Work In Progress: Saving the USPS

[NB: Check the byline, thanks! /~Rayne]

Before we look at current status, I want to make a point about what Louis DeJoy has done to the U.S. Postal Service. I hope that members of Congress or their staff members stopping in here pay close attention to this point.

DeJoy is maliciously destroying the U.S. Postal Service — quite likely violating 18 U.S. Code § 1701.

VICE had obtained a presentation outlining an “Equipment Reduction” dated May 15, 2020, one week after he was sworn in as CEO and Postmaster General.

This plan to reduce equipment — and the services the equipment provided — wasn’t whipped up in one week. It had to have been studied and created well before May 15.

Imagine for a moment you are an operations manger in one of a collection of high-output manufacturing plants across the U.S.. Your new boss comes in and says he wants to eliminate as much as 50% of your production capacity. How long would it take you and your co-workers in production engineering to identify the equipment which will least affect your production capability under peak demand?

Would it take you a week? Doubtful.

Would it take only a week for hundreds of plants across the country to do this same study and advise which equipment could be removed to eliminate any excess expense and yet provide reasonably reliable service?

Would it take only a week to prepare a finished presentation of a nationwide study with a proposed equipment reduction given the wide range of facilities across the country and operations managers?

No. Hell no.

DeJoy is executing a plan which had been in the works for some time intended to hollow out the U.S. Postal Service.

Let’s call this a conspiracy because you know damned well DeJoy didn’t do this all by himself given his postal service-free background. The public needs to know when this started and who was in on the planning.

~ ~ ~

Now, let’s optimistically assume the USPS continues to operate the way it has in the past to ensure customers continue to seek its services over commercial competitors like FedEx and UPS. You’ve gotten post card-like mailers and other kinds of promotional materials informing USPS customers about their services, rates, and changes to either.

Have any Americans anywhere in the U.S. received advance notification that their USPS service would be slowed down so they could adjust their mailing practices?

Have any Americans received notification that any familiar blue mailboxes near them would be removed or locked?

Have any Americans received advice on how they should adjust their mailing practices based on the changes to the USPS system closest to them?

No. Nada. Not one advisory or promotional mailer or brochure has shown up on line. Not even Trump supporters are sharing them.

DeJoy is NOT improving service if he’s allowing customers to fly blind about the changes to USPS. He is NOT making any effort to win over or retain USPS customers, which should be the first rule in trying to make profits — not pissing off the customer base.

This restructuring and reduction of equipment is intentional and malicious, executed with no outreach to customers whether individuals or businesses.

~ ~ ~

We’d heard reports that sorting machines had been tossed in dumpsters. We haven’t see photos turn up yet but we’ve now seen images of purported sorting machines sitting outside USPS facilities inside a fence, like so:

Photo: Sorting machines outside main post office, Cleveland OH – by Jim Anderson via Twitter

These machines will likely not work properly without considerable assessment now that they have been sitting out in the elements. Some parts may corrode and seize if exposed to high humidity, rain, and salt at any USPS facilities near oceanfront.

They were not stripped down for parts and put in an inventory for repair of similar equipment still on the floor.

They were not stored inside sub-optimized USPS facilities or warehouses to protect them from the elements.

They were not inventoried and submitted to an auction house for resale as scrap to recover value for taxpayers, in spite of the plan/conspiracy having enough time to identify how many/which machines would be pulled from USPS facilities before mid-May.

It’s not clear that some equipment or parts haven’t been stolen, either.

These machines which are taxpayers’ assets have been maliciously destroyed.

DeJoy is NOT reducing expenses and recovering costs to the USPS under some stupid notion of making a profit which no other government entity is required to do.

~ ~ ~

A lot of our community members reached out to their members of Congress and to the USPS Board of Governors to protest DeJoy’s destruction of the USPS.

The House and Senate Dems have been working on this as well as state officials.

Check this Twitter thread for examples of work done Friday-Saturday:

See also Rep. Don Beyer’s thread outlining what’s being done through Sunday:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi notified House members Sunday they should return to session to work on this crisis:


Dear Democratic Colleague,

The Postal Service is a pillar of our democracy, enshrined in the Constitution and essential for providing critical services: delivering prescriptions, Social Security benefits, paychecks, tax returns and absentee ballots to millions of Americans, including in our most remote communities.

Alarmingly, across the nation, we see the devastating effects of the President’s campaign to sabotage the election by manipulating the Postal Service to disenfranchise voters. Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, one of the top Trump mega-donors, has proven a complicit crony as he continues to push forward sweeping new operational changes that degrade postal service, delay the mail, and – according to the Postal Service itself – threaten to deny the ability of eligible Americans to cast their votes through the mail in the upcoming elections in a timely fashion. These delays also threaten the health and economic security of the American people by delaying delivery of life-saving medicines and payments. In 2019, 1.2 billion prescriptions were delivered through the Postal Services, including almost 100 percent from the VA to veterans.

Lives, livelihoods and the life of our American Democracy are under threat from the President.

That is why I am calling upon the House to return to session later this week to vote on Oversight and Reform Committee Chairwoman Maloney’s “Delivering for America Act,” which prohibits the Postal Service from implementing any changes to operations or level of service it had in place on January 1, 2020. House Democratic Leader Hoyer will soon be announcing the legislative schedule for the coming week.

To save the Postal Service, I am also calling upon Members to participate in a Day of Action on Tuesday by appearing at a Post Office in their districts for a press event. In a time of a pandemic, the Postal Service is Election Central. Americans should not have to choose between their health and their vote.

As we protect the Postal Service and access to the ballot, we continue to lead the fight for The Heroes Act as the coronavirus crisis continues to spiral further out of control.

I am grateful to Members for their enthusiasm about returning to Washington, and I am grateful for their suggestions for what else we may consider acting upon when we return.

Thank you for your enthusiasm, leadership and friendship.


Originally scheduled for September 17, House Oversight Committee  called DeJoy and USPS board of governors chair Robert M. Duncan to testify at an emergency session hearing on Monday, August 24. DeJoy’s agreed to appear.

One might wonder if the protesters which have gathered outside his golf side mansion have influenced his decision.

Last Wednesday, House Oversight Committee chair Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) introduced the Delivering for America Act which reverses DeJoy’s “changes so this fundamental American service can continue unimpeded.

According to Maloney’s office:

The Delivering for America Act would prohibit the Postal Service from implementing any changes to the operations or level of service it had in place on January 1, 2020, until the COVID-19 pandemic has ended. This legislation would maintain current service standards as well as the integrity of our elections and bedrock democratic principles.

