Lower the BAC level for DWI to .05%?

posted at 9:41 am on August 23, 2013 by Jazz Shaw

Last May, the NTSB put out a recommendation that the legal blood alcohol content (BAC) level for drivers should be lowered from the current level of .08% to .05%. If you happen to be one of the people who finds this a peachy idea, you may have a while to wait.

Don’t look for DOT to lead the charge in embracing an NTSB recommendation to lower the blood-alcohol limit for drunken driving.

Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said Thursday that if anyone’s going to take the lead on lowering the limit to 0.05 percent, it should be the states.

“To the extent that states adopt measures to lower the limit, that would give us the basis to study the data and to understand the impacts nationwide,” Foxx said at an event announcing the Transportation Department’s annual Labor Day crackdown on drunken drivers.

I’ll get around to praising the DOT for doing nothing in a moment, (which seems to be the best role for government these days anyway) but to give a hint as to how popular this move is, look no further than Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

Even Mothers Against Drunk Driving was lukewarm on the issue.

“MADD is laser-beam focused on what will save the most lives,” the group’s national president, Jan Withers, told POLITICO after the event. For Withers, that includes installing interlock devices in cars to prevent convicted drunken drivers from getting behind the wheel while intoxicated a second time, and vigorously enforcing current laws — not necessarily embarking on another legislative crusade.

“It took us 20 years to get down to 0.08,” said Withers, whose 15-year-old daughter was killed by a drunken driver in 1992. “It will take us another 20 years to get down to 0.05.”

Moving the limit from .08 to .05 essentially means that we’d be changing the law so that instead of being arrested for sniffing a beer as you head for the car, you’ll be heading to jail if you look at a beer. These arbitrary laws have been problematic since the beginning, not because we shouldn’t stop people from driving when they are impaired beyond the ability to safely operate a vehicle, but because they are implemented so flatly. Different people respond in different ways to the chemical stimulous of alcohol. Since body weight has such a huge influence on how much of a dose you can handle – in terms of a raw count of number of ounces – the idea of a percentage of blood content was supposed to address that. And it does, to some extent. But when you approach the “gray line” of the limit, some people are going to already be impaired while others may be just fine.

Lowering the limit even further will simply catch up more people who might have complete control of themselves under a law intended to catch the truly irresponsible and dangerous. This is in addition to the effect this trend has already had on the food, beverage, bar and restaurant industry. The road to hell is paved with good intentions, and while the intention of these laws is to save people’s lives, the implementation can and does cause problems.


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How about getting rid of the draconian laws all together and stop putting police check points every where. The goal of government is not to arrest everyone. Throw the book at people who drive drunk and actually hit someone, not someone who “might” hit someone.

Flange on August 23, 2013 at 9:44 AM

This has been the tactic of MADD and other organizations for many years. Drop the limit down from .15 to .10 and all of a sudden, you have an INCREASED rate of drunk driving. You then use those stats as justification to lower it even more to .08, which results in an INCREASE of drunk driving. Apply, rinse, repeat.

mouell on August 23, 2013 at 9:47 AM

Let’s just get rid of driving all together. My mouthwash will get me a 0.05%. The key is impaired driving…if that means 0.15% then so be it.

trs on August 23, 2013 at 9:47 AM

The road to hell should be paved with the fools who come up with this shiite.

MADD is as hyper as the Brady Campaign, they’ve taken personal tragedy in their own lives and created a charade that must feed regularly or it will die.

Bishop on August 23, 2013 at 9:47 AM

I still remember how the career of a Sailor who worked with me was ruined. He had ONE beer at a superbowl party … and was stopped by a cop when he was getting GAS.

Of course – he “blew” well below the legal limit – only trace amounts of alcohol in his blood. But, because he was only 20 years and 364 days old – ANY alcohol was a crime.

Yes that’s right – cop busted him with a legal level of alcohol in his blood on the day before his 21st birthday.

HondaV65 on August 23, 2013 at 9:49 AM

Throw the book at people who drive drunk and actually hit someone, not someone who “might” hit someone.

Flange on August 23, 2013 at 9:44 AM

I like the one strike you’re out rule. If you get caught driving under the influence your license is suspended forever. NO my wife she, my job it no arbitrary sentencing by some judge or anything else. You DUI you lose the privilege of driving.

Oldnuke on August 23, 2013 at 9:49 AM

This is a huge mistake. The BAC of 0.08 is acceptable. Most drunk driving accidents are caused by people whose BAC is substantially higher than 0.08. (When you hear of drunk driving crashes on the news, they always report the BAC, and it’s usually like “twice the legal limit” or something to that effect).

Lowering the limit to 0.05 will just enable police to harass anyone leaving an establishment that sells alcohol, and will label a lot of people as “drunk drivers” who in no way were.

Outlander on August 23, 2013 at 9:50 AM

It should be glaringly obvious to everyone by now that these kinds of laws are NOT about public safety. They are about raising revenues for local governments.

UltimateBob on August 23, 2013 at 9:51 AM

I still remember how the career of a Sailor who worked with me was ruined.

HondaV65 on August 23, 2013 at 9:49 AM

How did that ruin his career. When I was in most commands would have shrugged it off. Maybe a restriction some extra duty but that’s about it.

Oldnuke on August 23, 2013 at 9:53 AM

What the article doesn’t say is that this woman’s child was killed by an underage drinker. It’s just like the anti-gun crap. A person engaged in criminal activity kills somebody so all people must be oppressed.

Dr. Frank Enstine on August 23, 2013 at 9:58 AM

Yes, but if you’re an illegal immigrant, you can be found guilty of as many as three DUIs and Marco Rubio wants you as his neighbor with citizenship, right?

