Saturday, November 2, 2013
Tuesday, August 6, 2013
I don't a lot of times because I resent every company trying to make ME a shill for their product.
But I wonder why there isn't a DISLIKE button on Facebook as well ?
After all, I may not like your opinion on my page and there seems to be no way to remove it once its posted yet I have no say in it.
Nor do I get to say I don't like something except by posting it as a comment.
Is this some kind of " fairness " issue ?
I will admit I don't use Facebook as much as some do, because I spend a lot of time posting on other sites and other Facebook pages other than my own.
But it is something I wonder about.
I'd also like someone to tell me how to delete all of the " friend " requests I get.
Who ARE some of these people anyway and WHY do they want and seemingly NEED to be my friend ?
I don't get it.
Transit IS a public safety issue, no matter what the transit union thug types may think AND the politicians of the SF Bay Area ( who are symbiotically linked to them ) may think as well.
AND no matter what a SF State professor may think into today's Chronicle.
Negotiate and not strike SHOULD be the issue.
And never is with the extortionist tactics of transit union workers and their leaders.
These strikes cause people to have health issues.
They can't get to hospitals, doctors or get needed medication and in one case I know of personally, led to a stroke by a 94 year old senior because her care worker could not attend to her because BART went on strike.
That person was my aged Mother who is almost blind and deaf and became so agitated that she had a stroke over the lack of care.
One of these days a transit strike is going to kill some elderly person or someone who has a need for dialysis or insulin and dies because they couldn't get to medical care.
Transit is NOT just something to go to and from to get to somewhere.
It IS an essential public service just like fire and police and there needs to be a new law banning strikes by transit workers statewide.
Can one of our local or state legislators have the courage to step up and actually propose such a law and not be a lapdog for union interests ?
But I don't see anyone proposing such a law and it is long overdue.
And WHY do we ALWAYS hear from unionists that they " don't WANT to strike " ?
If they didn't WANT to strike, they wouldn't even think of doing so.
It's time for union workers to quit saying that they don't WANT to strike when everyone else KNOWS that they do.
Knock it off.
It's disengenuous and a bare faced LIE as well.
Pics from KRON 4 & KTVU among others.
Where are the rider's representatives in transit strike negotiations ? Transit unions and strikes. ...
WHY is there NO rider's representatives at these contract negotiations ?
With a BART strike averted, now a potential AC Transit strike looms as the BART union " claims " ( as unions always do in these cases ) that MANAGEMENT has not " acted in good faith ".
But the people with the most to lose and the most affected have NO say in these talks.
The riders need a representative too as they inevitably wind up paying FOR these strikes in wage losses, time and inevitably higher fares to ride the transit system that they need to take to get to work, doctor's appointments, shopping or just get to and from a location.
I think the transit agencies of the Bay Area need to think about this and appoint someone who is NOT connected with management or the unions and have that person sit in in all negotiations and who would be empowered to have a say in these negotiations as well.
It IS the rider whose interests should be protected and who has been consistently ignored every time a strike looms.
And also why did the Governor not appoint someone who actually rides BART and not 2 union leaders to his investigative panel on the BART negotiations ?
Think about it BART, AC TRANSIT, MUNI and Governor Brown ...
Pictures from KRON 4 and KTVU news sites.
Saturday, August 3, 2013
UHAUL van rental from Hell ! Unsafe at any speed ! Steering locked up 3 times. We could have been killed if we'd been in traffic ! Never again ! ...
Little did I know it was the rental from hell.
UHAUL's Ford vans ( there's a reason why FORD stands for fix or repair daily ) have a feature where you have to press hard down on the brake pedal to move the shift lever out of park.
That's fine IF it doesn't happen while you're driving the damned thing !!!
The van we rented from the Monument Avenue location in Concord kept having the steering wheel lock up every time we either stopped and had our foot on the brake or parked and it also locked up 3 times while we were driving it. It finally locked up totally and we spent over 30 minutes trying to get the steering wheel to move. The ignition switch would also not move either and was also locked up.
