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Who Is the Most Postal-Friendly Presidential Candidate, and Why Should I Care?

Updated on September 27, 2015
Mel Carriere profile image

Although many are mystified by his mysterious moniker, Mel Carriere is a San Diego mailman who writes about the mail, among other things.

Source

The Triumph of Snail Mail

Whether you work for the Post Office or not a strong, reliable, efficient, constitutionally-guaranteed Postal Service is important for you, even though you don't realize it yet. Whether you live on the remote rural reaches outside a dusty New Mexico one horse town, where mail delivery is the umbilical cord with the outside world; or on the mean streets of a crowded urban district, getting your checks, medicine and automobile tags via the U.S. mail is as or more important than ever. Computer hackers are becoming disturbingly efficient at breaking into the databases of major banks, government agencies, and big chain department stores, so your trembling hand now hesitates on that mouse button when making online financial transactions. As hackers run amok, good old-fashioned snail mail is looking better than it has for a while; some states even requiring it for tax returns. All the same, postal predators lurk in the turbid waters, waiting for an opportunity to pounce upon and dismember America's favorite and most trusted government institution, meaning that your last solid connection to the outside world is in peril.

With online hackers easily cracking your passwords and stealing your credit card numbers, good old fashioned snail mail is increasingly viable.
With online hackers easily cracking your passwords and stealing your credit card numbers, good old fashioned snail mail is increasingly viable. | Source

Why Should I Care?

Before I dig into the real meat of what presidential candidates have to say about the Post Office, - and believe me, it's not much and pretty much confined to one candidate; I need to explain why the institution matters. After all, the Postal Service is antiquated old jalopy anyway, something that any day now is going to go the way of the street corner pay phone and the horse drawn milk cart.

I remember a day about 22 years ago when I was approached by a self-proclaimed Postal Nostradamus prognosticating the institution's imminent end. I was hurriedly jamming mail into a set of centralized delivery boxes as this postal prognosticator did his best to brighten my day by explaining why the Postal Service would be defunct in 5 years or so; rendered completely obsolete by computer technology. That was late 1993 or early 1994 and guess what, we're still around! Although there have been some organized, dedicated, though always underhanded efforts to dismantle our institution, we continue to exist because the American people demand a strong Postal Service from their elected officials.

I think this is true because, for one, America is still largely a rural nation, composed of densely populated pockets surround by massive, comparatively empty swaths of "flyover" states. Don't get me wrong, there are plenty of folks living out there in "flyoverdom," but they are surrounded by an awful lot of land and can't crank up the jalopy to drive 20, 30 or 40 miles into town every day to pick up their mail. Their lives are adjusted to free mail delivery, and they realize that private enterprise just isn't going to haul Grandpa's heart pills 30 miles out to the ranch without charging him a hefty premium.

By examining the present rates of private mailers, we can get a taste of what Grandpa and your future expenses will be if the supply and demand principles of Economics 101 are left alone to govern our mailing needs. This is a complicated process, because whereas Postal Service rates are the same no matter where an article is mailed, the rates of the other major mailers change based on distance. So for the sake of argument I will mail some birthday goodies to my Mom in Colorado, a place roughly halfway across the country, and see how shipping rates vary from company to company.


Happy Birthday Mom! Rates Comparison - USPS, UPS and FedEx, San Diego to Northern Colorado

Item
UPS
FedEx
USPS
Standard One Ounce or Less Greeting Card
Not Available
Not Available
.49
5 x 8 x 2 one pound - 3 days
16.98
11.68
5.95
11 x 9 x 6 five pounds - 3 days
24.19
38.10
12.65
24 x 12 x 3 ten pounds - 3 days
33.32
48.30
17.90
Next Day Letter Legal Size
37.17
38.15
19.99

But Mel! - you declare, and I can smell the smoke from my rattling computer hard drive as it struggles to process your indignation; the Postal Service can charge these low rates because it is taxpayer subsidized. It delights me to burst your bubble by revealing the truth that the Postal Service doesn't take any taxpayer money, except to fund the mailing of free reading material for the blind. In response to this common misconception, and also in the interest of shameless self promotion, I direct you to an article I wrote on this topic some time ago.

Postal competitors also acknowledge that the Postal Service can do their job more efficiently and cost effectively, much to the chagrin of anti-postal die hards everywhere. Every day both UPS and Fed Ex drop a large shipment of parcels on our Postal back dock; mostly lonely little orphaned packages that don't have a big enough price tag to merit a ride in the big brown truck. Unfortunately, the recipients of these orphaned parcels still get charged UPS and Fed Ex prices, while laboring under the illusion they are getting better service than the "crappy" Post Office because they paid more. Many times while taking one of our competitor's packages to a door I have been greeted by a rather surly customer who says "Wait a minute, I ordered that UPS." I gave up a long time ago trying to expound upon the concept of the drop shipment to these people, an explanation that is typically reacted to with confused, irritated, suspicious looks by that anti-Postal die hard who paid extra, then got screwed. The point I am trying to make is that in a world without a Post Office there are going to be plenty of these lonely little parcels floating around, and you can bet that UPS, FedEx and their ilk are going to charge a premium to make these little guys viable for the bottom line.

It's really a lot easier than Eeny, meeny. miny moe.  Side by side, USPS gives the biggest bang for the delivery buck.
It's really a lot easier than Eeny, meeny. miny moe. Side by side, USPS gives the biggest bang for the delivery buck. | Source

Which Candidates Deliver?

So which Presidential candidates are going to take a strong stand to save your embattled Postal Service from its greedy competitors so that you, the ordinary working American will be able to use the mail without taking out a mortgage? The answer, unfortunately, is not many. Postal issues don't seem to be a burning topic by those standing on the Presidential Candidate soapbox. As a matter of fact there is only one candidate that is talking about the Postal Service at all, and I'll reserve a special place for him at the end. Avoiding postal issues seems to be a bipartisan effort; mainstream Republican and Democrats alike skirting around the subject in equal measure, the same way both major parties hem and haw about the specifics of all essential economic issues.

Republican candidates are typically not postal friendly.  Pictured is Darrell Issa, former chairman of the House Oversight Committee, who gave nightmares to postal employees and postal dependent Americans for years.
Republican candidates are typically not postal friendly. Pictured is Darrell Issa, former chairman of the House Oversight Committee, who gave nightmares to postal employees and postal dependent Americans for years. | Source

Pachyderm Postal Pranksters

Researching this hub was a frustrating endeavor. Either my search engine skills are sorely wanting, or the major parties candidates simply have no opinion about the Postal Service. Perhaps they are refraining from saying anything about the topic at all so when it comes time to save America's most trusted public institution they can't be accused of breaking any campaign promises. No matter how I configured the search engine query I came up empty, except once.

On the Republican side, the normally highly opinionated Donald Trump, he of the fluffy toupee, was mum on the subject. The always combative Scott Walker had nothing to say out of his 3.5 million search results. I can't say I scrolled all the way down to the bottom of that almost infinite list, but after futilely combing through a few pages it became obvious there wasn't any use fishing in that empty hole. Deez Nuts was similarly close-mouthed. Jeb Bush, he of a mighty, storied political dynasty returned similar silence. His brother George signed the disastrous PAEA act of 2006 that still looms heavily over the sagging bottom line of the organization, but is Jeb his brother's keeper? I think it's only fair to say the jury is still out on Jeb from a Postal perspective. If past Republican performance indicates future results, however, I predict a strong alliance between slash and burn postal officials and whatever ample GOP ass warms up the oval office chair.

Hilary Clinton, the self appointed Queen of the American political scene, looks on with surprise as her wishy-washy responses to questions and non-specific campaign platforms cause her poll numbers to plummet.
Hilary Clinton, the self appointed Queen of the American political scene, looks on with surprise as her wishy-washy responses to questions and non-specific campaign platforms cause her poll numbers to plummet. | Source

The Jackass Perspective

Mainstream Democrat candidates aren't any better than their Republican counterparts at supporting a strong Postal Service. Of course the Dems attend the Postal Union rallies and say all the right things behind the closed doors of the convention hall, but become mysteriously mum about repeating these same guarantees in public. When faced with the prospect of feathering the campaign nest with corporate money, they turn decidedly amnesiac about the assurances they made while pressing the flesh with the Postal rank and file.

