[ExI] Consequentialist world improvement

BillK pharos at gmail.com
Sun Oct 7 16:40:55 UTC 2012

On Sun, Oct 7, 2012 at 4:52 PM, spike wrote:
> But plenty of people fall off of
> chairs trying to change smoke detector batteries in the night while drunk,
> stoned or old.  So smoke detector legislation goes right on, year after
> year, running up medical costs and in some cases claiming the lives of
> unknown numbers of nice little grandmas, in exchange for practically
> nothing, NOTHING!
> Here is an interesting example of Anders' point on risk curves: the risk of
> death from a nighttime house fire and falling off a chair reaching for a
> smoke detector are both long tail risks, which makes them inherently
> difficult to estimate and compare, leading to deadly consequences.

I don't think I believe this claim.   :)  ????
Pensioners are more at risk of accidental fires. Falling asleep while
smoking, forgetting about the pan on the cooker, smoking while using
their oxygen inhaler :) , etc.
They are mostly well aware that they can't stand on chairs. I would
expect that a technician or the local Old Folks charity will install
the detector in the first place and arrange for the battery to be
changed every year.

There are so many charities looking after old folks these days that I
am sure if battery changing was causing accidents there would be lots
of warnings being circulated. Stairs and steps are the risks for old


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