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Silence is Golden

January 27, 2011

Ah, those pesky car alarms. I think it’s safe to say that we find them to be more of a nuisance and an annoyance more than as deterrents to theft. This morning, I heard one go off early in the morning. My first thought was the negative externality it was creating rather than for the safety of the car itself. After all, people who enjoy sleeping may not appreciate someone’s car alarm waking him or her up during the early moments of the day–isn’t that why we buy alarm clocks?

I think we have all been lulled into a false sense of security with the security the alarms are supposed to provide us, as well as conditioning ourselves to ignore the alarms themselves since most of us find them to be a problem rather than a solution. Seriously, does anyone really do anything if he or she hears a car alarm? Most of the time, it’s a false alarm! Let’s not forget that a lot of times the car owner doesn’t even realize the alarm system has gone off and is slow to deactivate it–that’s very irritating.

Personally, I think a more effective solution would be if the car didn’t start unless you pressed a button on your key to disengage it from its security mode. Maybe there is a way to circumvent that solution–there are some clever thieves out there–but that option seems more desirable than listening to someone’s car blast incessant, vociferous, cacophonous sounds for several minutes, especially when no one is going to intervene to do anything anyway.

You know those appeals before the movie starts every movie theater asking you to turn off your phone or put it on vibrate? We should do that with cars. Let’s muzzle them because, after all, silence is golden.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. January 27, 2011 12:16 pm

    totally agree! the malfunctioning of alarms has all but rendered them redundant. the fire alarm in our block never shuts up no matter how many times it’s fixed. no one even gets up out of bed to switch it off. Except me of course!

    • Trung permalink
      January 27, 2011 12:18 pm

      ah, my sympathy goes out to you for the problems with your fire alarm!

  2. Ollie D permalink
    January 31, 2011 6:37 pm

    good use of the negative externality phenomenon! kudos to your economics background. most importantly, good thieves disable the alarm’s wiring before they break into the car.

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