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Starbucks: Why are they hated so much??(33 posts)

Starbucks: Why are they hated so much??PaulCL
Aug 5, 2003 9:26 AM
According to the news, 17 Starbucks were vandalized in the San Francisco area last night by the "radical left" - that was according to the TV news. MSNBC indicated that the police believe the vandalism was associated with some sort of 'eco-terrorists'. Huh?? Its' in their local paper: http://www.bayarea.com/mld/mercurynews/6462591.htm

What do people have against Starbucks?? I don't get it?? Do they hate good, overpriced, froo-froo coffee drinks??
Eco/Politcal issues and coffee.czardonic
Aug 5, 2003 9:44 AM
Could be the "shade grown coffee" issue, the "fair trade coffee" issue or the "bovine growth hormone" issue.

In a nutshell, Starbucks is a huge corporation with the usual environmental, labor and safety skeletons in its closet.
That and it's still nice to support mom n pop shops. nmsn69
Aug 5, 2003 9:51 AM
Yes it is, but it doesn't justify ...Live Steam
Aug 5, 2003 10:02 AM
vandalizing anything. Also remember that Starbucks had similar roots as a mom and pop shop. Should they be punished for being successful?
It depends on how they became successful.czardonic
Aug 5, 2003 10:04 AM
I would agree that vandals are always in the wrong. But their victims are not always in the right.
Speaking for the left, I condemn this and all vandalism.OldEdScott
Aug 5, 2003 10:11 AM
Vandalism, shooting through windows, random creepy violence of any sort is bad politics.
I wasn't advocating violence Steam.sn69
Aug 5, 2003 10:14 AM
Rather,I was briefly trying to voice my opinion that I favor supporting the small businessman whenever I can. Right, left, whatever...I'd still like to do my small part to support the American dream.
I didn't think you were, but you didn't ....Live Steam
Aug 5, 2003 10:24 AM
condemn it in this instance either. The "that" part of your post somewhat implied agreement with the previous post. I think Starbucks is an example of an American success story. I am a small business owner too. I would love to have it evolve into a Starbucks scenario. Not many wouldn't I don't think. CZAR wants to imply some impropriety on behalf of Starbuck because they are a big corporation. The "they must deserve it in some way" mentality is totally off base. Sort of like saying Rodney King deserved a beating. Bad reasoning as far as I am concerned.

I would suggest that anyone out there that condemns corporate America, and who works under one of their umbrellas, step out and try it on your own. Why be a hypocrite and work for the devil?
I listed the specific reasons why people object to Starbucks.czardonic
Aug 5, 2003 10:50 AM
Just because they fit the profile of the irresponsible, faceless corporation doesn't mean I am jumping to unfounded conclusions.

How would you feel if some giant corporation put you out of business, not by virtue of its superior service, but solely by marketing itself agressively (and disingenuously)?
CZAR you are one funny guyLive Steam
Aug 5, 2003 11:10 AM
"In a nutshell, Starbucks is a huge corporation with the usual environmental, labor and safety skeletons in its closet." I like this one too :O) "Just because they fit the profile of the irresponsible, faceless corporation doesn't mean I am jumping to unfounded conclusions."

These are examples of specific reasons?

As for putting coffee houses out of business, well I think PaulCL made a good point. Coffee houses were not fashionable or prevalent before Starbucks came on the scene. The small coffee shop owes them a debt of gratitude for helping foster their growth.

If I was put out of business by a larger entity that would just tell me that I either priced myself out of the market or didn't do a good job for the customer. Barrier to entry is something that every entrepreneur must consider when investing in a business. Location and exclusivity are others.

If I were to open, say a Burger King I would look to open as close as possible to the nearest McDonalds. People are creatures of habit. Just as animals go to the familiar watering hole, people go to a familiar destination to feed. My new Burger King would draw business from the McDonalds with even having to advertise. My point here is that the small mom and pop coffee house can benefit from the Starbucks as well too. One must be inventive and have a business mind, not just know how to brew a cup of Joe.
"Could be the 'shade grown coffee' issue. . .czardonic
Aug 5, 2003 11:51 AM
. . .the 'fair trade coffee' issue or the 'bovine growth hormone' issue."

Specific.

But never mind.
Gotta hand it to you, you're one patient man. nm128
Aug 5, 2003 12:09 PM
Am I, then, a hypocritical employee of the devil?sn69
Aug 5, 2003 12:15 PM
Some would argue yes with good reason, some would argue no with good reason. Many more, however, would argue yeah or nay for the simplistic and overly-simplified reasons of blind partisan affiliation.

That said, as with ANYTHING in life, one must sort the cr@p from the truth (given, of course, the subjective interpretational nuances of individualism).

If you saw my absense of a stated objection to the first issue of Starbuck's franchises being vadalized, then I think the burden lies with you for reading too much into things based upon your partisan paradigms (alliteration not intentional). That's a normal, human reaction. We're all guitly of it--me as much as anyone else.

I suppose that could tangentally devolved into an esoteric argument of perception versus reality. What ever the case, I DO NOT condone vandalism. People still own those franchises and rely upon them for income. Nor do I think that those people are inherently evil because of their affiliation with a large corporation. I do, however, tend to cast a suspicious, critical gaze at most large corporations (particularly the defense industry giants) and I WHOLEHEARTEDLY and unashamedly root for the small business owner.

Finally, in the vein of hypocrosy and small business ownership, my father owned a small business that went under. It resulted in a substantial burden on our family when I was growing up. He/we didn't lose it due to an evil corporate empire nor was there undue interferance from some stodgy, bible-thumping righties or blissfully ignorant, do-gooder lefties. It simply failed; bad business. Case closed--so, yes, I've been there, done that.

Scott
I don't think so!Live Steam
Aug 5, 2003 4:17 PM
Maybe I did read too much into it. Maybe my "partisan paradigms" did weigh in my response :O) Sorry about that!

I almost always root for the underdog. Heck I'm a Rangers and Jets fan for goodness sake. I also root for the Yankees so don't hold that against me. That said, I find that there are a lot of people, not necessarily you, who believe that all of corporate America are evil, polluting, human grinding machines. They are probably no better nor any worse than the average small business on many levels. Each is trying their best to survive and prosper. I doubt anyone goes into corporate America with the intention of becoming a polluting, lying, stealing ogre.

As for the small business vs big business, I would like to know how many of us did not visit the nearest Home Depot vs their local hardware store once it opened. Or how many prefer buying from some other local business vs Wal-Mart. Who doesn't like getting the best deal in this day of high prices. I'll bet you prefer paying the prices at the local PX vs paying civilian prices at the local supermarket. (They still do exist, the PX, don't they?) There is nothing wrong with that. It's called being fiscally responsible.

I think we all agree that there is no justification for vandalism of any kind toward anyone or entity. I like the way you and a few others sign your names. It hints at trust, honesty and friendliness. I'll take your lead and sign off likewise.

Plain, old, Bill!
i refuse to set foot in walmart.rufus
Aug 5, 2003 6:00 PM
and i don't go to home depot much either, especially since there isn't one very close to me.
i refuse to set foot in walmart.Live Steam
Aug 5, 2003 7:14 PM
Now there's commitment!? :O) Hey I am glad you stick to your principles or at least the mileage helps you with that. But why is one's success perceived to have been at the expense of another?
because it is.rufus
Aug 6, 2003 6:24 AM
capitalism is not a zero sum game. there are winners, and losers.
Huge corporation...yes, but there are other companiesPaulCL
Aug 5, 2003 10:11 AM
that should be more obvious targets..like a timber company, mining co's, drug co's etc... Why pick on a coffee company?

I think it has something to do with Starbucks pushing mom N pop coffee houses out of business. The "anti-starbucks" feeling has snowballed out of proportion. Before Starbucks, there were no corner coffee shops in my area outside of the university. If anything, they have made coffee and coffee shops more popular.

Sounds like some nutcases just needed to pick on a very visible target.

Screw'em! I like my Starbucks. I'm going to go downstairs to the Starbucks in my building's lobby right now and get some sort of Decaff Latte Cappucino Frappucino expresso whip creamed-top 500 calorie $4.99 coffee drink!! Then I'm going to buy a 100 shares of their stock...ha..that'll get'em!

Paul
Starbucks is high profile.czardonic
Aug 5, 2003 10:45 AM
I don't think that Starbucks is actually percieved as a serious threat to small independent coffee houses. It is more like McDonalds than Barnes & Noble.

Face it, there are several solid, non-nutcase reasons to dislike Starbucks. I don't condone vandalizing their stores.
Who knows,TJeanloz
Aug 5, 2003 9:53 AM
It isn't clear, and the protesters themselves probably aren't sure. Except that big corporations are bad, and they are a big corporation.

There was an ironic situation like this in Boulder a few years ago, where people petitioned outside a Starbucks to "expose" third world labor practices - and it turned out that Starbucks was the only coffee shop in town (which is FULL of hippie-independent coffee shops) that offered either "fair-trade" or organic coffee.
Their "fair trade" commitment is said to be a sham. (nm)czardonic
Aug 5, 2003 10:05 AM
I've never heard that,TJeanloz
Aug 5, 2003 10:10 AM
I followed the "fair trade" thing quite closely for a while, and the primary complaint from those who campaign for "fair trade" was that Starbucks wasn't doing enough to promote the coffee - usually the complaint was that it was only the coffee of the day once a month, where other flavors were once a week.

All of the negative things I've heard about "fair trade" are that Starbucks isn't doing enough; not that they aren't doing the right thing, albeit on a small scale, with the program they have.
But you just repeated it.czardonic
Aug 5, 2003 10:58 AM
A huge corporation like Starbucks brewing a few token pots of "fair trade" coffee once a month is a farce.

"Fair trade" coffe is not a flavor, it is an aswer to an injustice. For Starbucks to procure the vast majority of its beans through unfair trade, and then hold up a tiny percentage aquired through fair trade as some kind of vindication of its business practices is a joke.
No, but maybe they hate overpriced, froo-froo yuppie slop...The Walrus
Aug 5, 2003 9:57 AM
...bought mainly by the clueless and trendy. I make better coffee at home.
No doubt. Idiots with personal issues more than anything.No_sprint
Aug 5, 2003 10:14 AM
Some people just can't stand success stories/successful individuals or businesses.
What else you got?mohair_chair
Aug 5, 2003 10:50 AM
It's convenient, that's all. These radical lefties just want a well-known target, and everyone knows Starbucks. I'm sure the vandalization has changed everyone's minds about Starbucks, and the company will quickly go out of business, thereby freeing thousands of people from slavery and closing off a major source of funding for Al Quaida. Thank god for radical lefties and their incomprehensible message of "anti-corporation," whatever that means.

I have no opinion on Starbucks, since I don't drink coffee, but I can't see anything wrong with what they do.
Because I'm sooooooooooooo cheap..............nmMR_GRUMPY
Aug 5, 2003 10:56 AM
'cause paying $5.00 for a cup of bean wash is nuts?Turtleherder
Aug 5, 2003 11:41 AM
More than likely just some igit that went for a high profile target. Me, I don't hate starbucks, I think it is pure genius. They get people to shell out five bucks a cup for boiled bean run off and every one thinks it's great. P.T. Barnum had it right.
News bulletin: Starbucks to open shop in FranceStarliner
Aug 5, 2003 12:30 PM
A riding buddy of mine has a sister who is an executive with Starbucks, who will soon be going over to France to head up Starbucks' attempt at entering the French market. Sounds to me like a tough market to expand into. It'll be interesting to see their marketing strategy: a shotgun approach of trying to change the coffee drinking habits of a proud nation, or a focused strategy of enticing younger clients to try them out. Location of the shops will undoubtedly be key.

BTW, according to news reports, the vandalism consisted of trying to make the shops look like they were closing by whitewashing their windows and hanging "closed for business" signs. I find the psychology of this act rather interesting.

I think czar offered some good reasons behind such an act. I see it as a general dislike/mistrust of faceless corporate culture; whose ever expanding success manifests feelings of powerlessness of the individual.
News bulletin: Starbucks to open shop in FranceJon Billheimer
Aug 5, 2003 1:57 PM
I think you hit the nail on the head! A lot of career protestors, in my opinion, are acting out their personal sense of powerlessness...which maybe isn't a bad thing if you've got a real cause to promote as well as an idea of how to improve your world. However, targeting someone or something large because you yourself feel small is pretty sick. And I think that describes a good portion of the radical left. Witnessing the G-8 protestors in Calgary last year, it was a pretty inchoate bunch who in general are just pissed off at the world. I know, because a couple of them are friends of mine!:)-
Familiarity breeds contemptSpoiler
Aug 5, 2003 1:04 PM
I shop at a Safeway grocery store, in a lower-income neighborhood. Most Safeways have a pharmacy. This store doesn't even have that. BUT, they're putting in a Starbucks in the store. It's quite a large counter. Most people I know want to get to the store, get their grocieries, and get the hell out of there.
I just can't see the attraction in stopping your shopping, blowing money on overpriced coffee, and sitting there hanging out among the screaming kids, wheel-scraping shopping carts, street bums trying to steal cigarettes, and the noise of 10 clicking and beeping checkout registers.

Ironically, the booth is located right besides a special display of $20 "titanium" golf clubs. Becaue of this, I have to maneuver my cart around island after island of useless BS displays of garbage, all in search of the remaining seven square feet of store space still allocated to the sale of REAL FN FOOD!

I know nothing about Starbucks corporate policies, but they've given me ample reason to loath them and their customers.
They also install cup holders in the shopping carts. (nm)czardonic
Aug 5, 2003 1:19 PM
loath the store for letting them in the door.EpicX
Aug 5, 2003 2:22 PM
starbucks... whoop de doo... not my thing personally. but, the dream of most mom and pops is to be successful. right? at least in some way. so why is it when local boy makes good, they are a sellout or 'evil' or whatever?

i just can't understand this reasoning. it's really pathetic these days. it's as if the "american dream" is ok to have as long as you don't quite reach it. god forbid you make someone else feel unsuccessful by achieving your own success.