Speak Out: United States Postal Service question?

Posted by swampeastmissouri on Sat, Sep 3, 2011, at 12:00 PM:

The USPO has been on the decline for years now. They got to independent. How will they be saved that is a good question, the USPO is just like the rest of the system it got overwhelmed with additional population and did not keep up with the demand people were calling for. In 1990 we had 240 million people today according to the U.S. Census Bureau we have nearly 312 million people right here in the United States that is a huge increase over a twenty year period, our entire system is shorting out like a broken circuit breaker and we are going to have to re-adjust to the 21st century soon.

Replies (28)

  • "it got overwhelmed with additional population and did not keep up with the demand people were calling for."

    I am sorry but I do not understand your point. What was the demand that went unmet?

    As your posting stated, there has been an increase in population but I understand that the amount of first class mail has decreased.

    -- Posted by Robert* on Sat, Sep 3, 2011, at 6:36 PM
  • USPS demise can in large part be a result of fax, e-mail, and other modern technology, as well as the more efficiently run delivery services such as UPS, Fed Ex, DLS, etc.

    USPS is not needed. Private enterprise is more than capable of filling the void left should the USPS fold.

    -- Posted by FreedomFadingFast on Sat, Sep 3, 2011, at 6:58 PM
  • DT

    Absolutely correct. In 1996 someone wanted to tax all e-mails to make up for the loss.

    -- Posted by We Regret To Inform U on Sat, Sep 3, 2011, at 9:21 PM
  • Wasn't mail delivered free way back?

    -- Posted by Old John on Sat, Sep 3, 2011, at 11:39 PM
  • The mail was free to all military personnel during the wars.

    -- Posted by Dexterite1 on Sun, Sep 4, 2011, at 6:49 AM
  • So let the old gal die a natural death and give her a Requirum Mass.

    -- Posted by voyager on Sun, Sep 4, 2011, at 8:01 AM
  • I could see the USPS returning to ways of the past if it can overcome the arguments of union employees. Going back in history, the post office was often a corner in an established business and the operator of that business also functioned as postmaster. Doing so would allow many small communities to retain service, draw more customers to said local businesses, and reduce costs for the USPS.

    -- Posted by Robert* on Sun, Sep 4, 2011, at 8:28 AM
  • In answer to the original question: an amendment to the Constitution could be used to negate the Postal Clause, without harming the remainder of the Constitution. This has been done, for example, to change the manner in which Senators are elected.

    -- Posted by Shapley Hunter on Sun, Sep 4, 2011, at 10:18 AM
  • In 1991/92 the Post Office purchsed the building at 555 Washington Ave in St. Louis for $12.5 million from Developer David Wilhelm, on the same day that he had purchased it from Mercantile Bank for $4.1 million. The building had been in default. While I do not have all of the details of this transaction, you would think the Post Office would have had to have an idea of what was going on. They did not make the decision to purchase on the same day as the bank sale of the building to Wilhelm I am sure.

    This is the kind of decision making that makes government operations, such as the Post Office, inefficient and/or corrupt.

    -- Posted by Have_Wheels_Will_Travel on Sun, Sep 4, 2011, at 10:38 AM
  • My distant cousin built and owned a post office. If I understand right he got a very good lease payment and the government was responsible for all upkeep. He was paid enough over the years to buy several acres of prime farm land.

    Although inefficient in those ways, the USPS is still pretty proficient in delivering a letter from/to Cape-Poplar Bluff-St. Charles often in one day.

    -- Posted by Old John on Sun, Sep 4, 2011, at 1:12 PM
  • Old John,

    Apparently, the leases were different. Quite some years ago, I serviced a Post Office for the owner who leased it to the Postal Department. He was responsible for the maintenance of the HVAC equipment.

    I had a man finishing a major repair and stopped by late in the afternoon to check his progress. He was just finishing up and checking the equipment for correct operation. Since he needed to be off on time for personal business, I told him to go ahead and I would make sure it cycled ok. When I went to leave, I found the dock doors, where we entered chained closed. I checked and nobody was left in the Post Office but me, I checked the front doors and they were securely locked. Not knowing if the placed was alarmed, I thought better not open something you have no way to relock anyway. I thought, if I get caught in here I am going to jail for sure. I called the owner's office, he is gone, the guy that answers thinks it is funny as all get out. My next call was to the local police to tell them where I was at before they found me. The dispatcher thinks it is hilarious also, but said she would try to reach the number they had on record.

    A very apologetic Postmaster showed up in about 30 minutes to let me out and tell me he had forgotten we were on the premises and in the mechanical room. He was headed for a meeting, and had he left, this being before cell phones, I don't know how long I would have had to sit there and wait.

    -- Posted by Have_Wheels_Will_Travel on Sun, Sep 4, 2011, at 1:29 PM
  • Couldn't find his own way out of a post office! That is funny.

    -- Posted by Old John on Sun, Sep 4, 2011, at 1:35 PM
  • Old John,

    Not one that was guaranteed me being able to sleep in my own bed anyway. I was driving my car, not a company vehicle, so my protestations to the contrary, my being descovered in a post office after hours may have resulted in problems.

    -- Posted by Have_Wheels_Will_Travel on Sun, Sep 4, 2011, at 2:14 PM
  • I agree that bad management is the #1 reason for USPS to go under.

    For example: they give away millions of shipping boxes and envelopes away for free. Staples doesn't give envelopes away for free. FedEx doesn't give their products away for free. UPS doesn't either, as far as I know. USPS could have easily "sold" these products for a minimul $ amount to help produce a profit, just as their competition does.

