Sugar-Coat the Stress

March 24, 2009

A side effect of continuous bad news on the doorstep.
This morning in the New York Times:

The recession seems to have a sweet tooth. As unemployment has risen and 401(k)’s have shrunk, Americans, particularly adults, have been consuming growing volumes of candy, from Mary Janes and Tootsie Rolls to Gummy Bears and cheap chocolates, say candy makers, store owners and industry experts.
Theories vary on exactly why. For many, sugar lifts spirits dragged low by the languishing economy. For others, candy also provides a nostalgic reminder of better times. And not insignificantly, it is relatively cheap.

(Illustration found here).

When every other damn thing is in the tank, candy is riding high.

Many big candy makers are reporting rising sales and surprising profits even as manufacturers of other products are struggling to stay afloat.

Cadbury reported a 30 percent rise in profits for 2008 while Nestle’s profits grew by 10.9 percent, according to public filings.

Hershey, which struggled for much of 2008, saw profits jump by 8.5 percent in the fourth quarter.

Lindt & Sprüngli, which specializes in more expensive products like Lindt and Ghirardelli chocolate, announced that even though it expects to close some of its luxury retail stores this year, it also expects chocolate sales to remain strong through mainstream retailers like Wal-Mart and Target.

“All is well in candy land,” said Jamie Hallman, owner of the Sweetdish candy store in the Marina district of San Francisco.

And this is sweet, too:

Congressional Republicans are telling Dick Cheney to go back to his undisclosed location and leave them alone to rebuild the Republican Party without his input.

The veep, who showed a penchant for secrecy during eight years in the White House,has popped up in media interviews to defend the Bush-Cheney record while suggesting that the country is not as safe under President Obama.
Rep. John Duncan Jr. (R-Tenn.) said, “He became so unpopular while he was in the White House that it would probably be better for us politically if he wouldn’t be so public…But he has the right to speak out since he’s a private citizen.”

And this, too, with a near-illegal twist:

WBAL in Baltimore reported today that Jenna Bush’s Secret Service detail vehicle was towed due to six unpaid parking tickets. A second Secret Service vehicle was also ticketed.

Bush and her hubby, Henry Hager, moved to Baltimore after their wedding, where she is a school teacher, and he is employed by Constellation Energy.

Big deal, right?

Well, according to the Secret Service’s web site, Jenna Bush is not entitled to Secret Service detail as she is over age 16.

So…why are our tax dollars paying for at least two Secret Service vehicles to be dispatched to Jenna?

Yeah, and hand over those damn Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups!

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