A “solution” that could only come from Berkeley, Calif. (emphasis mine):
Council members said they plan to investigate how the post office in Berkeley could increase its revenue stream, perhaps through leasing unused parts of the downtown building to local businesses. They also suggested taking a closer look at postage rates or even “a very tiny tax” on email as possible policy changes that could make a difference.
The council also resolved to reach out to more than 50 other cities nationally that are in similar positions, with pending historic post office buildings potentially on the chopping block, to try to form a coalition to attack the problem together.
Berkeley city councilman Gordon Wozniak suggested the “tiny tax” on emailed communications, in addition to internet data usage:
“There should be something like a bit tax. I mean a bit tax could be a cent per gigabit and they would still make, probably, billions of dollars a year… And there should be, also, a very tiny tax on email,” perhaps one-hundredth of a cent. He said this would discourage spam and not have much impact on the typical Internet user. Wozniak went on to suggest a sales tax on internet transactions that could help, in part, fund “vital functions that the post office serves.”
Why stop there? I say we tax all forms of communication so we can bring back the old Pony Express. Only people who hate ponies would oppose my plan – How could you hate ponies?