With 16 straight years of profitability, including record profits in 2009 and postage rates lower than almost all other industrialized countries, the Canada Post negotiations should have been relatively easy. But it's Tory times in Canada and what better way is there for a right-wing government to attack the labour movement than by going after the Canadian Union of Postal Workers, a national and historically militant union?
Canada Post has the largest vehicle fleet in the country and the most extensive coast-to-coast retail presence. It could dramatically expand the range of services it provides.
This idea may surprise certain segments of the population who are forecasting "the death of the letter" and even the post office because of an explosion of electronic technology and increased competition in the postal sector.
The fact is people, not machines or markets, will ultimately determine whether our public post office survives and thrives.
Did you know that the Conservative minority government is smuggling certain controversial measures into its upcoming federal Budget Bill C-9? While all eyes are on the Rahim Jaffer/Helena Guergis scandal, some other shady business is getting overlooked.
Items that might prove unpopular, exposed to the light of public scrutiny, are being packaged and sold as part of a Budget that is quickly working its way through Parliament. The Conservatives are counting on the opposition's reluctance to have an election to get their Budget approved. But it is essential that the package is opened and its contents handled with care.