Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Quick and the Fined

Lucky I didn't get booked taking this photo


There’s a new sport in Hobart. It’s called Can You Make it Before the Lights Change? I thought it was just me and that I was slowing down because I couldn’t make it across  the traffic lights before  they turned red, but it wasn’t my imagination.
Yesterday’s paper confirms that the interval for crossing the street has been shortened to about six seconds and Police have so far booked 24 people for failing  to obey the signals.  The report included a cartoon showing the little green man running instead of walking and a picture of a lady on crutches looking distressed because she hadn’t managed to get more than halfway across before being charged by stampeding cars.That kind of thing makes the front pages of the newspapers here. See the full report and pictures Race Against Little Green Men and many other exciting stories in the online version of our daily paper.

Now this could be the attempt of a paternalistic/ nanny state to increase our fitness – we are the unhealthiest state – we top the list for obesity, diabetes and heart disease,* but pardon me if I am sceptical. Perhaps it was that enormous payout to Gunns for not being allowed to level our forests, but I’m sure it’s the latest creative strategy for raising revenue for a cash strapped government, not satisfied with current levels of extortion from Speed Cameras and the like, but where will it end? Fines for loitering too long in front of shop windows or parking meters on park benches?

They won't be able to call Hobart Slowbart anymore. That's a shame. Doesn't the government know that SLOW is in?

 * I blame the excellent food

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