Whole Foods CEO John Mackey: ‘Socialists are taking over’ education & guns

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John Mackey is the CEO and co-founder of Whole Foods. We’ve discussed Mackey and his completely bonkers, priviledged and short-sighted social commentary before. He blamed Americans for “getting fat” without addressing genetics, environment, food deserts or income. He also claimed that the “best solution” to America’s health care woes is to “not need health care,” because he believes every single health care need is down to personal choice. Basically, I’m saying that Mackey is completely out of touch and a really awful human being. Well, would you like to know Mackey’s thoughts on socialism and capitalism? Ugh.

The CEO and co-founder of Whole Foods thinks “socialists are taking over” because of rising discussions of gun control in the US. Evidence of this left-wing takeover was present everywhere from schools to the military to firearms legislation, John Mackey told Reason Magazine’s podcast on Thursday.

“My concern is that I feel like socialists are taking over,” the multi-millionaire organic grocery magnate said. “They’re marching through the institutions. They’re… taking over education. It looks like they’ve taken over a lot of the corporations. It looks like they’ve taken over the military. And it’s just continuing. You know, I’m a capitalist at heart, and I believe in liberty and capitalism. Those are my twin values. And I feel like, you know, with the way freedom of speech is today, the movement on gun control, a lot of the liberties that I’ve taken for granted most of my life, I think, are under threat.”

During the podcast this week, the Whole Foods executive also complained that young people don’t want to work anymore because they’re having trouble finding meaningful careers.

“Younger people aren’t quick to work because they want meaningful work,” he said. “You can’t expect to start with meaningful work. You’re going to have to earn it over time.”

[From The Independent]

Socialism because of… gun control? And he’s saying that as teenagers with automatic weapons shoot up grocery stores, schools, concerts and churches. If loving gun control makes me a socialist, then I guess I’m socialist AF. Or could it be that in a capitalist democracy, the government has every right to regulate guns as an extreme threat to the economy and to future workforces? And the whole “socialists are taking over education” thing is idiotic too, there’s plenty of evidence that the Republicans have long-conned their way towards infiltrating education across the board to install whackjobs who then use educational institutions to play-act their f–king martyrdom. Weird, because that’s exactly what Mackey is doing.

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52 Responses to “Whole Foods CEO John Mackey: ‘Socialists are taking over’ education & guns”

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  1. kate says:

    Boycott Whole Foods. Boycott Amazon. The reasons are infinite.

    • Popsicle W says:

      Absolutely. It’s easier to do now since Amazon owns them both. Yeah, he is retiring this year. Something tells me it was a involuntary.

    • Caryn Miller says:

      I agree. Boycott Whole Foods while this imbecile is a CEO there.
      This extremely rich and not the sharpest tool in the thread person.” People should stop getting sick is a solution to America’s health care problem. Seriously!?

  2. Amy Bee says:

    I have one question are Whole Foods employees unionized?

    • pottymouthpup says:

      it’s non-union. That said, it sounds like their CEO has no idea of their history – I’m pretty sure they started out as a co-op.

    • aggie says:

      Not yet but it’s only a matter of time. I’m sure they’re looking at what’s brewing at Starbucks and now Trader Joe’s and freaking out.

  3. lucy2 says:

    I’m confused as to who this guy thinks his customer base is.

    • ThatsNotOkay says:

      lol. I mean, damn!

    • FHMom says:

      It sure isn’t MAGAs.

      • whatWHAT? says:

        Something like 56% of educated white women voted for 45.

        sounds exactly like Whole Foods customer base to me.

        most progressives I know don’t shop there. if they want healthy/organic, there are a few local small shops they can patronize.

    • whatWHAT? says:

      in all actuality, I’d bet a LOT of his customer base is the Rich White Karen who voted for 45, both times.

    • MeganC says:

      I’ve never seen a MAGA hat in Whole Foods.

      • SamC says:

        Sadly I have, and I live in RI, which is mostly liberal with a few pockets of Trumpr’s. Also was in a Dallas WF and saw a few MAGA hats.

        Most people I know who used to swear by Whole Foods do CSA’s or shop farmers markets. And these days it’s such a pain to shop there, seems 3/4 of the shoppers are people packing the pickup orders blocking aisles, stopping to check their phones, etc.

