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View Poll Results: Helmet wearing habits?

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  • I've never worn a bike helmet

    164 10.38%
  • I used to wear a helmet, but have stopped

    88 5.57%
  • I've always worn a helmet

    613 38.80%
  • I didn't wear a helmet, but now do

    393 24.87%
  • I sometimes wear a helmet depending on the conditions

    322 20.38%
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  1. #6401
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post

    Just because one risk category is not address means we cannot address a different risk category?
    Have it your way.
    So how do we decide which risk categories? and who gets to decide?

    By any measure of societal impact bicycle head injuries is a small contributor, and includes a large percentage of helmet wearers anyway. So the societal benefit of a helmet mandate isn't that big.

    But there are areas with much higher societal cost, such as unsafe sex or diet/obesity/diabetes? Since we're talking about societal cost impact, wouldn't it make sense to start where the impact is greatest? And if we want to limit it to bicycle accident/injury rates, it might make sense (to some people) to tackle the issue head on by removing bicycles from roads altogether?

    There's more to life than worrying about who's costing you money somehow, and it doesn't take a rugged individualist to see that.
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  2. #6402
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    Sorry, no children.

    I'll wear a helmet when I want to, thank you very much.

    When you wear a helmet for EVERY automobile trip you take I'll consider donning one for every bicycle trip I take.
    Not asking you to. Just asking you to address the topic I raised instead of raising red herrings.

    If you wear a helmet only when you want, I simply want you to pledge that if you happen to hit your head while riding helmetless and require medical treatment for a head injury, you pay cash out of pocket instead of relying on insurance. If you never hit your head, as you claim; if cycling is really as safe as you claim, then it should mean nothing to you to make such a pledge. Also, it would make you a true individualist.
    Last edited by Brian Ratliff; 12-10-13 at 04:34 PM.
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  3. #6403
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    Have it your way.
    ...
    I wish no changes to current standards. I simply want you to square your individualist logic with the shared risk of insurance.
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  4. #6404
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    ...
    By any measure of societal impact bicycle head injuries is a small contributor...
    So you agree that it is a cost contributor to society?
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  5. #6405
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post

    If you wear a helmet only when you want, I simply want you to pledge .....
    After you take a pledge to limit the number of children, so we don't have to pay to educate them. If you drive, how about dropping your PIP and promising to pay for any injuries you suffer.

    Wake up, you absolutely would not ant to live in the kind of world you envision. Or maybe you would?
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  6. #6406
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    ...
    If you think bicycling helmets should be worn for all bicycle rides then surely there are MANY other activities that would warrant helmet use.
    ...
    I'm sure there are. But we are talking about cycling and helmets. Not other activities such as showering, skiing, racing, or driving.
    Cat 2 Track, Cat 3 Road.
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  7. #6407
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    After you take a pledge to limit the number of children, so we don't have to pay to educate them. If you drive, how about dropping your PIP and promising to pay for any injuries you suffer.
    ...
    I am not the one making the individualist's argument. I fully acknowledge that some of the costs of my personal life choices impact people other than myself. Others here, yourself included, are trying to argue that their personal choices only impact themselves and no others. I am simply picking at that little knot of logic.

    Why do you keep trying to change the subject? Does shared cost in the form of insurance mean individual behaviors impact a group? That is the question. I think the answer is yes.
    Last edited by Brian Ratliff; 12-10-13 at 04:48 PM.
    Cat 2 Track, Cat 3 Road.
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  8. #6408
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post
    So you agree that it is a cost contributor to society?
    Of course it is, along with all kinds of things. The difference between you and I (on this point) is you want to pick what costs you'll share, and which you won't.

    I don't complain about every little thing that people do that raises my costs, and ask that they return the favor.

    And as it stands right now, the medical insurance pool is up well over 200k (probably double that based on time/value) based on what I've paid in insurance premiums vs the near zero in lifetime medical services used. At almost 65, I'm still with zero prescription medication, never been hospitalized for any reason, and have lifetime accumulated less than $5,000 in total cost of medical treatments or diagnostics.

    However, I'm not going to complain about what you've probably cost me.
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  9. #6409
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    After you take a pledge to limit the number of children, so we don't have to pay to educate them.
    If we are going to get personal here...

    I have no children. If you do, then I've paid more than my fair share to you and yours. But I am not resentful; education is a wonderful thing and I am glad to subsidize another person's child.
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  10. #6410
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    Of course it is, along with all kinds of things.
    ...
    Good. We agree then. But all costs are shared, either implicitly or explicitly. I think what you mean to say is there are some lifestyles you are not allowed to discriminate against when setting up an explicit resource pool (insurance). As it should be.

