Thus far, this particular category has been devoted to focusing on people, products, organizations, and trends which:
- have undergone major changes,
- are currently in the midst of transformation,
- are destined for future change, and
- the inevitable results that will evolve.
I thought maybe we’d change our focus a bit this week and focus on things that SHOULD be going, gone or eliminated as soon as possible because they simply don’t make sense. For instance:
- Let’s start with those maddening little labels glued on every piece of fruit in the supermarket. There’s got to be a better way. As it is now, you either end up eating the labels or destroying the piece of fruit by trying to surgically remove them before feasting. After every battle with a sticker, I feel like returning the piece of fruit to the supermarket—through the plate glass front window of the store.
- Now let’s visit the airport where there are several maddening classics which need to be targeted.
- Let’s get rid of that ridiculous sign near security which reminds us that no guns, knives, or bombs are permitted past this point! Duh! Have you ever seen a passenger dump their weapons in a growing pile at this point?
- How about the E-ticket machine near the counter that actually has the gaul and audacity to ask you if you packed your own bag. If you didn’t, would you tell this machine? And if you told them you didn’t pack your own bag, what are they going to do? Is there someone in the back room monitoring responses from all of these E-ticket machines?
- Here’s another dumb airport tradition: crowding up against the luggage conveyor while we wait for bags at the airport. If we all stood back six feet, we could see the bags coming and step forward and wrestle them off the belt without shoving.
- How about the Electoral College? No one understands what it is, how it works, or the fact that it undermines the concept of “every vote counts.” Rather than directly voting for the President and Vice President, United States citizens vote for electors. Electors are technically free to vote for anyone eligible to be President but in practice pledge to vote for specific candidates and voters cast ballots for favored Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates by voting for correspondingly pledged electors. You knew that, right?
- And finally … lotteries need to go. A lottery is a tax on people who are bad at math. It’s a huge tax—people sink about $40 billion a year into state lotteries and $345 billion into all forms of legal gambling. A good number of those who buy lottery tickets and travel to Vegas, Atlantic City, etc. are for the most part those who don’t have the money to waste. Only a very small fraction of what they lose comes back to them in funds for schools as promised. A direct tax would hit all income levels more fairly, would actually channel more to the schools at less expense to the taxpayers, and might even help educate people to understand their chances of winning a lottery are actually about a trillion to 1!