Friday, December 02, 2011


I am sitting on the phone waiting to cancel my Sirius XM satellite service to our two cars.  The prices seem to have doubled from last year with no explanation.  You can do everything you want online except cancel service and I have been shuttled back and forth in my efforts to do that on the phone.  I have turned from a customer into a victim once again by corporate America.  I like the radio service with no commercials.  Now I will just download podcasts to play in the car via blue tooth.

It is like Comcast.  It seems every time I get a bill from them it goes up.  It is time for the city of Albuquerque to allow a new franchisee into the mix.  My son has a choice of providers in upstate New York and his fees are much lower. And he has fiber optics right up to the home.  If I have any regrets from my term as Mayor in Albuquerque it is that I did not try harder to have the city council, a very reluctant group who got freebies from Comcast, to do it.

That wind yesterday in Albuquerque was tremendous.  It blew a nice tiled name plate that sat over our porch for seventeen years right off its hooks.  The only tile that survived was the B for Baca.  Strangely, the piles of leaves in the front yard disappeared and it now looks to be manicured.  Those leaves and many more ended up in the back yard and the currents caused a three foot high pile on our porch blocking access to the hot tub.  I had to cut a pathway in order to take my early morning soak.


Anonymous said...

Yes, Comcast sucks and you have to monitor them monthly for increases because they won't tell you your rates are going up. I've had fairly good luck negotiating extensions without heavy increases though. I had satellite dish for a while some years ago but a strong wind blew if off signal and they couldn't get to it for two weeks; I quit them and went back to Comcast. We really need more competition here, just like you said.

Anonymous said...

That's too bad about the satellite radio. It was a good idea. The Sirius channel gave space to Air America when it started up. Air America was an attempt to create a counterweight to the vast right wing echo chamber that spans the radio dial.

I wanted to support them so I stopped at a Pilot truck stop and bought a Sirius receiver. When I called in to activate the service, the first thing the kid who answered said was, "Can I have your phone number."

Not, "Hello." Not, "Thank you for calling." Not, "Kiss my rosy red rear end." But, "Can I have your phone number." It wasn't a question.

I'm already half primed to go off when something like that happens. I have had those chilling experiences where it takes half a day to get something canceled over the phone.

I told the kid I didn't appreciate being greeted on the phone like that, especially by someone who wants my money.

His exact response, "Welcome to the corporate world."

This was about the time I started reading about how corporations were using new ways to "discipline" customers. One was, using caller id, their computer would route certain callers, those who had called before expecting customer service, for example, to the never ending phone loops, while "good" customers, those who would place an order and not bother them otherwise, would get to talk to someone.

It was about the time Capitalism was really feeling its full power. The Neocons, Bush and Cheney, were embarked on their program of global military dominance. Cheney was inviting lobbyists in to write rules, Tom DeLay and Grover Norquist were inviting them in to write legislation. Capital realized it had the country in the palm of its hand. There was no Occupy movement. We the people were doing nothing but being good consumers.

Next truck stop I stopped at I set the receiver next to the dumpster with a note saying it had never been used. When I came back out again it was gone.