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Comanche
06-03-2009, 09:45 AM
Yesterday, the U.S. Postal Service placed THREE letters, addressed to someone else located at a different address, in my mailbox . This is certainly not a unique situation. So, the U.S. government is now the majority owner of General Motors? Doesn't sound good.

Cannibal
06-03-2009, 09:51 AM
Your brilliant commentary and observations are thought provoking.

Simplex3
06-03-2009, 09:53 AM
Depends on your definition of 'efficient'. If lining the pockets of campaign donors and voting blocks is your goal then they are frighteningly efficient.

Comanche
06-03-2009, 09:54 AM
Your brilliant commentary and observations are thought provoking.

Or maybe just "provoking"? ;)

Mr. Flopnuts
06-03-2009, 09:54 AM
So you're saying when I go to buy a GM I'm going to end up with a Hyundai?

Comanche
06-03-2009, 09:55 AM
Depends on your definition of 'efficient'. If lining the pockets of campaign donors and voting blocks is your goal then they are frighteningly efficient.

So true.

HonestChieffan
06-03-2009, 09:57 AM
Well look at the bright side. You may go in for a sore throat someday and get a new hip and a car in the process. All free.

Comanche
06-03-2009, 09:58 AM
So you're saying when I go to buy a GM I'm going to end up with a Hyundai?

Something really bothers me about the Chinese purchasing Hummer. No one else seems very concerned about it? Hummer came from a heritage as a military vehicle and now the Chinese, the suppliers of N. Korea, are now its owners? :huh:

HonestChieffan
06-03-2009, 10:01 AM
Something really bothers me about the Chinese purchasing Hummer. No one else seems very concerned about it? Hummer came from a heritage as a military vehicle and now the Chinese, the suppliers of N. Korea, are now its owners? :huh:

Carefull. I was called a retard in thee thread I started on this issue. You don't want to be called a retard do you?

Comanche
06-03-2009, 10:01 AM
Well look at the bright side. You may go in for a sore throat someday and get a new hip and a car in the process. All free.

More like go in for a sore throat and get a colonoscopathy. . .and a clown car.

Comanche
06-03-2009, 10:02 AM
Carefull. I was called a retard in thee thread I started on this issue. You don't want to be called a retard do you?

That's better than many things I have been called in the past. :D

Simplex3
06-03-2009, 10:02 AM
So you're saying when I go to buy a GM I'm going to end up with a Hyundai?

If you're lucky you would.

Jenson71
06-03-2009, 10:09 AM
The post office is not operated by Uncle Sam.

And, anyway, the post office is reasonably efficient.

HonestChieffan
06-03-2009, 10:11 AM
If you're lucky you would.

Good point. Maybe Kia will hook up with their North Korean brothers and give us a lil Nuc powered car.

And cut a deal with the Chineese and we can have a HummerNuc that cooks its own rice and fishguts.

Comanche
06-03-2009, 10:19 AM
The post office is not operated by Uncle Sam.


The USPS is legally defined as an "independent establishment of the executive branch of the Government of the United States," (39 U.S.C. § 201) as it is wholly owned by the government and controlled by the Presidential appointees and the Postmaster General. en.wikipedia

And, anyway, the post office is reasonably efficient.

I suppose you base this statement on the recent postage rate increase? Please.

Comanche
06-03-2009, 10:23 AM
their North Korean brothers and give us a lil Nuc powered car.

They will possibly test a "protype" today that could potentially reach Alaska! No doubt Hillary will give them a "stern" talking to after the launch.

HonestChieffan
06-03-2009, 10:23 AM
The post office is not operated by Uncle Sam.

And, anyway, the post office is reasonably efficient.

I hate this. I really do.

I agree with you.

I never fail to marvel that I can drop a letter in a mailbox anywhere in the US and feel relatively certain in 4 days or less it will arive in a mailbox on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere Montana and it cost less than a cup of ice at Arrowhead.

Comanche
06-03-2009, 10:28 AM
I never fail to marvel that I can drop a letter in a mailbox anywhere in the US and feel relatively certain in 4 days or less it will arive in a mailbox on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere Montana and it cost less than a cup of ice at Arrowhead.

