There’s wonderful news for everybody who owns a cell phone, which is basically anyone in America over the age of 3.
Congress has passed a law prohibiting robocalls, and President Trump has signed it.
That’s what comes in the big print.
The small print always says it may be awhile before you notice any difference.
Really, do you suppose?
For starters, how does anybody get your cell phone number?
If you are old enough to remember phone systems that were basically two cans and a piece of string, you can probably remember something called phone books. No more.
One of the chief uses of your cell phone these days to trying to find an app giving you phone numbers of your friends.
But getting back to why there has been no rush by junk phone boiler rooms to comply with the new law, consider this:
Among the highest generators of junk calls we hear from is President Trump, the same President Trump who signed the bill into law.
For awhile, we got daily calls asking us to send him $35 so he could “send a brick to Chuck and Nancy.” It was never made clear whether that would cover one brick to be shared by the two of them or one brick for each, let alone what Chuck and Nancy were expected to do with them.
Trump’s calls have gotten more and more desperate, warning that unless we send a generous donation to his re-election campaign, the Democrats will take over Congress, illegal immigrants will take over the country, and aliens from a yet undiscovered galaxy will take over the world.
Another member of our Frequent Junk Caller Club calls us up to five times a day warning that she is running out of patience with our failure to return her calls offering a low interest credit card, and this is absolutely, positively the last time she’ll call us.
And there’s Nancy, our self-described Medicare Advisor, who calls several times a week to report that their records show that we are in need of medical braces for every joint in our bodies larger than a little toe, and she is standing by to tell us how to tap the Public Treasury for the latest and greatest in braces.
My favorite was the call I got last week “responding to your inquiry about ways to reduce your student loan debt.”
When I finally got through laughing, I told my thoughtful caller that I am 79 years old and do not owe any student loans.
He seemed unimpressed by my thrift.
(S. L. Frisbie is retired. When he went to FSU — 1958 to 1962 — he supplemented what his parents paid for his education by getting a university job as a student assistant in his freshman year that paid 75 cents an hour. It is the only job he ever held in which he didn’t work hard enough to earn his pay. He got a job in his sophomore year as a daily newspaper reporter for a dollar an hour, making him one of the few people in history to get a newspaper job because it paid so much more than what he was making working for the government.)