4,666 Comments

Comments

Jan says ...
<p>This is one insurance industry conservative who will be shopping more at Whole Foods. I love your store and agree with you.</p>
08/14/2009 8:50:00 PM CDT
Bex says ...
<p>I can guarantee that all the folks here who agree with you ' ARE NOT WHOLE FOODS SHOPPERS.</p> <p>I also think you can see how the progressives perceive your 2nd 'statement' by all the 'Anti-Obama' people who are telling you what a great guy you are. </p> <p>What will matter will be the bottom line, however. And that will be known over the next few months. We'll see how many of the folks telling you how wonderful you are here will pay $12 for a bottle of olive oil and $5 for French 84% butterfat French butter.</p>
08/14/2009 8:50:00 PM CDT
former WF customer says ...
<p>Mr. Mackey, you certainly have a right to your opinion and to voice it, however I will no longer be supporting your store, which is my right as well. We desperately need true health care reform (coverage for everyone, no exceptions, cost regulation, no denial of service) and since you can't see this yourself, I would prefer to support other businesses that have a greater sense of social responsibilty than you do.</p>
08/14/2009 8:50:00 PM CDT
Thomas says ...
<p>Hello Sir,<br> Just wanted to let you know that although I have never shopped at a Whole Foods store before, you have found a new patron in me! Enjoyed the article, thanks for expressing your opinion.</p>
08/14/2009 8:51:00 PM CDT
PITA says ...
<p>Well written reform that should be considered by the 'czars' of health care. It is the line of thinking to most normal American's on this whole business of unnecessary control by the government. They really should reform the problem, not re-form another problem.</p> <p>If you had a Whole Foods Market closer than 300 miles from me, I would support your enterprise. pita out!</p>
08/14/2009 8:52:00 PM CDT
Healthy Gourmet says ...
<p>Thank you for some very interesting ideas to consider regarding health care reform. As a political independent, I'm a bit shocked by some of the knee-jerk, fascistic responses by those who cannot tolerate differing opinions and honest debate. My family will be doing extra shopping at Whole Foods this month! Don't ever be intimidated by closed-minded political extremists and please continue to express your views freely.</p>
08/14/2009 8:52:00 PM CDT
Maria - Kirkland, WA says ...
<p>John ' you are insensitive and out of touch. You are entitled to your opinion, but you came out as a representative of Whole Foods and are seeking to stop health reform that we all need ' even those that don't realize it yet. </p> <p>Remember, anyone can get laid off and lose affordable coverage. Maybe you should experience this and walk several miles in other people's shoes. Imagine that you cannot afford your store prices and have no job or health insurance. What's your 'corporate' position then?</p> <p>I'm glad to be a vegetarian in favor of raw foods, but I will also boycott Whole Foods in Seattle, Bellevue, and Redmond, WA until you retract or resign. I'm also spreading the word to everyone I know in CA, FL, IL, MD, TX, etc. to boycott and tell more friends, and so on . . . .</p>
08/14/2009 8:54:00 PM CDT
Rico C says ...
<p>Bravo Mr. Mackey! People need to take a closer look at themselves and realize that they are in control of their health. Their decisions on what they eat affect their health. We spent the day today at a water and theme park ' Holiday World in Santa Claus, Indiana ' and could not believe the number of obese parents and (sadly) children. This used to not be acceptable, but today you can parade around a theme park in bathing suits and not be accountable for what you eat and how you look. I applaud the fact that that you have suggested people be accountable for their decisions instead of expecting for government to bail them out. I do not have a Whole Foods in Evansville, Indiana but hope you consider locating here and will continue to drive 90 minutes to shop in Louisville, KY.</p>
08/14/2009 8:58:00 PM CDT
Kathryn McAleece says ...
