Blame Ralph Nader for Bad Drivers

That’s right. Remember “Unsafe at Any Speed”? It’s his fault we have all these free wheeling jack-asses driving around thinking cars should drive themselves and keep everyone of out danger, all the while simultaneously smoking a cigarette, making a playlist on their iPod, talking on the phone, and trying to drive. Driving is a job that should be taken seriously. Ralph Nader, although he had many good points, was the person who made it acceptable to blame the machine and not the operator. It is nice to able to blame corporations for our problems, but a better solution is to blame the drivers. They are, after all, the ones behind the wheel.

This quality issue with Toyota is the latest example of blaming the machine. Safety is a choice people make. If people don’t know when the accelerator sticks they should jam the brakes and take the car out of gear, then maybe the brick wall they slammed into was a wake-up call.

Rule 1: If you don’t know how the machine works, don’t use it. By this rule, most people on the road today should not be there. Sure, Toyota fucked up, but so did the people driving these cars by not knowing what to do during system failure.

Rule 2: Never assume the machine is going to work the way you want it to. I learned how to drive when I was twelve years old, on vehicles that were far more dangerous than anything Toyota has ever made. I was lucky to have experienced drivers around to teach me how the vehicle worked and what to do when something went wrong. If these Toyota drivers had the training that most farmers have, none of these crashes would have happened.

Rule 3: If you crash, it is your fault. This was the level of accountability I was given when I was operating machines before I was in high school. Because of this, I became an expert in dealing with control problems. By making every problem with a vehicle the fault of the manufacturer and not the operator, the operator has little incentive to learn about how to deal with system failure. If we are going to use this system of blaming the manufacturer, the people making the machines should have some say over who uses their product, and require training before a potential buyer is allowed to drive the vehicle off the lot.

So be safe out there, and if you wrap your car around a pole don’t come crying to me or the person who made it. Go cry to yourself or maybe Ralph Nader.

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