John Mackey, the CEO of Whole Foods and a supporter of “conscious capitalism,” joined the “Reason Podcast” with Nick Gillespie on Wednesday to discuss a variety of topics.
Gillespie caught up with Mackey during Las Vegas’ annual FreedomFest to ask about his company’s response to the Covid pandemic, the government’s response to the virus, and what his plans are upon retiring at the end of August.
Mackey told Reason he is concerned about the direction America is heading as “socialists are taking over” everything from the education system and the corporate world to the military and other government entities.
“My concern is that I feel like socialists are taking over,” the Whole Foods CEO explained. “They’re marching through the institutions. They’re taking everything over. They’ve taken over education. It looks like they’ve taken over a lot of the corporations. It looks like they’ve taken over the military. And it’s just continuing. So, I’m deeply concerned.”
“You know, I’m a capitalist at heart, and I believe in liberty and capitalism,” he continued. “Those are my twin values. And I feel like, you know, with the way freedom of speech is today, the movement on gun control, a lot of the liberties that I’ve taken for granted most of my life, I think, are under threat. Packing the Supreme Court maybe.”
Regarding the Whole Foods response to the pandemic, Mackey said the lockdowns were “difficult” and suspected history will look back on them as “one of the stupidest things government will have done in the 21st century unless they start a nuclear war.”
Gillespie joked that even in a nuclear war situation, people might still be able to shop freely.
Next, the grocery chain CEO said, “The so-called vaccinations didn’t really prevent Covid, which is what you expect a vaccination to do and there have been lots of side effects for people. My wife is now a long-hauler from the booster of all things.”
Meanwhile, Mackey continued, “Places that locked down like New Zealand and Australia now have epidemic infection rates.”
Questioned about his trust of mRNA “vaccine” technology, Mackey told Reason, “It was experimental and they didn’t deliver what they promised.”
“I got both vaccinations and I still got Covid… I have lots of friends who didn’t get vaccinations and they didn’t get seriously ill,” he added.
Mackey also pointed out the vast majority of those who died from Covid were morbidly obese and elderly, noting that people who reported this fact were silenced by social media and Big Tech as purveyors of misinformation.
The Whole Foods leader joked that when he retires the “muzzle” will be taken off and the company’s board won’t be able to stop him from talking any longer.
“I can talk more about politics in six weeks than I can today,” he stated.
Besides diving into politics and finally getting to speak his mind openly, Mackey intends on writing a book about the story of Whole Foods, doing more backpacking and co-founding a new business chain with friends.