The Ethical Skeptic

Challenging Pseudo-Skepticism, Institutional Propaganda and Cultivated Ignorance

Key Warning Signs You are Dealing with a Flim-Flam Artist

Thirty three indicators that you are dealing with that base level of sociopath con man who frequents the periphery of legitimate international business. More obvious? Yes. Common traits with social skeptics? Absolutely.

For now, let’s take a break from my usual commentary regarding fake skeptics. Or perhaps not so much as a break in actuality, as fake skeptics notably constitute a very specialized form of sophisticated con – one perhaps not picked up upon by the general population as easily. So let me reword my introduction here. Why don’t we notch down our target of focus here to a less sophisticated, more readily obvious form of flim-flam artist, one known as the sales job con man. The con man does not bill himself as representing science. Heck he doesn’t even understand science – yet he is every bit the faker which is the social skeptic.

As a businessman, I have run into my share of con men. When I closed out my father’s estate after his passing, bless his heart, it turns out that he was a sucker for a con man with a half baked story. I spent years extracting his estate from the clutches of several greedy and dishonest players who stole from him or tried to swindle his estate out of money/property – one was even his trusted bank. The crooks at his major bank stole on the order of $2 million from him themselves – through an irrevocable trust scam that they ran on elderly clients in the 1980’s. Such cases are in the public domain, so go look them up, along with the banks which ran them. I was able to rescue my mother from destitution as a widow, through perseverance and aggressive prosecution of these fakers. Even at that young age, I learned the nature of, and how to spot the cheat, the swindle and the crooked sell. It played well into my ability to spot even more sophisticated fakers and cheats later on.

As a person who has executed budgets for nations, programs and clients, I have run into my share of swindlers, cheats, boasters, con-men, rip-off artists – and those who delude themselves along the pathway of attempting to delude others. Just as in the case of the social skeptic, the con artist must first convince himself of the superior nature of his motives, abilities, wares and goals – he or she must con them self before they can effectively swindle their prey. In one of my businesses, I have been hired internationally for decades – in part because of an ability to spot a con, and protect a client.

So without further ado, let’s take a quick look at that base level of sociopath con man who frequents the periphery of legitimate international business. More obvious, yes. Common traits with social skeptics? Absolutely.

Twenty five signs that the person you are dealing with is a con man

1.  Is always a billionaire or just about to be one, yet can never seem to pay for lunch.

2.  Habitually values newer opportunities/contacts over older ones – the most recent deal coming in the door is always the most lucrative one on the docket.

3.  Seems to be a dunce/incapable in every function with the single exception of who gets the money.

4.  Has associates do all the detailed work so that any blame bypasses them and falls upon that associate instead.

5.  Money is always imminent from some black-box mechanism (private trade access, Euro bonds, insurance scam, random Arab Prince, Blood Diamonds, etc.) which is hidden from you or implied as above your paygrade level.

6.  Rides the roller coaster of bi-polar behavior – uses it as a passive-aggressive method of manipulation.

7.  Abuses substances, especially bipolar-enhancing-yet-sustainable ones like alcohol, and is easily addicted/chain smokes. Only ‘friends’ are drunks.

8.  Meticulously avoids providing any employable work or value other than her ‘Network’. You must match their ‘Network’ contribution with lots of cash as your contribution, usually. If not she gets angry or puts on a display of intimidation.

9.  Network of contacts never seems to include any acquaintances of duration longer than one or two years. Longest tenured ‘friends’ are actually a litany of people they have left injured in their wake of liability; promising to pay them back for their loss with the next ‘awesome opportunity!’

10.  Holds no references/friends/contacts from any of the businesses he mentions working with/for in the past.

11.  Shows sudden indignant flashes of anger when uncertainty arises concerning money. Money from you is always urgently needed within 24 or 48 hours because of some ‘limited opportunity’.

