Boycott Whole Foods?

This issue erupted about the same time as my washing machine and bathroom mirror, so I only had a chance to read about it late yesterday.

It started because the head of the Whole Foods chain wrote an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal opposing “Obamacare.” John Mackey led his screed with a quote from failed-stater Maggie Thatcher saying that the trouble with socialism is that “eventually you run out of other people’s money.” Of course people who agree with his position still call him a nut. He tried to game the system a few years ago by dissing his then-rival Wild Oats in anonymous emails. Of course I had no love for Wild Oats, which bought and then closed Cheese ‘N’ Stuff, a great local health food store that served as the only grocery in a marginal section of Hartford.

Mr. Mackey and others never explain exactly how Mr. Obama’s proposals constitute socialism, but the label is a convenient way to avoid true analysis. Basically what Mackey wants to do is create insurance mega corps like the banking behemoths that sent the country into an economic death spiral. His proposal is the meanest sort of total free market for insurance companies so that they could simply collect premiums and never pay for care.

Boycotting Whole Foods will not be a chore for me as I rarely shop there anyway. There is no store that’s really convenient. The closest is more than 12 miles away, and I seldom feel like driving 25 miles round-trip to pay ridiculous prices. (There’s a reason the place is nicknamed Whole Paycheck). Parking is a headache at all of the stores I’ve visited. Trader Joe’s and the local health food store serve my needs quite nicely. I did praise Whole Foods for being early in the campaign to give credit for reusable shopping bags. “Bag Bans

It is a bit upsetting that the top items on Google all support Mackey or are neutral. Since he loves Internet communication, maybe Mackey will notice that since his op-ed ran, Boycott Whole Foods on Facebook has nearly 14,000 fans as of 6 p.m. And the “health care reform” forum on the Whole Foods site is hoppin’! At least Living the Science gave a balanced view.

Of course Mackey wants everyone to remain healthy by eating wholesome foods – but don’t buy them at his store because he admits the chain sells “a bunch of junk.”

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