The Return of Clover, Mark I

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The original Clover – the self-named (and appropriately named) poster-heckler who inadvertently provided me with a wonderful term to describe Statist Americanus – has returned. And he has learned nothing, as you’ll see by reading his latest post, which is only new in a superficial sense, since he’s just regurgitating the same old hackneyed, package-dealing, oppression-justifying cliches that typify the Clover Hive Mind. But, in the interests of science, it is worth presenting this for general viewing. Masks on, now…  .

“Since it harms no one, usually, then it is OK walking around with a loaded gun pointing it at someone”

Poor ol’ Clover… doesn’t understand that pointing a loaded gun at people is threatening them with lethal violence, which any Libertarian – any sane person – would rightly call criminal. But merely walking around with a loaded gun… as such … presents no threat, no harm, implied or overt … hence, no crime. But Clover is trying to delegitimize carrying a gun – a reasonable, lawful thing – by implying (by package-dealing) that doing so amounts to threatening people with lethal violence. Hence, it should be illegal for anyone to possess a gun. Amazingly, people fall for this line of “thought” . . . if it can be called that.

Next item:

“It is OK to drive drunk and we should be fine with it until they kill a bunch of others and then put them in jail.”

I’ve already patiently tried to explain this to you literally dozens of times now. What is “drunk”? Whatever a politician decrees it to be? Is it merely the presence of an arbitrary  amount of alcohol in one’s system – even if one’s actual driving has given no reason to suggest actual impairment? Why? Many people over 80 are as or more objectively “impaired” than a 30 year old with a few beers in him, in terms of diminished reflexes and so on. Yet we do not lock people up merely for Driving While Old. (Usually, they have to actually do something to show impairment – such as drive the wrong way down the Interstate). Why not lock over-80 drivers up merely because they are over 80? Is it not the same thing as locking up 30-year-olds merely because they have “x” amount of alcohol in their systems?  No? Explain the difference, then.

Clover believes that “… it is better to decide what is right and wrong as a group rather than an individual deciding how dangerous they should drive or act.”

But Clover, there is no such thing as a “group decision. There are only individuals deciding, claiming that they act on behalf of the group, or the majority. What makes a group wiser or more morally righteous than an individual – or more competent to make the correct decision? We are individuals, Clover – and we have individually different abilities, moral sense and so on. Some of us are much better at some things (and others much worse). What gives you (or anyone else) the right to decide for me or anyone else what is the “best” way – as you define it – to do something? The right to force me to do what you believe to be the “best” way to do something? Who the heck are you? Wouldn’t it be better to leave it up to each individual to exercise judgment – and then be responsible for his own decisions – rather than chain each of us to decisions made by others that may or may not be appropriate or necessary? Which may, indeed, by inappropriate and unnecessary? Pearls before swine, I know.

Clover continues:

“You say that things like speeding is OK. You are right most of the time. Thousands of times throughout the year that is not true though. Excessive speeding does often kill. You say it does not do it all the time so it is fine. Yes driving 50 thousand miles on an oil change may be fine also once in a while but it can significantly increase the chances of an early death to your engine”

No, Clover. I have said that speeding is a technical infraction, a violation of administrative law –  and so morally neutral. It may be illegal to drive 75 in a 55. But is it wrong to do so in the moral sense? Of course not.  So, why should a person who is not causing any problems (other violating an administrative decree) be hassled by the cops?

And more, it is not “speed” that “kills,” in that tedious, decrepit and totally discredited formulation. It is driver error – which can be further distilled to such things as inappropriate speed for conditions, failure to maintain control, inattentiveness – etc. Your response – the Cloveronian reflex – is to fixate on some arbitrary group standard rather than deal with individual drivers who cause actual problems as a result of their poor driving (whether too slow or too fast or too inept).

And then Clover trots out that “It still comes down to it is what you decide is correct.”

Oh no, oh Cloveroni. It comes down to what can be demonstrated to cause harm. If there is no harm, if there is no victim, then there is no crime – morally (and reasonably) speaking. This is an ancient concept that dates back to Magna Carta and before, to the dawn of human civilization. It offends the moral sense to punish someone when no demonstrable harm has been caused (or threatened). Yet, as a result of the spread of Cloverism, the principle has been upended and we now have a system that is based on prosecuting victimless crimes – of which “speeding” is merely the most common.

Unfortunately – for the sake of liberty – we have Cloverism and it is spreading, in the same way and for the same reasons that bad money pushes out the good – in a kind of moral-ethical permutation of Gresham’s Law.

What’s the solution? I wish I knew. Reason does not reach these people. They “believe” and they “feel.” It is like trying to argue with a barking dog.

Throw it in the Woods?


  1. Of course things like speeding and drunk driving are wrong in the moral sense. You are choosing to threaten the lives of many people.

    The biggest delusion Libertarians labour under is that their actions only effect themselves.

    • “Of course things like speeding and drunk driving are wrong in the moral sense…”

      So, let’s see: Traveling faster than a number on a sign is “wrong in a moral sense”…

      We have a new Clover!

      • Traveling at a demonstrably dangerous speed is morally wrong. Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is morally wrong.

        Why? Because willfully endangering the lives of other motorists and pedestrians is morally wrong.

        • But it’s not “demonstrably dangerous,” RJ. That’s just a silly statement.

          Here’s a textbook example to prove the point:

          In 1974, the federal government decreed that highway speed limits will be 55 MPH and no higher. Previously, they were 70-75 on average. Were the previous speed limits “demonstrably unsafe”? But how can that be? They were “the law”!

          Then in 1994, the federal government rescinded the 55 MPH limit – and speed limits are now back to 70 in most places.

          So, which is it? Because you can’t have it both ways. If it was “demonstrably unsafe” to drive faster than 55 for the 20-something years from 1974-1994, how did it become “safe” to drive 70 on the same roads, in the same cars, the day after the 55 MPH limit was rescinded?

          Please, explain!

          • Easy to explain: such laws and regulations are not and should not be written in stone. If research demonstrates that vehicle engineering has made it safer to travel at slightly higher speeds than previously, than the responsible move is to adjust the speed limits. If after a period of time this, despite the previous research, still results in increased accidents and fatalities then you may see the laws re-adjusted as officials try their best to make the roads safer.

            • That’s a dodge, RJ.

              You know very well that’s not the reality.

              The reality is that speed limits exist as revenue collection devices. It has little, if anything, to do with “safety.”

              For 20 years, millions of people were unjustly screwed out of millions of dollars for “speeding” at speeds that were formerly – and are once more – legal.

              The same dynamic exists on virtually every secondary road.

              To claim otherwise is just idiotic.

              Oh, and here’s some more “laws” for you:

              How about the laws that put people in cages and destroy their lives… over arbitrarily illegal substances they posses, grow or put into their bodies?

  2. I Agree the bottom line here is we need to quit punishing people for what they might do. This allows anyone to be arrested anytime. If I walk down the street carrying a hammer, I could possibly kill someone with it. Should I be arrested for the fact that I could possibly kill someone? Ridiculous! If there is no victim there is no crime.

  3. I listened to most of this:

    “Joining Ian Punnett, Paul A. Trout (book link), retired professor at Montana State University, for a discussion on how ancient mythology about animal predators in search of human flesh has factual roots based on mankind’s early history. ”

    It’s quite the insight into the clover mind.

  4. Clover biopsy 5: “your post tells me you have done dumb things for years. I like your statements like “based on infrared spectroscopy (IR absorption) which is the same principle most breath alcohol analyzers rely on” You can not even tell me what equipment they were using for testing that you said was wrong. You can not tell me what the temperature was when they were using the test equipment…….You complain about 15 minutes being taken away from you but at the same time you spend hours making things up.”

    Actually “dumb” denotes the inability to speak. I’ve never suffered from that affliction; quite the contrary. 😀 I have undoubtedly done some stupid things in the past and have every reason to believe Clover has too. We are both human after all. But at least I can acknowledge that fact and not try to come across like some self-righteous crusader trying to rid the world of drunk drivers and speeders because I falsely believe I am morally superior and do not err. So Clover, let he who is without sin cast the first stone. Before you pick up that rock and try to smash my rights with it, remember that “there is none righteous. No, not one”. That includes you. Look it up.

    Then Clover spews on about all the things that I didn’t tell her, asserting that I “can not” tell her (Clover, it’s “cannot”). In fact had I wanted to bother, I could have easily provided Clover with more detailed information because I did look it up. But I was waiting for a valid technical argument in response indicating the she was interested enough to “look it up” herself. She could have countered with the specific equipment specifications, operating conditions and events disproving my statements. But our Clover, although claiming to know something about “electronics”, seems to lack the requisite technical expertise, so she resorts to derision and accusation instead. Clover will make a good democratic congresswoman some day, I’m afraid. Move over Pelosi, Clover’s on her way to take your job.

    I skipped the bulk of the rest of this particular post because analyzing it would be redundant; just more of the same emotive blather. However, her last statement was interesting because the technical information I allegedly “spend hours” making up is easily verifiable with a few simple searches on the Internet. On the other hand, the events I described relating to my encounters with a particular Virginia State Trooper are indeed anecdotal, but were in my sphere of personal experience. However, Clover often relies on things she has NOT experienced in an effort to validate her own opinions. So she should not consider the things I actually have experienced any less valid. I can reasonably infer from her accusation, that I ‘make things up’, that Clover speaks from her own heart and imputes the delusions found therein to me. Deep down Clover knows that she twists facts and ‘makes things up’ herself to support her self-righteous positions; therefore I must be doing the same thing.

    With respect to time taken from me by the state versus time spent writing: one minute you Clover or anyone else takes from me without my consent is stealing and is therefore a violation of my rights. The time I spend writing stimulates my mind. I am passionate about writing and find it enjoyable. There is no comparison between the two, so you err in another of your conclusions. It appears to me that Clover writes to assuage her pain and despair. Clover probably lashes out at us because she suffers emotional anguish over an “incident” caused by a “drunk driver” or “speeder” and lumps us in with them. Clover personifies the old saw “Misery loves company” and wants us to join her. Clover also refuses to understand that Constitutional restrictions on government power were put in place with the intent of stopping people like her from oppressing the rest of us with ever more complex and onerous rules and regulations. When they herd her into the turnstyle at the camp entrance naked, in front of leering DHS “officers” she may realize then that it wasn’t really “for her own good”. Then again, maybe not.

    Disclaimer: The conclusions I have drawn about our Clover are based solely on what she has written. I am sure that much of what I have inferred about her is at least nominally incorrect because (as far as I know) I have not had any association with her other than here. She is my fellow creature fully entitled to her own opinion, beliefs, rights and freedoms, which I stand ready to defend despite our differences. But based on what I know about human nature, I suspect my hypotheses are sufficiently accurate to make Clover uncomfortable. If so, I sincerely hope that discomfort inspires her to learn, explore and educate herself on a continuous and ever broadening basis. If I am wrong on any points, Clover may intelligently and reasonably correct me point by point. I believe Eric will allow her to do that. Otherwise she also has the right to remain silent, and if she can’t provide reasonable and enlightened discourse, I would encourage her to do so.

    • “Clover often relies on things she has NOT experienced in an effort to validate her own opinions.”

      It’s a bit twisted but I find humor in the news stories about some clover being abused/harassed/etc by cops/government. It always comes as some sort of shock to them when it happens and it must be just a few bad people or an error… it makes me laugh. They experience a little of what many people live with daily and they just cannot believe it’s real. Of course the news media gets it straightened out so the clover in the news story and clovers in general can keep their illusions.