<p>I read your article in the WSJ and find that in general I am in agreement with you. I have just spent the last 8 years living in a country with a single payer public system- Canada. A single payer system is great as long as you are in general good health. It is true, waits are long, general practioners are in short supply as are specialists. Who wants to wait four months to have a cancerous kidney removed, be sent home and then come back to the hospital two weeks later because an organ transplant came in and the transplant got priority. You see the operating room shut down at 4:30pm. Or, have your child diagnosed with cancer by your family physican and then go on the waiting list for treatment. The waiting list is at least 3 months long and in some cases longer. Manny parents just go to the emergency room and have their child admitted because once diagnosed (again) at the hospital, the child goes to the head of the list. Be admitted to the hospital for testing, be told the machine is broken and if you go home it will be at least three months until you can get an appointment. Stay overnight and the test can be completed sometime the next day. The income taxes are high, a few years ago an 'insurance premium' was added based on income and sales taxes run 15%. Not to long ago the provencial govts. were warned by Ottawa that the hospitals run in the black or close their doors. No more bail outs. SARS created chaos among the nurses because private nurses were paid more than public nurses. The govt. had to anty up with big temporary salaries for nurses dealing with SARS patients or face a boycott. The answers won't come quickly or easily. Rather than rushing, Washington needs to get this right and you have some great solutions. Thanks for speaking up.</p>
08/14/2009 9:00:00 PM CDT
Jake D says ...
<p>Well said. You have the right as any American does, to express your views without the fear of retribution. The Left is quick to judge, sentence and execute those that do not share their views. I am a Whole Foods customer and will continue shopping despite what the CEO may feel is the right direction for health care. Why should we punish anyone for differing with our own views'¦.that would be the ultimate un-American act.</p>
08/14/2009 9:01:00 PM CDT
Charlotte McCullough says ...
<p>As a politically moderate conservative, lower middle income person I find your views on Health Care reform very out of touch with the needs of ordinary people. The only things in your article that I can can agree with are the need for tort reform and that a healthy diet will help people be more healthy. My more healthy diet will come from a different store from now on.</p>
08/14/2009 9:03:00 PM CDT
will says ...
<p>For the single payer big government folks'¦<br> Even if a single payer government controlled health care system worked it would still be wrong in a U.S.constitution republic. The American enterprise is more about liberty than security. A greater free market in health care, plus much less government control, will lead to considerably lower health care costs. Then health care would be affordable. Government is ultimately about applied violence to enforce social arrangements. The less the better. Everyone is free to help his neighbor as much as he wants including forming voluntary health co-ops, helping to pay medical bills, etc. Personal sacrifice is a key aspect of true love. Why do you need government to take from someone else to fulfill your responsibility to care for others? Theft through the ballot box to finance 'collective compassion' is wrong and outside the constitutional limits placed on the Federal government. Every new government mandate is another gun pointed at our heads.</p>
08/14/2009 9:03:00 PM CDT
Ellie says ...
<p>Thank you! It's about time someone spoke up with<br> some common sense solutions. Tort reform/lawsuit limits must be part of any serious program to address the cost of healthcare. I want to support a business that deals in facts rather than hyperbole. Would you consider siting a store in the 08865 zip code?</p>
08/14/2009 9:04:00 PM CDT
D. Rob says ...
<p>Dear John: (this is a for real dear john letter)<br> You are so very misinformed or just plain dumb. My wife had a serious illness which was made worse by an hospital caused infection. But the worse part was the difficulty in getting the insurance co. to pay the bills, although they were able to pay their ceo his $1.5 billion retirement package. Now for my experience with national healthcare. Last year we were visiting relatives in Scandanavia. My wife took ill and her cousin called for an appt. She saw the Dr 2 hrs later (not a NP) and it cost all of 10 euros $15.00). So much for long waits and poor care.<br> As to the point made by someone who described himself as a doctor, insurance companies already interfere in medical care decisions.</p>
08/14/2009 9:05:00 PM CDT
Casey Wright says ...
<p>Mr. Mackey,</p> <p>I'm not even going to try and argue the merits of health care reform. I concede the point that you have a right to your views, but seriously, how stupid are you? What did you possibly hope to gain by regurgitating right-wing talking points in the Wall Street Journal while at the helm of a company that makes its living on a socially progressive image? What did you think would happen? If I were a WFMI shareholder right now, I'd be fuming.</p>
08/14/2009 9:05:00 PM CDT
tom says ...
<p>John,<br> Don't cave and don't back down. I don't even have to state whether I agree with you or not but I will fight for your right to free speech. (that one is in the constitution). I spent fifty dollars at WF tonight to<br> show my support. It's becoming the American way for some to attack those they don't agree with in order to shut them down, because they can't counter their position with reason.<br> Sad</p>
08/14/2009 9:06:00 PM CDT
Mike says ...