True, I guess, except for the three unlucky bastards who had their mail placed in my mailbox (don't worry, I did forward them).

HonestChieffan
06-03-2009, 10:29 AM
you get brownie points for being a swell guy.

jiveturkey
06-03-2009, 11:17 AM
I have found the USPS to be more affordable and just as reliable as UPS and FedEx.

whatsmynameagain
06-03-2009, 12:11 PM
Yesterday, the U.S. Postal Service placed THREE letters, addressed to someone else located at a different address, in my mailbox . This is certainly not a unique situation. So, the U.S. government is now the majority owner of General Motors? Doesn't sound good.

you talk a lot but dont say much. the usps is great besides the overpaid uppers. i ship hundreds of packages with usps- insured, international, etc... only lost 3 packages out of over 2500. id say thats damn near flawless.
Posted via Mobile Device

Mr. Flopnuts
06-03-2009, 12:23 PM
More like go in for a sore throat and get a colonoscopathy. . .and a clown car.

Introducing Government Motors newest attraction. A car that will reduce greenhouse gases while optimizing your MPG. The new Clownway!

http://co2calculator.files.wordpress.com/2008/10/segway.jpg

Calcountry
06-03-2009, 12:50 PM
So you're saying when I go to buy a GM I'm going to end up with a Hyundai?No, but you WILL stand a very good chance of getting a first class piece of shit.

Calcountry
06-03-2009, 12:52 PM
I have found the USPS to be more affordable and just as reliable as UPS and FedEx.I have found EFT's and ACH's to be much more timely and cost effective. Oh, and carbon neutral.

Not that that matters a whole heck of a lot.

Silock
06-03-2009, 01:42 PM
The USPS is legally defined as an "independent establishment of the executive branch of the Government of the United States," (39 U.S.C. § 201) as it is wholly owned by the government and controlled by the Presidential appointees and the Postmaster General. en.wikipedia



I suppose you base this statement on the recent postage rate increase? Please.

While you're looking that up, you should also note that they do not use ANY tax dollars whatsoever.

Simplex3
06-03-2009, 01:46 PM
While you're looking that up, you should also note that they do not use ANY tax dollars whatsoever.

...except when they're in the red, which is pretty much all the time.

http://www.wkyt.com/issuesandanswers/headlines/44489792.html
Post Office Has $1.9 Billion Loss In Quarter
Posted: 5:42 PM May 6, 2009
Last Updated: 5:42 PM May 6, 2009

WASHINGTON (AP) - The post office was $1.9 billion in the red
for the second quarter of the fiscal year and continues to face the
possibility of running out of money before year's end.

The agency cited the recession and movement of mail to
electronic communications in announcing the loss on Wednesday.

Postal rates go up on Monday, but the increase - to 44 cents for
first-class mail - is unlikely to cover the entire shortfall.

The second quarter loss brings the total loss for the fiscal
year - which began Oct. 1 - to $2.3 billion.

"We are aggressively reducing work hours and other costs to
limit losses, preserve cash and improve productivity," said Joseph
Corbett, chief financial officer and executive vice president.

Work hours have been cut by 58 million hours so far this year,
the equivalent of a reduction of 33,000 full-time employees, the
agency said.

In addition, the post office has been seeking savings by
consolidating excess capacity in mail processing and transportation
networks, realigning carrier routes, halting construction of new
postal facilities, freezing officer and executive salaries at 2008
pay levels and reducing travel budgets.

Mail volume in the second quarter totaled 43.8 billion pieces,
down 7.5 billion pieces, or 14.7 percent, compared with a year ago.

In an effort to increase mail volume the Postal Service has
recently developed incentive programs for high-volume mailers.

Overall in the second-quarter - January through March - the post
office had revenue of $16.9 billion, a decrease of nearly $2
billion, or 10.5 percent, from the same period last year, and
expenses of $18.8 billion, a reduction of $782 million, or 4.0
percent, from the second quarter of last year.

