Except you weren’t calling out a hack or a grifter, you were responding to me in the comments of someone you are calling a hack/grifter (though I think you have arrived at that assessment subsequent to your original post). Additionally, how are you able to call someone a hack/grifter (or indeed a sycophant) if you missed the actual point of the piece you are dismissing with these pejoratives?
The fundamental point of the piece — not wasting your time reading an entire book when the primary point can probably be encapsulated in far less text — is a good one. Indeed, Reader’s Digest made a business out of it. Only they did it with fiction (much to your chagrin, presumably) but, as I pointed out, it seemed as though the author was suggesting to do this primrily with non-fiction.
Are you really extolling the virtues of reading a 250-page book which, when you get to the end of it, turns out to be a padded-out re-write of a single chapter from a better book? I’d rather not.
PS It is highly unlikely that the author of this piece is reading these comments so he will not be aware that you think that what he’s doing is “dumb and bad”.