The author of this post is the current (and last) Postmaster of Webster, NC, and speaks of his area of expertise, the United States Postal Service.
It always confuses the big-government liberals, stuck in the false-dichotomy mindset that says if they support Big Government and all Big Government programs, then conservatives opposed to Big Government must oppose all Big Government programs. What they cannot seem to wrap their minds around is the concept that we DO support the U.S. government’s running those programs which a the U.S. Constitution says it is supposed to run. Among these are the Army, the Navy, and the Postal Service.
So why this fascination (among conservatives mostly, I suppose — I’m sure you will correct me if I am wrong) with the idea that the Postal Service is supposed to be self-supporting? We do not expect the Army to be self-supporting. It probably could be. We could probably sell enough weapons, and rent out enough troops, to make it so. We do not expect the Department of the Interior to be self-supporting. We could probably place high enough rents on mining and grazing operations, and high enough fees for visitors, to make it so.
The point is that profits are not what the government is about. Efficiency is desirable, but the primary mission of those agencies is to provide the services, not to turn a profit.
This is why we conservatives oppose Big Government — because Big Government is inefficient. That is why the Constitution cedes to the U.S. government only those things that cannot be done by the States and the People. At the time of our founding, the operations of the Postal Service could not be done by any other agency than the government of the United States. If, in the age of email, UPS, and Federal Express, we think that that situation no longer pertains, then we should amend the Constitution to remove that Power from the U.S. government. But killing a government program by forcing it to turn a profit, knowing that government programs are by nature inefficient, is, at best, disingenuous.