This column is a true story -- every word of it. And I think it very appropriate to consider around the Fourth of July, Independence Day spirit.Via Reddit.
Last week, I was in a car with my brother and his fiancee, driving through their upscale neighborhood on a hot summer day. At the corner, we all noticed three little girls sitting at a homemade lemonade stand...
Then my brother asked how much each item cost.
“Oh, no,” they replied in unison, “they’re all free!”
“No!” I exclaimed from the back seat. “That’s not the spirit of giving. You can only really give when you give something you own. They’re giving away their parents’ things — the lemonade, cups, candy. It’s not theirs to give.”
“You must charge something for the lemonade,” I explained. “That’s the whole point of a lemonade stand. You figure out your costs — how much the lemonade costs, and the cups — and then you charge a little more than what it costs you, so you can make money. Then you can buy more stuff, and make more lemonade, and sell it and make more money...”
No wonder America is getting it all wrong when it comes to government, and taxes, and policy. We all act as if the “lemonade” or benefits we’re “giving away” is free...
If we can’t teach our kids the basics of running a lemonade stand, how can we ever teach Congress the basics of economics?..
If that’s what America’s children think — that there’s a free lunch waiting — then our country has larger problems ahead. The Declaration of Independence promised “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” It didn’t promise anything free. Something to think about this July 4th holiday weekend.
15 July 2010
Little girls criticized for giving away "free lemonade"
Excerpts from a column by Terry Savage at the Chicago Sun-Times: