Authored by Jeffrey Tucker via DailyReckoning.com,
The old FedEx envelope was clever, a work of art even, optimistic and colorful, signifying speed and progress.
What a beautiful contrast to the plainness of the U.S. Postal Service. For years, I can recall dropping off these treasures and paying maybe $10 to assure their delivery across the country, even the world. For me, it was a fabulous symbol of an improved life, living proof that progress was baked into the historical trajectory.
But a few days ago, the clerk at the FedEx office confirmed a different ethos. There was no doing business without a scan of my government-issued ID. I asked for confirmation: So if I did not have this, there is simply no way that I could send a package? Confirmed.
Then came the envelope. It was the color of the brown bag I took to school when I was a kid. Serviceable, drab, dull. Also the new one is stamped with a big green marker: recyclable. There is no design, no art, certainly no beauty. It’s all gone.
Its main message is suffering.
What happened to the old envelopes? They’ve been replaced, the clerk explained firmly, with no more detail.
A recycle exhortation suggests shortage. We have to…
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