# The cellphone paradox - where are all the accidents?

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• posted on August 20, 2015, 3:53 am

You're assuming that all those new purchasers are drivers. I think that's definitely not the case. Absent that correlation, cell phone sales can skyrocket, but if they're mostly second lines or phones for non-drivers, then those sales will have little statistical effect on accident rates.
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Bobby G.

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• posted on August 20, 2015, 5:20 am

BINGO
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• posted on August 20, 2015, 11:55 am
On Thursday, August 20, 2015 at 12:07:30 AM UTC-4, Robert Green wrote:

The other assumption here is that whatever the increase in cell phone usage has been, that it has to produce a huge, readily observable effect on the gross accident numbers. That is a false premise. There are about 11 mil auto accidents a year in the USA. Suppose the ones caused by cell phone usage over the past 25 years went from 500 to 50,000. That's certainly "skyrocketing". But you wouldn't even see it in the noise in the 11 mil a year number, which the census bureau says is estimated and should be used for year to year comparison with caution. That doesn't mean that the effect doesn't exist, that it's not a growing safety problem, that we can't prevent accidents and loss of life by doing something about it.
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• posted on August 20, 2015, 12:14 pm
<stuff snipped>

It's a time-honored statistical trick often used in the medical world to exaggerate the benefit of a new medicine. They can truthfully say that substance X cuts your risk of let's say dying from a brain eating amoeba by a factor of 8. But without knowing that death rate per thousand from that threat you can't really tell what a factor of 8 means in realistic terms. Yes, it may reduce the risk by a factor of 8 but if only 2 people in ten million die from brain eating amoebas, as you note, you're not really moving the needle very far.
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Bobby G.

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• posted on August 22, 2015, 11:45 am
Uncle Monster used his keyboard to write :

I was wondering if anyone would bring this up.
If the mobile phone technology related distraction accident statistics declined due to laws being passed which thwart law enforcement's ability to check to see if the device was in use just prior to the accdent, would the overall accident numbers necessarily have to decline in order to avoid another paradox?
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For long you live and high you fly
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• posted on August 23, 2015, 1:14 am
Per Robert Green:

From what I have heard so far from various pundits, Trump must have a good bit of leverage over the Republican Party by virtue of his having the means and possibly the will to run as a third-party candidate - thereby quite possibly costing them the election a-la' Ross Perot.
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Pete Cresswell

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• posted on August 23, 2015, 6:32 am

He's certainly perplexing them.
http://mobile.nytimes.com/2015/08/23/us/politics/why-donald-trump-wont-fold-polls-and-people-speak.html
<<Asked if Mr. Trump had crossed a line with his language, Carl Tomanelli, 68, a retired New York City police officer in Londonderry, N.H., seemed surprised by the question.
"People are starting to see, I believe, that all this political correctness is garbage," he said. "I think he's echoing what a lot of people feel and say."
Many say they support Mr. Trump because of his unusual statements, not in spite of them.
Lisa Carey, 51, of Greenfield, N.H., immediately cited Mr. Trump's outspokenness when asked why his support remains so high.
"As inappropriate as some of his comments are, I think it's stuff that a lot of people are thinking but afraid to say," she said. "And I'm a woman."
Asked if they think his brashness would make it more difficult for him to work effectively as president, many voters argue the opposite.
"I want people who are negotiating with him to believe my president when he says he's going to do something," said Lori Szostkiewicz, 54, an educator from Hampstead, N.H. "I want to negotiate from a position of strength, not weakness.">> What's really interesting is how he's trumping the competiton:
<<A New York Times review of nine nonpartisan national polls and more public surveys in the early nominating states shows that, thus far, Mr. Trump is outperforming his Republican rivals with constituencies they were widely expected to dominate.
For example, he leads Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, a hero to fiscal conservatives, among Tea Party supporters, 26 percent to 13 percent, according to averages of the last nine national polls. He leads former Gov. Mike Huckabee of Arkansas, a former preacher, among evangelicals, 21 percent to 12 percent. And he is ahead of Mr. Bush, the former Florida governor and a favorite of mainstream donors, among moderate Republicans, 22 percent to 16 percent.>>
For big-wigs in the Republican party, it's a pretty serious dilemma. How do you deal with a guy rich enough not to need your support and unpredictable enough to credibly threaten to run as a third-party candidate?
While I don't think it will ever happen, I agree with Trump's desire to repeal the automatic citizenship granted to any child born in the country. That was meant to protect newly freed slaves, not serve as a magnet for Mexican, Chinese and many other nationals to have their kids on US soil with all the rights that go with citizenship.
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Bobby G.

