Tag Archives: mail

Lou DeJoy of Only One Man’s Desiring 8-21-20

This will be updated as I continue watching the Senate hearing. I know this hearing happened this morning, but I haven’t watched it yet, so this is my first post with live reaction updates. Refreshing the page as I update the blog post should reveal what I’ve written. OK here we go.
(Updates are from the bottom up. “–” in between each update.)

Ron Johnson sums up the afternoon and thanks DeJoy for caring about the process. And the calls to the senators seem scripted. He’s saying these are done by shills, but the difference between shills and people with a unified message is that shills say stuff in bad faith, and people with a unified method say stuff in good faith. Johnson drops his sixth “false narrative,” and he claims that this is a hit job. But this mail delivery collapse is affecting people of both parties.


Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ): We expect 95% of voters to vote by mail. Will local managers be able to authorize overtime to move election mail?
DeJoy: Yes, we’ll have redundant measures. We put together a letter, videos, a committee, to explain the process, and in September, we’re going to send out a letter to everyone in America to explain the process.
Sinema: Earlier this week you said you wouldn’t close any office before the election. What changes are you making that can slow down the processing of ballots?
DeJoy: None.


Ron Johnson says that the delays are just related to Covid. DeJoy’s improvements are great. We’d have seen that if not for Covid.


Josh Hawley (R-MO) immediately bashes The Media for misinforming the public.
Hawley: The Postal Service has the means to deliver mail safely and on-time through the election.
DeJoy: We have enough cash for that.
Hawley: What more money do you need?
DeJoy: We need about $10B just for covid, and we need a loan for long-term financing for new vehicles.
Hawley: How does it look for that loan in terms of paperwork?
DeJoy: We have an issue because we need to know how to pay it back. Right now we do not know.
Hawley: What’s your estimate?
DeJoy: It’s related to covid.
Hawley: You said you’d rather use the loan for new vehicles. I want the loan term extended and to allow for modernization of the fleet. It will be longer than five years.
He’s saying far beyond the next presidential term. He’s probably done really soon.
Hawley: Your response to the reports of the Office of the Inspector General?
DeJoy: Too many trucks and low reliability.
Hawley: Are you committed to keeping delivery six days a week?
DeJoy: Yes.


Mike Enzi (R-WY) is up. He seems to praise and then insult Pelosi.
Enzi: I didn’t know that the machines are serviced by the USPS. Also 60 days isn’t a lot of time to do full analysis. And maybe people aren’t sharing information. Also thank you for telling us that it wasn’t your fault that the mail wasn’t picked up but rather is due to covid. And we don’t even do sorting in Wyoming anymore. I used to be able to send a local letter in Wyoming and it would get there next day. Now it goes to Denver to go to Wyoming.
He keeps going, and I am not sure if his statements of praise are sarcasm? There seems to be a lot of insults being lobbed in a nice tone. I’m a little lost with Enzi. He’s got loads of complaints, but he seems to be friendly? Oh, now he says he’s trying to defend him, but still confusing.
DeJoy: Whenever there’s a new CEO, the CEO is responsible for all the actions immediately. We need to be more efficient.


Mitt Romney (R-UT) now gets to talk.
Romney: You contributed to Trump’s campaign and to my campaign, so you might say you donated to both sides.
The joke lands.
Romney: The mail is essential to our voting. Do you have confidence that if they say seven days before the election that they would make it in time?
DeJoy: Extremely highly confident. We would scour every day to get the ballots. Extremely highly confident.
Romney: Everyone should know that if you mail in seven days, you will be OK. On a separate topic, there are delays in the system. Are the delays more in one area than in another? Like are there more delays in the rural area than in the urban area?
DeJoy: Employee availability has dropped about 4% but as much as 20%-25% employee unavailability in hotspots.
I guess these are the bad people he’s been talking about so far.
Romney: I want to see the logistics plan to be more economically managed while maintaining the level of service we need. I don’t have to see it by Sunday, but we need to see a plan. Let us know what you need.


