Economics of buying cheap and cheerful stuff

Late Sir Terry Pratchett

The late (and much missed) Sir Terry Pratchett , in his Discworld series, had a character by the name of Captain Samuel Vimes of the Ankh Morpork City Watch. He was penny wise, pound foolish.

He earned thirty-eight dollars a month plus allowances. A really good pair of leather boots cost fifty dollars. But an affordable pair of boots, which were sort of OK for a season or two and then leaked like hell when the cardboard gave out, cost about ten dollars. Those were the kind of boots Vimes always bought, and wore until the soles were so thin that he could tell where he was in Ankh-Morpork on a foggy night by the feel of the cobbles.

But the thing was that good boots lasted for years and years. A man who could afford fifty dollars had a pair of boots that’d still be keeping his feet dry in ten years’ time, while the poor man who could only afford cheap boots would have spent a hundred dollars on boots in the same time and would still have wet feet.

Of course one has to take care of the good quality boots.


Cynical Investor

Cynical Investor blogs at Thoughts of a Cynical Investor





9 Responses to “Economics of buying cheap and cheerful stuff”

  • TruBlu:

    an expensive boots could last ten years and may have cost $50.
    but a poor sg can only afford a pair of cheap boots that can last only 1 year and he needed to buy 10 PAIRS AT $10 per pair for the same period.

    yet,the cheap boots were rather UNCOMFORTABLE even as he paid $100 over ten years compared to the $50 boots the RICH MAN paid for!

    same for HDB at 99 years at Woodlands vs a BIG BUNGALOW at DALVEY estate?
    lim kim san who acquired peasants’ farmlands in bukit timah or at where A ‘SON OF PUNGGOL’ once claimed to have stayed was able to pass down his big bungalow to his descendants to sell for at least $100 MILLION?!
    This aside from the bigly savings etc his children and grandkids get to benefit!

    as for the poor man’ kids n grandkids,their grandpa needed to sell his flat to pay for his EXPENSIVE GOVT HOSPITAL BILL$$$$???????????????!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    WELL,i leave the $CHOLARS TO ANSWER….

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  • cut and paste is plagiarism:

    what is the shitty point?

    why is the shit posted here and not in pap petir?

    when is this shit going to end?

    where is the logic in wasting byte space over such shit?

    how come shitty pap IBs are so shit cheapskate?

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  • sorry, it is just a tale:

    why masquerade a tale as truth?

    a clean sign of no brains, isn’t it?

    the book author is fine since he is spinning a tale in his own book.

    but it isn’t fine when someone reading a tale passes it off as own intelligence. just pap BS masquerading as sage advice. WTF.

    GD Star Rating

    Well said, CI.

    Singaporeans are penny wise, pound foolish.

    Here is why.

    Penny wise = do 10 years series template to get to NTU/NUS/SMU

    Pound foolish = No jobs for them because these Singaporeans cheated from cradle to grave. No EQ like Ramesh. Only know templated solution.

    No wonder even my master PM Lee said Singaporeans committed more crimes then foreigners.

    Because Singaporeans cheated with 10 years series from cradle to grave!!!!

    Majullah PAP, PAP Huat, Huat, Huat ah

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  • HDB flats depreciate to ZERO:

    One thing for sure HDB flat is not cheap. They are overpriced, getting smaller and of poor quality. Moreover, they steadily depreciate to ZERO despite HIP1 and HIP2. HDB’s Lease Buyback Scheme proves this.

    Using CPF (retirement) money on an HDB flat is a big mistake because it is basically a DEPRECIATING asset because of the 99-year lease. An HDB flat is NOT a store of value.

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  • oxygen:

    STUPID WRITING – he didn’t tells that PAPpypolitics sells peasant a broken boot (out of a pair) and charged PEASANT AH SENG AND AH LIAN the price of two pairs.


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  • oxygen:

    COMICAL INVESTOR DON’T SEEM TO KNOW TOO MUCH about economics, finance or investing.

    If he checked the decade-long price history of Dollar General Corp and bought its share, he did be a very rich walking skeleton by now.

    Here you go.

    The stock quote for Dollar General Corporation is DG. It rose from $20 plus to $157 now.

    But I know Comical Investor don’t know financial accounting applications.

    GD Star Rating
  • Descendents of the convicts:

    Lance Giles from Youfoodz, Australia’s “Fresh Meal Company” & his partner Jordana Stott are in Singapore now. Cynical Investor can try contacting now.

    GD Star Rating

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