American work force costing you money?

The office supply store manager looked up the printing cartridge number, headed for the isle it was on and brought it to the register. One hundred and eleven buckoos later, I was out the door. The printer had flashed a warning indicating the ink was low and I had headed out to replace it as I expected some planned printing would deplete the supply entirely. Two weeks later, I opened the sealed package and discovered the manager had sold me a drum, not the cartridge I had ordered. Mistakes are acceptable, but today, I find the level of mistakes uncommon, and I attribute these mistakes to the illiteracy problem in America, as this problem is prevalent within our work force.

A recent call to an educator friend, a career teacher with a Master of Science Degree provided facts to support my view. This man said that over fifty percent of all high school attendees do not graduate high school in the state of California. The numbers are similar in Arizona and Nevada, I believe.

A friend of ours suffers from  residual pain from a traumatic injury. While at the doctor’s office, the medical assistant asked, “Mrs. Ellenns, how would you like to pay for your co-pay today, credit or debit card?” “Currency, she replied.”  She was met with a glazed look by the thirty-something year old assistant who returned to her station and asked her coworker what currency meant.

It took five store clerks in a large department store to sell me a computer component as I insisted in buying the product with cash and not providing my ISP subscription data to them to store in their database. Privacy carries a high price in terms of time and effort and is always a bit more expensive than living as the masses. And this time, effort, and money is a great  investment based on my many years of experience.

In 1971, everyone graduated from high school. Perhaps two or three of each one hundred students in my town had to take a summer course to satisfy a Math or English requirement  to get their diploma, but they did graduate. On a rare occasion, a student was not capable of doing high school work and did not graduate. This was rare and many with below average learning ability managed to complete the “required” twelve years of formal education. It was nearly impossible to get a job or join the military without a high school diploma. GED’s were frowned upon by many and seen as a last resort to gaining the high school equivalency of a twelve year formal education. In fact, the GED was called, “high school equivalency test,” and most who thought of dropping out of high school were counseled against it by well informed, experienced, high school educators and counselors.

I don’t know about you, but the current inabilities of the work force causes me to expend extra time, effort, and money. Never before do I recall having to repeat myself so often and go through so many people just to buy and obtain ordinary day to day goods and services. Is America now a third world country due to our devalued currency and uneducated work force?

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Grant Hall

Is the U.S.A. a third world country?

Take a good look at the work force in America today as you shop and go about your business. Is the work force like you remember it twenty years ago? Do you notice an obvious illiteracy problem? I do. What about the once-great American work ethic? Has the quality of goods and services disappeared in America? I believe so.

Quality of services and goods are important considerations to establish first world living  standards. Based on what I experience from time to time, I believe the U.S.A. is now a full fledged third world country.

Actual Events in the life of Grant Hall

I enter the hamburger joint famished from seven hours of tape watching. The trip takes twenty minutes. It’s not often I eat a late lunch out, but I need the change of scenery. Time to breathe. Stressed, I wonder out loud if a turn is coming.

The lady takes my order. It’s one I’ve found works for me-tasty and rich in protein without the carbohydrates. A double burger, no salt or peeper, no bun, with tomato, pickles, onion. When asked what I want to drink, I tell her water without ice. “Cheese?” I shake my head.

Twelve minutes later, the burger arrives. It’s in a bun covered and smothered with a pinkish, relish-like substance with a gob of dressing stuck in the middle. There’s no silverware on the tray and the napkins are across the room. She forgets the water.

Once the server gal returns, I tell her it is not the way I ordered it. She shows me the paper strip and says she wrote it down right. Turning, she questions the fry cook, a twenty-something, slender fellow with ear rings and a silver ring in his nose. “That’s the way we make ’em” he declares. Then he turns his back on us.

She offers to make me another one. She’s polite. I wonder out loud what kind of a country I live in when the work force can’t fix a hamburger to order. Obviously, someone in the communication chain  from my order to the server to the fry cook can’t read-or doesn’t want to service his customers’ needs.

I tell her no. She places the eight dollars and change in my hand. I leave and opt for three pieces of fruit gathered from the supermarket in the same mall.

I recall having the same experience with the same chain-one of the last decent burger places left in America. In fact, one place that used to make mistakes with my orders closed some months ago. Seems like others had trouble with their orders, too.

Next, I go the the post office. The line is so long-perhaps a thirty minute wait that I go to the mail center two miles away and pay  three times the normal rate to send my certified mailing.

Another package has to go by way of a private ground carrier. There’s a small line at this store. The lady can’t find “Louisville” in her database. I spell it for her. “The “s” is silent,” I say. She nods.

I walk out and wonder again…. Then think out loud. “Yes, I do live  in a third world country.”

Grant Hall

Water, water and not a drop to buy

Supermarkets must be discontinuing the sale of spring water.

While soda pop, sugar spiked juices, liquors, and other carbohydrate filled drinks line acres of supermarket shelves, I find sixteen gallons of “drinking water” partially hidden behind pallets of cases of colas-so harmful to the metabolic system that it should not be sold in my experienced opinion. I buy all the two and one half gallon spring water containers in the store, hunt down a manager and ask him if they have any more. He goes to the warehouse, returns minutes later and says, “nope.” Nope? “What do people drink? I see very few filling up their jugs at the filtered water station,” I say. He shrugs. “Mostly, they drink soda.” Soda? Pop? The sugar-filled stuff has replaced pure water as Americans opt for what tastes good, rots their teeth, and packs on the bloat.

I make my way to the counter. A very heavy clerk asks if I found everything alright. “No,” I reply. She looks confused. I tell her they are out of spring water. She, too shrugs. Must be catching, I think.