Rand Paul (R-KY) is wearing a white T-shirt with a bright blue jacket over it. He is far from his microphone.
Paul: We need to get personalized delivery but later. People could live with mail twice a week rather than every day.
WAIT, WHAT?! No, every day. That’s what we do. Every day.
Paul: How are you constrained by the government so that you can’t effect the changes you need?
DeJoy: We need pension reform, and we need freedom of pricing.
Everyone knows pension change means screwing retirees.
DeJoy: When we get trucks moving at 97% of the time and squeeze time out of that, things will work better.
So are you saying that the postal workers are lazy?
Paul: We can save money by people in remote areas getting mail delivery sporadically rather than reliably. Also the last-mile delivery prices may be too low. Are they?
DeJoy: Six-day delivery is the biggest strength to stand by.
At least he’s not for cutting service, but also he’s cut service, so I don’t know.
DeJoy: If we cut a day of service, we get maybe $1B, but the transportation improvements save $2.5B.
Paul: I’ll believe it when I see it. How about the last mile?
DeJoy: Doing what we can.
Paul: This is all partisan nonsense. Good luck.


Jacky Rosen (D-NV): Will you provide minutes of the closed, nonpublic committee meetings this Sunday?
DeJoy: No.
Rosen: No?!
DeJoy: I don’t have the authority to do so, and I gotta talk to my lawyer.
Rosen: We’ll talk about this later.
Oh goodness.
Rosen: You said you’ve taken things offline and cut overtime as a way to improve stuff. Let’s talk data. Postal service is the only way the people who are shut in due to covid get their items, including drugs. Also the remote communities on tribal lands, they need no interruption in mail. Before implementing changes, did you conduct any specific analysis on how changes would impact seniors? Yes or no?
DeJoy: The policy changes–
Rosen: Yes or no?
DeJoy: I didn’t make those changes.
Rosen: So no. Did you do a specific analysis of how veterans would be impacted?
DeJoy: I just told the trucks to leave on time. Mail should have been delivered faster.
Rosen: Can you commit to the veterans and seniors that they will have on-time delivery?
DeJoy: That’s what I’m trying to do. So yeah?
Rosen: How about the impact on late fees if the mail is slowed down?
DeJoy: The analysis we did is that if we moved the mail on schedule, all late deliveries would be improved.
Rosen: Obviously that hasn’t worked. Our servicemen and women vote by mail. Did you take them into account? Yes or no?
DeJoy: It was supposed to improve it.
Rosen: Do you have the reports and analyses that you based these changes on. Will you provide these by Sunday night?
DeJoy: No.
Rosen: How about ever?
DeJoy: I don’t know.
Conversation devolves into DeJoy not understanding the concept of transparency. But he’ll give the truck schedule.


RoJo: Why are you uniquely qualified for this job?
DeJoy: I’ve done a lot in large logistical modernization in all kinds of private sector companies. Also my commitment to public service and community engagement. I looked for improvement within the system rather than bring people in from outside. Also I have a plan to improve the Postal Service.
RoJo: Did you have performance metrics?
DeJoy: We had 99.98% goals met. We haven’t had that at the Postal Service, and I’m trying to make that happen.
RoJo: (another softball) Are you committed to getting people their drugs?
DeJoy: Yes, I am.
RoJo: So how does it make you feel that people are saying you’re doing bad stuff?
OMG, Ron Johnson! Seriously?
DeJoy: It doesn’t bother me, and I have support, too.
RoJo: Can you carry the mail?
DeJoy: Yes. And if you look at during covid, we continued processing mail and sending to remote locations. Private industries would have stopped.
Yeah, so you want praise for meeting minimum requirements?
RoJo: What support do you need? And I appreciate your commitment to excellence Isn’t that the Raiders slogan?
DeJoy: OK


Ron Johnson is back, but he switched from video to having called in. The video shows the phone number but with the last four digits obfuscated. It takes about no time to figure out what those last four numbers are. What a dumb system.


