Grifters, Politicians, and other Cannibals

Yesterday my daughter was attacked by online scammers through her account that she uses to sell her precious paintings. I am still kicking myself for not seeing through it from well before the money was lost.

The evil grifter contacted her about buying her painting for $20.00. That’s a mere twenty, well below what it is actually worth when you add up the canvas, the paint used, and the time she spent on it. Let alone the worth of her talent and original ideas. He said he wanted to buy it, add gift cards to it, and have her send it directly from our house to his girlfriend’s house. This meant that gift cards were to be purchased by my daughter, put into the package and mailed. When I heard that he was sending $330.00 dollars to her by PayPal, I thought initially she was getting the real value of her work. But I had a headache and didn’t fully understand when she explained the PayPal contract she had. PayPal supposedly was going to hold the money while she purchased the cards, and then would release it to her to reimburse her. But she used all $200 in her account to buy two of the three cards he wanted, and PayPal was supposedly refusing to release any of the money until she proved that the three cards were activated. So, I contributed $100 to bail her out and get the last card. I should have been way smarter than that! In proving that the cards were activated to PayPal, she was actually giving him all the numbers he needed to own the cards and spend the money at his leisure. The PayPal link he emailed her was a fake. He got what he wanted and then some. Fortunately he didn’t get the painting.

I told you recently that I am getting dumber with age. I got scammed myself for $3000 dollars in 2007 when I was told I had won a $50000 prize from Publisher’s Clearing House from a contest my father had entered me in. I was given a real check for $3,000. I am gullible when it comes to trusting people I haven’t really even met. The scammer reclaimed most of my bank account money before the bank discovered the check was a fake. Never mind that my father ordered magazines to enter in those contests on more than one occasion. I was liable for the money that got sent to Canada for fake reasons.

The real problem is, it seems, that in the modern world, if you are not a meat-eating predator or a meat-eating scavenger, you are considered meat.

People who are rich and don’t actually need to squeeze me down to where there’s nothing left but bone and gristle are constantly treating me like a farm animal to be harvested. Bankers are pirates. Bank-o Merricka taught me that when they sued me rather than allowing me to do a debt-reduction program. Politicians like the evil Trumpinator are cannibals. I found that out when in 2017 his, “Big, beautiful tax cut” saved most of the people I knew $50 on their taxes, while I owed an additional $1,600 dollars because the December tax cut was retroactive for the whole year, and it required more in withholding from worthless, “taker” pensioners like me.

I grew up in a world where most of the people I knew were basically honest and hard-working. Now I live in a world where, to be successful, you must eat red meat. And I get to be the meat. That’s a good enough complaint to actually feel like I got it off my chest for a change.

6 Comments

Filed under angry rant, feeling sorry for myself, Paffooney

6 responses to “Grifters, Politicians, and other Cannibals

  1. I think scamming has always been with us. Technology is what makes it easier and therefore a more common choice of career option. Never give out bank account information, no matter what. There is never a reason to do that. The ONLY exception to this is automatic bill pay for legit utility bills and automatic deposit of payroll, SSA, and pension checks. And that is just for convenience with a genuinely trusted vendor.

    Do everything with a credit card where you can challenge any charges you think are bogus. Some banks allow you to challenge the use of your debit card but debit cards are more vulnerable.

    You send me the cash and I’ll send the painting is the only way to go. Buy your own damned gift cards or pay in advance. Anything involving complexity is begging to be cheated. I am always getting scam calls where I’m asked to front a little money or give my financial information or verify account information. NEVER NEVER NEVER!

    Just because you are paranoid doesn’t mean there really aren’t people out to get you. Paranoid with money is good.

    • You are right, of course. My complaint is merely shouting “ouch!” for being snake-bitten when I didn’t have my eyes open and looking for snakes. It would have been better if my daughter had asked me about it before making the deal. But it was my own fault for not looking into it more carefully before I drove her to Walmart to buy the gift cards.

      • Just today I fought off a possible scammer. I have been looking thru Angie’s List for someone to install a new window in a house. I already have the window. Somebody called saying he represented Handyman.com, Everything was fine and we set up an appointment for them to come out Dec. 1st. I would pay upon completion. Then he asked me for my credit card info to finalize the appointment. That was the end of the call. I don’t give my credit card info to a stranger over the phone, especially not for a service that wouldn’t be happening for 3 weeks.

        I have been known to give my ccard info to someone I called up at a business I knew and trusted. That’s always for something I ordered right then and there. I don’t give any bank account info, ever. Or username and password for ANY online account.

        Of course, occasionally there are data breaches. Mozilla Firefox keeps track of those. Changing usernames and passwords are a PITA.

        My credit union offers a free credit watch and have been called a number of times when they thought something was suspicious.

        I understand that it can be more difficult to deny a debit card transaction so I have been getting away from using it for anything but ATM work.

      • Your security system is great, and I really appreciate the carefully-thought-out approach. I wish I could do what you do with the ccard policy, but my Chapter 13 bankruptcy forbids me to even have a ccard for emergencies. Bank card is the only means we have for two more years. That is supposed to make me all the more vigilant. But this scam caught me by going through my daughter and catching me at a time when I really wasn’t well enough to remember to demand all the little important details. But she has learned a valuable lesson the hard way and it won’t happen to her again. And hopefully she can prevent me from making the same mistake again for any reason.

  2. Sorry. As I rule, until I get my money, I don’t spend a dime on online stuff. Also, unless I enter a competition, I never ever give such announcements a second look.

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