Charlatans are not a new phenomenon.

They've been around ever since humans discovered how easy it is to trick someone else into meeting their needs —  be it giving them money, service or adoration. Although scamming folks is not solely the domain of the religious nor do only the superstitious succumb to such slick dicks, the ordained charlatan is a particularly loathsome critter.

Societies have been burdened with so many con artists down through the ages that our vocabularies have grown an entire litany of names for such "sneaky Petes", none of which  are complimentary.  Swindler, cheat, con, fake, quack, phony, pretender, rip-off artist, sham, shyster, fortune-hunter, conniver, fraudster, double-crosser, shark, imposter, racketeer, hoaxer, horse trader, impersonator and counterfeiter are just a few synonyms for these sleazy members of society.  Obviously, we really do loathe them and their traveling sideshows. I tend to refer to these despicable characters as A-holes. For the love of all that's sane, don't do business with them, marry them, have kids by them, start a nonprofit with them or administer charitable acts with them.

If you succumb to a particularly virulent form of religious charlatan, I feel sorry for you.

Actually, since we're living in the age of information and great scientific discoveries, I find it difficult to be truly sympathetic with the throngs of willfully ignorant people who regularly fall hook, line and sinker for  these nasty religious charlatans. Whether they're claiming to have the power to grow your finances, heal your body or turn your life around, the only thing they ever accomplish is stealing your money. Yet, people continue to amaze me with their overwhelming need for a hero, someone to save them so they won't have to think for themselves.

They say a sucker is born every minute. As long as we have those who embrace superstition, old outdated ideas like demon possession,  heaven, hell, the devil, gods, holy books and holy buildings, charlatans are going to thrive.

I'm a myth buster. My recent published book -  Have We Been Screwed? Trading Freedom for Fairy Tales - can be purchased on Amazon.



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Comment by Michael Penn on September 23, 2017 at 9:34am

I agree with you fully, Tom. Your reply is very accurate but my original post using the term "crooked Hillary" was simply to say that the term was a Trump remark that he has used repeatedly until the public at large got it welded into their brains.

None of my remarks are to mean that Hillary should be President, or to even suggest that she would be if Trump was gone. All I know for Sure is that Trump is not qualified and that he is not my President.

Meanwhile, a great number of Trump supporters take the chant "lock her up" that Trump also started so seriously that they wonder why Trump has not done so when the President has no such power. Anything illegal would have to go to trial and people continue to blame Hillary for anything they can. Just as many are still concerned with her e-mail. It's all absurd.

Comment by tom sarbeck on September 23, 2017 at 8:46am
Postscript. We the people have to save the Republic. As someone famous once said, the only remedy for demcracy (oligarchy if truth be told), is more democracy.
Comment by tom sarbeck on September 23, 2017 at 8:39am
Michael, I listened to MSNBC (and never to Fox) and recall that before the election, when Trump was telling people the lies they wanted/needed to hear, Clinton was talking with major donors. Add that to her "basket of deplorables" remark and it's easy to conclude that Clinton basically disliked talking with voters.

As qualified as Hillary was for the office, as much as American women deserved a woman president, AND AS UNQUALIFIED AS TRUMP WAS (and still is), the Democrats establishment hurt all of us by hurting Bernie Sanders.

Don't get me started on the GOP. Reagan, without first counting the religious right, had invited them to join the Party. The GOP establishment--the 1%--needed their votes to win elections and then did nothing for them. By 2016 the RR were angry at their being exploited. The demagog Trump came along and told them the lies they needed to hear. He can't stop lying.

IMO, both parties have been corrupted by big donors. Personally, having to choose between Demo corruption and Repub corruption, I prefer the Demo kind.
Comment by Michael Penn on September 23, 2017 at 7:04am

I'm amazed even now some 9 months after the election that some on the Internet continue to talk about "crooked Hillary." They use the term as if it was absolute truth. To my knowledge the term came into being by her rival who is a charlatan. Some people believe every word that Donnie ever said. It's just that they are not very good at putting them together later.

Comment by tom sarbeck on September 21, 2017 at 12:11pm
Also don't elect them to public office, which we occasionally do.

I sat across a desk from one for 30 minutes, and as I walked back to my car I wasn't sure if I had a knife in my back. In the US Congress he was the House Minority Leader and he inspired me to research psycho/sociopathy, now known as antisocial personality disorder. If you feel inspired to learn more, search on 'Robert Hare', who has for decades studied them.
Comment by Teresa Roberts on September 17, 2017 at 12:49pm

Well, the word  charlatan doesn't appear in the book. However,  you and I might agree that  religion as a cultural construct may have been perpetrated by some of the biggest charlatans known to societies.  LOL I wrote this blog post  as a knee jerk reaction to the following video article about some modern=day religious shysters.  Watch it and puke. Oh, and then, if you're so disposed, read my book.

Comment by Randall Smith on September 17, 2017 at 6:55am

Me thinks with these recent blogs, your book contains much of the same "stuff". I get the message. You're right, of course.



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