So, this Malaysian Airliner jet has been missing for about three weeks. Here’s what I don’t understand. Why are we still using black box technology? Wasn’t that developed in the ’50s? I’m confused. Can’t we do better in the era of the internet, wi-fi and bluetooth? Couldn’t Airbus and Boeing equip all of their planes with something that pings a satellite? Information like direction, speed and altitude can be relayed. If my cellphone can tell me where I am within 50 feet or so using Google Maps, I can’t understand why we are still using Black Box technology from an era that was before CT scanners and open heart surgery.
I’m sure that the hatred that I have for corporate America is mutual. I have plenty of recent evidence.
Just a couple days ago, I was called by Bank of America. They wanted to know when I was going to pay the $150 that I owe them. I got this call on Monday – Veterans Day. I happily told the Bank of America employee that I’d already paid the money that I owed plus an extra $50 at the branch on the previous Friday. Then he read a standard statement which said something about how I would continue to get calls from Bank of America until they had received the funds. Wait a minute! What do you mean? I’ve already paid you. I didn’t put the money in the mail. I didn’t pay you via carrier pigeon. I went to the branch and paid you on the spot. The money is in your bank. Why should I get any more calls? Well, he explained, it was not in our system. I asked, logically, why should I be penalized with more calls because your system is slow? Needless to say there was not a satisfactory answer to my question.
Last Friday, after working a 15-hour day, I got a lovely call from Sirius XM satellite radio. I owed them $260. What ensued was a bunch of confusion that can only be laid down by corporate America. It turns out that I have three separate accounts with Sirius XM. I stated that I would like to combine all three accounts into one simple account. In order to get this done there was some $20 fee. I really had no idea why they were charging me the $20 in addition to the $260 fee to renew my contract. The whole process wasted 45 minutes of my life. On Saturday, Sirius XM called again. What? Plenty of apologies and I thought we were done with the saga. Yesterday, I got an automated call from Sirius XM. My account would be terminated in 24-48 hours because of nonpayment. I needed to call immediately. Dammit! This was going to be ugly. So I called. I owed nine dollars. For what? I spent 45 minutes on the phone with you guys just the other day. How can I owe you nine dollars now? I never got a satisfactory answer. I asked to speak to a supervisor. After being on hold for more than five minutes, I was told they were going to waive the nine dollars. How magnanimous. I’d wasted over an hour of my life on something that should have taken five minutes. This is why I can’t stand corporate America.
So, let me follow up and tell you where we are with my 51-inch Samsung TV. My beautiful TV has been sitting on my floor, dead, for more than 10 weeks. Samsung has decided to replace the TV. The exchange program does not let you upgrade to another TV. It does not let you pay the difference. Basically, you accept their deal or not. I get a new TV with a 90-day warranty, not the year warranty that I had before. I’d also bought an extended warranty on the TV, which I suspect is money that I flushed down the drain.
Don’t you love corporate America? I know I do.
There are several things that I truly hate about our political system. One of them is the intentional gerrymandering of voting districts which seems to occur in every state every 10 years. It doesn’t seem to matter who’s in power, the overall purpose of redistricting seems to be to openly suppress the vote of your opposition. I feel pretty confident this is what’s happening in North Carolina as well is Texas. The Supreme Court has rejected the redistricting map from Texas because it appears that it has violated the Voting Rights Act of 1965. For this conservative court to unanimously reject a redistricting map is extraordinary. Texas now has to scramble to get a map approved before its April first primary. This is a daunting task.
We need to adopt a computer-generated nonpartisan redistricting process. (This is a very detailed map using a nonpartisan process.) In my opinion, this is a must in order to take back our democracy from special interests which includes both Democrats and Republicans.