Have you ever seen a commercial and scratched your head and said "that makes no sense"? Actually, let me re-phrase that: the latest commercial that makes no sense is the American Postal Workers Union currently running a commercial saying that it delivers 8 zillion pieces of mail annually (give or take a zillion) without costing the taxpayers a dime. It says it is fully funded by what it charges for services. Huh? I thought the Post Office ran a deficit last year of $8.5 billion and it was the fourth straight year of losses. It lost $2.2 billion last quarter. If it is not getting subsidized by taxpayers then how can it stay in business? The commercial is parsing the facts (lying). Direct subsidies from taxpayers ended in 1982. Since then the Post Office has covered its deficits through borrowing rights from the Treasury (taxpayers). It owes the Treasury (taxpayers) over $4 billion and has a revolving credit line of $3.4 billion and has said that if it does not get relief it will default on its payments.. It also gets indirect subsidies from the taxpayers having to only pay 0.3% on outstanding debt and its credit line. The taxpayer subsidies also extend to its not paying any taxes, federal, state, local and, no vehicle registration fees.
Harold A. Black is professor emeritus in the Department of Finance, University of Tennessee, Knoxville having retired after 24 years of service. He has served on the faculties of American University, Howard University, the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill and the University of Florida. His government service includes the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and as a Board Member of the National Credit Union Administration. He also has served on the boards of directors Home Savings of America and its parent company, H. F. Ahmanson & Co., Irwindale, California prior to its merger with Washington Mutual Savings Bank, on the board of New Century Financial Corporation, Irvine, California, then the nation’s largest real estate investment trust and as director and later chairman of the Nashville Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. He writes an occasional article for the Knoxville News-Sentinel at http://www.knoxnews.com/staff/dr-harold-black/. His web page is haroldablackphd.com