|"Snake Oil For Sale!"|
|P.T. Barnum (with Tiny Tim)|
The best "showman"
of all time
Enter Josh Freed, documentary filmmaker, and director of "The Trouble with Experts," a hard hitting expose of the big business of selling off advice. If you ask him, asking an expert to guide you as you purchase stocks, raise your kids, or buy groceries is a crap shoot, as the science behind what they say may not hold up over time.
Here's Freed explaining it in his own words...
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So while we are bombarded with information on a daily basis, you have to ask yourself, what do we need experts for? Beyond the obvious (doctors, lawyers, accountants, and speed skating coaches), do we really need experts? If they are wrong so much of the time, why do we put so much faith in them? I'll suggest that maybe it's because we are afraid to make our own decisions. It's okay to read a few books and take them with a grain of salt, but too many of us dive right in and hand over our diets, our portfolios, and our kids to these modern day masters of illusion that are often wrong (but for the sake of their good name, you'll never hear them admit it). That's like having a friend that's never wrong and isn't shy about telling you what she thinks of your parenting skills - while her kids run around your house terrorizing your dog and destroying everything in their path. Thanks, but no thanks.
It's a choice people. We choose the advice we follow. It's a little hard to do with 40,000 parenting books on the market, but that doesn't mean there aren't some great books from which to choose- you just have to use a little common sense to read through the bullsh@# and trust the man (or woman) behind the myth (it's a saying). Yes, you remember common sense, that thing that allows you to make decisions based on a lifetime of acquired knowledge; that voice in your head that tells you you're right even though everyone is telling you that you are wrong (we'll accept intuition as an answer for this one as well); that thing that keeps you from telling your mother-in-law what you really think about her. You know, common sense, that unimportant thing you relinquish whenever you follow the advice of others blindly. It's in you, you just have to have enough faith in yourself to use it; to trust it; to own it.
WHAT MAKES A GOOD PARENT?http://drrobertepstein.com/downloads/Epstein-What_Makes_a_Good_Parent-Scientific_American_MIND-NovDec2010-final_proof.pdf
As Andy Warhol said, everyone gets their fifteen minutes in the limelight, and maybe the current expert explosion is what he meant, but if you just brought home a baby boy or a little girl, this is also your time to shine, so don't let someone else's advice get in the way of you being the most important person in your baby's life. And don't let anyone scare you from doing what you think is right (well, after the nurses give you a brief crash course). Parenting books are great but they always seem to forget the most important lesson... every parent is the expert on their own child, and at the end of the day, you know what is best for your baby, no matter what anyone else says (except maybe child services).
And, hey, if you can't find any parenting books you like, I can suggest a blog (or two, or three) you might enjoy
ARE BLOGGERS THE REAL EXPERTS?
If you ask my honest opinion, the best parenting advice you will ever get is from someone who is going through exactly what you are, at the same time, and can point you in the right direction to the information you really need as quickly and painlessly as possible. But, that's just me. We all choose our own path to success.