Bernie Sanders recently chose to test the waters of a possible Presidential campaign by weighing in on the deliberations regarding the Post Office. Thankfully, we have this Op-Ed so early on, because it reveals Sanders’ complete and utter inability to comprehend basic economics and accounting.
Bernie argues two main points: 1) the Post Office is not broke and 2) those who believe it is are “anti-government”, “wealthy special interest”, profit-seeking, or all of the above. These points rest entirely on his premise that pre-funding health benefits to postal workers is a very bad thing.
Sanders actually believes that planning for future promised benefits is not a fiscally sound practice. If he feels this way about the Post Office, surely he feels the same about Social Security and Medicare (two programs who have trillions in future liabilities). Does Sanders know that his type of accounting would land any business executive in jail?
Sanders says that if we didn’t have to pre-fund future benefits, than the Post Office would make a profit. Simple, right?
What he fails to mention that if we didn’t pre-fund benefits, the Post Office would merely be sloughing off paying its promises to some future nebulous day and time for some other taxpayers else to take care of –only when its liabilities were astronomical and the finances were on the edge of a precipice.
That result is precisely what we are facing programs like Social Security, Medicare, and many defined benefits plans across the country: politicians made future monetary promises without planning for them, and now the economic pressure has ballooned into severe fiscal instability. Sanders belongs to the ‘spend first, fix (maybe) later” group of bureaucrats who refuse to follow basic accounting practices like any business would be required to practice.
With the Post Office, we actually have an quasi-government entity following good, non-gimmick accounting so taxpayers can see first-hand the true financial picture (current and future) of the post-office. Pre-funding benefits to account for future and current liabilities is a proper and healthy way to do business. And if the Post Office cannot turn a profit while protecting its current and future liabilities, than it must make changes to its business operations
By repealing the legislation to pay for future liabilities, Bernie Sanders is ostensibly demanding someone in the future — your kids and grandkids — to clean up the mess of his government and his generation’s deliberately poor financial planning.
Which bring us two his second point. Bernie Sanders does what the Left does best, which is resort to name calling, straw-man arguments to build up his weak ideas. Sanders actually thinks that those who wish to pass on a health economic future while practice basic and principled accounting practices are anti-government, bought-and-paid-for, or profit-mongers. No, Mr. Sanders, we only wish for the government and its entities to practice the same kind of accounting standards that any other business or family is required to do.
Watch out, America — Bernie Sanders is just more of the same. Another bureaucratic imbecile who refuses to face economic and financial realities when it comes to the Post Office — or any big government program which deals with current and future liabilities. Sanders would rather pass the buck to the next generation in order to save a few union jobs.