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Campaign beats scammed small donors with an automatically checked box

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In Trump, he knows they will trust. Photo credit: Joe Raedle / Getty Images

Donald Trump may be a man with a very limited set of talents, but he has learned to apply those talents to a masterful effect. His talent is to use outright lies to create an image of himself in the media, and then to use that media to defraud people.

Typically, a grifter runs up against the limits of public knowledge: once it is exposed, it becomes progressively more difficult to find new marks. But this is where Trumps’ peculiar genius surpasses all who came before him and allowed him to exploit his scam on a historic global scale. Trump has always attracted so much media that any particular revelation of his twisted acts is overwhelmed by cacophony.

Shane Goldmacher reports to The New York Times that the Trumps campaign has defrauded donors of tens of millions of dollars. The scam was not complicated. When people gave them money online, the donations came with pre-checked boxes allowing the campaign to receive donations each week. They had to uncheck the box to stop the automatic transfer.

At first, the automatically checked box simply said: Make this a recurring monthly donation. Then he added: Make it a recurring weekly donation until 11/3, with a second box below, with even more text, authorizing an additional donation of $ 100 on September 29.

Ultimately, the posts included two hefty text boxes, filled with bold, all-caps slogans, with a much less noticeable line at the bottom informing anyone who had pulled off that mini-editorial that he was allowing the campaign to drain their bank. Account. These images are taken from the Times story:

Photo: Screenshot / New York Times

Goldmacher found victims facing serious financial hardship as a result of this scam. Even some professional political officers have sometimes failed to recognize the small, inconspicuous box.

History cannot calculate how much the campaign raised unintentional victims. Many of them simply paid without realizing it. The only measure of the size of the complaint comes from people who admitted that their bank accounts were losing funds every week and demanded a refund. There were a lot: the Trump campaign repaid $ 121 million, $ 101 million more than the Biden campaign.

Trump has operated like this from the start. Her company hires entrepreneurs, then in the hundreds pays them half the promised fees, if any at all, knowing that she can just find new entrepreneurs to unwittingly work for the famous Donald Trump. He scams his fans by buying expensive vitamin scams, or investing in a casino he loots, or signing up for expensive classes where instructors take students for all they are worth.

Trump’s political career was or, more pessimistic, is an extension of his painful career. He recognized the conservative media as the ideal vehicle to identify a new and extensive collection of brands. He presented himself as a populist and used the trust his constituents placed in him to rule as a plutocrat. All the promises to restore factories that disappeared in the 1980s have simply given way to another tax cut for the rich.

The fact that his victims continue to revere him is a testament to Trumps’ heartbreaking genius. The Goldmachers story contains this utterly perfect phrase, describing one of the victims who was made to give to the campaign more than ten times what he intended to give: like several other donors interviewed, however , he held Mr. Trump himself blameless, telling The Times, I am 100% loyal to Donald Trump.

Almost every trusted artist must have run away from their victims after doing the trick. Trump may be the biggest con artist in history. His victims still adore him.

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