Hostess Brands has been driven into bankruptcy. The company, according to the Wall Street Journal, was done in by:
changing consumer tastes, high commodity costs and, most importantly, strained labor relations [and] ultimately was brought to its knees by a national strike orchestrated by its second-largest union.
Hostess is the maker of, among other things, Twinkies, a snack food that consists of doughy yellow cake wrapped around some sort of gooey filling. The sort of thing, in other words, to give nutritionists heart attacks when they merely think about it. The Twinkie, though, had its followers. Now, they have lost their small, sinful pleasure and some 18,500 employees of the company will be out of work. The whole thing recalls the scene in Blazing Saddles where the sheriff takes a hostage – himself – whom he threatens to kill unless his demands are met.
Something like what is going on in Washington, where the people who created the "fiscal cliff" are now threatening to take the country over the edge.