posted on March 13, 2013 10:54
Washington may be about to give us an answer on one of the longest running philosophical debates since Eve bit the apple: Are humans rational creatures?
For months, just about every politician in Washington – Republican Congressmen, Democratic Senators, President Obama, Speaker John Boehner – has been talking about how much they want to cut spending. They’re all for cuts.
Last month the Post Office weighed in, saying it was going to save taxpayers $2 billion by ending Saturday mail delivery – which, if you think about it, isn’t a terribly painful cut: No one will go hungry. The sick will still receive care. And, if worse comes to worst, you can always send an email on Saturday.
It all sounded sensible until Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid weighed in and said the Post Office was way out of line – that it couldn’t end Saturday mail delivery without Congress’s approval and, speaking for the Senate, he didn’t approve.
That riled up some House Republicans who, just naturally, pushed back – saying Reid was all wet and the Post Office could end weekend mail anytime it wanted.
Then an odd thing happened.
It’s a little-known fact, but it turns out, in budgets going back for thirty years, Congress has included a law that requires the Post Office to deliver mail on Saturday – and last week when the House passed the continuing budget resolution it included the same law.
As soon as the bill passed, a Democrat Congressman merrily hopped up and announced (in the New York Times) that Saturday mail delivery was safe for another year. Then an unhappy Republican Congressman hopped up and announced the Democratic Congressman was dead wrong: The wording of the law Congress had just passed, the Republican conceded, was a bit vague – but then he added adamantly he didn’t have one scintilla of doubt the Post Office can stop delivering the mail on Saturday. Period.
So, here’s the status of clarity in Washington: The Post Office says it can end Saturday mail. The Democratic Senate Leader says it can’t. The House passed a bill with a thirty-year-old law in it – which both a Democratic Congressman and a Republican Congressman voted for. The Democrat says the law means one thing. And the Republican says it means the opposite.
Wednesday, March 13, 2013 2:39 PM
If Saturday mail were free the Democrats would be all for ending it. Because it cost the tax payers money, they can't be for ending it. And think, there are actually people walking around, that believe Democrats will one day vote to end some spending. It will never happen. When we have no more money, and no one will loan us money, and we have printed so much that inflation is killing us, they then will not vote to stop any spending.
Wednesday, March 13, 2013 4:31 PM
Oh, c'mon. Sheeesh. Who in the world doesn't think that the unions involved in the USPS are against ending Saturday mail delivery because of the loss of money/jobs USPS employees will get?
It's going to be a fight and it's going to depend on which side has the horsepower to make their beliefs actually happen.
It's nothing more than politics. Fiscal responsibility? Pffffftttttt.