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A Fool and His Money are Soon Parted Anyway

By Alicia Dorr in Miscellaneous on Jun 25, 2007 6:11PM

radar.jpgWe always thought that detectors of detectors, like the ones that told you when a cop or a garage door was around, were sort of silly. That puffed up "We're one step ahead of them" attitude people get from these technologies seems like the same smug satisfaction some people get when they hide their wallet in their shoe when at the beach. Sure. Crooks never look there.

We think the devices that tell you when you're approaching an intersection that has cameras are pretty despicable. We know it seems preposterous, but instead of spending your money on this detector, you could just stop breaking the law.

That's why we have to actually side with Alderman Burke on the issue. He has been huffing and puffing about these detectors of late, and he announced last week that he will seek to ban them altogether. His reasons aren't particularly noble; Burke points out that revenue from fines levied for violations at intersections with these cameras is big business — almost $20 million. About ten seconds after Burke admitted what a big revenue source these fines are, the city started falling all over themselves to defend the cameras, saying that they are put in some of the most dangerous intersections to curb accidents and "encourage people to drive more safely."

Well, who cares if the reason for spending so much money putting the cameras in these intersections doesn't exactly square with the city's line? The truth is these are some of the most dangerous intersections and people will get in accidents in them. If they are a deterrent at all, that's excellent, isn't it? It doesn't seem right that people should be able to buy a device that allows them to get around the law and speed through places in the city that don't have these cameras, putting everyone else at risk.

We're not saying that it's good that Burke wants to continue profiting off people's idiocy when it comes to driving, but you have to be more pragmatic about this kind of thing. Maybe if these people keep driving like assholes their money is best spent by the city anyway.