In 1995, New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman coined the Golden Arches Theory of Conflict Prevention, also known as “McPeace.” The idea was that countries stable enough economically and politically to court a McDonald’s franchise share too many democratic values to go to war with one another.
“People in McDonald’s countries,” Friedman wrote, “don’t like to fight wars. They like to wait in line for burgers.”
The theory didn’t last long. Four years later, residents of Belgrade, Serbia, could enjoy a Big Mac with fries from one of their seven McDonald’s restaurants as NATO cruise missiles and warplanes roared overhead during the …read more