Photo: Pavan Trikutam via Unsplash

Three Things: They Look Like Phones [UPDATE-1]

[NB: Check the byline, thanks! Updates will appear at the bottom of the post. /~Rayne *]

Those three things sure look like phones — like something you should be using to make phone calls ASAP.

Call about what, you might ask?


~ 3 ~

You’re already aware there’s a mounting crisis related to the U.S. Post Office. Yesterday Trump just came right out and said the quiet part out loud, that he’s stealing the election by messing with the post office.

No, really, he’s that damaged cognitively that he’ll admit his impeachable offense.

Speaking with Maria Bartiromo on Fox Business Network on Thursday morning, Trump appeared to confirm that he opposes Democrats’ proposed funding for mail-in balloting and the U.S. Postal Service in order to make it more difficult to expand voting by mail.

“Now they need that money in order to make the post office work, so it can take all of these millions and millions of ballots,” he said. “But if they don’t get those two items, that means you can’t have universal mail-in voting, because they’re not equipped to have it.”

It’s not the first time he’s said something to this effect, that Republicans lose when it’s easier to vote. He said it in March so you know he’s been thinking about this and working on it since at least first quarter this year.

But this time Trump’s pointedly refusing to assent to funding the U.S. Post Office. His slack-jawed flabby-assed flunky, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, offered an economic aid bill 10 weeks late and then dismissed the Senate for a month rather than allow senators to work with the House Dems to negotiate adding USPS funding to their pork-laden HEALS Act.

That’s right, the HEALS Act has no funding for the USPS though the House Dems’ HEROES Act passed in mid-May contains $25 billion. The Center for Responsible Federal Budget offers a comparison of the two bills — there’s nothing in the Senate bill for USPS though it contains money to improve airports (when air travel has fallen dramatically) and transferred money to private schools (though public schools are already underfunded and in need of money to address COVID-19 mitigation).

Meanwhile, Americans across the country have already been damaged by Trump’s overt attacks on the USPS through his corrupt appointee, Louis DeJoy. You’ll recall that DeJoy was a Trump donor; he’s basically bought his appointment through campaign contributions, which isn’t unusual. But he owned and still owned stock in competitors with the USPS. Every decision he makes which cuts USPS’s services and responsiveness is self-dealing.

Worse, since his appointment, DeJoy bought stock in Amazon which has its own shipping service — yet another conflict of interest.

DeJoy could and should be removed. The chances the House Dems would impeach him AND the slack-jawed Senate Majority Leader would allow the Senate to convict and remove him before the election are slim to none. You know Trump damned well won’t have a change of heart or mind about DeJoy (having neither heart nor mind to change).

But there’s another possibility. The USPS Board of Governors could remove DeJoy and name another among their ranks to serve as the Postmaster General.

Here’s the current board:



Political Party

Term Begin

Term Expiration

Of Interest

Louis DeJoy Postmaster General (PMG) and CEO Republican June 15, 2020 No Term Limit 75th United States Postmaster General
Robert M. Duncan Chairman of the Board of Governors Republican August 2018 December 8, 2025 Re-elected as chairman in November 2019
Ron A. Bloom Governor Democratic August 20, 2019 December 8, 2020 Chair of Strategy and Innovation Committee
Roman Martinez IV Governor Republican August 1, 2019 December 8, 2024 Chair of Audit and Finance Committee
John McLeod Barger Governor Republican August 1, 2019 December 8, 2021 Chair of Compensation and Governance Committee
Donald L. Moak Governor Democrat June 18, 2020 December 8, 2022 Replacing Alan C. Kessler
William D. Zollars Governor Republican June 18, 2020 December 8, 2022 Replacing James H. Bilbray

What we need are contact methods including phone numbers for these individuals because you know mailing anything to these board members won’t be timely. Heck, sending a letter via FedEx or UPS could work, too — find out what Brown can do for you, amirite?

These board members need to know they are on notice and will be held accountable for failing their fiduciary AND legal responsibilities.

Like 18 U.S. Code § 1701.Obstruction of mails generally

Whoever knowingly and willfully obstructs or retards the passage of the mail, or any carrier or conveyance carrying the mail, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than six months, or both.


And should any American not receive essential medication on time as many have reported, causing harm or even death? These board members should be named in any suit against the U.S. Postal Service.

But what about the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) limiting lawsuits by individuals against federal services?

See Dolan v. United States Postal Service — the deliberate removal of post office equipment to slow down and impede delivery of mail is not negligence. It’s malicious.

And the president explained what was intended. Hurting Americans’ health and commerce is just collateral damage to him.

There’s probably a case to be made for 18 U.S. Code § 371 Conspiracy to Defraud the U.S., and possibly 18 U.S. Code § 1346 Honest Services Fraud.

