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Hostess files for bankruptcy again.


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#61 Thekrakrabbit

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Posted 17 November 2012 - 05:13 AM

Well now that is just obsurd.

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#62 Ced

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Posted 17 November 2012 - 06:20 AM

Golden parachutes indeed.

#63 Rogueleader17

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Posted 17 November 2012 - 07:09 AM

Well just put 3 boxes up on ebay to help pay for this black friday, thank goodness our grocery store hoarded some in the back for me. I personally don't care for them, thier Fruit pies will be missed though.

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#64 bardockkun

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Posted 17 November 2012 - 09:25 AM

The real question is, how can superheroes stop super villains now without Hostess?! This is how the goddamn world ends! With C-level villains fucking up our towns and heroes powerless to stop them without the rich flaky crust and fruit filling of Hostess Fruit Pies!
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#65 dafoomie

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Posted 17 November 2012 - 11:03 AM

This thread was started in the beginning of this year and the company filed for bankruptcy more than twice over the last few years. The state of the company isn't a result of this one event, but a long string of them. I'm not the one treating this event as if it occurred in a vacuum here. Pensions are gone and and they already took a pay cut.

And are both parties equally responsible for the state of the company? I didn't realize that the average employee on the floor had any input on how to run the company.:roll:

The only one giving themself a prostate exam is you. Management!=managers.

How fucked do you think the people that make the real decisions that sunk the company are? You think they give a Fuck about some guy on the assembly line? Liquidating the company obviously shows that they don't when these types of situations are already accounted for in becoming a corporate executive. Golden parachutes aren't a myth, but standard business practice.

Dude, even the Teamsters are mad as hell at the bakers union.
http://www.teamster....ot-vote-hostess
http://www.teamster....ouncement-cease

Teamster Hostess members and all Hostess employees should know this is not an empty threat or a negotiating tactic, but the certain outcome if members of the BCTGM continue to strike. This is based on conversations with our financial experts, who, because the Teamsters were involved in the legal process, had access to financial information about the company.

As stated previously, Teamster Hostess members have been frustrated by numerous missteps by a variety of Hostess management teams, but the union has tried to engage constructively to find a solution to preserve jobs. That comprehensive engagement has spanned 18 months.

The Teamsters chose to challenge the company’s path of a worker-only solution, engage constructively so other constituents would be sacrificing and require management changes and oversight so that the same missteps would not be repeated.

The BCTGM chose a different path, as is their prerogative, to not substantively look for a solution or engage in the process. 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.

On Friday, Nov. 9, the BCTGM began to strike at some Hostess production facilities without notice to the Teamsters despite assurances they would not proceed with job actions without contacting the Teamsters Union. This unannounced action put Teamster members in the difficult position of facing picket lines without knowing their right to honor such a line without being disciplined.

As is our longstanding tradition, Teamster members by and large are honoring Bakery Worker picket lines when encountered and complying with their contractual obligations when not encountering picket lines. The BCTGM leaders are putting Teamster members in a horrible position – asking them to support a strike that will put them out of a job when they haven’t even asked all their members to go on strike.

That strike is now on the verge of forcing the company to liquidate – it is difficult for Teamster members to believe that is what the BCTGM Hostess members ultimately wanted to accomplish when they went out on strike. We may never know unless the BCTGM members, based on the facts they know today, get to determine their fate in a secret ballot vote. Teamster members would understand that the will of the BCTGM Hostess membership was truly heard if that was the case.

They weren't responsible for the company's problems but the Teamsters got involved in the process and protected their members by holding management accountable AND by making concessions to keep the company going. The bakers union not only was never involved, not only rejected the last offer but even chose to strike, to kill their company and cost 18,000 jobs. By voice vote! That's horrible representation by that union, they've done a complete disservice to their members.

I'm a union member and I've been in this position. You have to consider the health of the company in any negotiation, no matter whose fault it is, or in the end there are no jobs.

