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Remember the recent flap over CEO John McKey's Wall Street Journal op-ed on Health Care Reform?

In a move that stunned Whole Foods shoppers, McKey came out swinging with right-wing talking points, quoting Maggie Thatcher, and generally biting the hands that feed him.

So what was the upshot?  Is the boycott still going on?  I don't shop there anyway (who can afford Whole Paycheck?), so I don't have any idea of how shopping patterns may have changed.  Apparently, the "buycott" generated a brief uptick in sales, but I haven't seen anything indicating that the teabaggers have become loyal Whole Foods shoppers.

Today I got an email from our local climate action group, encouraging us to shop at a Whole Foods event supporting microloans to local farmers.  I replied that due to the CEO's outspoken opposition to health care reform that I couldn't support the Whole Foods event, but that I would continue to support local farmers through farmer's markets and community supported agriculture.

But seriously, WTF?  Why are progressive organizations continuing to partner with Whole Foods?  Yes, Whole Foods does have a history of contributing to progressive causes such as wind farms and local agriculture but there are other ways to make a difference in these areas without involving Whole Foods.  

Originally posted to Tracker on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 07:58 AM PDT.

Poll

Are you boycotting Whole Foods

56%118 votes
13%29 votes
28%60 votes
0%2 votes

| 209 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Is this just old news (11+ / 0-)

    and nobody cares anymore?

    "Right wing freak machine" General Wes Clark

    by Tracker on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 07:58:07 AM PDT

    •  Seems to be a pattern.... (3+ / 0-)

      flurry of activity, then nothing.

      There are a few people still on the Glen Beck advertisers....I rec their diaries and send my letters to the pathetic advertisers that are left on his show, but the "urgency" seems to be gone.

      Same with torture.  I STILL write letters to my congresscritters telling them that prosecutions need to happen.

      I never did shop at Whole Paycheck....I think it's a scam, so I can't boycott. And I would bet $5.00 that the Kossacks who said they'd stop shopping there haven't.

    •  I Think You Nailed It (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Tracker, dirkster42, Clio2

      Though "nobody" = "Whole Foods"

      There are only two ways a boycott can work:

      1.  The publicity they receive can be so negative as to effect change for PR reasons.
      1.  The impact they have on the bottom line can be so as to effect change for financial reasons.

      Point one was a complete bust, because as near as I can tell the whole of the boycott was MAYBE a few thousand people, most of them here.

      And point two takes time.  You wouldn't see the hit on the bottom line and be able to directly attribute it to the boycott until some serious reporting is done... but based on the lack of coverage of it even happening it's likely to just die out.

      Free Beer, Hot Wings, Eric Zane, Producer Joe, and Steve For President. OK Not Steve, but he can be chauffer or something.

      by TooFolkGR on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 08:09:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Point 1 sortof worked (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mataliandy, bebacker, miss SPED, Floande

        Even if few are boycotting it did become a news story in itself and show up in the NYT. While some progressive organizations may still partner with Whole Foods it is now easier to stop them if people complain since one can now send links to the news stories from that time.

        •  It Did? (0+ / 0-)

          What change did WFM make if it "Sort of worked?"

          Free Beer, Hot Wings, Eric Zane, Producer Joe, and Steve For President. OK Not Steve, but he can be chauffer or something.

          by TooFolkGR on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 09:54:43 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  we will see. I am planning (0+ / 0-)

            on leafleting this sunday. I have not stopped. It may take a while but that's ok by me. I have plenty of time.

            -9.62, -9.23 hey asshole, I was once paid to fund-raise for the DNC and Obama. Never once changed what I said here.

