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(34,151 posts)
Tue Dec 27, 2011, 12:18 AM Dec 2011

Post office arsons - is there a pattern developing?

This story made the national news:
Arson suspected in post office fire
By the CNN Wire Staff
updated 10:32 PM EST, Sun December 25, 2011
(CNN) -- Investigators suspect arson in a fire that heavily damaged a small post office in rural western Nevada Sunday morning, a U.S. Postal Service spokesman said.
Investigators found anti-government graffiti on the walls and bullet holes in the building, Capt. Mark Reagan of the Sierra Fire Protection District said.

But another PO arson barely made the local news:
Christmas Day Arson at the Tallahassee Centerville Post Office?
Tallahassee, Florida - December 26, 2011 -
A fire at a Tallahassee post office may not have been an accident.
Fire officials were called to this post office around 1:30 on Christmas Day and what they found is suspicious.
Fire officials say the post office was closed for the holiday, but a pile of mail was left burning in the middle of the floor.

There are major differences - the Nevada arson fire started outside the building and there was other damage, grafitti and bullet holes, that were not found at the Tallahassee PO.

I can't remember a single other arson incident at a post office and here are two on the same day. If there was a third incident I would be more concerned.

What is the status on laying off postal workers? I know it was delayed until after the first of the year but are there workers who will not have a job next week that are taking their frustrations out on the facilities?

10 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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Post office arsons - is there a pattern developing? (Original Post) csziggy Dec 2011 OP
The term "going postal" has a rich history Gman Dec 2011 #1
Anti-Government nuts... ellisonz Dec 2011 #2
Why burn them now when they'll be closed in a few years? Owlet Dec 2011 #3
Hmmm. As a former USPSer, not sure I agree with you here. Ship of Fools Dec 2011 #4
You may not do much mailing and shipping. TygrBright Dec 2011 #5
The entirety of that post is untrue. Occulus Dec 2011 #6
I'm evaluating a service as a user Owlet Dec 2011 #8
I live in a rural area as well Tsiyu Dec 2011 #10
If the USPS is so unnecessary, why are BOTH FedEX and UPS using them csziggy Dec 2011 #7
I vote by mail lunatica Dec 2011 #9


(27,711 posts)
2. Anti-Government nuts...
Tue Dec 27, 2011, 05:18 AM
Dec 2011

...and guess what...they are more armed than ever. Thanks lax gun regulations! You're the best!


(1,248 posts)
3. Why burn them now when they'll be closed in a few years?
Tue Dec 27, 2011, 07:01 AM
Dec 2011

The USPS is a dinosaur and no longer provides a necessary service. Sorry if that sounds drastic, but it's the truth. The mail delivery here consists of a few bills and the rest is junk mail. Half the time we get mail addressed to a neighbor or, on many occasions, folks in another town altogether. . There is nothing the Postal Service provides that can't be handled more efficiently either electronically (email, bill-paying) or by another existing service. For example, package delivery takes 2-3 times longer than FedEx or UPS. The USPS has morphed into a jobs program, nothing more.


(20,814 posts)
5. You may not do much mailing and shipping.
Tue Dec 27, 2011, 12:05 PM
Dec 2011

I do, and as far as I am concerned, the USPS is still the best deal around. Priority and Express compare favorably on most measures with FedEx, UPS, DHL, etc. First class is above and beyond ANYTHING the for-profit carriers can deliver. Less than a buck to send an ounce from Los Angeles to New York in 3-4 days?

Try and get UPS to match that.

Service can be uneven at times. But I have always had better--even superlatively good--service from experienced, knowledgeable counter staff who go out of their way to find me cheaper ways to ship effectively, deal with customs forms, etc. Compared to the here-today-gone-tomorrow college students at Fedex/Kinkos, they are customer care EXPERTS.

My carrier has gone out of her way more than once to help me receive a delivery in good condition and in a timely manner.

USPS has been plagued by bad management and a budget that has been devastated by bizarre Congressional demands to fully-fund their pensions for decades beyond what any federal agency or private business is required to.

In spite of that, they are modernizing as fast as they can, and offering new services to mailers and shippers all the time.