VICE reported on documents they obtained showing the reductions to equipment were set in motion months ago — what a coincidence that the “Equipment Reduction” presentation document VICE shared is dated May 15, 2020, the same day the House Democrats passed the HEROES Act containing $25 billion for USPS funding.

DeJoy was appointed by Trump on May 7, one week before that presentation’s date.

The document VICE obtained refers to “proposed plan” throughout, meaning it was not the final plan. There’s no indication this was intended to reduce costs to operate, only reduce equipment.

And there’s zero indication in the “Equipment Reduction” document or in other reporting to date that DeJoy would recover any costs of the equipment by selling any removed for scrap. Instead there are reports the equipment removed has been destroyed and tossed in dumpsters.

Imagine the scrap value lost to the U.S. Treasury. What’s the chances somebody has made off with this?

Wondering if there’s also U.S. code somewhere which addresses deliberate impediment or interference with the operations of the U.S. Census because that’s still underway and there are likely replies also being delayed.

If you find phone numbers for the members of the Board of Governors, please share in comments. Thanks!

~ 2 ~ 

It’s not just individuals who rely on timely delivery of mail for all manner of essentials like medication; it’s not just businesses which rely on timely, secure delivery of mail for transmission of payments and legal documents.

It’s states and local government relying on mail for the conduct of governance. States’ attorneys general should sue the U.S. Post Office and the entire Board of Governors if the states and local governments are harmed by this deliberate sabotage of the U.S. Post Office.

Here’s the National Association of Attorneys General’s website — click on the photo of your state’s attorney general to find their contact information including telephone number. Or check with your state’s government website for your AG.

Ask your state’s AG to look into damages to the state caused by the deliberate delay of mail by the U.S. Post Office.

You may see your state’s Secretary of State writing sternly worded letters of concern, as California’s Alex Padilla did today. But stern letters from a state to the U.S. Postmaster aren’t likely to produce anything but spin from DeJoy.

Attorneys general filing lawsuits? That might get something done.

~ 1 ~

Rep. Ted Lieu tweeted that it’s unlikely the USPS will be funded because of Trump and Senate Republicans.

He’s right — unless the GOP senators get panicky about their grip on a majority, they will continue to obstruct as they have been. Perhaps they’ve been persuaded by Team Trump that DeJoy’s trashing of the USPS will work in their favor.

We know, though, the Republicans have been twitchy about their ties to Trump for some time now. The White House’s handling of COVID-19 has been disastrous for their constituents. Lying or spinning can’t hide the body count. That body count may worsen, taking their voters should their essential medications not arrive by mail on a timely basis.

So make these GOP senators — especially this list up for re-election — panicky. If one of these is your senator, call them and get into their grill about the crappy HEALS Act which provides zero funding for the USPS but doles out pork like money for the bloated F-35 fighter jet.

Capito, Shelley Moore (R-WV) McConnell, Mitch (R-KY)
Cassidy, Bill (R-LA) McSally, Martha (R-AZ)
Collins, Susan M. (R-ME) Perdue, David (R-GA)
Cornyn, John (R-TX) Risch, James E. (R-ID)
Cotton, Tom (R-AR) Rounds, Mike (R-SD)
Daines, Steve (R-MT) Sasse, Ben (R-NE)
Enzi, Michael B. (R-WY) Sullivan, Dan (R-AK)
Ernst, Joni (R-IA) Tillis, Thom (R-NC)
Gardner, Cory (R-CO)
Graham, Lindsey (R-SC) Retiring:
Hyde-Smith, Cindy (R-MS) Alexander, Lamar (R-TN) open seat
Inhofe, James M. (R-OK) Roberts, Pat (R-KS) open seat

Congressional switchboard: (202) 224-3121 — or use to text them.

If you have one or more Democratic senators, call and thank them for their work and ask them to ensure they support USPS funding if the GOP senators come to the table to negotiate HEALS Act.

~ 0 ~

I want to point out I am not a lawyer. If you think there’s other angles of approach which work better apart from what I’ve written here, or if there’s a flaw in what I’ve laid out, share in comments so we all can take a better tack.

Above all, make sure your friends, family, neighbors know to plan ahead to vote as early as possible. Check voter registration status, look into absentee or mail-in ballots and ensure they are mailed as early as possible under state law or dropped off at the closest secured ballot drop box.

Let’s try to keep this thread focused on the U.S. Post Office, thanks.


UPDATE-1 — 5:25 P.M. ET —

Arizona’s Secretary of State Katie Hobbs has reached out to the AZ Attorney General:

Keep up the pressure.

108 replies
  1. Rayne says:

    * The reason the “check the byline” note has returned is that some folks make the mistake of assuming my posts are Marcy’s and chatting her up about them in Twitter.

    A differentiating feature apart from the note is that I tend to be hortatory in my writing where Marcy tends to analysis. This post is definitely hortatory.