Maggie Hassan (D-NH) echoes the concept that there is a delay in drug delivery. She asks if DeJoy is going to cut that out.
DeJoy: Yes.
Hassan: Some states are going to mail ballots out on September 4 (California is behind?! Why we gotta wait to October?) Do you have a plan to process election mail?
DeJoy: The letter was about mail classification–
Hassan: Do you have a detailed plan about how to vote by mail, yes or no?
DeJoy: We have detailed plans and have an expanded election committee and there are plans we go through every election–
Hassan: Can we see them by Sunday night?
DeJoy: I don’t think we’ll have them by Sunday night, but I can–oh wait, today is Friday. I’ll get bak to you.
Hassan: Make it soon. Facilities generally make election mail as important as FCM. Will you keep that up?
DeJoy: Yes, ma’am.
Hassan: Four sorting machines have been decommissioned in Manchester, NH. Three are sitting there, but one was sold to a scrapyard. There’s only one machine left in service. If it stops working like it did yesterday, the sorting center in Manchester stops until there’s maintenance. Director of maintenance sent out a memo not to put machines back into service.
DeJoy: I have no idea about this even. There’s probably logic to it.
Hassan: You’e said today that it’s not necessary, but when we’ve got only one and that breaks, that’s not efficient and it delays delivery, and I want a plan to make sure you’ll commit so the postal service can process every piece of mail that gets there that day like has happened in the past. Will you commit to your team to put a plan in place and send a plan in writing?
DeJoy: I disagree with your premise, but I’ll send you something.
Hassan: Postal workers are reporting retaliation for complaining about this issue. Will you commit not to retaliate?
DeJoy: Yes, ma’am.


James Lankford (R-OK) is up.
Lankford: There’s never been an issue with vote by mail before, but I thank you for helping out with an organization that is doing so poorly.

Lankford: Have you been locking up boxes in Burbank?
DeJoy: I have nothing to do with collection boxes.
Lankford: 35,000 blue boxes have been retired. Anything in the past 65 days are your responsibility. Will the 700 be put back?
DeJoy: We told everyone to stop the changes.
Lankford: Will that pick back up after the elections? Also the sorting machines. Will we continue this efficiency program after the election?
DeJoy: We want to be self-sustaining. We have new strategies to stop budget shortfall. We have to bridge $10B gap. It costs $500M to do something in Alaska(?) Either remove the self-sustaining requirement or make a change.
Lankford: Is there capacity for Christmas and Mother’s Day at this moment?
DeJoy: Yes.
This is a crazy thing to say. The delays have been nuts!


Carper finishes by saying that his family has a long military background and has fought for the right to vote to be protected. Mail-in ballots are necessary especially during the pandemic so people don’t have consider death as a result of voting.
Absolutely correct.


Carper is against voter suppression, and he sees changes that will cause even more of a delay than there has been so far, including increases to cost of vote by mail and packages, and they’re not even going to be competitive with UPS and FedEx. Closing of processing plants. Now just Yes/No questions.

Carper: Are you actually doing these things that we found out about in the past 48 hours? Yes or no?
DeJoy: (filler but then) Yes.
Carper: Will you restore the lost capacity of the postal service?
DeJoy: I didn’t do it, and I won’t reverse it.
Carper: Trump said he would not give money to the Postal Service because they can’t handle the mail. You’ve had conversations with him and have financially supported him. Will you remain independent of the Trump Administration?
DeJoy: Yes.
Carper: Do you support private appropriations to cover covid-related losses? I think this is what the question is.
DeJoy: Yes.


Senator Tom Carper (D-Delaware), now composed. He was not interested in missing his chance.
He also has had issues with hearing from DeJoy. We’ve all been there where we’ve been on hold and then they come on and you’re trying to unmute it. Usually we aren’t on camera doing it, though. Well, maybe we are now.


I had to pause it. I’m back now.


Moving on to Senator Carper but then move to Lankford.

OMGOMGOMGOMGOMG Carper had trouble but then started swearing but only after he’d unmuted. If you have a chance, 57:10 in the Washington Post video. I cannot breathe.


Ron Johnson reminds to keep to seven minutes, even though he didn’t do that himself


Portman: What advice do you give to vote by mail?
DeJoy: Vote early.
Portman: Veterans have reached out about drugs that weren’t delivered, and insurance said too bad because it’s been shipped. So what’s the deal, bro?
DeJoy: I’m working hard over here! But I feel bad about the slowdown. We serve 161M people. We deliver 99.5% of the time. Still trying to improve on that. And people are working feverishly.
I hope not feverishly with covid!


