You would think, from the millions and millions the government spends on computers, that we would be one tech-savvy bureaucracy, right?
Wrong. Not in our case, at least. There are computers, alright. Internet-capable PCs, sleek laptops, high-end thingamajigs. The thing is, they are rarely ever used to make things a lot less complicated for you and me.
Following the paper trail is still an exercise in patience as one is shunted from one office to another. Almost everything is manual: you look for something and the clerk riffles through logbooks that have obviously seen better days. You follow up action on a request, and your paper is retrieved--after much finger pointing--from a pile of virtually untouched documents. You need something, and you are made to wait, wait and wait. Sometimes for nothing.
Where are the computers in the middle of all these? Busy, of course. With Text Twist and Solitaire and Friendster. The older, on-the-wings-of-retirement set are too jaded to learn something new. The younger ones are clueless on the ways of government. Those in between? As usual, we are caught in the middle.
And so, in this day and age of high-speed connectivity, the wheels of the bureaucracy turn on their own slow, agonizing pace.