Friday, January 18, 2013
The United States Postal Service
I work for a small business (small: less than ten full time employees), and we do a lot of shipping of our products; we wouldn't even be in business at all without our ability to ship. To say that your United States Postal Service (USPS - it's important to remember what this stands for) is our best option, is a massive understatement. A perennial attack on the USPS is occurring as you read this. The usual so-called "free market conservatives" are once again working in our Congressional House of Representatives to further marginalize the USPS. Any diminution in the scope of the USPS, would be a terrible blow to our local business and to our customers, and to you.
In this case, "free market" means: "Let two huge multinational corporations (corporations are people, my friend), increase their profits by decreasing the role of the USPS. The corporations are the United Postal Service (UPS - gee what a great name, that couldn't possibly be designed to confuse users as to which country it owes allegiance to, could it?), and FedEx (again, "Fed"? that couldn't be confused with our Federal Government could it?). Both of these corporations do a reasonable job to shipping packages from businesses (corporations) to you and me. The price that you pay them to do so (included in the price your pay for your item) is almost always just a little higher than what YOUR USPS would charge you. So far so good. I would like you to call and ask UPS or FedEx to come to your house and pick up a letter or package. They won't do it. Have you forgotten that your USPS picks up AND delivers letters and packages to your door? On Saturdays too! Ask UPS to do that. They don't, not even for the corporations. So we see that the USPS does twice the job at a lower price than those "free market" competitors.
Now just in case this doesn't move you, think about the fact that UPS and FedEx hire lots of part time workers, mostly at Thanksgiving to Christmas time. They pay these people as little as they can get away with; no health, vacation, sick leave, or other benefits. Great for the Corporations' bottom line... so why are their charges to you higher? I guess that you'd have to ask the CEO's of these people/corporations... In contrast, the USPS pays mostly full time employees a living wage with benefits and deliver a service to you at a lower cost to you.. The employees are people in your community that live with the same needs and desires that you have. They give you better service than the "private sector" employees and they'll be here for you six days a week while doing twice the service of the alternatives. Have you been moved to think about buying locally, spending locally? Oh, by the way, the United States of American Constitution requires that your government maintain a United States Postal Service for your benefit. That should be enough for you if you call yourself a patriot. Now ask yourself what your Congressman (or woman) has been saying about the USPS. Are they planning on closing YOUR Post Office?