DejaMoo wrote: ↑Mon Feb 12, 2018 12:10 pm
OTOH, there are a lot of poor folks driving uninsured beaters either because they can't get insurance, or they can't afford the insurance, but still need a way to get around.
It seems that much of this sovcit rebellion is fuelled by simple financial desperation - can't afford to make the payments? Guess what - you don't have to! And people buy into it because they really don't have any other option when it comes to trying to hold onto what little they have, instead of losing it and sinking even further into poverty.
Think about this: you're working at Wal-Mart making $9 an hour. They're probably giving you 35 hours a week if you're "full time" so they don't have to give you insurance at 40 hours. So you're bringing home probably $1,000 a month. Even if you live way out in the middle of nowhere, it's hard to make it on that. A single person probably couldn't live in their own place on that.
If you've got to drive to get to work, the cost of license, registration, potentially personal property taxes and insurance can add up to a lot. Around here (a high cost NE US state) that would be $100-$120 a month, or about 10% to 15% of your paycheck. And it's easy for someone to conclude that this particular expenditure doesn't benefit them directly the way a dollar spent on food, rent, gas money, etc. would. And it's probably the only expense they can actually cut.
So it seems pretty natural that the scammers preaching financial freedom would pick this as the first place to try to promise a miracle financial cure. Of course, the problem is that getting caught with the trifecta of no insurance, no license and no registration, particularly if you have outstanding warrants for other bad behavior, makes the downstream cost to dig out from getting arrested to be quite significant.
One side effect of this situation where people put the fake plates on their car and attract attention is that the cops in some small towns might take pity on someone who's so marginal and let them off even if they know they're breaking the law. So when they get pulled over and let go, they think this nonsense actually "works," not that they're getting a lucky break on compassionate grounds.
In jurisdictions with license plate recognition scanners on the cars, dash cams and in-car laptops, cops don't have a lot of discretion about what to do. These are typically wealthy suburbs or larger cities. Once the ALPR systems are rigged up to detect the verbiage like "no license required" it is an easy software mod to alert patrol management in the police department that they've got a sovereign citizen and there's no discretion. A couple years ago my son's tags expired and he got stopped by a cop in a town with automated license plate readers. The cop told him that when the system lights up with expired tags, he no longer had the discretion to do anything about it -- he had to issue the citation and tow the car because there was a report from the ALPR system that got matched against the citations that were ultimately written. That may also be a reason why the incidence of poots trying to get away with this in the suburbs is pretty low. You have to be out in the sticks to have any chance of pulling this off even for a little while.