New leadership at the American Postal Workers Union plans to broaden the fight to save the national treasure of the U.S. Postal Service from the ravages of creeping privatization.
According to the Washington Post, Mark Dimondstein, http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/federal_government/new-postal-union-leader-promises-more-aggressive-defense-of-public-postal-service/2013/11/04/b5a5c32e-4588-11e3-a196-3544a03c2351_story.html who takes over the helm of the nearly 200,000-member union Nov.12 vows to fight to protect union jobs as the USPS’s financial hole gets deeper and deeper. Last year, the USPS reported a loss of $15.9 billion last year and just keeps bleeding money
The 30-year postal veteran says he wants to enlist the help and support of various groups that advocate for seniors, civil rights, veterans, small town dwellers and even business to save this institution which everybody uses and supports.
He’s also looking to strengthen ties with other postal unions.
Diamondstein has an obviously gargantuan task ahead of him to hold onto postal jobs. Especially when any big organization—the USPS included– that needs to cut expenses always looks first at slashing labor costs. Hell, the USPS would use robots to sort and deliver mail if they could get away with it.
Maybe someday soon the postal service will be able to do so. After all, robots have been widely used in factories for at least the past 25 years. We may be getting a little ahead of ourselves to think robots could perform postal tasks at the moment. But don’t believe for a moment that nobody’s thinking about it.
At the moment, some people in Congress and maybe even postal management just want to destroy the USPS so they can try to make money off it.
One of the most blatant attempts to destroy the postal service began with the postal reform act of 2007 when the USPS began having to pay at least $5.8 billion per year to cover the healthcare expenses of future retirees. No other government agency carries such a burden.
It’s impossible for any organization to pay such a sum and so far, the USPS has defaulted on this obligation two or three times.
Congressional proposals from Rep. Darrell Issa R-CA) to fix the USPS involve creating a special financial control board to oversee the agency’s finances This move would supplant the existing Board of Governors and move the postal service one step closer to privatization.
Diamondstein also must buck the overall movement to privatize functions of government which has not always been helpful to the country as a whole.
All you have to do is look at Edward Snowden, the contract employee for the National Security Agency, who had access to highly secret information and showed how much the agency abused its power and probably made us less secure.
Does such an embarrassing example of government slipshoddiness deter anyone from privatization?