Landing A Plane On Mont Blanc – But Which Law Has Been Broken?

A fun little illustration of why the fully planned and regulated society doesn’t in fact work. Because the bureaucrats doing the planning and regulation simply aren’t able to think through all the things that humans might do:

Police pursue men who landed plane near Mont Blanc summit

Rather brings up an image of French versions of the Keystone Cops. Run the film at high – Benny Hill – speed of course, as we watch Les Flics totter up and down the mountainside.

Two Swiss mountaineers landed a small plane less than 400 metres from the summit of Mont Blanc on Tuesday before heading for the top of Europe’s tallest peak with police in pursuit, the French gendarme said.

Yes, in pursuit. Most Keystone. Just imagine the following in kepis.

Describing them as mountaineers also looks a little premature.

The pair landed the aircraft at 4,450 metres (14,600-feet) on the famous mountain in the French Alps in an incident described as a “provocation” by the mayor of the nearby Chamonix resort, Eric Fournier. “It constitutes an intolerable attack on the high mountain environment and on all existing protective measures,” Fournier said, describing the behaviour as “unprecedented”.

Well, yes, you’ve got all sorts of preventive measures and yet this is still unprecedented.

Lt-Col Bozon said they were reflecting on what offence had been committed.

And yet your couple of centuries – it’s only about that long that Europeans have really though about climbing mountains for sport – of thought about regulation and measures has entirely failed to forsee this event.

Which tells us that the planned and regulated society doesn’t work. Simply because the planners and regulators can’t think through all the things that humans will try to do. Sure, more normally we worry about the regulations stopping people from doing something beneficial but still, the point stands. As we can’t forsee all the things people will try to do we can’t plan nor regulate all the things people do.

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Dodgy Geezer
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Dodgy Geezer

A fun little illustration of why the fully planned and regulated society doesn’t in fact work. Because the bureaucrats doing the planning and regulation simply aren’t able to think through all the things that humans might do…

That’s only a problem with the British approach to legislation – ‘Anything not forbidden is permitted’. I believe that the Napoleonic Code works rather closer to ‘Anything not permitted is forbidden’…

The Mole
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The Mole

If they class it as a protected environment then I would have thought (in the UK at least) they would have used the catch-all of criminal damage.

Rhoda Klapp
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Rhoda Klapp

There are probably aviation regulations that say you can’t just land a plane where you like. In the case of helicopters in the UK you only need the landowner’s permission, IIRC.

Leo Savantt
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Leo Savantt

You can land absolutely anywhere if your aircraft is in distress, or if you are flying an un-powered aircraft and can’t maintain altitude due to lack of lift. However, you could be prosecuted for being negligent in planning or poor aircraft maintenance if that caused the landing, but not for the landing itself.

Quentin Vole
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Quentin Vole

We could always adopt the Germanic position that everything not officially sanctioned by law is prohibited.

Jonathan Harston
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Jonathan Harston

I’m sure Isaac Asimov wrote a story about somebody getting to the peak of Everest via ‘plane instead of the hard way, so it’s not as though the idea is new.

The story had some twist (aliens?) resulting in an in-story claim that Everest would never be climbed – it was published a few months after Tensing and Hillary got there.

Ah ha: Everest.

TD
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TD

We may be about to enter a unique point in history as Elizabeth Warren is scribbling away on detailed plans to micromanage the US and apparently she and her supporters are convinced that she’ll be able to anticipate every conceivable action humans might undertake. Mind you, her plans are long, and very small print.