  5. I have noticed the great improvements in the site layout and content. Thanks Dom and Eric.

    I have noticed that a much larger portion of our young population is politically active than they were 25 years ago when I was in my 20’s. A much larger group actually care about liberty and freedom, something that they experienced a lot less of than we did back then, although cops started being dickheaded, steroid jacked ass creeps back in the good old 1980’s. I trace a lot of our economic and liberty problems to those days when we had the actor in the white house telling us that everything was just dandy while underneath, clovers and junk bond salesman were taking our individual and economic liberty away through regulation, litigation, manufacturing outsourcing, commercial contracts and ID requirements…

    When I can, I try and participate in what this new generation is doing. I also think that the Occupy Wall Street movement has been demonized by the media. Whether you agree with their specific demands, you have to admit that they have guts to stand up to the police.

  6. Clover biopsy 4: “do you think I have any right to drive down the roadway with safe drivers around me? The supreme court ruled that I do. They ruled that it is reasonable to stop people during a safety stop and talk to them to see if they are fine to drive. Statistics show that thousands of lives have been saved by the states that have these safety stops.”

    What I think is irrelevant. What The Fourth Amendment to the Constitution (The Supreme Law of the Land) says is: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

    So unless there is probable cause, the officers of the state are required by law appeal to a judge for a warrant specifying which crime it is they have suspicion to believe has been committed. If and when that judge approves it, only then may I be stopped, questioned, searched or otherwise impeded. What the Supreme Court determines should now be “public policy” does not change what (at least some of) the framers intended. If Clover had actually studied U.S. history and understood the language as it was used when the Constitution was written she would know this. Instead she will trade everyone else’s Liberty for her own false sense of security; which is in fact harm done to me and my peers. It is a violation of our rights. The fact that Clover wants to use violence prone men with guns to enforce her will on the rest of us, at our own expense no less, tells a lot about how her mind works.

    Does she attempt to educate and persuade by proving the necessity of changing the Supreme Law of the Land beyond a reasonable doubt? Clover prefers to take “administrative” shortcuts. Rather than working to change the Constitution, since she feels so strongly about this, Clover appears to believe that a lawlessness end run around it is acceptable since it makes her “feel” safer. It doesn’t matter if what she wants is “technically” illegal or morally wrong, because in her mind more restrictions equal more safety.

    If she can find like minded people in government to support her position, it justifies her bizarre worldview for her. Since “dubya” said the Constitution was just a “G-d piece of paper”, so it must be. She doesn’t stop to consider that ambitious men have always used fear and security as excuses to garner more power for themselves. Clover and her ilk are the power mongers’ dream; what better path to absolute power than on the backs of those who ask for slavery and oppression? Sadly there are apparently a lot of other people, the Supreme Court Justices included, that support this “public policy” over what the law says.

    Once more Clover proclaims there are statistics available, but she declines to reveal them for our perusal. So just like an overprotective mother making her son get down off the monkey bars, Clover would stop everything from happening around her that she deems dangerous. Why, we might ask? Because SHE SAYS SO and that’s the only reason we need. After all, it’s for our own good and it makes her angry that we don’t appreciate her concern for everyone else’s “well being”; our Liberty be damned. If I were in front of her right now, she would probably try to slap me to “knock some sense” into me. If blocked the blow, she would then file assault charges because my forearm hit her hand. Then she would try to have me put in a cage “for my own good”. To Clover and everyone like her, up is down and it’s gravity that’s wrong.

    • Excellent.

      I especially like the way you explained how Clover uses a theoretical harm (there might be a drink driver out there) to justify imposing actual harm (random stops/searches of people who have given no cause to justify it).

      What we’ve tried to explain to her – and what she seems constitutionally unable to grasp – is that positing a theoretical risk as the justification for violating people’s liberties is to destroy the very concept of liberty. For if you cannot expect to be left alone and in peace until you actually give some reason for the authorities to detain you, question you, search you (and so on) then you have no liberties. You are at the mercy of whatever the government (the Clovers) decide they want to do with and to you, since there is no longer any connection between your actions and the vague “risks” and theoretical “harm” they can endlessly refer to.

      After all, anyone might do anything at any time.

      This reductio ad absurdum “reasoning” is how we got to where we are – unlimited government, vs. government restrained by the rule of law.

      • Thank you for providing this forum Eric. I’ve discovered, too late I fear, that I have a passion for writing. This site is like a playground for me. My thanks also go out to Lew Rockwell for introducing your site to me and to Dom for keeping it up and running. I believe the time has come for the libertarian message to resonate widely and I’m glad to be alive to help spread it and to see so many people waking up to it! Speaking truth to power is what it’s all about. Be afraid all you Clovers out there, be very afraid!

        • This site is like a playground for me too! I have fun participating here. Even though most people don’t notice. I think you contribute just as much as us, so thank you!

        • You know what? I feel exactly the same way! Even though I am dismayed by much that is going on, I also, like you, get a charge out of being awake and alive and able to use whatever talent I have as a writer to help awaken others. I have no doubt that liberty-minded people alive in 1750 also felt as we do now – a mixture of disgust/depression leavened by a strong desire to change things for the better.

          This site has helped people like us network, hash out our views – and most importantly, let us know there are still many liberty-minded people left in this country. The clovers have succeeded to a great extent by default. They ooze into positions that we find repellent and so tend to stay clear of. They lust for power and control; we just want to be left in peace.

          But a moment comes when they’ve pushed too far, too fast – and I believe that is precisely the moment we find ourselves in today.

          There is hope while we can still act.

          And: Thanks also to Dom for creating the stage on which we play. This site looks great solely because of his efforts, not mine.

  7. Clover biopsy 3: “groups do not make mistakes…….Studies have shown that the vast majority of drivers do not adjust their driving to the conditions. The majority of people drive the same speed no matter if it is raining or the sun is shining. A large group of people do not slow down if the roads are snow and ice packed. The vast majority of people do not slow down in heavy traffic unless someone gets in their way. Just because a handful of drivers compensate when the conditions are not as safe like I do and you say that you do, it does not make it safe because the majority do not.”

    Here we go again. Groups do indeed make mistakes: witness the Spanish Inquisition, the Salem Witch Trials, internment camps for Japanese Americans in the U.S., concentration camps for Jews in Nazi Germany, the Gulag in the USSR, destruction of American Bison herds, ethnic cleansing of the Plains Indians, legalized slavery, ad nauseam. If the roughly two hundred million dead at the hands of government during the 20th century don’t prove the fallacy of group-think to Clover, nothing can. In many instances several different groups erred violently at the same time! And this list is hardly all inclusive.

    However our Clover rambles on about “the majority of people”, “A large group of people” and “The vast majority of people” making the mistake of not slowing down due to poor driving conditions. So first we have the assertion that groups don’t make mistakes followed immediately by the contradictory assertion that groups do make mistakes; fascinating. I would ask, if the “vast majority” of people do not compensate for changing driving conditions, where is all the carnage? The daily news should be rife with mass automobile homicide putting humans on the same footing as the Snail Darter or Spotted Owl. No wait, they aren’t really endangered either, are they? Once again no empirical data is provided to support her “facts”.

  8. Eric wrote a piece recently about the people who get into the “fast” lane and then plod along at *exactly* the speed limit, or maybe a couple of mph slower just to be safe, and never move over, either never glancing in their rear-view mirrors or not caring that ten cars are stacked up behind them. This “speed kills” conversation seems to be pitting the same two sides against each other: drivers who are paying attention and know their skills, versus drivers who have no idea how impaired their driving really is.

    I’ve been driving on US roads for 45 years and have noticed a definite decline in average driving abilities. I attribute this to a steady increase in the number of mind-altering chemicals our society is awash in. One in ten Americans are now on anti-depressants, which can have a mellowing effect that lightens your right foot on the gas. Fluoride is put in the water specifically to make the population more docile (even if they tell you it’s to prevent cavities). Millions more are on pain killers, which often have a warning right on the bottle about not driving or operating machinery while you’re on them. Perhaps the most widespread of all is Aspartame artificial sweetener, of which a major part of the molecule is wood alcohol, and for which one of the reported side effects (among many) is a mental fog which makes decision-making difficult. This is the impaired-driver syndrome I see most often, where they can’t seem to make a decision and so slow down to a speed that matches their brain function.

    These two sides, impaired and unimpaired drivers, end up driving each other nuts. Impaired drivers don’t know it, and assume everyone has the same attention and skill level as themselves, so speed seems frightening and reckless to them. For drivers with perfect presence of mind and fast reflexes, speed limits are unfair limitations of freedom and we just wish the zombies would get out of the way.

    • All excellent observations Tom. And I would add that most of these people appear affected, at least to some degree, by public school brainwashing to Submit and Obey. The one’s that turned out to be particularly difficult to break were given psychotropic drugs, such as Ritalin, to bring them into compliance, thereby forming a sub-group of pharmaceutical consumers. This strikes me as the dystopian extended cut of The Stones song “Mother’s Little Helper” playing out right here in 21st Century America. Have a problem? Go the the doctor, he’ll give you a “scrip”. But my gawd, don’t smoke a joint! We’ll put you in a cage for that! It truly has become bizarro world.

    • I have a natural frustration with american society and it seems to be getting worse since I went to fluoride free toothpaste and started filtering it out of the water I drink. So you might have something there.

      But I think at best it’s a contributing factor. Fundamentally from on high we have a society where people push their responsibilities on to others overlaid with a distinct ‘me first, fuck you’ attitude.

      First they are lazy and all the messages from drivers ed and on are about driving slow to compensate for people who don’t pay attention. Paying attention takes effort. The system says the other guy is responsible to pay attention, so they don’t. Only thing coming up from the rear are faster drivers and they should be driving slow enough to compensate. Then there is ass backwards american courtesy… where it’s ‘they must make way for me’ instead of ‘I will blend seamlessly into traffic obstructing no one’.

      Second, there’s the ‘f you’ part of it… I have had these passing lane blocking clovers go to 90mph to prevent me from getting around them on the right. So often I am cruising along and I am about to pass a couple clovers in the lane next to me when the rearmost one decides now is the time to change lanes when he has been happy behind the other clover for miles. The timing is so accurate that I swear they are watching their mirrors and do it on purpose.

      Driving is symbolic of the larger culture in many ways. Thus many factors are at play and certainly the drugged zombie apathy plays a roll too.

    • You’re right on the money Brent. The “fluoride” (Sodium Fluorosilicate) they put in the drinking water and toothpaste is not the same naturally occurring calcium fluoride found in some well water. The crap we brush our teeth with, bathe in and drink is the byproduct of phosphate fertilizer, aluminum and iron manufacturing. As I understand it, if they couldn’t sell this poison to put it in toothpaste and potable water supplies all across the nation, they would have to pay exorbitant prices to dispose of it as toxic waste! I pointed this out to our chemists in water treatment and at first they told me I was wrong. But after a bit of research, they came back and confirmed what I’d said and are now more than a little disturbed by it. Here’s the MSDS: judge for yourself if it’s something you want to injest.

      Back in 1934 Industrial and Engineering Chemistry publshed a study, Comparative Toxicity of Fluorine Compounds
      by Smith and Leverton at the Univ. of Az, Tuscon because it was not only being used as a water additive, but also as insecticide! You can tell by the first page alone ( that it’s not something you want in your water. But I’m sure if it was really bad for us the FDA, CDC and ADA would have already done something about it….right? Our government would never do anything that might hurt us…….

