(Window shopping in Tokyo where the bicycle is never far away)
And so another week arrives and with it bringing another court case.
Come this Wednesday, I will be back at the Downing Centre, Sydney for my Defended Hearing, but this time on the Local Court level of the building because this matter is a brand new one again - the Pyrmont Bridge one rather than the Harbour Bridge one which you may recall was finalised last week on appeal - in fact the bill for that one is right below... sigh:
With regards to that account above, I really resent paying the Victims Support Levy when (a) there is no victim and (b) riding a bicycle without a bicycle helmet ought to be a health matter rather than a criminal one - what a country, hey?
But what to do?
The courts won't listen, the politicians won't listen, the media won't listen - and will any of them ever?
Having run a very successful fear campaign throughout the 1980s, the helmet standards industry were able to reel in Australian governments one by one as these governments greedily gobbled up the helmet bait holus bolus ... "Come in spinner"!
Ever since then, the standards industry have been chortling all the way to the bank confident in the knowledge that the various Australian state legislatives will never revoke the regulation because they are being paid off by them (the standards industry); that the various Australian state executives won't agitate for revocation either because they are terrified of any adverse political fallout they imagine could eventuate should someone die on their watch in an Australia without helmet law; and that the various Australian state judiciaries quite often forget about the separation of powers, and anyway quite like political directions and even more anyway think it's a no brainer and that helmets make you safe ... so there.
Meanwhile in Meeja-land, their finely honed ignorance on 'matters bicycle' has left Australia floundering in bicycle and transport wilderness.
You don't have to read too many bicycle & helmet law articles by Aussie journos to work out pretty quickly that they have no idea what they are talking about, and that they are pretty timid about the whole exercise of taking a bike out onto the road, and would much rather drive their bikes somewhere secluded for a little ride round in circles - in specially designed clobber aka (well almost) Hans Christian Andersen's emperor's new clothes.
And of course, in addition, all of the above has been underpinned by quasi science.
For the twenty years plus that we've had helmet law, we have been plagued by academic rent-seeking and funding inbalances as profs and a/profs (and doctors too - weird) have striven to obtain interminable academic rent (paid for by Australian tax payers) by manipulating the social and political environment of using a bicycle with mandatory helmet law in Australia rather than by building on the bicycle-use that we did have without helmet law in this country more than two decades ago.
Shame on them all and a pox on all their houses and all their universities and some of their hospitals (which lately have been conducting research paid for by car companies)
... you all know who you are.