Recently, a friend of mine told me about a friend of his who was attacked by a flash mob.  This was a negative flash mob, not the fun kind.

She was walking down the street with her phone in her hand when around a dozen thugs surrounded her, knocked her down, and stole her phone before running off.

With me being the person I am with the hobbies and side-hustles I have, certain things came to mind.

  1. This is why standard capacity magazines should never be outlawed.   Sometimes, a six-shot revolver just isn’t enough.
  2. Before anyone complains about #1, when you are beaten to the ground by a pack of violent thugs, the length of your life is up to them, not you.  They are the problem.
  3. Walking down the street while talking on your cell phone is not the best way to stay aware of your surroundings.   Would she have been able to get away if she had been paying more attention to the thugs on the corner than her conversation?  I have no idea, but it’s certain that talking on a cell phone is a distraction.
  4. Walking down the street with an expensive gadget in your hand is asking for trouble.
  5. What were these thugs thinking?  Even a $500 cell phone turns into a $50 mp3 player the moment the victim gets to a real phone to call the cell phone company.   That’s a generous $50 payout.   With 12 people, that’s means everyone gets $4.10 as their share.   The federal poverty level is just under $12,000 per year, which means they would have to do this 8 times a day, just to get to barely enough money to survive.

    In Minnesota, this is, at a minimum, 3rd degree assault, which carries a possible 5 year sentence and $10,000 fine. That’s 8 public attempts to throw away 5 years of their lives, every day.   How can they consider this a good risk.

    It was pointed out to me that this thuggery is probably made possible by direct government sponsorship, in the form of welfare checks, so this is probably just a way to pass the time.   Somebody should tell those brutes that welfare checks stop when you’re in prison.

So I’m considering launching a basic economics class for thugs and street rats.  I want to teach them how to do a risk assessment by comparing the level of loot to the possible outcomes of getting caught.

Possible test questions include:

  • I could stab that guy for the $10 in his wallet, but if I get caught, I’m facing 40 years in prison.  Should I do it?
  • My flash mob makes $50 per phone we steal from defenseless women.   Would my buddies rat me out to avoid 5 years of hard time, and do I consider that worth $4?
  • Meth makes the faces of my customers dissolve from the inside before killing them.   Is it possible to build a sustainable business based on slowly killing my customers?  What marketing skills do I need to develop to replace the natural attrition of poisoning my customers?
  • Meth labs explode.  Is it better to hire my own junkies, or should I outsource that risk and take a smaller profit margin?
  • This is a shall issue carry permit state.  There are nearly 100,000 carry permit holders here.  That’s 1.87% of the total population and 2.6% of the adult population.   Statistically, how many people can my friends and I jump before getting justifiably shot?  Is that number times the $4 profit considered a good return on investment?  What would the ROI have to be to make this a worthwhile career choice?

Anybody know any violent thugs willing to beta test my new class offering?

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    1. LMBO!!! I think this is an excellent idea…a class on the true ROI of assault and theft. Sadly, you may not get many signups.

      As for the concealed carry permits, send those thugs to Texas…I bet more than 2.6% of our adult population carries a gun…

    2. Damn… someone always steals the best business ideas before I think of them!

    3. Great thoughts on this – you may want to check out “freakonomics” and gang leader for a day – both got a hold of drug dealers books and broke down the economics of it – very good reads (both in chicago area)

    4. Hilarious. I must admit, I don’t know of any takers, though. I also doubt that a risk assessment would change the behavior of many ‘thugs’ – instant gratification and short-sightedness run really deep nowadays.

    5. I grew up among many thugs. They don’t think about “$50 divided by 12 people”. They wouldn’t be thugs if they used common sense. All they think about is getting enough money to buy their next bag of weed or case of beer.

    6. Welfare checks might end when you go to prison, but prison is just another form of welfare check anymore. I say we bring back the public stocks and leave them out to dry for a few nights…

    7. Cute! Maybe they need a manager/agent. Doesn’t a manager get a percentage of the take? No wait, that would cut their take even more.

    8. Brilliant!!! Mind you I am not convinced they would stay to the end of your seminar – they’d probably arrive, eat all the food, pocket all the bottled water and then storm out with your laptop, projector and laser pointer …….. letting you know all about their rights – with nary a reference to their responsibilities.


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