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Spam + Upcoming Election = New Catch Phrase?

October 15, 2010 · 30 comments

in Commentary

I have written posts in the past about comments that have landed in the spam folder of my blog, and also about spending too much on a mortgage.  So, today, I am going to write a post that combines both spam and housing.  Sounds fascinating, right?

Well, even though my  spam has been reduced greatly since I installed the plug-in “conditional captcha”, a few spam comments still trickle in.  I read the spam daily in case something sneaks in there that is legitimate.  Here is a comment that arrived the other day that I just couldn’t bring myself to delete (or publish):

“I’m all for hitting the proverbial reset button, declaring possession to imply full ownership. All mortgages need to be forgiven. Starting…. now!”

I can’t say that I even understand the first sentence.  The second sentence is quite easy to understand, and I just laugh.

Does anyone actually think it is even remotely viable to just go around and forgive all mortgages?  So my mortgage should just be erased, along with everyone else’s?

Well if that is the case, then I need to get behind that legislation and just start celebrating!  It doesn’t really matter what the affect on the banking industry would be or anything else, lets just FORGIVE (and forget)!  Perhaps a politician seeking reelection can make this philosophy their catch phrase, and then just forget about it as soon as they’re elected?

“I promise if I am elected, all mortgages will be forgiven.  I will be hitting the proverbial reset button.  I will imply full ownership!  Starting now!”  (Applause…)

Now that I think about it, considering all the bailouts of underwater mortgages, maybe this comment isn’t so ludicrous after all?   Maybe they will also promise “free prescriptions in every pot”?  “No new taxes” (Except on those mean rich people)?  “I didn’t inhale”?  Oh wait, that’s not a campaign promise, I digress…

Anyway, I do recognize that universal mortgage forgiveness is not a realistic possibility, nor would anybody be dumb enough to promise it.  However, I have seen politicians at many levels make some pretty unfeasible promises in hopes of getting elected.  People just repeat a catch phrase without understanding the consequences or reality of it, and next thing you know, someone totally incapable now holds office.  Of course, the campaign promises are swept under the rug, but who cares?  Mission accomplished!

Do you ever get frustrated listening to people just quoting headlines without having any real substance behind their half of the discussion?  Have you ever seen the power of a catch phrase or campaign promise, no matter how unrealistic?

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{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

Joe Plemon October 15, 2010 at 8:09 am

Thanks for a witty post based on an idiotic spam. Sadly, the reality is that voters fall for ridiculous promises. Therefore politicians make ridiculous promises (when they aren’t throwing mud).

“No new taxes for anyone making less than $250,000” worked pretty well. But George Bush Sr’s “No new taxes. Read my lips.” pledge backfired on him.

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Kris October 15, 2010 at 6:34 pm

I agree, Bush’s promise really came back to bite him. I have pretty much given up on believing any campaign promise anymore, unless of course, they are going to forgive my mortgage. 🙂

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Nicole October 15, 2010 at 8:32 am

Yes.

And I am SO sick of election season. I wish NPR could understand that I don’t want to hear about elections in other states. I only marginally want to hear about the elections in my own!

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Kris October 15, 2010 at 6:35 pm

Nicole- I think I just want to put my head in the sand. I am just glad there is an election coming up so we can get rid of our governor.

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Nicole October 15, 2010 at 7:58 pm

I WISH we could get rid of ours. He is actively trying to destroy the university where I teach. Seriously.

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Kris October 15, 2010 at 8:05 pm

I heart term limits!

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The Biz of Life October 15, 2010 at 8:59 am

I just put the TV on mute when commercials start. Right now about 50% of them are political attack ads. If only we could live without politicians…. if only we could keep what we earn.

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Kris October 15, 2010 at 6:36 pm

Wake up Biz – you will never get to keep what you earn! You must give and give until you can give no more.

Earning too much money = bad…

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Little House October 15, 2010 at 9:53 am

Gullible I think would be the word to describe those voters who fall for propaganda tactics. I’m glad I don’t own a TV, I just couldn’t handle all the crappy political commercials!

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Kris October 15, 2010 at 6:36 pm

Little House – very impressive that you don’t own a tv! If you lived near me, you wouldn’t get a paper most days either people our newspaper doesn’t have the money for daily delivery!

How will you know who to vote for without the media telling you what to do?? 🙂

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Roshawn @ Watson Inc October 15, 2010 at 10:52 am

Kris, one of the most powerful things on earth is an idea, so I am not surprised that being able to clearly articulate an idea can cause people to disregard pragmatism. It’s quite sad, but common sense is just not that common. Few will bother to actually think through the consequences because why bother? He or she said it will be alright, and I trust them.

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Kris October 15, 2010 at 6:38 pm

Very very true Roshawn. People hear what they want to, and they jump in hook, line and sinker. Then they start telling everyone else what they ‘know’ without having more than one sentence worth of knowledge.

I cannot stand political discussions with some people because they literally do base all their opinions off one headline or campaign promise. (That is probably unfounded.)