  9. Clover biopsy 2: “Eric says that speed does not kill. Driving 75 mph compared to 55 mph increases your chances of death and major injury many many times. Driving 85 mph increases the risk many more times………….The only reason speed limits were increased is because the use of seat belts and added air bags makes 65 mph safer than 55 mph was in the past but the libertarians are against safety anyway and want air bags and seat belts removed.”

    Eric is quite correct: speed does not kill. I have traveled in excess of 500 MPH in a Bombardier CRJ-700 on numerous occasions and yet I remain extant. How can that be if speed is lethal? Am I immortal? So driving 75 MPH, or worse 85 MPH, increases my chance of death or major injury exactly how many times? Note that this assertion is disconnected from any reference to actual roads, geographic boundaries, weather conditions, traffic or any other verifiable data to support it. I’m not saying that there aren’t increased risks and costs that go with higher speeds. All I ask is that one produce a verifiable unbiased risk / benefit analysis if one wishes to persuade me.

    I do find her statement amusing that “The only reason” we now have higher speed limits is because of “seat belts and air bags”. She ignores the strong possibility that speed limits were raised because that’s what a large number of her fellow countrymen wanted. She fails to acknowledge or apparently even to comprehend that blanket statements based on emotion without empirical supporting evidence lend no credibility to her arguments.

    • Clover’s too limited to grasp many things,including that speed is merely one of several variables and not, by itself, determinative. I’ve pointed out to her, for example, that operator skill is far more determinative than rate of travel. If she doubts this, she should consider the results of bonking the pilot of Boothe’s Bombardier CRJ-700 on the heay-ud and putting herself behind the controls. Speed won’t kill – but Clover’s lack of skill quickly will. And yes, sweetheart, it is precisely the same on the roads. My mother-in-law behind the wheel of a car doing 45 is far more likely to result in an accident than me behind the wheel at 80. She rarely “speeds” but has been in multiple at-fault wrecks over the past 10 years; I “speed” almost every time I drive – yet I haven’t had an at-fault accident in 25 years of driving. If “speed kills,” then why am I still alive – and accident-free – while my mother-in-law has been nearly killed and also bent a lot of metal?

      Poor ol’ Clover. She literally has her panties up in a bunch….

    • Speed kills is such an intellectually bankrupt concept. The speed they choose is always arbitrary and they cannot even decide between themselves what it is. It is a personal line between good and bad.

      One thing I enjoyed doing to demonstrate that fact was to pit one degree of speed kills against another. If someone was arguing 70 I’d present the argument for 55. If someone argued 55 I’d present the argument for 30 and so forth.

      Speed kills works with the clover mind because they aren’t the ones doing wrong, it’s always those other people. They set the threshold at what they themselves do.. or make special dispensations for their driving and why the speed limit needs to be lower for everyone but them.

      Like the sociopaths who run the town I grew up in did to play on the clover mind… the main arterial that goes through the middle of the town was 2 lanes, 45mph when I was kid. Many years ago it was widened to 4 lanes, with turn lanes, curbs, and everything it never had. Same stuff on both sides. just a bigger, safer, faster, road. New speed limit: 30mph. City government office holders said it was to make it easier to ticket someone going 50mph. It’s the clover mind… 45mph is still safe.. but the speed limit was lowered to get those bad people doing 50…

      • “Same stuff on both sides. just a bigger, safer, faster, road. New speed limit: 30mph. City government office holders said it was to make it easier to ticket someone going 50mph.”
        Look you failure to understand the moral and practical framework behind such decisions.
        Here’s a concise explanation that should make it clear.

  10. Recently JFR posted that Clover is probably female. I too lean heavily toward that possibility. I don’t want to stereotype based on the actions of one specimen. So I will qualify her as a “primitive female”. By describing her as “primitive” I wish to convey that Clover is primarily driven by emotion, feelings and intuition. What do I base this assessment on? Much of what Clover posts is reflexive lashing out and highly emotive. Clover cannot be reasoned with. And Clover will not respond in kind to valid and logical points made by others. If she feels like she’s losing an argument she typically responds with a non sequitur or even outright nonsense. From this I deduce that in person, Clover will resort to screaming and slapping if you fail to concede the point in a debate. Later she will deny she engaged in this type of behavior. Clover acts like a spoiled 14 year old girl. Like most people, Clover enjoys attention, so Clover this is dedicated to you little girl.

    Based on Clover’s bias in her preceding posts, I infer that she has lost a child or another close family member due to “drunk driving”. Possibly her loss was by the actions of the deceased. Speed was probably a factor in the accident also. Clover has never gotten over this. In all likelihood, Clover never will recover because she sees it as her fault somehow. Therefore clover has gone MADD with grief. WE (as in the liberty minded) are perceived as her enemies. WE say things that offend her delicate sensibilities and this makes her even MADDer. We must be stopped or our dangerous ideas could spread.

    Soooo….let’s take some recent Clover quotes, slice them thin, put them on a slide and see what we can learn about her. I’ll call them Clover biopsies and do this by installments. Here goes:

    Clover biopsy 1: “Is the majority wrong that thousands are killed by drunk drivers? Is the majority wrong that drinking 3 or 4 drinks in a short amount of time decreases everyone’s driving ability that does it? Is everyone wrong that more severe accidents are caused by increased speeds? Yes the majority might be wrong in a very very small percentage of time but the fact is that an individual is wrong at a far far greater percentage of the time. At least as a group they have the resources to do testing and analysis of statistics and behavior. ”

    You will notice that Clover doesn’t actually cite any sources, provide any links or otherwise independently confirm her assertions. Frankly, based on her anecdotal ramblings we have no idea whether or not “thousands” are killed by drunk drivers or in what time frame or even the geographic location where this supposedly occurred. We can presume by Clover’s repeated and erroneous use of “everyone” to make her case, she imputes her beliefs to the entire human race. After all she knows she’s right based on her limited life experience, so “everyone” else must know these same things also. Those who don’t know these things are simply wrong in Clover’s mind.

    She assumes that “the majority” is correct more often than the individual. Clover fails to understand that “the majority” currently believes that paper is actually money and that the Federal Reserve banks are here to stabilize our economy. I doubt I need to explain that to anyone here other than Clover or Gil (and I have no desire to bother). But…from a historical perspective “the majority” (including many educated men) believed the world was flat, you could potentially sail off the edge and that the sun rotated around the Earth.

    Groups potentially having the resources for “testing and analysis of statistics and behavior” may be true. But that does not mean that they can or will do these things. But if the group decides to, is agenda driven and political in nature (and most groups are to some extent) then the results will probably be biased to favor the group’s own beliefs and purposes. The groups I’ve been involved in, and agree with, do just that. It’s human nature. So unless Clover can produce some scholarly and unbiased scientific studies to confirm the broad-brush swath that she paints, I will continue take her ramblings with a grain of salt.

    • The family member killed by such and such… I think if it happened to the Clover posting here it was more distant. Those in discussion groups I’ve been in the past that claimed to have lost someone close due to drunk driving or whatever the topic of the day could not help themselves but to play that card sooner or later.

      The reason they make the claim is that in this society of mostly clovers it makes them an “expert”. Nobody else is allowed to speak on the topic and if they do what they say is to be discarded unless they agree with the person who had the loss. For instance, even though at one time I was a kid and remember it quite well in regular company it is considered impolite for me to have an opinion on anything regarding children (even though it is within the realm of my knowledge and experience) because I don’t have any. It is the same thought process when it comes to some tragic death and injury. It also allows for the discarding of any rational thought. That’s part of why the news media loves to use sob stories to justify a loss of liberty. Those who are rational about it don’t need to be listened to.

      The rest of the analysis makes sense but unless this clover is unlike those I’ve encountered in the past we would have been presented with this mark of authority on the subject by now.

      • Your analysis with respect to others being the sole experts on death, illness, children, etc., simply because they’ve experienced it, is absolutely right. So I would also expect the victim card to have hit the table by now. But I also think our Clover plays her cards really close to her chest, because she feels she’s in the enemy camp. She doesn’t dare risk actually interacting with us at the human level or she might have to acknowledge us as people and accept some of our ideas as valid.

        She also realizes that there is a very intelligent group here, so she will not reveal any personal details about herself. Not even what she does for a living, educational level or anything she perceives might make her vulnerable. She’s beyond her depth here, but she feels so strongly about the subject that she can’t stay away. It takes a significant emotional event to cause someone to be this persistent. She’s an interesting specimen.

        • I’ve see the card played in “enemy” territory before, but epautos is a little more than the typical ‘speed kills’ discussions.

          In those groups most people knew the various driving scams except for the resident clovers. Sadly most of the regulars never made the conceptual leap to everything else the government does. So in that respect it was more clover friendly. Many of those who knew underposted speed limits, red light cameras, DUI checkpoints, and the rest were all scams for power and revenue but were still clover-like in other aspects of life and the law.

          Perhaps that makes all the difference in the world.

  11. This is the second time I’ve wondered over to this site. I’m not a car buff but I appreciate your political perspective. Great thread here.

    The reason I’m writing is just to say that Clover is obviously a woman!

    Maybe you already know that but just in case you don’t, I thought I’d add my 2 cents.

  12. In re: Clovers last asinine post. Actually Clover I have a great deal of experience with continuous emissions monitoring instruments based on infrared spectroscopy (IR absorption) which is the same principle most breath alcohol analyzers rely on. Some do use platinum fuel cell technology or a combination of methods. As Dr. David Hanson at the University of New York at Potsdam points out; applying one pint of contact cement to a sheet of plywood can yield a BrAC reading of .12, up to twenty minutes later, in an alcohol free individual. Alcohol free diabetics and even dieters can easily show .05 due to acetone in their breath, since practically all ethyl group substances will react the same as ethyl alcohol. Breath Alcohol Concentration does not even relate directly to Blood Alcohol Concentration, but is extrapolated. Some BrAC analyzers assume the cell volume of blood to be 47%. But it varies by gender. The lower your cell volume of blood, the higher your BrAC reading. If you have exerted yourself, are excited or have a fever your BrAC will read high (8% per deg. F body temperature). Breath Alcohol Analyzers are so accurate that the state of South Dakota, wisely, won’t even allow them to be used as evidence in court. Do you understand the concept of “beyond a reasonable doubt”? I’m pretty sure you do, but you just don’t agree with it. You think you know what’s right and want everyone else to comply with your beliefs. It must be hard to be humble when you’re so great!

    I’ve worked on sophisticated military and industrial electronics (to component level) since 1977. Before that I acquired my amateur radio license at 12 years old. I can assure you that radar, breathalyzers, combustion analyzers, oxygen sensors, radiation monitors and a whole host of other instruments and electronic devices are subject to failure and inaccuracy on an all too frequent basis. I work on these devices every day. You would be shocked at the tolerance band of some of these “precision” instruments. A flue gas particulate analyzer I maintain relies on laser backscatter technology and has a tolerance of +/- 25%. At least down under, in Gil’s neck of the woods, the Victoria police recognize a 20% tolerance band for their Breath Alcohol analyzers to allow for different body types. They know it isn’t accurate.

    Clover, you cite studies that show all the lives and money saved due to lowering the BAC limit to 0.08. Exactly how does one prove a negative? Here’s a good example: I have a talisman hanging on my back porch that keeps elephants, tigers and polar bears away. I can prove it works, because I have never seen any of the above in my back yard. In fact it works so well I’ve never seen any of these animals in the entire county! Government or even NGO sponsored studies attempting to prove what hasn’t happened are essentially worthless.

