The Last Dinosaur: The U.S. Postal Service

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Mail service is becoming slower, more expensive, and lessreliable. The price of a first-class stamp will go up to 22¢this month--a 633 percent increase since 1958. First-classmail delivery is 10 percent slower than it was 15 years ago,and Postmaster General William Bolger concedes that postaldelivery may have been more reliable in the 1920s.[1]

The United States Postal Service (U.S.P.S.) is probablythe worst managed and one of the least honest corporations inAmerica. One innovation after another has failed as the PostalService struggles to enter the twentieth century. The servicespends tens of millions of dollars each year to deceive thepublic about the poor quality of mail service. From maildelivery times to productivity increases to nine-digit zipcodes, the Postal Service turns out reams of misleadinginformation.

Americans are suffering a gradual extinction of mailservice. In the past 15 years, the U.S.P.S. has intentionallyslowed mail delivery, cut back on mail collection pickups,shortened the target zone for overnight delivery, reducedbusiness deliveries, imposed strict requirements on the size ofletters it will accept, and begun the abolition of home delivery.Congress is considering ending Saturday mail delivery.

The federal government has a monopoly on the delivery offirst-class mail; as a result, the Postal Service is the country's third-largest employer. Like all monopolies, the postalmonopoly is abused, as the government forces people to acceptincreasingly worse service at ever higher prices.

James Bovard

James Bovard has written widely on the Postal Service.