BuckeyeSam on August 23, 2013 at 9:58 AM

My job required mandatory random drug and alcohol testing. The limit was minimum detectability of the machine. I think that was .04 BAC. If you blew that or greater immediate suspension. There was a federal requirement that we could not drink any alcohol within 8 hours of reporting to work and of course illegal drugs were verboten. There were even special requirements for prescription medications. We didn’t have much of a problem with drugs or alcohol. There were a few but they were rare and quickly resolved.

Oldnuke on August 23, 2013 at 10:03 AM

Cripes, I blow a .05 if I open a can of beer that sprays me a little.

JetBoy on August 23, 2013 at 10:04 AM

Just a brief word about MADD and similar advocacy groups.

Once they reach their goal, they don’t declare victory and go home. They keep pushing for more.

flipflop on August 23, 2013 at 10:05 AM

I still remember how the career of a Sailor who worked with me was ruined.

HondaV65 on August 23, 2013 at 9:49 AM

How did that ruin his career. When I was in most commands would have shrugged it off. Maybe a restriction some extra duty but that’s about it.

Oldnuke on August 23, 2013 at 9:53 AM

Oldnuke,

Not any more. Any infraction like this will get you at least an Article 15 which is enough to effectively block any shot at promotion to NCO ranks. It will stay on your record and prevent you from making it above E-6. As for an officer, forget it. Any DUI will stop you from getting promoted.
When I first came in the the mid 80′s and listened to the stories from the O-5′s and O-6′s it was not a big deal. But pressure from groups like MADD has changed the culture. Hell, fighter’s pilots used to say “no smoking 12 hours before the flight, no drinking within 50 feet of the plane.” Those days are long gone.

AOTC

Agent of the Cross on August 23, 2013 at 10:05 AM

You DUI you lose the privilege of driving.

Oldnuke on August 23, 2013 at 9:49 AM

That doesn’t work now, repeat offenders just get back behind the wheel; it’s the sentencing and punishment which needs revisiting.

Pull a Heinlein: Take offenders to the public square and whip them soundly then remind them that the next time they’re caught DUI they get double the strokes, then quadruple, and so on.

Maybe not whipping per se, but the punishment needs to be more than saying “Hey, you can’t drive now and if you get caught doing it again we will issue another order that you still can’t drive”.

Bishop on August 23, 2013 at 10:06 AM

The road to hell is paved with good intentions, and while the intention of these laws is to save people’s lives, the implementation can and does cause problems.

To my mind this isn’t about good inentions. This is a solution looking for a problem.

There is zero quantifiable proof that lowering the BAC would “save lives.” And why .05? Why not just enact prohibition again if this is about saving lives?

Happy Nomad on August 23, 2013 at 10:07 AM

MADD is as hyper as the Brady Campaign, they’ve taken personal tragedy in their own lives and created a charade that must feed regularly or it will die.

Bishop on August 23, 2013 at 9:47 AM

^^this^^

UltimateBob on August 23, 2013 at 9:51 AM

No, they’re about assuaging the pain of the loss that certain people have endured. And, that’s never a good basis for making law.

I want it raised back up to at least 0.1. Anything lower is absolutely ridiculous.

GWB on August 23, 2013 at 10:07 AM

Until they’re prepared to eliminate absolutely every other thing that might negatively impact one’s driving this is stupid. No kids in the car, no radio to listen to, no passengers to distract you, no cell phones, no GPS, blah, blah, blah.

katiejane on August 23, 2013 at 10:09 AM

When I first came in the the mid 80′s and listened to the stories from the O-5′s and O-6′s it was not a big deal. But pressure from groups like MADD has changed the culture. Hell, fighter’s pilots used to say “no smoking 12 hours before the flight, no drinking within 50 feet of the plane.” Those days are long gone.

Agent of the Cross on August 23, 2013 at 10:05 AM

Good times. I remember in the mid-80s the Navy enacted a policy where any officer who got caught DUI had automatic flag mast. So some guy is standing in front of an Admiral along with his CO and his CO’s boss.

And at the same time the Officer’s Club was complaining that revenue from their Happy Hour promotions was dismal due to lack of customers. I don’t think they ever figured out the connection.

Happy Nomad on August 23, 2013 at 10:11 AM

OK Hot Air enough with your f***ing boring threads…

Where are the threads about black thugs murdering whites including most recently two black thugs in Washington murdering an 88 year old WW II vet…

mnjg on August 23, 2013 at 10:14 AM

That doesn’t work now, repeat offenders just get back behind the wheel; it’s the sentencing and punishment which needs revisiting.

Pull a Heinlein: Take offenders to the public square and whip them soundly then remind them that the next time they’re caught DUI they get double the strokes, then quadruple, and so on.

Maybe not whipping per se, but the punishment needs to be more than saying “Hey, you can’t drive now and if you get caught doing it again we will issue another order that you still can’t drive”.

Bishop on August 23, 2013 at 10:06 AM

Yeah I know. I just get pissedoff about stupid laws. Especially ones enacted just to increase revenue. Fewer laws and punishment that fits the crime not somebody’s idea of “Compassionate justice”. I kind of like your idea too. Beat the crap out of them and also if they’re repeat offenders take the car they’re driving and set it on fire at the side of the road unless it’s stolen. Then beat the crap out of them and chain them up in the town square and let them survive on what compassionate onlookers want to give them.