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Khaleef @ KNS Financial October 15, 2010 at 11:46 am

I think the most powerful one of recent history was Obama pushing “hope” and “change”. He got so many people believing that garbage, that they put him in office – now they are turning on him because they realized what he was saying was just a slogan (although, he IS trying to change this country…I won’t say how, lol)!

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Kris October 15, 2010 at 6:40 pm

Well, I think Obama was just building on the Clinton platform of ‘we need change’. Generic and meaningless, but people loved it. How many times during those elections did I hear “we need a change”. I would ask people what that meant and they just said “well no more Republicans”. I would ask what specifically needed to change and there would be no answers. Just ‘change, we need change’! Drove me insane.

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Invest It Wisely October 15, 2010 at 1:16 pm

I’ve been getting these spam comments lately, too. What a creative way to respond to them! Yes, everything would be swell if we could just forgive all mortgages, make bread, milk, and meat free, education free, health care free, heck, why not make everything free? Why use a price system for anything at all when we have the technological capacity to make as many shoes or whatever that we need? 😉

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Kris October 15, 2010 at 6:41 pm

I think that maybe my 12 year old must be running for office because he said the other day ‘wouldn’t it be nice if everything was free’. He is a budding politician- of course, he isn’t dumb enough to actually promise something for nothing. Not to mention, he has a conscience. I don’t know how many people running for office can live with themselves.

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Squirrelers October 15, 2010 at 1:33 pm

The whole concept of universal forgiveness for mortgages is ludicrous even in our current environment. Is individual accountability no longer important?

I agree with you on how these promises are often nuts and not feasible in practice. The reality is that money doesn’t grow on trees, and you can’t get something for nothing. Government doesn’t solve all our problems, nor does it create all of our problems. The perception is something different, however, which drives the ridiculous desires for universal foregiveness of mortgages.

These days, here in Illinois – land of rough and tumble politics – the ads are less about making promises and more about severe character attacks. Sick, but often humerous depending on how you take them. Frankly, I dislike those less than I dislike the empty promises.

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Kris October 15, 2010 at 6:43 pm

I really haven’t heard that many attacking commercials here in Michigan, but probably because I haven’t been watching much tv, and the candidates probably don’t have enough advertising money.

We will be getting a new governor soon, which is cause enough to celebrate.

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Suba @ Wealth Informatics October 15, 2010 at 6:12 pm

Yes lets forgive mortgages, while we are at it, lets forgive the luxury car loans, vacation home mortgages and all the credit card debt 🙂 why stop with mortgages. We have really lost the concept of personal responsibilities. Everything is either the evil company’s fault or the government’s fault. I am not saying they didn’t play a role, but did no one put a gun on our head and made us buy all those stuff? And the politicians trying to “help” by promising more handouts… great! We have not switched on the tv for the last 6 months, even more. The last political commercial I saw was the Demon Sheep ad, it was hilarious 🙂

Great way to answer the spammer, mine are all in some language so for all I know they might be cursing me…

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Kris October 15, 2010 at 6:44 pm

It is the evil rich people’s fault too Suba!

You are very right though. We do a great job of spending money because we ‘deserve’ nice things. However, apparently people don’t deserve the bills that go with it.

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Money Reasons October 15, 2010 at 7:06 pm

We are a society of followers and people that look out for ourselves.

I have a pretty bright friend at work, but I’m constantly explaining why certain things can not be done according to the media or on the whim of some idealist. For instance he want the government to put all these restrictions on the banks, but if they did what he said, then the banks would go out of business and our entire economy would seize up!

Nice post, with an even deeper meaning 🙂

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Kris October 15, 2010 at 8:52 pm

MR – I am so deep! 🙂

I think overall people generally oversimplify things. I have a future post about this, but it is like saying ‘well, just print money and then we will be fine’. It just doesn’t work that way unfortunately…

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Andrew October 16, 2010 at 4:10 am

There’s an election coming up? 🙂

I *am* trying to retain some interest, the other day I was reading the pamphlet put out the State election board on the various state initiatives, and trying *really* hard to make some sense out of it. Wasn’t easy.

A real debt jubilee of national, global, or Biblical proportion might eventually happen. This new latest deal with the foreclosure mess and broken chains of title doesn’t look too good.

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First Gen American October 16, 2010 at 7:58 am

I don’t get why government budgets can’t be run like other households or businesses. Doesn’t anyone believe that too much borrowing will eventually make us bankrupt?

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Andrew October 16, 2010 at 9:15 am

I think most folks believe that. It the way it works for the “little people”. Not so much if you have the ability, as the Federal Government does, to print money without much restraint (QE2?). If the national balance sheet were evaluated in standard accounting terms, technically we’re already bankrupt. Long term liabilities far exceed ability to repay.

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Financial Samurai October 18, 2010 at 9:35 am

When you are getting dumped on by Spam, you KNOW you have arrived! 🙂

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Kris October 18, 2010 at 12:01 pm

Sam – I am officially a big success then. I am just loving conditional captcha though. It trapped 1200 comments in a week that I didn’t have to go digging through to verify if spam or not.

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Crystal @ BFS October 18, 2010 at 2:36 pm

Thankfully the combo of DVR and audio books have kept me from being bombarded by election stuff, woot for concious ignorance. 😉

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