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On Seat Belts

Google News is abuzz with local news reports about the states actively involved in a Click It Or Ticket campaign, to increase the use of seat belts. Sorry safety belts.

There are two types of safety belt laws: primary and secondary. A primary law allows a law enforcement officer to write a ticket if he or she simply observes an unbelted driver or passenger. Under a secondary law, an officer cannot ticket anyone for a safety belt violation unless the motorist is stopped for another infraction. Primary laws are very effective in increasing safety belt use. In 2002, belt use in States with primary laws was 80 percent, compared with 69 percent in States without primary laws. [NHTSA, National Occupant Protection Use Survey, June 2002]

As of April 2003, only 18 States, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia had primary safety belt laws. The primary-law States are Alabama, California, Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaii, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas and Washington. New Hampshire is the only State that has no adult safety belt law.
And here are a bunch of lousy facts about all the lives seat belts can save. I can't find much other than blog comments on the one fact which makes primary seat belt laws a really bad idea. One fact. Can't trust the cops. They will use primary seat belt laws to harass anyone they feel like.

And let's close on enotes' Encyclopedia of Law explain why people don't wear seat belts:
According to the MVOSS study, the primary reason occasional seat belt users fail to buckle up is that they are only driving short distances (56 percent). More than half said that they simply forget on occasion. For those who never wear a seat belt, the most commonly cited reason (65 percent) is that seat belts are uncomfortable. Other reasons people gave for not wearing their seat belts include the following:
Being in a hurry and not having time to buckle up
Light traffic on the roads when respondent drives
Not wanting to get clothing wrinkled
Resentment at being told what to do
Knowing someone who died in a crash while wearing a seat belt
Resentment at government interference in personal behavior
Never having gotten used to seat belts
The belief that with air bags, seat belts are redundant
Safety experts point out that many of these reasons are based on faulty logic.

Imagine a Power User President

Here's a photo from Time Magazine's recent article on Al Gore. Looks like a lot of windows are open on those three 30" Apple Cinema Displays. I bet he has scripts and plugins worthy of the sharpest power-user. And a Big G5 to run all those displays. Imagine a president who not only read the paper, but read it online. And Google News. And that days top blog posts.

Imagine a president who left his position at Google, Apple, and his startup, not Haliburton.

In his interview with Diane Sawyer, she paraphrases his views that TV is anesticizing and the Internet will be more interactive. Before she begins to refute the Internet, he gives her the patronizing look of a patient web-zealot. "Go ahead and explain to me why your industry isn't doomed." I much prefer his brand of historical determinism.

His main point on Good Morning America seems to be, "Hey America, think something is wrong with the processes of politics, and media that allowed THIS to happen? Go with that feeling."