National Association of Letter Carriers Hires Restructuring Expert Ron Bloom

By Richard Thayer

(Photo: President Fred Rolando leading in cheer for Ron Bloom.)

Demonstrating once again its willingness to think outside the box in seeking innovative ways to save the Postal Service from itself and profit-hungry politicians, NALC President Fred Rolando announced Sunday that the union has hired President Obama’s former top manufacturing policy adviser, Ron Bloom, to develop new business ideas for the Postal Service (since the agency obviously can’t do that for itself).

The surprise announcement was made during the union’s rap session in Las Vegas, Nevada before thousands of letter carriers from around the nation. Bloom was in attendance for the announcement.

The announcement by Rolando came in the midst of the union’s efforts to negotiate a new multi-year contract for its 280,000 members. The current contract will expire on November 20.

Bloom joined the Obama administration in 2009 as a member of the auto industry task force that aided GM and Chrysler in avoiding bankruptcy and put them back on the road (no pun intended) to solvency. He then went on to successfully coordinate the administration’s manufacturing policy at the departments of Commerce, Energy, Labor and Treasury.

In addition to Bloom, the National Association of Letter Carriers has also hired the financial advisory company, Lazard, “to explore and expand the range of solutions available to the Postal Service, as well as their long-term business issues and strategies for the future.”

In September, Postmaster General Pat Donahoe announced the Postal Service’s strategies for dismantling the Postal Service. Among those strategies is its plan to eliminate employees’ bargaining rights, lay off thousands of its loyal, hard-working employees and doing away with Saturday deliveries.

Said Rolando Sunday, “The NALC totally rejects the only strategy put forth by postal management. Their strategy is to go down to five-day delivery, to close post offices, to close postal facilities, to cut pensions, to reduce health insurance, and we don’t believe that’s a strategy to save the Postal Service.”

In addition to his helping the auto industry, Bloom was a strategic adviser for the United Steel Workers as well.

In a recent book by journalist Ron Suskind, he writes that Bloom grew angry with some of Obama’s top advisers for their unwillingness to understand the plight of auto workers.

The newly unveiled plan by the NALC is diametrically opposed (as it normally is) to the Postal Service’s plans to shrink-wrap its service and employee’s jobs.

“We have retained Lazard and Ron Bloom to make sure we explore and expand the various range of solutions to address the Postal Service’s fiscal crisis as well as long-range business strategies not being pursued right now,” said Rolando. “They have experience in analyzing large, financially complex institutions and crafting creative solutions (which, of course, postal management doesn’t do).

After the announcement Rolando led in a letter carrier cheer for Bloom and Lazard.

What, no letter carrier jeer for PMG Donahoe and the Postal Service think tank in Washington?

For further reading:

Postal Union Turns to Wall Street for Advice on Its Future.

Obama’s ex-auto, manufacturing adviser sets sights on the Postal Service.


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