The United States Postal Service. Now before everyone yawns and goes to bed at the thought of a show surrounding mail, I promise that this will be as interesting as a show written about the Federal Reserve…ok bad example, but it is going to be an interesting topic. This summer the entire country saw the Postal Service get gutted and if you didn’t really pay attention to any of the news about the Post Office over the last 100 years, you’d think Trump was the only person trying to attack them.
Just like most people thought Trump had invented racism, wanting to sleep with porn stars, over using the word terrific and boasting about how great their dick works at 70! America is a 300 something year old country, that has been racist from its inception, always wanted to fuck porn stars but had to settle and has been bragging about how great its dick is since it learned the word ‘Military’. Trump is a symptom of the American Disease, which is Narcissism mixed with Erectile Dysfunction. And besides if Trump had invented militarism, racism, xenophobia or authoritarianism, they all would’ve gone bankrupt by 1992!
And I’ll be honest, I haven’t particularly paid attention to what’s been up with Postal Service either. No one really cared how the mail was sorted and delivered to you. People don’t really care how the sausage is made, so they definitely didn’t care how it was mailed or why people are mailing out sausages. But no one really started paying attention to the Post Office until the pandemic started and the Trump appointed a new Post Master General, Louis Dejoy, wanted to completely destroy the service.
Dejoy was set to cut pay, decrease the services the Post Office offers, take away mailboxes and finally prove that the Republican Party is just the Legion of Doom wearing suits! And really are we surprised that someone named DeJoy is trying to destroy the service that sends presents and letters from our grammas? His name is literally translates to removing Joy!
At the beginning of the pandemic, the previous Post Master General, Megan Brennan, requested $75 billion in stimulus; $25 billion for immediate use to pay employees, keep them safe and the services active and the rest to use over time to keep Post Offices running. The President of the American Postal Union said this amount was absolutely necessary since 12,000 postal employees have gotten sick due to COVID-19 and 64 others have died.
The Democratic controlled House approved a $10 billion stimulus for the United States Postal Service, once again claiming that Republicans will block it if it was any higher. Funny you never notice the Republicans say, “we’re not going to control women’s bodies, because the Democrats might say something mean about it”. There is no reason the Democrats shouldn’t have fought harder to expand funding for the Postal Service. I mean lets get serious, this is the Postal Service, not the American working class!
The reason the Postal Service is in bad financial shape is due to a 2006 Bush Administration bill, written by 2 Republicans & 2 Democrats called the Postal Accountability & Enhancement Act or PAEA. This piece of legislation made the Postal Service pre-fund retirement for all it’s current & future retirees for 75 years. This included employees that would be eventually be hired! Literally no other department or corporation has a plan like this.
The government wants more accountability from the Post Office but not cops? That’s like letting Gary Busey watch your kids. You know Gary’s going to do drugs, but you put cameras on the kids instead just in case they eat extra snacks. Meanwhile Busey’s kidnapped the dog, eaten everything in your pantry and sold your refrigerator.
In 2006, most Congresspeople voted to approve the PAEA, including Bernie Sanders! Only one Democrat & 20 Republicans voted against this pre-funding plan. This consistently put the Postal Service in debt over $5 billion every year since 2006 in order to meet this requirement. This was after the Postal Service netting a profit of $9.3 billion between 2003 & 2006. Now when asked where this pre-funding money was going to come from, Congress responded “Bootstraps”.
Socialism only works for Capitalism when its trying to dismantle necessities. If Congress is going to approve the Postal Service to pre-fund universal retirement then I think Dick Cheney and the Bush dynasty should pre-fund healthcare for everyone that is alive, has died, will be dead and born for the next 75 years. And where will this money come from? Bootstraps.
In June of 2020 Trump appointed Louis Dejoy as the Post Master General. He’s the first Post Master General in decades with no prior experience in the Postal Service. This is like Tom Hanks running the Postal Service because he played a FedEx employee in the film Cast Away! In unrelated news, Carrot Top is now appointed as new Secretary of Defense. Dejoy has said the Postal workers should “adopt a different mindset”. Yes, the mindset of not being able to eat or like be alive. A mindset where you are not as much Postal Workers, but more of a Postal Slaves! You’re Django Unmailed!
Dejoy is the former VP of the multinational supply chain, logistics and shipping corporation, XPO Logistics. Not only should this a major red flag that a VP of a shipping company is in charge of the Postal Service, but also that his company’s name was so unimaginative! You could’ve named it “Land, Air & Sea Corporation” or LASCorp! The Reddest of all the Red Flag should be that he graduated from Stetson University in Central Florida. Folks do we really want a Floridian in charge of a major mail service? I say nay!
