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Guest Post: The Great Postal Fraud

Tyler Durden's picture





 

Submitted by Jim Quinn of The Burning Platform

The Great Postal Fraud

“One of the things the government can’t do is run anything. The only things our government runs are the post office and the railroads, and both of them are bankrupt.” – Lee Iaccoca

You may have heard that the U.S. Post Office lost $16 BILLION last year. You may also have heard that Congress snuck a requirement into a bill that had nothing to do with the Post Office, mandating that they must deliver on Saturdays, even though eliminating Saturday delivery would save the Post Office $2 BILLION per year. Congress evidently can’t read a financial statement or interpret a chart. I’m sure the trends detailed on this chart will reverse themselves shortly.

While reading an editorial today supporting the Post Office in its efforts to save money by eliminating Saturday delivery I saw another MASSIVE LIE perpetuated by the MSM and the government.

Here is the Orwellian statement:

“The U.S. Postal Service is an independent governmental agency that doesn’t take taxpayer funds.”

This is complete and utter bullshit. This statement also described Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac until 2008. They were just little old independent government agencies helping out the housing market – until the shit hit the fan!!! Then they became albatrosses around the necks of the American taxpayer. You own them now. They have lost $200 billion of your tax dollars, and will lose billions more before all is said and done.

You can access the U.S. Post Office financial statements online. Here is their December 2012 report:

http://about.usps.com/who-we-are/financials/financial-conditions-results-reports/fy2013-q1.pdf

The honesty of the people writing this report is refreshing. They essentially admit they are BANKRUPT and unable to meet their financial obligations. In other words, a truly INDEPENDENT entity admitting they can no longer operate. How is this for honesty:

“The Postal Service continues to suffer from a severe lack of liquidity. The Postal Service held total cash of $2.9 billion and $2.3 billion as of December 31, and September 30, 2012, respectively, and had no remaining borrowing capacity on its $15 billion debt facility (See Note 3, Debt, for additional information). The increase in cash balances for the quarter is largely attributable to the seasonal impact of holiday mailings, along with additional revenue resulting from this year’s political campaign and elections. Cash balances generally decline during the remainder of the fiscal year, as revenue is not as strong in the remaining quarters. By the end of this fiscal year, the Postal Service projects it will have a liquidity balance that will be less than its average weekly expenses of $1.3 billion. This low level of available cash means that the Postal Service will be unable to make the $5.6 billion legally-mandated prefunding of retiree health benefits due by September 30, 2013. Further, this level of cash could be insufficient to support operations in the event of another significant downturn in the U.S. economy.

Through the three months ended December 31, 2012, the Postal Service has suffered 5 quarters of consecutive net losses and net losses in 14 of the last 16 quarters. The net loss of $1.3 billion for the first quarter of the year included $1.4 billion of expense accrued for the legally-mandated prefunding payment for retiree health benefits. The requirement of the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act, Public Law 109-435 (P.L. 109-435) to prefund its retiree health benefit obligations, a requirement not shared by other federal agencies or private sector businesses, plus the precipitous drop in mail volume caused by changes in consumers’ uses of mail, have been the two major factors contributing to Postal Service losses since the recession ended in 2009. Without structural change to the Postal Service’s business model, it will continue to be negatively impacted by these factors and, absent legislative change, it anticipates continuing quarterly losses for the remainder of 2013.”

The politicians that are mismanaging this country use governmental accounting fraud to cover-up the fact that the obligations of this bloated pig of an operation are going to be paid by YOU, the taxpayers of the United States. Today, none of the past, current, or future liabilities of this INDEPENDENT GOVERNMENT AGENCY are reflected in the Federal budget projections or the National Debt calculation.

Do YOU want to know how much YOU really owe? Brace yourself.

  • In the past six years they have lost $41 BILLION and they have a cumulative deficit of $36 billion. How many INDEPENDENT organizations can run up deficits of $36 billion without going out of business? YOU are on the hook for these accumulated deficits, just like you were on the hook for all of the Fannie and Freddie backed toxic mortgages.
  • The Post Office will lose another $10 to $15 billion this fiscal year. You will be on the hook for that too.
  • They have $15 billion of debt on their balance sheet, with $9.5 billion payable in the next 9 months. How will this INDEPENDENT government agency that is losing $16 billion per year pay off $9.5 billion? They won’t. The government drones will pass a bill in the middle of the night extending the terms with no cash flow requirements or expectation of repayment. I wonder if I can get a loan like that?
  • The really interesting stuff is buried on page 42 of their report. I wonder why it is all the way back there? In addition to their $15 billion of debt, they have another $70.5 BILLION of unfunded future obligations. The two biggest are:
    • $33.9 Billion of payments for pension and health benefits for retirees, all due within the next 5 years. It’s not cheap providing gold plated benefits to government workers.
    • $25 billion for workers compensation and sick leave payments. Yikes!!! It must be all that stress, because the mail never stops. It keeps coming and coming. It’s almost enough to make someone go postal, or at least file a stress related workers comp claim.

This really sounds like a promising story. Mail volumes continue to plummet. Someone should tell Congress the internet age has arrived. The Post Office has thousands of money losing, unneeded outlets. It has 637,000 employees when it only needs 300,000. Over 70% of Americans favor ending Saturday delivery, so Congress passes a law making that impossible to implement, ensuring $2 billion more losses per year. That’s par for the course. Over 70% of Americans were against passing TARP too. And according to your leaders in Washington, and parroted by the MSM, you are not on the hook for their losses.

It’s beyond laughable, but so is most of what is going on in this tragedy of a country, disguised as a comedy. The truth is that you are on the hook for the $36 billion of accumulated deficits, the $85 billion of debt and contractual obligations, and the annual $16 billion losses they continue to pile up. But what’s $120 to $150 billion among friends? Bennie can print that out of thin air in a few days. Why run an operation efficiently at a surplus, when you can keep hundreds of thousands of union government drones employed (until they go on workers comp) by sticking it to the working American taxpayer. I sure hope I don’t get a visit from the Postmaster General because of this article.

 


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Sat, 04/13/2013 - 13:54 | Link to Comment This One Goes t...
This One Goes to Eleven's picture

failure of another entitlement program

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:04 | Link to Comment BigJim
BigJim's picture

Don't worry JQ. The geniuses at the Federal Reserve have got it covered.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:14 | Link to Comment Skateboarder
Skateboarder's picture

It involves a ceremonial bailout ritual with live-heart removal, performed by the Bernank himself.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:22 | Link to Comment JoeSexPack
JoeSexPack's picture

USPS is a jobs program for slackers, losers & the otherwise unemployable.

 

Like the TSA.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:26 | Link to Comment Tijuana Donkey Show
Tijuana Donkey Show's picture

I have a friend that works there, and it sucks! I thought it would be a cool job, but they have really ruined it. Close this sucker, and end all the junk mail!

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:34 | Link to Comment JoeSexPack
JoeSexPack's picture

True story: last month I never received a package from Amazon that the USPS claimed was delivered.

 

They gave me a delivery code as evidence, but refused to give me the carrier's name. Three separate workers gave me a phone # for Melvin the supervisor, but refused to give his hours.

 

4 calls over the next week were unanswered, each after 50+ rings. On 5th call a woman said Melvin hadn't worked there for months. So 3 separate workers looked me in the eyes & lied. She also refused to give the carrier's name, but gave me a # for Postal Inspection.

 

Postal Inspection woman took my info, but refused to give a name or # of an inspector for a lost package, & did not care about the lies. 30 days passed & no contact from an inspector.

 

Amazon replaced the missing BBQ thermometers two days after I told them this story, no questions asked. Go Amazon!

 

Close the USPS & make America a better place.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:37 | Link to Comment Ahmeexnal
Ahmeexnal's picture

Thanks for the feedback. About to order from AMZN so it'll have to be UPS.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:46 | Link to Comment TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

.

Thanks for the feedback. About to order from AMZN so it'll have to be UPS.

The post office provides so-called "last mile delivery" to a geographically large portion of the country for UPS and FexEx. Without that, UPS and FexEx would be a lot more expensive and/or wouldn't offer delivery service to a lot of people.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:57 | Link to Comment Money Squid
Money Squid's picture

I know I am a little slow on some things, so let me see if I understand this correctly. Congress slips in a requirement that the PO must deliver on Saturday. The PO provides "last mile delivery" for UPS and FedEx, to keep their costs down. So the tax payer, through the PO, is subsidizing FedEx and UPS, and ensures Saturday delivery like FedEx and UPS, FedEx and UPS can make a "profit" for its executives and stock owners. Do I have that right?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:04 | Link to Comment TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

Yes, you have that right.

Also, if congress, at the end of 2006, hadn't required the post office to prefund its future health care benefit payments to retirees for the next 75 years (which means some of those retirees are yet to be born) and do this in a ten year span, they'd be sitting on a healthy surplus.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:22 | Link to Comment Money Squid
Money Squid's picture

A follow up question if I may - If the PO must prefund its future healthcare benefits (which is a lot of money), is the money then available to spend, loan, or encumbered in another way, like the Social Security IOUs in the 3-drawer filing cabinet? Is the prefunding a mechanism to make more tax payer money available for immediate spending on other programs/investments?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:28 | Link to Comment TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

I don't know the details of where the prefunded healthcare benefit money goes. Perhaps someone with more knowledge of it could chime in here.

