Always bugged me a little
Watto wasn’t exactly swimming in slaves, he only had 2 working out of his fairly modest junk shop. If you rephrase this as no pod racer is worth 100% of my workforce this becomes pretty apparent.
Watto: That child build a droid by himself. Doy you have any idea how much value he can produce in his lifetime. What short sighted economics are the Jedi teaching you?
ah yes, lets sell 100% of my workforce and one of them is capable of building a droid out of junk
I agree with Watto because tech in SW is equivalent to plastic in our world.
It is omnipresent, available in myriad forms, preposterously cheap, and much of it seems to be “1-use and throw it away”. It so prevalent that, even in the Outer Rims, the most desolate and sand-ridden planets have huge scrap piles of it. It’s so present that entire Star Destroyers are left to sit and be scrapped by locals rather than be salvaged by the victors. It’s so prevalent that an *entire species* does nothing but go around collecting it.
2 slaves are worth more than the Tatooine equivalent of a soap box racer built from scraps.
Tatooine only has about 200,000 people on it, not counting tuskens. Millions of slaves is a bit of an overstatement
edit: Wookieepedia cities this book, [journey though space](https://starwars.fandom.com/wiki/Journey_Through_Space_(2015)), as its official source.
Over time, child slaves become adult slaves, while new and shiny pods become old and worn out pods.
Conclusion: Child slaves are a sound financial investment.
I mean Anakin probably would have been able to build a pod racer when he grew up. He already built 3P0 as a child so Watto probably saw that Anakin had potential.
It’s true even in modern day workforces : Paying labour is your number 1 expense. There’s a reason so much of the major development in the west was built off the backs of slaves : It’s easy (for the non slaves).
Man, Anakin being a slave on Tatooine was such a good backstory for him and they just did not take advantage.
Why isn’t Anakin pissed about the Jedi not being willing to save his mother? Never mind that, why isn’t he pissed that they won’t free all the slaves on Tatooine? Instead his slave master is like a grumpy but well meaning stepfather. Who he’s happy to see when he returns.
It feels like a huge missed opportunity to not have Anakin be a *bit* older, be a genuinely good, kind and generous person, but also with an at times barely contained righteous anger about the injustice that is his entire life.
This would play so well into the idea of the Jedi having become an overly bureaucratic body which overlooks certain injustices to ingratiate themselves to the Senate.
It would be the perfect thing for Palpatine to manipulate to twist Anakin – the Senate is corrupt, and the Jedi enable them, just imagine what they could do ruling the Republic with no gridlock? It would even make the whole Naboo story factor in – after all, Palpatine was being hamstrung by an ineffective body. He just wanted to help.
I mean it would even help Dooku be a better defined character. I like the idea that his motivation was, at one point, vaguely just and born out of an understanding of the Jedis failings. Like Qui-Gon, who also would have benefitted.
Anyways this is a meme but thank you for attending my TED Talk anyways.
Weren’t slaves illegal under the Republic? If so then slaves would be even more valuable
Perhaps Shmi Skywalker was skilled in… other ways
On top of all of the other comments, you’re all thinking about what a slave or a racer is worth to *Watto*. That’s not how business works at all. It’s about what it’s worth to the customer.
In this case, one pod racer (which Qui-Gon would never bother to take off-planet) isn’t even close to being worth two actual sapient lives *to a Jedi*.
Sell based on what your customer will pay, not on what it costs you.
There’s literally *nowhere to go* on Tatooine. Yeah, great, hooray, you went 700km/h away from the only source of water for thousands and thousand sof clicks. Whoop dee doo.
No, what bugged me is that Queen Amidala never went back to at least try to buy Shmi’s freedom considering her disgust at the thought of slavery and Anakin basically ending the droid assault himself. I kind of get the Jedi, even if I don’t agree, but she wasn’t under any kind of philosophical restriction.
how much you want to bet that Watto wasn’t the only one with the Hyperdrive parts as well?
To take into account:
1. The pod was made from scraps, probably not a lot of value to begin with.
2. He is a scrap reseller. The pod is worth both as a pod and as inventory.
3. The pod could only be used for racing. The value of it was not too high to begin with due to its limited applications.
4. One of the slaves could be used to make more slaves.
Well keep in mind that racing pods were explicitly screaming metal deathtraps if you weren’t either a force-sensitive or an alien with super-human reflexes and coordination (and even then, very dangerous).
The mechanical capabilities of the vehicle are limited by how many people can make use of them.
It wasn’t exactly a top of the line pod. It was a junker Anakin managed to piece together from spare parts. Plus he built a whole droid. Anakin alone was way more valuable than any pod.