<p>I was flabbergasted to read this unworkable libertarian answer to health care reform coming from what I thought was a socially responsible entity, which I support with large amounts of shopping. It is about as reasonable as the libertarian financial system we just had to save from total ruin with taxpayer funds. Maybe on some island somewhere we can all make this thing work, and sing songs at the luau about individuals liberating the universe ala John Galt. </p> <p>But you clearly have no workable idea for how to address this problem, especially given your young and footloose staff. The rest of us live in the real world </p> <p>You ideas for fixing this would be one thing, but to savage decent efforts by other people as socialism and dangerous is reprehensible, ideological and deeply alienating for your customers. I spend about $10,000 a year there, and have for years. Now you can take that out of your till. I won't set foot in your store again and I am going to stop by and tell the manager, who I know well, why they won't be seeing me again. </p> <p>As if health care was just another derivative or commodity to manipulate. Atrocious.</p>
08/14/2009 9:07:00 PM CDT
Heath says ...
<p>I must say, after reading your thoughts, I am now very inclined to seek out a whole foods store. I have a whole new perspective of Whole Foods. I would love to see one in my town of Ft. Smith, AR. Thank you for calling a spade a spade.</p>
08/14/2009 9:07:00 PM CDT
Luke says ...
<p>Mr. Mackey,</p> <p>Great job on this. </p> <p>Hang in there, and please don't back away from what you wrote. I think it's a shame that Whole Foods Corporation has recused itself from this debate and doesn't take an official position on this important issue. I'm a long time customer of yours, and have spent thousands of dollars in your stores. I have also spent time standing in front of your bulletin board and read your core values waiting for one or more of my kids to finish using your bathroom.</p> <p>Please, tell me which one of Whole Foods' core values the positions you espoused conflict with?</p> <p>'¢Selling the highest quality natural and organic products available<br> '¢Satisfying and delighting our customers<br> '¢Supporting team member happiness and excellence<br> '¢Creating wealth through profits &amp; growth<br> '¢Caring about our communities &amp; our environment<br> '¢Creating ongoing win-win partnerships with our suppliers<br> '¢Promoting the health of our stakeholders through healthy eating education</p> <p>It seems to me that given the fact that the grocery business is extremely labor intensive, and you probably spend more money on healthcare every year than you do on fresh produce (I'll bet it's close, right?), having a sustainable and cost effective national health care policy such as the one you spelled out would seem to be completely in line with these values. This would let you lower your prices, which I would find delightful. It puts more money in your employees' pockets. It ensures that no one in this country would be denied healthcare because of poverty (by the way, that's a privilege that already exists in the form of Medicaid.) And, lowering the cost of healthcare for EVERYONE which your plan would do is certainly about the best thing anyone could do to help our communities.</p> <p>As a long time customer of your store, I know that many of the folks on your team and walking down the aisles pushing shopping carts aren't big fans of this whole capitalism thing. Still, it's surprising to me that your idea of putting the first $2,500 of everyone's health expenditures into their hands instead of some anonymous third party payer isn't more appealing to them. To me, that tactic is the ultimate transfer of power. Finally, we all have a chance to stick it to the man and spend our healthcare dollars as we see fit, even if that's on the supplement aisle at Whole Foods instead of at the pharmacy (yet another reason Whole Food's Corporate should be on the Mackey bandwagon.)</p> <p>I implore you again, don't back down. The apologetic, context- providing blog post is the wrong way to go. You and your brand have a great relationship with the people who are digging the 1000 page option. It's okay to spend some of the goodwill you enjoy engaging them in the conversation. It's not surprising they are reacting so angrily'¦ No one has articulated the opposing view as cogently and thoughtfully as you have. It will take a while for the logic of it to sink in. Keep doing it. Please!</p> <p>As for all of the foot stomping that's going on about 'I'll never shop there again'¦' I would let your cash register tally be the barometer of how valid those threats are. You have wonderful stores, and this is just a bump in the road. It will be hard to stay mad at you.</p>
08/14/2009 9:07:00 PM CDT
globalcitizen says ...