    Automobile technology has improved tremendously at the same time that BAC limits have been lowered. We have traction control, anti-lock brakes, enhanced suspensions and better tires. You’re assuming that these factors haven’t played into lower accident and fatality rates. Remember, DOT / NHTSB studies are brought to you by the same people that are telling you that the inflation rate is only 3.5% per annum, when any head of household that’s been using Quicken for the last three years can show you 11% (never mind Shadowstats’ numbers based on the original way of calculating inflation in 1990). The point is Clover, your government will and most certainly does lie to you. Education and improved automotive technology are far more likely reasons why we’ve seen lower accident rates. I know you prefer to think it was men with guns forcing those nasty drunk drivers to their knees. State sponsored violence or the threat thereof just gives you a woody doesn’t it?

    I hope I never have occasion to see you seated on my jury, since you seem pretty sure everyone is guilty and needs to prove themselves innocent. After all Clover, that Jewish couple that lived next door to you in Dresden back in ‘39 must have been doing something illegal or the Gestapo wouldn’t have dragged them out of their apartment in the middle of the night, now would they? And you can’t be too careful about who’s traveling the roads, that’s why the SS has those safety checkpoints set up all over the Homeland or was that Fatherland? That wasn’t you, you say? Perhaps not, but it was your kindred spirit. And that is the spirit of totalitarianism. That’s probably why you won’t tell us what you do for a living; I suspect you’re a government thug. Your mother must be proud.

    As to how much time the police and the courts have cost me; hours and hours. My first experience with the Virginia State Police was at 17 years old. I was on my way home from my girlfriend’s house about midnight. I had a 62 Ford Econoline van. The right front wheel bearing had started to whine and shortly thereafter that old 200 six started missing on one cylinder. I was running 45 in a 55, not weaving or giving any appearance of being impaired. When I asked the trooper why he pulled me over, he explained that I was driving too good! Then he wanted to search the vehicle and I told him no. I asked for his name and badge number so I could file a complaint with his supervisor. He responded “guess”. I told him I wasn’t in the mood and wanted to know his name. He shined the light on his name tag: Guess. That was the only funny thing about it. Total time detained: approximately 15 minutes. I’ll never get it back or the sleep I lost being so upset over it.

    I got out of the Air Force and moved back into rural Virginia. I encountered numerous license / sobriety / safety checks. I finally had enough and asked one trooper if he’d taken the same oath I had in the military. You know; the one about upholding and defending the constitution from all enemies foreign and domestic? He said he had. So I asked what does the Constitution say? He was dumbfounded. So I asked what the difference was between what he was doing and the Gestapo asking me for my papers? Amazingly enough he got downright belligerent and told me to just hand over my license and registration if I didn’t want to be detained. Total time wasted on roadblocks, probably 30 minutes I’ll never get back.

    Next encounter, coming home late at night, no alcohol involved and I fell asleep. I was out in the country, ran off the road and hit a tree. No one except me injured. I was wearing my seatbelt, but the inertia lock stopped me after I put my elbow through the windshield protecting my face. Being a dutiful and still brainwashed Virginian, I called the accident in to the State Police. I explained the whole thing to Trooper Friendly, who promptly wrote me a reckless driving ticket. I asked him if I had lied and told him that I’d run off the road avoiding a deer would I be getting this ticket? He said no. I then stated “So honesty isn’t always the best policy then, is it?” He was visibly tight over that. I went to court, beat the ticket without a lawyer and he was pissed. Total time lost: at least 8 hours.

    Almost two years later a group of drunk yahoos in a Fox Body Mustang came around a 45 MPH curve at God only knows how fast as I was crossing the intersection and clipped my front bumper. They locked ‘em up, slid 109 feet sideways, sheared off a guy wire and broke a light pole with the driver’s side of the ‘stang. They claimed they were running 45. There was beer all over the car, the driver was drunk and so were the passengers. I called the law. Guess who shows up? That same trooper that wrote me the reckless ticket. I told him about the beer in their vehicle, the apparent speed they were traveling, showed him the point of impact and the damage to the utility pole. He waited an hour and fifty-five minutes to administer a breath test on the driver that hit me. He proclaimed him sober, then proceeded to write me a failure to yield ticket (thank God there were witnesses). I asked him if he was going to take pictures of the utility pole and skid marks and measure them. He took pictures alright, but when we got to court, it turned out that the camera didn’t have any film in it. How convenient! He did everything he could to nail me, but I had sufficient evidence and witnesses, so once again I got the ticket thrown out. Total time lost: probably 30 – 40 hours between the four hours at the scene, all day in court and the time it took to prepare my defense.

    So much for your drunk-driving laws saving me time and money, huh? The other driver was trashed. It should have been open and shut. Wrong. As Will Grigg pointed out: there is no situation so bad or human experience so tragic, that the police can’t make it worse. Cops are often hunters Clover. That’s why a lot of them get into that kind of work. When a cop is convinced you’re in the wrong (regardless of whether you are or not) that makes you prey. If you slip out of his grasp, expect retaliation. After my last experience with this gentleman, he started hassling my sister presumably to get at me; he was a real hero there to protect and serve. He had so many complaints against him the state moved him to another county, instead of doing the right thing and dismissing him. But he was probably generating a decent revenue stream, so we wouldn’t want to kill the goose that lays golden eggs, would we?

    But the best encounter was my next door neighbor for seven years. Dealing meth, stealing from me, stalking my wife. He and his “ol’ lady” are confidential informants, so your wonderful war on drugs system allows them to do as they please with impunity as long as they keep info flowing to the cops. He cooked meth and sold it, received stolen goods, drove around with no plates or insurance and beat and abused his son. When we’d had enough and went to the police, they sent us a dirty cop to work with. He put our lives in jeopardy and after a couple of years of living hell, he was arrested on felony charges and put in jail. The neighbor continued to operate with impunity and my wife no longer felt safe there so we had to move. Total cost in time, due to your beloved statist system: at least four years of my wife’s and my lives, her peace of mind, my land and house I had paid off. By the way, that puke is on disability so we’re paying for his house and land.
    So your precious system has cost me a lot over the years; it works wrong when you need it the most and simply doesn’t work at all in some privileged cases. The Anarchists make a good point in my experience. Now if we can find a practical way to get there. I’m not going to bother wasting any more time on you Clover, because you are a statist and will never change. I just sincerely hope you get all the government you deserve and then some.

    • Among other things, have you noticed the way Clover likes to pontificate with certainty about almost any subject imaginable, even when it’s obvious he’s got not specific knowledge of the subject at issue? For example, mechanical-engineering issues. Or even just general automotive knowledge. It’s a characteristic of Clovers. They always “just know” – and are very determined to impose what they “just know” and everyone else.

      Clover still hasn’t revealed his background, or what he does/did for a living.

      I wonder why…

    • Boothe, great post – thanks for going into such detail and taking such time, although I expect it will be another case of pearls before swine. Clover is ineducable. He “just knows” what he believes to be “the truth” because he “feels” it is.

    • Editor’s note: More Cloverite eructations follow; bibs and masks on, please….

      Nice Boothe, your post tells me you have done dumb things for years. I like your statements like “based on infrared spectroscopy (IR absorption) which is the same principle most breath alcohol analyzers rely on” You can not even tell me what equipment they were using for testing that you said was wrong. You can not tell me what the temperature was when they were using the test equipment. You blame other drivers for you causing an accident. As even Eric was saying, you should have been looking far down the road before you started pulling out in front of a speeder. 4 hours at an accident location That must be a record. What takes hours at an accident location other than a possible death? Yes police do not test your BAC immediately. That is when you can have false readings. Given a period of time allows any false values that you state to be nonexistent. You seem to blame the cars that you have an accident with to be DUI but you want the ones that can kill someone to get off.

      The stats that I mentioned about the decrease in accidents and death by states that started safety checkpoints is compared to surrounding states that did not add safety checkpoints. Yes statistics like that are not 100% accurate but still very true. When you actually know people that stopped drinking and driving after these safety checkpoints were put into place then one with any kind of intelligence can deduce there are going to be fewer drunk driving accidents.

      You complain about 15 minutes being taken away from you but at the same time you spend hours making things up.

      • Okay Clover (a.k.a. air conditioning load), the cop took an hour to arrive on the scene because this happened in a very rural area. He waited almost 2 hours to administer the breath test (the legal time limit in Virginia at the time before he wasn’t allowed to administer the test at all and he knew what he was doing) and then he intentionally screwed around trying to find one witness that disagreed with me (he could not) and then tried really hard not to collect any evidence in my defense (he took pictures with an empty camera at dusk with no flash and couldn’t find a tape measure or measuring wheel). That’s what took four hours FYI.

        As I pointed out above, these people were coming around a CURVE through a rural town in a 45MPH zone. You can see far enough down the road to make it across when the oncoming traffic from the west is at or even slightly above the speed limit, but the view is obstructed by a house, trees and shrubbery beyond that. These morons were running at least 70 MPH based on skid marks and impact damage (probably over 80). They were in a mid 80’s hatch back Mustang LX so they were at or above the cornering limits of their suspension (I know because I owned a Stang just like that one). The driver was drunk to boot. No way could you, I or anyone else have seen them coming. Multiple witnesses saw the whole thing and affirmed what actually happened in court. The judge threw out the ticket in mere minutes.

        It was retaliation by the cop. And incidentally, in Virginia if you fall asleep at the wheel and you weren’t tired when you started driving, that’s not reckless driving. That’s why the first ticket didnt’ stick. The Virginia Supreme court settled that issue years ago. The sheriff (a friend of mine) did pull me aside as I was leaving the courtroom and told me “Don’t be tellin’ people about this. You’ll cost the county money.” I shit you not. Yeah, he was real concerned about our safety. Wake the F%$K up s^#t for brains!!!

        I forgot to mention, they hit me in the right lane of a two lane road. Explain how they weren’t at fault being over the line? And did you know that drunk driving and speeding were illegal in Virginia at the time these folks hit me? Didn’t seem to deter them one bit,now did it?

        So, if the trooper had written the guilty party up, instead of administering his own brand of road side non-judcicial punishment, the other driver’s insurance would have covered the damages to my truck. But because my “public servant” didn’t like the results the judge gave him previously, I got a bogus ticket, an actual impaired reckless driver walked away scotfree, I was inconvenienced and had to pay for the damages someone else did to me out of my own pocket. Your system worked just great didn’t it? Yeah, your precious “system” has given me a real respect for the law I assure you. I stay as far away from it as possible.

        In conclusion, you’re obviously one man doing the work of three: Larry, Moe and Curly. Apparently you really are this stupid. I’m done with you: Clover shun ON.

        • Editor’s Note: More Cloverite circles within circles….

          “Good to know Boothe that you agree with me with almost everything you said. You said that speeds do matter. They do cause accidents. Drunks should not be on the road because they do cause a lot of accidents. Good to see that you agree with what I have been saying all along.

          I could care less what you say about the cop you dislike so much. Taking pictures without film is an extreme mistake but was he trying to hurt you by not putting film in the camera in the first place? If not, I do not have a clue what you are complaining about. Almost everyone makes some kind of mistake in his life. You say that we need to let drunks off and should not use instruments that may in your words be incorrect. At the same time you complain that the instrument did not find him guilty? I do not understand your logic at all unless you are saying that anything that hurts you is illegal but if it hurts someone else it does not matter.”

