Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Stop the Carnage on Ireland's Roads: Legalize Cannabis

Young lads with fuck all else to do, driving like idiots around the country roads, fueled up on testosterone and boredom, are going to get into trouble one way or another. The Darwinist in me says, "Let 'em; natural selection will pick off the stupid and leave more food and air for the rest of us." The libertarian in me says, "Who are you to interfere? They knew it was dangerous when they got behind the steering wheel. If they want to risk killing themselves, mind your own business." But the lily-livered weak-kneed liberal in me says, "Drug 'em so they can't even crawl to their cars. Far better to have a nation of placid young boys giggling on the sofa and all the driving done by Domino's than to have a bunch of naive kids bombing round the laneways scaring the cattle, smashing into trees, and holding up the traffic while some poor fecker has to scrape their charred bodies off the tarmac."

I'm just being practical is all. Coughs not coffins, munchies not mayhem. You know it makes sense.

hat tip: Mrs. Sweary.

*update*: An afterthought. Ministers and policymakers could do worse than read Norbert Elias's Technization and Civilization (unavailable online but abstracted here and reviewed here), paying particular attention to the statistics on road accidents in first and third world societies. One could argue that the sort of barbarity we are seeing on the roads might have been predicted with some accuracy, given the "civilizing" advances that have taken place in some areas of Irish life, such as increased wealth and greater access to private transport, while other technical and cultural factors, such as bad infrastructure, macho adolescent posing, and the requisite sophisticated circumspection and self-control needed to drive on newly busy roads, have not yet caught up. This is Elias's argument, as I understand it, and is to be expected wherever new "technologies" appear on the scene and are taken up en masse by a society or by one particular sector of it.

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