Wild Oats Strewn

July 12, 2007

Who’s Who and What’s What at Whole Foods Market?

Would you buy your wild oats from a Yahoo named Rahodeb? What if he is a blogger named John Mackey, who also happens to be founder and CEO of Whole Foods Market?

According to “An Identity Crisis at Whole Foods Market“, as Rahodeb the anonymous Yahoo stock-market poster, he told the world that Whole Foods Is Hot, and Wild Oats is NOT. He did not tell the world that he, Rahodeb was the CEO of the Whole Foods Market that was hoping to purchase Wild Oats Market. His hopes recently came to fruition as the company of John Mackey, aka Rahodeb, recently agreed to buy Wild Oats for $565 million, or $18.50 a share.

Beginning in the late 1990s, Rahobed seems to have trolled the Internet with mischief in mind and corporate greed in his heart. In real life he was known as a Yogi and vegan Texas rancher. Are America’s consumers going to continue trusting their organic food purchases to someone who attempted to tarnish another food company’s good name and stock price? Are investors going to keep up the cash flow?

In January 2005, “Rahodeb” posted online “No company would want to buy Wild Oats Markets Inc., a natural-foods grocer, at its price then of about $8 a share. Would Whole Foods buy OATS? Almost surely not at current prices. What would they gain? OATS locations are too small.” Rahodeb speculated that Wild Oats would be sliding into bankruptcy or that its stock would fall below $5. A month later, he wrote that the Wild Oats management “doesn’t know what it is doing …. OATS has no value and no future.”

According to “Whole Foods Is Hot, Wild Oats a Dud — So Said ‘Rahodeb,’” for about eight years prior to the Whole Foods – Wild Oats agreement, Mr. Mackey posted numerous messages on Yahoo Finance stock forums using the pseudonym of Rahodeb, an anagram of his wife’s name. Rahodeb quickly became known as a cheerleader for Whole Foods stock. He was so anonymous, that he even spoke of himself in the third person. Expressing pride in the CEO’s work Rahodeb wrote in 2000, “While I’m not a ‘Mackey groupie, I do admire what the man has accomplished.” He cheered Whole Foods’ stock and bashed Wild Oats.

While praising his own company anonymously, Rahodeb socked it to the Wild Oats CEO, Perry Odak who had no idea who was behind the postings. “While Odak was trying to figure out the business and conducting expensive ‘research studies,’ to help him figure things out, Whole Foods was signing and opening large stores in OATS territories. Odak drove off most of the long-term OATS natural foods managers.

I admit to my bias. I love the company and I’m in for the long haul. I shop at Whole Foods. I own a great deal of its stock. I’m aligned with the mission and values of the company … Is there something wrong with this?” Perhaps the answer to Rahodeb’s question will be forthcoming as the Federal Trade Commission has initiated¬†a lawsuit seeking to block the Wild Oats takeover on antitrust grounds.

One thing that seems to have resulted from John “Rahodeb” Mackey’s shenanigans is that stockholders and corporate boards across America are now forbidding their CEOs to go anywhere near the Internet. ūüėČ


Queen Elizabeth Munster

July 11, 2007

 And the Revenge of the Picasa2 Nerds:

How great is this? The famous American lady photographer, Annie Leibovitz , won the gig to shoot the Queen on her eightieth birthday. During the shooting, Annie the First requested, ever so politely, that Elizabeth the Second remove her gem-encrusted sparkling spiked tiara from her royal head, in order to make a more down-to-earth and interesting portrait. Elizabeth, Head of Church and State, was so stunned at this extraordinary ‚Äúdecrowning‚ÄĚ demand from a mere mortal, that she lost her queenly temper and regally stormed out of the palace chamber, dragging her train behind her. Actually, she did not drag her velvet train as it was most carefully carried by the Queen‚Äôs ladies in waiting.

