Thursday 20 December 2012

More Depressing Crap from County Councillors

Apparently we need more 'balance' in the battle between cars and bicycles in Cambridge.


We need more of it.

Why, yes, I am spacing that out in a ridiculous way to draw attention to it.

I've addressed the 'mutual respect' fallacy on our roads previously, and here we've got an excellent example of where falling for that fallacy that takes us to. We've got an innately anti-cyclist set of councillors on the ruling Conservative benches, a bunch of transport idiots so dumb that they don't all understand that pro-cycling measures are not innately anti-car. They now lament that activists (do they mean me? I doubt it) bring down the 'wrath of God' in response to their victim blaming attitudes. 



The Wrath of God.

Delicious irony in the use of such hyperbole when responding to someone criticising you, I think. But lets get past that for a moment, lets just put that aside as typical local political nonsense. Lets look in closer detail at what Councillor Clarke had to say:

“There seems to be a continuing discussion between cyclists and car drivers about who is right and who is wrong, who gets in the way of who and who doesn’t.
“Surely it’s got to be time for society to take a mature approach to this. Everybody on our roads has to be more considerate.
“In order to do that, car drivers have got to think before they turn left at traffic lights and cyclists have got to play their part and give us a chance by having lights on and not going through red lights.
“If this gets raised the wrath of God from the cycling campaign descends on us. What we need are considerate, safe drivers of all vehicles on our roads so we can further drive down accidents.”
Councillor Clarke, no one lobbying for cyclists argues that we should ride irresponsibly. But otherwise this is nonsense. There is no 'discussion' between cyclists and car drivers, and no one gets criticised for suggesting that cyclists should have lights or not go through red lights. You're being criticised for solely emphasising such points while completely ignoring the available evidence of the causes of accident in Cambridge. Focussing pretty nearly entirely on the causes of a trivial proportion of accidents, the causes that the victims bring to the game, while ignoring the causes brought by those who cause the vast majority of accidents, is an obscenity. 

Of course, I welcome any 'balance' being brought to this. But blandly implying implying equality of responsibility where there is none is not 'balance'. Motorists are causing the overwhelming majority of accidents injuring cyclists and cyclists going through red lights, not having lights on etc. all, combined, have a  relatively trivial impact on the numbers of cyclists and pedestrians injured (and -no- impact on motorist injuries). You want balance? Address the risk factors proportionally. THAT is balanced. Will you do that now Councillor Clarke?

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