Azara Blog: The BBC runs more anti-car-driver propaganda

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Date published: 2007/06/09

The BBC is the voice of the British academic middle class. As such they hate cars, or at least cars driven by people other than themselves. Today the BBC has two blatant anti-car stories. The first story is propaganda for the usual car-hating cycling fraternity:

About 700 cyclists in various states of undress have cycled through central London in another leg of the World Naked Bike Ride.

The naked cyclists - and others with strategically-placed body paint, sticky tape or bum bags - were highlighting the damage caused by car dependency.

They were also promoting the environmental benefits of cycling.

Needless to say the BBC would never run such a story were it anti-cyclist instead of anti-car. Cambridge has a high percentage of cyclists, and any neutral observer (e.g. people who are both cyclists and drivers) would agree that in Cambridge the cyclists on average behave much worse than the drivers. Of course the consequences from cyclists behaving badly is generally not so serious as from drivers behaving badly, which is why cyclists never worry about their poor behaviour.

Cyclists everywhere suffer from this delusion that somehow they are morally superior to drivers. They are not. They are just rich enough to live near enough to their place of work to be able to cycle. They are also typical representatives of the "cult of the selfish". Unfortunately in modern political life it is deemed acceptable behaviour that if you don't do something, then you should be able to insist that nobody else should be allowed to do it either. This is just selfishness, pure and simple.

Cyclists also benefit from good roads, courtesy of all the taxes paid by drivers. But instead of being thankful that some poor soul is subsidising their route to work, they just complain. Cyclists are not just selfish, they are ungrateful.

If cyclists spent more time promoting cycling and less time complaining about drivers, they might be take more seriously by the people that matter, i.e. the public (not the academic middle class).

The second story is propaganda for the safety nutter bridgade:

Psychological assessments should become part of the UK driving test, a road safety expert has urged.

Robert Gifford, director of a road safety charity, told BBC Radio Five Live the current system failed to root out drivers prone to breaking rules.

He said psychometric tests could help to identify people with the wrong attitude to the road.

What planet does this guy live on? Does he know any drivers who are not prone to breaking rules, especially the insanely low speed limits on motorways? Surprise, motorists drive how they think they should drive, not how the safety nutters think they should drive. The government knows this full well, which is why they have bombarded the roads with speed cameras. And how are they going to determine what is the "wrong" attitude? Why of course they are going to ask silly and patronising questions, which any driver with an IQ higher than 80 will know how the government wants answered, independently of how they would actually behave. (For example, "If you see a beggar in the middle of the road, do you (A) run him over, (B) just miss him and swear out the window that he is an idiot, or (C) slow down and wait until he gets out of the way and drop him a tenner because he is obviously hard up?" Hmmm, which answer does the government want?)

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