            by bebacker on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 10:02:40 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Here are some ways a boycott worked (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Floande
            1. It raised as a national issue that people on the Left were upset about the health care reform debate at a time that the media was mainly talking about people on the right yelling. NPR and the NYT both moved from talking about upset rightwinger doing crazy things to people on both side of the spectrum going to extremes helping reframe the debate a bit.
            1. Whole Foods is still in a very defensive mood. National PR people are being sent to stores where protests occur and they have come out in several media forms with statements that Mackey doesn't speak for them. Having them worry about their image could make it so Mackey is less likely to use his status as CEO and Chairman of Whole Foods to attack health reform. It will hopefully also help lessen their attacks on organizing and attempts to indoctrinate workers with anti-labour talking points (such as when they got workers in SF together to lecture them on the dangers of the Employee Free Choice Act. See http://www.motherjones.com/... )
            1. Media coverage helped a bit to distance Whole Foods from the Left. The idea that liberals and progressives are rich educated yuppies who spend a lot on upscale products and culture while the Right is mainly working class blue collar normal people has been killing progressives since the late 60s. It is myth one sees here when people joke about Nascar loving Righties shopping at Whole Foods. It is a very middle class myth in its way since it is a myth that can only ressonate among thuse with no personal interactions with either the bulk of the poor progressive voting public who don't have the money to ever shop at places like Whole Foods and the rich Republican business owners who shop at very upscale stores for groceries (many which now stock organic produce). The idea of "late liberals", "limousine liberals" and the like is promoted by the Right to win elections and companies like Whole Foods who target market a very rich consumer base with their differentiating factor being a progressive image (which is now being slowly destroyed with the longer term impacts of Mackey's speech and the highlighting of it with a boycott being much more significant than any immediate effect among consumers whose habits take awhile to change especially with few alternatives due to Whole Foods bullying out of business of its competitors)
    •  I don't know (0+ / 0-)

      I have not stepped into the WF in SF I used to shop at since Mackey opened his mouth and inserted his libertarian wing nut foot.

      I did ask a local organic store if they had seen increased business, but they said no.  Of course, they have no parking, which limits participation in SF.

      I hope the answer is yes, but I don't know honestly.  I may recon today to see.

    •  On the plus side, teabaggers are blowing their $$ (0+ / 0-)

      on Whole Foods, to support Mackey, while dropping Walmart, which dropped Glenn Beck.

      :)

    •  Morford: Mackey's "a bit of a lightning rod for (0+ / 0-)

      a bit of a lightning rod for the both the left and the right, slightly offbeat and radical insofar as he fits into no typical CEO mold you can name. His health care opinion is merely par for the course.

      Keep in mind this is the guy who, not a couple years ago, announced he was cutting his personal salary down to $1 because he said he had plenty of money, didn't need any more and merely wanted to continue working for the joy of it, and to help improve the world. Huh? This is the company that still has a salary cap for its top execs; no one can make more than 14 times the lowest-paid employee. WTF? The lords of capitalism are not pleased.
      [...]
      Personally, I've always found Mackey to be one of the more fascinating, likable characters in a land where heartlessness and a general pissing on the world reign supreme. Yes, I find his health care stance to be idiotic and wrong. But his company's efforts and policies regarding everything from meat production to slaughterhouse conditions to dairy farming, et al? Still rather astonishing.

      Whenever a silly furor like this pops up, I go back and do a bit of homework, remind myself of Mackey's -- and Whole Foods' -- track record. Everything I read about the guy indicates he walks the talk, practices what he preaches, is definitely not some ruthless prick of a CEO out to rape the populace for as much power and money and influence as possible while only pretending to give a damn about the health of his employees. He is not, in short, the GOP. (source)

      Morford's no conservative defending his patron CEO. His latest post is titled "Spank me, then let's do lunch: How many hypocritical Republicans can dance on the head of a sex scandal?"

      Just some "food" for thought...

      End corporate ownership of elected officials!

      by 1BQ on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 01:02:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I can't speak for the overall boycott, (13+ / 0-)

    but my friends and I have not gone back to WFM, and we used to spend quite a bit of $$ there (hard to avoid, of course).

    I don't see teabaggers embracing WFM on a regular basis.  Wrong demographic for sure.

  •  Creaped out (5+ / 0-)

    I have never shopped there - I have been in the door but the prices were outrageous.  Whole place gave me that rip-off feeling - now I know why.

  •  It hasn't affected stock price, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RichM, immanentize, Clio2

    what will be interesting is to see what the quarterly financials look like.

    I don't think the boycott itself has much steam, but certainly a portion of the customer base was sufficiently alienated to just stop going.  The next quarterly financial report should give us a sense of how significant that portion is.

    (- 8.75, -5.59) Blue Dogs: HEEL!!!

    by dirkster42 on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 08:07:45 AM PDT

  •  When you shop at Whole Foods you are not (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    1BQ

    voting for health care.

    You are voting for food.  And none of the Yahoo Whole Food boycotteers bring much of a clue to the food choice debate which is an important debate.

