Mike Feltman just posted on his blog a counter-point to Microsoft's announcement. He brings up some very interesting points as to whether this was truly a "business" decision based on facts. I have been ranting for years (ask the people I work with) about the lack of respect VFP got from within Microsoft and the development community as a whole. I mean seriously, VB (pre .NET) was their idea of a data-centric programming language? And what about the horrible IDE called Visual Studio that it was packaged in. Ugh! If you ask me, they should have re-branded Visual Studio along with VB and those tools would probably be doing much better in the market place.
Andy hit the nail on the head when he talked about "the perception of the uninformed, marketing and buzz-word driven, benighted people who wouldn't dream of considering or using VFP anyway". Microsoft helped to feed that perception, in my opinion, or at least did NOTHING to refute it. Perhaps an internal memo educating their own people in the development tools division might have done something.
So yes, business decision it was, but I agree with Mike that this business decision was made long ago.