During the programme photographer US celebrity snapper Annie Leibovitz sizes up the Queen in her full regalia and ventures: “I think it will look better without the crown, because the garter robe is so…” . Before the photographer can finish … the Queen raises her eyebrows, fixes the snapper with an icy stare, and snaps: “Less dressy? What do you think this is?” TV cameras follow the Queen storming off with an official lifting the large train of her blue velvet cape off the floor as the Queen tells her lady-in-waiting: “I’m not changing anything. I’ve had enough dressing like this thank you very much.” This is all according to reports from Britain’s Daily Mail.

Leibovitz, being the pro that she is, managed to snap the footage of the stormy whirlwind and captured Her Majesty’s face¬†at the very moment that Majesty was contemplating sending Annie to the Tower of London. It gets even worse, for although Queen Lillibett may have given commoner Annie a piece of her mind, it was actually Annie who got the last laugh, with this — the official photographic portrait of the long-lived queen. Not only is Elizabeth “uncrowned”, but Annie has turned her into a vampire looking Munster Queen.

Queen Elizabeth Munster

And I bet Annie did it with Picasa 2 too, using the “Focal B & W” effect,¬†although she will never admit it.

UPDATE: Since I first “reported” this event as it appeared in Britain’s “Daily Mail”, it has been discovered that the original news story¬†came from the BBC, which has now apologized to both the Queen and Annie for misrepresenting the behavior of both. So the new news is that The Queen and Annie are good and proper folks and it is the BBC that deserves contempt … I guess. It is a bit much for Kerfuffles to find and follow the truth, however, Annie’s portrait of Queen Lillibett Munster has not changed … yet.

“Made in China” Dangers

July 9, 2007

LOOK MA — No Fireworks!
If you want to buy safe “Made In China” products, look to fireworks, as none made the 2007 Dangerous Recall List (Two in 2006).

Cheap But Not Safe

American consumers love¬†bargains and¬†Communist Chinese manufacturers love providing them. However, after reading this list of the dangers from China during the first six months of 2007, no responsible consumer will ever again purchase “Made in China” jewelry¬†for their children or grandchildren.

In January 2007, there were Dangerous Candles from Sally Foster; Toxic Overalls from Samarra Brothers; Fire Hazard Heaters from Family Dollar Stores; Bad Wiring In Fans from Holmes Group; Baby Travel Dryers With Electrocution Hazard from Metropolis Beauty; Improperly Wired/Flammable Lamps from Hong Ten Trading.

In February of 2007, we had Overheating DVD Remote Controls¬†from Best Buy; Lead Poisoning Claudia Jublot children‚Äôs rings sold at Big Lots stores; Defective Lamps¬†from Currey & Company of Georgia; Lead Jewelry Accessories¬†from Kidsite sold at Kmart;¬†Toxic Jackets¬†with snap closure of lead from Samara Brothers; Lead Bracelets¬†from the ‚ÄúUltra Gear‚ÄĚ brand; Hazardous Toy Batteries¬†that melted and caught fire from JAKKS Pacific ; Lead Children’s¬†Rings¬†from Rachael Rose Kidz.

March 2007, brought Breakable Bike Frames¬†from Target‚Äôs¬†Triax PK7 and Vertical PK7 brand names; Dangerous Razor Blades For Kids¬†in Tri Star International’s¬†children‚Äôs stationary; Shocking Extension Cords¬†from¬†Dollar Stop Plus; Lead Easels¬†from Discount School Supply’s¬†Elite brand; Lead Children’s Necklaces sold at Accessories Palace; Toxic Paint¬†on Toys R Us Elite Operations toy sets;¬†¬†Lead Mood Necklace¬† children‚Äôs jewelry sold by Rhode Island Novelty;¬†Dangerous Sconces¬†from¬†Home Decorators; Lead Paint Baby Toys¬†sold at¬†dollar¬†and other discount stores

April 2007, found Poison Pet Food¬†made in America was killing American pets because two Chinese companies intentionally exported contaminated pet food ingredients to the United States;¬†Flamable Hanukkah Candles¬†from Aviv Judaica Imports ; Oil Heater Fire Hazard¬†from Holmes Group; Flaming Boomboxes¬†from Coby Electronics; Collapsing Baby Seats¬†recalled¬†by Oeuf; Flammable Baby Clothes¬†from the¬†Disney Stores’¬†Baby Einstein brand; Hazardous Candles¬†from McCormick Distilling Company; Lead Children’s Bracelets¬†from A&A Global Industries; Lead Key Chains¬†from Dollar General Merchandising; Shocking Palm Trees, Pre-lit Palm Trees from iObjectSolutions; Unguarded Blades¬†on Sears “Craftsman” brand. Sears instructed customers to remove the ‚ÄúCraftsman‚ÄĚ logo label from their Chinese-made Craftsman Circular Saws so that the label could not become¬†detached and expose the saw blade.

