Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Let's make the government suck

As many of you know there is a never ending amount of bashing of the US Postal Service by members of Congress, especially Republicans (but a number of Democrats too). Oh, it's so inefficient, oh it's terrible, it should be privatized. Even though these same indviduals proclaim themselves lovers of the Constitution and the Postal Service just happens to be the only governmental service actually mentioned in the Constitution. It was never intended to be a "for profit" entity, but a service the founders believed the government owed the people. Well, to hell with that I guess: of the Postal Service's biggest problems has nothing to do with the mail. Its finances sank in fiscal year 2007, shortly after Congress passed the 2006 Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act. The act, among other things, required the Postal Service to start pre-funding the health benefits of future retirees 50 years in advance at a rate of about $5.6 billion a year. The year after the act was passed, Postal Service ledgers showed a loss of $5.1 billion.
Only the Defense Department is otherwise required to do this...and as we know, they are not required to operate at a profit, the more they spend the better it appears. There's actually a bill to undo this unbelievably stupid law. But don't count on it, it is too good a fallacy to not be beaten by the Conservatives who made it that way. [cross-posted at Firedoglake]


davedave said...

I, for one, enjoy going to my local post office. It's a beautiful old building, all oak and marble inside. If I'm lucky, the surly attendant is there. Makes my day when I can get her to smile.

pansypoo said...

my local PO is newer, BUT, somebody there is a big collector of old postal stuf and the vintage stff is on display + its so cool to see what they have added to their collection. i may have to donate booklets my grandma had on the new zip code.