The Beginning Of The End For The

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The Beginning Of The End For The Postal Monopoly Essay, Research Paper The Postal Service has been a government agency since 1775, and since 1872 it has been illegal for anyone but government employees to deliver a letter. Because of this and many other reasons, the USPS is a prevalent example of a government-controlled monopoly. The United States Postal Service is the largest postal service in the world. With over 800,000 employees (778,171 being part-time lobbyists), it is the US?s largest employer. In the past few years, the Postal Service?s profits have risen and productivity has declined. This essay will discuss why this is happening, and look deeper into the government-controlled monster that is the Postal Service. In the 1980?s, few scholars focused on the Postal

Service, and today there are many. This is because of all of the controversial issues that have been discovered regarding it. The USPS handles over 43% of the world?s mail volume, and Japan is in second with 6%. The USPS is also the largest airline shipper in the United States. The USPS delivers about 102 billion pieces of first class mail every year, and 20% of these letters arrive late. The average household gets 24 pieces of first-class mail every week, so almost 5 of these every week arrive late. In New York City in 1998, only 52% of the mail were delivered on time. Swimming champion Mary Meager had her parents send her the 2 gold medals that she won in the Olympics; the medals vanished when her parents sent them via USPS Express Mail. Why are these facts so appalling? Most

of it can be blamed on the unproductive postal workers. Postal workers, who are considered unskilled, make over $35,000 a year, and that number keeps increasing. These are very high wages for an unskilled worker. The workers also waste a considerable amount of time. A survey by the Postal Inspection service discovered that the average letter carrier wasted 1½ hours every day. Basically, 23% of all postal workers time is unproductive. A GAO study found that the average worker takes 50 days of paid leave every year. And sometimes, mail sent with the USPS doesn?t even get delivered. There are numerous stories of Postal employees stealing mail. For instance, in Chicago, 2,300 lbs. of undelivered mail were discovered at a postal worker?s home. Once in Rhode Island, 94,000 letters

were found buried at a letter carrier?s home. A Colorado carrier was arrested after 3 tons of undelivered mail was found at his home. These are just a few of the stories of the workers keeping mail as their own. And some undelivered mail isn?t even because of employees stealing mail. During the 1970?s, the CIA opened mail routinely. The reason behind this is because of the spying going on at this time between the U.S. and Russia, but this is still unnecessary. A Postal Inspection Service audit found properly addressed mail dumped in the trash at 76% of the Post Offices visited. This number is completely unnecessary and uncalled-for. At USPS headquarters, there are 11 members of the board and 50 economists, accountants, and lawyers on the commission. With all of these workers, you

would think that the service wouldn?t be having problems like this. The Postmaster General is the head of the service. The current Postmaster General is Marvin T. Runyon. Former Postmaster General William Henderson had this to say about the Postal monopoly: ??I believe that the Postal monopoly will not last forever.? Hopefully, he is right. According to Henderson, one in every 200 letters is delayed or missorted. In 1970, the USPS created the Postal Reorganization Act, trying to be redeemed. This was when the service officially became the United States Postal Service. Before that, it was just the Post Office. This Act had limited accomplishments. When the service was losing vast amounts of money in 1979, there was talk of privatizing it, but nothing pulled through. Many people