Social Security Numbers

I’ve read a few sites on the Internet that talk about how Social Security Numbers are horrible, ungodly things and that they could even be The Mark Of The Beast™. While many of their arguments seem very tenuous at best, and outright crazy at times, it is rather interesting that there isn’t a law requiring anybody to get a Social Security number. It’s just very, very difficult to work without one.

Stopping Unsolicited Mail

I mentioned that it was possible to set up filters on incoming postal mail. I haven’t done this yet, but apparently the way to do this is via USPS DMM 508 §8.1.1, which says that “an addressee who receives a solicited or unsolicited advertisement offering for sale matter that, in the addressee’s sole discretion, is ‘erotically arousing or sexually provocative,’ may, by completing Form 1500, obtain a prohibitory order directing the mailer of the advertisement to refrain from making further mailings to that addressee.”

The key is that it’s “in the addressee’s sole discretion”. So if you claim that those credit card offers are just too arousing, the Post Office won’t disagree with you. Apparently, the Supreme Court has upheld that this even includes a “dry goods catalog” if the addressee wants (although I haven’t independently verified the existence of the court case referenced on that site).

I just find this an amusing approach to the problem. I may try it out sometime and report how it goes.

More on junk mail

When I don’t outright refuse junk mail, sometimes I’ll take some of the junk mail I’ve received, remove personally identifying information from it, and stuff it into the next available Business Reply Mail (postage will be paid by addressee) junk mail return envelope I find, and drop it in the mail. I hope to exceed the one ounce limit so that they need to pay extra postage.

I’m just very sick of junk mail. I don’t allow random offers from companies to show up in my email box, so why should I need to deal with them in my postal mail box? Unfortunately, setting up filters on your physical mail box is much more difficult than setting them up on an email box. (It is possible, however, and I plan to do so in the near future if I continue to get more junk as companies discover our address.)

Your mail was refused

“After delivery, an addressee may mark a mailpiece “Refused” and return it within a reasonable time, if the piece or any attachment is not opened.” — USPS DMM 508 §1.1.3

I’ve been in the habit lately of refusing all my junk mail. I certainly don’t want to pay for removing the trash I get in the mail. Why not make the sender pay for it? (Undeliverable first class mail will get returned to the sender, while undeliverable presorted standard mail (which is most junk mail) will get disposed of by the USPS. That’s just a part of the service that a mailer is buying when paying postage.)

RF in my pocket

So, my snazzy new credit card that I got apparently has some sort of chip and RF transmitter in it. This allows me to purchase things simply by holding the card near the POS card reader instead of actually needing to go through all the effort of swiping it through the machine.

What is the world coming to…?