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Forum Post: US is So Pathetic it can't Afford mail service

Posted 12 years ago on Dec. 5, 2011, 9:50 a.m. EST by bklynsboy (834)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Because we spend $300 million a day in Afghanistan in a futile, endless, unwinable war, and have bloated military presence all over the globe, we don't even have money for mail, libraries, heating aid for the poor, job creation, education, veterans, health, police, fire, infrastructure, and everything else that makes a country function. Except war.

Destruction of the postal department is a Republican goal, of the largest union in the US and a service that millions of poorer Americans require (second article).

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/04/us-postal-service-faces-b_n_1127989.html?ncid=webmail1

http://www.zcommunications.org/postal-workers-the-last-union-by-allison-kilkenny

234 Comments

234 Comments


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[-] 5 points by nucleus (3291) 12 years ago

"In 2007, a Congressional mandate that the Postal Service prefund future retiree health benefits for the next 75 years and do so within a decade -- something no other public agency or private company has to do -- was implemented, and it’s cost the agency $21 billion since then. That alone accounts for 84 percent of the Postal Service’s red ink."

Crippled by a Mandate

[-] 2 points by CurveOfBindingEnergy (165) 12 years ago

That is pathetic.

[-] 8 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

"Moreover, two studies have indicated that the post office’s retirement pension fund is overfunded by 50-70 billion dollars. Congress could have just transferred the surplus in the retirement pension fund over to the retirement healthcare fund, keeping the post office in the black, but it chose not to." ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

So, you have two funds here. One is the retirement PENSION fund, and the other is the retirement HEALTHCARE fund. It turns out that the PENSION fund is overfunded by almost exactly the amount that the healthcare fund was required to come up with, but congress refused to just transfer the money from one fund to the other.

Is that situation starting to reek of engineered failure by those in congress who want to privatize the post office for the sake of their cronies on Wall Street. Consider that the post office handles HALF of all the mail in the world, and you realize what a tidy piece of business that would be for Wall Street & Friends to get their hands on.

--Knave Dave

[-] 1 points by Concerned (455) 12 years ago

n fact, it's the Postal Service that’s currently bailing out the U.S. government. Politicians have been raiding Postal Service revenues for years, using them to make the federal deficit appear smaller than it really is. The fiscal gyrations are so twisted that the Postal Service is right now forced to pre-pay health care benefits for employees the agency hasn't even hired yet — in fact, for many future employees who haven't even been born yet — all to artificially shrink the federal deficit.

It's these crushing accounting tricks, not the cost of delivering mail, that has pushed this 200-year-old institution to the brink.

Welcome to the wacky world of Washington, D.C., accounting.

Read more: http://redtape.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2011/10/07/8191425-twisted-government-accounting-behind-postal-service-woes

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Indeed. It shows to me how sick our congress is that they can play these games of denial, pretending they have no idea that they are destroying the postal service, pretending that they are not doing this in order to part out its business to their cronies.

Congress and congress alone is responsible for rough shape the United States Postal Service is in.

Saving it requires math that an elementary school kid could do.

--Knave Dave http://thegreatrecession.info/blog

[-] 0 points by earnyours (124) 12 years ago

We still don't need Saturday delivery. Change is almost impossible for government, even when the need is as obvious as crashing volumes due to email. Government + unions = rigidity + unresponsiveness + bloat.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

We used to live without Saturday delivery, and I have not problem going without it. It's nice to have. The fact that we change TO HAVE Saturday delivery over thirty years ago, shows government can change because that was back in the time when the post office was somewhat government supported. Now it must support itself.

My issue with dropping Saturday delivery is simply that it is not necessary. Increase the cost of bulk mail to what Wall St. should be paying to send out all those credit-card advertisements, and all postal problems are ended in one stroke ... even its retirement fund problem, which Congress created. That, or revise congress's absurd requirement that the post office fully fund within the next ten years its retirement for all present and FUTURE employees for SEVENTY-FIVE year! What a STUPID plan. They are going broke by exactly the amount that that upgrade in their retirement plan is costing them. Who ANYWHERE IN AMERICA has to fund their retirement plan seventy-five years into the future on a ten-year schedule? That's so utterly absurd. Any other business would only be required to keep its retirement (AT MOST) fully funded seventy-give years out ON A SEVENTY-FIVE YEAR FUNDING SCHEDULE!

This is completely engineered destruction of the U.S. Postal Service by Republicans.

--Knave Dave http://thegreatrecession.info/blog

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Govt responds now to lobbyists and political donors.

[-] 1 points by cmt (1195) from Tolland, CT 12 years ago

No, you don't need Saturday delivery. Many customers like it, and find it useful.

Don't confuse responsiveness to a large group of customers with rigidity.

[-] -1 points by earnyours (124) 12 years ago

The union likes it most of all. The Post Office is stunningly slow to accept change.

[-] 6 points by nucleus (3291) 12 years ago

The other thing to consider is that every piece of mail is scanned for explosives, chemical and biological materials. The cost of these security measures is not insignificant.

UPS and FedEx don't do that, and are not required to.

[-] 1 points by Concerned (455) 12 years ago

Actually, the Act was part of the 109th Congress - where the GOP held the majority in both houses - it was enacted in December of 2006. But that doesn't tell the whole story.

The bill was sponsored by Two Democrats and One Republican

Danny Davis [D-IL7] John McHugh [R-NY23] Henry Waxman [D-CA30]

A record of how the votes were cast was not kept making it difficult to see who voted for this act and who didn't and what the party representation was in those votes. But it makes it really easy for the spin masters to make it out to be a GOP bill doesn't it? How many people are going to actually go look at who sponsored it? If you want to confirm this you can see the actual bill at the following link:

http://www.govtrack.us/congress/billtext.xpd?bill=h109-6407

The P.O. had a loss of upwards of 10 billion in 2011. 90% of the agency's revenue comes from business mail, a large portion of which is junk mail. http://www.dailyfinance.com/2010/03/02/losing-money-isnt-the-u-s-postal-services-only-problem/

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

US govt. is dying to break the USPS so it can be privatized for huge profits.

[-] 1 points by nucleus (3291) 12 years ago

Bingo.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

yes!

[-] 1 points by flip (7101) 12 years ago

very nicely done

[-] 0 points by MVSN (768) from Stockton, CA 12 years ago

And there it is.

[-] -1 points by earnyours (124) 12 years ago

Like the Post Office, you must not have heard of email yet either. LOL.

[-] -3 points by Concerned (455) 12 years ago

And let us remember which party was in power in 2007 - The Democrats held the Congress.

[-] 4 points by nucleus (3291) 12 years ago

Trying to maintain the illusion that there is any real difference between Democrats and Republicans, all of whom feed at the same trough ...

[-] 2 points by Concerned (455) 12 years ago

LOL...Love it.

Could wish that more people would understand this....instead of always blaming it on the GOP...like our original poster did...

[-] 2 points by infonomics (393) 12 years ago

Amen.

[-] -3 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

What's the postal service?

No just kidding. Does anyone even use snail-mail anymore? I know my parents do, but only because they pay bills. They could just as easily do that online.

The Post Office was already deep, deep in debt before that law was passed. The Post Office has been losing money, and was hundreds of millions in the hole, ever since 2000. The USPS has faced increasing competition by email/ online billing since circa 1995.

Society progresses forward.

New technologies (internet mail) replace the old (physical mail). It is only natural for the USPS to downsize as its role in society diminishes. Do you really think by 2050 people will still be using paper and sending letters? Someday maybe even post roads will be obsoleted (due to Star Trek-style transporters.)

Don't fight the future.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

The post office is indispensable:

"There are still many transactions that cannot be completed online, even though the transaction begins online, and there always will be. As a matter of fact, the whole argument that mail volume is down due to the internet and not the economy is highly questionable. Amazon and Netflix alone have added huge volume over the past decade. Things purchased online do not get to your home on a wire. Have you noticed that your bulk male has gone down any in recent years?" ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

More people than ever are doing their buying via the internet. That means, because they're not driving to deliver their own items to their own home, someone else has to do all the driving for them. The post office is still by far the cheapest means of delivery, so unless you want to pay a lot more, you sure don't want to see it privatized.

--Knave Dave

[-] 1 points by OccupyCentre (263) 12 years ago

People will take a hand written, hand delivered mail from the Postal Service far more seriously than an email. If you ever want to achieve anything, don't be lazy. Writing emails is not "modern", but lazy.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

And the internet doesn't seem to have replaced Christmas cards, nor will it get your Christmas packages to distant family.

