Posted by: lucylastic | July 19, 2007

‘The Government’ – what are they on? And did we vote for this?

I know I have written in similar vein before, but I feel really strongly about how ‘the government’ are trying to control our actions more and more and more.  In the few hours since waking up this morning I have heard the following items on the BBC News.  ‘The Government’ are proposing to raise the car driving age to 18 AND insist that lessons are taken for at least 12 months before a test can be taken, because ‘although young drivers only account for 8% of the drivers on the road, they account for 18% of the accidents’.  Yes indeed – and boy racers will probably never go away – but couldn’t this be addressed through more comprehensive and more safety orientated training?  Or discounts for attending ‘proper’ driver training?  Driving lessons from a ‘reputable’ instructor cost around £35 per hour – even one lesson a week for a year amounts to a whopping £1820, plus the costs of the theory test, driving test itself and the ‘Pass Plus’ which introduces new drivers to motorways and supposedly helps to lower insurance premiums.  My Godson recently insured a ‘K’ Reg Metro 1.1, (a car worth no more than £400 on a good day) for £1300 – to insure the same car for a girl would have been about £600 – in his bid to get on the insurance ladder – but he’s one of the good guys…………… what the BBC reports don’t tell you is that many of the youngsters involved in these accidents aren’t insured at all, and their cars are untaxed and unregistered – and if they hit you, Mr or Mrs properly insured, it’s YOU who takes the penalty, not them – after all, your insurance company can’t claim from a non-existent 3rd Party can it? 

I could go on, but let’s turn to another amazing revelation in today’s NEWS. Jackie Smith, our new Home Secretary, once, (and only once, she would have you believe) smoked cannabis at Oxford University.  Well, shock horror, is this news?  Does anyone care?  But now that she is responsible for reviewing ‘The Government’s’ decision to downgrade cannabis to a Grade ‘C’ drug, I can only assume she thought she’d better own up before someone else dropped her in it.  I am honour bound to point out that she did admit that it had been ‘very wrong’ of her to try it and she ‘shouldn’t have done it’.  Frankly, I find this too ridiculous for words. 

It seems our leaders are intent on creating a society so anodyne that no risks will ever be taken and nothing that has any element of fun to it will eventually be allowed.  The decisions that are being made about what sort of school trips should be undertaken, (nothing involving water, nothing where a pupil might fall and be injured or die, nothing that involves any sort of risks at all it seems) are leading to schools asking parents to accept responsibility for anything at all that might befall their child, otherwise they won’t be allowed to join in.  Of course, tragic accidents sometimes happen, but if children don’t get exposed to risk and excitement and some level of thrill, how can we expect them to develop into adults who can reasonably assess the threats that they may encounter later in life. Grumpy old woman I may well be, but this stuff drives me nuts.  And as for all these phone-in ‘scandals’, pleeeeeeese – did anyone ever think they wouldn’t be manipulated and turned to advantage.  Didn’t anyone ever think that the ‘fantastic’ prize was funded by all the calls asking you to identify the capital of England from a list of 3?  I don’t know why it’s even given airtime. 

On a completely different note, I am looking forward to an evening that involves tasting a selection of champagnes – how good can that be?  Very, I am hoping 😉


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