An expert’s word about USPS

I have known some terrific mail deliverers. Our current one, Hugh, fits right in.

So when I ran into him an hour ago, I told him I was worried. He smiled and said, “There’s nothing to worry about. We’ve been dealing with this sort of thing forever.” Apparently (GOP) candidates make a fuss when their campaign and fund-raising flyers aren’t delivered asap.

He said they at the Post Office are trying to understand what’s being done — if anything — given all the hoopla, but he’s not observed any of the subversive moves we’re all getting agitated about.

I told Hugh I’d seen some photos on Twitter purporting to show trucks removing post office boxes in various parts of the country including New York, and asked him if that was really happening.

“No,” he said. They did move a box from the corner of one block to the corner of another block — one block south — because our building has its own internal post office box and USPS wanted to spread the boxes out.

But we can take it from Hugh, who knows what he’s talking about: boxes are not being removed in New York City, nor have mail sorters been dismantled and removed.

It’s possible what we’re hearing is Trump & GOP fear tactics, in this case about USPS. Threats that have not been and may never be fully carried out. Threats that are designed to create confusion, fear and (Democratic) fury and agitation. It’s what Trump does, after all: lies and signs non-executable Executive Orders, with his fat Sharpie.

I did a quick fact check on this news and learned that, yes, some sorters have been removed in Kansas and Detroit but there’s not a mass removal going on. Not yet anyway. And USPS union leaders are equivocal. Some think it’s sabotage, some believe some actions have been in the works for quite a while, even before Trump’s lackey became Postmaster General. Some of them are waiting to investigate the facts before they speak more forcefully.

A thought of mine: it could be a matter of lousy timing, planned before COVID and now in conflict with our desire to vote by mail because of COVID.

So it’s either a deliberately nasty, destructive plot or a bunch of opportunistic incompetents trying to take advantage of a pandemic. You know, the Trump Administration’s M.O.

Ergo, I’m sticking with Hugh’s factual on-the-ground reality and planning not to get hyper-outraged. Not yet anyway.

Haven’t yet decided how I’ll be voting but I’ll be voting. I have done so ever since I came of age. Every general election, every primary, every bi-election, every off-year election.

Except once.

A number of years ago I went to England during the November election period and forgot to file an absentee ballot. The Giants were playing the Jets on the Sunday after the election. I’d set my tape machine to record it. It was not an anxiety-provoking game: the Jets were not doing well and the Giants were.

The Giants lost and did not get into the playoffs and every politician I would have voted for lost. A complete wipe-out.

I’ve never left New York during an election-and-football season since.

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