April 18, 2007

Imagine going 91 mph in an SUV and not having your seatbelt on.

I always wear my seatbelt, even when I'm on a short trip where I won't be going over 30, but I can understand the thinking of those who leave their seatbelts off some of the time. But how can you not put it on when you're going 91 and in such a dangerous vehicle? What a spectacle of bad judgment from a political official whom the people of an entire state rely on. That said, I feel sorry for Governor Jon Corzine, who has suffered terrible injuries.

69 comments:

AllenS said...

As soon as the Gov recovers from his injuries, he needs to be cited for not wearing his seatbelt.

SteveR said...

And he was being driven by a state police officer

Jim Hu said...

I noted the NYT version of the same story last night.

I feel sorry for him too, but a bit less when reading how he wasn't just endangering himself and the functioning of the NJ government by not wearing his seatbelt, but also endangering other drivers by the idiotic way his driver was racing to the Imus meeting with the Rutgers women's bball team.

dax said...

I will admit that around town I don't wear my seatbelt, but when I'm on an interstate or traveling faster than 60mph, I'm strapped.
They were traveling at 91mph!!!
Can you say: Above the law??

Mark said...

My thought when I heard that he was speeding at 90mph for an "emergency" photo-op with Imus and the Rutgers basketball team was, well, the laws of New Jersey may not apply to the governor, but the laws of physics still seem to.

In my town, the police chief lost his job for being driven at high speeds with the lights flashing...to catch a flight at the airport.

I'm sorry the governor is badly injured, but when he has recovered, there should be legal (and political) consequences for abusing his position and speeding under flashing lights and stupidly endangering other drivers when there was no emergency.

Roger said...

Another example of (stupidly) arrogant behavior by the political class. Thank god on Corzine was the only one seriously injured as his irresponsible actions in not controlling his driver threatened a great many of the citizens of New Jersey. And to add insult to injury the citizens are probably paying the 6 figure hospital bill incurred by the idiot governor.

mcg said...

Proper parenting dictates that when a child has hurt himself doing something he shouldn't, you tend to the injuries first, and discipline later.

I'm glad to see people here agree that Gov. Corzine should be treated like a child in this instance.

mcg said...

dax: I believe the police report said that Gov. Corzine's vehicle was going 90mph before the collision. It was down to about 30mph by the time the collision actually occurred.

Given the extent of Gov. Corzine's injuries, I would reconsider your policy of not wearing your seatbelt around town. It is not difficult to envision a 30mph crash occurring in such circumstances.

Robert said...

91 MPH is not that fast on the Garden State Parkway. If you drive 91MPH on the GSP, you'll be passing most cars, but there will be some ahead and behind going the same speed. Wide lanes, straight, single direction road.

Mike said...

When news first came out his people blamed it on another driver, who they said was driving erratically. Now it comes out "he" was driving 90 mph. Add blaming someone else for the consequences of his bad behavior to his list of transgressions.

He really should pay his own medical bills in this case. But watch, he'll pay his $42 seatbelt ticket and act like he's being magnanimous.

save_the_rustbelt said...

Corzine is lucky he didn't kill several people in smaller vehicles who were dodging his speeding SUV. Do the words "chain reaction" come to mind?

Drew W said...

Like his predecessor, Gov. Corzine should hold an exculpatory press conference where he can declare, "I am an unbelted American."

Actually, that's kind of what got his predecessor in trouble, wasn't it?

(Please -- kidding, kidding. I'm only kidding.)

Internet Ronin said...

I hope Mr. Corzine has a complete recovery. I don't care if he gets a ticket later. What he and his driver did, however, should not be overlooked: they endangered others with their reckless disregard for safety and the laws of the state of New Jersey. Just because Mr. Corzine is governor of the state does not give him the right to ignore its laws because he was late to a meeting of no great immediacy or importance. I would not be surprised to learn that traveling at this speed to routine appearances was a normal occurrence.

Unfortunately, Corzine's behavior, and that of his driver, is not an anomoly. It accurately reflects the behavior of the ruling elite in this nation: "The laws apply to thee but no to me." Time and again, from judges to legislators to Presidents, exemptions to normal rules that the rest of us must live by are carved out and jealously protected.

dax said...

dax: I believe the police report said that Gov. Corzine's vehicle was going 90mph before the collision. It was down to about 30mph by the time the collision actually occurred.

