Oh, for the Pony Express!

I don’t know about you, but I’m being swamped with junk mail.

By that I mean mail delivered to me by the U.S. Postal Service that I did not request.

If you think I’m over-reacting, consider that just yesterday, I had 55 pieces of mail jammed (literally) into the mailbox at my home. Of all that mail, just three were items I had either requested or were bills.

This happens just about every day of the week. One day, I received 78 pieces of mail! On top of that, I have a Post Office box, and when I go to pick up mail there every couple of days, I get one of the P.O.’s plastic bins, loaded with mail! Again, most, if not all of it, (save for a couple of magazines) is advertising junk.

I get so much junk mail that my situation is cause for humor among the clerks. We all laugh, but the truth is, it isn’t funny, and I’m left with the job of going through all of it, removing my name and address and getting rid of it all.

The only upside is that some of the outfits sending the mail include real money in the envelope – asking me to return it along with a additional donation to their cause.

I don’t fall for that. I keep the money … pennies nickels, dimes and quarters. Kennedy half dollars, dollar bills, 2-dollar bills, and yes, even checks that are negotiable! I cash the checks at my bank and put the “free money” in a special bank at home. One week, I got $17 in free money!

I look at it as my “wage” for having to go through all that junk. I know that’s not what those organizations had in mind, but so be it.

And, how many trees had to die for all this? I have no idea – and since I can’t stop it, it just continues. I’ve tried registering to have the junk mail stopped, but it didn’t work, and I have no intention of trying again.

The USPS manages to get all that junk to me on a regular basis, yet when I mail important, first-class mail – like my monthly bill payments – it just doesn’t seem to be able to get them to the delivery address on time.

The worst for me was a couple of years ago when I started to get notices from my utilities that my payments hadn’t arrived. This was even though I wrote and mailed the checks on time. When I tried to put a trace on the mailings, I wasn’t able to, and the Post Office was no help in finding out what was going on. Those payments just disappeared! They were never delivered, and the checks never showed up.

Imagine that!

Ever since then, every single piece of mail I put into the system, is sent with a proof of mailing certificate. That means it costs me $2.10 for each piece of first-class mail – $1.55 plus .55 – but at least I have a way to trace it if it gets lost. When I think of how much that has cost me over the years, my brain gets dizzy – but at least my mail gets there on time!

And speaking of “on time mail,” you’re probably not aware that U.S. Postmaster General Louis DeJoy has a plan to slow the delivery of first-class mail – it’s part of a 10-year plan.

That’s right. SLOW down the delivery!

DeJoy announced the plan in March and calls it “Delivering for America.” He says the goal is to stabilize the Post Office financially, streamline operations, end air transport for long-distance mail and invest in new delivery vehicles.

While there are many issues to disagree with, the most controversial is that the plan would lengthen delivery times for most first-class mail along with the end of Air Mail.

Ronald Stroman, one of three new governors appointed to the U.S. Postal Service Board of Governors by President Biden, was critical of the plan. He said it’s “strategically ill-conceived, creates dangerous risks that are not justified by the relatively low financial return, and doesn’t meet our responsibility as an essential part of America’s critical infrastructure.”

He added that the changes “disproportionally impact our seniors, middle- and low-income Americans, and small businesses, who are our most loyal customers and most dependent on us.”

DeJoy admits the opposition, saying critics want the Postal Service “to stop what we are doing, study more, increase service, keep prices low, and cut employee benefits.”

He inferred these are not solutions and that “the best days of this thinking and what it has to offer has come and gone.”

So much for that!

As things stand now, first-class delivery times are taking longer, and the Postal Service overall is losing more money every year.

In addition to all this change in delivery times, you need to know that the Board of Governors approved the upcoming rate increases!

The rates change on Sunday, Aug. 29. First-class postage goes from 55 cents to 58 cents. Each additional ounce will be 20 cents.

A postcard goes from 36 cents to 40 cents.

Certified Mail goes from $3.60 to $3.75.

There are many other increases as well for other types of mailings.

The only thing we can do is stock up on “Forever Stamps” now, at the current price before the increase. They will always be good, and it’s the only way you can save a bit of money!

As for delivery times – who knows? That’s a crap shoot!

Follow Barbara Simpson on Facebook.

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This article was originally published by the WND News Center.

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