ATGATT - BMW Luxury Touring Community
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post #1 of 39 Old Jan 17th, 2016, 9:28 am Thread Starter
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ATGATT

Just came across this article from Michigan concerning motorcycle fatalities after the legislature repealed the mandatory helmet law in 2012. Injuries soar after Michigan stops requiring motorcycle helmets | Reuters
Fatalities soared between 2012 and 2013, but dropped significantly in 2014 for unknown reasons. As expected, most of the fatalities were alcohol related.


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post #2 of 39 Old Jan 18th, 2016, 6:01 pm
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Re: ATGATT

I have always worn a full-face helmet, even before they passed a helmet law here in California. A few years ago, my helmet saved my life in the only motorcycle collision I ever had, after 30+ years of collision-free riding. My other safety gear (motorcycle jacket, pants, boots, and gloves) saved me from a lot of pain.

I have wanted to join the American Motorcycle Association for over 35 years, but never did. I do not want to contribute to an organization that actively fights helmet laws. I would join if they simply took a neutral position.
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post #3 of 39 Old Jan 18th, 2016, 6:49 pm
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Legal or not, I always wear gear. The funny thing is that the only guys who have ever questioned me never ride further than the bar around the corner and have totaled more bikes than I've owned. Personally, I see it as Darwin's laws of natural selection at work.
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post #4 of 39 Old Jan 18th, 2016, 8:11 pm
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Re: ATGATT

My girlfriend rides and came from a Harley background. First day we were going out to ride on my LT, she showed up with shorts, T-shirt and a half shell. That ride was postponed and we went to the local gear store and got appropriate gear top to bottom for her. She is now an ATGATT convert and we both now wouldn't have it any other way. After I showed her some pictures of what can happen with no protection even in the smallest of crashes, there was absolutely no argument.

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post #5 of 39 Old Jan 18th, 2016, 8:52 pm
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Re: ATGATT

And in California where there are helmet laws, there's the idiots who ride up in a helmet, t-shirt, shorts, and flip flops....
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post #6 of 39 Old Jan 18th, 2016, 9:10 pm
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Re: ATGATT

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Originally Posted by JNW003 View Post
And in California where there are helmet laws, there's the idiots who ride up in a helmet, t-shirt, shorts, and flip flops....
We can only hope they don't find the road in contact with their unprotected body parts. Even with gear, there is no guarantee. Without it ??????? The road wins every time.
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post #7 of 39 Old Jan 18th, 2016, 9:45 pm
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Re: ATGATT

The drop in accidents is interesting...I was wondering if we would make it to February before one of these wintertime helmet threads.

Get the right gear and you can keep cooler in the summer heat and of course warm in the winter chill. The gear has saved me from some serious injuries.
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post #8 of 39 Old Jan 18th, 2016, 11:20 pm
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Re: ATGATT

Whenever I start to even think about riding without ATGATT I always think of this young lady.
Rock The Gear

I was going to leave for work and wasn't going to bother with my leather jeans and thought "my work jacket will do". It was hot for once. As I stepped out of the front door I remembered her article and an accident I'd had myself some years earlier when I had just put my gear back on in time for an accident.
I went back inside and put the right kit on and set of for work. On the way a motorist cut across in front of me totalling the bike and leaving me with a broken collarbone and a lot of bruising. Without my riding kit it woulld've been a lot worse.
Thanks again Brittany
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post #9 of 39 Old Jan 19th, 2016, 3:42 am
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Re: ATGATT

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And in California where there are helmet laws, there's the idiots who ride up in a helmet, t-shirt, shorts, and flip flops....
At least in California, you have the weather for it. Even in summer, Belgium isn't what I would call t-shirt weather. However I frequently see riders wearing Helmet, t-shirt or vest, shorts and trainers. These riders are also usually on a racer bike.

This is of course interesting, as the law in Belgium means you should wear protective gear. Close inspection of the law you realize as long as you are wearing something that covers the ankles, trousers to the shin, and long sleeved shirt, with a glove you are legal.

However I ride with full protective gear, even when the temperature does get warm. Safer that way, do not want to have a Darwinian event!