Based on the track record of congress and Wall Street, though, it's probably been thoroughly Corzined.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 16:16 | Link to Comment Stuck on Zero
Stuck on Zero's picture

Forget fancy retirement and health programs for the USPS.  Why can't they go on Medicare and Social Security like everyone else?

 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:44 | Link to Comment mjcOH1
mjcOH1's picture

"It involves a ceremonial bailout ritual with live-heart removal, performed by the Bernank himself."

I believe you're confusing this with the ceremonial goat-fuck, used in the case of vote-buying govt bureaucracies and union bailouts. The live-heart removal is reserved for private businesses that fail to pay the commonly accepted bribe levels.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 19:32 | Link to Comment greyghost
greyghost's picture

jimmy quinn goes major asshole again. this clown is nothing more than a college professor with no real world experience. note the smug air of superiority in his reply to posts. clearly not one to be challenged on any topic...ever.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 19:42 | Link to Comment Jim Quinn
Jim Quinn's picture

Don't make me spank you before sending you off to bed where you can suck your thumb and pee yourself.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:39 | Link to Comment akak
akak's picture

Something tells me you would like that.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:53 | Link to Comment Jim Quinn
Jim Quinn's picture

Shouldn't you be busy massaging Stooge's balls by now?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 21:54 | Link to Comment akak
akak's picture

Classy.

Behold the educated 'professional'.

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 13:28 | Link to Comment FEDbuster
FEDbuster's picture

Let's not forget the 600K+ Democrat votes the APWU (AFL-CIO) delivers on election day.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 19:39 | Link to Comment kchrisc
kchrisc's picture

"Corzined" I like that.

Corzined

adjective

1. To have stolen by an overseer that which was thought to be in safe keeping and to have no recourse as to recovery due to political connections of the thief.      His car was corzined by the valet who is the mayor's cousin and the police just laughed when called.      hujel
Sun, 04/14/2013 - 11:42 | Link to Comment PiratePawpaw
PiratePawpaw's picture

answer: its gone!. it went in the same special lockbox that your SS payments go in. That is why congress DEMANDS that the PO must prefund it. The USPS is a  cash cow for congress, NOT the other way around.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:07 | Link to Comment TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

Money Squid asked:

Is the prefunding a mechanism to make more tax payer money available for immediate spending on other programs/investments?

Just a quick followup to my original reply. The money goes into US Treasury bonds. Make of that what you will.

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 01:04 | Link to Comment TimmyB
TimmyB's picture

It shows up as part of the general fund, and thus it's true purpose---it's an accounting trick that lowers the deficient by the prepaid amount. It was passed to make the government deficient look smaller in the short run.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:35 | Link to Comment Jim Quinn
Jim Quinn's picture

You're a moron who doesn't even understand the difference between an income statement and a balance sheet. You blather on about the 75 years of pre-funding their pension and helathcare obligations. Your agenda is revealed by your exaggeration of 75 years. It is 50 years.

Secondly, the PO defaulted on their required payment for 2012. They didn't make the $12 billion payment.

Idiots like yourself seem to think it is fiscally irresponsible to fully fund your obligations. Are you a Congressman or the mayor of one of our shithole urban enclaves?

I know you are a math challenged dumbass, so understanding that $85 billion of contractual obligations for retirement, healthcare, workers comp and sick leave MUST be paid by someone - US TAXPAYER, is beyond the scope of your pea brain.

You DailyKoos idiots think an organization with massively declining volumes, rapidly rising costs, and no plan to address these two facts is NO PROBLEM.

The mind of a liberal is a terrible thing to witness.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:55 | Link to Comment RafterManFMJ
RafterManFMJ's picture

If this is the Real Jim Quinn from TBP I respectfully request you publish more. You and Jim Willie are the high points of my day. Love you both. No Homo.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:41 | Link to Comment El Oregonian
El Oregonian's picture

*

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:56 | Link to Comment Skateboarder
Skateboarder's picture

Let's not devolve into a name-calling shitstorm. Everyone go off and read this (potentially and most likely falsified) information and reconvene with legit (or psuedolegit) answers.

https://about.usps.com/who-we-are/financials/financial-conditions-result...

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 16:31 | Link to Comment Jim Quinn
Jim Quinn's picture

Yes. Let's go to the actual report.

The PO did not make their funding payment for pension and health obligations in 2012 because they have reached the limit on their credit line. Guess who they owe the $15 billion of debt to?

They owe it to the Federal Financing Bank. Guess who owns the FFB? 

BINGO!!! - The US Treasury owns the FFB.

So all we need to do is have the US Treasury loan the PO $30 billion and all will be well. Right STOOGE?

You idiots can mentally masturbate for hours with your bullshit about the PO being viable, but in the end YOU THE TAXPAYER are on the hook for over $100 billion of past, current and future obligations of this organization. Get that through your pea brains. 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:04 | Link to Comment TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

.

You're a moron who doesn't even understand the difference between an income statement and a balance sheet.

Oh, I'm sorry that I made you actually go back and read up on the subject of your smear job.

Your agenda is revealed by your exaggeration of 75 years.

Agenda? I haven't hesitated to point out the errors in the post office hit pieces that run here from time to time, of which yours is simply the latest.

It is 50 years.

The source for the 75 year figure is this article by Ralph Nader. Wikipedia says it's 50 years, and the text of the bill says through 2056. I don't know if Nader was exaggerating (it's certainly possible) or if the act had been amended between 2007 and the time he wrote his article in 2011 (another possibility).

Let's say I was wrong on the 75 years. I'm big enough to concede that point. When I'm wrong, I will gladly admit it, as that is part of being an adult. I'd rather be correct than cling to a mistaken belief, and I'm certainly not going to humiliate myself by trying to defend an error with namecalling.

Having said that, it is still an enormous financial burden to prefund retiree health care benefits for the next fifty years over a span of only ten years.

Secondly, the PO defaulted on their required payment for 2012. They didn't make the $12 billion payment.

Do you have a source for the $12 billion figure? The text of the 2006 bill indicates that the payment due September 30, 2012, was $5.6 billion. Thanks.

Idiots like yourself seem to think it is fiscally irresponsible to fully fund your obligations.

Aside from the namecalling, you're being a bit presumptuous. I think the case can be made that fully funding your obligations as you go is the responsible thing to do, and if you can prefund them by a few years it might be prudent to do so. I also think the case can be made that funding obligations fifty years into the future, if doing so results in transforming a surplus into insolvency, is fiscally irresponsible.

I financed part of my college tuition with student loans. Are you saying that it is fiscally irresponsible to attend college unless you can pay for the full four years in a lump sum before setting foot in a classroom?

I financed the purchase of my home with a mortgage and a 25% down payment. Are you saying that I was fiscally irresponsible by not paying cash for it?

Are you a Congressman or the mayor of one of our shithole urban enclaves?

Again with the name calling? I must have hit a nerve for you to slander me with the label of politician. Nevertheless, whether you realize it or not, your post office smear is a nice way to deflect much deserved blame away from congress. Why are you so insistent on defending the politicians which inhabit the swamp on the Potomac?

I know you are a math challenged dumbass

Made me laugh. The education I partially financed with student loans included classes in calculus, probability, differential equations, abstract algebra, and complex analysis. (It also included statistics, which I hated and, except for test days, stopped attending after the first test, yet still received an A for the course.)

Because I am a math challenged dumbass, I was able to compute the total dollar amount of interest which I'd be paying on my student loans and my mortgage, as well as the very substantial savings I'd realize by paying twice the required monthly payment and, in the case of my mortgage, making these payments two to three months before the due date. I blame this lack of mathematical comprehension for my reckless fiscal irresponsibility.

so understanding that $85 billion of contractual obligations for retirement, healthcare, workers comp and sick leave MUST be paid by someone - US TAXPAYER, is beyond the scope of your pea brain.

Yes, it is beyond the scope of my pea brain. Explain to me again how fully funding obligations forty to fifty years ahead of when they come due for people not yet working in a system which may not last another twenty years, even if it transforms an operating surplus into insolvency and default and consequently necessitates government bailouts, is the wise and fiscally responsible course of action. Also, for the sake of my mathematically stunted comprehension, I'd appreciate it if you could limit your explanation to variables involving only the set of real numbers. It is the weekend, after all.

You DailyKoos idiots

Sorry, pea brain here. While familiar with a rather broad lexicon of name-calling terms, I've never heard of a DailyKoos idiot. Could you explain this one? I'd appreciate it if you could avoid the use of polysyllabic words, if possible.

think an organization with massively declining volumes, rapidly rising costs, and no plan to address these two facts is NO PROBLEM.

From what I understand of the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006, the money used to prefund retiree health care benefits fifty years into the future, resulting in postal deficits instead of surpluses, goes into purchasing bonds from the US Treasury.

Why are you such a staunch defender of congress looting these funds to pay for Homeland Security, TSA, drug wars, drone wars, police militarization, ethanol subsidies, free cell phones, and other such intrusive and offensive big government abominations?

The mind of a liberal is a terrible thing to witness.

I'll agree with you there, although I wonder why you're so flagrantly exhibiting yours.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:10 | Link to Comment akak
akak's picture

Now THAT was a spanking!

