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View Full Version : Why is lacking proper credentials make someone more credible to some people?


msmith537
01-03-2004, 09:11 AM
I'm watching an infomercial about investing in the stock market based on market trends. The guy who created the system is telling us how "he has no financial background" and he might have even said he never actually went to college.

Anyone who has ever read the Rich Dad Poor Dad books may have noticed the same thing. The author basically tells us how he was a complete failure for the first 40 years of his life. And yet now, we're expected to follow his get rich scheme?


So why do people think that someone without the proper credentials, someone who isn't a trader or banker or broker knows some secret that "those fat cats on Wall Street won't tell you"? Is it simply a way of relating to an audience that is uneducated or uninformed on the subject? A ploy to keep the audience from noticing the "results not typical, you may lose money" disclaimer?

I can gurantee if I, as an MBA, could tell them that market timing does not work because past performance does not equal future results, capital gains tax and trading fees will eat up most of their profits, and that most "fat cat Wall Street" fund managers do not in fact outperform the index, they would disregard that advice and still shell out $90 to learn what a $15 book from the finance section of Barnes & Noble will tell them.

nameless
01-03-2004, 01:29 PM
Because the masses sometimes hate "buisness as usual" and want to see it reformed. Like with "political outsider" canidates that I tend to vote for--I know that the guy won't work well in the current system, but that's okay--I want him to tear it down.

Fionn
01-03-2004, 02:16 PM
Originally posted by msmith537

So why do people think that someone without the proper credentials, someone who isn't a trader or banker or broker knows some secret that "those fat cats on Wall Street won't tell you"? Is it simply a way of relating to an audience that is uneducated or uninformed on the subject? A ploy to keep the audience from noticing the "results not typical, you may lose money" disclaimer?


I think it might be a little from both columns. If you want someone to pay for some advice you're selling, it has to be something that they'll feel they can do. "Hey, I was broke and uneducated, then I turned my life around using this method..." is a lot more accessible to the average person than "The first thing you want to do is get a degree in finance from a respectable college or university..." If the advice doesn't work out, the person who shelled out $90 may well protect their self-respect by concluding they just didn't follow it right, rather than that they shelled out a lot of money for bad advice.

If you want to appeal to people who feel an institution or profession is corrupt, accentuating your lack of affiliation with would be a good idea. Just like "I'm not a politician" appeals to people who don't like politics as usual, "I'm not a stockbroker" would appeal to people who believe everyone on Wall Street is out to get rich at the expense of the little guy.

Dog80
01-03-2004, 02:22 PM
Originally posted by Fionn

...
If you want to appeal to people who feel an institution or profession is corrupt, accentuating your lack of affiliation with would be a good idea. Just like "I'm not a politician" appeals to people who don't like politics as usual, "I'm not a stockbroker" would appeal to people who believe everyone on Wall Street is out to get rich at the expense of the little guy.

Another exaple is homeopathy and "alternative" doctors. People, especially those who have a health problem that doctors cannot solve, will think :"If the professionals cannot sovle it, why not try the "alternatives""

dal_timgar
01-03-2004, 04:16 PM
Having "proper credentials" may mean you are not a "team player" if you tell too many secrets. You get kicked out of the old boy network.

Actually I think RICH DAD, POOR DAD is a pretty good book. Howerver he left out information too. He talked about buying a Porche and his wife buying a Mercedes. He claimed to be teaching accounting but he didn't say anything about depreciation of automobiles. If you check Sylvia Porter's MONEY BOOK, she talked about deprecaiton of automoblies 4 times.

Never expect to find all of the information in one place.

Dal Timgar

Khadaji
01-03-2004, 04:28 PM
When they say that they have no formal training, they are sending the message that you too, without formal training, can be successful. If they said that they had a harvard business degree, many people would think "Oh well, I guess it will be over my head."

Musicat
01-03-2004, 04:32 PM
Implicit is the message, "If any ordinary dork can do it, so can I!"

capacitor
01-04-2004, 03:12 PM
dal, Mercedes never depreciate in value unless it is wrecked.

Palo Verde
01-04-2004, 05:38 PM
I just had the opposite experience. At a party last night, this guy was ranting big time because a sculptor had recently put up a piece in a prominant place, "and he has no formal arts education at all!"

He wasn't ranting because he didn't like the piece, thought it was tasteless, or poor quality, but because the sculptor didn't have a college degree in art!

Super Gnat
01-04-2004, 05:43 PM
People with credentials are part of the Establishment.

And I think in Rich Dad, Poor Dad the author was passing on the thought processes that his fabulously rich father taught him, FWIW.

Meatros
01-05-2004, 09:11 AM
Actually, from what I understand Rich Dad, Poor Dad is a pretty bad book: Check out a few reviews (http://slate.msn.com//?id=2067175) and this write up. (http://www.johntreed.com/Kiyosaki.html)

yosemite
01-05-2004, 10:48 AM
Originally posted by autz
He wasn't ranting because he didn't like the piece, thought it was tasteless, or poor quality, but because the sculptor didn't have a college degree in art! Oh, that's so funny. And not at all uncommon.

I worked with a lady who often mentioned her (I believe) Masters in Fine Art. "I have a degree in Fine Art," she used to say. But I never heard of her talking about her latest painting or gallery show or anything. But she had a degree.

I have a very fine art education, but no degree. I think she liked to "rub it in" that she had a (ooooh) degree. But it never bothered me, in fact I thought it was funny, since I am well aware that art degrees are no indicator of talent. I've seen it too many times. An art degree just means that someone got through the arts program and did all the assignments. It doesn't automatically guarantee that they have any real ability.

Anyway, this lady with her (oooh) degree looked quite shocked when I was giving out invitations for my gallery opening. Yes, poor little peon nobody me, I was getting into art galleries. And I didn't even have a degree! This woman was quite incredulous. It was almost like she was thinking, "YOU got into a gallery? And there was also a touch of, "You mean there's more to art than just getting the degree? You mean that you actually have to keep producing work and proving yourself?"

That was really funny.

msmith537
01-05-2004, 12:24 PM
Originally posted by dal_timgar
Never expect to find all of the information in one place.
[/B]

No, but one should find information from reliable sources.

And do you know why no one talks about freakin' automobile depreciation? Because unless you are an accountant it doesn't matter. Depreciation is only usefull for assessing the value of a business and reducing Net Income for tax purposes. If you owned a business, of course you would depreciate your cars along with the rest of your assets. What does Joe Shmoe care that his car decreased in value 10% this year unless he plans on selling it?

Thank you for giving a prime example of my point. Apparently you read something somewhere about depreciation and ascribed more importance to it than is normally given by people in the field. Now to the untrained, such a wild claim may be believable because 1) it's an easy answer and 2) it sounds like it could be true. Since you never follow up your depreciation rant with any additional opinion or information, it's a little hard to prove or disprove.

What "old boy network" do you feel that you know enough about to speak confidently on what would get you kicked out of it?


capacitor - ALL cars depreciate in value as soon as you buy them, except perhaps the Batmobile and the Mach 5.



Originally posted by Super Gnat
People with credentials are part of the Establishment.


And that is bad..why? Is it somehow more noble to be an antisocial hermit who removes himself from society? Is it more credible to comment on something from the outside?

How does someone who is not part of the establishment know any more than someone who is? I like movies but I could no more tell you about the film industry than I could the workings of a car. I have a general understanding but there are aspects to being a film industry insider or an auto mechanic that one can only learn from experience. Would my lack of experience make me a credible source of information for anyone looking to become an actor or have their car fixed?

