Ya call that an "investment"?

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    Two months ago. The silly ass left.. SAL… for short. Wants to slap a $250 fine on “unwanted” land filling, yellow pages. Umm ok… I see poster for some creature for sustainable harbor. .. ok there too. But NOW.. I get more crap from the US Postal System then the yellow pages ever dreamed possible. Everyday.. 900,000 postal employees, run over 100,000 carbon belching delivery trucks, burning hundreds of milllions of gallons of fuel every year.. don’t forget the tractor trailers and airplanes. What do they deliver? JUNK mail.. destined for the landfill. Tons and tons and tons of it. Sooo unwanted and unneeded is the USPS…it is losing BILLIONS… upon billions. Ready to step up to this plate taxpayer? The internet has killed off 1st class mail. Improving or keeping the USPS is like going out and buying 100,000 saddles for the Pony Express. The telegraph did in the Pony Express,. We know that vehicle traffic is the singular largest polluter of our air, our Puget Sound… but we focus in on the once a year delivery of one phone book. SAL feel good, accomplish nothing rhetoric. If we are going to invest… no more GM’s, no more Chryslers, no more concrete roads.. that is old, inefficient technology. Want to be “green”… invest in the finest, highest capacity telephony technology. Make commute to work as archaic as tracking rabbits for dinner. That has substance. In all these storms, hurricanes, ice and snow storms… the number one repetitive cost? replacing downed utility lines… over and over and over again. Invest in trenching… with easy access to fiber optics in waterproof concrete casings… want road maintenance costs lowered? Decrease use. Ahhhh… but the city gets to charge for line use. A revenue source! It might have to cut road and transportation staff… I don’t want any more investments to preserve the status quo of 100 year old technology and the workers that maintain it. We should make it a goal to decrease the major polluters… a good first step..? retire USPS… if third class junk mail is your cup of tea? Fine… let independent private businesses deliver it… like my morning paper… if they go bankrupt…I don’t have to pay for it. Why are we continually throwing billions into a system (USPS) that is so obsolete it can’t meet it’s own costs… even with user fees. Either do that …. or charge third class the rates needed to cover the costs… stop subsidizing junk mail… and get on to advancing our economy instead of forever imbedding ourselves into century old infrastructure.. I never want to hear, this is a job for the government. Anyone doubt FedEx or UPS will get a second day letter to virtually anywhere? fact is… USPS contracts out to those very same private companies. This is one that should get off the teat of federal subsidy. We have no shortage of cheaper, faster ways to send information.



    wow. you want to blame the post office for bulk mailers?

    get a grip and do your homework. the courts have repeatedly ruled that the USPS is obligated to carry that crap. people have tried to sue to stop it, so far to no avail.

    i agree in spirit: we, the people, shouldn’t have to pay to annoy ourselves. but you’re going to put a lot of paper spammers out of work if you succeed.

    you might want to investigate what the DMA (direct marketing association) has to say on the matter, too. they’re particularly hostile to people who try to stop bulk mail. you don’t want to be business-hostile, do you, kootch?

    by the way, the post office is not only fully funded – unless republicans try to kill it, like they do to every other good thing that our government does – it is also mandated by the constitution.

    look it up.



    It’s a good thing certain kinds of people can’t refrain from namecalling, it makes it immediately apparent which opinions to disregard outright.



    The City Council actually did try to do to junk mail what it did to phone books. As mentioned above, junk mail has a much stronger lobby.

    “Do not mail” registry? Seattle City Council vote tomorrow

    -Signed, your friendly neighborhood “delivered without trucks or trees” news source



    Kootchman: The Far Right Whackos (FRW for short) don’t want to shut down the post office, they want to privatize it. In other words, they want to hand it off to friends who will make billions while paying employees minimum wage and no benefits. A small part of the profits will go to the Republican party.



    The single biggest consumer of fossil fuels in the U.S. is our military, which the petroleum industry uses as a free private security force.

    Your outrage, as usual, is thoroughly misplaced, Kotchy-koo.



    You can always request that your local Post Office not deliver junk mail and they are supposed to honor your request. It might take them a few tries before they get it right, but if everybody requested that the PO not deliver junk mail to their homes then the DMA couldn’t say Jack.