The only things you forgot to mention were that his mother was a hamster and his father smelt of elderberries.

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 00:04 | Link to Comment BigJim
BigJim's picture

You think Jim Quinn knows who his father is?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:58 | Link to Comment Jim Quinn
Jim Quinn's picture

Your looking for my source when the link to the actual financial report is in my article. You mean to tell me you went on the offensive regarding the financial situation of the Post Office and you didn't even open the financial report?

I guess your calculus expertise doesn't require you to actually read the information that you so authoritatively expound upon.

Click the link and learn something. Page 9 of the report SAYS they defaulted on their payment. That means they did not make the payment. The $5.6 billion is for FY13.

What a burden we have placed on the poor Post office. We require them to pre-fund their pension and health benefits and then they default on the payment and we do nothing. It's government accounting masturbation.

They defaulted because they reached their debt limit of $15 billion, which DRUM ROLL PLEASE, is from the US Treasury. Open the report and you would know that.

Whether they fund the obligations today or in fifty years, they will do so on the backs of the US taxpayer. They run multi-billion dollar deficits, excluding the funding obligations. Their own report predicts a further plunge in mail volume by 2020. Their losses are growing and they still owe the $85 billion.

You attempt to misdirect the debate from the simple fact that the US Post Office is not an independent agency and will never be able to meet its pension and healthcare obligations without the US taxpayer footing the bill. It's a money losing operation that needs to be downsized. It is supposed to be a self funding organization and it is not.

The fact that you placed 10 comments in a frenzy as soon as the article was posted reveals that you have an agenda to mislead the readers from the truth about the PO.

Next time, try reading the financials before you start spouting off. 

 

 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:31 | Link to Comment TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

.

I guess your calculus expertise doesn't require you to actually read the information that you so authoritatively expound upon.

I wasn't the author of the smear job. By the way, your remark on calculus expertise is, in this context, a non sequitur. It's good to see that ad hominem isn't the only tool in your logical fallacy toolbox.

Click the link and learn something. Page 9 of the report SAYS they defaulted on their payment. That means they did not make the payment. The $5.6 billion is for FY13.

Sorry about that. I guess you big government types are more familiar with the federal government's fiscal years than us pea brains. The payment due September 30, 2011, was $5.5 billion.

http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/109/hr6407/text

They defaulted because they reached their debt limit of $15 billion

You think the five and a half billion dollars a year congress was extorting from them had anything to do with this?

which DRUM ROLL PLEASE,

Spare me the drama, please.

is from the US Treasury. Open the report and you would know that.

Funny thing about that is that they have to borrow money from the US Treasury to make the congressionally mandated extortion payments to the US Treasury.

You attempt to misdirect the debate from the simple fact that the US Post Office is not an independent agency

I never said it wasn't. Anyone that thinks it is supposed to be an independent agency clearly has a feeble understanding of the constitution.

It's a money losing operation that needs to be downsized.

It is a constitutionally mandated function of the federal government. Why not downsize or eliminate the Department of Education, the Department of Energy, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Department of Homeland Security, or any of the other sacred cows that you big government types so adore?

It is supposed to be a self funding organization and it is not.

It is a constitutionally mandated function, irrespective of the desire of congress that it be self funding. Any deficits it incurs are the responsibility of congress to address. It cannot be abolished without an amendment to the constitution. But hey, the constitution is just a goddamned piece of paper, right?

The fact that you placed 10 comments in a frenzy as soon as the article was posted reveals that you have an agenda to mislead the readers from the truth about the PO.

The fact that you view my disagreement as a threat to your rigid Ideology of Truth® orthodoxy, requiring you to come out swinging with ad hominems and drama queen tactics like ALL CAPS, not to mention obsessing to the point of counting my comments, says a lot about you. Ever consider trying to make an argument without it entailing a vulgar display of histrionics?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 21:17 | Link to Comment Jim Quinn
Jim Quinn's picture

Reading your attempt to counter my facts with a stoyline is getting boring.

You didn't open the financial report.

You don't understand the concept of accrued liabilities.

You didn't even know the PO isn't actually paying the money that you opened your comments with.

You didn't know that the US Treasury funds their deficits already, meaning the American taxpayer is on the hook.

You keep spouting the falsity that my article says the US Post office should be eliminated. I said no such thing. I said it needs to be downsized and made capable of existing without the taxpayer being stuck with an ever increasing liability.

You opened the comment salvo calling the article Utter Bullshit. I responded in the same tone. Then you act like you are an innocent victim of big bad mean guy.

Your schtick is tiring.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 22:56 | Link to Comment Prometheus418
Prometheus418's picture

The USPS is the only .gov that actually *does* something tangible for myself and my faimly without putting me in danger of a heart attack from apoplectic fits of rage (ie. the highway department)

They probably do lose money, but why single them out- they actually do something that I can see.  I order shit online, and they bring it to my house- cheap and on-time, every time.  That's way more acceptable to me than the idiots who demand half-billion dollar schools and federally funded community centers thousands of miles away from me that I will never see.

We all already know that the government is inefficient- that point isn't up for debate as far as I'm concerned.  What I wonder is why the one institution that is availible to every citizen everywhere, with the same pricing across the board, is the one that is so often villified?  Is it the shorts with the reflective stripes?

Seriously- I live in a small town, and the USPS are champs here- they always get things here on time and intact, while UPS and FedEx are as about as reliable as the weather forecast (though I'll concede that they've gotten better in the past 2-3 years.)  If I want to send something via post, it's about eight blocks away- if I want to send somthing UPS, it's over twenty miles, and far more expensive.

Considering the fucking we get on just about anything the .gov touches, I'm on board with the USPS being the last thing we shut down and burn.  Ulitmately, they need to go the way of the rest- but I'm in no hurry to see them gone.  I'm genuinely curious as to why they, of all organizations, are on your proverbial hit list.

 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 23:53 | Link to Comment F22
F22's picture

95% of my mail from USPS is Junk.....

When I get an important delivery...junk silver....I have to go to the local postal annex

the hours of which are 9a-4p (customer friendly convenience) and the people that work there are the most rude slugs I've dealt with in any

business in my area.  I would never choose to have USPS deliver anything important...give me UPS or FEDEX any day.

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 00:17 | Link to Comment Prometheus418
Prometheus418's picture

I get semi-regular deliveries from Gainesville, myself- and I know what you mean.  

It depends on your locality, though.  I missed closing time by 5 minutes once, and caught one of the employees in the parking lot.  After asking nicely (no sarc), she went back in and personally found my package.  They've always been prompt and courteous for me, and even have a sense of humor when I do weird engineer shit like cutting priority mail boxes into dozens of triangles and taping them back together to mail odd-shaped packages on their lobby table.

Private enterprises here don't do that- they have no problem telling you to piss off if you inconvenience them.  It's one of the hidden pitfalls of rural life- they know you have nowhere else to go, and act accordingly.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:42 | Link to Comment El Oregonian
El Oregonian's picture

 

 

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Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:58 | Link to Comment post turtle saver
post turtle saver's picture

I don't know who down voted this but whoever did is either an idiot or has an axe to grind... this is EXACTLY the reason that the USPO is having trouble with the numbers.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:21 | Link to Comment RockyRacoon
RockyRacoon's picture

If you live in Podunk, Alaska, UPS nor FEDEX has you on their maps.  No USPS and you don't get diddly delivered -- at any price that is close to reasonable.   The USPS contracts with FEDEX and UPS to make that last mile delivery because it makes the USPS money they would not have otherwise had.  It's a symbiotic relationship, not a subsidy to FEDEX or UPS.  It just seems to work okay that way.  Stop looking under rocks for conspiracies.

And for the article to quote Lee Iacoca!  Really?  I think I recall Chrysler being the beneficiary of the first really big BAIL OUT!  The height of arrogance is astounding.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:25 | Link to Comment dark pools of soros
dark pools of soros's picture

Exactly, the post office is fine... What's a good business? Walmart?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 16:48 | Link to Comment RockyRacoon
RockyRacoon's picture

The postal service is not a business, any more than a fire station is a business.  It was originally begun to provide distribution for newspapers in accordance with the right of the free press as the underlying idea.  There is too much preoccupation with the "business model" as a template for anything.  It doesn't always fit the bill.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:59 | Link to Comment disabledvet
disabledvet's picture

it COULD be a business....but the Convenient stores and Pharmacies would never allow it. "they have a lobby too." also the capital budget for spending on plant and equipment is RIDICULOUSLY low. http://www.cato.org/sites/cato.org/files/serials/files/cato-journal/2011... obviously if instead of running 35 year old chevy s-10's they upgraded their 200,000 vehicle fleet to either all electric or all natural gas vehicles then that would save taxpayers billions immediately. "can't have that...those are Wall Street traders and they need waste, fraud and abuse by their Government Agencies." new more fuel efficient buildings? NOT. simply put "this is a General Motors loss of revenue scenario" and since no one is predicting sales to ever stop falling...EVER..."this is the kiss of death"...public or private. the stat that is most striking in that report is the loss of man hours in the past 6 years...as well as "the loss of efficiency" as suddenly all the folks "really running the Agency" realized "this thing can be economized to point where all you have are delivery people." my view is that in demanding the Postal Service deliver on Saturday you may see management do just that. what these clowns have done "is the exact opposite of a plan." perhaps the best option is to declare bankruptcy now the the Fed is monetizing all that debt anyways? at a certain level they already have.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 22:41 | Link to Comment BooMushroom
BooMushroom's picture

Two nits: first, of course their efficiency is down. The number of mailboxes has remained constant, and the volume of mail has decreased. If you are measuring mail per hour or mail per gallon of fuel, you're gonna have less efficiency if the amount of mail decreases. Second, the USPS fleet is huge! There would be a savings eventually, but the upfront cost would be significant and the Time for return of capital would be nonzero.

