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The Right Wing Scam Email Machine. Again.

I’ve written several times about how right wing leaders and websites use their mailing lists to make big money by selling scams to their followers. The New Republic has another report about this phenomenon, this time focusing on Herman Cain and Newt Gingrich.

But sometimes Cain’s digital missives, like a conversation with a weird uncle, veer into the unexpected. An example—there are more and more to choose from—is a message that Cain sent to his followers last July bearing the subject line, “BREAKTHROUGH: REMEDY FOR ED!”

“ED” stood for, yes, erectile dysfunction. As for the all-caps-worthy remedy, its details were not immediately clear. Language in the body of the message identified the potion as a product of Natural Breakthroughs Research LLC; a link farther down led to a website urging men to submit their e-mail addresses in order to receive “a cool free report” on impotence abatement. Sitting through a lengthy video finally yielded more information on the wonder drug, TestoMax 200, a putative natural testosterone booster. The e-mail’s final offer varied by recipient—a common marketing tactic—but could be $69.95 for a month’s supply, or $47 for something called “The Potency Programme.” Not interested? Are you sure? “Women get lonely very easily,” began one version of the pop-up windows barring the exit. “Once you leave this page, your chances of getting your manhood mojo back will decrease dramatically.”

The erectile-dysfunction ad is one of more than 50 similar pitches for miracle cures and easy-money tricks that Cain has passed along to his e-mail followers over the past two years. While he has been particularly unabashed in his embrace of the practice, he is not the only past presidential candidate hawking sketchy products. Newt Gingrich now pings the e-mail subscribers to his Gingrich Productions with messages from an investment firm formed by a conspiracy theorist successfully sued for fraud by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Mike Huckabee uses his own production company’s list to blast out links to heart-disease fixes and can’t-miss annuities.

That right wing conspiracy theorist is, of course, Porter Stansberry, a con man who has been nailed in the past for SEC violations. He obviously finds fertile ground for his scams among the denizens of the right wing fever swamps because he buys those mailing lists all the time.

Comments

  1. Randomfactor says

    A friend of mine (age 71) is on every snailmail sucker list imaginable for just this reason (he doesn’t do email at all). At least once a month he asks me to read something to tell whether or not he’s REALLY won $1 million and he should send them the processing money. Sometimes two and three times a month.

    Once they offered to come by and pick up the money in person to speed things up.

  2. says

    When these folks get taken advantage of it will inevitably feed paranoia, a feeling that seems to be more pronounced on the right than the left. Now wouldn’t that be ironic if displaced feelings from bad behavior from their own fellows is what is feeding a sense of someone being out to get them?

  3. bushrat says

    @2 Modusoperandi

    Surely not THE “Manhood Mojo”. Didn’t you open for Jay-Z back in 2003?

  4. Moggie says

    Fortunately I don’t need to worry about scammy Gingrich investment advice, thanks to this Nigerian prince Cain put me in touch with.

  5. Chiroptera says

    Ugh. Among the rich politicians, doesn’t “erectile dysfunction” mean “I don’t have a young enough vagina to stick it in?”

  6. says

    I’m on the email list of some teabagger group because, well, because they’re goddamn funny.
    I notice they have all kinds of crap about curing cancer and other serious diseases. Along with “investment” opportunities.
    I swear, if I had the scruples of the average fRight winger, I’d be sipping drinks with umbrellas in them on my own island right now. I could be retired after swindling the rubes for a while and then selling my sucker — sorry, subscriber — list to some other soulless bastard.

  7. jnorris says

    Ed, we all know why Messrs. Cain and Gingrich rent their mailing lists, getting people to contribute to the MegaPAC is hard work. Renting out emails for a base sum and a percentage is just good capitalist business.

  8. says

    A friend of mine (age 71) is on every snailmail sucker list imaginable for just this reason (he doesn’t do email at all). At least once a month he asks me to read something to tell whether or not he’s REALLY won $1 million and he should send them the processing money. Sometimes two and three times a month.

    Sounds like you should take him to see Nebraska. It’s an excellent movie, and has been nominated for six Academy Awards.

  9. lorn says

    Let’s face fact here folks, the human penis, even when gloriously erect for as long as anyone might desire, is a pretty poor tool for facilitating orgasms in women. If it was just a matter of providing the tool necessary for the ladies to hit the high notes it would be simple enough to buy a good vibrator. The Hitachi Magic Wand ($55 for the newest version and $99 for the classic) is considered to be something of a gold standard.

    Unfortunately even advanced marital aides are unlikely to keep the ladies around your average right-wing ideologue because the problem is not the relatively simple mechanical issue of rolling her O’s. The problem is that women are human beings who need some demonstration of genuine respect and consideration before they can relax and comfortable around you. They want to be listened to and not treated as property, political accessories, or masturbatory orifices for your convenience.

    They want autonomy over their own bodies, remuneration in line with their investment in time and effort, choices, respect, and a voice in how the family, the nation, and everything else runs. A perpetual hard-on won’t help you with any of that. For that you need a new ideology.

  10. Nihilismus says

    A perpetual hard-on won’t help you with any of that. For that you need a new ideology.

    And you can learn all the secrets of this “new ideology” by buying lorn’s book on Amazon!

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