The unemployment rate isn’t going down and President Obama and his merry crew are wondering what to do. Of course Mitt “flip flop” Romney says if he gets elected he will get the unemployment rate down and see to it that Americans can have things like vacations! Look, I like Obama and I don’t care for Mittens, but the truth is no one is going to decrease the unemployment rate because corporations in the quest for efficiency have made the American worker obsolete.
If you think I am kidding, read this piece from the New York Times and think about it. On the surface it might make sense that technology companies being all cutting edge and shit, don’t have mere customer service reps but really the decrease of humans goes beyond technology companies.
Remember when companies first automated their systems back in the quaint dark ages; if the menu didn’t have what you needed, you could always press 0 for an operator. Guess what! You pressed 0 and a real live human came on the line and helped you. Those were the good ole days when your problems could get solved. However some rocket scientist decided do away with the operator, we don’t need no stinking operator…now you get stuck in a loop waiting and hoping that your problem can be solved since no matter how detailed the menu, I always have a problem that needs that human touch.
Just this past week, I had to call that big scary agency that makes Americans shake in their boots better known the Internal Revenue Service. Let me backtrack, I actually went to their website to see if we could work out a plan since according to their site, if you owe a small amount now defined as $50,000 or less you don’t need to jump through any hoops to get a payment plan. By the way, they doubled that figure, used to be if you owed more than $25,000 you had to deal with the really special department made up of super agents, but with the economic collapse I guess too many people owed money so that raised the limits.
Anyhoo, despite going all bankrupt and shit last year, I still owe these fine folks some cash and wanted to make a payment plan. The online system couldn’t help me since my situation is apparently unusual and it didn’t register all my account information. After two attempts online I bit the bullet and called them and waited 45 minutes to talk to a human, that was after calling one day and waiting 20 minutes and just saying screw it. Hellooooo! Big government agency that handles incoming cash, get more humans! Seriously! I can’t even imagine how someone who has a job that isn’t flexible could place a call to these folks. In the past year every time I have called I am on hold anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour before I speak to a human being.
Next up, I had cable woes this week and again, no humans and the automated voice couldn’t register my complaint, thankfully after 15 minutes I was finally connected to humans. I will say that my local cable company that behemoth known as Time Warner Cable while they lack on the customer service side, they rock on the technician side! My tech came out this morning…Sunday morning and fixed all my problems. The problem is in order to get to the technicians I have to deal with customer service and that is where they fail.
Also what’s up with all this outsourcing, I have called large companies in Maine and the people at the other end of the line clearly are not Mainers. What? No Mainers in need of jobs? I think not.
My point is, too many times companies in a quest to make sure they maintain profitability for their shareholders and owners decrease staff, outsource to cheaper areas or automate and when this happens, someone is going to be jobless.
You want to get Americans working again; you need Americans to have access to jobs that pay real living wages and not this service economy shit we are all in. Sure a few of us have good jobs with bennies but most of us are piecing our shit together. Our standards have decreased too, fuck a vacation, we just want to earn enough to pay all our bills, and not have to do the bill shuffle game and maybe even have some dental insurance so we won’t be wearing dentures by 50.