China is afflicted with slowing economic growth, widespread poverty, and toxic air. And high prices at Starbucks. The Chinese government is definitely ready to address at least one of these issues.
The Wall Street Journal reports on the latest crusade of China's state-run media:
China Central Television, in a 20-minute broadcast called "Starbucks: Expensive in China," said the company charges as much as 50% more for some of its products in China than in the U.S., the U.K. and India.
The report said the company's profit margin in China was excessive, as high as 32% in China and the Pacific region, compared with 21.1% in the U.S. and 1.9% in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
Starbucks' response—and we are paraphrasing here, but accurately—is, "Hey, we have to build huge fucking stores in China because Chinese customers prefer to come and set up shop in here like it's a fucking Ikea, and that costs money, you know."
The world can only hope that these two totalitarian powers somehow destroy one another.