Monday, July 14, 2008

ON InBev and the AB Merger....My two cents

When InBev bought out LeBlatts in Canada, the unions were shut out of the buyout process. InBev has a history of anti-Union and an indifference if not right harassment to its workers. This included documented incidents in its Brazilian plants of workers systematically humiliated if they didn't meet production quotas or obey company rules.

St. Louis has a little bit of business whiplash too. When May Co. bout out Famous Barr, we were told not to worry and that Famous was an institution, would always be here, blah, blah, blah. Well, all of our Famous Barr stores now carry Macy's signs and the "regional HQ" we were told would never leave was moved to Cincinatti. American Airlines promised much the same with TWA and again, St. Louis was left out in the cold again. Southwestern Bell moved out in spite of having just built a huge multi-million dollar corporate facility in the city.

So given this history, we in the city just don't believe the promises of the business community much anymore. One of my most hated phrases is "Its just business." What I lothe with a gripping pasion is that business thinks it can get away with action without thinking of the consequences for the people that depend on it. Business without responsability is hogwash. Business has an obligation to operate itself in a responsible manner in order to make society a better place. Reckless, irresponsible and hostile behavior are an anethema to the society at large and an indication of what idiocy that greed accomplishes. I am all for making money. But to do it in a manner which is indistinguishable from legal theft from the society at large is not a way to conduct business.

This isn't about beer as much as it is about what will happen to the community charitable organizations that have come to depend on AB for donations, the workers who have come to depend on AB for jobs, and the people of the community who have come to depend on AB as a bedrock to build their lives on. Now the bedrock has proven to be just as vulnerable as any corporate entity and there is no security anymore. Once again, our city has suffered yet another in a long string of demoralizing humiliations.

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I am interested in CNG vehicles because they are good for the environment and aren't powered by dead Marines. I still have a little hope for the world. Read the musings and enjoy.

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