Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login

The USPS was not actually profitable. They simply seemed profitable because they were hiding the cost of retirement benefits. Forcing them to prefund is nothing more than forcing them to acknowledge the debts they already accrued. If that tips them into the red, they were not profitable before. They were simply pretending to be profitable via accounting tricks.

$100 in revenue - $75 in costs - $50 in off balance sheet debt is not profitable.

The special economic status of the federal government simply means that the taxpayer is on the hook for the USPS's hidden debts. No one disputes this. What's under dispute is whether the USPS should be allowed to incur hidden debts on behalf of the federal government (PAYGO accounting), or whether their debt should be transparently included in the federal debt (ERISA accounting).

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact