Were McCain Supporters 419-scammed by Nigerian "African Press International"?

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23 Responses to “Were McCain Supporters 419-scammed by Nigerian "African Press International"?”

  1. Antinous says:

    WarEagle,

    Take a day off to regain your composure.

  2. bwcbwc says:

    Wareagle: I take it you don’t count suicide bombings on US soldiers and civilian contractors in Iraq as terrorist attacks on the US?

    Or are you saying that the invasion of Iraq was merely designed to divert Al-Qaeda away from civilian targets in the US mainland? Helluvan expensive way to do that. Investing half a trillion a year in real security at home and in the intelligence services would probably have achieved the same goal with longer lasting benefits.

  3. bwcbwc says:

    Anyone want to bet that the token white woman in the upper right that looks like she is the only one that wasn’t scanned from a newsmagazine is the actual perpetrator of the scam?

  4. Michael says:

    What I find fascinating about the many refutations of WarEagle’s little delusional screed there is that nobody seems to note his very first sentence: “hard to get evidence when they kick you out of the country and halt inspections.”

    The IAEA were never kicked out by Iraq. America started the war while IAEA were still on the ground, still inspecting, and still finding nothing. And after America had established dominion, and they “knew where the WMDs were, to the north and south of Tikrit” or whatever the hell Rumsfeld blathered out and nobody in the press ever checked — after that, and America looked everywhere, wow. There weren’t any. Just as the IAEA had found, earlier, before having to leave because there was a war going on.

    That one little poisonous meme was an outright lie all along, and yet to this day, misinformed people like WarEagle lap it right up. It’s pathetic. It’s precisely because they want to believe they’re justified. 419 or Pravda in the Whitehouse — scammers are scammers.

  5. ill lich says:

    The key to these kinds of scams is that the target WANTS to believe it, for example, Bush/Cheney/Rummy sure WANTED to believe that Iraq had WMDs, verifiable sources and solid evidence be damned.

  6. noahd says:

    ….And Sarah Palin WANTED to believe Nicolas Sarkozy would call her.

  7. Adam Stanhope says:

    You did a great job, Mr. LaFontaine – and thanks for doing it.

    You also raise a good point. Who could imagine that the conservatives would pull THREE bogus recording stories out of their asses during the final phase of the campaign?

    What does that say about their current capacity for playing dirty tricks? Ye olde strategy of “the forces of darkness are conspiring to keep this tape from the American people!” must seem so comforting and powerful to them. I wonder if they’re smart enough to recognize that they were 0 for 3 with this strategy this year. Sigh.

    Speaking of tapes… If the wingnuts built a time machine and could send one wingnut blogger back in time to the day of the Republican Convention to work for the McCain campaign, and they could prevent just ONE of Sarah Palin’s gaffes from happening, which one would they choose?

    They claim not to have noticed how mind-numbingly stupid she looked during the Katie Couric interviews – but if I were a time traveling wingnut sent back to save the campaign, that’s the gaffe that I would prevent. Cancel Sarah’s interview with Couric!

    Hey – a wingnut version of Terminator!

  8. usfoodpolicy says:

    @WarEagle, the most recent major post-911 terrorist attack on U.S. soil was the deadly anthrax letters. Who should have been preemptively attacked to keep us safe from those?

  9. DaveLaFontaine says:

    Ye olde strategy of “the forces of darkness are conspiring to keep this tape from the American people!” must seem so comforting and powerful to them. I wonder if they’re smart enough to recognize that they were 0 for 3 with this strategy this year. Sigh.

    If only.

    A big part of the frenzy is that the wingnut path to power has been to demonize the opponent. Which has worked like a charm for 40 years – since Nixon’s “Southern Strategy” was devised. This last year, as they threw everything they had behind that – and it kept not working – their response was to redouble their efforts. At the end of the day, without Rove-ian politics, they have no path to power, as the ideology has pretty much run its course.

    And as for the wingnut Terminator concept – run out and copyright that one at the Writer’s Guild. The dimwits at Fox will snarf that up as a mid-season replacement…

  10. minTphresh says:

    USFOODPOLICY, not to mention the DAILY terrorist attacks on our troops in iraq and afghanistan. IED’s and suicide bombers and RPG’s , oh my! the major winners in this: Bechtel, The Carlyle Group, KBR, Halliburton, Blackwater Industries, and of course heroin junkies ( who now have a seemingly endless supply of cheap, potent and easily available junk). the ones footing the bill: the U.S. Taxpayer. the major losers ( regardless of outcome) our troops ( who are being used as cannon fodder), the iraqi people, the afghan people, our international reputation and of course, anyone having any interpersonal relationships with heroin addicts.