  2. P J Evans says:

    My congresscritters are all Ds – but I wrote anyway (via email) to let them know that they need to DO something. (DiFi is pretty much a loss, in terms of doing good, but she has some seniority she can use.)

    • Rayne says:

      I get frustrated with people haranguing the Dems to DO SOMETHING because they did what they were supposed to do. The public hasn’t done its job of staying on top of this, the media has done even worse.

      We need to call with specific asks. In the case of the House, we need to ask for hearings and possible impeachment of DeJoy. Hearings should include asking every one of the Board of Governors why they are permitting this debacle. As for Democratic senators like Feinstein, her staff could be pulling documents and dumping them in public along with stronger messaging so that we know more about DeJoy and how to fight this, in a way that puts the onus on GOP senators to get back to DC to fix this.

      • P J Evans says:

        My suggestion was impeaching him, because he’s delaying/obstructing the mail, with the cite to the section of code.

      • BobCon says:

        Yes, people need to pressure their MoCs, but it is critical to note that the House Dems have left town until after Labor Day and no hearing is scheduled until September 17.

        It is worth noting that the House skipped August recess during WW II and debated and passed legislation due to the national emergency.

        There is no reason the current recess couldn’t be cancelled. Most campaign events are cancelled anyway except for video events. The majority of House Dems have seats that will be safe IF elections go off as normal, but if there is massive voter supression and other cheating, even safe seats may be at risk.

        The House leadership knew of the looming crisis at the USPS months ago and declined to push for relief in earlier measures when they had leverage.

        I’ve gotten in touch with my rep to express my extreme unhappiness with what is being done to the USPS and the House’s lack of urgency. They need to hear both.

        • Rayne says:

          What leverage, BobCon? They are up against a GOP Senate which is sitting on +400 bills. They might have wanted to push through HR 1 which was passed in early 2019 but is still sitting on McConnell’s desk if they had any leverage.

        • P J Evans says:

          There are, IIRC, several bills which would fund the USPS – but Mitch has been sitting on every useful bill, for months.

        • BobCon says:

          The specific push, if you recall, was for the postal service funding to be included in the first CARES Act — a bill which McConnell, as you may recall, felt enormous pressure to pass. The Senate, in fact, had agreed to a direct grant of $13 billion instead of the conditional loan which they settled for and Mnuchin withheld until a few weeks ago, which generated the financial crisis now being used as a pretext.

          That leverage.

  3. Ken Muldrew says:

    Wouldn’t the USPS BOG have an easier path to replacing DeJoy if he was impeached (even if not removed by the senate)? It seems the press would also have a harder time ignoring this issue if there were impeachment hearings laying out the issues for all to see.

    • Rayne says:

      Good point, worth calling your House rep and asking them to begin impeachment inquiry into DeJoy.

      At a minimum DeJoy should be tied up in meetings for the next 80-odd days so that he can’t do any more damage to operations.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      By my count, the USPS board of governors is 5 Republicans, 2 Democrats. That’s not a board that’s gonna say booo to DeJoy or Donald. Contacting House and Senate members seems a much more fruitful route.

      • Rayne says:

        Dude. We can all see the political makeup, that’s why I included it.

        The point is to make the board aware they have legal exposure because they are enabling Trump. The Dems should spill about what’s going on, the GOP members need to make a choice — Trump, or avoid future investigation and prosecution.

        I’m still wondering if the entire board might also be charged with Title 52. VOTING AND ELECTIONS, Subtitle I. Voting Rights, Chapter 103. ENFORCEMENT OF VOTING RIGHTS, Section 10307. Prohibited acts, (a) Failure or refusal to permit casting or tabulation of vote, and/or (b) Intimidation, threats, or coercion — because Americans are now very worried about their votes and whether they will be able to cast them using absentee/mail-in ballots.

        See 52 U.S. Code § 10308. Civil and criminal sanctions for (a) Depriving or attempting to deprive persons of secured rights, and (c) Conspiring to violate or interfere with secured rights.

  4. neabinorb says:

    I don’t know that October 22 is early enough. First class mail mailed from my local post office to my PO box in the same building is taking more than two weeks to arrive *now.* Who knows what it will be like in October.

    • Rayne says:

      Make a plan now. Help others to do the same. A lot can happen between now and October 1 — that’s the date I’m using to determine my optimum voting process.

      I’ll probably vote in person as I did for the primary last week.

    • Rugger9 says:

      Most of the states have the ability to vote at the registrar’s office, as my county in CA does.

      So, when you get the ballot, go visit the registrar if you can or turn the ballot back in within a day of when you get it. Take it out of DJT’s hands by any legal means necessary just like we did in 2008 and 2012 (remember Rove’s famous OH meltdown when Anonymous allegedly undid a targeted hack).