      • whatWHAT? says:

        I’d bet that’s because the MAGA that shop there aren’t the kind of MAGA that wears the hat, flies the flag or has the sign on the house. the MAGA that shop there are much more likely to be the snooty Karens/Susans who live in gated communities and spend their days “lunching” at the club.

    • Cate says:

      This guy has been spewing like this for years, his customer base either doesn’t care or agrees.

      Also, I would not be surprised at ALL if a decent chunk of Trump voters also shop at WF. They’re just the ones who are quiet about their vote. Personally, I never shop at WF despite being a former employee. They used to have some affordable options (like a really amazing bulk section), that’s increasingly gone out the window in favor of $$ options. The Amazon takeover sealed the deal for me though, I’m going to have to be pretty hangry before I shop there again.

    • Caryn Miller says:

      I know. It’s pretty bizarre to come out and say off the wall things like that.
      Who does he “think” his customers are?!!?!

      Co founder of WF. Very strange.
      Guess his brain’s seen better days.

  4. TigerMcQueen says:

    I don’t go to Whole Paycheck anyhow. And as far as his rant about kids and work, he’s really saying ‘you have to work jobs that suck so that I can make money.” Yeah, screw that.

  5. Josephine says:

    every single capitalist venture in this country is fueled by and supported by heavily subsidized infrastructure. pigs like this have no clue what socialism is and how much their “capitalist” endeavors are supported by tax dollars. the pandemic made clear that capitalism has dangerous limits (& the recent shortage of baby formula was a classic capitalism failure even aside from the pandemic).

    the good news is that these disgusting old men keep outing themselves. he coudln’t keep up at WF so he needs to blame everyone else for their slipping status. screw WF and screw him.

  6. Bettyrose says:

    Listen closely right wing nutters … public education is a socialist concept in theory and practice. So are public roads. And weekends.

    • Alessandra says:

      So are vacations, insurance, worker’s comp…the list goes on. None of these a*holes has any concept of socialism, but are all too happy to reap its benefits.

      • cws says:

        I did work at the Whole Foods in Austin, at one point John Mackey was hobbling around on crutches with a broken leg. It completely goes against the ideas he spouted even then about “not needing health care”. (If I remember correctly, he fell). The moron even saw for himself that accidents can happen – someone wrecks into you, you need medical help.
        He didn’t want his photo taken on crutches because he was supposed to be selling “health”.

    • Josephine says:

      and the food we eat and he sells.

    • bettyrose says:

      My partner’s family have the total “god and guns” brainwashing. letting their church and the NRA tell them how to vote, which is consistently against their own best interests. They love to rail against Socialism (and they legitimately think the likes of Obama and Biden are socialists because they don’t understand the word at all and seem to think it means moderate Democrat). And let’s be clear that they took farm subsidies in the 80s. They all attended public schools through university, and many work in union environments, labor unions and *public school teachers*. Folx, ya’ll are socialists.

    • WiththeAmerican says:

      Sad thing is they’re going to lose public education very soon via Republicans. Gotta keep the base stupid and uneducated, in case they read a take on socialism that is something close to legit and find out they’ve been scammed.

  7. whatWHAT? says:

    Whole Foods is awful as a corporation anyway, and ridiculously overpriced. there’s a reason the store is nicknamed “Whole Paycheck”.

    they offer a “pre-peeled orange” (for the UBER lazy rich folk) in a plastic container that IS NOT RECYCLABLE. it’s in the plastic to “protect it” as it’s been peeled.

    B*TCH, the PEEL ITSELF protects it!


    • Bettyrose says:

      I agree but they were a decent employer offering benefits until Amazon bought them. Now they’re basically just another bougie enterprise that oppresses worked.

    • Kkat says:

      Pre peeled oranges are great for people with disabilities.
      people with arthritis can’t peel oranges.
      People with mobility issues can’t peel oranges.
      So it’s not just for the “lazy”

    • Kirsten says:

      I mean… I buy the pre-peeled oranges. And the other pre-cut fruit. I know it costs more, but I work, raise a kid, and do most of the household things, so I do spend extra money on some stuff like that so that I have a little more time for other things.

