Tuesday, February 10, 2004
Marxist Traffic Fines

Now this is interesting.

One of Finland's richest men has been fined a record 170,000 euros ($217,000) for speeding through the center of the capital, police said on Tuesday.


Finnish traffic fines vary according to the offender's income and, according to tax office data, Salonoja's 2002 earnings were close to seven million euros.

The final penalty could still change when the case is eventually heard by a Helsinki court, as was the case with Nokia executive Anssi Vanjoki, whose 116,000-euro speeding fine was slashed by 95 percent in 2002 due to a drop in income.
This, to me, reeks of Marxist ideology. You know: "From each according to their ability, to each according to their need." Now don't get me wrong. The guy did 25 mph over the limit in an urban area - the man needs a punishment; but goodness gracious! Whatever happened to 'the punishment must fit the crime'? Oh, that's right - this happened in Finland. No US Constitution over there.

Nevertheless, this is smacks my sense of fairness around quite a bit. The Finnish government is going to break the record for speeding fines just because this guy is a successful businessman? That's just not right. Punishments for crimes, by neccessity, must be the same for everyone - rich and poor, black and white, man and woman - in order to have any reasonable facsimile of Justice.

I know it's fashionable to loathe those who have more than us, but come on! Surely the Finns can find something better to do than enfranchising that irrational hatred in their law?
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A webjournal of ideas, comments, and various other miscellany from a Texan university student (with occasional input from his family) living in Toronto, Ontario. Can you say "culture shock?"

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