The Psychology of Financial Loss

Has this economy hit you hard?  Did you lose a lot of money?  Feels shitty doesn’t?

How would you like to get it back?  Well, if you join the campaign to redistribute the wealth then we can get your debt wiped clean!  It’s a good deal for you.  It’s a good deal for everyone and it’s a good deal for the earth.

Let me continue on explaining how the redistribution of wealth will make us all feel better.  But let me state plainly that the only true redistribution of wealth will occur where money simply ceases to exist.

So, I’m currently reading a book called Negotiation Genius by Deepak Malhotra and Max H. Bazerman of the Harvard Business School.  The book should really be called “Manipulation Genius” because if explains how all of the little psychological techniques of persuasion can be applied in a negotiation setting.  It’s quite evil in a few different spots.  But even a little evil is helpful in the path to understanding the psychosis of this financial system that we are all imprisoned by.  Anyway, the book outlines an interesting scenario.  I quote:

“Scenario 1.  You are walking down the street and find a $20 bill.

Scenario 2.  You are walking down the street and find a $10 bill.  The next day, as you are walking on a different street, you find another $10 bill.

Notice that the two scenarios have identical payoffs:  both result in the a $20 gain.  However, the vast majority of people believe that they would be happier in Scenario 2.  Why?  Before we try to answer this, let’s consider another two scenarios.

Which of the following would make you unhappier?

Scenario X:  You open your wallet and discover you have lost a $20 bill.

Scenario Y:  You open your wallet and discover you have lost a $10 bill.  The following day you lose another $10 bill.

Again, the scenarios are identical with regard to financial outcome.  However, this time the vast majority of people claim that Scenario Y would make them unhappier.

As these two exercises demonstrate, people seem to prefer finding money in installments, but losing money in one lump sum.”

Does that make sense to you, or is the book I’m reading really batshit crazy?

If the psychology behind this is true, then we enjoy losing money in lump sums.  It might explain how people become addicted to gambling.  So, if we follow this psychological truth to its logical conclusion then we can exclaim with great joy at the happiness that we’ll experience by losing ALL of our money.

I’m talking TRUE FREEDOM for The People.

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