    •  I agree-food choice is important (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mataliandy, bebacker, Clio2, zogren, miss SPED

      But I don't see Whole Foods as the only good option.  There are plenty of other good options - co-ops, farmers markets, CSAs, etc.  

      "Right wing freak machine" General Wes Clark

      by Tracker on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 08:17:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  There are not plenty of other good options (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        1BQ

        Most farmer's markets are open one morning on the weekend.  And further most farms are not mom and pop operations that can supply all the stuff that is usually trucked accross the country.

        •  I agree that there are not necessarily "plenty" (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          mataliandy, jenesq, miss SPED

          of options. Where we are, you have to hunt around. Whole Foods pretty much killed off local independent health-food groceries and cooperatives.

          However, some other groceries, including my local Safeway, carry certain organic produce as well as whole grain pasta and flours (some organic), and a few other organic items if you look for them. Safeway also has own-brand organic dairy products, which may or may not be all they claim, I'm not certain. The overall variety of offerings is not as great and the displays certainly are not as sensational as at Whole Foods. But the other day I even found at Safeway a small package of smoked wild-caught Alaska salmon, without additives (or so it was claimed -- it tasted very good).

          Trader Joe's also is a place for certain items, primarily packaged foods. Small specialty markets like wine and cheese shops also may offer organic wine and beer. There aren't many of these small markets left -- mostly in far suburbs -- so it's good to stock up when possible.

          There are two farmers' markets nearby, both on Sat. a.m. I hardly ever get there.

          If you're looking for organic meats or free range eggs, Whole Foods is -- so far as I know -- about it. On those items, I just try to pick the least-objectionable option elsewhere.

          I can't claim to be boycotting Whole Foods, though, because I was driven off long ago by the high prices, harried atmosphere, inadequate parking, and -- occasionally -- spoiled meat. There's no advantage to organic when I end up having to make another trip in order to take it back.

          •  Re: Safeway's organic dairy products, (0+ / 0-)

            please read this: Largest Organic Factory Farm Operator Once Again Accused of Illegal Activity:

            Aurora Dairy, based in Boulder, Colorado, the nation’s largest organic dairy producer, is once again facing allegations of improprieties. Aurora had previously been found in "willful" violation of multiple federal organic standards by USDA investigators in 2007.

            This week an organic industry watchdog, The Cornucopia Institute, filed a formal legal complaint with the USDA in Washington alleging that one of the five industrial-scale dairies operated by Aurora, its High Plains dairy near Kersey, Colorado, is failing to graze their dairy cattle as required by the federal organic standards.
            [...]
            Aurora’s milk is sold to many of the nation’s largest grocery chains, including Wal-Mart, Target, Safeway, Costco and others, for their cheap store brand label organic milk.

            End corporate ownership of elected officials!

            by 1BQ on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 12:45:57 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Depends on where you live (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bebacker, miss SPED

          In some metropolitan areas, there are plenty of options, including better ones. Ones, for example, with mostly organic produce, unlike WF.

      •  don't engage this poster (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jenesq, miss SPED

        already shown hatred over and over for people doing something(boycott of WF)that it disagrees with. Can't have a discussion.

        -9.62, -9.23 hey asshole, I was once paid to fund-raise for the DNC and Obama. Never once changed what I said here.

        by bebacker on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 08:36:00 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  And a former or current Whole Foods shareholder: (5+ / 0-)
        •  I suggested that he might be Mackey (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          dlcox1958, mataliandy, jenesq, bebacker

          in a previous diary. Not out of the question, given the apparent WF Uber Alles position taken, and Mackey's need to inflict his PoV on everyone, whatever the cost.

          •  Given his/her history on this site... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            in the Trees

            ...as an early and strong Kucinich supporter in the primaries, I very much doubt that he/she is Mackey.

            But of course, it's much easier to impugn his/her motives and accuse him/her of "hatefulness" than it is to engage his/her arguments...

            Call Congress and demand 2 Senators, 1 VOTING Rep, and full home rule for DC citizens. Anything less is un-American.

            by mistersite on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 09:27:58 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  every time the poster comes here (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              mataliandy

              and talks about WF people try and use reason and do "engage his/her arguments" to no end. No rationalization. No willingness to listen. But, keep defending.....

