The U.S. Postal "Service": How It Works in the 21st Century

"Do you know that all great spurts in...progress came just after some unorthodox ideas or exotic impressions had penetrated into a closed system?" -- Anatol Rapoport
As a matter of fact, I do in fact not know that.

And I ain't talkin' no philosophic obfuscation (wittingly or not).

As far as the exception proves the rule, when the exceptions aren't found but instead leap at the throat of logic, with rapier ready, as has been for years, I rejoice in wisdom.

As have others.

Posted by NotQuiteunBuckley at July 5, 2011 11:40 PM

You recycle that stuff? We just throw it away. Should I feel guilty or something?

Posted by Jewel at July 6, 2011 12:10 AM

I’m reminded about the story Reagan used to tell about the Soviet factory that processed iron ingots into pellets which were loaded onto rail cars and shipped to a Soviet foundry where they were melted down and forged into ingots. The ingots were then loaded onto rail cars and shipped to the Soviet factory that processed iron ingots into pellets.

Full employment, don’t you see?

Posted by gedaliya at July 6, 2011 4:03 AM

Jewel: I do not recycle that shit either. I wipe my ass with it to make sure it doesn't have a prayer in hell of ever seen the light of day again.

As a matter of fact, I do not recycle anything or think green. I believe I did enough for mankind by not propagating.

Posted by Cilla Mitchell, Galveston Texas at July 6, 2011 4:49 AM

Cilla, If all conservatives had at least five children and raised them right we'd own the world in two generations.

I too scoff at the recycling hysteria and don't do it on principle. I tell the envirotards that it's All going to be recycled in 4.5 billion years anyhow-by the Sun.

Posted by John Hinds at July 6, 2011 6:14 AM

Cilla, you wipe your ass with that stuff? We just throw ours away.

I had four girls, John. I'm conservative. I pray you are right.

Posted by Jewel at July 6, 2011 8:37 AM

I was raised in Seattle during the 50s and 60s where my father was a "career" letter carrier. Each election he would rave at the Republicans (they're for the rich) and vote for the Dems who always promissed big benefits and raises. I remember sitting through his lectures about how unfair it was that the police and the firemen made more money than him.

I loved him dearly but even when I was very young I could see through the greed of the regressives and the covetous power they hold over men who are not necessarily stupid, but unwise and uneducated.

The love of money truly is the root of all evil.

Posted by Denny at July 6, 2011 10:29 AM

I would be fine if they cut deliveries to three days a week. All I ever get is bills and junk mail.

Posted by Fat Man at July 6, 2011 1:43 PM

I once brought up this issue of all the adverts jammed into my mailbox every day with the carrier and he said that it is the sacred privilege of these companies to do this. The USPS must oblige them.

So I said, "If I want to put flyers advertising packets of laundry lint into each mailbox at the post office every day for the next 30 years, I would have that same privilege?" He said "Yes, you would".

"Is there any way for me to place a stop order to have the USPS stop putting this crap in my mailbox?" Nope.

This is a good example of what happens when a population turns to a craven desire for placid, worry-free comfort above all else. They will hand over their rights and remain oblivious to the trespasses against them.

Posted by Hannon at July 6, 2011 7:08 PM

Denny, You are a cocksucker. And I mean that in the most offensive way possible.

Posted by Chris K at July 7, 2011 8:16 AM

You do not have the faintest idea of what my relationship with my father was, how he changed, and what I think of him today.

A venomous presuming snake such as you needs a cage and a handler.

Posted by Denny at July 7, 2011 3:04 PM

"Why must there always be fightin' and killin'? Why cain't thar be peace in the valley?"

Posted by vanderleun at July 7, 2011 4:31 PM

Money is no more at the root of all evil than poverty ever was. Love of someone else's money might be.

Posted by james wilson at July 8, 2011 6:55 AM

I always thought evil was the root of all evil. Maybe I'm wrong...

Posted by Former Lurker at February 6, 2013 8:20 AM

Sounds like Denny's Dad was just envious of the pay of the police and firemen. So it's really envy.

Come to think of it, most of the Leftist critique of pretty much everything comes down to envy.

Don't see that changing anytime soon.

Posted by Eric Blair at February 6, 2013 9:16 AM

Well, this is dandy news!

I was never that bothered by the "junk" mail, the colorful and compelling 100% recyclable advertising supplements, hell, a number of them I even solicited through purchases from the various establishments which sent them.

What I am bothered by is that my First Class Mail and Priority Mail subsidized the mailing of these colorful and compelling 100% recyclable advertising supplements.

In my view, the colorful and compelling 100% recyclable advertising supplements should subsidize the mailing of First Class and Priority Mail letters, not the other way around.

With this change, we will receive all the same amount of colorful and compelling 100% recyclable advertising supplements but over the course of five days not six.

If colorful and compelling 100% recyclable advertising supplements were mailed at the First Class or Priority Mail rate, there would be fewer duplicates sent, the companies would be less promiscuous in the sending and we'd still, perhaps, have six-day a week delivery.

Gee, if five-day-a-week delivery of colorful and compelling 100% recyclable advertising supplements and First Class and Priority Mail will make the United States Postal Service more profitable (or simply, profitable) then why stop there, how 'bout three-day-a-week delivery as Fat Man suggested, M-W-F?

If not three days, how 'bout two-days-a-week delivery, T-Th ?

Shoot, if five days are better than six, and three days are better than five, and if two days are better than three, and if one day (W!) would be better than two, than three, than five, than six... well, let me introduce you to the ultimate in USPS service:

RAINBOW-UNICORN-OPTIMUM-PRIME delivery which will occur no days per week and make the USPS fabulously profitable, so profitable it will balance America's budget, eliminate the deficit, and erase the debt. Money for all and your colorful and compelling 100% recyclable advertising supplements for free !

