Thursday, February 13, 2014

Vegetarian Activists Want To Play Entrepreneur....With McDonald's Capital

By, Chris Rossini

New York Daily News reports:
Thousands of supporters have signed writer and activist Kathy Freston’s petition that asks the fast food chain to put ‘plant-based protein options’ on its menu.[...]
“We Americans love a protein center to our meal, so veggies and salads alone (or even in a wrap) won’t do the trick; we want something hearty and protein-centric just like the burgers and sandwiches you already have, only with something plant-based instead,” Freston says on the petition's website.

The petition has more than 88,000 signatures as of Friday afternoon. It has also gotten social media shout outs from celebrities, including Ellen DeGeneres and Alicia Silverstone.
This must be yet another consequence of the government's destruction of the economy. People sitting around, and forming petitions to tell McDonald's what they should be selling.

McDonald's lives and breathes on supplying what their customers want most. How can they tell? They have something called a profit & loss statement. They have the responsibility of risking their capital in a quest to satisfy their customers efficiently and profitably.

Do the 'vegetarian activists' think that McDonald's can just flip-a-switch, and 'plant-based protein options' will start popping out of the ovens? Unless one is a member of the McDonald's executive management team, it's impossible to imagine what it takes to make even the smallest of changes.

Here's the kicker. The very same article states the following:
McDonald’s introduced a McVeggie burger in the early 2000s, but it didn’t take off with customers.
Profit & loss provide the signals that McDonald's needs. Is a person willing to part with their money for your product or not? Names on a petition mean nothing. People who sign it have not parted with their money, nor do their signatures bind them from ever buying anything from McDonald's.

In the end, the petition is harmless, and the non-aggression principle is not being violated. However, these activists are putting their 2 cents where it does not belong. It's a further reflection of the recent American mentality of let's change them.

Chris Rossini is on TwitterFacebook & Google+


  1. Typical of today's left winger. Far too lazy, scared and clueless to start their own business and do things they way they want others to, but hey, that doesn't stop them from wanting to run other people's businesses. If their ideas are really as great as they think they are, then they should be wildly successful as customers will flock to their businesses and happily overpay for the things they are selling. And even better, they can donate all their profits to the government, since they wouldn't want to increase inequality. God help us!

  2. Better yet, if they think it is such a great idea, why don't they put their own capital at risk (ha ha)?

  3. Reminds me a bit of the days before smoking was banned in bars. Do-gooders claimed they would patronize the bars if only the smokers were forced out. The one or two bars that voluntarily had a ban wasn't enough for them, nor were those bars every very full of people.

    Since that time, every bartender I've asked, "How's business doing since the smoking ban?" has replied by saying business is way down, tips are way down, people do not spend as much time here.

    It's especially obvious when I go to a restaurant which has a bar as well. Before the ban, those bars were full of people, many lingering after having a meal. Nowadays, every single restaurant I've been in that has a bar is usually empty, or there's only one or two people who do not spend very much time there.

    Ya, Kathy Freston’s petition and the signers remind me of those Do-gooders who are quite smug and happy with themselves for deciding for others.

  4. Albert Nock saw this coming. Sorry for the long quote:

    "Furthermore, the mass-man sees in the State an anonymous power, and feeling himself, like it, anonymous, he believes that the State is something of his own. Suppose that in the public life of a country some difficulty, conflict, or problem, presents itself, the mass-man will tend to demand that the State intervene immediately and undertake a solution directly with its immense and unassailable resources…. When the mass suffers any ill-fortune, or simply feels some strong appetite, its great temptation is that permanent sure possibility of obtaining everything, without effort, struggle, doubt, or risk, merely by touching a button and setting the mighty machine in motion.”

    It is the genesis of this attitude, this state of mind, and the conclusions which inexorably follow from its predominance, that we are attempting to get at through our present survey. These conclusions may perhaps be briefly forecast here, in order that the reader who is for any reason indisposed to entertain them may take warning of them at this point, and close the book.

    The unquestioning, determined, even truculent maintenance of the attitude which Professor Ortega y Gasset so admirably describes, is obviously the life and strength of the State; and obviously too, it is now so inveterate and so wide-spread – one may freely call it universal – that no effort could overcome its inveteracy or modify it, and least of all hope to enlighten it. This attitude can only be sapped and mined by uncountable generations of experience, in a course marked by recurrent calamity of a most appalling character. When once the predominance of this attitude in any given civilization has become inveterate, as so plainly it has become in the civilization of America, all that can be done is to leave it to work its own way out to its appointed end. The philosophic historian may content himself with pointing out and clearly elucidating its consequences, as Professor Ortega y Gasset has done, aware that after this there is no more that one can do. “The result of this tendency,” he says, “will be fatal. Spontaneous social action will be broken up over and over again by State intervention; no new seed will be able to fructify.2

    Society will have to live for the State, man for the governmental machine. And as after all it is only a machine, whose existence and maintenance depend on the vital supports around it,3 the State, after sucking out the very marrow of society, will be left bloodless, a skeleton, dead with that rusty death of machinery, more gruesome than the death of a living organism. Such was the lamentable fate of ancient civilization.”"
    Our Enemy, the State

  5. McDonald's appears to sell around 6.5 million burgers a day, so with "more than" 88,000 signatures on the petition, it's pretty easy to see why the McVeggie burger was a flop in terms of product margins.

  6. As any economics student familiar with revealed preference knows, what people say or think they want often bears little resemblance to what they actually want.

    All these people are saying is "I believe I would prefer a world where McDonalds sells vegetarian food to willing customers strongly enough to type my name and click 'Sign Petition'".

  7. Burger King sells veggie burgers - I had 2 this week in fact. If McDonalds also sold them I would be willing to go there as well but at this time there's no reason for me to. I have little doubt that part of BK's decision was due to petitioning of some sort or another. Would you prefer consumers simply shut their damn mouths and have companies sell things blindly? Feedback is very important to the market - companies are constantly asking you to fill out surveys or satisfaction cards. A petition is just another form of feedback

  8. Yeah I don't get the big deal. People are using a communication tool to let a company know what they want. Who cares? This is all happening without govt intervention.