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 Post subject: Churning
PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 11:34 pm 
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Harriet Sergeant writes an important piece in the Daily Mail, the title: "Have we customers ever been so impotent?" "Like thousands of - others today," she writes, "I am stuck in one place while the people I love and want to be with are somewhere else. In other words, BAA has stolen my Christmas". Sergeant was meant to have flown to Cape Town to join friends and family. Instead, she had been grounded. But, she declares, "this is not just a story of the weather or incompetence. It is about a far wider issue." She is right, although the issue she writes is even wider than she describes.

View full article here

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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Thu Dec 23, 2010 11:48 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2005 6:11 pm
Posts: 864
Location: The European State of Insanity
The irony, of course, is that we don't live in a free market system and haven't for some time. Even at the height of Thatcher's government we never lived in that mythical free-market system. Monopolies were created and maintained by government regulation and interference. Competition was squashed by the same. It's impossible to start a new telecommunications company today because it's impossible to build the infrastructure without running afoul of the regulations and laws governing it putting the cost beyond the reach of all but the largest, richest companies or those already in the field. As I recall it took the bankruptcy of two companies before most of the country got a cable television service, and even then once the last took over the expansion basically stopped dead as they tried to recoup the cost.

Government regulation propping up incumbents who are "too big to fail" means there's no reason for these people to give a flying fig about us. They're guaranteed to remain in business because they have a stranglehold on the market as bad as any state-owned monopoly.

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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 12:02 am 

Joined: Sat Dec 09, 2006 9:24 pm
Posts: 429
Location: Shropshire/London
One World Government is based on monopolistic business power. The big corporations either hold monopolies or are joined at the hip with their 'competitors' to exploit their market positions. The only philosophies held by the OWG are environmental sustainability, meaning the dumbing down, and gradual reduction of the world's populations, and the domination of all physical resources through military means. The disposal of customers is now thought of as no problem, as the NHS issues vaccines designed to kill, like the Swine Flu vaccine, as the media creates panic to drive the dumbed down to run upon the needles of their own demise, filled with mercury, one of the most poisonous substances to all life.

Merely leaving a few more to catch their death in an airport terminal is in keeping with the general philosophy of reducing populations, especially those who can afford to fly and fill the world with CO2.

http://the-tap.blogspot.com/2010/12/swine-flu-vaccine-poisoning-millions-of.html

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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 12:14 am 

Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2005 11:11 am
Posts: 6700
The most obvious churners are surely the banks? Charging £15 per day for unarranged overdrafts is larceny, but some regulation somewhere says it's ok.
And that is the real clue, this is the EU way where the the megacorps keep the politicians sweet knowing that they can shut out the start ups and run a cosy cartel.
Our political parties are no different.

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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 12:34 am 

Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2008 7:03 pm
Posts: 102
Add Royal Mail to the list. This morning I queued outside the sorting office in sub zero temperatures for 40 mins to collect a SPECIAL Delivery letter. There had been one unsuccessful attempt at delivery so the item was returned & I had to wait 24 hrs before I could collect it. The sender had paid extra for special next day delivery. There was nothing special about it. I shan't bother to complain because I doubt if it will make any difference. Send them all to Siberia. On second thoughts it might be colder here.


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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 1:48 am 
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madbiker wrote:
Add Royal Mail to the list. This morning I queued outside the sorting office in sub zero temperatures for 40 mins to collect a SPECIAL Delivery letter. There had been one unsuccessful attempt at delivery so the item was returned & I had to wait 24 hrs before I could collect it. The sender had paid extra for special next day delivery. There was nothing special about it. I shan't bother to complain because I doubt if it will make any difference. Send them all to Siberia. On second thoughts it might be colder here.


That's the real point ... it is useless complaining ... it will not make the slightest bit of difference.