Portman: Are you in favor of vote by mail?
DeJoy: I’ve voted by mail for a number of years. USPS delivers every ballot it receives.
Portman: So… yes?
DeJoy: I think Americans should be able to vote by mail. So yes.
Portman: The states are going to decide this, not the federal government. But Ohio is certainly going to have it. And it’s hard to cheat in Ohio. But the Postal Service sent a letter saying that they can’t handle all the ballots. What’s causing this statement?
DeJoy: Not a change from previous years. Just more detail and more emphasis. Because of more vote by mail and because of covid. The letter was to tell the boards that if you follow this procedure, you’ll be OK.


Rob Portman (R-OH) has his turn.
Reiterates that DeJoy was approved unanimously. He also says that the future of the Postal Service isn’t pretty.
With the coin shortage, this country is ripe for the return of philately!


Peters: Will you make states pay more for election mail or will you treat election mail like first class mail?
DeJoy: We’ll treat it better than first class mail.


Peters: Direction from the White House?
DeJoy: Changes not coming from there.
Peters: Talk to Mark Meadows?
DeJoy: I haven’t talked to Mark Meadows since, my gosh, last week.
Last week?! Sounded like it would be months ago.


Peters: Any discussion with the White House about postal strategy?
DeJoy: No.
Peters: Mnuchin?
DeJoy: Just said I’m working on a plan but not what it was.


Peters: Suspending policy of suspending extra trips?
DeJoy: Nope.
Peters: Overtime still dead?
DeJoy: Never eliminated.
Peters: Curtailed?
DeJoy: Nope.
Peters: No Post Office closures before elections?
DeJoy: Suspended till after election.
Peters: Bring back any sorting machines?
DeJoy: Nope! They’re not needed.


Peters produces a chart about on-time delivery. Around July 11, there’s a drop, and by July 18 big drop. He asks DeJoy if he confirms there was a drop-off in timeliness.

DeJoy changes his tune and agrees that there were drop-offs, but it’s not his fault, it’s covid’s fault.


Peters is back. He praises the employees. The ones DeJoy just said can’t follow his good leadership.

Peters has gotten more than 3500 complaints just from Michigan about the mail.

DeJoy: The employees aren’t the quality they need. He’s there to get them in shape(?)

Peters doesn’t care for this nonsense. Cuts him off. Brings him back to reality.


Now time for questions.

Ron Johnson is first. “False narrative” count is up to 5.

DeJoy: No changes in policies. Oh, come on. Since his arrival, he’s established a task force and is intent on creating a website.

RoJo: The Postal Service has more than enough capacity for delivery of ballots, right? Right?!

DeJoy: There’s adequate capacity. And mail volume is down 13%. Mail delivery volume is down even more!
But everybody is ready for this election. Yesterday, they decided to create a bipartisan board or committee or something. There’s uncertainty about what he’s created.

RoJo: What about the retirement of blue boxes and sorting machines? Also isn’t this common that if there’s less use, then you should take things away?

DeJoy: Yeah, we’re taking about 35,000 over 10 years, but he hasn’t reviewed the data. Since he arrived 67 days ago, they removed 700 boxes, but he didn’t know about it. Quick math: 3500/year so like 10 a day. He’s above trend.

DeJoy: Mail volume has declined during covid, but package volume has increased dramatically. They’re just repurposing the letter ones for packages, but there are problems or something.

RoJo: Operational changes to cut out the overtime pay that results in slower mailing, but there’s nothing nefarious here, right? Right?!

DeJoy: He spent hundreds of hours before arrival (kind of like my tires), and then more after his arrival at USPS. He worked with management as a group and individually to reduce excess. He also received a report from the inspector general about $13B in cash and $12.5B in payments to make in next nine months, and no end in sight. I’m a little confused. Isn’t that an excess of $500M?

Oh wait, it’s probably $12B budgeted to them, and they are almost out of money. I think I follow now.

DeJoy: USPS is slow, but FedEx and UPS are always on time. You know, except when they’re late, which has happened to me a couple times recently.

DeJoy produces a chart that he says indicates that went from 88% on time to 97% on time delivery, and the late trips dropped from 3500/day to 600/day. This happened with in a week.

Unfortunately, some mail production processing is not in line with this schedule.

So it’s not his leadership but other people being able to follow him?


Ron Johnson explains again that DeJoy was confirmed unanimously.

Now DeJoy starts to talk.

