The next mass extinction could be closer than we think...

Methane emissions in the South Central US are nearly five times higher than previously thought. According to a new study from Harvard University, there is way more methane being pumped into our atmosphere, and that means a much larger effect on climate change. Overall, total US methane emissions are one and half times the EPA estimates, because the agency was using an invalid method for calculating methane in our atmosphere.

The EPA used a so-called bottom-up approach, which estimates methane release by guessing what one cow or one natural gas field emits, and then multiplying it by the number of those sources. This new Harvard study measured that amount of methane actually present in our atmosphere, and then traced it back to regional sources. The study's lead author, Scot Miller, said, “Most strikingly, our results are higher by a factor of 2.7 over the South Central US, which we know is a key region for fossil-fuel extraction and refining.” He explained that they will continue to research the discrepancy between their study and the EPA estimates, so that they can fully understand the impact of fossil-fuel mining on methane emissions.

Methane is an extremely potent greenhouse gas, and it is causing a rapid increase in global temperatures. And, many experts believe that it was responsible for the Permian Mass Extinction, which wiped out nearly all life on Earth. Not only do we need to understand how much methane is in our atmosphere and where it comes from, we must work faster to lower these emissions. If we don't, it could bring about the next mass extinction. The future of our planet, and our species, depends on it. To find out more about the Permian Extinction, and how methane emissions could bring about the next one – go to LastHours.org.

Comments

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#1

Thom is very right folks. Although the South Central US emissions of methane do not match the level of methane emissions that lead to the Permian Mass Extinction they do contribute significantly to the overall global warming that could trigger the Permian Mass Extinction level release of methand in the frozen permafrost. This is not pseudoscience folks. We do need to take this matter very seriously and act; and, act fast.

Kend's picture
Kend 9 years 9 weeks ago
#2

oh geeez here we go again. It just never ends. What global warming? Can someone please show me these studies that show the earth is warming and by how much. All I see is billions being spent and no improvement or results on anything. Except of course the bank accounts of environmentalists. They are doing very well. Talk about corperate welfare.

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#3
Quote Kend:oh geeez here we go again. It just never ends. What global warming? Can someone please show me these studies that show the earth is warming and by how much.

http://www.bcca.org/ief/climate_what.html

http://www.gfdl.noaa.gov/the-shrinking-arctic-ice-cap-ar4

http://hubpages.com/hub/The-Tipping-Point--Our-Climates-Point-of-No-Return

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_change_in_the_Arctic

Kend ~ There you go! Studies, tables, models, graphs, articles, and lots and lots of very disturbing pictures. Of course, these disturbing facts do not take into account the potential disaster that Thom is talking about if the huge volumes of methane stored in the permafrost were released. That would make these projections look like a picnic.

Please try to familiarize yourself with the facts before you open your mouth. Your constant restatement of the same clueless rhetoric is very tedious.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 9 years 9 weeks ago
#4

That Climate Summit in Poland was a friggin' joke... Climate activists banned from the discussion, while corporate hacks all got seats at the table. Deja-vu! Just like our healthcare debate four & a half years ago. Long as the oligarchs have their say and call the shots, it's all theater. - Aliceinwonderland

akunard's picture
akunard 9 years 9 weeks ago
#5

Eat more chicken. Get rid of cows and pigs. The ACA will get rid of human old farts.

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#6
Quote akunard:Eat more chicken. Get rid of cows and pigs.

akunard ~ That sounds like good advice. Good for the planet, good for the body.

Quote akunard:The ACA will get rid of human old farts.

akunard ~ Just how is that going to happen? People over 65 will still be on Medicare. Only people under 65 will be eligible for the ACA. Am I missing something? Please don't tell me that at the ripe young age of 64 you think I'm an old fart?

stopgap's picture
stopgap 9 years 9 weeks ago
#7

Please Thom, I'm more interested in Miley Cyrus, American Idol and Dancing With The Stars. Why do you always have to be such a buzz-kill with your facts and reality?

akunard's picture
akunard 9 years 9 weeks ago
#8

Large cuts in Medicare to help pay for ACA.

stecoop01's picture
stecoop01 9 years 9 weeks ago
#9

Doomed! DOOMED!!! We are all doomed! And the best part is - we did it to ourselves!

But seriously, we have over-populated ourselves into extinction. If just as little as 75 years ago we would have restricted population growth, we wouldn't be in this mess now. Back when there were less than 2 billion people on this rock, Ole Mother Earth had very little trouble cleaning up after us. But now we number over 7 billion and Mama just can't handle it anymore.

My one complaint about environmentalists has always been that they only look at one half of the problem - what people are doing to the environment, and ignore the other half - how many people are doing it to the environment. The two halves go hand-in-hand.

