Top Ten Postal News Stories of 2013

We had lots of visitors to the postalnews blog during 2013, as stakeholders argued over the shape of postal reform, and Congress did what it does best: hold hearings, think up names for post offices, and, above all, take vacations.

Here are the top ten most read stories from last year:

#1 USPS to destroy “Just Move” stamps over safety concerns

JustMove-Forever-pane15-v3Yes, this one, from October, pretty much went viral! The bizarre saga of the stamps intended to promote exercise, that were pulled because some found that they depicted unsafe activities. Most people seemed to find it all pretty silly, but the wing-nut brigade went ballistic! For them it was a perfect storm of their favorite faux outrage, a full blown nanny state/political correctness/Michelle Obama hysteria. Never mind that there was never any evidence that the First Lady had even been aware of the stamps, much less “forced” the USPS to destroy them as some of the right wingers claimed. If it had happened a month or two later, I’m sure someone would have found a way to relate it to Fox News’s annual “War on Christmas™” festivities!

#2 Early outs to be offered to managers, supervisors and postmasters

Not surprisingly, the second most read post, from September 5, had to do with early outs…

#3 PMG expected to make a major announcement on USPS restructuring Wednesday

Anticipation! It turned out the big announcement was the plan to eliminate Saturday mail delivery, except for packages. If you’ve forgotten how that turned out, scroll down to #6…

#4 OPM Announces 2014 Federal Employees Health Benefits Program Premium Rates

The annual ritual.

#5 Video: Letter carrier shot and killed while delivering mail at 7:20 PM in DC suburb

Tragedy struck a young letter carrier out delivering mail after dark.

#6 24 Senators tell PMG he can’t end Saturday delivery (and ask what suddenly gave him the idea that he could!)

The PMG learns there is a big difference between what he can technically do under the law, and what he can actually get away with…

#7 USPS Statement on NALC labor contract arbitration decision

Long story short: “We are disappointed that the Award continued limited no layoff protection and restrictions to contracting out.”

#8 USPS to end Saturday delivery (except for packages)

Maybe someday- but not just yet!

#9 Video: Trenton letter carrier entertains a “lady” in his LLV

When you’re a letter carrier out on the street, you just never know who might be watching you. And making a video recording. And preparing to upload it to YouTube…

#10 NALC: Q&A on City Carrier Assistants (CCAs)

The arbitration award raised as many questions as it answered.

#11 Cash strapped USPS is paying a celebrity “futurist” $1.5 million

OK, so it’s really a top eleven list- how could we leave out the news that the USPS was giving a self-proclaimed “futurist” half a million bucks to “divine” the future of stamps? “Faith Popcorn”, as she calls herself, was to have submitted her prophecies by November, but they have yet to be revealed. Even I could have predicted that!