Not that they can't make dozens of improvements, both with and without inconveniencing customers.

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 19:17 | Link to Comment dark pools of soros
dark pools of soros's picture

I agree - but it seems many folks here would rather all our sectors be a bottomline business like walmart..  i guess the sewage dept should only let us flush once a week next

 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:49 | Link to Comment Money Squid
Money Squid's picture

Not looking under rocks, nor for conspiracies. I am aware of the history of congress using tax payer monies to subsidize private industry. I have a lot experience with little-known, unrelated and strange government funding mechanisms and accounting practices. But, I can not keep up with all of them for all branches of local, state, federal and quasi-governmental organizations. "It just seems to work okay that way" Does not sound like you have good grasp on how it works at all.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 16:53 | Link to Comment RockyRacoon
RockyRacoon's picture

I'm saying that the symbiosis works okay.  All entities involved profit from the arrangement.  It has been worked out over many years, and it functions.  I'm not shrugging off that as an explanation.  And, as a matter of fact, I know how it works quite well, as it is part of my business model to use all 3 services.  I have all 3 company's widgets at my disposal to use to calculate costs.  I just pick the one best suited to my needs for shipping. 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:48 | Link to Comment Goldilocks
Goldilocks's picture

"We at Chrysler borrow money the old-fashioned way. We pay it back." - Lee Iacocca

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 05:40 | Link to Comment Cadavre
Cadavre's picture

Exactly -Lee sure pitched his lame ass "K" cars. Chrysler collision insurance is relatively cheap due to a high availability of good condition body parts in junk yards. They needed the money to off shore thir factories - same thing GM did with it's bailout bucks.

But still, Lee had to bring a posse of Franlins S&L cild meat to DC to negotiate terms (usual protocal for all suckling at the breasts of the commons)..

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:34 | Link to Comment Clycntct
Clycntct's picture

"“One of the things the government can’t do is run anything. The only things our government runs are the post office and the railroads, and both of them are bankrupt.” – Lee Iaccoca"

I had to post it cause when I got to your comment it just reconfirmed my first thought on WTF He cried for a bailout.

Public bailout: Lets use those light poles for what they are best at.

Swinging leachers.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:31 | Link to Comment de3de8
de3de8's picture

The gov't does a stellar job of running things in the ground.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 21:55 | Link to Comment BooMushroom
BooMushroom's picture

Yes, that is correct. And they (UPS and FedEx) don't give you a discount or even a notification that they are going to subcontract your order. They take your money at full price, and then pass the fuel and labor costs off on USPS.

If they had to tell you "we don't deliver to that address, delivery will be completed by USPS," how many people would pay the extra cost?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 21:16 | Link to Comment orez65
orez65's picture

Then UPS and FedEx should charge those people what it costs to make their deliveries.

If they want to live in the out country then pay for what it costs.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 22:03 | Link to Comment Antifaschistische
Antifaschistische's picture

Yes, now you're talking.

"The post office provides so-called "last mile delivery" to a geographically large portion of the country for UPS and FexEx."

So, really, the Post Office is just part of the faschist, backend to the "Private" storefronts at UPS and Fed-Ex.  (i.e. very large/powerful corporate america).

In other words..it doesn't matter how much they lose.  They will stay open to support UPS/FedX and shift all losses to taxpayers, so the 'private' orgs can remain profitable.

same play....chapter 34

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 23:12 | Link to Comment Prometheus418
Prometheus418's picture

Again, I can't see why they're anywhere near the top of any list.

I've got an anarchist streak, and I'll be the first to serve them a delicious gasoline-flavored cocktail, but everything has it's time and place- I won't be pissing in the USPS pool until long after payroll taxes are a distant memory, and even then, I'm inclined to see them peacefully privatized.

Just really cannot get my head around the folks who want to shoot the mailman.  Sure, they bring the bills, but they bring your Christmas cards and letters from that one old relative that still doesn't own a pc the same damn way.  Hell, Brin envisioned an apolcaylpse where the Postman was the one member of the old guard who was still welcome at the gates of hell.

Don't get me wrong- we need to start killing these fucks wholesale- but get your priorities straight.  Start with the congress, and work down from there- if you're still mad by the time you get the the poor sap who carries a letter-bag, that's your lookout.  I'm thinking a rage-induced heart attack will kill you long before you get to that point, though.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:43 | Link to Comment TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

This article is utter bullshit.

If not for the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006 (PAEA), the post office would be sitting on a surplus of over a billion dollars.

Quinn said:

The honesty of the people writing this report is refreshing. They essentially admit they are BANKRUPT and unable to meet their financial obligations. In other words, a truly INDEPENDENT entity admitting they can no longer operate.

Did you even read the excerpt that you posted?

The net loss of $1.3 billion for the first quarter of the year included $1.4 billion of expense accrued for the legally-mandated prefunding payment for retiree health benefits.

So they'd have a $100 million surplus for that quarter if they hadn't been required to prefund their future health care benefit payments to retirees for the next 75 years over a ten year span.

This whole Post Office thing is a stalking horse, one which can only be recognized when placed in proper context. The excessively burdensome pension funding requirement was created for one purpose: to kill the Post Office. The postal system is one of the federal government's legitimate responsibilities, as enumerated in the constitution. If the Post Office can somehow be killed off without a constitutional amendment, it will set a precedent for dismantling the constitution piecemeal.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:04 | Link to Comment dudebum
dudebum's picture

Well said, thanks 4th!

I can't imagine any business that could survive when mandated to prefund 75 years worth of future employee benefits over 10 years.

Article 1 Section 8 of the US constitution says (in part)

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

...

To establish Post Offices and post Roads;

 

Notice, this doesn't say the post office is required to be profitable, in fact it says Our taxes are _supposed to_ fund it.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 16:32 | Link to Comment willwork4food
willwork4food's picture

Soon,I hope the people can pass mandate HBAC act of 2014.

{Hang (a) Banker And Congressman}

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:13 | Link to Comment TheMeatTrapper
TheMeatTrapper's picture

I can't imagine any business that could survive when mandated to prefund 75 years worth of future employee benefits over 10 years.

 

What are employee benefits? Oh, that's the gold plated shit that union members get that the rest of us regular working class folks will never have - even though we get saddled with the bill!

Most of us tax paying slaves have to get up every morning and go to work to get paid. If we screw up - we get fired. We don't have a union that makes it damn near impossible to get fired no matter how incompetent we are at a job.

Once we get old, we had better damn well have saved enough to retire on, otherwise we're stuck wit Social Security that won't be there. 

The problem is that the Post Office, like most other government jobs, has morphed into an affirmative action, gold plated, unionized, guaranteed benefits for life jobs program that provides a hell of a lot better deal for the moochers than us working class stiffs out here getting raped to pay for it have. 

I don't have a problem with the post office being a government agency or losing money, just like the fire department. 

I do have a problem with the government workers turning into lazy, rude, arrogant, self entitled moochers who think the rest of us owe them a gold plated life!

 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:15 | Link to Comment koaj
koaj's picture

Nor does it state that this will be a government run monopoly. Lysander Spooner challenged this in the 1850s and lost. Congress cut prices so much that it ran as a loss to put Spooner out of business. Spooner delivered mail to people's houses for 1/4 of the cost of the USPS who was just delivering to local Post Offices only...PO Boxes

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:42 | Link to Comment TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

.

Nor does it state that this will be a government run monopoly.

Agreed. Makes you wonder why congress established it as one.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:12 | Link to Comment Telemakhos
Telemakhos's picture

You're right that Congress has placed unusual burdens on the Post Office, but prefunding the health care plan is only one of them.  Another is that Congress prevents the Post Office from closing post offices that lose money or from halting Saturday delivery (which is hardly necessary).  On the other hand, killing the post office as a way of dismantling the Constitution is a long, circuitious path for people who are already assassinating US citizens by drone strike without trial; there's no need for Byzantine plots against a scrap of paper you're ready to blatantly disregard.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:45 | Link to Comment Rogue Trooper
Rogue Trooper's picture

Facinating Stooge.  Your last sentence is scray, to say the least, but not surprising. These statist wankers in control and playing their Orwellian game will do anything to keep boiling us frogs.

The hedge comments section. Always ahead of the curve!

 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:54 | Link to Comment Jim Quinn
Jim Quinn's picture

You read the parts you want to read. Here is the pertinent info you ignored:

The increase in cash balances for the quarter is largely attributable to the seasonal impact of holiday mailings, along with additional revenue resulting from this year’s political campaign and elections. Cash balances generally decline during the remainder of the fiscal year, as revenue is not as strong in the remaining quarters. By the end of this fiscal year, the Postal Service projects it will have a liquidity balance that will be less than its average weekly expenses of $1.3 billion.