Now that the new plan is to increase delivery time from one-day for first-class mail delivered within a city to three days, "Think of what this slower service will do to time-sensitive materials like news publications and mail-order prescriptions to towns too small to have a pharmacy (and soon too small to have a post office) or to those Netflix movies that will now take 2-3 times longer to reach you, meaning you’ll get fewer a month." ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

The internet will get your seventy-year-old father's online drug purchases to him. The fact is the more we shop online, the more we need parcel delivery services, and no one does that more inexpensivelly than the post office.

--Knave Dave

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[-] -1 points by PeoplehaveDNA (305) 12 years ago

Until we get the transporter (LoL) if we every do (probably not for 100 years) the post office has to stick around. Case in point we just had a very successful Cyber Monday how the hell do you think all those people get their products and gifts. So we need the post office because privatized mail companies are too damn expensive even if supply and demand rises their services go up I can still see sending things will be more expensive than it is now. This will only hurt the middle class and the poor even more. There is no way that the privatized mail companies will be as cheap as the postal system we have now. Many of them can not legally deliver regular mail to a US mail box unless Congress approves. So when I see people knocking the current postal system I have to say they don't know what the hell they are doing the current postal system is not a problem to most people. It runs on revenue alone from postage not taxes. Our postal system is has relatively cheap postage compared to other countries which make it accessible to many. It may not be perfect but I think people need to chill out about permanently getting rid of it.

[-] -2 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

Case in point we just had a very successful Cyber Monday how the hell do you think all those people get their products and gifts.

Most of those packages were shipped via private postal service (FedEx, UPS, DHL, et cetera). So once everybody stop sending letters/bills and does everything online there's no longer any need for a government service.

Oh and you're wrong about expense. UPS' 3 or 4 day package delivery is equivalent to Priority mail, but 1 dollar cheaper.

.

[-] 0 points by karenpoore (902) 12 years ago

You may want to reconsider doing everything online ... you know big brother is watching. I changed back from online bill paying to the post office.

[-] 0 points by capella (199) 12 years ago

I would never pay bills on line.

[-] -1 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

They watch the mail too. One time I shipped a book via media mail, and got a call from the pstmaster. He wanted to know why there was a piece of cin-shaped plastic in the box. I said, "I don't know," threw away the plastic and told hm to go ahead and ship it.

Thanks to the patriot act even physical mail traveling via the government service is not safe.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Theaveng, I'm willing to bet your talking off the top of your head and have NO facts to back up your statement that most of those packages were shipped by other means than the postal service. Also, while those other services may be cheaper TO SOME PARTS OF THE COUNTRY for if you are shipping the slow way, ALL of them are much more expensive when it comes to overnight delivery:

"And the price difference between USPS and UPS? Next-day air by UPS from my location on the west coast was $53 to Hawaii. Well, that depended on what island I sent it to. Some other islands were $55.... My cost for the same one-pound package by USPS? Same flat rate ANYWHERE IN THE COUNTRY of $18.30 if I can fit it into a flat-rate envelope. If it’s a larger box, the same one-pound package would cost me $31.60 to any island....

"Now, you might think I cheated by picking UPS’s most expensive U.S. destination, but the fact is that the ONLY place where UPS overnight is cheaper than the USPS is if I send a package to someone else within my own zone. Even then it is only cheaper if I am unable to use the United States Postal Service’s flat-rate envelope." ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

All of these misconstrued facts that are being thrown around (mostly by Republicans who want to find excuses to privatize the entire government) are why I decided I needed to write an article that addresses all of those arguments.

--Knave Dave

[Removed]

[-] -2 points by FrogWithWings (1367) 12 years ago

The fact that their pension plan AND benefits packages are only exceeded, in the government and almost government sectors, by those of elected servants, does nothing to reduce costs to any reasonable level, nor does the fact that despite poor performance numbers, postal executives and management are VERY OVERPAID and typically get huge bonuses too boot!

I say screw them and welcome to my world where prices of durable goods and services are determined by the market and nobody gets paid a dime until there is profit.

[-] -2 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

In other words you're saying Government Unions destroyed the public office. I gotta disagree..... the post office is facng the same challenge as the Radio and Record and Book industries -- competition from the internet.

[-] 0 points by FrogWithWings (1367) 12 years ago

That is what you read from my post?

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

Well you did write, ".....does nothing to reduce costs to any reasonable level, nor does the fact that despite poor performance numbers, postal executives and management are VERY OVERPAID and typically get huge bonuses too boot!" - Why are they overpaid? Because of the government unions demanding big salaries.

[-] 1 points by FrogWithWings (1367) 12 years ago

Fallacy although I do not know how over paid other psuedo government employees with unions are also overpaid.... ie... the IRS.

However, MANY MANY MANY and even more non-union government positions are even more overpaid and with better perks... a was clearly mentioned....

The truth, these people are overpaid as they managed to score a ticket assuring their acceptance into the plutonomy.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Let's try using FACTS:

"During the Bush years ... congress mandated universal retirement health-care funding by the USPS be PRE-funded for the next seventy-five years! There is no other institution or business in the U.S. that has to pre-fund UNIVERSAL HEALTHCARE for its retirees for the next seventy-five years! Not even congress! The act gave the postal service ten years to accumulate that money, which means that every year the U.S. post office has to cough up $5.5 billion to fund the healthcare of future retirees.

"Oh, that’s about the same amount as the U.S. Postal Service’s current annual deficit? Hmm. I wonder how that coincidence adds up? Is the situation starting to reek of engineered failure?" ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

So, the FACT is that this ONE thing alone would completely balance the Postal Services budget.

--Knave Dave

[-] 1 points by FrogWithWings (1367) 12 years ago

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4CwkG2C5sAc&feature=related

the cost of this war put our republic in the largest bankruptcy ever of any nation, that is how the world bankers took control

[-] 1 points by FrogWithWings (1367) 12 years ago

Look, I'm not saying the USPS got a great deal.... however, this is a lofty and brightly colored flowering branch high upon the tree affecting many, at the root of the cause is this simple fact..........

Our nation has been bankrupt since 1871 and defaulted many times. Congress is de facto the owned and controlled trustee for the bankruptcy instrument of which has been relentlessly used by those controlling it, to destroy our republic and extract all wealth from it.

We, and our nation, are owned.

Anyone with eyes open can see congress is owned. They go to DC, often with great honor, integrity and even greater intentions only to become bought and paid for and doing what the actual OWNERS of this nations demand they do. The owners know most all have a price and that enough money makes a person immune from their prosecution machines, which never roll over those in the club, who are doing what they are told.

Why else would our congress pass such a ludicrous mandate assuring our USPS would go belly up? So they could slide FedEx and UPS, of which the world bankers own, in place thereof and continue extracting all our nations wealth much more effectively?

Sounds plausible to me! Your thoughts?

[-] 2 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

I don't believe there are ANY overpaid union positions. There are SOME underworked positions (some goldbricking), but no overpaid workers. In every case where you find union workers who are highly paid, I guarantee you'll find management that is much higher paid and not working one bit harder, and the company is still making an even BIGGER profit for its shareholders.

I agree completely, however, that congress is wholely owned by Wall Street. As such, our nation is owned by Wall Street, for it also owns the executive branch.

--Knave Dave http://TheGreatRecession.info/blog

[-] 3 points by shoozTroll (17632) 12 years ago

You can't send a chicken by UPS or FED X, you can by USPS.

That being said, I think the playing field should by made level by forcing UPS and FED X to fund all pension liabilities 75 years in advance within 10 years.

Just to be fair.

[-] 4 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Yes. It's a requirement designed to soley bankrupt the USPS. The president and congress should have withdrew it immediately/

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Indeed:

"Does UPS or FedEx agree to deliver to any remote part of the United States, no matter how unprofitable the run is, just to make sure that delivery is available to all U.S. citizens in order to keep us well-connected as a nation?

"Would UPS or FedEx deliver standard letters overseas to Hawaii or fly them by bush pilot into little villages of Alaska for the same price that they take them across town so that all parts of our nation get the same basic service at the same price to keep one area of the U.S. from having an economic disadvantage over others?" ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

--Knave Dave

[-] 2 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Well put! Privatizing will triple the rates and cut the service, which the lobbyists want,

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Get the post office out of the way, as a competitor that is bigger than all the private companies combined, and just think of how much they can raise their rates!

--Knave Dave http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/

[-] 2 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Govt creating a monopoly against public interest.

