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USPS rant
Old 06-07-2007, 02:51 PM   #1
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USPS rant

The US Post Office is often the butt of jokes, but until this week I didn't really realize how bad their service had sunk.

Many of you know I live in a rural area a few miles outside San Antonio. Our mail comes out of Castroville, TX and is carried not by an employee of the US Post Office, but by a contract carrier. Evidently that's a tough job to fill since the postmaster tells me our local carrier walked off the job Monday morning, and the back up carrier quit on Tuesday. Bottom line, no one in our area of the county (an estimated 400 homes) has received mail for the past three days, and I'm not sure any of us will get mail today - it's almost 3PM local time and we haven't yet.

I've spoken to the postmaster twice about the problem, once late Tuesday and again late Wednesday afternoon. His parting comment: "There is nothing I can do about it."

That's when I lost it.

After explaining to him his statement was absurd, insulting, and unacceptable, I asked him how much hassle it would be for him if the local residents complained to our Congressman about no mail delivery for three days. It got very quiet on the phone and he almost begged me not to do so. Didn't stop me for a minute.

Yep, I called up the office of the Honorable Ciro D. Rodriquez (D -TX), and vented my frustration to a nice lady who listened to my complaint, took all my information...and promised to send a letter to the USPS about the problem!! Yes, a letter! I was so dumbfounded I was speechless. It was all I could do to mumble a "thank you" before hanging up.

Then I decided to go the internal route and sent an email to the US Postal Inspector. I got a response within a few hours asking for more details. I sent the information the Postal Inspector's office requested last night, and received a response a few minutes ago. I am to expect a phone call from someone at the local post office within 24 hours. Jeeze Louise! I fired back a response saying I'd not gotten any results by talking with the local postmaster, I wanted to talk to his boss!

Sheesh!

Has snail mail service degraded this badly everywhere, or am I just "lucky"?
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Old 06-07-2007, 03:02 PM   #2
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I didnt even know that they had contract carriers...They should find a friendly retired person to be their backup to their backup

Who keeps using the PO as an example of how to do health care reform....
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Old 06-07-2007, 03:13 PM   #3
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Looks like a career opportunity has fallen into your lap!
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Old 06-07-2007, 03:18 PM   #4
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Hey, I'm part of the problem, not the solution!!!
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Old 06-07-2007, 03:22 PM   #5
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Add "no mail service" to the vague mumblings about rattlesnakes, scorpions, and chiggers, and you might deter a few more Yankees and Californians from entering the great state of Texas!
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Old 06-07-2007, 03:30 PM   #6
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Wow, and all along I thought the chiggers were getting the best of him!
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Old 06-07-2007, 03:38 PM   #7
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We have contract carriers here. I understand the pay is terrific.
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Old 06-07-2007, 03:42 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maddythebeagle View Post
I didnt even know that they had contract carriers...They should find a friendly retired person to be their backup to their backup

Who keeps using the PO as an example of how to do health care reform....
If we didn't have the USPS, I don't think rural areas would have home delivery. It wouldn't be profitable..... Kind of like not selling insurance to people with preexisting conditions
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Old 06-07-2007, 03:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
our local carrier walked off the job Monday morning, and the back up carrier quit on Tuesday.
The PO employees are taking the rest of the week off to celebrate the fact that there were no automatic weapons involved.
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Old 06-07-2007, 03:59 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
The PO employees are taking the rest of the week off to celebrate the fact that there were no automatic weapons involved.
Not so far, but it's only Thursday.
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Old 06-07-2007, 04:22 PM   #11
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I once had a PO Box in town in the post office itself. I got an overnight package that was due to be delivered on Christmas day. The post office advertises that its overnight mail will be delvered every single day of the year including Christmas day.

The "workers" at my post ofc put my pkg in my PO box even though it was addressed to my house. When challenged (my friend tried to get his money back due to non-overnight delivery) the liars at my post office said they called me on the phone on Christmas day and I told them to just put it in my PO box. They didn't.

I don't use the postal service unless I have too.

Mike D.
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Old 06-07-2007, 04:41 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by REWahoo View Post
... our local carrier walked off the job Monday morning, and the back up carrier quit on Tuesday.
Has snail mail service degraded this badly everywhere, or am I just "lucky"?
I spend a lot of time getting off everyone's mailing lists.

