Justin I’m curious what are the solutions? if you think there are solutions outside of the infrastructure of the mail service? how can you avoid shipping other then everything going to strictly digital? What about the “typical” private interest of the H.R. 6407 (109th): Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act itself and Fed Ex and UPS connection to it? should the issue be avoided because we are “too late to the party”, or might sound “stupidly anti corporate” What are the positives to this bill? who benefits from it? DIY labels don’t exist “outside” even if they think they do, VINYL record production is a very industrial process same with the manufacture of all the products we all use to digest all the information we take in be it a speaker or a screen. Your right I for one would Lobby for those things that I don’t think are good or are beneficial to my life or values in the same way the opposition lobby’s for there own interest.
My argument let the Post Office roll with the times to see if she can keep on keeping on as she was before if she dies so be it, but HR 6407 sinks her prematurely. Sorry for my blustering.
I’ve been involved with underground/indie music for 15+ years playing in bands, touring, running a label etc. and this situation is very serious and could have wide reaching effects way beyond just the music industry. The post office isn’t falling apart because it isn’t needed or not functional its simply because of private interest and the Bush law: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/blogs/taibblog/dont-let-business-lobbyists-kill-the-post-office-20120423, in that law there are rules that don’t let USPS change or diversify to stay more relevant with the times. That law was created by private interest to destroy a public service guaranteed in our constitution so that those private interest could make more money at the expense of the public having to pay more because they cooked the situation unfairly.
UPS and Fed EX want USPS gone so they don’t have to stay honest, USPS isn’t a monopoly but it is a checks and balance related to postage rates and thus keeps Fed Ex and UPS honest. USPS is a public service it doesn’t exist purely for profit as UPS and Fed Ex do. If USPS goes away the price on everything literally all shipping will dramatically go up because Fed Ex and UPS won’t have to adjust to USPS cheaper prices. USPS gets you the cheapest rate because they only have to sustain they don’t have to exist to generate the large profits. The point is USPS is being pushed out so there can be a monopoly.
Those of you who think that digital alone can support the music and media industry in general biggest to smallest you are wrong. Ask anybody who was around in a band, running a record or book store, or putting out music in the 90′s even if the industry is more sustainable now. Its not record labels big to small are sweating it even without the calamity of the postal situation. The internet is a wide network with vast resources of access and information but the economy of the internet isn’t fully hashed out honestly related to it being a non physical place inhabited by physical beings. The internet can’t be the only economy simply because we don’t live inside of it. Institutions big and small in the industry have already died out from Virgin Mega Store (actually supported a lot of indie labels and distributors) to historic labels like Touch and Go. Those things happen but you will see it happen on a mass scale if the postal service and especially media mail goes away. The prices will go up so much the amount of people who can still afford to buy goods won’t be enough to sustain the industry (bands, labels, manufactures, distros, PR, press, etc)
This USPS situation effects stores just as much as it effects labels directly, this is an economy, its like an Eco system, it trickles down and spreads out. This effects all those Ebay and Discogs sellers, book stores, etc. If you like variety if you like a lot of options, lots of music, new music, weird music, fresh ideas, the end of USPS would dramatically effect the amount real art and music being made in the world. If Amazon is the only option on the horizon for mail order goods that seems pretty scary honestly, because not everyone has the ability or access to work with Amazon. Do you want Wal Mart to be your only option for your groceries, clothes etc, its a very similar situation. I personally like my information and art to come from the democratized sources of the many not just the one.