Sunday, June 7, 2015

Why isn’t stupidity a crime? Only the fortuneteller knows

The headline says, Manhattan fortuneteller accused in $700,000 scam,” but the story easily could have been titled, Stupid idiot gives fortune to psychic who attracts the really gullible. This is one of those stories that will not go away and it has to do with a “profession” that is about as professional as someone offering to regularly trim and cut artificial turf yards. There are plenty of people who believe problems can be solved through mystic intervention. And there are plenty of people who think dead people will talk to you from the after-life and even return in some other form to give you comfort the remainder of your years until someone else comes along to bring you back without your previous lover or dog or cat. This one involves all of the above types.

What’s weird about the story under the headline is that the fortuneteller and an accomplice have been arrested and charged with grand larceny after bilking a customer out of more than $700,000 for services rendered. The fortuneteller and friend saw an opportunity and a gullible customer and took it and him all the way to the bank for withdrawals and payments. All the customer wanted was a solution to getting the woman of his dreams and affection to have the same feeling for him as he had for her.

Along the way, over a 20-month span starting in August 2013, the customer paid to the fortuneteller $80,000 for an 80-mile bridge, $30,000 for a Rolex watch, and more than $40,000 for a Tiffany diamond ring, all in the effort to rid evil spirits keeping the two apart. That’s what the fortuneteller told her customer. But wait, there’s more. The woman, the desired partner who wanted nothing to do with the fortuneteller’s customer, died six months after this effort started, yet the customer continued to pay the fortuneteller for more than a year because he was convinced by the fortuneteller his would be lover could be brought back to life in some form. Bow-wow!

Eventually, the customer got the real message of the situation and went to the police who found the clairvoyant and her partner, arresting and charging them with grand larceny. Looking at this entire incident, if there’s a crime for being an idiot, the customer, who is unnamed in all of this, should be serving a life sentence for being plain stupid. However, even in jail, there would be a good chance that he could be released through the continuing efforts of the arrested physic. That’ll be another $95,000, please. Pay at the door.
-------------------- word of the day
aggrandize (verb) [uh-gran-dahyz; ag-ruhn-dahyz] to make creat or greater in power, wealth, rank, or honor

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