North Pole - With only 30 days left before Christmas, hundreds of elves at the North Pole received their lay-off notices announcing a bold move by Santa to move his entire toy production to mainland China in 2011. The news comes as a shock to the hundreds of jovial little elves that have slaved for hundreds of years for the North Pole's largest employer, and are in the process of dealing with the sad news of looming
Santa's production of toys at the North Pole has faced recent financial difficulties over the last three hundred years, after making and distributing millions of toys free of charge which has resulted in a $987 trillion debt for Santa. Also blamed is the lack of demand for the finely crafted wooden toys the elves were producing, with many children demanding newer video game systems and advanced electronics which the elves are unable to produce.
The toy production will move to Xing Chung Province in earlier 2013 and most elves will see their North Pole toy factory shut down in March of 2013, sending thousands of elves to the unemployment line. "I think a lot of us will find work in the entertainment industry, but we are saddened Santa has not given us a choice to work with the Chinese on making toys for kids around the world." Jangle remarked. Santa Claus was unavailable for comment but is still expected to make delivery of the toys this Christmas Eve.
THIS IS WHAT REALLY HAPPNED TO SANTA
And here’s what you won't hear the unions ever talk about:
--Hostess paid out almost $100 million in health benefits for retirees last year, but over half of it covered workers who never had worked at Hostess. The Teamsters’ onerous and antiquated “multi-employer pension plan” foists the pension obligations of a bankrupt company on to the balance sheets of surviving rivals—ensuring a steady death spiral in any declining industry. A similar “MEPP” almost killed YRC, one of the largest trucking companies.
--Union rules forced Hostess to run separate truck fleets for delivering bread vs. sweets. A sweets driver, serving a 7-11 store, was forbidden from restocking shelves with breads already delivered and waiting in the back—he had to call for a bread driver to swing by and handle.
--The union restrictions on the 5,500 distribution routes at Hostess made it unprofitable to serve tiny outlets, yet Hostess was barred from using smaller, sleeker—and non-union—distributors.
--Workers were asked to take an 8% pay cut and pay 17% of their health-care costs instead of zero. Welcome to the club, guys. For this, they would have received 25% ownership of Hostess plus $100 million of Hostess debt to be paid back to the unions.
But the bakers wouldn’t budge.
In the months ahead a chop-shop or food giant may resurrect various Hostess brands, but those 36 plants are shuttered, those 18,500 jobs are gone for good. The union preferred to picket while an 85-year-old company suffocated ... rather than risk having to face inevitable demands for similar concessions at other employers across the country.
Those demands will be forthcoming, anyway, because, as President Obama likes to say in slapping the rich with higher taxes, the math doesn’t work. The only questions are which union will be next, and whether anyone reasonable (or sane) will be listening.
Even a parasite is smart enough to know not to kill its host. In the case of unions, the presence of such preternatural intelligence isn’t yet readily apparent.