[-] 0 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

That's silly. How has the government created a monopoly. What LAW prevents UPS from delivering letters for 45 cents a letter if it wants to? None. The U.S. government does not fund the post office, so it gets no anti-competitive support against private enterprise. The U.S. government simply makes sure that the post office operates at a loss so that it will die so that its routes can be parted out to the cronies of congressmen.

Any company that wanted to could start delivering letters daily for 45 cents, but it is impossible to make a profit at that rate, so there is no company on earth that has been willing to start.

The government has not created a monopoly because it does NOTHING to prevent others from providing this same service. It does, however, make certain this service loses money so that private enterprise will have the opportunity down the road to step in at higher pay.

It is congress that mandates the extremely low bulk-mail letter rates for the sake of their cronies on Wall Street who have all those credit-card offers they want to send you.

--Knave Dave http://thegreatrecession.info/blog

[-] 2 points by hamalmang (722) from Lebanon, PA 12 years ago

USPS does not survive off government subsidies. They are self sufficient. Whatever spent in wars has nothing to do with their money. All they need to do is raise the price of a stamp by 5 cents and everything would be ok.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

See my comment above.

[-] 2 points by zoom6000 (430) from St Petersburg, FL 12 years ago

because Republican calling all those services ponzi scheme

[-] 2 points by shoozTroll (17632) 12 years ago

Where are the "conservatives?

Where is the explanation, of why Bush forced the USPS to fund it's pensions 75 years in advance?

Why aren't the "conservatives" asking for all other pensions to be funded this way?

[-] 3 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

This is the party in power giving the lobbyists their money's worth. They're licking their chops on the potential windfall of privatized mail service. Analogous to all other privatized businesses formerly govt. run.

[-] 0 points by shoozTroll (17632) 12 years ago

The Democrats have their issues, but there is not, nor has there ever been, any party in this country as corrupted and anti-American as the Republicans.

[-] 0 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Yes! And the people must hurt by them are the blue collars which support them the most, being brainwashed by Koch, Fox and big business media. All for profits.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

"Which party do you suppose is behind the cuts-only approach to balancing the post office’s budget?" ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

The budget could be balanced overnight by raising bulk mail rates, but Wall Street wouldn't like that. Those bulk mail rates save them BILLIONS when they mail out all those credit-card applications. Those rates save them MORE BILLIONS when they mail out all of their billing statements EVERY MONTH.

And who is it that sets those rates -- the postal service or congress?

Republican and Democrate alike. You don't see Democrats voting against congress on those bulk-mail rates.

Also, you don't see congress mandating that THEIR retirement health care be PRE-funded for seventy-five years!

--Knave Dave

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Dems and Repubs are the same in different wrappers.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Frik and Frak.

--Knave Dave http://thegreatrecession.info/blog

[-] 1 points by cmt (1195) from Tolland, CT 12 years ago

Please, don't give them ideas. They've done enough to kill pensions in the private sector (except, of course, super-pensions for CEO's, called SERPs). For further reading: The Retirement Heist.

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 12 years ago

I'm just looking for the official explanation of why this was done.

[-] 1 points by cmt (1195) from Tolland, CT 12 years ago

Ah, I don't know what their excuse was. BTW, it isn't just the pension, but also health benefits for retirees that has to have 75 years of pre-funding provided in 10 years.

[-] 2 points by aahpat (1407) 12 years ago

The United States Constitution:

Article One, Section 8 requires the Congress "To establish post offices and post roads;"

So America's deteriorating roads and highways along with the intentional starving to death of the Postal Service by the right-wing in Congress is a violation of their oath of office to "uphold and defend" the Constitution.

The roads and Postal Service serve vital national security purposes. And when the national economy is receding maintaining these services pumps needed vitality into the economy.

Why does America's right-wing hate America? How do they intentionally get away with goose-stepping all over the Constitution of the United States of America?

[-] 3 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Good points. They own the media and lobbyists who buy congress. The supreme court is also bought: Citizens United.

[-] 2 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Excellent questions. Consider also other services that the U.S. Postal Service is mandated by congress to provide that vastly outclass anything the private sector provides when it comes to your security:

"Does UPS or FedEx run its own law-enforcement agency equivalent to postal inspectors to make sure your mailbox is safe from theft? Mailboxes all over cities are unlocked because the US postal service has doggedly gone after anyone who misuses a simple mailbox just so you can feel your checks are reasonably safe from theft in the mail.

"Does UPS or FedEx pursue its own customers for mail fraud, too?

"While this very day UPS reports, “Heavy snow in parts of Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas is causing unavoidable service delays due to hazardous road conditions in the affected areas,” USPS has to deliver through rain, sleet, hail or snow.

"How much would UPS or FedEx raise their rates if they had to provide all of the above under a congressional mandate?" ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

WHY do right-wing Republicans so badly want to end this service that provides vastly MORE SECURE mail delivery with MORE convenience at LOWER prices than anyone else will ever touch. What is with the HATRED they show toward U.S. mail. It is probably the cheapest and the best mail delivery service in the world.

--Knave Dave

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

You connect the dots. Privatizing will never have the level of service you mention. It's all profit driven and lobbyist pay off.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

I've even marked the points with dots in my article, and there are LOTS of dots. Connecting them is really quite easily done.

--Knave Dave http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/

[-] 2 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

again, I agree.

[-] 2 points by betuadollar (-313) 12 years ago

Half of all mail today is junk mail - corporate advertizing - and while we, pay what, 44 cents(?), they are paying a bulk rate of 8 cents. It's ridiculous considering the burden it places on the postal service.

[-] 2 points by judy (61) 12 years ago

Yes, annoying. It places a burden on the 'consumer', too. Daily it goes like this. Walk out the front door of the house to the mailbox. Gather the pile of mail. Take it into the house. Sort it. A FEW pieces of 'real mail'. A HUGE pile of junk/advertizing mail. Not buying too much stuff lately... so don't even look at it. Take that HUGE pile. Walk to the back of the house, out the back door to garbage/recycling can. Dump in the pile of junk mail. Waste of time, waste of resources.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Good point.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Excellent point. It is absolutely ridiculous:

"Congress has mandated these low bulk-mail rates to help major corporations. If the mail is unprofitable it is because 70% of the mail delivered is bulk mail that must be sent at obviously unprofitable rates if the mail is not breaking even and junk mail accounts for 70% of it.

"One would almost think that some party in congress is trying to break the back of the U.S. Postal Service by making it the slave of Wall Street. Perhaps they’d like to see it privatized. Maybe they have corporate cronies who would like to deliver billions of additional packages and other corporate cronies who benefit from unbelievably low bulk mail rates. Don’t you suppose there’s a little lobbying on those bulk mail rates while no lobbying on your first-class single-item rates?

"Who else but congress could create such a contrived crisis? It is clearly either crisis by design or crisis by extreme lack of intelligence. The answers to this artificial crisis are so simple congress could set the post office on a solid footing for decades to come in a one-hour session." ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

All they'd have to do to balance the budget is raise the bulk mail rate. Bulk male rates are complete corporate welfare to Wall Street. You subsidize them with the individual rates you pay, and YOU DON'T EVEN WANT THE BULK MAIL!

So, utterly crooked, but this is what Congress has mandated for decades. No other delivery service has such absurd bulk rates.

--Knave Dave

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

What's breaking the PO is the requirement to fund its retirement for 75 years into the future! NO OTHER Entity has this! Meant to break the USPS. Signed by congress.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

That, too. Congress is, in fact, breaking the post office in AS MANY WAYS as it can find to do so and still veil its intent.

--Knave Dave (http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/)

[-] 2 points by itsme2 (45) 12 years ago

I hate getting mail.

[-] 2 points by Lmurguia7 (57) 12 years ago

On the contrary. We've rendered postal mail nearly unnecessary by our gift to the world of Email. (You have heard of Email ???)

[-] 0 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Try emailing a shirt.

[-] 1 points by libertarianincle (312) from Cleveland, OH 12 years ago

I did this just the other day. I got online, went to to the "shirt website" bought a shirt from the store and had it sent to my nephew who lives across the country, all with out putting pants on. All without government help.

Amazing.

[-] 0 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Hope you get your wish, have it privatized and rates triple with less service because postal is never going away..

[-] 1 points by libertarianincle (312) from Cleveland, OH 12 years ago

It cost me $3.99 to ship the shirt from wherever the online store shipped from to San Diego and it will get there in 3 days. If I did the same thing through the USPS, Parcel Post, it will get there 4-6 and cost me $10.

Whose rates are triple again?

