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Eat anything you want and still lose weight!

Did it work? Did you open the post and are reading this? Well, dumb question either way I suppose. I got a spam mail with that kind of subject line. When I opened it up, good on them, it didn’t have a magic diet pill or five minute workout. In fact it stated right up front, the only way to lose weight is to diet or exercise and the best way is to do both. I would add to that, you can get into ketosis with minimal risk for most people and really be able to eat more than you might otherwise be able to with the exception of lots of carbs. But it got me thinking, those kinds of marketing schemes do work, they often sell, they can make the grifters hawking them a millionaire. Because we want to believe them, they can be downright seductive.

No-effort miracle remedies are by no means limited to dieting schemes or any particular ideology. But of course, being the hyper-partisan atheist asshole some accuse me of on a regular basis, it didn’t escape my laser like focus that that’s how the right-wing often markets itself these days.

Want to lower the deficit? Why slash revenue, yeah, that’s it, lower or eliminate taxes on the wealthy and not only will the gigabucks roll into the Treasury turning all that red ink into green, the dollars will trickle down off the shoulders of our betters like a sing-song stair-step waterfall and drown all of us in prosperity.

You got laid off, with two kids starting college in a week, and found out you have super expensive chick cancer all in one lousy summer month? That’s God-eh testing you — and even thinking about asking for evidence that you’re being tested is out of bounds. Don’t think, don’t analyze, just pucker up and kiss Hank’s ass. And by kiss ass, I mean give me all your remaining savings. AKA tithe, by all that is Holy, trust the Lord and show it with a substantial tithe to my Church of Me. Unless the tithe is so big it hurts, it doesn’t count, it won’t work.

Want to help the unemployed and underemployed? Cut every program that helps them to the bone, no more government help or disability filings or work programs repairing crumbling infrastructure, that’s just a hand out. Repeal Obamacare and end things like FMLA and COBRA. Make them desperate, riddle them with anxiety, otherwise they have no incentive to get off that sweet $900/month unemployment habit and $114/month food stamp addiction. If you cared, if you really, truly cared, that’s how you help them.

The only way to achieve peace is by waging perpetual, unilateral war. The only way to preserve freedom is by signing it away. Minority rights are best insured by dismantling equal protections laws. Level the playing field for students by concentrating low performing, poor kids in one school and then award funding to that district based on how they perform. It just never fucking stops.

I used to wonder why some older people were so cynical. Now I know. I have lived long enough to see the same scams, the same discredited failed debunked self-serving marketing schemes get shot down only to be resurrected and presented anew as if someone just thought them up, and still work. And more often than not there is a kernel in there somewhere, the equivalent of eat all you want and still lose weight.

One of the best things about blogging here is you hard-nosed, pragmatic, argumentative, over-picky, detail-oriented skeptics do not fall for that bullshit in anywhere near the numbers of the general population.

Comments

  1. says

    Did you open the post and are reading this?

    Yes, I opened the message. But that was not because of the subject line. It was because of the author who has been known to write stuff worth reading.

  2. Trebuchet says

    I opened it thinking it might be about some of the ads that run here on FTB! Great post, though.

  3. magistramarla says

    What is hilarious is that there are three such ad showing up here right now – 7 secrets about belly fat! How acidic is your body? and Fix your thyroid to lose weight!
    These things are ubiquitous, and I’m sure that there are enough pour rubes falling for them to make it worthwhile for them to advertise in all kinds of places.
    It’s sort of a waste for them to advertise to the skeptics here, isn’t it?

  4. says

    It’s TRUE!!! You can anything you want and still lose weight.

    Just stay within 1500 to 1800 calories a day. And exercise at least 30 minutes a day, most days of the week.

  5. Trebuchet says

    What is hilarious is that there are three such ad showing up here right now…

    I’ve got four.

  6. says

    We have talked about offering an ad free version of FTB. We’d try to figure about how much we make from ads and charge the same. There may be tech headaches that make it tough to do though, not sure where that stands.

    I don’t even notice ads in the margins on websites, unless they leave those frontiers and get in my face like that whirling tornado once did on the old Sciblogs, at which point I leave that page. I’m not sure how effective that kind of marketing even is, but if they’re there it must be worth it to someone. As far as the content of the ads, yes Internet gurus are trying to target them better. But we aren’t those gurus, those nameless unknown execs pick what ads go in what suite and get sprayed to thousands of sites. I’m pretty sure the key determining factor in that process is if the check clears.

    Look at it this way: the more fundamentalist nutiness or misplaced virtual carnival barking that gets placed on sites like this, the less damage they can do.

  7. Randomfactor says

    The Vast Right Wing Conspiracy is, at heart, a moneymaking pyramid scam.

    A friend of mine is an older, fox-news-soaked disabled veteran. He hates Obama incoherently*. He’s utterly dependent on federal programs for his very existence. And he’s on every right-wing mailing list, and because of that, every get-rich-quick-while-you’re-losing-weight-effortlessly mailing list as well. And he falls for them, every one.

    I can’t save him from himself. Best I can do is to refuse to help him with the wackier schemes. And try to keep people like him from destroying his only means of survival. And slip him groceries when I can.

    *(Driving with him one day, I saw him point at a billboard and complain that THAT’S WHAT’S WRONG WITH THIS COUNTRY!!!!! as we passed a billboard promoting the Boys and Girls Club. I was a little confused until he explained that Obama was plastering his picture everywhere to promote his Cult of Personality which would lead to the Downfall of Everything and possibly lose us Afghanistan. Later I drove past the same billboard slowly enough to read it. It featured a picture of Denzel Washington.)

  8. nathanaelnerode says

    You can eat anything you want and still lose weight! Steak, jellybeans, lard, anything!

    You just can’t eat very much of any of it. (Zing…)

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