59 Geo. L. J. 305 (1970-1971)
Postal Reorganization Act of 1970: Heading Off Future Postal Strikes, The

handle is hein.journals/glj59 and id is 311 raw text is: THE POSTAL REORGANIZATION ACT OF 1970:
HEADING OFF FUTURE POSTAL STRIKES?
THOMAs R. KENNEDY       
Mr. Kennedy suggests that the Postal Reorganization Act repre-
sents a substantial improvement over previous executive attempts
to resolve the unique labor problems of the Post Office. He also
proposes adoption of a plan for congressional resolution of future
postal strikes.
The postal service has long presented difficult labor relations prob-
lems. Unlike private industry, whose management has the principal goal
of maximizing profit, public management must consider the public in-
terest, the legislative response, and other political factors when budget-
ing and negotiating labor contracts. Other factors have also inhibited
effective unionization. Postal workers have not presented a unified
labor force because of conflicts between rural and urban based unions
and between craft and industrial unions. Effective collective bargaining
also is hampered by the necessity of third party approval by Congress.
Finally, the prohibition of strikes and other legal restrictions unique to
public employment have further handicapped the resolution of postal
labor disputes.
This article outlines these problems and examines the effect of previ-
ous executive attempts to alleviate them. The failure of these attempts
is contrasted with the improvements contained in the Postal Reform Bill
of 1970. Finally, further needed improvements are suggested.
THE PUBLIC, PosTAL EMPLOYES, AND THE POSTAL SERVICE
There is an ancient fable about some very wise and very blind men
of Indostan who resolved to learn by touch what an elephant was like.'
One blind man grabbed the elephant's trunk and thought he held a
a large snake. Another touched the elephant's stomach and thought the
elephant was a large horse, while a third thought that the shape of the
elephant's tail meant that he was like a giraffe. The wisest of all touched
the elephant's ears and didn't know what to think at all.
Public employee labor relations are hampered by an analogous diffi-
*Counsel, Postal Operations Subcommittee, Committee on Post Office and Civil
Service, U.S. House of Representatives. B.A., Carroll College; LL.B., University of
Montana. Member, Montana and United States Supreme Court bars.
'EVAN'S DICTIONARY OF QuoTATioNs 195 (J. Saxe ed. 1968).
[305]

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