Sunday, September 13, 2009

Treading water in a whirlpool

Perhaps some of you have noticed that I've been a bit scarce on the 'Toobs lately.

In an effort to save a few ducats, I've decided to give up my Internet access and the meager cable that came with it. I've been trolling the internet for more almost 20 years, since the years of Protegy, BBS and 9600 baud modems connected to screaming 286 XT's. (ten megahertz, baby!) It's been a part of my daily activity for a long time. But something has to go.

The faltering economy and abject corporate greed has given me little choice. My employer, who shall be nameless, is not hurting that badly but has found that the public's fear and consternation about the economic climate has given rise to a timely opportunity to make a few more millions. Using the economy as a crutch, they've slashed hours and suspended merit raises. Management is constantly reminding us that for every job they post, hundreds of applicants show up - so watch your ass!

Nervous isn't an apt description. Terrified come closest. Some of my co-workers are barely making ends meet because of health issues, kids, household repairs and transportation grief, etc. This shit isn't news to anyone with a pulse over the last year. I'm certainly not alone. Bills stack up, credit cards get maxed out, phones shut off, and the car breaks down.

Don't look for sympathy from any of the corporate whores raking in the dough either. The banks got billions of our funds to keep their logos on the door and they thank us by jacking up late and overdraft fees. One example: a friend at work paid her VISA bill but transposed the numbers of her online payment. She overpaid by $63 which put her in the hole ten bucks. It went unnoticed for a couple of days, after she had spent money on gas, groceries and school supplies... six transactions for just under forty dollars. Because of the overpayment error, she got hit with seven overdraft charges worth - $240. She called the bank as soon as she realized the error and explained her plight. It was a wasted call. The bank rep did nothing but lecture her about paying attention to her transactions and that maybe this situation will be a lesson to her. She has two kids and a husband that recently was laid off from that same bank.

Fuck that!

Fuck Bank of America, Fuck Chase, and Fuck all the rest. Real people are suffering out there. That error could have happened to me or any other person. Even a math whiz will fuck up a number on occasion. The corporate whores that play with our lives care as much for us as they do for their tennis shoes. Run the shit out of them then toss them to the curb.

The Insurance industry is just as corrupt. The billing clerk from my doctor's office called me to talk about my growing bill. She was cool, but direct. Money needed to start coming in. I explained my situation at work and she was sympathetic. I'm making a small payment every month. But she did say some shit that got me steamed. She was curious why my bill was so high. Other patients with the same insurance were paying a lot less out of pocket that was I. Basically, my insurance was stiffing me for most of the bill. I should be paying 15 to 20 percent after the initial deductible but that's not the case. I'm responsible for nearly 65% of the full cost of my surgery and treatment!

It's part of the game. They know what their supposed to pay but don't. They stiff the doctors for the cost of the procedure and let the patient pick up the tab. If you have the time, the patience, the understanding of the plan and a lot of fucking luck; you can badger the insurance company into paying their share of the bill. Not paying more or going beyond their responsibilities but paying their share....the amount they are supposed to pay anyway.

Stories like this are too numerous to count. Every one of us have them and they all stink. The answer to this shit is sitting in committee in Congress. It's been there so long, it's starting to grow mold.

We have to get this crap done. Fuck the Corporations! Toss out any legislator that puts their needs above ours. Reform Wall Street, break up the big financial conglomerates. Enforce the fucking anti-trust laws. If the laws are too weak, change them. Let the fuckers on the Supreme Court know that a person has a heart and a brain, not a spreadsheet and a bottom line. Corporations are not people. They are blood sucking parasites.

Hope to be around a little while longer...but Comcast will cut me off as soon as the money runs out.
I have a lot to do until then.

Keep swinging!

So Mote It Be,
David A.