It’s likely too late to reverse the all the changes made to the USPS sorting system though some changes like pulling the blue mailboxes or locking them could be returned to their previous condition.

The real challenge ahead: forcing the Senate Majority Leader to allow this bill to go through the Senate, and finding enough GOP votes to pass the bill with a veto-proof majority.

The GOP needs to prove it isn’t trying to kill more Americans by squashing this bill. Too many voters have already been at risk of serious harm because their medications haven’t arrived by mail on time.

This is yet one more clue to DeJoy’s intentions driving the changes to the USPS: he made no obvious effort to mitigate threats to Americans’ health and security before he made any changes.

~ ~ ~

Finally, I have to tell you I have had it up to fucking here ~slashing gesture below chin~ with the left-wing whining  DO SOMETHING.

Stop the god damned whining or go sit in the time-out chair until you’ve decided you can do something constructive yourself.

There’s a lot to be done which isn’t the responsibility of members of Congress who are already doing what they are supposed to do (which, by the way, includes meeting constituents as well as asking for their votes in the now-shortened break time they have before Election Day).

The whining is a serious problem in itself because it discourages voters at a time when they are already feeling down because of Team Trump’s unrelenting attacks on democracy combined with the pressure of the ongoing pandemic.

Encourage others to do what they can to push back. At a minimum, take the time to educate yourself and help friends and family do likewise about options to vote.

Look into early voting. Look into dates to obtain absentee/mail-in ballots and how to turn them into clerk’s drop boxes if mail is not an option. Or make a plan to vote in person. Begin by checking your voter registration status.

Check with your state’s secretary of state and attorney general to see if they are taking action to halt the changes or develop alternatives to support voters. Some states’ attorneys general are preparing to file suit against DeJoy and the USPS.

Need more guidance? Celeste P. has a deep Twitter thread of actions people can take to save the USPS, including pressure on the GOP senate to pass the HEROES Act economic aid bill which includes funding for the USPS.

This is a government of, by, and for the people. We are the people we have been waiting for to fix this mess.

Let’s get it in gear and go.

161 replies
  1. Rayne says:

    Michelle Obama’s speech, yes? All that.

    EDIT: Whoa. Didn’t know Lieu had gone to FBI. He’s right, though.

    Congressman Ted Lieu speaks out after urging FBI investigation into Postmaster General Lois DeJoy

    … Amid a political firestorm over mail-in voting, Lieu explained why he sent the letter to the FBI calling for an investigation into the postmaster general and the USPS Board of Governors.

    “The federal law is very clear. It is a crime if you willfully obstruct or slow the passage of mail. It is also a crime if you interfere with elections. And we already know that the post office has been sabotaged by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy,” Lieu said. …

    • Molly Pitcher says:

      Best speech I have ever seen her give; really knocked it out of the park. The most elegant throw of shade on Trump imaginable. Never stooped to his level, but totally threw him to the curb. He is low and she went high and won.

      • bmaz says:

        Yes, it was all that and you and Rayne are so right. Have to give credit to Sanders too though, he was also great. Hell of a first night.

      • Tom says:

        I think Michelle Obama’s speech came across far more effectively and pointedly than if she had delivered it in the usual “rah! rah!” setting and atmosphere of a regular political convention. She helped emphasize that these are not normal times and that Trump is not a normal President.

      • Rugger9 says:

        All one needs to see about high versus low is how DJT responded to Michelle Obama, via a snarky tweet about how she taped this and got the COVID-19 death toll wrong at only 150,000, not the current 170,000 plus.

        Naturally the Internet piled on (sorry about the Raw Story citation, Rayne, the tweets are there):

        Greg Sargent also wrote a column in the WashPo about it, there is a subscription counter (i.e. delayed paywall) for the Plum Line which might be excerpted elsewhere.

        • Rayne says:

          Look, you’re going to have to try harder with citing stories. Most of us are smart enough to figure out how to get around WaPo paywall if we don’t have a subscription (I do through my Amazon Prime account).

          You think a paywall is a problem — the collection of user information at sites like RawStory is problematic, too, while encouraging regurgitation of others’ work without compensating them for their effort. Many journalists are freelancers or are fighting to keep their jobs during this mounting economic downturn. They need direct traffic they can measure to their original work, not pilfered by others who add nothing new, in order to keep their jobs or get new ones.

          Wouldn’t take much to put up a few links to tweets directly so that those tweeters — like Jake Tapper-CNN, Peter Alexander-NBC, Ryan Lizza-Politico, or Walt Shaub — could see the traffic in their stats. Nor would it have taken effort to link directly to Sargent’s post in WaPo.

          For anybody else reading this, keep this in mind. And pick a newspaper or two to support with a subscription, especially smaller local papers which are most at risk.

          • Ginevra diBenci says:

            Some favorites: The Tyler (TX) Morning Tribune, Kansas City Star, Denver Post, Toledo Blade, and my own local paper, The Hartford Courant. I wrote for a local paper years ago (The Ithaca Times in upstate NY), and I cherish what remains of this great tradition. Don’t overlook journalists working at papers gobbled up by conglomerates; many are hanging on by their fingernails (Tribune Co., for example) and doing exemplary work under punishing conditions.

            • vvv says:

              I maintain a subscription to the Chgo Trib for the reasons of supporting the press, but as I think I’ve said here before, their online format (fake newspaper or download as annoyingly laid-out *.pdf) is so very frustrating to use that I look at the paper once a week, if that. I also don’t care for their conservative orientation, and may well switch to the Sun Times …

              • hideousnora says:

                I try to keep up with my old home. The Chicago Tribune has been frustrating to read online. I really love The Reader, especially Ben Joravsky’s work. He reminds me so much of Mike Royko.

  2. punaise says:

    We’ve been writing tons of targeted but non-partisan GOTV postcards on behalf of he NAACP, Black Voters Matter and other groups. Apparently the personal touch of a handwritten note is the most effective. But will those cards even arrive at their intended destination?

    “Your Vote is Your Voice”

  3. Eureka says:

    I’ve a Post Office ‘gift’ to share: this is a perfect time to (re)read “Why I Live at the P.O.”

    Several years back, someone pointed out the overlooked thematic elements of American isolationism during pre-Pearl Harbor WWII, and the ~ turtling away from ‘outsiders’ (for example, family returning/appearing from far away).

    Read in today’s context, with personal security under sabotage from the inside, by those you ‘know’, and seeking refuge at the Post Office: mind-blowing.