          • According to the WHO, all auto related deaths world wide – including those involving alcohol – are not even in the top ten causes of death. They are number sixteen. Sixteenth behind diarreah! You have a greater chance of shitting yourself to death than being killed by a drunk driver.

          • Don, based on what our pet Clovers write, a little REAL diarrhea might help them, because they leave no doubt as to what they’re full of. It would be a welcome change from the constipation of the brain and diarrhea of the keyboard they currently seem to suffer from. 😉

          • Editor’s note: Can you hear the clapping, Cloveroni? We’re all tired of you. Not because we disagree with you. But because you are an imbecile. Someone not capable of assimilating and integrating a factual, logical chain of thought. Hence, there is no point in even trying to reach you using logic and reason. You simply feeeeeeeeeeel. And you “know” … about everything. Just because you know! Meanwhile, you’ve shown, by every post you’ve made, that you’re a small-minded, low-wattage, straw man-peddling non sequitur cannon of statist-snuggling, authority-venerating stupidity. A purveyor of gibberish (literally; not even spelled correctly and often incomprehensible)… a human (sort of) duck that just quack quack quack quacks… be gone with you! G’day! Bye now!

            “I am out of here since you start pulling truthful statements that show that others on this site back up my statements.”

          • You’re an ass, and too stupid to plumb the depths of your own stupidity.

            I’d say “pearls before swine” but I understand pigs are brighter than dogs, and I rank you below both. Far below.

  13. Big fan of Heinlein myself here.
    Gotta say, the whole “clover dialogue” is just…..tedious. It’s the same old bromides, same old jingos, always a duck and weave…no real serious thought behind the posts….just tiring. I keep hoping to find someone, on some site, who can articulate the statist position well and defend it. I’m continually disappointed.

    • The best I’ve found are in the pages of fiction. Read Mustapha Mond’s speech in Brave New World. Or, O’Brien’s in 1984. Not for our own good; not for the advancement of “society.”

      Just for the sake of control – for the sake of power over others.

      The conscious ones – not the petite Clovers we have here but the uber Clovers – know exactly what they are doing and why.

      Some are born to ride … others to be ridden.

      • Yep, i’ve read some of those. I was more specificially talking about statist who post in response to yours and others articles/commentary. It never seems to be well argued, etc. I’m very curious as to why? Curious no? Guess the “uber clovers” don’t bother to post.

        • Or even correctly spelled!

          But then, how do you argue idiocy intelligently? That’s the nut of it; we’re dealing with people who are just, well… stupid. Or, if not technically low IQ, just sloppy in their thinking. They like to generalize – and “just know.” How? They “just know.”

          Consider the endless (months-long now) efforts to educate Clover on the “drunk driving” question. We ask Clover: What does “drunk” mean? Define it, please. Clover responds: It is having a certain percentage of alcohol in your system (BAC) as determined by a breath or blood test. But Clover, individuals process alcohol differently. They also vary greatly in their baseline abilities – things like eyesight, sense of spatial relationships and reaction time. Some people start out as much better drivers than others, so that even if they have some alcohol in their system, they may still be operating at a higher level than a person who starts out with a low baseline – weak eyes, poor sense of spatial relationships, slow reflexes, etc. – even though the latter is “100 percent sober.” Shouldn’t the thing that matters, Clover, be evidence of actual impairment? That is, poor driving – whether as a result of too much booze or low skill or senility – or whatever? Isn’t that what’s relevant – if the thing you want is to identify problem drivers? Why persecute someone whose driving can’t be faulted just because he is found to have “x” percent of alcohol in his system? Or – even more vicious – persecute him even though he has a BAC well below the legal maximum but is caught with an “open container” in the vehicle?

          Cue outpouring of non sequiturs and fact-free hysterics….

          • Read my response to swamprat above. To sum it up he said that “No one is arguing that alcohol diminishes judgement, reflexes and vision necessary to drive”.

            I say that these diminished skills have nothing to do with weaving back and forth across the road during a short period of time that a cop might be watching. To be drunk enough to be driving all over the roadway you should be in jail rather than a simple DUI charge. You would be way over any limit even recommended by Eric to be weaving all over.

            We do not need to bring all drivers down to the level of the worst drivers on the roadway like Eric wants. If that were the case we would have thousands of more accidents each DAY. If Eric had looked at studies that were done, he would know that even at .02 there is some diminished driving skills. At .05 it becomes very apparent in tests. So Eric wants to triple or quadruple that amount just because he says one driver can drink that much and still keep from weaving all over? They say that at the legal limit it is pretty equivalent to texting. So if he wants to increase that amount a lot more what would that be equivalent to? Maybe a 95 year old texting while driving?

            • Once again, Clover is factually impaired (leaving aside his disgusting authoritarian-snuggling).

              The troof, Clover, is that actual accidents involving drivers with alcohol in their systems correlate with BAC levels of .10 or higher. This is why the legal threshold defining “drunk” driving used to be, yep, .10 in most states.

              But then “getting drunks off the road” became a cottage industry – and a vehicle for expanding the police powers of a burgeoning police state – so a new, political standard was established. Now people are considered legally “drunk” who have BAC levels of .08 – and MADD and idiot crusaders such as yourself favor an even lower standard, even though there is no evidence that people with such small amounts of alcohol in their systems cause accidents.

              Everything in your arsenal is based on emotion and fact-free assertions.

              You feeeeeel that people who have some arbitrary amount of alcohol in their systems are “drunk” – even through their actual driving can’t be faulted and, absent some East German-style checkpoint, would have gone on their way without causing anyone any problems.

          • @clover on November 9, 2011 at 11:29 pm

            You are not responding to Eric’s point.

            If you are driving erratically (regardless of reason), then you would merit being looked over the the friendly neighborhood LEO.

            If you are not driving erratically and do not demonstrate a hazard on the roadway, then you should be left alone.

            At times you talk with less sense than Chatty Cathy®. At least you are not a congressman. Then you really could cause harm on a grand scale.

          • There’s no such thing as someone who’s a better driver because they had a few drinks – they just think they are. Every time people are given a few drinks and put on a simulation they fail every time – especially with reaction times.

            • Clover, you did not understand what was said.

              What was said was: Some people are better drivers than others. Just as some people are better athletes than others. Right? Ok.

              And just as an athlete will still outrun a non-athlete even when the athlete’s maximum performance is lowered by, say, not enough sleep (or, yes, a bit of alcohol) so also the naturally better, higher-skilled driver likely will still perform better behind the wheel even with a bit of alcohol in him than a sober – but marginally skilled to start with – driver.

              Bob Bondurant with three or four beers in him is still a better driver than me sober. And I am still a much better driver than my mother in law, even if I have had a couple of beers.

              The larger point is that individuals vary. Imposing an arbitrary standard of impairment that doesn’t speak to the individual’s actual driving is unfair. And randomly stopping people to inspect them for anything without specific cause is evil.

              “Safety” and “security” are the excuses given by every tyranny that ever was. Read the speeches of Lenin, Hitler, Mao – and The Chimp. Suffused with droning appeals to both.

              But people like you fall for it every time.

          • Clover, the issue is unreasonable search and seizure. Random road blocks to check your sobriety with no probable cause are fishing expeditions to seize your assets. If you believe the bureaucRATs that push for this type of governance care about your health and safety, you really are delusional. Just picture a couple of Waffen SS stopping you with MP-40’s, asking you for your papers; same thing.

            Just recently a whistleblower down in Houston raised issues about the mobile sobriety lab’s calibrationa and accuracy (because there were real problems with it). But is was such a money maker they fired her. Then when she went to work for a private lab the sheriff’s dept. canceled the contract with them getting her fired again.

            It looks like her testimony has called no less than 2,600 cases into question, most of which will be thrown out. What’s it going to take for you and Gil to understand what’s really going on here? Will it be roadside prostate checks? Because you might be smuggling drugs up your rectum and even if you aren’t, elarged prostates are a health problem and you have government funded health insurance so we can’t be too careful…..

          • Editor’s note: It speaks – again! They “steel” things from us, you see.

            Boothe, do you think I have any right to drive down the roadway with safe drivers around me? The supreme court ruled that I do. They ruled that it is reasonable to stop people during a safety stop and talk to them to see if they are fine to drive. Statistics show that thousands of lives have been saved by the states that have these safety stops. I have friends that drink that say they now do not drive drunk for the fear of getting caught. Do you think they have the right to drive drunk?

            You say that these stops are only in place to steel things from us. When was your last vehicle taken from you? How many of your friends had their vehicle taken from them? This happened to no one that I know.

            I looked at the TV report about the mobile sobriety lab’s. It was more about them not even being on the road because of mechanical and electrical problems rather than giving false readings. The video showed a guy looking at the engine of one of the vans. An engine has nothing to do with false readings on a testing machine. The report said one was not on the road for a full year since it was bought. Try not to go to the blog sites that make things up and seek the truth.

            Do more reading on your whistleblower. You will find out it has nothing to do with any facts that instruments were actually wrong.

          • Clover you really can’t be this thick. First off, my information came from ABC news and KHOU Houston and other “official” sources. Ms. Culbertson raised issues about electrical, mechanical and temperature related issues with the Houston BAT vans with her superiors. She was basically told to shut up about it. Your precious “officials” are more interested in “revenue” than honesty and inteqrity. But you’re reality challenged so you’ll never see that.

            As an instrument & controls technician I can assure you there is a valid reason for regulated power sources and temperature controls for precision instruments to maintain their accuracy. Now I’m well aware that the Houston police department’s official line is that the sobriety testing equipment simply won’t work at all if the ambient temperature is out of tolerance. I call B.S. on that.

            Those instruments will undoubtedly work over a fairly wide temperature range, but just as Ms. Culbertson pointed out, they may be out of calibration. Would you stake losing your license, heavy fines and possible jail time on that bet? There is a reason why metrology labs are maintained at 25 deg. C and 50% rel. humidity. Metrology labs are also staffed with technicians that are specialists in the field, not police officers with just enough training to push buttons and print out reports.

            There are two prosecutors facing charges for spying on the grand jury that’s investigating this mess and a judge has already recused herself. Clover, you apparently don’t grasp the fact that police departments and city governments are made up of people. The very same incompetent people you’re so worried about endangering you on the roads work for your city, county and state governments. And by virtue of their position, they often get a pass on drunk driving, not being held at fault in accidents and screwing over people that aren’t in the club. That’s how your system works, altogether too often, clover.

            From what I can tell, you cherry pick data, read only the news reports and statistics that support your positions and ignore logic, reason and human nature. I’m betting you’re a bureaucrat bellied up to the public trough.

            In response to your idiotic crack about no one ever having their car stolen; plenty of people have had their money and time stolen. Now I’m sure that you buy into the “if it would save one life” fallacy. But if we’re going to do anticipatory prevention and do away with all mechanized forms of transportation, it will save many lives! In fact we do away with all transportation besides walking, accidents not only go away, but general physical fitness will improve, obesity will drop off and there will be less time for tee-vee and other wasteful persuits.

            Which brings me to my next point: tee-vee. You immediatey went to a tee-vee video to make your case, instead of reading multiple reports concerning this latest Houston PD scandal. That’s a sign of a lazy brain clover. Try reading more often, your brain needs the exercise.

            From what you post here, you blissfully ignore the protections guaranteed to us by the Constitution in favor of judicial activism that you do agree with by the Supreme Court (which, incidentally, ruled that the Constitution is the Supreme Law of the Land and that has never been overturned). You favor a small measure of fictional security in exchange for all of our Liberty. You would rather see ten innocent men go to jail rather than one guilty man go free, the inverse of what the framers wanted.

