In this day and age there exists certain essential services that we Americans have come to take for granted and even to depend upon for our lives! We often take them for granted be cause they work most of the time. Our access to safe water is one good example. I can count on one hand, the number of times my water flow gets interrupted in any given five year period. The old Bell Telephone system was another example of a service that worked extremely well, right up until the time that the Federal government stepped in.
Today, we have electric service and digital services that are a vital part of each of our daily lives. And frankly, I feel that both are starting to suck big time! Of the two, the Electric Coop which enjoys an almost absolute monopoly does work most of the time. It’s just that we now have had to learn to suffer with the periodic one second drop offs. I’ve been with Empire for decades and, if anything, service drop offs become more frequent.
Then, there is our digital connections to the outside world. This includes TV, Internet and telephone service for a growing number of individuals. And while the local high speed Mediacom cable service is not a absolute monopoly, the alternatives (DSL and Satellite) are vastly inferior in terms of really fast Internet connectivity. Sadly, too many people I know can’t even get cable in this day and age as it’s simply not offered! What a crock!
Now, in no way shape or form am I a fan of any government, especially the Federal government which has become the much deserved butt of jokes all across the planet. (Seriously, everything they touch soon turns to crap and we all know it). The Halls of Congress, a place that used to hold a most honorable, wise and august body of men and women, has turned into a Romper Room nightmare which seems to get worst with every new regulation, with each new tax and with every new year….
But, then what about our State governments? Well, I would agree that while the state officials are not quite as bad as their Federal counterparts, it’s really becoming a horse race with the American citizen bringing up the rear.
The thing is, there is no real competition at these very essential infrastructural levels! And, none of us has many options to exercise; with water we can sometimes drill a private well (pending state and Federal EPA approval), if you want power, I would guess you could go solar with a generator (but that is extremely expensive and out of the reach of most of us). Here in southwest MO, it’s Empire and no one else, even though that company is now owned by the Canadians! And please, don’t get me started when it comes to the ongoing horror show that is our communications network providers. No matter who you pick, you are practically guaranteed sub-par service, over-inflated prices and management people who I swear were selling used cars not too very long ago! (This week alone, I’ve had both a power outage and a router failure to contend with which was ongoing as I wrote this post). And while the rest of the world bravely continues its voyage into the 21 Century, I find my self sitting in the dark looking at a blank computer screen and wondering where it all fell down…
Seriously, someone need to tell these folks that mediocrity is not a goal to strive for…