<p>I'm joining the thousands and thousands of others who will never again set foot in a WF store until the folks who run and profit from the business are demonstrably compassionate and supportive of, in Ronald Reagan's words 'a hand UP' by supporting REAL reform in health care. I can now finally ethically and morally justify using more gas to drive to my Organic Market, much farther away, to benefit from not only a much better selection and far lower prices but from the knowledge that my $500+ a week food tab is enhancing the lives of the truly decent folks who own and run the company.</p>
08/14/2009 9:07:00 PM CDT
Ben says ...
<p>The opening quote from Thatcher. Awesome. Leading with that accusation and then making a limp attempt at making the WSJ editors look like minor villains for retitling the piece and antagonizing certain people? Hah. While there are some really good points and directions outlined in the piece, submitting work to the WSJ and expecting it to become anything other than fuel for right wing paranoia is either incredibly naive or a completely disingenuous statement. It reinforces that the Whole Foods corporate culture's lack of awareness of families not making six-figure incomes starts at the top. There's apparently more than one good reason the 'Whole Paycheck' nickname sticks. </p> <p>FWIW ' the socialism is already here, it has been in place for nearly a century, it is just being misappropriated toward the top earners and is a malfunctioning old -ism. </p> <p>disclosure ' WF stores are really great and mostly set a fantastic example. I wish there was an equivalent option for people who cannot afford the premium prices. WalMart isn't cutting it. Lets see some action out in the places beyond the Hybrid populated parking lots instead of paying them lip service.</p>
08/14/2009 9:08:00 PM CDT
Jim says ...
<p>I do appreciate your honesty in how you and the company feel about health care reform. However, I do not agree with your way of thinking and do not beleive that the majority of your customers agree with these right wing talking points. You have lost my business and I encourage others to also shop elsewhere. Obviously you do not understand your customer base or comprehend how they think.</p>
08/14/2009 9:08:00 PM CDT
yobaby says ...
<p>having come from cuba'¦hmmm'¦mr. mackey, Bravo! you will see me @ whole foods a whole lot more!!!!</p> <p>don't even get me started on the utopian universal jargon out there!! so many of the 'enlightened' folks boycotting your stores don't have a clue'¦they live in the most exceptional country this world has ever known'¦being able to shop where they please'¦they reject what the founding fathers risked to preserve for them'¦they are slowly giving up their lives and freedom to the government as if they still need a parent to make their decisions'¦WE the people help our communities'¦NOT the government'¦that is not their job'¦quit shrugging your responsibilities on to them'¦have you noticed how eagerly they take power from you, always wrapped in bleeding heart/sensible motives'¦as the government grows bigger, so does their lust for more'¦insatiable desire for power. they seldom live by the rules/laws they set for you'¦no, they do not want boundaries set on them'¦they are the demi-gods worthy of praise and honor'¦they are the privileged elites and will utter the words, 'let them eat cake''¦then, just try to take their freedom/power'¦you wouldn't last long.</p> <p>please listen &amp; wake up before it is too late'¦the short term may seem dandy'¦but the long term is the problem'¦i really have a difficult time believing the politicians pushing this insane 1000+ page piece of legislation are being altruistic'¦call me a cynic, but then again'¦i've lived and have watched my family live through the horrors of 5 decades of big government in the once beautiful island of cuba. don't think yourselves better than the people of cuba when they, too, believed in hope and change as offered by a talented young provocative and exceptional lawyer/community organizer/speaker, fidel castro.</p> <p>in the words of dylan thomas:<br> 'Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,<br> And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,<br> Do not go gentle into that good night'¦<br> '¦Rage, rage against the dying of the light.'</p>
08/14/2009 9:09:00 PM CDT
Teresa T. says ...
<p>You have a new customer. I've never shopped at your store because it's WAY on the other side of town. But you can be sure I'll be making the drive to your store now. THANK YOU for such a fantastic Op Ed, and for not being intimidated by our rogue media or this rogue Administration.</p>
08/14/2009 9:10:00 PM CDT
Grant Higginson, MD, MPH says ...
<p>I was planning on going to Whole Foods tomorrow to purchase a whole salmon and other dishes for a family barbeque. My plans have changed. I can not support a store whose owner has such an uninformed and repressive view on important social issues. Anyone who has listened to the anguish of low-income people, average citizens and successful professionals who have experienced first-hand the denial of benefits we all should have access to is someone who I can not pratonize in good conscience. My next step on the net is to 'search' for the nearest New Seasons store.</p>
08/14/2009 9:12:00 PM CDT

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