Honesty is another great example of something we need more of yet they won't let us exchange. Don’t we all wish that everyone had a bit more honesty, from our neighbor down the street with the shifty eyes to that congressman with shifty eyes?
Nevertheless, online auction businesses have made a practice of rejecting for sale those items one cannot grasp in the hand. Company policy appears to be that such things as honesty and love cannot be sold because it is impossible to set a price on such things. Such policies are as sensible as the flat Earth theory. Honesty has been bought and sold since antiquity, and contrary to what the Beatles may say, money really can buy you love in some contexts.
You may be asking yourself, “What’s the big deal if there’s still joy, happiness, and a multitude of other good, salable abstract commodities?” Well, the big deal is that these online auction houses won’t let you sell or buy any of those either. In fact, whoever said money can’t buy you happiness probably works for them.
Shock however, seems to be on the rise, but not because it commands higher prices than ever. No, actually, the
auction companies practically hand this one out to all takers. Shock comes free with every purchase when your account status shows up in your e-mail. That’s when you realize the auctioneers are taking a cut of your sale coming and going. It’s like setting up a booth and offering free samples of ice cream (or anything else for that matter – I like ice cream) just beyond the threshold of a revolving door. Of course, the consummate businessperson that you are, you offer only one sample per person. But, consummate scammers (with shifty eyes no less) know that they are “new” customers each time they walk into those revolving doors, take the spin and walk back out again, right into the path of your booth. Here’s where they look surprised and say, “Ice cream! My, what a pleasant surprise!” for the third or fourth time in fifteen minutes.
Bring the gavel down on those chintzy auctioneers. Insist upon love, joy, honesty, happiness. Tell them you want your abstract commodities, and you want them now. Stand up to them, and for all the money they exact from their fees, those auctioneers will wish they could buy yet another abstract good – time, because it won't be long when they'll be forced to change their game.