Why Do They All Look The Same?

Government homogenizes everything it touches. It makes things uniform, drains the color, randomness and difference out of life.

Government is the reason why cars increasingly look . . . homogenized. The basic shape is becoming uniform – the inevitable end result of having to comply with government edicts specifying that a car must successfully withstand being hit from the side, behind and at various angles; this has imposed a design template on all cars, regardless of brand or model. It is why all brands and models increasingly look the same except for increasingly bizarre grille and headlight shapes – which are a kind of desperate last salvo of expression still possible only because the government hasn’t yet got around to decreeing how grilles and headlights should be shaped.

Which will probably happen when it occurs to a government bureaucrat that certain grille shapes threaten to poke pedestrians – and we can’t have that.

The same homogeneity is found inside new cars – in all cars made since the late ‘90s, when the government decreed that all cars must have air bags stuffed into their steering wheels. It is why all steering wheels now look the same. Before the government decreed that all new cars must have air bags, steering wheel designs varied – often wildly. They were the centerpiece of interior design and even defined the car. Against the State: An ... Rockwell Jr., Llewelly... Best Price: $5.02 Buy New $5.52 (as of 11:35 EST - Details)

Today, they are just steering wheels.

The same blob in the center – where the air bag is. The different shapes of the past are no longer feasible and so there is one shape – generic, homogenous. With a different badge in the center.

It is no wonder that most kids no longer car about cars. It is like trying to summon interest in milk jugs.

“Safety” itself was once a different selling point – rather than the same selling point, as it has become today. Some cars sold on the basis of other attributes, such as their flamboyant styling –  or because they offered features which appealed to people but which have since been outlawed by regulatory fatwa such as swiveling or rear (or sideways) facing seats – or roofs with removable glass panels (T-tops).

Those pre-fatwa cars weren’t “unsafe,” either. The presence or absence of air bags or swivel seats or T-tops does not increase or decrease the odds of a crash happening.

A 1970 VW Beetle is perfectly safe to drive.

What is meant by “safety in the regulatory fatwa sense is a vehicle’s ability to withstand impact forces if there is a crash. It is a distinction with an important difference. If no crash happens,  a 1970 Beetle is just as safe to drive as a 2018 Beetle – only the old Beetle has more character because it is different. The new Beetle merely looks vaguely like the old one but underneath its skin, it’s not much different from any other front-drive, front-engined compact economy car.

Everything that made the old Beetle a Beetle is absent from the new Beetle.

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