Thursday, November 19, 1998
Just One Thing Although I am generally pleased with both of the articles about Whole Foods Market (Nov. 12), I would like to comment on one quote of mine that was taken out of context, and another that was completely omitted.
According to the article, regarding their produce, I was quoted as saying Whole Foods "buys all over the world." If the writer (Sue Fishkoff) inferred this through any unclear language on my part, then I apologize to Sue. I wanted to make it clear that much of the produce comes from a distribution center in the Bay Area, not from "all over the world."
Omitted from the article were my comments about the Whole Foods Private Label, which is food produced in many regions of the world. I was complimentary about this product line, whereas my opinion of the "365" line, the one with many items containing sugar, is considerably lower. I would really appreciate it if you could clear this up.
While I am very disappointed in Whole Foods'' position regarding the UFW fight for better working conditions and dismayed at the fact that they sell non-turtle safe shrimp, I wish to bring to the attention of consumers that it is not only businesses who must take responsibility for what they sell, but also individuals who must take responsibility for what they buy.
If customers do not purchase non-turtle safe shrimp then sellers will no longer sell non-turtle safe shrimp. If customers do not buy strawberries, and let sellers know why, perhaps the sellers will begin to lobby for change in farm laborer working conditions. Shrimp and strawberries are not necessary foods, they are luxuries, and as such can easily be deleted from one''s diet until harvesting conditions are improved. We must all be responsible consumers and urge our merchants to be responsible purveyors.
HELEN V. OGDEN
What About Unions?
Certainly, I''ll never set foot in Whole Foods again and I''ll strongly urge my friends to avoid shopping there. Unfortunately, I look upon all of you who work for Mr. Mackey ("Minding the Store," CW, Nov. 12) as victims. Mr. Mackey, the "boss," insists he''s created an unconventional work place. I believe what he''s created is his own puppet show.
Believe me, baby boomers, X Gens, the whole gang of you who''ve recently joined the labor force (not in management, but in labor), I''ve lived and worked long enough, at 72, to recognize the dangers in Mr. Mackey''s work credo. I think he''s a dangerous anachronism in America''s workforce today. While my children are struggling for perks at their jobs to help them raise their families, they''re totally at the mercy of management, and who remembers the last time your boss voluntarily offered you health insurance?
Meanwhile, Mr. Mackey vilifies the very human strengths that brought about the birth of company health programs...unions!
Think of this: Every single perk you''ve ever enjoyed or have wanted to has been there for you not from management, but because men and women of the work force were able to find a united voice in dealing with the "boss."
Why does Mr. Mackey choose to blaspheme one of America''s strongest assets? Think about that while waiting for the local health food stores to return.
Save the Dunes
Regarding the Sand City council elections, I thank Coast Weekly for giving us candidates free speech access during the last election. We congratulate the winners. Marcus Denoon of the Pot Party continues as Health Minister, but MP Cepeda switched to the Natural Law Party, MP Perry is a Democrat, and I''m now registered as a nonpartisan.
We three MPs, or members of parliament (Cepeda, Perry and Ogle), were out-campaigned and outspent, some abuses of the democratic process occurred, and our slate was not dynamic enough. This can be improved, and next time we''ll open ranks to the good independent candidates in the field.
Together, the challengers got 85 votes in Sand City, but the incumbents won all the seats, with 45 to 48 votes each. That''s not fair. According to my survey of 28 Sand City residents, 60 percent oppose any hotels west of Highway 1. But all five of the current councilmembers favor a large hotel there. The 60 percent majority is in trouble, as the developers are readying the assault on these virgin dunes, where the hang gliders practice. The biggest dune by the Sand City exit is also the highest peak in the Monterey/Seaside basin. It''s close to Seaside High, where people climb and view. The USA Parliament is not just registering voters, promoting ways to address the abuses of misrepresentation and power, and unfair elections results, but we''re also regrouping and getting ready for the next skirmish, which will be to save the dunes. We need campaign money and volunteers, please call 394-8502 for more info.
JAMES OGLE, USA PARLIAMENT SECRETARY
I could not help but smile after seeing the article on page 32 of the Nov 12 issue of Coast Weekly regarding the 360 degree photo techniques used by Patrick Van Beuge and Christopher Light.
Over 30 years ago, while attending San Diego State University, I took my own Nikon, and a two-foot wide silvered hemisphere and created the same kind of photographs.
I then developed a method of projecting the resulting slide back onto a surface. I took the development to my physics professor, who proceeded to explain to me at great length why it was impossible to project a sharp image back off a convex surface (claiming that the light rays could not be focused).
When I explained not only why it could work, but brought in a working model to show him that it did, in fact, project sharp clear images, he mumbled something about rewriting the optics books, and shaking his head, departed.
I''ve always wondered why no one ever picked up on this technique, since, in a commercial venue, you could literally wrap the viewing screen around the audience, producing an effect superior to even Imax.
I guess they never re-wrote the books.
Now, as a computer and video professional, I''m delighted to see at least one part of my ancient project brought forward. The advent of the digital age is perfect for the resulting image.
Thanks for the article, and my best wishes to the young photographers in their new enterprise.
TRACY VALLEAU, CEO
DIGITAL LIGHT STUDIOS, INC., MONTEREY
Bypass, Chapter 2
Interesting that the strategy of more money and better lawyers lost out to what is known as the will of the people. Hopefully the politicians and business leaders will get the message that Monterey County taxpayers will not buy the Prunedale Bypass at just any price.
The public wants this project to be well thought out. We must, as a community, take into consideration land use on property adjacent to major road projects. Do we want urban sprawl or scenic easement?
The only way to decide what is right is through public scrutiny and open discussion. Let''s not let the politicians deny the people their right to participate in the democratic process.
On Wednesday, Dec. 2, at 9am., at the Salinas Community Center, the Transportation Agency for Monterey County will decide whether to replace the standing Citizens Advisory Committee to the Transportation Agency with political appointees. Currently membership is selected from the community at large.
The argument for this abrupt departure from public policy is better geographical representation. What Agency members don''t say is there have been nine vacancies on this committee for the last 18 months. Not one Agency member has recommended a candidate to fill any of these positions!
Apparently the volunteers that have devoted countless hours to this committee are under consideration for dismissal for asking to many questions.
CITIZENS ADVISORY COMMITTEE TO THE
TRANSPORTATION AGENCY OF MONTEREY COUNTY