Thursday, August 20, 2009

Carrot Throwdown

"Whole Foods aficonados who assumed the company's management was as crunchy as the brand are feeling betrayed."

Ylan Q Mui, "Whole Foods Devotees Lash Out at CEO," The Washington Post, August 19, 2009.

CEO John Mackey shared some conservative health-care reform ideas in the Wall Street Journal last week -- and now has received some consumer feedback. Boycott! We stopped shopping at Whole Foods a decade ago or so because of high costs and inconvenience. Maybe their anti unionism fed into my decision a bit, but I think it was the fact that we always had to shop somewhere else. Too many trips. Should I blame it on the kids?

I guess one might feel betrayed if you think that paying more will get you a righteous capitalist. I've given up on such tough standards. I do expect,however, that when CEOs stick their noses into public debates that they have plausible answers for reducing health-care costs, providing coverage for the uninsured, and promoting healthful living. That is, health-care policy should be more than ideological and partisan wrangling. Maybe some of his ideas are okay?

So, just don't boycott. Challenge Mackey to a public debate? Get an organic luminary to throw down the carrot.

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