A tweet from Newt:
European push could mean that driverless cars will hit the road sooner than expected. http://t.co/aDT3oFRqYz— Newt Gingrich (@newtgingrich) May 19, 2014
If you've followed Gingrich's career, you know he looks upon this development with eager anticipation, not alarm -- under that helmet of white hair lies the mind of a technophile 11-year-old.
But wait -- Gingrich is praising European countries? Those socialist warhorses?
Yup -- and not just European countries, but European countries working in conjunction with the United Nations:
Cars could be driving themselves down the world's streets far sooner than expected, thanks to a change in a global treaty backed by European countries.Germany! Italy! France! How is this possible when everyone knows that socialism crushes the will to innovate, as well as all other aspects of the human spirit?
A little-noticed amendment to the United Nations Convention on Road Traffic agreed last month would let drivers take their hands off the wheel of self-driving cars. It was pushed by Germany, Italy and France, whose high-end carmakers believe they are ready to zoom past American tech pioneers and bring the first "autonomous vehicles" to market.
... as the technology becomes more affordable, Europe's luxury automakers say they are well placed to take advantage of it because of their deeper experience in engineering, manufacturing, marketing and sales. There is no point in waiting while California upstarts catch up.
... moving from test drives to marketable products was held back by Article 8 of the 1968 Convention on Road Traffic, which stipulates: "Every driver shall at all times be able to control his vehicle or to guide his animals."
The amendment agreed last month by the U.N. Working Party on Road Traffic Safety would allow a car to drive itself, as long as the system "can be overridden or switched off by the driver"....
Back in 2012, when he was running for president, Gingrich sneered at Europe for its, um, driving choices:
Gingrich ... lampooned the fuel-efficient Chevy Volt, and the prospect of generating energy from algae -- calling Obama "President Algae" and "President Food Stamps" -- and claimed that the 44th president is seeking "total power" to shape Americans' consumption habits.Apparently the driving in Europe is going to be more to Newt's taste soon.
"The President would like to force all of us into small vehicles," Gingrich alleged. "The President would like to force all of to do what he wants. He's president of the wrong country. ... He needs to move to Europe."