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Businesses United States

Proof Daylight Saving Time Is Dumb, Dangerous, and Costly (bloomberg.com) 352

From a report on Bloomberg: The case for daylight saving time has been shaky for a while. The biannual time change was originally implemented to save energy. Yet dozens of studies around the world have found that changing the clocks has either minuscule or non-existent effects on energy use. [...] The latest research suggests the time change can be harmful to our health and cost us money. The suffering of the spring time change begins with the loss of an hour of sleep. That might not seem like a big deal, but researchers have found it can be dangerous to mess with sleep schedules. Car accidents, strokes, and heart attacks spike in the days after the March time change. It turns out that judges, sleep deprived by daylight saving, impose harsher sentences. [...] Some of the last defenders of daylight saving time have been a cluster of business groups who assume the change helps stimulate consumer spending. That's not true either, according to recent analysis of 380 million bank and credit-card transactions by the JPMorgan Chase Institute.
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Proof Daylight Saving Time Is Dumb, Dangerous, and Costly

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  • by Virtucon ( 127420 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @09:23AM (#54022331)

    We've known for a long time, at least in my recollection since the '70s, that daylight savings time didn't do much other than cause problems. Since our Nation really isn't based on agricultural production anymore maybe it's time we just give it up. I'm sure the farmers, chickens and local schools can get it sorted out okay.

    • by Ol Olsoc ( 1175323 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @09:33AM (#54022369)

      We've known for a long time, at least in my recollection since the '70s, that daylight savings time didn't do much other than cause problems. Since our Nation really isn't based on agricultural production anymore maybe it's time we just give it up. I'm sure the farmers, chickens and local schools can get it sorted out okay.

      It's another case of Government over-reach. No one tells me what to do. We have the right to make it whatever time we want it to be.

      I use the metric minute, hours and days, but in every other letter of the greek alphabet.

      • It's another case of Government over-reach. No one tells me what to do. We have the right to make it whatever time we want it to be.

        So it's beer o'clock? I like this new work schedule.

    • by squiggleslash ( 241428 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @09:35AM (#54022383) Homepage Journal
      When I grew up, my teachers blamed the farmers for DST too. So imagine my surprise when I found out they're actually among the loudest opponents of DST - they generally oppose it because their work is synchronized to daylight hours, and DST means the entire world moves one hour out and expects deliveries, staffing, etc, an hour earlier for half the year.
    • by rmdingler ( 1955220 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @10:01AM (#54022483) Journal

      A group of scientists placed five monkeys in a cage, and in the middle, a ladder with bananas on top. Every time a monkey went up the ladder, the scientists soaked the rest of the monkeys with cold water. After a while, every time a monkey would start up the ladder, the others would pull it down and beat it up. After a time, no monkey would dare try climbing the ladder, no matter how great the temptation. The scientists then decided to replace one of the monkeys. The first thing this new monkey did was start to climb the ladder. Immediately, the others pulled him down and beat him up. After several beatings, the new monkey learned never to go up the ladder, even though there was no evident reason not to, aside from the beatinThe second monkey was substituted and the same occurred. The first monkey participated in the beating of the second monkey. A third monkey was changed and the same was repeated. The fourth monkey was changed, resulting in the same, before the fifth was finally replaced as well. What was left was a group of five monkeys that – without ever having received a cold shower – continued to beat up any monkey who attempted to climb the ladder. If it was possible to ask the monkeys why they beat up on all those who attempted to climb the ladder, their most likely answer would be “I don’t know. It’s just how things are done around here.” Does that sound at all familiar?

    • The areas that do not implement DST do so precisely because farmers don't want it.

      It's business interests that drives it ... if New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and in Canada Toronto didn't implement it, the other areas that need to be in contact with and in sync with the plethora of Head Offices based in those cities wouldn't lobby to implement or keep it.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by clovis ( 4684 )

      We've known for a long time, at least in my recollection since the '70s, that daylight savings time didn't do much other than cause problems. Since our Nation really isn't based on agricultural production anymore maybe it's time we just give it up. I'm sure the farmers, chickens and local schools can get it sorted out okay.

      DST should not be a problem for anyone anymore.
      If you want to know the time, just google for "correct time".