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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 2:06 am 

Joined: Sat Oct 23, 2010 3:12 pm
Posts: 1441
If, it's a big if BUT,, were we ever, to be offered a referendum - on in or out of the EU, we would be battling not only the commission Stasi but the whole gamut of corporate business conglomerates and banking. It is not in their interests (big business), for us to have choice and freedom, they like us (the people) where we are, numbers/automatons in the EU empire, submissive, bovine and gullible 'clients', just waiting to be milked.

The myth of choice long ago disappeared, I feel a certain camaraderie with the Anti-globalisation nutters at the G7/8/20 [think of a number] Junkets. I've always felt they had a point, big business is not our friend, it is inimical to freedom and freedom of choice.

In Britain, the small company is still the driving force of the nation, trouble is, too many new companies feed the tertiary sector, not enough small manufacturing firms appear and if the do, they are soon swallowed up by the bigger monsters, can't have competition can we?
The big obstruction to small business are the banks, "lend you an umbrella, then when it starts raining, ask for it back." Not only that, they (banks) in recent years have been loath to lend anything to small businesses, unless... at punitive interest rates. The banks in Britain no longer answer or are they reliant upon British business, they look to the world, not our domestic markets. Therein lie two problems, balance sheets took a hammering on the world markets, London is a big financial centre, we rely far too much on investment banks and their dodgy dealings caused a major headache in Britain but the government couldn't wash it's hands, so the taxpayer became lender of the last resort - ironic seeing as the nation is 1.3 trillion in debt (ha ha laconic laughter).
The banks have been robbing us blind in a second way, printing money by the BoE has meant that banks have been ridding themselves of dodgy debt and at the same time fleecing businesses (small and medium sized firms) and customers, building up their reserves and flogging the same dodgy services abroad (still - in Malaysia and the far East etc), the British taxpayer is being royally robbed and yet the British government can do, well fukc lal. And the banks see and have no loyalty to the British or Britain, no local bank manager looking after the customers needs, I used to be on first name terms with my bank manager, now I speak to a call centre in Bangalore.................(or whatever).

We had choice in the 70s and 80s, it all started going 'west' after Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act - Clinton started effin around with the banks in the states, takeovers galore blah blah and we were left (in Britain) with a few massive banks and no legislation, then there was Gloomo Brown and we are still paying for the profligacy.
Message, small is controllable and far, far more beautiful...oh yeah we're all fckugin doomed....global conglomerates just don't care (a tinkers cuss) about the 'little man' -"just give me the new markets man!!!"

A final thought, big banks believe in AGW, because they see the mark-up and it's big, very big.


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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 2:16 am 

Joined: Sat Oct 23, 2010 3:12 pm
Posts: 1441
To Richard,

The mods and all who contribute: Peace and freedom and have a good Christmas!! PDT_Armataz_01_34


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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 2:23 am 
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Posts: 2153
Location: Pembrokeshre
I recognise the problem you are talking about and it is everywhere. Here are some examples.

DHL I have 15 parcels waiting for DHL to pick up. They have been waiting to be collected for four days during which time DHL have delivered parcels to me but Steve the driver told me he is forbidden to pick up parcels because of the snow (virtually none here in Pembrokeshire). DHL are collecting parcels from our snow bound warehouse in Suffolk because they are under contract with the warehouse to collect every day, but have stopped serving the general public and very small businesses. This is the second time this winter DHL have simply dropped their obligations to the public.

Doctors - An employee of ours had been coughing for six months, she had been to the doctor four times already and had been given cough mixture and antibiotics. She thought she had something stuck in her throat, was having trouble getting up to come to work, falling asleep in front of the telly at night and was feeling generally unwell etc. One day she coughed up blood, we told her to ring teh doctor and ask to be seen at once. The reply was "we are too busy to see you today, come tomorrow". We wanted her seen immediately and called NHS direct who called the surgery on our behalf and ordered them to see her that afternoon.

