I come in praise of the United States Postal Service

I always use USPS to send my mail. Why? Because despite the anti-postal service campaign produced by corporations like FedEx and UPS, the regular post office, without making a fuss, delivers just as quickly as profit-making delivery services and for far, far less cost.

Have you ever tried getting a first class letter to California in two days via FedEx, for $.49?

And some day, if you’re very very good, children, I’ll tell you the story of how once upon a time a prosecutor in upstate New York used UPS to send the entire DNA sample in a rape case–neglecting to hold some of it back, just in case–to a specialized DNA lab in Boston…but it never arrived. UPS lost it. (And yes, the man who had been arrested for the crime was innocent of it.)

And USPS sells stamps. I love stamps, I worship stamps. They are works of art–literally. My current first class stamp collection is a group of WPA posters–“designs from the Work Projects Administration.” The 1930s, ergo Deco. My style and just gorgeous, every single colorful one. (If you want some, head to your local post office fast–they’re having trouble keeping them in stock.)

So I take attacks on the post office personally, because unlike a lot of people, I remember that Reagan, foaming at the mouth to “shrink government” and turn government functions over to corporations (remember that? do you? did you vote in 2016?), pulled US government support from the post office, thus making us a country without a fully supported postal system.

(OMFG do I hate these “government is bad” people! And while recalling Reagan’s mouth foam, let us remember it was Reagan who decided Amtrak should function on its own, without government subsidies. Leading to…what? Like, the current Amtrak state of affairs is not due to Port Authority and Amtrak mismanagement but is due to no longer receiving the government subsidies it needs to function fully? Every commuter is pissed off but should be pissed off at Reagan, not Amtrak. However, I’ve heard he’s dead and it’s difficult to be pissed off at a grave site, so.)

Oops, that was a detour. Lest it turn into a derailment, let’s get back to the post office:

Just to check my memory, I Googled “usps + Reagan.” To my bitter amusement, all I got was that the USPS issued a “forever Reagan” stamp. Hm, I take back “bitter amusement,” and replace it with @#%&_qw#*%&*w(&%w&#%w&t!!!!!! and WTF!!!) (OK, I Googled again and found confirmation.)

What a long intro to a deeply satifying essay I picked up from Jim Hightower, writing on The National Memo. I bolded the last paragraph:

Journalism, which is supposed to help make sense of our turbulent world, can’t seem to make sense of itself.

In addition to “news” (which involves reporting on stuff that’s real) we’re now getting “fake news” (stuff that’s completely made up). But wait — the barons of corporate news are adding to today’s tumultuous state of journalism by putting out feeds of “BS news” (stuff they know is untrue but reported as fact, because it advances their political agenda).

For example, the mighty Washington Post keeps publishing a load of BS to denigrate our U.S. Post Office. The paper’s latest pot shot was in an alarmist editorial declaring, “The U.S. Postal Service continues to hemorrhage red ink.” Embracing their owner’s anti-government ideology, the editors grumped that postal unions have made our mail service outmoded and insolvent, running up “a net loss of $5.6 billion last year.”

That is pure bovine excrement — and the editors know it. In fact, thanks to our amazing, innovative and efficient postal workers, the nation’s public post offices racked up a $610 million operating profit last year, and a $1.2 billion profit the year before.

The $5 billion in red ink that the paper’s editorial propagandists touted is not real, but instead, is a deliberate bookkeeping hoax created by Congress to make the public think that our Post Office is a hopeless money loser that should be privatized.

There they go again.

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