My World is Rapidly Changing
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written by Ron:
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          The list of things that have changed or will shortly change has been circulated on the internet lately. Usually I see these abstract lists and theyíre quickly deleted, but this one touched me Ė mainly because it seemed accurate and secondly because it seemed to touch my life rather emphatically.
          The list warns us that the following changes have been made or will shortly become reality.
          Topping the list is the warning that we will soon be living without the Post Office. The claim is that with the advent and rise in use of e-mail, UPS and Fed Ex the Post Office as we know it, will disappear.
          Next on the list to vanish will be the check. The cost to process checks runs into the billions and the plastic card and the use of the internet for transactions will lead to the demise of the check. Britain is planning on doing away with checks by 2018. And if you donít pay your bills by check thatís another nail in the Post Officesí coffin.
          Already fading from our lives is the printed newspaper. The current generation doesnít read a newspaper and the newspapers you now read on your computer screen for free will soon be charging us subscription fees.
          As Borderís, the book store behemoth, found out, printed books are on their way out. For those of us who like holding a book and physically turning the pages we should get used to those gadgets that download an entire book for less than half the price of a book made of paper. Ask Borderís and thousands of smaller book stores if things havenít already changed.
          Someday our grandchildren will tell their children about the land line telephones that used to be in our homes. Land line phones are quickly becoming absent and soon to be museum pieces.
          Remember when you used to go to a Tower Records to purchase an LP by Frank Sinatra, then you got used to buying Madonna singing on the smaller CDs. Now you turn on your computer, click and download Lady Gaga. Ask Tower Records if the music business has changed.
          People are watching television and movies on their computer screens. Theyíre playing games and using the internet instead of just watching television programs. Television viewing is diminishing. People are using sites like Hulu so they can watch what they want, when they want. The old days are just that Ė old and dying.
          Say goodbye to your privacy. There are cameras on the street, in buildings and in your computer and your telephone. If you click on something on the internet, if you purchase something on-line, whatever you do your profile is being built. In computers around the world you are building a profile of yourself that businesses and advertisers are using to identify you. They know who you are and where you are - you are not alone, not anymore.
          And so, from my land line telephone to my books to my daily newspaper, to my trips to my local Post Office, the things that brought me assurance that my life was in my control are rapidly falling by the wayside.
          Iím facing these changes bravely. Iíll read my newspaper on my computer screen. Iíll live without going to the Post Office. But, one of the things Iíll miss is reading a good old Ė fashioned book, and then passing it on to a good friend for his or her enjoyment. Iíll miss doing that.
          Next thing you know theyíll have cars that you donít have to manually shift gears and televisions with color pictures or weíll do our banking without ever having to leave our home. What a world!
Americans are getting ticked off
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