Post office delivers what had to be done
Friday, February 08, 2013 10:00 AM
Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.
That's the U.S. Postal Service motto.
But operating in the red surely will bring things to a halt ... at least on Saturdays.
Will there be some pain once the U.S. Postal Service cuts service on Saturdays? No doubt.
But honestly, what should Americans expect since they have dropped shipping much of their everyday correspondence through the postal carrier? The Internet and smart phones are here to stay.
Sending a letter across the country is still a bargain at 46 cents. Consider the human and mechanical resources that go into getting your car payment to a bank in New York or sending a birthday card to Grandma in Phoenix.
The reality is that corresponding by phone and Internet is cheaper - even though we know Grandma would rather have a real birthday card signed by the grandkids.
On Wednesday, the U.S. Postal Service laid out a plan that would take delivery from six days a week to five, leaving Saturday without regular mail, starting in August. Package delivery, a post office service seeing gains, would still go to customer doors on Saturdays.
The savings would be about $2 billion each year, postal officials said.
The change is past due for an agency running in the red and that has been forced to reconfigure how it processes the mail.
Pressure from federal officials resistant to necessary changes have hurt the Postal Service. But how can a business operate efficiently if it isn't allowed to adapt.
The postal service is in no position to run a 21st century business under 19th and 20th century models. The loss of Saturday delivery was inevitable because we, as customers, all but demanded it through our declining patronage.