If the management would just work with the Unions to re-align job assignments based on the new service profile, rather than demanding endless RIFs and then hiring cheap-ass contractors and temps, you'd see much better service. And if Congress would rescind that stupid pension-funding demand, it would be a long, LONG time before you'd see another rate increase, too.

Anyway, I LIKE getting junk mail, especially from corporations who are part of the problem. There's nothing more fun that filling those pre-paid reply envelopes with all the heavy crap I can stuff into them and sending them cheerfully on their expensive way back to their corporate masters.



(20,599 posts)
6. The entirety of that post is untrue.
Tue Dec 27, 2011, 12:15 PM
Dec 2011

I am a USPS employee. You would not believe the amount of mail our (smallest in the country, slated to close) processing and distribution center processes each night.

Here's a hint. We're the smallest such facility in the country, or one of the smallest, and we process approximately one million pieces of mail daily.

Your words are, quite frankly, the words of one who knows nothing at all about which he speaks.


(1,248 posts)
8. I'm evaluating a service as a user
Wed Dec 28, 2011, 10:05 AM
Dec 2011

I'm sure you and the others in you facility work hard, but the point I was trying to make is that the value of a service or a product is really determined by the person who uses that service or buys that product, not the one who provides the service or makes the item. If you bought a computer from, say, Dell, and it crapped out after three months how would you feel about the product? Would you really take into account the hours that some workers spent to put that machine together, or would you just decide that Dell made crappy computers and go out and buy a Mac?

I live in a semi-rural town with no post office building. Our mail is delivered by a post office 15 miles away. There are at least 6 post office buildings in small towns within that 15-mile radius, each of which has a staff, and which has to be heated, cooled and maintained. We have regional school districts to cut down on cost. Does the postal service make any effort to regionalize?

Mail delivery here is atrocious: misdelivered items, lost bills, books that take up to 18 days to be delivered from Atlanta, - and I'm on the East Coast.

I'm sorry if my OP struck a nerve, but I very much doubt that I'm the only person in the country who thinks that the postal service has come a long way down in recent years.


(18,186 posts)
10. I live in a rural area as well
Wed Dec 28, 2011, 10:46 AM
Dec 2011

and I am happy to have the USPS as my mail delivery.

I get mail from Atlanta to my place often in one day. My mom sent a card on the 23rd of December and I had it on the 24th, even though my teeny post office is well off the beaten path down the mountain.

And if you need to get baby chicks mailed, who else will care for them cheerfully until you pick them up?

Who else will send my letter for less than $.50?

They aren't perfect, but if we lose the USPS, poor and working class people will suffer.


(34,151 posts)
7. If the USPS is so unnecessary, why are BOTH FedEX and UPS using them
Tue Dec 27, 2011, 04:30 PM
Dec 2011

As part of their package delivery strategies?

In many rural locations, neither of the commercial delivery services want to provide service, and the USPS does it so efficiently and so cheaply that it is more profitable for them to pay USPS to do the final deliveries. If the USPS folds, expect delivery of packages and information to cost many times what it does now.

Here, we get bills, magazines, packages, books, advertising, and mailings from the US government.

The USPS would be profitable if they had not been burdened with pre-funding retirement, far more than any other company or government entity has ever been required to do. That they are still close to being viable even with that burden, is a tribute to how efficient the USPS is.


(53,410 posts)
9. I vote by mail
Wed Dec 28, 2011, 10:32 AM
Dec 2011

How am I going to get my ballot? I also depend on the Post Office to deliver my paid bills on time so they aren't late in which case most companies add late fees. I also get local supermarkets' sales which I actually look at. I get my car's registration tags and my car insurance paperwork in the mail and I need both of those.

When my mother was alive she used to get her medications by US mail. And there are all those retirees and dependents who get their Social Security checks and other checks from the government.

I have nothing against FedEx or UPS. They do a great job of delivering and picking up from UC Berkeley. There are dozens of dedicated UPS and FedEx and DHL employees whose entire jobs have covered deliveries for the University for years. They do a great job and they work their asses off. They also deliver purchases I've made online to my home. They're great at tracking the packages. They're highly efficient and they're reliable. But I don't see them doing what I've mentioned in my first paragraph. And I do have to pay a fee of dollars, not cents, for every delivery I get from something I purchased online.

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