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• posted on August 23, 2015, 10:06 am
On 8/22/2015 11:32 PM, Robert Green wrote:

That's a tough one.
My grandparents were in this country legally. Yet, none of their kids were born *before* they got their citizenship papers. How would you handle my mom and her siblings? Tell them they have to apply for citizenship when they are in HIGH SCHOOL (or later)? What status do they have in the time between birth and their parents' citizenship? Between that time and the time *they* apply for citizenship? "Guest worker"? "Guest child"?
Or, is it automatically "OK" if you come from European stock? Only a hurdle if you cross the *southern* border?? :-/
One of the hospitals, here, complains about all the costs of care that they have to bear for "illegals" -- esp those brought to the hospital by Border Patrol (found in the desert, dehydrated; apprehended in a high speed car chase/crash; etc.).
[Border Patrol doesn't *arrest* them until after they have been "treated" so, technically, Uncle Sam isn't financially responsible for the cost of their care at that point!]
OTOH, the same hospital ADVERTISES to up-scale Mexicans (i.e., native Mexicans *in* Mexico) that they should come "visit", have their kid in this hospital (bestowing on it US citizenship) and then spend a couple of days *shopping* before heading back across the border. These are sold as "package deals"!
(WTF???)
A *practical* solution is to deport the parents of these kids and let them decide if they want to remain in this country without their families -- or, join their folks in Mexico, voluntarily (yet still being US citizens).
[How would it be any different for these kids to "harbor" their parents -- here illegally -- than it would be for someone to drive a *busload* of them into the country?]
At least the "where were you born" criteria makes it a simple test. No additional complications about whether or not your parents were entitled to be here at the time of your birth.
[Of course, Trump wouldn't believe any of *their* birth certificates, either! :> Always convenient when you can be selective about what you want to consider as FACT and what you DON'T!]
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• posted on August 23, 2015, 1:22 pm
Per Don Y:

Two things that jump out at me:
- Net migration to/from Mexico is way down, maybe even zero.
- Biometric identification and, hopefully, a decent national internet infrastructure (maybe comparable to Korea's) will effectively function as a universal ID card. i.e. any person anywhere can be looked up and identified based on (facial features? thumb print? retinal pattern?) by anybody connected to a central database.... so being here illegally will soon become impractical for all except those with the means to bribe their way into a bogus database file.
Assuming that those two assertions have merit, I would think that a lot of proposed immigration policy will become moot soon - especially the parts about building fences.
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Pete Cresswell

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• posted on August 23, 2015, 4:18 pm
On 8/23/2015 6:22 AM, (PeteCresswell) wrote:

There is no incentive for effective border enforcement. Neighbor is about as "anti-mexican" as you can be... yet I've never seen him hire a "white person" for any work around his house!
Note the same folks talking about "illegals" also want "guest workers". Arguing that we don't have enough people to "do the work required" (despite unemployment rates!).
In all things, they want The Market to solve the problem; EXCEPT if that means it will cost *them* more (paying market wages to GET the labor that refuses to work for the wages you'd pay "illegals")! In that case, we "need" to muck with The Market...

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• posted on August 24, 2015, 8:38 pm
Per Uncle Monster:

From what I have read, net immigration has dropped to zero.
If that is really true, it would seem that they are probably already doing that.
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Pete Cresswell

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• posted on August 24, 2015, 1:47 am
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Ah, the next step on the road to the police state.
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• posted on August 24, 2015, 1:20 pm
Per Ashton Crusher:

I would agree - and I think the ALCU would too.
But my take is it's coming, like it or not.
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Pete Cresswell

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• posted on August 24, 2015, 1:47 am
On Sun, 23 Aug 2015 03:06:28 -0700, Don Y

I think it's a waste of time to try and explore the "if when my parents had me that law had been such and such" hypothetical's. Your parents either did what they did because it was what they wanted or because of whatever the law was at the time they were trying to either take advantage of it or get around it. Just like the illegal's are doing now, i.e. some are on the up and up and some are scum bags dropping anchor babies. Regardless of what used to be and how it did or didn't affect your past we ought to get rid of Birthright Citizenship. It simply no longer makes sense and ENCOURGAGES aliens to come here illegally. Can you give a single reason why THIS country and/or YOU are better off because we allow Birthright citizenship?
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• posted on August 24, 2015, 2:04 am
On 8/23/2015 6:47 PM, Ashton Crusher wrote:

