Sunday, May 14, 2006

No patch for human stupidity

The New Yorker recently ran a story about a 57 year old Vietnam vet Christian psychotherapist who not only fell for a 419 scam, but ended up being prosecuted, convicted, and sentenced to two years in prison. He spent over $40,000 of his own money and owes $600,000 in restitution for fraud committed over five years trying to help the "Abacha's".

I think I am supposed to feel sorry for this guy who was swindled, but I don't. He deserves every last thing that happened to him. Seriously. When interviewed post-conviction/pre-incarceration:

When I asked Worley what he wished he had done differently, he didn’t answer directly. Instead, he spoke about hoping that the Abachas would get back in touch with him. However, before they could resume work on the multimillion-dollar transfer, he expected them to send the six hundred thousand dollars that he needs for restitution.

“What if they sent you a check?” Barbara [Worley's wife] demanded. “Would you put it in the bank to see if it cleared again?”


“John!” she said.

“I don’t know,” Worley said finally, sounding defeated. “I have to have time to think about what I would do in that situation.”

“My husband is naïve,” she explained to me. “He trusts people.”

Honey, your husband isn't naive, he is a freaking idiot.

There are some people who think they are fighting back against the Nigerian con artists who are taking advantage of hapless marks/rubes/fools by wasting the time and money of the con men. Check it out.
I'm not convinced this is really doing anything to minimize or prevent fraud, but I guess if they have the time to kill and find it entertaining, who am I to criticize. Some people juggle goslings.


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