    -- Posted by Skeptic1 on Sun, Sep 4, 2011, at 6:47 PM
  • I disagree w/ Shapley that the 17th Amendment didn't harm the Constitution. Senators are much more beholden to money now than they are to their constituents. I had much more sway over them when I could go make a case to my state Legislator than I do being one of 5 million people to vote for/against them.

    -- Posted by bebo on Sun, Sep 4, 2011, at 8:43 PM
  • Mozart's Requiem is a must hear.

    I thought I was the only person on here that knew where "Fairdealing" was. Went through there again today.

    -- Posted by not_sorry on Sun, Sep 4, 2011, at 11:02 PM
  • EOS, I fully understand where you are coming from.

    Reread and consider you have clouded your point with too many things to follow and think about.

    Lincoln and his cronies, I think were the ones that first figured out how to abuse the contstitutional procedure for political gain.

    To keep the original system honest we need honest state legislators.

    Considering today's voting public and big money campaigns, is that possible today?

    -- Posted by Old John on Mon, Sep 5, 2011, at 12:20 AM
  • Although I agree concerning many things in your post, I must point out one good reason for keeping the Senate. It slows the process of government in at least two ways.

    1. Makes it necessary for any political party to have control of both houses and the Presidency before it can ram through legislation. Example: Imagine how much different things would have been today if the republican party had had control of either the Senate or the House after 2008. (Obamacare could not have rammed through)

    2. The length of terms along with rotating elections allows only one third of the seats to be up for election in any election year. This does not allow one election to totally change the face of the Senate as can happen in the House. The rules of the Senate cause gridlock, slows governmental processes, and does not allow one election to change the entire government.

    I would agree with you if you suggested limits on number of congressional staff and also on individual staff salaries. I would also like to return to appointment of Senators by state legislatures.

    -- Posted by Robert* on Mon, Sep 5, 2011, at 7:03 AM
  • bebo wrote:

    "I disagree w/ Shapley that the 17th Amendment didn't harm the Constitution."

    Harming the system is not the same as harming the Constitution. The Constitution remains intact, although states' rights took a serious blow.

    The Constitituion is designed to permit the people to amend it or change it outright, even to the point of cutting their own throats. However, so long as the changes are consistent with that framework, the Constitution itself remains valid.

    -- Posted by Shapley Hunter on Mon, Sep 5, 2011, at 7:59 AM
  • Bebo,

    I'm not sure how old you are, but I'm doubting that you had the luxury of petitioning a legislature-appointed senator... ;)

    -- Posted by Shapley Hunter on Mon, Sep 5, 2011, at 8:02 AM
  • When the US Postal Service was established there was no speedy transportation system between cities, no telegraph, no phone service, no text-messaging, no e-mail, no Federal Express, and no UPS.

    Although some people have not taken advantage of advances in technology, I am not sure that the USPS as we know it is necessary. If it were eliminated, some private service would appear to provide any unique services it provides; of course those private services would generate a profit. Ten years from now no one would really miss it.

    It would probably go the way of the rotary phone.........or the party line

    -- Posted by Robert* on Mon, Sep 5, 2011, at 11:43 AM
  • How much do you want to bet? Before the end of the year there will be a movement to bail out the postal service!

    -- Posted by Robert* on Mon, Sep 5, 2011, at 11:45 AM
  • Didn't government get involved in building roads based on the need to fulfill it's duty to provide postal service in the early days?

    -- Posted by Old John on Mon, Sep 5, 2011, at 11:53 AM
  • An easy to read and understand PDF which demonstrates the connection between the early postal service and the transportation system we have today.

    http://www.transportation.org/sites/aashto/does/Cullen-2009-04-26.pdf

    -- Posted by Robert* on Mon, Sep 5, 2011, at 8:49 PM
  • stnmsn8, Thanks, I'll look at that, sounds interesting.

    -- Posted by Old John on Mon, Sep 5, 2011, at 11:03 PM
  • USPS management has wasted millions if not billions on vehicles that were inappropriate for their needs, management decisions that were clearly in opposition to established union agreements and federal laws that they KNEW would result in huge costs once settled, and now saving money by having carriers reporting to 'centralized' offices and picking up mail for other offices rather than having trucks deliver. I asked some questions recently and learned it is likely to cost MORE money because existing contracts will have to be bought out, the volume to go to the 'centralized' offices will be so greatk, it will require an additional truck or two to what is currently under contract, and some of the post office local delivery vehicles can only travel a certain speed but will have to be driven from the 'centralized' office to the assigned community-probably can't carry the volume of mail for the day-and will take enough longer to get there, it will take overtime to deliver the mail. (One of the expensive vehicle purchases was for units that got like 5 miles an hour and had to be drive five miles or more to begin their route each day)

    Add Olympic sponsorship, congressional requirement to 'overfund' pensions (into federal coffers) unlike the feds themselves, and it is no wonder USPS is struggling.

    For those that say privatize, FEDEX and UPS workers are paid better so that will certainly save money, and what happens to rural Americans that depend upon postal service for delivery of medications, etc.?

    -- Posted by sunshine51 on Tue, Sep 6, 2011, at 7:22 AM
  • No other business model would survive if it operated like the USPS. They charge me $100 for a box that they walk 20 feet to fill, while the people in the city and country that they deliver to, get their mail for free. I guess that in this instance, there is such a thing as a free lunch.

    -- Posted by Hugh M Bean on Tue, Sep 6, 2011, at 11:33 AM
  • "They charge me $100 for a box that they walk 20 feet to fill, while the people in the city and country that they deliver to, get their mail for free."

    The box is your choice. There is no reason why you cannot have your mail delivered to your home for free too.

    -- Posted by commonsensematters on Tue, Sep 6, 2011, at 12:46 PM

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