I and my girlfriend both tried to move the damned thing and nothing happened. I called the location where we rented it and they were of no help. They transferred me to UHAUL'S misnamed customer service and they weren't any help either. They did send someone out to help us but when he arrived he was actually blocks away from our location and did not know where we were and asked ME for UHAUL'S emergency road service phone number ( something he should have & shouldn't be asking the customer for it ) and by that time I finally got the steering wheel to move by putting both of my feet on the pedal A LA Fred Flintstone, pushing as hard as I could on the pedals and using both of my hands applied force on the steering wheel and by moving it to the Left, I got it to move and my gf was able to drive it. IF she had been alone, she never could have gotten it to move.
This feature of pushing on the brake pedal is dangerous and should not be on any van.
We're furious and are just thankful the steering wheel didn't lock up when we were in heavy traffic or on the freeway.
I asked UHAUL for an adjustment to my bill but ... they take 2-3 days to contact you instead of dealing with it on the spot. I want a refund of at least the rental fee given that we wound up cutting our plans for the van short because we were afraid to drive the cursed thing.
I and my late Father had rented UHAUL trucks for years and never had a problem But after this experience, I will NEVER rent another UHAUL van again !!!!
|Van unsafe with UHAUL's press on the brake to move the shift lever feature !|
Friday, July 26, 2013
O'buma clueless. People lock doors in black neighborhoods because that's where criminals are ! Oakland woman killed in her car while driving through her neighborhood ! Where's the outrage ? ...
Sometimes even that doesn't help as in the case of Judy Salamon shown below.
She was driving home with one of the dogs she took care of in her dog walking business when someone or someones decided to end her life.
She would report to authorities abused animals in her neighborhood, yet an idiotic Oakland PD spokesman said she was :
" In the wrong place at the wrong time. "
Just what is the RIGHT place, officer to be shot and killed in your car while driving through your own neighborhood ?
People in her neighborhood knew her and like her.
But obviously, someone didn't.
Where's the outrage over yet another victim of crime in Oakland, Ca. ?
May your killer or killers be caught soon.
Now the Oakland City Council is calling for action after her death.
The same city government that laid off hundreds of cops and which led to a 25 % increase in crime in Oaktown ?
We hear these calls for " action " seemingly every day after someone gets killed in Oaktown, don't we ?
Yet the killing continues unabated.
Pictures from the SF Chronicle.
Neighbors shocked at fatal shooting of 66-year-old woman
Friday, July 19, 2013
Craigslist wouldn't allow this critical post to stay up on their car sales site !!! Buyer tries to tell sellers what bothers buyers. Ad got flagged !
|Car listed as if it is somehow repairable and driveable.|
Yet a post which seemed to make perfect sense to me, was removed by CL because someone didn't like a BUYER being critical of the practices by car sellers.
The ad talked about people who sell cars with no engines, no transmissions, non working batteries or systems and who try to sell them as if there is nothing wrong with them.
Furthermore, cars that have been in accidents are sold as if the damage is of no import even when the buyer is going to have to pay a lot of money to fix the car should they buy it.
I guess someone on CL objected to the idea of constructive criticism of car sellers. Maybe even Craigslist itself.
Here's what I said :
A message to car sellers :
This guy wants $ 1500 for the above car even though it's probably not repairable, even though he could sell it for parts.
We've been saving up for a used Prius and have noticed some things that really bother us.
1) IF your car doesn't run, you shouldn't try to be getting top dollar for it.
IF you've had the engine fried, the battery system or the transmission, the car is going to need a lot of expensive repair.
It also means that you shouldn't expect top dollar if the car is missing an engine, battery system or transmission, which I've seen far too often.
LOWER the price.
I saw one today where the seller was trying to sell it as if it was a primo car, yet the entire left back door was crushed in.
IF it's been hit. LOWER the price.
A lot !
2) I see ads where the entire ad is in Spanish,
While California may seem to have become a province of Mexico or part of Latin America, most buyers aren't there yet.
Put the ad in ENGLISH, please !
If you don't know any ENGLISH, get an English speaking friend to help you write your ad.