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post #10 of 39 Old Jan 19th, 2016, 5:17 am Thread Starter
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Re: ATGATT

I recently came back from the Florida Keys. Florida has no helmet laws, but the majority of motorcyclists i saw were wearing full helmets and are riding touring bikes. Maybe they were from out of state and were coming from helmet states, but it was good to see. Maybe Darwinian selection has already taken place.


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post #11 of 39 Old Jan 20th, 2016, 3:33 pm
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Re: ATGATT

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Originally Posted by axamax View Post
Whenever I start to even think about riding without ATGATT I always think of this young lady.
Rock The Gear
.
I went back inside and put the right kit on and set of for work. On the way a motorist cut across in front of me totalling the bike and leaving me with a broken collarbone and a lot of bruising. Without my riding kit it woulld've been a lot worse.
Thanks again Brittany
Or the two minutes spent putting on the gear allowed the stars to align and cause your accident

Seriously I am in the all the gear most of the time camp, intellectually I know that an accident is as likely to occur on a 5 block ride as on a 500 km one but I still will jump on the bike with just the helmet and jeans.

Gerhard


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post #12 of 39 Old Jan 20th, 2016, 4:32 pm
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Re: ATGATT

We all decide what level of risk we are willing to accept. We all weigh the trade-offs of doing what we should do versus what we want to do.

I'm sure there is an example of someone who has ridden a poorly maintained motorcycle, without proper gear, frequently inebriated, and breaking traffic laws that has survived for years that way.
I'm sure there is also an example of a conscientious rider that kept their bike impeccably maintained, wore ATGATT, and always obeyed the traffic laws, and somehow ended up dead.

Life is funny that way, and it's not always fair. Personally, I find keeping my bike in top condition, not pushing the limit with regards to speed, leaving plenty of stopping distance between me and the vehicle in front of me, and riding defensively with full awareness of what's going on around me, to be far more important than wearing ATG. Actually riding on a hot day with ATG can be uncomfortable to the point of distraction.

I have four complete riding suits and helmet combinations. My favorite is an Aerostitch Transit jacket and pants, Vega boots, a Schuberth C3 helmet, and a pair of Harley Davidson gloves. It's comfortable from 40 to 80 degrees F. For riding days colder than 40 degrees F, I swap out the Aerostitch and the gloves for a set of heated Gerbings. I still struggle to find a riding outfit that provide good protection and is still cool enough to ride on 80+ degree days in traffic.

On those really hot days I frequently find myself with less than ATG. Is it less safe? Maybe. But I believe it's more important to be comfortable and undistracted. And I'll accept that risk.

YMMV.
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post #13 of 39 Old Jan 20th, 2016, 4:43 pm
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Re: ATGATT

I usually wear most of the gear most of the time, all of the gear some of the time, but when the weather gets too hot I take the car and use the AC.
Of course when you are on a long trip the options are more limited, and my wife and I got caught in the AZ desert at 117F with very slow traffic crossing the CA border.
Better to sweat than bleed!
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post #14 of 39 Old Jan 20th, 2016, 5:32 pm
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Re: ATGATT

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Or the two minutes spent putting on the gear allowed the stars to align and cause your accident

Seriously I am in the all the gear most of the time camp, intellectually I know that an accident is as likely to occur on a 5 block ride as on a 500 km one but I still will jump on the bike with just the helmet and jeans.

Gerhard
Well aren't you a glass half empty kind of guy.

Seriously though, I wear as much gear as I can comfortably stand. The cooler it is the safer I'm dressed, but my minimum is Iron Worker jeans, mesh jacket, boots, gloves and my modular helmet. On really hot days the helmet tends to have the chin up which isn't the safest, but better than nothing. We're all big boys and girls and can make our own assessment of the dangers and acceptance of the risks.

As to riding safe and maintaining the bike well being more important than gear, I couldn't disagree more. If safe riding was all that was needed to keep me out of accidents I wouldn't wear anything as I trust myself. What I don't trust are the teenagers with cell phones who run red lights and stop signs.

Just last week I was stopped at a light when the a**munch in front of me suddenly threw his van in reverse and backed into me. Luckily I was in the cage and no real damage was done, but that could have been a different story if I had been on the bike. No, gear wouldn't have really helped in that situation, but that story illustrates that no matter how safe you drive/ride, you just can't avoid some accidents.

