Anti-Starbucks Crusader To Run For New York City Mayor

Bill Talen, who is better known as Reverend Billy, is now running to be the next Mayor of New York City. Some long time INeedCoffee readers will recall that back in 2002, Reverend Billy went after coffee giant Starbucks. He delivered sermons in Manhattan on the ruthlessness of Starbucks Coffee. From Reverend Billy’s Starbucks Invasion by Bill Talen:

When Starbucks’ scouts enter a new neighborhood, they listen for the laughter. They find where culture is still original, not corporatized, and that is their opponent and prey, for Starbucks is a jealous God. They approach the landlords of the community, whether it’s a diner or a restaurant or a bar. They offer far more than the traditional tenant can afford, because Starbucks arrives with its Nasdaq funny money. They arrive from a completely different economy, and evict the business that native residents have built for years. This is a famous Starbucks tactic and has been repeated throughout the country and abroad. It is a kind of bombing. It is violent. READERS. DO I HAVE A WITNESS? STOP THE BOMBING!!

rev billy
Reverend Billy / What Would Jesus Buy by Mason Wendell

Reverend Billy is now going after Wall Street and banking bailouts. Since New York is home to this crisis, Billy has decided to run for Mayor as a member of the Green Party. The election will take place on Tuesday, November 3rd, 2009. From his platform page on the Reverend Billy Talen for NYC Mayor website:

As Mayor of New York, Reverend Billy Talen will continue the work he has done for more than a decade as a champion of local ingenuity and neighborhood know-how. United as he already is with the city’s many communities, his administration will be the connecting force reaching out to all New Yorkers, to create a city that is sustainable, just and free; defending public space, self-determination, and the right for every New Yorker to earn an honest, independent living. put together an informative video about Reverend Billy and his campaign to be the next Mayor of New York City. As a friend and contributor to INeedCoffee, we wish him the best of luck.

RESULTS: Reverend Billy finished 4th in the Mayoral election with 0.8% of the vote.


Bill Talen – Contributor page on INeedCoffee.

Reverend Billy Photos From Austin Starbucks Rally – Photo set taken by Flickr user Mason Wendell (March 2007).

Reverend Billy Talen for NYC Mayor – Official campaign site.

Reverend Billy’s Bailout – Wall Street Journal story on Bill’s campaign.

Full List of NYC Mayor Candidates For 2009 Election – Wikipedia

Bill Talen aka Reverend Billy Announces His Candidacy for Mayor of New York – March 2, 2009 story on the campaign announcement.

Michael Allen Smith

Michael Allen Smith fell in love with coffee while attending college. Shortly after graduating college, he found himself in the Tampa Bay area far away from the good coffee he had at The Ohio State University. That is when he starting home roasting coffee. Less than a year later in April 1999, he launched the coffee website has been going strong ever since with hundreds of articles and tutorials submitted by over one hundred contributors.

In 2007, Michael moved to America's coffee capitol Seattle, Washington. He has visited close to three hundred different coffee places in Seattle, Portland,Vancouver and San Francisco and met many of the top roasters and baristas in the country. Since 2009, Michael has been the Organizer of the Coffee Club of Seattle, which is a Meetup group of over 800 coffee enthusiasts. Besides the social aspect of the group, the Coffee Club of Seattle partners with local coffee professionals for educational events such as coffee cuppings, brewing demonstrations and roasting tours.

Unrelated to coffee, Michael has a personal blog at which covers several topics including fitness, cooking and economics.

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