HOTCARS Are Coming

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A beast is slouching out of Bethlehem – disguised in swaddling clothes.

Several Israeli companies with ties to the Israeli national security apparat are developing technologies to monitor people inside their own cars.

Ostensibly infant people – ostensibly to prevent them being left inside parked cars to roast to death – a problem created, ironically enough, by forcing parents to put their kids somewhere in the back of the car where they are more easily forgotten.

But the tech to solve this manufactured problem could also be used for “other forms of driver ( i.e., adult) and occupant monitoring,” as explained hint hint-style to Automotive News by Raviv Melamed of the Israeli firm Vayar Imaging.

For example, to ascertain whether an adult driver is buckled up for saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety. Or smoking in a car that might be used to transport kids. Or allowed – contrary to law – his 11-year-old kid to ride up front instead of “properly secured” in a booster seat in back. Even if just for a quick ride down to the mailbox at the end of the driveway

Eating. Gesturing.

Almost anything that involves movement down to a heartbeat could be monitored.

And not just could be.

Probably will be.

A mandate for this technology is percolating in Washington, courtesy of Reps. Peter King of New York and Jan Schakowsly of Illinois.    

The Helping Overcome Trauma for Children Alone in Rear Seats Act (and what sort of awful person could oppose overcoming trauma for children left alone in rear seats?) will, if it becomes law, require that all new cars be fitted with monitoring technology that can “detect a child left alone in a car and alert the owner and/or emergency services.”

Whether you happen to have kids who might be left alone in the car being of no consequence. Everyone will be forced to buy this technology, if they buy a new car.

Which fact shows that this is not about kids – ostensibly or otherwise.

The same technology used to “detect” the movements of a child can just as readily detect the movements – and actions – of an adult. This may even reduce to actions such as frowning when a report about “climate change” issues from the car’s Telescreen/LCD display.

And when Unapproved Actions are detected, the system could  just as readily be used to “alert emergency services”  . . . i.e., sic armed government workers on the adult offender as to rescue the forgotten, slow-cooking kid.

The car could be sent instructions to pull over and wait for the Hut! Hut! Hutting! by the AGWs . . . windows up, doors locked and – presumably – the AC on.

Or perhaps a simple automatic deduction from the offender’s checking account, mandatorily paired with the technology?

We saw a prequel of our Now or soon-to-be in 1993’s Demolition Man.

“Everybody is looking at this,” Vayar Imagining’s Melamed exulted to AN. Of course. They’d be idiotic not to, given the times. There is money to be made – via the mandate – and control to be had. A double win for the corporate-government nexus.

But what about us?

Ask an over-the-road trucker.

They’ve been under surveillance for years – including real-time telemetry transmits about their driving patterns (“aggressive” braking and acceleration inputs or no-nos). Cameras watch them; microphones listen to them.

Fines are issued to them. Every control inside the truck is under the control of someone outside the truck – which can even be turned off remotely/automatically if the driver attempts to exceed his allowed hours.

But the consolation – such as it is – has been that the trucks are generally owned by the trucking company and the driver is an employee of the trucking company whenever he is in their truck. It’s still vile but not too far removed from the cameras and so on which exist at most cube farms.

The difference — if the insipidly named but creepily serious HOTCARS act becomes law  – is that you’ll never leave the cube farm.

At least, not until you get home.

Which will also probably soon be subject to monitoring – For Your Safety and The Children as well as The Earth – via the “Internet of Things.” Your smart TV already has cameras and microphones; Alexa is listening. So is your phone, probably. Your next toaster will emit “data” about your breakfasting habits. Your ‘fridge will sell you out to the health insurance mafia. Too much fatty meat in there.

It is coming.

Even if the HOTCARS act does not become law, a de facto law has already been passed by the European New Car Assessment program (NCAP) which is the European analog of the U.S. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Both evaluate new cars and issue “star” rankings for saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety – which is defined less and less by how well a given vehicle protects its occupants in a crash but rather by how much “safety” technology it has aboard.

“Safety” being defined increasingly in terms of monitoring and controlling the car. Which is to say, monitoring and controlling the driver.

Everything under the eye – and fist – of Sauron.

Toward that end, NCAP recently announced that it will base the numbers of “stars” it awards on the presence – or absence – of “child presence detection” technology, beginning with the 2022 model year.

This will put huge PC pressure on every car manufacturer that sells cars in Europe – which is pretty much every car manufacturer – to install the technology generally, whether the HOTCARS act makes it through the legislative colon or not. Because no car maker is going to go to the trouble of installing this expensive technology in only European-market cars.

And no car company wants to be seen as not on the cutting edge of . . . saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety.

Also – more cynically – because the car companies are becoming just as hungry for money and power as the government.. Increasingly, we don’t buy cars. We sell ourselves to the car companies, who allow us to use their cars – under their terms and conditions.

