Reasons The US Post Office Isn’t That Important

The US Post Office is important, but the recent cut-backs aren’t as bad as some people are making it out to be. One article on the subject that recently caught my attention was 10 Reasons the Post Office is Important to Us over on Change of Address because it didn’t really give the full picture.

For example:

  1. There are other ways to get medication to housebound patients.
    Private Shipping Services and Local Delivery Companies do the job just fine. Not every country has six-day mail service. Canada has five-day mail service and we survive.
  2. The economy will rebalance.
    The $1 Trillion dollar mailing and shipping industry won’t go away, the work will just go to the providers who can do it the most cost effectively.
  3. It’s not ending the postal service.
    There is just not as much need for as many offices or for six-day mail service now that so many documents can be delivered electronically and other private services provide other options.
  4. Shipping companies can still use the postal service.
    And they can partner with other companies that offer complementary services.
  5. Physical Goods Can Still be Delivered
    Just not on Saturdays.
  6. Publishers can still get their print publications out.
    They just have to adapt to no Saturday service and different printing deadlines to make different drop-off deadlines. Not a big deal.
  7. Rural Americans will still get their mail
    The Post Office isn’t taking away this service, and since most private delivery companies don’t operate in rural areas, this market will exist for years to come because of
  8. The Universal Service Option
    which still applies.
  9. Most communities with a sense of community have a community centre.
    That is independent of, and does not rely on, the post office.
  10. Major carriers can provide security as well.
    UPS and Fedex and similar companies are setup to track shipments along every mile and every individual who has access to those shipments because they import and export and this is a requirement to be in that business (10+2, etc.) and they use the same system across their business.

There’s nothing wrong with right-sizing an institution to stem massive bleeding, and while this will, unfortunately, result in some job layoffs, as the article notes, the need for document and parcel delivery still exists and it’s a given that the private sector will expand to meet this need and create new jobs to balance most of those jobs that are lost. It’s sad that the Post Office took so long to take action, and now has to take a massive action, but the Post Office is not going away and the mounting losses are more important than losing a day of service. Let’s just hope that they rebalance their operations the right way and don’t have to do this again.