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[DRAFT] Levelled Accusations

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Candlewhisper Archive
Senior Issues Editor
 
Posts: 22369
Founded: Aug 28, 2015
Anarchy

[DRAFT] Levelled Accusations

Postby Candlewhisper Archive » Tue May 04, 2021 6:55 am

Reminded of this by the horrible news from Mexico today, that I was thinking of doing an issue about the train crash this year in Cairo. I think there's not many issues about the consequences of having an inefficient and/or corrupt government.

TITLE:
Levelled Accusations

VALIDITY:
Low or no public transport spending, low safety / low safety standards, cars not banned, low compliance with laws (i.e. high crime), some corruption

DESCRIPTION:
Tragically, a freight train collided with a minibus at a level crossing, resulting in 26 deaths and 28 injuries. It's been pointed out that sad though this is, it represents just the latest in a series of lethal accidents involving road and rail safety, with level crossings representing a point of especial danger.

OPTION 1
"Not my fault! The crossing was closed, there were warning lights," observes the head of the Railway Authority. "On my way into work todat I saw commuters ignoring the rules, jumping traffic lights, overtaking like maniacs. It was enough to make me and my chauffeur mess up the harmonies on our carpool karaoke session! This is a law enforcement problem, which could be fixed with stricter penalties for breaking the rules of the road, and more traffic cops. Lives are at stake, and it's your job to fix this!"

OUTCOME:
a special "Victim Blaming Unit" has been set up by the national police

OPTION 2
"Police are overstretched and underfunded as it is!" declares your Transport Police Chief, striding into the meeting after as a special constable opens the door for him, having left the official police limo outside. "Clearly what we need here is better infrastructure, with more rail bridges and tunnels, and automated solid barriers where a level crossing is unavoidable, plus infrared safety sensors, cameras, all those things! Investment! Economic regulations! This is not a police matter -- it's your job to fix this!"

OUTCOME:
in the @@DEMONYM@@ version of 'The Railway Children' the three little tykes never make it past the thirty-foot steel safety fences

OPTION 3
"Oh, there's plenty of funding for transport and police, but all that money is disappearing into the pockets of corrupt officials!" rages your part-time tea lady, whose sister has just dropped off to work. "You need to set up an anti-corruption watchdog that will clean house, and make departments properly accountable! Not an easy job, and one that will require balancing and juggling a lot of different factors with considerable skill. That's your job to fix! Yours! Though I'm sure if you think hard, you could think of a suitable candidate to run the task force." She balances a third loaded tea tray on her left shoulder, and gracefully walks out of the room.

OUTCOME:
anti-corruption legislation is served mid-morning with a biscuit on the side

OPTION 4
"Poor duckiboo," coos your massage therapist / driver, working the tension out of your shoulders. "All these nasty people shouting at you, and not doing their jobs properly. Nobody wants to be hearing about depressing things like this before they've had their morning tea, do they? Do you want me to make the noisy people go away? We can just stop the trains and block the roads for a bit, to give you a bit of breathing space. No trains and no traffic means no collisions. Why not have a nap before lunch? Go on, you know you deserve it."

OUTCOME:
the economy isn't in recession: it's just having a little rest from growing
editors like linguistic ambiguity more than most people

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Trotterdam
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Posts: 9231
Founded: Jan 12, 2012
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Trotterdam » Tue May 04, 2021 7:31 am

Candlewhisper Archive wrote:Low or no public transport spending
If a nation has no public transport spending, then it either has no trains or those trains are run by private companies (in which case safety would also be their responsibility, in theory).

Candlewhisper Archive wrote:low safety / low safety standards, cars not banned, low compliance with laws (i.e. high crime), some corruption
Your validities are assuming a whole lot of things wrong with the nation. I guess that's kind of the point (there are multiple problems, which do we prioritize solving?), but it also results in a lack of focus (you said the main inspiration for the issue was addressing the consequences of corrupt governments, but corruption isn't even brought up until the third option).

There are some interesting points here besides just corruption, such as how some countries are definitely recognized as having much more reckless drivers (on average) than others. Though I also wonder: it's unlikely for such a crossing to not at least have a boom barrier (...so that's what they're called) protecting it. Boom barriers aren't particularly difficult to break through if you try, but it still requires pretty deliberately circumventing (and probably vandalizing) a device that is clearly there for your safety, so are we supposed to assume that someone actually did that? Or was the crossing really protected with nothing more than warning lights (in which case the language "the crossing was closed" in the first option is a bit misleading)?

Candlewhisper Archive wrote:todat
Oh, hmm, spotted a typo.

Candlewhisper Archive wrote:OUTCOME:
the economy isn't in recession: it's just having a little rest from growing
Is this your attempt at circumventing the inability to use commas in effect lines? I think it'll still read pretty awkward.


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