            You are a despicable proponent of Napoleonic law, expecting each of us to bow down and prove our innocence anytime the state questions it. You and people like you with a distorted view of reality and what this country should be, have been instrumental in helping turn America into a fascist police state. You are asking for the oppressive government you so richly deserve. We can only hope you get what you’ve asked for good and hard.

          • Editor’s note: Clover has the Troof and Facts for us!

            Sorry Boothe but I still see no facts that you bring up that any instruments had false readings. If they did which as is in your mind and not shown in any fact, they may have been reading too low. Are you an expert at the instruments in question? Often instruments are within tolerance if the people using them are comfortable enough. I know enough about electronics that if they are designed correctly they will operate at a wide range of voltage. Do you have any of these facts?

            You say that people have been delayed a long amount of time and had things stolen from them. How much time have you been delayed? How much have you had taken from you? How many lives have been saved and millions of dollars in accidents have been saved since things like safety stops have been implemented? Every thing I have read from reports show that we save millions if not billions of dollars each year because of safer roads. Do you disagree with those facts?

            It is fine to make statements but I do not have to agree with things that are blown out of proportion like you and many others do. I have been stopped by about 2 safety stops in my lifetime. They were both less than 5 minutes each. Is that not worth the thousands of lives it saves, the 10s of thousands of injuries it saves and the Billions of dollars that it saves from the decrease in accidents? The supreme court thinks so.

            I did read about the Grand jury investigation. No facts have come out of it from what I have read so far. They only wanted the minimum number of people in the hearing so that they get at all facts. You are making up the facts before they are known. Do you have inside information other than the blog sites you go to? Your TV reports had nothing about instruments not reading correctly.

  14. I love driving when there’s a newly paved road, before it has lanes painted on, signs, speedtraps, etc; mostly because you actually get to see people behave in coordinated and reasonable fashion because they DON’T WANT TO GODDAMN DIE -i.e, emergent behavior in their own interest; as opposed to because daddy government told them to. This reminds me of those stories people tell about traffic in India or Saigon -where what appears to average westerners to be absolute disorder, is actually surprisingly safe. Or better yet, of those cases in european cities where experiments in removing signs and traffic lights actually rendered their streets safer.

    In my experience, people who have been accustomed to a statist mentality for very long absolutely hate driving in the conditions I described above. I guess it’s like what Morpheus tells Neo about people who have been in the matrix for too long.

    • Outstanding – that “new pavement” analogy is spot on!

      Meanwhile, the latest baby step toward more dependency: Here in VA, at work sites (on the road), the Virginia Dept, of Transportation no longer just uses flag men to wave people through. They make you wait – and use a “pilot car” to shepherd all the little Clovers through, because god knows they’d never be able to figure it out on their own, let alone do it “safely.”

  15. I have an idea. Send Clover and Gil to a a special clover section of the site so that we don’t have to see them. Call it the clover patch.

  16. eric,
    I gotta say, the worst part of your site is the free rein (reign?)you give Gil and his like. Such a waste of reading effort I am forced to skip over. If they ever say anything worthwhile will you let me know?

    • babydriver, you may disagree with what Gil said in his post but it is very very true. I have seen it at multiple sites and that is exactly what the libertarians say. For instance, speed never kills, it is the road conditions or another driver or a distraction or multiple other things. Yes they may be right in that other things contribute to a bad accident but the fact is that if things like speeding or other unlawful driving acts were not being done in the first place then the accident could either have been avoided or the severity would have been diminished tremendously.

      • Clover, as always, you spout generalizations to delegitimize specifics. Example: Some people drive too fast for their abilities (or conditions) – hence, everyone who drives over a certain speed (as defined by you or some other Clover) is “driving too fast” and should be fined. It does not matter to you, apparently, that some people are capable of safely handling higher speed-driving – as proved by the fact that they do so without incident. In fact, most drivers are “speeding” (driving faster than the arbitrary speed limit) most of the time. People like you actually believe that this is dangerous – which is nonsense. It’s nothing more than violating an administrative rule. That’s all.

        Instead of your Cloveronian collectivism that treats everyone as part of a dumbed-down group, and ignores individual differences in capability, judgment and so on – why not base consequences on harm done? In other words, leave people alone unless (and until) they actually cause a problem. Then by all means hold them fully responsible. But until then, leave them alone. Why must people who have done nothing – casued no harm – be treated as though they actually have caused harm?

        Your answer amounts to pre-emptive criminality; that is, treating everyone as if they had caused some harm because “someone” (not the person at issue, necessarily – just “someone”) might cause a problem. So, because Clover is such a marginal driver that he can’t safely control a car at 80, the system will try to force everyone to drive no faster than 65. Even when no harm is done – even when there is no victim – just a “violation” of administrative law. Etc.

        You asked Brent what harm government schools cause. All one needs to do us read your posts to know the answer.

          • This is so tedious… really.

            Firing a gun – properly handled, at a proper target, in the right context – is not the same thing as randomly “firing guns in public.” Just as driving faster than some number on a sign is not – as such – reckless. Like the full-bred Clover that you are, your specialty is emoting and exaggeration; you like to make idiot generalizations and hope that others are too stupid to see that generalizations don’t apply to individuals.

          • Gil, it’s important to understand that when you fire a gun, you are responsible for where the bullet goes and what it does. If you are careful and think about what you’re doing, you will cause no harm even if you “fire guns in public”. If you are not careful and don’t care who you hurt, based on what I see going on in Amerika now, then you are a good candidate to be a police officer or part of the military. If you’re really good at video games and similarly amoral, you’re a potential drone pilot. Pretty simple, huh?

          • Gee Boothe a bullet killing power is based on how close it is to the gun when fired. After a certain distance a bullet is harmless. Hence fire a gun into the air is harmless – it’s dangerous on the way up (but there’s nothing but air) but it’s not dangerous on the way down. Strange how people in the Middle East celebrate by firing guns into the air. I guess they must be extremely free people.

          • Actually Gil, a bullet fired into the air returns to earth after reaching its apogee at terminal velocity. Depending on the mass of the bullet, it can be quite dangerous. The fact that some people in some middle eastern countries (as well as others) fire guns into the air to celebrate various events does not change physics. Nor does it absolve anyone from their responsibility for the acts that they commit. Gil, you really can’t be this stupid…..can you?

            • It’s worse than mere stupidity, Boothe. People such as this are intellectually sloppy. They don’t want to exert the effort necessary to think. Instead, they feeeeel. Their arguments, such as they are, always come down to emoting and generalizations they can’t or won’t substantiate. They just “know” – because it’s how they feel. This is why you can’t make progress with them. You make a point – that is, you present a fact and draw a conclusion from the fact… and the Clover just ignores the fact, and begins emoting about some tangential thing, or perhaps repeats the same thing, as if the fact you presented and the conclusion you drew based upon it never existed at all. It is literally like trying to teach a poodle the second law of thermodynamics.

          • A falling bullet is nowhere near as harmful as an out of control car. In fact it’s very hard to prove that someone was hurt by a falling bullet. The chances of being killed by an out-of-control driver are way higher than by killed by a deliberate shooting. Yet you defend the far more risky activity? . . .

            • Clover, what we challenge is your unilateral subjective definition of “risky” activity – and also your attempt to equate anyone who drives faster than you think acceptable as being “out of control.”

          • One big factor for speed is that other people on the roads too. Racetracks presume everyone going around the same way and no one will be trying to cross the road. Not to mention most cars can’t safely do high speeds. It’s doubtful manufacturers of down-to-earth cars have to legally factor in the driver to use their car as a literal racecar. Hence how many cars can do safely do high speeds? The engine may be able to accelerate a car down a straight piece of highway but what about car’s tyres, brakes, suspension, steering, etc.? Racecars are maintained to be in tip-top shape before each race. Sure enough there are people who own supercars like an Enzo Ferrari, F1 McLaren, Bugatti Veyron, etc., who can do 200mph+ safely. But what about real-life four-cylinder cars? If cars have to street-legal racecars in your new highway order for U.S. autobahns that means few could afford to own a car.

            Sure it’d be cool if there were private highways whereby drivers waive their right to sue the company and the highways are fenced off to let outsiders come in and endanger drivers. However roads that are open to the public? No way!

            • I have one word for you, Clover: Autobahn.

              There, high speed traffic coexists with lower-speed traffic safely. Why? Because the Germans practice lane discipline and use their mirrors and anticipate the need to yield before a faster moving car is upon them.

              “But what about real-life four-cylinder cars?”

              You obviously aren’t familiar with the capability of modern cars – including real-life four cylinder cars.

              Today’s four-cylinder cars have higher performance capabilities than most of the V-6 (and some of the V-8) cars of the 1970s or even 1980s.

              The typical 0-60 time of a 2012 MY economy car is about 8 seconds. Many are considerably quicker. Nothing takes more than 11 seconds (Prius hybrid). All can easily cruise for hours at 80-plus MPH with plenty yet to go. Virtually all – and I mean basic economy cars – have better brakes (shorter stopping distances) and higher lateral grip thresholds than the sport/performance cars of 25 years ago. Any new car that is even mildly sporty – for example, a Toyota Camry V-6 – has more power, is quicker to 60 and has a higher top speed than a ’70s Ferrari 308.

              Once again, you effuse ignorance.

          • Do you think if a car driver wipes their ordinary car at illegal high speed then the family can sue the car manufacturers for not building the car to withstand that speed if it shown that’s why the driver crashed? Then again far fewer die from gun deaths than car yet you’re blasé about yet a clover when it comes to guns.

          • If speed is meaningless on accident numbers and severity then there would be no deaths or injuries. There would never be any of the hundreds of cars you see go into the ditch each year.

        • Eric yes there is a degree that someone may be more capable as you say to drive at a faster speed. Capable and the what actually happens is where the problem lies. Do you know that race car drivers have some of the highest accident rates on our highways? They are clearly more capable so why so many accidents? Decisions are even more important than ability. Risk taking is what causes most all accidents. Driving too fast for conditions, tailgating, weaving through traffic, passing on a blind corner or hill, distracted by something inside or outside of the car. These are only a very few of the decisions that cause accidents. Ability has nothing to do with these.

      • Clover said: “For instance, speed never kills”

        We’ve been outlawing the wrong thing! Speed doesn’t kill, its the sudden stops that do. We need to outlaw stopping in less than 1 second at any time…that law will save a lot more people!!

        So it is written, let it be done. Clover Problem #1,259 solved. Next.

        • Yes lberns1 the only thing you forget is the only reason he leaves me on here is for money purposes. You get no advertising funds if no one comes to your site.

          • First of all Eric has told me many times to just block your ass and leave your posts marked as spam (which is where they appear now by default). For entertainment purposes I approve them against his wishes.

          • Actually Clover, you are the catalyst for many intelligent discussions here. It’s sad you yourself are unable to participate in the same. You prove two things: 1)Prussian style public education works as intended, and 2) No matter how ridiculous and illogical your posts have been in the past, you always seem to be able to outdo yourself. You’re a curiousity like the bearded lady or the dog boy at a sideshow. Remember, maggots and dung beetles serve a useful purpose. What did you say you did for a living?

  17. We agree that pointing a loaded gun at someone is threatening but so is a drunk on the road or someone driving in a reckless manner. There is no difference. My life is still threatened and the loss of my property is still threatened.

