What does Amazon.com have to do with David Lane’s American Renewal Project?

Amazon.com is driving me nuts! If I report a problem, offer feedback or ask a question, the reply I receive is always about something different from my inquiry. Recently I encountered a firmware issue and received an explanation about why I paid sales tax. It is also obvious that the responder has only read the first paragraph. People with extraordinarily low attention spans read a few sentences, get bored, and then presume to have all of the information that they require.

I have wondered if they were using AI whereby a submission is crunched by a computer which selects boilerplate for the most likely reply. I believe that it is human error.

This is not limited to Amazon. The other day I requested some pre-sales information from Sony’s consumer electronics division. I asked three questions. Someone answered only the first question while profusely thanking me for my interest in Sony. Presumably, these inquiries are handled by young, lower level employees.

My hypothesis is that social media has destroyed our collective intellect. People are only capable of processing Twitter’s current character limit. Some years ago I was frustrated by the fact that each generation has less curiosity. People don’t seem to want to know how things work anymore. Combine that with shorter attention spans and the result is predictable.

That brings me to David Lane, the American Renewal Project, American Family Association and Heavenly Father’s Foundation. I was on  the verge of clicking send on the IRS referral and then I became insecure.

Was my explanation too long and too complicated for consumption by a first-line staffer? This is a very serious issue. A group of people engaged in a conspiracy to commit tax fraud. Ultimately the source of a contribution to a political campaign was tax-deducted and there is a deliberate effort to conceal the transaction.

Trump did something similar when he bribed Florida AG Pam Bondi to discontinue an investigation of Trump U. Trump was not prosecuted and I doubt that the transaction was even investigated. However, Trump’s transaction was more ambiguous than that of the Heavenly Father’s Foundation.

I sent a one sentence summary to the FBI and invited them to contact me by phone or email if they were interested in pursuing the matter. My telephone call to the foundation was never returned. No one offered an alternative explanation for the transaction. My voicemail message was not specific (I still recall a time when carbon life forms took messages for people). Perhaps a Google alert interfered. Who knows?

I am in the process of re-writing the referral. It will go out today. I will remain insecure. The only thing that I will receive from the IRS is a form letter acknowledging receipt.

Meanwhile I will figure out how to be less frustrated by lazy 20-somethings with the attention spans of a fruit fly and the curiosity of Sarah Palin (or Donald Trump for that matter). I confess to having screamed at computers that answer phone calls and then ask me to explain, “in as few words as possible,” why I am calling. If I scream “fuck you” the computer responds:
“Sorry, I didn’t quite get that.” Ugh! It’s one thing when technology is faster, better and cheaper. Lately, it has just been cheaper.

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By David Cary Hart

Retired CEO. Formerly a W.E. Deming-trained quality-management consultant. Now just a cranky Jewish queer. Gay cis. He/Him/His.