One of my favorite stories involves a blind street vendor of hot dogs. One day, one his customers suggested that if business was good, he should consider expanding. The customer offered to help the blind vendor with introductions to a banker, and so the vendor ended up buying a second cart, and hiring someone to work for him. That worked out so well, that he was able to buy more carts, and hire more people. This gave him enough discretionary income that he was able to send his son to college. The son majored in business administration. When the kid graduated, he returned home to see that his dad had purchased a corner lot and an old diner trailer that he rennovated and opened as a freestanding restaurant. The son was horrified. “Dad…don’t you know the economy is lousy! You shouldn’t be expanding right now…you need to pull in your horns and hunker down for a long recessionary period. This has got “Depression” written all over it! You’d better be careful, or you’ll lose everything!”
The father thought, “Well…my son did go to college, which I’ve never done, and he did major in business, and he did get a degree. Maybe he’s right.” So he sold the restaurant, sold off the other carts, and went back to working a single street corner, selling hot dogs. He thought, “Boy, my son was right. The economy is lousy.” Continue reading Economics and Perception.