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 US Postal Service loses $2.2bn in last 3 months
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 Return to top of page · Post #: 1 · Written at 2:39:32 PM on 10 August 2020.
NewVista's avatar
 Location: MilwWI, US
 Member since 10 May 2013
 Member #: 1340
 Postcount: 738

Of course national postal services are considered a bit of a sacred cow, that's why Uncle Sam has continued to cover its annual deficits which are usually a billion or two per year, but now there's a blow out in the deficit and tension with the often feisty Trump administration as 2020 federal spending goes off the charts. This is prompting some rude increases in some postal rates. I suppose this is killing off a lot of mail order business to Australia?


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 2 · Written at 3:19:33 PM on 10 August 2020.
Brad's avatar
 Administrator
 Location: Greenwich, NSW
 Member since 15 November 2005
 Member #: 1
 Postcount: 6333

Australia Post was heading towards the same scenario and now they only deliver letters twice per week. I am not sure how often parcels are delivered.


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A valve a day keeps the transistor away...

 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 3 · Written at 7:47:21 PM on 10 August 2020.
NewVista's avatar
 Location: MilwWI, US
 Member since 10 May 2013
 Member #: 1340
 Postcount: 738

Letters only twice a week! I'm floored! But that's what it should be; every day is ridiculous.

I was going to send a small coffee-table book to Australia but balked at the postage - $67 - wonder if DHL or Fed-Ex would be cheaper? I wish they'd bring back slow cheap Surface Mail.


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 4 · Written at 8:50:44 PM on 10 August 2020.
Brad's avatar
 Administrator
 Location: Greenwich, NSW
 Member since 15 November 2005
 Member #: 1
 Postcount: 6333

I've paid around the $80 mark for radios to be sent from WA to NSW. I had to do that with two or three radios. That is registered mail with insurance and signature to my GPO box.

I wonder what the costs would be like if there was no automated mail sorting centres and thousands of people still had to be on the payroll to manually sort all manner of mail. It makes me wonder if all the technology that exists now is really making things cheaper or whether it is just an excuse to have fewer people around.

Then again, postal services were government-owned utilities back then and were not required to turn a profit. These days, Australia Post is a corporation rather than a commission.


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A valve a day keeps the transistor away...

 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 5 · Written at 12:11:48 AM on 11 August 2020.
Robbbert's avatar
 Location: Sydney, NSW
 Member since 18 September 2015
 Member #: 1801
 Postcount: 1376

When I was a child the mail was delivered once a day, Monday to Friday. Over the years it increased to twice a day, and also on Saturday. Now with the decline of real mail in favour of emails, they have been able to cut back their service.

If there's hardly any letters to deliver, then it makes sense to only turn up once or twice a week. The corresponding increase in parcels mean former postmen can be redeployed as drivers.


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 6 · Written at 2:14:38 AM on 11 August 2020.
NewVista's avatar
 Location: MilwWI, US
 Member since 10 May 2013
 Member #: 1340
 Postcount: 738

The postal unions are powerful and the salaries high for a largely unskilled workforce, yet despite heavy government subsidies, outsiders have no power to reform. This may change with Trump, who has a reputation as a disrupter of cultural inertia.

Privately run UPS has an inverse sliding scale punishing those who want to send small lightweight packages. It's clear they don't want to get entangled in high volume sorting and delivery.

If Fed-Ex and UPS were to merge, they could call it Fed-Up Smile that's what Jeff Bezos is, fed up, so he started his own delivery service. I see a lot of his new Amazon Prime trucks now, he is aiming to go to an all electric fleet soon, hope he starts an international service. Bezos, the world's richest man, being a former computer scientist, smart man!


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 7 · Written at 5:11:04 AM on 11 August 2020.
Brad's avatar
 Administrator
 Location: Greenwich, NSW
 Member since 15 November 2005
 Member #: 1
 Postcount: 6333

Be careful what you wish for with one man doing everything. Amazon's ultimate business model is a bit like Bunnings here - Bunnings started out in Perth with one hardware store back in the 1800s. They eventually became a national favourite but still with some stiff competition in the form of Howard Smith's BBC Hardware. Both went into the big box shop concept and then the ACCC permitted Bunnings to buy out BBC. The end result is a company that is more than twenty times the size of its nearest competitor and doesn't always provide good service or have the things one wants in stock. Bunnings is in a similar position to our big supermarkets - they can send a supplier broke overnight. WHilst the parant company of Bunnings isn't worth $300bn, such market power is dangerous.