#66 mtxbass1

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Posted 17 November 2012 - 03:27 PM

It depends on the reason as to how they went into the red. I already told you I'm not interested in buying a bridge if you're telling me that it was labor costs. I don't buy their line about being "under capacity" either when investment capital firms tend to load companies like this with debt to pay themselves.

Nope, it wasn't labor costs, even though nearly all of the 18,500 workers were Union workers.

http://articles.busi...etirement-funds

It couldn't have been the near 2 BILLION DOLLAR obligations demanded by Union pension plans, could it?

Several!=every union employee. If your acquaintances can't get a job making that much in any given field, that's a problem with the industry they're trying to get into as well as the overall job market; not what a few bakers are paid.


This is more than a few bakers when nearly all of the workers at this company were Union employees. See above.


And if you admit that the average worker has little(lolz) to no input on how a company functions, how the Fuck is their union responsible in any way?

Gee, maybe because the union had a clear path here to keep 18,500 people employed? Maybe because the union itself chose to ignore that hostess said they would close the company down? I'd say the union is directly responsible there.

The larger individual investors have already taken their profits by the time something like this goes down. Corporate executives/officers/assholes are no longer concerned about profits when they're already cashing in their chips. Even if those fuckers can't get another job, and they always do even if they sink a company, do you think they'll be in the same straits as the average worker? The only investors left are the smaller ones still affiliated with the groups that were left holding the bag.

You really have no idea how this works. No one has made a profit here yet. The assets have not been sold off, and the first people who would make a profit are the capitol investors. Shareholders get any cut remaining after that. "assholes" as you put it, will likely get nothing.

The assholes don't give a shit about a pink slip, so obviously why would they give a Fuck about giving everyone else one? Their goal wasn't to turn Hostess into a profitable enterprise because if they were, they would've hired scabs like every other industry instead of closing up shop. And you have the nerve to call ME naive?


Absolutely I do. This company has been in trouble for almost 10 years now. They came out of bankruptcy once, saw the problems on the horizon, then set an ultimatum with the union. The union stood their ground and lost.


Really? Cause I see a lot of union blaming and corporate apologism.

Really? So this is the only time they were offered a pay cut and didn't take it? You might want to double check how much you think you know about the companies history. A time warp back to 2009 might help you with that hole in your memory.

Apologism? What part of BOTH parties are responsible do you not understand? Management was and is a part of the problem here. The union however does not just get a free pass. The union had options. They chose to ignore those options. The company shut down.

And if the company didn't load itself with debt over the course of several years, this wouldn't have been an issue at all. But thanks for filling us in on the "big" picture.

Again, read the article I posted above. The company saddled itself with 2 billion dollars worth of UNION PENSION liabilities.

Honest question. Why are you so outraged over this? Your dad a union worker? You have family that are union members? Did some big bad corporation wrong you in some way? Businesses live and die daily based on management decisions. Hostess was a shitty company that deserved everything that came to it. The unions are just as much to blame here as the management is.



#67 dohdough

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Posted 17 November 2012 - 06:11 PM

Nope, it wasn't labor costs, even though nearly all of the 18,500 workers were Union workers.

http://articles.busi...etirement-funds

It couldn't have been the near 2 BILLION DOLLAR obligations demanded by Union pension plans, could it?

You mean the one that they stopped paying months ago? That $2b is the value of the fund, not their contributions to it.

This is more than a few bakers when nearly all of the workers at this company were Union employees. See above.

So now you shifted from a few bakers to all employees making $73k a year?

Gee, maybe because the union had a clear path here to keep 18,500 people employed? Maybe because the union itself chose to ignore that hostess said they would close the company down? I'd say the union is directly responsible there.

Funny, I thought you said that the corporate executives were more to blame for this and now the union is more responsible?

You really have no idea how this works. No one has made a profit here yet. The assets have not been sold off, and the first people who would make a profit are the capitol investors. Shareholders get any cut remaining after that. "assholes" as you put it, will likely get nothing.