    Ample copies online: here’s Eudora Welty reading it (with the text as graphics) (while initially jarring, it goes well pretty quickly, and is better for her spoken voice):

    “Why I Live at the P.O.” Eudora Welty reads her classic story RARE AUDIO

    [LOL: “I’m” a defunct mail-client, too. (Eudora was named after her…) ]

    • vvv says:

      I kid you not, totally co-inky-dink but I read *The Postman* last week (better than the movie), having just gotten it a month ago and placed it in line after *The Three Body Problem*, a couple Dianne Capri and some Jim Butcher. The book, silly as it as, is rather touching in places as it describes the value and symbolism of the USPS.

  4. Eureka says:

    I thank a tweeter for capturing this from the sieve (meaning it could have been posted somewhere here already and *shrug?*): DeJoy’s wife with a pending nom to be Ambassador to Canada (and longer on Trump’s thankew list, plus myriad GOP appointments going back to at least W admin — see wiki for other interesting details):

    Aldona Wos

    2015 to present

    In May 2017, President Donald Trump appointed her his vice-chairwoman of the President’s Commission on White House Fellowships. The president uses the commission to interview and recommend candidates for White House fellowships.[46] In June 2019, she was considered for Ambassador to Canada.[47] Trump announced his intent to nominate her on February 11, 2020.[48] On February 25, 2020, her nomination was sent to the Senate.[49] Her nomination is currently pending before the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.

    (internal links removed)

  5. misteranderson says:

    Awesome post. Thank you. I had a former coworker who’s spouse worked for USPS for 40 years post on Facebook that people should use the mail because she saw that as supporting the post office. She probably didn’t know what Trump was up to. It was risky for me to challenge that on Facebook because she has a lot more status than me with that group, but I had to. I’m unemployed, I wished I lived near Dejoy’s home, I’d be protesting every day there.

  6. SaltinWound says:

    I agree with the larger points but this is truth mixed with fiction. The Burbank mailboxes have been locked for quite a while, on one side only. Those boxes are open for use.

    • Rayne says:

      “locked for quite a while” — how long is that while? That account, zandywithaz, which you shared said they’ve been locked on one side for months.

      Like since May? June? July?

      Don’t blow this off. There are photos across the internet of drive-up boxes removed and locked, not just in Burbank, and the locks themselves have no explanation to date.

        • Rayne says:

          Yes, I read that thread and all the replies. Ask yourself why the post office would make it more difficult to use mailboxes and not implement solutions to make them more secure *beginning in 2017*.

          Gee, I wonder who could have funded better security for mailboxes…I’m sure it’s all Obama’s fault, though.

          • P J Evans says:

            They might have problems with people vandalizing boxes via the snorkels – I know my local PO closes its snorkels on Sundays, because of vandalism. (Doing it via the pull-handles is harder: you can’t just drive-by and you need two hands.)

            • BobCon says:

              They took away the drive by box at my local PO at least three years ago.

              Of course, you sometimes see people drive up on the sidewalk to use the regular box rather than park and walk over….

              • P J Evans says:

                I usually go by to mail stuff before the counter opens, and for me it’s easier to use the inside drop. Snorkels aren’t designed for short people.

                • SaltinWound says:

                  I don’t understand the impulse to defend the Burbank boxes as part of the piece instead of accepting facts and simply removing the photo.

              • posaune says:

                OMG! driving on the sidewalk is SO Polish! (of course, in Poland it’s legal to park on the sidewalk).

      • MB says:

        There was a similar situation at my local PO (Westchester – [LA]) where the drive-by slots of the mailboxes (not on the street/sidewalk like the Burbank photos, but located on the PO property) were locked at night because of recurring mail theft. They would open them back up when the first employees showed up in the morning. I believe these boxes were removed entirely in the last year or two, well before the pandemic, for reasons unknown to me. Folks who used have the convenience of driving through this lane from the PO parking lot to deposit their mail without having to leave their car now have to park and go inside the PO to do that.

  7. Jenny says:

    Thank you Rayne.
    I noticed blue mail boxes in my neighborhood are still normal. So far, none removed and none locked.

    STELLAR speech by Michelle Obama. Empathy explanation was excellent.

  8. fishmanxxx says:

    Certainly hope that US citizens serving their country overseas including roughly 200,000 servicemen and women are not denied the opportunity to vote in the upcoming elections?

  9. earlofhuntingdon says:

    DeJoy and the people working for him behind the scene seem to be operating in the way Republicans do regarding budget deficits. Force the deficit sky high with tax giveaways, and spending on war and the wealthy. When a Democrat takes the White House, scream bloody murder about deficits that make the sky fall.

    The Post Office analog to that is DeJoy running amok to ensure that what he destroys can’t be reused, the people and know-how he’s tossed aside can’t be replaced. That makes it harder, more time-consuming, and more expensive to repair his destruction. He hopes people will forget what he did so that Republicans can scream about how much money Democrats want to throw at a wasteful USPS. DeJoy must hope, too, for a pardon or that some perverted notion of the business judgment rule will keep him from suffering any painful consequences. I hope he is wrong.

    The USPS has become like Social Security for Republicans: a white whale they must have. In their cult-like zeal, they must cleanse it through privatization or render its blubber for the greater good, in some capitalist version of the Wicker Man. DeJoy’s is only one round. They’ll be back, as they have returned over and over to undo FDR’s Social Security and LBJ’s Great Society.

    We can’t stop at fixing or replacing machines and delivery times. We should bring the USPS back into full govt ownership, bolster its union and workplace practices, shore up its facilities and equipment, revise its governing structure, and make it more transparent. One step at a time, but it’s good to have ultimate goals in mind.

  10. Jenny says:

    Postmaster General Louis Dejoy on Tuesday said he would pause changes to the operations of the Postal Service until after the election amid bipartisan outcry.

    “To avoid even the appearance of any impact on election mail, I am suspending these initiatives until after the election is concluded,” DeJoy said in a statement.

    This is a developing report

    Yep, the damage is already done. Today I asked my postal service carrier how he was doing and he replied “fair.” I told him I appreciated his service.

      • BobCon says:

        The other key piece that has to be nailed down is a guarantee not to reinstate any of this in some bogus emergency ruling in October.

        Best case would be a public commitment that any proposed pre-election rule changes go to Congress first for review and comment, which wouldn’t block stealth changes but would at least open them up to challenges and potentially slow implementation.