He’s the President of LDJ Global, a corporation interested in real estate, private equity, consulting and project management. Project Management is the Communications Degree of Job Titles! The major controversy surrounding Dejoy is that he’s a major donor to the Republican Party, helping George W. get reelected and contributed over $27k to Jeb Bush, 2016! With his ties to the Bush brothers, private logistics and delivery companies it’s very clear that this is a corporate to coup to try and privatize the United States Postal Service.
A major reason to defund the Postal Service, according to Donald Trump is Mail-In Voting, which is primarily handled by the Postal Service. Trump claims that if people via mail there’s a higher risk of fraud. When asked for specifics, he gave everyone the finger, screamed fake news as secret service threw a smoke bomb and whisked him away to a bunker where no mailman can ever find him.
Look, mail-in voting isn’t without it’s problems, like do you need extra Stamps for if you’re voting for a Socialist! But it’s far more secure than say gerrymandering states with districts that look like blurred out penises. It’s far more secure than Interstate Crosscheck which is a system that removes voters of the same last name in different states. And it’s far safer that black box machine voting with proprietary coding.
Not just that but going to polls during a veracious pandemic is wildly irresponsible. Most poll workers are elderly folks. And sure you could say that this should encourage more younger folks to work the polls and my retort to that would be to have younger candidates that the youth can actually be excited about instead 2 wrinkled, racist, gasbags!
Bolstering the postal service is absolutely necessary and the stimulus request is reasonable since the use of the mail is pertinent for people to order food, pay bills and get medication. 80% of the prescription medication from the VA is delivered by the United States Postal Service. Look if we could email drugs to each other, Big Pharma would have partnered with Gmail years ago. Instead of Nigerian Princes trying to hack our emails it would’ve been all our cousin Ricky’s trying to score extra Digital Valium.
Sidebar: Yes, Indian people can have cousins named Ricky too! If most notable Indian-American politicians are named Bobby Jindal & Nikki Haley, I’m sure this fictional drug addicted cousin I made up can go by Ricky because he was picked on in High School or needed a white sounding to name to get elected in South Carolina!
The Postal Service today is just as important as it was in its inception. When the nation was expanding westward, California was basically an island on its own. Thanks to the postal service the east and west were able to communicate with each other, just like Chris Rock & Jackie Chan in the hit film Rush Hour and Rush Hour 2. The first thing new towns would do would is establish a Post Office. The idea was to create equality between small towns and big cities so they had the same amenities.
Newspapers were shipped for free by the Postal Service. In one week’s time someone in California could know what was going on in Boston. In the 17 & 1800s that was like having 4G on your phone. In the 19 month gap to expand the Telegraph lines, the Pony Express would deliver mail across the country in matter of 10 days. And it was so important to deliver the mail that America developed Postal Roads which were like early highways.
So without the Postal Service, frontierspeople would’ve been isolated, remained ignorant to the nation’s concerns and we wouldn’t have highways. The Postal Service was determined major modern conveniences just like porn determines the pace of technology today. The Postal Services is like the Porn of America. That’s why I’m doing this show with no pants on.
Throughout August activists organized protests outside Dejoy’s North Carolina and Washington D.C. mansions. You can’t represent the working class if you have MORE THAN 1 MANSION! That would be like Tom Hanks representing the NAACP! At this moment, Dejoy has said he won’t be putting heavier restrictions on the service and Democrats have come back from vacation to fund the Postal Service the $25 billion they asked for back in March.
Now, as much as I’m all for this action, this feels like posturing in light of the coming elections. If they were truly for keeping this service active, they would’ve fought to get them the $25 billion at the least back in March. Again this is an example of how activism, protests and amplification can get legislation to swing in the right direction.
The United States Postal Service is an American Institution that made this country what it is. Any attempts to destroy, defund or detract from this service should be seen as UnAmerican. Louis DeJoy is a disgrace to all his previous Postmaster Generals, especially Ben Franklin, America’s First Post Master General! Dejoy is definitely not as funny or sexy as Ben Franklin! We should be paying more attention to what the Postal Service is and how it has and continues to benefit our lives despite all the manufactured challenges it faces.
