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The only times that I've been pulled over were times that I was breaking a traffic law. If the cops knew that I wasn't a criminal just by running my plate number they might be less hostile, and therefore less likely to write a ticket. I don't know, it could be good, it could be bad. If there were a bunch of uninsured drivers on the East Coast, then I'd be all for it. ---RonXX (for some reason I'm called Anonymous Squid)
 

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Completely Off Topic

I've noticed that if you use the 'Preview' feature, my name comes up as Anonymous Squid - but when I post, it's OK again.
 

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As a fellow Californian (extreme northern variety), I too am concerned about uninsured motorists. Roughly half of the collisions up here involve uninsured motorists. Want to hear about an easy fix that should probably be welcomed by both the trial lawyers and the insurance industry?. How about paying for PL and PD at the pump? You'd still get to purchase comprehensive, collision , etc. through your local insurance agent, but we who are already paying high premiums for the low-life non-insured would realize a major reduction in overall fees paid. Something to think about. Sorry to divert from the wireless thing; guess you just hit a nerve.
 

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The increase in in-car technology helps LEO's do their job, but at the same time it makes it that much easier for the obnoxious ones on a power trip to make life difficult for someone who wasn't doing anything out of the ordinary, or someone whose hairdo they didn't like the last time they stopped 'em.



I guess it hasn't filtered down to the local agencies around here, because I have so far not gotten stopped on a motorcycle in NY state. This is despite boneheaded stunts like wheelying past an officer travelling the other way, or passing a trooper at 90+ in a 50 (again, going the other way). Maybe they're just apathetic around here..perhaps I should try going slower than the limit for a change and see what happens.



-a_nominal_squid-
 

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Two thoughts:

1. Technology Security Concerns:

Security in wireless technology is not merely bad right now, it's horrible. I am not merely concerned about this, I am actually strongly against the use of today's American wireless technologies for secure purposes (and law enforcement communications fall under this umbrella). In other words, it will be possible for me to see, store, record, and modify in real-time any information that goes across digital wireless channels, due to inherent weaknesses in today's American wireless technologies (I keep specifying *American*, because I am not up on European wireless standards; they may be just as bad).

This is not to say that the concern does not exist for any analogue or digital wireless voice communications (and we've seen those get compromised); the problem with modern digital wireless is that the vendors tout security (and convince most people that it exists) when it quite simply doesn't. For the curious, there are a number of reasons for this, but we'll sum them up as revolving around the fact that most American wireless vendors and the communication protocols they develop, are developed in the *dark*. That sector doesn't work with the rest of the InfoSec industry...thus ensuring they make mistakes in their secure channel designs that a second-year cryptographer would know to avoid.

2. Profiling.

Profiling (at the local and state level) is not too great. Per stories about getting pulled over; I've been pulled over many times for no discernable reason, including going too slowly. The officer explained that drivers under the influence went too slowly more often than they went too fast. I'm not making that claim...I have no idea if that statement is true or not; I'm just repeating it.

Profiling is getting better. Technology (that ugly stuff we talked about above) is allowing the FBI, SS, FinCEN, and a few others to deploy very fast and powerful profiling systems, with a much higher degree of accuracy and detail than most people have any idea they posses.

In the mean time, here's reality: I drive a 14-year old POS (my cage; bike stays new :). When I go through the really rich areas around my town late at night (past midnight), I'll get pulled over. I've had my whole car searched and inventoried (I had landscaping equipment in the car and they told me it was reported stolen earlier that night...except, I had all my reciepts for it....jerks).

I'm the head of Information Security for one of the largest Credit Unions in the world, and I still get pulled over for having an old car, and the fact I look like a hooligan.

