After discussions with Qwest, my ISP, and some research, I have an RMA for the router that Qwest billed me for, the only problem being that within the past 30 days I WAS NEVER SENT A ROUTER BY QWEST. The router I was billed for is nonexistent. I was sent a router several months ago, which I paid for, and I’m inclined to return it. But alas, less than a week ago, I trashed the shipping material.
My ISP assures me that a) the router they installed is generating rental income for them and b) no router they would install would be billed to me by Qwest, as they are separate operations.
My vanishing phone number has been explained, as well. It seems that my ISP, unbidden and unapproved, dropped a whole new line to the house in order to establish ADSL, instead of regular DSL. In so doing they thoughtfully moved the existing handsets onto the new circuit, presumably allowing them to bill me for the “service,” in addition to whatever other charges are to be levied. A swift call to them identified that balance as a mere $123 and some petty coppers.
Ah, the sweet, clean air of the free market, where service is sublime and price competition flattens cash outflow. The hell with that! Nationalize ’em! Slow and ineffective service that costs little and is subject to my will as a voter beats slow and ineffective service that costs a shitload and is beyond recourse every single day of this century or any other! Citizens, why do you tolerate this sort of crap?