A Sin of Omission
03/30/2015 - A recent “study” by a Harvard-educated economist asserting the Postal Service has an “unfair competitive advantage” over private-sector delivery companies has garnered a lot of attention in recent days. The “study” by Robert J. Shapiro was the subject of articles in the Washington Post and Fortune, and was the centerpiece of a panel discussion at the well-known Brookings Institution on March 25. The headline in Fortune was eye-catching, to say the least: ‘American Taxpayers Give an $18 Billion Gift to the Post Office Every Year,’ the Wall Street mouthpiece asserted.
But so far, discussion of Shapiro’s claims has omitted a crucial detail: The study was financed by United Parcel Service, the Postal Service’s chief private-sector competitor and a long-time proponent of postal privatization.