Thanks mcg.
That makes more sense.
Seatbelts or no seatbelts, no one walks away from an impact at 90mph.

PatCA said...

"But how can you not put it on when you're going 91 and in such a dangerous vehicle?"

It's good to be king.

BTW he has said he should be cited and will accept it without argument.

Bruce Hayden said...

Don't know if this is still the case, but I used to know some NJSP, and they had what they called a "trooper" lane on the freeways. They could, and did, drive just as fast as they wanted in that lane, and if they happened to come up on anyone in it, they would pull them over on general principles. Oh, and flashing a badge, allowed them to do this even out of uniform.

Almost as bad, they would undo their seat belts when they would hit the city limits of a big city. Never could understand that, esp. after cleaning up the aftermath of a lot of human projectiles who formerly were unbelted drivers and passengers.

Mike said...

"BTW he has said he should be cited and will accept it without argument."

That's big of him {/sarcasm}.

Make him pay his medical bills.

Bruce Hayden said...

It still comes down to the idea that the laws are good enough for us, but not for him. Getting to an Imus interview is not the sort of "emergency" envisioned by the laws that allow the police, etc, to exceed the speed limits with lights flashing.

We routinely see and hear about how conservatives are hypocrites when it comes to social issues. But this is where liberals so often show their hypocracy - in passing and enforcing laws against the rest of the populace, and exempting themselves (or, indeed, flying in private jets to rail against Global Warming).

In both cases, the hypocracy is "do what I say, not what I do".

B said...

I am no fan of Corzine, but I do pray that he recovers.

It is intriguing to me that we don't actually know, as evidenced by the contradictory speed comments above, what speed the impact took place at.

Regardless, a 30 mph impact can still yield a death blow. I was in an accident at approx 35 mph a few years ago, when someone hit my rented Taurus in the front running a red light. Neither I nor my 3 passengers, nor the driver of the Camry that hit us was injured. A week earlier, my brother-in-law ended up in the ICU for 5 days after his 1 year old Ford 150 truck was hit on the drivers side by a Honda Accord (?!) that police said impacted at 30 mph. My bro-in-law, was not wearing a seat belt (neither was I in my accident).

You can just never tell. So, better safe than sorry.

Mark said...

I am always curious if presidents wear a seat belt while being driven in the limos. I would think they don't, as they probably feel there is no need since they assume they are safe.

Maybe Corzine felt the same way. Hey, I am in a big car being driven by a law enforcement official, what can possibly happen to me?

Lee said...

I don't understand this notion of beyond-the-law punishments anymore than I accept above-the-law behavior. Corzine was wrong not to wear his seatbelt. The driver was wrong to be driving 91 mph on a public road. Presumably Corzine knew it and accepted this. Dumb. and, worse, dangerous, as the consequences have shown. But calls for more "blood" are both abhorrent and illogical.

The Gov. has insurance that will pay his medical bills; he will pay the deductible, just like every else who has NJ state insurance. And that's many people, in so large a group that, no, his extraordinary bills will not raise the rates for everyone else.

In addition, the man is in incredible pain, won't walk for months and may not walk as he did before at all. Probably he has lost years of his life, because a 60 year old may or may not recover his former vigor after such catastrophic trauma. That's a price Corzine will pay, and it's a hefty one. Unlike many would, he will also (rightly) suffer the indignity of unsympathetic public scrutiny.

Take a seat in your NJ local municipal court and find out that the fines for not wearing a belt are less than $100. Speeding fines are often reduced as a matter of course to no point tickets (up to 2 in 5 years). I don't endorse either, per se; but these facts show this vitriol for what it is.

Eli Blake said...

I've on at least two occasions been spared serious injury by a seatbelt.

But here is my beef: I've begun asking people who don't wear seatbelts whether they walked, were driven or took the bus (since school buses don't have seatbelt) when they were kids, and if they were driven whether their parents made them wear a seatbelt. And based on the relatively small sample of people I've asked, I've reached the conclusion that the habit of using or not using a seatbelt begins in childhood. Virtually everyone I've met and asked about it who does not wear a seatbelt can answer yes to at least one of two questions: 1. Did your parents let you not wear your seatbelt when you were a kid? or 2. Did you ride a bus to school for more than a year when you were a kid?

Don't just take my word for it either-- ask yourself these questions if you ever don't wear a seatbelt, and then ask it to others around you. The results will astound you, in terms of how strong this correlation is.

It is true that adults can always adjust a bad habit, but that takes a lot of concentration and in general it just isn't very high on the priority list for most people.

Anthony said...

I started wearing seatbelts constantly after seeing some of our State Patrol's home movies of auto accident scenes. Yeesh.

Not wearing them is something I just.don't.get.

I don't remember if my parents were adamant about us wearing them, but I don't think they were. I tremble whem I remember the few times my dad put me on his lap and put the belt around both of us. Dumb, dumb, dumb. But then again, he did eventually recognize it was dumb idea, so quit.

Mike said...

Lee, Of course increased use of the state's medical insurance program increases rates. Where do you think this money comes from? I don't call for him to pay his bills as punishment, just fairness to the taxpayers.

Robert said...

You guys pontificating about power and how laws are only the people and the elected officials think their special, have no idea what you are speaking about when it comes to the Garden State Parkway. Anybody can drive up and down the Parkway or the Turnpike at 85MPH all day and not get a ticket. You can blow right cops sitting on the side of the road at 85MPH and not get pulled over. This is the speed that most of the cars drive at on these roads. The dangerous cars are the ninnies doing the speed limit, or worse, doing the speed limit in the left lane and blocking the cars behind them. We follow "Keep Right, Pass Left" in New Jersey. The "Trooper Lane" somebody refered to is actually the left lane. And they don't put their lights on. If your doing 85MPH in the left lane and you look up and see a tropper on your tail, you move to the right and let him by. This is what he means by a trooper lane. Nobody in NJ is saying "I can't believe the Governor was doing 91MPH!" That's normal. People are saying "I can't believe he wasn't wearing his seat belt!"

Saul said...

The second I heard about this, I knew that the rant about what Imus said was the cause of the collision. So Imus said something stupid about people he doesn't know. Their "hurt" and the fake outrage by Jessie Jackson (who has no moral authority on this subject) pales in comparison to the injuries sustained as a direct result of the backlash.

An Edjamikated Redneck said...

I have a massive problem with seat belt laws, and consider them the camels nose in the tent of government control in private aspects of my life.

I have no problem with my car or life insurance company mandaying seat belt use, but I see no government reason for the same mandate. How many people are covered under government funded insurance policies anyway?

What I see it as is a step in the direction of two things- controling behavior some see as risky and preparing us for the idea that a police officer can stop us on the highway just to inspect our right to be somewhere.

Do you think the officer will stop a car, walk to teh window and see a seat belt in use (a primary, stopable offense in most, if not all states), realize he has no reason to detain the vehicle and allow you to leave?

Or do you think once the car is stopped he will inquire into driver's license, registration and insurance (required items, and required to be shown to the officer, but you cannot be stopped just to make sure you have them, in most jurisdictions)?

The part about risky behavior is also bothersome. How many people will it take to declare a certain behavior risky? How long until the government's overreaching concern for my health requires me to show license to by buy fast food, after having my cholesteral verified to be able to handle a Big Mac?

Or how about rock climbing, skydiving or jogging on country roads? how many will be killed or injured doing these activities before some nanny panel decides to curtail these activities for your own good?

Slippery slope? All they wanted were a few rows of every aircraft to be non smoking a few years ago, remember?

Internet Ronin said...

Redneck - I'm all for you not having to wear your seatbelt if I don't have to pay for injuries in any accident I cause. Unfortunately, it will never work that way and I'll still have to pay.

MadisonMan said...

I'm glad I don't live where people think their time is so important that they have to drive at 85 mph to get somewhere fast fast fast.

Galvanized said...

I am very sorry for his injuries and glad he's alive. We all learn from experience.

That being said, any person who is a civil servant, a legislator, one who represents the law, upholds, or enforces it should never be considered above it. Simply put, they are held to the standards that they create and impose. No excuses.

Hopefully, once able, Corzine should hold a press conference about this matter -- of his lesson learned and an example for us all.

hdhouse said...

hey..its New Jersey...why slow down to put on a seat belt.

i guess this explains the sudden lack of interest in the red truck that pulled out and caused the whole thing...or did that truck cause the whole thing....

hey you lawyers....the guy in the red truck probably has whiplash...and i think he has a case.

Theo Boehm said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
An Edjamikated Redneck said...

Ronin- I have to disagree.

You are responsible for any damages, provided I have not violated any legal statute. Seat belt laws have never been tested for validity, and could possibly be struck down (I hope!). That said, if you are at fault you are responsible for all damages, forseen and unforseen, and my failure to take full advantage of any safety device does not mitigate that, as my failure did not instigate the injury.

johnstodder said...

And based on the relatively small sample of people I've asked, I've reached the conclusion that the habit of using or not using a seatbelt begins in childhood. Virtually everyone I've met and asked about it who does not wear a seatbelt can answer yes to at least one of two questions: 1. Did your parents let you not wear your seatbelt when you were a kid? or 2. Did you ride a bus to school for more than a year when you were a kid?

Age is a factor. The cars my parents drove me around in weren't always equipped with seatbelts, especially not in the back seat. I'm from the generation that treated the back seat as a playpen or a bed. Frequently this would happen as my parents were driving home from a martini party on an icy winter night, both of them smoking cigarettes with the windows shut.

Some aspects of the "nanny state" aren't so terrible.

Nowadays, I am a faithful seatbelt wearer, ever since one of my brothers almost got killed in a car crash. Except, for some reason, I have this brain cramp about wearing a seatbelt in a taxi. The taxi driver isn't any more likely to be a good driver than I am. In fact, I've been in quite a few cabs where the driver had obviously just taken a bong hit or a shot of heroin. But I rarely put the seatbelt on. I always assume, I guess, that it's filthy or broken.

I feel terrible for Corzine, but geez, his driver ought to be in jail. Politicians are ridiculous. In my illustrious past, I once rode in a car with the Governor or New Mexico, sirens blaring, rushing past a long line of cars stuck in traffic by riding along the curb -- so the governor wouldn't be late to a concert.

johnstodder said...

Governor of New Mexico, that should say.

Mike said...

Galvanized said: "Hopefully, once able, Corzine should hold a press conference about this matter -- of his lesson learned and an example for us all."

Yes. And maybe at that time the Governnor can also tell us his views on Global Warming and CAFE standards. 90 mph. Sheesh.

Steven said...

Corzine was clearly attempting suicide, and should have been allowed to die with dignity.

Well, as much dignity as you can have when you were speeding to get to Don Imus.

mcg said...

You are responsible for any damages, provided I have not violated any legal statute. Seat belt laws have never been tested for validity, and could possibly be struck down (I hope!). That said, if you are at fault you are responsible for all damages, forseen and unforseen, and my failure to take full advantage of any safety device does not mitigate that, as my failure did not instigate the injury.

There are limits to this argument. If you made purposeful modifications to your car as to render it more dangerous to you in the event of an accident, are you saying that all of the additional injuries you might sustain are the responsibility of the "at fault" party in the accident? So if you do something loony like, say, tape the broken bottle of a glass to the center of your steering wheel, that's just added cost for me if I happen to rear-end you?

Nonsense. Driving on public thoroughfares is a cooperative enterprise that simply could not function without a certain presumption of risk and a certain assumption of self-responsibility and self-defense on the part of all parties involved. It is reasonable for communities to legislate that reality to a certain degree, whether or not we disagree on how much.

Bill said...

"... such a dangerous vehicle?"

People don't think of SUVs as dangerous, at least to their occupants. 'I bought it because it's a tank--what could happen to me?'

Invisible Man said...

That's a whole lot of righteous anger from some of the people who I am assuming weren't as moved by the Vice President of the United States negligently SHOOTING A MAN IN THE FACE!

mcg said...

Nonsense, invisible man. I'm as angry about it as THE MAN HE SHOT.

Lee said...

"Of course increased use of the state's medical insurance program increases rates. Where do you think this money comes from?"

it grows on trees, Mike, of course. there never would be a premium pool high enough for insurers to turn record profits, after all.

Of course excessive use of medical care brings excessive costs. But it's a group and not individual risk assessment. Corzine would be no more responsible for any rate increase than the perfectly legal smoker down the hall or the perfectly legal Big Mac eater you, your supervisor or best friend may be.

Mike said...

Lee, I'm not for over moralizing life's choices. I don't think the Big Mac eater nor the smoker should pay increased insurance. Many people do, but I think that we shouldn't over-analyze life's randomness. That said, he's the Governor for Christ's sake. He should be following the laws. Especially one so simple as "wear a seatbelt".

I actually seriously doubt he uses the State's insurance plan. If I had his money, I wouldn't.

Internet Ronin said...

I actually seriously doubt he uses the State's insurance plan. If I had his money, I wouldn't.
Precisely because he has his money, Mike, I bet he does. ;-)

(Although I know nothing of New Jersey's state employee insurance plans, I imagine the choices are excellent, given what I do know about other states' plans.)

Pissed Off Hillbilly said...

The mystery red truck that allegedly caused the accident did so by swerving out of the passing lane when the governor's SUV came roaring up on his tail.

jult52 said...

Robert: Your full of it. 91mph is exceptionally fast for both the GS Parkway and the NJ Turnpike and exceptionally dangerous for the GS Parkway. There's no excuse for Corzine's behavior and his driver's, although I wish him a speedy recovery.

Robert said...

Jult, I said that you can drive 85 and not get pulled over. 91 is over that and you or me would have probably been pulled over.

Theo, Your Mass plates were probably your downfall. Also, if you were driving a late model that maybe looked a little low to the ground, you would be pulled over for breaking the speed limit. Those highways are the drug corridors for the Northeast from Florida. They always look for beaters that are riding low to the ground.

Smilin' Jack said...

Seatbelts should be banned, and every car should have a sharp spike protruding from the center of the steering wheel. People would drive a lot more carefully, and accidents would go way down.

The Drill SGT said...

while I agree with:
Pissed Off Hillbilly said...
The mystery red truck that allegedly caused the accident did so by swerving out of the passing lane when the governor's SUV came roaring up on his tail.


From looking at the crash diagram in the WaPo, I would describe it this way.

1. Police SUV comes from behind like a bat out of hell in the left lane at 90+ with lights flashing.

2. red pickup sees the SUV and swerves from the Left lane into the right lane to get out of the way of the Police. In the process, the red pickup over reacts and ends up on the shoulder, loses partial control and attempts to regain the right lane.

3. In the process, a white car in the right lane reacts to the red truck thrashing on the shoulder by vearing into the left lane where it bumps the police SUV,

4. STILL traveling at 90+ into the left barrier.

an avoidable accident brought on by the speeding SUV. IMHO.

a PR appearance with IMUS wasn't worth endangering honest citizen lives.

Mike said...

Like someone upthread said: It's IMUS's fault.

Eli Blake said...

johnstodder:

Bill Richardson or one of his predecessors?

edumakated reader:

I have no problem with my car or life insurance company mandaying seat belt use, but I see no government reason for the same mandate. How many people are covered under government funded insurance policies anyway?

That's the most ridiculous comment of the day. Your car or life insurance company don't have the cash to hire s private detective to see whether you are wearing your seatbelt, so they rely on your driving record (which they check regularly), and if you get a ticket for not wearing it then watch how fast and how high your auto insurance rates will go.

To suggest that it is OK for them to require it but not for the state (which employs the police) to enforce it sounds like a dodge to me.

SteveR said...

I thought Richardson got around by helicopter these days, you know its a big state and highways are so 20th century. Besides its free to him.

AJ Lynch said...

Have to interject red & blue divide into this story.

Why did it take the MSM almost a week to uncover this info? Why did I first hear on Tueday morning from talk radio that the the trooper had his flashing lights on.

If it were a republican they would have been all over this much earlier.

The governor was seated in the front seat and ended up in the third row with his legs out a window. His body was like a pinball in that car and he probably injured his fellow passengers when as he bounced around the interior of the vehicle.

Scott said...

I don't believe Corzine collects a salary from the State of New Jersey, or needs to carry health insurance. He's an ex-CEO of Goldman Sachs. He was rich enough to buy his Senate and Governor seats without asking for donations from those little people he presumes to represent.

Those of us in the investment industry derisively call investment bankers "Masters of the Universe." That was certainly Corzine's mindset. His accident was terrible and should happen to no one. But if it brings him a little humility, some good might come of it, if he survives.

cheerful iconoclast said...

Robert, you have a point about the normal speed on the Garden State Parkway being over 65. However, if it really is true that eveybody drives 85, and that the real danger is from people driving at or slightly below the speed limit, then shouldn't they raise they speed limit to, say, 85 and enforce a high minimum speed limt?

An Edjamikated Redneck said...

So if you do something loony like, say, tape the broken bottle of a glass to the center of your steering wheel, that's just added cost for me if I happen to rear-end you?

mcg, you have changed the rules. I have not modified my car to make it unsafe, I have only not availed myself of an alleged safety device. Have you ever read the stats?

Of the 31,910 vehicle occupants killed in crashes in 2001, 60 percent were not wearing a safety belt. [The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Annual Assessment of Motor Vehicle Crashes, 2001]

Statistics are wonderful things- according to this stat from the NTHSA (http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/people/injury/airbags/buckleplan/mayplanner2003/factsheet.html) 40% of the people killed in a car crash were buckled in; a difference of only 20% from the unbuckled. For 20% the government can kiss my unbuckled butt.

How many other cases of a 20% difference do you want to mandate government interference and control?

Eli, I will do you a favor and not take offense at your remark, as I consider it the most offensive of the day.

My insurance company has other ways of determining my complaince with it's requirements. It would be very simple for them to add a clause to the policy reducing benifits if I'm in an accident and injured while not wearing a seat belt, or require an additional premium it I refuse to sign a pledge to wear one. Simple, effective and not nanny government.

And, if I disagree with their rules, I can find another insurer- you know, free market and all that.

johnstodder said...

Eli,

My ride with the governor of N.M. was back almost 20 years ago. It was Gov. Toney Anaya.

Chip Ahoy said...

Once I borrowed my mom's Taurus for a couple of weeks that automatically put on your seat-belt. My dog was funny when she rode in front and the seat-belts closed around her pulling her into the seat. She seemed to acquiesce to the seat-belt as the price for riding up front but it forced her to sit there and watch me drive.

I used to think my parents had an aberrant interest in bondage for making us wear them. Every. Single. Time. Now I like 'em tight.

Internet Ronin said...

Redneck, not to be argumentative, but the difference is in reality much higher than 20%. If the percentages of people who do or do not wear seat belts is equal, then the probability of being killed in an accident if not wearing one is 50% higher than wearing one if all other things were equal per those statistics: the 50% wearing seats had 40% of all accidents resulting in death but the 50% not wearing seat belts of accidents generated 60% of deaths. That is a 50% increase in likelihood of death in an accident.

Maybe where you live is different, but almost everyone I know wears a seat belt. Even if it is only 80% around here, that means the 80% generate 40% of fatalities but the 20% generate 60%. I'm no math major, and someone who is can better illustrate, but it seems to me the probability of death in an accident while not wearing a seat belt in the second example is exponentially higher, as in 700%. I don't know about you, but I think that is an incredibly large risk premium.

The Exalted said...

god, you people are funny. the governor of nj gets driven around at 90 mph, and THIS, of all things, is the "abuse of power" that gets you going in this day and age.

too rich.

Revenant said...

the governor of nj gets driven around at 90 mph, and THIS, of all things, is the "abuse of power" that gets you going in this day and age.

Reckless driving is more dangerous to me and serves less purpose.

mcg said...

mcg, you have changed the rules. I have not modified my car to make it unsafe, I have only not availed myself of an alleged safety device. Have you ever read the stats?

