• Most Financially Ethically Dubious Act?

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    Over at Get Rich Slowly there is a great debate over the ethics of frugality – with topics such as “free” wi-fi, or is is wrong to bring food into a movie theater.

    For the record, I have only “borrowed” an unsecured wi-fi connection when my own was down, and I have brought in food to a movie theater, but more often than not I’ll just skip eating for the two hours.

    There are a lot of things that I have done to get money in my life that I’m not of proud of. My dad has a habit of leaving his wallet in another room when he was sleeping. When I was a kid, I would often take a few $20′s from his wallet to…wait for it…buy my friends. Having $40 when you’re 13 was like being like Donald Trump. My friends and I would usually end up spending the whole thing on arcade games. Now, I don’t even remember a lot of those kids’ names. My total lifetime “borrowed” from my dad – probably over $1,000.

    Another not-too-proud thing I did for money was steal from my employee when I was a teenager. I worked at a fast food chain, and a manager and I became close friends. We came up with a pretty good way to “keep” a lot of money that was supposed to go into the cash drawer. Total money scammed: over $3,000. I used that money to buy my first car, insurance, and a pager.

    I’m going to continue to reiterate this: I’m not proud of what I’ve done and I’m quite ashamed of things that I’ve done in my past. Currently, I try to atone for my past grievances by doing as much volunteer work as I possible and donating to charities. Those two acts in themselves will never replace that money that I took, but will shift me towards the positive in terms of moral balance.

    What is the most ethically dubious thing you’ve ever done to either save a buck, or gain more money? Anonymous comments are accepted and even encouraged.

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