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What is it about nice people that attract total idiots?Nice people are martyrs. Idiots are evangelists.

SOCK IT TO ME BABY!!!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Twinkie, Twinkie, little star...

My good friend Monkey Butt took the opportunity of Time Machine to ask me what all the buzz was with Hostess.  Don't ask, that's just what she does.  You can see my reply easily enough, but then I went on Facebook and saw people actually defending the union that put them out of business.

"Oh, it's a Bain Capital thing," They said.  "Ruthless corporate raiders refused to negotiate with the poor defenseless union."

I've had enough.


Let us re-evaluate the situation.  FACT:  a box of HoHos has consistantly been two dollars higher than the similar product made by Little Debbie.  FACT:  this was caused by, in part, union wages and pension requirements that priced the company out of competition.  FACT:  The Teamsters recognized that the situation was unsalvageable and agreed to the harsh concession Hostess needed to even try to stay afloat.  FACT: The baker's union refused to bend, even though any reasonable group would have said, "Hey, they will close the company if we don't accept.  Our people having jobs at all should be our first priority."  FACT:  the company had little choice to close.  In fact, let's hear how the Teamsters reacted to the closing, in a released statement:

“The BCTGM chose a different path, as is their prerogative, to not substantively look for a solution or engage in the process,” the statement read. “BCTGM members were told there were better solutions than the final offer, although Judge Drain stated in his decision in bankruptcy court that no such solutions exist. Without complete information, BCTGM members voted by voice votes in union halls. The BCTGM reported that over 90 percent rejected the final offer and three of its units ratified the final offer.”
Hmm, doesn't sound like the BCTGM will be welcomed into the Teamsters anytime soon.

FACT:  27% of Hostess' work force (the 5,000 represented by the BCTGM) cost 100% of 18,500 people their jobs.  Does this absolve Hostess their responsibility in the collapse?  Certainly not, they gave both unions reasons to distrust them.  But the Teamsters put their workers first, while the BCTGM (which undoubtedly stands for "Buncha Chumps out To "Get" Management") just said, "F'em all."

In the end, Hostess may have folded with the concessions.  There was no guarantees.  There was a wealth of stupid moves committed over the years- and let's not forget how many of those were concessions TO unions- and there may not have been time to fix it.  However, the employees WOULD have still had a job at Christmas.  They WOULD have had a 25% stake in the company- and a much greater say in how to fix things.  And they might have had a shot at part of their pension- instead of it all being disbursed at a judge's discretion.

In the interests of fairness, I went over to their website to see if they had anything to say in their own defense.  But like Hostess, their site has apparently crashed.

And the Bain Capital thing?  Well, Bain makes it's money taking struggling businesses and either rebuilding them to thrive if they can, or dividing them up so the viable parts have a chance of surviving if they can't.  That is the FACT.  And that is what will happen to Hostess now.  It was up to the BCTGM to decide which side of the line Hostess would come down on.  Ask THEM why they chose #2.

14 comments:

  1. "Bain makes it's money taking struggling businesses and either rebuilding them to thrive if they can, or dividing them up so the viable parts have a chance of surviving if they can't."

    That was the message that got lost during the campaign. It was completely misconstrued and the facts about what happened after Romney left were mixed with what happened while he was still there, it was confusing for many people.

    Great post, CW. Although, I'm sad to see them close down and all those people lose their jobs.

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    1. It didn't get lost- it got buried by people like the guy on Facebook that thinks that the big raise a former CEO got during the first bankruptcy was excuse enough to cost 18,000 people their jobs. I cannot understand the logic that says paying "the man" back is more important than being employed.

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  2. Interesting facts and I will just have ot take you word for it that these facts are in fact the facts...

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  3. In my defence I don't think I've ever even seen your belly! So nah nah nah! And yes you're right, that's just how I am :) Business-smiszness. I'm going to miss those tasty overpriced delicious treats!!! :)

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    1. I forgot I took that picture of me sitting in front of the USS Maine's anchor at thr RB Hayes Museum off the blog! And the one of me standing there at Turkey Run... And at the price Hostess was charging, I've missed them for a while.

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  4. They chose #2 because they ARE #2.
    Effin' dopes.

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    1. Succinct and well-put. Hope they enjoy their unemployment checks. Do union exes get higher unemployment than what they made, like the rest of us do?

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  5. CW-well written, although sadly, most people are far too lazy to read and educate themselves when it's easier to swallows the soundbyte of "corporate greed puts the poor bakers out of work."

    There might have been a time (before I was hatched) that there was a need for unions, but in my lifetime they have simply served as a another tool to undermine the US economy and bring us closer to the Commuist state we're on a slide towards.

    Any doubters out there can just read the Communist Manifesto (or listen to the lyrics of John Lennon's "Imagine") and think of how many of those steps can be checked off in our recent history.

    One thing I would disagree with you on, CW, is on your response to Ms. Meadows-I believe that she should NOT trust you, that it would be better for her to pursue her curiosity and seek out more facts on her own.

    Only if Americans wake up to the truth by self education is there any hope fo salving what is left of the gift our founding fathers gave us.

    Larry

    "Don't blame me-
    I wrote in Ron Paul...AGAIN"

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    1. I KNEW I shoulda put the "wink" next to "trust me..." But jo-anne already knows that.

      Thank you for the well-written comment, my friend.

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  6. Cwm:
    Excellent post imbued with all the FACTS we need to know.
    Thank you for presenting them.

    As for "trusting you"?
    Hell, why NOT?
    You're NOT from the governemnt, right?
    That's the first BEST reason right there.

    But it's OK to (as Reagan once said) Trust...but VERIFY.

    I snagged a bag of DONETTES this week, and I agree that greedy UNIONS jacked the price of Hostess UP over Little Debbie and Mrs. Freshley.

    Here's a chance to see TASTYKAKE (Philly) move into the area...if they're SMART.

    Nor can you get DRAKE'S CAKES (Wayne, NJ)...hostess owned them and SHUT THEM DOWN.
    ALl for an 8% raise in pay...
    Now they have a 100% REDUCTION in pay...nice one, morons!

    Time for the SMALL companies to STEP UP.

    Stay safe (and factual) up there.

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    1. "Mrs. Freshley"?

      Some companies shoot themselves in the foot right of the bat! (AKA "with a name like THAT...")

      Remember when ding songs came out? The first ads had Mom holding up the foil-wrapped goodie and ringing it like a bell.

      Then Hostess went the "animated character" way with Twinkie the Kid, et al, and Ding dongs became King Dongs so they could have a little round chocolate King character.

      Soon, somebody must have thought "King DONGS" to be rude and crude, and for a short time they were King DONS".

      By then, the whole character thing had died off and it was back to ding dongs.

      It was the same way with Mc Donalds. Remember the "Evil Grimace?" He had six arms and stole shakes. Then he lost the "evil", along with two arms and his "pockets" for hiding his stolen shakes, and became another goofy pal of Ronald's.

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  7. Sorry CW-new follower (thanks to a plug from Stephen T. McCarthy) so I didn't get the silent wink!

    Another thought struck me-eating fewer Twinkies is actually an intelligent move (from a diet perspective)-who knew Americans had it in us?

    Larry

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    1. Check the prices on eBay and see if you think we're smart!

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