Researcher and Writer in Washington, DC

A Book You Cannot Trust: Robert N. Winter-Berger’s The Washington Pay-...

A Book You Cannot Trust: Robert N. Winter-Berger’s The Washington Pay-Off

On June 8, 1960, the New York State attorney general Louis J. Lefkowitz enjoined Winter-Berger from the securities market. Why? Because Winter-Berger had defrauded folks by peddling non-existent stock to rich folks, to whom he passed himself off as a “prominent socialite.” The corporation and the miracle product he described did not exist. He made […]

The big reforms in the Trump postal reform p...

The big reforms in the Trump postal reform plan

Yesterday, the Trump administration unveiled its recommendations for reforming the ailing U.S. Postal Service (USPS). Due to plunging mail volume and rising costs, USPS lost $4 billion last year and has $130 billion in unfunded pension and health care obligations. The 74-page report was issued by the U.S. Treasury, which headed the Task Force on the United States Postal System. Secretary […]

A truckload of watermelons: Five OMG’s from John Lawrence’s “The Class of ‘...

A truckload of watermelons: Five OMG’s from John Lawrence’s “The Class of ‘74”

John Lawrence has some tales to tell. He served nearly four decades in the House, culminating as the chief of staff to Nancy Pelosi during her stint as speaker from 2007-2011. Lawrence’s book, The Class of ‘74: Congress After Watergate and the Roots of Partisanship (Johns Hopkins), was released earlier this year, and is a heady, political […]

Will Congress save the money-bleeding Postal Serv...

Will Congress save the money-bleeding Postal Service

The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) lost nearly $2 billion in 2018. But that eye-popping number does not capture the full picture. The agency failed to pay $2 billion into its employees’ health care fund, so its real loss this year is $4 billion. This is not good. Congress designed the Postal Service to be a […]

Vague law foments debate over USPS parcel pric...

Vague law foments debate over USPS parcel pricing

There’s been quite the hullabaloo raging over the U.S. Postal Service’s (USPS) pricing of parcels. President Donald J. Trump started a volley in late December 2017 by tweeting….(Read more)

The other biggest problem in Washing...

The other biggest problem in Washington

A supine Congress unable to hold a president accountable. Members who find the job miserable (except for the status). A persistent problem of understaffing and lack of policy expertise. For decades, Congress has faced these growing problems and others. The Trump era has thrown them into overdrive. Congress has weakened itself and centralized its policymaking […]

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