One need look no further than the current Chief Executive for a textbook example of Postal backstabbing. President Barack Obama enjoyed overwhelming support from Postal Employees across America in both the 2008 and 2012 elections, but has not reciprocated with anything resembling love. He has, in fact, arrogantly thumbed his nose at those who voted for him by supporting the Postmaster's plan to end Saturday delivery. Obama may wrap himself up in the revolutionary mantle of "hope and change," but ultimately he is part and parcel of the rough and tumble Chicago wing of the Democratic Party, the same gang of thugs who beat up protesters at the 1968 Democratic National Convention. Along with the Postal Service, he has sold out American Workers in general with his drive to enact the TPP trade agreement.

This doesn't surprise me, and I won't be shocked if his party-picked successor, Hilary Clinton, takes a similar blind eye to Postal issues. The problem is that Americans don't realize their mail matters until their checks or medicine are significantly delayed because of plant and post office closures. For this reason candidates like Clinton find your mailbox easy to ignore.

Why are aspiring Democratic and Republican candidates both so quiet about the Postal Service? I believe it is because they are hedging their bets. With one hand they will gladly take campaign money from Postal Unions, but the other hand is afraid to support the little people because they can't risk losing funds from big corporate backers who yearn to dismantle the USPS and then greedily pick up the pieces for a quick profit.

Even when wearing thick birth control glasses, Bernie is a badass.
Even when wearing thick birth control glasses, Bernie is a badass. | Source

Enter Bernie

In retrospect, I think I should have entitled this article "Who Is the Only Postal-Friendly Presidential Candidate?". When I started this project, however, I really expected to find more Presidential Postal pals. Instead I discovered that most of the potentially Postal friendly candidates I came across were of the Simon Peter type, feigning plausible deniability as the cock crows on a dismal dawn.

Enter Bernie Sanders, the single Presidential candidate responsible for saving this article from the cyber trash bin for lack of material. Bernie is the only one on the ballot who desires to put America's Postal Service on a sound footing for decades to come. Whereas with the other candidates finding information was like trying to squeeze drops from a dry sponge, when I typed the words "Bernie" into my Postal Search engine I was slammed by a tsunami. I will share some of these search results with you.

In a Huffington Post article of March, 2014, Bernie said "The U.S. Postal Service is one of our most popular and important government agencies. It provides universal service six days a week to every corner of America, no matter how small or remote. It supports millions of jobs in virtually every other sector of our economy." He tells you right there why you should care, much better than I did, then eloquently adds "Whether you are a low-income elderly woman living at the end of a dirt road in Vermont or a wealthy CEO living on Park Avenue, you get your mail six days a week. And you pay for this service at a cost far less than anywhere else in the industrialized world."

Bernie continues "Yet the Postal Service is under constant and vicious attack. Why? The answer is simple. There are very powerful and wealthy special interests who want to privatize or dismember virtually every function that government now performs, whether it is Social Security, Medicare, public education or the Postal Service. They see an opportunity for Wall Street and corporate America to make billions in profits out of these services, and couldn't care less how privatization or a degradation of services affects ordinary Americans."


What then is the answer, according to Bernie? It starts with ending the 5.5 billion dollar annual retirement prefunding mandated by the 2006 Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act (PAEA), which is responsible for all the financial losses recorded by the Postal Service since 2006. In addition, Bernie insists that "...the Postal Service should have the flexibility to provide new consumer products and services--a flexibility that was banned by Congress in 2006." He cites an Inspector general report that suggests "...that almost $9 billion a year could be generated by providing financial services. At a time when more than 80 million lower-income Americans have no bank accounts or are forced to rely on rip-off check-cashing storefronts and payday lenders, these kinds of financial services would be of huge social benefit."


Bernie Sanders is not just blowing smoke to win votes. He has been an active advocate of the Postal Service during his tenure in Congress. As a Senator from Vermont he has introduced bills to help alleviate the unfair financial burdens foisted on the institution by anti-postal political raiders. He has fought against cuts in the quality of mail service. He has denounced the crippling recent practices of Postal Executives, saying that they caused “disaster that is negatively impacting Americans all over this country when it shuttered more than 140 mail-sorting plants and slowed delivery times to cut costs." At every step he has been a passionate advocate for the Postal Service, and for working Americans in general.


