Ding Dongs

Because simply calling them “economic illiterates” doesn’t quite get the point across harshly enough.

When the freaking Teamsters agree with management and accept concessions, shouldn’t that be an indication that hey, this is kind of serious?

Something like this happened with Eastern Airlines back in the late ’80s. Despite having their mechanic’s union steward holding a seat on the board of directors, it still didn’t satisfy them. If anything, their leadership used that privilege to just create more hate, discontent, and chaos. Labor strife got so intense that, near the end, company chairman (and Apollo 8 CDR) Frank Borman reportedly carried a concealed pistol in an ankle holster.

The end result? One union eventually drove a once-great airline into the ground. On purpose, to prove a point; never mind their thousands of colleagues who had no say in the matter and were dragged down with them.

I can’t imagine the fury such people at Hostess must be feeling right now. Why couldn’t anyone understand that 80 or 90% of something is far better than 0% of something? Take the deal, suck it up, and use the time you just bought to find a better job. And if you can’t find a better gig, be patient. Life sucks for a lot of people these days and it ain’t about to get any better.

The only explanation for this kind of behavior is greed, bound to a sense of entitlement, with a healthy dose of economic ignorance. I’ve never understood this notion that businesses are just sitting on enormous piles of cash with no better purpose.

Maybe they are, maybe they aren’t. Either way, it’s not like there aren’t other obligations. Just because a company has cash reserves doesn’t mean they should hand over all of it to their employees. What happens if they have a bad year? You’d kind of want those reserves on hand to cover your bills – which includes making payroll.

In other words, it’s the same principle we should all be using to manage our personal finances. If I get a raise (cough, hack…’scuse me, gagged on something there), it doesn’t mean my kids are suddenly going to see a big increase in their allowance. And I love my kids a whole lot more than our employers love us.

Let’s face it: work sucks. That’s why it’s called “work” and not “fun”. Sometimes we’re fortunate enough to land at good companies with good leadership; sometimes we’re working for the pointy-haired boss in the Dilbert comic. I’ve had both, and have never comprehended the strike mentality that tries so hard to squeeze more blood from the stone. If your gig blows that bad, then find another.

Perhaps I’m too harsh, but my heart goes out to the innocent bystanders in this mess. That includes the Hostess employees who were just cast into financial turmoil by a few boneheaded coworkers, and the rest of us who are now well and truly screwed when the zombie apocalypse finally arrives:

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