Five Monkeys as a Financial Lesson

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By Al Thomas

Start with a cage containing five monkeys. Inside the cage hang a banana on a string from the top and then you place a set of stairs under the banana. A monkey will go to the stairs and climb toward the banana.

As soon as he touches the stairs spray all the other monkeys with cold water. Pretty soon another monkey makes an attempt with same result. All the other monkeys are sprayed with cold water. When another monkey tries to climb the stairs the other monkeys try to prevent him.

Now, put the cold water away.

Remove one monkey from the cage and replace it with a new one. The new monkey sees the banana and attempts to climb the stairs. To his shock, all of the other monkeys beat him. After another attempt and attack, he knows that if he tries to climb the stairs he will be assaulted.

Then remove another of the original five monkeys replacing it with a new one. The newcomer goes to the stairs and is attacked. The previous newcomer takes part in the punishment. He doesn’t know why, but he is now part of the crowd mentality.

Replace a third original monkey with a new one. Then a fourth, then the fifth. Every time the newest monkey takes to the stairs he is attacked. Most of the monkeys that are beating him up have no idea why they were not permitted to climb the stairs. Neither do they know why they are participating in the beating of the newest monkey.

Finally, having replaced all of the original monkeys, none of the remaining monkeys will have ever been sprayed with cold water. Nevertheless, none of the monkeys will try to climb the stairway for the banana.

Why, you ask? Because in their minds… that is the way it has always been!

For my thinking readers it is time to examine world cultures. Every country has its culture built on the same mindless system as the monkeys. The cry is, “We have always done it that way”. And they are so imbued with the culture, system, methods, whatever, that it is almost impossible to change unless there is some type of catastrophe – natural or man made.

For those who hold the Buy N Hold investment thought process and have seen it fail in 1929, 1974, 1987, 1990, 2000 and 2008 it will become another catastrophe for their personal financial accounts unless they are willing to examine another investment approach. There is another one coming.

You are just one monkey and can escape the cage – if you want to.

Al Thomas’ new book, “If It Doesn’t Go Up, Don’t Buy It!”, 3rd edition, has helped thousands of people make money and keep their profits with his simple 2-step method. The method made 10% during 2008. Read the first chapter at and discover why he’s the man that Wall Street does not want you to know. Copyright 2010 Williamsburg Investment Co. All rights reserved.

Original article here.