She went to the surgery and coughed up more blood in front of the doctor ( a vet's daughter) who was unimpressed and seemed in a very bad mood (we think because we had forced them to see her that afternoon). The doctors says "have another course of antibiotics and come back in two weeks if you are not better", the employee replied "my employers told me I must insist having my lungs scanned". The doctor goes ballistic "I will not be told how to do my job, if your employer wants you to be scanned they can pay for it". The employee comes back to our office with anitbiotics

Cut a long story short: We advised the employee to go the emergency at the local hospital who immediately scan her and find she has blood, lung and bone cancer.

We send a letter to our local surgery outlining why we have no confidence in 3 of the 4 doctors in the practice, and full details of our story. We get called in by the good doctor who tells us "the other doctors are very upset by what you wrote about them in your letter and would be embarassed to have you in their surgeries, wouldn't you like to find another practice? WE reply "No, we like you and will wait for appointments to see you, we would not be embarrassed to go to their surgeries in emergencies" And "we think it is very difficult to find a good NHS doctor so we don't want to leave this surgery since your surgery has 1 good doctor which is 1 more than most other surgeries in the NHS, so we will not leave".

Two weeks later a letter arrives telling us we are to be struck off the register because of "a breakdown in patient doctor relationship" and have a month to find another practice. We complain to the local health board who tell us the practice are a "private business" and the reason given for our removal is on the list of reasons why doctors can ask for patients to be taken off their registers. The paperwork is good, they cannot help us.

Anyway this went on for months and we finally left and found another practice. Our employee died 16 months after being bullied. Her family don't want to fight the authorities even though I have put together all the evidence they need to prove their relation was bullied and we think deliberately misdiagnosed (we have further reasons to say this) by an overpaid doctor who thinks patients are low life.

The surgery say they cannot discuss the case notes of their patients with outsiders (but they can send us messages asking us to pay for their patients to be scanned).

This is the way Britain works these days.

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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 2:30 am 

Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2010 12:38 pm
Posts: 33
Impotent? That's a mirage. The illusion was shattered with the Milbank riot.

Look at BAA.

Sir Nigel Rudd, Non-Executive Chairman
Colin Matthews, Chief Executive Officer

As directors, their addresses should be available from Companies House.

Just turn up outside their residences with saucepans and hammers at 9am on Sunday morning, and trust me, they and a bunch of others will get the message that this stuff matters.


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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 2:49 am 

Joined: Mon Aug 30, 2010 1:05 pm
Posts: 288
Tapestry » Thu Dec 23, 2010 7:02 pm

You are describing cronie capitalism, which is excellent for the cronies but not the economy or the customer.


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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 3:29 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 06, 2006 7:26 pm
Posts: 204
Location: England
Very depressing reading through the whole thread.

There's only one thing for it: It is now Christmas Eve (02:10 Friday) and I must now retire after having supped of a little too much hot, buttered rum (and glasses of Guinness) in my attempts to keep the cold at bay.

When I waken later today my guts will be churning. (ON TOPIC!) I shall take a couple of loperamide and maybe a glass of brandy & port to settle things down. After my breakfast of porridge & cream (no gruel here!) I shall have a very slow stroll through the icy streets. At one time I would have passed out pennies to street urchins but as I have not undergone a CRB investigation I shall keep my money in my pocket. At one time I would also have called in to a couple of the local hostelries and counted my blessings along with kindred souls as we sipped hot toddies at the bar. Today I do not cross their unwelcoming thresh as the burly doormen tend to look down their noses at an old geezer shuffling along with the aid of a stick. So I shall slowly make my way back home.

Then joy shall reign! First, I shall watch "It's A Wonderful Life" while supping some good ale and devouring some ham sandwiches, with pease pudding and home made pickled onions. After that it will be time for afternoon tea with two toasted crumpets. Then Christmas 2010 shall begin as I tune in to BBC Radio 4 at 15:00 and listen to one of the few remaining things the BBC still does well: Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols from the chapel of King's College, Cambridge. I have listened to this service all of my life, sometimes in very remote locations, and this is when my Christmas truly begins. (I bet there's a few in Broadcasting House would love to see this tradition brought to an end but they do not yet have the courage to try it.)