How, specifically, do you intend to implement your "system"? Require pregnant women to provide proof of citizenship before going into labor? After all, you want to know that the child is a citizen from the moment it takes its first breath of air -- as it's rights and privileges extend from that. Don't want to wait for the mother to show up with proof two weeks later as the child would be in legal limbo for that period!
And, if the mother died in childbirth, then what?
Maybe we should require folks to provide proof of citizenship before *conceiving*? Just in case.
[Hmmm... weren't you (elsewhere) lamenting the "police state"?]
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• posted on August 26, 2015, 2:09 am
On Sun, 23 Aug 2015 19:04:19 -0700, Don Y

What do you mean by "my system"? You mean cutting off birthright citizenship? All that needs to be done is pass a law. We already have a law that eliminates birthright citizenship for people from other countries who are HERE LEGALLY and work in consulates. A constitutional amendment is not necessary to make the required change. No other first world country allows birthright citizenship. Somehow they make do without it.
Now, Can you give a single reason why THIS country and/or YOU are better off because we allow Birthright citizenship?
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• posted on August 25, 2015, 4:11 pm
<stuff snipped>

Complications that grow easier to resolve each year with DNA and improved record keeping. I would rather some citizens with unusual situations have some red tape to unravel to assert their citizenship than have the current free-for-all.
I put a high enough value on being a US citizen that the idea of a very pregnant illegal immigrant racing to a US hospital is not enough to gain it. I feel that seriously diminishes the value of US citizenship to hand it out as a price for winning a race that's illegal to begin with.
The problem with making the rule so simple is that immigrants with less than a six grade education can understand how to play that game. And they do play it. I've read that over 4 MILLION anchor babies are here. It's other nationalities that are looking to make their kids Americans by birth, too, and are setting up pregnancy hotels for illegal immigrant women to wait in to give birth.
Why sustain a powerful magnet for illegals when the law has clearly served its intended purpose of insuring slaves were granted citizenship?

<g> Who would have thought a year ago that Trump would be dominating the Republican race? I've heard both sane conservatives AND liberals saying that out of all the people who've promised to shake things up (like Obama promised), Trump is the only person that's going to be able to do it.
People apparently feel that way because he's got his own money and so the believe he owes corporate backers nothing. I think it was perhaps by choice he got himself jettisoned from so many endorsement deals. Being fired makes a greated statement about political correctness running wild that volutarily resigning would not.
I could even bring myself to vote for Trump. He's light years smarter than Palin and has recovered from four bankruptcies so he's got some sort of financial talents. I also believe if he gets in, he'll actually govern far more sanely than his rhetoric would imply. Electing Trump, especially as an independent, would definitely send a message to both parties that the voters are tired of the same old "pay to play" politics.
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Bobby G.

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• posted on August 25, 2015, 4:34 pm
Per Robert Green:

I heard one of the stand-up comics riff on that possibility. Mainly he went back to the ludicrousness (at the time) of the idea of a movie actor becoming president.
But I think Trump has excess baggage compared to Reagan - or just about anybody else, for that matter.
In the Atlantic City area I think there are enough former small contractors who were ruined when they did jobs for Trump and then Trump simply told them flat-out "I'm not going to pay you, period...." that trotting them out on national TV would, IMHO, make whatever electablity he may have plummet.
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Pete Cresswell

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• posted on August 25, 2015, 6:44 pm
"(PeteCresswell)" wrote in message
Per Robert Green:

I heard one of the stand-up comics riff on that possibility. Mainly he went back to the ludicrousness (at the time) of the idea of a movie actor becoming president.
But I think Trump has excess baggage compared to Reagan - or just about anybody else, for that matter.
In the Atlantic City area I think there are enough former small contractors who were ruined when they did jobs for Trump and then Trump simply told them flat-out "I'm not going to pay you, period...." that trotting them out on national TV would, IMHO, make whatever electablity he may have plummet.
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Pete Cresswell

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• posted on August 25, 2015, 7:37 pm
On 8/25/2015 12:34 PM, (PeteCresswell) wrote:

But did he inhale? Many people know Trump has lots of baggage, but they seem to be willing to ignore it, at least so far. His loyalist won't care, they have to scare some of the other voters.
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