Sunday, March 21, 2010

Gullible, Thy Name is Consumer

I'm too depressed by all the "we know what's best for you and we're going to fix it so that we make most of the decisions in your life" load of compost-heap barkey-malarkey going on in Washington today to do a political post, so I'm doing a "this politically correct load of compost-heap barkey-malarkey is ridiculous" post.

This ad appeared in a local newspaper circular earlier this week. It's just a little more proof of how the supermarkets are all jumping on the Whole Foods-ish "organic" bandwagon more and more these days.

I typically don't go to the nearby Winn-Dixie because its parking lot is nearly impossible to navigate and life is too short to sacrifice one's blood pressure to too-small parking lots/places, but I suppose that's kind of beside the point. Nonetheless, I will birdwalk if I so choose, because I can. For the time being. Until Congress decides that staying on topic will reduce the budget deficit because less time on the computer will result in less energy consumption and more green jobs.

Okay, I admit that I'm a little focused on all the "we know what's best for you and we're going to fix it so that we make most of the decisions in your life" load of compost-heap barkey-malarkey going on in Washington.

Back to the "organic" (translation: more expensive") fad.

I'm sure there are benefits to eating foods that are locally grown using fewer chemicals and preservatives that don't have to be transported over long distances, but logic suggests that those benefits apply to fresh foodstuffs, not the products in cans and boxes that have been processed, at times, beyond recognition.

So, I'm not getting sucked in by the whole "our organic foods are healthier for you than other canned and processed foods, and once you accept that premise you won't worry about paying more for them after this week's special is over" marketing strategy. Processed foods are processed foods -- and they all have lots of salt and loss of nutrients. And even I acknowledge that sometimes, we simply must rely on processed foods to get a meal on the t.v. tray.

But, I mean, seriously -- Organic Macaroni and Cheese?!?! I don't care how the wheat is grown that goes into the pasta -- powdered cheese is powdered cheese.

Geez. How gullible can we get?


  1. Moogie, the day I pay $2.50 for a box of macaroni & cheese mix...please have me committed.

    Aaaaahhhh...the good old days when folks lived off the land. They ate their own home-grown vegetables, chickens, beef, pork... Drank milk from Bessie, or maybe even "Happy The Goat!"

    Yes, those were good times. Of course, most of the folks died before reaching 60...but who's counting?

    I've got nothing against folks that desire a more natural input of fuel in their tank. I'm kinda one of them myself...I like tomatoes, okra, peppers, eggplant, squash, etc. that I've grown in my garden. (and locally grown purple-hull peas that I just finished eating a ton of).

    And truthfully, I can't blame good capitalists for taking advantage of the phobias that the natural kick has instilled in many.

    Heck, I don't want to drink insecticide, or bathe in Roundup. But, as you note, if it's in a can, or a box, there's a good chance that it didn't get there by itself, nor will it last long without being tainted by human hands...and it's not much different from the 33 cent Great Value box.

  2. Do you have a Whole Foods store in your neck o' the woods (I use the term to include all of Greater N'Awlins)? Mr. Mackey has made some *serious* money off the gullible, even given the benefit of the doubt about his intentions. I used to like cruising the local Whole Foods in the Bay Area for the eye candy (there are some quite lovely hausfraus among the gullible, especially in the trendy burbs of SFO) but their prices averaged anywhere from 30% higher (minimum) to double the going rate at mainstream markets. I *never* bought anything there.

    But yeah: organic mac & cheese? It is to LAUGH!

  3. Yeah -- there's a WF pretty close. I dread having to go there because of the smug, self-focused folks who shop there and block everyone else's access to the aisle. But, sometimes their fish is just superior to what's available elsewhere.

    And all the little tuna-fish-can cars with their Save Mother Earth biodegradeable bumper-stickers.

    And the HORRIBLY behaved offspring.

    Oops -- there goes the blood pressure.