The entire panel of Forbes on Fox came out in favor of privatizing the U.S. Postal Service recently. The only dissent was that we’re not “ready quite yet.” Nobody pointed out – or seemed to care - that the Postal Service is extremely popular among Americans.
On December 14, 2013, host David Asman kicked off the discussion by saying there are “new calls” to privatize the Postal Service after it posted a $5 billion loss this year. New calls from whom? Asman didn’t say.
Steve Forbes wholeheartedly endorsed privatization. “Oh, absolutely David!” he gushed. “It’s not just Britain. Numerous other countries have done it as well. And the Post Office actually has some real assets. They have real estate, they have an overfunded pension fund, they’ve made some great strides in efficiencies and if Congress got out of the way and it was truly privatized, they’d do great things!”
Rick Ungar was the lone kinda/sorta voice of dissent. He said, “I agree that it’s certainly out of step with the times, but I don’t think we’re ready quite yet to do it, too many remote places that would have a problem.” But, he added, “There’s a company called Zoombox which I’ve seen that really can replace what the post office is doing, we’re just not there yet.”
Mike Ozanian thought the interests of rural America paled in comparison to gutting the workers’ union. He said, “(The Postal Service’s) work rules are very outdated, and as far as remote areas having to pay more, well you know what, that’s seems fair to me because out in Wyoming and other places like that, they pay a lot less for their homes and for their lands.”
Elizabeth MacDonald was on board, too. She said, “Get the government out of the way of the US Post Office. …They are privatizing in Europe, Canada, Asia, New Zealand, Japan. It seems like a worldwide phenomenon.”
Sabrina Schaffer said, “Yeah, I have to agree. …They’re limited to modernize based on Congress. …We should either get government out of the way so that they can do what they want to do.”
Asman said, “Aren’t politics in favor of doing this? Isn’t this something that both sides of the aisle could agree on?”
Forbes agreed. “There are positive ways to do it. It’s going to cost money, but that’s what happens when you get the government out of the way, and it’s well worth the price.”
But as Pew Research noted in May:
(T)he Postal Service is one of the better-regarded arms of the federal government. In a 2010 Pew Research survey, 83% of people said they had a favorable opinion of the Postal Service, the highest level among the 13 agencies asked about. More recently, 60% of respondents in an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll said they had “very” (28%) or “somewhat” (32%) positive feelings toward the Postal Service — more than President Obama, either major party, the Catholic Church or the NRA.
But when it comes to business interests, union busting and getting rid of governmental services, the heck with the public!