My hope is that some extraterestrial species is watching us, and learning from our mistakes.

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#10
ObamaCare Facts: Dispelling The Myths

Quote Article: ObamaCare and Medicare:ObamaCare Medicare reform improves and expands Medicare for seniors. The ObamaCare Medicare cuts are estimated at $716 billion. Those cuts are reinvested into Medicare and ObamaCare to improve care for seniors and close the Medicare Part D " donut hole" among other things.
Quote Article: ObamaCare and Medicare:Even though Obamacare "cuts"Medicare; it isn't really a cut, it's health care reform aimed at improving care for seniors. The fact is, millions more seniors will be covered under Obama's health care plan. Here are some things that the program does to improve Medicare:

ObamaCare closes the "donut hole" that was causing Seniors not to be able to afford their prescriptions. (The Medicare "donut hole" is the Part D drug coverage limit where seniors must start paying out of pocket for their prescriptions.) In 2012, seniors got a 50 percent discount when buying brand name drugs and 14 percent discount on generic drugs covered by Medicare Part D. This reform gets stronger every year, increasing coverage and closing the donut hole until it disappears in 2020. From that point on, seniors will only pay usual drug co-pays.

• ObamaCare expands existing coverage for seniors, including preventive care and wellness visits without charging you for the Part B co-insurance or deductible. Seniors will no longer need to put off preventive care and check-ups due to costs. This reform has been active since 2011 and gives seniors better access to cancer screenings, wellness visits, personalized prevention plans, vaccines, flue shots and more.

• New initiatives to support care coordination, your doctor may get additional resources to make sure that your treatments are consistent.

ObamaCare does not cut any benefits from Medicare Advantage.

• ObamaCare reduces payments to Medicare advantage rewarding those providers who increase the quality of their coverage. Medicare Advantage pays will now be more in line with other areas of Medicare

• ObamaCare reigns excess spending on Medicare Advantage, which is currently causing a burden on the tax payer that is disproportionate to the amount of people it helps. Medicare Advantage is run by private insurers and costs $1,000 more per person

• According to the CMS Medicare beneficiaries are expected to save, on average, about $4,200 over the next 10 years due to lower drug costs, free preventive services and reductions in the growth of health spending.

• The protection of Medicare is ensured for years to come. The life of the Medicare Trust fund will be extended to at least 2029—a 12-year extension due to reductions in waste, fraud and abuse, and Medicare costs, which will provide you with future savings on your premiums and coinsurance.

The fact is, ObamaCare Medicare Reform does a lot to help seniors, as the bill addresses Medicare more than any other single issue. Many of the attacks against ObamaCare in regard to Medicare are unfounded, although the program isn't perfect one only needs to look at how seniors have benefited from the care and protections of Massachusetts health care reform under Governor Romney to understand how ObamaCare will impact Medicare.

http://obamacarefacts.com/obamacare-medicare.php

http://verticalize.net/h/healthcare/?results=medicare&rf=ocf

akunard ~ So I see. Is that what you were talking about?

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#11
Quote stecoop01:My hope is that some extraterestrial species is watching us, and learning from our mistakes.

stecoop01 ~ I think that it is safe to conclude that if some extraterrestrial species is indeed watching us, then they have learned from this mistake a long, long, long time ago. Perhaps the only reason they are watching is to wager on whether or not we will. I wonder what our odds are?

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#12

To anyone who is interested, Senator Alan Grayson has sponsored a letter to the President asking to end drone warfare--except for times of actual war. You can add your name here:

http://enddronewarfare.com/?source=E1127NoCuts2013

ptg0's picture
ptg0 9 years 9 weeks ago
#13

Consider this. Our atmosphere is only 7 miles thick. Once you are up 2 miles, there is barely enough oxygen to sustain human life. At about 13000 feet, there is even less. My point is, there is only about 2 miles of air up there that 7 billion people breathe.

We all better get use to "shortness of breath". This may be how our earth cleans itself.

As for "Obamacare", perhaps "democRATs" should have bitched more when raygun made "for profit" health care legal in 1982 and gave all tax payer built and paid for county hospitals to the "for profit" health care cabal for pennies on the dollar. More welfare for millionaires.

Where were the democRATs in 1982? Why did Obama make this a law instead of making "for profit" health care illegal with fines amounting to death for the millionaires that love making money from human suffering?

The democRAts and republiCONs all have the same motive.

FUCK THE AMERICAN TAXPAYER (CHUMP)

stopgap's picture
stopgap 9 years 9 weeks ago
#14

To climate change deniers: While there are numerous scientific studies explaining how climate change works and the effects of climate change, I have yet to hear from the deniers exactly how pumping millions, if not billions of tons of pollutants in the the atmosphere every day , effectively changing the chemical composition of the atmosphere, doesn't somehow affect the climate? Exactly, how does that work? Nor do I hear from them how does pissing in the backyard pool all the time, eventually, NOT, make it un-swim-able?

akunard's picture
akunard 9 years 9 weeks ago
#15

DAnne:

Add more people to the system, cut payments and we get better care?

