Teslas keep on crashing into things – because Tesla hasn’t stopped encouraging Tesla owners to keep their hands (and eyes) off of things.
The steering wheel, for one.
And the road.
If the driver uses it, he is expected – legally obligated – to be ready to use his hands and eyes to prevent the car from Auto-piloting itself into things.
It’s like a toilet for the bind that moves itself to another corner of the room – and then blaming the blind man for the mess on the floor.
Well, per Whitesnake, here we go again.
Musk says that soon Tesla drivers will be able to take their eyes off the road – and their hands off the wheel – all the time.
This is “Level 5” – the Tesla-verbiage equivalent of Phase 3 or whatever the government gibberish is with regard to the WuFlu and what we’ll be allowed to do. What it means is a completely automated car.
But will Tesla be completely responsible for what happens?
He hasn’t been – for what’s already happened.
How about when it snows – and the electronic eyes that “see” for the driver who doesn’t no longer do? Or the software gets senile or it just can’t handle the inputs because of its limited parameters?
See eggs and omelets.
“I’m extremely confident that Level 5 or essentially complete autonomy (sic) will happen and I think will happen very quickly,” the nation’s rent-seeker-in-chief said the other day at the annual World Artificial Intelligence Conference in Shanghai.
The “sic” inserted to correct the editorial inaccuracy of referring to a car that drives itself according to the programming instilled by a corporation as autonomous – i.e., independent of external control – when in fact Tesla’s automated cars are completely controlled by the corporation’s programming and so not by you.
How confident will you feel about being on the same road with Level 5 cars with no one’s hands on the wheel or even expected to be? Level 5 cars may not even have steering wheels or brake pedals, these being the equivalent of vestigial tails . . . if the cars are truly automated and the driver just another passenger.
But if the wheel – and pedals – remain, it implies an obligation to drive. And to be held responsible for not driving, even if car supposedly does. If, on the other hand, the wheels and pedals are absent, then the driver can’t be held responsible for what the car does and what he couldn’t have done to prevent it.
No measure, it seems, is too extreme to “stop the spread” of a virus that might get you sick but 99.7 percent not dead. On the basis of this we are expected – we are required – to emulate the look – and neurotic behavior – of Michael Jackson in order to be allowed to go shopping or go to work. The entire country, just about, completely reorganized on the basis of an asserted threat to almost no one.
But a car that regularly kills people by running into them – because there’s no one’s hands on the wheel or eyes on the road – is turned loose without any restrictions at all.
Not just the people in the car, either. Also people in other cars, who happened to be in the orbit of one of these de facto driverless cars.
What about de jure liability?
Businesses are under extreme pressure to enforce Face Diaper decrees issued by the government – and out of fear of being sued because someone might get sick. Why isn’t similar “concern” expressed by the government for cars that get people dead?
Note that while The Virus (TM) is largely avoidable – the people who fear it can stay home, wear a Diaper when not home – avoiding a Level 5 Tesla is unavoidable. How would you even know one’s nearby?
And yet, there is no equivalent of a Face Diaper mandate or even “social distancing” imposed on them. They are free to mingle as they like, to insinuate themselves directly into our vicinity – and perhaps directly into us – without any legal impediment or even social shaming to keep the threat they pose to our safety at bay.
Isn’t it interesting how fungible these “threats” are? How they don’t carry much weight – or rather, impose much in the way of mandates or restrictions – when to impose them would present certain . . . difficulties.
Meanwhile, the imposition of extreme difficulties for other reasons having nothing to do with threats to our safety is reasonable and necessary.
It makes my teeth ache.
Got a question about cars, Libertarian politics – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!
If you like what you’ve found here please consider supporting EPautos.
PS: Get an EPautos magnet or sticker or coaster in return for a $20 or more one-time donation or a $10 or more monthly recurring donation. (Please be sure to tell us you want a magnet or sticker or coaster – and also, provide an address, so we know where to mail the thing!)
If you’d like an ear tag – custom made! – just ask and it will be delivered.
My latest eBook is also available for your favorite price – free! Click here. If that fails, email me at EPeters952@yahoo.com and I will send you a copy directly!