Why Don't More People Love Audio?

Can anyone explain why high end audio seems to be forever stuck as a cottage industry? Why do my rich friends who absolutely have to have the BEST of everything and wouldn't be caught dead without expensive clothes, watch, car, home, furniture etc. settle for cheap mass produced components stuck away in a closet somewhere? I can hardly afford to go out to dinner, but I wouldn't dream of spending any less on audio or music.
A lot has to do with marketing. Discount stereo stores, top 40 radio stations, and movie theaters all promote the myth that volume equals quality. As audiophiles can tell you, any idiot can make a loud noise, but it is beautiful sound that people will remember. I know just listening to my system has convinced many to ignore the consumer grade junk and seriously listen to what they are buying. The bottom line is, it is up to the people like us who are critical about sound to educate others.
CW London, do you think this Mr. Whitehead is real? Seems rather like a bit of a wag.....but then perhaps he has a Bose system in his Spitfire and a big B&W system in his B-17. Me, I'm a snob, I'd rather be shot down and crash then listen to that stuff.
And what a hard job it is, educating my Bose-buying friends who don't even give my system a chance. I guess people don't really listen to music anymore, just sound. I guess for those who want sound coming out of their speakers Bose or anything else that makes sound is good enough. It is difficult to get people to understand what real quality stereo sound is. Oh well...
Tucker, I don't know if that would answer your question, but I'm thinking that if I were very, very rich, I would exactly know which Porsche to buy in order to enjoy "the best" in terms of acceleration, handling, etc., or which mansion to build and where and probably most of the cognoscienti would agree with me. Generally in these things we can establish a clear set of references. Audio on the contrary seems elusive. Nobody really has a fixed set of reference. Nobody can truly tell us ( thank the audiogods) what is "best". Cars can be compared by measuring performance, time pieces by their exactitude, rarity,workmanship, but nobody can measure how close our systems may come to the real thing, to a live musical event. So audio is more of a quest, an experimenting, a searching, a road full of doubts, of ups and downs and possibly often also quite a lonely thing. The lucky fellow with the oil wells, reading TAS and spending the 350.000 on a system described there as SOTA and showing it off as "as the best", without comparing it to a life concert and hence starting a quest of his own, I would not describe as an audiophile. So to be a true and dedicated audiophile is impractical, expensive, trying. The enjoyment of a new level of performance in your system is often enough followed by bouts of selfdoubt, the critical remark of a peer might throw you into the deepest of depressions, a new ampflifying star on the horizon will fill you both with greed and a new yearning for sonic nirvana. You are rarely at peace, neither with yourself nor with your system. Now who needs that? Nobody in his right mind. Besides if you want to hear music, why not switch on your radio, huh? So you ask why so few people love audio? We are an elite lot, my friend. The salt of the (aural)world. (-;
detlof, while i enjoy reading your posts, & for the most part agree w/ewe, by yer analogy to cars, i can tell ewe *aren't* also a motorhead. :>) even tho cars' performance stats *can* be measured, like audio, some do *some* things better, while others excel in *other* things. and the "cognoscienti" most certainly do *not* agree! ;~)

while i am nowhere *near* financially able to own any car i wish, the porsche, while a fantastic automobile, *might* be in my stable - if i could afford the at least 10 other *must-haves* 1st... ;~)

regards, doug *no radio while i drive* sedon