Oldnuke on August 23, 2013 at 10:14 AM

This has been the tactic of MADD and other organizations for many years. Drop the limit down from .15 to .10 and all of a sudden, you have an INCREASED rate of drunk driving. You then use those stats as justification to lower it even more to .08, which results in an INCREASE of drunk driving. Apply, rinse, repeat.

mouell on August 23, 2013 at 9:47 AM

Exactly correct. This is about raising local revenue and increased business for lawyers and kickbacks to MADD and their “programs”.

rhombus on August 23, 2013 at 10:15 AM

Can I have a glass of wine with dinner at a restaurant and still drive home? Yes, but it would likely go over the .05 limit. Doesn’t mean you’re drunk, it’s just on your breath. When you eat food your pyloric sphincter closes(seperates the stomach from the small intestine). Since 80% of alcohol is absorbed in the small intestine, the bulk of the alcohol enters your blood stream several hours later. Not in your blood stream = not in your brain = not impaired. But it’s still on your breath, you’ll still blow a higher amount.

One glass of wine with dinner, is that asking too much?

Meric1837 on August 23, 2013 at 10:15 AM

mnjg on August 23, 2013 at 10:14 AM

Look up in the headlines. The CNN thread with “Cops don’t have a motive”.

Oldnuke on August 23, 2013 at 10:16 AM

Its a business. In Colorado you can expect no less that a $10,000 cost associated with a DWI.

Just like month end quotas on ticketing drivers at months end, it’s all just a money grab.

patman77 on August 23, 2013 at 10:17 AM

In the age of lifelong punishment for any minor indiscretion by commoners (but presidents can snort coke) I’m dead set against this.

I’d rather take my chances with some slightly tipsy drivers than have thousands of people’s lifelong prospects suppressed by some trivial conviction.

forest on August 23, 2013 at 10:17 AM

Until they’re prepared to eliminate absolutely every other thing that might negatively impact one’s driving this is stupid. No kids in the car, no radio to listen to, no passengers to distract you, no cell phones, no GPS, blah, blah, blah.

katiejane on August 23, 2013 at 10:09 AM

What about transfats and large sugary drinks? :0

Seriously, this ultimately comes down to personal accountability and responsibilty for safe driving. Not stupid draconian laws.

Happy Nomad on August 23, 2013 at 10:17 AM

And at the same time the Officer’s Club was complaining that revenue from their Happy Hour promotions was dismal due to lack of customers. I don’t think they ever figured out the connection.

Happy Nomad on August 23, 2013 at 10:11 AM

Oh,yes! Col Grumpy:”You need to support the O Club or they will close it down”.
Lt. Skippy: “Sir, If the MPs pull me over after one beer, my career is over.”
Col Grumpy: “Yea..well..you still need to support the O Club!”

The only clubs that managed to make money were the clubs overseas that could have slot machines. Ramstein NCO Club made so much money it was insane.

AOTC

Agent of the Cross on August 23, 2013 at 10:17 AM

0.05 definitely seems draconian.

In my area, everytime you hear of an accident due to DUI the person drunk driving (whom is never injured from some reason) usually is blowing a 2.0 or more.

brtex on August 23, 2013 at 10:18 AM

No, they’re about assuaging the pain of the loss that certain people have endured. And, that’s never a good basis for making law.

I want it raised back up to at least 0.1. Anything lower is absolutely ridiculous.

GWB on August 23, 2013 at 10:07 AM

I thought we had this discussion here not long ago (or maybe I was discussing it with someone on facebook).

Someone was saying that they watched a bar patron, who was clearly intoxicated, leave the bar stumble to their car to drive home. There was a cop nearby watching the whole thing too. The cop waited for the person to drive away, and then pulled them over and busted them.

That had to be a very costly experience for the “offender”. If public safety was really the objective, the cop could have intervened before the person drove away, maybe given them a breathalyzer test and, if they were really drunk, a ride home (or helped them call a cab).

I see what you’re saying, but the collection of revenue for local municipalities is a huge incentive for law enforcement.

UltimateBob on August 23, 2013 at 10:18 AM

OK Hot Air enough with your f***ing boring threads…

Where are the threads about black thugs murdering whites including most recently two black thugs in Washington murdering an 88 year old WW II vet…

mnjg on August 23, 2013 at 10:14 AM

Go troll somewhere else, jackass.

UltimateBob on August 23, 2013 at 10:20 AM

Look up in the headlines. The CNN thread with “Cops don’t have a motive”.

Oldnuke on August 23, 2013 at 10:16 AM

They need to make this more prominent by having it is the main body threads… They are too cowardly… Their cowardice have been exposed this week by not talking about the murders of whites by blacks both in Oklahoma and Washington…

mnjg on August 23, 2013 at 10:21 AM

If it’s about a driver’s ability to competently operate a motor vehicle, why doesn’t the NTSB push for mandatory road tests for everyone over 55 years of age? I think there are many people over 55 who are as, or even more, dangerous on the road than someone who’s had two beers.

Also, operating cell phones while driving is probably an even bigger and growing issue. Why isn’t there a nation-wide push to ban cell phone use while driving?

And let us not forget about the proliferation of medical marijuana legalization. What is the NTSB’s position on this and what are they doing to address driving while “medicated”?

suburbanite on August 23, 2013 at 10:21 AM

What about transfats and large sugary drinks? :0


Happy Nomad on August 23, 2013 at 10:17 AM

Sugary drinks as well as ice cream cones would be covered under blah, blah, blah.

katiejane on August 23, 2013 at 10:21 AM

Its a business. In Colorado you can expect no less that a $10,000 cost associated with a DWI.

Just like month end quotas on ticketing drivers at months end, it’s all just a money grab.

patman77 on August 23, 2013 at 10:17 AM

That’s exactly what I am saying.

UltimateBob on August 23, 2013 at 10:21 AM

Go troll somewhere else, jackass.

