Greed, 2013.

There’s a new kind of greed. Well maybe it’s not new, but it’s not the classic “have some want more” kind of greed that the word “greed” makes you think of.
It’s the ” I want to get something for nothing” kind of greed. And I’m finding it quite upsetting.
“What’s wrong with wanting something for nothing?” I hear you ask.
Well everything really. Everything is worth something to someone, so why should you or anyone else have it for nothing?

Surely if I want something, I should pay for it, or work for it or give time for it. Not expect it handed to me on a plate. And how do you evaluate something’s worth? In money? Time? Effort?

How do you put a price on time? You could only pay me for my time with more time. My time is not worth money. Money isn’t going to buy back the time I spent on the phone waiting for someone to answer. Money isn’t going to make me on time to pick my kids up from school.
But I do know that time is worth money to some people. It’s the difference between getting paid for one job or two. So why do we begrudge paying for someone’s time when we need their skill?

Let’s taking plumbing as an example. I choose plumbing because it’s something I’ve needed help with recently. Help I’m willing to pay for.

I remember a time when a call out fee was £50. It’s now £70 or £80. Well over time and inflation, I consider that reasonable.
When you consider the cost of petrol now and distance between clients, the time it takes to get to the next job, then just doing the job whatever it is, properly!… this guy has to make a living too.
Then you have parts, parts which frankly I can’t be arsed to hunt for on the internet to see if I can get a better price, hoping I’ve bought the right thing and that it arrives on time and in one piece. If Bob Plumber can get those parts and is charging me a little on the top because he took the time to order them from a reliable source, then that’s okay dokey with me. Like I said, my time can’t be bought, his can.

Now you need to consider the qualifications of these dudes. I do wonder about these so called qualifications as I’ve had two so called plumbers in to look at my dodgy heating and neither has had the faintest idea what to do. My neighbour who has identical plumbing, hired a Russian chap who fixed the dodgy heating issue.
As Russian dude is familiar with our odd system, I want him to fix mine. Common sense if you ask me. But because he wants £80 call out, folk who shall remain nameless are shaking their heads and tut tutting. Suggesting all sorts of bodgem and dodgems to save a buck.
This Russian chap obviously knows his stuff, I want to pay for his know it all stuff to fix my crappy heating! I don’t really care how much it bloody costs. I’ve already wasted money on blithering idiots, why not try the clever dude?
Of course clever Russian dude is charging what he does. Blithering Idiot charges the same, so does Mr F’ing Clueless and his mate Bodgit Fred. They might swing a deal but you’ll be without hot water for a month.

But this is typical of folks these days. Cut out the middle man. Well loves, the middle man is there for a reason. To save you mucking up and costing yourself more in the long run.
Hunt for the bargains. The truth is, there are no real bargains, things cost what they cost. They are made and the cost of making them depends upon the price of the raw material. If you buy it cheap it was probably made cheap. Sure some stuff gets marked up unreasonably, but a bit of common sense should tell you this and at the end of the day you need to think “how much is this worth to me?”
If someone offers to do a job cheap his work will probably be shoddy because he’s in a rush to get to the next job he also promised to do cheap. He needs to make ends meet too and he knows how much he needs to bring home at the end of the month. He’s only doing jobs cheap because that’s what all you greedy bastards demand. He can’t survive on the jobs at the actual rate he’s giving and then give them adequate time too. If you paid him more, he could take his time, do it properly, get job satisfaction and leave you happy too.
Instead, you bargain hard, he takes on more than he can manage but still needs to pay his bills. He cuts a few corners, leaves unsatisfied and will probably have to return to angry customers in a months time.

I blame internet shopping. When it comes to buying ticket stuff. Go see it in person. You can’t see the quality on a photo. Sure go see it then buy it online because is cheaper. I hope it’s the same and I hope the shop you looked in now doesn’t go bust because the items they sold are cheaper online online. Well done greedy. You’ve put someone out of a job and made something more expensive.

If you can’t really afford to buy something without wasting precious, invaluable time on the internet, perhaps you should consider “do I really need it?” You might save £10 here and £5 there. But how much time did you spend looking? What else could you have done in that time?
Go outside, get some fresh air and exercise. If your lucky you might get some free extra minutes added to your life.

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