  11. Daemon says:

    It also helps that anyone on their side who realized this was a hokey probably decided to keep their mouth shut as the rumours of this tape’s existance was still worth something politically. I bet there are still a lot of people who are convinced it’s real.

  12. ill lich says:

    I generally don’t like to see people 419-scammed, it takes advantage of the gullible and overly optimistic, but in this case I will make an exception. After reading much of this story I haven’t seen any evidence that any money actually went to “API” (correct me if I missed it) but it would be nice, in the same sense that I get a kick out of “stupid criminal” stories. Am I calling McCain supporters criminals? No, but I do find that end of the blogosphere overpopulated with very hateful vicious people in dire need of a comeuppance. I’m a reasonable guy, I don’t think Bush was a very good president, but neither was he Hitler and people shouldn’t make that comparison, but the “wingnut-o-sphere” doesn’t let up on the “Obama-as-Muslim-socialist-communist-terrorist-Hitler-Antichrist” accusations. If they sent any money to a 419 scammer, well . . . they got what they deserved.

  13. WarEagle says:

    @1 it’s hard to get solid evidence when they kick you out of the country and halt all inspections. And JUST LIKE EVERY OTHER LIVING/BREATHING POLITICIAN in 2002/2003 we weren’t going to just assume he didn’t have them. We’d already done enough sitting passively and assuming pre-9/11 and we learned our lesson.

    Terrorist attacks on US since 2001. Zero. appreciate that just a little bit. Maybe our soldiers won’t have died in vain in your eyes that way.

  14. Steve says:

    Sadly, No! has been covering this from the start in their snarky style.

  15. PatGund says:

    Yeah, I blogged about this a few weeks ago, and joked that it sounded like a nigerian scam.

    The problem is that there are those in what people call the “Cult of the COLB”, (i.e. people who believe Obama’s birth certificate is faked, he was actually born in Kenya, or if born in Hawaii lost his citizenship when his mom married Lolo Soetoro. In other words, delusional fools) who actually STILL believe in this tape and claim it will appear any day now. They also believe that, even though two lower courts have rejected it, that Philip Berg’s lawsuit will be heard by the Supreme Court, and that Obama will be disqualified and deported as an illegal alien.

    These people WANT to believe this tripe, and will ignore any evidence to the contrary.

  16. Adam Stanhope says:

    I think the Hard News Inc. site has slightly confused two distinct yet desperate Republican “tape” myths that were afloat in the days leading up to the election.

    One tape was a videotape that supposedly showed Obama “toasting” a Palestinian-American “PLO Operative” named Khalidi at a university going away party.

    The second tape was the Nigerian one.

    For info on the first one, look at a blog search for keywords: OBAMA KHALIDI TAPE

    http://blogsearch.google.com/blogsearch?hl=en&ie=UTF-8&q=obama+khalidi+tape&btnG=Search+Blogs

    Note in the results a blog called “STOP THE ACLU!” offering $175,000 for the tape!

    You can’t make these things up!

  17. imipak says:

    Yeah, but… I want to believe some of the dopier end of the McCain/Palin supporters fell for a 419. And you can’t prove a negative, so how much evidence to the contrary would I have to ignore to become delusional?

    Then again, the story’s so good that it hardly matters whether it’s true or not. And now I’m really confused…

  18. Daemon says:

    @wareagle
    Asside from the the fact that Bush already had plans to invade Iraq, and was just waiting for somebody to hand him an excuse…

    Where did you get the idea there’ve been no terrorist attacks on the US since? Or do you simply not count things like the bombing of the US embassy in Karachi, Pakistan? Does it not count just because it’s not in the continental US?

    Furthermore, “Terrorist attacks on US since 2001. Zero. appreciate that just a little bit.” Too bad Iraq had nothing to do with terrorism. Heck, chances are nothing the US gov’t has done has had anything to do with it. It’s not like there were so many attacks on the continental US before 2001… It’s easier to strike local targets than ones on a differant continent.

  19. Anonymous says:

    @1 it’s hard to get solid evidence when they kick you out of the country and halt all inspections.

    When you say “they”, you’re referring to the Bush Administration, right? “They” didn’t actually “kick” anyone “out” immediately before the invasion. “They” informed the inspection teams on the ground that serious ordnance was about to start landing in and on places the inspection teams were trying to, you know, inspect.