    In a way Kootch is right. The post office is a money pit just waiting to fail. It is already a subsidised business with private taxpayer dollars. Otherwise you wouldn’t need stamps. The problem is as technology developed with e-mail, internet and more effecting methods of spam(e-mail) coupled with cheaper alternatives to ship bigger items (Fed Ex, UPS) the post office never changed anything. Instead they just raised prices on taxpayers.

    So, maybe in some respects getting rid of some expenses at the post office is a good thing. Only in America can a business run itself into debt and not able to survive yet still promise amazing benefits. They should be making adjustments to expenses first if that can’t pay the bills. If they have the ability to raise taxes on private citizens without going through the IRS then it is basically an extension of government. Taxing without going through congress.



    Kootchman, as others have pointed out, you can remove yourself from junk mail lists already. Nothing new there.

    Secondly, the post office does not receive, nor is it asking for, federal funds. It is not subsidized by the US taxpayer.

    What it does need is relief from the requirement imposed by Congress that the USPS must pre-fund retiree medical benefits, a requirement that no other federal agency must meet. (Nor do most private companies) It’s another example of politicians creating an impossible situation whereby they mandate a policy that will undermine a program or agency, and then using the results of that policy to say “See, (insert appropriate title here) doesn’t work!”


    lucky chick

    Wow. I think all I have to add is: “impressive rant” since I can’t be bothered to parse it.

    (Yeah, I know, I didn’t add anything of value to the conversation, but at least my grammar is correct.)



    lucky chick… we don’t expect you to add much of value… so in that regard, you met expectations. In this forum..given the informality of it, only the snarky look at grammer and spelling. It’s a blog… it’s not a dissertation. Curious though… why did you bother? Uh, yea redblack… the courts have ruled because the USPS has sued to maintain the monopoly..and who defended the USPS? your government. You are aware that FedEx, UPS have fee restrictions? They MUST charge more than USPS….

    Dawson..they burn a pea pot off fuel… but, I am willing to pay for the cost…there is no private alternative to an Abrams main battle tank, or the sweet sound of a Super Cobra on station. And factually you are wrong… both private vehicles AND the domestic airline industry suck uo more fuel than the US Military. I don’t know where you get your facts.. “The U.S. military burns more than 10.6 million gallons of gasoline each and every day.” compared to: “The largest consumer of gasoline is the United States, which used an average of 386 million US gallons (1.46 gigalitres) of gasoline each day” (2005 data) It would appear the US military consumes 3% of the total daily gas output… USPS delivery vehicles…228,000…run 6 days per week… assuming they use 10 gallons per day (my wild ass guess) is still a hefty waste…and that does NOT cover tractor trailers and air transport..

    elikapedia… USPS is of the same ilk as Fannie Mae… a GSE… government sponsored enterprise. Conferred with monopoly powers..and I would prefer FedEx and UPS pay the fuel road, and property taxes..which USPS does not. Fannie Mae and Freddie are also GSE’s…. care to guess how much is going to cost us? AmTrak is a GSE… This is my favorite… your mail COULD actually be cheaper…but in order to maintain their price monopoly…FedEx and others have to charge a minimum rate… they can’t pass along their efficiencies… they are prohibited from doing so.. “FedEx transports Express, Priority and First Class Mail, and earned postal revenues of $1.373 billion (corrected) in fiscal 2010″… you are forced to pay more to prop up a GSE… that smells like a tax to me…



    the US postal service isn’t meant to be a business any more than our hiway system.

    it is a service.. one that is still necessary for those with limited incomes or those without fixed addresses…

    and it must be at least somewhat competitive since several major retailers send our packages via USPS..

    the best news.. the USPS actually delivers unlike FED EX drivers who run a notice to the front door instead of attempting to deliver the package. I have caught them leaving my gate empty handed too many times :(



    yes kootch… you have found America’s flaw…the USPS. Get rid of mail service and we can RULE the world!!!!!!!! hahahahahahaha!!!!!



    Kootch, I guess we’ll just have to disagree on the semantics. To me, an example of a federal subsidy would be things like essential air service, where airlines are paid with tax dollars to continue to serve a community, or farm subsidies that are paid to farmers not to grow crops. A GSE is a different animal. If you don’t use the post office, you don’t pay anything for it. It’s not subsidized by tax dollars.