UltimateBob on August 23, 2013 at 10:20 AM

Go f*** yourself… Do you get a star by defending the cowardice of the site writers?

mnjg on August 23, 2013 at 10:23 AM

Not any more. Any infraction like this will get you at least an Article 15 which is enough to effectively block any shot at promotion to NCO ranks. It will stay on your record and prevent you from making it above E-6. As for an officer, forget it. Any DUI will stop you from getting promoted.

AOTC

Agent of the Cross on August 23, 2013 at 10:05 AM

Jeebus! Things have really changed then. I can remember double timing it over to the EM club for lunch and chugging down a few brews and scarfing a hot dog. Then back to the engine room for the rest of the shift. We called it the Coors for lunch bunch. I can remember tossing a couple out the door for my division officer because it was too far to the O club and he wasn’t supposed to go into the EM club.

Oldnuke on August 23, 2013 at 10:23 AM

The guy who buys ammo for DHS can run a race war website, but if you got busted for a .08 DWI 12 years ago, hundreds of companies won’t hire you.

forest on August 23, 2013 at 10:23 AM

0.05 is just a bare buzz. You can’t convince me that someone is more of a thread because of a light buzz, than they are with a cell phone, or especially texting.

MNHawk on August 23, 2013 at 10:23 AM

Let’s just get rid of driving all together. My mouthwash will get me a 0.05%. The key is impaired driving…if that means 0.15% then so be it.

trs on August 23, 2013 at 9:47 AM

Which will go first, driving or drinking?

My money’s on a package deal.

Steve Eggleston on August 23, 2013 at 10:24 AM

In Larimer County, Colorado, I know people who have been arrested for a roadside BAC of .0 on suspicion of DUI. Once they are at police station, they request a blood test, if refused, they are booked. The roadside test is not admissible in court, although without any evidence, most cases are dropped. However, you have to post bail, your car is impounded and if you have any previous offenses, you better lawyer up.

lea on August 23, 2013 at 10:25 AM

Go f*** yourself… Do you get a star by defending the cowardice of the site writers?

mnjg on August 23, 2013 at 10:23 AM

Cowardice? If you want to read nothing but race baiting, go to Sharpton’s or Jesse Jackson’s websites.

Here, we aren’t obsessed with race. We talk about a variety of subjects.

If you don’t like it, just leave, dickhead.

UltimateBob on August 23, 2013 at 10:26 AM

In my area, everytime you hear of an accident due to DUI the person drunk driving (whom is never injured from some reason) usually is blowing a 2.0 or more.

brtex on August 23, 2013 at 10:18 AM

And it is always around the time that bars close, like 2am. I’m surprised that some bright spark at the NTSB hasn’t made a suggestion that BAC be tied to the time of day/night.

Happy Nomad on August 23, 2013 at 10:26 AM

Ramstein NCO Club made so much money it was insane.

AOTC

Agent of the Cross on August 23, 2013 at 10:17 AM

You ever make it to the Air Force NCO club in Athens? Holy cow! What a place. Palatial doesn’t even begin to describe it. Of course I’m talking about the 60s here. No idea what it’s like these days or even if it exists.

Oldnuke on August 23, 2013 at 10:26 AM

Go f*** yourself… Do you get a star by defending the cowardice of the site writers?

mnjg on August 23, 2013 at 10:23 AM

Cowardice? If you want to read nothing but race baiting, go to Sharpton’s or Jesse Jackson’s websites.

Here, we aren’t obsessed with race. We talk about a variety of subjects.

If you don’t like it, just leave, d!ck head.

UltimateBob on August 23, 2013 at 10:27 AM

Moving the limit from .08 to .05 essentially means that we’d be changing the law so that instead of being arrested for sniffing a beer as you head for the car, you’ll be heading to jail if you look at a beer.

Nope. .08 is four beers in a hour. Way to be informative on an important issue.

BTW, I’m opposed to the rise.

Mr. Arkadin on August 23, 2013 at 10:29 AM

The money made from the DUI laws when I lived in Connecticut were actually factored into some local Towns annual budget process. They counted on that money to make ends meet. CT will most likely be one of the first states to implement this. After all it will bring in more revenue. Gotta keep the money flowing in, and DUI’s are easy peasy for the cops. Stop enough guys for crossing the double yellow line and you’re going to hit pay dirt soon.

The typical final cost to a first time DUI offender in CT was at least $,2500 when everything settles out from the fine, paying for the mandatory school and getting a lawyer. It’s a big business there.

Johnnyreb on August 23, 2013 at 10:30 AM

Cowardice? If you want to read nothing but race baiting, go to Sharpton’s or Jesse Jackson’s websites.

Here, we aren’t obsessed with race. We talk about a variety of subjects.

If you don’t like it, just leave, d!ck head.

UltimateBob on August 23, 2013 at 10:27 AM

And we had dozens of threads about Trayvon Martin… Just admit it, you and the writers of this site are afraid of being called a racist for speaking the truth about the utterly destroyed black society caused by themselves and white liberals…

mnjg on August 23, 2013 at 10:33 AM

Its a business. In Colorado you can expect no less that a $10,000 cost associated with a DWI.

Just like month end quotas on ticketing drivers at months end, it’s all just a money grab.

patman77 on August 23, 2013 at 10:17 AM

So, true. Daily UAs & BACs, alcohol classes, court costs, probation, suspended license, renewal fees of license, interlocken fees, lawyer retainers, high risk insurance, community service. All those people in Colorado riding bicycles are not doing so because they care about the environment or their health, they are forced to.

lea on August 23, 2013 at 10:35 AM

The Abolitionists NEVER give up, they just change their clothes.

clippermiami on August 23, 2013 at 10:35 AM

Road Related-

Local talk radio is covering if people would leave a note if they hit a car in the parking lot. One contributor talked about the note he leaves…..

