What are you buying when you buy organic?
A Wellesley graduate is one of the company’s prize exhibits. “I just hang on to the fact that my job is good in some larger sense,” she says on the corporate Web site. “If people buy the sprouts, they’re eating healthier foods, the farmer is doing well, and it’s good for the planet because they’re grown organically.” Since 1998, Whole Foods has ranked high among Fortune’s “100 Best Companies to Work For in America.” Although the company is as ferociously anti-union as Wal-Mart—John Mackey, the volubly libertarian founder and C.E.O., has called unions “parasites”—Whole Foods limits the compensation of its highest-paid executives to no more than fourteen times the employee salary average, and it likes to talk about how it rewards team members’ initiative. Mackey once told Forbes, “Business is simple. Management’s job is to take care of employees. The employees’ job is to take care of the customers. Happy customers take care of the shareholders. It’s a virtuous circle.”
" It’s a virtuous circle", that's just crazy talk. The idea that business isn't just some cold abstract about making money. I don't know what percentage of the population thinks that business is or should be a monolithic concept, a bullet train of sorts, whose sole purpose is the accumulation of money where the means don't really matter as long as there is a large stack of cash in a tiny group of people's bank account at the end of the day. If you think that business or more broadly capitalism should be run any other way, well let's just say there have been plenty of derivatives to describe people like you. One of those plain simple in your face truths that is so obvious that it is frequently overlooked is that because we're at least in theory a free society, many people are going to choose to be selfish in the most morally irresponsible way. Businesses like Wal-Mart where they think that unions are “parasites”. What do you think John Mackey is. Mackey hasn't the slightest clue what an honest day's work is. He has other people do the work while he racks in the cash. Mackey and people that think like him are the ideological decedents of plantation owners. As far as I know Mackey has never invented anything, never conceived of an original idea, and never broke a sweat providing food for his family or braces for his kids. He sits behind a desk a recipient and leecher of other peoples ideas and labor. Labor unions are not a perfect concept, they shouldn't be necessary, but they put pressure on people like old John to pay something that at least approaches a living wage. Whole Foods isn't perfect, but if companies like Wal-Mart operated more like Whole Foods or Costco labor unions wouldn't be a necessary counter balance to company king pins like John. To John and the thousands of corporate executives that think like him, employees are not people they're clogs in the money making machine; capitalism as nihilism. Mackey and his ilk live in a fantasy world. Where would the products he sells come from, how would those products be distributed, and who would consume them without labor. Mackey like most libertarians and conservatives live in a fantasy world where all of the gears, pulleys, and wheels of commerce run because they waved their pigskin from Stanford or Harvard or wherever like a magic wand and made it so. One has to wonder if somewhere along the way these pretend Kaptains of Kommerce didn't take a blood oath to never ever give credit to working class Americans for anything.
Well in my shot at libertarians I did say "most", here's one with the idea about individuals bringing financial pressure to bear on the telcos so they'll stop cooperating with the NSA, Divestiture, the Repeat Solution? . One thing you can do tomorrow, if you're not tied up in a long tern contract is which to Working Assets Wireless.
I thought this was an appropriate poem for Memorial Day
OTHERS taunt me with having knelt at well-curbs
Always wrong to the light, so never seeing
Deeper down in the well than where the water
Gives me back in a shining surface picture
My myself in the summer heaven, godlike
Looking out of a wreath of fern and cloud puffs.
Once, when trying with chin against a well-curb,
I discerned, as I thought, beyond the picture,
Through the picture, a something white, uncertain,
Something more of the depths—and then I lost it.
Water came to rebuke the too clear water.
One drop fell from a fern, and lo, a ripple
Shook whatever it was lay there at bottom,
Blurred it, blotted it out. What was that whiteness?
Truth? A pebble of quartz? For once, then, something.
For Once, Then, Something by Robert Frost