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Is there a price to pay for Progress

Discussion in 'The Meadow' started by Hornet3d, Nov 16, 2018.

  1. Hornet3d

    Hornet3d Distinguished

    Very best of luck with the interview, I hope it all goes well and you are successful. I had a similar problem when I was made redundant from a job that was well paid with lots of International travel. I decided I wanted to downshift for a better quality of life. I thought convincing local employers I was serious about working long term for about a third of the pay would be close to impossible. In reality most were very understanding and could relate to my wish not to travel so much and get a better work life balance. They were more concerned about employing someone who was honest, could communicate and they could be confident you were going to turn up for work.
    Janet likes this.
  2. Hornet3d

    Hornet3d Distinguished

    Main dealers over here are also far more expensive and, like the US, there is no guarantee you will get a much better level of service and repair. If should also be noted that, in general, our level of customer service falls well below that of the US, at least that is my personal experience. It is beginning to change though, I can only speak for Honda but the service I have been given since buying the CRV is first class and that is with two different dealers. They now have set repair charges for most repairs so you will be charged the same at any of their dealers. They have set service and repair costs and also plans to pay monthly or yearly to cover the cost of servicing. I recently put my car in for one repair but they found a few other things but they now send you a video of the problems they have found. I had a warranty, not with Honda but it took numerous phone calls and four days to get the claim approved and even then the amount they were prepared to pay was only a fraction of the cost. Point is though, all that hassle and all the phone calls and emails were all handled by the dealership and when their rep saw the result of the claim he even discounted some of the work. As long as I keep getting service at this level I am prepared to pay a little more, even on the insurance, if it ensures I can use the main dealer for any repair.
  3. Hornet3d

    Hornet3d Distinguished

    One thing that surprise me is that there has been so many advances and yet companies seem to either not understand or not able to harness the new techniques.

    I was reminded this today, I was waiting to have some railway sleepers delivered and I had an email last night saying they had been loaded on the truck for delivery tomorrow and my order could no longer be changed. Another email this morning confirmed delivery between 08.40 and 14.40. Truck pulls up just after 13.00 and the driver discovers my order is not on the truck. I ring customer services but progress means I have the usual voice menu and the delivery option has three sub options. I tried all three options and everyone of them ends by a recorded message telling you to contact them through you account on the web. Not good but why have three options when one will do just say all delivery queries need to be done on the web. So I ring sales and , of course, I get to speak to a live person who puts me through to customer services where the rep takes my details, says she needs to speak to the driver department and puts me on hold. After a dozen or more renditions of 'Your call is important to us' I hang up.

    So now I do go through my account on the web and tell them unless I get a call by close of business today they can cancel the order for the railway sleepers and my order for a small summer house. Someone calls and agrees to ship the railway sleepers for Saturday. An hour later I get an email saying that due to the manufacturing delay my new delivery date is Monday. I now ring the customer service rep back as I now have her direct number and ask a few questions, first is the delivery for Saturday or Monday and if there was a manufacturing delay how were they able to load it on the truck last night and give the driver the consignment details. I got the usual response, it was an automated message, but I pointed out that there had to be some human interaction to pick the reason for the delay.

    Leaves me not understanding if the sleepers were ever loaded on the truck, if they were did they fall off on route (dangerous) or the driver delivered them elsewhere. Perhaps some who was expecting a summer house and arrived home to find a self build kit consisting of six railway sleepers. What I am certain of is my opinion, and that is, this company has little clue how to use the technology, from order picking to customer contact to voicemail menus and god knows what their cyber security is like. The sad fact is my own experience tells me they are far from alone.
  4. carmen indorato

    carmen indorato Extraordinary

    Sounds soooooo familiar. My dear mother used to say:
    The world is a City.
    Communicating across the planet like this reinforces that belief reading how we all share the same difficulties irregardless of our city!
    I hate the infinite loops and call transferring in the systems. I am starting to think it intentional to get you frustrated and ultimately hang up.
    When they get you on the phone it angers me when they remind me I could have done it electronically by email or on their site. I tell them I don't have a computer and need a real face to talk to to get this resolved. Of course that real face doesn't now shit from shinola and has to himself or herself go on line to get the data.
    Yeah, life sucks in the digital age. When things are good they are very good but when the poop hits the fan, it all sucks!
  5. Ken1171

    Ken1171 Distinguished Contributing Artist

    This documentary from 2011 tells a different story comparing to what I remember while I was living in the US. It was made in the same year I left. I would like a 2nd opinion from those of you who are still there. Is it as bad as they have claimed it was back in 2011? Of course, different people will have different life experiences, but I believe there is a common ground about the general situation.