Hi Friend,

I just wanted to leave you a note that somebody has vandalized your car by slapping an Obama bumper sticker on it. I wouldn’t want you driving all day looking like an idiot.

A Good Samaritan

Happy Nomad on August 23, 2013 at 10:37 AM

What’s so hard about driving a vehicle without alcohol in your blood? I do it all the time….it’s easy…try it sometime.

repvoter on August 23, 2013 at 10:43 AM

When I was in Traffic School for rolling a stop sign (taking the class means no points) I learned that you can get a DUI if you blow a 0.00. If the cop looks at you and thinks you haven’t had enough sleep (for instance), bam! DUI. It’s their discretion, and you have to fight the legal fight to clear yourself. Just an FYI….

joejm65 on August 23, 2013 at 10:50 AM

KNow what the #1 revenue generator for lawyers are in this country???

Yup – DUI’s.

Lawyer’s do not want harsh penalties – they want a revolving door of 3/5/10 times DUI offenders who keep getting bombed – keep getting caught – and keep charging lawyer fees. It’s appalling to hear and read “John Doe killed a mother and her 2 kids this morning, with a BAC of .28%. It was his 5th offense for DUI – and is on a suspended, temporary license” – which is a joke to think a chronic drunk will only drive “per the rules”

In Europe and elsewhere – there are normally lower age limits to drink – but much higher penalties, including first offender jail time. Ireland – 10 year loss of license and a $10k fine.

I applaud MADD for their efforts – everyone knows someone killed or injured in a DUI – and they seem to understand how the system works, while not “jumping on board” as a knee jerk reaction.

This isn’t just about cops/local/state jurisdictions getting revenue – it’s the lawyer lobbies.

Odie1941 on August 23, 2013 at 10:51 AM

And we had dozens of threads about Trayvon Martin… Just admit it, you and the writers of this site are afraid of being called a racist for speaking the truth about the utterly destroyed black society caused by themselves and white liberals…

mnjg on August 23, 2013 at 10:33 AM

Since you have zero input over the content on this site, perhaps you should start your own blog. Problem solved.

joejm65 on August 23, 2013 at 10:52 AM

This is like trying to eliminate pedophilia by raising the age of consent to 25.

Pythagoras on August 23, 2013 at 10:52 AM

Nope. .08 is four beers in a hour. Way to be informative on an important issue.

BTW, I’m opposed to the rise.

Mr. Arkadin on August 23, 2013 at 10:29 AM

Every human is one sex and exactly the same mass in your universe?

Murphy9 on August 23, 2013 at 10:52 AM

NEXT-let’s ban cussin’.

Little Boomer on August 23, 2013 at 10:55 AM

And yet the same faciasts who are pushing this crap are A-OK with giving amnesty to illegals with two previous DUI convictions.

BuzzCrutcher on August 23, 2013 at 10:58 AM

Since you have zero input over the content on this site, perhaps you should start your own blog. Problem solved.

joejm65 on August 23, 2013 at 10:52 AM

And you get three brownie points for defending the site… Now class a big applaud to little joejm65…

mnjg on August 23, 2013 at 11:00 AM

Nope. .08 is four beers in a hour. Way to be informative on an important issue.

BTW, I’m opposed to the rise.

Mr. Arkadin on August 23, 2013 at 10:29 AM

Or 2 high gravity beers…

Odie1941 on August 23, 2013 at 11:04 AM

KNow what the #1 revenue generator for lawyers are in this country???

Yup – DUI’s.

Odie1941 on August 23, 2013 at 10:51 AM

Got any stats to back that up???? I’d be shocked if DUIs are in the top five. There are lots of them, but the fees are fairly low.

BuzzCrutcher on August 23, 2013 at 11:04 AM

If we can save just one life…….

Viator on August 23, 2013 at 11:05 AM

I see what you’re saying, but the collection of revenue for local municipalities is a huge incentive for law enforcement.

UltimateBob on August 23, 2013 at 10:18 AM

True. The laws aren’t usually made because of revenue, but they often seem to be enforced for that purpose. Which seems more like twice the problem than either by itself.

Seems to me like mnjg fits the definition of a troll to a “T”.

GWB on August 23, 2013 at 11:12 AM

This is about revenue.

rdbrewer on August 23, 2013 at 11:14 AM

It should be glaringly obvious to everyone by now that these kinds of laws are NOT about public safety. They are about raising revenues for local governments.

UltimateBob on August 23, 2013 at 9:51 AM

And about politicians pandering to the neo-Prohibitionists and neo-Puritans.

And about politicians worried they will be smeared as “soft on drunk driving”.

farsighted on August 23, 2013 at 11:16 AM

I was always a designated driver when I was in the Marines. Not once did I drink anything but soft drinks.

Nine out of ten times I was pulled over within three minutes of leaving a bar as the DD. The first thing out of the overly aggressive a-hole’s officer’s mouth was,”Have you been drinking?”

The first thing I said every time was,”Why did you pull me over?”

Every officer gave me the same reply: “You swerved over the line.”

Location: within ten miles of Camp Lejeune, NC.

VibrioCocci on August 23, 2013 at 11:17 AM

MADD, the Brady gang and other neo-prohibitionists are the little fascists that chip away at our personal freedoms, all in the name of their own albeit tragic but isolated losses. They think they are doing good, but all they do is funnel their grief in the worst possible manner, by making everyone else pay for it. People affected by tragedy are the last who should be making laws – and dropping a DUI threshold to .05, about a beer and a half in one hour for an average-sized adult, is beyond absurd.

Enjoy the decline!

King B on August 23, 2013 at 11:17 AM

I like the one strike you’re out rule. If you get caught driving under the influence your license is suspended forever. NO my wife she, my job it no arbitrary sentencing by some judge or anything else. You DUI you lose the privilege of driving.
Oldnuke on August 23, 2013 at 9:49 AM

You have got to be kidding me.

