Clunkered by mail

Columnist : Albert Paschall

I tried to turn my car into a ‘clunker’ but it didn’t work.  It’s only two years old, gets 30 miles to the gallon and runs well.  It can’t meet the government criteria for a ‘clunker.’  The program that will get you up to $4500 in rebates from the government if you trade in your big car or SUV for a smaller one.

But even if I could what would I trade it in for? I like to buy American but of the top 5 selling vehicles in the United States only one is an American brand.

I don’t think that a Ford F-150 pick up truck is for me and do I really want a Honda or Toyota?  Or is the cash for clunkers program a new way of financing our national debt?  After all the country that is the number one seller of new cars in the United States – Japan – holds $677 billion of our nation’s mortgage.

If I could get the $4500 would I want to get it in the mail?

Don’t think I would.  The US Postal Service, the wholly owned subsidiary of the Direct Mail Marketing Association, is in deep trouble.  I might never get my government gift.  Independent business owners, who have to send out bills, now have to spend nearly half a buck on each one, while big box stores can use the world’s largest, government sponsored advertising service for pennies on a dollar, clogging mail boxes with junk nearly every day.

Despite these incongruities the postal service plans to lose $700 million this year, will close my local post office, probably suspend Saturday delivery and then raise the rates again.

The president of the United States is insistent that we have a national health care insurance company.  Someday if the president gets his wish will health care be managed like the clunker the postal system is?