The USPS’ Radical Plan
I don't fault postal executives for putting forth such a risky plan. They have been warning for years that Congress' meddling and accounting games were putting the agency on the road to insolvency. On one front, the proposal has succeeded where previous efforts by the agency and mailers' groups had largely failed: The postal service's financial problems and Congress' role in causing them are now front-page news. And the prospect of having to vote on voiding no-layoff clauses in union contracts and allowing an estimated 120,000 postal workers to be sacked has attracted legislators' attention as well.
Given the constraints placed on it, the postal service had been making a lot of the right moves recently to get its house in order. But inaction by Congress and the White House put USPS on the verge of running out of cash. The postal service responded with its only option—what in football is known as a "Hail Mary" play, when a player launches the ball as far as possible in an effort to score final points, usually with very little time left in the half. As any football fan can tell you, such desperate plays rarely work. PE
D. Eadward Tree is the pseudonymous Chief Arborist for Dead Tree Edition (http://deadtreeedition.blogspot.com), recently named by industry commentator Patrick Henry as one of the top 10 blogs for printers and publishers. Mr. Tree is an old print dinosaur who doesn't know his RSS from a hole in the ground, but pay him a few bucks for an article and all of a sudden he thinks he's some kind of new-media pundit.