7 Frightening Realities About the Post Office which Politicians Ignore
President Trump has a historic opportunity to save the American taxpayer from a $37 billion bailout … and turn the failing postal service around.
The postal system is dysfunctional.
Why? Because of…
- The Postal Bureaucracy
- Hostility and ignorance from all of the above about the importance of direct mail used by thousands of businesses
Here are 7 frightening and dysfunctional realities the politicians in Washington are ignoring:
- The United States Postal Service (USPS) has lost $371 billion…that’s right, billion…in the last five years.
The huge, inefficient, corrupt bureaucracy also has $101 billion in unfunded pension and benefits liabilities.
It’s unsustainable, but the post office keeps doing things wrong.
It’s hurting the American economy and jobs. It’s going to hurt the taxpayers with a massive bailout.
- Under President Obama, the entire system has become a joke.
The post office is run by the Postal Board of Governors. 9 members are appointed by the President and approved by Congress. Also, the Postmaster General and Deputy Postmaster General are on the board—a total of 11. The governors advise the postal service on management, can fire the postmaster general and more. They also approve rate hikes.
The board must have 6 members to have a quorum. Currently, they only have 2 members: the Postmaster General and the Deputy Postmaster General. The other 9 seats are vacant.
One US senator—most likely Bernie Sanders (I-VT)—is holding up any nominations because of the postal unions. No new governor has been appointed since 2010.
To resolve the problem resulting from a lack of a quorum, the Board of Governors broke the law. Without a quorum, the Board established three new rules out of thin air:
- Hiring, firing, and postal rates could be decided without a quorum.
- No specific number of governors are needed to make decisions.
- A “Temporary Emergency Committee” has been established giving the Postmaster General and his top staff complete authority.
It’s absolute authority with no oversight or accountability.
So, without a quorum, the post office hiked rates anyway on January 20th, 2017, hurting itself in the long run, harming businesses who rely on the mail to generate sales—and jobs.
- The Postal bureaucracy is archaic, resistant to change.
Overstaffed, fighting automation and resistance from powerful postal worker unions, the postal bureaucracy has become wasteful and inefficient. They make decisions not based on market need and business reality, but what pleases bureaucrats, unions, and politicians.
- The Postal Service is a government-protected monopoly in need of competition.
Monopolies don’t work, especially the monopoly bureaucracy. Only choice and competition can create efficiency and progress. If the auto industry, computers (including email and texting), and eye surgery were bureaucratic monopolies, their products would very expensive, second-rate, and immune from positive change.
Indeed, if the horse and the buggy industry were protected just like the post office, we would be riding horses instead of high-powered cars. We would have giant computers like in the 1960’s, not iPhones in every home. We would have government-approved glasses, not Lasik.
The United States Postal Services has tried to stop innovations and advances in postal delivery.
Years ago, the post office tried to stop UPS, FedEx, and other private delivery services. Fortunately for businesses and consumers, the government monopoly failed. Then the USPS tried to control email. But fortunately for businesses and the consumer, they failed.
Let me give you another example of what happens without competition:
New postal rates are hitting businesses, killing jobs and commerce. The excessive rate hikes produce less revenue, and the growing postal service’s deficit grows. The latest hike is a huge job killer—and the post office, the consumer and business are the victims.
- The Post Office can’t be controlled by Congress
Much of the dysfunction is caused by the United States Senate and House. Individual members prevent the closure of inefficient postal facilities, the hiring of good people, and implementation of technical improvements.
Politicians want to please their union donors rather than allow the marketplace to work.
- The Post Office is like Obamacare – Let’s Repeal and Replace
Like Obamacare, a repeal and replace system must be established for the USPS. A well-planned transition is needed.
The dysfunction can’t be fixed without major, immediate reform.
Let me give you an example of why the current administration needs to hurry:
I just received an odd, terrible ruling from the United States Postal Service (USPS). I am getting a costly surcharge on my traditional direct mail for one of my clients. It makes no economic sense.
In the past, I have on occasion placed in my clients’ mailings a small, lumpy piece—in this most recent case, a small sponge sample.
For the first time, the post office hiked up the price of mailing the package, telling us that they would charge the mailing as a parcel, not as standard rate.
Before January, the cost of postage would have been $0.47 per piece. After January, with the rate increase it is $0.49 per piece. But now what they want to charge my client between $2.60-3.20 a piece!
It’s insane. This is another example how the United States Postal Service has transformed into a bureaucratic night mare for direct marketers.
My clients won’t send direct mail. They lose new clients. The clients’’ prospects won’t get their special offers. They lose a great product. Instead of the post office generating revenue, the post office won’t get any.
Bad policy. Less mail. No revenue. Everyone loses.
- The solution to the USPS mess is competition and choice.
Here are the steps President Trump must take so that everyone wins:
- Work non-stop and quickly to make changes. Ignore the bureaucracy, unions, and politicians.
- Fire bad personnel and downsize departments.
- Appoint staffers and hire workers who understand business, competition and job creation.
- Change the dysfunctional rules
- Privatize key functions of the postal service, end the monopoly, and stop the waste.
Not only is the United States Postal Office going bankrupt, but their wasteful incompetence and abuse is hurting business owners, consumers, and jobs.
There can be no delay. Trump needs to act now and Make Postal Delivery Great Again, or at least tell the Government monopoly: “You’re Fired!”
Contact your representatives right now and tell them: “Reform the postal service now!”
Let me know what you think. Email me at [email protected].
Craig Huey has been a postal expert for over 30 years, having mailed over 1 billion pieces of mail for his clients. He is the President of Creative Direct Marketing Group, and Publisher of The Huey Report.