The Postal Service has been a part of making America great by connecting communities, ensuring we are an informed populace and making sure we are all taken care of. The Postal Service has been for the public good and because of that, it’s been the target of private interests since the early 20th century. To really understand why the USPS is currently in $55 billion worth of debt, we have to go back to the 1907.
At the top of the century, major bankers like J.P. Morgan, John D. Rockerfeller and of the sort were pushing to centralize America’s banking industry so they would have control over the nation’s money. So they created a rumor that a prominent bank was failing, which created a panic and an eventual crash. This was known as the “Great Crash of 1907”.
The United States Postal Savings Bank was put into place in 1910 to prevent average citizens from losing everything if and when the financial system failed. And if we remember our history, it fails…like a lot! 1907, 1914, 1929, 1970s, 2000, 2002, 2008, 2020…also in 2021, 2022…and so on.
The Postal Savings Bank would be a public bank that would not only help the average working class but it would help fund the Postal Service in and of itself. The Postal Service has never been funded by tax payer money. I mean why would it! The Postal Service provides a service to the public, it’s not like it starts wars in countries we have no business being in! When the Postal Service starts killing black & brown people on purpose then we can start using Taxes to fund it! Guys this is America. Land of Freedom and Guns. If you wanted Logic and Understanding go to Canada!
The Postal Bank would be one of the largest Public Banks in the nation. And Public Banks are incredibly helpful since they save the unbanked and underbanked. 28% of Americans either don’t have a bank or access to a bank. These folks have to depend on Payroll cards that they can use for food or gas. This is similar to Scrips, which was currency the Mining Corporations used in their towns. It’s fake money to control the populace. 10% of Americans incomes go into paying fees, which includes $50/month in ATM fees. A Public Postal Bank would alleviate a lot of these issues.
But in 1910, the largest wealthy bankers trying to centralize the banking industry were looking to pass the Federal Reserve Act and called the Postal Bank a menace! After causing the crash in 1929 and taking American currency off the Gold Standard, the Federal Reserve needed Americans to trust their centralized banks over the Postal Bank. [SC 16] So FDR enacted the FDIC insurance and put caps on the Postal Bank and forced them to increase their interest rates. FDR basically bullied the Postal Bank by saying “Stop indebting yourself, stop indebting yourself!”
By the way is anyone even surprised when a majority of America’s problems come from an over-powered Banking Industry. They’ve kinda become the obvious villains in all the stories. They’re like the Team Rocket of financial villainy.
I get it, a bank within the Post Office sounds weird right? Postal Banking would be similar to how Triple A offers roadside assistance, car insurance, tourism help, medical insurance, elderly support, driver’s license renewals, cake baking classes…If Target and Apple can offer their own credit cards and financial services why can’t the Postal Service offer Postal Banking with better interest rates and customer care.
In 2014 the Post Master General made an argument for the need for a Postal Bank, but fell on deaf ears. At that time, Obama was more concerned with a White House Correspondents Dinner and the Republicans were more concerned over his tan suit! A Postal Bank would provide all the services that most banks provide at a better interest rate and would be able to provide benefits a lot easier and quicker by partnering with government agencies.
They also provide Retail Lending to help small business America grow. Could you imagine the state of small businesses during this pandemic if a Public Postal Bank could approve and grant low interest loans, with greater forgiveness and get them their money faster? It’s almost like we’d be a logical country that was run on compassion, critical thinking, real empathy and understanding.
After FDR crippled the Postal Bank, like polio crippled him, Eisenhower took the next step and said “No government organization should be in direct competition with private enterprises” and abolishes the Postal Savings Bank. This is why we can’t have nice things…literally. This is the notion that private enterprise needs to grow infinitely instead of steadily is the reason why America doesn’t have universal healthcare or education. It has to be controlled by corporate interests so the spirit of competition can be alive to kick us all in the teeth and then charge us extra for dental.
Have you ever played a game of Mario Kart with you friends? It’s fun right. You get to compete and throw turtle shells and banana peels all over place and people slip and we all laugh. But then it gets too serious and 5 minutes later, your friend is torching your gas tank so you don’t beat them to the Wendy’s. That’s what Capitalism and that spirit of competition is. It’s a torched gas tank and too much fast food!
There were commentators in the 60s talking about how the Postal Service should be privatized. And there are private entities that do some similar things to the Postal Service, like FedEx and UPS. In fact FedEx can now do pretty everything the Postal Service can because the USPS had to sign away First Class mail rights to them.