When the service finishes it is time to warm a couple of mince pies and broach the Christmas sherry. And then I shall watch "A Christmas Carol" (Alastair Sim version) and remember times of my youth just as Mr. Scrooge does in the film. As the evening progresses it will all become rather befuddled; there'll be a couple of calls from family members who are checking to ease their conscience that I am truly having a wonderful Christmas alone. I wouldn't have it any other way.

So, it only remains to thank Dr. North for his blog which so frequently keeps my old mind from straying to the likes of UK Gold, and may I wish to each and every one of you a happy Christmas, and may we all see better times in 2011.
"God bless us, every one!"


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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 8:11 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 29, 2010 2:03 pm
Posts: 437
Yes - the Customer Abuse system has been developing for many years. Still - the perpetrators breed each other: so perhaps it won't succeed much further, and the rough students will be just the thin edge of the reaction.

The absence of grace is at work in the US too, where I've begun to observe my own rising antipathy to certain races. I was not ever thus, but I'm learning how resentment grows in response to application of stereotypes, hatred of the British, and resistance to the English language. So I remind myself of my normal mindset, and of the very special 'others' I've known over the years.

Yet - just as I thought so much was hate-filled, tonight the supermarket was suddenly a lighter place and more faces smiled. And as I left, the bagging boy looked at my neck and said something; he repeated for me - "Go With Christ" - keeping his eyes on my cross: but his speech revealed that he suffered from some disability. Returning his blessing rendered the day altogether more meaningful.

So Mr. Wood -- I too shall turn to beloved King's tomorrow: for me it'll be the World Service at 9 a.m. I shall look for the reading lamps on the organ, and smile at their 'triplet' (my grandmother's lamp) on my table. And I shall echo the last time I listened to those descants and sang as I drove from Glasgow to Yorkshire - aye, down between Ruthwell and Bewcastle, and all across our ancient (very cold) 'Northumbria.' I shall think of St. Cuthbert's monks carting the Lindisfarne Gospels round there, for years, to save them from the Vikings. And I shall think of you all with thanks for the fellowship, intelligence, and hope that springs from this blog.

God bless Dr. North, and all who post here. Merry Christmas.


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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 8:51 am 
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Posts: 549
Location: EU East Midlands Region of the former UK
It is hardly surprising that we get such rotten service, for the indifference and contempt which customers receive are also meted out to the employees.

To make your mark in the highest echelon of any large business, you have to increase profits, and one guaranteed way of doing that is to pare costs to the bone. As the profits rise, so does your immense annual bonus, and so do your self-esteem, your power and your status.

When you acquire a new business, "economies of scale" are vaunted. Staff costs are an easy target. The first thing to do is to get rid of as many employees as possible. This is termed "improving productivity". What it actually means is that all resilience is stripped out of the organisation, and the remaining employees are driven hard. This leaves them with no scope for devoting time to solving customers' problems. They are too busy delivering the standard offering mandated by the new management.

The next task is to cut the remuneration of those remaining. This is done by ensuring that any rises given in the annual payround are less than the rate of inflation. During performance assessment interviews, junior managers may amuse themselves with exercises in parlour psychoanalysis designed to distract, baffle and humiliate the employee. Not a team player, are you? Never mind the customer, get those numbers up. We're devoted to Quality.

Pensions are another fruitful area for pay cuts, as contractual elements are dismantled and the organisation reneges on prior commitments.

Which brings us to propaganda. Rah rah rah videos lauding the progress of the company (by which is meant the empire-building of the top dog) exhort employees to work even harder. The word "team" is overused in a vain attempt to foster tribalism. In such vanity publications, the message is that the workforce should exult in the success of the top dog.

However, people are not fooled, although they know to keep their opinions to themselves. Every propaganda exercise merely reinforces the employee's contempt. Work, from being a positive activity which benefitted customers, has become a cheerless grind. All scope for initiative has been squeezed out.