    • girl_ninja says:

      I do think folks with disabilities are buying at WF because they want a healthier food experience as well.

  8. girl_ninja says:

    I received an Amazon gift card and decided to us it on Whole Foods pick up order. They are over priced and their actual frozen food brand is disgusting. I’ll rely on my local farmers market, Price Rite and Trader Joe’s. Screw Whole Amazon.

  9. Christine says:

    Anything that’s a threat to his lifestyle is inherently bad. The rich would love people to remain poor and uneducated because that’s how they make their money. They’re so scared of socialism because they might actually be held accountable for their wealth and influence on communities and politics.

  10. He is stupid says:

    Like he doesn’t benefit from some type of Socialism right now. These damn rich conspiracy people are insane and I wish they didn’t have the platform to spew their misinformation. He needs to stop being greedy and be for the people because that’s who supports your business and STFU!

  11. Well Wisher says:

    Walmart with higher prices.

  12. Kirsten says:

    I feel like Socialism here is just his fill-in term for, “things are different now than they were twenty years ago and I’m uncomfortable.” Because the military sure as sh*t hasn’t been taken over by Socialists.

  13. Miranda says:

    LMAO, especially at “It looks like they’ve taken over the military.” Ask any progressive person who has served if that’s the case. My husband, an Afghanistan vet, can no longer even speak to most of the men he served with, which he attributes to “QAnon-related social death”. My father-in-law, a retired colonel and lifelong Republican until Trump came along, has spoken of how alarmingly far to the right the military continues to drift, to the point that he says he wouldn’t join if he were a young non-white, non-Christian man.

  14. BeanieBean says:

    Socialists are taking over corporations? Does he hear himself?

  15. He is out of touch says:

    Also I love these comments I’m glad to see we’re on the same page!!!!

  16. MY3CENTS says:

    So is he going to start selling guns at Whole Foods?

  17. Lens says:

    It’s the right wing who hate public education who scare me. In Arizona they are allowing college students to take F/T teaching jobs before getting a degree, in Sarasota county in Florida teachers can’t buy their own books for their classroom and scholastic books and book fairs are out, in Texas you have to give the other side when teaching about anything (famously the Holocaust, the other side is Hitler and slavery the other side is slavery owners) and that’s just what I remember offhand. Mainly it’s passing stuff that teachers already do not do (like indoctrinating children to become trans (what?) to have something for parents to Harass teachers for no reason. It’s a clusterF in the south where education has always been behind the north now it will collapse snd that’s what they want.

  18. Confused says:

    Just as a CEO of a jewelry company in UK called his wares Tatty or similar & found his sales plummeted I hope this happens to him
    There is a branch in central London which I was curious about Now as a veggie & socialist ( that is not Communist) I will give it a wide berth
    These US business owners are so entitled as if their opinion is more important & valuable
    Thinking of that pillow guy
    They are wealthy because of their customers hard earned cash
    They show little respect for them or likely their staff too
    I don’t wish this man any success & hope his customers vote with their feet & leave him

  19. Lizzie says:

    ..and probably no longer buying your overpriced products.

  20. VIVAAVIVA says:

    Hot take from simply reading the headline: man, I wish.

  21. VIVAAVIVA says:

    Now after having read the article, someone tell this generic white male that he has yet to lose any of the rights he takes for granted while 50% of the country just lost the right to make private medical decisions.

    TL;DR: Have all the seats, fella.

  22. Annalise says:

    Free speech is HARDLY under threat. Last I checked, no one was going to jail for speaking their mind, no matter how ridiculous their mind might be, and this turd is NO exception.

  23. phlyfiremama says:

    I’m so incredibly grateful that we have HEB in Texas!!

  24. Deering24 says:

    “You can’t expect to start with meaningful work. You’re going to have to earn it over time.”

    Typical right-wing corporate bullshit. The way the ecomonic system is tilted, you could be “earning” for the rest of your life, all right—by being trapped in jobs that pay zip and have no advancement. It’s impossible to climb the ladder if you have to work 24/7 to live— but creeps like Mackey know that all too well. Young folks see this scam for what it is, a d ain’t buying it.

  25. Emily says:

    Rather socialism than fascism.