    Or are you referring to Desert Fox? In that case, “they”(in this case, Clinton Administration) did pretty much the exact same “Here come the bombs.” thing, thereby encouraging the inspectors to exit post haste before impact.

    Of course, on the one hand, Clinton was responding to intransigence on the part of the Iraqis, who were working to stifle the inspections and conceal their activities.
    On the other hand, Bush found the Iraqis to be too willing to provided unfettered access to the inspectors, which might have had the effect of demonstrating cooperation and compliance and might have, if left unchecked, removed any casus belli whatsoever.

  20. DaveLaFontaine says:

    I think the Hard News Inc. site has slightly confused two distinct yet desperate Republican “tape” myths that were afloat in the days leading up to the election.

    In retrospect, yeah, you’re right – the Nigerian tape and the Khalidi tape were breaking at the same time, right before the election, and the wingnutosphere was screaming about them both, as well as the Michelle Obama
    “whitey” tape from June that is still being name-checked as though it actually existed… just trying to decipher who was demanding the release of what, which would prove this other thing that was being suppressed by some alleged shadowy group setting fire to a copy machine in the Norwegian office of … (slams head repeatedly on desk) Gah! Once again, all props to the blogger Mountain Sage, who devoted significant time & energy to nailing down the facts behind the API and its allegations.

    I wrote about this scam mainly to highlight my concerns over how the replacement of the traditional media and its fact-checking and verification structure by New Media is leaving a window open for charlatans. The fact that the readers, both here & at Hard News, are intelligent & motivated enough to self-deputize and ferret out the difference between the two crazy tape “scandals”, is going a long way towards proving to me that the “People Formerly Known As The Audience” may be further along towards taking up the mantle of the MSM than I had dared hope.

    Bravo, folks.

    It is my sincere hope that we can maintain this level of engagement & truth-digging over the next couple of years – I suspect that the MSM (or whatever pieces of it are left standing) isn’t going to be up to the job of really following into how these vast gobs of “Economic Stimulus” and TARP Bail-out money are being allocated. Somebody’s got to watch the store…

  21. DaveLaFontaine says:

    Thanks again for the notice – and the scam must be paying off in some way, because the API, after getting suspended by WordPress, shifted over to a new site to try to keep the story alive: http://www.africanpress.in/

    The key to these kinds of scams is that the target WANTS to believe it, for example, Bush/Cheney/Rummy sure WANTED to believe that Iraq had WMDs, verifiable sources and solid evidence be damned.

    Abso-damn-lutely. My larger point was that our cultural shift from depending on the traditional, established news media for our information, to depending on the still-evolving “New Media” makes it easier to pull off scams like this. My concern is that a more well-funded, well-organized scammer can take advantage of our pre-existing desire to believe/trust in something, and use that to their own nefarious ends.

    One of my commenters pointed out that in this case, the media checks&balances worked the way they should – this story never really made it far beyond the overheated Obama-hating blogswamp … which is true, but TV news and papers are failing fast, and we need to scramble to fill that void.

    If we are to survive as a society, we need some kind of centralized place where we can come to agree that “Yes, this event happened. This is what it means.” We need a collective reality, so we can make well-informed decisions.

    I think we’ve all seen that the time for knee-jerk, gut instinct, ill-informed decisions is over.

  22. mdh says:

    Steve, you referenced Sadly, No! without linking. They are SO gonna TP your house.

  23. ill lich says:

    #4 WAREAGLE

    Terrorist attacks on US since 2001. Zero. appreciate that just a little bit. Maybe our soldiers won’t have died in vain in your eyes that way.

    Specious reasoning. If an attack occurs tomorrow will you blame Bush or Obama? Or maybe Clinton?

    Also, everything we were promised about the Iraq war was false: no WMDs, not welcomed with flowers and parades, and it did not pay for itself. If Bush/Cheney were impeached for what they did then the soldiers would not have died in vain.

    (As for “solid evidence”, well. . . I was referring to the willingness of the Bush administration to believe unverifiable claims from Iraqi ex-patriots who had axes to grind, and shady documents from Niger, all of which turned out false. Or Cheney’s insistence that Atta met with Iraqi intelligence in Prague, despite the Czech government denying it, and despite Atta’s own passport showing he was in the US at the time. I understand why they didn’t believe Hans Blix, but it turned out Blix was right– appreciate that just a little; it’s important we learn from our mistakes.)

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