              -9.62, -9.23 hey asshole, I was once paid to fund-raise for the DNC and Obama. Never once changed what I said here.

              by bebacker on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 09:59:23 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Um, "hatefulness" was never mentioned by me (0+ / 0-)

              I just think that penguinsong has a clearly one-note defense of WF, and a position against any boycott that seems non-logical and perhaps driven by an unknown agenda. Certainly doesn't seem built on a logic anyone here seems able to detect. It is fairly easy to make a case that Whole Foods has been as much a negative influence on health as a positive (watered-down, semi-healthy products, elimination a'la superstore techniques of better, smaller competitors, etc.). But in any case, everyone should recognize that buying at WF is to some degree supporting Mackey and his wing-nut (oh, I mean, "Libertarian") anti-union, anti-healthcare agenda.

              Mpst people here seem to find penguinsong has little interest in any real debate, or even logic applied to WF. As for him being Mackey, it's not really important except that he/she might as well be, given the Mackey-esque WF cultism. But as with the other "Is that you, John?" comments, it is mainly humor of a satirical sort.

          •  And his modus operandi (0+ / 0-)

            Is to create a fake online identity and post under that identity to benefit his company. It's a method he used to help crash Wild Oats stock while Whole Foods was trying to buy them. Why he wasn't strung up on fraud charges - or at least jailed for insider trading - is beyond me.

      •  I don't even see Whole Foods... (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        itskevin, bebacker, Clio2, miss SPED

        as being among the good options.

    •  as a vegan everytime I eat (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mataliandy, jenesq, Imipolex, Clio2, miss SPED

      i am voting against pollution, waste and cruelty. Every time I no longer shop at WF I am voting for workers rights and health care. Yup. I am.

      -9.62, -9.23 hey asshole, I was once paid to fund-raise for the DNC and Obama. Never once changed what I said here.

      by bebacker on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 08:34:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Gee. The boycotters are yahoos??? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mataliandy, bebacker

      Why didn't someone tell me this before.  That makes all the difference in the world.

      [/snark]

    •  except (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mataliandy, bebacker, Clio2, miss SPED

      Whole Foods has many negatives when it comes to the food choice debate. They helped industrialize organic and in doing so are helping push smaller farmers and organic food stores out of business (not to mention Wild Oats where they got rid of a choice by first hurting and then buying their competition.)

      There is a huge difference between even the large farmers market food vendors here in Berkeley and the produce sold at Whole Foods (this is especially clear when you look at things like eggs and meat).

      The anti-healthcare angle also hurts organic and slow food in helping spread the feeling that those for such causes are "let them eat cake" elitists. This was much less true with small coops where prices may have been high but they didn't have a upper crust feel to them. There is a real risk of the enviromental movement getting split off from the progressive/labour left again and while one could see short term environmental gains from that one would likely see the longer term destruction of the environmental movement.

      In the Bay Area we do have alternatives to Whole Foods (Berkeley Bowl has even more orgnaic product near where I live and even the local Safeway has an organic section) and pushing for stores that dont just aim to cater to the rich to carry some organic choices is a much better long term thing than supporting Whole Foods (where even nonorganic produce is overpriced because the aim is for perfect looking products for a rich clientele).

    •  I can "vote for food" (5+ / 0-)

      in fact, vote for a better selection of organic vegetables than the pathetic WF, by shopping elsewhere. Whole Foods is conspicuously poor in the percentage of organic fruits and veggies they offer, compared to their competition.

      To suggest that somehow WF is some kind of gold standard for health is silly, IMO. If anything, they are a fairly diluted "health joint", with much that is not healthy, not organic, etc.

    •  Give me a break (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      itskevin, bebacker, miss SPED

      I know what I'm doing when it comes to food, and I certainly shop at places where my food dollar is going to do the most good - local health food stores and a regional co-op, and for the commercially prepared crap made with organic ingredients (like my daughter's favorite crackers), I'll shop at a regional commercial grocery chain - letting the manager know that the only reason I'm in the store is because they've chosen to carry certain products.

      As far as I'm concerned, getting the regional grocery stores to carry these foods increases food choice for everyone, much more affordably than adding an upscale, inaccessible by public transit, Whole Paycheck to the suburban ring, outside of any downtown.

  •  Support Whole Foods - Read the ARTICLE (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    penguinsong, Fargopher

    Did you real the article... ??

    This wasnt an anit OBAMA article.. this was a common sense piece from whole foods CFO -

    He was focused on Debt.. and problem with Large Debts for the citizens..

