This is a lead-bottomed, thick-skulled Klanbagger. Probably the kind of a guy who loves him some deep fried twinkies. But deep-fried twinkies are not the most toxic things the Klanbaggers like to swallow. They’ve swallowed turd after turd about how those danged YEWNEUNS done KILLT their favorite food. As I knew when I heard about the shutdown, nothing could be further from the truth; Hostess has been in trouble for decades now, and while some of it is probably attributable to a loss of fondness for the product line, much more of it has been management greed and incompetence. I’ve seen all the bakery stores just disappear where I live (yes, I did indeed patronize them, for bread and hot dog buns,) and I’m also well aware of concession after concession made by unions to keep Hostess afloat.

This is what Hostess management did with those union concessions. The most amazing thing about this story is that the corporation managed to survive this long. Anyone who believes for a second that Hostess wasn’t going to do this regardless of what the unions did is just stump-dumb. They’ve been looking for ways to strip the company of every dime they can get out of it, and the union simply ended the feeding frenzy.

 

Today, Hostess Brands inc. — the company famed for its sickly sweet desert snacks like Twinkies and Sno Balls — announced they’d be shuttering after more than eighty years of production.

But while headlines have been quick to blame unions for the downfall of the company there’s actually more to the story: While the company was filing for bankruptcy, for the second time, earlier this year, it actually tripled its CEO’s pay, and increased other executives’ compensation by as much as 80 percent.

At the time, creditors warned that the decision signaled an attempt to “sidestep” bankruptcy rules, potentially as a means for trying to keep the executive at a failing company. The Confectionery, Tobacco Workers & Grain Millers International Union pointed this out in their written reaction to the news that the business is closing:

BCTGM members are well aware that as the company was preparing to file for bankruptcy earlier this year, the then CEO of Hostess was awarded a 300 percent raise (from approximately $750,000 to $2,550,000) and at least nine other top executives of the company received massive pay raises. One such executive received a pay increase from $500,000 to $900,000 and another received one taking his salary from $375,000 to $656,256.

Certainly, the company agreed to an out-sized pension debt, but the decision to pay executives more while scorning employee contracts during a bankruptcy reflects a lack of good managerial judgement.

Depends on what you mean by “managerial judgement.” I’m pretty sure that Willard would look at this and recognize exactly what has been done here. He played games like this with American corporations for years. Bleed them to death, and then carve up and sell off the carcass.

It is high time that Bankruptcy filings took into consideration the practices of management, and gave a Judge the power to fire corporate officers that engage in the stupidity that Hostess management has shown, over and over again. Their multiple bankruptcy filings have left hundreds of creditors holding the bag, from farmers to workers, and they’ve done this a few times now. Bankruptcy is a valuable tool to let a viable company facing harsh economic conditions weather the storm and be protected from vultures waiting at the door, but there needs to be more protection for good-faith suppliers and workers from vulture corporations who use bankruptcy as a way of fleecing everyone they can steal from. That Hostess has been able to do this yet again is unconscionable. The Klanbaggers, now in mourning nationwide, will, of course, never understand any of this. They “understand” whatever is spoon fed to them, in-between their fried twinkies.

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