Explain, Please

agnespuffinNovember 15, 2012

Dumb female here, sooo help is needed with simple question.

Just read an article about how much the US Postal Service is in debt, etc.

So is this the same USPS that is the sponser of the Lance Armstrong Bicycle Team? If so, do they pay any of the expenses for the team?

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Makes yah wonder me too!

Here is a link that might be useful: Holy or sacred cow

    Bookmark   November 15, 2012 at 11:07PM
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That's a hoot isn't it!!! Do you want to bet that there's more wasted on other dumb stuff too.

I have often wondered if there are enough stamp collectors out there to make all those fancy stamps profitable.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2012 at 11:28PM
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david52 Zone 6

The collectors editions of the stamps they publish is a major money maker for the post office. $150 - 200 million a year.

Which more than funds a bicycle team - along with a lot of other sponsors.

There are a lot of reasons the post office is broke, none the least is the congressional mandate that they fund their retirement/future health benefits as per actuarial estimates now, not in the future, which means they have to set aside a huge chunk of their revenue for future expenditures.

A rare example of government prudence. Which is why so many tea baggers in congress want to get rid of it and give the bid'ness to UPS and FedEx, who not only don't have to mess with those silly retirement health benefits, they are very generous with campaign contributions.

Here is a link that might be useful: link

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 12:19AM
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The USPS stopped sponsoring Lance Armstrong or any cyclists in June, 2004, when it's team was taken over by the Discovery Channel. This information is easily available "on the internet".

This deficit has to do with the fact that we don't mail letters any more.

USADA still hasn't shown any proof, by the way.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 7:53AM
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Thank you!

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 8:02AM
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marquest(z5 PA)

They are going broke for all of the business practices stated above. I have an opinion, you know what those are worth. But.....they have cost themselves out vs volume. Although getting back the days of horse and buggy bill paying, love letters, thank you notes are lost forever. Simple etiquettes of yesterday are lost somewhere in a text message brain dead society.

The online nursery business are sending through UPS and Fed Ex because they are even cheaper than using our Gov't mailing service, trading plants, I can find a better price and faster service using UPS. That should not be the case. They priced a large market out where they could get volume.

My suggestion is reverse charges a dollar for an envelope and lower the price for packages. They could price UPS and Fed Ex out of business.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 8:16AM
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jannie(z7 LI NY)

My husband used to collect stamps. First day covers, plate blocks, whole pages, etc. Rather than use them on mail and get value for them, he stuck them in books. Now that the economy is so bad, nobody's buying collections like his.Issuing commemorative stamps would seem to be a good way for the USPS to make more money.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 9:47AM
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We use USPS exclusively. We like their service, their pricing isn't that bad, everything can be done and labels printed right in your home, and they deliver when they say they will. Plus, our local branch holds packages for me so they don't freeze or sit in the hot sun or rain. Who could ask for more?

I have not been especially pleased with service from UPS or Fed-Ex.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 10:08AM
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david52 Zone 6

There are an awful lot of small bid'nesses out there using the flat rate packaging - garlic, clematis, other bare-root stuff. Easy to bill, easy to send.

I somehow suspect that if the post office disappears, that FedEx and UPS will somehow mange to bump prices - particularly in rural areas where their costs are so high. They tried that for a while, but lost market share, so quit.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 10:44AM
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tishtoshnm Zone 6/NM

Funny thing is we have not found UPS to be cheaper for shipping. With a sister who lives in Alaska, I adore the flat rate shipping boxes which often saves a tremendous amount of money. I think that the increases in cost of shipping at places like UPS have of course cost them business. My MIL used to go on shopping sprees and ship things from TX to NM. The last time she did it, the cost was nearly $40 for a box that was not very heavy. Now, no more boxes from TX. For Christmas she limits herself to Amazon and gift cards.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 12:00PM
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Oh good grief, how many times a year do you have to discover that the USPS is in trouble?

They do not get to just change their rates-it has to go through congress.

