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Jul. 9 2010 - 4:44 am | 700 views | 0 recommendations | 6 comments

On Free Lemonade: A Response to Terry Savage

If you haven’t already, go read this column, which has been making the rounds.

Okay, are you back?

The only possible way to respond is by imagining the writer engaged in a conversation about his ideas. All the lines spoken by the male in this video come directly from the column.


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6 Total Comments
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  1. collapse expand

    Very good — both are solid free market/limited government ideas — entrepreneurship and charity, but it might have been better to charge those willing to pay so that more is available for those who can’t pay — either way, government coercion is out of the picture.

  2. collapse expand

    When it all comes down to it, I believe Terry Savage seriously needs a vacation. Dude.

  3. collapse expand

    Savage missed an important point: Sometimes it is worth the Lemonade to learn who is passing by in front of your house.

    Clearly he doesn’t understand marketing. As for the video, I got bored about half way through it. The person who made that video needs to understand that usually the best way to respond to a written essay is another essay to refute the points. This video counterpoint was slow and pedantic…

  4. collapse expand

    I find very annoying the medieval, mercantile view that there’s no “free lunch” and that the set amount of wealth in the world can only be shuffled around, and there’s no potential for wealth creation or non-zero sum solutions. On the other hand, this youtube video also bugs me. It’s too long and monotonous to be funny, and it’s not much of a rebuttal, so what’s the point?

  5. collapse expand

    Mr. Friedersdorf,

    I for one rather enjoyed your little bit of witty repartee on the video. The female model accurately pointed the logical flaws and shady rhetorical devices Mr. Savage employed. That the paper cups, water, lemons, and sugar were not the little girl to give away was certainly true but it is equally true that it was not their to sell either, was a good point. What your female model did not note was that it was entirely unlikely that the girls were doing something that their parents were unaware of, as Mr. Savage suggests but does not openly state.

    If fear that Mr. Savage was not only pedantic – gosh golly there are no free lunches? Who knew! – but actually wrong. As others have pointed, everyone is quite aware that government programs are paid for by taxes. Ironically, it is conservatives who would like everyone to believe that this is not true with their endless call for tax cuts. It is not possible to provide government services and not have taxes. Republican legislators nonetheless cut taxes and then borrow the difference (“Borrow and Spend”).

    Mr. Savage is wrong because if I do not pay for lunch (or lemonade), that makes it free for me. That someone else actually pays does not make it any less free for me.

    Finally I would note that Mr. Savage has assumed that the girls in question were somehow operating at a loss. What he did not realize was the lemonade was actually a waste product which the family would have to pay a government agency to haul off. By giving it away “for free”, they were actually creating a net profit by saving their family those disposal costs.

    One girls trash is a conservative commentators treasure.

  6. collapse expand

    Since no one else has noted it, I’d like to mention that this video is hilarious. Good stuff, Conor. I think you’ve found your calling.

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    About Me

    Conor Friedersdorf is a writer, a Californian by upbringing, and a nomad at present. Refresh his page often.

    See my profile »
    Followers: 140
    Contributor Since: June 2009
    Location:Various cities, and sundry spots between them.