I thought it would be a good idea to start the third part of an article such as this by saying something about sexy women in bikinis having a lemon meringue pie wrestling match just to catch your attention. But that would be cheap and beneath me. How dare you even think I’d mention it. Well I never…!
Now where was I? Oh yes, when all the numbers are looked into, the truth is that we don’t know exactly how many fatalities were associated with going over the speed limit vs. “traveling too fast for conditions”. So let us consider this.
For the sake of argument I’ll generously concede that 90% of the 322 deaths are related to those actually exceeding the speed limit. I’ll allow the remaining 10% of the total to represent those not going over the speed limit (and just traveling too fast for conditions). That puts us at 290 deaths which occurred while the vehicle was exceeding the speed limit. So what does exceeding the speed limit mean?
Should one ask that very question, like I am right now, it would mean if the person was traveling 1 mph or worse yet, 1 kph over the speed limit they would fall into this category of statistics. They were over the speed limit, they died. So the way it is presented to the public suggests that being over the speed limit caused the deaths even if it is one mph over. Therefore according to the official narrative, limiting speed will automatically lead to fewer deaths. But that is an obviously specious argument.
What if, while exceeding the speed limit, the occupants…choked to death on a chicken leg while shifting a manual transmission…
Regarding cause, my next question about this figure is: is speed the causal factor in the deaths? What the article insinuates in the most opaque way possible is that speed was causal rather than co-incident with the death. The way deaths appear to be calculated (or at least presented) doesn’t take into consideration the cause of death, but whether the car was over the speed limit at the time of death.
What if, while exceeding the speed limit, the occupants of the vehicles in question had been crushed beneath a falling boulder, or choked to death on a chicken leg while shifting a manual transmission, or was hit by an oncoming lorry (aka, a semi) when the driver became distracted by a particularly frisky passenger?
Admittedly many deaths occur at greater than 1 mph over. Keep in mind though that such deaths would also rightly include those exceeding the speed limit on their way to the emergency room following a traumatic event. Such could occur after being gored by an antelope, or as a result of a carotid artery mishap while shaving with an electric carving knife (yes, it was sharper than anticipated), or perhaps a in freak sewing machine accident. In these cases, speed was not the primary factor in the death. Rather the impending death was the cause of the speed. But that’s how the data can be lumped together to suit a particular agenda.
So because I’m still feeling charitable, let’s only knock another 10% off of the remaining 290 deaths to account for those who died in a car exceeding the speed limit, but was unrelated to the speed of the car. That leaves us with 261 deaths on British roads per year (~22 per month) due specifically to exceeding the speed limit by 1 mph or greater. Does that sounds like good cause for mandatory restrictions on the mobility, autonomy, and freedom of the surviving citizenry? Authoritarians would affirm that it is.
Interesting to note is that number of deaths caused by excessive speed is almost identical to annual deaths attributed to fatigue and malaise. Yet I don’t see a major governmental push to end fatigue and malaise. Given that we’re all interested in legislating the saving of as many British subjects, er – citizens as possible, how about we look to the internationally lauded British Government’s National Health Service (NHS)?
[A mandatory fire suppression system] could save the countless lives of NHS patients who attempt self-immolation following yet another meal of suet and jam sandwiches.
For this, let’s go all the way back to 2012 and see if we can’t find some kind of public disclosure of a wee problem occurring in the NHS. Well hello there. According to the study cited in THISarticle, a few preventable deaths have cropped up here and there. Nothing to see here, it’s been going on for years, move along. I mean, if it were a real concern, our pasty guardians and saviors would be there to sort it out. Or so it would seem.
The study cited indicates that a minuscule 11,859 deaths annually (~32 per DAY) are due to preventable medical error in the NHS system. But we can’t concern ourselves with that. It’s an effective top-down system that is the envy of the world.
But wouldn’t you know, darnit, it appears that something “went wrong” with the care of 13% of all the patients who died in NHS hospitals. But don’t worry, “An error ONLY caused death in 5.2 percent of these – equivalent to 11,859 preventable deaths in hospitals in England.” Whew, I’m relieved that ONLY 5.2% of the 13% of all the people whose death followed errors in care was directly attributable to said care. In case you couldn’t tell I’m darkly amused by the word “only” in this context.
So what’s being said is that 228,000 people who died in the State run hospitals had something go wrong with their care, and that 11,859 of deaths were preventable. Given these horrific numbers and liability involved, I’d suspect that number has been sanitized a bit. Either way, it sounds like there could be room for improvement. A mere 3% improvement in preventable deaths in NHS hospitals would exceed the number of speed related deaths annually.
A modest improvement of 15% would decrease the number of preventable deaths in NHS hospitals such that it would exceed the number of individuals who die on the roads annually from ALL causes. This would include incidents where a driver’s head burst into flames while eating wasabi, and where an oblivious pedestrian got mowed down while sexting invites to that evening’s swingers event, along with other causes.
The article goes on to indicate that “Previous estimates have suggested up to 40,000 deaths a year are caused by errors in care but these have been based on international studies”, (and everyone knows that international studies are bunkum, right?) , “and have not directly linked the errors with the cause of death.”
Right. So there it is, the linking of causality with outcome. Causality is conveniently rolled out when it is important to discount a number, and is carefully tucked away when data needs to be obscured. But if we consider that the “international studies” have no skin in the game of minimizing the hazards of a State-run hospital system, we can perhaps understand why the numbers are so much higher than the 11,859 calculated by an in-country source.
So there we have it, the NHS is the 4thleading cause of death (if one only counts preventable deaths) following circulatory diseases, cancer, and respiratory illnesses. As George Carlin once said, “nobody seems to notice, nobody seems to care.” I do wonder how many children are affected. But apparently that doesn’t really matter.
Given the statistics, one is far likelier to die of negligence in a hospital than on the roads by a ratio of between 6:1 and 20:1.
So, in all of this I ask the question, why? Why is it so important that legislation be directed toward the stated objective of saving lives when it coincidentally severely curtails freedoms on the population? Yet in instances and circumstances where many many more lives may be spared with even minimal oversight, negligent deaths are seen as a minor statistical inconvenience. Now isn’t that interesting?
I said all of that stuff in this and the prior two parts of this article so I could offer this:
My proposed legislation is that the National Health System will hereby be required treat all patients in moving vehicles instead of a boring old motionless hospital. Given the statistics, one is far likelier to die of negligence in a hospital than on the roads by a ratio of between 6:1 and 20:1. Cars in motion are a much much safer place to be than an NHS hospital. Just think of the children! 360,459 lives could be saved by 2037 just by treating patients in motion!
Also included in the bill (or whatever they call proposed items of legislation in the UK) will be a stipulation to require NHS hospitals to retrofit patient rooms with automatic fire suppression bedding. Such a system could save the countless lives of NHS patients who attempt self-immolation following yet another meal of suet and jam sandwiches.
All kidding aside, it seems that legislation should be better directed toward areas where greater numbers of lives could be spared. But that would presuppose that the true objective is safety and saving lives, rather than authoritarian control of the actions and movements of people. Sure, it’s my opinion, but that’s just me.