Bulk mailers are subsidized by an ever decreasing pool of regular customers. Big business gets huge breaks on all that junk mail you dont want.

US rates for mailing flats and letters is one of the lowest in the world-try sending a post card in Europe or Canada Australia etc and your coddled American eyebrows will go up to your hairline.

Check out how much Fedex charges you to send a letter-it is around $11. Can you never conceive of a time when you might need to send a signed document? How about Certified letters-it is huge business with the PO.

Only the USPS can deliver to your mail box and other carriers are salivating over the right to do that.

It may come as a surprise to many that not everyone has a computer to do all their business-just like not everyone having picture ID-it is a fact. I do not do my business on line because all we have available here is dial-up and it is like watching paint dry.

The reason that congress requires the USPS to prepay insurance and retierement accounts for their employees is to make their finances look really grim-then you have legitimized breaking up the USPS and giving away all the money making parts to your buddies leaving the no pay irritating bit of getting mail to rural customers to "some one else"

I know several mail carriers and it is not a fun or easy job. Each one has to sort and deliver all sorts of junk plus critical medications and mail to around 500-700 + households daily. Packages are getting to be a bigger and bigger part of what they do-UPS has people who sort and load up the van to take the packages out-your mail carrier has to do it his or herself plus load up tons of magazines and giant trays of crap most of it subsidized by special rates given to support business.

The purpose of the Postal service as conceived by Benjamin Franklin was to help bind the country together with a single system of communication and that is why it is controlled by congress. Before you hoot and sneer do a little research and find out what you are talking about.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 1:06PM
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The post office has the biggest union in the country. They have a large number of veterans and minority workers. This congress is anxious to break up unions - why not the biggest one

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 5:51PM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Speaking of hooting and sneering.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 5:58PM
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The postal Unions- of which there are many-each 'craft' as it is called has it's own are practically useless. They have no power what so ever since they cant strike or even slow down. Differences are decided by arbitration and the arbitrator works for the government.

I will aslo point out that the USPS doesnt actually cost taxpayers anything. Money is not given to make up short falls, it is loaned. When they act like a regular business and spend some money to sponser someone for the same reason that Nike would, the money is not taxpayers funds. Whether or not it is money well spent I cant say. As a business model they have some problems since they cant change anything without sayso and they have all the usual problems of management VS workers plus employees have all the protections of federal workers. When you consider how big our country is and how many nooks and crannies there are it is amazing the system works as well as it does. Fedex and UPS both use the PO to deliver packages to out of the way places that DONT PAY-which is where we would all be without it unless you lived in town-no more RFD. Too bad for us?

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 7:17PM
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patriciae, Who does the PO take out the loans with/from? The US Treasury, that's who. Of course the PO costs all taxpayers. You the taxpayer gives the US Treasury it's money to loan (unless the Treasury borrows it as well).

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 8:08PM
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People may not send as many letters as they used to, but with online shopping,Ebay for example, I'm sure the PO is making up for that loss. It's the retirement funding that is causing the problems. The mandate should be eliminated next session.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2012 at 8:42PM
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JM- a loan is not a gift-it has to be paid back with interest so the tax payer makes money. That is how loans work. The way this particular loan works is that congress set aside a sort of trust fund of money that the PO can tap when they have a short fall and they pay back in when they have money to pay back. Previously they seldom used any of this money but since the prepayment thing happened I gather it is getting to be a serious problem.

Althea is right-it is the pre paying that is causing the main problem and the legislation to require this prepaying was designed to make the Postal system look as if it were not sustainable.

    Bookmark   November 17, 2012 at 12:37PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

The one thing that would fix the problem, they won't do. Sending junk mail is practically free, a government subsidy.

Why should it be less expensive for a for-profit business to advertise itself than for a private citizen to utilize the mail for a legitimate purpose, like a hard copy of a document, wedding invitation, greeting card, or picture of faraway relatives?

    Bookmark   November 19, 2012 at 5:16PM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Why? The Business of America is Business. Everyone pays so a few make piles of money.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2012 at 7:52PM
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