Motor Biker had some very interesting news out of Europe in his blog today.
The first is an article about French President Sarkozy. Sarkozy and his government have successfully reduced the crash fatality rate in that country by 50%, however they are now going OVERBOARD with things...

They are going to deploy 400 4th generation radars that will have no warning that there is radar ahead, the locations will not be allowed to be stored on GPS. Although they had backed down last year because of protests, they have decided to go ahead with these units anyway.

Starting in the spring, every vehicle in France will be required to have a breathalyzer unit in them.They do not disable the vehicle - they are the balloon type - but think of the ramifications - if you get an impaired you will have ZERO defence because the government is leaving the responsibility to find out if you are impaired up to you - I am not for drinking and driving in any way - but seriously is this not a bit over the top?

Another thing they are looking to force on people will be speed limiters in cars. The Sarkosy government is looking at 2 options - one in every car or only for those who get speeding tickets.

And now come the motorcyclists - as far as Sarkozy is concerned, bikers are bad.

Begin Quote: 
Motorcycle Riders All this is pretty bad and far fetched. But the worst was his statement. Freely translated, he said:

"Half of the dead were decent people who were in their car, respecting the rules of the road, and a human bomb fell upon them, and their destiny and their family was shattered".

In other words, all bikers ride like lunatics, and are a menace to decent citizens. He doesn't take into account that studies and statistics have clearly shown that 70% of the motorcycle vs car accidents were caused by the car driver, not the biker. But it's election time, and he does not like bikers, so he's showing it. End Quote

The second article of extreme interest involves the legislation on motorcycles.
In a press release from FEMA -
Begin Quote:
The European Parliament's Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO) voted in Brussels today on its report on the proposal for a regulation on the approval and market surveillance of two- and three wheelers and quadricycles.

In the view of IMCO, as from 2016 motorcycles will have to become cleaner and manufacturers must apply ABS, even for light motorcycles. And as from 2014, measures to prevent powertrain modifications (which are still to be developed) must be applied and users shall present their bikes for inspection when carrying out "substantial" modifications. End Quote

FEMA agrees with many of the proposals that will be voted on in 2012, however they have grave concerns over section/article 18.  

Begin Quote: 
But if the current text of article 18 is finally adopted, it will mean that all the usual changes motorcyclists make for riding comfort, fuel efficiency, or simply to suit their riding style, will be illegal or will have to be checked and approved, even this has not been a problem so far and there is no reason why it should become a problem tomorrow. FEMA will certainly keep on working on this regulation." End Quote

It appears that Europe is doing everything it can to dissuade riders from riding. 

If the anti tampering law is not changed to allow for personal comfort modifications then a lot of riders will probably quit and that seems, in my humble opinion to be the goal here.

So why should you in North America be concerned? Many of the laws we have here in North America originated in Europe and although modified for our countries - they still come here in one form or another.

The nanny state is alive and well and we should all be afraid - VERY afraid. 

I have said it many times and at the risk of sounding like a broken record I am going to say it again - WE in Canada really need a watch dog - an organization that can truly go to bat for us.

The US has the AMA - Europe has FEMA - we need someone to start speaking for riders here BEFORE these laws can come in to play here.

I know one thing however - Canadians will not get involved and be proactive until there is a threat that is so severe that every rider will want to get behind and by that time it will be way too late.

In other news - I have made a decision regarding Charity Calendar Fundraisers - NEVER AGAIN - at least not the way we did it this time.

Since people have given me nothing but flack over them, I have decided that they are not worth the grief.
I made not one red cent on them - I never intended to make money on them but in fact, because of the screw up by the printer I lost money on them.

I have been belittled because I did not give participants free calendars for appearing in them - can I ask a question? What part of CHARITY FUNDRAISER did you not get?

I have been harassed by people who did not seem to read the fact that the calendars were not being printed until pre ordering was over on October 31st. I have been belittled because some people did not get orders in on time - even though we gave people 4 months to place an order.

NEVER - EVER AGAIN - it is just not worth the energy - next time I want to create awareness and raise funds for something via a calendar it will be a virtual calendar - one you can down load and print off at home - for a fee.

There are many articles that may be of interest to you in the news feeds over at - check them out to stay informed...

I am going to leave you all with some funnies for the day - cause even if you don't need a giggle I DO!
Garfield was syndicated on my birthday - and today - this is exactly how I feel

Have a great Tuesday everyone...

Belt Drive Betty
Editor & Rider

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