*sigh* Large investment firms are a union(lolz) of hedge funds, individual investors, and other capital firms of various sizes of contributions and therefore, have different levels of equity in the debt and influence. Disaster capital firms don't make their money by seeing a company succeed, but by extracting fees. If they make the company work, then good. If not, then they got paid anyways because they're not gambling with their own money. The individual members of the investment firms can pretty much cash out before the bubble completely bursts and see profit because not everyone is paying the same price or even market value for the debt and those players are already gone. The only ones holding the bag are the ones that didn't have enough leverage to get out in time.

I mean shit, Gordon Gecko pretty much outlined this in Wall Street and shit like this was covered non-stop during the last election cycle with Bain Capital. But please go on about how I have no idea how investment firms that deal in troubled companies work. Are you going to tell me that every person that invested in FB's IPO took a bath too? That's a trick question btw.

Absolutely I do. This company has been in trouble for almost 10 years now. They came out of bankruptcy once, saw the problems on the horizon, then set an ultimatum with the union. The union stood their ground and lost.

And this has nothing to do with my point about the assholes that gave themselves 80-300% raises to turn Hostess into a profitable company.

Apologism? What part of BOTH parties are responsible do you not understand? Management was and is a part of the problem here. The union however does not just get a free pass. The union had options. They chose to ignore those options. The company shut down.

Again, read the article I posted above. The company saddled itself with 2 billion dollars worth of UNION PENSION liabilities.

Of which they stopped paying and are actually part of a union(lolz) of corporations that spread the burden of pension payments that they had already stopped paying.

Honest question. Why are you so outraged over this? Your dad a union worker? You have family that are union members? Did some big bad corporation wrong you in some way? Businesses live and die daily based on management decisions. Hostess was a shitty company that deserved everything that came to it. The unions are just as much to blame here as the management is.

Do I have to be a rape victim or know someone who was raped to talk about how bad rape is? Do I have to be black to talk about how bad racism against black people are? Do I have to be in a wheelchair to talk about how hard it is to be in a wheelchair? But no, let's make this about me and not the issue.

Again, if businesses live and die by management decisions, how the Fuck are the unions just as much to blame here when they're not the ones making those decisions? And you say this AFTER you've gone back an forth on the level of blame you've placed on the unions IN THIS POST ALONE, while saying in another post that you weren't making it 50/50.

You can't even be consistent in one goddamn post, but keep doing the mental acrobatics on placing blame according to your mood. I find it hilarious.

#68 shady859

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 12:13 AM

Not touching the union talk but as a Kellogg employee my first thought when I heard the news was hmmm I wonder if we'll buy them.. Fast forward to now my mom called and asked if I could find her some Twinkies up here where I live. Told me to check Ebay and wow $20 a 10 pack looks the going rate! I bought a 3 pack of Zingers (SUPERIOR) at the gas station today with my coffee and Twinkees were on the shelf as well. Guess i'll go buy what they have and get a odd look from the Indian dude there.... I did notice the endcap at Kroger where they keep cakes was totally empty today but blamed it on the store being remodeled.

#69 Invicta 61

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 02:23 AM

Fuckin' Twinkie hoarders!
Bah weep granah weep nini bong.

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#70 lokizz

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 02:39 AM

on the next episode of twinkie hoarders.....seriously though i want to get some of those pies before they run out the fucking cherry pie is the shit.

#71 Invicta 61

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 02:58 AM

I was partial to the apple pie but cherry was pretty tasty too. Hell, I had a hard time finding them this past summer let alone now.

Maybe I can bribe a convenience store employee to sell me a box of them shits from the back room.
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#72 detectiveconan16

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 03:39 PM

Those jackbooted Union thugs! They are the cause to all of this as those poor executives could barely get their golden parachutes! http://thinkprogress...fall/?mobile=nc

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#73 soulvengeance

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 10:05 PM

Those jackbooted Union thugs! They are the cause to all of this as those poor executives could barely get their golden parachutes! http://thinkprogress...fall/?mobile=nc


This is what I'm talking about. Okay, maybe the union could have been more willing to deal, but would you want to deal when you see this?
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#74 SynGamer

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 10:25 PM

This is what I'm talking about. Okay, maybe the union could have been more willing to deal, but would you want to deal when you see this?


