"It is the highest impertinence and presumption, therefore, in kings and ministers, to pretend to watch over the economy of private people, and to restrain their expence, either by sumptuary laws, or by prohibiting the importation of foreign luxuries. They are themselves always, and without any exception, the greatest spendthrifts in the society. Let them look well after their own expence, and they may safely trust private people with theirs. If their own extravagance does not ruin the state, that of their subjects never will." ~ Adam Smith
Why You Can Drive Over 65
Column by Alex R. Knight III
Exclusive to STR
I’m not referring to age – though the answer to that, if you qualify, is probably that your eyesight and reflexes are still good enough to get behind the wheel and make it from point A to point B without causing any 20-car pileups or running down any small children. I am referring to the the maximum speed limit cap on most any thoroughfare to be found in present-day America. Sure, I’m probably missing a few lonely, sporadically travelled straightaways out in the deserts of New Mexico, or Nevada, or Utah, but I think it’s likely safe to say that better than 99% of roads from Atlantic to Pacific have a governmental speed limit of one kind or another, maxing out at the aforementioned 65 miles per hour.
Funny that, because we also know these facts: For one, that government bureaucrats long ago decided to arrogate for themselves the authority to dictate an almost unfathomable surfeit of laws, regulations, statutes, and standards applying to the manufacture and importation of motor vehicles. Yet, not one of those has ever mandated the presence or application of governors on engines, so as to prevent them from exceeding a maximum velocity of 65 (except, presumably, in the case of vehicles slated for government use – since of course we know that government people are so much more responsible and safety-conscious than you or I could ever be capable of). You would think, indeed, that the bureau-rats of every stripe and definition would clamor for this in the name of “public safety,” or some such other all-encompassing rubric. Why, it will save lives, reduce incidents of high-speed police chases, etc. Right?
But the motives of politicians and their bureaucrat minions actually lie elsewhere, as evidenced by the fact that almost every street-legal motor vehicle in America is capable of attaining a speed well beyond 65 miles an hour. The speedometer in my own doesn’t cut off until 140, a velocity long before which I would’ve already rolled over my ride and wrecked it, were I so crazy as to go any faster than double digits. The politicians aren’t interested in saving lives, or they wouldn’t be involved in what they do in the first place. The truth is really quite simple. They want us to speed. Because this means that one of their badge-wearing servants is more likely to pull us over and issue us a ticket. A fine. A tax, on top of every other way in which they bleed us white with taxation in other forms, like the worthless parasites that they are.
In fact, Jim Davies, in a recent write-up on his Zero Government Blog, reports how police in California, due to falling tax revenue intakes, have taken to issuing utterly ridiculous traffic fines to motorists in order to try to make up for the shortfall. Rather than slow spending and cut the public a break in a time of mass unemployment and home foreclosures, West coast bureaucrats are turning up the heat in a raw display of arrogance and pure selfishness. Let them eat cake, in other words.
Happily, there are things almost anyone can do to counter this latest form of unceasing government assault on all of us. Marc Stevens’s classic book, Adventures in Legal Land and his weekly show, The No-State Project, are both venues that showcase proven and effective methods for countering traffic tickets with a surprising degree of effectiveness. In fact, I believe that at the time of this writing, over 9,000 such pieces of worthless government paper have been tossed out of courtrooms and into the trashcan. Another more abbreviated version of this process, just as well written and described (though not as detailed) is As King: A Simple Guide to Autonomous Living by “Paranoid” and available online for free download.
As we work towards a truly voluntary society, it is important meanwhile to keep The Man away from ourselves and our property as much as possible. The bureaucrats are out to pillage, steal from, and abuse us as much as they possibly can, whenever they can. Knowledge is power. So arm yourself. And know how to call their cards next time they try to steal some more of your money because you were driving with a bit of a lead foot.
An old friend of my parents, himself no stranger to various brushes with the police, had an old saying he used to like to bring up from time to time – one to which he attributed almost boundless profundity: “A word to the wise is sometimes sufficient.”
I guess it was always good advice.