[-] 1 points by ProAntiState (43) 12 years ago

'Father of 3-cent Stamp' Spooner fought Post Office

Linn's Weekly Stamp News, Feb.-March 1983.

The United States has a habit of commemorating firsts. We have had stamps honoring Benjamin Franklin, the first postmaster general; John Hanson, the first president of the United States under the Articles of Confederation; and George Washington, the first president of the United States under the Constitution.

But the United States Post Office and the United States Postal Service have both failed to commemorate Lysander Spooner, the first man in American history to do something about high postal rates and win.

Lysander Spooner was born in Athol, Mass., in 1808. As a young man he studied law, pamphleteered, and crusaded upon dozens of causes before he hit upon an adversary worthy of his mettle and training - the U.S. Post Office. He was so successful that he nearly put it out of business!

Like most of us today, the spiraling cost of postal rates in 1844 so irked Spooner that he began an extensive study of the situation, using his legal background. There was not questions that the rates were too high; it cost 18 3/4 cents to send a letter from Boston to New York, and 25 cents from Boston to Washington, D.C.

At this time railway mail service was no better. A letter from Boston to Albany N.Y., written on a quarter-ounce of paper and carried on the Western Railroad at that time, cost two-thirds as much on a freight charge as carrying a barrel of flour the same distance.

Spooner concluded that there were high costs and no services involved in such a system. He also discovered that the public was using quite a few methods to circumvent these high postage rates. But for the most part, they were failing in their efforts.

There was no federal monopoly on the mail service at this time. Spooner face a loud "hurrah" to those who were trying to outmaneuver the system, but he also say they were fighting a losing battle.

With no other solution in sight, Spooner decided to compete with the U.S. Government!

First of all, he could not see why the government should have monopoly on mail delivery. He knew that the Constitution ordered that Congress provide for mail delivery, and that Congress had done so with a U.S. Post Office Department.

But Spooner's loophole was that the Constitution did not say that private citizens could not carry and deliver mail also. The battle was on!

Using this loophole as his main ammunition, he organized his own postal service and audaciously called it the American Letter Mail Company. The company offered to deliver letters, with no limit on weight, at reduced prices.

Then he really tweaked the government's nose. He ran an advertisement on the front page of...

http://www.lysanderspooner.org/STAMP2.htm

Spooner vs. U.S. Postal System by Lucille J. Goodyear American Legion Magazine, January 1981

There didn't seem to be any way to lick the high cost of postage until Lysander Spooner came to the rescue

http://www.lysanderspooner.org/STAMP3.htm

[-] 2 points by GirlFriday (17435) 12 years ago

It would take one simple move to keep it going. Patrick Donahoe is an ass. This is deliberate and intentional to force people into using the others. I have refused to use the other option for a reason. It sucks.

[-] 2 points by WarmItUp (301) 12 years ago

The question is why does the post office have to make money in the first place, no other government agency actually sells a product. could you imagine if the military had to pay for itself, how many bake sales would they have to have to raise a trillion dollars.

[-] 1 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 12 years ago

I blame the George W Obama presidencies, and Clinton himself for not vetoing the Financial Services Modernization act of 1999, the bill that repealed most of Glass-Steagall and helped cause the financial collapse in 2008 and a lot of the problems we're seeing now. And of course I blame the corrupt congress throughout all 3 presidencies as well.

It really sucks when you find out that even the democrats are a huge part of the problem along with the repugnants.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Yes! Dems are repuglican light.

[-] 1 points by MsStacy (1035) 12 years ago

It's a dying service being replaced by email and direct electronic payments. Add to that government requirements to keep it's entire workforce, unreasonable federal pension fund requirements, and delivery of mostly junk mail at a cut rate, I'm not surprised. It's a dinosaur.

Let's face it, mail is going the way of 8 tracks and vhs tapes. No amount of money will save it, you can only burn money uselessly trying to save it, if you don't allow it to adapt to the times.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Those are the typical excuses. The mail service turns a profit except for the $5 Billion a year pension requirement they must pay to fund it 50 years into the future. Designed by Congress to make it fail so it can be privatized for profit.

[-] 1 points by MsStacy (1035) 12 years ago

So let it be privatized. Businesses will get to send their junk mail and grandma will have to pay a bit more to send out those birthday cards. The rest of us will hardly notice and in 20 years it will be used as much as the telegraph.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Rates will significantly rise and service will likewise diminish. Also rural areas will suffer. But your musings of the one percent are expected.

[-] 0 points by MsStacy (1035) 12 years ago

Is the demise of the postal service some plot by the rich now? The use of mail, is slowly being replaced by direct deposits, direct payments, and email. Look around you, people are writing fewer checks, everything is going digital. High speed internet service will have to be extended to rural areas, this may hasten it for them.

[-] 2 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

All true but as stated, the USPS turns a PROFIT, except for the onerous 50- year- into -the- future $5B pension requirement. If it turns a profit, its use is on a scale unknown to you and it utility is proven. The $5B requirement is meant to have it fail and be privatized. Again, more proof it is a sought-after service.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 12 years ago

private services are private

[-] 2 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Yes, they help the 1% at the expense of the 99%.

[-] 0 points by Mooks (1985) 12 years ago

Honestly, I can't remember the last time I used the USPS or really got anything of significance in the mail. I do a lot of selling online and years ago I started using FedEx for all my shipping needs because they are faster, have much better customer service, and a fraction of shipping problems that the USPS has. And the cost is not much different either for comparable services. I am neither for nor against the USPS because as I said I never use it but, in my eyes at least, it is distant 3rd to FedEx and UPS based on their actual service.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Not every entity is a perfect fit, however, it benefits the majority.

[-] 1 points by infonomics (393) 12 years ago

I challenge you to read the text noted with the bookmarks on the left-hand side of this 10K, the Post Office's latest 10K:

http://www.infonomx.com/OccupyWallStreet_Wiki/pdf/PostOffice_10K_Sept_2011.pdf

Read it and share your understanding with the people of this post. What does it say? I challenge you.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

The United States Postal Service announced recently that it is going postal on itself (to use a fading expression from the days when postal workers shot people (or themselves) because their jobs drove them mad). Well, the USPS didn’t actually use that term, but the Postmaster General, Patrick Donahoe, is certainly doing his best to kill the US Mail with his plan for change.

( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

I think he's a henchman of the members of congress who are designing the post office for failure.

--Knave Dave

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

He is scum that sold out his department.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Sure is.

--Knave Dave

[-] 1 points by TheMaster (63) 12 years ago

Email and online banking pretty much made the USPS the buggy whip of the 21st century. Plus, no one reads junk mail. It's snail mail spam.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Similar to the junk emails every day. Throw 'em in the trash.

[-] 1 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 12 years ago

A country is only as pathetic as the people's fight who are in it- JDG

[-] 1 points by BlueRose (1437) 12 years ago

The mail trucks look like they are about to fall apart, have you noticed? They all need a good paint job at least.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

My PO has cracked sidewalks they don't repair; just put cones around. But we have plenty of money for new bombs, jets, missiles, carriers, subs, to blow up the world as America crumbles.

[-] 1 points by stuartchase (861) 12 years ago

We also let bad companies like this do business in America.

http://occupywallst.org/forum/make-a-stand-join-the-clan/

The Revolution starts here!

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Yes, and GE and Westinghouse aren't far behind with their nukes.

[-] 1 points by stuartchase (861) 12 years ago

I know. By the way, toshiba owns westinghouse. That's how toshiba got into the nuclear business. The worst part is the only idiots I heard talk about how Toshiba was involved in that Japan nuclear accident was Fox NEWS, and that bitch only mentioned it for a minute and moved on. I was like what the fuck?

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

The mainstream media is criminal in omitting info.

[-] 1 points by stuartchase (861) 12 years ago

Is worse than that. People just don't care.

If you could post this link:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/make-a-stand-join-the-clan/

On this wall:

http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=2213279355&v=wall

It would help out a lot.

[-] 1 points by Puzzlin (2898) 12 years ago

I so agree. They are getting away with it. Social Security will be next if we don't stop them. Seriously!!! We MUST STOP THE REPUGS!

[-] 2 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

How true! Unfortunately Obama extends and expands many repug policies. Not much diff. bet. the parties.

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 12 years ago

Why did Bush set it up to fail, in the last hours of his presidency?

That's the question you should be asking.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

He's a pawn of interests and forces that want the business for profits.

