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PostPosted: Fri Jul 30, 2010 19:51 
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OK, this has been bothering me for a day or two since I realised how many companies I use are in their list of supporters.
I've drafted this letter which - suitably tweaked - I'm going to start sending out to companies that I would be likely to use. Also will send something similar to the Ministers of all the government departmenst they list, who might be shocked to see where public money is being directed.

Johnny wrote:
Dear Sir

In the past I have regularly bought (INSERT PRODUCT HERE) from your company and fully intended to continue to do so.

However, I read on the anti-car campaign group BRAKE’s website that you are/have been a donor to their coffers. Apologies if this is not the case, but you may wish to contact them to get your name/logo removed.

BRAKE is a charity, though there is a widely-held opinion that they do not deserve this status. They appear to have been started with the best intentions to offer support to road accident victims, but seem to have been taken over by people who spend all their effort campaigning against car use, with a particular thrust being a desire to make us all drive extremely slowly, despite the fact govt stats (TRL 323) show that excessive speed only causes one accident in thirteen.

I offer you a couple of choice examples of their campaigning style:

1. A couple of years back, a woman was banned from driving for seven days for driving at 10mph on the M32 in Bristol and swerving on and off the hard shoulder. BRAKE’s spokesperson Lorna Jackson’s comment was:
“This case sends out a very strange message to drivers. Mrs Cole was not breaking the speed limit or endangering anyone with her actions, yet she received a seven day ban, when we commonly see drivers caught travelling at 80 or 90mph get away with a fine and three points.”

Is she for real?

2. Here’s some choice points from their “Target Zero” manifesto:

“Compulsory road crash awareness education is in nurseries and schools for all ages, warning against driving.”

“There is a ban on overtaking free-moving traffic, except on multi-lane roads.”

“Speed limits are no higher than 40mph for single carriageway rural roads, and 20mph for narrow country lanes”

“Speed limits are no higher than 20mph for villages and towns, and lower limits on residential roads.”

BRAKE is perfectly entitled in a democracy to campaign for laws like this, but as an ordinary motorist I am not comfortable spending my money with an organisation that supports a fake charity with such sinister motives.

If, before I next plan to buy (INSERT PRODUCT HERE) from you, I check their supporters list and your name is still there, I am afraid I will be going elsewhere henceforth. I will also be encouraging friends and family to do the same.

Yours faithfully

Johnnytheboy

(links to some of the sources of my data)

http://fakecharities.org/pages/posts/brake8.php
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/bristol/7171154.stm
http://www.brake.org.uk/target-zero
http://www.brake.org.uk/our-supporters


I'll be checking that fakecharites link beforehand as it's currently down. :(


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 30, 2010 20:15 
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Government department version.

Quote:
In these financially austere times, I imagine that you are trying to justify every penny that the <INSERT GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENT> spends.

So I was surprised to read on the anti-car campaign group BRAKE’s website that you are/have been a donor to their coffers. Apologies if this is not the case, but you may wish to contact them to get your department’s name removed, for accuracy’s sake.

BRAKE is a charity....

....BRAKE is perfectly entitled in a democracy to campaign for laws like this, but as members of the Coalition have on several occasions referred to “ending the war on motorists”, I find it very surprising that you would have the budget going forward, and the political desire, to continue to support them with public money.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 30, 2010 20:20 
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Very good letter, I may send a similar version of it out too. I don't use that many of their supporters but it won't do any harm to write to one or two that I don't use, so long as they have no way of checking up....;-)

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 30, 2010 20:54 
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I'm going to start with the government depts. That's my money, and I can't vote with my feet.

:x

Bridge House Trust
Children in Need
Department for Transport
Department of Health
Garfield Weston Foundation
John Ellerman Foundation
Office for Criminal Justice Reform
The Scottish Government
Youth Justice Board


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 30, 2010 21:16 
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And my bloody bank.

This is the general email address for the DfT:

FAX9643@dft.gsi.gov.uk

...if anyone wants to join in.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 31, 2010 01:51 
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A very good idea :)
Speed is a contributory factor never a 'cause'.