The first quarter was unusually good due to the election campaign mailings. Their cashflow will plunge over the remaining three quarters, not including their pension obligations. Can you read for comprehension, or only through your ideological glasses.

The PO is losing billions, even excluding their funding obligations.

Let's hear your next bullshit excuse for this bloated pig of an organization.

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 01:06 | Link to Comment Midas
Midas's picture

Jim-

The Post Office is rapidly downsizing and is losing about 30.000 employees a year for the past three years.  They have about 200,000 fewer than in 2004 even though they are generating the same revenue.  I don't know what metric you are using to classify them as bloated, but I think going from 800,000 to 600000 and delivering to an ever increasing number of stops is not an easy feat. 

Also, many industries are having troubles during this depression, I don't know why the USPS should be any different.  Their troubles didn't start with the internet, 2006 was the highest revenue year.  The problems started with the implosion of the economy in 2007.  If you start with pricing that is designed to break even and postage increases tied to the .gov supplied inflation numbers and then the economy goes into a tailspin would you expect to make money?  Would that be a great time to set 55 billion aside for a rainy day, or is that the rainy day?

Additionally, in your research for this article did you come across the figures on how much money the USPS has in savings to pay out for current retirees? 

Cheers.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:27 | Link to Comment Jim Quinn
Jim Quinn's picture

Sounds like a bright future. I'm sure the volume will pick up any minute. 

First-class mail volume has fallen 19 percent since 2001, and it is projected to fall another 37 percent by 2020.7 From 2006 to 2009 total mail volume dropped from 213 billion to 177 billion items, a 17 percent decrease.8 By 2020 the USPS estimates further volume declines of about 15 percent, to 150 billion pieces, which would be the lowest level since 1986.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:13 | Link to Comment akak
akak's picture

Not everything delivered, or deliverable, by the Post Office can or ever will all be delivered, or deliverable, by email.

You would help your arguments by not coming across like some technogeek doofus who thinks that e-everything is always and everywhere not only the best but the ONLY way to go.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 19:19 | Link to Comment Parrotile
Parrotile's picture

Sometimes it seems that "decidedly old tech" is still the best way to go.

Sending your "sensitive" data via Carrier Pigeon is also a convenient way of circumventing covert surveillance by your Government, or by your competitors.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2009/09/09/us-safrica-pigeon-idUSTRE5885PM20090909

 - and you will not be hard pressed for "transport capacity" - for example - http://www.kingston.com/en/usb/storage_chart.

Just need a location to house your "couriers" - and pigeons are easy to look after, even for apartment-dwellers! http://www.pigeonweb.net/pigeon-fanciers

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 19:23 | Link to Comment akak
akak's picture

It's all, and always, a matter of trade-offs: the higher the tech, the less resilient, less redundant, more fragile, and more prone to failure it will be.  The technogeek squard always overlooks this fact.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:55 | Link to Comment Jim Quinn
Jim Quinn's picture

Excessive labor costs are another major problem. While the USPS has been able to eliminate a substantial number of employees through attrition, the USPS’s predominantly unionized workforce continues to account for 80 percent of the agency’s costs despite increased automation. The USPS estimates that, in the absence of changes, its total workforce costs will soar from $53 billion in 2009 to $77 billion in 2020.23

As of 2009 the USPS had financial liabilities and unfunded obligations of $88 billion.24 Unfunded obligations for retiree health benefits accounted for $52 billion of the total. The 2006 Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act addressed this unfunded liability by requiring the USPS to make a special payment of more than $5 billion annually from 2007 through 2016 to build up a retirement fund. This was a good idea to reduce possible liabilities on future taxpayers.

However, USPS revenues began plummeting shortly after the PAEA’s enactment. In 2009 Congress relieved the USPS by allowing it to defer $4 billion of its scheduled $5.4 billion retirement payment for the year. Facing the same situation this year, Congress adjourned without providing the USPS with similar relief. As a result, the USPS could soon run out of operating funds.  

Critics argue that the pre-funding payment schedule is too aggressive, particularly in light of the USPS’s current financial struggles. However, the USPS faces a bleak future regardless of the payments. As the GAO notes, allowing the USPS to continue deferring the payments will "increase the risk that in the future USPS will not be able to pay these obligations as its core business continues to decline and if sufficient actions are not taken to restructure operations and reduce costs."25

Opponents of pre-funding USPS retiree health benefits argue that private companies and the rest of the federal government are not legally required to do so. That is largely irrelevant. Retiree health care coverage is an increasingly rare perk in the private sector, and the federal government’s financial management is nothing to emulate. In 2008, only 17 percent of private sector workers were employed at a business that offered health benefits to Medicare-eligible retirees, down from 28 percent in 1997.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 21:23 | Link to Comment orez65
orez65's picture

Nothing prevents the postal service from being subcontracted.

Nor does the Constitution rule out electronic delivery of mail.

The mail used to be carried by horse carriage but now is carried by truck.

Is that unconstitutional?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:20 | Link to Comment tarsubil
tarsubil's picture

I had a book disappear that was postal delivery and Amazon also replaced it no questions asked. The postal workers must just know this and are taking advantage. I smell a rat.

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 00:29 | Link to Comment Buck Johnson
Buck Johnson's picture

Don't worry, the whole govt. thing will fall apart because they just can't afford it anymore pure and simple.  I have a funny feeling when the liabilities implode, those same govt. employees are going to get shafted.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:34 | Link to Comment TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

The junk mail is what subsidizes the cost of first class postage. Without junk mail, stamps would probably be a dollar each by now.

BTW, junk mail is combustible. A sufficiently motivated person could develop a method for using it to subsidize his winter heating bill.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:50 | Link to Comment sunnyside
sunnyside's picture

Then let a stamp be a dollar or even 2 dollars if that is what it costs.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 16:18 | Link to Comment mrdenis
mrdenis's picture

My wood stove loves junk mail ...........

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:31 | Link to Comment Jim Quinn
Jim Quinn's picture

Facts are so inconvenient for ideologues.

A key driver of mail delivery costs is the congressionally mandated obligation to serve virtually every mailing address, regardless of volume, six days a week. Fulfilling this "universal service" obligation results in the USPS having large fixed costs, including the costs of more than 36,000 postal outlets, 215,000 vehicles, and 600 processing facilities.

However, even given the universal service obligation, the Government Accountability Office and USPS officials believe that more than half of these processing facilities aren’t needed.14 Why aren’t they closed down to save money? The GAO notes that the USPS faces "formidable resistance" from members of Congress and postal unions when attempting to close or consolidate facilities.15

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:26 | Link to Comment TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

.

Facts are so inconvenient for ideologues.

Given that namecalling appears to be the first tool you reach for when someone disagrees, and the emotional investment in the subject that this implies, the ideologue here is you.

Are your arguments so frail that they can only be defended with a standard litany of logical fallacies?

Seriously, I've admired some of your previous articles. I'm embarassed for you by your instant fallback to such tactics.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:59 | Link to Comment akak
akak's picture

I agree.  The whole tone of the responses here posted under the name of "Jim Quinn" not only do not match that of the attached article, and other articles by the same author, but also do not seem reflective of comments previously posted under that same name.

Could we have an imposter Jim Quinn posting under an assumed name here?  Or is it just the real Jim Quinn having a bad hair day?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:48 | Link to Comment greyghost
greyghost's picture

akak...no this is the real deal from the mighty quinn. i went thru this many months back when i called him on some crap theory thunk up in the class room. as the posts went on, he became more and more insulting. to the point that other posters even started to take notice. notice how he hovers over every post to his article and attacks with insults, usually about the posters IQ. it is what i usually found typical from arrogant professors that don't like their work examined. after all, the classroom is their dictatorship, what with the power to hand out grades. however that may be just me...i found school very confining, with too many humans willing to accept their bullshit at face value. 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:58 | Link to Comment DavidPierre
DavidPierre's picture

SmokeyQuinn is a Bean Counter @ Whoreton School of Busyness.

If he ever went in front a real class the students would rip his throat out for being a MORON.

OFF his blog today...

"Calling commentors on his site “douchebags”, “idiots”…etc? LOL Very professional. This Jim Quinn guy has some anger-management issues. It must really suck to be so miserable all the time."

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 10:03 | Link to Comment FreeNewEnergy
FreeNewEnergy's picture

Just in case anybody hasn't discovered this yet, DavidPierre is the famous Jim Willie. That should be obvious by now.

Having seen the abhorrent behavior by both Jims (Quinn and Willie) on the comments for the past 2-3 years, I have grown tired of it and suggest to both authors that they refrain from commenting on their own articles or each others. You'd both be doing yourselves professional courtesy while maintaining a little bit of dignity.

While I respect both of you for your work, neither of you are 100% right all the time and everybody's work is subject to criticism, so suck it up and stop acting like pedants, sociopaths or adolescents (can't really make up my mind which fits them best).

If you have differences, settle them on your own damn time. I am 100% certain you each could contribute more to the comments' sections than your usual diatribes.

As my 10th grade math teacher used to say, "Just knock it off, knuckle-heads."

