The time has come to outsource postal service 

The United States Postal Service (or still the post office to most of us) has been losing money for decades. With competition from email, electronic bill paying, United Parcel Service and FedEx, the need diminishes.

There is a current “emergency” payment the USPS can’t afford — a $5.5 billion payment to finance retirees’ future health care. Like prison guards, auto workers and municipal employees, postal employees have very generous union contracts. These include high wages, generous health care, no-layoff clauses and high retirement benefits. Maybe it is time to shut down the publicly funded postal system and put these services up for bid. UPS, FedEx or DHL could certainly deliver mail a lot cheaper.

Keith C. De Filippis
San Jose

Perry’s dangerous line

The most consequential interchange at the Republican presidential debate Wednesday was Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s assertion that Social Security is a “Ponzi scheme” and a “monstrous lie.” Perry’s loose talk came in spite of a prior warning from Republican strategist Karl Rove that such language could be politically “toxic.”

Perry’s bold rhetorical assault on Social Security would appear to be a politically suicidal moment and is nearly certain to provide President Barack Obama with an electoral “lifeline” should Perry become the GOP nominee in 2012.

Jim Hartman

Is there public support?

In the Thursday article “Central Subway begins to take center stage,” new Muni chief Ed Reiskin is quoted as saying the Central Subway project still enjoys broad support among elected officials. But I wonder if the Central Subway project were put to a vote of the people of San Francisco, what the results would be.

Tomasita Medál
San Francisco

Stop salt pond project

I do not understand why building a new city on the salt ponds of Redwood City is still even a possibility in the minds of these developers. Can’t they take a hint? We don’t want it. No one wants it except the people who would profit from it. Cities and counties around the Bay Area are saying no and yet they don’t stop.

What will it take? Whatever it takes, let’s get it done so we can move on to other things. These people are wasting our time and energy on an impossible, not well-thought-out, frivolous project.

Kathleen Shecter
Redwood City

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