Chuckling to myself, I could not pass up the opportunity to highlight the Oxford Dictionaries’ international word of the year for 2016, post-truth, an adjective defined as:
“relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief”
Why was I chuckling?
Since 2002 my research, writing and consultation to help everyday people learn the whole truth about money, wealth and the economy has fallen mostly on deaf ears. As often as possible I source public domain Federal Reserve and U.S. Government agency information, statistics and graphs to share and expound upon the realities of actual inflation, economic policies and central-bank money mechanics.
But it does not seem to matter how official my sources are when it comes to who wants to know.
The problem, as I have analyzed it over the years, is that the corporate, for-profit financial services industry appears to enjoy an open-ended, evergreen marketing budget when it comes to “educating” the public on topics of money, wealth credit, debt and the economy. Frankly, I cringe every time I hear the supposed facts and advice of conventional financial wisdom replete with critical contextual omissions. So-called objective facts about money and the economy are half-truths at best when you are not made privy to the big picture.
As defined, and in this case, post-truth is the conventional financial data and advice that simply reinforces erroneous existing beliefs, while appealing to the emotions (Chase Freedom, use credit to pay for a wedding, get rewards, etc.). Self-preservation and the need for growth is the name of the financial-services game when it comes to shaping the scope of monetary facts that get passed on to the “consumer.” What is in your best interest, ultimately, is not their concern, as is the case with all for-profit entities.
I’m not saying that industry professionals are evil and out to get you. Not at all. Probably most advisors, consultants, bankers, traders, etc. mean well, yet they unwittingly disseminate pricey financial advice no longer relevant to the economic times we live in, and often based on incomplete data, in my view. They suffer the same limitations to their knowledge-base as everyone else via their industry education and training.
After meeting R.Buckminister Fuller, reading his book, Critical Path, and then co-producing the last leg of his speaking tour in 1983, my eyes were opened. There was no going back. I needed to dig deeper into the history of monetary issues.
Post-truth is not a new concept. For me it began way back in 2002 when heading out on my journey to revise common knowledge about money, wealth and the economy. It has been an uphill battle ever since. Perhaps one-by-one people will discover the merit of another way to think about, earn, save, spend and invest money. Perhaps word will spread to help give more people the opportunity to experience financial relief and wealth-building by taking advantage of a sound, out-of-the-box personal finance approach.