The post office makes a profit…why doesn’t everyone know this?
Via Truthout comes this post on the US Post Office:
The post office makes a profit — expected to be more than a billion dollars this year.
Yet, the media keeps reporting that the USPS is losing billions of dollars each year. What they fail to mention is that those are phony paper losses manufactured by Congress at the behest of corporate privatizers.
Late in 2006, the lame duck Republican Congress rammed into law a cockamamie requirement that the Postal Service must pre-fund the retiree health benefits of everyone it employs or expects to employ for the next 75 years. Hello? That includes workers who’re not even born yet! No other business in America is required to pre-fund such benefits for even one year. To add to Congress’ cockamamie-ness, the service is being forced to put up all of that money within just 10 years — which has been costing USPS more than $5 billion a year. That artificial burden accounts for 100 percent of the so-called “losses” the media keep reporting.
Just think what would happen if all businesses had that requirement.
I want to know where the defenders of the original intent are on this one. After all, what patriot in their right mind would act intentionally to destroy Benjamin Franklin’s legacy? Why it’s traitorous! It’s un-American!
What are we teaching the children when we destroy the western folk hero known as the pony express? What becomes of Norman Rockwell’s depictions of the post office and the mail man?
Do these people have no sense of respect for our heritage?
Personally, we need the post office and so does Fed Ex and UPS.
This is about privatization. It is about handing over $65 billion in postal revenues to private industry. It is about creating monopolies in the package delivery and logistics markets.
Outsourcing already transfers more than $15 billion a year to companies like Pitney Bowes and large printers like Quad Graphics and R.R. Donnelly.
For in depth reporting on the postal issue look at the website I’ve contributed to for the last several years. http://www.savethepostoffice.com
My work is at http://www.savethepostoffice.com/Jamison
In the last several years we’ve lost 300,000 good middle class jobs. Pay and benefit systems have been threatened. We are losing an essential communications infrastructure.
So true. Could you imagine the cost if the US military was required to pre-fund all of its expected retirement spending in the next 75years?!
A functioning postal system is part of any developed nation and the blatant attack on the USPS by parties interested in its demise is unfortunate, but it is truly galling that the Congress goes along with this hatchet job.
Well there is a bright side. Of sorts. Which can be summed up as “That which does not kill me makes me stronger”.
Of course this requirement that the PO prefund retirement health for workers who won’t be hired for decades is egregious bullshit. On the other hand every year that the requirement is in place and the PO is not actually forced out of existence (which of course was and is the goal) is a year that the PO is piling up some billions of dollars in its reserve fund. Though it isn’t easy to actually tease those amounts out amidst the gooblygoop about “unfuned liability”. For those who want to try you can parse this mostly hostile report from GAO:http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/650511.pdf
To the extent that there is a bottom line, under current law it would appear that scheduled payments into this particular fund would drop by 50% after 2017 (see Table 3). And that in nominal terms.
Of particular interest is the bar chart of Figure 4 which shows that the House (natch) is attempting to even more frontload the payment, which if it doesn’t successfuly ruin the PO actually ends up with LOWER payments in after 2017 than any of the Current Law, Administration or Senate proposals.
To that degree it seems that the Republican House is trying to roll the dice in hopes of proving their “Government is the Problem” mantra before their proposed formula actually does the pre-funding they are using as a pretext to attack the PO. For example a look at Figure 5 shows a requirement to devote 28% of total compensation to prefunding this future health fund in 2016 but dropping ot 11% in 2017.
Which just goes to prove the old (modified by me) adage: “Numbers don’t lie, but liars figure”. You just have to figure out which set of numbers falls into which category. In any event the dollar figures for “unfunded liability” are laughable compared to the ones the bad guys deploy for Social Security and Medicare. We are literally talking ‘billions’ compared to ‘trillions’
I wonder where those billions of postal dollars are saved? I bet it is not in US Treasuries. But if they were, we would probably be hearing about how the post office is creating huge budget deficits.
Learn to fucking read you idiot.
“The assets of the PSRHBF are comprised entirely of long-term,
special-issue U.S. Treasury securities with maturities of up to 14 years. The long-term securities bear interest rates ranging from 1.375% to 5.00%. The expected rate of return was unavailable for 2013, and 4.7% for 2012 and the actual rates of return were 3.6% for 2013, and 3.7% for 2012.”
page 39 (using the page numbers in the document)
Why do retards from the left that have never read SFFAS 5 or 33 continue to spew the ideological lie that somehow the employee post-retirement health insurance liability includes benefits for workers not yet hired? Do you fuckheads on the left not comprehend accrual-based accounting? Are you that mentally retarded?
Advice for leftwingers…
“Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt.”
Hmmmmm. I seem to have hit a nerve. Don’t have an aneurism, Jay.
Nah I’m fine. We are all used to you being wrong Jerry. Because you are always wrong.
Jay, you seem to be a real dickhead but in this case you’re minimally right. The GAO calculations are based on employees currently on the rolls and not on future hires.
On the other hand you might also mention that GAO has admitted that the need for prefunding evaporates if postal employees and retirees who are eligible for Medicare are required to enroll and if FEHB provided supplemental or wrap around plans in its offerings.
Go read the legislative history of PAEA. The prefunding requirement was an add on by the Bush administration pretty much solely for budget scoring purposes. It had the added “benefit” of draining billions of dollars out of the Postal Service which made a “crisis” inevitable.
The RHBF is only a piece of the overall puzzle. The Postal Service has overfunded the FERS retirement fund. Up until three years ago the CSRS find was overfunded, then assumptions were changed and, voila, a large “liability” suddenly appeared.
This is about union busting and transferring public infrastructure into private hands. It’s about creating unregulated monopolies in the package delivery and logistics markets.
So Jay take your ignorant generalizations and asinine insults and stick them up your dumbfucking ass. Best take your own advice.
Go fuck yourself.