The postage increase was limited to 2 cents on first class mail
because under the law the change in rates cannot exceed the amount
of inflation that occurred the year before.
---
On the Net
U.S. Postal Service: http://www.usps.com

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

kc rush
06-03-2009, 01:52 PM
I do wonder if you are Ford or some other manufacturer if you are now at an extreme disadvantage for government fleet sales.

Sully
06-03-2009, 02:01 PM
They run a heck of a bicycling team!

Silock
06-03-2009, 02:18 PM
...except when they're in the red, which is pretty much all the time.

http://www.wkyt.com/issuesandanswers/headlines/44489792.html

Except they're still not *consuming* tax dollars. They can, and do, take out loans from the Treasury, but they pay them back (and yes, they have been profitable recently).

The Postal Reorganization Act was supposed to allow for more flexibility in rate adjustments, but it still doesn't allow enough.

And it isn't as though the only delivery service in the world that's hurting is the USPS. They're ALL hurting.

Simplex3
06-03-2009, 02:30 PM
If they take loans from the tax pool when they're in the red how does that equate to never using tax dollars?

HonestChieffan
06-03-2009, 02:36 PM
If they take loans from the tax pool when they're in the red how does that equate to never using tax dollars?

Smoke meet Mirror?

Bush did it so its ok.

They are part of Nafta.

Silock
06-03-2009, 02:54 PM
If they take loans from the tax pool when they're in the red how does that equate to never using tax dollars?

They're not pulling a GM, here. They DO pay the money back.

I'm sure that if they were allowed to legally borrow from any place OTHER than the Treasury, they would do so.

***SPRAYER
06-03-2009, 02:55 PM
http://www.conservativebuys.com/images/because150sq.png

Stewie
06-03-2009, 02:57 PM
Something really bothers me about the Chinese purchasing Hummer. No one else seems very concerned about it? Hummer came from a heritage as a military vehicle and now the Chinese, the suppliers of N. Korea, are now its owners? :huh:

I think the military vehicle is different in many ways from the Hummer sold to the masses.

Comanche
06-03-2009, 03:31 PM
you talk a lot but dont say much

I don't "talk" at all on this site. . .I type! I do have a ton of insightful comments to make, however. I must have pizzed off some postal workers who are defending the ridiculous institution. Frequent rate increases are evidence enough that the postal service is inefficient. The conversion to electronic e-mail/texting & etc. is additional evidence of the public's displeasure with "snail mail". Competing private companies would not be able to survive if the postal service was so good. Without the first class monopoly, it is doubtful the postal service would survive at all.

Comanche
06-03-2009, 03:33 PM
Introducing Government Motors newest attraction. A car that will reduce greenhouse gases while optimizing your MPG. The new Clownway!

http://co2calculator.files.wordpress.com/2008/10/segway.jpg

Great post! :clap:

Comanche
06-03-2009, 03:38 PM
While you're looking that.

Ummm, looking up what pray-tell?

QUOTE=Silock;5814084] they do not use ANY tax dollars whatsoever.[/QUOTE]

And that proves the postal service is an efficient/effective company? Don't think so. Check the frequent rate increases.

Comanche
06-03-2009, 03:42 PM
I do wonder if you are Ford or some other manufacturer if you are now at an extreme disadvantage for government fleet sales.

I wonder if the cops will still want Crown Vics? I imagine they will. Ford may be at a disadvantage on fleet sales but it sure must feel great to keep Uncle Sam out of its board room.

Jenson71
06-03-2009, 03:42 PM
I don't "talk" at all on this site. . .I type! I do have a ton of insightful comments to make, however. I must have pizzed off some postal workers who are defending the ridiculous institution. Frequent rate increases are evidence enough that the postal service is inefficient.

Yearly rate increases are not evidence of inefficiency. Unless you define efficiency here as involving the maintenance of a permanent rate, which I doubt anyone could agree with.

If you have insightful comments, please make them. The sooner the better.

Comanche
06-03-2009, 03:48 PM
I think the military vehicle is different in many ways from the Hummer sold to the masses.

No doubt . . .the main point was the heritage. Besides, throughout history industrial plants have been converted to military manufacturing and vice- versa.