      In some places, early voting is tracked and probably will be by the campaigns. If the GOP sees they’re getting swamped, look for them to change their tune in a big way. BTW, OH says only one drop box per county because of “potential litigation” by GOP. OH still has a GOP SoS, of course.

      • P J Evans says:

        L.A. county will have to have some kind of dropoff points – the registrar-recorder’s office is on Imperial Highway between Norwalk and Bloomfield in Norwalk, inconveniently located for nearly everyone.

        • Teri C says:

          Call your state representative to find out where the Dropbox will be. They should be at the polling stations. This is starting to sound too complicated so I may risk going in person to vote.

        • P J Evans says:

          The county will have that information online, as well as sending it out to voters. L.A. County is pretty good – they have several million voters, so they can’t afford to slip up. (In the primary, they sent out a list of “voting centers” covering the entire county – you could go into any one that was convenient, though most weren’t really.)

      • EricB says:

        Massachusetts has made it easy, with universal vote-by-mail applications sent out plenty early, and drop boxes available at municipal buildings. I voted in our Sept 1 primary more than three weeks early. It’s hard on the clerks, but they’re making it work. If they were allowed to spread out the counting as well, it would be better.

        For voter-suppression states, how about a protest where voters line up in a safely-spaced line to drop off their absentee ballots, and block traffic in the process? It could inconvenience drivers enough to get some news coverage.

  5. earlofhuntingdon says:

    William D. Zollars —

    His seven-year term started last month. He has a BA in economics from Minnesota and a career in trucking and “logistics.” He worked at Ryder and Yellow Transportation – and Eastman Kodak. He was most recently CEO of YRC Worldwide, which received a “huge” Covid loan from Steve Mnuchin, a pal. YRC is being investigated for defrauding the Pentagon during Zollars’s tenure. Zollars’s current gig seems to be as a professional board member. I’d say he’s a firm Trump and DeJoy supporter.

    • Teri C says:

      His former company YRC is being sued for overcharging the Pentagon yet the Pentagon okayed the $700 million CARES loan. Something fishy is going on. Stock price is only 4.21. Why is the government saving this company? He still owns s lot of stock.

    • Rayne says:

      This is proof it’s not about profitability for USPS. Destruction of the equipment as well as disposal which doesn’t recover scrap value means DeJoy is deliberately shutting down capacity irrespective to cash inflows.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Yes, at least 671 mail sorting machines since DeJoy officially became PMG on June 15th. About 80 machines/week. Hard to develop a true efficiency plan until you have insider access on what needs to be fixed. DeJoy had his game plan before he started, and it was always about cuting back service plan.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          The House really needs to subpoena that plan and all the supporting documents and drafts. It’s likely to show DeJoy explicitly targeted Democratic districts.

        • bmaz says:

          Have I mentioned that Pelosi, Hoyer and Jeffries are determined to see that no such thing ever happens? I think I have noted that previously…..

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Oh, you have, you have. Nancy and Steny are workin’ on fundraisin’, while waitin’ for Donald to implode. Worked well durin’ the impeachment. That that might mean remainin’ out of office is just, well, an unintended benefit. That would be an argument for removing them by way of one grand glorious virtual retirement party.

        • Rayne says:

          And until we figure out how to change the way politics operate, limiting campaign expenditures under a SCOTUS decision which says money=speech, the evils of fundraising remain.

          Figure out how to get around that or let the leadership of the Dems raise cash to get their team re-elected.

  6. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Donald Lee Moak (D) —

    Marine, Navy, and commercial pilot, retired as a Navy Captain. Former head of the Airline Pilots’ Association, now a lobbyist and consultant. Nominated and approved last month, along with Zollars, which restored a quorum that had lapsed, also last month, with the apparently forced resignation of Deputy PMG Ron Stroman. Presumed centrist. Term expires 2022.

  7. earlofhuntingdon says:

    John McLoud Barger (R) —

    Lawyer and professional investor from California, formerly on Investment and Retirement boards of Los Angeles County Employees Retirement Association. Presumably, center right.

  8. earlofhuntingdon says:

    The USPS board has been a political football since 2014, when it lost its quorum and McConnell sat on further appointments. It regained a quorum in June 2020, lost it for a few weeks, and regained it before month’s end. DeJoy’s appointment took effect June 15th. Five of the current seven members (up to eleven are authorized) are Trump appointees. Trump ignored the problems with the USPS board until they became relevant to his re-election. Just food for thought as you contact your congresscritters.

  9. mass interest says:

    Thanks, Rayne. Will do what I can.

    This is truly an emergency situation. I hope those in power who concur get going with the lawsuits.

  10. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Final food for thought:

    Roman Martinez IV (R) — Florida Republican, NYC investment banker for more than three decades. Sits on a ton of boards and foundations.