Don't dress for the ride, dress for the unexpected stop. Ride safe and remember that your sharing the road with a bunch of murderous idiots who hate you and want to kill you.
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post #15 of 39 Old Jan 21st, 2016, 10:29 pm
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Re: ATGATT

Last year, I went on a ride with a friend of mine for a about 250 miles in 95+F. LOL we doubled the miles he had on his HD Softail. My friend wore a polo shirt, jeans, a helmet, ankle high shoes and I think gloves. At our first stop, he was really hot and his arms were already starting to burn. He really needed a break and a cold drink.

In KS, we get plenty of days over 100F. Here's what I wear: Modular helmet with face down while riding but may have shield up with sun visor down sometimes, Frogg Togg Chilly Dana, black Mesh jacket (probably getting a white one this summer), t-shirt (or other short sleeve shirt), leather gloves with mesh, mesh pants that are mostly white over jeans and boots. (Yes, socks and underwear too...)

The Chilly Dana makes the biggest difference. Soak it in water and wear it. My hair stays dry but the bandanna keeps me 25 degrees or more cooler. It is amazing under the helmet and accentuates the airflow I get in my helmet as the bandanna seems to cool the air coming into the helmet.

Mesh gear serves to keep the sun off of me. The light color reflects the heat so that my legs especially are cooler with the mesh pants on than just in the jeans. This summer, I will probably be in ugly all sandstone or white but I will feel cooler.

Of course, sitting at lights, I feel the heat but may put the modular helmet up for a minute. When I am moving, temperatures are fine.
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post #16 of 39 Old Jan 28th, 2016, 7:17 am
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There are ton's of problems with the way the study was conducted and reported. For example how many of those accident victims took up riding after the helmet "modification" bill was passed? That explains the sudden increase and following decrease.
Wear what you feel comfortable with and THAT is the right amount for you. Wearing something that makes you uncomfortable will distract you and increase your chances of getting hurt, or dead.
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post #17 of 39 Old Jan 28th, 2016, 8:38 am
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Re: ATGATT

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There are ton's of problems with the way the study was conducted and reported.
It useful to tease out what matters in crash occurrence and crash fatalities and that has been done somewhat in various reports cited by Dave Hough's books and other including portion attributed to road hazards, animal strikes, AGAT v not, speeding, mechanical failure as a precipitator, age, and so forth. The younger riders that still are enjoying La Belle Indifference but have superior reflexes and less fear versus the aging rider 180 degrees off from that. I think the stats I've read on AGAT show, and unfortunately this was not further controlled by all of the other factors involved, a significant improvement in prevention of certain types of injury for example soft tissue damage, but not so much for bone fractures etc. I think it's helpful to honor the commitment to safety by gearing up fully no matter where we're headed, but will concede there is a small level of superstition basis of this position! Speed, time of day when riding, traffic density all play huge roles. I'd love to see a much more detailed breakdown of crash/crash fatalities than has already been done. You see it daily in the differences of riding behavior in traffic and I haven't seen any studies that look specifically at riding strategies--very difficult to do but would be great to see.
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post #18 of 39 Old Jan 28th, 2016, 10:42 am
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Re: ATGATT

As for wearing gear in the summer, a good mesh jacket makes it like standing under a tree on a hot day. It's still hot, but better than standing in direct sun.

In Proficient Motorcycling, David Hough points out that you don't see Arabs in the desert wearing shorts and a tank top. There's a reason for that, centuries of living in that climate have taught them that you're better off covering up.

As for the stats after a helmet law is repealed, I would think there's an easy way to know if the law made a difference or not. Simply look at the number of accidents and the number of fatalities. If you see the accidents stay the same but the fatalities went up it is a good indicator that the repeal of the law caused the fatalities to climb. If they both go up you can safely say it made no difference. As to why they went back down, I could only guess.