We pay them to control us – and then they mine us.

All of this ostensibly because a handful of parents “forgot” their tots in the backseat of a car and left them to slow-cook until tender.

If  they’d been riding up front – next to mom or dad, as kids used to – they’d probably not have been forgotten (or cooked) in the first place.

And our cars might still be ours – and under our control.

. . .

Got a question about cars, Libertarian politics – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!

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  1. Thank you for being one of the few to call out Israeli technology that is on the brink of dominating the world.

    People need to research the following:
    Unit 8200
    “Talpiot Programm”

    How many people know that Israel is the world leader in AI development and not really China?

    How many know that Israeli companies own the patents to the majority of automobile automation technology?

    How many know that Israel is the leader in the development of Block Chain technology and cyber security?

    How many know that Israel is part of the “5 Eyes” intelligence sharing program even though they are not officially on the list?

    Wake up people and start realizing that Left vs. Right, Democrat vs. Republican are just fake paradigms used to push their divide and conquer strategy. While Islamic Immigration and China are definitely threats, the biggest threat is Israel and their control of our political processes with their Lobby Groups and Political PACs here in the USA.

    When government is attempting to censor and disarm citizens, they have evil plans in store.

  2. I got left in a car once but it was a saturday night and i sat in the front seat of our caravan. Both parents thought the other person grabbed me. I was 2 and i honked the horn until my older sister came out to grab me. I was pretty angry. Imagine if i had been in a car seat. I doubt a 2 year old could unstrap themselves.

  3. Stasi mein schatz, Komitet Gosudarstvennoy Bezopasnosti tovaritsch, Dirección General de Inteligencia amigo, NTSA/EPA/CPSB/CIA/FBI my friend, no difference.
    Alles klar, herr Kommissar?

  4. I forget a lot of things. Someone in the backseat has never been one of them. My cousin is extremely forgetful and losing things all the time. She has left her mother at the store before. I attribute it to her marijuana habit. Maybe this is a side effect of the MJ legalization?

  5. Well Eric,,, We never ever “forgot” our little ones in the car. I personally cannot understand how a “parent” could “forget” a kid in the backseat or anywhere. Maybe parenting is different today? I grew up in Phoenix Arizona,,, everyone knows it gets HOT there. Kiddies rode up front. Rarely did I see a baby in the back and seat belts weren’t required. AND we did not have A/C.

    Difference I see is Mothers were Mothers back then. Few distractions. Those damn Iphones,,, hell if people walk into moving cars, walk into manholes while doing something on those phones I guess I can see how they can “forget” their kids.

    We have left our kids many times in a running locked car with a/c on to go in and pay a fuel bill at the filling station. Carrying a screaming brat in to a business used to be rude. Now commonplace. Most kids aren’t tall enough to put the brake on before putting car in gear. (Automatic) nor could they put a standard in gear without killing the car.

    There is absolutely no excuse for forgetting a kid in a car,,, notice I did not say “leaving a kid in a car” or anywhere unless you drop dead from a heart attack or something similar. This kiddie safety crap is way out of hand because idiots are allowed to be parents. The other day we tried to buy some nighttime cold and flu medicine and the clerk demanded my ID….. I am 70 years old. Absolute insanity reigns! Or buying beer in a Walmart with a small kid in tow. It’s damn ridiculous and all because of a few low IQ idiots,,, the rest of us are supposed to put up with this sh*t! AND PAY FOR IT!

    • Hi Ken,

      Agreed. It’s a concatenated fiasco. Part of it being the result, I believe, of parents so exhausted by rigmarole such as having to strap each kid into (and out of) a saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety seat every single time the kid is taken anywhere in a car that they do forget sometimes. Tiredness will do that. And the kid is in the back of the car – which makes it easier to forget. Now add sail fawns constantly eructing and mom also working while trying to be a mom… it’s a wonder Roast Kid isn’t served more often.

      • Just say NO. We did the little baby seats, but then the gestapo said basically forever. Wife and I fought over it, so I just kept throwing out the stupid seats till she gave in.
        I think in my state the dog has to be strapped in now, hahahahahaaa. never.

        • This is the right answer. Passive aggressive consistent resistance. Dont wear the damned seat belt, it is your right not to and the state is not granted the privilege of compelling you to wear it against your will. Your kids are YOURS, you make those decisions for them. When the Gestapo attacks, go to court, waste their time, and stand firm. This goes for every one of their tyrannies.

          Are they going to “fine” you? Yes. Will they jail you? Unlikely, they are mostly after money. Will they send the state IRS after you when you refuse to pay their “fine”? Yes. Is liberty and self respect worth it? Yes.

          I visualize those GI’s in the fictional film “Saving Private Ryan”. Scared to death, riding a landing craft, seasick, terrified, but believing they were fighting for liberty or something, against tyranny at least. Do we dishonor the memory of such men by knuckling under to everything the communists/fascists/democrats/Republicans try to do to us? What will you do when they finally come for your guns? (Hint, hiding them in the dirt is not a good idea). Think about what matters, stand for something.

