In this issue:  Did I make you feel untrustworthy?
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What Seasoned Traders Do

We suspect everyone we don't know.  In order to be successful, we can't suspect them so much that they feel like buying from someone else.  In this letter, I'll cover a few things I've realized that can help your new customers feel more comfortable with your paranoia about getting scammed.  If you're not paranoid, lucky you- but please be careful.  We don't want to encourage the scammers.

When you trust someone right before they get into an accident, you will feel betrayed (heavily) until you find out about the accident.  That might be never.  I tell some of my best customers (and suppliers!) that I'd like us to have a plan in place in case one of us gets hit by a truck.  Or a bus.

As we grow older, we learn the lesson that honesty is the best policy over and over again, often, if we're good people, in a way that is enjoyable.  Younger people are susceptible to the temptation of being trusted.  I'm a father, and have been for almost two decades, so hopefully this next paragraph will carry some weight and help some of you out.

If you trust someone "too much," two different kinds of bad effects can occur, either separately or together. One effect is that they take advantage of you.  In my mind, and perhaps because I am always aware of the risk, this effect is not nearly as bad as the second one.  The other effect is that you might demonstrate to them how easy it is to benefit from hurting others.  You can turn them into a scammer just by trusting them too much.

Dishonesty hurts those practicing it in ways they cannot see.  I've written about this problem regarding scammers before.  Because they've chosen that path, they view everyone as a potential mark, even those close to them, and this perception degrades the joy of whatever relationships they might have.

I hope some of the folks who have scammed me will read this and take it to heart.  I am not vindictive, but you hurt me.  I can take that loss as a lesson that it was up to me to help you learn that honesty is more profitable, and I failed you.

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