You can't win. No matter where you stand or what you say you are alienating part of your audience. Maybe most of it. (Picture from BNET.)
The best-known example this decade is The Dixie Chicks. Singer Natalie Maines criticized the Iraq War and lost her country music following. Their music may be better than ever, they still sell, but they no longer churn out hits the way they did. Some will never forgive.
Whole Foods may be in those same crosshairs now. CEO John Mackey (right) wrote a health care piece for The Wall Street Journal, echoing Republican talking points on health reform, and some of his liberal customers went ballistic.
Some of what Mackey wrote makes good sense. Price transparency is good. Creating a single national market is basic. But it doesn't extend coverage to small businesses and consumers who can't afford coverage now, and for that he is being blasted, with some calling for direct action.
This is not a good time for that. Whole Foods stock is just getting out of the hole it got into with the recession that began last year. Profits are down, its goods seen as luxuries by many consumers.
Consumers can vote with their wallets, and while speech is free where we spend money is a choice. That's why where celebrities stand is often where they sit, and those who step out of line learn hard lessons.