          It’s relatively easy and cheap now to say NO. It is literally the least you can do.

          • Exactly right. Revoke consent. Make them resort to violence, because that’s the only real tool they have at their disposal. More people need to see that, then maybe things can change.

  6. The Government is your Most Honest Friend, Protector and Benefactor. Just ask a Clover.

    Trying to argue that Liberty and Freedom are being butchered daily does not compute with these people. Why, the government wouldn’t LIE! Heaven’s NO!!

    Sometimes I think we’re living in a country suffering massively from Battered Stockholm Wife Syndrome. No matter the evil before their very eyes they’ll defend Leviathan to the death as he’s literally being ear-tagged.

  7. In my chosen profession we look at a metric of uptime per subscriber. It is presented as a percentage. The goal if 99.99% uptime per year, aggregated across all subscribers. Of course there’s an asterisk next to that number, mostly because that extra .09% usually comes after some CAPEX spending that the executives would rather put into share buybacks.

    The safety cult tries to make safety another accounting measurement. That’s fine for budgeting purposes, but at what point does that expense become better used on something else? The argument of the safety cult is usually wrapped in flowery speech like “What it it was your child?” and “if it saves just one life, it will be worth it.” But the insurance company sees it a little different. And no matter what safety procedures and gadgets are in place, a flock of geese can still ruin your afternoon.

    And if you never step up to the plate, you’re sure to never strike out. But you’ll never hit the ball, either.

    • RK, you make an excellent point. I’ve been in a back and forth with a friend online after he posted that the Effa, Uh, BeeUh, Eye, had just stopped three, count ’em, Three, domestic terror attacks (white supremacists all). When I pointed out the odds of being killed by a terrorist was somewhere on the order of 5,000 times less than being killed by medical malpractice and quoting Mencken on the whole aim of practical politics is to keep us scared with imaginary hobgoblins, he said he’d pray I didn’t get killed by these imaginary terrorists.

      When I replied with several links to articles about FBI infiltration and encouragement of “foiled” terror attempts it was met with “don’t waste your time talking” to people like me.

      Their effing sheep. They lick the hand that holds their leash and they don’t even know it.

      • Too true Mark, almost all “domestic terrorists” are just some lame schmucks set up by the Feebs so they can then save us all from a phony attack. So all the clovers can fawn over Uncle for keeping them safe while the AGW’s get to ask for even more of our money for their already bloated budgets. Makes me gag every time I read about how we’ve all been saved from the latest “terrorist” plot

      • I think on some level, a lot of these folks begin to realize that they are being sold a bill of goods, but any sign of cognitive dissonance results in them shutting off all further thought because acknowledgement of reality is too frightening. It is much easier for most to adopt the Stockholm Syndrome and substitute denial for fear.

        • Hi Anon,

          Indeed. Note the supercilious quality of their responses to any criticism of EVs, regardless of the facts. Which they never concede. Instead, they sidestep and equivocate – launching (typically) a series of non sequiturs frosted with feelings. It really is a form of dementia.

          But then, I am afflicted with Dunning Kruger syndrome for saying so!

  8. The bit about “addled parents who ‘forgot’ their kids in the back seat” seems unnecessarily derogatory to me, especially since I had such a close call with a kid of my own. Especially the scare quotes around “forgot”.

    The scorn should be reserved for the politicians and other control freaks who want to foist this technology on everyone, instead of leaving it as optional equipment that parents of small kids could choose to buy, and that manufacturers could decide if it made sense to offer ina given vehicle.

    • Great point Jim!
      I would build on it that.. This HOTCAR technology should only apply to a stationary vehicle. There are a host of problems that arise once a vehicle is in motion. I drive a Tesla so I am used to this monitoring tech, but there are all sorts of minor flaws that will take a long time to work out. The ‘Dog mode’ in a Tesla keeps the vehicle at a selected temperature while the vehicle is parked. In California it is illegal to leave an unattended child in a vehicle anyway. So even with HOTCAR tech you would still be contravening the law. Eric’s major point about unnecessary and intrusive tech being forced on us, stands.

  9. Hi Eric,

    I sometimes question your overreaction to some of the gov/industry incursions upon our vehicular privacy and freedom. That’s because many of them are so incremental that, by themselves, they don’t justify such a huge expenditure of energy and emotion.

    But this “Hot Car” concept seems to be going for almost The Whole Enchilada all at once. You’re absolutely right to be shouting loudly about this one!

    And let’s all recognize our “special friend,” in the middle east, that spearheaded the whole thing.

  10. The Stazi of the former East Germany would be so envious. But then again, they never really went away. They just changed clothing styles and like parasites infected the new government and took it over.


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