[-] 1 points by SparkyJP (1646) from Westminster, MD 12 years ago

In the first place, the USPS is not nearing insolvency due to operational or market conditions. The reason it might not have enough cash to pay any of its creditors next year is the PAEA trust fund obligation- plain and simple. The Treasury is sitting on $42.5 billion in USPS profits- that’s an undeniable fact. Congress created that problem, and only Congress can fix it.

The other issue I have with viewing the situation as a bankruptcy is the fact that creditor and debtor are one and the same- the US Government. The USPS has plenty of money to pay its suppliers and employees. The debt it can’t cover is owed to the US Government. The US Postal Service, contrary to what a lot of folks seem to think, is not a “quasi-governmental” entity, nor is it a company “owned” by the US Government. It is an integral part of the US Government. The trust fund “debt”, then, is owed by one agency of the US Government to another agency of the US Government. Both agencies are, in the end, owned by the American people. The concept that one agency can force another agency to “liquidate” assets that belong to the American people to satisfy a debt owed to the American people is bizarre.

The bottom line is that the US Postal Service financial “crisis” is a political construct, not a financial one. Politicians got us where we are today, and they need to come up with a way out.

[-] 2 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Absolutely! If they have $300M per day in Afghanistan, they can subsidize The USPS! But both parties don't do shit.

[-] 1 points by ZenDogTroll (13032) from South Burlington, VT 12 years ago

It is MADNESS.

The Postal Service is a venerable institution, one that has, and does still, serve as a cultural mecca in small towns all across America.

This nonsense cannot continue. We cannot allow the repelican party to sabotage the natural functions of government and sell off each and every one of our most valued possessions!

The Postal Service!

Social Security!

FEMA!

These institutions serve the needs of the people and cannot, must not, be stripped of their function that they may be sold to the highest bidder!

Calumny!

Sedition!!

[-] 2 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Well said.

[-] 1 points by rbe (687) 12 years ago

Email killed the post office.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Thanks for these articles. I was thinking about writing an article about the intentional busting of the post office today on my blog. So, maybe the articles will help add to that.

--Knave Dave http://thegreatrecession.info/blog

[-] 1 points by aeturnus (231) from Robbinsville, NC 12 years ago

The amount the US spends on military programs far outweights anything it spends on social programs.

I believe the mail service tends to be self-serving, so it depends on the issuance of stamps and other things for sustenance. With the rise of electronic media, it's not surprising that the post office is losing money.

[-] 3 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

USPS would be profitable if the congressional requirement of funding retirements 50 years into the future were abolished. No other entity has that.

[-] 2 points by aeturnus (231) from Robbinsville, NC 12 years ago

I was not aware of that. So I looked it up, and came across this:

http://www.zcommunications.org/postal-workers-the-last-union-by-allison-kilkenny

Pretty scary stuff. Sounds like more reasons why we need to be doing what we're doing.

[-] 2 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Exactly. This administration is helping to bankrupt the USPS so it becomes privatized for profits, a long-term Republican goal. Dems and repubs are the same. Obama has extended and increased many Bush policies.

awesome link!

[-] 2 points by shoozTroll (17632) 12 years ago

You noticed that?

Good on you. It was signed into law by Bush in the last moments of his reign.

A little more union busting as the economy crashed on his watch.

[-] 2 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Plus the prick started a fake war killing 5000 GIs and 100,000 civilians, added $2 trillion of debt and he's out making speeches and enjoying retirement.

[-] 1 points by nomdeguerre (1775) from Brooklyn, NY 12 years ago

The elite has turned on the American populace. We're simply worker and consumer units to them (though how we can be consumer units without jobs seems to be beyond their pea brains).

Cross post: http://occupywallst.org/forum/the-corporat-state-is-moving-in-on-the-postal-serv/

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Yes, and they want profit at all costs.

[-] -1 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

They are thinking short-term (as in... no longer than 1 or 2 years.) Build goods for cheap in 3rd world countries, and then sell them high to the rich consumers in Europe and America.

They don't care that in another decade or so, the EU and US markets will be drained dry of any money (due to lack of jobs).

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 12 years ago

No because so many people are communicating electronically the demand has shifted away from snail mail.

Because people are using the service the per delivery cost has risen dramatically especially in areas of low population density.

This is a sign of progress not regress.

[-] 2 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Partly true. USPS is required to fund its retirement 50 years into the future. No other entity in the US does that. It's a congressional requirement meant to bankrupt it so it can be privatized, a republican goal for more private profits. Without that mandate, it would be profitable. Furthermore, my point is the unlimited military spending steals from other vital government services.

[-] 1 points by BlueRose (1437) 12 years ago

Amazing.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

The tip of the iceberg.

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

P.S.

The Post Office was already deep, deep in debt before that 2006 law was passed. The Post Office has been losing money, and was hundreds of millions in the hole, ever since the dot-com crash of 1999-2000. So blaming it on a law that was passed almost seven years later is illogical. The USPS has been poorly run, and faced increasing competition by email/ online billing since circa 1995.

Society progresses forward.

New technologies (internet mail) replace the old (physical mail). It is only natural for the USPS to downsize as its role in society diminishes. Do you really think by 2050 people will still be using paper and sending letters? Someday maybe even post roads will be obsoleted (due to Star Trek-style transporters.)

Don't fight the future.

[-] 0 points by agnosticnixie (17) from Laval, QC 12 years ago

The USPS would, without these payments, have made over 800 million dollars in net profits total between 2007 and 2011. I'll remind that it's a non profit.

Also, teleporters: if your solution requires something that is still considered borderline scientifically impossible in theory, let alone in practice, you should seriously reconsider the underpinnings of your ideology.

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

Citation please. I think in reality, the post office would not have raised stamp prices, we'd still be buying them for 32 cents, and they'd be in the same situation as now (spending more than they collect).

borderline scientifically impossible in theory

Scientists have already transported atoms. And I wasn't "relying" on anything. RIGHT NOW you don't need transporters to ship letters or bills..... we can already send them through the internet and don't need gas-guzzling & polluting postal cars to do it.

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

The USPS shouldn't even exist. It was a great idea when it was listed as a Congressional power in the Constitution in 1786, but with the rise of the internet, hand-delivered mail is as obsolete as the carriage, or horsewhips, or candlemakers. Even magazine delivery is becoming obsolete as people move to e-magazines and e-books.

The only useful thing the Post Office does is deliver Christmas presents to my door, and that is a function that could be performed by private companies like FedEx, UPS, et cetera. And faster. Or cheaper.

.

[-] 3 points by nomdeguerre (1775) from Brooklyn, NY 12 years ago

Don't be so naive. Or are you playing naive? Cheaper is not in the offing. But I think you know that. I guess you are one of the 1% unPatriotic anti-American-way-of-life troll sh*tbags who seek to milk the 99% for all they're worth.

By the way, the Post Office is hardwired (in effect) into the Constitution.

One more thing, if privatized anonymous written communications cross country would cease. Of course that wouldn't bother a fascist.

[-] 1 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

Here's what your message looks like when the child-level insults/ namecallings are removed:

.....Cheaper is not in the offing..... By the way, the Post Office is hardwired (in effect) into the Constitution...... One more thing, if privatized, anonymous written communications cross country would cease....

Wow. Short. "Issue letters of marque" is also hardwired into the constitution, but Congress no longer does that. Just because they have been given a power, does not mean they have to exercise it. If the constitution said Congress "shall build and maintain Horse trails", would you still expect that obsolete function to be exercised too?

And I disagree that FedEx/UPS would be more expensive (or slower) than the post office. UPS Ground is equivalent to USPS priority, but costs 1 dollar less. (And if you want Next Day or 2 Day Delivery... the post office doesn't even offer it. UPS or FedEx is faster.)

Your claim that anonymous communications would cease is also silly. We're communicating right NOW are we not? And we're anonymous to one another. - Anyway I'm not saying we should abolish the Post Office. I'm saying that crying about it cutting-back services, due to fewer customers & less incoming revenue, makes little sense.

Society progresses forward.

Do you really think by 2050 people will still be using paper and sending letters? Eventually the USPS will be obsoleted by the future, and the downsizing we are seing now i part of that prcoess. (Someday maybe even post roads will be obsoleted, due to Star Trek-style transporters.) Don't fight the future. Don't be a Luddite.

By the way:

A "fascist" is really a corporatist according to Mussolini's own writings. I certainly don't fit that bill (I hate corporations).

[-] 1 points by nomdeguerre (1775) from Brooklyn, NY 12 years ago

Monopolies and cartels never lead to lower prices. Last I checked Western Union required 25% to wire money to an individual -- that's what monopolies lead to.

