Friday, November 16, 2012

Tyranny of the Minority

The Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union killed Twinkie, Ho Ho's, and Ding Dongs. 33 bakeries, 565 distribution centers, approximately 5,500 delivery routes and 570 bakery outlet stores will close Tuesday, and 18,000 workers, two-thirds of whom are NON-union, are now unemployed. "Most employees who lose their jobs should be eligible for government-provided unemployment benefits," Hostess said. More wards of he state, just what is needed right now.

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NBC's Savannah Guthrie read a statement on "Today" from the bakers' union that said: “Despite Greg Rayburn’s insulting and disingenuous statements of the last several months, the truth is that Hostess workers and the union have absolutely no responsibility for the failure of this company. That responsibility rests squarely on the shoulders of the company’s decision makers.”

Rayburn responded that he had been “pretty straightforward in all the town hall meetings I’ve done at our plants to say that in this situation I think there is blame that goes around for everyone.”

He denied that the decision to shut down could be a last ditch negotiation tactic to get the union back to the table.

“It’s over,” he said. “This is it.”
It is only a myth that Twinkies will last forever, but in this case Twinkies will go on after another bakery picks up the the top selling brand name. The Union, however, may, and should, die a quick and painful death. They called the shutdown and liquidation a bluff and we all lost.

It's over. 12,000 non-union people out of a job because of 6,000 union bullies. Unions are not your friend.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Food Stamp President

Denny's Offers New Menu

John Metz operates about 40 Denny's restaurants in Florida. With full implementation of ObamaCare in January 2014 and partial implementation in January 2013, his employees' work hours will have to be reduced and a 5% surcharge added to the price of a meal to pay for the expense of the government health market takeover. The alternative is to close stores and fire workers.

Metz will hold meetings at his restaurants in December to tell employees,
"that because of Obamacare, we are going to be cutting front-of-the-house employees to under 30 hours, effective immediately. ... I think it's a terrible thing. It's ridiculous that the maximum hours we can give people is 28 hours a week instead of 40. It's going to force my employees to go out and get a second job."

Obamacare requires businesses or franchises with more than 50 workers must offer an approved insurance plan or pay a penalty of $2,000 for each full-time worker over 30 workers.

The program mandates that only employees working more than 30 hours a week are covered under their employers health insurance plan, chains like Olive Garden and Red Lobster are already considering reduced worker hours.
Metz is not anti-insurance or even anti-employer provided insurance.
His current coverage for full-time employees costs him $5,000 to $6,000 annually, he said. "Obviously, I'd love to cover all our employees under that insurance," he said, "But to pay $5,000 per employee would cost us $175,000 per restaurant, and unfortunately, most of our restaurants don't make $175,000 a year. I can't afford it."
Paul Fronstin, director of the health research program at the Employee Benefit Research Institute in Washington objects, "Instead of indirectly charging customers by raising prices, he is directly charging and making a political statement." Fine, Mr. Fronstin, but isn't that the same result - the customer pays the added expense? And why shouldn't Metz make a political statement if a stupid political policy threatens his livelihood and that of his employees?

Apple Metro and Jimmy John's restaurants have already told employees their work hours will be cut to part-time to avoid the huge ObamaCare fees and massive layoffs while Olive Garden and Red Lobster are considering the same or similar actions. Papa John's Pizza has also told shareholders earlier this week ObamaCare will cost the company 11 to 14 cents per pie, a cost that would be passed on to consumers.

Classic Obama Compromise

Obama has framed the fiscal cliff budget deal as another "my way or the highway" compromise. A week ago, Obama said,
"I am not wedded to every detail of my plan. I am open to compromise," Obama said. But, in a hint of the strife to come, he said that he still wanted to raise tax rises for the wealthiest American – a policy most Republicans in Congress vehemently oppose.

