Analysts have seen that the Philippines’ economy will unlikely increase this year due to tighter monetary conditions, weaken business sentiment, and escalate US-China trade war—which is bad news, overall, for poor vendors in the country.
Abby Ross’ post on Facebook last year has resurfaced recently, in a timely manner, to give insight to the inequitable distribution of wealth, especially on rich consumers haggling poor merchants.
“Haggling” is often related to a dispute and aggression where an irrational trade is done between a buyer and a seller: the salesperson, fearing loss of a sale, succumbs to the pressure of a buyer asking for a discount, and agrees to the deal despite making less or sometimes no profit at all. It’s the law of supply and demand taken to its extremes.
A British aid agency even once pointed out that haggling is keeping Third World people in poverty, and was reported on the Independent news.
Ross narrated a similar story where a rich woman went to a saba or banana vendor and asked for its price. The latter said it is worth Php1 per banana. The wealthy buyer told the seller, “I will take 6 bananas for 25 cents each or I will leave.”
“Come take them at the price you want. Maybe, this is a good beginning because I have not been able to sell even a single banana today,” the vendor replied.
She asked Her, 'How much are you selling the Saba for?'The Old seller replied, 1 Peso per banana, Madam.'She said to…
The woman then took the bananas and walked away feeling she has won, got into her fancy car and went to a first class restaurant with a friend. The two of them then ordered a lot of food which summed up to Php1,200. The affluent woman gave the cashier Php1,500 and told her to keep the change.
“Why do we always show we have the power when we buy from the needy ones? And why do we get generous to those who do not even need our generosity?,” Abby asked in her post while taking note that the incident seemed quite normal to the rich buyer but very painful to the merchant.
“My father used to buy simple goods from poor people at high prices, even though he did not need them. Sometimes he even used to pay extra for them. I got concerned by this act and asked him why does he do so? Then my father replied, “It is a charity wrapped with dignity, my child,” Abby recalled at the end of her post.
And while it is said that the lifestyle of the rich is an aspiration of the poor, past studies have shown that mindfulness and having an attitude for gratitude is all the more important to the betterment of one’s life.