For a company that has $2.5 billion in sales annually, the CEO compensation is actually quite low. I'm not saying it's right, just saying...

That said, the company warned that it would shut down if they striked, and the company stuck to it's word. So again, the union has only themselves to blame for the loss of 18,500 jobs. I'm sure many of the employees are now thinking it might have been smarter to continue negotiating...

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#75 Yagami

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 11:31 PM

local Target was cleared out of stuff like I expected,

Except for mini muffins. I love the masses. Rush to hoarde twinkies and leave me the best Hostess item, blueberry mini muffins!

#76 RedvsBlue

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 12:11 AM

http://www.dailykos....Hostess-Bankery

Remember how I said I made $48,000 in 2005 ad $34,000 last year? I would make $25,000 in 5 years if I took their offer. It will be hard to replace the job I had, but it will be easy to replace the job they were trying to give me. That $3+ per hour they steal totaled $50 million last year that they never paid us. They sold $2.5 BILLION in product last year. If they can't make this profitable without stealing my money then good riddance.



#77 mykevermin

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 12:54 AM

CEO compensation is actually quite low...

...the union has only themselves to blame for the loss of 18,500 jobs...


Tell me, do you actually get paid to be a lapdog for the plutocracy, or do you do it for free? If the latter, can you deduct your labor on your taxes? Because it would be ironic if you couldn't.
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#78 soulvengeance

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 01:11 AM

For a company that has $2.5 billion in sales annually, the CEO compensation is actually quite low. I'm not saying it's right, just saying...

That said, the company warned that it would shut down if they striked, and the company stuck to it's word. So again, the union has only themselves to blame for the loss of 18,500 jobs. I'm sure many of the employees are now thinking it might have been smarter to continue negotiating...


I think they were overpaid since they didn't do their job, yet they gave themselves a raise. How exactly does that work? Current CEO compensation is completely opposite of how things should work.
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Calls this what you may, but I would say that Blacks actually benefited from the slavery. Comparing the current lives of many African Americans to Africans, one can see that the former live in much better conditions with greater freedoms and opportunities.


#79 SynGamer

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 02:09 AM

Tell me, do you actually get paid to be a lapdog for the plutocracy, or do you do it for free? If the latter, can you deduct your labor on your taxes? Because it would be ironic if you couldn't.


I have a problem with factory workers making $34,000+ a year when it's an unskilled labor job. The way I look at this, it's pretty black and white; the company said they would shut down if the union strikes. The union strikes and the company shuts down. The blame can be placed on the company for being a financial mess, but ultimately the union decided their own fate.

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#80 mykevermin

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 02:28 AM

I have a problem with factory workers making $34,000+ a year


wow.

wow.

wow.

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#81 RedvsBlue

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 03:36 AM

I think they were overpaid since they didn't do their job, yet they gave themselves a raise. How exactly does that work? Current CEO compensation is completely opposite of how things should work.


Corporations have become nothing more than a small group of wealthy patting each other on the back. CEOs used to be accountable to a board of directors yet now they are often CEO and chairman of the board destroying any accountability for the position of CEO (effectively making themselves partially their own boss...). Even still those same CEOs are then likely to also be board members in other companies thus giving them incentive to give those CEOs ridiculous salaries because they'll return the favor when the roles are reversed. The board is supposed to serve at the leisure of the shareholders but often that just isn't the case.

It'll likely never happen but I'd love to see 2 reforms which would be to prohibit CEOs from being able to serve on either their own board of directors (until after their retirement as CEO) and from being able to serve on the board of directors for other corporations. You don't see anyone serving as Governor for one state and President of the United States, do you? Why should corporations be different?