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post #19 of 39 Old Jan 28th, 2016, 11:13 am Thread Starter
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Re: ATGATT

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As for the stats after a helmet law is repealed, I would think there's an easy way to know if the law made a difference or not. Simply look at the number of accidents and the number of fatalities. If you see the accidents stay the same but the fatalities went up it is a good indicator that the repeal of the law caused the fatalities to climb. If they both go up you can safely say it made no difference. As to why they went back down, I could only guess.
While the original article talked only about the fatality rate, it did not talk about the rate of traumatic brain injury following a MC crash involving a helmet-less rider. From a socio-economic point of view, the latter has greater implications for the rest of us, as months or years of hospitalization will only increase the premiums that the rest of us pay for health insurance, not to mention the loss of productivity that that helmet-less rider suffers. Hate to be cynical, but a dead cyclist is much cheaper to society.
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post #20 of 39 Old Jan 28th, 2016, 2:57 pm
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Scubadoc, you know who doesn't lobby for helmet laws? Insurance companies. The number of TBI's is much higher in lid law states. Why? The answer is obvious. Which one costs taxpayer's and the insured more? Obvious.
Now if you really want to debate bike gear lets talk DOT versus SNELL. Or how about leather versus textile? Anyone promoting All the gear shouldn't be caught in textile. It promotes tumbling which in turn increases injury.
See the problems?
Wear the gear YOU feel best about, look at the studies with the bias written in, and practice practice practice, because about 99.9% of all accidents are avoidable. If they weren't we'd call them "on purposes."
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post #21 of 39 Old Jan 28th, 2016, 4:47 pm Thread Starter
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Re: ATGATT

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Scubadoc, you know who doesn't lobby for helmet laws? Insurance companies. The number of TBI's is much higher in lid law states. Why? The answer is obvious. Which one costs taxpayer's and the insured more? Obvious.
"
Sorry Teach, I can't accept that without documentation. That is like arguing that the insurance industry lobbies to repeal cigarette taxes to encourage people to smoke more, since the earlier they die, the cheaper they are from an actuarial point of view. That was actually a tongue in cheek argument by a favorite columnist and writer of mine, William F. Buckley back in the 60s.
A pack of cigarettes in the 70's cost about 30. In 2012 it was near $6.00. Most of this was related to an increase in both Federal and State tax.The rise in taxes has produced a marked reduction in the number of smokers in this country. (That is why cigarette taxes keep increasing, as the number of smokers decrease.) So while it is not economically sound, I think the insurance industry still supports helmet laws. Insurance premiums for MC riders appear to be cheaper in states that have mandatory helmet laws than in states that have no or optional helmet laws.


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post #22 of 39 Old Jan 28th, 2016, 5:44 pm
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Scubadoc, actually you can find the insurance not lobbying at multiple sources, and your cig argument actually support's what I posted. Lidless rider equals lower TBI and higher fatalities, which equals lower pay out. More smoking equals more pay out so insurance companies do lobby to eliminate smoking.
Further there is no correlation between motorcycle insurance premiums and helmet requirements. PA also passed a helmet "modification" bill several years back. My premiums did not go up and are lower than most.
There are loads of false assertions posted on the net and I love poking holes in them. Hobby of mine cause I do research for a living & hobby.
Just to be clear, I am not arguing with you, just pointing out the potential issues with these types of post. They are kinda like the old saying that 99.9% of all stats are made up on the spot....lol
Ride safe my friend...
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post #23 of 39 Old Jan 28th, 2016, 6:06 pm Thread Starter
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Re: ATGATT

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More smoking equals more pay out so insurance companies do lobby to eliminate smoking.
That is a social commitment, but not actuarially sound. A dead smoker at age 50 is much cheaper for the insurance industry than a live non-smoker at the age of 85, unless you have neither health or life insurance.
Sometimes sound economic policy and societal good work at cross purposes. This is off topic, but still fun to discuss. I have a background in health economics as well as medicine, and these topics are fascinating to me.


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post #24 of 39 Old Jan 28th, 2016, 6:25 pm
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Textile may not be as good as leather, but I'd rather go down in textile than a T-shirt and a leather jacket stuffed in the trunk because it's too hot to wear isn't worth anything when the accident happens. Wear the highest level of safety that you WILL wear.

Forcing yourself to overdress in the name of safety will usually end up making you less safe. Eventually, through your sweat filled thoughts, you'll convince yourself that it'll be OK if you take the jacket off, just this once. Unfortunately your odds of having the accident while the jacket is in the trunk are just as high as they are while it's on your back.
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post #25 of 39 Old Jan 28th, 2016, 6:40 pm Thread Starter
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Re: ATGATT

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They are kinda like the old saying that 99.9% of all stats are made up on the spot....lol
Ride safe my friend...
The corallary of that is the following: those who don't have the facts use statistics like a drunk using a lampost - more for support than for illumination.


