For more than a century, the federal government has pursued a misguided witch hunt against perceived monopolies in the private sector. But in a glaring hypocrisy, Congress has long protected one of the nation’s largest businesses against competition. The legal monopoly conferred on the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is a relic. Government-run mail makes no sense in our email-dominated economy, and other nations are showing that postal privatization works. If the centuries-old Royal Mail can be privatized, then so can our USPS.
In a new study, former Clinton administration economist Robert Shapiro provides useful input to the privatization debate. He looks at the subsidies that Congress confers on the USPS, as well as the extra costs.
Here are some background facts from Shapiro: