Charles Petzold


August 24, 2011
Roscoe, N.Y.

I received the following email today:

I first thought it was a phish because it makes reference to a "payroll deduction" and I haven't received a payroll check since 1985. I was sure that if I were to track it down, at some point somebody would ask me for my Social Security Number to verify and correct the payment.

But it's much worse than a simple phish. Take a closer look: The email purports to be from, suggesting that I made an unauthorized donation to this organization dedicated to re-elect the President. The much finer print, however, indicates that the email really came from (a PAC, of course), and if you try to go to the former web site, you'll actually be redirected to the latter, where they tell you that you didn't really donate $50 and it was all just a clever scheme to make a point.

What kind of sleazebags think up this crap? And who do they think they're trying to persuade? Do they think that someone who was really led to believe they made an unauthorized donation of $50 be won over to the position of the sleazebags who tricked them in the first place?

Of course, some people will try to defend this tactic by saying "Everybody does it." No, only sleazebags do it.

And if these are the type of sleazebags trying to take over our country, I am fired up more than ever to do my little part to prevent that from happening.