Is a black box in cars too much?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by tshrimp, Oct 28, 2013.

  1. tshrimp macrumors 6502

    tshrimp

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    #1
  2. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

    ucfgrad93

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    #2
    Yes, it is going to far. I have no problem with taxing cars based on miles driven. However, it shouldn't be tracked by a black box. Instead, the odometer reading should be verified by an actual person when you renew your plates/tags.
     
  3. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    Based on the revelations of widespread NSA surveillance, it definitely strikes me as a dreadful idea to permit the Government to order the installation of tracking devices in personal automobiles.

    There are, however, a couple of optimistic ways at looking at this issue. The first of which is the fact that we live in a representative Democracy. And we need to make it very clear to our elected Representatives and Senators that we - the People - do not want the Government installing tracking devices in our cars. That there are other, far less intrusive, ways for state and federal governments to raise the tax revenue needed to maintain our highways. And that, with the best will in the world, the Government's claims of respecting the privacy of individual drivers just don't ring true. No matter how sincere the protestations may be now, it will simply be way too easy for some bureaucrat or analyst in the future to go snooping through the records of where John Doe drove his car on date XYZ.

    The second reason to be optimistic is this: My car doesn't have a tracking device on it now. The car I buy next year won't have one either. And either of those vehicles will reasonably be drivable for many, many years to come. Meaning that should a future Congress, against our better judgement, enact such a foolish and intrusive law - we all will have at our disposal the means to escape its observation.
     
  4. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #4
    Thanks for the link, I was wondering what today's Infowars Conspiracy Theory Du Jour was today.
     
  5. tshrimp thread starter macrumors 6502

    tshrimp

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    No problem. Page looked questionable, but many of these things come from at least some nugget of truth. Maybe this is just bogus stuff, but was concerning if true at all.
     
  6. Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

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    If there is no way to know the veracity of a statement, then how should one evaluate whether one should be concerned.

    And what is a "nugget of truth"?
     
  7. Mousse macrumors 68000

    Mousse

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    I'm assuming these "black boxes" will be powered by the car battery? I'm gonna assume it's gonna be protected by a fuse of some sort. Well hail. Looks like my car is gonna have blown out fuse to the black box a few miles after I drive it off the dealer's lot.;) This infringes upon my 9th amendment right. Why does no one care about the 9th amendment?

    Black boxes in cars is unconstitutional. So sayeth the 9th.:cool:
     
  8. filmbuff macrumors 6502a

    filmbuff

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    This idea has been tossed around for years. If you follow car sites you know it has been proposed several times, especially since electric cars make gas taxes seem unfair. I don't think it will ever happen, it would just be politically impossible. I know my car will never have one installed.

    But I'm worried that instead of the government forcing this on everyone it will slowly find its way into peoples' lives through insurance companies. Progressive's "Snapshot Discount" ads show that they already want to do it, and I'm afraid that enough people will be baited into it with promises of discounts that it will eventually become a regular part of life, and once people are used to it it will be easier to make it mandatory.
     
  9. tshrimp thread starter macrumors 6502

    tshrimp

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    See post #8 as he gives an example.
    If you are not interested in the topic and think it is not valid for discussion then that is fine. It was interesting to me, but I guess not to you. To each his own.
     
  10. lostngone macrumors demi-god

    lostngone

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    These "Black Boxes" are 100% legal.

    How things are going to start is they will be optional to use. Then Federal law will require all new vechiles sold have them. Then without a working box your insurance rates will go up. Then over time it will become mandatory. Just like seat-belts and emission control.
     
  11. bradl macrumors 68040

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    I would say, in some cases, this would violate the 4th, 9th, and 10th amendments.

    9th, as you already mention.

    4th, though a far stretch, because this box could be used against a person in a criminal proceeding; if so, data would already have been recorded without any warrant to instigate such a seizure.

    10th, because not all roads are funded by the federal government. US Highways/Interstate highways, yes, but county roads or state highways? Possibly a different story there.

    I think a bigger question that should be asked, is what would the taxes be used for? Infrastructure? If so, that was what the 2008/2009 stimulus was supposed to be for; did parts of that get blocked (been a while, I can't remember)? My point is that these funds have to be going to somewhere, and we would at the very least have a right for checks and balances; We would have the right to know what these funds are going for, and why.

    Other than that, yes, it is going too far, based on potential violations of 3 amendments.

    BL.
     
  12. chown33 macrumors 604

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    One of the expressed fears seems, well, misinformed:
    Now, the government wants to add real-time tracking of your vehicle location to that long list of surveillance targets. This would of course allow the government to:
    • Track and map all your driving trips.
    • Know when you are home or away from home.
    Know where you work.
    ...​
    Does he really think the government doesn't already know where you work?
    Has he never heard of W-2 forms filed by your employer?