  6. Ken1171

    Ken1171 Distinguished Contributing Artist

    One thing about the video above was that the family they decided to use as the prime example earns $120K, which is waaay above the American average income. How come they can't make do with such an unusually high income? Wouldn't this just be another classic example of people who just can't handle credit cards responsibly? It is not the bank's fault that they overspend, or don't pay their debts responsibly. Everybody knows that credit cards are money traps these days, right?

    In addition, I find it slightly offending that they compare this with the Great Depression, where people were STARVING on the streets because they had no money to eat or a place to live. These people are complaining about having to cook their own meals - that's a completely different situation. I understand that bankers use predatory tactics that used to be illegal in America before Ronald Reagan, but that doesn't justify these families irresponsibly overspending their income, and getting into debt like that. I find it odd that these people put the blame on anybody else but themselves. Nobody has forced them to indulge into overspending.

    I also find it funny that they have decided to use the state of Arizona in 2011 as an example of real estate crisis, right when Hispanics were being statewide persecuted and forced to run away to other states by Maricopa county's sheriff Joe Arpaio. I was there when it happened. Of course, they left a huge number of rented homes vacant, which generated a real estate crisis. Of course, that had nothing to do with the supposed death of the middle class they try to depict in the video.

    They also compare how the previous generations used to have a better share of the American Dream, but that was in a time when banks were not [yet] allowed to charge the crazy APR rates they practice nowadays. It was more forgiving to pay for a loan in those days than it is now. Maybe that explains a few things.
  7. Satira Capriccio

    Satira Capriccio Distinguished CV-BEE Contributing Artist

    Good luck Janet!!!
    Janet likes this.
  8. Hornet3d

    Hornet3d Distinguished

    I wonder how much sympathy there was for those that were featured. The comparison with the depression seems extreme and if the queues outside food banks that are being shown here in the UK are anything to go by it would be closer to the depression now than then.

    I once worked with someone who had been on unemployment for about 4 years, he only worked for about six months then engineered his dismissal. The told me he could not afford to work and run a people carrier to transport his six children. Not only was I not sympathetic I was annoyed I, along with all other working tax payers, was paying for his extended family.
  9. Janet

    Janet Extraordinary Contributing Artist

    Thank you! I had an interview yesterday. It went well and they liked me but were concerned that I have trouble carrying a 30 pound bag of dog food. They will let me know Friday.
  10. Hornet3d

    Hornet3d Distinguished

    Glad it went well, I will keep my fingers crossed in the hope it might help, if not I can always use it as an excuse for my bad typing/spelling :).
    Janet likes this.
  11. Ken1171

    Ken1171 Distinguished Contributing Artist

    Indeed! Another thing is that the so-called American middle class don't make $120K a year like that family does. They make do with much less than that, so it was a poor example that doesn't represent who they want to portrait. It seems to me that what they did in that video was to defend self-indulgence and overspending, while putting the blame for the consequences on others.

    Nonetheless, it was a good example of how bankers abuse credit card rates to trap people into endless debt. This is why I keep receiving 2-5 credit card applications a week for years. I have a good credit record, which makes me the perfect target for bankers. I happen to be the only member from my family that didn't fall for that yet. There is a whole banking industry trying to get people into it, and then another one trying to help people to get out if it. Doesn't that sound like credit cards have become a kind of drug? LOL
  12. Speedr8cer5

    Speedr8cer5 Member

    Wow...we must be doing good. We have made between 27k and 37k...we have about 1k on credit cards. We have a home we are buying. I have been out of work for almost 3 months due to a back injury and we are currently only behing this month. And up to recently my wife has made and sold things to help supplement what I made but have tried to keep her from having to work outside the home.
  13. Hornet3d

    Hornet3d Distinguished

    I guess the credit cards are much the same in the UK and, while I don't agree with it, I can see why some people just get caught in the trap and way in over their head. I think my bigger concern though is for those banks who pray on those so close to the poverty line. The pay day loan companies that look so tempting to those who have a little of the week or month left over when the money runs out. Who but banks and governments can justify 1250% rates of interest.
  14. Miss B

    Miss B Drawing Life 1 Pixel at a Time CV-BEE

    Good to hear. FingersCrossed.png
  15. Ken1171

    Ken1171 Distinguished Contributing Artist

    Still on the credit card history, nothing better than explain it with a cartoon.

  16. carmen indorato

    carmen indorato Extraordinary

    The shit all comes down to greed and polarized politics not only on a national level but more and more on an international level. When Liberal Congress forced banks to give loans o lower income worker in US so they could invest in American Dream even though they not only did not have enough or ANY equity assurance to pay it back that caused an economic crash during the Obama administration. Property got confiscated by over stretched banks who were coerced into taking stupid risks giving those loans to what would have historically been unqualified creditors.
    Then they needed bailing out. The Gov forced the damage and the government bailed them out and of course the American tax payer got screwed. It seems to be a pattern of late and one I dread.
    It is funny the video called the Tea Part Movement a group of angry bigoted people venting and wanting change.
    Yes, Angry and yes wanting change in their disfunctional polarized government whose main purpose for the past 30 years and growing has been for themselves the elites of this country. Of course if they do everything to to help the poor or illegal immigrants everyone else suffers. Now it is Socialism they are trying to shove down our throats and of course noone in the liberal government has any damn idea who is going to pay for it all. Oh yes the top 1% citizens. And when they can no longer be raped financially who pays for all the social grants they want to give to EVERYONE?

    It was long ago if you or your family had no money you did not go to college. You got job or a trade and worked. You lived at home until you had enough to get married or move into your own little apartment and become independent.
    You learned to be frugal, ate at home and tried to save as much as you could for a rainy day. Now, kids are spoiled rotten, demanding they get the best sneakers and designer clothes, electronics, cars and vacations. Families eat out and disregard th difference between wants and needs.
    We are victims not only of the banks who own the credit cards but of Madison Avenue advertisers we "HAVE TO HAVE THIS OR THAT just to make our lives better. It is constant on TV. It was once an ad was less often viewed. No TV ads are running on a 2 to 1 ration. 2 minutes of ads for very 1 minute of broadcast time.
    It was once that cable TV was paid for by the consumer if they did not want to see ads. But that changed withing the first two years of Cable TV as slowly more and more ads began showing up on cable broadcasts. It would have been ok for sme but what that did was get everyone addicted to cable and with more and more people subscribing th transmission towers non cable users relied on to get their TV shows to come home wee getting fewer and fewer in yur area meaning if you decided to cut your cable and go back to antennae you would very likely be SOL because you might not be in an are that had decent reception.
    These are a few of the issues I have had to deal with myself and there are many many more on a day to day basis I have found keep us poorer than our parents. For instance I invested and have made a lot of money on those investments. Of late as the stock markets are getting destroyed and the American hate trup polarized government compounded not by American economy which is actually pretty good, but by international politics and economics and the overall global geo/political instability. To keep the investments a few years ago no longer being able to wade through the buy and sell skills needed to maintain positive growth, I got a managed account where the brokerage firm gets paid a small percentage of my overall portfolio value to keep the portfolio in good positive growth. But when I see in one month I lose $16,000+ I get real nervous and for the past few months that total has been falling precipitously making me lose more and more, I am thinking now the managers of my funds are not keeping me in the Positive but getting paid anyway that is going to CHANGE!

    Wants and needs.
    I never eat out, I never go on vacation, I always try to find discounts for services and foods etc as often as I can just to keep from overspending. No movies little driving to save gas and canceling some of the stuff I used to subscribe to for years. Books, music, magazines, wines, etc.