Please hold. Your call is important to us.

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 Post subject: Re: Churning
PostPosted: Fri Dec 24, 2010 10:00 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 29, 2010 12:41 pm
Posts: 241
RAENORTH wrote:
madbiker wrote:
Add Royal Mail to the list. This morning I queued outside the sorting office in sub zero temperatures for 40 mins to collect a SPECIAL Delivery letter. There had been one unsuccessful attempt at delivery so the item was returned & I had to wait 24 hrs before I could collect it. The sender had paid extra for special next day delivery. There was nothing special about it. I shan't bother to complain because I doubt if it will make any difference. Send them all to Siberia. On second thoughts it might be colder here.


That's the real point ... it is useless complaining ... it will not make the slightest bit of difference.


Last year we had a friend send us a card with not a second class stamp on, but a 2p stamp. A Mistake, but the card that came through the door was from Royal Mail stating a delivery was awaiting collection at their office with an excess to pay. I had no idea what this was, and was not allowed to see the article until I had handed over the excess plus £1 for the retrieval. A bloody Christmas card - Was I pissed!

Also last year, we sent a parcel inland by Royal Mail 'signed for'. It didn't arrive. The fiasco of tracking it went on for weeks attempting to find out its whereabouts. Online, one is given contacts. They all serve to send you back to the 'home' web page - no joy. Use the phone number, and the automated menu will keep you selecting various options for seven minutes - an 0845 number - and will again send you back to the first automated menu. You will not be able to speak to a 'person' because none exist, of this I am sure - we are served and controlled by the machines we made. My next step was to the Royal Mail office and face to face contact. After much explaining and no satisfactory answer other than sympathy and 'It's the same everywhere', I got the manager out. She gave me conflicting information that the previous person had given. No satisfaction. Take it or leave it - and the old boy that first I spoke to had the gaul to state: "They'll miss us when we're gone". He must have been remembering the Postmen of his younger days. And here's a 'cracker': when I put the address of the Royal Mail Office in Brick Knoll Park St Albans into a map search - "No such address exists". NOW, that address is found when searching - THEN, is was not.

We re-sent a duplicate item via an independent, and claimed compensation for the lost. This was not fullfilled, as during the 'waiting period' demanded for 'lost items' the original item was found. It was claimed the posty left a card to the effect a delivery had been attempted. This was, and has always been disputed by the customer as they have seen no such card.

With the breakdown of transport in every sense, from roads that have been made into physical and financial 'tank traps' through 'traffic calming' and theft by camera, to 'security' thugs bereft of any humanitarian feelings (probably took the company pill and vaccination), we have a populace who are being kept in place - not only physically - but mentally, in every way. The 'Old utilities' such as British railways actually served better than the privatised ones. Their safety record based on proper maintenance was superior as it entailed linesmen employed in-house, something todays employers will not do, the job is contracted out, and if that contractor is over busy - it gets further contracted out until the people doing the job are quite unfamiliar with the correct procedure and necessities of their work to ensure safety. Potters Bar was a classic example - missing bolts from a points set. In a past documentary, an ex-rail inspector from Scotland showed the team sections of track on the Forth Bridge which had stay bars loose, and some fixings missing. Why? Because inspection was done from a moving train - not by lineside walking, too expensive.

The 'Old' communication facilities involved a Pub, word of mouth, and papers that had elements of truth in them. People worked, shopped and lived in communities - often very individual ones. The work is now distant. The shops are a car drive away. The pub's a 'wine bar' or gone completely. The community has dispursed to the flat screen and its flashing pictures. Isolation and conformity by repetition and regulation are watchwords of governance by deception. But amongst many I speak to - and from all walks of life and ages too - people are not so asleep as it may at first appear. The anger and resentment of so much that has been lost is seething just below the surface - it's not confined to students - nor is it misguided.


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