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  1. #1
    Long Trail '04
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    Default Proof that CEO's Thru-hike...

    Here's a snip-it from an article on the cover of today's Wall Street Journal. Interesting to note that a CEO took a 5 months off to thru-hike.. (wish I could get that much time off)


    In 1992, the Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank, published a book called "Patient Power" that offered the high-deductible plans as a counterproposal to President Clinton's proposal for universal health care. A few years later, Congress created something called the Archer Medical Savings Account, which certain small businesses could use in conjunction with a high-deductible health insurance plan.

    "Patient Power" gave Whole Foods founder and CEO John Mackey, who considers himself a libertarian, the idea for how he might overhaul his company's health insurance. In 2002, he took a five-month sabbatical to hike the Appalachian Trail. At various stops during his amble northward from Georgia, a car would arrive at a designated stop where the trail crossed a road. Someone would restock him with food and hand over a laptop so he could catch up with e-mail.

    At one stop, Mr. Mackey got the news that the Treasury Department had issued a new regulation that would make it easier for companies to adopt consumer-driven plans. The government had confirmed that health-cost-reimbursement accounts, like the one Whole Foods uses in conjunction with its health plan, would be shielded from taxes and that employees could carry the balance over from year to year. Unlike some medical savings plans, the one used by Whole Foods doesn't allow employees to add tax-free contributions to the company payments.

  2. #2
    Registered User
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    Default

    at least 10 characters
    Last edited by Jersey Bob; 10-27-2004 at 14:34.

  3. #3
    Sittin' in Tx, Dreamin' of GA
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    This guy is a true Austin-Hippie who took a dream and made a lot of money with it. Whole foods is the only health/organic food SUPERmarket I have ever seen. If ya'll are ever in Austin it's a must see. Handy that there's one right next door to REI!

  4. #4
    American Idiot
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    Surprising how well those Whole Foods stores do. People get charged out the yin-yang for feel-good food.

  5. #5
    Getting out as much as I can..which is never enough. :) Mags's Avatar
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    Default Whole Foods

    We call the local Whole Foods here in Boulder "Whole Paycheck"


    The produce, meat, etc. is GOOD...but darn expensive.

    Funny..100 years ago "organic produce" and "free range meat" was what everyone bought. Now it is a luxury item.

  6. #6
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    We have a Wild Oats here and it is shockin how much more expensive it is to get groceries there than at Kroger or Food Lion. Our saving grace is the farmers market, which is dynamite.

  7. #7
    Registered User
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    Whole Foods does not simply sell "feel good" food. It sells food that is not slathered with carcinogenic pesticides and toxins. It sells meats that are not treated with antibiotics and hormones. The farmers who grew the coffee the store sells are treated fairly. I consider it smart to spend a little bit more to protect our bodies and the dignity of farmers.

  8. #8
    Getting out as much as I can..which is never enough. :) Mags's Avatar
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    Default Spending a little extra money

    Perhaps it is smart to spend a "little" extra money..but that little extra money is a LOT to some families. Not everyone can afford the luxury. Heck, I can just picture what would have happned if Mom had to buy organic carrots, beef, etc. growing up. Yowch!

    And, that is what I am saying. My great-grandmother would WALK down to the grocery store that sold local produce that is now of the type sold in many of the Whole Food type stores. What was common place up until post World War Two is now a luxury item that many families can't afford.

    I agree; it is good to support the farmers who sell this produce. And, the food is of much higher quality. But not everyone can afford this better quality (but expensive) food.

  9. #9
    Section Hiker 500 miles smokymtnsteve's Avatar
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    well how about that ..with the USA supposedly the richest country in the world...spreading our gospel of democracy ...and our own citizens have trouble affording decent food.
    "I'd rather kill a man than a snake. Not because I love snakes or hate men. It is a question, rather, of proportion." Edward Abbey

  10. #10

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by smokymtnsteve
    well how about that ..with the USA supposedly the richest country in the world...spreading our gospel of democracy ...and our own citizens have trouble affording decent food.
    While there are certainly those who are in dire financial straits through no fault of their own, there are also a lot of people who are there due to the choices they have made or continue to make.

    Anyway, Whole Foods is pretty neat -- they bought out Harry's here in Atlanta and it's always an adventure going shopping there.

  11. #11
    ME => GA 19AT3 rickb's Avatar
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    The book "Fast Food Nation" inspired my wife to shop there.

    Food never tasted better. Costs more item for item, but given the over-processed crap we now do without, we actually spend less.

    That book made it hard to enjoy a good steak, though.

    Rick B

  12. #12
    Long Trail '04
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    Here's an interesting tidbit from an article on Mackey in the latest copy of Fast Company..


    Mackey is a persistently puzzling fellow: self-effacing, but with a hint that he senses his own legacy. During 2002, in the heart of the recession, he took four months off to hike the Appalachian Trail, fulfilling a longtime dream.

    People who hike the whole trail end up with "trail names," a moniker that acknowledges that the Appalachian Trail is a universe unto itself, a place where the roles of the outside world are set aside. Mackey had been warned in advance to pick his own trail name, lest he be tagged with something derisive, as is the custom.

    "My trail name is Strider," he says. For someone tall, lanky, and energetic, it seems an innocuous enough choice. "I'm a great admirer of Tolkien's Lord of the Rings," Mackey says. "Before I was in high school, I had read it five times. And one of the characters I admired was Strider."

    But as with much about Mackey, that nickname is not quite what it seems. "Strider isn't his real name; it's his nickname on the trail. He is really Aragorn, the king. But he wasn't a king on the trail. In 2002, when I was hiking, I was certainly the richest guy hiking the Appalachian Trail. I was a kind of secret king. But that wasn't my identity, or my role, on the trail."

  13. #13
    American Idiot
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    Quote Originally Posted by SavageLlama
    In 2002, when I was hiking, I was certainly the richest guy hiking the Appalachian Trail. I was a kind of secret king. But that wasn't my identity, or my role, on the trail."
    No kidding... I don't like the guy already, not to mention that first post was like a plug for Whole Foods. No reflection on you, SL.

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