August 8, 2012 |
The U.S. Postal Serviceis in trouble, and there's no telling whether it will survive. It's been battered by the Internet and a dragging economy, besieged by commercial competitors and stymied in its efforts to trim a costly web of post offices and delivery routes. On Aug. 1, it defaulted on a $5.5-billion payment to the U.S. Treasury for future retiree health benefits. Some think that it's time to privatize the service, bringing an end to one of our oldest federal institutions. The outlook is grim, though the crisis is not unprecedented.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 7, 2013 |
BERKELEY, Calif. - Plenty of communities have resisted the U.S. Postal Service's sweeping real estate sell-off, battling to keep open historic buildings that speak of bygone civic grandeur and to guarantee old-fashioned mail service for the public. Few have succeeded. But this is Berkeley, home of the Free Speech Movement and protracted protests over civil rights, Vietnam and more. So when the postal service announced plans to sell Berkeley's 1914 Second Renaissance Revival-style main post office, decorated in New Deal-era art and situated in the heart of the liberal city's Civic Center, the town rose up. Opponents staged a 33-day encampment on its steps, and the mayor and entire City Council joined forces to block the sale, with backing from U.S. Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Oakland)
December 14, 2011 |
Ringing like a Salvation Army bell, more Christmas-themed outrage is in the air. This time, it's a kerfuffle over some holiday carolers being ejected from a post office in a Maryland suburb outside Washington. It seems that the carolers, dressed like something out of Dickens, ran afoul of a federal law that prohibits organized groups from assembling on post office property. It's likely no one would have heard about it, except that J.P. Duffy, a spokesman for the influential conservative advocacy group the Family Research Council, was among the dozens of patrons at the post office in Aspen Hill, Md, on Saturday.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 26, 2013 |
Members of the Santa Monica Conservancy, a preservation group, plan to hold a rally at the city's post office at 5th Street and Arizona Avenue at 11 a.m. Saturday, the last day of its operation. The U.S. Postal Service announced a year ago that it would sell the building, and the conservancy and others have since been advocating for its preservation. In 2012, the National Trust for Historic Preservation put the nation's historic post offices on its annual list of endangered places.
April 10, 1994
In his March 24 letter, Gary A. Robb gets up in arms over the prospect of a government-administered health care program. He offers the post office as the kind of management he fears. Actually, what he should fear is the reverse: having the health care guys running the post office. Between 1967 and 1990, hospital care costs rose 1,200% while the cost of a first-class stamp went up only 417% (6 cents to 25 cents)--about equal to the consumer price index. TILDA DE WOLFE Monterey Park Once again, a government agency can't balance its budget, so it's raising prices.