    There are even services one can buy now from private companies that offer remote engine-kill, remote location tracking, etc. OnStar is one. LoJack is another. Some cars are manufactured with the OnStar components pre-installed, so this dystopian "future of cars" has actually been in place for several years:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OnStar
    Starting in the 2009 model year, General Motors began equipping some new vehicles with Stolen Vehicle Slowdown. This feature allows OnStar to remotely slow down the stolen vehicle. ...
    Also in 2009, General Motors began equipping some new vehicles with Remote Ignition Block, allowing OnStar to remotely deactivate the ignition so when the stolen vehicle is shut off, it cannot be restarted.[5]
     
  13. Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

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    #13
    I didn't say it wasn't interesting to me...in fact I would be very unhappy being forced to have any kind of "black box" in my car.

    What I did ask was given the sketchy quality of the source...how can one evaluate the necessity of current concern.
     
  14. tshrimp thread starter macrumors 6502

    tshrimp

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    Here you go. Maybe you will like this link better.

    http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-roads-black-boxes-20131027,0,6090226.story#axzz2j2t7eRap

    So now is it based on at least a nugget of truth?
     
  15. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    In order for that to happen Congress would have to pass legislation mandating the boxes become standard equipment in all new cars. (What would happen with existing cars is up for further debate.)

    And you know, I just can't see that happening any time soon. I think the American people, both liberal and conservative, have had just about a bellyful of Government spying on them.

    Yeah. We held our noses and looked the other way when they passed the USA PATRIOT Act. Just like we held our noses and looked the other way while we were told about the WMD in Iraq...

    And are we any safer? Maybe. But at a cost that most of us just don't think has been worth it. I, for one, certainly haven't been overly impressed with the wisdom of the NSA's domestic surveillance programs. So thank Edward Snowden - foolish, potential traitor, and confirmed leaker - for that.

    Because if any Congressman is idiot enough (or bribed by Insurance company lobbying money) to bring legislation to the floor mandating these things: And he's going to bring down a hell storm of protest from both the ACLU and the Tea Party.

    Bad policies make strange bedfellows indeed.
     
  16. lostngone macrumors demi-god

    lostngone

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    I didn't know that some new tires have RFid chips in them!
    So if your car has tire pressure sensors. With a simple reader in or next to the road someone can not only tell who you are and when you drove past they will know that that your front left tire is low on air.
     
  17. Shrink macrumors G3

    Shrink

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    Thanks for the link...interesting and disturbing article.

    The quote below (from the article link that you provided) certainly expresses my concerns well...

     
  18. roadbloc macrumors G3

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    #18
    For me, yes. I'd never take insurance that requires a black box to be in my car.
     
  19. lostngone macrumors demi-god

    lostngone

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    It wouldn't be required(well at first).

    The question is how much more are you willing to pay them NOT to have it.

    90 a month with the box but 250 without the box.

    I know insurance companies are already experimenting with monitoring/tracking devices.
     
  20. bradl macrumors 68040

    bradl

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    Not that I doubt you, but I wonder which companies are doing this.. are they just local to you, or are they nationwide companies?

    BL.
     
  21. lostngone macrumors demi-god

    lostngone

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    I know companies like Telogis make fleet tracking hardware and software.

    As far as actual insurance companies I know progressive is allowing people to plug in hardware to their cars OBD plug and they offer some type of discount. They really don't tell you what they record but they say it doesn't have a GPS in it but it wouldn't need one if in can read the output of the newer Onstar systems.
     
  22. VulchR macrumors 68020

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    I am pretty sure in some countries where insurance fraud is common not only are black boxes required to get insurance, but the boxes areequipped with a video camera to record any events prior to a crash. To my mind the issue is not the government but the insurance companies. In any case, people should start agitating against any hint of this kind of nonsense, because so far it seems that governments have an insatiable appetite for violating privacy. [imagines thread 5 years from now when the discussion is about black boxes in shoes and a proposed federal sidewalk tax....]
     
  23. Mousse macrumors 68000

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    Once the Gub'ment makes them a requirement, they will infringe upon the 9th. If they're optional, then they're legal. GM can track where you are, kill the engine, start the engine, unlock your doors remotely with their OnStar system. Sounds suspiciously like the 'black box' system the Gub'ment wants. It's optional, so it's legal.

    The 9th states that any 'right' the Government isn't explicitly given in the Constitution belongs to the People. If someone want to give up your right to privacy for the convenience of OnStar, it's his choice. I ain't giving up my 9th. I've given up on buying any GM vehicle because of OnStar.
     
  24. VulchR macrumors 68020

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    #24
    I believe the argument will be that you have the option of buying a car or not, therefore having these black boxes would be optional. In any case I think the black boxes is an awful idea - better to raise taxes on the rich than to charge everybody the same rate per mile.
     
  25. anonymouslurker macrumors regular

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    The dongles from Progressive mainly record acceleration, and they use that as a metric of how "safe" a driver you are. How often do you brake hard enough to go over a certain threshold? How often do you floor it from a stop light? Deriving speed from acceleration to see how often you're going over 65mph, etc.

    Still a lot that can be extrapolated from just an accelerometer.
     

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