BLACK & WHITE NEWS REEL NARRATOR Last time on Common Sense Soapbox, Bob to the Future! BOB ...Speaking of planning, Roberto, any plans for opening a restaurant? Those tacos were amazing... ROBERTO I would love to, but I don’t have the capital right now. INT. HALL O’ ‘GRAMS - DAY Charlie, Bob, Penguin, and Roberto are standing by Roberto’s taco cart. Charlie and Roberto are talking to each other excitedly, with lots of hand gestures and nodding. Bob and Penguin look on. We're entering a conversation already in-progress. ROBERTO Oh, yeah, I’ve got the location all picked out. Good spot, too! I just need to save up a bit more before I open up the restaurant. BOB Does it cost more than... (counting tokens) ...$2.25? Roberto rolls his eyes a bit. Bob doesn't realize that these coins aren't even the money people in the future actually use. It's like play-money for kids, for the vending machines at the museum. ROBERTO (deadpan) Yes. BOB Dang! I’ll have to go for a smaller share... CHARLIE Bob, I appreciate that you’re trying to help, but even in today’s day and age, opening a restaurant is hard work and Roberto's going to need a lot of capital investments to get started. BOB (aghast and offended) Capital investment?? You’re a- a- a- capitalist?? (to Roberto) Say it isn’t so! Charlie and Roberto exchange looks. ROBERTO Bob, a capitalist is just someone who owns capital. Bob sputters. BOB Exactly! Pfft! There is a pause as Charlie and Roberto wait for Bob to continue with his point. Bob does not continue. CHARLIE Bob, do you know what capital is? BOB I sure do! It’s money! CHARLIE That's... one part of it, sure. But it’s a little more complicated than that. BOB I refuse to believe anything could possibly be more complicated than I initially thought of it as. CHARLIE (spreads hands in a gesture of display) And yet... Capital is a really broad term, and it covers a lot of things. Roberto continues. ROBERTO Financial assets and debt, sure, but also stuff like chef’s knives and tortilla warmers and payment processing systems. Even delivery trucks and warehouses. BOB Nuh uh! CHARLIE Yeah-huh! Capital is just the tools we use to make the production of all the stuff people buy easier and more efficient. Cut to Bob’s face with all of its features removed at the “:O” text emoji over it ROBERTO Exactly. And because it’s more efficient, the final product - these delicious tacos, perhaps? - will be more affordable and available for everyone. CHARLIE And if Roberto spends less to make the tacos, and customers like you and me spend less to buy them, we all end up with more resources for other awesome things! ROBERTO Everybody wins! BOB So, capital’s just... like... tools? Like a screwdriver? ROBERTO Basically, yes. BOB So, why don’t you just make your own taco wrenches instead of getting investors and buying them? ROBERTO (laughs) I know how to make tacos, not any of that other stuff! I want GOOD tools, not the garbage I’d end up making! Charlie, I’ll have my lawyer send some paperwork over to your financial planner. Roberto pushes his taco cart off-screen. BOB You know what? This has inspired me! I’m going to become an enter-prenner, too! I’m going to start my own technology company! CHARLIE That’s great! But you’re going to need some startup money first. And I know some places that are hiring. BOB Hiring? Like, for a job? CHARLIE Yeah! You’ll want to get familiar with our technology and who does what, right? I know just the place! BLACK AND WHITE NEWS REEL NARRATOR: Next time on a very special Common Sense Soapbox… CLIP from Episode V.

Common Sense Soapbox


About this show

Short videos with a punchy, comedic tone and entertaining Socratic characters taking on trending issues and important concepts from a classical liberal perspective, written & animated by Seamus Coughlin.

Bob Becomes... A Capitalist?

December 10, 2019

Bob is super-excited about Roberto's plans for a restaurant until he learns Roberto needs capital investment, not Hall o' Gram tokens. But what is this "capital" throwing a taco wrench in the works?

Written by Seamus Coughlin, Jennifer Maffessanti, and Sean W. Malone
Animated by Seamus Coughlin
Edited by Sean W. Malone


All Shows

Invisible Hands

Popular YouTube host Kevin Lieber (VSauce2) hosts this informative and entertaining video series designed to introduce key concepts of economics to younger audiences through credible arguments, comedy... And puppets!

Connect with FEE