Yup, profiling has a long way to go at localized levels, but it's getting there. ;)

Arian
 

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I live near Bellevue Washington and frequently drive through the city. Bellevue has the most expensive homes in

the state (even more than the posh areas in and around Seattle) and the people there typically have A LOT of

money. So of course the police will "harass" you if you're not driving the right car. I used to have a crap car and

got pulled over for apparently swerving in my lane, which I wasn't. It was just their way of profiling me as a

possible violator of some kind due to my '85 Accord. The Bellevue police likely WILL miss use this new toy as a

way to harass cars that don't cost more than 30 grand or look like they should be in the fair city of Bellevue. I hear

stories here and there about it still happening and it happened to me too a while ago.... oh, well.
 

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Fill me in here...

Getting pulled over for frivolous things may always happen, (I never had it happen to me in my junker) but doesn't this new wireless system mean that you will be done with the stop sooner?
 

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That is a good idea, but...

Vehicles that use more gas would pay more PD and PL. It just doesn't seem fair to charge a gas guzzler the same as a electro-economy car the same for liability and damages. Maybe you have it worked out that it could be fair. Your idea is intriguing. Enlighten me?

luvmyvfr
 

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Arian and his Nation

Kidding on the name.

I find it interesting that you are head of security for one of the largest Credit Unions "in the world..." but also claim "I am not up on European wireless standards...". I'm not saying your lying, but there seems an inconsistency, when many people in scandanavia and, I think (someone I work with told me, but I can't remember which country specifically, seems like it was Ireland or Scotland) that people exclusively use their cellular phones as their credit and debit cards at businesses, or in other words, that all their banking and financial information is on their cell phones.

That means, either one of the worlds largest credit unions isn't in some of these countries, or doesn't deal with the little people and is the largest in $, through dealing with big businesses, instead of largest in # of customers. Unless there is an alternate explaination.

Anyway, what do you think the difference is between their system and ours? Is it the phones themselves, the networking, or the encryption of the signals? You sound like you might be in the know.

luvmyvfr
 

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Re: That is a good idea, but...

Nothing much to add. What vehicle would you rather collide with a large gas guzzler or a hybrid gas/electric? Which would do more damage in a collision?

I really don't think the trial lawyers would be too keen on the idea anyway; too much to lose! I was just reading the Dec issue of Motor Cyclist earlier; the last page has an article that cites the British system of law, whereby the loser in a case pays the expenses of the winner. That might curtail some of the frivolous cases but might also lead to the big guys pushing the little people around even more than they already do.

What we need are statesmen in office, not career politicians.
 

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Making a Case for Real Bulletproof Software

Their laser scanners will quickly identify which chunk of data you are in their files by the DNA identity dogtags we'll all be wearing on our electric shock collars, which will all be to Make Us Safe.
 

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Ok, first things first... the basic problem is our legal/insurance system. Insurance should be optional, but it should be structured to protect the purchaser of the insurance in case *they* make a mistake. If you get hit (i.e. you're not at fault), it shouldn't make any difference to you whether they have insurance (or whether you have insurance); your compensation should be the same regardless.



The un-insured person should be the one feeling the pain; they gambled by not having insurance, and they lost (just as I've gambled and lost by having insurance and not making claims totalling anywhere near the amount I've paid in premiums). If they simply do not have the ability to pay, then the gov't pays you on their behalf, and then the gov't owns them, and puts them to work for the gov't until they pay it back.



That said, a more immediate fix might be (assuming that your goal is to require all motorists to be insured) to (1) associate insurance with the vehicle, not the driver (2) at inspection, require proof that your insurance is pre-paid until the next inspection time (3) vigorously enforce inspection requirements (i.e. make the stickers more obvious, more difficult to fake, and spend more time looking for and punishing violators).
 

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In general, I agree with you. Conceptually, innocent until proven guilty implies freedom from searching until a reasonable level of suspicion can be established, and the Constitution bears that out fairly explicitly.



But I have a question about the wire-taps issue. As I understand it, the big change is this:



Used to be that if the police wanted to tap your home phone (for example), they went to a judge, presented their evidence for suspicion, and assuming the evidence was sufficient, they got permission to tap your home phone. Then, if they later wanted to tap your work phone, they had to go through that process all over again.