Of course, many will try to refute Bernie's support for causes important to working men and women by pinning the ugly, disagreeable "socialist" tag on him, not realizing that in essence all American politicians are socialists, whether they belong to the left or the right wing of the political spectrum. Would be office holders disagree only on who receives the benefits of the people's largess. Should the spouses and children of veterans killed in action receive compensation along with giving student loan forgiveness to starving graduates; or should we hand over billions in taxpayer money to corporate run banks and auto makers who use it to pay out multi-million dollar golden parachutes to failed executives? To speak for Americans in general, as long as I am the guy or gal receiving government benefits like Social Security and Medicare it's not socialism. It only qualifies as the insidious, infectious, hideously deforming, god cursed disease of socialism if my neighbors are the ones picking up free money from the mailbox.

Bernie just doesn't talk the talk, he walks the walk, often on picket lines in support of workers rights.
Bernie just doesn't talk the talk, he walks the walk, often on picket lines in support of workers rights. | Source

What Do You Expect in a Postal-friendly Politician?

Mainstream GOP and Democratic Party politicians have a talent of skirting real meat and potato issues by distracting the electorate with cosmetic smokescreens that are mere symptoms of the true underlying disease, which is that the working man in America is poor and getting poorer every day. "Bring down the flags!" they shout, and "defund the abortion clinics!" While these are worthwhile causes for debate, the root behind racial tension and unwanted pregnancies is economics - pure and simple. Level the playing field, provide opportunities for a living wage to everybody, and the side issues will blow away in the wind like the smoke that they are.

The viability of the Postal Service may seem like a side issue, but it has important implications that Americans will only realize when the organization no longer exists. Whereas Hilary and Jeb hem and haw and refuse to give a definitive answer about anything, postal or non postal, Bernie Sanders has been carrying signs and shouting out straight answers from the rooftops. He won't abandon your Aunt Maggie's rusty metal mailbox dangling from a barbed wire fence on a rutted Montana road, or your starving student son's earwig-infested receptacle in a rough ghetto neighborhood where only letter carriers don't fear to tread. Every American should continue to receive letters and packages without the hefty surcharges that the stockholders of corporate delivery giants demand. Should your Post Office continue to be a valuable service to the many, or the privatized profit maker of the privileged few? The song says "...you don't know what you've got til its gone," so pick a candidate that won't leave you singing woeful songs of regret.

Is the Postal Service Important to You?

See results

Bernie Speaks

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    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 22 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Just one more reason why I'm voting for Sanders. Thanks for an impartial and well-researched article. Well done!

    • profile image

      Old Poolman 22 months ago

      As always, a well written and researched hub. I always enjoy reading your work because I learn a few things every time.

      I would imagine our friendly lobbyists have much to do with politicians trying to eliminate the USPS. The green grease they put in the hands of greedy politicians does much to influence their votes.

      I don't know much about Sanders, but the more I think about some of what he is saying the more I like him.

      Thanks for sharing Mel.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      I am glad you used the word impartial Bill because one thing I try not to do is chain myself to dogma. Let's give Bernie a shot, we need something different. Thanks for reading!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Thanks Mike I am always happy to share the little I can squeeze out of the Internet with my good HP friends. I appreciate you dropping in!

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      You're mistaken about a constitutionally-guaranteed postal service. The document says Congress can do that: it doesn't say they have to do that.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      The Constitution doesn't necessarily say we have a right to bear arms outside of a well regulated militia either, nicomp, but it is traditionally interpreted that way. The founding Fathers obviously recognized the importance of unimpeded communication enough to include it and its underlying principle in the document. The point is we can't be slaves to the letter of the law, but the spirit. Thanks so much for reading.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 22 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Communication is our finest weapon against tyranny. Communication through writing is the epitome. Long live the Postal Service.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Low cost communication is indeed the only defense the masses have against those who would enslave us, Eric. Thanks for dropping by on a fine San Diego Sunday.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 22 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Go Bernie! it's great to hear about some other presidential candidates....much more plausible than Donald Trump. Interesting hub Mel.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      If Donald Trump is the best the Republicans have, and he appears to be, then Bernie should be a shoo in. Somehow I rhink Bernie and Donald are going to be derailed by their own parties, since they are not part of the old guard mainstream. Interesting you are hearing about the Trump circus down under Jodah. Thanks for reading!

