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Good day, hope you're enjoying nice weather in your suburban Dallas office suites.

Dallas? What the hell are you doing in Texas? I realize it was before your watch (which has been rather short) but Hostess sold off their Dallas bakery and pulled out of Texas years ago. But I understand... A previous management team that wandered over from Pepsi across town wanted to stay close to home, and no doubt nurture Hostess and Pepsi's long unconsummated lust for each other. The sole offspring of that affair were a tacky Pepsi display with a spot on the top sized for Hostess sweet goods and your palatial upper floor suite of glass walled offices in swank Irving. Sorry to burst your bubble, but Pepsi has moved on and doesn't want you anymore, and being in bankruptcy you can get out of that expensive lease easily. And yes, it's fun to look out those floor to ceiling windows and pretend that you're financial "masters of the universe"... But truth is that Hostess has about a week to live on it's current course. So if you don't do anything more usefull today, please grab as many boxes as needed and start cleaning out your desk. Having reportedly outsourced to the Philippines much of the real work at Hostess real HQ in Kansas City, there should be plenty of space for you there. Of course, you'll have to deal with folks with darker skin tones in KC than you're accustomed to in tony Irving, but if you can't handle that you can join the thousands of Hostess workers you laid off on the unemployment line.

But if you'd like to do something more useful, you might want to get back to running Hostess Brands. I mean, the company is a mess... Sure, you've got trucks running all over the country today pretending you're still in business. But those bakery trucks are pretty much empty, and many will bring back more stale unsold bread than they delivered fresh bread. And while you managed to gather enough scabs and supervisors and temps to bake a bit of bread, there not doing too well at it... Might help to at least get the right breads in the right bags! BTW, if you insist on this fantasy of trying to run a bankrupt bakery with it's bakers on strike, if you dig around you might find an "idiot's guide" to running a bakery in the form of the operations manuals buried in the offices of your abandoned bakeries. The one that gives the Hostess SOP for strikebreaking makes especially humorous reading, but you execs are doing so badly at this strikebreaking stuff you could probably learn a bit from it.

Of course, it'd probably make more sense for you to at least talk to those thousands of folks who are currently marching around your bakeries with "on strike" signs, your bakers. Dang, there angry... At the Billings bakery they told the media that Hostess is so mismanaged that they would prefer the bakery be liquidated because any new owners would be an improvement, and at another of your bakeries they've got a coffin with "Hostess" written on it. Yup, the baker's jobs have gotten so bad under your and previous management's tenures that liquidation with possible permanent job losses are a viable option. So while you're cleaning out your desk, you might want to call the bakers union and maybe make some concessions like telling the bakers what plants will be closing and when, retraining laid off bakers to fill the 600 plus open jobs Hostess has posted, and committing to getting paid up on Hostess' pension payments. When you get done with that, you can fire your PR company that hasn't put out a release since friday while twenty more bakeries went down. Then call up your bankruptcy attorneys and tell them Hostess won't be paying their $14,000,000 and counting bill... 'Specially 'cause they've been tearing up union contracts but strategically ignoring expensive and unnecessary leases on offices like yours. Same for all the other leases on property Hostess has no use for... I mean, does little Waterloo, Iowa really need four Hostess facilities?

But hey, who am I to tell you what to do with your two billion dollar and dwindling corporation? Heck, I'm just an old retiree, who like most of your bakers and delivery drivers, knows Hostess better than you do. So just enjoy that panoramic view out the window and all the perks while packing your golden parachute. In a couple months the unlawful detainers will be served, and the sheriff will come and escort you off the premises. In the meantime, might want to get started on cleaning out your desk... The sheriff usually only gives you five minutes.

Originally posted to RuralRoute on Mon Nov 12, 2012 at 09:43 AM PST.

Also republished by In Support of Labor and Unions.

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