Tag Archives: rings

7 Reasons Why Diamonds Are a Waste of Your Money


7 Reasons Why Diamonds Are a Waste of Your Money

I’ve been in the diamond business for over 10 years. I’ve traveled all over the world buying and selling diamonds. I’ve passed through most of the major airports across the United States with about a million dollars worth of diamonds in a leather wallet stuffed inside my pants. I’ve bought and sold diamonds in Dubai, Mumbai, Moscow, Hong Kong, Paris, Stockholm, Tel Aviv, Madrid and Barcelona. Even today I am involved on the fringe of the diamond business, running a diamond education site helping would-be buyers.

Considering my deep personal involvement in the diamond business, my opinion might surprise you — diamonds are a terrible waste of your money.

Here are seven reasons why:

1) The most common misconception about engagement rings is that they’re some kind of ancient tradition that’s deeply embedded in human history in societies around the world. This is completely false. The idea of a diamond engagement ring is roughly a century old. Guess who invented the concept? Not surprisingly, it’s the same people who mined the diamonds — the De Beers diamond syndicate. How far did De Beers go in their quest to create demand for diamonds? Edward Jay Epstein notes in his famous investigative article:

“In its 1947 strategy plan, the advertising agency strongly emphasized a psychological approach. “We are dealing with a problem in mass psychology. We seek to … strengthen the tradition of the diamond engagement ring — to make it a psychological necessity capable of competing successfully at the retail level with utility goods and services….” It defined as its target audience “some 70 million people 15 years and over whose opinion we hope to influence in support of our objectives.” N. W. Ayer outlined a subtle program that included arranging for lecturers to visit high schools across the country. “All of these lectures revolve around the diamond engagement ring, and are reaching thousands of girls in their assemblies, classes and informal meetings in our leading educational institutions,” the agency explained in a memorandum to De Beers.”

I have nothing against clever marketing campaigns, but this is different. It’s not like with cars, for example. You know you need a car, so the car companies compete for your attention with their ads.

In this case De Beers spent millions upon millions convincing the public that they needed to buy a product that they basically created out of thin air (thin air that they alone controlled).

2) Diamonds are not an investment — they are a retail product like any other. People explain away spending thousands of dollars on a little stone because they mistakenly believe that the diamond is a solid investment. Are there any other investment classes where the person selling you the asset makes a minimum 10 percent profit margin (usually much more)? Most people would be lucky to get half of what they paid if they tried to sell a ring the day after they bought it. Don’t fool yourself into thinking that buying a diamond is a safe place to put away money for a rainy day.

3) The diamond jewelry market is a shark tank. Even consumers that spend hours online learning about diamonds can easily get screwed by one of the many unscrupulous dealers out there (both online and bricks & mortar). There’s virtually no end to the various games dealers can play to help them eke out a higher return (and therefore giving you less value).

4) Spending a month’s (or two!) salary on something so impractical — at the exact same time you are beginning your new life together as a budding family — is a very poor financial decision. I’m not only a very experienced diamond dealer, I’m also a father of six, married for 13 years. The expenses only grow with time, they don’t get easier! Believe me, five years later, you’ll be wishing you had a spare five grand lying around.

5) Men, you don’t need to waste a ton of money to prove your manhood. If Mark Zuckerberg can forgo the diamond engagement ring, then you can too.

6) Women, you don’t need your man to waste a ton of money to prove that he loves you.

7) If your man buys you a diamond as a means to keep you quiet for another year about marriage, he probably should be dumped anyway. Find someone more grounded who is excited about building a life together with you — not someone who’s trying to continue being single while taking you along for the ride.

I have consciously left out of this list any arguments about immoral practices in the diamond business (i.e., blood diamonds, unfavorable working conditions, and child labor). The odds of buying an actual blood diamond in developed countries are extremely low. There are checks and balances in place that would make it extremely risky for a dealer to sneak something in illegally.

I don’t want to be perceived as hypocritical. If one takes a stance against poor working conditions, then I believe it should be done across the board. I don’t believe the diamond business is any more guilty than any other industry that does most of its production in poorer countries on the other side of the world.

Moral issues aside, there are enough reasons not to succumb to the greatest scam in history. If you hang around a group of diamond dealers for a day, there’s a word you’ll hear passed around quite a bit — “illusion.” As in “I lost my illusion in that diamond.” “He wouldn’t sell me the diamond at my asking price because he still has tons of illusion in that stone.” It’s diamond dealer jargon for a projection of high value onto something. When you “lose your illusion” in a diamond, it means you have succumbed to the reality that you will be selling it for less than you had hoped for. When you “have illusion” in a diamond, it means that you still believe you’re going to sell it for a great price because it’s such a knockout stone.

It’s rather amazing that the very people who buy and sell millions of dollars of diamonds a year acknowledge the ephemeral nature of their value at the same time that their lives are completely invested in them.

Ladies and Gentlemen, please take the red pill. Don’t believe in the illusion. Pass this article on to your friends. Share it, Like it, Tweet it. Lets start a new movement together.

