03/18/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

McDonald's Pulls Out Of Iceland

I learned from Matthew Yglesias that McDonalds is pulling out of Iceland, victims of that nation's currency collapse. The BBC has more:

McDonald's is to close its business in Iceland because the country's financial crisis has made it too expensive to operate its franchise.

The fast food giant said its three outlets in the country would shut - and that it had no plans to return.

Besides the economy, McDonald's blamed the "unique operational complexity" of doing business in an isolated nation with a population of just 300,000.

It should be pointed out, however, that while Iceland will have to do without packaged, low-grade meat products infused with artificial aromas to make them stomachable to the human palate, it does not necessarily mean Iceland is doomed. While Thomas Friedman observed, in The Lexus And The Olive Tree, that "no two countries that both had McDonald's had fought a war against each other since each got its McDonald's," his Golden Arches Theory of Conflict Prevention was disproven when Russia rolled into South Ossetia last year. [Or rather, disproven again, as there was a McDonalds in Serbia at the time of NATO's bombing in 1999.] So, Iceland needn't necessarily fear that they will soon find themselves in the midst of armed conflict. Besides, I think that there are faeries that protect them, or something. Anyway, good luck, Iceland!

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