The phonies we fall far are the ones we want to fall for: the “news” story about the other candidate’s hidden past; the amazing weight loss plan that permits unchecked eating; the gadget that guarantees newfound simplicity.
In the bazaar of communication that we’re all strolling through every moment of every day, the comforting trinkets of self deception and quick fixes can be had on every corner. Honestly, they’re not that hard to spot. One indicator is the enthusiasm of crowds. If lots of our colleagues are all of a sudden atwitter about a revelation that “changes everything,” we should wait a week before adopting it.
Style and flourish are also giveaways. They’re there to mask a lack of substance. The gem that sparkles overmuch is clearly a fraud. The headline that announces, “You won’t believe what happened next” is telling you what to do with it: don’t believe it. The job that recruits with glossy photos of employees driving sports cars is a pyramid scheme.
It’s not hard to spot a fake.