democracy to the people? Or were we justified in threatening the safety of Japan under the Tokugawa shogunate so that they would trade with us, thereby increasing our financial security?

How far does this concern for public structural integrity extend? Could we theoretically start enacting legislation upon China as they've threatened (now surpassed) our financial status as number 1?

Wondering where we draw the lines here.

-TG


Good point.

If the goal is to mitigate harm, then how do we does the government know which is the best means?
(assuming that's even the goal, which it isn't).
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Re: Bike helmet laws shown to reduce number of injuries

Postby TA1LGUNN3R on Thu Mar 14, 2013 1:51 pm

crispybits wrote:Why does there have to be a lazy one size fits all rule for every situation?


Rule of law. It's pretty much the basis of the entire anglo-american justice system and most of the western world. I'm not agreeing or disagreeing with it, I'm just applying what is the status quo to other situations and the discrepancy this creates.

-TG
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Re: Bike helmet laws shown to reduce number of injuries

Postby crispybits on Thu Mar 14, 2013 2:55 pm

TA1LGUNN3R wrote:
crispybits wrote:Why does there have to be a lazy one size fits all rule for every situation?


Rule of law. It's pretty much the basis of the entire anglo-american justice system and most of the western world. I'm not agreeing or disagreeing with it, I'm just applying what is the status quo to other situations and the discrepancy this creates.

-TG


No, the rule of law says "in situation X, this happens, in situation Y, that happens". It can differentiate between radically different things, such as, oh I don't know, whether cyclists should take reasonable measures to protect themselves on public highways and what those measures are (as a bare minimum), and something compeltely different like, hmmm, maybe..... whether one country can justify invading another?

The principles can be similar, but if the subjects of those discussions are radically different, then other principles may also apply and the context and other external factors may also lead to a different decision.
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Re: Bike helmet laws shown to reduce number of injuries

Postby TA1LGUNN3R on Thu Mar 14, 2013 3:24 pm

crispybits wrote:
TA1LGUNN3R wrote:
crispybits wrote:Why does there have to be a lazy one size fits all rule for every situation?


Rule of law. It's pretty much the basis of the entire anglo-american justice system and most of the western world. I'm not agreeing or disagreeing with it, I'm just applying what is the status quo to other situations and the discrepancy this creates.

-TG


No, the rule of law says "in situation X, this happens, in situation Y, that happens". It can differentiate between radically different things, such as, oh I don't know, whether cyclists should take reasonable measures to protect themselves on public highways and what those measures are (as a bare minimum), and something compeltely different like, hmmm, maybe..... whether one country can justify invading another?

The principles can be similar, but if the subjects of those discussions are radically different, then other principles may also apply and the context and other external factors may also lead to a different decision.


Rule of law allows for precedent, where justifications for punitive actions are based on similar facts and motives. The situations are alike. Precedent also allows for case law, where interpretations of law can be ruled as precedent.

-TG
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Re: Bike helmet laws shown to reduce number of injuries

Postby crispybits on Thu Mar 14, 2013 3:33 pm

Can you explain how the decision to invade Iraq is similar to the decision to enforce a cycle helmet law? Apart from a very (and I mean VERY) stretched application of the principle of protection of public safety there are many, many ways in which the judgement calls made in each case will be arrived at very (and I mean VERY) differently.
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Re: Bike helmet laws shown to reduce number of injuries

Postby TA1LGUNN3R on Thu Mar 14, 2013 3:44 pm

crispybits wrote:Can you explain how the decision to invade Iraq is similar to the decision to enforce a cycle helmet law? Apart from a very (and I mean VERY) stretched application of the principle of protection of public safety there are many, many ways in which the judgement calls made in each case will be arrived at very (and I mean VERY) differently.


