The Issa Man Cometh…Again

By Richard Thayer

It’s impossible for one person, no matter how energetic they might be, to keep up with all of the craziness that pours out of the federal and state capitols on a daily basis. I have tried to stay on top of it, but, alas, I’m out-numbered and out-gunned.

I sit down at my computer and go through the day’s news stories trying to select the one that seems to be the most urgent. Just one for the day. I see this one where New Jersey has just passed a law taking away the public employees’ collective bargaining rights. Then I see where Rep. Eric Cantor has bailed out of the debt reduction talks because he doesn’t want to tax the billionaires. Over there is the story about Wal-Mart winning its sex discrimination case, allowing them to continue to practice sex discrimination.

It’s one thing right after another: Bam! Bam! Bam! They fall like body blows to my head and mid-section. I’m becoming punch drunk. I grow giddy. I can’t keep up with it!!! I’m on overload.

Out of all the political mayhem I read about today, here’s the story that tops them all.

This past Thursday (June 23), Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif) introduced a bill to restructure the Postal Service. He evidently didn’t like the three that are already pending. He believes the Postal Service needs to be regulated more. This admonition from the party that believes there should be less government interference and less regulation.

Oh, but that’s for private businesses, not government ones. When Rep. Issa says the USPS needs more regulation, he means it should be privatized; it should become a private company. Once it becomes a private company (and that’s the goal), then it won’t need any regulation. Kind of like the big oil companies and the folks on Wall Street. They can look after themselves. They’ll be honest.

Rep. Issa claims that the Postal Service needs to be regulated in order to “prevent another taxpayer bailout.”

I think he knows better. He knows that the Postal Service isn’t supported by taxpayer money. He knows it. But he is saying that for the benefit of his base, the people who actually believe taxpayers are footing the bill for mail delivery. These are the people who rely on Fox News for all their “fair and balanced” info.

Among other things, the bill would eliminate Saturday delivery. Not a good idea. But, unfortunately, the Postal Service agrees with him on that one. Yep, five-day delivery will be the answer to all our problems. It’s like saying that committing suicide will stop that pain in your big toe.

Remember when the GOP was accusing the Obama administration of creating death panels for the elderly? Well, Rep. Issa wants to create a death panel of his own. This panel would be created to oversee the death of the Postal Service. Now there’s a death panel.

In announcing the unveiling of his bill, Rep. Issa said, “Congress can’t keep kicking the can down the road on out-of-control labor costs and excess infrastructure of USPS.”

You read right: Out of control labor costs.

If you’re a postal employee, Rep. Issa thinks you’re making way-y-y too much money. He believes you should be making what your friendly Wal-Mart associate or greeter down the street is making.

You might recall that it was Rep. Issa’s committee that took the Postal Service and the APWU to task several weeks back because of their contract agreement. Rep. Issa and his fellow Republicans on the committee said that the USPS had been way too generous.

Here’s a heads-up for Rep. Issa and his GOP cronies: If you got bent out of shape over the USPS/APWU agreement, you’re really going to get twisted when it comes time for the NALC/USPS to negotiate. The APWU agreement was a walk in the park compared to what’s coming down the pike.

If you care about your future, you’ll contact your congressional representative ASAP and tell them the best thing they can do with the Issa bill is to roll it up and stick it in the Men’s room.


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