The biggest reform I'd like to see is limiting CEO compensation but that's an even bigger uphill battle. At one time I believed the Republican rhetoric that this is anti-capitalism but it's a protection for shareholders that shouldn't be seen as any different than any other SEC requirements.

wow.

wow.

wow.

Shorter SynGamer: bring back sharecropping, bring back the truck system. embrace the new aristocracy, kiss their feet for the gruel you're being served.


Methinks SynGamer is either A) still in high school or B) so completely out of touch with the real world that he actually thinks $34,000 is a high annual income (particularly if you have any children at all).

#82 dafoomie

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 03:59 AM

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/11/18/1162786/-Inside-the-Hostess-Bankery

You don't have a problem with this attitude? 'I don't want to take a pay cut, so instead of quitting, I will take an action that will end the company, end my job and the jobs of 18,000 other people even though our union only represents 5,000 of them and most of the rest wanted to keep their jobs even with the pay cut.'

This is the murder-suicide mentality.

#83 mykevermin

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 04:13 AM

Let's cut your wages in half and see how long you stick around your job.
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#84 Clak

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 04:17 AM

No union decides the fate of the company, only those running the company control it's fate. They (the company) put themselves in a position where they could not meet the demands of the union and still operate, so they closed down. Any other number of things could have put them out of business, and they were doing badly before any of this.

But no, it's always the fault of the union. You gotta have some kind of scapegoat.

#85 dafoomie

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 04:24 AM

Let's cut your wages in half and see how long you stick around your job.

Where did we disagree again? I'd find another job. I would not admonish him for quitting. But I would not try to take the entire company down with me.

He doesn't understand why he needs to take a pay cut when his company's annual gross revenue is 2.4 billion? He clearly doesn't understand the business model. That entire industry operates on the tiniest of profit margins, in the best of times they would not make 1/10th of that in profit. They've been a very poorly run company in the past, they're facing a market that is shifting away from them, they have a massive debt load that they need to service every year and they have 2 billion in unfunded pension liabilities. So yes, whether he understood it or not, he and everyone else needed to take a haircut in order for the company to continue operating. Their one union was not going to get a better deal than the rest.

#86 RedvsBlue

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 04:31 AM

Where did we disagree again? I'd find another job. I would not admonish him for quitting. But I would not try to take the entire company down with me.

He doesn't understand why he needs to take a pay cut when his company's annual gross revenue is 2.4 billion? He clearly doesn't understand the business model. That entire industry operates on the tiniest of profit margins, in the best of times they would not make 1/10th of that in profit. They've been a very poorly run company in the past, they're facing a market that is shifting away from them, they have a massive debt load that they need to service every year and they have 2 billion in unfunded pension liabilities. So yes, whether he understood it or not, he and everyone else needed to take a haircut in order for the company to continue operating. Their one union was not going to get a better deal than the rest.


His CEO didn't take a 50% pay cut (and instead got a pay increase earlier this year), why should any of the factory workers have the bear the brunt of poor managing decisions of the CEO?

#87 dafoomie

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 04:42 AM

His CEO didn't take a 50% pay cut (and instead got a pay increase earlier this year), why should any of the factory workers have the bear the brunt of poor managing decisions of the CEO?

Why should only the bakers union make no further concessions when the other 11 unions are all taking a major haircut in order to preserve jobs?

Why did this union never get directly involved in the process as the Teamsters did? They had a seat at the table through bankruptcy court, they had all of the company's internal financials, vetted them with their own people and determined that concessions were necessary for the company to survive. The bakers union declined to get involved, haven't been in contact with the company in over a month and made no demands before declaring a strike. They waited until the last possible minute to derail what was thought to be almost a done deal and they stabbed the Teamsters in the back.

The unions were to get 2 seats out of the 9 on the board of directors and own 25% of the company.

#88 mykevermin

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 05:01 AM

Where did we disagree again? I'd find another job. I would not admonish him for quitting. But I would not try to take the entire company down with me.


