Dwindling justification for HS2

An internal survey found that 12,000 of 18,000 Nationwide employees prefer working from home, and home-working is at least as efficient as office working. It also improves quality of life. The main justification for HS2’s scorched earth policy was the “need” for greater north-south rail capacity. Where is that justification now? Yet the state continues to back HS2 instead of making roads safe and efficient, and instead of creating a hydrogen infrastructure for clean road transport, and the next big thing, flying cars.

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Anonymous executioners

Deaths on “smart” motorways – where the hard shoulder is opened for use at 70mph – reached their highest level in 2019. Article here.

The destruction is completely avoidable. One obvious solution is to open the lanes on straight stretches only, and to close them on bends. Another is to allow their use at low speeds only, and ban their use in fog or rain.

The DfT said: ‘Since taking office, the transport secretary has committed £500m to smart motorway safety improvements …” – So the anonymous cretins at the DfT get away with manslaughter, then receive vast funding to repair the mistakes they should have avoided in the first place.

‘The safety and peace of mind of drivers and passengers using these routes remains our priority,’ states the DfT.

Their actions swear louder than their mealy-mouthed words.

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Manslaughter charges at last?

In an earlier post I wrote that pigs would fly before Highways England faced manslaughter charges for opening hard shoulders to motorway traffic without proper precautions.

It’s promising that South Yorkshire coroner, Nicola Mundy, is referring the case of Nargis Begum to the CPS.

Highways England, of course, denies responsibility. High time that the perpetrators of a lethal system were brought to book! Another post on the subject here.

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Them and Us

A pensioner in Christchurch, Dorset, painted a zebra crossing so he and his disabled wife could cross a busy road. The council fined him for criminal damage. I kid you not.

In the absence of a bridge or flyover, road-users should be free of misguided regulation, free to act sociably, and free take to take it more or less in turns. In built-up areas especially, drivers should give way to anyone on foot wanting to cross the road.

Because the anonymous morons who run our anti-social traffic system fail us so dismally, this gentleman showed how it could be done. With his neat brushstrokes, he brought about a transformation in quality of life and space while harming no-one.

Tom Moore shuffled round his garden and, by a fluke of the internet, raised millions for charity. He was rewarded with love and a knighthood. Laurie Phillips took creative action in a bid to right decades of wrong. He gets a £130 fine. Laurie, I salute you!

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Use of motorway hard shoulders without safeguards was “entirely wrong”, admitted Grant Shapps. Article here. Are corporate manslaughter charges being brought? When pigs fly. Thirty-eight (38) avoidable deaths later and untold trauma to survivors, the anonymous perpetrators of the current traffic system – the entire miserable system – will get away with crocodile tears and an apology.

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The definition of fascism?

Re previous posts about the fabricated “crime” of “speeding”. Statutory traffic law allows no defence, no arguments on rational or commonsense grounds. The system inures itself against reform by forbidding voices to be raised in challenge. It’s a self-serving monster.

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Hit by a bus

The phrase, “You could be killed crossing the road” is a thoughtlessly-repeated phrase, e.g. the other day on The Today Programme by Chief Medical Officer, Chris Whitty (10.1. 2021, I think it was). Making some parallel with the risk of catching Covid-19, he came out with, “If you were healthy and unlucky enough to be hit by a bus” …

Death and injury on the road have little to do with luck. They are down to a lethal system involving third-rate minds, unequal rights, inhumane control, misguided engineering, and inadequate driving tuition.

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Anyone for tennis? Nope

I’m no fan of the term “nanny state” because good nannies enable rather than disable human flourishment. Blanket lockdown rules that outlaw activities such as tennis among people capable of exercising due care are akin to rigid speed limits that teach driving by numbers and outlaw intelligent discretion. The anti-speeding campaign Brake! would say that driving by context is a licence to drive without due care and attention. No, it’s a blueprint for driving with true care and attention. Speed does not kill. It’s inappropriate speed, or speed in the wrong hands that can kill. Such subtle distinctions are beyond the wit of our MPs who allow extortion rackets masquerading as safety measures to spawn.

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Mugged by the system

During a perfectly safe overtaking manoeuvre on an otherwise empty dual lane stretch of the A361 Link Rd, I’m clocked doing 73 in a 60 by a concealed radar gun. The road is clear and the weather fine. No harm or inconvenience is done. In Court I’m not allowed to read out my challenge to a system which values numbers over context, and criminalises the innocent. My free speech is denied. Guilt and “criminal intent” are assumed. The use of commonsense is outlawed. I get a £100 fine, three points, and an order to pay half the Prosecution’s costs of £700 and a victim surcharge of £32 – although I’m the victim here, of intransigence and stupidity. Did the exeperience instil in me a greater respect for statutory traffic law? No, I despise it with renewed passion, and feel I’ve been mugged. MPs – whose dereliction of duty towards individual liberty and the democratic process allowed this extortion racket to come into being – should hang their heads, or preferably own up, make restitution to countless victims, and reform the grotesque system.

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Speeding: a fabricated crime

Motorists who fall foul of traffic regulation are rarely real criminals. Captain, now Sir Tom Moore, the NHS fundraising hero, admitted to breaking the speed limit hundreds of times. In doing so, he probably only hurt the odd fly. Harriet Harman and Stephen Fry are among legions of motorists “caught” doing 100mph in perfect safety. They weren’t doing it on a High Street but a deserted motorway. Former Energy Minister, Chris Huhne, and his ex-wife were jailed for swapping points over a trivial speeding offence so Huhne could avoid losing his licence over other trivial speeding offences. Mr Justice Sweeney, said: “Any element of tragedy is entirely your own fault.” I disagree. “Speeding” is a fabricated crime, and no crime if it caused no harm. Inappropriate speed is a different matter. Clearly it’s beyond the wit of the state to distinguish one from the other, or ensure the distinction forms an integral part of driving tuition and the driving test. Another casualty of puerile regulation over “speeding” is the “disgraced” Labour MP, Fiona Onasanya. These high-profile victims of the inflexible, indecently mercenary system, which wrecks lives and criminalises the innocent, are the tip of a grim, silenced iceberg.

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