Obviously tracked mail doesn't bother you at all. That's either shortsighted (as though the possibilities of control won't be used) or stupid.

"Society progresses forward." "Don't be a Luddite." I guess a corporatist future is inevitable and it's silly to resist, not. Sorry I don't feel embarassed.

It's obvious that you don't hate corporations. 'Hating coporations' is not in the stating, but in resisting their overreaching power and desire to treat all of us as cows to be milked. Here at OWS, we seek a society that meets human needs (this includes a Commons of joint ownership, which includes the Post Office) not one that greed rules. We, the citizens, are sovereign, and we can and will do it.

You lied (or were simply wrong (I suspect the former)) in your post below on Post Office profitability. See my earlier post: http://occupywallst.org/forum/the-corporat-state-is-moving-in-on-the-postal-serv/

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Indeed:

If you eliminate the USPS, "you’ll get worse [rates from UPS and FedEx] because UPS and FedEx rates are held low by the fact that they currently have to compete with the vastly more efficient United States Postal Service." ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

--Knave Dave

[-] 1 points by nomdeguerre (1775) from Brooklyn, NY 12 years ago

The corpoRATS see us as cattle to be milked. They're miffed they aren't getting the last drop of milk out of us. CorpoRATS: "Screw the commons, how does that make us any money?"

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

That's about the sum of it. Their greed now knows no bounds. Having outsourced all the jobs they could, they switched to insourcing them by encouraging illegal aliens to take the jobs inside the country that cannot be moved out of the country. All in the pretext of being nice to foreign underprivileged people, but it is REALLY ENTIRELY about finding cheaper labor, regardless of what damage it does to our own culture.

After insourcing the outsourcing, they have busted the unions to the fullest extent possible and are systematically trying to bust the post office because it is the government's second-largest employer AND is the largest mail-delivery service in the world. FedEx and UPS combined are dwarfed in size by the USPS. That would be a mighty nice pie to get ahold of if it could be privatized.

--Knave Dave http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/

[-] 1 points by nomdeguerre (1775) from Brooklyn, NY 12 years ago

No kidding. Illegal immigration was encouraged as a way to gut the minimum wage. These people would own slaves if they could.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Exactly!

If Republican administrations REALLY wanted to stop illegal immigration, the answer would be simple. Arrest and put in jail all the people who illegally HIRE them. Forget about spending millions of dollars building fences on the border. Arrest and jail their employers.

A month of that, and illegal jobs would start drying up all over the country. Unemployed illegal aliens would start returning home on their own accord.

--Knave Dave http://thegreatrecession.info/blog

[-] 1 points by nomdeguerre (1775) from Brooklyn, NY 12 years ago

It's so simple really. But they all serve globalism and the NWO: the RATpublicans, the DemoCRAPlicans and the corpoRAT bought and controlled media. What voices of sanity reach middle America?

[-] 1 points by GirlFriday (17435) 12 years ago

applause

[-] 1 points by BlueRose (1437) 12 years ago

Without the USPS, many rural Americans would have no mail service, as they go where UPS, etc do not.

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

Without the USPS, rural Americans can use the internet to send mail and pay bills. The post office is slowly-but-surely becoming obsolete..... as happened with horse-drawn carriages when cars arrived on the scene.

[-] 1 points by BlueRose (1437) 12 years ago

How would they send packages? Like I said, they only have USPS in some areas.

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

Like I said, they only have USPS in some areas.

Yeah. You were wrong when you said that. By 2050 when the government officially disbands its postal service, people living in remote areas can use UPS, FedEx, DHL, etc for packages, and the internet for sending letters and paying bills.

Hopefully by then the Amtrak Monopoly will be a thing of the past too, and passenger rail can be provided by Conrail, Union Pacific, and other private lines. I really, really hate monopolies.

.

[-] 1 points by BlueRose (1437) 12 years ago

No I'm not.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Where did you buy that cracked crystal ball. It is absurd to think that FedEx and UPS or any others will make regular mail runs into remote areas of the U.S. that are not profitable. They have no congressional mandate to do so and operate on a profit-incentive basis alone. The U.S. Mail is mandated to serve every town in the nation, no matter how remote:

" Would UPS or FedEx deliver standard letters overseas to Hawaii or fly them by bush pilot into little villages of Alaska for the same price that they take them across town so that all parts of our nation get the same basic service at the same price to keep one area of the U.S. from having an economic disadvantage over others?" ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

--Knave Dave

[-] 1 points by BlueRose (1437) 12 years ago

I defend the existence of USPS, I think something got lost in translation here.

[-] 2 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

I was responding the person right above you, Blue, but didn't want to put my comment between yours and theirs, since yours was a direct response, and its meaning would have been lost if I had. I should have been more clear about which comment I was responding to.

--Knave Dave http://TheGreatRecession.info/blog

[-] 1 points by Phanya2011 (908) from Tucson, AZ 12 years ago

It is my understanding that there are areas of the U.S. where no other service delivers mail, the internet isn't available, or the people do not have computers. What would you suggest be done to insure that these people are connected?

[-] 0 points by foreeverLeft (-264) 12 years ago

Same thing they did before the government started wiping our asses for us, drive to town and communicate.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Excuse me? "the venerable U.S. Postal Service, first begun by Ben Franklin [, is] older than the U.S. constitution." ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

So, there has NEVER been a time in the history of the United States when the government was not delivering our mail to the most remote parts of the country. The Postal Service predates the United States of America in that the United States of America is really created BY our constitution.

--Knave Dave

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

Since the 2nd part of your statement is wrong, I suspect the 1st part is wrong too. Internet exists everywhere there is a phone line..... I have traveled from Florida to Alaska and everywhere between, and I've never been in a place where I could not plug a phone into my computer & get online.

As for people not having computers, that is a self-correcting problem as the future unfolds. I don't want to kill-off USPS immediately, but gradually phase it out over the next ~20 years. Basically the same way that horse-and-carriage travel was slowly phased-out and replaced with cars. What we're witnessing now is merely the first step in a long, long road.

[-] 1 points by Phanya2011 (908) from Tucson, AZ 12 years ago

Well, "not available" can translate to "not affordable." Plus, I totally agree that the post office will eventually be phased out, when it is replaced. I did not understand you were referring to a "long long road," with your first post.

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

I notice you didn't answer my "How is 7 dollars a month (or free) not affordable?" I guess you realize your claim the internet is not available or affordable is nonsense.

[-] 1 points by Phanya2011 (908) from Tucson, AZ 12 years ago

I didn't respond because it's a silly question. I don't know how many people live hand to mouth, but I do know that seven dollars is a whole lot more to a person who lives on, say, 500.00 a month than it is to anyone making a decent income. Not to mention affording a computer.

[-] 1 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

These arguments of phasing out the post office are because it is obsolete stem from not knowing the facts about how UNobsolete it really is. We have had almost twenty years of internet use in the country, ten years of intense internet use, and yet ...

"the US post office process 78 billion pieces of first-class mail a year. In fact, it delivers HALF of ALL THE MAIL IN THE WORLD!" ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

At 78 BILLION pieces of first-class mail a year, I don't think the postal service is anywhere near going obsolete. The real truth is that it is doing so MUCH business that it looks extremely ENTICING to Wall Street and the gang to get this business by privatizing it, and so congress is doing their bidding by doing EVERYTHING it can to make the postal service go broke.

Moreover, "In the event of a shutdown due to bankruptcy, private companies such as FedEx and UPS could handle a small portion of the material the post office moves, but they do not go everywhere. No business has shown interest in delivering letters everywhere in the country for a set rate of 44 cents or 45 cents for a first-class letter." (Huffington Post)

Everyone wants a piece of that ENORMOUS 78-billion first-class mails pie, BUT not at the low rates that the post office charges for delivery. Congress needs to bust the post office and get it out of the way so that the private sector can set the price at which they are willing to deliver that same mail.

--Knave Dave

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

But free is free. It costs nothing for them to get online and email others or pay their bills.

Besides every time I drive into the "bad" part of town I see people with smokes or talking on their cellphones. Strange..... if they can afford those expensive habits why can't they afford an internet hookup? The answer is: Of course they can.

My question was not silly. Your "they can't afford it" comment was silly. It's BS. Free internet is free. They can afford free.

.

[-] 1 points by Phanya2011 (908) from Tucson, AZ 12 years ago

Why are you lumping every person of limited income into a category with the people you see when you go to the "bad' part of town? Poor people live in small towns as well as big cities. There is a "special" telephone rate that is for limited calls only so they can afford it. I have not yet found an internet provider that is free. There are blind people who happen to be poor as well; there are people without arms who also happen to be poor. I agree that in the future everything will be different, but to assume everyone in the country can afford (and use) the internet is optimistic, at best.