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 9 years 9 weeks ago
#16

"The ACA will get rid of human old farts," says akunard. "Add more people to the system, cut payments and we get better care?"

What better example could there be to illustrate the utter worthlessness of conservative ideology? When it comes to basic human needs and how to meet them, these guys are not only completely clueless; they simply couldn't care less.

The same goes for climate change, folks. Anything that matters to survival, to our collective wellbeing, is of no consequence to people whose worldview is so self-centered, so myopic, nothing counts in their realm of reality except power, profit and self-enrichment. They've nothing of value to contribute to the discussion, let alone any efforts at finding solutions to the overwhelming litany of problems plaguing us; problems that they, in large part, have created. Long as conservatives and teabrains occupy seats of power and call the shots, it will continue to get worse until eventually, we all perish. And if Thom's report on the status of methane emissions is correct, this could be sooner rather than later.

I continue visiting Der Spiegel from time to time. Whenever I see an article about climate-related topics, and examine the accompanying blog, I am stunned at how these discussions are dominated by climate deniers, who seem to be the majority of participants, all stridently declaring this one big hoax. I'd bet $$$ at least half these no-count ignoramus quacks are paid shills of the fossil fuel industry.

Conservatism is a hoax; a dangerous, ugly hoax. The evidence of the destruction it causes is all around us. If we can't get enough of these soulless quacks out of Congress, removed from positions of power and influence, there is no hope for us. It's hard to wrap my mind around stakes that high, but this is where we are my friends. - Aliceinwonderland

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#17
Quote akunard:DAnne:

Add more people to the system, cut payments and we get better care?

akunard ~ As I understand it, you are not cutting payments you are cutting funding and for profit administration waste. The cut funding is being earmarked for redistributed to be spent more efficiently. Henceforth, you get a much greater bang for the buck and both the system and the seniors save money; whereas, the seniors also receive better care.

It's the same result you get by designing a car with lighter material--it can carry more passengers, go faster, and get better gas mileage with the same engine. If you then improve the efficiency of the engine you gain that much more performance and savings.

There is too much inefficiency in the current system. Tests and treatments repeated because previous results are not available or shared. Overpriced medication because of unnecessarily high administration costs and lack of centralized care. People getting unnecessarily sick due to poor preventive care or lack of coverage or ability to pay high deductibles and copays. Much of it is due to for profit interference, too much administration costs, and poor communication. That leads to unacceptable preventive care, excessively high drug costs, and unnecessary catastrophic illness treatments. ObamaCare attempts to eliminate these problems by adding services where they are most needed and cutting them where they are not. As the article I posted above laments, the entire approach of ObamaCare is to improve the quality of care for everyone--with an emphasis on seniors.

As far as I am concerned, the plan looks great on paper. How it actually functions in the real world we will all have to wait and see. Personally, I have high hopes. It's natural to be skeptical of any new idea--especially one that affects such important aspects of our lives. However, I remember that same skepticism when Medicare was first implemented. That seemed to turn out just fine, didn't it?

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 9 years 9 weeks ago
#18

Marc, your patience is indeed admirable. I could have explained all that to "akunard" but I don't believe he is listening. I just don't think he gives a flippin' damn. He's from the "me" crowd; we're from the "we" clan. Two completely different mind sets. He and his ilk are concerned only about themselves. They are not interested in figuring out how to create a healthcare system that works for everyone, or keeping this planet inhabitable for future generations of humans (let alone other life forms). We can continue repeating this stuff 'til we're blue in the face, but "akunard" and kend will keep asking the same dumb-ass questions over and over and over. And my hunch is, they're not really looking for answers. It's all just rhetorical nonsense. It might extract great blog posts from the rest of us from time to time, but it still seems futile getting through to these guys. - Aliceinwonderland

akunard's picture
akunard 9 years 9 weeks ago
#19

There are a few things government does well and that is waste and fraud, creating them not getting rid of them!

What will happen when your Dr. is on salary? He will cut his patient load. You get paid the same for seeing 20 people a day as 50 per day.

I just try to explain how it works in the REAL WORLD. So quit trying to pull me into a pissing match

Danger and destruction every where? Why are so many banging on the door to get in when they could spend their energy getting visas to the truly great countries where the chance to prosper is not hampered by capitalism?