DeJoy’s internet connection is kinda slow. Must have at&t.

Postal Service this year will lose $9B, according to DeJoy. The losses are related to pension plan funding, including medical insurance. Does this mean he’s in favor of universal healthcare? This certainly would alleviate the budget woes.

In his 67 days of service, he’s been able to “see the hidden strengths of the Postal Service.” I wish he’d stop hiding those things!

He says the election is his top priority. Why is that slowing down mail delivery right now? We won’t get our ballots for more than a month yet.


Peters says he has been asking since July about what has happened. The response took a month. Peters opted not to make the joke that this should have been a bad sign about the tone at the top for timeliness.

Peters brings up the issue of slow delivery of necessary drugs. I have heard similar things described. This is not just a Michigan problems.

Peters’s investigation update:
DeJoy needs to apologize for the damage inflicted on the public. America needs to know if the changes can be reversed and if DeJoy intends to keep this nonsense up.


Peters drops a pun: DeJoy hasn’t delivered.


OK Johnson’s done. Now over to Gary Peters. Peters is from Michigan.


Oh wait, that’s Ron Johnson. As my fiancee pointed out he’s Ron Johnson from Wisconsin. She chuckled at the rhyme.

Anyway, Ron Johnson is praising Louis DeJoy. I’m relieved that Louis DeJoy looks like the featured picture of this blog and not like Ron Johnson.

Johnson is saying that the idea that DeJoy is pulling away the mailboxes is to the screw up vote by mail, but he says that the policy was in place prior to DeJoy’s arrival. But why did the last guy leave?


Washington Post started with coverage late, but DeJoy is talking about some false narrative. He’s talking about how great he is. Sure sounds familiar.

Lou DeJoy of No Man’s Desiring 8-13-20

So much has happened since my post on Tuesday!

(If you’re just tuning in, check out the other items in the Louis DeJoy category of my blog.)

For starters, I got an update yesterday that the tires that are still on their way from San Diego finally got to a Los Angeles big distribution area. It was still in the IN TRANSIT category and not yet OUT FOR DELIVERY, but at least it had progressed.

Today the status is OUT FOR DELIVERY. It should arrive before 8pm, they say. We’ll find out if that happens.

Meanwhile, yesterday the Chair of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform introduced a new act to end the “Make America Late Again” motto the Postal Service has come to adopt under Postmaster General Louis DeJoy.

https://oversight.house.gov/news/press-releases/chairwoman-maloney-introduces-delivering-for-america-act-to-protect-delivery

The Delivering for America Act, once passed, would do a hard reset of the rules to how they were on January 1 of this year. Overtime would be back. Postal workers would not have the option to speed up their routes by leaving annoying (bicycle tires?) or heavy (stationary bike cranks and pedals I sold on eBay months ago?) packages on the loading dock.

Thank you, Carolyn B. Maloney for introducing that!

The text itself is shockingly short. The length of the Delivering for America Act is only 298 words, and what you’ve read through the end of this sentence is 241 words.

The document also is dated August 10, so from me, directly to you, Congresswoman Maloney, hello, and thank you for being a dedicated reader of my blog.

For everyone reading this, please make noise! Tell the government you’re fed up with this. Louis DeJoy has got to go. We need our mail as much as ever. We need infrastructure to process our ballots. We need our postal workers to be taken care of so they don’t leave.

Find your elected officials here and contact them!
https://www.house.gov/representatives/find-your-representative
https://www.senate.gov/senators/index.htm

Lou DeJoy of No Man’s Desiring 8-11-20

Clearly I like this title, so I’ve made a new category for it. Here’s today’s update. The problem is worse than I’d thought/hoped.

When it looked like the tires were lost in transit, I felt compelled to try a third time so I would be able to go on bike rides with my fiancee again, and it turned out that Amazon itself–not just third-party sellers–had tires in stock. Amazon’s delivery service is pretty reliable, and USPS has been garbage (by recent policy), so there shouldn’t be those problems. As the saying goes: Happy fiancee, happy liancee(?)

Amazon set estimated delivery at August 10.

I got shipping confirmation from Amazon. To my horror, tracking indicated shipping through USPS. Totally screwed, I thought. But on the contrary. The tires from Amazon arrived yesterday. They were delivered by USPS without exception. No delays, no misdeliveries, no missing tracking information.