  18. Drunk driving: You say you do not agree with drunk driving penalties because some people may be able to drive drunk. The fact is if you have had more than a couple of drinks in a short amount of time you should not be on the road. Show me the person that is capable of driving as well after having many drinks as they are sober? The facts are against you. The facts also show that since the crackdown on drunks, everyone else is a bit safer. Yes we are not completely safe because we have limited resources to keep all the drunks off the road. I and everyone else should not have to be off of the road during the hours when people drink to be safe. Where are my rights? The limit that is now set does not make you illegal with one or two drinks and that is a fact that is proven with a lot of testing even though some people have their driving affected negatively with as little as 2 drinks.

    It comes down to you want people that drive dangerously to have more rights than everyone else. I have the right to drive on the road with safe drivers around me. You do not want that.

    • Clover – I don’t think that anyone wants drunk or impaired drivers on the roads. If a cop views someone who is driving erratically and posing a danger to others, he is within his rights to assess if the person has alchohol in his or her system. Field sobriety tests are part of an officer’s toolkit to gather evidence to convict. No one is arguing that alcohol diminishes judgement, reflexes and vision necessary to drive. The other argument that some people are better drivers than others is true. Only an idiot would disagree with that statement. By logical extension, the same thing applies when you are drunk. Some drunks handle their liquor better than others. Some drive better than others, too. Applying the lowest common denominator to any traffic law including drunk driving is asinine.

      I don’t like dangerous drivers, drunk or sober. Our traffic laws should focus on bad behavior and not exceeding some arbitrary limit.

      • Exactly.

        The issue is – not who is “drunk” – but rather, whose driving gives reason to suspect impairment?

        Clovers fixate on arbitrary – and typically, politically motivated – rules (such as the .08 BAC standard) rather than focusing attention on those whose driving suggests they are impaired – whether as a result of excessive drinking, or senility or simple incompetence. The reason for impairment is fundamentally irrelevant. Does it really matter whether the asshole who t-boned you was drunk – or just a passed-it old geezer with terrible eyesight? Clovers never consider that.

        Like an idiot child, they emote, stomp their feets and screech about some bogeyman (“drunk drivers” – which to them means anyone who has “x” amount of alcohol in their system, no matter their actual driving). It drives them into a spittle-dripping frenzy.

        I’m not defending “drunk” (that is, impaired) driving, either. I’ve just been trying to get through to Clover that a given person may not be significantly impaired just because he has “x” percentage of alcohol in his system – and to describe him as a “drunk driver” merely on that basis – without taking his actual driving into account – is ridiculous. And unjust.

        I’ll give you an example. My mother-in-law is one of those fearful/hesitant drivers who pulls in front of other cars, wanders across the double yellow, brakes randomly (and suddenly) for no apparent reason… etc. Her eyesight’s not great and her reflexes are worse.

        I guarantee you I’m a better – safer – driver even with three beers in me than she is completely sober. But if I roll up on a “sobriety checkpoint,” I’m in trouble – and she gets a pass. Why should this be so? Which of us is the more likely to cause an accident? The actual facts say MIL. She has had numerous incidents. Me – none.

        Again, I’m not defending “drunk” (that is, impaired) driving – for any reason. Just pointing out that having “x” amount of alcohol in you does not necessarily mean you are dangerously impaired, let alone “drunk.”

      • OK swamprat, to sum it up you say that drinking diminishes judgement, reflexes and vision necessary to drive. I do not disagree with that one bit. What does that have to do with the only thing you want them stopped for which is an accident or driving erratically during a very short time a cop would see them drive down the road if the cop is on that road in the first place at the same time? Even someone that is twice the legal limit might be able to drive down the road without weaving back and forth for a short time just by taking his hands off the wheel but as you say they still have very diminished driving skills.

        If you think that we should let drivers drive down the road when they are far from 100% then maybe we should put you in charge of our school system and save us billions of dollars. We would just have every student in the class take a test. Only the one with the lowest score would need to be in school until that student brings his scores to the score of the next lowest student and then you bring that student back. If the lowest student in the class never brings his score up to the 50 percentile then half of the class would never have to go to school saving us teachers and classrooms. We need to bring all students down to the lowest level in the class just like you want to bring the skill of all drivers down to the skill level of the worst driver on the road.

        Explain yourself on why you think we need dangerous drivers on the roadway/

        • Clover – With all due respect, I did not say that we need dangerous drivers of any kind on the roadways. Cops are supposedly trained to look for those and will pull over when necessary. The roadside sobriety tests are designed for cops to gather necessary evidence to convict.

          Whether the person is swerving because of alcohol or swerving because of anything else, I agree, that punitive measures could or should be taken.

          You need to stay focused on the subject at hand. Your diversions to school systems, kids, and other topics is hard to follow and frankly irrelevant. We don’t test drivers every year, nor should we.

          Your continual baseless assertions that I think that we believe that we need dangerous drivers on the highways by using your illogical extensions is becoming quite tiresome. I did not say that, so don’t try and put words in my mouth. If you want to take a bite out of something, make sure that it won’t bite you back.

          • Clover believes in pre-emptive guilt (and enforcement). He upends what is arguably (or was arguably) the one thing that made America different from every other country in the world. That is, people could expect – were legally entitled – to be left alone by the law (and cops) until they did something to warrant being looked at. It was known as probable cause and thanks to Clover, it has been thrown in the woods. America is now just like every other country. We talk about “freedom” but don’t really mean it – or understand what the hell we’re talking about.

            The Clovers out there, anyhow.

          • Nobody gets it but you Clover! With all your knowledge, and just plain good life advice, I’m really surprised you don’t have your own website and we’re not visiting it.. For some reason we’re the ones running a site and you’re visiting it. So tell us Clover what is it you do for a living?

  19. You ask?What makes a group wiser or more morally righteous than an individual?

    I say that at least as a group you can add some common sense that is lacking in many. You know, the ones that think they can drink a dozen drinks and drive and at the same time drive 95 mph down the interstate. As a group you can look at the stats that are ignored by the individual that says that speeding is a safe way to drive or drive drunk or tailgate or speed and weave through traffic. A group that looks at the FACTS know that these actions are wrong.

    • Clover…OK, I will give you one thing ONLY! Yes, the people rule the country – this Republic is rule by We The People, right? But, Clover…there is such a thing as the rights of the individual. The majority can be wrong. Just take a look at the Jim Crow laws of the Old South, which were rightly repealed by the courts who determined that the majority in that case didn’t matter – that the rights of the minority are inviolable. If you believe in the rights of the minority, you must also accept the rights of the individual – what that same Ayn Rand called a minority of one.

      • Is the majority wrong that thousands are killed by drunk drivers? Is the majority wrong that drinking 3 or 4 drinks in a short amount of time decreases everyone’s driving ability that does it? Is everyone wrong that more severe accidents are caused by increased speeds? Yes the majority might be wrong in a very very small percentage of time but the fact is that an individual is wrong at a far far greater percentage of the time. At least as a group they have the resources to do testing and analysis of statistics and behavior.

        Eric says that speed does not kill. Driving 75 mph compared to 55 mph increases your chances of death and major injury many many times. Driving 85 mph increases the risk many more times. Speed limits have increased beyond 55 mph in many areas but it still increases chance of death and injury. The person that drives faster than others just takes more chances for himself and others around him. The only reason speed limits were increased is because the use of seat belts and added air bags makes 65 mph safer than 55 mph was in the past but the libertarians are against safety anyway and want air bags and seat belts removed.

        • Same old speed kills. 15 years on and I am still reading the same crap of the Claybrook era preached as truth. If speed killed then the Autobahn would not be safer than the US Interstate. But it is, so speed does not kill. Poor driving does.

          Speed only becomes a factor when there is a crash. But americans by and large want to be lazy and sloppy drivers so they demand that everyone else (but not them personally) drive slow to avoid crashing into them.

          The root cause of crashes is still two objects trying to occupy the same space at the same time. In Germany people go after that root cause and in doing so have created much safer limited access highways.

          I feel at least 1000 times safer on the autobahn at 100mph than on the US interstate at any speed.

          • Groups are actually more likely to make mistakes because they are further removed from the specifics of the situations they are dealing with. For example, they would impose a categorical standard across the boards on everyone, when in reality people make decisions on the margins.

            When there is a lot of traffic, I slow down. When there is little to no traffic, I speed up. When road conditions are hazardous, I slow down. When they are ideal, I speed up. Those are specific marginal decisions. A categorical speed limit applied to all situations punishes those who are not acting recklessly when conditions allow for faster driving, and fails to punish those who do act recklessly, those driving too slow or ineptly, forcing other drivers to correct more often and thus increasing the chances of an accident.

            Group decisions, being always removed from the specifics of any circumstances individuals have to deal with, will always tend to impose rules that are ridiculously skewed one way or another, promoting reckless behavior and/or punishing normal behavior. But, as Eric has said, good luck trying to explain that to people who can’t reason beyond the level of a chihuahua.

            • Well-said, Nuclear!

              Also, group-think destroys individual initiative, which I think is an essential prerequisite to a viable, free society. People who await orders are people who accept taking orders. People who think for themselves question orders – and ignore the ones that make no sense.

          • Editor’s note: It just can’t stay away!

            One last comment to make Eric happy and more money for the day. NuclearCannoli groups do not make mistakes. You as an individual say that you drive according to conditions and if conditions improve you speed up a bunch or whatever. Studies have shown that the vast majority of drivers do not adjust their driving to the conditions. The majority of people drive the same speed no matter if it is raining or the sun is shining. A large group of people do not slow down if the roads are snow and ice packed. The vast majority of people do not slow down in heavy traffic unless someone gets in their way. Just because a handful of drivers compensate when the conditions are not as safe like I do and you say that you do, it does not make it safe because the majority do not. There has been studies that show this and you can judge for yourself with the number of accidents and cars in the ditch when conditions deteriorate. It makes no sense to have anything goes driving when a vast majority of drivers do not have a clue.

          • Something tells me this is not his last comment. It’s all you now Eric, cuz I am not touching Gil and Clover’s posts anymore. Every time I read their stuff it scares the shit out of me! How can some be so fucking stupid and think they see clearly? There is no hope for humankind if these idiots get anymore traction.

            • That’s what depresses me, too! There is no reaching them. It’s not a misunderstanding. Not even a disagreement. They’re just… dumb. Not capable of rational thought. You can’t reason with the unreasonable. It’s exactly like trying to explain to a one-year-old why it should stop crying.

          • I love how clover and the rest of the statists look at the _RESULT_ of their control freak statism and use it as a reason why their control freak statism is required and why we need more of it.

            One of the U-rants I never finished is about how society has been re-arranged such that people can go through life not thinking, rather passing on the responsibility, the effort, to other people. This is your society Clover. Where you pass off decisions to the government and ultimately to the fewer and fewer private sector people that are carrying the load of society.

            Dom, even with just clover and gil and the occasional passer-by of their type this site is refreshing. In some forums the emotional driven interrupt technical discussions to express their anger or whatever. Not even political forums just plain old car forums can’t even have a technical discussion without someone’s feelings getting hurt and people not looking for solutions but emotional support. ugh.

          • Editor’s note: Clover is so tender!

            brentP to respond back to your response, you hit it on the head. “people can go through life not thinking” . Pretty much the facts as I see them also. You get that changed where people think while they drive and before they drive then we we will be in complete agreement. No drunks would be on the road, no texters, no people reading books while they drive, no tailgaters, no traffic weavers, very few in the ditch ever and very few accidents.