    Ron A. Bloom (D) — Wesleyan, Harvard MBA. NYC Investment banker and union representative, Deputy to Steve Rattner, who led the auto industry bail-out. Centrist.

    Robert “Mike” Duncan (R) — Staunch Kentucky Republican, former chair of the RNC, the TVA, and multiple corporate and charitable boards. Sat on the board of the Cleveland Federal Reserve. Now, Trump’s appointee as chair of the USPS board.

    Getting congresscritters, the House, state governors, unions, public service organizations, etc., to shine light on DeJoy (the richest man in North Carolina), his destruction of the USPS – as if it were a private business instead of a constitutionally-mandated public service – and to embarrass these members of the great and good for letting him do it would be doing a national service.

  11. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Pressure campaigns are paying off: Maritsa Georgiou notes in this thread that Sen. Steve Daines has sent a letter to DeJoy about the mailbox removals. As has Rep. Greg Gianforte.

    Funnily enough, DeJoy’s bone collectors seem to be withdrawing from service mail collection boxes mostly from blue areas. In Montana, that includes at least eighteen in Missoula, thirty from Billings, and more are from Bozeman and Lewiston. The USPS is claiming that the removals are from “low use” areas and that the boxes are being relocated to “higher use” areas. No details to support the claim.

    Then there’s the removal of 671 mail sorting machines since June, representing a reduction in capacity of 21.4 million pieces per hour. A significant number of them are from MI, WI, OH, PA, FL, and TX.

    • Mauimom says:

      Although I’ve seen notices that the REMOVAL of post boxes 7 perhaps sorting machines has been halted, I’ve seen nothing about RETURNING the removed items to service.


  12. Mary L Bahr says:

    I am very concerned about this. I don’t know if you have seen the letter from USPS lawyers to states about deadlines to post ballots. But they are warning them to move up their deadlines. The League of Women Voters now recommends October 23rd for returning your ballot by mail and urging people to drop them off at ballot boxes instead. Here are my list of contacts at USPS including the inspector general, a hotline complaint website, and a mailing address for the board.
    inspector general and make a complaint about service. Here are some contact numbers and links.
    There is an inspector general and I am putting the link for their complaint system whose list includes executive fraud.
    Here is a place to mail complaints
    Write Us
    Customers may write the Postal Service to express concern and to request assistance. In order to receive a timely response, it is recommended that correspondence be mailed to the Office of the Consumer Advocate at the following address:
    WASHINGTON, DC 20260-2200
    Here is a hotline complaint page:
    Here is an email contact for slow or missing mail and packages.

  13. Jenny says:

    Thank you Rayne. Excellent information. My reps are all Democrats; however will call to reinforce the issue.

    Suggestion: if one cannot get through to a representative on the hill via the switchboard, then call the local number in their state. Listed on their website.

    • lorna says:

      I put the members of congress for me in my phone. I have their DC number and one or two local #s. It makes it very easy to call

  14. silcominc says:

    Rayne, I am starting to hear murmurs from veterans and seniors about delays in medications. Not sure how to get more attention to that fact. It cuts (I think) into trump country. I remember GOP tried in 2000 to use the veterans in their fight to steal the election in Florida and just the mention of that was enough for Lieberman to pressure Gore to stop fighting (a little known fact). Though today’s environment is considerably different.

    But if enough seniors and vets start yelling and get coverage for that, I would assume the GOP members up for reelection will buckle as Collins is in Maine – but hope springs eternal.

    • Rayne says:

      I saw a tweet thread yesterday in which one person said it usually took two days to get their meds and it took 13 days this last time. They’d run out in between.

      This is going to kill Americans — not that Trump cares because he’s already killed +167,000. But this is why I want the USPS Board of Governors to know they are as much to blame as DeJoy if someone dies because they didn’t stop him.

      • silcominc says:

        Rayne, I know your not a lawyer, but can they (the Bd of Governors) be held liable for these actions? You are right – people will die from this and many will have to pay dearly because credit card companies (and others) will charge interest and other fees because of late payments. The carnage will be significant.

  15. harpie says:

    Exclusive: Postal service inspector general reviewing DeJoy’s policy changes and potential ethics conflicts
    4:16 PM ET, Fri August 14, 2020

    The internal watchdog at the United States Postal Service is reviewing controversial policy changes recently imposed under Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, and is also examining DeJoy’s compliance with federal ethics rules, according to a spokeswoman for the USPS inspector general and an aide to Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who requested the review. […]

    • harpie says:

      Rep. Bill Pascrell [D-NJ-09] is also a great defender of the USPS:
      4:53 PM · Aug 14, 2020

      We’ve filed two complaints with the USPS Inspector General, in May and this week calling for wide-ranging probes of trump and dejoy’s destruction of the post office. [screenshots]

      Pascrell also did this:
      6:21 PM · Aug 14, 2020

      Tonight I’ve made a criminal referral to the New Jersey Attorney General asking him to empanel a grand jury to look at subversion of NJ election laws by donald trump, louis dejoy, and other trump officials in their accelerating arson of the post office. [screenshots]

        • swmarks says:

          I contacted Rep. Joe Courtney (Dem, 2nd congressional district–CT) to support immediate House hearings into PMG’s recent actions to subvert federal election.