Comanche
06-03-2009, 03:55 PM
Yearly rate increases are not evidence of inefficiency.

Yes they are. The size of the increases are an additional factor. I am still not ignoring the ineptitude of the postal service.

If you have insightful comments, please make them. The sooner the better.

If you don't stop responding in a condescending manner, I will respond in kind. You are rude, trite, annoying, pointless and irrelevant. Step up your game partner.

Radar Chief
06-03-2009, 03:55 PM
I think the military vehicle is different in many ways from the Hummer sold to the masses.

Yes. The Hummer H-3 is it’s own vehicle, though it uses the GM I-5 and 5.7L V-8 engines, but the H-2 is basically a Tahoe with a much heavier body and a somewhat trick electrically selectable locker in the solid rear axle.
I mentioned the solid rear axle because the original military Hummer, often referred to as the H-1, is an independently suspended vehicle front and rear.

Silock
06-03-2009, 04:01 PM
Ummm, looking up what pray-tell?

QUOTE=Silock;5814084] they do not use ANY tax dollars whatsoever.

And that proves the postal service is an efficient/effective company? Don't think so. Check the frequent rate increases.[/QUOTE]

Are you suggesting that UPS and FedEx have never increased their rates?

Jenson71
06-03-2009, 04:05 PM
Yes they are. The size of the increases are an additional factor. I am still not ignoring the ineptitude of the postal service.

And what of FedEx and UPS rate increases? Are these signs of inefficiency? Your standards demand yes.

I treat everyone here justly, that is, according to what is justified of them. If you act like an inconsiderate moron, you will be treated as such.

Comanche
06-03-2009, 04:09 PM
Yes. The Hummer H-3 is it’s own vehicle, though it uses the GM I-5 and 5.7L V-8 engines, but the H-2 is basically a Tahoe with a much heavier body and a somewhat trick electrically selectable locker in the solid rear axle.
I mentioned the solid rear axle because the original military Hummer, often referred to as the H-1, is an independently suspended vehicle front and rear.

Props for the mechanical info. You killed that. :clap:

Comanche
06-03-2009, 04:10 PM
you will be treated as such.

Your behavior falls far short of "emulating" Pope John Paul II.

http://www.ruggedelegantliving.com/a/images/Pope.John.Paul.II.2005.jpg

Jenson71
06-03-2009, 04:13 PM
There is no reason for quotation marks.

Comanche
06-03-2009, 04:25 PM
There is no reason for quotation marks.

Big Oil, Big Mail
Just as General Motors has in effect subsidized Big Oil by continuing to build gas-guzzlers in recent years, so has the USPS continued to subsidize Big Mail by shaping its operations to encourage what it now calls, revealingly, “standard mail”—that is, advertising junk mail. Most American citizens are blissfully unaware of the degree to which USPS subsidizes U.S. businesses by means of the fees it collects from ordinary postal customers. For example, if you wish to mail someone a large envelope weighing three ounces, you’ll pay $1.17 in postage. A business can bulk-mail a three-ounce catalog of the same size for as little as $0.14.

USPS management claims that “standard” mail makes lots of money, that the USPS makes a better margin delivering a “standard” mail package for $0.14 than it does a first-class one for $1.17. Why? Supposedly because of efficiencies produced by bulk-mail, machinable, zip-plus-four and zip-plus-nine standardization schemes. If you look at the revenue stream from advertising mail, it does look impressive, and it has been growing (for perverse reasons we’ll come to in a minute). But when you juxtapose next to that revenue stream the enormous transactional costs of maintaining a riotously complex rate structure to service it, you quickly reach a different conclusion: Standard mail, the costs of which are also generally tax-deductible for businesses, does not make money. It amounts to a corporate subsidy, which helps to explain why Congress, insofar as its members understand this, typically doesn’t object to the status quo. After all, these corporations have been known to contribute to electoral campaigns.

Actually, it’s worse than that. Not only are pennies shaved off the postage affixed to grandma’s letters routed directly into the pockets of direct-mail marketers, some 20 percent of direct-mail advertising volume is comprised of credit card, mortgage and other financial offers. So yes, the USPS has contributed in a subtle yet very real way to our burst economic bubble.