In May of 2007, we dined on Toxic Fish¬†from China as what was labeled as monkfish was actually deadly puffer fish; Tween‚Äôs Lead Jewerly¬†from Tween Brands Inc. of New York; Toxic Lead Drums¬†from The Boyds Collection of Pennsylvania in its ‚ÄúEli‚Äôs Small Drums and Liberty‚Äôs Large Drums;‚ÄĚ Children‚Äôs Turquoise and Lead Rings¬†from Cardinal Distributing Company of Maryland; More Lead Children’s¬†Jewelry¬†from Spandrel Sales and Marketing of Arizona; Collapsing Stools¬†from Cracker Barrel Old Country Store; Lead Bamboo¬†toys manufactured by HaPe International Ltd; Hazardous Grills¬†from Sagittarius Sporting Goods; Toxic Jesus Fish Children’s Necklace¬†from Oriental Trading Company of Nebraska; and¬†Hazardous Candles¬†that were highly flammable from Vivre Royal¬†.

In June of 2007, we purchased Deadly Tires¬†from Tire importer Foreign Tire Sales, based in Union, N.J., shoddily manufactured by Hangzhou Zhongce Rubber Company resulting in traffic deaths;¬†we may have eaten Tainted Seafood¬†as the FDA detained imports of¬†Chinese¬†catfish, basa, dace, shrimp and eel;¬†Thomas the Toxic Lead Painted¬†Tank Engine Toys¬†arrived from American toy company RC2; Lead Children’s Earrings¬†were sold in Kmart stores; Deadly Cribs¬†“Nursery-In-A-Box” from Simplicity Inc.; we brushed our teeth with low-priced but Poisonous Toothpaste¬†containing diethylene glycol, which poisons the liver and kidneys and depresses the central nervous system; Lead Butterfly Necklaces¬†for kids from Geocentral; Pier 1 Imports Unexpected Shattering¬†glassware; Collapsing Recliners¬†from Rockingham Deluxe Lounge Chairs; Gateway recalled Laptop Computer Batteries from China.

So far for¬†July 2007, we have imported Dangerous Hammocks¬†from Danlong Industries which injured several and we continue our¬†importation of¬†lead jewelry for¬†our children ‚ÄúEssential‚ÄĚ Lead Jewelry¬†as Future Industries of New Jersey recalled their ‚ÄúEssentials for kids‚ÄĚ jewelry. Afterall, silver and gold are just too pricey for kids’ jewelry¬†I suppose.

Striking, isn’t it, how many of these dangerous “Made In China” consumer items were manufactured specifically for children? Is it because the Chinese do not value the lives of American children? Or is it that Americans, amongst the world’s¬†wealthiest consumers,¬†do not value their own children enough to buy them the best?

This timeline list was gleaned from “Dangerous Made-In-China Products: 2007 Timeline” at WhoSucks:¬†“we have chosen to mention only the incidents that seem most likely connected to problems on the Chinese side, such as dangerous/faulty materials being used in production.”¬†

The image, Made In China, is subject to copyright by metz79. It is posted here with permission via the Flickr API by barneykin.

Bush Pardons Clinton

July 6, 2007

Another Bush Pardon – This One Riles the Republicans.

In response to the carping of Democrats over his non-pardon of White House aide Scooter Libby, President George Bush has “turned the tables” on the Dems and pardoned the Impeachment of President Bill Clinton. Bush¬†went even further than anyone expected by pardoning both Bill and Hillary Clinton for the 140 pardons that¬†Clinton signed on his last day in the White House.