    Also - he was in favor of Individuals getting the same tax benefits as Groups for health purchases ?? are you against that ?

    He was for Allowing the purchase of any policy accross state lines .. regardless of where you live .. are you againt that ??

    Read the article.. it makes sense.

    This Public option if it passes has to be paid by somebody.. and it will likely be the poor and middle class through lower wages or Taxes..

    Whole Foods Shouldnt be boycotted for speaking his mind with the correct facts..

    •  LOL Read the Bill (11+ / 0-)

      This Public option if it passes has to be paid by somebody.. and it will likely be the poor and middle class through lower wages or Taxes..

      That's downright comical that you tell us to "Read the Article" then toss out an uninformed boner like that.

      Free Beer, Hot Wings, Eric Zane, Producer Joe, and Steve For President. OK Not Steve, but he can be chauffer or something.

      by TooFolkGR on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 08:12:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The thing that is going through Congress could (0+ / 0-)

        well be worse than any of Mackey's ideas.

        •  There's No Bill That Contains a Public... (8+ / 0-)

          ...option that would be paid for by "the poor and middle class through lower wages or Taxes.."

          As for "the thing that is going through congress" (though of course there isn't "one" thing, I assume you mean the Baucus bill) I'm not a fan of it, and that's not the bill Mackey was talking about in any event.

          Free Beer, Hot Wings, Eric Zane, Producer Joe, and Steve For President. OK Not Steve, but he can be chauffer or something.

          by TooFolkGR on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 08:14:59 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  If anything good gets done on health care, (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            dirkster42, TooFolkGR

            just call me surprised.

            And whatever happens it will have nothing at all to do with this idiotic Whole Foods boycott.

            •  Agreed on the Boycott (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              jenesq, dirkster42

              But in a free market, people can spend or withhold their money based on any criteria they like.  I think the boycott is "stupid" inasfar as people expecting it to change anything, but I have no objection to people doing it based on the perceived offense.

              Free Beer, Hot Wings, Eric Zane, Producer Joe, and Steve For President. OK Not Steve, but he can be chauffer or something.

              by TooFolkGR on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 08:21:39 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  BOYCOTT - (0+ / 0-)

                Your right.. and point valid.. they should be able to boycott..

                But whom are you helping.. Hurting..

                If you look at Whole foods.. what he pays his Employees.. with Healthcare.. and how he treats his staff compared to WALMART or major supermarket chain.. Your Boycotting a good person with good workers..

                •  omg! Do we need to have another (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Tracker, SemDem

                  person here use bad reasoning?!

                  "Would someone pleeeeeease think of the employees?!" NONSENSE.

                  When I use my money locally elsewhere I am helping those small business owners and those employees. What? Do you hate farmers and small business owners and employees? Do you? B/c that is where my money is going instead of WF.

                  Can we all agree not to use bad reasoning and strawmen in this debate?

                  -9.62, -9.23 hey asshole, I was once paid to fund-raise for the DNC and Obama. Never once changed what I said here.

                  by bebacker on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 10:13:21 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

        •  Thing going through Congress. (0+ / 0-)

          Exactly.. great point..

      •  Read the Bill .. follow what happens (0+ / 0-)

        Your right.. the Bill says tax on +250k people.. but that ultimately effects the lower/middle classes..

        Most are employed by Small business .. who are going to get stuck with this.. who in turn pay less in wages to absorb the tax..

        If the Taxes/medicare savings alone dont cover it.. it will come down to sales taxes or VAT taxes.. errrr national sales tax .. all of which are regressive and adversely hit Those with Lower/Middle incomes who cant afford it.

    •  The consensus (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mataliandy

      of people who have looked at Health Care in detail is that the current state of affairs is unsustainable, and a drag on economic growth in general.  People stay in jobs they hate instead of taking risks to pursue entrepreneurial innovation because they're afraid to lose their health coverage.

      If you are concerned about debt, you should be screaming for a public option, so that the economy will be eventually strong enough to pay off our debts, incurred by the very laissez-faire attitudes that the article endorses.

      (- 8.75, -5.59) Blue Dogs: HEEL!!!

      by dirkster42 on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 08:22:01 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Fuck Whole Foods troll (2+ / 2-)
      Recommended by:
      fivefouranonymous, bebacker
      Hidden by:
      Clio2, penguinsong

      read through your comments, enjoying the site?