Because first-class mail volume has been falling off increasingly over the past dozen or so years, thanks largely to the Internet, “standard” mail operations have become proportionately more important to the USPS. So it has gone to some lengths to cater to and to increase this aspect of its business. The lower the postage for bulk advertising mail, the more of it the USPS receives—more than 100 billion pieces per year—and the more profits businesses have to then plow back into even greater print circulation. This speaks to common sense: When you tax something, you get less of it, and when you subsidize something, you get more of it. That is part of the reason the USPS now handles less first-class mail, because it is in effect taxed, and more junk mail, because it is subsidized.

There are basically three problems with all this, at least one of which has now become obvious. While the standard mail revenue stream has helped keep the USPS apparently solvent, it has amounted to a huge gamble that the increases in volume, paid for again in part by out-sized increases in other rates (first-class, parcel post, international mail), would go on essentially forever. This amounted to a Ponzi scheme, and that scheme has now collapsed. Driven by Internet cannibalization and especially the economic downturn, mail volumes have been plummeting off a cliff at a rate several times faster than the USPS’s own experts predicted in their worst-case scenarios. Advertising mail, most critically, is down more than 20 percent compared to last year.

The second problem, not so obvious, is that for every additional piece of standard mail the USPS has handled, it has actually lost money thanks to the enormous transactional costs it incurs. This is not mainly because its business model has driven away first-class mail customers (though of course it has done that, too); it is because there is a point at which the efficiencies of economies of scale tip over into the inefficiencies of gigantism. The USPS has long since tipped. It has a vast, fixed-cost infrastructure that includes a massive footprint of 38,000 buildings. Its bloated payroll of 800,000 employees—third only to the Department of Defense and Wal-Mart—makes up a whopping 80 percent of its operating expenses (UPS and FedEx spend between 37 and 51 percent). The USPS has tried to pare down its payroll, but the power of the unions has made that very difficult. From senior management down to unionized letter carriers, USPS employees are grossly overpaid compared to any government or private enterprise of its kind, foreign or domestic. This is largely why no matter how much labor-saving technology the USPS buys to service “standard” mail, it seems to have little impact on its labor costs.

It’s almost impossible to say how much of this infrastructure is devoted to subsidized standard mail. It is clear, however, that a disproportionate percentage of the USPS’s well-compensated middle managers are responsible for servicing the highly complex and machine-dependent USPS standard mail operations. One can also get a barn-side idea of the breakdown by noting that personal letters are now down to just 4 percent of the mail stream.

The third, even less obvious problem concerns environmental costs. The USPS transportation fleet of around a quarter of a million vehicles consumes prodigious amounts of gasoline and spews tons of emissions into the air. It is vastly more resource-intensive, too, to print, carry, deliver and dispose of paper-and-ink messages than electronic ones. Ah, but here’s the rub: The health and environmental costs of all that pollution is not paid by the USPS, anymore than pollution in general is paid for by the companies that produce it. It has been said many times before, but it is still worth repeating: In market economies, profits tend to be private and liabilities public, according to the hallowed logic of collective action. And that is why all responsible governments in such economies make corporations pay taxes to fund, in part, the clean up of the messes they make. But the USPS is not really a corporation and it has never paid any taxes, so it hasn’t contributed a nickel to cleaning up the environmental messes for which it is responsible. Had it been forced to do so, it would have gone broke years ago.

It’s an open question whether, if U.S. taxpayers really knew how much they subsidize the junk mail that annoys them daily, they would feel better or worse about its cumulative environmental impact. One would like to think that every American with at least half a brain and a mailbox either already is or will soon be an environmentalist. But, then, one would like to think many things.

http://www.the-american-interest.com/article.cfm?piece=614

Comanche
06-03-2009, 04:26 PM
There is no reason for quotation marks.

Nothing New
On Capitol Hill right now numbers being tossed around regarding the USPS’s unfunded liabilities are in the Bernie Madoff zone, already more than $50 billion in total. Clearly, the USPS is sinking fast. But before it began to sink fast, it had been sinking slowly for years. The reason, again, has been the growing unsustainability of its basic business model in the face of structural technological change.

