Close encounters of the fender-bending kind

This week was a bad week for driving.  I didn’t have any trouble myself, but I was WAY too close to one actual accident and one almost-accident in the space of 15 minutes.  (Why is it called a near miss?  It was a miss.  It’d be more accurate to call it a near hit.)  I was on my way to DC for a middle of the day meeting on Wednesday, and traffic was terrible.  Lanes were closed for construction and everyone was inching along the access road where three lanes were merging into one.  While we still had two lanes, I watched a guy rear end another car.  They weren’t going fast, but the one guy hit the other hard enough to buckle his hood.  Not pretty.  Not 15 minutes later, I was on a three-lane highway and I watched a car in the left lane and a car in the right lane both try to merge into the middle lane ON TOP OF a car in between them who was already in the middle lane.  There was much honking and swerving.  I was about four car-lengths behind the guy in the middle lane, and I kept my eyes peeled the whole rest of the trip.  No more incidents.  Today, though, there were a bunch of idiots in a huge hurry on the way home from Baltimore.  I was going about 80 most of the time, in the rain, and these guys were flying by me.  In the rain.  Why do people drive like morons?  Why was I going 80 (speaking of morons…)?