Starbucks to expand idiotic “Come Together” fiscal cliff coffee cup campaign

It’s a curious campaign, considering Starbucks’ embarrassing tax issues in the UK. Perhaps this is why Starbucks is promoting a completely stupid “Come Together” campaign in the US, where the coffeeshop’s baristas are writing the message “Come Together” on people’s coffee cups before serving them to customers at Starbucks, supposedly in order to promote a theoretical middle ground in the “fiscal cliff” debate.

It’s rather weird that Starbucks is invoking the Sandy Hook Elementary massacre to somehow justify this GOP-aligned “debt” campaign.

There are moments in our lives when we have an opportunity to ignite tremendous positive change—not just in the lives of the customers and communities we serve every day, but in our country. This was evident in the outpouring of support in the wake of the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary that claimed 26 innocent lives, including one of our partners (employees), Lauren Rousseau.

This spirit of connectedness and humanity is powerful; so powerful that if we unleash it, we can make a difference on a much grander scale.

Heckuva pivot there, Starbucks.

There’s another creepy side to this campaign.  Starbucks is doing the campaign on behalf of a Wall Street -backed organization financed by “fix the debt” Wall Street billionaire Pete Peterson (more on that from Krugman).  So this isn’t some indie group.  It’s the same old Wall Street crowd that helped get us into this mess in the first place.  (Funny how they refused to cut their bonuses but we’re supposed to cut our Medicare and Social Security.)

Encouraging both parties to “come together” on some mythical middle ground is beyond false. The pendulum has been pushed so far to the right that companies like Starbucks miss the reality that a middle ground is still a far-right wing position. Somehow I must have missed Starbucks’ coffee cups criticizing the wasteful spending involved with invading two countries, one based on a lie, and multiple tax cuts that we knew would break the bank. Anyone else recall seeing that?

Starbucks come togetherOr, what about Starbucks promoting an end to the reckless tax cuts that are a large part of the financial issues in the US? Anyone recall that either? I certainly don’t, but then again I’ve never been a fan of paying $3+ for bitter coffee.

And another thing.  John was just talking to me about another “fiscal cliff” fact that a lot of people don’t realize.  The easiest “solution” to the fiscal cliff is Congress simply passing legislation telling the fiscal cliff to bugger off.  The only reason we have an impending “fiscal cliff” is because Congress passed legislation mandating a fiscal cliff.  All Congress need do is repeal the legislation, or, wimpier but just as effective, amend the legislation and change the date of the fiscal cliff to whenever they want in the future.

The fiscal cliff and its impending deadline are artifice.  Just as phony as Starbucks’ goofy cumbaya coffee cups.

Companies like Starbucks need to either shut up about politics, or educate themselves about what’s really going on and get fully involved in the right way.  But this pathetic excuse for meaningful discussion is worse than a waste of time.


An American in Paris, France. BA in History & Political Science from Ohio State. Provided consulting services to US software startups, launching new business overseas that have both IPO’d and sold to well-known global software companies. Currently launching a new cloud-based startup. Full bio here.

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