3) Some sellers have it set up so that the only way to contact them is either using CL's email or their personal email. The problem with that is that all too frequently they don't answer their email for days, don't answer it at all or if they have a phone number, don't answer their phone either.
This drives buyers nuts as a lot of sellers take forever to answer emails as well.
Answer your emails and do it promptly.
There might be someone who NEEDS a car, has the cash ready and is ready to buy yours/
Also, this IS the day of voice mail, unlimited long distance calling, and it's a lot easier for someone to get a hold of you if they can call you. Playing voice mail or email tag with someone is annoying as hell and wastes the time of the buyer who could be moving on to purchase another car if they can't buy yours because YOU won't answer messages.
4) IF you're selling a car, don't put $ 12 as the price of the car instead of $12000. Its dishonest and misleading. How hard is it to type out the full price ?
5) IF your car has been in an accident, it's going to take a lot of money to repair it.
Don't expect to get top dollar for it.
Lower the price.
6) If the car is leaking oil, transmission fluid, water, has a bad battery or battery system is not a good car. It's going to take money to fix. Please be honest and let people know the full condition of the car and don't expect to sell it for full value just because it's a Prius with some " issues ".
We once bought a Saturn on CL & they guy told us the AC ran cool and he had spilled some coolant on the engine but it ran fine.
We were naive enough to believe him and the car's engine seized after 2 months and died.
7) Finally, people on and off here are selling Prius'es for waaaaaaay above what a dealer would pay for them in trade.
As an example, we've seen a 2001 Prius that blue books for $4500 as the maximum price a dealer would pay list here for as much as $ 10000 !
A 12 year old Prius is NOT a classic that needs restoration and is simply not worth twice blue book or more.
Thank you for your attention.
I thought the post was a reasonable one.
But someone flagged it for removal.
I can only draw the conclusion that dishonest sellers or Craigslist itself removed it because they dare not see a potential buyer list the flaws and shady practices of Craigslist sellers.
What is CL afraid of ?
Monday, July 1, 2013
Verizon Iphone 4 nightmare. Incredibly BAD customer relations at company owned store in Pleasant Hill !!!
On the 20th of June, I bought a new Iphone at the Verizon store on Salvio Street in Concord, Ca.
Technically, the phone is not new. I got an Iphone 4 for free ( actually the state charged me $ 50.12 tax for a " free " phone which is irritating as hell, but the phone is a refurbished phone.
I got the phone primarily so my 94 year old Mother who lives in San Francisco can contact me in case something happens to her. She lives in San Francisco and has a history of strokes. And we both determined that my having a cell phone ( I'd not had one for a long time. ) ensures that she or emergency personnel or her doctors can always contact me day or night.
The phone worked for 8 days.
Then Friday night, after being out in 103 heat in Walnut Creek, I got home to my oven ... err, apartment ( it was 95 in here when I walked in the door ) and plugged it into the USB charger which is hooked up to my Imac.
The phone felt hot so I decided during the night to turn it off so it could cool down.
In the morning when I got ready to go out to Safeway, I tried to turn the phone on & it kept shutting itself off.
So ... I called Verizon's customer support & was told that I could either go back to the store I bought it from & get a new phone or go to Verizon's company owned store in Pleasant Hill & that since it was under warranty, they would give me a new phone when I got there.
The problem with all of this is that the phone died on a Saturday.
Saturday it was 103 here in Martinez, and a 104 in Concord.
Neither my girlfriend nor I currently have a car.
We have to take buses.
We are saving up to get a used Prius but we're only at the half way point to have enough money to get something around a 2005 or 2006 model.
The bus system here cut their hours and routes and times when the state cut funding several years ago.
The buses run every 40 minutes during the week.
On the weekends, trying to get a bus to and from Martinez or Concord where she lives is a nightmare.
I had called her to meet me at the Verizon store, thinking in my naivete, that I would walk into the store, show them my dead Iphone 4 and walk out with a replacement.
When I bought the phone at the Verizon branded store in Concord, I saw the Verizon logo on the storefront & all over the walls & doors.
