Monday, April 11, 2016

Kshama Sawant: "Anecdotal Evidence of the Massive Statistical Evidence"

Socialist Seattle City Councilwoman Kshama Sawant on mandatory bike helmets:
Did I hear you right, there’s somebody who wants to repeal the [mandatory helmet law]? … I definitely would not support… In fact, just two days ago… somebody I know actually, his cycle tire sort of got stuck in one of those streetcar tracks and because it was raining, the roads were slick and he got pushed against a car. And when he fell, and he now has a concussion. He’s only safe because of a helmet. And that’s just one anecdotal evidence of the massive statistical evidence that we absolutely need… I don’t think we should revisit that in any way in the public good.

Of course, there is massive evidence here that Sawant's logic is absolutely weak.

It may be true that there is "massive statistical evidence" that wearing a helmet while riding a bike prevents many head injuries and it might be a very good idea that bikers wear them. But there is absolutely no logical link that because this is such that the government should step in and mandate helmets.

Obviously, if a person doesn't want to wear a helmet, he must have some reason for not doing so. Why should a government overrule such a person's decision? Mandatory bike helmet laws have little to do with the "public good." If a person falls off his bike and injures his head, he is the one who suffers the consequences, not the general public.

There is a much greater danger to the general public when the masses start to believe that governments should step in and dictate regulations on all sorts of actions. Central planning never works. As Hayek taught, it is the evil ones that gain control of the regulation levers, in addition to the general suffocation of a society that comes with regulation.


1 comment:

  1. An argument justifying mandating any safe procedure revolves around the fact that since the state is the majority provider of monies for health care it has the right to call the tune, so to speak. The classic Vicious Circle.