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post #26 of 39 Old Jan 28th, 2016, 7:09 pm
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Scubadoc, well you are mistaken with your assertions on smokers versus non as well. I am really sure the studies show smokers are at greater risk for all health concerns and require double the medical care as their non smoking counterparts. Further there is no correlation between smoking and longevity. Even if we take the top two, ie heart disease and lung cancer, a smoker and non smoker are at equal risk. So in the long run, it is in the insurance industries financial interest to prevent the expenditure on care by lobbying for anti smoking legislation. They don't lobby for lid laws...because TBI is expensive and dead isn't.
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Re: ATGATT

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Scubadoc, well you are mistaken with your assertions on smokers versus non as well. I am really sure the studies show smokers are at greater risk for all health concerns and require double the medical care as their non smoking counterparts. Further there is no correlation between smoking and longevity. Even if we take the top two, ie heart disease and lung cancer, a smoker and non smoker are at equal risk.
You are right with your first assertion. Yes, smokers require more health care than non-smokers. You are totally wrong with your second assertion. No, smokers die sooner than non- smokers. See the following CDC statistics:
CDC - Fact Sheet - Tobacco-Related Mortality - Smoking & Tobacco Use


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post #28 of 39 Old Jan 28th, 2016, 8:56 pm
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Re: ATGATT

Here we go.
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Here we go.
Movie is over.


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post #30 of 39 Old Jan 29th, 2016, 8:14 pm
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Scubadoc, again it is your source that is the problem. Fact the surgeon general under Reagan concluded that there was no connection between second hand cig smoke. Two months later a newly appointed SG armed with the same data and report's stated the opposite and the fed began implementation of bans. There is NO conclusive research connecting second hand smoke to cancer or lung disease. This is also true with regards to smoking and death. Always makes me laugh when folk's take the fed as some authority. Now go see if you can find supporting and opposing studies/research. I believe you will be surprised. You CAN "make" the study show anything if you set up the study to meet your expectations. For example the person died in a motor vehicle accident at age 55, but was a smoker at the time of the death... Laughable ain't it.
This is like arguing for helmet laws. More people died wearing lids during the last 4 reported years than died not wearing lids. This is a documented FACT from the fed agency. Should we ban lids? After all more folks are dying while wearing a lid. The feds recommendation is we need to increase lid use. Why, has their use reduced fatalities? No but the recommendation stands.
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post #31 of 39 Old Jan 30th, 2016, 7:14 am
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Re: ATGATT

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Scubadoc, again it is your source that is the problem. Fact the surgeon general under Reagan concluded that there was no connection between second hand cig smoke. Two months later a newly appointed SG armed with the same data and report's stated the opposite and the fed began implementation of bans. There is NO conclusive research connecting second hand smoke to cancer or lung disease.
Good thing you understand this and I even agree that to some degree there is manipulation of data but even if a smokers where to live his entire allotment of time the quality of that time is pretty horrible in the twilight years. I have known several people who suffered with emphysema caused by smoking and that ain't no picnic. Another observation once health declines it seems to at a rate much more rapid than for those without the smoking addiction.

Gerhard


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post #32 of 39 Old Jan 30th, 2016, 7:55 am Thread Starter
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Re: ATGATT

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Scubadoc, again it is your source that is the problem. Fact the surgeon general under Reagan concluded that there was no connection between second hand cig smoke. Two months later a newly appointed SG armed with the same data and report's stated the opposite and the fed began implementation of bans. There is NO conclusive research connecting second hand smoke to cancer or lung disease. This is also true with regards to smoking and death. Always makes me laugh when folk's take the fed as some authority. Now go see if you can find supporting and opposing studies/research. I believe you will be surprised. You CAN "make" the study show anything if you set up the study to meet your expectations. For example the person died in a motor vehicle accident at age 55, but was a smoker at the time of the death... Laughable ain't it.
This is like arguing for helmet laws. More people died wearing lids during the last 4 reported years than died not wearing lids. This is a documented FACT from the fed agency. Should we ban lids? After all more folks are dying while wearing a lid. The feds recommendation is we need to increase lid use. Why, has their use reduced fatalities? No but the recommendation stands.
Teach, there its no need to carry this out any further. I admire anyone who doesn't let the facts get in the way of his convictions. Even the insurance industry has data to show that insurance premiums go up in states that do not require helmets : https://coverhound.com/insurance-lea...urance-premium
You ride the way you want, i don't have to live with the consequences of your decision. I just hope you carry sufficient health insurance and don't depend on society to bail you out.