    Wants and needs! I may not be living the American Dream like it is sold to us but I try to live comfortably and safely WITHIN MY MEANS without being beholding to anyone. That is MY AMERICAN DREAM!
  17. Ken1171

    Ken1171 Distinguished Contributing Artist

    I believe some people tend to confuse the American Dream with self-indulgence, which might be a major cause for irresponsible overspending. But we can't deny this is all related to what the Founding Fathers have stated: when the country looses control of the money supply to private businesses (like the Federal Reserve), that's the end of the American Dream. People get enslaved by credit cards, gradually transferring their wealth to the banks. This is how every new generation has less than the previous. Our grandparents owned their homes, while we rent them. Now wonder the IRS was created in the same year (1913) as the Federal Reserve. Also no wonder so many Americans consider federal tax illegal. It's all connected, but people don't see it.
  18. Hornet3d

    Hornet3d Distinguished

    I think you have a point in that a lot of this has to do with self indulgence but then I also agree with the underlying problem being more to do with the monetary system, self indulgence just helps the whole rotten process along. To some point I can see that for a large part of the world the idea of poverty has changed. It used to mean not being able to afford enough to eat and sadly that is still wide spread today but, for many, it is not having a car, a flat screen TV, the latest smart phone and so on. Even when you have those it is not enough for some, it has to be a massive flat TV with all the bells and whistles, many of which you will never use. The phone must have a particular fruit imprinted on it and the same rational expends to the clothes which must have the all important badge. This even includes underwear, which one would hope, very few people will see unless you are in one of a fairly few select professions.

    The only time I am interested in a particular badge is when buying tools as I was taught young that a good quality will last a life time. I have saws and wood planes that I purchased when working on my first home over forty years ago and some tools that were purchased for me that have not lasted forty weeks. That aside I really just look for what will do the job, my smart phone is four years old and cost the equivalent of $100, and none of my clothes carry a designer badge. I guess there is one other exception, I will pay more for something such as fair trade coffee where some of the profits are invested with the growers. I know some will say that is also why you should pay more for clothes but I am well aware just having a branded label is no guarantee
    that it is not produced in a sweat shop.

    I worked a phone shop a few years ago and was surprised by one young girl who would not send her phone off for a free repair because the only loan phone I had to offer was last years model. I remember her exact word even today, " I can't be seen using that my friends will tear me to pieces". I also remember the anger of her father who was paying the contract each month for what was essentially a faulty phone. I also remember the Saturday girl in my local coffee shop who refused point blank to sweep up as she "would not be seen dead with a broom in her hand as it would ruin her street cred". I must admit that I did wonder on both occasions what their priority would be if they were starving.

    Yep the banking system is greedy and immoral but some seem hell bent on being a victim.
  19. Ken1171

    Ken1171 Distinguished Contributing Artist

    That's some pretty good points. My sister only buys items based on brand. I buy based on reviews. My downstairs neighbor bought a Sony Bravia TV because she thought if it's the most expensive on the stores, it must mean it's the best from the bunch. That may even have some truth, but the guy from the TV fixing shop on the corner receives as many Sony and Samsung defective TVs as any other brand. Not to mention where I live, Samsung is the most sold, but it also has the worst technical support ratings in the country, where when you call them, you will never talk to a human being. That's why I buy based on the ratings, not the brand.

    As for credit card overspendings, if people were never late on their payments, they wouldn't even have to know what APR means. If you can't afford it, don't buy it. It's a as simple as that. But like we know, there is a lot of cold psychological and calculating marketing involved that pushes people into wanting things as if they really necessary. I wish I could hire these people to make my store products promos! LOL
  20. Hornet3d

    Hornet3d Distinguished

    What makes such branded buying also a little nonsensical is the fact that many of the LCD panels are the same across a number of brands. Just like computer monitors where a Dell panel is used in a range of monitors all with different brand names on the front. Like you I always read a lot of reviews, often from different sources, before any major expense. I also read the low scores as many times a low review has nothing to do with the product, comments like the delivery driver was rude is worth making but it is not then really fair to score the product a single star based upon that.

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