    • Dana Tate profile image

      Dana Tate 22 months ago from LOS ANGELES

      I had been hearing for years they were trying to do away with many of the postal services by making us do it online such as ordering stamps and email. I for one do not trust our computers that much. I am the one you described who's fingers are shaking as they order things online. I also say "long live the postal service!"

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Dana. Yes thieves break into mailboxes but they have to do a lot of work with little return on investment. On the other hand, a good hacker can get access to millions of credit card numbers in an instant. Thanks for being afraid to use your computer and for using the mail instead!

    • profile image

      Old Poolman 22 months ago

      You are the expert on this subject Mel, but my guess would be we probably have the best mail delivery system in the world. Please correct me if I am wrong.

    • ladyguitarpicker profile image

      stella vadakin 22 months ago from 3460NW 50 St Bell, Fl32619

      This is a great article, and full of useful information. What can they think of to ruin next?

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      I think that you are absolutely right Mike and we need to keep it that way.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      As the saying I learned in the Navy goes Stella, if it ain't broke don't fix it. I wonder if the edit bot will fix my bad grammar. Thanks for reading!

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      USA Today headline, Nov 5, 2012:

      "Post office reports record loss of $15.9B for year"

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 22 months ago from Central Florida

      I'm glad you found Bernie's stand on postal services. I'm a big Bernie believer. He's for the people and services that they need, and can't be bought by the billionaires.

      nicomp (comment above) - the postal service is a service, not a profit making company. Government needs to keep it strong.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      2012 was a bad year because of the economy nicomp. We would be back in the black now except for the disastrous effects of the PAEA, which your hero, that towering intellect George W Bush signed. Thanks again.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Virginia for helping me out with the trolls under the bridge. Yes we are a service, but we take pride in not taking handouts. We don't stand on the Capitol steps with our little tin cup. Thanks for reading!

    • profile image

      Old Poolman 22 months ago

      If people think shipping charges are high now, just eliminate the USPS from the competition and the rates will soar. And that is exactly what the lobbyists are trying to accomplish. Get rid of the USPS and the private shipping companies are free to charge whatever they want and we will pay that price. In case anyone is wondering, lobbyists don't work for free and bribes take big money. Who would you guess is putting up the money to get ride of the USPS?

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      "nicomp (comment above) - the postal service is a service, not a profit making company. Government needs to keep it strong."

      You debunked your previous debunking. The USPS obviously runs on taxpayer money.

    • Christy Kirwan profile image

      Christy Kirwan 22 months ago from San Francisco

      What a great article, Mel! It's surprising that so many candidates refuse to take a stance on an important institution like the USPS. Very informative.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      It is a service nicomp, but it hasnt been funded by the taxpayers since the early 1970s.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Christy. Big money doesn't want to see us succeed because heaven forbid a public run company that doesn't fleece its customers be successful. Cteates a bad precedent.

    • Rochelle Frank profile image

      Rochelle Frank 22 months ago from California Gold Country

      One thing I really like about the USPS is the flat rate priority shipping. My husband has a small business where he ships small heavy products all over the country. This service makes it easy.

      The other brilliant idea is the 'forever' stamp, so we don't have to keep updating postage with 1c and 2c additions to envelopes.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      Mel, you are completely contradicting yourself. In your "Postal Myths Debunked" article you assert that the USPS is not taxpayer-funded. In this article you say it's been funded by taxpayers since the early 1970's.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 22 months ago from Queensland Australia

      Hi again Mel. Australia Post has also posted record losses over the last few years and have been trying to find ways to turn that around. They find that less people are sending letter now due to Internet and email so they have put up the cost of the basic stamps. Also reducing mail delivery to three days per week outside of major cities, trying to get people to set up electronic mailboxes and do more transactions online etc. The Government considered privatizing but the people always vote against that. I agree it is an essential service and needs protecting. Currently our dollar is so low that it is impossible to purchase anything from the USA as the postage is usually more than the cost of the item.

