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Archive: Motoring as a hobby should be discouraged

The frivolity of driving for pleasure in January 1916

23 January 2016

9:00 AM

23 January 2016

9:00 AM

From ‘The Conscription of Wealth’, The Spectator, 22 January 1916: At recent race meetings streams of motor-cars have proceeded from London carrying down persons engaged solely in the pursuit of their own amusement, wasting petrol, wasting the labour of chauffeurs, and diverting in hundreds of detailed ways energy which ought to have been devoted to the carrying on of the war. A heavy tax on petrol and heavier duties on motor-cars, except where they are used for public work, would prevent this scandal. More generally, it is notorious that in all classes, with the possible exception of the very rich, the scale of expenditure is as high as, or higher than, before the war, and the only way of effectively dealing with the problem is to increase taxation heavily. Certainly the well-to-do classes will make no objection.


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