Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Jettisoning the Baggage

Greetings good citizen,

Pursuant to downgrades issued by the major credit rating agencies, stock markets around the world have been bleeding from the eye-sockets all night.

The NYSE opened ‘down’ across the board but it’s interesting to note that the Magic of Wall Street has managed to lift the FTSE (London) back into positive territory, again, for no discernable reason.

I like to open my posts with these ‘What the fuck have you been smoking?’ reports to better contrast the ‘Happy Talk’ spewed in other sections of the media.

You’ve been hearing rumblings about ‘downsizing’ if not outright eliminating (privatizing) the Postal Service for the past couple of decades.

Well now they’re actually going to do something about it.

Oddly, the question is why now and why so much?

On Monday, the Postal Service said it would “move forward” with that plan, with closings to begin as early as March. It also said it was seeking a nonbinding advisory opinion from the Postal Regulatory Commission about the closures, although agency officials said they were intent on closing the processing centers as part of a plan to save $3 billion a year by 2015.

“The bottom line is that in the last three years, we’ve lost almost 27 percent of our first-class volume,” Patrick Donahoe, the postmaster general, said in a phone interview. “In 2000, 5 percent of people paid bills online. Now it’s 60 percent. The problem is we’ve lost so much volume in blue-box mail, we can’t hold out for next-day service anymore.”

The Postal Service lost $5.1 billion last year.

Um, geez Louis (Postmaster General is a ‘political appointment’ and changes with each incoming administration) You’d think somebody was ‘unaware’ of both the purpose and the importance of the global mail.

Just to give you an idea of ‘how important’ the mail service is (here in the US) imagine a 4 way intersection and 4 different vehicles pull up to the stop sign at the exact same time.

One is an Ambulance, the other is a Fire truck, the third is a police car and the last is a postal vehicle…who has the ‘right of way’?

You’re damn right, the postal vehicle!
(Not that the driver of the postal vehicle wouldn’t yield to the other three, those civilization altering communications are more rare than our example would lead you to believe.)

As stated, the Post Office has been ‘losing money’ and years ago clueless politicians decided to make the postal service ‘self-sustaining’, which once again displays stunning ignorance of the purpose/importance of a national communications system that is the postal service.

If the electricity goes down, the mail still ‘moves’…slowly, but it will still get there…eventually.

What do you suppose they intend to do with the ‘savings’ yielded from these cuts to the postal service?

Will they divert them to fighting the perpetual ‘war on Terra’ or will they go towards funding more surveillance apparatus for the growing Security State?

But perhaps it is the ‘bigger picture’ that is being ignored here, don’t you think?

Our second offering from the same source takes this same story to the next rung down on the government ladder:

“There’s always been this promise that if you came to work and did your job, at the end there would be your reward — a defined retirement. The idea was you could retire with respect and dignity. But that whole idea has been slashed now, and I felt like, ‘What is the point?’ ”

In some places, the rise in retirement has brought welcome and needed financial news. Kansas announced last month that it would save $34.5 million over two years because more than 1,000 workers had agreed to accept cash and health insurance incentives to leave. State officials said they had yet to determine which of the positions of departing workers they considered critical enough to refill.

But some experts and workers question the ultimate result of so much leaving, saying it is already leaving some governments short-staffed (and, in some cases, obliged to pay overtime) and at risk of losing institutional knowledge and technical expertise as older workers vanish.

Is this the conservative ‘Starve the Beast’ strategy in action? No.

It IS the end result of Globalization. All of those enterprises our politicians ‘allowed’ to be off-shored no longer contribute to the, er, ‘greater good’.

So they’ll shut down the post offices (what the hell, nobody can pay their bills anymore anyway!) and cut back on police, fire and the education system (teachers first, naturally.)

In fact, as you can plainly see, they already have.

And what will be left?

A Banana Republic where the privileged don’t set foot outside their walled and fortified compounds without a platoon of heavily armed bodyguards because they know if they drop their guard for even a second they will be kidnapped and killed (in that order.)

What, you can’t afford to pay a platoon of heavily armed men to protect you and yours?

Well, you’d better have enough to pay ‘tribute’ or you’ll be taking your life in your own hands just venturing to the corner store!

And that will be the hell of it, you won’t be able to afford to escape!

Without a functioning justice system you’re a chicken just waiting to be plucked by some greedy opportunist.

And on that unpleasant note…

Thanks for letting me inside your head,


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