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Because they're fucking sadists that's why. They're just trying to force your attention, to no benefit to them, only to your detriment, just because they value controlling others however pettily above even basic human decency.
Invest in a speaker phone, seriously. Anyone who still uses an automated phone responder these days and not like, email or something, you can pretty much assume they're going to be a psychopathic control freak. (The fact that almost every big business does this is very telling about the current economy.)
But, invest in a speaker phone.