Archive for September 24th, 2006

Through a Glass Darkly

Sunday, September 24th, 2006

A look into the (near) future of Big Mother's "War on Drunk Driving":


The Yomiuri Shimbun
(Japan), Sept. 22. The Construction and Transport Ministry has started discussions with automobile manufacturers on ways to promote the use of anti-drunken driving devices in vehicles…

Anti-drunken driving devices called alcohol ignition interlocks prevent cars from starting if alcohol is detected. The ministry will encourage automakers to install such devices in their products and has plans to establish the criteria for this equipment. Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Japan, a civil organization has been collecting signatures to make it mandatory for chronic drinkers to install the equipment in their cars….

Major automobile manufacturers, including Toyota Motor Corp. and Nissan Motor Co., have launched projects to develop vehicles that have the equipment installed. According to the ministry, there are various ways to determine a driver's intoxication level.

In Sweden, a trial car has been released that detects the alcohol level when a driver breathes on the ignition or the seat-belt buckle. There also has been research done on equipment that can detect alcohol levels from a driver's skin when he or she touches the steering wheel. However, who will pay the cost of the equipment is yet to be decided.

There also remains a problem on how to cover loopholes–for example, how to prevent people who are not driving from breathing into the equipment on behalf of drivers. According to sources, equipment that confirms the identity of the driver through a preregistered voice pattern has been developed abroad.


Remember when you could just stick a key in the ignition? Or when there were no roadblocks? When guilt or innocence was not decided by a machine? When there was a Constitutional right to jury trial in DUI cases? When you were legally presumed innocent? When….

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