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STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
Sunstein Has Major Accident, Mulls More Highway Regulation
By Daily Bell Staff - February 21, 2017

Revolution in Highway Safety Needs a Little Help … Three weeks ago, I was walking home on a dark, snowy night in Concord, Massachusetts. The next thing I knew, I was in a hospital, hooked up to some kind of machine. I could not lift my legs or even my head. The doctors told me I had been unconscious for hours. They explained that I had been hit, full on, by a car whose driver apparently could not see me in the dark and the snow; that I had suffered a concussion; that I had four broken bones in my back; that I would probably be unable to walk for days; and that the recovery period could be long and tough. Still, they said, I had gotten lucky. They were right. I am fine. But a lot of people aren’t.

Everything that Cass Sunstein does – or is – somehow resolves itself into a reason why the US needs more regulation.

As you can see above, he recently had a severe accident and presumably that gave him time in bed to think about ever MORE regulatory activity.

Why would you think about regulations if you are bed with a broken back? You probably wouldn’t but you’re not Cass Sunstein.

More:

In the very month in which the nation’s capital seems to be overrun by deregulatory fever, it was announced that in 2016, more than 40,000 Americans died in accidents involving motor vehicles. That’s a significant jump from 2015, when traffic deaths also increased from the year before.

The United States should not accept that level of human tragedy. The good news is that the Department of Transportation knows a lot about what might help — and, yes, regulation is a part of the picture. In the coming year, the department’s new leadership and the White House ought to mount an aggressive effort, working alongside the private sector and state and local officials, to reduce deaths on roads and highways.

Sunstein points out that things likely improved so much on the roads between 1930 to 2014 partially because of road regulation.

The most comprehensive report finds regulation saved some 613,501 lives in that time. Regulation included in Sunstein’s words “occupant protections” like airbags, child restraints and brake systems.

Seat belts are responsible for a lot of additional safety as well. Usage had increased to nearly 80 percent according to Sunstein. Drunk-driving deaths have also been cut substantially according to Sunstein.

Quite apart from government, new safety technologies, driven by market forces, have been exceedingly helpful.

However, since 2014, regulation has not kept pace with deaths. Sunstein says too many are still not using seat belts. Too many are still getting drunk. Distracted driving has become a big issue.

The Department of Transportation has plenty of ideas on how to push back however, and have recently announced a Road to Zero initiative, to bring accidents to zero deaths inside of 30 years.

Cass says such a goal might seem wildly optimistic but it’s not for any administration that cares for the populace. He says he’ll elaborate in a second article – Part Two.

We can guess some of what he might say. It probably has to do with upcoming driverless cars, including electric cars and how they will take over the responsibility of driving.

The problem with such cars is that they take input from outside outlets. Thus if someone owes some money for a ticket, the car might not turn on until the ticket is paid. That could go for any bill.

It could go well beyond bills. The car could be shut down for any one of a number of reasons.

Secondly, all of this is being done by force. It is not going to be voluntary. Even now, if a seat belt is not being worn, the driver might be fined. And that goes for a number of different activities. There are a wide range of safety mandates and not all of them are equally necessary or even necessary at all.

Finally, there is an assumption that these safety mandates are part of the work of government even though they may not be. Just because the government sees a potential upgrade doesn’t  mean it has to make it.

From out point of view, the fewer regulations the better. If the car manufacturer wants to make safety changes, that’s good. If the government wants to do it, that’s not so good for a wide variety of reasons.

Ordinarily the market would deal with safety issues. Some cars would offer more safety features than others. There are unfortunately only two major car companies in America that are also based here. Because there are so few companies based in America, that competition has been lessened. There are too few companies and they are virtually part of the government anyway.

Ideally, there should be lots of smaller, regional companies with a myriad of competitive innovations. That would be a lot more possible if companies were responsible to themselves and  shareholders rather than government.

Conclusion: Sunstein is convinced that only government can adequately promulgate safety regulations. We think it ought to be the outfits themselves.

