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1st Class Stamp Nearly 2X Cost In 1930

From a context free Associated Press:

(Click to enlarge)

Post office plans to announce new rate increase

By Randolph E. Schmid, Associated Press Writer Tue Jul 6, 2010

WASHINGTON – Battered by massive losses, the Postal Service wants to raise rates to bring in more money.

Postal officials scheduled a briefing Tuesday to discuss the amount of the increase, which will go to the independent Postal Regulatory Commission for review.

The boost comes as no surprise. Postmaster General John Potter said March 2 that a rate increase would be necessary for the agency, which does not receive tax funds for its operations.

The current 44-cent first-class rate took effect May 11, 2009.

While that change will be the most visible, rates for other types of mail will also go up, raising concern among business groups and nonprofit organizations.

Under the law, the post office is generally limited to increases no more than the rate of inflation — 0.9 percent for the year ended in May.

However, the agency is allowed to seek a larger increase in unusual circumstances. Potter said in March he planned to take that step.

"The projections going forward are not bright," Potter said then. But, he added: "All is not lost. … We can right this ship."

The agency lost $3.8 billion last fiscal year despite cutting 40,000 full-time positions and making other reductions. It has continued to face significant losses this year…

Postal officials also have proposed eliminating Saturday mail delivery as a means of cutting costs, a change that would require congressional approval.

Post office finances are also complicated by the requirement that the agency make annual payments to pre-fund future health benefits for retirees, something not required of other government agencies.

And the postal inspector general contends that the Postal Service has been overcharged billions of dollars for retirement benefits for employees who worked for the old Post Office Department before it was converted to the Postal Service in 1970.

The cost of a first class stamp in 1930 was $.02. Adjusted for inflation, that would be $.26 in today’s money. But, instead, a first class stamp now will cost $.44 – and soon even more.

Why is that? With all of our modern technology, computers, airplanes, trucks and automobiles, shouldn’t the price of delivering a first class letter have declined tremendously over the last 80 years?

We suspect that the pay levels and gold plated benefits and pension packages that these hardworking Postal employees receive might have something to do with it. As we have previously noted, Mr. Potter’s pay and perks alone added up to more than $800,000 in 2008.

By the way, lest we forget, Mr. Obama held up the US Postal Service as a model for his ‘healthcare reform’ legislation. And, alas, he was probably right.

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, July 6th, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

10 Responses to “1st Class Stamp Nearly 2X Cost In 1930”

  1. proreason says:

    “Mr. Obama held up the US Postal Service as a model for his ‘healthcare reform’ legislation. And, alas, he was probably right.”

    Actually, for government, the PO is a model of efficiency. The reason is that the process is clear and simple. Even government workers can grasp it. “letter/package placed in drop off. Too little postage? Send back. Otherwise, deliver to address. Bad address? Send back.”

    Rather than digust at 2X, we should be thrilled that it isn’t 20X.

    It’s the same reason why Social Security is a relative success. Clear objective. Simple process.

    Now, apply that to Medicare and you can understand the problem. Thousands of medical conditions and growing, tens of millions of patients, millions of providers, continually changing medical capabilities, the most complex administrative functions in human history. The government could have 300 million bureaucrats and it wouldn’t be enough. And that’s before criminals begin to exploit the complexity under the watchful eyes of the few bureaucrats who stay awake, and before the lawyers begin their feeding frenzy.

    And Obamycare will be ten times worse than Medicare. Seriously. It is 100% inevitable, if it isn’t repealed, that Obamycare will reduce the complexity by SEVERELY rationing care……in dozens if not hundreds of ways….just like every other statist healthcare system ever invented has done…..because there is no other way that a rules-bound bureaucracy can do it. Any 12 year-old could figure that out.

    • Rusty Shackleford says:

      The government could have 300 million bureaucrats and it wouldn’t be enough.

      It’s very clear. Given the diversity and combinations of things that can happen, the government is ill-prepared to deal with contingencies. As you stated, a simple, clear objuective is manageable; One with lots of permutations is not. And certainly not at the government “lowest common-denomenator” level.

      It’s absurd to assume, or even imagine that bureaucracy can distill everyone’s medical needs to a simple matrix or set of statndards. That’s why it always has been and always will be called the “practice” of medicne because, unlike the left’s notion that the Constition needs to “adapt to mondern times”, the medical profession definitely does and for obvious reasons.

      But as you also said last year, Pro, once this plan goes into effect, say bye-bye to medical innovation, research, development, and basically lock your calendar to 2011 because there will be NO medical advances after that.

  2. Astravogel says:

    I’d prefer to keep Saturday delivery and abolish Monday’s.
    Since we’re already getting more Monday business, postal,
    and governmental holidays, like 5 July 2010, delivery would
    not be missed much. (Neither would government.)

    Democratica Delinda Est!

  3. Liberals Demise says:

    Allow me to make it simple…..

    1st Class Stamp (at cost) with 4th Class treatment (same cost)

    Snail Mail

  4. U NO HOO says:

    The mail carrier is the only government employee that a citizen is happy to see and will wait for.

    Only three rules for the post office:

    1. Sort the mail

    2. Deliver the mail

    3. Look like you know what you are doing

    #3 is really really hard to do

    Oh yeah, the post office is strongly unionized.

  5. canary says:

    But the postal service made a fortune when they raised to 44 cents after first getting rid of all their 1 cent & 3 cent stamps such as on their new 1 rate boxes.
    I couldn’t understand standing for 15 minutes as a clerk put rows & rows on my box, then counted each stamp, making customer’s stand in line. Then they raised the stamp, gave old stamps to Walmarts to sale, who didn’t have 1 cent stamps, so you’d have to use (2) 44 cent stamps.

    Why did Obama add 2 new Board of Directors. One a political science major and a labor attorney, when they needed a financial expert?

  6. mr_bill says:

    Even if the first class rate were $10 and their purchase rate were double what it is now, they would still find a way to squander it all and run a deficit.

    Government + unionized labor = waste, graft, inefficiency

  7. Perdido says:

    I use the USPS a lot. I can basically send a flat or letter anywhere in the country in about 3 days, usually less. I’m good with that until we can get it done with contractors submitting bids and quotes. I think that 44 cents, even if it is double what it was in the 30’s is still a damn good deal.

    They just don’t put enough checks in my PO Box. ;-)

    No I don’t work at the P.O. and I’m related to anyone that does, either. lol.

    • Liberals Demise says:

      Why is it they build a Post Office with 5 windows but only open 1?
      (2 at the most)

  8. Reality Bytes says:

    Oops – wrong post.


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