I had a revelation today. In a flash, I figured out how I’m likely going to die. What’s going to happen is this. I’ll be living my life on an average day, perhaps even a day much like this one. Then, without warning, a story likethat of Janella Spearswill cross my path. It happens all the time, but judging from the reaction I had today, one day it’s going to be too much and my head will explode. Yes, literally explode. Hair and bones and brain dust will spew forth, covering everyone and everything that dares to get in their way. Yes, I’m going to die for my art (such as it is), either that or all of these idiots are finally going to defeat me, it depends on how you want to look at it.
Here’s some back-story by way of the article. I’d summarize it myself, but really, I just can’t.
The e-mail pitch is familiar to most people by now: a long-lost relative or desperate government official in a war-torn country needs to shuffle some funds around, say $10 million or $20 million, and if you could just help them out for a bit, you get to keep 10 (or 20 or 30) percent for your trouble.
All you need to do is send X-amount of dollars to pay some fees and all that cash will suddenly land in your checking account, putting you on Easy Street. By the way, please send the funds though an untraceable wire service.
By this time, not many people will fall for such an outrageous pitch, and the scam is very well-known. But it persists, and for a reason: every now and then, it works.
Spears received just such an e-mail, promising her that she’d get $20.5 million if she would only help out a long-lost relative – identified in the e-mail as J.B. Spears – with a little money up front. “That’s what got me to believe it,” Spears said.
It turned out to be a lot of money up front, but it started with just $100.
The scammers ran Spears through the whole program. They said President Bush and FBI Director “Robert Muller” (their spelling) were in on the deal and needed her help.
They sent official-looking documents and certificates from the Bank of Nigeria and even from the United Nations. Her payment was “guaranteed.”
Then the amount she would get jumped up to $26.6 million – if she would just send $8,300. Spears sent the money.
When Spears began to doubt the scam, she got letters from the President of Nigeria, FBI Director Mueller, and President Bush. Terrorists could get the money if she did not help, Bush’s letter said. Spears continued to send funds. All the letters were fake, of course.
For more than two years, Spears sent tens and hundreds of thousands of dollars. Everyone she knew, including law enforcement officials, her family and bank officials, told her to stop, that it was all a scam. She persisted.
Spears said she kept sending money because the scammers kept telling her that the next payment would be the last one, that the big money was inbound. Spears said she became obsessed with getting paid.
Now, Spears has gone public with her story as a warning to others not to fall victim.
She hopes her story will warn others to listen to reason and avoid going down the dark tunnel of obsession that ended up costing her so much.
Spears estimates it will take two years to dig out of the debt she ran up in pursuit of the non-existent pot of Nigerian gold.
It’s a shame that most of the people who have been struck by stupid to this degree either don’t or can’t read.
I think the reason this particular case makes me so unbelievably angry is that this woman, before telling the story of how she wiped out her husband’s life savings, put a new mortgage on their home and took out a lien on the already paid for family car in the process of squandering more than $400000, had the nerve, the fucking…nerve to say that she does not think that she’s stupid or that she is an easy mark. Listen lady, fuck you and the horse you can’t afford to ride in on! Tell the truth for God sakes! You are stupid. If this happened to me, I’d be stupid too. And you know what, I’d freely admit it! Being in denial helps no one, especially not you.
I feel bad for her husband, who I couldn’t help but notice wasn’t quoted in the article. I will say this though. If ever this poor bastard decides to take up a collection to buy a hammer with which to beat this woman to death, I’d strongly consider pitching him a few bucks. Sure he’d go to jail, but at least he wouldn’t have to worry about how he’s going to pay for his next meal.