      The Seminole Democrat
      A blue voice calling from the deep red

      by SemDem on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 08:36:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  wrong (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      itskevin, bebacker, SemDem

      and you're on the wrong website.

    •  For the record... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mataliandy, jenesq, miss SPED

      Mackey was:

      - Against any sort of subsidies for the poor and lower middle class

      - For raising money for the uninsured through donations

      - For insurance deregulation, which would allow insurance companies to continue to exploit their customers, if not find even more egregious ways to do so

      - For high-deductible plans, which discourage preventative medicine

      - For increased shopping at places like Whole Foods

      He was not simply against the public option (which would actually save money, contrary to what the poster above says), but against the very concept of universal coverage, whether done through public or private means.

      •  For the Record... (0+ / 0-)

        Mackey was:

        - Against any sort of subsidies for the poor and lower middle class
        Not True - he says hes for Tax subsidies in Group setting being set up for Individuals.. so its fair and across the board... This tax break that employers get would greatly help the poor .. who buy a large no. of policies through individual markets.

        - For raising money for the uninsured through donations
        How is this bad ?  I donate to poor .. How could this hurt. ?

        - For insurance deregulation, which would allow insurance companies to continue to exploit their customers, if not find even more egregious ways to do so
        Deregulation makes 1300 cos. compete for 360 million.. the best coverage at best rates will produce more coverage at lesser rates.

        - For high-deductible plans, which discourage preventative medicine
        Hes for this because it gets more in the tent..so when the heart or cancer problem come they have coverage.. Incidently the HSA the CEO mentions is extremly effective for preventitive medicine and creates tax break to lower/middle class through the HSA.

        - For increased shopping at places like Whole Foods

        He was not simply against the public option (which would actually save money, contrary to what the poster above says), but against the very concept of universal coverage, whether done through public or private means.
        You can probably win this point.. but he did say he was for reform and bringing more under the tent.. I dont think he was simply saying the system is fine and those without be damned..

        Appreciate your thorough response..

    •  the article spewed libertarian bs (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SemDem

      and showed a callous disregard for the kind of people employed at WF, as well as a cynical cover for Mackey's antiunion, age-discriminating history.  

      Mackey seemed to think, arrogantly, that his customers would not notice.

  •  I don't shop there anyway (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Tracker, dirkster42, TFinSF

    but I try to spread the word

    when friends call it whole paycheck, I correct them

    and call it

    ASSWHOLE FOODS

  •  The email you received (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Clio2

    Unfortunately, that tells the bigger, more complex picture.  I think it's simplistic to lump everything into one issue and demand that all progressive groups shun Whole Foods.  Here's why:  

    When I tried to replace my Whole Foods shopping, it was very difficult, even in a huge city like Chicago, to find the local farmers.  Sure, Farmer's Markets in the summer, but there was an advantage to local products (not just produce) being in a central location.  What are the farmers supposed to do?  Livelihoods depend on where they can wholesale their products.  

    I'm not defending Whole Foods.  The CEO is a crook and should have been chastised when he ran Wild Oats into the ground.  He's good for buying up the competition and giving none of the benefits to the consumer.  He's an asshole.  

    That being said, I have cut way back on my Whole Foods shopping.  I have found a number of alternatives.  I have to go to Whole Foods for a few items.  I will walk into Whole Foods, buy one organic artichoke and walk right out (my very ill dog needs artichokes for his liver disease -- I kid you not)  But it occurred to me at the time that local farmers and locally made products could potentially suffer.  

    It's just more complicated than we'd like it to be.  As are many issues we try to simplify.  

  •  I shop there (occasionally) only because... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    1BQ

    ...they have the best produce and fresh food sections around me.  I don't always feel like trekking the extra distance to WF, though.  But I never subscribed to any fantasy notion of a corporation being truly, consistently progressive anyway.  

    So, no, I am not boycotting them.  I don't believe I ever claimed to, though, for the record.

    •  A "profit-margin" boycott is probably as (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JimmyTheSaint, miss SPED

      effective as not going there at all. Typically, vitamins and personal products (toothpaste, shampoo, etc.) are big profit items for the store, and produce not so much. So, avoid buying vitamins, herbs, and personal items. Many of these can be gotten quite easily (and cheaper) over the Internet anyway, from places like Iherb and Vitacost. Save money, and spank Mackey at the same time!

