Friday, February 11, 2011
It’s been an ugly day.

I fucking hate ICBC: the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia. Almost like I fucking hate BC Ferries. (Almost as much as I hate you, bitch, and wonder why the hell you still read my blog… but that of course, is for another entry altogether, if/when I have the inclination to bother with it.) Hell, I hate any monopoly organization. ICBC isn’t just a monopoly though, they’re exact proof of the failures of a socialized system: socialization at it worst.

Today, I had the misfortune of actually having to complain to an ICBC operator. I imagine it’s akin to what complaining to BCTel was; prior to competitive phone companies forcing BCTel to change it’s treatment of consumers (along with their company name altogether to Telus). The woman was an arrogant bitch, as I imagine (and have been told) they all are. I suppose you’d have to be, to be working for one of the most hated organizations in this province.

To make a long story short, I recently (as in at the end of December or beginning of January) renewed my yearly insurance; which should have expired this month. I renewed it almost 2 months early, YES – because I’m fairly neurotic about being on time about payments due. I have an automated debit from my account with them, which takes place on the 18th of every month- except this month it turned out. This month, they got greedy and took the money on the 9th. Not expecting that payment to come out, and already depleting that particular account of any available funds, that debit forced my account into the red. I was charged a simple $5 fee for going over my available balance – the bank decided to deny the overdraft, reversed the charge and billed me my first ever NSF fee. Thanks to that fee, my account is still in the red – ICBC will once again have to try and take their fee, and I’ll have to pay all charges.

When I called the ICBC bitch to ask about the change of dates, her response was a little convoluted, absolutely disdainful, and totally rude. She actually told me that ICBC doesn’t actually sell ICBC insurance so thus it wasn’t up to their staff to inform us of such changes –when I mentioned my bank statement showed ICBC takes the charges, the office I went into had an ICBC logo and called themselves ICBC Driver’s Services, and the receipts they offered all carried the ICBC logos, she explained that some brokers choose to use ICBC’s logo, just for the sake of using it. Doesn’t sound like proper business ethics to me. And in short, she pretty much said it was up to me to read the fine print when I signed the documents to renew my insurance with them TWO MONTHS early.

I don’t know about you, but when I renew something, I expect that it will be renewed under the same terms as the current agreement, unless otherwise agreed. I’m pretty sure the definition of ’renew’ implies just that. I also believe it’s under the business’s responsibility to point out any goddamn changes so that the buyer is aware they are apparent. If of course, that's if the business has ethics: which we all know, ICBC doesn’t need to. They’re a government owned monopoly and by law we have to do business with them in order to drive in this fucking province.  I get it. I didn’t read the fine print. But FUCK! Why should I have? From what I understood, I was simply extending a current agreement as is.

I’ve heard multiple stories about ICBC fucking people, whether it be under these conditions or from people making a claim. My father pointed out in one of ICBC’s pamphlets that they actually have the authority to confiscate your vehicle, for ‘unlawful’ activities without any charges being laid or proof. READ THAT – they’re own marketing material says that it’s the discretion of ICBC employees to take away your car if they decide your actions are unlawful – YOU DO NOT have to be charged in a court of law, proven guilty, arrested, or even accused of unlawful activities by someone (other than an ICBC representative of course). Just pick up the Drunk Driving Penalties Pamphlet from your local ICBC office for yourself. What I don’t understand is WHY DON’T CANADIANS STAND UP AND DO SOMETHING ABOUT THIS BULLSHIT? We are supposed to be living in a democracy. Don’t tell me the people of BC want this bullshit; choose this bullshit; and will continue to accept this bullshit. They will, though. Because as a general rule Canadians are fucking pussies that convince themselves they are ok with everything and anything – for the sake of keeping quiet. Just like the housewives of the past. Canadians are pansies.

I envy the strength of the Tunisians for their recent successes as a community, and the Egyptians – who today, forced their dictator president Mubarak to step down.  We Canadians... We’ve got it so good in our comfy little lives, we’re afraid to make it better – even if that is what a democracy is truly about.

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No matter where I am, I'm lost and learning to like it. I'm a living contradiction, and the best lies I tell are the ones I tell myself.
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