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View Diary: Hostess took workers' pension money to fund itself (158 comments)

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  •  Betrayal without remedy? (45+ / 0-)

    Then FIX THE FUCKING LAW.   It is shocking and an a TOTAL outrage that contracts made with employees do not carry the same force as contracts made with other businesses.   This must be changed.

    "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

    by lgmcp on Mon Dec 10, 2012 at 02:04:39 PM PST

    •  I'm counting on my pension. (8+ / 0-)

      I'd like to think there is SOMETHING other than a quixotic whim which will cause my employer to honor it.  

      "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

      by lgmcp on Mon Dec 10, 2012 at 02:10:24 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Well (6+ / 0-)

        All the already contributed funds are safe.

        This situation is about the employer ceasing to make contributions going forward.

        I suggest that 'depending' on your pension being there in full is a bad idea. You should be saving money alongside the pension contributions (does your company offer a 401k?). Whether you are public or private, you can't really control the pension if your employer fails to live up. The best thing you can do is make supplementary plans.

        (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
        Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

        by Sparhawk on Mon Dec 10, 2012 at 02:20:18 PM PST

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      •  You may be counting on it. But, if the company (15+ / 0-)

        "underfunds" it, you will only be able to collect half.  If if falls below 60% funding it gets socialized to the government, then you will only see pennies on the dollar.  Check out the Airlines and other companies.  It's the new in thing.  What bucket do you think those bonuses come from?

        "Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.” --Napoleon Bonaparte

        by Paddy999 on Mon Dec 10, 2012 at 02:25:23 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Then maybe we need to push for a law (10+ / 0-)

          That states that no executive cash bonuses can be paid until the employee pension is fully funded.

          Stock I don't care about, but if that would impact funding employee pensions, then no stock bonuses either.

          Pension funding should be first, before any bonuses.

          Because if you don't have the money to pay your employees ALL the pay they're entitled to, you don't deserve a bonus.

          Executive bonuses should be the last thing paid.

          •  General Motors CEO's and staff were (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Paddy999, lgmcp

            making BONE US's for decades while losing market share and not making a profit. They seemed to have a hard time finding funds to apply to the pension fund.

            Richard Wagoner in his last year before getting the boot made 17 million, and I'm sure his health care did not take the same hit mine did.

            Fail upward indeed.

            "Anything We got, We Got The Hard Way" Mary Chapin Carpenter.

            by vzfk3s on Mon Dec 10, 2012 at 04:43:09 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  General bankruptcy reform is required. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            samddobermann, lgmcp

            There are a huge number of gimmicks inserted there in recent years that skew in favor of management in leaky companies and foul up the lives and futures of individuals, such as the b. court not being able to rework residentia mortgages on first homes, but surely on second, and individuals no longer being able to go to a flat out liquidation in Chapter 7 and instead being forced into long term payouts in Chapter 13. This is just another one in a long list.

        •  That's right (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          lgmcp

          My dad was a union guy FEA / ALPA for National Airlines when it was taken over by Pan Am.  

          He was pretty close to retirement when that happened and he just had a bad feeling about all the deregulation going on with the Airlines back then (1983-84).  So he took earlier retirement at 60.  He was given a choice of how he got each of his 3 pensions (Eastern, National and Pan Am).  

          Eastern was already down the drain and their pension was handled by the PBGC, but his National and Pan Am he had a choice of lump sum or payout over his life time.  He took the lump sum and put it in an IRA.  We were glad he did, because within a couple of years Pan Am was bankrupt and the pension was turned over to the PBGC.   Some of his friends took the lump sum and others elected to get the life time payout.  All of those guys ended up with half the benefits they were expecting.  

          My dad has been gone for 5 years - there were no survivor's benefits for my mom, but that $112,000 that he got back in 1984 is still in the IRA, earning enough to supplement her SSA.  Obviously, it's not $112k any more - they took out their RMD for over 25 years and he did move some to some little bond investments before he was 70.  But between the two accounts, the IRA and the investment account, that original $112k is still pretty much intact and earning enough for mom to pay for car insurance, groceries, homeowners insurance, supplemental health care over her Medicare, etc.  We took some out to replace the crappy windows in the house and replace the HVAC / heat pump because as she's gotten older, she really feels the cold and I wanted her to be comfortable and not have sky-high power bills.  If they had a mortgage, it would be tough, but he made a point of paying that off by the time he was 65, just so they wouldn't have to worry if something happened to him.  

          He hated all the deregulation of the airlines - ranted for the rest of his life about it - safety, stealing from the unions, screwing up pension plans, running good companies into the ground... the whole Enron thing made him crazy, too - still can't figure out why he was a Republican - maybe if he was still alive, he'd be voting Democrat now - he certainly would be unhappy about hedge funds, Bain Capital, what's happening to Hostess and Sensata....

          "Focusing your life solely on making a buck shows a certain poverty of ambition. It asks too little of yourself. Because it's only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you realize your true potential." - Barack Obama

          by Ricochet67 on Tue Dec 11, 2012 at 03:56:03 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  "Betrayal without remedy" is a disgusting concept. (16+ / 0-)

      If not legally criminal, it should be pursued in court by whatever creative means possible.  And Congress should make such transfers away from workers illegal as soon as possible.

      There is far too much robbing of the poor to benefit the rich these days.  

      Did I mention these bastards were given million dollar bonuses after stealing the pension money with no intent of paying it back!?!?   WHAT were THEY paid with?

      Forfeit the bonuses into the pension fund.

      "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

      by YucatanMan on Mon Dec 10, 2012 at 02:27:31 PM PST

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    •  they do have as much force as other contracts. (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      lgmcp, Sparhawk, DrPlacebo, nextstep, VClib

      they're all unsecured creditors of the bankruptcy estate.

    •  And make this a criminal fraud matter (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AoT, Farugia, rocksout

      not just a civil matter.  Let's see a few of these assholes frog-walked in shackles in front of some cameras.

      “Nice country you got here. Shame if something were to happen to it” --the GOP philosophy to governing as described by Paul Krugman

      by dwayne on Mon Dec 10, 2012 at 04:58:30 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  contact you Congress critters (0+ / 0-)

      and push to organize around this.

      I'm asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... *I'm asking you to believe in yours.* Barack Obama

      by samddobermann on Tue Dec 11, 2012 at 03:05:35 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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