Rants in passing

March 4, 2010

My work schedule has been keeping me off the mainstream blogs in my arsenal and on the microblogs like Twitter and Tumblr. But since I was in an airport with about an hour to go before my next flight, I thought I would dash off a list of mind bits that have been cruising in my noggin. Here’s that diatribe…


Texting while driving.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Doesn’t the law state that distracted driving is a moving violation? Then why not have the cops enforce the laws already on the books instead of just piling new legislation onto our already overstuffed books? Seriously! The texting laws would NOT make it illegal to Tweet, check in on Foursquare, send emails or even surf the Web while driving. So what good is it? Make drivers keep their hands at 10 and 2 and then lay down the law.

*You’ll notice a threaded theme in these little notes. It’s that legislators are so out of touch with how people live that they can’t reasonably be expected to pass laws that help us ‘regular’ citizens live our lives.

Post Offices and the USPS limiting deliveries and location openings

I’m all for limiting delivery days for US Mail. This might save some money and could give those of us who still believe in the viability of paper mail better service. But that’s where I stop. What I’ve heard lately is that the USPS is thinking of closing down on Saturday (and making that its non-delivery day as well). How stupid can you get? If you close on the main day of the week when working people buy stamps, post mail and use other services, you’re creating a self-perpetuating cycle of failure. Your store is closed on Saturday. People can’t buy stamps or boxes or Express Mail on Saturday. They find other ways to get their materials delivered. Idiocy!

Bridge Construction – Weymouth/Quincy, MA

For multiple years, the drawbridge on Rte 3A in Weymouth and Quincy has affected drivers by rising during inconvenient commuting times. It goes up to enable gasoline tankers clear navigation of the waterways that lead to the Citgo petroleum terminal in Braintree, MA. The issue here is that we – citizens – are hostages to the whims of the tides, the Federal government (waterways are a Federal responsibility when it comes to transporting hazardous materials), and a corporation. That makes no sense. Further, the current bridge was supposed to be a temporary fix spanning the water until a permanent fixed bridge could be built. Well, a week ago there was a meeting during which legislators opined that replacing the current bridge with a fixed-span structure would be too expensive and they would support replacing today’s bridge with another drawbridge. Are you out of your mind? Think about the hundreds of people who sit in traffic, engines running, DAILY, while they wait for the tanker to travel under the bridge. Lost productivity, environmental damage and irritated taxpayers are the result. If I just use one person as an example – me – here’s how it adds up. My time is justifiably worth $100 an hour to my clients. If I’m in traffic for 15 minutes waiting for the bridge, that’s $25 lost work time. Multiply that by 100 cars each time the bridge goes up (which is on average a couple times a week). That conservatively comes to… 200x$25×50(weeks). I get $250,000 per year in lost productivity from drivers. If the life of the bridge is four years, that’s a MILLION DOLLARS LOST. Build the fixed bridge and get in touch with what normal people go through you idiots!

Well, my flight is boarding and I feel much better.

Please share your latest plight in the comments.

More to come…