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22 March 2012

wasted resources

I got pulled over for speeding this morning. I was coasting down a steep hill, the sub-functional speedometer read around 77 mph. The officer said I was going 68. The speed limit was 55.

Ok, fair enough.

He was nice enough to write it up as 65 in a 55.

And, he didn't give me a speeding ticket. Instead, he ticketed me for "wasting finite resources." Yes, that's what my ticket says.

I had to wonder, whose resources, mine or his?

Don't get me wrong, I do appreciate that he didn't give me a moving violation and I accept that he actually should have done so.

But... wasting resources? There's actually a traffic violation for that which doesn't involve spilling oil on the road? This strikes me as a divergence, a deflection of blame in response to the oft-bandied public sentiment accusing The Government of wasting public resources (specifically police time and money) on victimless traffic violations.

"Don't you have some actual crime to stop? You're wasting tax payers' money!"

Again, not that he shouldn't have ticketed me - it's the reasoning behind the "wasting resources" being an actual legal violation that has me a bit... disappointed in our system, in yet another tiny way that is symptomatic of a greater systemic pathology.

"We aren't the ones wasting resources, you are!"

"I'm rubber, you're glue; what you say bounces of me and sticks to you!"

Or, "Nu-uh!"

And so forth.

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