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Orzag: Privatize the Post Office
Newsmax ^ | Wednesday, 25 Jul 2012 06:27 AM | Peter Orzag

Posted on 07/25/2012 8:07:13 AM PDT by Olog-hai

Those who believe in the usefulness of government must be vigilant about making sure all its activities are vital ones, since the unnecessary ones undermine public confidence. With this in mind, Congress should now privatize the U.S. Postal Service.

Further evidence for why this should happen came last week, when the Postal Service announced that it would be unable to meet billions of dollars in payments that are coming due in August and September for future retiree health benefits. Privatization is not always the best way to improve efficiency, but the problems facing the Postal Service will be difficult to address if it remains within the government, and there is no longer any sound reason for it not to go private.

The Postal Service faces three problems: First, Congress has not given it the permission it needs to cut costs and raise revenue—and lawmakers seem unable to approve even modest reforms. Second, its market has been declining for years, as e-mail, electronic payment and other alternatives to traditional mail have grown. Third, the economic slump has caused a further drop-off in mail volumes. …

… Labor compensation accounts for about 80 percent of Postal Service costs—a much higher share than at FedEx or UPS. No one would argue that, in the midst of a weak labor market, a large share of the Postal Service workforce should immediately be shed.

But it is also true that the agency will one day need far fewer workers. Private ownership could facilitate more generous buyout packages and other measures to ease the transition to a leaner workforce. …

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Government; History; Politics

1 posted on 07/25/2012 8:07:18 AM PDT by Olog-hai
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To: Olog-hai

” Privatize the Post Office”

Dump ‘Em !!!!!

2 posted on 07/25/2012 8:12:33 AM PDT by gunnyg ("A Constitution changed from Freedom, can never be restored; Liberty, once lost, is lost forever...)
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To: Olog-hai

Orzag was a key Obama adviser.
The unions are already peeved at Barry for not getting them Card Check.
The unions and Orzag are in direct opposition on this.
Barry is counting on union support to drag him over the finish line.

Pass the popcorn, THIS one is gonna get GOOD!

3 posted on 07/25/2012 8:15:39 AM PDT by Buckeye McFrog
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To: Olog-hai

Would that not violate the Postal Clause of the Constitution?

4 posted on 07/25/2012 8:16:34 AM PDT by dfwgator (FUJR (not you, Jim))
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To: Olog-hai

I remember in my basic business class that government bureaucracy could do everything but was the least efficient method. The United States Postal Service, run by cOngress. made some decisions that adversely affected the Post office that they put UPS and FEDX into business. If the fools in congress had not manipulated they system Fedex and UPS profits would still be in the USPS system.

5 posted on 07/25/2012 8:17:04 AM PDT by mountainlion (I am voting for Sarah after getting screwed again by the DC Thugs.)
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To: Olog-hai

The unions misrepresent USPS’ money problem as Congress created, and therefore Congress can fix with a stroke of a magic wand. Such a simple thing. Close our eyes and imagine $6 billion fixed.

6 posted on 07/25/2012 8:20:42 AM PDT by BAW (“If you’ve got a business – you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”- Pres Obama)
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To: dfwgator

What in particular? All that Congress is charged with doing is establishing post offices and post roads. Nothing beyond that can be regarded as unconstitutional, I would say, including privatization. (Not sure about unionization of postal labor, i.e. as a public-sector operation.)

7 posted on 07/25/2012 8:22:20 AM PDT by Olog-hai
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To: Olog-hai

Privatize the schools first!

8 posted on 07/25/2012 8:24:00 AM PDT by precisionshootist
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To: dfwgator


9 posted on 07/25/2012 8:25:43 AM PDT by csmusaret (I will give Obama credit for one thing- he is living proof that familiarity breeds contempt.)
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To: gunnyg

Yup...the PO needs a competitor. Everybody will be the better for it.

America’s unique contribution to philosophy, education, science, politics, economics and social psychology, etc. is ‘Pragmatism’. (”...usefulness, workability, and practicality of ideas, policies, and proposals are the criteria of their merit...”)

At some point in our development as a nation, we have forgotten this very sound thinking.