Kend's picture
Kend 9 years 9 weeks ago
#20

Thanks DAnne for the info. The problem is the Eskimo's who have lived there for thousands of years say this isnt anything new the ice has come and gone forever. I noticed most of the data is from years ago. Up here the last 3 years have been extremely cold and most of that ice has returned. the earth is tens of millions of years old and been changing tempatures since the beginning. emissions in cars have been reduced to a quarter of what they where 15 years ago . Cars are twice as light yet they are polluting tens times more..?? Something isn't right.

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#21

Quote akunard:There are a few things government does well and that is waste and fraud, creating them not getting rid of them!

akunard ~ That is absolutely true with anything involving the Military Industrial Complex; but ,really, anything else? The Postal Service is 10 X's more efficient than any other physical messaging service. Medicare is 100 X's more efficient than any private for profit medical insurance, and, quite sadly, the US global spy network is about 1,000,000,000 X's more efficient than any other information gathering operation in the history of humanity; yet, the last thing I see when I look at the BIG PICTURE of government versus the private sector is waste on the part of the government; in fact, all I see is a bunch of BS on the part of the private sector.

Quote akunard:What will happen when your Dr. is on salary? He will cut his patient load. You get paid the same for seeing 20 people a day as 50 per day.

akunard ~ What will happen is that Doctors who are motivated by healing people will be given all the time in the world they need to heal people. It is the current system where Doctors are FORCED to cut corners on everything that they do in order to make quotas. Pay the doctor a salary per day instead of per patient is the best way to maximize quality of care. Just look anywhere else in the world that has a Universal Health Care System and you will see the evidence that this is true. Pay for quality and you get quality, pay for quantity and you get quantity; and, the two are mutually exclusive.

Quote akunard:I just try to explain how it works in the REAL WORLD. So quit trying to pull me into a pissing match

Danger and destruction every where? Why are so many banging on the door to get in when they could spend their energy getting visas to the truly great countries where the chance to prosper is not hampered by capitalism?

akunard ~ I'm sorry my friend, but what you have just written is such a unintelligible clouded mental brain fart that I must conclude that it is the result of too much Champagne mixed with Turkey stuffing. A most Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

Quote Kend:Thanks DAnne for the info. The problem is the Eskimo's who have lived there for thousands of years say this isnt anything new the ice has come and gone forever.

Kend ~ With all due respect to you and your Eskimo friends, until they can produce the satellite evidence that contradicts what I've provided your testimonials literally mean less than nothing.

Quote Kend:Cars are twice as light yet they are polluting tens times more..?? Something isn't right.

Kend ~ I can honestly say I don't have any idea what you are talking about. Please kindly provide the link to the the scientific data that supports that argument; because, quite frankly, that statement makes no sense to anything I understand happening in the real world.

Quote Aliceinwonderland:We can continue repeating this stuff 'til we're blue in the face, but "akunard" and kend will keep asking the same dumb-ass questions over and over and over. And my hunch is, they're not really looking for answers. It's all just rhetorical nonsense. It might extract great blog posts from the rest of us from time to time, but it still seems futile getting through to these guys. - Aliceinwonderland

Aliceinwonderland ~ Now this is the most reasonable and logical explanation of what I have been hearing all night long. I must thank you for that most astute observation. I certainly hope you are enjoying your Thanksgiving festivities as much as I. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 9 years 9 weeks ago
#22

I think it is a mixture of a corrupt government combined with the capitalist private sector government corrupters that screw us all. re: "Alec wants to kill Obamacare" my post #16

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#23
Quote Palindromedary:I think it is a mixture of a corrupt government combined with the capitalist private sector government corrupters that screw us all. re: "Alec wants to kill Obamacare" my post #16

Palindromedary ~ After Thanksgiving festivities I'm in more than in well enough condition to respond to akunard and Kend; however, you will have to elaborate on what you are trying to say if you want an intelligible response from me.

Kend's picture
Kend 9 years 9 weeks ago
#24

Sorry guys I forgot it was thanksgiving up there so happy holidays to all of you.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 9 years 9 weeks ago
#25

Thanks, Kend.

akunard's picture
akunard 9 years 9 weeks ago
#26

The USPS is 10X better than UPS and FedX thank you for the best laugh so far today.

Fact- Drs.are dropping out of Medicare. So, fewer Drs. seeing more patients will improve what we have now??? And you call my staments "brain farts".

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 9 years 9 weeks ago
#27

If you have to rely on UPS and FedX to mail your letters, bills, etc. you won't be laughing anymore "akunard". Especially with the sticker shock you're gonna have once you've paid them for these services.

Oh yeah... government, BAD! Government, EVIL! Privatize everything! Right, "akunard"?

