Your editorial against private industry taking over postal delivery sounds like it was written without evaluating any facts.
First of all, one cannot compare the Pony Express (which carried mail from St. Joseph, Mo. to Sacramento in 1860-61) with modern business methods, such as used by United Parcel Service. UPS would be a likely candidate to take on the job.
Where do you get the idea that the Postal Service’s bad reputation is “ill-deserved”? It earned that reputation by bad service, surly clerks, postal carriers who can’t get the mail in the right box and total disregard that they are civil servants.
UPS can’t be accused of “skimming off the most lucrative postal routes and business.” It succeeded in taking away more than half of the Postal Service’s package delivery through some old-fashioned attitudes like efficiency, hard-working employees (who know how to move fast, rather than at a snail’s pace), good customer service and courtesy (something lacking at most post offices).
I have sent packages to the tiny town of Mannford, Okla., via UPS. They arrive there faster than when I have used the Postal Service, and the price is very reasonable. UPS is making good profits. If given the chance, I feel that it could also deliver first-class mail better, even to small towns. It and other firms could be required to deliver everywhere, if they wanted the contract.
The idea is not just “a romantic notion with no relation to reality in 1985.” It might just be one of the best ideas for the 1980s.