There was a slight bit of hope for the United States Postal Service under Richard Nixon. I know…but wait for it. [SC 18] Nixon was so terrible that the Postal workers went on strike asking for better pay, better hours and better work conditions. In 1970 the Postal Worker’s average salary was $2200/year, which is about $15k a year today. That’s just shy of minimum wage. Today the Postal worker is making $15-20.
Plus the job of a mailman was grueling. You try carrying sacks of mail up and down the hills of Pittsburgh or San Francisco for less than minimum wage and see what the frame of your mind is. Because of this, the turnover rate for the Postal Service in 1970 was 23%. The Postal Service is the second largest employer of American citizens, behind Walmart. Except people are far less dead on the inside at the post office than at Walmart. They are also largest employer of African Americans.
The Great Postal Strike of 1970 was met with brevity and calm by Richard Milhouse Nixon. Yes, because clearly you need men with guns to handle the mail. You never know when a letter from you ‘bubbi’ could explode with you know…love and hard candies! Why would you pay Postal workers better, when you can have armed gunman to attack your mailboxes and make sure you pay that electric bill on time at gunpoint.
The Unions weren’t behind the Strike, but the Rank & File went on strike anyway. They walked off and called sick, engaging in one of the largest wildcat strikes of our century; 150k letter carries & an additional 200k other employees. Nixon was so hurt by the 350k Postal Workers Striking that he went on national television asking for understanding! And the Postal Workers did respond with a message of empathy.
So why was Nixon fighting so desperately to get the mail out? Because this was during the Vietnam War and the Draft notices were sent out via mail. No draft, no soldiers, no war, and that means no erection for Nixon. If there’s no erections for Nixon how were him and Henry Kissinger supposed to showoff their special no-pants hug at White House briefings!? This was a time before viagra.
The Strike ended with Nixon giving collective bargaining rights to the Postal Service, but denied their right to Strike. But a compulsory arbitration was required if a settlement through collective bargaining is not achieved. They began running the Postal Service like it was corporation instead of the public service that it is! This isn’t particularly a major win for the Postal Service, but not a total loss either. Richard Nixon gave them a solid neutral.
As I mentioned earlier in 2006, the Postal Accountability & Enhancement Act is responsible for the Postal Service being in debt. [SC 24] Following under Obama sorting and trucking were sub-contracted and 65,000 postal workers lost their jobs! The triple whammy comes from the fact that this was at the height of email, which is now being slowly destroyed by Facebook messenger and Twitter DMs! And if you don’t think email is in trouble thing about how often you’ve heard someone say “Slide into my inbox”? The answer is never.
The internet also provided the Postal Service’s saving graces too. Most packages from online retailers were going through the Post Office. Now this means that they needed new equipment to sort and deliver these packages, but it was another opportunity for private industry to strike again.
Companies like Amazon have gotten into shipping and created their own delivery service. And the Postal Service is getting hamstrung by how it can generate income. They can only sell stamps, passports services and mail related items. But companies like FedEx and UPS can sell mail related items and retail goods. And if you’re sending a package do you really need a Kit Kat? The rampant need to snack every 10 minutes is also destroying the Postal Service!
Republicans have harshly said the Postal Service doesn’t deserve funding because it’s an inefficient business. But how can it work effectively if all the legislation written by both Democrats and Republicans are meant to stifle the service. That’s like taking your car to a mechanic to get an oil change, and they shoot the engine and claim you’re a bad driver.
From the abolition of the Public Postal Bank, stripping away the right to Strike all the way to pre-funding retirement for 75 years, the Postal Service has been a target of private interests. When you have a public service that delivers our food, medicine, consumer goods, the bills we’re all trying to avoid, as well as our ballots and information, the oligarchy will do everything in its power to bring that service to its knees and ensure that working class remains in poverty and debt.
The Postal Service can be saved if it’s allowed to do what it was intended to do. Reversing all the restrictive regulations would be a start. Giving the service the funding the it needs and deserves would another. Providing our mail carriers with the pay and benefits they deserve would also be huge. It’s about damn time we started preserving American Institutions like the United States Postal Service and dismantling unconstitutional ones like the centralized banking system that’s the villain in every story!
Krish Mohan is a socially conscious, Indian standup comedian and writer who regularly tours the country. He performs at small theaters, bars, comedy clubs, colleges, DIY and house venues. With his quirky attitude, charming personality, and intelligent humor, Krish captivates and engages audiences of all backgrounds, tackling hot button topics like race, religion, war, immigration, while adding an optimistic, philosophical & sociological twist!