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A valve a day keeps the transistor away...

 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 8 · Written at 8:45:24 AM on 11 August 2020.
Vintage Pete's avatar
 Location: Albury, NSW
 Member since 1 May 2016
 Member #: 1919
 Postcount: 1993

As far as I'm aware the postie comes every day here, Perhaps it's different in the country.
He is a great postie , Puts all  my packages in the carport ,Often stops for a chat to talk about the Mountains or Motorcycles .. Real nice fella ..  Pete


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 9 · Written at 1:43:39 PM on 11 August 2020.
GTC's avatar
 GTC
 Location: Sydney, NSW
 Member since 28 January 2011
 Member #: 823
 Postcount: 5997

When the Six Million Dollar Man ran AusPost, he wanted to cut down standard mail deliveries to 3 a week (Mon,Wed,Fri) due to the huge reduction in mail deliveries. Naturally, the union wouldn't have a bar of that, so he raised the price of postage stamps instead.

Over the last 5 or so years, my local postman, as he works this street, has gone from pushing around a cart full of letters, to carrying them in one hand.

Three deliveries a week for standard (non express) mail makes perfect sense.


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 10 · Written at 3:20:23 PM on 11 August 2020.
NewVista's avatar
 Location: MilwWI, US
 Member since 10 May 2013
 Member #: 1340
 Postcount: 738

I can't understand why the short-lived Woolworth/Lowes hardware chain failed in Aust. There was certainly room for another big box chain.


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 11 · Written at 3:35:36 PM on 11 August 2020.
Vintage Pete's avatar
 Location: Albury, NSW
 Member since 1 May 2016
 Member #: 1919
 Postcount: 1993

What there is a great demand for is quality items... Don't think Bunnings sells anything other then Chinese products really.
It's all just shit.
I did spot some Allen keys there made in the USA and I did buy a hand Saw made in Denmark...but those items are very much a minority. Most Australians are looking for quality items these days and not Chinese junk.
One other trick they do with tools is say, it's made in UK or where ever, but if you go to the website you find that yes, it's put together there but the parts come from China.
All those mowers and whipper Snippes at Bunnings I see them on the throw outs.
Bunnings is a bit like karmart for hardware!
All this junk is a big problem for the world in terms of economic buying and waste .

Pete
Oh an Australian tool manufacturers here in Albury has just gone broke..been there for years and years .. covid pushed it over the edge apparently.


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 12 · Written at 3:39:06 PM on 11 August 2020.
Brad's avatar
 Administrator
 Location: Greenwich, NSW
 Member since 15 November 2005
 Member #: 1
 Postcount: 6333

I bought a DeWalt 18V router yesterday from the new Bunnings in Gladesville and was pleasantly surprised to see that it wasn't made in China. I am a very happy man as a result.

All global companies need to think global and set up factories elsewhere and stop being totally dependent on a country that doesn't give a hoot about the rest of the world.


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A valve a day keeps the transistor away...

 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 13 · Written at 3:49:27 PM on 11 August 2020.
Vintage Pete's avatar
 Location: Albury, NSW
 Member since 1 May 2016
 Member #: 1919
 Postcount: 1993

DeWalt, If you go to their website you will read the parts are made in China.
I was reading it yesterday.
DeWalt is made in many countries though.
Handy tool a Router! Twin post ? Plunger? Free hand trim?

Pete


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 14 · Written at 4:15:42 PM on 11 August 2020.
Brad's avatar
 Administrator
 Location: Greenwich, NSW
 Member since 15 November 2005
 Member #: 1
 Postcount: 6333

I am not sure why they'd make bits and pieces in China then post it all over to Mexico for assembly though so be it - it still denies the CCP a factory for final assembly and that's better than 100% Chinese.

The model I bought was this one. It works but I haven't given it a test run yet. I'll do that before the end of the week.

Every couple of months I expand my tool collection. Next cab off the rank is either a 54V demo saw or an 18V rattle gun.


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A valve a day keeps the transistor away...

 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 15 · Written at 4:22:46 PM on 11 August 2020.
Vintage Pete's avatar
 Location: Albury, NSW
 Member since 1 May 2016
 Member #: 1919
 Postcount: 1993

It's a free hand, very handy tool, you can get the attachment to make it to a 2 post plunger.
It's a very versatile tool and check out the kit attachments ... I router Trimer is what you have and once you get use to them you can make many things. I have a couple of Routers I use.
But those hand trimers are now very versatile since they now supply the attachments for themyou will have fun with that Brad.

Pete


 
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