    • Raven Eye says:

      From Politico email:

      “Postmaster General Louis DeJoy announced Tuesday that he was suspending “longstanding operational initiatives” at the United States Postal Service, amid fears that the changes could delay election mail this fall in the middle of the pandemic.”

      In light of Rayne’s observation related to the USPS slide deck… “This plan to reduce equipment — and the services the equipment provided — wasn’t whipped up in one week. It had to have been studied and created well before May 15.”…One does wonder what DeJoy means by “longstanding”, and who was longstanding around cooking this up?

      • P J Evans says:

        The GOP has been trying to privatize the USPS since 1970, at the latest. So they probably have been planning ways&means for decades; it was made easier when McConnell refused to confirm Obama’s appointees, leaving the Board of Governors with no quorum until Trmp appointed his own business killers leaders to it.

        • Raven Eye says:

          It’s the scope of USPS facilities that tells me that while the actions recently taken may be the execution of a decades-old strategic theme, actually turning that into a tactical action plan could only have been completed more recently — certainly farther back than the week following DeJoy’s appointment, but probably not more than about a year ago.

          With 21 Network Distribution Centers and around 250 Processing and Distribution Centers, somebody inside has been working on this and keeping up to date on the individual center layouts, installed equipment, and the labor resources needed to do the work. Even removing drop boxes requires a detailed local plan that has to connect the target boxes with the labor and vehicles needed to execute.

          I think the Postal Commissioners and senior USPS management have as much, or more, to answer for than DeJoy does.

          • P J Evans says:

            I suspect that the BoG has that information, and has had it for more than enough time to do planning. Or to hand it off to others to work out plans. (There are multiple distribution centers in L.A., that I know of – my PO goes through Santa Clarita, for example – and it would be nice to know how many were pulled from each center in metropolitan areas.)

            • Eureka says:

              That was on my mind as well — and I’m wondering if mine has changed from one Phila. zip to another, but I never paid close enough (recent) attention to recall the numbers. Maybe I’ll find something around the house/elsewhere.

              I did notice that some mail coming to me did a strange new zig-zag before arrival.

                • Raven Eye says:

                  The cited document originated in 1997, and was last revised in 2010. USPS has used that current sorting and distribution process since long before DeJoy. IIRC, the idea was to reduce the amount of (manual) sorting at local post offices. The ultimate model for this was what FedEx used for years; “Everything goes to Memphis”.

                  Small postal stations have to sort everything by hand, but the Processing and Distribution Centers can have multiple sorting machines, including having one or more always offline for maintenance (the same way cruise ships operate their diesel engines). This relies on a large transportation infrastructure (all those contract trucks with the big numbers on the trailers), which is interesting at a time when we scrutinize carbon footprints.

                  • ducktree says:

                    The zip code here in City of Signal Hill was changed in about 2001 or 2002 from the locality’s City of Long Beach environs’ zip code, starting 908xx to 90755, . . . the reasoning being it was holding down the MLS property valuations. As always, follow the money . . .

                    • P J Evans says:

                      Like the western part of Canoga Park decided it was going to be “West Hills” because it sounds so much more upscale – but they didn’t get a new zip code.

                  • P J Evans says:

                    I was amused though, when I ordered some stuff from a surplus company in the Gardena area (a suburb of L.A., though I think the company is actually on the LA side of the city limit), about 50 miles from me, and they shipped it FedEx, so it went from LA to Memphis and back.

                  • ducktree says:

                    That also is the delivery route plotting of FedEx for parcels sent from/to the DTLA area – they usually go to some hub in the middle of the continent like Denver or Sal Tlay Kcity.

        • vicks says:

          Yes. it has long been a dream of those who put their fortunes before the good of others to get themselves a piece of the action and Trump is just the guy to get er done.
          I’m going to go out on a limb here and suggest it’s possible that voter suppression may be a bone that has been thrown to Trump by the sharks circling this federal agency, and that the locations that being disrupted may have more to do with a route(s) that a particular one percent-er has his or her eye on than a hit on voters in the area.
          FYI Fed Ex has been selling routes for about 10 years now. A route costs about 100K and those who know what they are doing have done quite well for themselves.
          I can’t even get my mind around the extent of the grift that would happen if the Trump organization succeeded in driving this federal agency into the ground and then claimed the only solution was to sell it off in pieces, but I can guarantee that if we allow it to happen it won’t be parceled out in 100K chunks, the biggest and baddest corporate assholes will end up running what is left of our postal service this just like they run everything else.
          If there is any truth to my theory, I would assume a shit ton of data has been shared with the above mentioned sharks and I think a quick way to get clarity is to look for any transfer of post office data to outside contacts that don’t immediately make sense.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        If DeJoy or his corporate apologists meant any of that, DeJoy would never had started this campaign the second he was sworn in. I give this tactical retreat about 24 hours before they start going round it.

        • Ginevra diBenci says:

          Also too, what does “after the election” really mean? November 4 at 12:00 a.m.? If so, given the damage already done, DeJoy et. al. could conspire with Trump to throw the whole thing into chaos.

            • Vicks says:

              After the election huh?
              What were the comparisons of mail volume between a presidential election and Christmas?
              Kinda out of the frying pan and into the fire if you ask me.
              These people aren’t dumb enough not to know how damaging it would be to hit the federal post office over the holidays.

              • P J Evans says:

                something like 1.5 million ballots and 1.3 *billion* pieces, IIRC. And ballots would be pre-sorted.

                • Vicks says:

                  I will say it again, vote suppression and/or giant donations is Trump’s cut of a much larger plan to take down the post office and hand it over in pieces to the names in corporate America we all know and hate.
                  We need to find out who has been pressing for his the hardest and understand why controlling distribution routes would be a windfall that makes Trump’s tax cuts look like chump change.
                  Once we understand who the most motivated characters are, I think the connections to Dejoy and the people he put in place to do his bidding should be easy (for professionals) to trace.
                  I also still believe that the depletion of equipment may have more to do with targeting and wounding specific areas of interest to the sharks/donors circling.
                  Someone a lot smarter than me needs to look at the cuts listed on the internal docs without the blinders of election interference and see if there is another pattern.

  11. graham firchlis says:

    DeJoy statement:

    No mention of restoring capacity, and vague on timing.

    Just doing his job, following orders, no mea culpa, no apology, all is well, nothing to see here, move along, people.

    • BobCon says:

      One potentially good thing about this being taken care now is that it may be removing a bargaining chip from the COVID response bill negotiations.

      Hopefully there is no side agreement between Schumer and McConnell that Mitch would get DeJoy to stop in exchange for concessions on UI or state and local aid by Schumer. I hope that Schumer had the good sense to realize public pressure on this would slam the GOP and force them to deal directly.

