Thursday, October 7, 2010

The United States Post Office

Today I had again the misfortune of going to the post office. After standing in line for 10 minutes as usual I overheard the conversation between the clerk and a gentleman ahead of me. He just needed one stamp--poor thing--and asked why there was no longer a vending machine for stamps outside the main lobby. Good question, dude.

"To save jobs," she answered.

To save jobs. Think about this for a minute. I don't know about you, but it seems to be that a vending machine for the sole purpose of stamps is a good idea. It doesn't mind standing on its feet all day, it will work as many hours and holidays as needed, it's quick, and it doesn't need vacation days or employment benefits. True, it has to be restocked and maintained--but that would create a job itself, wouldn't it? I don't have the data to compare the costs of vending machines for stamps vs. a human employee, butlikeomgforsure, I'm enraged at the audacity and inefficiency of our "benign" government. Again. I know, I should be used to it by now.

Let's forget, for a moment, the unconstitutionality of the post office and the tax dollars squeezed out of us by force to operate it; let's also forget of the monopoly it has arbitrarily declared on sending and receiving letters. Hey, what happened to Anti-Trust laws in this country? Oh, nevermind.

The USPS in its infinite wisdom decided it was unfair to replace workers just to make things cheaper and more efficient. She did say, after all, that the machines were removed not because they were too expensive, but because they were taking jobs from the humans. So the USPS generously employs people to keep from hurting their feelings with money from our wallets.

It's oh-so-easy to be generous with others' money, isn't it? And in our case, we're a never ending treasure chest. The USPS, just like the Federal government, operates on a perpetual deficit with absolutely no penalty, while a private sector company (or the average citizen) is held to a different standard. For us there are threatening letters, assets frozen, money taken, even imprisonment. My friends, just you try to evade your taxes or even innocently be late in paying them. The IRS will have your butt on a platter, reaching its grubby tendrils into your job, your bank accounts and anything you own. But We the People are expected to cough it up, bend over and offer our asses for another spanking.

Why does the government do this to us? Because they can. Because they have the guns. Because we have rolled over and given them everything. Shame on us.

The problem with allowing the government to run our schools, our post office, our roads and the like is that it removes the vital need for ingenuity, passion, drive, invention, success, and efficiency. There is no longer a reward for bad behavior. Spend too much? That's ok, here's another pile of money we've taken from the citizenry. This is why private competition is so damn important. In private competition, money is not collected UNLESS QUALITY SERVICES AND PRODUCTS ARE PROVIDED TO THE CONSUMER, AT WHICH POINT THE CONSUMER VOLUNTARILY PAYS THE VENDOR FOR THE SERVICE. Money is not taken through unconstitutional taxation, with the threat of fine or imprisonment. The service provider has a serious incentive to provide quality, economical service--or else he will lose a customer, and consequently, his business will fail. He is not allowed--moreover, he is not able--to operate on a perpetual deficit.


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