The 50 Dollar Question

by bart


I recently asked my friend’s little girl what she wanted to be when she grew up, and she said, “President of the United States”. When I asked her why, she said, “Because I want to give food and houses to all the homeless people.” Her parents beamed like the liberal Democrat chumps they are.

I said, “You don’t have to be president to do that. Just come over and mow my lawn and I’ll give you $50, then I’ll take you to where all the homeless people hang out because we all know where they hang out, and you can give them the $50 towards a ‘house’ and ‘food.’ Except, little girl, we know where that money is going, don’t we?”

“Where?” she asked, because kids are dumb.

“Drugs and Alcohol. Probably needle drugs and cheap booze. Like the stuff you’ll be drinking sophomore year of college.”

She thought for a moment, and she said, “Why don’t you just get the homeless man to mow your lawn? Then you can give him the $50 and he’ll have a job.”

And I said welcome to the Republican party.


Solving our country’s problems is so easy. Look, I just solved freaking homelessness. Most people have no idea how to solve major problems. You just get a team of homeless people, and you get them to freakin’, ah, you get them to mow lawns! You call em’, “Homeless Lawn Mowers LLC”, or something. It’ll be awesome. I want ten percent for the idea and the name.


And the little girl said, “Wow, you’re generous to give that homeless man a job.”

And I said, “I can’t actually give him a job because he’s drunk and high, remember? PLUS, I only have one lawn, and $50 a week isn’t enough to live on, BUT: if he started his own business, and payed me to rent my lawn mower, he could easily mow like probably twenty lawns a week, and that’s a thousand bucks a month, right? BUT: the freakin’ government taxes the crap out of small businesses even though they are supposed to be the lifeblood of our economy. AND besides all that, these homeless people probably have criminal records. AND even if they don’t have one, I’m sure they have some sort of mental health issue because so many homeless people do. Maybe undiagnosed. Who knows? It’s not my problem. Look at me, I brought myself up out of nothing! All I had to do was go to the local college that all my siblings went to, get my business professor’s friend to give me an internship at his company, and fifteen years later I started my own company without any help from anyone. Self. Made. Man.”

“Wait,” the little girl said, “so what happens to the homeless people?”

“The government gives them money.”

“Really?!” she said, shocked.

“Yes, awful, isn’t it? That your parents and I have to pay for those homeless people to sleep in free shelters at night, and get free doctor’s check-ups? And get free food stamps?”

“Yes,” she said. “The government sounds terrible.”

“Welcome to the Libertarian Party,” I said.


“But if the government doesn’t take care of those people, who does?”

This little girl still had questions!

“The people do,” I said, “with their own money—but it’s not forced.”

“Oh gotcha.” She paused and had the audacity to ask, “Do you pay any money to help those people?”

“You’re a nosy little piece of crap aren’t you?” I said. I continued, eyeing down this little devil sitting across from me with her stupid pigtails.

“Well, okay, no, not personally…but I pay taxes so that I don’t have to pay for programs for the homeless. But I would pay money I didn’t already pay it in taxes.”

“So the government is good?”


“But if they do the stuff that no one else will…”

“They are terribly inefficient.”

“What does inefficient mean?”

“It means they waste so much money!”

At this, even the little girl’s liberal Democrat parents agreed. And then we agreed on how hard it is to do taxes! And then we agreed on how annoying it is when you drop your phone in that space between the car seat and the center console and you have to move the seat all the way forward to get it out, and you still have you mangle your own hand trying to fish it out of the greased tracks of the seat. And we called it a night.


A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead on the side of the road. A priest walked past the man and didn’t stop to help him. A Levite walked past the man and didn’t stop. But a Samaritan, who had no business helping this man, stopped and helped him. He bandaged his wounds and took him to an innkeeper and said, “Here, this guy will mow your lawn for $50.”

Life is either so, so simple……………or it is infinitely more complicated than I ever imagined.