Thingish Things

Careful What You Ask For

Written By: William F. B. O'Reilly - Dec• 05•11

Speaking of unintended consequences, get this:

The New York double-decker bus industry is under attack by the New York City Council. This is the second time it’s been in the cross hairs in a year. The first time it was for the sound amplified tour-guides make in residential neighborhoods, specifically the West Village.  So the Council demanded that the bus operators spend millions of dollars outfitting every seat on every open-air bus in the city with a headset. 

Now that that’s done, there is no need for the tour guides. The operators can remotely pipe the tour information into the headsets. As a result, hundreds of layoffs are being planned.

Not so fast says the Council, which is now seeking to force the tour operators to keep the unionized tour guides, even though they are no longer needed. Maybe the tour guides should be reassigned to lighting the city’s oil lamps or to watering the trolley horses. I mean, really, what’s the difference?

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