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Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Selling Vs. Informing

Each time I hear someone I know thoughtlessly regurgitating the words of a favorite radio or TV pundit, one thought seems to settle me. The personalities spewing that hateful, toxic, divisive bile to a susceptible audience - even when the audience are people known to me - are NOT thinkers. They are salespeople, pure and simple.

By definition, salespeople have something to sell. Keeping that thought in mind usually settles me. Because even when these individuals entertain me - however perversely - I'm not buying the hate, the toxins, the misguided attempts to divide. I'm in the market for good will, hope, and unity.

That doesn't mean I seek out rosier-than-thou information. Nor does it mean I'm unaware of the difficulties all of us face every day in an increasingly complex, interdependent world. But I will continue to search for thinkers who inform me vs. salespeople aiming to entertain me. I'm certain of little but I am certain that taking that path is better for me, for the people around me, and for the tiny piece of the world over which I have some influence. 


  1. I never thought of the people who spew this awful stuff as "sales people." More often I have thought of them as hateful and crazy. Food for thought......

    1. Ines; I've found it healthier to think of these people this way rather than demonizing them. It gives them less power and I can ignore easily ignore salespeople selling something I've no interest in.

  2. Pat,
    I was glad to see that you used the word 'entertain' in your last paragraph when describing these 'salespeople'. Entertaining covers a lot of ground. And one of the more recent uses gets right to the point and discredits the user about as well as it could. And it was used by their bosses.
    Forgive the paraphrasing, but when attempting to defend themselves against a lawsuit filed against them and one of their employees, the heads of Fox News responded that the public shouldn't take what this specific person said as truth or even news as they can't be trusted to give accurate information.
    Again, I apologize for the paraphrasing, but I found the defense that was used to cover this network's asses, exactly as it should have been. The only thing I would have added would have been 'Poor' Entertainment. Perhaps even 'Incendiary' entertainment. But certainly not news. Definitely not anything used to properly inform. Maybe 'snake oil salesman' would be a better description.
    Be well,

    1. Bob; My first draft of this post was a much more scathing indictment of these pundits. Had I retained the sharper edge of that draft your suggestion of using "snake oil salesmen" would have fit perfectly. But in the end, I decided it was the words these folks use to scare listeners and divide us that deserve my scorn rather than the salesmen/entertainers themselves. Thanks for your comment.