    • kalinin1158 profile image

      Lana ZK 22 months ago from California

      Man, can Bernie be any cooler? I had no idea he's an advocate of the Postal Service. Yet another way he stands out from the other candidates in a positive way. Great hub!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Go read the above paragraph again nicomp, and carefully this time. Dont just skim read, I know you are better than that. You saw the words taxpayer subsidized in bold face, but it is not what I said at all. Yes I apologize for this being long and somewhat challenging

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Mike. It is definitely an organized and well funded effort.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Yes Rochelle those were great ideas, nothing this current administration of flunkies could have thought of, but they continue to pay dividends years after the last competent postmaster left. Thanks for reading!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      John, In England, Canada and other countries we are seeing the grim reality of what happens when Postal services are privatized. It is not good for commerce because who can afford to ship? Thanks for the return visit.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Svetlana Bernie could not be cooler, even with sexier glasses. The thing I like about the Bern is that he has a plan for everything, he's not just running because he thinks it is his turn or we are "ready" for him. Thanks for reading!

    • profile image

      Cera Jane 22 months ago

      Great read as always!

      I was pretty entertained by comments on this one too. Especially, the nincompoop using Nicomp as pseudonym.

      Bravo!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Cera. Nicomp is a harmless troll that makes his rounds here then goes and hides beneath his bridge. All bark, no bite. I carry troll spray in my satchel to keep him back. If you read his stuff he is actually a clever fellow, though it pains me to say it. I appreciate you dropping in!

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      "... Especially, the nincompoop using Nicomp as pseudonym."

      Never heard that before.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      "...Nicomp is a harmless troll that makes his rounds here then goes and hides beneath his bridge. All bark, no bite"

      I'm always happy to point out your contradictions. When the name-calling begins, I know I'm right.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      But I compliimented you in the same paragraph, nicomp, though in a sort of underhanded way. I don't think you have ever denied your trolldom. Maybe it was the word harmless that irked you.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      I'm not irked at all. I am distressed by the lack of original thinking.

    • kalinin1158 profile image

      Lana ZK 22 months ago from California

      Mel, I admire your patience and lighthearted humor when responding to troll-like behavior. You even followed the guy! You are clearly a better (hu)man than I am :)

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      kalinin1158 -- thanks, sometimes it gets tiresome but I keep trying.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Freedim Freedom of speech is important Svetlana. We shouldnt supress anybody, either the trolls or the billy goats gruff. I think I spelled supress wrong. I'm going to get hammered for that too.

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 22 months ago from Oklahoma

      Wonderful analysis. The USPS is very important to all of our day to day lives, whether we realize it or not.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      Ironic, it is, that the massive amounts of pollution generated to deliver us junk mail and the overwhelming amount of third-class and bulk-rate paper that ends up choking landfills have become irrelevant to preserving yet another outdated government giveaway. As long as union employees have jobs, I guess.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 22 months ago from Stillwater, OK

      Undeniably true, Mel. And you can bet that I agree with what you'e said, because I was once a part of the organization as a casual employee. We worked our butts off for a lot less, but we sure knew everything that was going on in the organization.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Usually a right-winger never met a landfill he didn't like, nicomp, so I'm surprised and delighted by your sudden environmental activism. Belueve me, if we're not around someone else will be clogging the landfills, and at a much higher price. Thanks for reading. Solidarity in mother earth and all that.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      Intetsting argument, "it'd someone else polluting if it wasnt us."

      A good argumemt for nuclear power, I think!

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Larry Rankin sorry to neglect your comment, I was busy head butting trolls off my bridge. The USPS still is very important to a whole lot of people, even though nicomp has called it an ""outdated government giveaway." I get thanks and smiles all day from people who still appreciate, and still rely upon the giveaway, even though it is not a giveaway at all. Thanks for reading!

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 22 months ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Overwhelming comments! You certainly went all out here.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      It's outdated because we have the Interweb and it's a giveaway because it's billions in debt. I didn't say no one liked it. I didn't say it isn't important. I smile at my mailman and I thank my mailman regularly. Thanking a service provider doesn't make that service necessary.