No way anyone is going to obey that. People would continue to drive, and I would support their being able to do so! How about getting to work? It is far too easy for someone to get a DUI when they really weren’t that impaired.

Yes, it’s a serious crime, but there are different degrees of seriousness among DUI offenses. To give them all the same extreme punishment would fail to recognize the differences and would never be obeyed.

bluegill on August 23, 2013 at 11:18 AM

Even the founder of MADD said she did not intend for the BA level to be so low: it’s really prohibition.

Still, convicted drunk drivers, really bad ones, continue to drive illegally and kill people.

And the CHP told us at traffic school that they know that 90% of the people on the freeway on Friday night are legally impaired. They just pick one and stop him.

I know 2 people who had two drinks each and were stopped and convicted. It’s mandatory. Thousands of dollars in fees and attorney fees (the law would not allow one to be without an attorney) and no driving for a year even to work, and prison time if you violate that. Is it right to criminalize these people?

PattyJ on August 23, 2013 at 11:20 AM

Got any stats to back that up???? I’d be shocked if DUIs are in the top five. There are lots of them, but the fees are fairly low.

BuzzCrutcher on August 23, 2013 at 11:04 AM

I omitted tort/contract, my bad…

You are right – lawyers make a few bucks on DUI’s, not a big money maker and there isn’t a revolving door of clients per the laws. They can barely afford a cup of coffee each day, poor souls…

Odie1941 on August 23, 2013 at 11:20 AM

Forgot my point because I was so MADD: lower BAC rules = more harassment (obviously).

VibrioCocci on August 23, 2013 at 11:20 AM

We need to enforce the penalties. With the TV being flooded with ads from lawyers who will get you off or the charges reduced, it makes the whole idea of consequences a joke. First time, license revoked for life and huge fine. Any injuries, property damage, or deaths should be serious felony on top of the DUI charges. Any subsequent offenses should be jail time and a huge fine.

DAT60A3 on August 23, 2013 at 11:32 AM

This should make for an interesting discussion on ‘The Five” tonight. I personally support Dana And Greg being able to have a drink or two with dinner.

Another point of interest is what effect this would have on Public Intoxication arrests for non drivers or others who called a cab or took the bus or even walked home.

meci on August 23, 2013 at 11:32 AM

Pull a Heinlein: Take offenders to the public square and whip them soundly then remind them that the next time they’re caught DUI they get double the strokes, then quadruple, and so on.

Imagine the mushroom cloud that would arise the first time anybody arrested a black driver and tried to apply a rule like that. Then we’d have to sit through 100 remakes of Mandingo and Django unchained. No, please, I beg you, it’s not worth it!

but this proposed change is like cutting the Yellow Light duration down to 1 second so you can “prove” that red-light running is increasing. Hey, hasn’t New Jersey been doing exactly that? Making a lot of money off the practice too, I heard.

Tom Servo on August 23, 2013 at 11:37 AM

I like the one strike you’re out rule. If you get caught driving under the influence your license is suspended forever. NO my wife she, my job it no arbitrary sentencing by some judge or anything else. You DUI you lose the privilege of driving.
Oldnuke on August 23, 2013 at 9:49 AM

You have got to be kidding me.

No way anyone is going to obey that. People would continue to drive, and I would support their being able to do so! How about getting to work? It is far too easy for someone to get a DUI when they really weren’t that impaired.

Yes, it’s a serious crime, but there are different degrees of seriousness among DUI offenses. To give them all the same extreme punishment would fail to recognize the differences and would never be obeyed.

bluegill on August 23, 2013 at 11:18 AM

I agree with Oldnuke.
I will go one further, the police should have absolutely NO ability to use judgement on whether to write a ticket. If they pull someone over, then they MUST write a ticket, and for exactly the reason they pulled the person over for.
I got stuck taking a ride home from a party one time with a drunk chick who was cruising at a nice clip of over 90mph. She got pulled over and got a warning. A WARNING! Why? because she was a flirtatious slut is why.
At one of my jobs my boss was a narcoleptic that fell asleep at the the drop of a dime. I was forced to ride along with him frequently, and he was one of the most dangerous drivers on the road. The police pulled him over, and yet again, because he was an old guy, they just gave him a warning.
I already commented on this page about the guy who rear ended me and ran, when the cops came, they refused to charge him with anything and threatened me with some sort of stalking charges for following him.
Only when everyone is held to the exact same standards will these laws have a chance at ever being repealed.

astonerii on August 23, 2013 at 11:48 AM

It’s really about bringing in more revenue through fines.

sadatoni on August 23, 2013 at 12:00 PM

If the gun control idiots could simply be pointed at the example of the drunk driving laws, they would be schooled about how stricter and stricter regulations do NOTHING to stop people doing something illegal.

They keep lowering limits and raising penalties, but statistics show the instances simply keep rising.

Sound familiar?

PJ Emeritus on August 23, 2013 at 12:36 PM

This is making me glad I quit drinking. I’ve always been careful about drinking and driving, but 0.05 is too low even to to be careful about.

Farmer_Joe on August 23, 2013 at 12:40 PM

And the old saw about the “privilege” of driving agains rears its ugly head.

Here’s a clue – driving was something people in the private sector started doing with the advent of the automobile and government saw the chance to make money off it.

Again – sound familiar?

PJ Emeritus on August 23, 2013 at 12:41 PM

Happy Nomad on August 23, 2013 at 10:11 AM

Well, they are the Navy, after all.

PJ Emeritus on August 23, 2013 at 12:47 PM

Every human is one sex and exactly the same mass in your universe?

