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(24,320 posts)
Sat Mar 2, 2024, 07:58 AM Mar 2

Made In Macedonia: Americans Lose Millions Buying Fake Donald Trump Debit Cards [View all]

BELGRADE -- Last September, 86-year-old Ann Bratton thought she'd stumbled onto the investment of a lifetime.

An ad on one of the encrypted Telegram app channels the Nashville-area retiree had joined was offering debit-like "Trump cards" featuring the billionaire U.S. ex-president's image, each supposedly preloaded with $200,000. After years of forking out tens of thousands of dollars on souvenir banknotes, coins, and other Trump memorabilia, she calculated that she could quickly and easily turn a $6,000 investment into a $4 million nest egg.

What she didn't know was that behind the offer of "Trump Collection" cards was an opaque group of web-based vendors from a faded industrial city 8,500 kilometers away. And that city, in the Balkan country of North Macedonia, was already notorious for being home to legions of scammers who had fraudulently monetized Donald Trump's popularity in the United States and around the world.


But it's an open secret in this corner of the Balkans that a startlingly successful digital disinformation and fake news industry that emerged in the Macedonian city of Veles alongside the political rise of Donald Trump helped lay the groundwork for a thriving new business in fraudulent goods marketed through encrypted channels to Trump-style conservatives and "patriots" an ocean away.


**** as a note: If you read the article, you will see just how big a fool Bratton is (when she describes Trump in paragraph 7)

68 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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An 86-year-old trying to build a "nest-egg" with this junk is just sad. Croney Mar 2 #1
she thinks Trump is honest Skittles Mar 2 #3
She's a Republican from TN kwijybo Mar 2 #36
+1. A real cultist dalton99a Mar 2 #38
Milwaukee Irish julmur Mar 2 #46
the world knows how easily-manipulated Trump's fans are Skittles Mar 2 #2
Surprised that TFG isn't going after Macedonia to get "his" money back. no_hypocrisy Mar 2 #4
They're probably wiring his cut to an overseas bank BlueKota Mar 2 #5
I doubt he could find Macedonia on a map. nt Gore1FL Mar 2 #16
I doubt he could spell Macedonia. . or map. niyad Mar 2 #19
Melania could, she can speak five languages! Shermann Mar 2 #24
Ah, yes, thank you for the reminder. niyad Mar 2 #28
Yeah, but the only phrase she knows in five languages is "Leave the money on the dresser". Midnight Writer Mar 2 #56
Oh snap! nt Shermann Mar 2 #57
I dont he could pronounce it. SammyWinstonJack Mar 2 #31
That, too. niyad Mar 2 #41
I Was Gonna Say The Same Thing... GB_RN Mar 2 #43
He thinks Macedonia is a big hairy elephant! Floyd R. Turbo Mar 2 #33
Or may think it is his wife's name. Norbert Mar 3 #67
😁 Floyd R. Turbo Mar 3 #68
Or pronounce it correctly as they do. GreenWave Mar 2 #50
BOOM! MorbidButterflyTat Mar 2 #64
I doubt he could find his asshole with both hands. Meadowoak Mar 2 #27
His hands are not large enough to reach, anyway. niyad Mar 2 #30
Mackedoneeya and Cheese. nt tazkcmo Mar 3 #65
Trump always gets his cut from these scams up-front. sop Mar 2 #45
This would only work on conservative voters. mwb970 Mar 2 #6
and in the final sentence, she still thinks it might be legit . . . . SarcasticSatyr Mar 2 #7
I love how the article lists the fake images they use to help sell these things rpannier Mar 2 #9
More like even idiots think he's an idiot. bluesbassman Mar 2 #58
"It's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled." sop Mar 2 #47
I read the scheme and thought "that is so obviously AllyCat Mar 2 #8
Nigerian Prince Scam rpannier Mar 2 #12
Actually, a friend many years ago, NOT a reichwinger, fell for several niyad Mar 2 #26
OMG these were people she knew? AllyCat Mar 2 #29
Yes, one a supposedly trusted friend. It is awful when a supposed friend niyad Mar 2 #32
Glad you stepped in to save her. AllyCat Mar 2 #34
Sadly enough, for quite some time, she was angry with me for exposing niyad Mar 2 #44
The root of it all right there. Bristlecone Mar 2 #48
Synonym for a Trump supporter Old Crank Mar 2 #10
they are bilking traitors who would give their money to trump anyway samsingh Mar 2 #11
You are right on that! 70sEraVet Mar 2 #42
And this charlatan gets Supreme Court protection Blue Owl Mar 2 #13
Republicans are suckers. Emile Mar 2 #14
Gullible idiots. n/t ms liberty Mar 2 #15
Reminds me of this story from almost a year ago: Gore1FL Mar 2 #17
Wow, I completely missed this story. Geez, the level of credulity required niyad Mar 2 #22
TrumpTurd Paperweights (tm) don't seem like such a crazy idea anymore. Buns_of_Fire Mar 2 #18
We are all born ignorant. Maggots will all die stupid. MAGAtsmaggots. Wonder Why Mar 2 #20
Ha ha ha...not sorry. This is what he'll do to the country. 617Blue Mar 2 #21
Everything Trump touches, turns to shit. But in this case, 3Hotdogs Mar 2 #23
First, read the article - long, detailed and fascinating. hatrack Mar 2 #25
P.T. Barnum knew whereof he spoke. Ocelot II Mar 2 #35
People who fall for Trump Gruenemann Mar 2 #37
That is their business model... crud Mar 2 #54
What a maroon oswaldactedalone Mar 2 #39
Gullible Trumpers with zero judgement. Fools make easy marks, eh? Oopsie Daisy Mar 2 #40
Most anyone can be scammed Farmer-Rick Mar 2 #49
I should feel sad for these people. No on is immune from all scams. paleotn Mar 2 #51
Scammers/con men love the elderly, especially church goers. They are more trusting. keithbvadu2 Mar 2 #52
Damn, if I could scam people I'd jump on the magat train. Lunabell Mar 2 #53
It's the perfect scam Turbineguy Mar 2 #55
I'm not surprised. Birds of a feather flock together--Well, if one thinks two titans of pathology might Backseat Driver Mar 2 #59
They believe in falsehoods if it makes them feel good DBoon Mar 2 #60
One born every minute. republianmushroom Mar 2 #61
There was a similar scam a few years ago involving Trump and the Iraqi dinar. keep_left Mar 2 #62
I totally believe this (sarcasm): MorbidButterflyTat Mar 2 #63
There are clever scams that many people might get sucked into. This ain't one of them. Silent3 Mar 3 #66
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