Also you start by saying that you are going to continue to use their product yet at the end state that unless your conditions are met you won't - that is conflicting and therefore meaningless.
Depending upon how much you buy will likely depend on what their level of 'concern' will be - I am afraid.

If you were able to source a similar / suitable product for less money / better service/conditions etc and say this inspired you and you are now going to leave, unless they do 'X' and are prepared to loose X amount of business - then I think it would be more meaningful.
Plus if it is copied CC to your MP AND to Watchdog ... as they have air time = lots of viewers = much more money AND = much more embarrassment.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 31, 2010 21:05 
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Johnnytheboy wrote:
Quote:
Compulsory road crash awareness education is in nurseries and schools for all ages, warning against driving


"Warning against driving"?

:loco:

Wouldn't the time be better spent teaching children road safety they can put in to practice, like ped and cycle safety?

Or is this just about indoctrinating the young and impressionable?



Think you might find ,if you look hard enough that it's been going on for a long time .I remember my sister coming to visit us with my nephew ,way back in the late 70's .I took them to the railway station -she belted up ,as did he and next thing he said was "mummy ,why is uncle not wearing a belt".And he was not educated at a local school-but at one of the better ones ,paid for by thee & me ,as parents were posted abroad and could claim boarding school allowance .

But if we teach road safety - my granddaughter has been taught it by her mum ,from an early age ,and for quite a few years now ,bike safety ,by stepdad -but the bike safety bit comes easy -she's bike( as on engined/quad) daft -so wants to learn all about them ,and stepdad starts from safety angle first .

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2010 12:51 
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Brake: • Life bans are implemented for life-threatening and life-taking drivers.

This one caught my eye. For a start what will be judged life-threatening? - As a motorcyclist I'd judge anyone who says 'SMIDSY' - and who gets to choose what is and isn't 'life-threatening'?

But of more concern is how Brake would deal with the burgeoning numbers of recidivists who will not stop driving because of a ban. Though the events in 'Cops on the Box' programmes are very selective it does appear that there's no shortage of banned drivers who continue to drive. So how do they propose to deal with them (given that any notion of in-car ID checks is impractical - and even if it weren't thieves would have a get round soon enough)? Permanent incarceration? Or perhaps hobbling persistent offenders? :shock:

Barkstar

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2010 13:24 
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Do BRAKE campaign to have motorcycles banned on the grounds that they are so much more "life threatening" than cars?

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2010 13:42 
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SafeSpeedv2 wrote:
A very good idea :)
Speed is a contributory factor never a 'cause'.

Also you start by saying that you are going to continue to use their product yet at the end state that unless your conditions are met you won't - that is conflicting and therefore meaningless.
Depending upon how much you buy will likely depend on what their level of 'concern' will be - I am afraid.

If you were able to source a similar / suitable product for less money / better service/conditions etc and say this inspired you and you are now going to leave, unless they do 'X' and are prepared to loose X amount of business - then I think it would be more meaningful.
Plus if it is copied CC to your MP AND to Watchdog ... as they have air time = lots of viewers = much more money AND = much more embarrassment.


The letter I posted is a template which I am changing then reading every time I send it. I am including my history with each company.

So far bothered two govt departments and two insurance companies. Trying to work out who to annoy at RBS group who seem to be the umbrella organiser over several offenders.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2010 13:45 
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Barkstar wrote:
But of more concern is how Brake would deal with the burgeoning numbers of recidivists who will not stop driving because of a ban. Though the events in 'Cops on the Box' programmes are very selective it does appear that there's no shortage of banned drivers who continue to drive. So how do they propose to deal with them (given that any notion of in-car ID checks is impractical - and even if it weren't thieves would have a get round soon enough)? Permanent incarceration? Or perhaps hobbling persistent offenders? :shock:


To be fair, about the only thing I agree with them on is more trafpol.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 02, 2010 13:47 
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malcolmw wrote:
Do BRAKE campaign to have motorcycles banned on the grounds that they are so much more "life threatening" than cars?


No, but all motorcyle accidents are caused by cars or "speed".