    • by msauve ( 701917 )
      "Since our Nation really isn't based on agricultural production anymore maybe it's time we just give it up."

      It's got nothing to do with farmers, a similar article [nationalgeographic.com] points this out:

      For some reason, many Americans grew up believing that the practice was adopted for farmers, Downing said.

      "That's the complete inverse of what's true," he said. "The farmers were the only organized lobby against daylight saving in the history of the country," he said, explaining that the practice left them with an hour less sunli

  • National DST Day (Score:5, Interesting)

    by PopeRatzo ( 965947 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @09:33AM (#54022365) Journal

    Why not just make the Monday after DST time change a national holiday? Problem solved.

    Me, I like Daylight Savings Time, because it will allow me to sit out on the porch in May listening to the Blackhawks game and still have enough light to read. And in the Winter it would suck having to go to work in the morning in the pitch dark.

    • What about setting time to halfway in between and then sticking to that.

      • If there's one thing that is far worse than any move of the clock by an hour either way, it's the stupid concept of half an hour offsets in timezones. But hey it works in North Korea so clearly it has something going for it or dear leader wouldn't have decreed it so.

        • In case I wasn't clear, I mean that instead of DST being a one hour change make it a half hour change then stick to that as standard time and don't change it anymore.

    • by Imrik ( 148191 )

      Because it's the Tuesday after the time change that gets the biggest spike.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Hey I have a radical idea! How about we adjust the work etc schedules differently for summer vs winter? Hmm, we'll ok it is not so radical, many businesses already do it... SO f*ing do that AND STOP WITH THE TIMEZONE BULLSHIT.

      Hey, our meeting is set up a bit late, it will be dark, how about setting it earlier. NO LETS ALL CHANGE OUR CLOCKS INSTEAD!!! Madness...

    • Because your body's circadian rhythm works on a 24 hour clock, simply giving people a day off doesn't fix the problem. If you've traveled internationally, you may have noticed that it's easier to adjust flying West than it is flying East. That's because flying West makes the day longer. You can simply stay up longer each day, and still get enough sleep. But going the other way you have to force yourself awake without enough sleep. It's the lack of sleep which makes it hard to adjust.

      DST works the sa
      • Speaking of circadian rhythm, nobody considers the fact that DST helps keep it more aligned all year long.

        In modern society, people are pretty much stuck on a fixed schedule all year long due to work, business hours, social events, etc. Having the sun come up at 4:00 a.m. would just serve to interfere with sleep. I would bet good money that the overall health detriment of that all summer long would far outweigh a single hour shift once per year.

        • Speaking of circadian rhythm, nobody considers the fact that DST helps keep it more aligned all year long.

          I have two words for you: winter hours

          If you want different words, try summer hours

    • by Bert64 ( 520050 )

      What's to stop them simply playing the blackhawks game when there are different numbers displayed on the clock? Or how about going to work in the winter when it gets light irrespective of what arbitrary numbers are displayed on a clock?

      DST doesn't change anything except the arbitrary numbers assigned to a particular portion of the day.

  • by RobinH ( 124750 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @09:35AM (#54022381) Homepage
    So can we just get rid of it then? I maintain a few data logging systems, and it creates all kinds of problems, as I'm sure you're aware most people want to view data in local time, but not only is there a 1 hour gap in the data in the spring, but there's actually going to be two points in time that are equally valid 1:30 am November 5th, 2017. That's just stupid.
    • by Toth ( 36602 )

      Our support folks had several calls today "caused" by the time change. i.e. "Gas pumps have the wrong time", "Appointments are off by an hour", etc. There will be several more over the next week or two.

  • by onyxruby ( 118189 ) <onyxrubyNO@SPAMcomcast.net> on Sunday March 12, 2017 @09:39AM (#54022395)

    Daylight savings is the perfect example of government's regulatory overreach interference in people's lives for theoretical gain. What is there is an increase in stress, time, money and heart attacks.