"We can't just cut our way to prosperity," the president said. "If we are serious about reducing the deficit, we have to combine spending cuts with revenue and that means asking the wealthiest Americans to pay a little more in taxes."
On the Sunday talkers, Republicans and Democrats said a deal is possible.
Republican Sen. Bob Corker suggested that getting more revenue from the country’s highest-earners should be part of the mix, but only by closing loopholes, not increasing taxes, and only if Democrats agree to cut federal spending.

"I am optimistic," Corker said on "Fox News Sunday." "I think there is the basis for the deal.”

Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said Sunday he agrees with House Republicans who steadfastly say more cuts to federal spending are needed. However, he disagreed with the idea that tax cuts result in deficit reductions and increased government revenue.
Even David Axelrod, Obama's re-election campaign adviser, said,
he was encouraged by House Speaker John Boehner signaling willingness last week to close the loopholes to help cut the deficit. “I think there are a lot of ways to skin this cat, so long as everybody comes with a positive, constructive attitude toward the task,” he said on CBS' "Face the Nation."

Today, Jay Carney, Obama's appointed spokeshole, clarified Obama's message aboard Air Force One,
that Obama “will not sign under any circumstances an extension of tax cuts for the top 2 percent of American earners. ... It is simply unacceptable to go back to policies that failed that stuck the middle class with the bill in order to give very expensive tax cuts to the wealthiest. … We can’t afford it.”
That is an Obama compromise: do it my way or no deal.

Ding Dong the Twinkie's Dead! The Union killed it.

The labor dispute between the 82-year-old Hostess company and the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union has already permanently closed 3 plants laying off 627 people. The UCTGM Union represents 1/3 of the Hostess workforce, but through union greed nearly 18,000 Hostess employees - 2/3 nonunion - will be unemployed by next week, if not by the end of today, Thursday, Nov 15, 2102.

On Wednesday, Hostess said that if enough striking workers did not return to work by 5 p.m. EST (2200 GMT) the next day, the company would on Friday ask U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Robert Drain in White Plains, New York, who oversees its Chapter 11 reorganization, for permission to shut down and sell assets. 
"We simply do not have the financial resources to survive an ongoing national strike," Hostess Chief Executive Gregory Rayburn said in a statement.
It's hard to believe this does not have anything to do with Michelle Obama's war on food, Bronco Bamma's war on corporations and his apparent desire to put everyone to the public trough.

NOTE: No, Twinkies do not last forever; they've a shelf life of about 25 days, slightly longer that other baked pastries because they do not contain dairy products. When they're gone, they're gone.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Veterans in My Family

The Dickinson family (Mom)

Owen Leroy Dickinson USN WWI, maternal Grandfather. Later, he was a deputy sheriff  recruited into the FBI where he was on the teams to chase down the gangsters Pretty Boy Floyd and Machine Gun Kelly. He joined the KKK in Oklahoma as an undercover agent. The investigation, arrests, and trials severely crippled the Klan in Oklahoma. 

Owen L. Dickinson USN WWI, maternal Grandfather. Smoked cigars, when I was 5 yrs old, I asked him to drop the long, fluffy ash in my hand. He did. It was so hot I dropped it. He laughed. Lesson learned.   

Robert Dickinson USN WWII N. Atlantic, maternal Uncle. Joined FBI after the war and investigated Mexican drug smugglers in Texas. He and his bride were killed when his plane was sabotaged and exploded over the Texas lake they intended for their honeymoon. 

Hugh Dickinson US Army Air Corps WWII, maternal uncle

Roscoe "Dick/Rick" Dickinson Pre-WWII US Maritime Service, maternal Uncle. Lied to get into the service at 14 yrs, was kicked out; joined another branch, kicked out; finally Congress passed a law to allow under-aged enlistments with parental permission.

Roscoe "Rick/Dick"Dickinson, USN WWII, Korea, Vietnam  (USS Constellation). Had he lived in an earlier time, Uncle Rick would, no doubt, have been a pirate of the Caribbean. 

The Buda family (Dad)
Steve Buda US Army WWI paternal Grandfather. Trained at Ft Custer, S. Dakota in 1918. As his  regiment was packing  for the trenches of Europe, the war ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. His first wife and twin sons died in the Spanish Influenza epidemic.

