News Release

Degraded Postal Service Part of a “Manufactured” Crisis and a “Daylight Heist” of New Deal Art

CNN is reporting: “The U.S. Postal Service will end Saturday home delivery of letters and other first-class mail, but will still deliver packages, starting in August.”

GRAY BRECHIN, [email]
Brechin is founder and project scholar of the Living New Deal Project. He said today: ”With the reduction of mail delivery to from six to five days and possibly fewer, the USPS management continues its losing strategy of degrading service and driving away customers that began with radical staffing cutbacks at our post offices and continues with the outright sale of those post offices across the U.S.

“We are watching a daylight bank heist with no cop on the beat. The press has entirely missed he point that over its 221-year history, U.S. taxpayers paid for a portfolio of public properties and art that is now worth a fortune to anyone who can gain access to it. By putting the USPS into its current death spiral, Congress has forced the USPS to liquidate the public’s assets. It has designated the commercial real estate giant CBRE as its exclusive agency to sell our properties, a company largely owned and chaired by private equity billionaire Richard C. Blum, Senator Dianne Feinstein’s husband. The USPS is custodian of post offices and art of extraordinary quality, but at the current pace of downsizing, all of its properties will soon be thrown onto the market and the U.S. will be without the public postal service mandated by the Constitution. The USPS announced last week that it will sell the central Bronx Post Office with its great cycle of Ben Shahn murals. Yesterday, the shocked residents of Chelsea in Manhattan learned that the Postal Service will sell its beloved neighborhood post office with its two New Deal sculptures.”

“We are watching a daylight bank heist with no cop on the beat. The press has entirely missed he point that over its 221-year history, U.S. taxpayers paid for a portfolio of public properties and art that is now worth a fortune to anyone who can gain access to it. By putting the USPS into its current death spiral, Congress has forced the USPS to liquidate the public’s assets. It has designated the commercial real estate giant CBRE as its exclusive agency to sell our properties, a company largely owned and chaired by private equity billionaire Richard C. Blum, Senator Dianne Feinstein’s husband. The USPS is custodian of post offices and art of extraordinary quality, but at the current pace of downsizing, all of its properties will soon be thrown onto the market and the U.S. will be without the public postal service mandated by the Constitution. The USPS announced last week that it will sell the central Bronx Post Office with its great cycle of Ben Shahn murals. Yesterday, the shocked residents of Chelsea in Manhattan learned that the Postal Service will sell its beloved neighborhood post office with its two New Deal sculptures.”

See: SaveThePostOffice.com

Also, see the IPA news release “Nader: Post Office Crisis ‘Manufactured’,” in which Ralph Nader states: “The deep hole of debt that is currently facing the U.S. Postal Service is entirely due to the burdensome prepayments for future retiree health care benefits imposed by Congress in the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006. By June 2011, the USPS saw a total net deficit of $19.5 billion … [this] deficit almost exactly matches the $20.95 billion the USPS made in prepayments to the fund for future retiree health care benefits by June 2011. If the prepayments required under PAEA were never enacted into law, the USPS would not have a net deficiency of nearly $20 billion, but instead be in the black by at least $1.5 billion.” Nader stressed that, in terms of retirees’ health benefits, the Postal Service is required to do things that “no other government or private corporation is required to do and is an incredibly unreasonable burden.”