Fox' Bolling Blames Union Contracts for the U.S. Postal Service's Financial Woes
Leave it to Fox to do the bidding of the House Republicans and their allies, who are doing their best to try to destroy the U.S. Postal Service. Never mind the damage that would be done to the elderly who rely on the mail to receive their prescriptions, small businesses and Americans who live in rural areas with shoddy Internet service and the thousands of Americans who earn a decent middle class living from being employed there.
No, in the view of the majority of the panel members on this Saturday's edition of Cashin' In, that's a terrible thing that those people are gainfully employed and heaven forbid have union representation and it's all their fault that the Post Office is in financial straights. And par for the course with these "business block" shows of theirs, the only voice of reason was the one, poor, lonely outnumbered "liberal" Christian Dorsey, who did actually tell the truth about one of the problems -- which is that Congress has "forced the USPS to pre-fund 75 years’ worth of pensions for its employees, a requirement not made of any other public or private institution."
Instead we were treated to the rest of them screaming that we need to privatize the Postal Service, lying and telling the audience that other industries would provide the same services less expensively and ignoring, other than Dorsey again, that they have a mandate to serve all Americans which those other companies are not bound by. It really just boiled down to another shameful exercise in union bashing, which is what these Saturday shows on Fox do week, after week, after week, or at least when they're not attacking the poor and demonizing liberals in general.
Here's more on what's really going on, counter to the nonsense being pushed in the clip above: Do You Want To Live Without The Postal Service?:
Recently, the U.S. Postal Service announced that - starting August 1, 2013 - they would eliminate Saturday service for all items except packages.
While this action may technically be unconstitutional, the Postmaster General is only pushing Congress to act after nearly 15 years of obstruction. In fact, USPS is taking this action as part of a broader cost-saving measure to save the postal service from extinction.
Extreme measures like this wouldn't be necessary if Republicans (and a few corporatist Democrats) in Congress would remove the insane burden they placed on the Postal service with the Orwellian-named 'Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act' - an action that forced the postal service to pre-fund 75 years’ worth of pensions and health care coverage for retirees at a 100% rate, a burden no other public or private institution in America has to match.
If you think any private company anywhere in the world could do what the Postal Service does, for anywhere near the cost they charge, you need to watch this quick movie from Esquire's Jesse Lichtenstein.
The U.S. Postal Service announced on Wednesday that it will discontinue first class Saturday mail delivery, marking another milestone in the decline of the once-ubiquitous government service. But it isn’t a switch to online mail that’s causing the postal demise — it’s Congress.
Under the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act, Congress has for years forced the USPS to pre-fund 75 years’ worth of pensions for its employees, a requirement not made of any other public or private institution. That means that the Postal Service is footing the bill for employees it hasn’t even hired yet.
The USPS doesn’t actually receive money from the government, but still needs Congressional approval to make any changes to its structure. An analysis in July showed that the USPS, without its pension requirement, would have a $1.5 billion surplus. Read on...
House Republicans are aiming to dismantle the postal service, but their plans hinge on a few tall tales they've sold the American public.
September 22, 2011 | In nine months in office, the new Republican House majority has amply proven the emptiness of its early promises: to create jobs, run government more like a business and respect small-town America. But there’s no better object lesson in Republicans’ real priorities than their bid to end the Postal Service as we know it.
The United States Postal Service (USPS) transports hundreds of billions of pieces of mail a year to addresses everywhere in the United States. It does so with no government subsidies – if you don’t use the postal service, you don’t pay for it. Now, like the US economy, the USPS faces a crisis brought on by Republican policies, which Republicans insist only more right-wing policies can solve. USPS has informed Congress that it can’t pay $5.5 billion due to a federal retiree health fund September 30, raising prospects of default. Republicans, led by Rep. Darrell Issa, are demanding layoffs and service cuts. Here’s how the Republican plan – burning the Postal Service to save it – contradicts the stories Republicans tell us about themselves.
Much more there as well. The article is well over a year old, but it's still relevant to what's going on now.