As to what can be characterized as "brain farts", it's not only your sta[te]ments; it's your misspellings and so forth. Your posts look like they're from someone who's barely literate. And I'm supposed to take your opinions seriously, no matter how unintelligibly they are written? Ha-ha-ha-ha-hahahahhaha! - AIW

akunard's picture
akunard 9 years 9 weeks ago
#28

It no longer amuses me to be your punching bag while trying to give a different point of view. I will leave you all to your little world of " It would nice if every one thought the same and were equal." While patting each other on the back and feeling all warm and fuzzy.

My final message. As the Reverend Ike liked to say, "The best thing you can do for the poor is not to be one of them"

So line up and sling your best for this the last evening I will monitor this group.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 9 years 9 weeks ago
#29

You can dish it out, "akunard", but you can't take it. You laugh just as readily at Marc's posts. If you don't like being laughed at, try treating others as you wish to be treated; with respect. What you dish out comes back to you. - AIW

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#30

akunard ~ "Brain farts" were brought up by you first. By the way, in my opinion, I've been as cool and respectful as can be. I've tried to address the issues; and, only resorted to the "brain fart" meme as a response to an uncool nonsensical rant that I respectfully "quoted" above to be sure that everyone know why I said it. Sorry if it offended you.

Quote akunard:The USPS is 10X better than UPS and FedX thank you for the best laugh so far today.

akunard ~ When you stop laughing why don't you ponder this... How long would UPS or FedEX stay in business if the Federal government passed some silly law saying that they needed to fund the retirement of all employees they now have and will have for the next 70 years in addition to all other operating costs? A month? Two weeks? Maybe till the end of the day?

When I see UPS and FedEX shoulder that preposterous burden as long as the USPS has then maybe I might stop laughing at your ridiculous response. (By the way, 10 X more efficient is a very conservative estimate. I'm quite sure the actual factor is much higher.)

In case you don't already know, this new postal law was sponsored and written by UPS and FedEX in order to destroy their major competition, the USPS. So far it has failed because they underestimated the power of the federal government... Just like you.

Kend's picture
Kend 9 years 9 weeks ago
#31

DAnne UPS and FedEx didnt over promise on there retirement fund like the USPS. There is a huge difference. If the USPS runs out of money the tax payer gets stuck with the bill. if the others do the share holders lose. I just read that over 70% of pension funds are under funded. That is scary.

On the post office there is a couple of things I noticed when I go to the US. Saturday delivery? Who the hell needs Saturday delivery. The line ups. What the hell. we have post offices at every 7/11 And drug store. We never wait. Canada post owns a courier company that competes with UPS and FedEx. They honestly are not as reliable but they are the cheapest.

Akundard please don't leave me here all alone. you make interesting points like your point on the Dr's we lose thousands of them to higher paying US jobs. It is almost impossible to get a family Dr here In Canada I don't blame them after 10 years of school and hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt go to the best place to improve your families life. Isn't that why millions swim across rivers and float miles on tire tubes to get to the US.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 9 years 9 weeks ago
#32

"Akunard," pleads Kend, "please don't leave me here all alone!" Where's my violin? Nothing like a musical refrain for a firmer tug on the heartstrings! (tsk)

Whenever I take on these conservative guys' arguments, they pack up their toys and leave, or have a hissy fit, or both. Gee, I must be doing something right! - AIW

Kend's picture
Kend 9 years 9 weeks ago
#33

Be careful AIW, you don't want to chase all the conservatives away who is going to pay for everything .

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 9 years 9 weeks ago
#34

Gimmie a break. Hey, you're not even a yankee! Take your money back to Canada. We don't need your friggin' money. - AIW

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#35
Quote Kend:DAnne UPS and FedEx didnt over promise on there retirement fund like the USPS. There is a huge difference. If the USPS runs out of money the tax payer gets stuck with the bill.

Kend ~???????????????????????

Are you trying to imply that the USPS caused this debacle of their own accord?? You're actually blaming this law on the USPS and not Congress and Bush who wrote it, voted for it, and signed it into law. The last time I looked Congress and The President didn't work for the Post Office. Good thing too, they're way too incompetent for that challenge.

akunard ~ Please, don't leave us alone with Kend!

Kend's picture
Kend 9 years 9 weeks ago
#36

DAnne. The USPS and it's employees where under funding there pensions all the government did was asked them to catch up. If they don't they will run out of funds. Seems reasonable to me. Please correct me if I am wrong. I was wrong once before.

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#37
Quote Kend:Be careful AIW, you don't want to chase all the conservatives away who is going to pay for everything .

Kend ~ The same people who pay for everything right now--everybody else.

The problem with the "CONservative" mentality is that they think that because they pay some tax that they pay all tax. The reality is that the working class people pay most of the taxes and carry most of the burden. The truly wealthy are really parasites that aren't really needed. The Bush tax cuts showed that we don't need you. If you don't want to contribute your fair share we are better off without you. Adios Compadre!