Murphy9 on August 23, 2013 at 10:52 AM

Is everybody magic in yours? Name me one person in your universe who can get to .08 by “sniffing” a beer, as Jazz states.

BTW, body weight affects your degree of “impairment” for a given dose of alcohol, not BAC. Mass and sex have a very limited effect. That’s the whole point of BAC, as Jazz does correctly point out.

Or 2 high gravity beers…

Odie1941 on August 23, 2013 at 11:04 AM

So by that logic, I should be able to to drink a fifth of vodka in an hour and drive. After all, it is only one.

Oh, and I’m opposed to lowering the limit.

Mr. Arkadin on August 23, 2013 at 12:54 PM

Moving the limit from .08 to .05 essentially means that we’d be changing the law so that instead of being arrested for sniffing a beer as you head for the car, you’ll be heading to jail if you look at a beer.

How about some facts you irresponsible twit? Drunk-driving is a serious issue and readers deserve better.

Capitalist Hog on August 23, 2013 at 1:03 PM

Hey, why 0.05? Why not 0.00?

If reducing the limit from 0.08 to 0.05 will save lots of lives, imagine what reducing it to 0.00 would do.

Of course, the evidence that reducing it from 0.1 to 0.08 “saved lives” is pretty flimsy. Basically non-existent.

They even lie about the stats used to promote and justify these reductions in the limit. An accident is considered “alcohol related” if any driver has any alcohol in their system, no matter who is at fault or what the level is.

An accident where one driver is at .02 (essentially a barely measurable trace amount) and the other 0.0, and where the 0.0 driver is at fault, is tabulated as “alcohol related”.

In the vast majority of accidents where an alcohol impaired driver is at fault and someone is hurt or killed two things are usually true.

1. The alcohol impaired driver is well over 0.08 BAC.
2. The alcohol impaired driver has several previous DUI convictions.

Further, proponents who claim the draconian DUI laws have reduced “alcohol related” fatalities ignore other mitigating factors. Such as that automobiles have become much, much safer over the past few decades and almost everyone wears safety belts now.

The hard core drinkers who ignore the laws need to be taken off the road, but persecuting and prosecuting the many citizens who sometimes drive at BACs between 0.05 and 0.08 and treating them like criminals will not do a thing to help.

If these people were really concerned about public saftey they would advocate cracking down on other traffic related offenses as much as they do DUI. Things such as speeding, tailgating, reckless driving, etc. If the penalties for these were as draconian as they are for first time DUI offenders, imagine the lives that could be save. Right?

And if we really want to save lives — because “if only one life is saved it is worth it”, blah,blah, blah — why not drop the speed limit to 30 mph everywhere and strictly enforce it. That would save thousands of lives, wouldn’t it?

Which all goes to show these reductions in the BAC limit are not really about public safety.

farsighted on August 23, 2013 at 1:04 PM

Capitalist Hog on August 23, 2013 at 1:03 PM

As sarcastically as you post most of the time, Communist Porky, you don’t recognize it when you see it?

Pull your panties out of a wad.

PJ Emeritus on August 23, 2013 at 1:15 PM

I applaud MADD for their efforts – everyone knows someone killed or injured in a DUI – and they seem to understand how the system works, while not “jumping on board” as a knee jerk reaction.

This isn’t just about cops/local/state jurisdictions getting revenue – it’s the lawyer lobbies.

Odie1941 on August 23, 2013 at 10:51 AM

Bah, MADD are what I like to call “emotional terrorists”. They lost loved ones and are reacting on emotion not logic. The DUI laws are money makers for governments and the lawyer class.

Comparing alcohol laws to gun laws is a good idea.

oryguncon on August 23, 2013 at 1:19 PM

How about this?

If you drink and drive you are breaking the law. BAC 0. Everything else is BS. If you’re a lush or a “social” lush get an effing cab. You don’t have a right to drive. Get it?

Driving is a privilege. Druggies, drunks, etc sap off of society as much corporate raiders and welfare cheats. Yet because we all have them in our families some of us seem incapable of damning them to their own demise.

Do drugs, go for it. Enjoy yourself. Just don’t harm or threaten others. Drunk driving often harms and threatens others more than the driver.

Public drug use is drug abuse. If you’re wasted in public you’re an addict.

Capitalist Hog on August 23, 2013 at 1:36 PM

Moving the limit from .08 to .05 essentially means that we’d be changing the law so that instead of being arrested for sniffing a beer as you head for the car, you’ll be heading to jail if you look at a beer.

I haven’t seen anything in this article which would make me understand why a move to .05BAC is bad.

I don’t think looking at a beer raises your BAC to .05 — I think drinking it does.

Now, what is the science? When does impairment begin to occur? If the science says .08BAC is where impairment begins to occur, I’d say that .04BAC is where the line should start. But that’s because I’m an engineer and know that long before effects become measurable in a test, they are there. When I build things for use in hostile environments, the rule of thumb is to make the thing a binary order of magnitude more resiliant than tests show it needs to be. That’s called “over-engineering” but it saves lives.

So, if the 0.08 number is already over-engineered, then there’s no reason to go to 0.05. But if it is under-enginnered, then there’s every reason to do so.

From this chart, it appears that the 0.08 level is vastly under-engineered:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blood_alcohol_content

unclesmrgol on August 23, 2013 at 2:10 PM

Name me one person in your universe who can get to .08 by “sniffing” a beer, as Jazz states.

Mr. Arkadin

Name us one other moron in your universe of crazy(other than you and retard hog) who believes Jazz literally meant you could get to .08 by sniffing a beer?

xblade on August 23, 2013 at 2:12 PM

BAC 0. Everything else is BS.

Capitalist Hog on August 23, 2013 at 1:36 PM

Everybody has a BAC greater than zero — because of our metabolism.

