Unions: ‘As dead as a Ding-Dong’?

The latest to fall victim to unions? The Twinkie. Hostess, the maker of the iconic Twinkie, announced it is filing for bankruptcy after unions rejected the company’s reduced union benefits proposal.

In short, the unions wouldn’t blinkie. Goodbye, Twinkie. James Sherk, a senior policy analyst at the Heritage Foundation, explains it this way.

[Unions] make companies less nimble, less competitive. A unionized firm takes longer to respond to changing market conditions. It has to negotiate any changes with the union, and unions are not always reasonable. So unionized companies invest less, make less, and create fewer jobs than non-union firms. Over time they wither away.

Union membership is shrinking as the damage they do to businesses and employees becomes increasingly clear. Unions have responded by trying to make it harder to refuse their services. As Sherk concludes,

These changes would only make union organizing easier. They would not make unionizing a better deal for workers. The union movement won’t recover until it gets a new business model — one that actually helps companies and workers compete in the marketplace. Few workers want to make their company as dead as a Ding-Dong.

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  • A_frightened_American

    One question: How is it considered fair or right that while workers were being asked to accept a pay cut of 30%, Hostess executives were taking salary increases averaging about 300%?

    The CEO was being paid $100,000 PER MONTH and others were being paid between $400,000 and $700,000 per year.

    You accuse the union of destroying the company. How can you accept that as a valid premise? It looks to me as if it was the executives’ greed that did it.

    I really would appreciate an answer.

    • thinkr2

      OK, this is late and maybe you will never see it, but maybe someone else will.

      Let’s assume that the top four execs made 3 million a year between them. If they worked for FREE and ALL that money went to employees, it would make less than $14 a MONTH difference for each employee. That’s TWELVE CENTS an HOUR.

      Hostess execs may have been greedy, I don’t know. It is hard to get someone to run a company of almost 20,000 people without paying them at least comparable to what they would get elsewhere. The board of directors can’t just hire a couple of recent college grads if they want to keep THEIR jobs.

      COMPARED to what the union benefits AND INEFFICIENCIES cost Hostess, 3 million is chump change. If union wages at the time were 50% higher than non-union workers would work for, then Hostess workers were OVERPAID and SHOULD have taken a cut IF THEY WANTED TO KEEP THEIR JOBS. That was likely the case.

      Assuming that the average wage at Hostess was the national median (who knows? It’s reasonable) then Hostess’s yearly cost for wages was over a billion dollars. If non-union workers (or the union workers) would work for a third less, Hostess could have saved over 320 MILLION dollars a year. How does that compare to 3 million?

      Can you see that the executive’s greed was NOTHING in comparison to the union’s greed?

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