Confused by those local ads for postal workers lately? Perhaps they sparked some hope that all the bleak news about cuts in mail delivery is not so imminent after all? We wish we could encourage a more positive interpretation, but the facts haven't changed about the future of mail delivery. Turns out those are largely part-time positions, likely to replace older workers who will retire with much better health and pension benefits than their replacements could ever wish for.
In addition to the popularity of private delivery vendors and email's role as an instant source for personal communication, it's no secret the U.S. Postal Service is in an uphill battle to retain customers. Even Wednesday's announcement that Congress halting plans to end Saturday service because of constituents' complaints, can't stop the inevitable. On the same day, President Obama proposed whacking $20 billion from the USPS over the next 10 years.
As Sen. Tom Carper has pointed out, this country needs to show a willingness to accept change at the Postal Service and help it implement a reasonable plan for reform. And it is one that will likely include even more cuts than Obama proposes. "With the budget situation we face, we can't just cut the Postal Service a check for $20 billion - nor should we," said Carper, who co-authored legislation to overhaul the service last year that passed the Senate. "We need to show a willingness to accept change at the Postal Service and help the Postmaster General and his team implement a reasonable plan for reform."
It's time for those in Congress who wish to ignore this reality to heed Sen. Carper's wisdom as a call to duty for betterment of their constituents.