        • P J Evans says:

          I emailed Becerra, CA AG, asking him to sue over the USPS being crippled for purely political purposes. Whether he does anything, well, who knows?

        • vvv says:

          Reached out to my senator, representative and state AG; I hope all reading this page do, and encourage others to, also.

        • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

          Washington AG’s office also getting an earful, apparently. A polite earful.

          I’ll be in a group conversation with a House member next week and trust this will be a hot topic. (I don’t generally sign on to these things, but I’m so indignant about the impudence of TrumpOrg that I’m willing to spend the time.)

  16. graham firchlis says:

    Election methodologies are controlled by the states. Extending the deadline for accepting mailed ballots may be an easier path, and a few states have already done so.

    Here in California all mailed ballots must be postmarked before or on election day and be recieved by the county elections board not later than 17 days thereafter.

    SEVENTEEN days, not two or three.

    Follow that model, and the postal slowdown be damned.

  17. Molly Pitcher says:

    I have called my congresswoman, Feinstien and Harris’s office, but that is preaching to the choir.

    Since sunlight is the best disinfectant, I feel like this information needs to get to the media who are diving into this story at the depth of a Jesus Lizard.

    The howls from the public got the White House to back off sending in the troops to many of the cities they were threatening to invade. I think the action with the most traction is making this situation as simply explained as possible, as widely disseminated as possible. I am going to put together the information posted hear and send it to producers for as many shows as I can.

  18. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Nice short takedown from Dave Dayen on why the USPS’s claims about the unbearable – and undeliverable – volume of mail-in ballots is bullshit. For one thing, it’s a fraction of the bump in first-class mail that the USPS handles during the Christmas season. I bet it’s only slightly more than the tax deadline bump.

    And yet Louis DeJoy – the richest man in NC, major RNC and Trump donor the last five years, and investor holding significant positions in the stock of USPS suppliers and competitors – had this tear up the drop boxes and tear down the mail sorting machines game plan ready before he took office. BTW, Manhattan and DC residents witnessed their mail drop boxes being shanghaied today.

  19. Geoguy says:

    Wall Street on Parade posted an article today titled “Pull Back the Curtain on Efforts to Kill the U.S. Postal Service and Out Pops Koch Money” by Pam Martens and Russ Martens: August 14, 2020. It includes a list of the 1980 Libertarian Platform when David Koch ran for Vice President. “We propose the abolition of the governmental Postal Service…” I had forgotten that a few people who are or were in the present administration had passed through Koch’s (nonprofit) Americans for Prosperity.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      A massive public fail by the USPS during the 2020 election would be from chapter one, verse two of the revised standard version of the neoliberal privatization bible.

      That’s the one the Koch brothers placed in every hotel room they could find. The displaced Gideon Bibles were given to China and now comprise the landfill under several of its newest airports, including Beijing’s.

  20. Alan Charbonneau says:

    I found this from an article published in 2007 about catalogue businesses complaining about rate hikes. I changed the name of the chairman from James Miller to current chair Robert Duncan. While the address is the same as Rayne provided, they provide a room number and a fax number as well. Hopefully the fax number still works.

    How to Contact USPS
    To reach the USPS Board of Governors, write to
    The Honorable Robert Michael Duncan
    United States Postal Service Board of Governors
    475 L’Enfant Plaza, Room 10300
    Washington, D.C. 20260-0004

    But industry insiders strongly urge catalogers to fax their letters ASAP to (202) 268-5472.

  21. Eureka says:

    Great updating thread which concatenates others (LOL at the tweet addressed to NORTH CAROLINA; good new ideas like calling AARP for your impacted elders, which I will do):

    “okay, because dO sOmEtHiNg is taking over, here are some things democrats *are* doing, and here are some things *you* can do. i’ll try to add to this as things happen.”

    • Rayne says:

      That was a great tweet thread. I’m so goddamned tired of the yelling DO SOMETHING at House Dems when there’s so much to be done by citizens and not House Dems, and House Dems had already done quite a bit the media did a pissy job reporting.

    • P J Evans says:

      Wondering why AARP isn’t making Big Noise about this – so many of its members buy prescriptions online from their advertisers!

    • Eureka says:

      I forgot to mention that that thread captures a tweet from PA AG Josh Shapiro, from maybe the 13th, saying he hears us about USPS and he’s on it (indicating something TBA).

