Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The Undiplomatic Diplomat

"Why should I have this guy running down the country? Who the fuck
is he? How the hell are they doing?"
That hardly sounds like diplomatic language, does it? But that's what Britain's "business secretary" Peter Mandelson said in front of reporters at a diplomatic reception in New York last night.
Mandelson was plainly infuriated at remarks made by Starbucks chairman Howard Schultz who told CNBC that his company was most worried about its stores in Britain. From The Guardian:
Angered at remarks by the company's chairman, Howard Schultz – who said the UK was in an economic "spiral" with "very, very poor" consumer confidence – Mandelson accused him of spreading unnecessary misery and speaking out of turn.
...Earlier in the day, Schultz singled out Britain as a source of anxiety for Starbucks – which has stores in 49 countries – during an interview with the CNBC television channel.

"The place that concerns us the most is western Europe, and specifically the UK," he said. "The UK is in a spiral."

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