It’s no surprise that I harbor nothing but utter disdain and contempt for the United States Postal Service. I consider it fair, because that’s how it seems they consider me, as well.
When I wish to colorfully describe that something is slow, I say it moves at the speed of the Postal Service. The Postal Service is bureaucracy personified in a way that’s apparent and personal on a level that other forms of bureaucracy aren’t: Most people deal with the USPS on a more regular basis than they do with their friendly neighborhood other type of bureaucrat.
There is nothing the government can do better than someone in the private sector. Again, the USPS exemplifies this truth in a way that’s more visible to the Everyman. Postal employees are surly and apathetic (and unionized so eff off, Postal Customer). Most Federal Express and United Parcel Service employees don’t have this attitude. And credit where it’s due: a few postal employees don’t exhibit the trademark USPS contempt for the customer that’s taught at Postperson’s School.
There is a provision in the US Constitution for the US Congress to establish Post Offices and Post Routes, so the USPS is secure in its existence, even though it clearly needs to be completely reorganized into something useful and efficient.
I have developed this contempt for the USPS over many years and various run ins with their apathy and disregard for customer service. But a few things culminated recently that once again highlight just how disinterested the Postal Service is in doing it’s damn job.
First, the mailboxes at our apartment complex was vandalized. And to be fair, this is likely not the fault of the Postal Service. But they’ve capitalized on it by not delivering our mail for a couple of days. There was a notice about the vandalism in our post box a few days ago, yes. If that actually told us that our mail would be held at the local Post Office building, it wasn’t worded in a manner that actually communicated that fact to either my wife or me. And we’re both quite gifted with words.
Secondly, a package I’d ordered was marked as delivered on the website when I couldn’t actually bring the package home. Yes, you read that correctly. When I went over to the post office building, the lady behind the counter told me that the package couldn’t be picked up because it was still on the truck.
Newsflash for the Postmaster General: That doesn’t qualify as delivered. That’s like airlines ordering their planes to push back from the gate, then sitting on the tarmac for four hours and calling it an on-time departure. If I can’t bring my package home, it’s not delivered.
I dread when I see that something has shipped via the USPS. The Postal Service sucks and it’s rightfully struggling in our current economy. Because everything that a government agency does can be better done by private industry that fears losing its competitive edge.
When there’s competition, the customer wins. Every time.