AEI Pushes for Postal Reform
AEI Newsletter

Although the government continues to subsidize and protect the outdated U.S. Postal Service, Americans' demand for mail delivery is declining and thus the Postal Service has an eroding revenue base. To create a modern, effective postal industry that will not drain government resources, government ownership and monopoly power must end. To address this issue, AEI has established the Postal Reform Initiative, which is running concurrently with President George W. Bush's Commission on the United States Postal Service.

The project is led by AEI adjunct scholar Rick Geddes, an assistant professor in the Department of Policy Analysis and Management at Cornell University and author of Saving the Mail (AEI Press, 2003). Geddes is leading a series of conferences and is the author of AEI's Postal Reform Papers. This project will assess the mission and operations of the Postal Service, propose a vision of a modern postal industry, and suggest how the United States could implement this vision. It will focus on the potential of modern communications technology and a more open and competitive market environment to solve the problems that have bedeviled the U.S. postal industry. It will also review the experiences of other countries that have enacted postal reform in recent years.

In the first Postal Reform Paper, published in March, Geddes wrote, "We are . . . at a decisive moment in U.S. postal history. The model upon which the Postal Service was created, that of an independent, government-owned agency enjoying a legally enforced monopoly, is inappropriate for the United States today. Inexorable, secular technological change cannot be addressed through minor bureaucratic renovations. The reforms recommended by the president's commission must represent a bold departure from the outdated 1970 model."

In Saving the Mail, Geddes showed the feasibility of meaningful postal reform. "The postal services of Germany and Holland are now privately owned. Full market competition has been introduced in Finland, Sweden, and New Zealand. Through limitations on the reserved area of service, increased competition has been introduced in a variety of countries. The citizens of those countries are beginning to enjoy the benefits of vigorous postal reform, and Americans may soon do the same."

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Wednesday, April 23, 2014 | 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Graduation day: How dads’ involvement impacts higher education success

Join a diverse group of panelists — including sociologists, education experts, and students — for a discussion of how public policy and culture can help families lay a firmer foundation for their children’s educational success, and of how the effects of paternal involvement vary by socioeconomic background.

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Thursday, April 24, 2014 | 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Getting it right: A better strategy to defeat al Qaeda

This event will coincide with the release of a new report by AEI’s Mary Habeck, which analyzes why current national security policy is failing to stop the advancement of al Qaeda and its affiliates and what the US can do to develop a successful strategy to defeat this enemy.

Friday, April 25, 2014 | 9:15 a.m. – 1:15 p.m.
Obamacare’s rocky start and uncertain future

During this event, experts with many different views on the ACA will offer their predictions for the future.   

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