      Rayne: This is but one reason you’ll never run out of things to write, and why your oeuvre on personal responsibility for democracy is so important. Because even if — especially if — we wish our reps (et al.) would “do something” and feel they are not, then that means … _we_ need to do the somethings still, anyway, and even moreso*. We largely got used to an autopilot and look where we are. But look where we are going when we get going.

      PJ: I know, right — where are they? The two groups they don’t want to offend are advertisers and subscribers, easy advocacy here it would seem. Sure, too bad that they’ll have to figure some “non-offensive” weasel language in identifying the problem(s), but we can’t help it that the GOP POTUS(‘s appointee) is actually doing this stuff.

      *including specifying, perhaps, what exactly they could do under the circumstances that’s not done, or how to get around the blocks… brainstorm it out

    • Eureka says:

      Another thing that I am concerned about (and that AARP should be concerned about, wrt their advocacy) is that this will embolden mail thieves / identity theft and feed targeted scams against all of us, but especially vulnerable seniors. People are or will be getting used to missing mail. How will we know if it’s the crippled post office or criminals hijacking an opportunity, or even establish the latter as a (once-and-still-or-again, we hope) trusted institution is rendered unreliable?

      Plenty of folks, including rural and seniors, without internet or the inclination to turn their business over to online +/- paperless billing and such. Besides al l teh other issues with meds, etc.

  22. Ravenclaw says:

    Not sure how helpful this info will be, but:

    Robert M. Duncan
    United States Attorney
    260 West. Suite 300, Vine Street
    Lexington, KY 40507
    (859) 233-2661

    Ron A. Bloom
    Vice Chairman & Managing Partner
    Brookfield Asset Management
    250 Vesey Street
    New York, NY 10291
    (chairs the “innovation” committee)

    Donald L. Moak
    The Moak Group
    401 Ninth Street N.W., Suite #740
    Washington DC 20004

    Roman Martinez IV
    248 Tradewind Drive
    Palm Beach FL 33480

    It occurs to me that what we really need is a draft of a letter that strikes the right note. It needs to appeal to their better nature and sense of civic responsibility (even if we think some of them don’t have any such thing), mention the legal issues (so there’s a stick as well as the phantom carrot), but not be threatening or intemperate in tone. That is, it can’t read like what we really want to say to these guys…

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      “Duncan” is a common surname and that’s NOT the correct “Robert M. Duncan.”

      The correct one is older, born c. 1951 I believe, and goes by his middle name, Robert “Mike” Duncan.

    • Rayne says:

      SAMPLE DRAFT LETTER (personalize at will):

      I’m an American citizen, writing you because the U.S. Post Office (USPS), a Constitutionally-recognized government service, is under attack by its own Postmaster General and CEO, Louis DeJoy.

      Since DeJoy’s appointment as Postmaster General, mail service has deteriorated substantially, with delivery times of First Class mail now doubled. This is unacceptable when Americans and the businesses that serve them require reliable and prompt service — service which has been fine until DeJoy assumed office.

      The increasing impairment of USPS’s service has also interfered with another Constitutionally-mandated service, the U.S. Census, damaging Americans’ ability to allocate resources.

      DeJoy as a Trump donor may also be fulfilling Trump’s unlawful and impeachable intent to interfere with this year’s federal election, both in the remaining primaries and the general election, by reducing the ability of the USPS to handle ballots.

      The ongoing pandemic forces Americans to rely more heavily on USPS’s services for communications and deliveries. This is the worst time during which changes which degrade mail service should be implemented.

      The toll on Americans DeJoy’s actions impose is great — it may cost the lives of citizens who depend on reliable, secure delivery of necessary medications. DeJoy’s liability, should the worst come to pass, will not be his alone.

      DeJoy undermines the USPS’s delivery of mail to Americans, proving the inadequacy of his qualifications to lead the USPS. He also has substantive conflicts of interest which may impair his decision making.

      Mr. DeJoy must be removed as CEO and Postmaster General. It is your duty as a member of the USPS Board of Governors to do so.

      • dimmsdale says:

        Thanks for that, Rayne. Took it (slightly augmented here and there) and emailed it to all 5 of the Republicans on the BOG. Hopefully their emails become overwhelmed!

      • vvv says:

        I’m sorta a minimalist, probably messed this up, but I wrote:

        DeJoy should be removed, or impeached.

        The sorting machine and box removals, prohibition on overtime, postal delays and obvious attempt at voter suppression are outrageous, un-American and likely prosecutable.

        I will certainly join any class action lawsuit naming *you* as defendant.


  23. Troutwaxer says:

    I think we need to launch the revolution pretty much at once, not after the election. I can be a peaceful revolution, but the goal is to destroy the Republican Party.

