By now, many readers will have seen the popular American YouTube video by Mark Dice in which he stands on a city sidewalk and offers passers-by a free gift. They may choose between a 10-ounce silver bar or a large Hershey’s candy bar.
Each taker chooses the candy – most of them with no deliberation. The only taker who seems to hesitate at all soon decides on the candy, as “I don’t have any way to do anything with the silver.” (Behind them is a coin shop. Mister Dice offers to take the silver bar inside if she wishes, but she’s uninterested and takes the candy.)
A 10-ounce silver bar is presently valued at about $140, the Hershey’s bar at about $2.
(Editor’s Note: If you have not seen the video, please see below.)
Mister Dice doesn’t comment in the video as to what lesson might be learned from this, but an obvious one would be that Americans (or at least those who reside in his home town of San Diego, California) are prone to prefer instant gratification over something of substantially greater, but delayed value.
If this is his intent, he’s succeeded well in his light-hearted, but instructive video.
Since the 1950’s, much of the world has perceived Americans as being on “Easy Street,” and in recent decades, the U.S. government has fuelled American complacency through a consciousness of easy money and entitlement.
And so, Americans are often perceived by those outside the U.S. as being somewhat insulated, spoiled, naïve, and short-sighted. But, if this is true, Americans certainly aren’t alone. Much the same exists in Europe, Canada, and quite a few other countries that have, over recent decades, followed the American socio-economic model.
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