Wake up and smell…no coffee

July 2, 2008, 3:16 PM UTC

Aren’t analysts obnoxious? On the heels of the news that Starbucks will be closing about 5% of its stores nationwide, the Associated Press reports that assorted pundits feel the cuts haven’t gone deep enough. “Starbucks Corp.’s (SBUX) plan to close several hundred stores is a step in the right direction,” says the AP, “but analysts say it may not be enough to solve the problems facing the company.”

Isn’t that just like the Street? You give them 600 on the altar of sacrifice, and they want more. They’re like kids with potato chips or cookies. They can’t stop eating once they’ve gotten a taste of the good stuff. No, wait. Maybe that’s like sharks with a bucket of chum. 

The story goes on to suggest an interesting aspect of the situation. “Starbucks did not give details about which locations will be closed, but Stephen Kron of Goldman Sachs said he thinks the closings will be weighted to areas that have been hit the hardest by slumps in the housing industry and the broader economy.” 

This would make sense. We are already a nation of haves and have-nots, of huge discrepancies between the rich and the poor, two sides of the tracks, the good malls with cool and sexy anchor stores and the ones that depend on acres of wholesale shoe establishments. 

It would not be surprising to find that we are now a nation in which some people have access to really good coffee and others do not, where those who have defaulted on their home loans must walk for miles to get a decent latte. They sure can’t afford to drive. 

Of course, who can?