John Feehery: Speaking Engagements

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A Fool And His (or Her) Money

Posted on May 27, 2014
Kevin Trudeau cropped
“Abigail is a versatile reader who uses her natural emphatic abilities to assist you in bringing love and peace into your heart and life.  Armed with the gifts of clairvoyance, clairsentience and mediumship, she is also able to read all situations and receive your important messages from the spirit guides.  To connect all Abigail asks for is an open mind and an open heart.”

And presumably an open wallet.

To talk to Abigail on California Psychics hotline, it will cost you about eight and a half bucks a minute.  For 30 minutes, that’s about 250 bucks.

California psychics have to go through a rigorous process, the website assures us.  Only the best, most clairvoyant mediums get selected to serve the public.  That’s because California takes its psychic industry very seriously.

There’s a simple word for this.  It has four letters and it starts with an S.  No, not that word.  It’s a scam, people.  It’s meant to separate a fool from her money.

I say her, because it is usually women who consult psychics.

If men are lonely and want to talk on the phone, they will usually call somebody else, where the deliverables are more obvious.

I saw the advertisement for the California Psychics Hotline on cable television this morning and it got me to thinking.  How much of our economy is built on complete scams?

Kevin Trudeau is one example, as reported in the news:
Best-selling author and self-styled weight loss guru Kevin Trudeau was sentenced Monday to 10 years in prison for bilking consumers through late night infomercials.

Trudeau's book 'The Weight Loss Cure 'They' Don't Want You to Know About' sold more than 850,000 copies at $30 a piece through oft-played tv infomercials a federal judge decided were part of a con. A $37million judgement was also entered against him. The pitchman's lawyer argued the sentence was too harsh and said the most anyone lost through his commercials was $30, but the judge disagreed, calling him a habitual fraudster. Trudeau has been an 'unrepentant, untiring, and uncontrollable huckster who has defrauded the unsuspecting for 30 years,' said U.S. District Court Judge Ronald Guzman.

This guy made countless millions of dollars basically lying to people.  He is a sociopath.  And yet television gave him a platform to rip consumers off.  It gave him legitimacy.  If it’s on television, it must be true.

America is awash in flim-flam men.  Modern media has made it easier than ever to separate a fool from his and her money.

I don’t know how to fix it, but letting the market run its course, unfettered, with no regulation, doesn’t seem to be a particularly wise approach.