I don't know, Cags. The way I read the article, it didn't appear that Reebok is actually charging him...they've agreed to help him for free as far as I can see. The $12-20,000 is simply an estimate of how much it's going to cost to make the shoes. Having worked in manufacturing, I can imagine that the cost to make the shoes will indeed be much higher, in that the machines that they use to mass produce their product won't be sufficient to turn out a product that's suitable for him, resulting in a significant cost to the company to either purchase new machines or custom make the shoes without them.
So they pay pennies and dimes to make them and we are supposed to pay high prices. You don't understand because they are used to it. You did not complain before, didn't you? It is nice to see some anger and rebellion in your reaction. We are their pidgeons. Aren't we here to pay for our desires? Therefore they will keep nourishing them!
I saw this on the news last night. Apparently, the price reflects the machines they'll need (and don't have now) because their existing machines don't accommodate shoes that big. So I can see the high price, but it does make one wonder why they don't just make the big shoes, give them to him "for the rest of time", and do the business version of "writing off as charitable donation" their gift.
Then again, though, I suppose there's the chance they could get into the thing: If you give him those expensive shoes free, why can't you give you free shoes to all the little kids of poor families etc. etc. That type of thing.
I'm not defending them - just assuming they may actually have some reason that would make giving him the shoes impractical or otherwise trouble-causing for them (or maybe even him).