A guy behind me has four cases of cola on a pallet.  Apparently, he doesn’t like water.

Once upon a time in America, people were taught how to eat and drink for health. Didn’t others read Adelle David, Carlton Fredericks, Robert Atkins, Vince Gironda, and others to learn about proper nutrition. What happened to the drinking water in our stores?

I make it to the car with the family. We all take a swig of water from the jugs kept in the car. I look around and am grateful we understand the difference.

Grant Hall

Grand Central Hotel and Grill; Here’s the Beef

It all starts with the meat. This is something steak houses should know. This one knows.

She’s been in the business thirty-nine years. I know her only as Susan, manager of Grand Central Hotel and Grill, Cottonwood Falls, Kansas. Her experience manifests itself as I sit down to enjoy a quality rib eye that I could have cut with a fork. Cooked to perfection as per my order, it is juicy, tender, medium rare, and exactly what steak lovers expect.

Cottonwood Falls is near the Cottonwood river in Chase county, Kansas, and the Grand Central Hotel and Grill can provide accommodations for the business traveler or vacationer who wants peace and quite and a chance to reminisce and remember, and imagine how the west might have been. And when you’re hungry, go to the Grand Central Hotel and Grill for tasty food, excellent service and a pleasant atmosphere.  I liked it and am certain you will enjoy it, too.

Grant Hall

Is the busy professional an ignorant American who does not understand the Federal Reserve System?

I’ll call her Sue. She’s a busy, house payment making, college educated, once upwardly mobile, once young, now stationary, middle aged, and locked in, “intelligent” gal who has not a clue how the world works. How do I know? Because I spoke to her, without lecturing and without hesitation, and posed simple,  leading questions that any “trained ear” could use to make such an assessment based on her blank stares and inappropriate stabs at a response. Sue doesn’t give a hoot about currency markets, central banks or the Federal Reserve.  She is a busy professional and an ignorant American.

Sue doesn’t know what Federal Reserve System means. And she doesn’t want to know.

A long-time Republican, she believes the economy is in bad shape, recognizes that her money doesn’t buy as much as it did when she was young, and depends on like-minded Republicans to give her the “skinny” on what’s really important. You can probably guess which two she listens to during the day on her talk radio channel. For some reason, these two well paid goofs never talk about the Federal Reserve System. As a matter of fact, it seems like others-mainly Fed types, don’t like the idea of bloggers saying much about the Fed either.

Could all of those bloggers be blogging away about the Federal Reserve System because they’d like to educate the likes of “Sue” about what has been the cause of our ruined money? And make no mistake about it, your currency IS ruined. Sadly, Sue and others-many professional and “educated” have not a clue about what I’m blogging about. These “well educated” types wave flags, shoot off firecrackers while celebrating Independence day, and believe “inflation” to be a natural and normal, economic phenomenon. Nothing could be further from the truth. But, I won’t tell that story today. I’m all blogged out. I keep thinking of all the “Sue’s” out there who haven’t a clue about the foundation of our economic system-money. And I don’t know whether to stand on my soap box or go to the bath room and puke.

Grant Hall

Grant Hall is the author of Privacy Crisis:Identity Theft Prevention Plan and Guide to Anonymous Living.

What about your president’s birth certificate?

Barrack Obama has yet to provide proof of his eligibility to serve as president of the United States of America, and despite the efforts of attorney’s Berg and Taitz, the case has not been heard in a U.S. court. Why is so much effort being made to hide such a simple request?

What about the birth certificate, Mr. Obama?

While visiting with a perfect stranger, she brought up the Obama birth certificate issue. “No, I don’t believe Obama is a citizen,” she volunteered. I listened as she went on and on and on about the criteria for presidential eligibility.

The internet is full of such columns and posts on the matter. Petitions are signed. Blogs and websites are prevalent in searches. Once, I heard three shows devoted to the subject in three days, and I don’t listen to radio often.

Opinions mean little. Why has there been no satisfactory resolution to satisfy the mass numbers who continue to want proof of eligibility?

My gosh! Something occurred to me just now. What if………, OH NO!

What in the world will happen if all those who question it-those who haven’t been satisfied, what if they are right?

Grant Hall

Language barriers and service ends

This article continues to emphasize the lack of quality service in the U.S.A. The actual incidents are true.

hamburger hell

It sounded simple to me. Medium rare, no bun, lettuce, pickles, onion, tomatoes, with a knife and fork, on a plate, please. She asked me to repeat it. I did. Then, I turned around, walked across the room, fed the music machine and returned to the counter to wait. It arrived well done, between two stale buns, smothered in a mayo-like creamy, something, without the tomatoes.

Nearly every poor service issue in America today can be attributed to language barriers and poor work ethic.

Counter helper number 2 arrives. “I make a new one,” he chimes in broken English. I’m late for the meet up. I leave.

How many times has this type of incident happened to you?

Mail jeopardy

One would think English as a first language would be a requirement for delivering the mail. It would seem….well, logical.

It would also seem like the ability to deliver timely and quality mail services to the population would be a priority. Today, I walked in to find two clerks occupying the eight slots, two or three others mingling about behind the counter, and one lady asking customers’ questions who are victims of the poor customer service manifested by a long, long, line. I wait a few moments, start to ache, remember the mail center a mile or three away that provides certified mailing services, and walk out of the agency office and prepare to buy the service elsewhere at twice the cost. However, I’m pressed for time today and need first world service so I pay the difference.

These experiences actually happened. My policy is to never return when a business or agency provides poor service.

Grant Hall