I'm too stupid to decide for myself what to do, and it's up to those better educated to decide for me. They are enforcing a lifestyle choice at the expense of my self-determination and taxpayer funds to do so, creating instances where enforcers with guns can fine me for not obeying, detaining me and even arresting me. If I don't obey, I can be fined more and eventually imprisoned.

Likewise, the people of Iraq are too stupid to decide how to live for themselves. They don't have democracy, and we must bring it to them at the expense of our finances and enforcing this will upon them by sending in troops with guns. If they don't comply, we can bomb them some more. Glorious democracy!

Or, since my actions allegedly present a threat to the public safety, the actions of Saddam Hussein's regime also allegedly posed a threat to American safety. Therefore, we are justified in sending a cop (troops) to cite me (depose Hussein), and install future cooperation (threat of force).

-TG
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Re: Bike helmet laws shown to reduce number of injuries

Postby TA1LGUNN3R on Thu Mar 14, 2013 3:50 pm

If you're hesitant regarding why individual vs. international applications are similar, I ask this: how does enforcing our will upon a singular person differ from those of a nation? Is it only in the logistics of a larger force? Do you believe it's justified because a large force (U.S. gov't) with its nearly infinite resources at hand can impose their will upon an individual who doesn't have those resources and isn't justified because by actually applying this same ideal to a more capable mass it encounters more resistance?

In this vein, would you support an absolute monarch if he had supra-weaponry that allowed him to defeat any enemy with negligible cost (i.e. God)?

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Re: Bike helmet laws shown to reduce number of injuries

Postby crispybits on Thu Mar 14, 2013 4:40 pm

The issue is not you being too stupid, and the fact you think I'm favouring legislating against stupidity means that you know full well that not wearing the helmet is stupid. The issue is irresponsibility. You refuse to take others into account and by doing so you create a public health risk.

Similarly, the issue in Iraq was not that the population was stupid. The issue was (depending how much of our side's propaganda you believe) that their government was causing them harm. Their government was also getting into position to cause our allies harm (whatever you think of the various political ties)

On one side, you have a state putting safety measures in place on it's own population when using public areas within it's own borders. It's a relatively simple set of factors here, a domestic safety issue in a public place within borders and within jurisdiction.

On the other side, you have a state invading another forcibly in order to enforce the safety of non-citizens, violating international boundaries and jurisdictions in order to put a different government in place entirely. That's a much more complicated set of factors, of international law, UN resolutions, sovereign status, putting in place a whole new government, and frankly more about oil, politics and setting up friendly governments in volatile areas than any public safety concerns. Many other principles and many more complicated factors involved. Public safety was the least of them.

Similarly, public safety would never be enough to justify the US doing anything to China because they're a bit richer now, because many other factors are involved.

So we go back to the "what are the factors that would excuse the population from taking state-prescribed and low cost and reasonable safety measures in public, risk intensive places like highways?" Is there an actual rational reason, more important than the potential for damage caused, to object to this? If you believe the government is using it as a cash cow then you have to buy a $20 helmet from an American firm, boost the economy, and wear it when cycling on public highways. That way you never have to pay any fine or give any cop any reason to stop you at all. You live in one of the most free countries on Earth (it's not perfect, but it's up there near the top of the list for personal freedom), and this is frankly a petty, trivial and frankly absurd thing to equate to international war, or oppression by the state.
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Re: Bike helmet laws shown to reduce number of injuries

Postby Army of GOD on Fri Mar 15, 2013 12:34 am

crispybits wrote:Why does there have to be a lazy one size fits all rule for every situation?


Isn't this the argument against the helmet law?
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Re: Bike helmet laws shown to reduce number of injuries

Postby crispybits on Fri Mar 15, 2013 12:42 am

Context - that quote was about comparing the helmet law to international war / politics.

Within the scope of the law, one rule for all of only one type of vehicle only on public highways is hardly "one size fits all".
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Re: Bike helmet laws shown to reduce number of injuries

Postby Army of GOD on Fri Mar 15, 2013 12:50 am

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