Good morning, City Desk readers, and welcome to the last Creative-Loafing-in-bankruptcy Freedom Friday! This time next week, we very well might be under “new management,” as health-code-violating restaurants like to say.
Today: Lefties will picket the Whole Foods at P Street. Tomorrow: Righties will respond by handing out Whole Food CEO John Mackey’s Wall Street Journal editorial. In the near future: At least one person plans to boycott Wal-Mart to punish the mega retailer for pulling its ads from Glenn Beck’s show.
To all of the above, a newsflash: Boycotting is a) wrong and b) doesn’t work.
Let’s start with the stock prices: Mackey’s value has only gone up since the boycott threats. Why? Because people love his store so much that their response has been, “I disagree with what he wrote, but I don’t want to shop anywhere else.” To investors, this makes Whole Foods appear bullet proof. After all, it may have the most liberal clientele of any national chain in the country, and its owner is a card-carrying libertarian. Not enough people are willing to shop at an inferior grocery store just because they disagree with Mackey’s politics—especially since Whole Foods is a model of corporate responsibility in every sense of the word.
Second, even if it were possible to stage a revenue-affecting protest at the P Street Whole Foods (and it’s not in this day and age—my generation doesn’t protest, we twitter), the people to feel the pinch first would be store employees. The same employees that Whole Foods critics have frequently touted as needing union representation (and who would, in all likelihood, probably lose money by unionizing). Assuming single payer fanatics could arrange an effective boycott, is a cashier’s job worth their cause?
And Wal-Mart protesters, please, stop. If you keep this up you’ll just be proving that you’re as dumb as everyone says you are. (And you and I both know you’re not dumb, you’re actually really good at prioritizing your financial needs.)
Speaking of government-run programs: Cash for Clunkers ends Monday after putting almost half a million new cars on the road at a cost of $3 billion and hemorrhaging participating dealers due to untimely reimbursements. If my math is right, that comes out to around $6,564 in tax dollars per car. The cap was supposed to be $4,000. So what does that mean? It means that approximately $2,500 per car went to other stuff. Call it a transaction fee or call it bumblefucking, it still means one thing: The only entity that can get away with promising to spend one amount of money and then actually spending 55% more than promised is the U.S. Government.
Don’t get scammed, y’all!