One of the newspapers delivered daily to my home is the WSJ. Oddly enough, I don’t read it for the Money and Investing section but the front page news. I also enjoy the marketing and technology trends, recipes, and the wonderful week-end section. And, I usually let the papers pile up and read a few at a time, making the news outdated. I don’t care, it’s always interesting in the present moment when I’m reading it. One article, last week, that raised an eyebrow had to do with baby boomers.
Securities regulators and prosecutors are battling what they say is a nationwide surge
in investment fraud against baby boomers. In many cases, the victims pursued risky bets to
overcome losses suffered during the
financial crisis—a trend that regulators say is worsening.
Wall Street Journal, December 14, 2011
Now that’s scary. I always thought it was “old people” who got suckered into scams.
Is my generation that gullible?
Well, it seems some of us cared about our future and that makes us vulnerable. It also forces some otherwise good people to behave badly.
I got somewhat scammed myself recently. I hired someone I knew for a small remodeling job in my kitchen (cabinets and a concrete countertop). I paid her a deposit after I paid her in full for the finished cabinets. I’d like to mention she asked to be paid in full when the job wasn’t even complete, and I did. Then, she made samples for the countertop and after 8 – I could not approve one of them. Nothing popped out at me, and I got tired of not having a countertop for weeks on end and honestly didn’t think after 8 tries, she could produce a good one. So, I decided to go with granite – something she did not do.
I apologized for not liking the samples and asked for my deposit back. Well, this friendly remodeler basically told me to f—off. She claimed the samples cost money and she bought the materials (concrete) already and I had to pay for that. I went back to the contract which did not say I had to pay for samples or material in advance, or that the deposit was non-refundable. To end the dilemma, I offered to split the deposit with her – for her troubles – and she basically said to to f–off.
I’m guessing if the remodeling business was booming, this contractor would give my deposit back, but in this economy she’s behaving badly. I informed her I was going to file a complaint in small claims court because I can’t afford to lose that deposit, but she doesn’t seem to care. Now I will let a judge decide our fate.
What would Judge Judy say? Is this a case of nice people behaving badly?