26 Aug CEO’s do not deserve freedom of speech, just celebrities
The CEO of Whole Foods grocery chain, John Mackey, has really caused a firestorm as of late. It is not because he has brought the stock value of his very popular chain of stores from $7 to $30 in the last year, and it is not because they continue to add thousands of people to their payroll in a period of labor market contraction. It is not because around the country there are lines of customers going around the store as people anxiously try to spend their dollars on the value proposition Whole Foods offers. No, Mackey is in a whirlwind of controversy, because he has spoken out against Obama’s health care proposal.
I am unable to make this stuff up, for I lack the perverse creativity required of talented satirists who would blog on this in jest. The successful CEO of a large, growing, national company, with a deep vested interested in socio-political policy, has gone on record making his feelings known (Mackey is a limited government advocate, and a prolific writer as well). This morning, Mark Haines on CNBC ran a feature wondering “if this is a sign that CEO’s need to zip their lip on issues like this.” Haines’ guest this morning stated that Mackey “violated the public trust” as the face of his company by delving into this issue in a public forum.
If I am to understand the left wing position correctly, senior citizens around the country afraid of the direction of “end of life” care, need to go to Townhall meetings where Democratic politicians and AARP hacks lie through their teeth to them, and these senior citizens (many of them veterans), need to shut their mouths and play nice, and never, under any circumstances, raise their voice, and express dissent. Likewise, the CEO of a $4.2 billion company responsible for the livelihood of 52,900 employees, needs to shut up, resist the temptation to share his insights and experience in the marketplace of ideas, and leave the editorializing to the “experts”.
And all of this begs the question – who are the experts? The Democratic proponents of Obama-care are one-by-one admitting they haven’t read the bill, don’t understand the bill, and don’t intend to (one of the proponents of Obama-care who has said this is named “Barack Obama”). So if our civil servants are out, I am left with only one segment of society qualified to speak out, and that is the far left celebrities in Hollywood. I need to be specific, here: I do not merely mean “famous people”; I specifically mean, “famous, leftist, people”. We prefer they be good looking, too, though exceptions are available for Jenny Garafalo. John Mackey is not as pretty as Brad Pitt or Angelina Jolie, and he ought not be as vocal in his right wing ideology either. He is just a CEO. Bradjolina have given us ample covers of People magazine, and they do photo shoots multiple times per week. George Clooney, who is very handsome, starred in ER, where hot doctors and nurses had sex with each other constantly, but then also saved lives and cried a lot (especially when they suffered a loss, either in the operating room, or the bedroom). I do not need to hear from an ideologue like John Mackey, who has never made a movie with Matt Damon, when I can get my socio-political itch scratched by a group of famous and good-looking people whose combined IQ would not threaten my boy’s pre-school class.
And speaking of that pre-school class, let’s teach them now not to get “mouthy”. The land of the free and home of the brave belongs to an elite group of good-looking substance abusers, where socio-political babbling is allowed, and encouraged.