The problem came to head about four years ago and led to the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act (PAEA) of December 2006. Its basic theme was: “We expect you to start acting like a real business; learn to make a profit.” The USPS was supposed to do this by becoming more competitive in the services for which it did not enjoy a legal monopoly—like sending packages, for example, and express mail services—by using its legal monopoly to better effect, and finally by developing new services and hence new revenue streams. The 2006 Act also enhanced the power and changed the name of the Postal Rate Commission to the Postal Regulatory Commission; and it set limits on postage price increases, capping them to match the Consumer Price Index, but allowing for annual adjustments instead of the prior limitation of adjustments only every three years.

In addition and more importantly, the Act reduced the USPS’s unfunded pension obligations by transferring $30 billion of it to the Federal employee pension program. In return for this largesse, it required the USPS to make scheduled payments for the next ten years to reduce, just partly, the more than $50 billion of unfunded postal workers’ pension-fund obligations still remaining. This amounted to a bailout: $30 billion worth of relief on the USPS’s pension obligations, plus the USPS was given a $15 billion line of credit with the Federal Fund Bank to draw upon in case of emergency.

Postmaster General John Potter hailed the PAEA as a victory for postal workers, but he underplayed the potential threats posed by Internet cannibalization, environmental-sustainability pressures, energy costs and a possible economic downturn. In 2008, this year and most likely next as well, all of these threats have materialized with devastating financial consequences. Potter wasn’t the only one who didn’t see this coming (though that is part of his job). Despite three postage-rate hikes over the past three years, few in Congress were paying much attention. After all, compared to the breathtaking losses being racked up by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, who had time to think about the postal service?

Now the problem can no longer be ignored. With the economy collapsed, direct-marketing response rates in a nosedive and the entire Ponzi scheme now blown up, the day of reckoning is here. Many experts predict that the USPS will far exceed a $3 billion loss this year and that even with all the cost-cutting measures the USPS has already put in motion, a $6–12 billion loss is more likely. Any loss of over $7.8 billion, which now seems probable, will exceed the $15 billion maximum Federal loan ceiling from the 2006 Act, leaving the USPS unable to meet its financial obligations. The USPS is about to go broke. If it does the phrase “going postal” may acquire a whole new meaning, describing something that literally vanishes.

http://www.the-american-interest.com/article.cfm?piece=614

Comanche
06-03-2009, 04:36 PM
There is no reason for quotation marks.

Using Quotation Marks

The primary function of quotation marks is to set off and represent exact language (either spoken or written) that has come from somebody else.

http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/577/01/

Jenson71
06-03-2009, 07:09 PM
I understand what they are. I said there's no reason for them.

Saul Good
06-03-2009, 07:52 PM
The USPS is a monopoly that is losing billions, and it's being called efficient. I am amazed every time I read something like this.

banyon
06-03-2009, 07:54 PM
Using Quotation Marks

The primary function of quotation marks is to set off and represent exact language (either spoken or written) that has come from somebody else.

http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/577/01/

Who else's language were you using?

Saul Good
06-03-2009, 07:55 PM
Can we adress semicolons when you are done with this riveting discussion?

banyon
06-03-2009, 07:57 PM
Can we adress semicolons when you are done with this riveting discussion?

Sure, what did you want to say about them? Too indecisive? Not fair as the bastard stepchild of two other punctuation marks?

Saul Good
06-03-2009, 07:59 PM
I say that you should either come with the colon or don't come at all. Don't bring that weak semicolon action around the CP. Save it for the Mane.

Pants
06-03-2009, 08:13 PM
Colonoscopathy

roffelcopter

Saul Good
06-03-2009, 08:34 PM
And there it is; this thread has been "hijacked"

HonestChieffan
06-04-2009, 12:17 PM
High Colonic

***SPRAYER
06-04-2009, 01:54 PM
http://michellemalkin.cachefly.net/michellemalkin.com/wp/wp-content/uploads/2009/06/govmo.jpg