Via Orin Kerr at the Volokh Conspiracy, I see that the Republican National Committee is now sending form letter fundraising appeals by certified mail, return receipt requested. In Kerr's words, the RNC explains that this unusual method of sending its appeals is needed because
it's critically important that I received the letter in person so I could take "immediate action.
Kerr reacted as I would react on receiving such garbage, by throwing away the letter and wanting to bill the RNC for the time and trouble of picking it up. Most of the RNC's donors, and for that matter most of the DNC's donors, work and aren't at home when the mailman arrives, so it's a major inconvenience to pick up such mail. It's also far more expensive to send such mail.
But choosing this unorthodox method of mailing is perhaps dumbest because many if not most people, and certainly most of the middle class business types who make up a large part of the RNC's mailing list, know that certified mail, return receipt requested, is usually if not always bad news. It means you're being sued. Or it means the IRS wants to have a word with you. And receiving the certified mail postcard is, for many of those who know, a justified source of minor panic. When Ed McMahon wants you to know that you won the sweepstakes, he shows up at your door. When an ambulance chaser wants you to remember that little fender bender two years ago, he sends certified mail.
I can't imagine anyone responding to such a vulgar and stupid appeal. A chain letter would be more effective, and cheaper.