    It's a concept that kills people, something studies have shown for years. Meanwhile anyone who wants an extra hour of daylight can make a personal choice and adjust their sleep schedule.

    http://www.livescience.com/567... [livescience.com]
    https://permies.com/t/509/Debu... [permies.com]
    http://www.nytimes.com/roomfor... [nytimes.com]
    https://www.theatlantic.com/na... [theatlantic.com]

  • by puddingebola ( 2036796 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @09:43AM (#54022407) Journal
    What about the immense benefits of falling back when strokes and heart attacks dip, the birth rate increases, economic production increases, and consumer spending increases. Yes, it is unfortunate that so many must die from springing forward one hour, but I think you'll all agree, falling back is too great a benefit to discard. Thank you.
    • by Imrik ( 148191 )

      Falling back gives a far smaller benefit than the problems from moving forward, in some cases it even is a negative on its own.

    • Read TFA. It compared Los Angeles (uses Daylight Saving Time) vs Phoenix (doesn't use DST) There's a large increase in health services consumed associated with the start of DST, and a minuscule almost non-existent decrease associated with its end. Across all aspects measured (grocery sales, retail sales, restaurant business, other services, health services), the net effect of the start and end of DST was zero or negative.
  • by QuietLagoon ( 813062 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @09:50AM (#54022439)

    Proof Daylight Saving Time Is Dumb, Dangerous, and Costly

    A correlation was cited, but causation was not proven. There are more pedestrian accidents between noon and 1pm. But that does not mean that lunch hour needs to be eliminated.

    .
    Nice try. Wanna play again?

    • by religionofpeas ( 4511805 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @10:21AM (#54022553)

      A correlation was cited, but causation was not proven.

      DST happens on different dates every year, so if there's a clear correlation, it's as good as a proof for causation, because there's nothing else that happens on those days.

      • DST happens on different dates every year,...

        Different days of the month, but not different weekdays. Nice try. Wanna play again?

        • by religionofpeas ( 4511805 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @12:19PM (#54023063)

          Different days of the month, but not different weekdays. Nice try. Wanna play again?

          Sure, I'll play again.

          Switching over to daylight saving time, and losing one hour of sleep, raised the risk of having a heart attack the following Monday by 25 percent, compared to other Mondays during the year, according to a new U.S. study released on Saturday.

    • You have it backwards. If DST were useful as its proponents claimed, you'd expect to see a positive correlation with its use. Instead a negative correlation was found. That's enough to invalidate the claims of DST's proponents. No need to prove causation. (In fact if anyone needs to prove causation, it's the people advocating DST.)

      We're not trying to prove smoking is bad for you. We're merely trying to disprove the claims by the tobacco companies (DST proponents) that smoking is good for you.

      And
  • ... except that most of the lobby groups would call for us to be at GMT+1 all year round because they want it "lighter later". Screw that. I say the UK should stay at GMT all year round. I want some light to wake up to in winter - waking up in the pitch black is totally depressing.

    • by Zocalo ( 252965 )
      GMT+1 is the time most of the EU is on, whereas GMT is quintessentially a BRITISH thing; it's right there in the name! With the almost wall-to-wall "Fuck You, EU!" attitude from most of the the media and around half the population in the UK, if you ever wanted to scrap daylight savings and standardise on GMT I'd say the next couple of years are when you want to push for it.
  • by HalAtWork ( 926717 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @10:07AM (#54022501)

    Personally I stopped changing my clocks. Past few years I have just stayed on the current time and it's been great. I get more sunlight in the winter when I'm actually awake to enjoy it, and I avoided all the moaning and groaning of having to get up/go to bed earlier.

  • Yes get rid of it (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Rick Schumann ( 4662797 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @10:56AM (#54022699) Journal
    Get rid of the time change and make it light an hour longer in the evening. Who really gives a damn if dawn is an hour later every day? Most people work. So you're going to work in the dark, so what? Wouldn't most people prefer having it be light outside for a while after they leave work, even in mid-December?
    • No point in bitching about it on /. If you want this changed you need to contact your state legislature. The time change is determined locally. I know my state has put forward elimination but the biggest sticking point it whether the surrounding states will also change since many people work daily across state lines. The latest version had an activation only if a certain number of surrounding states also passed the changes.
  • The suffering of the spring time change begins with the loss of an hour of sleep.