People heavily infected with candida (a type of yeast [fungus]) can get drunk, or have elevated BAC, just by eating sugar.

The rules should reflect science measuring when impairment occurs to the point where reflexes and decision making are adversely affected.

unclesmrgol on August 23, 2013 at 2:23 PM

Most of those posting here have no idea what they are talking about.

I was a Police Officer for 34 years in Nassau County NY, I was in the DWI testing for my last 15 years, I tested over 10,000 subjects who had been arrested for DWI, and operating while impaired by drugs.

A subject is stopped because of how they are operating their vehicle, then put thru a battery of Standardized tests to gauge impairment before being arrested and brought in for testing. They person must show impairment.

I was certified on the breathalyzer and Intoxilyzer 5000 and the [EN]

The post about infected with candida and elevated BAC by eating sugar is just downright wrong, sounds like something a defense attorney would think up.

jevica on August 23, 2013 at 4:02 PM

This proves that the BAC level is just an arbitrary number.

southsideironworks on August 23, 2013 at 4:12 PM

This is making me glad I quit drinking. I’ve always been careful about drinking and driving, but 0.05 is too low even to to be careful about.

Farmer_Joe on August 23, 2013 at 12:40 PM

Which is really the point of the neo-prohibitionists.

GWB on August 23, 2013 at 4:28 PM

Hey, why 0.05? Why not 0.00?

If reducing the limit from 0.08 to 0.05 will save lots of lives, imagine what reducing it to 0.00 would do.

Of course, the evidence that reducing it from 0.1 to 0.08 “saved lives” is pretty flimsy. Basically non-existent.

They even lie about the stats used to promote and justify these reductions in the limit. An accident is considered “alcohol related” if any driver has any alcohol in their system, no matter who is at fault or what the level is.

An accident where one driver is at .02 (essentially a barely measurable trace amount) and the other 0.0, and where the 0.0 driver is at fault, is tabulated as “alcohol related”.

In the vast majority of accidents where an alcohol impaired driver is at fault and someone is hurt or killed two things are usually true.

1. The alcohol impaired driver is well over 0.08 BAC.
2. The alcohol impaired driver has several previous DUI convictions.

Further, proponents who claim the draconian DUI laws have reduced “alcohol related” fatalities ignore other mitigating factors. Such as that automobiles have become much, much safer over the past few decades and almost everyone wears safety belts now.

The hard core drinkers who ignore the laws need to be taken off the road, but persecuting and prosecuting the many citizens who sometimes drive at BACs between 0.05 and 0.08 and treating them like criminals will not do a thing to help.

If these people were really concerned about public saftey they would advocate cracking down on other traffic related offenses as much as they do DUI. Things such as speeding, tailgating, reckless driving, etc. If the penalties for these were as draconian as they are for first time DUI offenders, imagine the lives that could be save. Right?

And if we really want to save lives — because “if only one life is saved it is worth it”, blah,blah, blah — why not drop the speed limit to 30 mph everywhere and strictly enforce it. That would save thousands of lives, wouldn’t it?

Which all goes to show these reductions in the BAC limit are not really about public safety.

farsighted on August 23, 2013 at 1:04 PM

You may use the ‘if it saves the life of one child’ argument to support lowering the BAC level, or to take away the 2nd Amendment, but don’t you dare use it to suggest limiting the ‘right’ to kill 3,288 babies a day for the sake of convenience.

slickwillie2001 on August 23, 2013 at 4:33 PM

Driving is a privilege.

Capitalist Hog on August 23, 2013 at 1:36 PM

No, it’s a right. The government can’t arbitrarily decide that you may or may not use facilities and thoroughfares paid for through public funds.

Now, you can lose that right if you abuse it.

My solution is to take away your license after the second offense and restrict you to motorcycles or scooters if you want a motorized vehicle. Don’t think you’d be anywhere near as big a danger as in a car or truck.

Be that as it may, I was wondering when they’d crank up the “war on alcohol”. Lefties don’t think the Proles should drink because we’re children who can’t be trusted with such things, and there are certainly those on the Christian Right who would also support de facto alcohol prohibition.

Dr. ZhivBlago on August 23, 2013 at 4:41 PM

You both wrong and right.

It’s BOTH a right and a privilege. Your license is the privilege, but you have a RIGHT to drive by default. Just like a C.H.L. You have the RIGHT to carry, and it SHALL be issued, but the state can take it away if you break the rules.

Driving is a privilege.

Capitalist Hog on August 23, 2013 at 1:36 PM

No, it’s a right. The government can’t arbitrarily decide that you de facto alcohol prohibition.

Dr. ZhivBlago on August 23, 2013 at 4:41 PM

TX-96 on August 23, 2013 at 5:31 PM

Gosh, wish I had been able to lead the perfect existence that a few folks on this thread seem to portray. Must be lonely up on your pedestals.

gator70 on August 23, 2013 at 5:53 PM

Or 2 high gravity beers…

Odie1941 on August 23, 2013 at 11:04 AM

So by that logic, I should be able to to drink a fifth of vodka in an hour and drive. After all, it is only one.

Oh, and I’m opposed to lowering the limit.

Mr. Arkadin on August 23, 2013 at 12:54 PM

What’s confusing you exactly?

“4 beers” is based on an average beer size – 11.5 ounces to 12 ounces, at 3.5%-4.5% ABV.

A high gravity beer is at least double the alcohol – 8.5% ABV – 12%+.. for the same beer size – 11.5-12 ounces, there half the amount of beer can be consumed to equate the .08%

A 1/5th of vodka at 25-40% ABV isn’t even close to a comparison… being its just “1″

Odie1941 on August 23, 2013 at 7:27 PM