    But do you see how all costs of living are shared as long as we live in a society? The Randian individualist doesn't actually exist in real life.
    Cat 2 Track, Cat 3 Road.
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  11. #6411
    Senior Member LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post
    Not asking you to. Just asking you to address the topic I raised instead of raising red herrings.

    If you wear a helmet only when you want, I simply want you to pledge that if you happen to hit your head while riding helmetless and require medical treatment for a head injury, you pay cash out of pocket instead of relying on insurance. If you never hit your head, as you claim; if cycling is really as safe as you claim, then it should mean nothing to you to make such a pledge. Also, it would make you a true individualist.
    I don't think risk of head injuries from most transportational cycling activities should be singled out on a waiver such as yours. There are plenty of other risky behaviours you should be asking people to sign waivers for.

    However, if I could get good, free, low-deductable, no co-pay insurance in exchange for signing such a waiver I'd GLADLY do so.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  12. #6412
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    I don't think risk of head injuries from most transportational cycling activities should be singled out on a waiver such as yours. There are plenty of other risky behaviours you should be asking people to sign waivers for.

    If I could get free insurance in exchange for signing such a waiver I'd GLADLY do so.
    Okay, so you'll take up this offer for a price (fully subsidized insurance). This price is, then, exactly the cost you believe you distribute to other people when you choose not to wear a helmet. This is just logic, and this is fine. Sensible even.

    Now then, the question is whether you'll now align your rhetoric on this subject to be in line with what you are willing to charge to stand up for your ideals. If the risk of crashing while cycling were really very near zero, then it would make no difference to you one way or another to take up this pledge. You were the one to put a price on it.
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  13. #6413
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post
    Good. We agree then. But all costs are shared, either implicitly or explicitly. I think what you mean to say is there are some lifestyles you are not allowed to discriminate against when setting up an explicit resource pool (insurance). As it should be.

    But do you see how all costs of living are shared as long as we live in a society? The Randian individualist doesn't actually exist in real life.
    I never said they weren't. EVERYTHING has external costs. From the day you were born, you were having a cost borne by society in general. But that doesn't justify micromanaging life selecting a single activity just because you have a smug, sanctimonious attitude about what's an appropriate level of risk involved.

    You have yet to justify mandating helmets, based in cost impact in the overall scheme of American life, an THAT is the point.

    You believe what you want to, I'm done wasting my time here.
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  14. #6414
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    I never said they weren't. EVERYTHING has external costs. From the day you were born, you were having a cost borne by society in general. But that doesn't justify micromanaging life selecting a single activity just because you have a smug, sanctimonious attitude about what's an appropriate level of risk involved.

    You have yet to justify mandating helmets, based in cost impact in the overall scheme of American life, an THAT is the point.

    You believe what you want to, I'm done wasting my time here.
    I am not justifying anything. I have not made a call for a helmet mandate. And nobody is forcing you to type on a computer to a cycling forum website.

    EDIT: I forgot my over-the-top invective. Er... let's see... And nobody is forcing you to smugly and sanctimoniously type on a computer to a cycling forum website. Er... yea.... It's weak but I am unpracticed with the $20 words.

    Anyway, I'm glad we've gotten around to agreeing. Yes, your choices do influence the people around you, including your choice to wear a helmet or not.
    Last edited by Brian Ratliff; 12-10-13 at 05:12 PM.
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  15. #6415
    Senior Member LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post
    Okay, so you'll take up this offer for a price (fully subsidized insurance). This price is, then, exactly the cost you believe you distribute to other people when you choose not to wear a helmet. This is just logic, and this is fine. Sensible even.

    Now then, the question is whether you'll now align your rhetoric on this subject to be in line with what you are willing to charge to stand up for your ideals. If the risk of crashing while cycling were really very near zero, then it would make no difference to you one way or another to take up this pledge. You were the one to put a price on it.
    I think asking people to forgo treatment for engaging in perfectly healthy activities is WRONG. I also think medical care pool cost savings due to health benefits realized from cycling with or without a helmet outweigh the pool's increased TBI costs due to a percentage of people not wearing helmets.

    Why do you propose people sign such waivers?
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  16. #6416
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    I think asking people to forgo treatment for engaging in perfectly healthy activities is WRONG. I also think medical care pool cost savings due to health benefits realized from cycling with or without a helmet outweigh the pool's increased TBI costs due to a percentage of people not wearing helmets.

    Why do you propose people sign such waivers?
    It's a rhetorical point, as most of this thread is. If you really do feel there is no cost to anyone but yourself when you make the decision to forgo a helmet for convenience, then that pledge should either mean nothing to you (you feel the risks are invisibly low) or you should be taking the offer on principle (to really stand up as a Randian individualist).

