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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Check it out

Ever wonder why the "service economy" continues to falter? It's not just the slow recovery that's keeping people out of stores. It's also the do-it-yourself nature of those "services."

The Globe highlights the latest "convenience" (aka job killer): self-checkout registers that are growing like weeds in many supermarkets and pharmacies.

I'll admit this is a generational rant. I'm not a fan of paying for my coffee with a debit card and prefer to use cash or checks for many purchases rather than risk the wrath of Citibank and its usurious interest rates.

But I really draw the line at not only having to roam ever-changing supermarket aisles in search of what I want buried behind "manager's specials" only to have to scan and bag my loot then figure out how to get the cranky machine to accept my slightly wrinkled bills.

And I really rebel at the thought of a pharmacy that brings in scanners that require more human oversight than a checkout cashier and then claim it is for better "customer service."

But I suppose I am condemned to rage against the machines. I'm more likely to fade away than this new "service" and I suspect cash isn't all that far behind.

In the spirit of the season just past, all I can say is "Bah, humbug."

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I refuse to use self checks at Home Depot. This is the type of thing that the Internet is great for. "Create a job, refuse to use" day for self check registers. Next pick one day nationwide to boycott baseball games for their high prices.

January 04, 2011 5:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon: Wow, you sure have that one right. Tickets for too many events including sports, theater, and music are out of this world. At this rate, in a generation, they won't have any fans because the inability to see these events live at any kind of frequency will rob them of the interest to develop a fan following, and without that, they're nothing but a product without a customer.

January 04, 2011 9:14 AM  

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