‚ÄúI want to be known as the ‚ÄėPardoning‚Äô President‚ÄĚ, Bush explained at a press conference announcing this unexpected turn of events. ‚ÄúIf I can pardon illegal aliens for breaking the laws of our country, then certainly I can pardon one former president for doing likewise. Afterall, I am a Christian and so is he and our faith teaches us to ‚Äėturn the other cheek.‚Äô I am pardoning both Clintons for their Presidential pardons and I am pardoning them for being hypocrites also. I am just a pardoning kinda guy.‚ÄĚ

‚ÄúNever again will my predecessor have to endure the indignity of being addressed as the ‚Äėimpeached Former President.‚Äô And never again will my press secretary and my remaining fifteen Republican supporters be able to refer to the Clintons as hypocrites for condemning my non-pardon when they committed 140 pardons themselves on their very last day in office.‚ÄĚ

‚ÄúI‚Äôm President now and I am granting Bill Clinton a full and complete Presidential Pardon. Not only will I grant the pardon to Bill, I will grant a pardon to his gracious and lovely wife Hillary, as well. I wish them Godspeed in their self-righteous quest to begin a new Clinton dynasty in America. May their daughter Chelsea follow their footsteps in service to our nation. For this reason I am pardoning Hillary Clinton for her eight years as¬†co-president so there will be no Constitutional hindrance whatsoever to her serving another eight years once she is officially elected to the U.S. Presidency.‚ÄĚ

SIGNED: George W. Bush
Pardoner President of the United States of America

MDs with IEDs

July 3, 2007

It is just another benefit of socialized medicine that has been denied to Americans.

Thank God and thank the Republicans that America has not “yet” implemented Saint Hillary’s socialized medicine plan. It was those rascally Republicans who¬†denied that benefit of “MDs with IEDs”¬†to America by destroying Hillary Clinton’s plan for a national health care system.¬† (IEDs are improvised explosive devices: Wikipedia.)

If you are wondering why at least six of the suspects in the foiled bombings by Al-Qaeda in the United Kingdom were medical doctors, you need wonder no longer. It has been announced that all of the suspected terrorist medical personnel were employed by Britain’s National Health System.

Many years ago, the vast majority of docs in Britain’s NHS were British-trained and British-born. Today “Foreign Doctors Are the Lifeblood of NHS.” The United Kingdom still trains its share of homegrowns, however¬†many, many of these medical graduates choose not to practice under socialized medicine. That was a situation that NHS easily surmounted as they merely replaced them with foreign doctors who were not near as demanding as the British doctors were, even though as far back as the year 2000 there were complaints:¬† Row Over Foreign Doctors.¬†

Now it has come to this: the socialization of medicine in the UK is responsible for medical doctors who are choosing to create patients rather than heal them. Today’s British NHS seems to be staffed by MDs with IEDs as the British people are left wondering where all the¬†terrorists are coming from and how they can afford to blow up pricey Mercedes automobiles. “Terror Ringleader is Brilliant NHS Doctor

The Bumper Sticker War

July 3, 2007

John Edwards Was Right – It’s A Bumper Sticker War!

John Edwards was ridiculed for his statement: “The War on Terror is a … bumper sticker ….” Fox News, Wednesday, May 23, 2007, however he has been proved to be a prophet before his time, as recent events in the United Kingdom have shown. At least three bumper stickers attached to automobiles fitted to be potential man-maiming bombs have been found in both Scotland and England. And at this very moment, in New York City and Washington DC, as July 4th festivities are getting underway, police are looking for more bumper sticker bombs.

Thus far, all of the car bombs discovered in the UK have displayed bumper stickers. The two in London read “John Edwards Is Right – It’s A Bumper Sticker War.” The sticker on the potential car bomb at the airport in Glasgow read “MDs With IEDs – We Bomb Better Because We Use Mercedes.”

The world was curious as to why pricey Mercedes vehicles were fitted out to be exploded. Now it makes sense. The suspected perps are medical doctors and those were the only automobiles they had at their “disposal.”

“MDs With IEDs – We Are the Mercedes Bomb Squad.”