A Year of Embezzlers, Closures, USPS Woes –Michelson

Still, no matter how daunted printers have felt trying to navigate and reinvent their businesses in these tough economic times, take solace that you’re not trying to solve the financial and structural problems facing the U.S. Postal Service. From shrinking mail volumes, to no-layoff collective bargaining union contracts, onerous retiree health benefit prefunding requirements, and Congressional meddling about plans to close nonessential post offices and processing centers, the Postal Service faces collapse. And, true reform, at least until after next year’s elections, is doubtful, given the inability of Congressional politicians in both parties and the Obama administration to find agreement on anything.

In good conscience, I can’t sugarcoat a year-end recap by falsely proclaiming that 2011 has been kind to the graphic arts industry. Printing is a tough business that’s gotten even tougher. But, like what George Bailey learned in the holiday classic It’s A Wonderful Life, don’t lose sight of the lives you touch and the contributions you make within your community. After all, printers are resilient, entrepreneurial and make good impressions. PI

Mark T. Michelson

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