Good luck finding another nation that will put up with that nonsense and provide you with the resources you have here. Let the Exodus begin!

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#38
Quote Kend:DAnne. The USPS and it's employees where under funding there pensions all the government did was asked them to catch up. If they don't they will run out of funds. Seems reasonable to me. Please correct me if I am wrong. I was wrong once before.

Kend ~ Yes, you are wrong. The USPS was under funding their pensions? Underfunding pensions for employees that aren't even born yet let alone hired or retired? The "idea" that the USPS was in trouble and "running out of funds", was a myth. The postal service has been solvent for two centuries. You kindly explain to me exactly how with today's automations and computer systems that make the task of the USPS so much easier and efficient that suddenly they are going to have financial problems that they never had before? It was a lie. 70 years of future pensions is a ridiculous OVER funding that is totally unnecessary and ridiculous. Postal employees pay into their own pensions when they work. That is how pensions work. You pay as you go. You don't try to pay down a debt for something that doesn't yet exist. Do you?

This notion was obviously hatched by commercial lobbyists working for the competitors of the USPS who knew that they could never compete with the government and wanted to sabotage them from within so that they could monopolize mail and drive the prices as high as they want without having to worry about competing with cheap government mail. Realize that within the last two centuries the only element in the mail industry that has changed for the USPS is that now they have commercial competition. That competition knows that it can't compete fairly; so, it wants to buy out the service. It is a scheme that is blatantly obvious to the average American. Corporations here buy out their competition all the time. Its nothing new to want to get rid of competition and buy their customers away from them. It's a far easier way to get new customers than it is to win them over. It's good for business but bad for the customers because now they have lost their freedom of choice and are dependent on the new supplier. The new owner usually regains his loses by raising prices and laying people off. That is why it is really bad for employees too. This is the real goal behind this nonsense. The end game leaves the winner owning everything and the customers and workers screwed. Just one of the sad tragedies of unchecked Capitalism. You should know all this.

Kend's picture
Kend 9 years 9 weeks ago
#39

"The only element in the mail industry that has changed for the USPS is that now they have commercial competition" DAnne , I guess you haven't heard about the internet. the need for the post office is slowly fading away. within 20 years everyone will receive all there mail via email which leaves only packages. We have plently of companies who do that very well.

USPS pensions are funded by both the employee and the tax payer. The one thing I could never under stand is how the employee can contribute only $300 or $400 dollars a month for 25 years and then receive $3,000 or $4,000 a month for 30 years. The math doesn't and up So that's why the pensions have to be topped up or they will not be able to keep up with there obligations

I would strongly suggest if you have a pension plan to check into it. Most of them are in big trouble. You my want to get what you can Out now.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 9 years 9 weeks ago
#40

Baloney, Kend. The internet will never replace the post office. Packages are not the only kind of mail the internet isn't suited for. Some people - like me - refuse to pay their bills online, because of online piracy and security issues. As Marc has explained, workers pay into their own pensions, and the post office is no exception. Last I heard, the post office was entirely self sufficient, needing no taxpayer or government funding to remain solvent. As always, your numbers are not adding up. - AIW

Kend's picture
Kend 9 years 9 weeks ago
#41

Alice you will be one of the few who would like to still use it. Your right though what do I know. Maybe most people would rather pay for there mail to take days to get to its destination. Instead of clicking a button and for free it takes a few seconds for it to get there At no cost or subsidy from the tax payer at all. Do you use a cell phone or a couple of cans and a string. Sorry that was mean But couldn't Help it I have been getting beat up here lately.

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#42
Quote Aliceinwonderland:Baloney, Kend. The internet will never replace the post office.
Quote Kend:USPS pensions are funded by both the employee and the tax payer. The one thing I could never under stand is how the employee can contribute only $300 or $400 dollars a month for 25 years and then receive $3,000 or $4,000 a month for 30 years. The math doesn't and up So that's why the pensions have to be topped up or they will not be able to keep up with there obligations
Quote Kend:Alice you will be one of the few who would like to still use it. Your right though what do I know. Maybe most people would rather pay for there mail to take days to get to its destination. Instead of clicking a button and for free it takes a few seconds for it to get there At no cost or subsidy from the tax payer at all.

Kend ~ As long as people live there will be a need for the post office. There are signed documents that have to be delivered over distance. There are packages that have to be delivered at the smallest fees possible. Who in their right mind is going to pay a $5.00 minimum fee to buy a $3.50 product? There are also written statements that people have to have physical copies of to pay their taxes and protect their assets. There are court summons and legal documents that need a post mark to be legal. Let's not forget about absantee ballots. They are sure to be the wave of the future. There are also forms that have to be filled out and mailed in with signatures, signiture gaurantees, and notarys. Some things can't be done over the internet. Though internet signature work in some cases nothing will ever replace the real thing.

