USPS responds to error-riddled article by Americans for Tax Reform

USPS responds to error-riddled article by Americans for Tax Reform USPS sets the record straight on an article by Americans for Tax Reform

Your recent column “USPS Posts Half a Billion in Losses Despite Billions in Subsidies” is overtly flawed and significantly exaggerated. The entire piece is based on a competitor-funded paper fraught with errors about the financial status of the Postal Service that the Americans for Tax Reform organization unquestioningly parrots.

The writers of both documents fail to report the truth — that the Postal Service receives no tax dollars or subsidies for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund operations.

The writer also makes no mention of the incredible cost savings the Postal Service has achieved. The Postal Service has proactively down-sized its network from 675 processing facilities to 318 over the last 10 years, and enacted other savings initiatives reducing our annual cost base by over $15 billion per year, an extraordinary cost savings by any measure.

The “subsidy” numbers referred to in the column & paper are created by flawed methodologies and assumptions, apples-to-oranges comparisons, and a one-sided narrative.

The document claims that the Postal Service’s economies of scale and scope are a “subsidy” resulting from the organization’s monopolies. This is completely incorrect.  In fact, the opposite is true.  The Postal Service has a universal service obligation to deliver to each and every address in the United States, six days a week, regardless of the volume of mail destined for each.

Without any support, the piece accuses the Postal Service of failing to be financially accountable. Yet nowhere in the article does the writer discuss the fact that the Postal Service is constrained by a price cap tied to inflation for the overwhelming majority of its products or that the Postal Service has billions of dollars in unique burdens placed upon it, like the requirement to prefund its Retiree Health Benefits, something no other private entity is required to do.

Americans for Tax Reform owes readers a more accurate, better researched and fact- checked representation of the financial situation of the United States Postal Service. The inaccuracies contained in the column are a disservice to the American public.

Some excerpts from the article:

This week the Postal Service reported a net loss of $586 million for the third quarter of fiscal 2015. The USPS’s ability to lose over half a billion dollars in just three months would almost be impressive if it wasn’t a detriment to American taxpayers. The fact is the USPS receives roughly $18 billion in taxpayer-backed subsidies annually yet is still failing.

Despite this massive multi-billion dollar subsidies crutch, the Postal Service continues to prove incapable of financial accountability. The third quarter losses this week are not only a massive bureaucratic failure but also mean the Postal Service has now posted revenue losses 25 out of the last 27 quarters.

Given the $1.5 billion dollar losses posted in the previous quarter, 2015 could be the 9th consecutive year USPS has suffered multi-billion dollar losses. The Postal Service is now averaging about $5.5 billion in annual losses and within the last decade the Post Office endured over $47 billion in losses, a number that is only slated to grow.

7 thoughts on “USPS responds to error-riddled article by Americans for Tax Reform

  1. Funny that the competitors of USPS are the ones to release such garbage. It’s even funnier that USPS has stepped up and said none of it was true. Every time they appear in front of Congress, all they ever talk about is how screwed they are financially. I guess postal management’s argument depends who they’re arguing with.

  2. The Postal Service has been “backdoor taxed” (IE: hidden tax) via the omnibus act passed in a late session of Congress and refusal to return overpayment to Employees retirement funds…… so just the opposite as claimed by ATR….Employees and taxpayers have been “fleeced” by Congress.

  3. What would one expect from a right leaning organization? They just babble on as their hero Joseph Goebbels trained them to do! Now if, as they want you to believe they are so concerned about tax payer subsidies, then why should they ignore the subsidies American business receive from tax payers? A large number of corporations hire workers, then tell them how to apply for food stamps, welfare, and Medicaid! Employment costs that the cheap, greedy American business bastards should pay! The business hogs want to be able to hoard their money, while the tax payer pays their obligations. Why should a businessman pay for anything while he could suck off the tax payer?

    • Well said!!..If you look at the Defense industry…How much does the taxpayer foot when they go over budget for contracts..or the Highway or roads industry when it takes them 10 years to pave a road…everyone gets over on the government because of laws that are written for that purpose…too suck off the tit of the taxpayers so stockholders to receive their dividends!

  4. Typical lousy journalism. Pick a big target and throw crud at it and hopefully something will stick. I only have one question for any “reporter” of this false narrative. Does the “news” organization you work for guarantee you anything? Retirement? Health benefits? Equal pay across the board for like jobs? Hire more Vets than anyone else? The USPS is one of the best companies around. If you’re jealous, just admit it. Otherwise, do your due diligence and get the facts straight before you write the “news”.

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