      All you need do is Google "usps bailout" to learn how bad the debt is.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Nobody has bailed out the Postal Service nicomp. Google the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act, signed into law by your comrade in arms George W Bush, to find out why we are in debt. It is completely a paper debt enacted by postal-raiding legislators to suck billiins out of our coffers for their pork projects. Our operations are still in the black and we havent taken a penny from the taxpayers. Thanks for thanking your mailman though.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
      Author

      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Thank you DDE. When the comments are better than the actual article that says something about the writer, and I'm not sure it is something good. Thank you for reading.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      " Our operations are still in the black and we havent taken a penny from the taxpayers."

      Completely false, bailouts have been regular and significant. However, don't let facts get in the way of your opinions.

      Note that the USPS lauds the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act on their web site. It's the union that opposed it.

      What is your affiliation with APWU?

    • Mel Carriere profile image
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      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Where are you getting your information, I would like to ask? Cite me some references, and don't let your opinions get in the way of the facts. I am not in the APWU. I am a member of the NALC, the National Association of Letter Carriers.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
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      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Perhaps the articles you refer to speak of imminent Postal bailouts discussed in the Senate because of losses caused by the PAEA, but none of those were approved.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      These articles spell out the ongoing problems and also prove that the USPS is a government institution...

      From the right, last year:

      http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/03/20/postal-...

      ... and from the left, 6 years ago:

      http://www.politico.com/story/2009/09/a-postal-ser...

    • Mel Carriere profile image
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      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Both slanted news sources, but I will review them.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
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      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      As I thought, no word in either article about mythical bailout money changing hands. Just one biased officials cry wolf supposition that the Postal Service is 100 billion in debt, which is not true, and a report about a proposed temporary suspension of payment to a pension account that is already 32 billion overfunded. The so-called debt is all due to the PAEA but you don't adress that, perhaps you are afraid to go into places where you might find information contrary to your biased world view. Nonetheless I welcome and encourage your continued comments, it gets me more of those coveted google pennies you write about.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 22 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thank you very much for creating this article, Mel. I've been reading about the US election but know so little about American politics that it's been hard for me to assess the value of what I've read. It was interesting to read that Bernie Sanders is the only candidate who supports the Postal Service because he's the one that I've been most impressed with so far.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
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      Mel Carriere 22 months ago from San Diego California

      Bernie is the most honest candidate out there Linda, and that's why he just tells it like it is. I think we could learn a thing or two if Bernie moves us in the direction of Canada, like how not to get involved in endless foreign wars. Thanks for reading!

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 22 months ago from Ohio, USA

      Mel, let's work backwards: give me a new source that you don't think is 'slanted' and I will use that.

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 21 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Mel

      When I read things like this it makes me realize just how 'different' New Zealand is!

      Our postal service also struggles with conventional mail deliveries but 30 years ago it was allowed to set up courier businesses to 'take on' the big boys on a level playing field. They still have the Lions share of that market!

      Twelve years ago the government got the message that Kiwis don't like that all our Banks are foriegn owned so the Postal service was asked to set up a New Zealand bank! They now have about 20% of the housing market and turn about half a billion (US) in profit a year!

      Any politician tells you it can't be done tell them "B### S### take a look at New Zealand and Kiwibank!"

      Lawrence

    • Mel Carriere profile image
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      Mel Carriere 21 months ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Lawrence. Bernie Sanders has also proposed postal banking, and if it works in New Zealand why not here? I appreciate you dropping in.

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 21 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      I heard on the radio this morning about the Democrats presidential debate you just had, apparently Hillary and Bernie were the only ones making sense!

      Bernie may seem extreme socialist in the USA but everywhere else he's 'middle of the road'

      Have a great week and may the best win!

      Lawrence

    • Mel Carriere profile image
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      Mel Carriere 21 months ago from San Diego California

      Socialism is a dirty word here Lawrence in the land of wild west rugged individualism. But the big corporations are oksy with the concept as long as they are getting billions in bailout money from the taxpayers, which of course they don't call socialism. Thanks again.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 21 months ago from Ohio, USA

      Ironic, it is, that the USPS gets bailed out regularly and people applaud but Exxon gets a tax break and the same people are bitter.