  24. earlofhuntingdon says:

    One thing about Trump, if he can’t get what he wants through frontal attack, he reaches around and keeps going. The “entrepreneurial” Louis DeJoy seems to be the same. If his PR flack says he’s no longer illegally ripping mail collection boxes from the pavement, that’s what he’s doing. Instead, he locks the boxes up so no one can use them. The silver lining is that they both make proving intent so easy.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      Louis DeJoy’s principal defense will likely be he’s just being a good bidnessman, and implementing standard business protocols. Since he’s the PMG, that would make him the best witness the prosecution could wish for.

      • dimmsdale says:

        Is it fair to assume DeJoy wouldn’t be doing this without getting clearance from Barr wrt specific federal laws being violated? (the other way to ask the question is, ‘Can we look forward to federal charges for DeJoy tampering with the mail/right to vote?’ (disclaimer, IA clearly NAL)

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Not during the Trump administration. He’s probably more vulnerable to state charges. And if he is critical to Trump’s plan, he may have a pardon in the offing.

      • P J Evans says:

        I can see the prosecution calling businessmen (and women) to testify about how that kind of operation damages businesses.

      • Rayne says:

        He’s a good businessman like Trump. He just killed off a big chunk of competition for the businesses in which he’s invested having been corruptly approved by the GOP senate.

        I’d like to know if any GOP senators are invested in the same firms. We already know they benefited from DeJoy’s work at RNC.

  25. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Why the apparent media blackout about Robert Trump’s COD? The president supposedly visited him in hospital in NYC the day before. Should that make us worry, or should we worry more that he couldn’t be bothered to stick around a few more hours until he died? I’ll assume that Trump liked the optics of playing golf during a pandemic better than sitting near the bedside of a dying younger brother.

    • P J Evans says:

      The family probably hasn’t said in their public statements. (I read elseweb, though, that he’d fallen and was having brain bleeds as a result.)

  26. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Erie County is a democratic stronghold and bellwether for the state vote count in Pennsylvania. Its county seat, Erie, PA, just lost two of its four bar-code mail sorting machines. Those are the ones uniquely able to quickly process mail-in ballots. That cuts an eight-hour shift’s (no overtime for DeJoy) processing rate by over half a million pieces. Those machines are among the hundreds of machines nationally that Louis DeJoy is mothballing or destroying, along with thousands of mail drop boxes and now hundreds of mail delivery vans.

    DeJoy must think he’s still running his troubled trucking company, the one accused of defrauding the Pentagon. It’s as if he’s listening to non-existent Wall Street bankers, telling him to fire people and shred physical assets, the go-to method to put lipstick on a private sector pig before selling it to the M&A abattoir. Either that, or DeJoy – and his board majority – know he’s helping Trump cheat to win an election.

    Meanwhile, Postal Service jobs, including those of 97,000 veterans, are in jeopardy; millions of people wait weeks for their mail; and tons of essential mail and prescription drugs remain undelivered or arrive late. People are dying over this slow motion coup. Next up will be the president throwing around his John Yoo-inspired presidential emergency action documents (PEADs), the secret ones that neither Congress nor the public know about.

    • Rayne says:

      Just have to watch your social media feed closely to see who’s sharing details. Not easy but it can be done. Thought I’d read somewhere they were focusing on post office locations but I’d still watch trusted local voices for that.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      I suggest looking around for other sponsors.’s “register first” approach seems to be trolling for data. If people like what they do and how they do it, they’ll get that data. But data first is not an approach one should accept from your average salesman.

      • P J Evans says:

        It’s sure not a good way to get people to show up. (Local PO is about a mile from me. The current forecast for next Saturday has a high of 98.)

        • Rayne says:

          I don’t think we can wait for better weather. The first hearing is scheduled 8/24 (assuming witnesses show up), betting the bill will go the House floor that day for debate.

          I think of the Tea Party assholes who showed up at town halls all through August in 2009. That should be us, making it crystal clear to GOP MOC this threat to USPS is not acceptable. We’re just going to have to adapt for COVID-19 conditions and climate change.

        • P J Evans says:

          Oh, 98 is an *improvement*. The forecast for Monday through Friday is 3 digits. Tuesday, 106F…. I feel sorry for the carriers, who have to be out in it.

  27. Tom says:

    By sabotaging and dismantling the U.S. Postal Service, Trump is trying to undermine Americans’ capacity to resist him at the ballot box, just as General Thomas Gage’s expeditions into the Boston countryside in 1774 and ’75 to seize the colonists’ stores of gunpowder were intended to undermine Americans’ ability to resist the King’s forces militarily. And now we are hearing that Trump would like to meet with Vladimir Putin before the election, and for what reason: to contract for the use of Hessian troops to help suppress rebellion in the colonies? I’d like to see the Lincoln Project do an ad calling for the revival of the Spirit of ’76 in the present national emergency.

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