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A few steps back to take huge leap forward
Posted by Tony on 17th March 2016 at 13:21:44
Chance chat with an ordinary bloke strongly confirmed a few of my preoccupations.

AOs and PSOs make train travel uncomfortable even when I know I've done absolutely nothing to excite their interest. Yet in recent days I'd found at least three reasons to try to initiate charitable conversation which only underlined how badly "the system" has gone wrong in this area, and ultimately reflects a system wide issue I'll get back to.

Yesterday was just one of those days that will happen a bit too easily on a stretched and blinkered system. Intended departures both ways out of Sunbury were long delayed, although it didn't really compromise the primary objective of this monthly excursion. Both ways an early 40s guy from a couple of stations away got caught up in the same delays en route to a regular obligation to swap his daughter's care even further up the line. So at Sunbury ahead of our final legs we compared notes that finished up spilling further than our mutual delays.

His recent encounters with AOs and PSOs were both unjustified and irresponsibly costly. And arrangements over his daughter which he and his ex though amicably and sensibly revised as she started school had been voided by an authoritarian regime insisting it needed to justify its own existence, again at the family's cost and against all their wishes. While I haven't had personal motivation for being as critical as I can be, that half hour clearly confirmed how bad it has become for the next generation, let alone for youngsters.

I've been talking about "information tax" for a generation, not a tax on information but a tax of information which white collar bureaucratic types, aka professionals, demand to justify their own existence. The new observations to a degree even I hadn't imagined possible is that despite this one way information torrent, those not only receiving it but using it to justify their own disproportionate remuneration, are doing everything they can to avoid listening.

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