The United States Postal Service's unnecessary financial crisis

7 posts / 0 new

Congress went on recess this week leaving the United States Postal Service financial crisis, unresolved. At midnight tonight, the Postal Service will default on a $5.5 billion payment it owes to the Treasury Department. This default will not have any immediate effects on day-to-day operations at the Postal Service, but it highlights the financial troubles that the institution, which was created more than 200 years ago by Ben franklin, is facing today. And those problems are almost entirely thanks to Republicans.

In 2006 – Republicans in Congress passed a poison pill piece of legislation forcing the Post Office to pre-fund retiree health benefits 75 years out into the future – basically funding benefits for future employees who aren’t even born yet. The Postal Service has to do this by giving the Treasury $5.5 billion every single year. That’s a requirement that no business, or any government agency has ever had to comply with. And it’s the reason why the Post Office is going bankrupt today and looking into closing down post offices, laying off workers, and cutting down delivery service.

So why is all this happening? Because the Postal Service employs hundreds of thousands of unionized workers – where as private mail carriers like UPS and Fed Ex do not. Republicans – in their non-stop war on labor – realized that they could hurt unions by bankrupting the Postal Service. That’s what they did in 2006, and their plan is working today.

Don’t buy into the scam that the Postal Service is going broke because of the internet and the rise of e-mail. It’s going broke because it’s the latest casualty in the GOP's war on organized labor.

Thom Hartmann Administrator's picture
Thom Hartmann A...
Joined:
Dec. 29, 2009 9:59 am

Comments

In addition to this poison pill for the Post Office, the Bush-league administration also gave us poison pills meant to harm Medicare (not allowing Medicare Part D drug prices to be negotiated), and No Child Left Behind.

NCLB has wasted billions of tax payer dollars on developing curriculums that get slanted towards test taking, not teaching kids the skills needed for our economy to grow and prosper in this ever competitive global marketplace. NCLB has been shown to be a subtle way of promoting the private and charter school industries, at the expense of public schools performance. Even parents without the economic means to do so have felt the need to pull their underachieving children out of the public school system and place them in for-profit charter or private schools, or in parochial schools.

Also, relatives of Bush profited mightily from their ownership interests in firms that supply the testing materials required by the schools to track the students "progress".

miksilvr
Joined:
Jul. 7, 2011 11:13 am

Not possible the Republicans created this bill. DEMOCRATS had the majority in both the house and Senate in 2006.

According to Govtrack.us the law in question, H.R. 6407 the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act passed the House by a voice vote and unanimous consent in the Senate. Now not only did the GOP not have a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate, all 44 Democrats and the lone independent in the Senate consented to the bill:

Votes: Dec 8, 2006: This bill passed in the House of Representatives by voice vote. A record of each representative’s position was not kept.

Dec 9, 2006: This bill passed in the Senate by Unanimous Consent. A record of each senator’s position was not kept.

Additionally, two of the three cosponsors for this bill were Democrats and you just don’t get more “liberal” than Henry Waxman (D-CA):

Cosponsors:
Danny Davis [D-IL7]
John McHugh [R-NY23]
Henry Waxman [D-CA30]

Never let the facts get in the way of a good rant.

Redwing's picture
Redwing
Joined:
Jun. 21, 2012 4:12 am

Is crisis manufacturing considered part of the manufacturing sector or the financial sector?

http://socialistworker.org/2011/09/15/a-manufactured-postal-crisis

Laborisgood's picture
Laborisgood
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

My 25 year postal employee neighbor says only the old timers like him get pensions. After 1984, new employees were put on Social Security.

DynoDon
Joined:
Jun. 29, 2012 9:24 am
Quote Redwing:

Not possible the Republicans created this bill. DEMOCRATS had the majority in both the house and Senate in 2006.

Never let the facts get in the way of a good rant.

Please stop making up shit.

chilidog
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm
Quote chilidog:
Quote Redwing:

Not possible the Republicans created this bill. DEMOCRATS had the majority in both the house and Senate in 2006.

Never let the facts get in the way of a good rant.

Please stop making up shit.

And you keep following the rantings of your misinformed socialist leader.

Redwing's picture
Redwing
Joined:
Jun. 21, 2012 4:12 am

Currently Chatting

The other way we're subsidizing Walmart...

Most of us know how taxpayers subsidize Walmart's low wages with billions of dollars in Medicaid, food stamps, and other financial assistance for workers. But, did you know that we're also subsidizing the retail giant by paying the cost of their environmental destruction.

Powered by Pressflow, an open source content management system