12.  Makes flamboyant display or often mention of her generosity or team-player nature and how honest they are.

13.  Exaggerates his contribution or investment into a project or effort. Equates two phone calls to 8 hours of work.

14.  Cannot seem to keep a spouse. Puts girlfriends on display during business activity.

15.  Is generous with money when it is in theory – then suddenly greedy when it is on the table.

16.  Seems to constantly roll from one injury to the next – lots of down time from injury and illness.

17.  Takes ridiculous risks for no reason/no gain. Thinks gambling is an expertise.

18.  Is an easy sell himself. Gets furious or hangs up the phone if you don’t immediately accede to his latest scheme. Calls you ‘pig headed’ if you hold doubt about even 1 thing out of 100.

19.  Speaks often of the Bible or God. Habitually forces tactical discussions into tangential conjecture about how he always does the right thing.

20.  Promises the moon, delivers a rotten melon. Tells you how lucky you are, or that it is your fault.

21.  Belittles everyone they connect or work with as not matching up to his standard of motive, ability, outcomes or goals.

22.  Let’s you know at all times and repeatedly, what it is you do not personally do well – never evaluates herself. Never shows humility. Never forgives.

23.  Rehashes in rambling, the same issue over and over and forgets that she just recently ranted about it before. Stalks victims.

24.  Pattern of boasting that someone whom he just met, is his close friend or business partner.

25.  Long list of those they’ve harmed or tossed under the bus, who they can never work or even speak with again.

26.  Doesn’t know anyone from his neighborhood, high school or college days – seldom speaks with family.

27.  His kids are never around him, are out of control themselves, druggies and are crooks or con men (women) as well.

28.  Thinks everyone should be giving him money. Acts like he is doing you a favor by you loaning him money.

29.  Your loan of money or hard work you gave him, were his gratuity and due birth-right from simply being wonderful.

30.  Never repays the money he owes or never the full amount, even and especially under the rare event of a success.

31.  There is always a technicality, or some minor thing another party did along the way, which was a permissive making his debt or contract no longer valid.

32.  Meticulously avoids making any mention of, component of, or deal or agreement itself in writing or in an email.

33.  Irrational or intense flashes of anger over minor, non-business related circumstances involving strangers.

epoché vanguards gnosis

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“‘I do not know what the truth is.’” I know. That’s why I said, “What do you think the truth MAY be?” “liberal religions or spirituality” (E.g Ail Sina’s “Rational Spirituality” or the beliefs of Neale Donald Walch (sp?)) “I am open to all possibilities – ethically even nihilism,” Then why do you use language like “proving nihilism as false.”, as if to misleadingly imply that you know for certain? Would you say that you are in principle open-minded but in practice most of the evidence points the other way? What about fundamentalism? Same thing? “actually it is a pseudo-theory”… Read more »


“One cannot logically assemble a modus ponens regarding a moral, without addressing its origin. The origin may be implied as an external standard, or may simply be a common or personal standard, but the sentence always begins with a silent-but-implied [because ______________ has decreed this to be so,] therefore (statement of value)… So morals and their origins are a discussion distinction without a difference.” Sounds like the point I was thinking of making. I might have misunderstood your comment, “Morality – is a red herring argument. I have morals, but arguments attempting to ascribe discrete origins to them are a… Read more »


So are you saying that:
1: You are being anonymous b/c you fear the Social skeptics would like to do harm to
your co-workers and friend’s families and you don’t think it’s important to know anyway?
2: You find the question of the origin of morals to be irrelevant?(why?)



1. Why do your comments say “DocD” on my tablet and “AonDoc(sp?)” elsewhere?
(I don’t blame you if you don’t know. And I wouldn’t use someone’s initials. I think that is from my email and I know you didn’t put my address up (not that you would do that, of course) and I’m not mad or anything, (I don’t really care) just letting you know.)
Are you trying to be able to tell me apart from anyone else who is anonymous?


To see if I need to use my real name.


Well I guess not :). However i have some questions (I know some are unrelated): 1. Why don’t you use your real name? Is it for privacy or safety reasons? (BTW, I think you quoted someone calling you “Mr.A”) 2. You, as an ignostic say you are tired of nihilists and fundamentalists commuting a bifurcation fallacy and you believe they are both wrong. Which begs the question: What do you think the truth may be? (What do you think of liberal religions or spirituality or real bona fide humanism?) (By the way, I am a nihilist.) 3. What are your… Read more »

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