If you find yourself not being able to fight the social pressure to get a diamond ring, it’s OK. There are many like you. It’s not a simple thing to resist. Just please do yourself a favor and speak to an expert who can help you make sure that at the very least you spend as little as possible on the illusion and still come away with something that serves its purpose.

Ira Weissman is a diamond industry veteran with a decade of experience at one of the world’s largest diamond polishers. He has traveled the world buying and selling diamonds and now dedicates his time to helping consumers make the most of their diamond buying decisions. He has been featured on Anderson Cooper, CNBC, and has been quoted by MarketWatch, The Village Voice, and BankRate. Visit Truth About Diamonds to educate yourself about diamonds.

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Ancient City, Older than the Pyramids of Egypt, unearthed off the Coast of Georgia

auAncient walled city, older than Egypt’s pyramids, unearthed off Georgia coast

Gary Daniels

Six hours southeast of Atlanta off the Georgia coast on Sapelo Island, archaeologists have unearthed the remains of an ancient walled city which predates the construction of many of Egypt’s pyramids. Known as the Sapelo Shell Ring Complex, this ancient city was constructed around 2300 B.C. and featured three neighborhoods each surrounded by circular walls twenty feet in height constructed from tons of seashells. Some of the earliest pottery in North America was also found buried in the remains of this lost city.

The site is quite an enigma because at the time of its construction the Native Americans living in the area were simple hunters and gatherers who had yet to invent agriculture. Many scholars believe agriculture is a prerequisite for civilization. Did these simple tribal people somehow make the leap from hunting-and-gathering to civilization in a single bound producing not only a walled city but also the new technology of pottery without the benefit of agriculture? Or did an already civilized people arrive on the coast of Georgia from elsewhere and, if so, where did they come from and why?

Just thirty years before the construction of the Sapelo Shell Rings researchers have noted that Bronze Age civilizations around the world show a pattern of collapse. According to the website LostWorlds.org:

In the Middle East, Akkadian Sumer collapsed at this time and the Dead Sea water levels reached their lowest point. In China, the Hongsan culture collapsed. Sediments from Greenland and Iceland show a cold peak around 2200 BC. The population of Finland decreased by a third between 2400 and 2000 BC. In Turkey’s Anatolia region, including the site of ancient Troy, over 350 sites show evidence of being burnt and deserted. Entire regions reverted to a nomadic way of life after thousands of years of settled agricultural life. In fact, most sites throughout the Old World which collapsed around 2200 BC showed unambiguous signs of natural calamities and/or rapid abandonment.


What happened around 2200 B.C. that could have caused such widespread devastation?

Meteor Storms & Cosmic Catastrophe?

Evidence is mounting that this devastation came from the sky. Astronomers have theorized that at this time Earth passed through a dense concentration of cosmic debris. Just picture the asteroid scene in Star Wars and you’ll get the idea. Yet researchers don’t think much of this debris actually impacted the ground. Instead they believe these meteors exploded in air bursts high above the ground, creating an ancient version of an atomic bomb blast.

These air bursts would have first incinerated everything within tens if not hundreds of miles. Next they would have created hurricane force winds which would have obliterated any above-ground structures as well as forests.

Astronomers believe this catastrophe was similar to the Tunguska Event which flattened 80 million trees over a 2,000 square mile area of Russian Siberia in 1908. Russian scientists believe this event was caused by the explosion of a large meteor tens of meters across at an altitude of 3-6 miles. A similar event is thought to have caused the climate downturn in 3200 BC which flash froze the so-called Ice Man in the Swiss Alps.

Who Built the Sapelo Shell Rings?

At the time of European contact, two Native American tribes were known for constructing round, walled villages: the Timucua and Yuchi. Archaeologists believe some time in the past the Timucua migrated to Georgia and Florida from South America since their language was similar to that spoken by Indians in Venezuela. Did they flee their homeland after it was devastated by a meteor swarm that destroyed huge swaths of jungle? The Rio Cuarto impact craters in Argentina are thought by some geologists to date to this time period which supports the idea that South America was affected by the same event that struck the Old World.

The Yuchi also have a legend that they arrived in Georgia after “the old moon broke” and devastated their island homeland. Could they have thought these meteors were pieces of the moon falling to Earth? Could impact tsunamis have devastated their island home in the Bahamas forcing them to flee to the mainland? Only further research will answer the questions.

Learn More

Learn more about the lastest research regarding the Sapelo Shell Ring Complex. Or visit the Sapelo Island Visitor’s Center at 1766 Landing Road, S.E., Darien, GA 31305. You can also find me on Facebook, subscribe to my newsletter, watch my DVD “Lost Worlds: Georgia” or visit my website LostWorlds.org.

[Note: There is currently no consensus on the dating of Egypt’s pyramids. Estimates range from 10,500 BC to 1800 BC and everything in between. Additionally, the pyramids were not all built at one time and though some of the oldest likely date to 2500 BC others date to around 1800 BC thus the Sapelo Shell Rings are, indeed, older than many of Egypt’s pyramids.]

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