If our mail carrier quit I don't think we'd notice until our kid's Netflix DVDs stopped arriving...

I wonder how UPS & FedEx could use the local USPS' problems as fodder for their marketing machine?
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Old 06-07-2007, 04:45 PM   #13
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Eh, USPS came through for me when I had to overnight our Cobra payments...the provider only lists a PO box and it turns out that neither fed ex nor UPS will deliver overnight to a PO box...which makes sense. For nine bucks less than the UPS/fed ex fee, the USPS got it from this side of the country to the other by noon the next day.

But yeah, if my delivery guy dropped dead in his truck, I wouldnt miss much. Everythings e-delivered and e-paid.

I guess I'd be short on my recycling quota due to the lack of 10,000 pizza place coupons...
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Old 06-07-2007, 05:37 PM   #14
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What you are experiencing isn't acceptable. The Postmaster needs to meet with the route customers to arrange for them to receive their mail someway-somehow until the problem is fixed. If that means setting up a basket for each customer where each customer lists the family members or neighbors/friends who can bring them their mail it would help.

Many of us receive our meds through CVS, a mail order pharmacy. Not having mail service could the life threatening for some.

To have two contract carriers quit either means that the contract isn't worth the cost & time to work or the Postmaster is a difficult person.
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Old 06-07-2007, 05:53 PM   #15
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With all the hoopla about Paris Hilton getting released from jail early, I think I have the solution: Send her here to schlep our mail for the next month - send our postmaster to jail to serve out her sentence.

Yep, a win-win situation.
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Old 06-07-2007, 06:42 PM   #16
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CFB: Only USPS can deliver to P.O. boxes by law. However you can get a "suite" at a pack & ship shop that is really just a mailbox that anyone can deliver to. I believe there are legal restrictions on what you're allowed to send with private carriers, but as far as I know it's not enforced.

REW: You want a repeating drunk driver to drive a mail truck daily all over your town? You're not that desperate for beaver shots, are you?

My pet conspiracy theory is that there is an organized effort to tick off postal employees and otherwise degrade service, and that in a few years there will be a big push to privatize the post office. (I really thought they'd try during the Bushie years, but that ship has likely sailed.) USPS can do odd things, but I swear some of the things they do seem squarely aimed at enraging the employees and making them work out of their area of expertise.

By the way I think privatizing the postal service would be a really bad thing.
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Old 06-07-2007, 06:55 PM   #17
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C
REW: You want a repeating drunk driver to drive a mail truck daily all over your town? You're not that desperate for beaver shots, are you?
Naahh.

I want to see her skinny, prissy butt sweat while dragging hundreds of pounds of mail out in the 95 degree temps, dodging rattlesnakes, fire ants, scorpions and chiggers!

And I want my mail!
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Old 06-07-2007, 07:13 PM   #18
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my mom works for usps for over 20 years, i have mixed feelings. i think there are definitely problems with the organization overall, and they have definitely used and abused my mom - who has tons of physical problems from working graveyard for 20 years - but i also think it's odd people will pay $13-30 for overnite to the next town over when $.39 will get it there too - or a few bucks more for signature or certification...i always remind my coworkers to use usps unless it is super urgent or far away.

how much would fedex charge to send your letter ground? more than $.39 i bet.
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Old 06-07-2007, 07:22 PM   #19
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I learned later today that the root cause of the problem lies where I thought it did - with the postmaster.

Our area has been growing rapidly and the route apparently became so large that it was impossible to complete in one day. That's why the carrier quit...and the back-up quit after attempting only 1/3 of the route.

Looks like the postmaster was too lazy or too clueless to realize months ago he needed to split the route between two carriers. He allowed the situation to totally crater and deserves whatever crap he gets for not taking action when he had the opportunity.
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Old 06-07-2007, 09:31 PM   #20
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Has snail mail service degraded this badly everywhere, or am I just "lucky"?
We learned a lot about how bad the postal service had become, and how weak their dedication to public service, responsibility, or duty (a four letter word, apparently), during the months following Hurricane Katrina.

We had no mail service at all for months, and only partial mail service for months after that, in the undamaged areas. We had tourists and Mardi Gras, but couldn't get mail. Go figure.
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