Saturday, November 17, 2012

No More Twinkies, But At Least The Union Survived Intact...

I've said it before, and it bears repeating: Unions exist to ensure that complete, mouth-breathing, knuckle-dragging, addle-brained doofuses can manage to get and keep overpaid, underworked jobs that their feeble abilities to simply breathe, eat, shit and occupy a particular and unique point in space and time would otherwise make them unqualified for.

Union Big: Hostess out of business, but this only proves the union's power and resolve.

Because, let's face it: it all would have been for nothing if people had kept their jobs in this time of great economic uncertainty and rising prices, only to see the union get busted in the process. That would have been a fucking tragedy.

I'm sure all of those people who are now without a job are so happy they could shit, because that's exactly what they were talked into going on strike for in the first place: to save the union.

You have to love this next bit, which comes from a supposedly professional economist: If you ever wanted to know why economics seems such a convoluted, complicated and apparently contrary subject, this is why: most economists are dumber than dogshit. Here's your proof:
The union’s willingness to go down with the sinking ship — and in some cases take credit for sinking it — in the Hostess case may prove to corporate investors that the working class must be reckoned with, said University of Southern Maine economist and labor relations expert Michael Hillard.
Hillard said he will be interested to see what the ripple effect of the Hostess bankruptcy will have for labor relations nationwide, as the combustion comes on the heels of scattered Republican-led efforts to weaken unions through state laws, not to mention a steady decline in leverage in the 30 years since then-President Ronald Reagan fired more than 11,000 striking air traffic controllers.
Right, because legally striking bakers and illegally striking air traffic controllers are apples and apples. As for the  'ripple effect', let me go out on a limb here and make a prediction:
Even MORE companies with recalcitrant unions who won't renegotiate gold-plated benefits packages that are economically suspect will challenge their workers to go on strike, then use bankruptcy protection and proceedings to get what they need, and fuck the union douches standing on the picket line. This isn't about Labor and management past a certain point: it's about survival as a viable enterprise.
The MBA's understand this, apparently the union bigwigs don't. Now they're (the union douchebags) furiously trying to sell a decision which potentially costs 18,000 Americans their jobs (not that it matters: the union already collected their dues and spent them on getting Obama elected) as some sort of VE Day for organized labor. Good luck with that one.
Dipshit Economist then goes on to say this:
“You’ve seen ownership practices for any kind of large scale manufacturing operation replaced by this short term financial mentality, that’s come largely from Wall Street, and looking at companies less as enterprises than as bundles of assets that can be moved around a chessboard,” Hillard said. “They’re operating with the idea that you can always squeeze more — squeeze more out of operations, squeeze more out of labor, squeeze more out of distribution, just find any way to get more profit.
“The idea that this is how you run a healthy economy is a question, and so who’s standing up to this? Labor unions are one of the ways people have to make their concerns known about the economic conditions in our world,” he continued.
Yeah. I'm certain the union had it's non-unionized brethren in China, Indonesia and Bangladesh forefront in their thoughts when they pulled this stunt. In case no one ever told the unions, or the economist, businesses have always sought to cut costs as a means of sustaining profits and improving operations. The biggest expenses, though, that a business faces is labor and benefits costs, and therefore, those are the things that go under the knife first, and most often.
Why do you think automation exists?
I wonder, would either the union or this insane economist who apparently knows nothing about his subject, be saying the same things today about the power of the union, and it's success in destroying Hostess if, for example, the union simply ate the concessions as a matter of goodwill and spared 18,000 the unemployment line?
Fuck no. They'd simply be using that as leverage in the next round of negotiations, when one hopes, the economic picture improves and profits are up. The point is never to see to the actual needs or rights of the workers (that function has largely been usurped by the legal system and the state/federal governments) it's always about maximizing the revenues to the union, revenues which are later used to buy politicians, and keep most union execs living a lifestyle not that far removed from the Fat Cats they claim to despise.
Eighteen thousand people no longer have a job this morning, but the President of their union is still living in a tony suburb, eating steak three times a week, and has only the finest booze, silk pajamas, cars and hookers at his fingertips, I'll wager.
This was never about saving anyone's benefits: it was always about keeping the union on life support. The results in this situation speak for themselves.
I now wonder if 18,000 bakers would be able to organize their own bread line?

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