Thursday, January 10, 2013

Killing The Golden Calf

Lisa Mux, the Waukesha Wonk, called it days ago, when Golden Guernsey up and closed up shop without any advanced warning or attempts to work with the state to help out the well more than 100 workers they just laid off.

Mux had written right after the news at broken:
In fact, the real trouble seemed to start when an investment company in California, Open Gate Capital, bought out the plant after the lawsuit. According to some workers, Open Gate did not have any experience in dairy, and may not have been a reliable company. From Fox 6 Now:
It is a lawsuit workers believe let an unreliable company purchase the plant and shut it down.
Open Gate finally issued a press release and - wouldn't you know it?- blamed the unions:
OpenGate Capital said that when it acquired Golden Guernsey, the acquisition terms included an exclusive and fixed-price milk supply agreement, and the assumption of a legacy union contract. As Golden Guernsey was under pressure to meet demands for lower cost products, it was unable to successfully reduce its expenses in a way to achieve a state of financial viability given some of its legacy relationships, according to OpenGate Capital.

Since being acquired by OpenGate Capital, Golden Guernsey made efforts to reduce its expenses through discussions with its various suppliers, vendors and the labor union.

“The prospect of closing the plant and the potential for bankruptcy was raised on several occasions with these groups, all of which were provided with a clear picture of Golden Guernsey's fragile financial condition. Despite this, Golden Guernsey's efforts were rejected, leading to the closure of the business,” OpenGate stated in a press release.
Yup, sounds just like what the vulture capitalists at Hostess said when they killed off that business, grabbed the money and ran like the thieves that they are.

As soon as the Open Gate vultures realized that they weren't going to get to keep their monopoly and rake in the money hand over fist, they closed shop and ran off with all the loot they can carry.

Fortunately, at least one person knew his rights and has filed a complaint with the state for the company's illegal maneuver. It'll be interesting to see what Scott Walker will have his people do with the complaint. I guess it really comes down to how much money Open Gate donated to Walker's legal defense fund.

But I can't help but appreciate that this is a twist of a classic portrayal of the greedy bastards like those at Open Gate. Only instead of stealing candy from a baby, they taking milk way from little kids.


  1. What do you expect from a bunch of greedy capitalists hellbent on abusing the capitalist system in order to promote their own agenda, their own gain? This is classi "vulture capitalism" but it should really be called "parasitic capitalism" because of how companies like Open Gate buy plants, suck off them like leeches, then close them because they've sucked them dry.

    1. "...abusing the capitalist system in order to promote their own agenda, their own gain?" This is not abusing the rules of capitalism. This is how capitalism works. Capitalism is corrupt.

  2. Does anyone know if this group has any interest or holdings in the dairy industry in California?