Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Driving Faster Reduces Accidents, Right?

Say there are fifty people in a study.   Some of them insist that driving faster is safer - as it lets them avoid other drivers.  They go at various speeds between 55 and 65 mph.  Others insist slower is faster as it gives them more reaction time.  They drive between 25 and 40 mph.

So they start driving.  Over the years, they repeatedly show that the slower drivers are right - they have less accidents.

The guys with the ninth highest accident rate realizes they have a problem.   They think it over, and realize they are doing something wrong.  They have to make a change.  So they insist that the solution must of course be to drive at 90 mph - faster than anyone else is driving.

This is the hallmark of stupidity.  Refusing to admit that your core principle is wrong, that people doing the opposite have better results.  

I am of course talking about Tennessee.  They are tied as the 9th worst teen age pregnancy state, in large part because they have a full blown case of "Abstinence Only" sex education.  (source)

So what do they do to fix it?  They pass a "no gateway sex education law'.  You see, they look at the records and realize something.  Many of the 'abstinent kids' with relationships give hand jobs and oral sex to stay abstinent.   Tennessee, instead of realizing that this release is the only way kids can put up with the incredibly moronic and stupid sex ed policy, thinks it encourages the kids to eventually break abstience.

So the 'no gateway sex ed' law makes it illegal (and allows parents to sue school teachers or organizations for it) to promote gateway sexual activity.  They left gateway sex vague - it could be hugging or holding hands claims some lawyers. (news about passing the bill, Bill summary).  Please note that the law specifically negates the 'health message' exception that people sometimes use.  So no, you can't use that excuse to explain that condoms works better than abstinence - because the human sex drive is stronger than abstinence promises but not stronger than condoms.

They think by doing even more of a clearly failed program it will finally work. It won't.

In business, they call this moronic plan to fix an issue "We'll make it up in volume".   No. You can't make it up with volume if your are losing money on each sale.  It didn't work for Karl Marx, and it won't work for Tennessee.  (Karl Marx admitted that the fewer owners an economy had, the worse the worker's life, but claimed that going all the way to 0 would instantly reverse the clear trend of getting worse and actually be better for workers.  He was wrong.  Going to 0 owners from 1 continues to make things worse the same way going from 2 to 1 did.)  More of something that doesn't work never solves the problem.

I will hereby bet anyone that posts here that that Tennessee will NOT go down beneath 15 in teen age pregnancy ranking  as long as this bill is legal.   I will bet up to $1000.  First come, first serve.  Why do I give them the chance of going as high as 15th?  Because some other states might get worse.

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