by Michael Z. Williamson
I keep hearing people say they want to regulate guns the way we regulate cars. They don't really mean that, of course. What they mean is they want to make it acceptable to find more ways to intrude on the right to keep and bear arms.
I propose instead, we regulate cars the way we regulate guns. Let's start:
To buy or operate a standard car, one will have to be 18 years old. Under that age, adult supervision will be mandatory. This means the adult must be in the vehicle with the underage driver.
To buy a sports car, you will have to be 21. A "Sports car" will be defined as any combination of any two of the following: 2 doors instead of 4, spoked rims not requiring hubcaps, aerodynamic effects such as spoilers or air dams, a wheelbase under 100 inches, a manual transmission, a curb weight under 3000 lbs, fiberglass or other non-metal construction, or painted logos.
For every purchase, you will have to fill out a questionnaire confirming you're a US citizen, do not use drugs or abuse alcohol, have never had a conviction for alcohol related incidents or reckless driving. Lying on this form will be punishable by 10 years in prison and/or a $10,000 fine.
New cars will only be purchased from Federal Automobile Licensees who must provide fingerprints, proof of character, secure storage for all vehicles, and who must call the Federal Bureau of Motor Vehicles to verify your information before purchase. They may approve or decline or delay the sale. If they decline, you may appeal the decision in writing to a review board. If they delay, it becomes an approval automatically after 10 days. However, the dealer may decline to complete such a sale in case of later problems.
Additionally, the purchase of more than two cars in a given year will require signing an understanding that buying cars in order to resell them without a license is a crime. There is an 11% federal excise tax on all new vehicles, plus any state or local tax.
Federal Automobile Licensees must agree to submit to 24/7/365, unannounced, unscheduled searches of their entire homes, businesses and any related properties and personal effects to be named later.
Then you will be eligible to take your drivers' license test to determine your eligibility to operate on the street. Rules will vary by state, with some states requiring proof of need to own a vehicle for business purposes, and up to 40 hours of professional education. Also, not all states will accept all licenses. You will need to keep track of this information. Additionally, speed limits will not be posted. It is your responsibility to research the driving laws in each area you wish to travel through. Some communities may not allow out of state vehicles, sports cars, or even any vehicles at all. Violation of these laws will result in confiscation and destruction of your vehicle by crushing.
To have a turbocharger, supercharger (External Engine Compression Devices) or a muffler will require an application to the Federal Bureau of Motor Vehicles. A $2000 tax stamp will be required for these High Performance Vehicles. Your request must also be signed by the local chief law enforcement officer, and you must provide fingerprints. If approved in 10-16 weeks, you will be responsible for keeping your High Performance Vehicle in secure storage, and request permission in writing to take it out of state. You will need to carry this documentation with you. There are 13 states that do not allow possession of High Performance Vehicles. Be sure you are aware of those laws before planning your trips. (But really, what do you need such a vehicle for anyway? Who really needs to drive that fast? You must willingly accept and adhere to the socially accepted idea that you are inherently evil for merely possessing such a fast, high powered automobile.)
Additionally, superchargers and turbochargers must be manufactured before June 1, 1986. They may be sold and refitted by a FAL who also has a Special Occupational Tax license authorizing him to work on these. New superchargers, however, are a violation of federal law, except for use by the police or military, or specific government contractors. Expect to pay $15-$30,000 each for these items. Mufflers will only cost from $250-$1000, plus the $2000 stamp. However, once the muffler is damaged, it must be disposed of by cutting it into three pieces. Failure to do this may result in your family going through the next decade only knowing you in a prison jumpsuit and all your bank accounts seized and never replenished.
Imported sports cars will be prohibited. You may purchase other items from foreign manufacturers, but your automobile is in a special class of prohibition due to its inherently evil and sinister nature. The frames may be imported, cut into three pieces, and reassembled with US made engines and suspensions, as long as 60% of the parts are American. Shortly, though, the Transmission Loophole will be closed. The purpose of allowing imports is for spare parts, not to build more destructive "race vehicles.” Transmissions will have to be US made.
Repairs may only be conducted by a licensed FAL, who will send a truck to retrieve your vehicle. It must be a flatbed type truck, winch/dolly trucks are not allowed, under 10/$10,000 penalty. You may work on your own vehicle, but any repair that exceeds emission or performance standards will be subject to federal criminal charges. And violation of this reasonable regulation could result in not only your imprisonment and the confiscation of your assets but imprisonment of any employee or family member who was insane enough to repair your “race car” for you.
Be aware that an existing HPV may have multiple HP Features. A new HPV will require a license for each feature you wish to add to it—one each for muffler or external engine compression device. And you must request and receive, in writing, permission from the federal, state and local governing authorities prior to making such modifications.
Converting a standard car to a sports car will require payment of a $2000 tax, even if no HP features are added. However, if an FAL/SOT does the conversion on a new frame before the vehicle leaves their premises, it will only be a $50 tax. You will need to carry this documentation in the glove box at all times, the mere failure of which alone can result in an arrest and possible conviction.
There is discussion of closing the Car Dealer Loophole, through which private individuals sell cars to friends without going through an FAL. It is important we have these background checks. Surveys show criminals prefer to buy unlicensed to get around their legal liabilities so they can commit crimes in stolen vehicles, which evidence has proven for many years to be true.
Some vehicle law convictions will result in loss of your driving privileges forever. This includes reckless operation, drunk driving, an incorrect bumper height or attachment, or the wrong type of exhaust. Collisions may also result in permanent loss of driving, if injury occurs and negligence is proven. In addition, any felony conviction of any kind--even tax evasion--will mean permanent loss of your driving privileges. In these cases, it will even be illegal to ride or sit in a friend's car.
There is also discussion of prohibiting brightly colored vehicles. Vehicles are transportation, not toys, and should not be marketed in a way that suggests they are intended for casual use. It is important that everyone be aware of the dangerous nature of cars.
In the future, we may have to consider large displacement engines (anything over 2.5 liters) and transmissions with more than three speeds as being High Performance Items to be added to the federal registry. There will be a window during which you can register your items for $2000 each, provided you meet the background check. Otherwise, you will have to immediately surrender them to an FAL/SOT to dispose of on your behalf. Operating an unlicensed HPV after this date will result in confiscation and destruction of the vehicle, and the 10/$10,000 punishment.
These laws and regulations are due to drunk drivers, reckless drivers and other criminals. The automobile community should be glad it is allowed to exist at all, given all the deaths and environmental damage caused by these vehicles.
The president said today that he strongly supports your right to own and drive basic, standard vehicles for farm use and carpooling. But he and many other people have made it clear that eventually – maybe this month – we need to cease all manufacturing of such high powered automobiles for the civilian market.
Eventually, we need to move away from the notion that owning and operating a vehicle is a right and entitlement, and limit it to people with a proven, bona fide professional need. There are plenty of trains and buses for normal people. This is how most civilized nations are moving and is not a violation of your right to travel.
©2013 by Michael Z. Williamson www.MichaelZWilliamson.com