    It is meant to be a business… read the mandate from Congress…it is required to generate sufficient revenues as to NOT require federal funds. It is also, not to make a profit. FedEx carries USPS first class mail now. I am sure that if they assumed a new postal class that did not require a signature… they would be delighted to drop it off. Both FedEx and UPS have releases from me..they drop off signature required stuff all the time… AND… the sender can check the box “no signature” required. Bottom line? They can’t generate enough revenue to meet their mandate.. Jeez the federal government is doing to USPS just as it did to me.. fund the pension funds, fully, and on time..so we don’t have to pick up a busted pension system a la the Pension Guaranty Fund… redblack… god I wish I knew wehre you got your information,… The direct mail industry wants me to pick up their tab for mailing junk? Hell no… I never support a business model that requires federal subsidy… dude I am consistant across the board… the fed should no more support USPS than GM, or Creed … if you don’t have a viable plan, product, or service… you die. And as a constitutional scholar you suck… the constitution “authorizes” the federal government to run a postal and toll road system.. it also authorizes congress to declare, and issue letters of marque and reprisal… it doesn’t mean they have to do any of them… it is an authorization…not a mandate to do any of the above.. And DHG?..you don’t know Jack.. my regular UPS guy….. FedEx and UPS are HEAVILY unionized companies… very unionized…. very well paid… they are making billions already… efficiently though and not asking Congress to get them a few billions in loans every year to run. for heavens sakes FedEx already carries most of the first class mail for the USPS.. elkipedia… the reason so many businesses use 2 day or priority mail? FedEx and UPS carry it! ..just think how much more expensive it when BOTH fedEx AND USPS take cut? A subsidy is whenever the federal government tries to control prices… grain or mail… and history tells us over and over again… price controls do not work. And if they go broke? I am not obliged to pick up the tab…. I am perfectly fine with union organizing… as long as it is not public employees. I would prefer 10 billion go to public schools… so our kids have a shot at creating the 22nd century … not tinkering with the obsolete 20th century business models that would, and should die off…. left to you guys… Alexander Graham Bell would be censored, and the Pony Express would ride again.



    and it occurs to me that that is your fundamental flaw, kootch: whenever you talk about government, the first thing out of your mouth/keyboard is “business.”

    we’re trying to have a society here, and not everything hinges on investors making money. heck, most of things government does or is supposed to do aren’t related to money in any way. in fact, i’d wager that most people don’t give a rat’s hindquarters about business.

    our government is there to do many things, and very few of them are expected – let alone required – to make profits for someone. and a lot of us would rather perfect that idea than hand it off to someone who can get rich by breaking it.

    so stop conflating paying taxes and fees to government with paying bills to comcast. you are not entitled to value-added service for that money. it’s simply the cost of living in a society where we do things together, collectively, when we face challenges.

    and now, a quote from the constitution:

    The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

    To borrow money on the credit of the United States;

    To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes;

    To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States;

    To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures;

    To provide for the Punishment of counterfeiting the Securities and current Coin of the United States;

    To establish Post Offices and Post Roads;

    To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;

    To constitute Tribunals inferior to the supreme Court;

    To define and punish Piracies and Felonies committed on the high Seas, and Offenses against the Law of Nations;

    To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;

    To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;

    To provide and maintain a Navy;

    To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces;

    To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;

    To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;

    To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings; And

    To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.

    article 1, section 8



    Great idea… Let’s dump the postal service and put 574,000 more people on the unemployment rolls. Then let’s cut unemployment benefits like many of the Republicans want and let private enterprise figure out how to hire more workers to pick up the slack. And no, dammit, we’re not going to spend any money training seniors and the disabled how to use the Internet to pay their bills. Let them figure it out themselves. If we do all that, things will be so much better…




    you missed the point…

    my local fed ex driver walks past the guard dogs sign on the gate with a note in their hand.. not a package.

    they make no attempt to deliver at all unless i catch them on their way out the gate and demand my package.

    my mailman not only brings the package to the porch.. he brings my mail with it.

    I get much better service from the post office at competitive rates…

    as for it being a business…

    aren’t you the guy who keeps telling us that business is in the business to make money?

    The USPS is a service that was designed to pay for itself until the congress in it’s infinite wisdom changed the accounting rules in a blatant attempt to privatize this service.

