Make people think you are smart with stuff you learn from The Economist magazine

If you are looking for something to help you be a better conversationalist, something to make people think you are smart, an hour spent with The Economist magazine might be just the thing.

For example, did you ever wonder why those “Nigeria” scam letters that promise you a fortune are so execrably written? How could anybody be so dumb as to fall for a scam like that?  The magazine’s June 30-July 6 has the answer.

In a nutshell, scammers are looking for the most ignorant people they can find. Time is money for scammers, so they don’t want to waste their time with people smart enough to suspect a scheme. People who are not savvy enough to recognize a phony deal are easier pickings, they figure, probably rightly. So their poorly written, ungrammatical, misspelled emails serve to filter out the literate and skeptical.

Make what you will of this fragment of information in the same issue of The Economist. In 2007 and 2008, during George W. Bush’s presidency, the United States ranked in seventh place of the world’s most admired countries. In 2009, when Barack Obama became president, the United States jumped to number one and remains there.

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