I should not be expected as a NEW customer to know which stores are franchisees & which stores are company owned.
All I want is a phone that works & I suppose expecting it to work for more than a week is somehow unreasonable.
So I walked to Amtrak from my apartment which is where the terminus for the bus is here. That was at 1:00 P.M.
It was already stifling hot & didn't hit 103 until 4 P.M.
I went into Amtrak to sit & wait and bought a Klondike bar. It was so warm inside the Amtrak station that the ice cream was melting all over my brand new shirt faster than I could eat the thing.
So, time passed. I waited until 3:08 P.M. for the bus.
40 minutes later I arrived at the bus stop near the Verizon store.
It was roasting hot when I got off the air conditioned bus !
After going into Bed, Bath & Beyond to buy a new bath towel I walked about a block to the Verizon store.
I walked in and was met by the Manager & told him what Verizon's customer service person had told me & that she had told me I could exchange the defective phone for a new phone that day.
My girlfriend, who had been waiting for me was in the store.
The manager told me at that time that I could either go TO the store where I bought the phone but that I would get NO replacement phone from them since I had NOT bought it at a company owned store.
Well, I blew my stack !
I walk with a cane & do not do well in the heat.
I've also been suffering with sinusitis & bronchitis & the heat aggravated that condition.
When I told him that Verizon's customer service person told ME to go TO their COMPANY OWNED store & get a new phone on the spot, he " apologized " to me but said there was nothing he could do.
I asked for someone over him or to talk to that person & he said there was NO way for him to do so & that HIS manager wouldn't be available until Tuesday.
I had completely lost it & was screaming at the guy because I felt not only incredibly put upon with having to wait for a bus for 2 hours but also waiting in the heat & wasting my time.
To top it off, while I was busy yelling, a guy came over & told me that he was a cop, showed me his badge & told me to leave the store or he would arrest me.
I don't see small print well anymore and have no idea what department his badge was for.
My girlfriend tried to say something ( she had been absolutely quiet until this time ) to speak up for me, because she had been patiently waiting for me to arrive & get done, and he told her to leave as well or he would arrest her.
So ... we both went outside.
I calmed down after a few minutes.
I went back inside, the officious bully cop had left & I asked the manager ( after apologizing, which I shouldn't have had to do since * I * was the one put upon by their customer service person's incompetence ) how I would get a new phone.
He finally went & ordered me a new phone & it will arrive on Tuesday via FedEx.
But this should have never have happened.
When one calls a corporate tech support line, one is not unreasonable to expect them to tell you the proper information.
I've never had a Verizon cell phone before nor have I ever availed myself of any of their other services in the past.
One would think that THIS Manager could have helped me when I first walked in the door instead of telling me there was nothing he could do since I didn't buy the phone from their store.
But I suppose that would be too much to expect.
Customer service for a CUSTOMER.
So I got the paperwork for the replacement phone & we left to get something to eat.
I had to wolf it down & head back in time to get the last bus home.
And to top off the lousy day, my girlfriend somehow LOST her house keys in the process or all the running around after leaving the Verizon store.
I spent a total of 6 hours of wasted time to go home phoneless.
If this is how Verizon's corporate stores treat NEW customers, how in the hell do they treat long time established customers ?
It is not the way I would have done it when I worked in the customer service field.
I went out of my way to HELP customers.
I guess that concept is alien to managers at Verizon's company owned stores.
I am still furious over this & so is my girlfriend.
I am not inclined to ever recommend ANYONE ever buy any product from the store in Pleasant Hill after this experience.
I'm just sorry I can't be in the 'Burgh to enjoy it with my fellow Pirates fans.
Lets see the Pirates go all the way to the playoffs and the World Series !
Go BUCS !
Why these unionized employees hold entire cities or regions AND commuters hostage every time their contracts expire and why the agencies & the public put up with it.
There is NO requirement that transit workers be unionized.
Yet each time a contract expires with these unions, the unions either threaten to go out on strike or actually strike.
