Friday, December 08, 2006

#328 - It's All About the Money

Sorry for the absence of blogging lately. It's a busy time of year and I actually try to spend as much free time as possible with my family. It's a holiday season, but beyond that I have no excuse.

That doesn't mean I'm not trolling the news every day. Most of the time I just zip past most of what Drudge deems to be noteworthy. I have no idea what constitutes a "standard" at the Drudge Report, but I've sure never been able to figure him out.

Anyway, this morning Drudge pointed to this little gem about the father of Chelsea Clinton's boyfriend getting tossed in the clink for fraud in connection with those Nigerian e-mail scams. And not in the way that immediately sprang to my mind, either.

The very first time I received one of those e-mails I must admit to being somewhat nonplussed. How on earth did this guy get my name, and why is he offering to cut me in on this deal? That lasted for about, oh, fifteen seconds. Then my Internet Survival Instincts kicked in and I immediately began looking for background on the scam. Sure enough, at the time it was on the list of fraud schemes that the Secret Service was keeping an eye on. I don't think they even bother anymore. Back then, though, I was encouraged to forward the e-mail to the Secret Service fraud investigators as part of their ongoing investigation. I felt like a useful citizen for a few minutes afterward.

From that time, of course, I have successfully ignored anything coming into my e-mail that even smacks of being a scam. Even when I get those rather authentic-looking phishes with the logo of my somewhat obscure credit union in them I don't so much as blink. I just let my spam filter quietly and efficiently drop them into Spam Outer Darkness.

So to read that this former congressman (whose wife also happens to be a current congressperson) and friend of the Clintons actually was connected to one of these schemes, I was ready to cheer that they'd finally nailed one of the idiots responsible for so much of the spam that overloads my filters every day.

Not quite. You see, I've always just assumed that the only people dumb enough to fall for these schemes were the same ones who read Weekly World News or the Los Angeles Times and actually believed what they were reading. I mean, how gullible can ya get?

Then to find that Ed Mezvinsky, a former congressman (who would be assumed to have a level of intelligence above paramecium) actually fell for one of these scams - not once, but multiple times - is just too much to be believed.

Apparently, as with gambling or narcotics, these scams are addicting. This man's personal greed and avarice were such that he began defrauding clients and relatives in order to support his habit.

I mean, at what point did he fail to understand that these schemes were never meant to benefit him??

Ah, well. This one gets to spend time in prison contemplating his sins. As a friend of the Clintons, I'm assuming he'll contemplate them right back into another run for office. He's probably assuming Hillary will be in office then, and he'd like to be invited to more state dinners.

Preferably with Nigerian diplomats.

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