    It is probably true that in practice, more people in the pool on bikes the better because of the fitness aspect. But this is not the argument being examined here. The argument is whether the decision to wear a helmet or forgo it for convenience is affecting only the individual. It is assumed that the individual will be on a bike either way. I think we've actually settled on the solution. The decision to forgo a helmet does push costs onto society, you've put a price on it, and so either the risks are not invisibly low or nobody is really willing to live up to the Randian individualist rhetoric (and are subsequently okay with being a little bit of a free-loader).
    Last edited by Brian Ratliff; 12-10-13 at 05:14 PM.
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  17. #6417
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post
    .

    Anyway, I'm glad we've gotten around to agreeing. Yes, your choices do influence the people around you, including your choice to wear a helmet or not.
    We don't agree on anything at all. But I find it interesting that your system of logic allows you to seamlessly jump from a question about cost externalities to an assumption of influencing people by example.

    Here's something else we probably don't agree on. As far as I can figure, you're either an idiot or a troll. Of course I could be wrong, but it doesn't matter.
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  18. #6418
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    We don't agree on anything at all. ...
    Hey, he's back!
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  19. #6419
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    Any one person's choice to not wear a helmet for any given bike ride may or may not push some kind of cost onto society.

    I'm not sure why you feel this possible cost is great enough to require all cyclists to wear helmets. Just doesn't make any sense to me, especially when compared to other similar activities that don't have helmet laws in place.

    Why stop at regular old bike helmets? Why not full face helmets?
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  20. #6420
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    ... you're either an idiot or a troll. Of course I could be wrong, but it doesn't matter.
    Do I need to flag this post as abuse? I have thus far refrained from directly insulting people.
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  21. #6421
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    Any one person's choice to not wear a helmet for any given bike ride may or may not push some kind of cost onto society.
    ...
    Ah, we are getting somewhere. Forget politics for a minute and focus on the cost to society part. We are narrowing down to the true question: under what conditions does forgoing a helmet NOT push a cost onto society (assuming accidents are basically statistical and not deterministically under the rider's control)?
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  22. #6422
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post
    Ah, we are getting somewhere. Forget politics for a minute and focus on the cost to society part. We are narrowing down to the true question: under what conditions does forgoing a helmet NOT push a cost onto society (assuming accidents are basically statistical and not deterministically under the rider's control)?
    Well let's see. I've got approx 100000 lifetime miles. Appox. half with a helmet, half without. Zero brain injury medical bills.

    How many 100000+ mile riders does it take to start adding up the medical bills?
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  23. #6423
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post
    Do I need to flag this post as abuse? I have thus far refrained from directly insulting people.
    No insult was intended, just a statement of opinion.

    While some of us are actually interested in the issues involved, you seem to be more interested in a time wasting rhetorical exercise, after which you cop out saying you don't believe in the idea you were advocating for. That and the totally illogical leap from cost allocation to influencing opinion by example, seems to cover both the possibilities IMO, but as I said, I could be wrong. I simply can't figure it out.
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  24. #6424
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    Well let's see. I've got approx 100000 lifetime miles. Appox. half with a helmet, half without. Zero brain injury medical bills.

    How many 100000+ mile riders does it take to start adding up the medical bills?
    "How many 100000+ mile riders [like me] does it take to start adding up the medical bills?"

    This is your true question. If everyone had your cycling history, then the answer is probably that the costs of so small as to be insignificant. Now, is everyone like you? I know people with far fewer miles and several fairly serious crashes for whatever reason. There is a population distribution to this question, but most of the data is fairly obscured. Now, as cyclists, we prefer the uncertainties lead to policies skewing in our favor.

    But here's the thing. Injuries are tricky business when forming statistics. You might be fine for 100k miles and then incur a $100k medical bill to your insurance tomorrow. That $100k hospital bill might have been only $2k had you worn a helmet and mitigated the head trauma. The point I am making is that the decision to forgo a helmet does, averaged over a population, incur costs to society; that there are no Randian individuals; that the decision to wear a helmet or not is not, strictly speaking, a decision entirely devoid of social interest.
    Last edited by Brian Ratliff; 12-10-13 at 05:45 PM.
    Cat 2 Track, Cat 3 Road.
    "If you’re new enough [to racing] that you would ask such question, then i would hazard a guess that if you just made up a workout that sounded hard to do, and did it, you’d probably get faster." --the tiniest sprinter

  25. #6425
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
    No insult was intended, just a statement of opinion.

    ...
    Bulls**t.
    Cat 2 Track, Cat 3 Road.
    "If you’re new enough [to racing] that you would ask such question, then i would hazard a guess that if you just made up a workout that sounded hard to do, and did it, you’d probably get faster." --the tiniest sprinter

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