Even in the venerable pages of the Irish Times you will struggle to see a reader's letter that is not perfectly politically correct in all respects. Somehow our citizens are all toeing the party line and chanting the official mantras and without a single free thought of their own.
So I'm grateful to John Sheehan of Rathfarnham in Dublin 14 for his observations on our drink-driving laws. He begins by saying, "Reporting on drink-driving often shows a cavalier attitude to statistical evidence," to which I can only say that the same is true of all reporting today. He continues, "We were told recently that the Garda Síochána had detected 34 per cent more cases of drink-driving this year than 12 months previously. There was a complete failure to address some simple questions."
He then asks the obvious ones such as, were the same number of people checked year-on-year, (are we comparing like with like?), were these checks in the same places and at the same times and had either Garda procedures or equipment improved in the meantime? You cannot report an increase in drink-driving without knowing these simple basics first. For the sake of argument, what if Garda checks had doubled this December over last? If so then the 34 per cent increase in detection would represent an actual fall in the incidences or an overall decrease in drink-driving nationwide.
Like myself too, John Sheehan questions just what is drunk-driving. If you've had a pint then you are hardly drunk but if you've had ten you most definitely are. But a half-pint can put you over the limit, hence technically drunk. The point of his letter is to point out that in the absence of hard reliable accurate evidence it is impossible to make any kind of reasoned or rational decision on drink limits for drivers. Instead we get feigned emotional knee-jerk reactions from idiot politicians, all paid for by the vested interests with the strongest lobbying power.
Is it still the law that you must respect the law I wonder?
Oh! Some wit wrote to the papers today asking if one half-drink of alcohol can alter ones judgement so much behind the wheel then surely the Dail bar must be closed for good today.
Will we take a vote?