In the above ground economy people regularly lose their minds. For example, on Abovethelaw.com, Elie Mystal reports that about 20% of law students have mental-health issues. And, come to think of it, they haven't even gone to work yet.
In contrast, here in the underground economy in the marginal neighborhoods of New Haven, Connecticut, most of those I know seem to have the serenity of blissed-out monks. They are part of, James Surowiecki tells us in THE NEW YORKER, a $2 trillion economy in the U.S. To enter it you don't need Ivy credentials, just streetsmarts about what will sell, for how much, and who not to cross.
Those who stay in the underground economy will never have to jump through the hoops of those above ground. They may never have the nervous breakdowns which have become a rite of passage for the professional class Download Geezerguts. However, there are plenty of well-meaning educators, social workers, and policy wonks attempting to persuade them to go to college, which probably entails going into debt, so that they can develop mental illness about job security and upward career mobility like the rest of us.
I moved here to this part of New Haven, which mirrors the neighborhood in Jersey City, New Jersey I grew up in, to return to trusting in the providence of the only economy I knew at the time. Then a high school homeroom teacher encouraged me "to better myself."