Trump Trying to Kill the Postal Service and Democracy

I hate conspiracy theories. At first glance, it would be easy to say that the idea that Trump installed his own US Postmaster General, Louis DeJoy (who himself is heavily invested in USPS competitors) in an attempt to derail voting by mail during a pandemic when most people would prefer not going to a polling station sounds like a run of the mill wacky  conspiracy theory. Of course, in Trumpian overly-written super villain fashion, he blurted the plan out loud to everybody and continues to tweet out accusations of a fraudulent election that won’t even take place for the next few months.

So what is going on exactly?  Let’s start with an first hand account from an anonymous postal worker about what they have seen going on in the USPS since DeJoy took over:

See, up until just two months ago, every letter carrier, clerk, mail handler, truck driver, etc, worked under one pretty simple philosophy: every piece, every address, every day. Everyone in the chain of custody for mail made sure every piece got as far along in the system as it could, and if it made it to my hands, in my office, it was getting delivered. That’s how I’ve done it for my career, how the guys who have been doing it for forty years have always done it, and that’s literally how Ben Fucking Franklin’s guys did it. You can almost hear Aaron Sorkin’s orgasm as he punches up the Bradley Whitford speech about the majesty of it all.

But two months ago is also when that abruptly stopped. After a couple hundred years, it just…stopped. On the ground floor, there’s a lot of arguing about who is ordering what, and what’s going to be permanent, and what’s going to be a trial run, but at the end of the day, the result is obvious: I go into my job, every single morning, and don’t deliver hundreds of pieces of available mail that used to get delivered. The only reason given is some vague nonsense about “operational efficiency” and “cost savings.”

We’re not just talking about your Subway Coupons and AT&T ads. We’re talking everything. Election mailers, ballots, paychecks, social security checks, unemployment benefits, tax documents, business correspondence, your grandma’s birthday card, Amazon parcels, that DIY crap you won’t stop buying on Etsy, fucking medication. All of it just left behind. It didn’t make an arbitrary cutoff time decided by some simpleton who bought the job a couple weeks ago, and he knows best, so fuck your nitroglycerin, gramps. Hope today’s not the day the ol’ ticker gives out.

You know that old motto-that-isn’t-actually-our-motto? The whole “Neither rain, nor snow…” spiel about getting the mail to you? We actually took that pretty damn seriously. Like I said, I’ve worked the better part of a decade for this agency, and I can count on zero hands how many times I’ve personally withheld delivery of mail without a goddamn good reason. I’ve jumped fences, climbed walls, MacGyver’d my way past broken locks, outrun dogs, split my pants in a downpour and gone for another five hours anyway, all because maybe, very possibly, I was holding something important to someone that they’d been waiting on.

Postal Service plans to remove 671 high-volume mail processing machines.

U.S. Postal Service warns Pennsylvania that mail-in ballots may be delivered too late.