Today, you get in, turn the key enough to engage the starter. I you let it go, the car continues to crank until started. At least that's what my Expedition does. Anyway, it starts every time unless the battery is dead, or there is some other big problem. Sure, your old car was easy to work on. That's just another way of saying that it was always broken by today's standards.
As for single stream, we used to sort it, but now use a large single stream bin. A great improvement all around. Here's why: I toured the recycling center with my daughter's elementary school class. I watched the trucks pull in. This was in the "sort it" days. So a guy would pick up your bin, throw the cardboard with the cardboard, the plastic with the plastic (by type), the glass with the glass, etc. The truck had an opening for each. Anyway, the truck pulls into the recycling center, and the back opens, and the dumper rises, and all of it gets mixed together! I finally asked why, and they didn't have a good answer. So what was the point? It was totally inefficient in that the sorting process the guy did at every house was essentially a useless exercise. And he knew it too, so those sorts were not particularly well done. Bottom line, single stream makes far more sense - sort it at the recycling facility. Don't pay a guy to do it at the curb. Have a truck pick up a big bin automatically.
Finally, the financial end of this... When we went to single stream, we got a garbage can (95gal) and a recycle can (95gal). We found we were producing more garbage than recycling. So I sent my brother in law, who was living with us to go purchase another garbage can. They explained to him that they would like to sell him a recycling can instead. The town made money on the recycling, and garbage cost them. So he came home empty handed. I told him to go down and buy the extra garbage can - I didn't care what it cost the TOWN... I cared about keeping the garbage out of the recycling. So I sent him back and reluctantly they sold him another garbage can.
Roll the clock forward, and the town does what government does best. Since they made money on recycling, they announced that anyone who had more than one garbage can would be issued a new recycle bin and they would be taking the extra garbage can that I had paid for away. And recycling would only pick up every other week. And if I wanted to keep my extra garbage can, I had to pay a $150 a year subscription for it. So, they did what made economic sense for them at my expense.
Of course, my solution to this was simple. I had the same number of cans, it's just one went from Garbage Green to Recycle Blue. So I threw my garbage in the recycle bins. Problem solved for me. And probably part of the reason recycling is more expensive now because of short sighted government workers wishing things were different and turning me into a profit center!
That, and we must never forget that as much as we may applaud the insurance company in this particular story for calling out poor practices, the primary purpose of a modern insurance company is to take your money and give you nothing in return. Everybody needs to be very aware of that, and be untrusting in all your dealings with anyone in the insurance business.
As in all industries, there are the good and the bad. I would posit that you are speaking about "bad" insurance companies, not good ones. Not every insurance company dreams of giving you "nothing in return" for your premium dollars. Quite the contrary, if insurance companies never paid any claims, there would be no need for them, and their premiums would dry up immediately. The primary purpose of an insurance is to transfer risk... in effect, pooling it and transferring the risk from one entity to several/many. Believe it or not, this enables many things. Even things like the Ansari X-Prize. The organization awarding the prize didn't have the money to pay the prize, they only had about half of it. They used that to buy an insurance policy, which paid the claim when the prize was won. Regardless, most insurance companies invest in their claim handling capabilities as it is a competitive advantage to have good claim paying history. Doubt it? Compare "The General" auto insurance claims paying vs. USAA or Amica. The latter pride themselves on claim paying. Personally, I have a policy for my house, that recently paid a claim and paid on items I never expected them to reimburse me for. Their claim handler went out of her way to make sure I got far more money than I had anticipated. The bottom line is that its easy to pick on insurance companies, but if you do your research and buy policies from reputable companies, you'll likely have a great experience with them when you have to file a claim. If you go for the cut rate, "The General" type companies, well you got what you paid for.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that we're asking cops to do everything all the time now... In addition to protecting us, and bringing in the bad guys, and finding them, we want them to use kid gloves and we've tied their hands over and over again. So we are getting exactly what WE deserve, a bitter police force, who feels that the people are not behind them, and thus they move from serving and protecting us to serving and protecting themselves. Congratulations everyone... you got the police force you deserve. You don't like it? Well further tying their hands, throwing them in jail, etc. is just gonna make it worse. Rock on, morons.
The essence of being a Christian is that you have to believe that a guy died on a cross, was stone cold dead, not sleeping, not in "suspended animation", not hibernating, but dead dead dead. And then 3 days later, he came back to life. According to Jesus, it's best if you just accept it on faith. But as an engineer, I needed the proof... so even though I'm a doubting Thomas, I have come to believe that he is risen. And I have a much higher than normal IQ, and am not easily impressed with magic tricks, tarot cards, and psychics...
What I found most interesting is that human footprints on another world isn't even considered. And when I think of wonders, I have to believe that walking on the moon makes all other human wonders pale in comparison. I, too, was absolutely enthralled by the space program and the Apollo missions. I've watched Apollo 13 like 20 times. I was too young to remember the first moon landing and Armstrong's first steps. I do remember being in kindergarten and being hustled into a cafeteria so the entire school could watch a moon landing on a 19 inch black and white television. I remember building a model Saturn V rocket with my dad, with all the stages were removable. For one of the launches, I dutifully discarded the stages as the rocket took off, and I remember thinking the mission was doomed to failure, having seen 90% of the rocket gone in the first 10 minutes. How could they have made such a mistake I thought...
Anyway, fast forward to today, and I have several friends who are convinced the moon landings were faked and have an elaborate conspiracy theory supporting their assertion. My daughter even explained to me that the cameras wouldn't have worked in space (she just got done with a photography course where they posited this theory). Historians claim that the whole thing was just a cold war artifact. Lots of people make the argument that the money would have been better spent on social programs (as if we had just added the Apollo funding to the supertanker of money already spent on such programs would have just made the difference, and we'd be living in a utopia now if only our swaggering leaders had just thought of the children!)
Rarely mentioned is the fact that having humans walk on another world is perhaps the greatest achievement mankind has ever accomplished. It is more often written off as a publicity stunt. Lost is the inspiration a generation got from that endeavor. And that generation is getting old now and the state of the world and the indifference to the achievement discourages me and others of that time no end.
Getting off this pale blue world is a thing our society should value highly, as like it or not, the longevity of our species depends on it. And while we are currently in the wooden sailing ship stage of our ability to explore space, that should in no way discourage us to continue to push those boundaries. Humans should walk on Mars. We should capture and study asteroids. We should send probes to Europa in search of life. We should do these things, as Jack said, not because they are easy but because they are hard.
Meanwhile, Nasa's funding is abysmal in comparison to all of our other spending. A tiny fraction of our budget, seemingly shrinking every year. I am depressed.