Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Who's Minding the Store?

Yesterday I went into our local Post Office (USPS) to cash a postal money order (issued by the USPS) my nephew received from his dad. Actually I went twice. The first time was about 9:20AM and I was told it couldn't be cashed because they "didn't have enough money in the register".

(Actually my wife had gone into this same PO a couple days earlier to cash it for him and was told the same thing..."not enough cash on hand". But she was also told that because the clerk didn't know her and our nephew wasn't present, she couldn't cash it for her, and advised her to go to the Post Office in the town in which we reside. But since she doesn't know my nephew either, and at age 15 he doesn't possess a photo ID, how would she know he is who he is?)

Anyway, I said, "That's OK (not enough dinero in the register), I'll come back later." They know me well in this Post Office. So, mid-afternoon I returned, presented the money order, was asked to endorse it and put my drivers' license number under my name. No problem. Then the clerk called the post master to the counter and asked if she could cash this for me. "Of course! We know Pastor Rick!"

They have this machine that they feed the money order into which is supposed to read the serial number off the front, telling the computer in the register how much it is for and recording the transaction. They tried for ten minutes to get the machine to read the money order to no avail. Every time it just spit it out. I wondered aloud, "Can you manually put in the number?". They tried but there wasn't a way to do that. So finally they suggested I take it to my bank and cash it.

Now, this was a post office issued money order. Their computer should have been able to accept it. But, I thought, if this was my business, I wouldn't send my customer away telling him "Sorry". I would have said, "Here's your cash. We'll figure this out later", kept the money order and sent me on my way.

But, the Post Office is a government owned business.

So I'm really scared for our banking and automotive industries now owned by Uncle Sam, and for our health care system, should it be taken over by the feds. Will they be run just like my post office? How many people will be turned away by doctors who have the ability to do the surgery but the system requires them to say, "Sorry".

We have the best medical/health care in the world. Sure, there are shortcomings, but do we really want to be told that our surgery or care is denied because the system doesn't work?

By the way, my bank quickly cashed my money order. They didn't have a US government provided machine to run it through.

I have to add this: I like all the folks who work in our PO. It's the system that doesn't work, not the kind men and women there. I'm sure they had no choice but to send me elsewhere.

1 comment:

Bob said...

I'm still confused why they can't seem to manage Medicare/Medicaid, but they're sure they'll do a standup job with national healthcare for everyone.

I asked a buddy in Canada about socialized medicine and he couldn't sing it's praises enough. When I mentioned it in the U.S. he said "Oh that would never work for you guys." I had to laugh.