  12. ThoughtMail says:

    Since elections are squarely in the jurisdiction of states, Governors could call out the National Guard to collect, sort, and deliver mail-in ballots. Additionally, they could be deployed to assist as poll workers and counters where necessary. Maintaining the peace is, of course, one of their core responsibilities with which they can be trusted to act constitutionally (see, General Milley).

    Make some noise about this. Everyone is counting on having a fair election, and this may be one means to that end.

    • Raven Eye says:

      Using the Guard is worth considering. I’d recommend them wearing Army Service Uniform or the new Army Greens rather than the Army Combat Uniform — too many recent associations with cammies.

      • ThoughtMail says:

        One more idea on privatization.

        Why don’t we privatize the GOP?

        Oh, wait …

        I’ll see myself out.

      • John Lehman says:

        Yes, yes agreed. Good idea.

        Let’s use the “original intent”(snark)* of the Second Amendment and “State’s rights” (semi-snark). Don’t believe the Second Amendment justifies immature idiots playing war fantasies with stock piles of over powered mega death tools, though.

        *“Original intent” circa 1789… everyone has the right to bare arms…a single shot mussel loading musket.

  13. Jenny says:

    Former USPS board member to brief House Democrats this week
    David Williams, who resigned in April as vice chair of the USPS Board of Governors, is scheduled to give a private briefing to a group of House Democrats on Thursday.

    Postal Service board member who resigned over Trump’s meddling to brief House Democrats

  14. P J Evans says:

    It’s probably useful to know that the USPS handles more mail per *week* at Christmas than in the general election.

  15. earlofhuntingdon says:

    With Trump, there’s always one more thing. His manipulation of the census and ending outreach efforts a month early? Avoidable Covid deaths? As you talk to people, consider how you might feed those kinds of things into the conversation.

    • Eureka says:

      Yep. There are some human and American universals which even the propaganda mills/ bothsides-ers can’t snuff (for many, the turning point of unavoidable reckoning as to who Trump is, no two ways about it, was abandoning the Kurds and otherwise endangering our troops. The wood cords stack neatly, if slowly, after someone has had that shift). Fortunately (to this person seeing the storyline play out), I had months ago chatted with a 2016 Trump voter about the Trump campaign against mail ballots (this person was unaware — not kidding — that the GOP are vote suppressors). It’s always good to talk.

      Man, the Fightin’ Phils are playing some baseball. Let’s hope they don’t make me regret that this edit window doesn’t last three more innings. …and they are back with more!

  16. Rugger9 says:

    DeJoy has announced he is “suspending” his changes until after the election but nothing about undoing the damage he has already done. I’m looking forward to Katie Porter asking questions next Monday, let’s hope some of the Ds yield their time to her so she has more than 5 minutes.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      As I said above, this is a Trumpian retreat designed, in part, in anticipation of congressional hearings. But DeJoy and Trump are driven by testosterone. That will force them to get round this tactical retreat after a short theatrical delay. They might use secret “authority,” undisclosed or unacknowledged programs, or s/w, policy, and personnel changes that accomplish the same things as removing physical assets, but which don’t lend themselves to being photographed.

  17. punaise says:

    In the extremely unlikely event that you needed any other reasons to get Susan Collins voted out of the Senate, there’s this.

    As it turns out, Collins is actually one of the members of Congress most responsible for the Postal Service’s devastation. Long before DeJoy started manipulating the USPS, Collins was at the forefront of a bill that crippled the agency’s finances.

    That’s because it saddled the institution with debt that no other government agency—or private company—is responsible for. At the same time, it effectively blocked the USPS from taking advantage of new opportunities to provide services and garner revenue when it needed to make up for losses stemming from declines in first-class mail due to the rise of the Internet and email.

    Now, the post currently has $160.9 billion in debt, of which $119.3 billion is the result of pre-funding retiree benefits. That was by design. As Pascrell wrote, “To argue that the Postal Service needs to be privatized, conservatives need to show that it is dysfunctional, and there’s no better way to do that than by weighing the agency down with impossible financial obligations.”

    We can’t contribute everywhere, so my targets in the Senate are Collins, Mitch McConnell and Lindsay Graham. AZ and TX would be nice too.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      That cash position might be what M&A vultures consider fat game. If privatized, I assume the buyer would get out from under that 75-year rule. That would free up tens of billions to pay for the acquisition and fatten their pockets.

  18. graham firchlis says:

    As unsatisfying as DeJoy’s pause certainly is, it would be a mistake to underappreciate the achievement.

    24 hours ago the Reactionaries were still brazenly plotting more destruction. Due to public pressure they’ve been forced to hesitate, and that’s a good thing. Thanks are due to all who put in effort, especially those whose efforts inspire others to action.

    But so much more remains. Now is the time to redouble effort, press legislators and governors relentlessly. So far all the oppressors have offered are words. We need action, and that requires more pressure. Rayne has it right, and thanks for that.

  19. P J Evans says:

    I suspect that they’ve been greatly surprised by the response they’re getting – they seem to have expected everyone to go “well, it’s the government, what can you expect?” and didn’t remember that the USPS is the one part of government that everyone knows and likes.
    (The carrier on our route in west Texas drove a right-hand-drive Volvo – he didn’t have to lean halfway across it to put mail in boxes. And he had only two accidents in 20 years.)

  20. Bobster33 says:

    Personal story from Torrance, CA. We used to have a monster mailbox at the local post office where you could drive up and drop off your mail. From about 8 am to 6 pm, there was typically a line of cars using it. Back in May of this year, it was closed. The rumor was that the box was closed to limit the spread of the virus.

    Three years ago, that same post office was infamous (in my household) for another reason. If I dropped off my Netflix return envelop before 9 am (at that monster mailbox), I would get an email from Netflix (at same day 4 pm) announcing they had received my returned email and had sent out the next movie on my list. The next day I would have the next movie on my list. We loved sending our weekend movies back on Monday morning and receiving the next on our list on Tuesday afternoon. I suspect the reason my current delivery is not this fast has more to do with Netflix than USPS. But I gotta tell you, it was nice while it lasted.

  21. punaise says:

    will DeJoy step up the plate at the House hearings? Katie Porter on the mound.

    (mighty Skeezy at the bat…)

    And now the pitcher holds the ball, and now she lets it fly,
    And now the air is shattered by the force of Louis’ lies.

  22. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Heather Walker in Grand Rapids has a story about the USPS dismantling a mail sorting machine TODAY – on orders from Louis DeJoy. Hours ago, she had pics of parts of the large, expensive machine disassembled and in the parking lot. Less than an hour ago, she reported that the USPS said the removal had stopped. Grand Rapids is a key voting district in Michigan. It is the second largest city in the state, and the largest in western Michigan. Its MSA holds about 1.3 million people.

    As Gen, Turgidson might say, we don’t want to condemn a program because of a single slip up. But if good chunks of this machine are disassembled and in the parking lot, it won’t be of much use in the timely sorting of mail. It will have to be cleaned, its missing parts and fasteners found, reassembled, its software reloaded and/or checked, and the whole thing tested. Under DeJoy, that might take some time, ’cause his budget is so stressed.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      I noticed that in Walker’s pics, the partially disassembled mail sorting machine is standing next to a large dumpster.

      This is what I meant when I suggested that DeJoy and Trump have made only a tactical retreat, which the press duly exaggerated as a major u-turn and an unabashed victory. Rubbish. Moves like this alone can still cause havoc in key voting districts across the country.

    • Rayne says:

      What’s odd about the Grand Rapids’ equipment decommissioning is that it happened in a conservative district — that’s Rep. Amash’s area.

      Wondering if this is political payback, this time aimed at non-Democratic dissenters though Amash is not on the ballot this fall. Amash, though, is now a Libertarian, and he’s on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, and vice chair of the Subcommittee on Federal Workforce, U.S. Postal Service, and Labor Policy.

      Feels like both an eff-you and a dare to Amash.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        I can vouch for that. I sent Marcy a note in June to the Grand Rapids P.O. box. It took the Post Office almost a month to label it, “Return to Sender Not Deliverable as Addressed Unable to Forward.” The notation required, “Sort in Manual Only No Automation.” It took a month for me to get it back. Round trip: 56 days.

        • harpie says:

          ooof! I’m glad I didn’t have anything in transit when Marcy’s move happened.
          [I’m really sad about no longer being able to send little notes along with my quarterly donations. :-( ]

      • Eureka says:

        What about stuff sent to the Houston address, is that getting forwarded to Ireland (she’d said before that it wasn’t secure)?

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Her twtr message just said that “nothing” had been delivered – in well over a month – to her via mail-forwarding, a service the USPS offers. DeJoy must think he’s running a bank or telecom, which claim to be able to change their contracts at will (even then, on notice).

  23. harpie says:

    2:14 PM · Aug 19, 2020

    NEW — Pelosi spoke to DeJoy this morning “The Postmaster General frankly admitted that he had no intention of replacing the sorting machines, blue mailboxes and other key mail infrastructure.”

    2:35 PM · Aug 19, 2020

    To be clear, the “frankly admitted” is not Pelosi reading into DeJoy’s words.

    An aide tells me: “He said he wasn’t going to do it.”

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      Saying the quiet parts out loud. Having no intention of putting the equipment back in service leaves a little wriggle room. Saying that he refuses to do it is DeJoy telling the Speaker of the House that she can go Cheney herself.

      And yet we have the MSM treating DeJoy’s purported promise to stop doing things until after the election as a major victory. (Will it ever stop trying to kick Lucy’s football?) It’s clear from the news today that that “promise” is a lie. At best, DeJoy is being Jesuitical. Partially dismantling equipment or removing its electrical connection is not “removing” it, but it is “removing it from service.” The press really ought to run with that. There are plenty of other examples from Trump’s last three years to establish his pattern and practice of deception.

  24. klynn says:

    1. Even if part of all of this is to create an atmosphere of dysfunction of the postal service to push the “privatize” narrative; the mail should not be privatized in such an “analytics strong – politically divided” time. Mail delivery could be manipulated to hurt certain citizens almost in an asymmetric warfare fashion for political gain.

    2. Looking at some of DeJoy’s foreign contacts, this USPS destruction has the appearance of information warfare against citizens.

    • P J Evans says:

      It’s going to benefit his stock portfolio, and maybe his wife’s as well. Big, big conflict of interest, which should have gotten him dropped from consideration.

  25. earlofhuntingdon says:

    The USPS has been delivering baby chicks since 1918. Might be an interesting story there. I imagine it’s long been the safest, cheapest, fastest way to do it. Except that under Louis DeJoy, the tradition may be dying out. A Maine farmer went to his local post office to pick up his 800 baby chicks. All Dead.

    A one-off might be explicable. But the stuff that started happening immediately after DeJoy took office fits a pattern. It looks like what you get when you hire a neoliberal CEO who has no knowledge of the company, disdains its people and history, and holds tens of millions of dollars in the stock of its suppliers and competitors. He starts cutting people and throwing stuff out. He stops doing things that make no sense to him, but which have been worked out over decades or a century as effective processes. (Farmers would have dropped the USPS in a New York minute if they didn’t do it right.)

    DeJoy also fits the old IT mantra: shit in, shit out. And that’s before you get to the voting and other needs of his pals Donny Trump and Steve Mnuchin. I am so looking forward to Katie Porter asking Louis a few questions. I wish the committee would double or triple her time. DeJoy needs a grilling.

    • P J Evans says:

      Beekeepers buy bees and they’re shipped by mail. Queens usually have a few workers with them, and the little cage is closed by a plug of sugar candy (which feeds the bees while in transit). Delaying something like that could get messy. (Also expensive: a queen runs $30-50, and a 3-lb package of mixed bees, for a hive, can be nearly $200.)

    • posaune says:

      Back in the late 1920s and 1930s, my grandmother (a SD homesteader family) raised canaries for the mines as a means to feed her 10 children during the early-onset Depression in the western plains. She mailed the birds to customers through the USPS — for years — and after the mines declined, she sold the males as pets “guaranteed to sing.”

      In recent years, mr. posaune and I have raised canaries for our son (now a 16-yo, LOL) and the Fife pair we ordered last October also arrived by USPS. Perfectly happy and healthy in a cardboard carrier, with shredded newsprint, cucumber and apple slices.
      The only fumble was on the destination end, when our local PO thought the box was headed for the National Zoo. We arrived for pick up in time, having been telephoned about the arrival. Nick and Nora are doing just fine.

  26. earlofhuntingdon says:

    The hits keep on coming. JPMorgan Chase says it’s in talks with the USPS to install its ATM machines and to provide “other banking services” at certain post offices across the country.