I don't think it's changing the rules at all. I mean, sure, my example was particularly contrived. But there are also all sorts of choices in the market for vehicles as well, all with varying degrees of safety. Even motorcycles! (How do I buckle those seat belts on one of those, anyway?)

Furthermore, people mod their cars all the time. Sure, we're not talking glass shards on the steering wheel. But we're talking different rim and wheel packages, custom suspensons, new bumpers and aerodynamic packages, custom control chips to boost horsepower, etc. etc. Some even replace stock seat belts with five-point harnesses. All of these mods change the relative safety of the vehicle, sometimes in ways that are hard to quantify.

So, as sensational as my example was, it's not without at least some precedent. Most of the mods I've discussed above are legal. But should they all be, regardless of the compromise in safety that may result? And should every insurance company be expected to retain independent vehicle inspectors to go to your house and see what kinds of mods you've made? Or should they follow you around to see if you fasten your seat belt all the time?

mcg said...

My insurance company has other ways of determining my complaince with it's requirements. It would be very simple for them to add a clause to the policy reducing benifits if I'm in an accident and injured while not wearing a seat belt, or require an additional premium it I refuse to sign a pledge to wear one. Simple, effective and not nanny government.

This is hardly efffective at all. Neither Internet Ronin nor I give a rat's ass what your insurance company expects from you. If they don't care whether or not you wear a seat belt, fine.

What we're talking about is when we are liable for your injury. If I accidentally rear-end you, and you go flying through the windshield and break your neck because you don't take your personal safety seriously (oh, but it wrinkles my neatly pressed shirt! gasp!) then I frankly think it ought to be your problem, not mine.

There is a reason they call them "accidents". Not every auto accident is an incidence of criminally reckless driving or even civil negligence.

Downtown said...

Um - Hate to point this out to everyone, but Corzine was not the one driving.

Therefore he has ZERO responsibility for the speeding. Only the driver was at fault.

And Corzine had every right to not wear a seatbelt. Sure - he should be subject to a fine, but it's still his choice as to whether or not he wants to take that risk of getting a fine.

mcg said...

Now, come on, he probably had a little more than ZERO responsibility, Downtown. He was, after all, the driver's superior. Is it not conceivable that he ordered the driver to speed? I think we can assume he didn't order him to slow down.

Mike said...

DTL, Are you obtuse on purpose? [/rhetorical question]

The governor had absolute control of how fast his driver was going. If he told him to drive the speed limit, he would have.

Internet Ronin said...

Not obtuse, just partisan.

An Edjamikated Redneck said...

Friends, I seriously fail to see the issue.

Does your health care insurer limit policy holders actions, say by banning risky athletic activities? So if I, as a fellow policy holder, try to climb Mt Hood and get lost, costing several thousand dollars in medical fees through hospitalization and such, causing a rise in your premium, do then have the right to pass a law restricting me from mountain climbing?

Or as a fellow policy holder, can you restrict my access to sugar, based on the excessive expense caused by mixing sugar and my diabetes?

Where do you draw the line with government involement?

I have never said seat belts were a bad idea, but seatbelt laws are. It should be a personal choice, just as helmets are for motorcycles in most states.

As an aside, I had a cousin involved in an accident with a flatbed truck trailer that slide across the center line and pinned his van to a guard rail. Beacuse he was not wearing a seatbelt he was able to dive out of the way of the impact and came out of the ordeal fairly healthy- had he been buckled in he would have been crushed by the truck.

dick said...

I really fault Corzine for not wearing seat belts.

My reasoning for this goes back to a friend who is a private duty nurse. One of her patients was a quadriplegic. His condition was caused by a traffic accident. There were 4 people in the car. The other three were hurt but not badly and all were wearing their seat belts. He was not and is now reduced to being carried around wherever he goes. She had to give him time on a ventilator and do almost everything for him and all because he chose not to wear a seat belt.

Corzine was elected governor of one the major states and as such should have been more attuned to taking care of himself so he could perform his job. That it did not matter to him should be enough reason for the people not to vote for him again. He obviously thinks he is above the law. As a friend of mine who lives in New Jersey says, he is pond scum.