A "black market" of sweets and treats

It's the best story I've read in months. A young lad from Salford starts selling sweets at his school where they've got some New Labour style "healthy eating" policy in place. He was buying stuff in bulk from a wholesalers, smuggling it in, and selling at a profit. The money made was going into a trust fund so he could pay to go to University. Furthermore he employed two of his mates (at £5.50 a day) to help out. He's a business prodigy, clearly. He has initiative and a mind of his own. That's why the establishment have now stepped in and are threatening to suspend him.

Tommie [says] he has his sights set on a top business degree from prestigious Oxford or Cambridge.

Parents Gary, 33, an office worker, and gym manager Tracy, also 33, describe themselves ‘council estate born and bred’ - and say they would struggle to pay £9,000-a-year tuition fees.

Gary said: “He’s a typical teenage boy who saw what he wanted and worked hard for it. He realised that if you want to get ahead in business and in life, you have to start at a young age. At first we thought we should stop him selling the sweets, but then we saw that he was doing it properly, legally and sensibly so we left it to see what would happen. I could only dream of making that sort of money at his age."

“It’s a shame the school are trying to stop Tommie. According to his business model he’d have earned £2-3k by the end of the year, which would have made him the £18,000 he needed to pay for University. He’s always thinking ahead and I think that shows an unbelievable knack at his age.”

What's so wonderful about the story is it works as an innocent microcosm of the nation we live in. Here the teacher makes the argument that this lad's entrepreneurial instincts must be quashed because their healthy eating policy is "for the good of the children". He's an adult, he can tell kids what's good for them and how they should behave. That's his job.

However, the UK's drugs laws are regularly made a mockery of like this. The billions earned illegally trading in them go into the pockets of older and far nastier versions of this kid. The argument our establishment uses though is almost identical. It's for your own good, you're a child we're the adults, do as you're told.
However in our not-so-innocent real world many suspect that by the time this pattern reaches adulthood our Government has done some sort of deal with those who break their laws[1]. Why else would they allow them to become so well funded using a business model even a child can master?

In the real world this "war on drugs" nonsense more than anything else funds organised crime.

Furthermore, we're not children and our Governments are not our masters. They were not selected by some all powerful hidden force but elected by us to do our bidding. Good on this kid, I wish him all the best. Maybe when he's an adult our world will change for the better.
Nick Margerrison.


Dave Voce said…
My first reaction to this story was the same as yours, however on second thoughts if i were the head i doubt i'd want a kid coming in with bags and bags of crappy junk food to flog. I have a lot of issues with schools and how we educate our kids but the recent push on healthy eating is one thing i can agree on. And even if it weren't crappy junk food but carrots and brocolli it still isn't the place to run his business empire from.
Dave Voce said…
I think i sent the last message a bit prematurely as I’ve just remembered that i used to go to school with bags and bags of plums that i picked from our trees and which i would flog to the kids and i could easily make enough for a big bag of junk food, so i might be a bit of a hypocrite. Things were certainly freer back then and i never got told off for my business empire.

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