I also think it's funny that people think that just because something is in a book it must be true. All that means is that enough people BELIEVE it's true. The problem with being an "outsider" is that often, all you have is opinion, conjecture, or stereotypes to fall back on. You see the things you (and everyone else) are familiar with, compile them into a thesis that reflects what everyone "already knows". "Hey those Fat Cats on Wall Street really are Fat because it says so in this book "Wall Street Fat Cats and their Fatness".

yosemite
01-05-2004, 12:34 PM
I also think it's funny that people think that just because something is in a book it must be true.Ain't that the truth. My mom isa prime example of this. The next time she starts waving her crackpot books at me and saying, "It's in this BOOK!" I'm going to wave this (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0595094724/qid=1073324008/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/002-1516840-0202415?v=glance&s=books) right back at her. I swear. I am.

kabbes
01-05-2004, 12:39 PM
I'm curious to know our favorite ECONOMIC WARGAMES expert's solution to the ol' car conundrum. The older a car is, the less it's worth. This makes perfect sense -- the older that car is, the more unreliable it will be and the more worn its interior will be. So we're never going to get round the fact that once you've bought your car, it begins to lose value.

So what -- we should not buy a car? Or, indeed, anything else ever other than the absolute necessities? Food depreciates pretty fucking quickly too. These food barons are just pulling the wool over our eyes!

Dal, someone seriously needs to explain to you the concept of money being nothing more than a placeholder for getting the things that you want. The prize doesn't go to the person who dies with the most stashed away. If spending $1,000 on a car makes you happier than the work cost you to earn it then it is money well spent.

In the Dal_Timgar world, we'd all be living in caves and bashing our rags with rocks. Rocks don't devalue, dudes.

pan

kabbes
01-05-2004, 12:42 PM
Originally posted by yosemitebabe
Ain't that the truth. My mom isa prime example of this. The next time she starts waving her crackpot books at me and saying, "It's in this BOOK!" I'm going to wave this (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0595094724/qid=1073324008/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/002-1516840-0202415?v=glance&s=books) right back at her. I swear. I am. Dude. And have you seen the second book down in the "customers also bought this" list?

yosemite
01-05-2004, 12:44 PM
Originally posted by kabbes
Dude. And have you seen the second book down in the "customers also bought this" list? :eek:

dropzone
01-05-2004, 12:55 PM
Originally posted by capacitor
dal, Mercedes never depreciate in value unless it is wrecked. (running out to buy that thousand-buck, elderly-but-not-wrecked '71 220 I saw the other day)

Cap, You can have it for just eight grand!

Super Gnat
01-06-2004, 02:06 AM
Originally posted by msmith537
And that is bad..why? Is it somehow more noble to be an antisocial hermit who removes himself from society? Is it more credible to comment on something from the outside? It's bad because the Establishment is devoted to Keeping Us Down. We know they're corrupt. Perhaps this antisocial stranger (or renegade from the Establishment) will actually have our best interests in mind.

Mr2001
01-06-2004, 08:49 AM
Originally posted by msmith537
capacitor - ALL cars depreciate in value as soon as you buy them, except perhaps the Batmobile and the Mach 5.
I bet Emmett Brown's DeLorean appreciated in value once he installed Mr. Fusion.

capacitor
05-14-2004, 11:47 PM
I just wish one of these pompousa asses say "I got a degree" to Bill Gates.

dropzone
05-15-2004, 12:20 AM
You think Bill doesn't want to hire people who are better educated than he is? You would be wrong:

http://www.microsoft.com/college/fulltime/sde.asp

Duckster
05-15-2004, 03:02 AM
I also think it's funny that people think that just because something is in a book it must be true.

Well, it's on the web (http://www.richdad.com/) so it must be true! :D

yosemite
05-15-2004, 03:06 AM
My mom isa prime example of this. The next time she starts waving her crackpot books at me and saying, "It's in this BOOK!" I'm going to wave this (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0595094724/qid=1073324008/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/002-1516840-0202415?v=glance&s=books) right back at her. I swear. I am.
Ah. What a coincidence. As it happens, I just ordered this very book. I finally snapped. My mom was driving me NUTS with her "It's in this book!" bullshit. I can hardly wait for this book to come so I can wave it in her face. :D