In 1975, as Minister of Transport, the then John Gilbert introduced the Road Traffic (Seat Belts) Bill to Westminster. Although unsuccessful, five years later the 1981 Transport Act made the wearing of front seat belts compulsory.
Ralph Nader’s 1965 publication, Unsafe at Any Speed had a more dramatic effect on US road safety.
Both men later showed questionable political judgement, although to date Nader has not displayed a common link with Pearl Jam:
A former Labour defence minister has suggested threatening to drop a neutron bomb on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border in order to crack down on terrorism by creating a impassible barrier between the two countries.
Speaking in the House of Lords on Thursday, Lord Gilbert said Britain could use the radiation warheads “to create cordons sanitaire along various borders where people are causing trouble”.
“Your Lordships may say that this is impractical, but nobody lives up in the mountains on the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan except for a few goats and a handful of people herding them,” he said.
That none currently are thought to be deployable is not the most absurd part of the plan.