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Monday, October 15, 2012

Postal service



Recently the Postal Service sent the residents of my town a questionnaire. They will be cutting back our service and wanted some input. The best case scenario still leaves us with a significant reduction in office hours. Delivery times will also be affected. In a rural community, that’s a bit of a hardship.

People like me who live out in the woods rely on postal delivery. UPS still delivers, but some other parcel services no longer service my area. It wasn’t cost effective. I’m sure it’s not cost effective for the US Postal Service either, but that’s not the point. It’s one of the services that the government is supposed to provide. There’s nothing wrong with greater efficiency, but when it comes at the cost of service, that’s a problem.

For many people it’s a lifeline to the world. When you live far from town, having medications delivered right to your home mailbox is a godsend. I get everything from books to machine parts. Not only that, I’m one of those old fashioned guys who like to pay his bills by check. You’d be amazed at what gets delivered to rural post offices -everything from live chicks to honeybees.

The Postal Service has been around a long long time. Before text messages, cell phones, e-mail and every other electronic form of communication, there was the mail. It’s not instant, but it’s fast enough for many things. Should the grid get sketchy or the Internet go down, the mail should be able to get through. It’s old fashioned, but has the potential to be resilient. Gutting a reliable system is a mistake. Mail delivery tied us together when there was nothing else and it’s still important today.

-Sixbears

16 comments:

  1. It's just symptomatic of the times we live in... cutting back on services is perceived as being more efficient and that's the most important thing. It's the same in New Zealand... People do not matter... We live in disturbing times Sixbears and they're no about to get better anytime soon...

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    1. This is one of the low tec services that could be provided in bad times, but they don't see it that way. Sadly, I think you are right that we ain't seen nothing yet.

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  2. Same way with the railroads. The government was already subsidizing them, but let them close down lines and ILLEGALLY sell the right-of-ways to make biking trails in many places. Now, in time of prolonged war, we would have little rail service. And we're STILL giving them money the last I heard!

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    1. A company tried to reestablish rail service locally. Turns out the state had illegally sold the rail for scrap.

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    2. Gorges, you're missing the point. Rails-to-Trails KEEPS it as a right of way. It'll be much easier to convert back to a railway than if buildings were built on it, which was what was happening before.

      I still say the proper way to level the playing field for government subsidies is have the government own and maintain the track and let private companies run the trains. That's how virtually all other transportation is done.

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    3. That would work and it should make for a more logical use of resources -if done right.

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  3. Typical of a government-run business. And the cost of postage is going up again.

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  4. What ever happened to" Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds" I guess they should add but lack of funding might.

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    1. The funding problem is tougher than a blizzard.

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  5. They should trim some bureaucratic fat instead of service. It's the dead weight that's killing them.

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  6. I agree with Craig. Sad to say sooner or later the USPS will be sold or leased to a private company. Then, watch the cuts.

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    1. A private company would competely shut down many rural post offices as there is no money in it.

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  7. Maybe we should go back to the poney express.

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