As an interesting footnote, I note that the alcohol and beverage industry in Michigan helped lobby for the repeal of mandatory helmet laws. Their argument is that repeal of the law would increase the number of bikers going to bars and taverns in the state. So now we have lidless riders spending their leisure time getting their alcohol buzz.
This comes directly from the ABATE newsletter, I didn't make it up.


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post #33 of 39 Old Jan 30th, 2016, 8:10 am Thread Starter
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Re: ATGATT

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Good thing you understand this and I even agree that to some degree there is manipulation of data but even if a smokers where to live his entire allotment of time the quality of that time is pretty horrible in the twilight years. I have known several people who suffered with emphysema caused by smoking and that ain't no picnic. Another observation once health declines it seems to at a rate much more rapid than for those without the smoking addiction.

Gerhard
Every study I have ever read shows that a long time smoker has a life expectancy 10 years shorter than the non-smoker, the last 10 years of their lives are not pleasant. I know this from personal observation. I practise medicine in Southern Maryland, where tobacco used to be a cash crop and tobacco use was a way of life. The average 60 year old smoker that I see has heart disease, respiratory problems, often needs an oxygen tank to get around. He may our may not develop cancer, but, as you mention, his quality of life is pretty crappy (a sophisticated medical term).


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post #34 of 39 Old Jan 30th, 2016, 4:21 pm
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Scubadoc, the problem as I see it is that we ALL have a reference point and it is very difficult to take a stance counter to that reference point, even if the fact's point to something else.
We could debate smoking until the cows come home and the arguments would fly in the face of reason. Nobody would argue that it is good for folks, but the evidence say's it is not what we have heaped on. A person is just as likely to develop respiratory and heart disease from the plastics we utilize in every realm of our lives. Enough documentation for the banning of all plastic. Sugar which is in everything is far worse than even smoking.
The point as stated initially is folk's should wear the gear they are most comfy wearing, that way their attention is on riding.
As for lid law's? I am not another's keeper. If they get themselves dead, its not my concern.
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post #35 of 39 Old Jan 30th, 2016, 5:43 pm Thread Starter
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Re: ATGATT

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Scubadoc, the problem as I see it is that we ALL have a reference point and it is very difficult to take a stance counter to that reference point, even if the fact's point to something else.
We could debate smoking until the cows come home and the arguments would fly in the face of reason. Nobody would argue that it is good for folks, but the evidence say's it is not what we have heaped on. A person is just as likely to develop respiratory and heart disease from the plastics we utilize in every realm of our lives. Enough documentation for the banning of all plastic. Sugar which is in everything is far worse than even smoking.
The point as stated initially is folk's should wear the gear they are most comfy wearing, that way their attention is on riding.
As for lid law's? I am not another's keeper. If they get themselves dead, its not my concern.
Teach, I honestly agree with everything you've just said. Ride safe and stay healthy.


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post #36 of 39 Old Jan 30th, 2016, 10:35 pm
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Scubadoc, good back and forth discussion. I hope you have a great ride season and a safe one....
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post #37 of 39 Old Jan 31st, 2016, 6:26 am Thread Starter
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Re: ATGATT

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Scubadoc, good back and forth discussion. I hope you have a great ride season and a safe one....
I love "happy endings". Be safe


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post #38 of 39 Old Jan 31st, 2016, 10:57 am
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Scubadoc, it is always a pleasure batting a topic or two around when the discourse remains pleasant and doesn't turn to name calling/insult.
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post #39 of 39 Old Jan 31st, 2016, 10:58 am Thread Starter
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Re: ATGATT

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Scubadoc, it is always a pleasure batting a topic or two around when the discourse remains pleasant and doesn't turn to name calling/insult.
And I hope we both learned something from each other.


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