The US Postal Service, under attack from a manufactured crisis designed to force its privatization, needs a new source of funding to survive. Postal banking could fill that need.
War has indeed become perpetual and peace no longer even a fleeting wish nor a distant memory. We have become habituated to the rumblings of war and the steady drum beat of propaganda about war’s necessity and the noble motives that inspire it. We will close hospitals. We will close schools. We will close libraries and museums. We will sell off our parklands and water supply. People will sleep on the streets and go hungry. The war machine will go on.
Investigative reporter Greg Palast is usually pretty good at peering behind the rhetoric and seeing what is really going on. But in tearing into Senator Elizabeth Warren’s support of postal financial services, he has done a serious disservice to the underdogs – both the underbanked and the US Postal Service itself.
The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is the nation’s second largest civilian employer after WalMart. Although successfully self-funded throughout its long history, it is currently struggling to stay afloat. This is not, as sometimes asserted, because it has been made obsolete by the Internet. In fact the post office has gotten more business from Internet orders than it has lost to electronic email. What has pushed the USPS into insolvency is an oppressive 2006 congressional mandate that it prefund healthcare for its workers 75 years into the future. No other entity, public or private, has the burden of funding multiple generations of employees who have not yet even been born.
by Joseph Piette
August 11, 2013
Postal and community activists struggling to save the U.S. Postal Service from privatization need to know who they are fighting against.
The Postal Service was established in 1775. It needed government administration as it was so important for communication.
Even in today’s age of Internet communication, 20 percent of the U.S. population lack Internet access and depend on the post office for bills, bank statements and letters. (Gallup World, Aug. 4) The Postal Service is still essential for the $1.3-trillion mailing industry.
by Dave Welch
August 1, 2013
Dave Welch is a retired letter carrier, delegate to the San Francisco Labor Council and organizer with Save the People’s Post Office, a community and labor coalition fighting to stop the closure of the main post office in Berkeley, Calif., where a “direct defense” of the city’s historic facility has been underway since July 27. Here, he reports on actions across the U.S. to stop the closing of post offices and layoffs of postal workers.
April 16, 2013
A PLAN to eliminate Saturday mail delivery and slash postal jobs has been canceled for now, according to an April 10 statement from the U.S. Postal Service Board of Governors.
Specifically, the board said Congress required the post office to continue 6-day delivery in a continuing budget resolution passed last month. The Government Accountability Office had also issued an opinion that Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe didn’t have the legal right to unilaterally end Saturday delivery.
nextleftnotes·Mar 24, 2013
NEW YORK — March 24, 2013. Labor leaders, community activists, and politicians stood together outside Manhattan’s Farley post office to protest planned closures of neighborhood post offices, the end of six day mail delivery, and layoffs of postal workers.
by Jamie Partridge
March 11, 2013
Jamie Partridge, a retired letter carrier and organizer with Communities and Postal Workers United, reports on the call for protests against attacks on postal jobs.
THE NATIONAL Association of Letter Carriers (NALC), representing 200,000 city postal carriers, has called for a national day of action to save six-day mail delivery on March 24. People everywhere are encouraged to show up and demonstrate to the postmaster general, Congress and the president that Americans are ready to defend postal jobs and service.
The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) today continued its tradition under the leadership of Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe of shooting itself in the foot. The only question that remains is: When will the madness end? By ending Saturday letter delivery in August 2013, as the USPS has proposed, millions of customers who take advantage of its services will be harmed, mail service will be slowed, and the USPS’s current death spiral will deepen.
PressTVGlobalNews·Dec 23, 2012
Six days starving to save six-day delivery. That’s the message of a group of former and current postal workers who went on an emergency hunger strike on the National Mall as well as walking through the halls of Congress and to the White House in Washington DC.
On July 27, 2012, the National Association of Letter Carriers adopted a resolution at their National Convention in Minneapolis to investigate establishing a postal banking system. The resolution noted that expanding postal services and developing new sources of revenue are important to the effort to save the public Post Office and preserve living-wage jobs; that many countries have a successful history of postal banking, including Germany, France, Italy, Japan, and the United States itself; and that postal banks could serve the 9 million people who don’t have bank accounts and the 21 million who use usurious check cashers, giving low-income people access to a safe banking system. “A USPS bank would offer a ‘public option’ for banking,” concluded the resolution, “providing basic checking and savings – and no complex financial wheeling and dealing.”
Condemns Postmaster General Donahoe’s Calls for Service Cuts, Post Office Closings, Job Cuts
For More Information Contact:
Ralph Nader or Jeff Musto
Consumer Advocate Ralph Nader today called for Postmaster General Donahoe’s resignation. Several consumer non-profits joined him in this letter, including Public Citizen, Consumer Action, the Gray Panthers, and Essential Information. The Postmaster General Donahoe is “actively presiding over the demise of one of our country’s greatest founding institutions,” said Nader.
Neither rain nor sleet nor snow may have stopped the Pony Express, but the nation’s oldest and second largest employer is now under attack. Claiming the Postal Service is bankrupt, critics are pushing legislation that would defuse the postal crisis by breaking the backs of the postal workers’ unions and mandating widespread layoffs. But the “crisis” is an artificial one, created by Congress itself.
In 2006, Congress passed the Postal Accountability Enhancement Act (PAEA), which forced the USPS to put aside billions of dollars to pay for the health benefits of employees, many of whom hadn’t even been hired yet. Continue reading