I seem to be regularly annoyed by the modern trend for dumbing everything down. It is perhaps part of a master plan to reduce the masses to total dependence on those with “Knowledge”
It seems to happen in all sorts of ways, we have kids who cannot add up or multiply and who cannot tell if they have the right change without looking at a till slip. Even then it is doubtful if some can add up the coins in their hand. Educational standards have fallen through the floor, half the under 30s cannot spell or construct a sentence. At the other end of the scale university has now been rendered almost worthless, a degree is no help in obtaining a job, but merely a millstone of debt for most of a lifetime.
Even the BBC is leaving words out of text in it’s web pages.
We now receive business letters utilising apostrophes ” we’ll send you full details later” “you’ll find details below.” Then signed “yours sincerely” !!!
I was taught all businesses or companies are addressed as Dear Sirs and then FAO: Mr, Mrs or Miss B Whatever and of course a business letter must end yours faithfully, not sincerely. However here is the first minefield. We now have Ms and would you believe Mx ! Men are now supposed to have some sort sixth sense as to what form of title by which any woman wants to be addressed, it appears to be completely arbitrary.
I have here to confess that I am with Sheldon Cooper when upon starting his new version of Windows, it said it was friendlier and easier to use, he said “I don’t like that” or words to that effect. Businesses do not want to be your friend, they just want your money, MS Windows may want to be your friend, but really its about making Bill and co even richer. I use Linux instead.
Businesses trying to be friendly by using your name twice in every paragraph, (horrible echoes of the Dale Carnegie course) We do not want you to be our friend, we do want a better price, much better service and the impression that you know what you are doing.
Grammar and basic letter writing is not taught any more it seems, it also appears that the job of writing and printing labels in supermarkets is automatically given to the least literate or a non-English speaking employee. The internal training program has obviously been diverted full time into aisle blocking techniques using various pieces of mobile equipment. The cage for recycling cardboard is a favourite since is sticks out further than most other on site equipment, however the combined stepladder and table can be used to good effect, preferably alongside an existing pinch point where a free-standing display of goods is placed to narrow the aisle. The new weapon is the double stack of trays/bins which have been filled for home/internet shoppers. Not only is there a constant flow of “full for empty” trays passing from the internet shoppers with 8 stack trolleys that park nearby, but usually it forms a staff meeting place for the full trolley stack remover, two or three internet shoppers and any passing supervisor or friend of any of the above. Thus not only is the aisle blocked with trolleys but also with people.
Everything is reduced in size, value for money, simplified or buried in unnecessary packaging.
Take cat food for instance, suppose I offered you the opportunity to pay twice the price for the same thing? We always buy tinned cat food, a shrink wrapped 6 tin pack costs 10.4p/100g in Asda but the same food in envelopes called “pouches” costs 20.8p/100g. Ok its convenient but its 100% more! Tins have been disappearing from the supermarket shelves, the choice is narrowing, soon we will be obliged to pay twice as much.
This is a tin of Butchers cat food that I complained about:
I worked out by weighing, that it was 45% jelly and 55% meat and other.
The reply I got told me there was nothing wrong with it and that sometimes the jelly went around the outside of the meat. They did send a £5 voucher which I later used, but they totally missed the point, I am thinking now that ignorance in doing a job is so taken for granted that they can say any old thing and be thought to have replied satisfactorily.
Toothpaste has been made thinner, it pours out of the tube now. Tatar sauce so thin it runs off the fish. (possibly also the fault of tv chefs inventing “jus” and “foam” instead of proper sauce.) (one wonders what is cheaper than water, to add to dilute the product) This reducing of value may also be the result of Asda, Tesco etc trying to match Aldi and Lidl in price. The result is normally that the supplier and the logistics get squeezed.
How we have any dairy farmers left in the country is a mystery, they have been forced into loss making deals, similarly pig farmers, British produce will soon be a reserve of the moneyed classes, while the bulk is imported from countries with no EU laws or standards. Every year we have periods of cheap beef and pork as our dairy herds are sent for slaughter, and pig farmers are forced out of business.
I am particularly annoyed at the demise of common sense and the rise of so called political correctness. Being polite is now a minefield, one cannot say hello to any female without trepidation that they will take offence at the form of address. Nor open a door or give up a seat on a bus or train, things I was taught I must do as a child, without risking being harangued as being as patronising. Yet if one ignores such courtesies there is an equal risk of being cast as rude or ill brought up.
So I suppose for us ancient relics, it is best just to stay home and die quietly.
Oh yes I forgot to mention that of course, it is all Tony Blair’s doing!