Is Wall Street Aiding and Abetting Childhood obesity?

The recent announcement that Twinkies, the late, great brand best known for its ungodly amount of empty calories, would be issuing an IPO sure caught this blogger by surprise.

It seems that two private equity firms saw the potential in revitalizing the iconic brand and now believe they’ll make an absolute killing when the IPO occurs.

Ironically, at almost the precise moment that the planned IPO was announced, The New York Times Science Section published an article headlined: “The fight against obesity begins early”.

In a nutshell, the Times article detailed the findings of two new research studies that linked a high body mass index in children to an increased risk of developing colon cancer and suffering an early stroke as adults.

One would think such findings might give pause to the masters of the universe on Wall Street, especially considering the backlash against “Big Food” and the role it plays in fattening up America and helping our health care costs to skyrocket.

Au contraire. As you’ll read in the Fortune piece, the new owners of the company that will be selling Twinkies along with Ding-Dongs and other artery clogging goodies, are positively bullish about the retro brand’s growth potential.  Childhood obesity be damned.

And, that’s so sad.

It seems the expression “Greed is good” is not only alive and well, but expanding faster than the waistlines of kids who already inhale too much crap (and will now be able to add Twinkies to mom’s shopping list).

As the cartoon character, Pogo, famously said, “We have met the enemy and he is us.”


5 thoughts on “Is Wall Street Aiding and Abetting Childhood obesity?

  1. Archie Bunker loved Twinkies (almost as much as he did Richard E. Nixon). Was there ever a more intelligent sitcom TV character than Archie? I rest my Percoset-addled case…..

  2. Intelligent consumers reward companies that “do right.” Twinkie eaters are not intelligent consumers.
    They will need someone to yank their gooey, greasy garbage from their cold dead hands.
    Meanwhile, Wall Street will do what it is supposed to do… make money for investors. It has to be the Percoset talking.
    You are expecting the wrong thing from the wrong group.

  3. I think you’re missing a key point, Danderoo. Countless studies have shown that consumers will reward companies that do right (whether that means doing right by the environment or humanity). And, organic, healthy food and beverages are winning market share across the board. While there is certainly a huge (pun intended) market for fatty, empty calorie food such as Twinkies, the handwriting is on the the wall for Big Food. Like their colleagues in Big Tobacco before them, Big Food will not step up and do what’s right. So, the surgeon general will step in at some point and begin restricting the marketing (and market growth) of Hostess and its ilk. Wall Street SHOULD care about rewarding healthy foods and penalizing bad guys like Hostess. They may not do so from an altruistic standpoint, but they should be doing it from an investment standpoint. Instead, they look at the short-term gains for Hostess vs the long term growth of healthy foods (and doing good by doing right in the process). And. it’s Percoset that’s clouding my mind, not the weed….

    • Repman – I agree with The Danderoo. In the short-term, guns AND butter (lots of it, though fake) seem to be resulting in similar riches for those companies and their investors.

      I agree that the general trend is towards social responsibility. I sure hope so – my 401K depends on it. Like a lot of things in society, perhaps we are in a trend away from one way of consumerist life (excess, no consequences) to a more aesthetic one, prodded by economic necessity. In other words, people finally can’t afford all the garbage that does them no good.

      This theory probably has holes in it, because other studies show people act against their self-interest. If Donald Trump is elected, the idea that companies/brands consumers are rewarded for doing the right thing will be completely shredded!

  4. REPMAN! What are you smoking and can I have some? What in HELL makes you think Wall Street cares about the physical health of America’s children? Or any children? Or anyone’s health?