[-] -1 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

Why are you lumping every person of limited income into a category with the people you see

Why are YOU lumping every person into the "they can't afford free internet" category? How many of those people xist that can't afford free internet? Probably zero.

And then use it to justify why we have to keep an old-fashioned (and gas guzzling, environment-damaging) physical mail service? And to answer your other question - Juno and Netzero are free; I already told you that.

[-] 0 points by tomcat68 (298) 12 years ago

umnn, and let's not forget Another problem with this redistribution of wealth.

I've been unemployed 6 months now, can't find jack shit for work, but do I qualify for free Internet or a cell phone? Hell no, and would anyone care to guess why?

Because I am male and WHITE.

isn't it time we address the Real Racism in this country?

I'm over 40 and haven't seen any racism against ANY other races Except Whites in my life.

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

How is 7 dollars a month not affordable? That's what I pay my phone-based internet. There are even some FREE internet providers (netzero, juno). It's actually cheaper to send an email than to send letter mail.

[-] 1 points by fandango (241) 12 years ago

Sorry, I like mail. I like to write personal letters, I like to read a book, not a machine. I like magazines. I would never use the internet to pay bills.

[-] 0 points by karenpoore (902) 12 years ago

Yes, me too and I figured out about being online all the time ... you know big brother is watching.

[-] 0 points by fandango (241) 12 years ago

watching, reading, keeping records of where you go, what you say and who says what to you.

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

Even if you could get the e-books for a dollar and e-magazines for 10 cents, you'd still turn down that option?

[-] 1 points by fandango (241) 12 years ago

YES, I would. I like libraries, I like the feel of a book. I get plenty of magazines . I like the format.

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

I read a lot of books too, but I definitely don't like the format. They are heavy, and holding them up wears-out my arms, and you have to constantly hold them open (else they'll close and lose your spot) It's actually easier and more lightweight to read on an Amazon kindle.

[-] 0 points by karenpoore (902) 12 years ago

You may want to exercise your arms and back! Boy, I know Americans' are overweight and out of shape from lack of body use, but finding that a book wears out your arms is a new one on me. Tried the Kindle Fire and hated it.

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

Funny..... I hear people complain about it all the time. "I spent all day reading this book, and man do my arms hurt." BTW I only weigh 125 so..... not fat.

[Deleted]

[-] 0 points by fandango (241) 12 years ago

I have no trouble reading from a book.

[-] 0 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

Ahhh... maybe you're reading the thin lightweight ones then. The books I read are usually 800 pages thick and holding them up when I'm laying in bed, or sitting in a chair, DOES eventually make my muscles hurt.

I prefer the lightweight e-book whenever I can get one. They don't strain the arms. Plus they're usually much cheaper (free or 1 dollar).

[-] 0 points by fandango (241) 12 years ago

I generally read non-fiction, most of them oversized books. I have no problem with them sitting at a table, or reading the them in bed, the book propped against my legs.

[-] 0 points by nkp (33) 12 years ago

lay offs would help, but that is impossible due to unions. you guys probably wouldn't like that either

[-] 3 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

The USPS would be profitable if it didn't have the sole requirement in the US of having to fund its pensions 75YEARS into the future. That was designed soley to bankrupt it so it could be privatized. You'll get rates 3x higher and less service on privatization.

[-] 1 points by nkp (33) 12 years ago

why are there 75 year pensions? answer: unions

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Incorrect. FACT Bush signed that requirement into law.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

see comment above, it was signed by bush.

[-] 1 points by nkp (33) 12 years ago

never said Bush was great

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

So don't blame the union.

[-] 1 points by nkp (33) 12 years ago

still union's fault

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

how

[-] 1 points by cmt (1195) from Tolland, CT 12 years ago

Not just pension, but health care as well. No business is required to do anything like that!

[-] 0 points by chestRockwell (-4) 12 years ago

Fuck the poor

[-] 0 points by Brandon37 (372) 12 years ago

Great, now calculate how much we spend on other futile causes that benefit the People in no way. Let's discuss how much we send to other countries - many who hate us.

[-] 3 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Right on! Build America first, create jobs here. Kill NAFTA.

[-] 0 points by darkhound (66) 12 years ago

If you need next day delivery, you have something even better - email and PDFs. Welcome to the 21st century.

If something really needs to get over by the next day, you've got FedEx.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

The point is if we can spend $300 million a day in Afghanistan, we can support a mail system needed by the 99%.

[-] 0 points by darkhound (66) 12 years ago

Preventing another 3000 deaths in NYC is more important than next-day mail delivery, especially when everyone has email and the service is available through FedEx and others etc.

[-] 0 points by fandango (241) 12 years ago

Destruction of the USPS is a republican goal? Its the underfunded unions benfits that the USPS can't afford .

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

The ONLY reason USPS is losing is because Bush 2, in his last minutes as Pres., signed a law requiring USPS to fund its retirement for 75 YEARS IN THE FUTURE at $5 Billion a year. No other entity has that . It is designed to bankrupt the USPS so it can be privatized

[-] 0 points by Nevada1 (5843) 12 years ago

Hi bklynboy, Agree. Best Regards, Nevada

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Thx. Lite a fire under your congressman. Let him know your thoughts.

[-] 0 points by beautifulworld (23799) 12 years ago

The USPS is required by Congress to fund their pensions for the next 75 years. No U.S. company does this. Most U.S. companies barely fund their pensions at all and good luck to all of us when we want to retire.

This is a direct attempt by a Republican Congress to begin dismantling the U.S. government through privatization. They knew when they implemented this requirement that it would bankrupt the USPS.

This is serious stuff. Think hard about what kind of country you want to live. Ron Lawl and the Libertarians and the Tea Party sound really interesting, but think about it. Think about living in a world where there is no government - just unbridled capitalism. And, as bklynsboy says, plenty of money for "defense" and war - which, by the way, enriches these same Republicans who are fully invested in companies such as Halliburton. These people are merely looking out for the interests of the 1%.

What we need to do is get back control of our government - not do away with it.

[-] 0 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Absolutely on target!

[-] 0 points by GetaBrain (22) 12 years ago

The Post Office is the only federal business that runs itself. It doesn't get any money from the govt.The problem with the PO is the workers have too strong a union. It's hard to fire people no matter what they do.

The ones who deliver the mail work their asses off but many of the other jobs are where the waste is. I remember one Xmas years ago working part-time at the airport. I was sorting packages for overseas and one regular old-timer pulled me over to the side and told me I was working too hard and making them look bad, to take a break for an hour.

That's the problem. Too much waste by employees and too much spending on facilities. The system is too old and needs a huge overhaul to make it efficient.

A few times when they raised the stamp prices in the past, they actually had billions in surplus. I wonder where all that money went.

They're right, it should be privatized. If we knew the reason it isn't, we'd probably find out where those billions went.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Watch your rates triple and service cut when you get your privatize wish. Privatize means FOR PROFIT, unlike now.

[-] 0 points by GetaBrain (22) 12 years ago

Guess you didn't read the post. There was plenty of money even when they raised rates. Who's taking it is the question. It would be a privatized but monitored business like a utility company.

Like Social Security. If it weren't touched, there would be plenty of money for a long, long time. It's not supposed to be touched, but for years now they have been 'borrowing' it and using it for other things.

Now they talk like it is govt money and they're doing people a favor by paying it out. It isn't, it's the people's money and it is illegal for them to touch it. They get around it by 'borrowing' it and paying it back (yeah right).

[-] 3 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Exactly, they would actually run a surplus if it weren't for the requirement Bush signed that they fund their retirement 75 years into the future! No other entity in the US has this requirement. At $5 B a year it's busting the PO, their intent, and destroying the union, their goal.

[-] 3 points by cmt (1195) from Tolland, CT 12 years ago

This payment is the one that they will probably have to default on. It is an absolutely crazy requirement, which makes no sense except to break an effective non-profit so that others can come in an gouge.

[-] 3 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Exactly!

[-] -1 points by GetaBrain (22) 12 years ago

I think we're on opposite sides here. You sound like you are pro-union. I don't want o bust unions, I just want them to pay their own pensions and health care like we do.

I could never figure out why govt unions think that their benefits should be paid for with taxes. Private sector unions pay their own, PLUS their taxes pay for public sector govt unions.