  •  thanks for the diary (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Tracker

    kossacks have very short memories...they get furious and move on to the next thing in a few days.

    I can't believe progressives shop at a place that donates money to DEFEAT healthcare for all..but that's how it goes.  Heck, I even had to argue with progressives on not shopping there for a few days.

    With conservatives, they will fight tooth and nail as long as their masters tell them too.  We are the opposite, we are so fair that we argue against our own positions.

    I'll be a Democrat until a better party comes along.

    The Seminole Democrat
    A blue voice calling from the deep red

    by SemDem on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 08:32:21 AM PDT

  •  Anytime I drive by the West Newton store... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Tracker, Fargopher

    ...here in MA, the parking lot looks full and bustling, not that this would be a clear indicator necessarily.

    I've certainly stopped going there, but I'm not seeing any noticeable depletion of their traffic. Frankly, I wouldn't be too surprised. Too many folks stop short of boycotts when it's their ox that would get gored. In this case, lots of people I'd have expected better from spent a lot of time droning on about this being a free speech issue and about how WF insures their employees and all sorts of irrelevant drivel.

    But with this economy, and the number of folks who say they ARE staying away from WF, there's gotta be SOME dropoff in sales, I'd think.

    Will the last one out of democracy please turn out the lights?

    by Apphouse50 on Tue Sep 15, 2009 at 08:54:18 AM PDT

    •  Good point. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Apphouse50

      Too many folks stop short of boycotts when it's their ox that would get gored.

      Many rich "progressives" (rich enough to shop at WF) are that way.  Same thing with their so-called concern about climate change.  These same people take private jets, run their a/c non-stop, and use their connections to block any attempts to build wind farms within eyeshot of their property.  All while us small fry (who can't afford to shop at WF) do everything possible to reduce our already small carbon footprints.

  •  The cool thing (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Tracker, jenesq, miss SPED

    about my decision to boycott, whether I decide continue my boycott or not in the future, is that it's forced me and my wife to do comparison shopping in the area. We are now members of a CSA, I can get several organic items at Trader Joes, there's a fruit market that's open year around called Stanleys (Chicago) that has organic produce. ALL of these places I mention are less expensive than Whole  Foods and I'll never spend as much there as I did before.

    I think one of the reasons McKey decided to deliver his anti-healthcare reform message from his bully pulpit was because he figured he had a monopoly on local farming/organic commerce in the area, not to mention a gross miscalculation of his customer base.

    Lastly, Whole Foods is really fucking expensive. The employees aren't under a Union contract and organic options are becoming more available, so why the uber expensive prices? After the indirect encounter with McKey's personality via his WAPO editorial, I think I've gotten a feeling for the regard that he has for his customers which is "fuck you, I'll gouge you for every cent I can get".

  •  I've quit shopping there... n/t (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jenesq, miss SPED
  •  The boycott did at least three things: (0+ / 0-)
    1. reduced number of progressive WF shoppers
    1. increase number of con WF shoppers
    1. Brought a lot of attention to Mackey's ideas.
    •  Other things it may have done: (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Tracker
      1. Cut into company profits.
      1. Force Mackey to think twice before trying to further influence the debate. Or more likely: Force the board to keep him on a tighter leash.
      1. Energize the progressive community even more behind reform, and the public option in particular. There was a turning point shortly after Mackey wrote his article, and I think he may have helped contribute to it.

      Based on the products Mackey sells, I don't believe you can easily replace #2 in your list with #1. #1 are the high-volume customers with a special commitment to the ideas behind the products, the very things that justify the higher cost.

      •  I have not set foot in WF since the op-ed. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        itskevin

        We have been back at school a month, so the WFM near my school has lost multiple shopping opportunties per week from me.
        There is a Sprouts, a Vitamin Cottage, a Central Market, and a new health food store within a few red lights of that WFM.  There is a Kroger with organic produce across the street. There are a half dozen local grocery stores within  a few blocks of WFM.  I have had no problem giving up WFM, I don't even think about them anymore.

  •  A Progressive Version Of Glenn Beck Would (0+ / 0-)

    keep these flash in the pan outrages front and center on a daily basis.  That is the difference between the right wing machine and the patheticly lacking progressive response.

    Democrats and progressives have Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid to represent (aka work against) them.  Quite pathetic.

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