    Dave Dayen notes the inevitable anti-trust and anti-consumer aspects of this move. It’s most obvious purpose would be to keep the USPS from doing something on its own – which might put it in the black, while demonstrating the extent to which High Street banks are ripping off low- and middle-income customers for plain vanilla banking services. The USPS refused to comment on the report.

    Beware the “non-compete” clause that might bind the USPS for years, even if this “experiment” immediately falls. That’s probably the first thing DeJoy would agree to. Binding the USPS that way could also be a reason to propose such an experiment. DeJoy would characterize it as a way to increase office lease income from underused facilities, though he would lard it with a page of B school jargon beyond that.

    Also note the sanctity of contracts clause in the Constitution. Certain FedSoc nominated federal judges are prone to read it expansively, to keep contracts they like from being voided. They would also like to bring back the Lochner era, when the S.Ct. used it as the basis to reject as unconstitutional attempts at novel regulation.

    • P J Evans says:

      I don’t object to ATMs in public places, but they should serve *all* banks and credit unions.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      The ATMs are the most innocuous part of the deal, other than the charge for using them. The devil is in the details.

      What are the other “banking services?” What’s in the overarching contract that would restrain or restrict the USPS or enrich JPM? For how long and at what cost? What’s the cost to walk away from the deal? What data sharing arrangements or proprietary data or s/w does it include and how does it restrict the USPS or enrich JPM?

      Private, for-profit space on USPS turf is a very special commodity. Why should a single mega-bank be allowed to have a monopoly on association with the USPS and its space? Why no proposed tender? The whole deal, especially its timing, stinks like a fish left in the back of a pickup truck cab all week.

      • P J Evans says:

        “a fish left in the back of a pickup truck cab all week”
        Especially this week, in my area. 107F yesterday, 105 today, forecast for tomorrow is 105, 104 on Friday…then it’s going to cool off to the mid-90s for a week.

  27. klynn says:

    It would be curious to overlay DeJoy’s USPS destruction timeline with the Berman firing timeline.

    While DeJoy’s focus appears motivated to impact mail-in voting and personal financial gains, I wonder if there was a hoped secondary impact involving today’s arrest?

    • Rayne says:

      Funny you should mention that…I started a timeline and already plonked February 7 on it, the day when Barr locked down campaign finance investigations.

      I’ll put up a post shortly for crowdsourcing entries.

  28. earlofhuntingdon says:

    The hits still keep coming: “USPS Headquarters Tells Managers Not to Reconnect Mail Sorting Machines.”

    “Please message out to your respective Maintenance Managers tonight. They are not to reconnect / reinstall machines that have previously been disconnected without approval from HQ Maintenance, no matter what direction they are getting from their plant manager,” wrote Kevin Couch, Director of Maintenance Operations….”[A]s one postal worker at a maintenance facility in the northwest that has had multiple machines decommissioned told Motherboard, the damage has already been done. “There are a lot of machines targeted or pulled already.”

    The House needs to put Louie under oath and ask him some pointed questions. Please let them be by Katie Porter. This is not a topic that merits allocating question time by simple division.

    • P J Evans says:

      “suspend” for DeJoy apparently means “do it much less obviously, in hopes that they’ll give up and go away”.

    • Rayne says:

      I’m trying to finish writing a post right now, can’t do the legwork. Hope somebody chases down this Kevin Couch person and looks for any campaign donations or social media posts indicating his politics.

      There had to be people inside the USPS who aided and abetted this. The Equipment Reduction plan is too detailed for this not to have had inside sources.

      And there needs to be more obvious rebellion inside the USPS against the changes because they violate federal law. These union folks folks should pointedly reject changes which are unlawful — and all of them are so far.

      • ducktree says:

        A classic example of a war of attrition:

        https:/ /

        Postal workers have been filing grievances…

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Nothing on Kevin Couch so far. I did find a comparison of recent USPS machine withdrawals: 3% in 2018, 5% in 2019, 13% in 2020. That’s based on the announcement about withdrawing 671 machines, 618 of them due to be out-of-commission by August 1st.

        Presumably, that’s DeJoy showing his cost-cutting mettle. But nothing rational about that goal in a pandemic year, shortly before a hotly contested election, one dependent more than normally on the mail for delivery of ballots, by a neoliberal administration unabashedly against mail-in voting from Democratically leaning states, and bent on privatizing the USPS or putting it out of business.

        One of the topics the House needs to pursue is Mnuchin’s role in “persuading” a Republican board majority to appoint DeJoy. Mnuchin was apparently a busy go-between for the White House and the USPS. The White House was so keenly interested that the USPS has decided to prohibit the executive search firm it used to find DeJoy from talking to Congress. As a major Trump and GOP fundraiser for each of the past four years, DeJoy would already have been on the radar.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          LOL. Turns out Louis DeJoy was not shortlisted by the executive search firm the USPS used to find its new CEO.

          According to Kyle Cheney, DeJoy’s name came from John Barger, a Republican donor and manager of his own investment firm in southern California. He sits on the USPS board’s Compensation and Governance Committee. These sorts of appointments are often scripted, so DeJoy’s name may not have originated with Barger. DeJoy’s a big donor, but he’s in North Carolina and Barger operates in L.A. So how did the two connect for this job? DeJoy has none of the experience or expertise of any past PMG, and he comes with a ton of conflicts of interest.

          “The lawmakers said putting forward a candidate outside of the search process was a break from typical practice.”

          • earlofhuntingdon says:

            From Cheney’s Politico article:

            Asked to respond to Barger’s comments, [former USPS Inspector General David] Williams told the lawmakers “I had expressed concerns after each of the interviews with Mr. Louis DeJoy. I urged that a background investigation be conducted. And when I resigned, I cited it as one of my reasons for submitting my resignation to Chairman Robert Duncan.”

            • earlofhuntingdon says:

              Good question, but it’s probably more complicated. Barger and Mnuchin are in the same line of work, but they’ve worked on different coasts. The GOP might more of a common denominator. Interestingly for such a high-profile guy, Barger has avoided having a wiki entry.

        • vicks says:

          In addition to Dejoy sharing the perks of being a deputy finance chairs for the RNC with upstanding citizens Michael Cohen and Elliot Broidy, Dejoy was local finance chair for the cancelled Republican Convention that was supposed to take place in Charlotte, NC
          Dems announced a major scaling back of thier event on April 2, 2020.
          Most republicans, as instructed were counting on the virus going away but some, like Dejoy may have seen the writing on the wall,
          Dejoy was appointed to Postmaster and CEO on May 6, 2020
          Prehaps Dejoy decided to cut bait and demanded a new gig and Postmaster General was what they pulled out of their asses.

