Wednesday, July 05, 2017


One of my favorite websites, WordSpy, introduced me to an interesting new word the other day: fearonomics (noun) - "The negative impact of fear and anxiety on economic activity; the use of fear to sell products and services."

It seems to me that this is an especially good word for the present day, particularly in the second meaning. For instance, how many millions of guns continue to be sold in this country every year because of the fear of

(1) tyrannical, overreaching government that wants to take your guns away*;

(2) armed criminals**;

(3) violent, uncontrolled illegal aliens***; and,

(4) America-hating liberals bent on ruining the country?

Sex may sell, but so does fear.

And as President Franklin Roosevelt memorably said in his first inaugural address,

"So first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance."

I think we've done a spectacular amount of retreating in the last few years, and it's not doing anyone any good. Let's think about advancing for a change.

Have a good day. Don't give in to the counsel of your fears, or let your spending be driven by fearonomics.

More thoughts tomorrow.


* The fact that it's done a pretty inept job of doing it for the last 200-odd years notwithstanding.

** Who, oddly enough, find it extraordinarily easy to get their hands on plenty of guns.

*** Who should be deported or jailed, anyhow.

† Contrary to popular belief, it may not - at least, in the long run. Check out this article from Psychology Today.


eViL pOp TaRt said...

Fear-evoking messages are more likely to evoke avoidance behavior. People tend to resist being upset and crassly manipulated. Those types of messages might work, however, if they also contain advice for how to reduce fear.

Rudolph said...

We should not take counsel from our fears.

Mike said...

OH NO, you mean their coming for my BB gun?!

allenwoodhaven said...

Interesting article. Along the same lines, anxiety is a big big sales pitch. Buy this whatever and your anxiety about whatever will be cured!