Archive for July, 2009

MY NEW CAR

Monday, July 13th, 2009

I have a new car in all senses of the word. It is brand new and straight from the showroom as well as new to me. I was told it had come from Germany although a man who helps in the garden told me it was made in Brazil which he deemed to be “a very bad thing”.


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COMMONSENSE NOT ALLOWED

Wednesday, July 8th, 2009

As featured in The Independent, July 2009

Sir: Deborah Orr’s account of her day on South West Trains (June 27) rang a number of bells. I have had the same kind of experience dealing with railway officials, banks, shops and call centres. It seems in many organisations the “nyet” factor, (anyone visiting the USSR before 1989 will remember the frustrations), is positively fostered thus enabling small people hiding behind the rules to feel a misguided sense of importance. However the real culprits are the managers who set up the kind of directives that make no allowance for common sense. It is in fact an insult to their employees tantamount to saying they are incapable of exercising judgement, and the opposite of empowering.

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RESPONSE TO DAVID GREEN (Letters May 25th)

Thursday, July 2nd, 2009

As featured in The Times, May 2009

Sir: In response to David Green (Letters: May 25th) may I say that I believe lawyers and solicitors very much over value their services. My own experience of this profession is that they muddy clear waters, spin things out by making simple things complicated, cover ineptitude with jargon and expect you to do most of the donkey work yourself, yet still send out a huge bill. They almost always demand money up-front so by the time you realize their incompetence you are locked in. The average person has no means of knowing who is capable and who isn’t. Trial and error in this case is not only an expensive business but can have catastrophic consequences. Furthermore when recourse to the law is needed it is often when you are at your most vulnerable and it is all too easy to have the wool pulled over your eyes. There are no guarantees that by paying more you get a better service. Legal costs already make the law out of reach of the majority.

In addition this cartel has lead to a fear of litigation that has affected every section of society; over zealous health & safety procedures are not usually about risk management but the possibility of bankruptcy. This state of affairs is one of our least attractive American imports and has been enthusiastically waved in under the radar by the British justice system. Any measure that shakes up this self-satisfied and complacent group is to be encouraged.

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