          • Clover, you miss the point entirely as I expected. It is the view that everyone needs to be treated as children that has resulted in them needing to be treated like children. The thinking you adopted, the premises of government you endorse caused the problem. People will not get better with the present (your) system in place and growing. The present system must be dismantled. Then people can learn to be responsible again.

            The trouble is there’s too much money and power in the present system to let go. So we can expect greater theft, less freedom, more harassment, and declining safety (until driving reductions outpace the safety negatives).

          • Editor’s note: Here it goes again! Clover is so…. scrumptious!

            Brent, too much money in the system does not cause the thousands of accidents and deaths we have each year. It is the people that act like children is why there are laws and not the opposite. There were drunks on the road before there was any laws against it. There were not any speeding laws until people were driving like crazy and killing people and causing accidents. People were tailgating and causing accidents because of it before laws were needed to at least tell people it is wrong. Maybe if we enforced such laws then we would have fewer accidents like countries that do enforce them like Germany. People say how safe the Autobahn is with all that speed but fail to tell you how they enforce speed limits where there is heavier traffic, stop tailgaters, enforce strict passing laws and many other things.

            It is not the laws that make people drive like children.

          • Don’t worry many psychopathic bullies are Libertarians too – they don’t wnat anyone telling them what they can and can’t do and get to define what constitutes “harm”. If a pocket of Libertopia was achieved it would fail too then their intellectuals complain it would have worked it the handful didn’t gamed the system.

            • Another winner!

              It takes a special sort of Clover to have such endless difficulty grasping the concept of harm. It is a pretty simple, objective concept: Causing injury, as for example to persons or property. But this is too much for a Clover. To him, “harm” is synonymous with “makes me nervous” or “it bothers me” or “I just don’t like that.” No actual injury need be demonstrated; no actual victim presented. Just the Clover’s feeeeeeelings, who-o-ah feeeeelings.

              It must be awful going through life this afflicted.

          • In re: Gil If there were such a place as Libertopia, inhabited solely by libertarians (pay attention to that lower case, classical liberal ell, not to be confused with beltway “ho” Libertarians) then no one would game the system. But since we know there are posers and interlopers in all societies and walks of life, if someone gamed the system we would immediately know they were Cloveresque and we could shun them. Then they’d either have to move out of Libertopia or starve. If they attempted to steal to support themselves so they could stay in our midst, the victim would then be justified in using force to protect his property; if that results in the untimely demise of the Clover, that would be the Clover’s fault.

            Eric’s absolutely right; you have a much distorted view of “harm”. My refusal to do business with or support someone that has “gamed the system” at my expense or even someone I disagree with, does them no harm. They are free to go deal with someone else. If they screw enough people over and establish a reputation that prevents them from dealing with any but the shadiest members of society that is their fault. They would still have the freedom to move to the wilderness and be a hermit.

            I’m going to explain this to you one more time Gil; A right is anything that you can do that does not impose involuntary costs of any kind on anyone else. If I have done nothing to you and you or your agent(s) take my money, property, time or liberty you have infringed my rights, plain and simple. We established a Constitution and Bill of Rights in this country in an effort to prevent that type of behavior, especially by those who aspire to govern. It is the Supreme Law of the Land. The fact that all levels of government routinely ignore it and violate our rights in no way changes that law. It merely proves that there are men (and women) in positions of authority that are lawless. The fact that you approve of some of their lawlessness, due to fear, your “feelings”, your misconceptions about what constitutes your rights or for any other reason, does not legitimize those activities.

            Taking an oath to uphold the Supreme Law of the Land, then ignoring it to enforce what you and others of your ilk believe to be good “public policy” is not only dishonest and reprehensible behavior, it is in fact criminal. If enough people genuinely believe that the Constitution and Bill of Rights are detrimental to our society, there are legitimate means provided to change these documents under the law. It has been done in the past. The fact that it has not been done and has been resisted at the state level recently is telling.

            It doesn’t matter how the cops, lawyers and judges torture, twist and pervert the law. It doesn’t matter what you and your kind “feeeeel” we should do. What matters is having the honesty and integrity to respect this Supreme Law that strictly limits government and allows maximum freedom for each individual, even those individuals you don’t agree with, because you understand that it’s what protects your very right to disagree.

            So yes Gil I do have the right to drive fast, not wear a seat belt or helmet, smoke cigarettes (or anything else for that matter), jump out of airplanes, drink rat poison or do any thing I please so long as I do not infringe anyone else’s rights. No matter how dangerous, stupid or irritating a thing I’m doing may seem to you, unless you can prove that it cost you money, property, time, liberty, life or limb, you have not been harmed by my actions. If you have not been harmed, then you have no legitimate interest in what I’m doing. I can’t make it any plainer than that.

          • Clover, the money does indeed create many *COLLISIONS* they are not “accidents”. The reason is because the present system, your system, is done by people who benefit from it and preys on the emotional thinking (like yourself) which -results- in a system that is improperly engineered.

            As to the first speed limits, entirely false. They were the result of emotional thinking luddite type people who were afraid of new technology. Where people (in the USA) weren’t so afraid speed limits stayed away well into the 1930s.

            People drive like children because it’s a punishment based system. It’s about getting away with something. It’s not an engineered system. With each new idiotic rule it becomes more and more parental and then people stop thinking a little more. Become a little less adult.

            Germany’s system, although slowly falling victim to the same claybrookian nonsense is an *ENGINEERED* system. People get ahead by following the few simple rules. In the USA it’s an emotional ‘because government says so’ system of many complex rules where people get ahead by breaking them (and some benefit from the enforcement) That’s why Germany’s roads are safer.

            Time again for a film I like to reference because it shows the USA at a point of change from a free society to one of a criminal gang using the law to extract wealth. A time where even GM could still put its name behind real freedom based thinking.


          • Editor’s Note: Another one for the Clover Patch. Hold your fire, he’s handicap.

            “Harm” is sbbitrary. It’s akin to breaking up a fight and have both arguing that the other guy started it. After all, what do Libertarians think about a Libertarian who shot dead a traffic cop when he was pulled over? A freedom fighter or dumb murderer? He would swear black and blue he was defending himself against a government thug.

            • Yes, Clover. And so is gravity and the second law of thermodynamics! All just arbitrary! Why , we could change them tomorrow if we wanted to, just by changing out minds! It all depends on your perspective…. just like the concept pf harm!


          • Editor’s note: Sorry, Clover. Try again. When you squeeze out something that makes any sense, it will be allowed through. Otherwise… it rubs the lotion on its skin or else it gets the hose again!

          • Sorry Eric about spelling steal as steel. I guess I do not have any experience with that type of thing like you do. It never comes up with anyone that I am friends with. They have morals.

            • Well, Clover, it’s clear from your posts that you understand the concept of morality to about the same extent that you’ve mastered sixth grade spelling and grammar.

          • Actually Clover is probably right; he probably doesn’t actually steal outright. He doesn’t have the balls. Instead he relies on his agents to do it for him: The IRS, state department of revenue, city planning office, DMV, ad nauseam. He and his friends don’t see being on the dole as stealing. What would call that? Selective vision?

            • Worse – cowardice.

              Because he knows. It’s been explained to him. And he doesn’t care.

              The typical Clover, interestingly enough, is rarely tough enough to take anything himself by force. Which is probably why the typical Clover loves authoritarian government so much. It does the wet work for him – and tells him he’s a “good citizen” for supporting it, which makes him feel (gag me) morally superior to everyone else…

  20. Yes it does come down to what a Libertsrian thinks what harm is done. You crash your car and someone else ia killed then it would your duty to presume the other person was at fault anyway and minimise your jail time.

    “The other driver should have seen I was driving much faster then him so he at fault by changing lanes when he did.”

    “That pedestrian should have seen how fast I was going so she shouldn’t have tried to cross the road when she did.”

    “The other drivers should have seen I was a tad tipsy by my wobbly driving so they should have given me a wide berth.”

    “I pay taxes and by extension own these streets so I’ll drive however the hell I want on my property.”

    • If you don’t like the way I drive, you could have the decency to stop charging me for building roads you won’t let me use. Of course, I hate the way you drive also. And yes, if you force me to pay for those roads, I’ll use them as I see fit. Don’t like it – pay for them yourself.

      Bottom line – punish people who cause harm, not those who drive in ways you dislike.

      • You like driving on the wrong side of the road? Oh wait who is the government to say which side is right and which is wrong? If you on the side you want then it’s up to the other drivers to get out of your way and if they don’t then they were ones causing harm via their inacionts.

        Then again why should I punish people who have done no harm to me? If I see two men fighting why should I intervene even if the aggressor is winning the fight? He did no harm to me. Then neither did Saddam nor Gadafi – so who I would I be to dare to interfere with their lives while they were alive?

        • You are using an absurd example to try and punch holes in an argument. No sane person is going to question something that basic in the United States. Having laws that state driving on the right side of the road is not the same as setting absurdly low speed limits or forcing people to purchase cars that have equipment they don’t want. Clearly, driving on the wrong side of the road causes harm almost 100 percent of the time. Speeding does not.

          How the hell did Saddam or Ghadafi get into this conversation? Clovers spin a very mangled web. By the way, people who try and interfere with disputes usually get bloodied worse than those who are arguing.

          • You can’t have a discussion with a Clover because a Clover doesn’t abide by the same rules you and I do. They are victims of what Ayn Rand called “the anti-conceptual mentality,” which means they don’t (or won’t or can’t) grasp principles or use logic and reason. You make a specific statement; it is not rebutted with a specific fact. Instead, you get a non sequitur – some irrelevant comment that meanders off in an entirely different direction. Or you get an emotional outburst. Sarah Brady on firearms being a classic example of the phenomenon – or MADD on alcohol consumption and driving. Or, the Clovers here. They feel…. they believe… that is the extent of it. It is not possible to reason with such a person, because reason is not known to them. It is like trying to convince a German Shepard that he should not wander off by engaging him in a discussion of the dangers of traffic.

        • ” If I see two men fighting why should I intervene even if the aggressor is winning the fight? He did no harm to me. ”

          Pro 26:17 He that passeth by, and meddleth with strife belonging not to him, is like one that taketh a dog by the ears.

          • The answer, of course, is – it depends.

            Would I get involved in a routine fistfight between two evenly matched dudes? Probably not – unless one was a bud of mine and was getting his ass kicked (and even then, only if he was obviously losing – or down – and the other dude wasn’t quitting).

            Would I try to help if a I saw a big dude beating the shit out of some much smaller dude? Probably – unless the big dude was bigger than me – or if I didn’t have my gun!

  21. Being relatively new to your site, I missed a lot of the original Clover. His positions sound like what the late, great Robert A. Heinlein was referring to when he observed that since the baby can’t eat meat, then everyone should eat pap. Perhaps it is that Clover does not trust himself, and then projects this lack of self confidence onto everyone else. It is a common failing of parents toward their children-Hell, I’m guilty of it still-but the loving parent learns to close his/her eyes and let the kids go. Statists can never let go, and this is especially true when they achieve power.

      • So cool to read reference to ‘The Moon is a Harsh Mistress’ in this thread. I recently read it again, after almost 4o years, and had my 19 year old read it also. I recommend it to all who haven’t read it. Timely, again……….

        • Heinlein is one of my favorites, along with Philip Dick, Hunter Thompson, H.L. Mencken, Huxley and Orwell. Great writers – and thinkers, too. They could turn a phrase – and open your mind.


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