I mean, are they a better class of people than the rest of us? If you look at the equivalent jobs in each sector, public sector usually make more money. That's not fair. Obozo wants fairness, let's make it fair then.

Getting off the thread here so will end it. What part of Bklyn? Cheers.

[-] 2 points by KnaveDave (357) 12 years ago

Cheap taxpayer! What do you mean that private companies would provide the service cheaper? Consider all of the following that post office provides that NONE of the other services do and already at a LOWER price:

"Does UPS or FedEx come by every house in your town everyday of the workweek plus Saturdays just to see IF you have mail to deliver?

"Does UPS or FedEx come to get your packages whether you remember to take the extra time to call them or not?

"Can you just set the package outside hour front door in a government protected box, or do you have to sign for its shipment in person, requiring you be home on THEIR schedule?

"Does UPS or FedEx have numerous service outlets scattered all over your town in order to make themselves as convenient as possible?

"Does UPS or FedEx agree to deliver to any remote part of the United States, NO MATTER HOW UNPROFITABLE the run is, just to make sure that delivery is available to all U.S. citizens in order to keep us well-connected as a nation?

"Would UPS or FedEx deliver standard letters overseas to Hawaii or fly them by bush pilot into little villages of Alaska for the same price that they take them across town so that all parts of our nation get the same basic service at the same price to keep one area of the U.S. from having an economic disadvantage over others?

"Does UPS or FedEx run its own law-enforcement agency equivalent to postal inspectors to make sure your mailbox is safe from theft? Mailboxes all over cities are unlocked because the US postal service has doggedly gone after anyone who misuses a simple mailbox just so you can feel your checks are reasonably safe from theft in the mail.

"Does UPS or FedEx pursue its own customers for mail fraud, too?

"While this very day UPS reports, “Heavy snow in parts of Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas is causing unavoidable service delays due to hazardous road conditions in the affected areas,” USPS has to deliver through rain, sleet, hail or snow." ( http://thegreatrecession.info/blog/2011/12/post-office-change-by-congress-will-doom-usps/ )

What do you think those other services, which are already MORE expensive than the post office, would charge if they also HAD to provide all of the above under congressional regulation?

--Knave Dave

[-] 0 points by libertarianincle (312) from Cleveland, OH 12 years ago

That's funny, because when phone service was moved from government power the cost went down, and the technology skyrocketed. The reason the USPS cannot compete is because FedEx and UPS offer more products, faster service, and a cheaper rate.

[-] 3 points by cmt (1195) from Tolland, CT 12 years ago

USPS has a requirement, set on it by the last administration, to pre-fund retirement costs 75 years into the future. No private entity is saddled with a cost like that. It is a tremendous drag.

They also have to deliver daily to fairly remote locations without charging them more. If it goes fully private, delivery costs will become variable and will skyrocket in rural areas.

[-] 0 points by libertarianincle (312) from Cleveland, OH 12 years ago

How many people in RURAL areas rely on daily delivery? Not many I would guess.

[-] 2 points by cmt (1195) from Tolland, CT 12 years ago

It is available to nearly every person in the country, if someone sends them a piece of mail. There are exceptions in Alaska, where the mail must be flown in by small plain. There are remote areas in the 48 where the daily delivery is to a tiny local post office, where the mail put in little locked mail cubbyholes.

It is hard to picture a flat rate to such areas by a for-profit enterprise.

[-] 0 points by libertarianincle (312) from Cleveland, OH 12 years ago

That's the funny thing about the market cmt. IF there is a demand for a flat rate delivery to rural areas, the market will make it happen. You and I, when we use USPS PAY for that flat rate. Its socialized across the fees we all pay. Why shouldn't it cost a little more to send something to a remote area? The majority of people who do mail things would SAVE money.

[-] 1 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Republican goals since Regan is privatization for profits. Rates ALWAYS rise, service sometimes falls. You want that? The ONLY reason USPS is losing is because Bush 2, in his last minutes as Pres., signed a law requiring USPS to fund its retirement for 50 YEARS IN THE FUTURE. No other entity has that . It is designed to bankrupt the USPS so it can be privatized. Animals.

[-] 0 points by karenpoore (902) 12 years ago

Hey, war and killing are big business and good for the economy of a few! I am being sarcastic ...

[-] 0 points by Remigration2Europe (13) from New York City, NY 12 years ago

Simply abolish Christmas, join muslim.

[-] -1 points by tomahawk99 (-26) 12 years ago

have you looked at your mail lately it's all junk mail.

[-] -1 points by ironboltbruce (371) from Miami, FL 12 years ago
[-] -1 points by TheMaster (63) 12 years ago

FedEx or UPS should take over that sorry operation. The postal service sucks.

[-] 4 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

Watch your rates rise 300% or more AND get service cuts, when privatized.

[-] 2 points by BlueRose (1437) 12 years ago

They can't make profit in the rural areas, they will not deliver to everyone like USPS.

[-] -1 points by danmi (66) 12 years ago

Who did not see this coming?? With email and online bill pay, USPS is becoming of very little use these days. If they got rid of some of the upper management, union and keep the real workers (carriers) then they could probably survive. Rumor has it that we may in the future just be picking up our mail at the local gas station and the post office will be gone

[-] 0 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

All wrong. Read the posts. Republicans want to privatize for profits and destroy the biggest US union. They also require funding retirement for 75 years into the future: that's what's breaking the USPS. NO OTHER ENTITY IN THE US HAS THAT REQUIREMENT.

[-] 0 points by danmi (66) 12 years ago

I still think the union is destroying usps. Look at what the unions have done for the rest of the US, turned our Country to chit

[-] -1 points by ronjj (-241) 12 years ago

Crawl out of your hole bklynsboy, you don't have to wait until Feb 2 this year OK??

Your statement that we do not even have money for mail (I get mail 6 days a week), libraries (you would love our new library on 10 landscaped acres), heating aid for the poor (everytime I pay my gas bill, I have the opportunity to help with this), job creation (created 2 jobs this year in my business-NO help from you or the government), education (spent 15 years there-couldn't spend all the money we got every year from the Feds without wasting some), and on and on.

Your statements merely throw your crap in my face everytime I send in my $100 and $1000 to the state and federal gov. Thanks a hell of a lot for supporting the taxpayers of this country, jerk.

[-] 1 points by divineright (664) 12 years ago

I do have to say I've seen amazing amounts of waste even at the county level of government. Numerous departments were scrambling to waste money to burn up their budgets so they could justify an equal amount or more the next year. It was depressingly ridiculous. I can't even take paying my taxes seriously anymore. I feel about the same as if I flushed the money down the toilet.

[-] 1 points by theaveng (602) 12 years ago

I send-in ~25,000 in taxes every year. (That includes all taxes.) I suppose we could raise taxes on those with more than a million annual income, but for the rest of us (less than $100,000 income) the taxes should be lowered.

I'm tired of sending in the equivalent of a Lexus Car to my government every, fucking, year.

[-] 1 points by ronjj (-241) 12 years ago

I fully agree with you regarding the tax situation. And I do think for the most part we are pretty well off. What I DO NOT like is paying for a Lexus Car and getting a VWBug. If every dollar in taxes that we pay was used wisely, effectively and as intended, we should be seeing a lot more results.

[-] 2 points by BTKcongress (149) 12 years ago

"wisely, effectively and as intended" are words that are not compatible with government spending,,, because every hog is feeding at the trough. my friend with the military in bahrain used the word "astonished" at the gluttonous waste and profligacy in the war efforts... the US taxpayer pays $18,000 per month for his desert apartment (he's with about 75 other servicemen..i'll let you do the math) to some rich oil guy there. people should be appalled at the dispicable waste and misappropriation of our tax dollars.

[-] 1 points by barb (835) 12 years ago

The tax payers money that funds the military is largely for protection of our businesses that left for lower wage employees in other countries. We are supporting them when they took our jobs.

[-] -1 points by ronjj (-241) 12 years ago

This is the result of out of control taxation and borrowing. If the government had to live within its' means like you and I do that waste could be cut immediately. The problem is that they DON"T.

I see one fault in our taxation system. There should have been a limit set on the taxes that could be collected at any level of government: ex: Federal X%, State Y%, etc. That would have given everyone the incentive to do what was right - the government needs most money - make the economy work, not the government borrowing apparatus. etc.

[-] -2 points by bklynsboy (834) 12 years ago

asshole, move out if you don't like it.

[-] -2 points by ronjj (-241) 12 years ago

AHHHHHH, I made you say a bad word. How S P E C I A L