Trump slams Amazon for forcing closure of stores ‘all over the country’

What I’m about to say is not to be construed as I bless Amazon (better, it’s founder and boss Jeff Bezos) for becoming “King of the Mountain” in retail. In full disclosure I use Amazon like a madman. Bless them for how convenient they’ve made shopping for me. But they do have their hands in everything from books to food to medicine and this is changing the retail market that is losing out to them and forcing changes in companies to survive in their wake.

Let’s get something straight, nations around the world from the beginning of time have had one or more citizens vying for “King of the World” status. J P Getty taught us that in amassing money there is never enough and it is a myth that a giant like the one in “Jack and the Beanstalk”, while big can easily be brought down if you hit them in the right spot. The moral of this story is that you keep growing bigger eating everything up so nothing is left to take you down.

Enter Donald Trump and his verbal war on Amazon. That’s a laugh. Why, you ask? Because Trump wanted to be “King of the World” in real estate development. He certainly wasn’t above using every means by hook or crook to get his way.

Giants don’t have a brotherhood of giants, though occasionally they do get together and plot how to grow bigger. But most of the time they see each other as threats and work to undercut the other’s threat of competition, also known as “do it to them before they do it to us.” Anyway, once Trump stepped out of the retail market and entered the political market all of a sudden giants become more bad guy than good guy and so he begins a Twitter war on Amazon. Not for being so big but for forcing the U.S. Post Office to carry their packages too cheaply.

There is an advertisement for a different company when the man is looking to purchase something online and when he learns it comes with free shipping he joyously cries out, “Game changer!” I hate to burst his bubble but it’s not free, this shipping. Companies like Amazon cover the cost of shipping through yearly fees (like Prime service), they raise the price of the goods, they drive hard bargains to get the product at reduced prices, they force shippers to offer lower costs to shipping; something Amazon did with the Post Office.

Now, while the Post Office is shipping Amazon products at a reduced price they are happy to do so because without Amazon using them they would make nothing so they see it as an opportunity to at least be a player in shipping.

“It is reported that the U.S. Post Office will lose $1.50 on average for each package it delivers for Amazon. That amounts to Billions of Dollars,” Trump said over two tweets. “If the P.O. ‘increases its parcel rates, Amazon’s shipping costs would rise by $2.6 Billion.’ This Post Office scam must stop. Amazon must pay real costs (and taxes) now!”

There is a truth, Mr. President, you aren’t looking at: the USPS is in debt at least $125 Billion. In Article 1, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution we have these simple words: “To establish post offices and post roads.” Note that it didn’t say “a postal service,” only offices and roads. Of course, what good is an office and a road without a service? Understandable conclusion. In the beginning the service of carrying mail was contracted out to private carries. Then it was decided to keep the money for themselves and under the controlling hand of Congress .

Eventually Congress kind of made postal service independent from the government and created the USPS, but still controlling its policies. As the nation expanded so too did the postal service and so did its costs of service, to the point that without modernization it no longer could afford mail service. But it could not make those modernizations and changes without the express okay by Congress and politics trumped (pun not intended) pragmatism.

Long story short, Congress’s inability to do what it needed to do to make postal service free from debt drove it deeper into debt. So it isn’t, Mr. President, Amazon that is causing the USPS from making profits, it’s Congress. Fix that, then come back to the question of Amazon.