Saturday, July 18, 2009

Government monopolies

Today, I was again reminded of how badly the US Post Office sucks. I can go to nearly any grocery store and purchase a perishable kiwifruit that was shipped halfway around the world for under 40 cents, but it costs me $5.54 to mail something certified mail with a return receipt less than 10 miles away.

Wait until the government is running health care. That will be a trip.


Young at Heart said...

That is not really a fair comparison. It's like comparing apples and oranges (or kiwis and packages). Your kiwi comes in a huge truck (or plane) of other kiwis, all going to the same location. It is not basically hand carried from one location to another as an individual piece. If you feel the post office is ripping you off, why don't you use the private sector services, like UPS? I can guarantee you they won't come close to that 40 cent kiwi either.

Freemarket said...

YAH- what I sent was certified a letter. The government has a monopoly on that service- there are no private carriers who are legally able to compete in that particular market, which is completely stupid. Fortunately, thanks to e-mail and the ability to electronically transfer money (online bill pay, paypal, etc.) the need for regular mail will become a thing of the past.

Bob O said...

Also, it's not an apples and oranges comparison. It's exactly the same. Once your letter goes into the system, it's just one of many millions of objects know as "letters" and it does come to your location on a big truck.

Really, the only difference is there is one extra step: object "letter" goes one more leg of the trip to your house, while you have to drive to location Safeway to pick up the Kiwi.

There are a few small differences (Kiwi need climate control, letters don't, etc), and I'd bet that more Kiwi fruit come here than letters go to NZ. Think about it.

But, essentially it's the same task.

Anonymous said...

Y@H: Whether the comparison is fair doesn't actually matter. It's just a set up for the same worn-out conclusion. This blog was once a thoughtful place of ideas and insight. It is now a bastion of lazy-thinking and tired ideologies.

Freemarket said...

As opposed to the brilliance and fresh thinking contributed from you, Anon 11:07?