We get a lot of junk mail. Apparently, amongst the fodder I tossed into the blue bin last week was this steal deal from Ford: “Lease a 2012 Focus SE for $199 @ 0% interest with $0 down.” I never noticed. What I did notice was the correction we received from Ford telling us of a “printing error.” It’s not $0 down for humanity’s sake, it’s $2850 down! How embarrassing.

Come on, this wasn’t a printing error, it was a human error, so just admit it. Second, if you made it, rather than spending thousands of dollars drawing attention to it and retracting the “great deal,” why not just honour it? Who knows, maybe you’ll sell even more cars, and be more profitable this time based on volume rather than price. Plus, isn’t the SE like the bottom of the barrel and these direct ad campaigns are just about getting folks into the store for up selling anyway?

Yes there are credit problems in this country and yes, people are extended up the wazoo. But companies offering credit should be filtering out questionable borrowers via credit checks etc., not based on whether or not they can pony up 3000 bucks. If they want it, they can get it. Maybe from another credit card.

Here’s the lesson I took from this pale apology and retraction: first, just don’t make stupid mistakes. Second, if you do, take it on the chin. Who knows, it just might work out in your favour.