This mindset is the kind that would think it was the sole responsibility of the last ARM-financed house to go underwater caused the entire financial collapse of 2007-2008.

8 years removed from a prior bankruptcy restructuring, continuing to *increase* executive pay during that time, diminishing laborer pay, and continuing to run in the red are the problems. The union strike did not end the business - every bit of prior mismanagement that preceded the strike did, the abhorrent demands of executives did, and the DECISION to close the company following the strike ended the company. The strike helped push the final nail in the coffin of a long dead (but still fresh, if rumors are to be believed) corpse of a company - but the DECISION (since you like to talk about decisions made, I type in all caps because the company could still make the DECISION to not close) was made by the executives.

The company's poor business decisions, made by those in suits whose pay increased, caused the company's collapse. The failure to do...oh, I don't know, offer gluten-free products, use whole wheat flour, eliminate HFCS and substitute legitimate sugar...the failure to innovate by Hostess left them in a market that didn't want to buy (contrary to my own assumptions about consumer preferences) mass produced bullshit snacks. Here in PA, Tastykake has had its own problems throughout the last several years.

At any rate, the bakers, the teamsters - the *labor* side of Hostess did not cause the problems of the company. Poor management and a lack of innovation (side note: isn't the profit motive supposed to stoke innovation? what of poor Hostess, then?) doomed the company. Yet those who mismanaged the company left with raises as high as 300% acquired *this year* - if only to really twist the "fuck all y'all, I'm'a get mine and then bail this sinking ship" knife of corporate America - they are the ones who caused the company to fail. They put the company in the condition where it could not fulfill its obligations.

The inability to pay its pensions is the company's problem, not the unions. You pay your bills. You don't pay the companies that supply the ingredients to make twinkie creme filling, do you blame the suppliers if they halt deliveries on those ingredients? Yet you would blame the laborers for (a) negotiating wages and benefits, and then (b) expecting delivery of those wages and benefits.

Payment for services rendered is what the laborers expect, just like any other participant in a market economy. Yet you point your finger at them and say "you made this happen." That's shameful.

You seem to see this scenario as cutting one's nose off to spite one's face. Except the nose in this case is the root cause of all the problems of the company.

You show me that baking quality led to declining sales, or that production levels could not meet demand, therefore sales declined - okay, then you can blame the bakers. But until you can show that the company's mismanagement for well over a decade has *anything* to do with the bakers, your arguments have zero merit except when you admit that you desire to see a new working underclass in American society to serve the plutocrats. You won't be happy until you see all manual labor making $4/day so the three martini lunch brigade can afford a new bespoke suit for the coming weekend parties.

In the end, who's to say the executives won't take their newfound riches and enter into a new company as venture capitalists, and buy the assets, not be on the hook for the debt or pensions, and now start a business paying people $7.25 an hour to bake (and then we can complain about how the poor leech off of us when they qualify for medicaid and EBT)? Highly improbable, but certainly possible.
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#89 dafoomie

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 06:14 AM

tl;dr

My argument is not that anything other than poor management is responsible for Hostess's position, or that unions are responsible for their demise. It is that these bakers union members were very poorly led and represented by their leadership, which led to the worst case scenario for all parties involved. The intention of the rank and file members could not have been to end the company by striking, but anyone familiar with the internals knew that was exactly the position they were in. Other unions took a proactive role in determining what cuts were necessary and how management would be held accountable, the bakers did none of that.

The Teamsters acted exactly as a union should, to protect the best interests of its members to the extent possible. They did everything in their power towards that end.

Edited by dafoomie, 19 November 2012 - 06:35 AM.


#90 RealDeals

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 06:25 AM

Hear me out here; Twinkies as the new gold standard. (They already are to millions of obese children!) Your body decays before a Twinkie would, and they're versatile in that if the economy ever tanks completely you can literally eat your life-savings. Also, I want the value of stocks relayed to me in terms of a frosting-filled pastry.
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I need power to come back on! I still need to spend $10 or so to get my $20. Stupid hurricane Sandy Vagina!

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