A compelling Slog AM. I don't entirely agree with some of Rich's conclusions, but I appreciate his putting the challenging stuff out there.

The stories about the extreme triage Los Angeles County is having to do are just so saddening, sickening, and horrifying. They signal just a complete failure, and after we've had so many months to get our bearings around this virus and adapt accordingly. Of course, the failure is as much national as it is local, but there does seem to be something peculiar to that locality. I get the sense that Mayor Eric Garcetti and the public health officials there have their act together. The question still arises, why is LA being so particularly hard hit? One guess is that it's a cultural thing among Southern Californians, something that someone like Joan Didion could better explain than I could.

Reminds me of this headline from The LA Times in today's Seattle Times that made my jaw drop: "California posts another single-day record for new coronavirus cases: 74,000."


@2, The comments weren't exactly sympathetically paraphrased by The Stranger. There certainly is a case for people eating better and exercising, and I'd actually expect the CEO of Whole Foods to think this is important. However, the guy is still a douchebag millionaire for talking about how other people don't need health care. It's not the best look for some rich dude who sells expensive food to other rich people.


Oxygen is running out everywhere. I can't even imagine how fucking agonizing it must have been for the hospital staff watching them die and being unable to do anything.










Regarding Psychotic CEO of the Day. You forgot to mention that Amazon just quietly announced they are ending "Haven", the project to "revolutionize" the health care system for their employees that they trumpeted with much fanfare two years ago. If Amazon found there was no way to squeeze a buck from an idea, you know it is hopeless. Our healthcare system resists all efforts to improve it. No other country in the world attempts to provide basic coverage to its citizens with for-profit insurance, why would we expect it to work here.


Most of those Republinazi fuckers in the House and Senate who’re carrying out the coup d’état have law degrees from Harvard and Yale. Nice to know those institutions along with state bar associations are totally on board with sedition and treason. And if they’re not, then why haven’t any of those fuckfaces spoken out and denounced them (oh right, tax cuts for the rich $$$).
It’s Tr666pnazi ratfuckers all the way down.


@ 9,

Republinazis' brains ran out of oxygen decades ago, however they'd never used them anyway.


RE: Eat a better diet instead of having an adequate health care industry

What are the best vegetables to eat to prevent getting hit by a bus?


it IS a simple matter of policy:
convincing the simpleton vote
that we, the Peeps just ain't quite
Smart Enough to have Universal Healthcare

'hmmm -- that seems about right.'
--actual Quote


16 - Actual quote from whom, from where?


Those Amber alerts are loud! I pulled over to the shoulder because I thought my phone was about to explode.


A. Simpleton from
in a local E.R.
pretty much


The way sane countries with universal health coverage handle unhealthy behavior is by levying taxes on products such as cigarettes, so that with every pack you buy, you are contributing to the fund which will pay for the emphysema treatments you will need later. This creates an economic incentive not to smoke to augment the incentive of wanting to live. You would think conservatives and libertarians would love the idea of incentivizing healthy behavior rather than compelling it!

What the Whole Foods CEO is selling here is very on-brand: If you eat our vegan rice puffs instead of Cheetos™ then you won't die! The idea that mortality can be avoided is one that nearly every human would like to believe, but is of course a delusion. Even people who maintain healthy habits will die one day, and their end-of-life care will still cost money. Unless he can prove that people who eat right and get exercise are statistically more likely to die inexpensive deaths it won't save the healthcare system any money if they eat the vegan rice puffs.

Mackey's aims are twofold: to hawk his company's promise of eternal health and youth, and to avoid the higher taxes he assumes he would be asked to pay in order to fund healthcare for people who aren't as rich as him.



Try wearing headphones on a Zoom conference where half the participants are unmuted and all of our phones broadcast the Amber Alert signal at the same time - I thought my EARS were about to explode...


The Whole Foods CEO reflects the dominant thinking among conservatives--that good health is a matter of effort and responsibility. Never mind that so many are too poor to eat well or too stressed about being poor to care.


@24 -- too many of the Poor
have been Forced to
eat their own

but thank GAWD
we haven't shoved
Universal Healthcare
down everyone's Sore throats



The Affordable Care Act largely addressed access, but did almost nothing to address cost. With national health care spending at almost 20 percent of GDP, it's no surprise that some voters and policy makers oppose further coverage expansions.
Big picture to keep in mind is that access to health insurance is a very weak predictor of good health. [Not having insurance is a very strong predictor of bankruptcy and foreclosure, however.] What buys good health is education and opportunity. Most OECD countries spend 10 percent or less of their GDP on health care, and we should too! If we spent the other 10 percent of GDP on education and infrastructure, we'd be much more prosperous, and therefore healthy.


