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riding/driving: Privilege or Right?

Discussion in 'The Pub' started by Ktulu, Jan 10, 2008.

  1. Privilege

  2. Right

    0 vote(s)
  1. We have all been told that driving [and by extension: riding] is a privilege, not a right.
    Some of us have been told this several times.

    Some of us have been told this by police officers...

    It is generally accepted as true, because we are taught to work for things and be grateful for them - as good little Aussie battlers. However, I find I agree less and less with this sentiment.

    Of course, a driver's licence is not a basic right - and can be taken away based on one's behaviour.
    So from a standing legal viewpoint: driving is indeed a privilege facilitated by the state, and this is supported by law.

    Law is meant to reflect community standards, and this is where my argument lies:
    I believe [particularly in Sydney and Melbourne] that a significant number of people have a sense of entitlement or feel they have a 'right' to drive.

    I know I do.

    In the good old days, a car was a luxury - afforded by the rich or the privileged. Everyone else could catch the bus or the train.
    Nowadays, it is my personal view that for many people to maintain employment: they MUST operate a personal motor vehicle in order to attend work on-time and maintain a reasonable quality of life not intruded upon by excessive travel-time outside of work hours.

    This is due to a number of factors:
    - Australia is a large and spread out country, meaning extra distance is travelled, and extra time required for it.
    - In some cities, the public transport system can not reliably perform with the current level of users; let alone increased numbers were people to use it in place of personal transport.
    - The hot weather in some seasons, makes travel without air-conditioning less than comfortable and indeed can cause health problems for some people [heatstroke etc].

    But now why do I feel like I have a right to use a vehicle to overcome the above problems? Why do I place my own opinion above the government's law?

    I feel obligated to maintain a personal vehicle by the governments own inability to provide a suitable alternative, and do so at great financial benefit to them.

    Last financial year, I spent well over 20% of my gross annual income on fuel, rego, insurance, repayments and servicing on my vehicles. In GST alone the government has received over $2k from me personally... and I'm not even bothering to consider fuel excise or income tax on whoever I've paid that money to.

    So when I feel forced to engage in an activity that costs me a stack of cash, you're damn right I'll crack the shits when someone tells me they've done me favour while stuffing an envelope in their back pocket.

    I am not at all surprised people drive while on suspended licences, or without licences at all.
    I personally feel I have an entitlement to drive, considering the alternatives and cash I've outlayed.

    What do you think?
    [ignoring the exact letter of the law for a moment, and considering that the law is supposed to reflect community standards].
  2. I think if people viewed it as a privelage, and not a right, people might give driving the due respect it deserves.
  3. ^^^ Good read Ktulu,

    I empathise with your frustration and agree with you on all the above points,


    Now some things you havent taken into account,

    1. How much roads cost to build and maintain.(your contribution is like a grain of sand on a beach 100 kilometres long)
    2. How much it cost the AFG to maintain emergency services to help/assist Drivers/Commuters. (same again)
    3. Hey we could be in a 3rd world country and it could be alot worse, take a step back, breath and take a moment to reflect on how much crappier some other countrys roads are :wink:
  4. Riding/Driving is a Privledge. it is a privledge in the sence that if you can't do it without endangering those around you then get the F#% off the roads.
    I don't much care how much damage some stupid tosser does to them selves. We can all go to hell in our own ways, but just don't include any inocent bystander in your stupidity and/or incompitance.

    Incompitance i personaly feel is teh bigger factor in why people should lose there licence. Faliur to indicate or headcheck. And then there is my pet hate of tailgating. What right does any one have to intimidate others on the road causing them increased risk.
  5. Driving is a priviledge and sometimes the people who think otherwise need to be kicked in the nuts.


    I pretty much agree with you Ktulu, and for me it's just a sad state of affairs that there are other alternatives but it is never explored, after all the automotive industry is HUGE, and you know how the government works, why look for a long term solution to conjestion/transport when a short term one will help them stay in government for another term.

    Bleh. they need to be kicked in the nuts.
  6. I volunteer to be the official nutkicker for the entirety of the australian people.

    Heck, I will do it for free. :grin:
  7. Privilege. Because I know someone who drives unlicensed, unrego'd, no insurance, fangs it everywhere whilst smashed off his face, and stoned into another dimension. He's the kind of person who if he accidentally smashed into a car/person, he'd take off as fast as possible.

    It has to be a privilege because of such people.
  8. And also given to you on the basis of learning and behavior. Therefore, your earn the privilege to operate a motor vehicle by demonstrating tat you can.

    And this is still the case. Vehicle ownership is still expensive, it's just that because of perceived convenience (aka laziness, and having a better quality of life than our predecessors/parents) we are willing/able to allocate income to vehicle ownership.

    Absolutely not! Many people could get a job closer to home, habitate closer to work, or move one's work or home closer to public transport routes.

    You make the choice to travel, a very small minority are required to travel.

    Studies have shown that it's just as reliable as vehicle transport, on an average basis where you are comparing breakdowns/problems and transport trip times run in parallel with transport routes.

    Do any AUS cities public transport not have air conditioning? Trains, buses, trams all have aircon I believe?

    No, you choose not to base your lifestyle around suitable public transport and expect the government to provide where it suits you.

    Yet above you claim that vehicle ownership is no longer a luxury!?!

    You choose to engage in vehicle ownership, whether it be because of your living, work, or recreational activities and interests.

