The Atlantic takes us to an interesting place this morning, asking us to consider whether we put more instinctive faith in the rich than in the poor and, if so, whether we’re mistaken. Here’s a thought experiment to go with your morning joe:
You’re standing on a corner in downtown San Francisco. It’s a four-way stop, meaning cars are supposed to pause before entering the intersection. As you’re sipping your latte, you look to your left before stepping off the curb. The car approaching is a shiny BMW. Do you cross? How about if it’s a Ford Fusion? The model of trust I’ve been describing suggests you might want to pause if it’s the BMW.
So, do you place more trust in the driver of a Bimmer or that of some midrange American car? What if there’s a third car, a real junkbucket, in the mix? Who’s more likely to hit you? Tell us, science!
Ester: Hello Judah! Would you like to introduce yourself for the Billfold readership?
Judah: Hi Billfold, my name is Judah Bloom and I am a new car shopper and, hopefully, owner.
Ester: And you are related to me!
Judah: That, too. I am your youngest brother.
Ester: That makes it sound like I have 15 younger brothers, each cuter and more princely than the last! But I only have you. Luckily, you’re great!
Judah: Well thank you. I am just trying to avoid the “little” brother routine that typically arises.
Ester: Yes, we middle children are notoriously insensitive to the feelings of our younger siblings. ANYWAY. You are not little; you are in fact almost 30, are you not?
Judah Yes I am. I am turning 30 in August and have been working a steady job for the past, almost three years.
Ester: Let the record show: You are a millennial with a strong work ethic. You’re virtually a unicorn! What other markers of traditional adulthood can you offer? Can you cook yourself dinner?
Judah: If ordering online or turning on the microwave count, then yes, absolutely. However, I have been a success at living by myself and going to work everyday, which is an achievement.
Ester: In this day and age, that basically warrants you a Nobel prize. Or, as it happens, A NEW CAR! So tell me about your decision to purchase an automobile!
Judah Well, the car I am currently driving is an 11-year-old Acura RSX (two door hatchback) that I got from my parents. It has taken me cross country 3-4 times and been with me for as long as I have been able to drive. However, it is reaching old age and becoming untenable/not financially viable to maintain.
Ester: You mean it’s time to put it in a home?
Judah: I was actually going to try to find it a nice farm up north to let it run around with other old cars.