Capitalism works.

10 posted on 07/25/2012 8:41:56 AM PDT by SMARTY ("The man who has no inner-life is a slave to his surroundings. "Henri Frederic Amiel)
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OK, I shoulda said...Dump ‘Em AND Flush ‘Em !!!!!

No, no violins, no song and dance...just *%$+# GONE !!!!!

Semper Fed up !!!!!

11 posted on 07/25/2012 8:51:33 AM PDT by gunnyg ("A Constitution changed from Freedom, can never be restored; Liberty, once lost, is lost forever...)
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To: precisionshootist
Aw, they can’t do that. One of the Ten Planks in the Communist Manifesto after all . . . specifically, Plank #10:
Free education for all children in public schools. Abolition of children’s factory labor in its present form. Combination of education with industrial production, etc, etc.
Funny how they really don’t oppose child labor in there, yes? and want to squeeze “industrial production” out of schoolchildren while ostensibly in the classroom . . . ?
12 posted on 07/25/2012 9:00:42 AM PDT by Olog-hai
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To: Olog-hai
Article I, Section 8, Clause 7 of the United States Constitution empowers Congress "To establish Post Offices and post roads"

This is one thing that the federal Government should do. Primarily, IMHO, as an example of how government should not be allowed to do something that private companies can do.

13 posted on 07/25/2012 9:17:01 AM PDT by FatherofFive (Islam is evil and must be eradicated)
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To: mountainlion
Neither FedEx nor UPS existed until quite recently (as postal history goes). They were never part of the Postal Service.

However, there was a Seattle delivery company and a bunch of Post Office Department (a different agency) employees BOUGHT IT and turned it into UPS.

These same employees had run the old Post Office Department parcel post system and their proposal for modernization was turned down by Congress.

So, you have the right territory, but the wrong conclusion.

FedEx is a different matter entirely and it too has a USPS connection ~ there Fred Smith wrote a paper about a new air based parcel service ~ his roommate, or a close classmate, was the son of the Postmaster of Gary, Indiana. He, himself had earlier submitted an idea for a new air based parcel service for USPS consideration. He was turned down.

It's not like the idea for an air based parcel system just popped into existence ~ it was a logical outcome of advances in air freight need.

Neither UPS nor FedEx are as efficient as USPS ~ which is why they have HIGHER PRICES for moving identical parcels the same distance. However, USPS has to serve EVERYWHERE and UPS and FedEx only serve a limited area they feel they can service.

14 posted on 07/25/2012 9:59:07 AM PDT by muawiyah
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To: Buckeye McFrog

You’re correct.
Orszag (aka rug boy) was one of the original Baraqqis.

Don’t understand this one at all.

15 posted on 07/25/2012 10:05:29 AM PDT by nascarnation
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To: Olog-hai

Actually, we *can’t* as a nation privatize the Post Office. But this does not mean that we cannot substantially change its purpose.

In a unique period in history, the US bent over backwards to create one of the oldest treaties that still exist, involving almost every nation in the world. Today it would be impossible to recreate such a treaty.

“Prior to the establishment of the Universal Postal Union, each country had to prepare a separate postal treaty with other nations it wished to carry international mail to or from. To simplify the complexity of this system, the United States called for an International Postal Congress in 1863.”

But the end result is that all international first class mail that flows into and out of the US must be through the Post Office.

Yet this is just a small part of what the Post Office does, and much of the rest is up for grabs, as it were.

One suggestion is to incrementally change the PO, so that it becomes a true “secure mail”. By this I mean they would discontinue carrying all but first class, registered, certified, and to-and-from government mail. Including most packages.

The financial hit of doing this could be made up for to some extent by making the PO a “bonded courier” for shipping valuable items, like cash, gold, silver, gemstones, artworks, etc., in a high security manner.

Such items would have to be assessed before shipment, and be put in sealed containers with 100% insurance. It would move by armored cars and other secure shipping.

Likewise, the PO could be used as process servers, and any number of other high value services.

16 posted on 07/25/2012 10:06:26 AM PDT by yefragetuwrabrumuy
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