Reflections on Hostess

Well, we didn’t get there soon enough — not a Twinkie was in sight by the time we reached the Hostess outlet this morning.

The parking lot was full, and the store had plenty of people, but not much merchandise. Seems a lot of people had the same idea, to see what was available before it was all gone.

No sales, and why should they, when everyone seemed willing to buy things at whatever price they had. I walked out with nothing. All the really Hostess products were gone, and the bread was regular price, and not a huge lot of that.  Cookies and stuff was there, but I didn’t usually buy that, so no need to buy it today.

And thus passes an era. But why did it pass? There are long answers and short answers, immediate causes and long term causes. Let me try a short answer on an immediate cause: Greed and self-centeredness.

When I heard the news that they were going out of business yesterday, I told Betsy, if I was a part of the 70% of the employees who agreed to concessions to keep the company open, I’d be really upset at the Bakers’ Union for losing us all our jobs.

Betsy replied that even the Teamsters told them not to strike, and if the Teamsters say no, with their reputation, you should listen.

But the Bakers Union was sure that they deserved their raise and who cares about anyone else.

Employers need to show that they care about equitable treatment of their employees if they expect long-term success.  But employees need to support the long-term health of their employers as well, if they want to keep their jobs.  The Bakers’ Union forgot that.

Our government would do well to learn from this, though I doubt they will learn the right lesson.

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