Chris Selley: If we are going to subsidize anything it should be broadband Internet, not mail

National Post | Full Comment

Canada Post will record its first loss in 16 years, the Crown corporation said this week — $54-million lost, after a $98-million profit the year before. And a Conference Board of Canada report commissioned by the company and released this week suggests things are unlikely to improve without radical action. Over the next seven years, the board predicts a 27% decline in domestic transaction mail — bills, cheques, letters —a 26% drop in addressed and unaddressed ad-mail and a 26% decline in its publication traffic. It projects Canada Post will have a $1-billion deficit in 2020.

It is time to acknowledge that, certainly in urban Canada, there is almost no reason for Canada Post to exist at all. All I get in the mail are bank and credit card statements that I have begged to stop receiving; magazines, which I could live without if alternative distribution methods proved cost-prohibitive; Christmas…

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