      I think we should have postal banking and postal dentistry and postal lawn care services. And postal hair cutting and postal anti-virus. The lines at my local post office are not long enough already.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
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      Mel Carriere 21 months ago from San Diego California

      You still haven't proven the Post Office gets bailed out nicomp. That's just an assumption you would like to believe because it fits your agenda. The fact is it does not. Hasnt been on the government dole since the early 70s. Exxon, on the other hand, carries out the ecosystem destruction you accuse the Postal Service of. Thanks for dropping by.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 21 months ago from Ohio, USA

      You ignored my request for your acceptable list of sources, Mel. I gave you authoritative references from both ends of the political spectrum clearly documenting the abysmal financial condition of our USPS: you poo-pooed both of them, I asked you for acceptable sources, you did not respond.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
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      Mel Carriere 21 months ago from San Diego California

      Well yes, I read your links and they did give some partisan, paid off Congressman's highly exaggerated view of the Postal Service's financial woes, but not a single word about bailout other than supposition deliberately designed as a scare tactic. But to date it has not happened and probably won't, because contrary to the doomsayers' predictions we are achieving operating profits again. People trust us and people use us because we don't gouge them.

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 21 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      I just read the articles you sent and its interesting that fox news does say they are running deficits but no where does it say the GOT the bailout!

      I googled the situation and the stuff I got back was that it's the unions wanting to fix the problem and telling the state that the bailout would only work as part of a wider re-vamp to return the USPS to profitability!

      From what I read of Mel's hub only Bernie is willing to even address the issue and thats what he's pointing out!

      Got to be honset as Trump being a pretty good businessman I thought he'd be 'all over' this but even he's got it in the "too hard" basket!

      Lawrence

    • Mel Carriere profile image
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      Mel Carriere 21 months ago from San Diego California

      Thank you Lawrence, that's pretty much what I got out of it too. Of course everything you read on line is slanted to one degree or another, but those links quoted people with a definite postal destroying agenda in mine.

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 21 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Mel

      Glad I could help.

      Lawrence

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 21 months ago from Ohio, USA

      You continue to ignore my requests for your list of acceptable sources.

      I provided documentation from both sides of the aisle: the USPS is a money loser and requires government welfare on a consistent basis. You rejected the articles based on the political leanings of the sources.

      Feel free to honor my request if you truly want to continue this debate. Otherwise you show yourself to be a shill for Big Union.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
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      Mel Carriere 21 months ago from San Diego California

      Well I confess I am a shill for Big Union. Uniins have done more to improve living standards for American families than your trickle down friends ever did. You seem to be a shill for other interests, and have yet to provide proof that this so called welfare bailout has taken place.

    • nicomp profile image

      nicomp really 21 months ago from Ohio, USA

      You continue to ignore my requests for your list of authoritative sources. Once you provide that list I will produce evidence that your USPS survives only due to government welfare and protective legislation.

      Until you do so I can only assert what I know to be true. I am happy to go back-and-forth with you as long as you like.

      This is my fourth request.

      I provided authoritative references from (supposedly) left-leaning and right-leaning news organizations -- you rejected those citations out of hand. As a courtesy to you I will use whatever sources you care to provide. Your move.

    • Mel Carriere profile image
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      Mel Carriere 21 months ago from San Diego California

      I didn't reject them out of hand. As Ive repeated to the point of tediousness now, I read them both and they proved nothing. The burden of proof is on you. Prove this mythologogy of a taxpayer bailout you are spewing as if I'm supposed to believe it just because you are smart and wonderful nicomp.

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 21 months ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Nicomp

      Read your own stuff again! The 'bailout' you talk about hasn't happened! To me it sounds like what's been happening is they've been borrowing money from the Banks against their assets!

      As for reform, unlike private companies can just make the change they need and don't even need shareholder consent government departments often have to get 'permission' from the politicians first! That permission hasn't bern forthcoming.

      By the way I'm not a union man either but Mel is right in what he says about them!

      Lawrence

      (Sorry for butting in Mel)

    • Mel Carriere profile image
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      Mel Carriere 21 months ago from San Diego California

      Perfectly fine Lawrence. Butt in any time. I appreciate your, and frankly everybody's contribution here.

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