    Yeah. Summary is both dumb and dangerous to the continued health of my braincells. Which kind of wrapped in a safety bubble bumbling idiot comes up with that "suffering". Mind you if someone is incapable of adjusting their sleep schedule so they don't lose an hour of sleep, let them suffer. Maybe we can weed out such precious flowers in a few more generations of dawinism as those people who can't cope with an alarm going off early die off early in heart attacks.

    • by dgatwood ( 11270 )

      Mind you if someone is incapable of adjusting their sleep schedule so they don't lose an hour of sleep, let them suffer.

      Most people are incapable of adjusting their sleep schedules at the drop of a hat. What I find is that about a week before the time change used to be, my body clock starts shifting. This means not only does the actual time change cause problems, but also the lack of the old time change. And instead of gaining an hour on the other end, somehow my body clock shifts the start time so that

  • You get to squeeze an extra hour of work from your employees while daylight's out. Folks are used to working when the sun's up.
    • by ledow ( 319597 )

      But you don't magically get an extra hour of daylight. They still work X hours which overlaps with Y hours of daylight. You've just offset one against the other slightly.

      And, in fact, in most places at any decent latitude, the hours of daylight are vastly longer than the average working day and even when they are not, what you lose in the morning, you gain in the evening and vice-versa:

      http://jan.moesen.nu/daylight-... [moesen.nu]

      As a mathematician, I honestly could never fathom what it was trying to achieve.

      Even if

  • by caseih ( 160668 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @11:25AM (#54022833)

    I farm and I'm actually in favor of DST, sort of. The reason is, without DST, during the very long summer days, I would have to wake up at 4 am to do herbicide applications (it's calmest around dawn). With DST I can sleep in until 5am. So I'd much rather have it than not have it. It makes a huge difference. Without DST I would just have to go to bed a lot earlier, but to make that effective I'd have to simply go to bed early all the time to condition my body to wake up earlier. That just doesn't work all that well when everyone else is going to bed later.

    But I would be in favor of simply having DST year round. The reasoning is that without DST, in the winter, folks usually wake up in the dark and drive to work in the dark, and then by the time they head home from work, it's dark again. With DST, you'd still drive to work in the very dark hours, but at least when you got home from work you'd enjoy a short period of daylight. At least for the northern latitudes.

    • how so? Germany is central Europe, so not at a really northern latitude, but even here the sunset in the winter is way before 18:00. it is long dark on the way home.

  • by markdavis ( 642305 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @11:46AM (#54022921)

    There is really nothing wrong with Daylight Saving Time. For modern people, it is better to have daylight later in the day than earlier. The problem is the change to and from Saving Time to Standard Time; that messes everything up.

    Change to DST (summer time) and just STAY THERE and stop changing time and all our problems go away.

    • by djinn6 ( 1868030 )
      I honestly don't understand why it matters which time zone we end up in. Businesses that want to open early will open at 7 AM if we go with UTC -8:00 and 8 AM with UTC -7:00. If a business needs daylight to do work, then they can adjust their own working hours throughout the year. If dawn is 5 AM in the summer, then start work at 5 AM. If it's 9 AM in the winter, then start work at 9.

      If you want people to have more daytime after work, you might as well just make a law that says work must end no later tha
  • Missed Mass (Score:4, Funny)

    by meta-monkey ( 321000 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @11:56AM (#54022957) Journal

    Also I missed church this morning, and evening Mass never feels the same. Ditch DST.

  • by Hussman32 ( 751772 ) on Sunday March 12, 2017 @12:24PM (#54023085)

    Why do people complain? You have more light for evening activities while still having enough light in the morning to get you to work.

    I can ride my bike home after work and not be in the dark. I can take my kids to the park. I can spend one more hour in the yard.

    It changes back because it's too dark in the morning for too long.

    And sure, as Hawai'i and Arizona can tell you, you're just fine if you don't change them. But I like it.

    • You have more light for evening activities

      It's still too cold right now for evening activities, and if I just wait another month, sunset will be an hour later anyway.

  • DST is not the issue, it's the switching that's the problem from my viewpoint. I would welcome DST year round as it gives you an extra hour of sunlight in the evening. This would be most appreciated in the winter.

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