Now, they request permission to "tap" a person. Meaning that they still go to a judge, and present the evidence for suspicion, and assuming the evidence is sufficient, they get permission to tap any communications resource you use... home phone, work phone, cell phone, email accounts, etc.



Please correct me if I have misrepresented the situation.



If that explanation is basically correct, though, I don't see the problem. It seems more like a realization that, hey, people used to only have a very limited number of ways to communicate electronically. Now they have lots and lots of options, and making the LEOs repeat the process for each possible method is a waste of time and money, and impedes their ability to do their job.



Besides, if they have sufficient evidence of suspicion to warrant an investigation... well that is a *reasonable* search-and-seizure situation. The LEOs should be able to use any observational tool (more or less) that they want in the process of conducting that investigation. What is the problem with that?





The Constitution says: "Amendment IV: The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."



Obviously, that was written long before electronic communication was available. At some point, "telephone" became a viable, particular "place" to be searched. The change is that now "electronic communications" has replaced "telephone" as a viable, particular "place" to be searched. Still seems a lot less intrusive than an undercover human investigator, which most people are ok with, but clearly falls *way* outside the lines established by amendment IV.

 

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That is a good idea, but...

I agree that most gas guzzlers are big, thus needing more gas to motor around, but a smokey old mazda would do less damage than some of todays sedans, that is what I meant. Anyway, I saw, and see your point, and I like it.

As for politicians and statesmen, I totally agree, but how can a statesman get elected? He'd have to be extremely rich these days to get the advertising out there, and rich guys seem to be in bed with special-interest groups, in one way or another. I've known people who would make great elected officials, but whom would never run, because they were great people, and wouldn't stoop to the levels you have to stoop to, to be in politics these days. Like Colin Powell, he's (arguably) a statesman, thank goodness these people can be appointed, and don't have to run for office.

Anyway, good points all, and I also really liked the idea of the losers paying the legal fees of the winners as mentioned in Motorcyclist. That would do much for the frivolous lawsuits in the courts, but would screw over a lot of poor people who lost on technicalities (for example), and had legitimate cause to seek legal representation. I think, since judges are given so much discretion anyway, that they should fine lawyers who bring cases that they (the judges) deem frivolous. That would at least make the lawyers think about taking the case.

luvmyvfr
 

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I like the idea of associating the insurance with the vehicle. However, requiring proof of insurance at inspection (renewal, here in CA)has been a dismal failure in this state. People get insurance for registration, then cancel for the rest of the year. Paying at the pumps eliminates that.



I also agree with your point on gambling with to or not to insure, unfortunately, at least here in CA, the public is left holding the bag, i.e., higher taxes for the payoffs/care, when an uninsured person is maimed, crippled, etc. Same thing with helmets, right, personally, I'd never ride without one, but do we need another law to protect against idiocy? CA also used to be able to cite noninsured drivers. After you were pulled over for whatever reason, you had to produce evidence of insurance. That was thrown out by the courts; violated one's "other" protections from the laws.



I wish I knew what it would take to get the public upset enough to act decisively and establish a different system. More frustration. Thanks for your comments.
 

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"People get insurance for registration, then cancel for the rest of the year. "



That's why I was suggesting that they be "pre-paid" until the next inspection time. No advantage to cancelling a service you've already paid for.



Wow, that's amazing that you can't require proof of insurance during a routine stop in CA. Seems so counter-productive.

 

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Re: Coppers Go Wireless-I love it!!

As a 40+ year old techno-geek and being overweight and grey with a conservative haircut, etc, etc, etc....................

The coppers never believe I was really doing 180 mph............

yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeehawwwwwwwwwwwww

You gotta work the angle, gents............
 

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Re: That is a good idea, but...

Actually I don't see how it effects poor folks that much. If your poor and you loose then you don't have any money to pay anyways. It would hurt the next step up. Lower middle class since they would take what little you have been able to save.
 
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