Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Things that should exist but probably don't, #2

If I ran the world, I am convinced that it would be a much more interesting place.

We have so many problems as it is! Political differences, religious differences, crime, traffic, overpopulation, disease... many, many organizations are fighting to try and resolve these problems in their own way.

Here's the rub. They're too myopic. The ACLU wants to protect our rights. Planned Parenthood wants to protect our rights too, but really only specific ones. The Beastie Boys want to protect our right to party. See how this is all too narrow? The ACLU at least takes up a variety of causes, but still. Then you have religious organizations that want to do all kinds of shit, from picketing the funerals of people they heard were gay, to lobbying to overturn Roe v. Wade, to taxing your income and calling it by a different word so they don't get in trouble for doing that thing that the government is only allowed to do.

It seems to me that the crazier and more convinced you are about whatever it is, that the more likely you are to be able to make a change, be it positive or negative. Religion is, therefore, in a confusingly strong position here, because their entire organization is based upon the assumption that something is correct that they basically pulled out of thin air and ran with. Politics is probably running a close second, but politicians are heavily influenced by religion.

And take politics alone -- Democrats (lately) have ideals but are willing to compromise on those to get a little bit of what they want. Republicans (lately) have ideals and are almost entirely unwilling to compromise on them to get anything. Remember when we just about shut down the federal government over what amounts to peanuts in the budget? Remember that? Who wins more often than not when the two parties butt heads? The Republicans, because they say something insane and then slowly scoot back towards normal until the Democrats say "oh fine, we can deal with that since you started off in CRAZY TOWN. At least we managed to avoid moving there with you."

So, in light of this, I have some suggestions for better operating things.

First of all, traffic. Where I live, the traffic isn't really as big of a problem as it is in larger cities, but it's still aggravating at times, especially when a car breaks down or wrecks and blocks a lane of traffic.

Proposal: Instate a lottery system for all licensed drivers. Selected drivers will receive one of the following required accessories for their vehicles:

  • A cow-catcher, or "Traffic Progress Assistance Device", or TPAD
  • Street sweeping equipment

The cow-catcher vehicles would be required, when a vehicle breaks down in a lane of traffic, to unceremoniously smash it aside into the nearest ditch or onto the nearest curb or what-have-you. The street sweeping vehicles would then ensure that any shattered glass, twisted metal, or other debris (such as parts of the vehicle's drivers, passengers, or traveling mechanics) were swept away so that other vehicles do not become disabled as a result of the traffic progress assistance vehicle.

Added side benefits of this would be widespread! Drivers would be encouraged to properly maintain their vehicles so as to avoid breaking down, helping local businesses as well as the manufacturers of various vehicle parts and fluids. Instead of getting furious and attacking other drivers, people prone to road rage who were equipped with this equipment could simply take their aggression out on broken down vehicles. (The lottery system is to reduce the potential for abuse of this system by people who actively want a TPAD installed on their vehicle.) Less time would be wasted stuck in traffic! Also, there would be more resources for anyone who survives! Last, but certainly not least, in the event of zombie apocalypse, a significant segment of the vehicles on the road would be well prepared to combat the relentless horde of monsters hungering for human flesh, and the contents of the ditches may well distract the zombies, making life safer for non-TPAD vehicles too!

See? I've fixed traffic and overpopulation with just one idea here. Now I just need some volunteers to canvas for signatures. If people just applied their creativity a little more, we'd have all these things wrong with the world solved in no time!*

*As long as you don't mind living in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, anyway. But who doesn't think that'd be awesome?


  1. Interesting perspective.. I wouldn't vote for it, though. I'd rather just have flying cars. :)

  2. Flying cars, ironically, could be so much more efficient at population control. July 4th every day! :D