Anytime you order anything over the internet you get a choice as to how it is delivered. If you have the time to wait the USPS is, and will always be, the cheapest; in fact, most shippers offer it for free; which, makes it invaluable to both the seller and the buyer. The USPS is critical in keeping many web retailers business lucrative.

As far as the ridiculous statement that Postal workers receive $4K/mo pension payments I know for a fact that you pulled that figure out of your {pants}. FYI depending on whether or not the employee was hired before or after 1984 they would be enrolled in the CSRS or the FERS. That means that with at least 27 years a worker can retire at age 58 with either $1,215/mo or a maximum of $2,216/mo. There is a big difference on trying to live on that fixed income then the ridiculous amount you've mentioned. The fact of the matter is that the lower amount is the new amount. That's right older employees get much more money than newer ones for doing the same work and now, contributing more. Sounds fair? How would you like to work most of your life and retire on about $303/week?

http://work.chron.com/much-postal-workers-paid-retire-22117.html

The fact of the matter is, Kend that ever since the Administration of Ronald Wilson (666) Reagan almost every aspect of our society has been robbed by Reaganomics and has not kept up to the cost of living or even kept up with production. Reaganomics has ruined this nation and that man will always be remembered as an anti-Christ in the future.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 9 years 9 weeks ago
#43

Kend- if you don't like getting beat up, stop making these ridiculous assertions based on nothing but your imagination. And have a lovely weekend. - AIW

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 9 years 9 weeks ago
#44

DAnneMarc & Aliceinwonderland: Great points! And I agree...you are beating the pants off of kend and akunard. No wonder they are beginning to retreat with their tails between their legs.

By the way, DAnneMarc, it's off topic...but when did that ever stop me ;-}...I thought of you today when I watched one of
Abby Martin's Breaking the Set show re-aired from Oct 2 (which I missed then). She interviewed Joe Rogan who has a very popular podcast called the Joe Rogan Experience and they discuss everything from DMT to Psychedelics to God.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8JgSuaFh5M

Kend's picture
Kend 9 years 9 weeks ago
#45

I am not going anywhere. I am a old hockey player we are used to getting beat up but we never quit. Sorry. I bet if you all got together you could get Thom or Lousie to kick me off.

Ok there will be some need for the postal service but nothing like it is today. Once or twice a week delivery maybe.

Reagon again. Why don't you blame Lincoln or Washington well your at it. That was decades ago. get over it. There was plenty of time for your guys to fix whatever it is that you think Reagon did.

Ok DAnne I over stepped on the pension thing but I was trying to make a point. I think alot of people are getting sucked in by the investors that manage these pensions. The only one who is going to retire well is them.

I hope I never have to retire on $300 a week. I guess thats why I am the only one in my company working today. If you get your way I will have to give up everything I worked for so we can all retire the same.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 9 years 9 weeks ago
#46

Nobody's going to get you kicked off this blog, Kend. Your posts are not bullying or offensive, nor are they abusive in any way. But they are annoying.

What seems glaringly obvious to Marc, Mark S, Palin and me is that when you don't know an answer or fact, you simply make one up. Sorry pal, but that just doesn't fly on this blog! "Okay DAnne", you concede; "I overstepped on the pension thing but I was trying to make a point." Kend, I hate breaking this to ya, but when you're making up "facts" your point is bogus.

If you want to get away with that ficticious bull crap, get yourself booked for an "interview" on FOX. I'm sure Rupert Murdock would love how you twist and mutilate facts to make a bogus point. Hell, they do it all the time! It's their trademark! But if you continue playing that game here, you won't get away with it. All you'll be proving is that Kend is a glutton for punishment. Because if I'm not here to call you out on your B$ and pop your balloon, there's several other regulars on this blog who are more than happy to do the honors, any one of whom could be available at any given time. So have at it, Kend, if you like getting beat up on Thom's blog!

And on another note, you don't know doodily-do about the U.S. Postal Service. You either are completely clueless about the source of their financial crisis or you choose to ignore it. Should that vital part of our commons get caught in the clutches of private profiteers, it'll be the same disaster we've had with healthcare: prohibitively high prices, resulting in too many struggling too hard to access a simple necessity once accessible to all. Given the hogwash gushing through your posts of late, it's unlikely any of us will be seeking your prediction as to the outcome of this charade, or how many days of the week you think USPS will be open for business twenty years from now.

