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July 13, 2007


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Where's the outrage, you ask?

I don't know about outrage, but I've got plenty of mockery:


Half Sigma (and to others who wonder what was so wrong about Mackey's "rahodeb" postings):

Mackey admits to thousands of posts over four years on a Yahoo! chatboard for stock investors - an average of four a week. Rahodeb was well known to the Yahoo! board regulars of course; he was known as someone with a great deal of information and obvious interest in Whole Foods' stock. He was an unabashed chearleader for Whole Foods, predicting dramatic stock price rises, and he also was a shameless basher of Wild Oats, often ranting against what he described was an over-valued stock price. Then Whole Foods attempted to take over Wild Oats, offering to pay more than three times what rahodeb had ranted was an over-valued stock price.

This is called intentional manipulation of the stock market. Maybe it will all make sense when the SEC spells it all out in a criminal indictment against Mackey.

Less serious but equally telling about Mackey's ego, he has on his own blog for months and years been holding himself up as the paragon of transparency while deriding his critics as enemies of transparency. His last rant came just days before it was revealed that he had for years been hiding behind a veil of anonymity posting self-congratulatory praises of himself and his company, and viscious attacks against a competitior he would try to take over. This is all the behavior of a classic narcisist. And true to the form of the narcisist, he now believes everyone is picking on him, when, in fact, he is so far getting off remarkably light.

But we'll see. Neither the FTC nor the SEC take kindly to stock price manipulation.


Thank you so much for sharing this link on our write up. This is precisely one of the questions I will be exploring as well as it fits in with our prevailing concept that some personal brands seem to be more exempt than others from accountability than others.

"Why has Mackey's lame excuse -- that it was harmless prankish behavior -- played without criticism.?"

Because, I imagine, such behavior from him is to be expected. I am starting to believe, pending the next round of communication on his part, that only the SEC will able to remind us that what he has done may be no less criminal than insider trading. Yet, at the same time, regardless of my personal view, Mackey has managed to keep his head above water at the moment.

Great addition to the conversation. All my best,

I'm not sure what Mackey did that was so horrible. CEOs are allowed to talk about their companies to people who don't work there, they do it all the time. And he did it on a public forum that any schmuck can read. I get a lot more worried about CEOs having private conversations with big investors, leaving the little guy completely out of the loop.

John Mackey's days as the Blogging CEO of Whole Foods Markets are numbered, mark my word. In fact, his days as WFM's CEO are numbered.

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