And don't imagine that we do not coldly calculate the price of a human life. In 1974, the speed limit was lowered to 55 mph to conserve oil. That also led to a dramatic drop in traffic fatalities -- approximately 3,000 lives every year. This didn't stop us, after the oil crisis, from raising the speed limit back to 65 and beyond -- knowing that thousands of Americans would die as a result.
The calculation was never explicit but it was nevertheless real. We were quite prepared to trade away a finite number of human lives for speed, and for the efficiency and convenience that come with it.
Friday, February 26, 2010
Posted by macbeach at 12:31 PM