Reaganomics got us into this mess, Kend. Keep denying it all you want if it makes you happy. You can trivialize it with comments like: "Why don't you blame Lincoln or Washington" and "That was decades ago. Get over it." Yeah Kend, we'll get over it... but not 'til after Reagan's policies are nullified, at least enough to begin repairing the damage they caused to our infrastructure, our environment, our economy, our safety net... yep, ole Reagan de-regulated and privatized us right into the ditch!

It's got nothing remotely to do with Washington or Lincoln. If they've witnessed this freak show from the "other side", those guys are probably writhing in their graves right now. Because when capitalism is unregulated, it grows malignant; then there's no democracy anymore. And then you've got corporate fascism to deal with. That's when we've lost our commons. It's when everything we depend on just to function has been privatized, held as ransom, while these klepto-turds pick our pockets with impunity.

If you're so certain we're trying to rip you off for everything you've worked for, what's keeping you here anyway? You can always take your business back to Canada. No skin off my nose. Life will continue here, with or without your regal presence. - Aliceinwonderland

Kend's picture
Kend 9 years 9 weeks ago
#47

Alice, sorry for the miss understanding but I am in Canada And so is my business. I do have business interests down there Though. As well as a little condo in Scottsdale To get out of the cold. So you have nothing to worry.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 9 years 9 weeks ago
#48

"You have nothing to worry," says Kend. Nor do you! Even if we "get our way"...

Speaking of which... since you're Canadian and across the border from us, what's it to ya if we "get our way" anyway; huh? - AIW

DAnneMarc's picture
DAnneMarc 9 years 9 weeks ago
#49

Quote Kend:Ok there will be some need for the postal service but nothing like it is today. Once or twice a week delivery maybe.

Kend ~ I'm not sure if I'd agree with that little time. Cheap package delivery is still going to be needed by the ever increasing online industry. However, I'm willing to concede that one.

Quote Kend:Ok DAnne I over stepped on the pension thing but I was trying to make a point. I think alot of people are getting sucked in by the investors that manage these pensions. The only one who is going to retire well is them.

Kend ~ Now you've just raised an excellent point. Pension managers, especially in the private sector, have gotten away literally with murder. Pension money is an easy target. Yet, in order to properly meet the needs of the retiring communities it needs to be invested and grown as well as protected from crooks. I agree that pension management is a critical factor that needs a big overhaul in the future. No doubt the best way to begin is to prosecute those who have embezzled pension money to the full extent of the law and recoup those losses. Without justice, any modifications would simply be more B$.

Quote Kend:I hope I never have to retire on $300 a week. I guess thats why I am the only one in my company working today. If you get your way I will have to give up everything I worked for so we can all retire the same.

Kend ~ If I get my way? What are you talking about? I don't want you to give up anything? I just want you to do the smart thing for yourself and your employees. Take their pensions and invest it in something that is both conservative in risk and high in return. You can't let it just sit around dormant. Dormant money is lost money. In essence, let the pension money itself work now so that the retiree's don't have to work later. If you can't find any mutual or other stock that you trust, why don't you consider reinvesting the money into your own companies stock and put the shares in your employees names. Not only a great way to provide for your employees; but, then you generate more enthusiasm for the company then ever before. Now your workers have a vested interests in the companies success. In fact, with one stroke you generate the same vested interest in your company that you have. Your workers aren't just working for you anymore, now they are working for themselves and their future. The harder they work, the better and sooner they can retire. According to Dr. Ravi Batra, that is what the future of the economy is going to look like anyway; so, why not be ahead of your time, share your load, and insure that you keep everything that is yours? Such a move would provide you with the extra capital to better run and expand your business; and make even more money for yourself as well. Smart move if you ask me.

Quote Kend:Sorry. I bet if you all got together you could get Thom or Lousie to kick me off.

Kend ~ Don't even think about it. This blog wouldn't be as interesting without you. You actually bring out the best in us and make the blog more provocative. I wouldn't be surprised if you were sponsored by Thom himself just to stir up the pot. Keep up the 'good' work.

Quote Kend:Reagon again. Why don't you blame Lincoln or Washington well your at it. That was decades ago. get over it. There was plenty of time for your guys to fix whatever it is that you think Reagon did.

Kend ~ I could go on for hours about why we cannot ignore that particular elephant in the room; however Aliceinwonderland already did an excellent job at doing just that so I will refer you to her post. By the way, Reagon is spelt Reagan. If you are going to argue that he has no more responsible for the current situation than Lincoln or Washington the least you can do to show you know what you are talking about is to spell his name right.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 9 years 9 weeks ago
#50

Marc to Kend: "If you are going to argue that he [Reagan] is no more responsible for the current situation than Lincoln or Washington the least you can do to show you know what you are talking about is to spell his name right." Sorry Marc, but it'll take a heap more than that to convince me this guy knows what he's talking about. - AIW

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