Obviously, both of you are smarter (well, maybe not) than what you're showing here.

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 16:28 | Link to Comment akak
akak's picture

 

Just in case anybody hasn't discovered this yet, DavidPierre is the famous Jim Willie.

That is a very interesting assertion.  Do you have any evidence to back up that claim?

(I am not denying it, merely wondering on what basis you have concluded this.)

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:50 | Link to Comment Jim Quinn
Jim Quinn's picture

You're really not used to having your weak, feeble minded arguments countered with facts directly from financial reports issued by the Post Office and audit information from the GAO.

Storylines are so much easier to spin.

I'm embarassed that I've had to teach you basic mathematical concepts and the definition of accrued liabilities. Maybe you should have taken an Accounting 101 course rather than Calculus.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 19:41 | Link to Comment akak
akak's picture

You, on the other hand, clearly excelled in your Dale Carnegie "How to Rake Friends and Incinerate People" self-help course.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:30 | Link to Comment buckethead
buckethead's picture

Unattached observer chimes in:

Guest poster gets schooled. Comes to ZH thinking the government haters would fall in line. Insults the first person to disagree. Continues futile course of action. Takes a beating.

I would argue that ZHers by and large are not ideologues at all. They tend to seek what works. Natural order and all.

One little fact that this write up seems to ignore is that operating and maintaining a postal service is one of the few obligations required (constitutionally mandated) by the federal government.

Sure you got plenty of guys to play along. So there's that. Is that what you're going for?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:38 | Link to Comment Jim Quinn
Jim Quinn's picture

ZHers are not a group.

Individuals are ideologues. Stooge fired off 10 comments in a frenzy attempting to discredit the facts in the article. I responded in the exact tone in which he commented. He then got his panties in a twist, because I was too mean. He's a hypocrite.

Nothing in my article said that the US Post service should be eliminated. Did you actually read the article?

The article argues that the PO is not an independent agency and the taxpayer is on the hook for $120 to $150 billion of their liabilities. I stated that corrupt Congressional weasels are responsible for not allowing the Post Office to take the necessary actions to put their operation on a sound financial footing.

I'm going for the truth. What are you looking for? Bullshit storylines? 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 21:22 | Link to Comment buckethead
buckethead's picture

Your post definitely has some facts worth considering. It fails to consider the undue burden placed on the USPS by congress in addition to the fact that they serve a vital, even if diminishing role.

Couple that with the vitriolic tone... And there you have it.

Generally the commenters bring the vitriolic and the contributors respond in a reasonable, unemotional manner. Take that tact, deal with the facts, and I assure you, the commenters will get your back, provided your take is supportable and well presented.

Here's wishing you health, happiness and prosperity.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 21:28 | Link to Comment orez65
orez65's picture

Every mailing address can now be electronically served.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:35 | Link to Comment akak
akak's picture

 

BTW, junk mail is combustible. A sufficiently motivated person could develop a method for using it to subsidize his winter heating bill.

I did exactly that, for a while, but discovered that the ash from burning junk mail accumulates at a MUCH higher rate than when burning wood or even ordinary plain paper.  Besides, it often stank while burning, which might have gone unnoticed by a citizen(ism) of Beijing, but which I found rather offensive.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:46 | Link to Comment TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

akak said:

I did exactly that, for a while, but discovered that the ash from burning junk mail accumulates at a MUCH higher rate than when burning wood or even ordinary plain paper.

Yeah, it's definitely not the greatest feedstock. There are a few ideas you might find interesting, such as shredding it and briquetting it with other things like wood chips.

Here's a link to a site with plans for a variety of DIY biomass briquetters:

http://home.fuse.net/engineering/ewb_project.htm

I ran across another site where the guy was using a cement mixer to make fireballs out of shredded paper and sawdust. It looks like the domain expired, but the internet archive has copies of it:

http://web.archive.org/web/20101128094432/http://puffergas.com/fireballs...

http://web.archive.org/web/20101128095631/http://puffergas.com/fireballs...

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 19:43 | Link to Comment willwork4food
willwork4food's picture

Ditto. Most junk mail is plasticized for the shiney effect. Best for wrapping cups when moving or kitty litter bottoms for those of you girley-men that don't like real dogs.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 19:55 | Link to Comment Jim Quinn
Jim Quinn's picture

In 2009 the average postal employee received about $79,000 in total compensation.30 This compares to $61,000 in wages and benefits received by the average private sector worker that year.31 A recent study by labor economist James Sherk found that postal workers earn 15 to 20 percent more per hour than comparable workers in the private sector.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 21:29 | Link to Comment orez65
orez65's picture

They received a 3% salary raise last year.

Even though they are broke!!

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:36 | Link to Comment OutLookingIn
OutLookingIn's picture

"...this tragedy of a country, desguised as a comedy."

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:38 | Link to Comment OutLookingIn
OutLookingIn's picture

Could that be black humor?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:05 | Link to Comment rayduh4life
rayduh4life's picture

So why aren't you signing up JSP?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:11 | Link to Comment G-R-U-N-T
G-R-U-N-T's picture

It would be interesting to see the accumulated debt of the post office added to the soverign debt, then divide the soverign debt by every living tax paying citizen. 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:38 | Link to Comment Cadavre
Cadavre's picture

A lot of us still ignore a perceptive tools in the we hide away in the conforming compliant "it iz watz tatz gys sez be true by cracky!" cozy comfort of an ostrich hole we still pretend to have left behind. Us with angl'e names suffixed with an "er" or "wright" or "smith" need to recognize that those names are the names of the slave cast our patronages suffered. Like "Hooper", the barrel making caste. Or "Wheeler", the wheel-guy caste , or "Cartwright", the caste of the feudal cart and wagon mechanics. Love Yiddish names - there so - so unassuming, like "Cohen" is the title of a high priest. But all that changed - the economic pyramid was couped to invert reality, and instead of the base where the commons produces goods and services, the tip, now is the base. The tip is fraudulent extortion pseudo quant underlying "The Keynesian Principals of Ponzi". When CNBC first leased OUR bandwidth, we were all assigned to a more demeaning "Jefferson is Turning of In His Grave", yet efficiently generalized avant gard'e nouveau world order slave cast designation: "Consumers". Funny, the great big massive mob that makes and produce evrything in now just a mere consumer. Soulless retail whores that will tug a suit's limp ass zipper dragon for an iMeal! Makes ya proud to be an American!

Let us go back to the beginning of the decade. Diebold selects a proper puppet, a man child no less - a fly guy?) - wow REALLY? - his family's history with US owned assets is as bad as our bubbled face wizard of grandiose self delusion and carney barker extraordinariness scion, the mostest dearest of puss buckets, ole song bird.

Let's try to swim through the accumulated resin of the last decade. We should recall the "calls" from the K-Street's white shoe dandies fav slutz, the Dielbold Selectees' to privatize social security. Member? Of course you do. SS became an entitlement instead of a trust fund (WTF?). Well none were willing to risk a good gutting and it ended on the CSPAN cutting room floor. Last year the "Creamer", while scratching his tattered cloaca with the handle of a toilet plunger is all hot about privatizing the post service and hot picking private carriers like scabs dey be da scabs his asshole. FOX news was going crazy with it too. A hard sell - just like the hard sell segue lame streamed shilled when plan "A" being attempted. USPS is one of the few constitutionally ordained functions to assure the commons basic private protected communication. Right now, DoJ is telling UPS and Fed-Ex to open packages without a warrant.

What kind of investments are SS ans USPS portfolio managers/treasures allowed to make?

Both are limited to US Treasuries. Congress has borrowed (stolen) all the "cash" (2.6 Trillion) from the Social security fund, and replaced it with US Treasuries. The SS fund manager has a book full of 0% notes. 0 rate means no income (like a loan to a brother-in-law). And yous gotz to noze when those big lots from SS are hitting the board dey are being discounted to. The loss is not social security manager losses. The loss is the tributes loaned to the white shoe ponzi boys. SS treasurer takes em to the market and comes back with a bunch less than face - not even close. An den some zit twit zero wit CSPAN butt-plug spout "America, we have a problem with SS". It's a sure bet that any positions still earning income are probably being paid with, guess yet(?), more US Treasuries. So SS loaned out to congress almost a half trillion cash to congress in the last 18 months, and now has paper that will be discounted, fur sure, when it is converted. 

USPS has physical assets and market carried costs. USPS pays for gasoline like we do and we pay a lot despite a global oil glut, and [also] despite US refineries exporting more than half the gasoline cracked in the US. What dey want - want the wally world white shoes and their sperm buckets on CSPAN want really want is another hapless victim nation to sanction or do some "protecting from those who hate our freedom", or anything, to story up price.

But USPS can't hedge it's market carried costs - and it's treasurer also has to manages benefit. Why is USPS loosing money?

We are getting too comfy - we ain't challenging ourselves. We be acting all tribal like the dominion heretics that branded us "consumers". We need to go back to the ostrich hole we pretend we don't have and, as uncomfortable and distressing as it may be, plug "back in" in those perception widgets.

While on the dog trail with a neighbor chatting urs true asked, "Is the president was the leader of the free world?"

He replied "No", with the addendum, " ...but he is our leader"

In fairness - this guy has a couple of PHDs, But he be cajun - therefore - and so - his public position, like a lot of us, ain't necessarily the "real" position.

The president is not our leader. We are the leaders. We hired the president. We authorize him to be the uniformed and civil service boss. We authorize to to make appointments, to sign or veto congressional purchase orders. But nowhere in the "company policy" do we assign him our proxy or authorize him to lead us. The president is a public service employee fro chriss sakes

Wake up. Time is critical.

Oh BTW, the name for plan "B", an alternative to a vote to privatize more utilities managed by the commons, was described by another Neutered Twitted "Find the Quarter" master of ceremonies Kiddie Brothel Johnny as "Let'n it wither on the vine".

Is a Provisional Ruling Council more civil than old school, but "tried and true" rage filled storming-s of Bastille's episodes that fed our frenzied ancestral thirst ruts for king's blood any "veal" tasties luckless enough to be napping in the palatial nests of all previous era's Houses of the War Usury?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 23:22 | Link to Comment Prometheus418
Prometheus418's picture

Holy shit man, what language was that?

 

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 03:55 | Link to Comment John_Coltrane
John_Coltrane's picture

Which is why the Newman character on Seinfeld was so amusing. 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:20 | Link to Comment toys for tits
toys for tits's picture

Congress literally tied the postal service's figurative hands.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:51 | Link to Comment prains
prains's picture

Hey, don't worry just press the easy button

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:31 | Link to Comment Ignatius
Ignatius's picture

Get working people to 'hate-on' working people, that's what I'd do if I were part of the deep, dark corporate money pools.

Reform?  Fuck, everything needs reform.

Atleast with these guys I get a letter delivered, something useful....

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:44 | Link to Comment Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

LOL. No. Fuck the postal workers. Buncha welfare queens. Their labor is overpaid by about 1000%.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:10 | Link to Comment rayduh4life
rayduh4life's picture

Compared to who?  Politicians, Banksters, A-Rod, Pujohls, Paulson,Blankfein,Soros??????

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 19:48 | Link to Comment willwork4food
willwork4food's picture

Toten's upset cause he was hoping an upgrade to french fries from bathroom and garbage duty.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:09 | Link to Comment StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

Guess you've never worked for the Post Office(s).  There are lots of Drones there, as in useless non-worker bees.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 21:43 | Link to Comment orez65
orez65's picture

I don't want nor need any paper letters delivered to me.

Specially since I travel frequently and don't get my mail on time.

For you global warming fanatics:

Think about the carbon dioxide reduction from shutting down 260,000 postal service vehicles.

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 06:11 | Link to Comment Cadavre
Cadavre's picture

Think about the carbon dioxide reduction

In any 24 hour period, the emisssions from just the container ships traveling the world's oceans releases 5 times more VOC (emissions) than all road traffic in the US for the same period. The Global Warming Ponzi pitch was timed to the solar cycle. At solar min, when there are 0 solar flares, the sun radiates more heat. The flares are like vents. No flares, like an oven without a vent, and the sun can't shed heat - so more heat is radiated.

It was beautiful set up - a lot of people - the true believers - bought it - we subsidizeed GE to tune of 5 Billion dollars on top of the tax free 26 billion 2010 profits for corn squeezings that ate more fuel than it produced    - this year the arctic sea ice was fatter in January than any previous January on record. When it didn't fly Al Gore's daughter was kicked/divorced out of the Schmitt family - guess Al be tugging fat cats at his old "taliwaki taliwaki - juice juice juice" wet spot haunts (again)!

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 10:14 | Link to Comment FreeNewEnergy
FreeNewEnergy's picture

I think we'd save more CO2 if we stopped bussing students from one shitty school to another - a monstrous misuse of resources and literally no good comes from it.

You want better schools, better neighborhoods? Stop bussing the youth around and creating rivalries which otherwise wouldn't exist.

As others here have said, the USPS actually serves some useful purposes and they've been royally fucked by CONgress, UPS and FedEx.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:49 | Link to Comment tarsubil
tarsubil's picture

The post office is actually a duty that is mentioned in the Constitution. The problem is that the fucking retards in Washington, DC are fucking retards. Eliminating Saturday is a no brainer decision considering dropping volumes and the benefits to scheduling. And look at the "new" vehicles the postal service drives. They are based off an old Ford Explorer frame. That was pure genius upgrading to shitty SUVs for delivery of mail. The issue is that our government is simply so bloated and complicated and corrupt it couldn't run a lemonade stand.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:30 | Link to Comment dark pools of soros
dark pools of soros's picture

But they're good at banning lemonade stands

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 20:22 | Link to Comment tarsubil
tarsubil's picture

Now you know why. They are jealous of 6 year old entrepreneurs with more business acumen than the entire government combined.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 16:08 | Link to Comment A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

Let's call all government exactly what it is...Jobs programs for the otherwise unemployable. This includes, but is not limited to, CONgress. POTUS, S(r)OTUS, TOTUS, all the other OTUSes, and the alphabet soup of agencies.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:08 | Link to Comment Landrew
Landrew's picture

Another child, who do you think puts space craft in space? Who do you think built the most powerful camera in the WORLD? WE DID the U.S. Government! We have some of the best and brightest in the world in our National Labs! You sound like a Cock Brother Troll.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:23 | Link to Comment TheMeatTrapper
TheMeatTrapper's picture

The best and brightest work for private contractors that build shit for the government and get paid by taxpayer dollar. Amazing shit happens despite the government being involved - not because of it. 

As an IT consultant who has seen first hand how "government" workers actually work, compared to us in private enterprise, I can tell you from first hand experience that there is no comparison. 

As a private consultant, I attend continuing education seminars regularly to stay current. I do not get paid to do this - I pay to do this. Many times I have to attend such seminars after hours as to not interfere with my regular work. 

I also see government "workers" there. They are getting paid to attend, and get credits in their "careers" for attending, and they prefer to attend during business hours. 

They consider it part of their job to attend and expect to get paid to do it. The rest of us have to do it on our own and out of our own pocket; so spare me the bullshit about government workers being the best and brightest. They are the laziest and most entitlement minded. 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:59 | Link to Comment A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

If we free the slaves, who will pick the Cotton?

You just show your own lack of imagination, and presume this is the best we can do. Without government obstruction of innovation, through regulatory barriers and capital controls, Christopher Columbus would have been exploring Mars.

 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 21:51 | Link to Comment orez65
orez65's picture

Spacecraft in space: Boeing, Lockheed, Pratt & Whitney.

NASA is great for public relations but they do not design nor manufacture anything. I know, I've done work for them.

Most powerful camera: Kodak and other PRIVATE companies.

Military hardware and software: private companies.

Please stop your nonsense.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 23:02 | Link to Comment ManOfBliss
ManOfBliss's picture

Did you just say "we" did... as if "we" are the US government? Excuse me?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 23:51 | Link to Comment Prometheus418
Prometheus418's picture

 @Landrew

Sorry, bud- you didn't build that.

I know who puts spacecraft in space, and keeps those cameras cool.  I and my team, along with many others I've never met, do.  Not a one of us works for the government- we're subcontractors for the guys who do.  We get half-formed ideas and veiled threats from bureaucrats who want to keep their funding, and deliver private sector *ahem* "last-mile" engineering and manufacturing services.

It's a shit deal, and I'd rather not be a part of it- but that self-same government killed every other productive industry within driving distance with rediculous regulations, taxation and monetary debasement.  Defense and Space-program work are the only games left that can feed a family here.

Rest assured, I'm keeping notes- and what I help to put in the air, I can bring down.  Keep it out of our country, and it's all fun and games, but the minute a drone kills a kindegarten class, the real fight is going to begin- and it's not going to go to those whose fuckups have been patched up for decades by men who know the real score.

And don't pull any hypocritical noble shit out on me- I have a wife and kids to feed.  I might, maybe, be able to do that in a state of nature, but it's by no means a certain thing.  I'll only try if and when I am compelled to do so.  While it's still a better deal to deliver full literal compliance to TPTB (and if you know anything, you know the protest that entails) I'll grudgingly do so because I know the rest of you will shake your heads and cluck disapprovingly when it becomes too much for me to bear, and you read about the results in the "news."  If I had even half an inkling that resistance would lead to a revolt, it would be fait accompli.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:05 | Link to Comment Landrew
Landrew's picture

Spoken like a true child. I ship anywhere with USPS! Who do you think carries the last mile for many people of this country? That's right UPS,FEDX and the like USE USPS to ship that last mile! 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:20 | Link to Comment akak
akak's picture

I am loathe to defend a government monopoly in any manner whatsoever, but from a purely pragmatic view the USPS beats FedEx and UPS by a mile on small package shipping rates.  I have NEVER understood why those latter two services are so consistently high (i.e., outrageous) in their shipping rates.

Aside from their rates, UPS in particular is an abomination, and completely sucks donkey shlong when it comes to reliability and dependability.  I can give any number of sordid examples of their utter indifference and incompetence, having on several occasions had them lose or destroy both sent and (non)delivered packages.  It is typical for me to find during the spring thaw at least one UPS-delivered package that had been dumped, unannounced, into the snow somewhere within a 30 foot radius of my front door during the previous winter.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 21:55 | Link to Comment orez65
orez65's picture

USPS ships for less because they charge less than they spend.