Here is the timeline since the front tire flat on July 5.

Attempt 1 (Third-party seller through Amazon):
July 6: Two bicycle tires ordered through Amazon from third-party seller.
July 8: Seller shipped package Priority Mail from Orange County, FL to residential address in Los Angeles.
Package never scanned by post office. No new information.

Attempt 2 (Third-party seller through Amazon):
July 29: Two bicycle tires ordered through Amazon from different third-party seller.
July 29: Seller shipped package Priority Mail from San Diego, CA to residential address in Los Angeles.
July 29: USPS reported package entered system.
July 30: USPS advised that package will be delivered to residential address in Los Angeles August 1.
July 31: USPS advised that package will arrive on time (i.e. August 1).
August 1: USPS advised that package will arrive late but is on its way.
August 2: USPS advised that package will arrive late bus is on its way.
No new information since then.

-BUT-

Attempt 3 (Direct purchase from Amazon):
August 7: Two bicycle tires ordered directly from Amazon.
August 9: Amazon shipped bicycle tires and advises delivery date of August 10. USPS tracking number provided.
August 10: Bicycle tires delivered to residential address in Los Angeles without exception.

Less than two weeks ago Jeff Bezos appeared in front of the House Judiciary. He was accused of engaging in anticompetitive practices. He denied it because what else was he going to do? It’s unjust that the little guys in Florida and in San Diego can’t get USPS to deliver their goods, but Amazon hasn’t faced such problems. This is abuse by Amazon and abuse by USPS.

This behavior by USPS and the stranglehold Amazon has on it are unconscionable. This cannot go unchallenged.

I abhor unnecessary legislation and unnecessary regulation. I think there are better ways to spend public money. It should be saved for stuff like this. Because this has gotten out of hand. This is hurting small business. This is hurting the consumer. This is hurting confidence. This is hurting America.

And this is the case when it comes to commerce!

The election is 12 weeks away. In California we will get our ballots at the beginning of October. We must have a system in place that delivers our votes and packages on time.

Get rid of Louis DeJoy. Reach out to your elected officials:
https://www.house.gov/representatives/find-your-representative
https://www.senate.gov/senators/index.htm

Tell them: Enough with Make America Late Again.

Lou DeJoy (of no man’s desiring)

It’s day five of no update from USPS and day six of it being late. It’s day nine since it entered the system in San Diego. Keep in mind we’re talking about travel distance of about 140 miles. Los Angeles is the biggest city in California, and San Diego is the second-biggest city in California. This is not going from Hemet, CA to Weed, CA.

So why is this happening?

Voter suppression!

Of course voter suppression.

I had started writing this post yesterday but felt I needed to do some more research into this guy. We know something has gone unusually awry because it’s bad enough for an investigation into the mail.

Not only does Louis DeJoy deny that he’s doing it to suppress votes despite being a big donor to the campaign of Donald Trump–the guy who has made a point to dunk on the USPS at every opportunity–he says following:

“Rather than sensationalizing isolated, operational incidents that I acknowledge can occur and have always occurred in a business of our size and scope, or attempting to impose unfunded mandates unrelated to any postal policies, I ask members of Congress to take action on this one legislative burdensome issue that will actually make a difference,” DeJoy said.

Sensationalizing? Isolated incidents?

Family members have told me about prescriptions lost in the mail. Friends have laughed about postcards that may never arrive. I STILL DO NOT HAVE MY TIRES.

But it’s OK because they are fully equipped to handle all election mail no problem. Because I guess it’s Opposite Day.

Postal Devilry Update

Tracking has not changed since I was advised of the continued delay on August 2. Remember how I was promised it would get here August 1? My email from USPS Informed Delivery said it would be arriving what was then today. It wasn’t even in the soon category for delivery. It was for that day.

So who is this Postmaster General guy who is stopping overtime and telling mail personnel to go on without grabbing everything? Here’s his bio from the USPS site:

https://about.usps.com/who/leadership/officers/pmg-ceo.htm

Also he was a huge campaign contributor to our current president who wants people not to vote by mail. I’m going crazy. More later on this.

I called the offices of my senators and my representative today to tell them to make sure to get rid of this guy. I recommend you do the same.