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View Diary: Midday Open Thread–Russia Bombing, USPS, Benghazi, Duck Dynasty and more … (68 comments)

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  •  "myth of the infallibility of the private sector"? (0+ / 0-)

    Sorry.  I never heard that one.  Who exactly has been spreading this myth?

    In general, failure is built into the design of private enterprises.  It is the impetus behind competition.

    You seem to not understand the dilemma of UPS (and FedEx) this week is that it was too successful.  People are so used to being able to order something a few days ahead and pay for rush delivery (and have been satisfied with the service in the past), that boatloads of people did just that this year.

    The reason the USPS didn't run afoul of this phenomenon is that no one in their right mind would trust the post office with a time critical package.  I sent USPS packages 8-9 days ahead and still used Priority.

    The Postal Service operates under the premise of lowered expectations.

    •  The USPS has always been my preferred (7+ / 0-)

      deliverer of packages.  I have really seen little difference between UPS, FedEx, and the postal service.  I have received packages sent without a rush delivery by USPS sometimes just as quickly as ones sent priority mail by other carriers.  And it's cheaper.

      In the time it took Adam Lanza to reload, eleven children escaped. What if...

      by Sixty Something on Sun Dec 29, 2013 at 12:51:56 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  what does this mean? (0+ / 0-)
      In general, failure is built into the design of private enterprises.  It is the impetus behind competition.
      thanking you in advance.
      •  It means.. (0+ / 0-)

        failure is expected in private enterprise.

        There is no "myth of infallibility".

        While most businesses attempt to be perfect, they rarely are.  Missed product deadlines, for example, are more common than met deadlines (at least it seems so in high tech sectors!)

        Ever buy an extended warranty on a product?  Millions do.. expecting failure.

        Many people will not purchase a major upgrade in software and instead choose to wait until after the first or second "patch".  They know first generation software is buggy.  Fail.

        In a more general sense, new products and services often miss the mark, leaving an opening for competition.

        Failure is part of what makes private enterprise as dynamic as it is.

      •  free market works because businesses fail (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        hmi, JJ In Illinois

        If a restaurant serves bad food, it rapidly goes out of business. Likewise if FedEX or UPS botches things in a major way, they will lose market share to USPS, DHL, or other firms.

        Because individual organizations fail in the free market, the ones that remain tend to have better business models. Not always, because monopoly and crony capitalism prop up some long after they cease to be useful. I'm thinking of the entire domestic sugar industry, for example.

        Now... in contrast the problem with government agencies is that they are difficult to close down once started. Some agency is always some politician's pet project, and they can last far after they do more harm than good.

        Some agencies should always be government run... like the ones that set the rules and punish cheaters, crooks, and free-riders (IRS, SEC, EPA, FDA, Law Enforcement and Prisons, etc.). Or the ones that do big things that the free market usually wont do (NASA, NSF, National Parks)... but other things might be better off with a free-market approach.

        Personally I think the Post Office does a fine job, relative to FedEX and UPS. The free market competition makes them more efficient despite being government run. Privatizing it would be highly disruptive and not gain much... unless your goal is union bashing.

    •  Retailers were actively pushing pushing pushing (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JJ In Illinois

      I was getting multiple emails a day (not counting the obvious spam) from retailers urging me to keep shopping, all the way to the 24th, with guaranteed Christmas delivery. So I'm not surprised a lot of shoppers went that route instead of the mall.

      IMO there were some communications problems between the retailers and the shipping companies about what capacity actually existed, and how late they could guarantee delivery. The lawyers will sort all that out, in terms of who's going to eat the refunds and rebates and coupons.

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