By Harvey Tobkes

Television commercials are made for dummies.
And the worst offenders are the Infomercials:– Lose 30 pounds in 30 days. – Want abs that will make you irresistible, you need our dynamic body machine. —Facial cream makes you look years younger. — Coat your roof with our amazing spray and stop the leaks. — I’m sure you’ve seen them all!

Pharmaceutical companies all seem to be on that same track. First they show you a person or a couple leading a wonderful life, presumably because they used the advertised medication. Then they speed talk a list of side-effects that are so horrendous you want to cover your ears, and finally end with the cliché…”Ask your doctor if ‘Curitall’ is right for you.”

Auto dealers spouting lease payments run a close second; the monthly payments are the teaser (low…and oh so tempting!). What you cannot hear, is that the offering is for a basic model with a text disclaimer at the bottom of the TV screen that appears for a nanosecond in a print size you couldn’t read with the Hubble Telescope; it lists a dozen charges for huge up-front money requirements.

How could all those suckers have bitten on reverse mortgage teaser loan ads? It only takes half a brain to know if it’s too good to be true…forget it. So now we have…”If you are over 62, get a bundle of cash, no mortgage payments, live in your own home.” Better have a sharp lawyer check that out. Home loans are the most egregious examples of deceptive advertising.

So, why don’t our lawmakers clamp down on these predators? Two reasons, LOBBYI$T$ …or maybe because those same lawmakers are getting the straight deal without the disclaimer as a reward for their forbearance.

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