THE INTELLIGENT BUYER AND THE TELLTALE SELLER by Dexter Masters

THE INTELLIGENT BUYER AND THE TELLTALE SELLER

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Dickens said ""Do other men for they would do you,"" and whereas Mr. Masters, for many years active in Consumers Union, would not go that far, he has assembled many examples from literature as well as life to support his inquiry into the buyer-seller relationship. He finds that contempt is the chief component, and inevitably he deals primarily with sellers rather than buyers: ""the seller is a success, the buyer is a failure; successes look down on failures; and nice guys finish last."" His exposition, which consists of historical fact along with a great deal of present-day demonstrable evidence, becomes more and more stringent as he questions price--the reality the seller invents; advertising (""most effective with non-urgent needs and relatively unimportant desires""), and finally some of the most dangerous soft spots created by the hard sell--the drug, automobile and tobacco industries. As for those nice guys, they pay $75.00 a year to support a medium (advertising) which hits them 1600 times a day. Mr. Masters assumes throughout that they are intelligent as well as nice-- they just can't always be informed--and his book suggests that we change our thinking from caveat emptor to caveat venditor.... More literate, less aggressive than the Packarded products, this is perhaps directed at a more sophisticated readership. Without ever raising his voice, Mr. Masters says a great deal very well.

Pub Date: June 13th, 1966
Publisher: Knopf