God, I love America.


Anyone notice how under this administration everything that was good is turning to carp... everything. ...Remember NASA ?

Over at NASA they have already implemented the RAINBOW-UNICORN-OPTIMUM-PRIME delivery method to put astronauts into space.

When we're good, we're really good.

Posted by Sandy Daze at February 6, 2013 10:34 AM

My uncle used a motorcycle to deliver the mail in Appalachian West Virginia way back when. I expect it was faster than a mule.

Posted by chuck at February 6, 2013 1:35 PM

Gerard, wasteful and annoying as it is, I believe that the junk mail is not causing the Post office to lose money. As I understand it, the Post Office finds it to be a profitable revenue source.

Posted by pst314 at February 6, 2013 5:10 PM

Call me lucky. My mailbox is right next to the recycle bin. I don't even take most of the stool in the house.

Posted by glenn at February 7, 2013 9:44 AM

The only good things that comes in our U.S. Mail are checks from our customers, greeting cards, and oil and gas royalty checks. (My publisher deposits royalty money directly to my bank account.)

The USPS can go to one-day-per-week delivery for all I care. Bring back Mr. ZIP and the Post Office Department!

Posted by B Lewis at February 7, 2013 10:38 AM

"At last I'm getting Saturday's off!"

Tsk tsk. I'm sure the SAAA (Society for the Abolition of the Aberrant Apostrophe) isn't going to approve. :)

But yes, post offices everywhere (and it's certainly the case in the UK as well) are increasingly a vehicle for the delivery of junk mail and various unwanted items. In the UK, many companies are using alternatives; but government departments use the mail for their unwanted (usually costly) items. In the UK, at least, government departments are pretty well the only organisations still using brown envelopes, too.

[Put a sock in it, Fletcher, lest you get six of the best in the worst possible way.]

Posted by Fletcher Christian at February 7, 2013 3:53 PM

Its obvious the business model is now broken.

Many many decades ago, the Post Office had very limited home service:

You either picked up your mail at the Post Office or at the Mailbox Grouping down at the crossroads.

Perhaps its time to go back to that again and lay off a vast amount of the carriers? Maybe have an email sent out to the person getting a letter(s) so the customers' time is not wasted?

(Original thought came from one of my parents. Ray is a very smart man.)

Posted by cond0011 at September 22, 2015 3:55 PM

The post office is not a business, it is a service of the gov. though not a dept. like it used to be. It would be nice if it broke even but it is not supposed to earn money like a business.

Posted by pbird at September 22, 2015 6:53 PM

The post office is not a business, it is a service of the gov. though not a dept. like it used to be. It would be nice if it broke even but it is not supposed to earn money like a business.
Posted by pbird at September 22, 2015 6:53 PM

What it's "supposed" to do is keep people off the street who are unqualified to have a job - and it succeeds in that admirably, along with the rest of the Government.

Posted by Rob De Witt at September 22, 2015 7:12 PM

"The post office is not a business, it is a service of the gov."


Article 1, Section 8 of the United States Constitution:

The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States; but all duties, imposts and excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

... To establish post offices and post roads;


As I said before, the business model is broken and is now bleeding serious red. In decades past, the Postal Service did FAR LESS home delivery than it does today. For the Government to legislate a regression to an earlier time is not necessarily a bad thing, pbird - especially in light of an 18,000,000,000,000 dollar Federal Debt.

After all, if they did it before, they can do it again.

(...and since we are on the subject of regression, drastically reduce the kinds of foods that can be bought with Food stamps. Meat & Potatoes basics. Reduce the amount of money given, too. Lots of staples are still cheap.)

Posted by cond0011 at September 22, 2015 8:14 PM

They can lose money; okay by me. Shiite hole countries around the planet have corrupt mail services that can't be trusted with even junk mail.
But, when California post offices lose my deliveries twice in the same year, I have to ask myself: "what are they smoking down there?" The corruption of the USPS has begun in America, and the loss statement for the past decade all of a sudden means something.
Fire everyone. I'm sorry - even the carriers. Hire vets and get this thing working again.
BTW, I throw everything out, too. Recycling is for rubes.

Posted by Casey Klahn at September 23, 2015 7:51 AM

I shipped an $800 vintage Pioneer turntable in mint condition, insured for $1000. They destroyed it - heartbreaking. Was told by the local postmaster all insurance claims must be made online. Very difficult site to deal with. Was told my claim was denied, no reason given. Never replied to my questions for reason for denial.

I haven't used that shitty "service" for anything since, and never will.

Posted by ghostsniper at September 23, 2015 8:39 AM

The USPS is quite possibly the only GSE to meet its congressional mandate, as it is Prohibited By Law from earning more than expenses, i.e.,
a Profit. Imagine. The problem seems to be with non profit mail - like demopublican nonsense, crap from sierra seal club, & c. Paid at a 40% discount from the rate suffered by the colorful & compelling. Thanks to Billy Cliton.

As the colorful & compelling advertisements do not receive First Class Mail service & protocol for handling, USPS considers the same to be Dire Straits mail.

You know, money for nothing

Posted by itor at September 24, 2015 9:19 PM

Eliminate the Post Office and within a few days (if not stopped by regulators) there will be massive competition to fill the vacuum. There is a need and it will be filled. That would also be the end of subsidized junk mail. I use it to start my charcoal when smoking some meat. The ashes go into the garden. Not because I am a greenie, but because the ashes are useful.

Posted by Snakepit Kansas at September 25, 2015 5:22 PM