    All of that protect the taxpayer rhetoric isn’t consistent with your dump public unions and bust public pensions rant…

    and for the final giggle…

    “Hell no… I never support a business model that requires federal subsidy..”

    so the key word here is requires?

    Because i am pretty sure you put gas in your tank

    and eat food from federally supported farms

    and do business with federally supported banks




    The accounting rules were changed to make USPS fully fund their pension system. The attempt was to not have the tax payer holding the bag with a grossly underfunded pension liability. I do put gas in my tank. The federal government does not subsidize the oil industry… they do…offer various tax incentives to encourage things like domestic oil production…the very things you call “subsidies”… do I like it… no… The feds LOVE to control the banks system… if they had kept their paws off…. and let good old asset valuations and credit risk determine loans .. well, this whole damn implosion would never have happened. I hardly consider the member banks paying for FDIC insurance a subsidy But it is a government mandate. They have my checking accounts, that’s about it… and the mortgage papers. They do loan member banks… but not for free …banks pay for the privilege… and all of those are required. Federal crop insurance? premiums paid… price supports? perfect…they inflate the cost of food… nope … they entire crop subsidy, land use allocation, land bank..all federal programs to keep the price and cost of goods high and shielded from supply and demand .holdovers from interventions that never disappear.. the federal land bank was initiated after the great dust bowl…to let land go fallow, and allow cover crops (grass moslty) restore a root system to hold top soil after the ten year drought that precipitated the event… but like all government programs…they never quietly sunset…the go forever and ever…getting bigger and bigger…the land bank was established when the average farms size was less than 200 acres… a far cry from the corporate farming of today….. I would be deeeelighted to see those 100,000 Department of ag employees trimmed by about 85%… and confined to food safety inspections…which they fail miserably at. These are government interventions in the private market…regulations.. I pay em cause I have to… not cause I want to. USPS is still supposed to pay for itself… it is supposed to charge rates that cover its costs… it has failed to do so for 8 of the last ten years… time to dump it. If it can’t pay for itself … why have it? Your FesEx person must hate you… mine leaves biscuits for the dogs…and leaves everything I have given him the release to leave. What are you doing to that poor person?



    what exactly per gallon do we pay for the federal highway trust? Who is subsidizing who?



    Well rebdlack… of everything the government does is not related to money…what are they doing with all those checks I send every quarter? It;s all about money… this may offend your sensibilities…but… from surplus comes largesse… yea… that is the way it works… and so far…in the history of humankind…no other system has created enough surplus as has capitalism… and while not even near perfect… it does a fair job. The eyes of envy have been with us since the begining… but… the ones “with” have always found ways to outsmart the fingers in the cookie jar folks. In the ebb and flow…. this time the left overreached… and they are going to have to retreat a bit. If the day comes when the cookie takers are in the majority … it is getting close… simple enough.. the cookie jar gets taken away and hidden in a safer place.


    2 Much Whine

    Kootch, be careful. I’ve now copied my favorite sentence you have ever written and one of the few we agree upon. “It’s a blog… it’s not a dissertation.” Might come back to bite you one of these days.



    The U.S. Military is the single largest user of fossil fuels in the world.



    and here:


    and here:


    I could go on, but you obviously know how to use Google because of your knowledge of military equipment. Knowledge I doubt you gained SERVING YOUR COUNTRY.



    Quote from 19 above… “The federal government does not subsidize the oil industry…”

    Thanks for the hysterical laughter you generated by this statement. I needed a good laugh this morning. Google “Federal Subsidies for Oil Companies.” The 92(yes, 92) pages of reference material that comes up begs to differ with you. I’ll select just one quote from an article in The Christian Science Monitor, taken from the first page of Google references:

    “Finding and tallying federal energy subsidies, however, can be fiendishly difficult. Doug Koplow of the energy-consulting firm Earth Track in Cambridge, Mass., is considered one of the nation’s leading experts on the topic.

    He estimates that the US spent between $49 billion and $100 billion on energy subsidies in 2007 – numbers Mr. Koplow says are still accurate if adjusted for inflation. The handouts cover a broad range of activities, from federal loan guarantees and funding for energy research and development to special tax exemptions.

    Here is how the subsidies break down by category, adjusted for inflation, according to Koplow.

    Oil and gas: $41 billion:”




    TDe…which goes to show that length of posts does not equate knowledge of subject posting about :->

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