Killed By Union Stupidity
As union chief Richard Trumpka is shooting his mouth off about the the fiscal cliff being a "manufactured crisis," a major manufacturer of the Hostess brand of bakery products is having to shut its doors. Seems a select group of its union workers have gone on strike about having to take an 8% pay cut in order to keep their jobs. I'm for letting the unions destroy themselves but also feel for the economy as a whole because of their continued greed. So it seems it is better not to have a job than take a pay cut in order to insure the survival of you company? Is that your position union workers?
Many of us grew up on Wonder Bread. I later switched to Nature's Pride because of the nutritional value of whole grained bread. Now neither will be found on store shelves. Nor will Twinkies, Ho Ho's (I have a friend who is having severe withdrawal symptoms over this one), Hostess cupcakes, Zingers, Ding Dongs and the list goes on. Now not only will we be missing some true American junk foods but our unemployment lines are increasing by 18,500 workers who cut their own throats.
Hostess this past Friday marched into federal bankruptcy court and requested permission to cease operations and sell its assets. All of its 33 bakeries and 656 distribution centers nationwide. All in the name of union greed let me add again. The union identified in the sign above represented 5,000 of those Hostess workers and is the culprit in calling for the strike that is causing the backlash we will experience. The company CEO made the following statement: "We deeply regret the necessity of today's decision, but we do not have the financial resources to weather an extended nationwide strike."
That is not to say that particular brand names will not be sold and re-marketed under a different corporate umbrella. If that is so then it will take a while for particular products to reappear. But one thing is for certain. Even if any of the products are sold and given a new startup, Hostess workers aren't going to get their jobs back. They in essence have screwed the pooch.
The bakers for the company had a 5 PM deadline this past Thursday to return to work or the company would be forced to shut down. The deadline came and went and now the company will shut down. This was the second time Hostess had filed for bankruptcy. That was this past January. It emerged from restructuring in 2009 and continued operations. This time there will be no restructuring and no jobs for the workers. Thanks again bakers union.
The Teamsters Union had accepted a new contract with reduced wages and benefits this past September. Well the Baker's union rejected the contract and the company went to the court to force a new concession contract on workers to survive. You now see the outcome of the Bakers Union's intransigence. It's called no jobs. The Teamsters Union represented about 7,500 Hostess workers and has been critical of the 5,000 member Baker's Union for calling the strike that ultimately forced the company into liquidation.
Union Ding Dongs?
The terms of what the Teamsters accepted seemed reasonable in order to allow for the survival of the enterprise. Here's what the new contract stipulated:
"The new contract cut salaries across the company by 8% in the first year of the five-year agreement. Salaries were then scheduled to bump up 3% in the next three years and 1% in the final year.
Hostess also reduced its pension obligations and its contribution to the employees' health care plan. In exchange, the company offered concessions, including a 25% equity stake for workers and the inclusion of two union representatives on an eight-member board of directors. "
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Now you need to understand that was the bottom line to continue operations. For a nine-to-fiver that might be hard to understand. But it is what it is. But it wasn't enough for the bakers of the world. So now there are 18,500 of our fellow American workers out of a job. If you expect things to get better under Obama - DON'T.
The Frog Prince
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