Monday, July 6, 2009

Odd Bits: Republicans and Credit Cards

Chronicle of Higher Education headline: “NEW TOP REPUBLICAN ON HOUSE PANEL: WASHINGTON DOESN'T ALWAYS KNOW BEST. In his position on the education committee, Rep. John Kline of Minnesota says he will be guided by skepticism of government's role in higher education.”

In what other industry could you be paid – not fired – for publicly dissing your own job? Mr. Kline, you were sent to Washington to govern, so do your best at governing and quit whining.

In related news… Sarah Palin has stepped down as Alaska’s Governor. She has advanced the Republican goal of smaller government by taking herself off the payroll. Gotta admire that integrity.

How about those companies that want to renew your account in future years by automatically charging your credit card? Just try to cancel that arrangement. “No, sir, we can’t do that by phone, you’ll have to send a registered letter.” “Sorry, we can’t do that on this customer service line, you’ll have to call this special number” (which of course is not answered). Or you’re sent to a phone menu hell in which you can’t cancel without listening to 20 minutes of pitch for other products.

No, that’s not for me. I was happy with Mozy’s free file backup for my home computer, until I filled up the free storage limit. The paid version is cheap enough, offers megabytes galore, but is only available by automatic credit card renewal. No way. So I subscribed to IDrive, which backs me up every night and it’s pay as you go and so far so good.

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