But ... they no longer have a contract so technically, they are no longer employees.
Why doesn't BART ( or Muni or AC transit ) just fire them ?
These union members are thugs.
They engage in the equivalent of extortion and hold commuters and the public as their hostages.
And disrupt the economy of cities and entire regions as a result.
Furthermore, despite what unions and liberal politicians would have YOU believe, they do NOT care for the worker as a whole.
If they did, they would continue to work and allow negotiations to continue until an agreement is reached.
Transit workers and transit systems SHOULD be considered essential public resources like fire and police service workers, who are also unionized in many cases.
People need not only to get to work, but to go to the city for medical appointments or to care for the elderly and have to travel long distances.
MY 94 year old Mother, who is frail, now won't have her caregiver because of this strike. She lives in San Francisco. Her care worker commutes from Hayward on BART.
They are NOT allowed to strike.
Neither should transit workers.
Its way past time to end the periodic extortion we are subjected to by union workers in this area, be they workers from BART, MUNI, AC Transit or elsewhere.
IF they strike, train replacement workers and replace them.
End the extortion and the greed of union workers who want huge pay raises, while thousands in the SF Bay Area have no jobs at all.
Picture from KGO 7 news.
Sunday, June 23, 2013
Monday, June 3, 2013
Could this be the thing that will cause the global ecomomy to collapse beyond repair ?
Germany’s finance minister warns of a ‘revolution’ if Europe adopts America’s tougher welfare model
- Germany, France and Italy backed urgent action to rescue a generation of young Europeans
- Youth unemployment in the EU stands at nearly one in four
- Schaeuble insisted on the importance of preserving Europe's welfare model
PUBLISHED: 11:41 EST, 28 May 2013 | UPDATED: 12:06 EST, 28 May 2013
German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble has warned that failure to win the battle against youth unemployment could tear Europe apart
Germany, along with France and Italy, backed urgent action to rescue a generation of young Europeans who fear they will not find jobs.
Youth unemployment in the EU stands at nearly one in four, more than twice the adult rate.
He also said that abandoning the continent's welfare model in favour of tougher U.S. standards would cause 'revolution'.
'We need to be more successful in our fight against youth unemployment, otherwise we will lose the battle for Europe's unity,' Schaeuble said.
While Germany insists on the importance of budget consolidation, Schaeuble spoke of the need to preserve Europe's welfare model.
If U.S. welfare standards were introduced in Europe, 'we would have revolution, not tomorrow, but on the very same day,' Schaeuble told a conference in Paris.
'We have to rescue an entire generation of young people who are scared.
'We have the best-educated generation and we are putting them on hold. This is not acceptable,' Italian Labour minister Enrico Giovannini said.
Germany in particular, weary of a backlash as many in crisis-hit European countries blame it for austerity, has over the past weeks taken steps to tackle unemployment, striking bilateral deals with Spain and Portugal.
German ministers told the conference that to help young people find jobs, Europe must continue on the path of structural reforms to boost its competitiveness as well as make good use of available EU funds, including six billion euros that leaders have set aside for youth employment for 2014-20.
While all agreed on the urgency needed to tackle youth unemployment, ministers offered no concrete plans, insisting Europe must be pragmatic and work on various strands.
'Let's be honest, there is no quick fix, there is no grand plan,' said Werner Hoyer, head the European Investment Bank.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has invited EU labour ministers to a youth unemployment conference while French President Francois Hollande urged he euro zone to work towards a joint economic government
More than half of Spain's under 25-year-olds are jobless, as are nearly 40 percent in Portugal. In Greece, youth unemployment shot to a record 64 percent in February.
In March 2013, the lowest youth unemployment rates were in Germany and Austria, both below eight per cent, highlighting the wide disparities within the EU.
The youth employment crisis will be a central theme of a June EU leaders' summit, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel has invited EU labour ministers to a youth unemployment conference in Berlin on July 3.
Following up on an idea aired earlier this month, French President Francois Hollande urged the euro zone to work towards a joint economic government with its own budget which could take on specific projects including tackling youth unemployment.