Agency or business?

… We should hike the price of a stamp to $1, fix the U.S. Postal Service for good, and end the sorry spectacle of Congress forever toying with an institution it’s too inept to govern.

The Postal Service has become a poster child for incompetence thanks to an astonishing $41 billion in losses since 2006. Any normal company that lost that much money would either be bankrupt or thoroughly thrashed by irate shareholders. Yet the Postal Service bumbles on, with even bigger troubles on the way. It predicts annual losses could exceed $18 billion by 2015.

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Most of all, a $1 stamp might force postal customers to think a bit more reverently about the mail. Americans take for granted the idea that they can send a piece of mail anywhere in the country for a price that is almost as low as free.

Uhm, we the taxpayer don’t ever call it free.

The reality, however, is that the postal service is a weird hybrid agency that’s supposed to act like a regular corporation, except that Congress retains the authority to micromanage and manipulate it and keep it locked in the past. As I and many others have argued, the real problem with the USPS is its 535-person board of directors.

TV commercials for the Olympics, Moo’s special “move” stamps, Congresscritters in the driver seat, let me count the ways on how to blow money that is not yours.  My postman explained that the mandated funding of their pension 75 years into the future is one of the biggest reasons they are in the shithole.   Who does this?

Let’s Raise the Price of a Stamp to $1.

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