by Emmett R Smith
I just received today these links below, from a friend in the UK:
These two links may interest you:
As to the first link:
it is about a crooked “push-poll,” a technique whereby filthy rumors are circulated about a candidate, all more-or-less false too. In this case the victim is Mr Senator Barack Obama. Myself a recovering Republican, I have to confess that in the Autumn of 2002, during a downturn two recessions ago, I went to work in a Republican “boiler room” here at home in Old Mankato, in Southern Minnesota and on the North Coast of Iowa….
It is not quite the same thing as the poll scam described above, but I will leave you all to judge for yourselves.
A boiler room is a site where people in gangs and relays (wo)man computerized telephones and pester you in your homes during supper — if you have all of your marbles, on receiving one of these unwelcome home-invasions you are supposed to say:
“Please take my name off of your list.”
This, legally now, is supposed to give you some peace.
(“Piss off you dirtbag southern sonofabitch!” does NOT do the trick, by the way.)
During my shortlived stint of less than a fortnight we were calling mostly previous donors-of-record, and putting on the squeeze for more cash. Most of our marks were retirees living now in the Carolinas, and my knack for ignorant Midland and Southern american accents stood me in good stead in this job:
“Ma’am, dis yere is Emmett Smif’, no, Ma’am, not d’football-playah, d’ol’ farmer outtob Eagle Lake, Minnesota…SOUTHE’N Minnesota, ma’am? Das right, ma’am, now d’reason Ah’m calling on yew tonight an’ troublin’ yew-all at yo’ suppah table — an’ Ah DO ‘pologize ’bout dat, ma’am! — is on behalfa dat great and go-O-OD man…ouah PRESY-dun’, ma’am — Mistah G Dubya Bush! Ma’am, I KNO-AH f’um ouah records heah wib d’Republican Pahty dat YEW-all done give so much be-FOAH — and I jus’ wanna FANK yew-all foh DAT — but, MA’AM, d’presydunt, he NEED yo he’p all ovah’gain, SEE? Dis yere Gran’ Ol’ Republican Pahty of our’ns in a BA’AD way — wiv’ fightin’ off ALL ob d’lies and d’swindles and de UN-christian PRE-tensions ob dese yere Democrat-Gimmeecrat-Surrendahcrat p’o-communis’ ANN’ p’o-TERRORIS’ duhty poison pups…dey’s all ob dem JUS’ de SAME OL’ TIRE’ OUT LEF’ WING’S bin draggin’ down dese yere ‘Ninted States foh tew long ahready, see? So, ma’am, we KNO-AH how bad it is fuh yew-all onna FIX’ re-tirmun’ IN-come down dere ina Caruhlinah. But dis yere IS Emme’ Smif’, ma’am, like I say befoah, an’ on behalfa d’Republican Nasson’al Committih, we’uns naow on ben’ed knee IS beggin’ YU’uns tuh gib till yew-all SQUEAKS, ma’am, puh-LEASE — and jus’ MAY be DEN we’uns’ll ALL squeak by tuhgedder naow ‘gain DISS time TEW. Ma’am, d’freat ob d’Terroris’s an’ d’Democrass n’d’pressur’ fum d’gay rice peopuhl AN’ D’WHOLE POS’ COL’ WAR WORL’ WE DON’ HARDLY REC’NIZE ANYMOAH, dat is ALL ob it so VE’Y real…. An’ so Ah’ll jus’ let yew-all goah naow, but foh Ah do I jus’ wanna fank yew-all ‘gain, A’FOAH Ah put down d’FINAL ‘mount yew-all gonna pledge tuhnight!”
How this system works is all on a sound business-footing, and it is entirely legal:
Incorporated private firms contract with the party national committees, and they then do the dirty work, rent and equip facilities, recruit workers (trying carefully to hire all involved as subcontractors rather than paid employees) and then vend their services to the various party and election and re-election committees. These latter essentially retain the telemarketing services as consultants, who process “call-contracts,” draw their percentages — and, then, pass onto the party organizations whatever cash may be left over.
I am no accountant, but the spectrum of loopholes and write-offs for these non-profit operations should be obvious….
Obviously, America is still the land of (some sorts of) opportunity.
What should be equally obvious is that I quit after a call-contract rotated through in which we were to make calls, score pledges and then be paid, ourselves, an admittedly-derisory bonus. The bell clanged and away we went on a three-hour calling-round:
I puffed, I sweat, I lied to beat Hell and I got a good case of laryngitis.
Whereas after this morally-ambiguous session, of terrorizing and defrauding the last of America’s so-called “greatest generation” who may still have a little bit of money left to call their own — and, when I was four hundred dollars ahead of the pack on renewed pledges — bingo!
There would be NO bonus for Grandpa….
It was some of the usual fine print, of course, all on a sound business-footing, and so I left.
The one thing good about it all is that I do not now spend my days still listening to shamed old republican people weeping because they now (two recessions later on) can no longer afford to give money to Mr Bush and Mr Cheney and everybody. The last link below, then, may not be entirely-inapposite — it is something about honesty:
[Emmett R Smith all rights reserved 20 February 2008]