  29. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Katie Porter does need to do more than the usual five minutes of questions for Louis DeJoy. And the committee needs to subpoena Mnuchin without delay.

    From former USPS Inspector General David Williams: “Mnuchin would bring in board of governor members into his office to berate them about postal changes.” Dave Dayen: “To summarize, Steve Mnuchin used financial leverage over the Postal Service to engage in a hostile takeover of the agency. And DeJoy’s appointment came out of nowhere, not from the search firm dedicated to the task.”

  30. earlofhuntingdon says:

    We might need another thread. From an LA Times lead story on the USPS: “Like Armageddon”: Rotting food, dead animals and chaos at postal facilities [amid cutbacks]”

    I added brackets for the last two words because I considered them needlessly exculpatory. They imply causation when, in my opinion, the chaos is intentional and not a function of the USPS being short on money. You don’t throw out millions of dollars worth of essential mail sorting and delivery equipment when you’re short on cash. You throw it out because you don’t want to deliver the mail.

    The Dems are happy to provide money to the USPS. But Trump and Senate Republicans are petulantly sitting on it, because it might help people vote, and some of those who do vote won’t vote for Donald Trump. Never mind the vets, older Americans, and everyone forced by their healthcare insurer to get their drugs by mail. Never mind those who need that check in the mail, a latter from home, animals and fresh food sent by mail that now rots untended in a Postal Service trash heap. Too bad for the millions who buy from online sellers because they’re local stores are closed, are open fewer hours, or have little inventory. Forget about the people with limited or no access to the Internet, who still depend on the mail for everything, including sending in their vote.

    I noted yesterday that a simple card sent to a valid address in Grand Rapids, MI, an address for which there was a valid mail forwarding order, came back to me undelivered. It took 56 days to make the round trip. This is what Trump does to everything he touches and for the same reasons – malicious incompetence, to help himself out of a jam, or to put his pinkies into someone else’s cookie jar. Please let’s get out the vote.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      In my list of effects from DeJoy-Trump’s dismantling of the Post Office, I understated the effect on businesses. From Amazon to the locally-owned coffee grinder, they rely heavily on the USPS. Imagine waiting fifteen minutes for a McDonald’s sandwich. Long delays mean unhappy customers, higher costs, and less business, which means shedding jobs and a slower economy. In the middle of a pandemic-driven recession. Trump is doing to all of America what Stephen Miller is doing to would be immigrants.

      As for DeJoy’s lie that he would stop disrupting postal business, this is from that LA Times story:

      Inside one sprawling facility at Florence and Central avenues in Los Angeles, which serves 92 L.A.-area post offices, seven delivery bar code sorters were removed in June, leaving three, Gonzalez said….Each of those machines, which would handle mail-in ballots, can process up to 35,000 pieces of mail per hour.

      A seventy-percent cut in mail sorting capacity, at a center serving 92 post offices in one city. What are the odds that most of the people served by those offices vote for a Democrat?

        • P J Evans says:

          It’s not hard to find on Google Maps – it’s half a mile from one end to the other on Central, and a quarter mile wide. Solar panels on roofs, and covering a lot of parking.

  31. vicks says:

    Part 1. The red flags start flying, NYT’s May 7, 2020 (1 day after Lajoy’s appointment”
    “Mr. Trump dispatched Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to oversee an overhaul at the Postal Service, and negotiations over its funding have emerged as a point of tension between Republicans and Democrats. In March, Mr. Mnuchin quashed a bipartisan attempt to send the agency emergency funds, insisting instead that his department be given new authority to lend up to $10 billion to the Postal Service on terms it helps set. Mr. Trump has said the service will receive no additional money until it meets his demands.”

    Part 2. Steve Mnuchin, secretary of the Treasury leverages Covid relief dollars for USPS “proprietary data”
    “The Treasury Department agreed to loan the U.S. Postal Service $10 billion in emergency coronavirus relief funding Wednesday in exchange for the mail service’s most lucrative private-sector contracts.” “The debt-laden mail service will provide the agency proprietary information on its agreements with private-sector competitors”
    (These are reported to be the “last mile” contracts with shippers like Amazon.)

    Part 3. Mr DeJoy
    “DeJoy was CEO of High Point, North Carolina-based New Breed Logistics from 1983 to 2014, and retired after his company was acquired by Connecticut-based freight transporter, XPO Logistics, for a reported $615 million. Following that acquisition, he served as CEO of XPO’s supply chain business in North America until his retirement in 2015, and was appointed to a strategic role on XPO Logistics’ board of directors where he served until 2018.[7]”

    Part 4. Trump, Mnuchin, USPS, Mr Dejoy, extorted data, and the company that may connect them all: XPO Logistics.
    “The company, under CEO Brad Jacobs, ran into some headwinds the last 15 months or so. In February of 2019, XPO lowered its profit outlook for the year, citing a substantial loss of business from its largest customer.
    That made it the second time XPO had revised its earnings forecast down in the past three months.
    XPO did not identify the customer, but said it involved its “postal injection” business, under which XPO trucks pick up bulk shipments of parcels from fulfillment centers and take them to local US Postal Service center for final delivery. It is generally assumed that customer was Amazon.”

    • Rayne says:

      That last link at Supply Chain News is the pay dirt, vicks. Now we know more about why Mnuchin is involved:

      … XPO said it has hired high powered investment and legal firms to execute the processes. Those include Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan Chase as financial advisers and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz as its legal adviser in the review process. …

      Amazon’s own logistics company cut into XPO’s business at the same time Trump’s tariffs increased retail prices, reducing consumer demand. Rather than cutting costs and riding it out, or trying to find ways to spin off to Amazon, or trying to partner with Amazon’s competitors Target/Walmart/other, XPO looks at breaking up.

      Investment banks want to shake more cash out of XPO and its subs; they need to improve its prospects to do so. They want to find more business for XPO or its future spinoffs so they lean on Mnuchin to get dirt on competitor USPS which is a vendor to Amazon. UPS is involved because it wants to maintain its share of the market and it’s willing to help lean on USPS by providing its own take on expense allocation.

      It’s corrupt as fuck. Mnuchin is favoring Wall Street investment banks and a Trump donor over a Constitutionally-mandated service. Fuck him.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Nice analysis. The Goldman Sachs connection, of course. And interesting how JPM Chase is an adviser here, and a would be sole, for-profit lessee of the USPS to offer ATM and “other” banking services at locations to be determined. Yup. Corrupt.As.Hell.

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