October 21, 2011

Somebody asks you to pretend you were driving when they were caught on camera speeding. Do you: a) agree to take the points, b) politely decline, c) march straight down to the local police station and report this person to HM Constabulary as an attempted perverter of the course of justice.

How did you do? If you answered a) you are either very naughty or married to the attempted-perverter in question, or both – Bankstone News has no desire to plumb the murky waters of your marital affairs.

If you answered b), congratulations, you are on the path to virtue – lacking only the unforgivingly vindictive streak to mark you out as a truly right-minded citizen.

The correct answer is of course c). Dob ‘em in right away and fingers crossed they haven’t got anything on you (although: how could they, given that you lead an entirely blameless life, and can just deny it all anyway?)

According to a survey carried out by Alcoholics Anonymous and popular retro god-simulation game Populus, just 1% of Brits would (or, perhaps more accurately, were prepared to admit they would) take the points-hit for someone else. That’s impressively scrupulous, isn’t it?

To turn the story into something more salacious, however, all you need do is convert that feeble looking 1% into a “shocking” 300,000 people – imagine Anfield filled six times over with point-swapping law perverters. Terrifying isn’t it?

The good news is that 12% of the 17,000 AA members surveyed said they would report any suggestion of point swapping to the forces of law enforcement. Scale that up and you have 3.6 million eager informers out there, which is roughly what the Stasi had back in the day.

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