Joseph Buda USN USS Converse WWII Pacific, father. Before enlisting, he worked in metal shop in Michigan making left-handed springs for British fighter aircraft and right-handed springs for American fighter aircraft. After the Pearl Harbor attack, he joined the Navy and was assigned to Destroyers. He served on one of the first ships fitted for radar fire control and saw the first successful night actions against a larger Japanese force at the Battle of St Cape George for which the destroyer squadron awarded a Presidential Unit Citation, equal to an individual Distinguished Service Cross, Air Force Cross, or Navy Cross.

Joe Buda & Margaret Dickinson-Buda WWII Detroit (mom&dad)

Robert Buda US Army WWII, paternal Uncle. Uncle Bob served  in Texas throughout WWII and  as long as he was there, the enemy never attacked Texas. Everyone served where they needed. His daughter became an Air Force Major.

Ken USN USS Constellation, brother in law w/his mother. Ken served aboard the same  Air Craft Carrier as did Roscoe Dickinson, but many years apart. Ken married my sister, Indigo Rose.

Dana US Army, Patriot Missile Battery Tech, niece, daughter of Ken and Indigo Rose. She has served overseas in Korea, current at Ft. Sill, OK. where she survived a tornado. Husband Nick is US Army. Prepping to muster out.
Erin US Army 101st Med, niece, daughter of Ken and  Indigo Rose, sister to Dana. Erin married Marc, also US Army currently civilians.

Some guy. Seth USN Intelligence in CO, served aboard destroyer and missile frigate in Iraq War, Indian Ocean, and  Pirate patrol, nephew. Currently a civilian in school on GI Bill.
Not pictured: 
Pat, US Air Force, brother in law
Shilo, US Army, sniper currently deployed in Afghanistan, cousin and grandson of Roscoe
John, US Army Tank Corps, WWII Europe, Uncle
Steve, US Army, Cold War Germany, cousin

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Two Local News Stories

An 83 year old man was beaten mercilessly by a 300 pound, 33 year old road rager who is now a guest of the Placer County Sheriff about a mile from me. A witness became a second victim when he stepped in to aid the elderly gentleman.
ROCKLIN (CBS13) – An elderly man was the victim of a beating in what Rocklin police are calling a road rage rampage.
“This guy was kicking an 80-year-old man in his own garage,” said a neighbor and witness, who wished to remain anonymous.

Around 10 a.m. Saturday, Rocklin police responded to the 6000 block of Bridal Veil Drive, where they discovered an 83-year-old man suffering significant injuries from an assault in his garage.

A neighbor, who witnessed the battery, was also injured when he tried to intervene.

“He weighed 300 pounds. He beat him half to death,” said the man.

Police say 33-year-old Zubin Bogdanoff followed the victim for nearly a half mile to his home, and then attacked the man.

According to witnesses, Bogdanoff fled the scene in his vehicle and attempted to run over a neighbor that was calling police.

Bogdanoff was quickly apprehended after a brief search of the area. He was booked into Placer County Jail on charges of assault, burglary, battery, and felony abuse of an elder.
An Eldercare worker in Loomis served up some wild mushroom soup and now two are dead, four are hospitalized including the care worker. Placer County Sheriff's deputies say it was an accident, but California Dept. of Social Services are investigating further. I'm reminded of The Beguiled.

SACRAMENTO (CBS/AP) — Authorities say two residents of a Northern California assisted living facility have died and four others are hospitalized after eating soup with wild mushrooms.

Placer County sheriff’s officials say that 86-year-old Barbara Lopes and 73-year-old Teresa Olesniewicz — residents of Gold Age Villa, an elderly care home in Loomis — died after eating the soup that had been prepared by a caregiver at the facility.

Sheriff’s Lt. Mark Reed says the caregiver who prepared the soup was among the six people sickened. The conditions of the four people hospitalized were not immediately known, and their names have not been released.