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  • ICFubar

    This is always a tough question, the necessity or lack thereof of safety regulations. Those picking up the pieces,from families to health insurers, to their cost after harm is done are the ones most likely to call for safety regulations and safety design features or ingredient input. Unfortunately the market doesn’t always respond, often dragging its feet, on such matters and often having the clout to suppress action across any number of market based initiatives or legal remedies sought or petitioned. What the answer is I can’t say I know under the present situation, unless there was a total rework of society.

  • Doc

    People used to work where they lived, even in the same house. So why do most of us have to travel and commute every day?

    Politically motivated zoning laws? Taxes making smaller scale production unaffordable? Centralization of political power to certain places? Corporations growing large due to their legal status?

    I’d say it’s mostly due to politics. And then you get savants like this Sunstein saying that the cure is more of the thing that caused the illness to begin with.

    I believe the best way to get rid of the problems on the roads is to stop forcing people onto them.

  • Praetor

    Cass Sunstein, hmmm! Sounds more like a hit or accidental hit. They maybe practicing eugenics on old Cass. When you made your living worshiping at the alter of government. Government will always be you’re master and that is Cass Sunstein. Hit by car.!!!

  • ZeroabsolutlyNone

    Cass Sunstein, I concur…hmmmm. Go look up who he’s married to! They’ve been obama syncophants since day one!
    “More rules and regulations…that’s what you peons need”
    I say…go fuck yourself Cass. Too bad that car wasn’t going a little faster.

    • gaspar

      It would have been a blessing if he did not survive.

      • Don’t be rude. We have nothing against him personally, only his endless plumping for increased government interference.

  • J

    Some regulations are good and some are bad. We need to see the regulation and know its purpose as well as hazards that may occur before we make a decision. But the true result of the regulation will be known when it is put to a test or in use but there should be a trial phase that quickly removes the regulation if it causes more harm than good. A good regulation for example is the limit to the amount of fish caught to keep fish totals from depleting.

    • concerndcitizen

      Regulations are fundamentally illegal. They are created by bureaucrats and have no basis in the constitution. If you want a rule, live under the rule of law and go through the process of passing a law. It will be debated out in the open, compromised and there is a clear process for repeal. It’s mostly the “progressives” who know they can’t pass a law, so they created piles of regulations.

  • John Bubb

    One possibility that would never occur to this empire builder, is that perhaps a little individual responsibility is called for. For instance, why was he walking where he was, in the snow, at night? For this, he believes we must become serfs.

  • oney

    Quit making cars out of plastic, rubber bands and bubble gum so they get 50 miles per gallon as REGULATED by the .gov.

  • Alan

    Once he said he lives in Concord, MA, that explains all. He’s a elitist liberal moonbat without a lick of common sense or appreciation for individual liberty. It couldn’t possibly be that he’s responsible for getting hit by a car.

  • Rosicrucian32

    He was walking in the dark in Concord (no sidewalks and curvy roads) when it was snowing and he got hit by a car…….and it is the lack of regulation at fault?
    It sounds more like he survived a brush with Natural Selection.
    At any rate, when does it become HIS fault for doing something that put HIS OWN life at risk, and why should we pay a price for his poor decision making process?

    • disqussted999

      Yeah, you’d think it might be more appropriate to push regulation that states that stupid pedestrians caught doing stupid and dangerous pedestrian things have to undergo a mandatory pedestrian training camp, have to stay off all roads for a year (as a pedestrian) after passing that 3-month camp (must be repeated every 3 years and a PedIQ over 65 must be demonstrated), and after that for one year, must wear a helmet with a flashing yellow light and a shirt with bright reflective lettering: Caution–Idiot Pedestrian.

  • NoMeansNo

    A little Karma here, Cass?

  • robertsgt40

    Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy. Maybe next time he goes for a walk at night when it’s snowing, he’ll consider taking a flashlight or at least wear reflective clothing. Dumbass

  • organicfoods

    Mobil devices use by drivers while vehicle in motion is worse than DUI studies had shown.

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