I would have hoped that Amazon/Whole Foods would garner the great PR and do a good thing by bringing fresh produce and food deserts in urban poorer areas.

32 food deserts.


Addendum to blip @ 35: Even if you are comfortably covered by private insurance, you are paying roughly double what universal health care would cost you. Your insuror's rates include the costs of uncompensated care (which health care providers unavoidably pass on to paying customers), and the costs of administrative gatekeeping, categorization and ratemaking,

And in fact, you already pay more for health care in your tax dollars than almost any denizen of those cesspits of socialism elsewhere ... whether or not they eat their vegetables.


I'm totally in favor of people eating healthier and exercising.

It would be a lot easier if McDonald's weren't allowed to advertise their junk food to children. Or industrial farmers were given subsidies to grow corn syrup. Or pharmaceutical companies weren't allowed to shill their snake oil on TV. Or public schools had adequate funding for phys ed.

Rich pricks like Mackey can scream all they want about "personal responsibility" and "making better choices" but advertising fucking works and Americans are harassed by the junk food and pharmaceutical and lazy lifestyle industries from birth. Knock that shit off, actually fund and promote healthy living options, and THEN you can talk to me about people's "personal responsibility."

Oh, and universal health coverage should be a given, regardless of diet and exercise. It would be cheaper than what we currently have, and would cover more people. The fact that we don't have it is a goddamned disgrace and a testament to how much the wealthy and powerful have brainwashed half this country.


This is the same John Mackey who would prefer we all forgive and forget that he spent eight years sockpuppeting in favor of himself and his company on online forums. Choice quote describing himself anonymously: "I think he looks cute." You can read more of many articles about his alter ego "Rahodeb". Anywho, I'm thinking he's more sociopath than psychopath.


@41 & @43: Well, shucky darn, it's the Flying Covfefe Brothers, out trolling for idiotic comic relief! Wheeee! Have you contacted Lorne Michaels yet to get on SNL?


brilliant comments
@40, 26, 30, 35, 38.

thank you


@49:....said the functionally illiterate Flying Covfefe Brother with a dangerously high triglyceride level. Stop if you lose consciousness, Rainy.

@52 kristofarian: Agreed and seconded. Well said, blip @26, @35, & @36; periwinkle @30, RonK, Seattle @38, and Urgutha Forka @40. Kudos to all. :)

@53: Don't you and your fellow Flying Covfefe Brother @49 have some remedial 6th grade Math homework to catch up on?


@55 re @43: Nope. All I see is concern trolling, as usual, Rainy. How are your story problems coming along?
Oh, okay. I'll help you out.
"A passenger train leaves Boston at 3:15 p.m., heading southwest toward Memphis, Tennessee at 50 mph. A Greyhound bus from Boise, Idaho is going eastbound towards Chicago, Illinois, travelling on I-90 at 70 mph. A seagull circles a dumpster, eyed by wandering vagrants in a San Diego alley off 32nd Street. A mangy mongrel down in Biloxi, Mississippi is scratching his butt while the tide rolls in. How long will it take to bake Aunt Selma's sweet potato pie?"


@51 kristofarian re Rainy, you_can't_stop_us, et al: : Sorry--I can't seem to help myself, lately. Although it's unadvised, playing whack-a-troll can become addictive.

@52 ProfessorHIztory: Oops--sorry. @52 was meant for @51 kristofarian.


Nice to see Trump exiting office like horse manure on this dark coda of frantic election subversion with Mitch McConnell, looking like a demonically possessed vintage Charlie McCarthy doll, refuting the 2K stimulus payments and guaranteeing Republican doom at the polls. The Proud Boys are emblematic of the dysfunctional narrow-mindedness of the alt-right and should be prosecuted for domestic terrorism by the Justice Department like the KKK. With any luck the Biden Administration in concert with a Democratic Congress can undo the harm imposed on America by the hairy orange howler-monkey and his minions, many of whom should be sent back to prison, along with the snakes in his administration like that Jared Kushner weasel and his ex-con pop, not to mention the Proud Boys, who may be an insurgent radical right-wing Pat Boone-inspired bible-thumper splinter group.

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