Tag Archives: AT&T

An abuse of presidential power?

I want to share a brief item posted on Facebook by Robert Reich, a fiery critic of Donald J. Trump. Reich writes:

Another impeachable offense. Trump personally tried to block AT&T’s merger with Time Warner as retribution for CNN’s coverage of him, according to a new report. In meetings with his advisors, he demanded that the Department of Justice’s antitrust division to stop the merger. The move would have also been a huge victory for Rupert Murdoch, who owns Fox News and viewed the AT&T-Time Warner as a threat to his business.

If these reports turn out to be true, this would be a clear violation of the First Amendment’s protection of freedom of the press — conspiring to block a merger for the sole purpose of limiting press coverage. We must not become inured to this unconstitutional behavior.

What do we make of that? Reich, a former labor secretary during the Clinton administration, believes the president of the United States has interceded in direct violation of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

We’ve been hearing a lot in recent days and weeks about “conspiracy to obstruct justice,” about “alleged collusion with Russian operatives” who attacked our electoral system.

We now might start hearing more chatter about “abuse of presidential power.”

The U.S. House Judiciary Committee has launched an expansive investigation into an array of questions regarding Donald Trump’s conduct as president of the United States.

The committee’s agenda is overflowing.

Trying to understand human behavior

I’ll admit readily to a lot of things that surpass my understanding.

A tale I heard today just might take the cake.

I purchased this fancy new cell phone a few weeks ago. It’s been giving me fits. The battery wouldn’t hold a charge; I took it in twice. The second time I visited the AT&T store up the street from my home, the young man replaced it with a new device, identical to the one I had.

Then the second phone began locking up on me. I would run a function on the phone and the touch screen would become non-responsive. I took the phone in twice more to seek some advice and counsel. I got it and went about my business.

Today it did it again. This time, though, I couldn’t get it unstuck.

I went back to the AT&T store. I was a bit steamed, but not overly so. The young man greeted me at the door with “Hi there, how are you doing?” “Not very well,” I snapped. I then explained to him what was happening with my phone and he directed me to a colleague who he described as “expert on Windows phones.”

“Oh, you mean, Kevin?” I said. I became acquainted with the expert during a previous visit.

But as I told the young man who greeted me about my troubles, I apologized for being so snarky and rude.

His response? “Oh, don’t worry about it. You’re just fine.”

Here is where I got a lesson in human behavior that totally baffles me.

“I’ve been slapped, kicked, called every dirty name there is, even been spit on — at least five times” by angry customers, the young man said.

“Spit on? You mean in the face?” I asked, incredulously. “Yep, right in the face,” he said.

He then told me about an individual who shoved him into a wall because he couldn’t acquire a certain device he was seeking. “Was this at Christmas time?” I asked, only half-joking. “Yes it was,” he said.

Well, Kevin came over eventually, talked me through my problem and then helped me phone the manufacturer’s warranty office. I got a live person after just two electronic prompts. I told the young lady of my problem — and they’re shipping me a new phone, which I’ll get in a day or two.

And to think I thought I was being rude. I’m not sure I even know the meaning of the word after what I heard this afternoon.

Bless all those retail sales staffers who endure that kind of abuse.