That's why they are broke!!!!

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 21:54 | Link to Comment TheMeatTrapper
TheMeatTrapper's picture

In the past, when we were a fiscally sound, self reliant nation, many rural post offices were general stores, pharmacies or other centrally located private businesses. They handled the mail for a fee. The communities mail was delivered to them, and they held your mail until you came into town to pick it up. 

There is nothing in the Constitution that mandates that your mail must be delivered to your doorstep. 

I see nothing wrong with the mail being delivered to a central location in very remote areas and then the recipient getting off their fat, lazy ass and going into to town to get their mail. 

The Postal Service should not be required to go the last mile - the customer should. 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 23:56 | Link to Comment Prometheus418
Prometheus418's picture

That would be ok, too.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:07 | Link to Comment Louie the Dog
Louie the Dog's picture

failure of another entitlement program

Failure of another Affirmative Action scheme

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 11:55 | Link to Comment hivekiller
hivekiller's picture

If you think the USPS is bad, wait until you have to start paying FEDX or UPS to deliver your mail. USPS is failing because of the depreciating value of the dollar. Haven't you people learned anything???

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 13:55 | Link to Comment _ConanTheLibert...
_ConanTheLibertarian_'s picture

Billion dollar stamps?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:11 | Link to Comment wee-weed up
wee-weed up's picture

And the billion dollar stamp will no doubt carry a portrait of Mugabe on it...

Not Zimbabwe's... ours!

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:32 | Link to Comment Downtoolong
Downtoolong's picture

They'll have to remove stamps from the CPI calc then, like everything else that goes up faster than the number they want to report.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:00 | Link to Comment Tinky
Tinky's picture

Yes, but to be fair, their counter service is spectacularly efficient.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 22:09 | Link to Comment orez65
orez65's picture

Efficient??!!!

I don't go to the post office anymore because my blood boils when there.

Typical scenario: huge line of people waiting for service with two to three postal workers (?) at counter.

At random one of them disappears from counter.

Then another.

Taking breaks??

Then one will return to counter and BS's with customer.

Then disappears again.

Once you make it to the counter they are arrogant and incompetent.

And the post office is only open from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm.

They wouldn't want to burden their "workers" with shopping center hours!!!

Give me a break!!!!!!!

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:01 | Link to Comment ILikeBoats
ILikeBoats's picture

I have no love for the USPS, however my understanding was that:

"The requirement of the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act, Public Law 109-435 (P.L. 109-435) to prefund its retiree health benefit obligations, a requirement not shared by other federal agencies or private sector businesses" 

 

meant that a huge amount of money was hoovered out of the USPS over the last 10 years.  See this: http://www.examiner.com/article/a-brief-history-of-postal-service-reform... and note that the USPS was forced to give extra benefits to those with military service.  Pay attention to the part in this article labeled "Section 380" . 

In short, they took something that was "working" despite being bloated and figured out how to steal from it in order to pay off someone else (Wall Street? some other part of the gov't?) .

Rest assured, this was not "by accident" but this is about financial engineering and the deliberate creation of chaos.  My guess, they will crash the USPS and thus, checks and money orders will be less useful, and everyone will be using electronic means of payment instead, just because the alternatives will be worse.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:12 | Link to Comment Oldballplayer
Oldballplayer's picture

Congress is using the Postal service to keep the civil service pension funds solvent. Otherwise they would all go belly up.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:13 | Link to Comment DormRoom
DormRoom's picture

You are aboslutely right.

USPS owns a massive, and lucrative portfolio of real estate (downtown/main street properties), much of which was bought in the New Deal, to strengthen community involvement.  These properties, and beautiful public spaces belong to all Americans.. There is no doubt that a wolf pack of real estate moguls want to bring down the USPS to scoop up these real estate assets for pennies on the dollars.

 

Imagine a Starbuck at every USPS outlet.  In exchange of a space where one can find out neighbourly news you can get free wifi. #decline of America.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:16 | Link to Comment alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

Precisely correct!

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:27 | Link to Comment Tijuana Donkey Show
Tijuana Donkey Show's picture

Meh. You can't give away real estate in most places. Good idea though. 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:06 | Link to Comment Kim Jong-Il
Kim Jong-Il's picture

USPS owns a massive portfolio of blighted dreal estate (downtown/main street properties)

 

there fixed it forya

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 18:01 | Link to Comment A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

I always wondered why Public Librarys don't have espresso carts. Seems like a perfect match to me.

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 00:00 | Link to Comment Prometheus418
Prometheus418's picture

The pubilc library in St. Paul, MN I used to frequent had a Dunn Brothers coffee in the same building.

Personally, I thought it was brilliant.  I always liked checking out my books, then sitting down to read them with a coffee and bagel.  You couldn't take coffee into the library, but taking books into the coffee shop was a matter of only a few indoor steps.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:21 | Link to Comment smartstrike
smartstrike's picture

They also forbade USPS to compete against FedEX and UPS because that would be Communist. On the other hand private business such as Big Farma and Big Health Care exist as monopolies and hoover 18% of GDP each and every year.

So in the end USPS is bankrupt because they're required to fund pensions for their employees, on the other hand Big Farma and Heath Care Industry rake in trillions while bankrupting USA.

You can compete against USPS and send a parcel by FedEx, UPS or a courier but you can't use these services to legally ship LOWER PRICE drugs to USA from abroad. Ain't Private Capitalism great?

 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:40 | Link to Comment Urban Redneck
Urban Redneck's picture

It's not bankrupt because it has to fund its pension, that's PR bullshit, although because it has to invest its pension assets in USTs yielding ZIRP -- the pension fund is actually UNDERFUNDED, which those same PR whores conveniently neglect to disclose.

The USPS is bankrupt because they are over regulated and micromanaged from Washington D.C.

Their footprint and cost structure doesn't support limited products and long opening hours.  Cutting 1 day a week won't fix the problem- they would need remain on a 6 day schedule and migrate to to an A-B delivery for non-express mail just to stabilize.  The prohibitions on transport of certain items are idiotic- such as not participating in the booming firearms delivery business.  There are other revenue opportunities that could be realized with their large footprint and relatively unskilled labor force- but:

YOU NEED MANAGEMENT THAT KNOWS HOW TO TURN AROUND A STRUGGLING BUSINESS AND RUN PROFITABLE ONE, AND THEY WOULD NEED THE FREEDOM TO DO SO.

Neither the congress-critters nor anyone that Washington would actually install to run the USPS fits that bill.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 14:55 | Link to Comment TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

.

It's not bankrupt because it has to fund its pension, that's PR bullshit

From the report excerpt that Jim Quinn posted but either didn't read or understand:

The net loss of $1.3 billion for the first quarter of the year included $1.4 billion of expense accrued for the legally-mandated prefunding payment for retiree health benefits.

It's simple math.

YOU NEED MANAGEMENT THAT KNOWS HOW TO TURN AROUND A STRUGGLING BUSINESS AND RUN PROFITABLE ONE, AND THEY WOULD NEED THE FREEDOM TO DO SO.

A $100 million profit for a quarter sounds like a profitable business to me.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:11 | Link to Comment Urban Redneck
Urban Redneck's picture

Great, just eliminate pensions and everything is magically fixed indefinitely.  That's just the sort of intellect, professional experience, and strategic (wealth confiscating) vision that Barry has demonstrated he is looking for in his executive-level appointments.  Good luck with the application! Successfully running an actual business is just a bit more complicated than that.

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 15:37 | Link to Comment dark pools of soros
dark pools of soros's picture

How? Buy making us all deliver our own mail like self checkout counters?

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:26 | Link to Comment TheMeatTrapper
TheMeatTrapper's picture

How? Buy making us all deliver our own mail like self checkout counters?

 

No. By making working for the government the same as working for private enterprise. Eliminate the gold plated, guaranteed bennies for life. Make government workers fund their own 401K's and pay for healthcare insurance like the rest of us do. 

Sun, 04/14/2013 - 19:19 | Link to Comment dark pools of soros
dark pools of soros's picture

fuck 401ks!!!  and why don't you look at it the other way and wonder why you are getting screwed?   So one side fights to keep their benefits, and usually at a cost to salary, while another either goes for more salary and forgoes benefits or worse lose out on both and you sit here and say everyone should be the same

fuck u commie!!

 

Sat, 04/13/2013 - 17:41 | Link to Comment Urban Redneck
Urban Redneck's picture

Without using a bunch of words that are likely to show up on a bullshit bingo card-- the USPS has exactly TWO things going for it 1) a vast branch network (and efficient hub and spoke transportation system) and 2) a vast army of employees who visit basically every address in the US on regular basis.  So you let the USPS sell services (other than mail delivery) to businesses that would otherwise have to pay to build and maintain their own smaller or localized versions of the same.  THERE ARE various established models and known opportunities- including poaching savers from the TBTF banks, offering customer service for utilities such as telephone, electric, and gas while simultaneously replacing some of those firms bottom tier field personnel- the utilities still pay fortunes for a smaller army of "meter readers". 

There isn't a one-size fits all solution for every branch, the mixture of goods and services offered (above a certain baseline) would vary between urban and rural and from place to place.  The common trait being local management looking at the local community and saying who owns a ton of local offices or vehicles and where can we beat them or help them?

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