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Subject:  Re: Here's your chance: Balance the Fed budget Date:  1/8/2007  12:34 PM
Author:  Dwdonhoff Number:  200563 of 603176

Hi jcradd,

I said;
Really? Pray tell... what could that 'big difference' possibly be?"

your replies (with my answers);
Off the top of my head, here are a few examples of real value:
- A battery that lasts longer, and/or is less expensive, rather than one that comes in a flashier package or has a bigger advertising budget.

Let's stay objective. If you say "a battery that lasts longer, rather than one that lasts shorter" then you are on solid ground.

If you say "a battery packaged more attractively, and advertised for better recognition" then you would be on solid ground.

When you cross-compare irrelative attributes, you are failing in objective comparisons.

- A TV that actually has better features and/or is built more solidly, rather than one that has its characteristics embellished by the zealous salesman at the store.

Same example principle, you are muddying your variables.

- An employee who actually does more productive work for their company, rather than one who does a better job of putting on the appearance for their boss.

Again, the variables are no contrary... you could have a more productive employee that grandstands better than otehrs, versus a loser who merely cubicle-dwells. You're failing to stay scientific in your discipline.

- A politician who has a real agenda that matches the rhetoric he uses to get elected, rather than one who markets himself as the champion of some certain group or cause in order to get elected, then uses complexity of issues and the short attention span of the public to work toward something completely different without his supporters ever catching on.

OK... in all seriousness; WHEN was the last time we have EVER seen such a political animal as the former? ;~)

We (as a culture) have reached a point where we have given the creation of perceived value through spin and marketing the same legitimate economic worth that we give to the creation of real value.

When used illegitimately, I agree with you wholeheartedly. The use of hucksterism to make something appear to be something it is not is predatory, and the only end-game to it is broad education.

ON THE OTHER HAND, persuasive promotion and presentation is CRITICAL for the highest quality and highest true-value programs, products and services. Indeed, the 'skills of salesmanship' in this case may be as (or MORE) important than the production of the offering itself.

This is because creating legitimate quality DOES NOT ensure broad UNDERSTANDING of its quality, nor the shift of emotional inertia of the consumers in their default manner of emotional decisions. Peopl OFTEN can be presented with "the facts" and still make poor decisions... and it is here that the skills of persuasion, in the hands of ethical professionals, is tantamount.

That is something I see as a problem, and I think that cultural acceptance does a lot to contribute to the pervasiveness.

You reference "our culture"... but I am left thinking you must be referring to the globe, rather than regional, national, or hemispheric culture. Among the various "advanced" economies, the U.S. is the LEAST hucksterish, and the LEAST confrontational in negotiations (take your mind to European and Mid-East haggling, let alone the brutal posturing and negotiating of Asian cultures.)

In the end, in economic terms, "Value is defined by the appreciation of it, in whatever way that occurs, by the consumer." REAL value is as it is perceived... not the specifications of the engineering.

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