Thursday, May 03, 2012

Honest as the day is long

I got my old layout back at last, you see, I write a bit, then I go back and correct it followed by another piece, then adding the pictures then when it is published I often find errors again which I go back on and correct it all over again.

But I have a problems with the photos for one more day.

Honesty is the best policy

Just in case you think it is only in Ireland that taxi drivers overcharge.
Here is one from Asia.

$400 fine for $190 taxi fare

By Hidir Reduan
New Straits Times
Friday, Apr 27, 2012

KUALA LUMPUR - Two taxi drivers paid a heavy price for overcharging their passengers when they were slapped with hefty fines in two separate cases at the magistrate's court yesterday.

First in the dock was J. Elanggo, who pleaded guilty to over-charging a British couple of nearly RM460 (S$188) in taxi fare for a trip from the KLCC in Jalan Ampang to the Dorsett Regency Hotel, Jalan Imbi, about 2pm on Feb 8.

The couple, Evelyn Irene and Rex Alan Frank, were shocked when they were asked to pay RM459.20 when the meter only showed RM8.

The couple paid the fare but lodged a report with the Complaints and Investigation Unit of the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) later that day.

Counsel N. Satgurunathan, who appeared for Elanggo, pleaded for a lenient penalty in light of the high cost of living his client shouldered.

"He only earns on average RM3,500 a month, RM2,250 of which are already spent on monthly taxi rental. He has a wife and two young children to support."

Prosecuting officer Chief Inspector Nom Phot Prackdit urged the court to impose a heavy sentence to deter other taxi drivers from committing the same offence.

Magistrate Nurdiana Mohd Nazari fined the accused RM1,000 and ordered him to serve a month in jail if he did not pay the fine.

Elanggo paid the fine.

In the same court later, another taxi driver was fined RM400 in default four days' jail after he pleaded guilty to over-charging four passengers RM8 in taxi fare.

Ahmad Osman, 53, demanded the victims pay the RM8 instead of RM4.80 which was shown in the taxi meter.

He committed the offence at the LRT Sentul Timur in Taman Dato Senu, here, around 6.37pm on Nov 30, last year. He paid the fine.

Speaking to reporters outside court, SPAD legal and secretarial executive Nor Shahkierra Abd Manan said the convictions of the two taxi drivers were the first for the offence of over-charging passengers.

The taxi drivers could have been fined a maximum RM50,000, jailed not more than three years or both.

At least over there the public seems to be protected, not like over here where such things are just ignored.

An Australian man and his wife approached me and asked me to take them to Suffolk St., he wanted to take the Aircoach to the airport.
I told him that the taxi fare to town and the bus fare would be roughly the same cost as going there directly by taxi and the taxi would be much faster.
He told me that another guy who worked in their London office had told them that they had been charged €50 to get into town the last time he had used a taxi in Dublin, so he advised them to use the Aircoach.
So all taxi drivers finish up getting a bad name.

There was a poor taxi driver a few years ago in Saudi Arabia I think who found a briefcase full of money and diamonds.
He retraced his steps and found the owner, who was very happy to get his goods back.
Word got out about his honesty and how the owner never gave the driver any reward.
The King himself sent for him and presented him with a large reward.
Right from the hand of the King.
The driver thanked him and told the King that it was in his very nature to be honest, if the owner did not reward him this was of no consequence. It would be between him and his God.

Still it can be hard to be reasonable at times.

An American threesome got into the taxi to go to Glasneven graveyard, then to the Gravediggers pub. So I showed them the sights en route. The father wanted to go to the toilet. So we went to Kavanaghs pub (the grave diggers)first.
I said I would pause the meter while they had a cigarette.
On arrival at the grave yard I got a phone call from home so I had to excuse myself.
They were going to walk down to the family plot and would get another taxi when they walked back out on the road again.
There was €17.50 on the meter.
I waited with €2.50 in my hand. He paused and fumbled through his wad of money. Then I told him I had the change of €20 in my hand and the blue note was the €20.
So he took the change and gave me the €20.
I said thanks and turned to go, but he insisted that he wanted to look after me as I had "looked after them real well"
So by how much did he value my service?
€20 no €10 no €5 No €1 no, but you are getting warmer.
.70 cent was to be my reward! I don't know if you behave badly in such situations.
Do you give it back and say you are sorry if you offended them so badly?
I didn't know you were so hard up, you had better keep it yourself.
I will buy a box of matches on the way home. Or throw it away in disgust.

Just take it on the chin and behave yourself, which I did.
But it is hard when a poor person would give you €2 or €3.
Now I will forget all about them.

Talking about honesty I had an accountant in the taxi who does the books for different businesses.
He started doing the books for a Doctors practice, things were not right. He went back through the records for 15 years.
The Doctors secretary had been skimming money off the patients accounts for herself.
There was more than €150,000 missing. She had put 4 kids through college, she had property in France New York and Florida.
She got 5 years jail. But our journey came to an end before he could say how much money they had got back.I didn't get a chance to ask him how much money the doctor had put in his back pocket without declaring it.

The Edge of U2 fame had problems a while back when it was alleged one of his staff was taking money out of his bank account around €3 million was the figure for that one. She also had an international property portfolio.

"John she said Forgivness and reconcillation are not words you use when you refer to Muslims"
A realy funny lady

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