BRAKE wrote:
Many motorcyclists are killed due to other drivers failing to spot them and pulling out on them at junctions, but bikers are also often killed due to riding at excessive speeds on bendy rural roads with pot holes, hidden junctions and other hazards


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 30, 2011 00:29 
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Good grief!

I accidentally stumbled across Brake's website, and saw the following sight on their homepage:


Image


The child, standing out in the middle of a (non-residential) road, without supervision, and with perfectly good pavements either side of the road.
The arrogance of the extended arms is the icing on the cake.


. . . . . . . . "Dream"

People, this is what Brake want!

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 30, 2011 03:55 
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Although that shot looks like it has been taken 'abroad', I had seen the person as an adult initially.
I agree that having empty roads is hardly a reality and certainly makes me wonder how they think they are going to receive the clothes that this person is wearing, or the food to sustain them too? How are they going to get from the Port (assuming imported) to their address? Magic carpet perhaps ?
Considering they try to support truckers, this seems like a complete conflict of interest.

It bothers me greatly that they use relatives of those who are suffering, or have suffered road incidents, as voices for their Campaign, these people are often in great shock and are in an extremely vulnerable state.
Their attempt to teach all children that cars are 'dangerous' is rather nieve and speaks of desperate measures. All vehicles might be considered dangerous if you chose to walk out in front of one, or if one was completely unaware of how one is likely to be (predictably) driven. But teaching children to be aware and how to keep themselves safe and to be very careful and sensible, will allow for a safe passage without the need for segregation.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 30, 2011 07:51 
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Ah yes, "abroad".

That's a place where road safety is very likely to be much worse than in the UK. Perhaps BRAKE should start there and not here.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 30, 2011 08:55 
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That really does sum up their idea of road safety, encouraging a young child to stand in the middle of a road, with their back to one possible flow of traffic and their hair over their face obscuring their view of oncoming traffic...well done Brake!

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My views do not represent Safespeed but those of a driver who has driven for 39 yrs, in all conditions, at all times of the day & night on every type of road and covered well over a million miles, so knows a bit about what makes for safety on the road,what is really dangerous and needs to be observed when driving and quite frankly, the speedo is way down on my list of things to observe to negotiate Britain's roads safely, but I don't expect some fool who sits behind a desk all day to appreciate that.


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 01, 2011 10:21 
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graball wrote:
That really does sum up their idea of road safety

Perhaps their mission has secretly changed and they are now engaged in population control as a means of accident reduction, encouraging children to play "chicken" might reduce the number of potential "speeders" by one or two ..... reading some of the stuff they come out with I'm not so sure that's as far fetched as it sounds :(

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 01, 2011 14:07 
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Has anyone seen this:

BBC Online wrote:
The charity [Brake] wants the punishment for speeding increased to a £1,000 fine and six penalty points.

Note the lack of "up to".


Brake’s response to the Department for Transport’s Road Safety Compliance consultation (February 2009) wrote:
If implementing fixed-penalty fines based on income is not possible, Brake would like to see a much higher fixed-penalty fine, of £1,000 for speeding.

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 01, 2011 17:44 
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Barkstar wrote:
Brake: • Life bans are implemented for life-threatening and life-taking drivers.

This one caught my eye. For a start what will be judged life-threatening? - As a motorcyclist I'd judge anyone who says 'SMIDSY' - and who gets to choose what is and isn't 'life-threatening'?

Barkstar


No, I think you may have misread it. As all drivers are life-threatening. life-taking demons, there's no degree of judgement necessary! :wink:


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2011 11:47 
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The original Brake links do not work - I wonder why? Does anyone have a list of their corporate sponsors? Think Johnnytheboy had a good idea with his letter. I would be horrified if companies I use supported Brake and would look for alternatives.


As with much of Brake, this strikes me as questionable/exploiting vulnerable, grieving people...

http://www.brake.org.uk/donate/in-memoriam.htm

"Donations at a funeral
Some people bereaved by road crashes have generously fundraised for Brake by asking for donations instead of flowers at a funeral or memorial service. If you wish to do this and would like some words about Brake and the use of our logo for a funeral programme, please call Lisa on the details above."


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