Plato bequeathed an enduring and demeaning image of the sophists as the “spin-doctors” of their day, rhetorical strategists, relativists in their morality, disinterested in truth, suggesting that all that really mattered was power. They were hired hands, traveling wordsmiths who sold their skills to the highest bidder without any view of right and wrong. They displayed an appalling capacity to defeat a just argument by an unjust one and so use their cleverness to confuse ordinary people. An art put up for sale lost its worth. By serving a variety of masters, the sophists lacked a moral core and encouraged forms of competitive demagogy. The demands of conscience and sense of collective responsibility, shared values and respect for gods, and promotion of self-interest. Tricks with language allowed the foolish and ignorant to appear wise and knowledgeable.