Stimulus Package?

Who writes the titles for these things that our fate depends upon?

“Stimulus package” sounds like a ribbed condom!

But seriously, folks, the recent legislation was designed to limit “earmarks,” and that’s all well and good. But many remain. Why not one for Mail Art?

I have had a lot of faith in O’Bama, but have you noticed that the bailout legislation has zero support for Mail Art?

I first started sending artistic envelopes to friends back in the early 1950s, when I was a tad more than ten years old.

And since around 1960, I’ve spent a small fortune on postage stamps annually. And not only for current US Postal Service stamps, but uncanceled commemorative postage stamps going back to the 1930s. And then there’s the cost of self-published, limited edition stamps.

I hope that you will support me in this grass roots effort to get our government—elected to bring change—to add Mail Art as a major category for tax rebates and other support, so we can afford to lead the free world in International Mail Art. Call it an earmark. I call it a postmark!

Don’t let an administration elected for change become a rubber stamp for the same old policies. In fact, artistic rubber stamps should be the only ones allowed on Mail Art, and that is another subject altogether.

Jeff Berner
Paris, France

Views: 24


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Comment by Talking Bird on February 14, 2009 at 6:33pm
Well, as far as the actual financial stimulus package, there's really nothing we can do but laugh. The collapse was caused by too many people lending too much money they don't have to people who can't possibly pay it back; and the solution is for the world's biggest debtor to lend the lenders an incomprehensibly vast amount of money that it doesn't have.

Comment by Jeff Berner on February 8, 2009 at 7:25pm
Wow! And I was just being droll!

Comment by Talking Bird on February 7, 2009 at 9:35pm
Unknown to most people, the U.S. Postal Service is in as much danger as those big banks whose reckless gambling brought about the financial crises. The big banks followed hair-brained strategies they knew would eventually bankrupt them because they were counting on the government coming to their rescue. They knew they were "too big to fail."

The problem in the postal service is different, though. They didn't make any high-risk loans. Their problem is that everyone is using e-mail and direct deposit and online bill-payer, and also that nearly all online merchants flatly refuse to ship by USPS. So the postal service has very little revenue. The only thing they're doing now is distributing junk mail, at a deep discount, and propaganda from members of Congress, for free. USPS employees have been warned that they won't be able to meet payroll by sometime this Fall.

But I haven't heard any talk about bailing out the postal service. Maybe that's because they haven't bribed anyone. The Washington Times recently reported that "18 of the top 20 recipients of federal bailout money spent a combined $12.2 million lobbying the White House, the Treasury Department, Congress, and federal agencies during the last quarter of 2008." If anything, there are probably lobbyists bribing Congress not to help the postal service, so the government will be forced to sell it to a private company. Mail artists may have to switch to UPS or FedEx, or to some new competitor in that market, maybe "CitiBank/WellsFargo Postal Service." Think of how that will affect the cost of sending a piece of mail art!



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