    One of my pet hates is people that move to outer suburban communities and housing estates (eg. Berwick, Pakenham, Melton - all in VIC) where there is little or no public infrastructure (transport, schooling, hospitals, etc.) and then demand the government to provide it immediately. It's a huge burden on public expenditure/budget for a relatively small group of people, and only creates massive problems in regards to transport times and distances - all of which the public living in these area's demands the government to fix. WAKE UP AND SMELL THE ROSES people - you moved (or choose to remain) in this area, and if you aren't happy with the public infrastructure then go to where you will be happy.
  9. Why? From a cost perspective?

    IMHO the fine is not enough - might as well be pissed as you got no insurance either way. I had a neighbour who did it every time one of their two cars was up for rego, for up to six months, and got booked twice - he's complaint to the cops "if I had the money to pay the fine, don't you think I'd have rego'd the car" Although if he didn't get caught, eventually he'd do the Blue Slip and get re-rego'd tell me how much cash he'd saved :roll:

    Slightly different view in that, whilst we're all entitled to drive, the right to discounts on licence/insurance should be made available to all those who undertake some sort of advanced driver/rider training during their current licence period. I'd have to guess, but from various discussion, would think these drivers/riders have less claims/acidents than those who don't do any advanced training.

    But if you're talking strictly based on "I pay my share so my right is to a licence", then hard to argue except that for a car licence there is no requirement for professional training (which I'd like to see) only an easily doctored log book.

    20 years ago, a bike licence was much easier to obtain (in NSW), now there would indeed seem to be a privilege by having to give up days on the weekend just to get L's and then again for P's.
  10. For the record: I see these issues from a Sydney perspective, and realise to some people from smaller or much better planned and managed cities - I'm just a whinging poove :)


    Less so than it used to be compared with average pay.
    Hyundai's aren't sold on quality.

    Of course.
    But it's only in recent years congestion has become so bad, with higher fines, less parking, and more toll-roads increasing the time and money cost to people just trying to get to and from work.
    People won't move house just for the glorious reward of being able to sell their means of transport.

    Oh, even if drastic improvements were to take place, it would take a generation before it was noticeable. People have no faith in the public transport system here, as it's track-record is less than ordinary.

    I have experienced it as a maintenance issue, personally one summer and it was absolute, bloody torture.

    My job requires personal transport during business hours. From the income that job provides, I pay plenty of tax ontop of what gets skimmed off my spendings by the ATO.
    I never voiced an expectation that the government provide something to suit me: I merely pointed out that it doesn't - and in light of that, I feel I operate at least 1 vehicle out of necessity rather than out of joy at the glorious gift of driving from our state government who appear to give small and take large, in this arrangement.

    The cost of housing in Sydney is ridiculous.
    Children stay at home longer - working adults aren't always the stupid drains on society who move somewhere with unreasonable expectations, you paint them as. Plenty just grow up there, and can't afford to move out when they're 18.
    In community housing you get kids. Kids grow up. Kids need to get to school, and a part-time job, and uni later on, and maybe a proper job after that. Without public transport this becomes a shit-fight.
    A council with an interest in the continuation of a community would be stupid not to facilitate cost-effective transport to and from places of education and employment for young people.
  11. I'm with you ktoolio - f*ck 'em all.
  12. Yes the price of housing in Sydney is ridiculous (but no people won't shift).

    Yet there are roughly 100 jobs going begging at the factory 2kms from here because they can't fill them (but no people won't shift to the town to work in these jobs even though rent is cheap).

    Then when the factory gets a batch of visa workers people complain 'they are taking all our jobs!'. :roll:

    What are you suggesting would convine those unemployed 18 year olds that they should shift to where the work is Ktulu?
  13. The person you describe believes it his right. :evil:
  14. But Mouth,

    Cost of living anywhere closer than those you listed does cost too much, I'm in IT, I don't get paid enough to own my own house within 40km of my work place (these days). Not as easy as just picking up my job and moving it 50km SE where it affordable either, where IF i changed jobs, i'd be earning even less than what i'm on now, thus repeating the cycle of not being able to own anything within 40km of my current job.

    I used to take public transport to work, and i have experienced the "Air Con maintenance issue", not very often, but it was hell that summers day, "Theres a sauna in my pants, and everyones invited ;) ". There were not enough outbound trains in the afternoon to cope with the demand either.

    Now i'm lucky enough to have a company provided vehicle, as my job also includes a lot of travel during business hours.

    Not that it's that much cheaper to take public transport these days, its $47.40 for a 10x2hour (zone 1+2), much what you'll need for a week.
    It costs that in fuel for a week in the company car, and thats personal trips included.
    You must add servicing and rego into that (i've allowed $2k for this example, cos you might need tyres and something else fixed as well), and that equates to $5.48 per day, less than a 2hour (zone1+2) ticket.

    So In one way or another in your model, we either spend more to live closer to our work, or spend more in travel to get to work... its all filled with taxes, fees and levies.

    On the topic of spending so much money on roads
    If the workers would work, and not 1 person at a time working, there would be significantly less labor charges, and lets not get started on labor as a gvmt :roll: ...

    So I believe it is a right to own a vehicle, here anyway (don't care about overseas), but it is also a privilege to be given an open license to operate the vehicle as you see fit.
  15. what is this "public transport" you speak of? :?
  16. Last I checked Australia did not have a Bill of Rights.

    So I guess everything we do is a privilege.