ERV approved spam

I get a ton of spam in the comments of ERV.

Happily, we have a really good spam filter (too good sometimes, as most of us, even me, have gotten comments sent straight to spam for no discernible reason), but still, a bit of Turkish spam or STD dating site spam or steroid spam gets through now and then, and I have to manually remove it.

So at first I was a bit annoyed when a comment was let through a couple days ago that appeared to be spam. It had the markers– late to the party (‘older’ post, ie 11 days old), simply a link in the comment section, same link as the ‘website’ of the commentor, and a non-committal phrase: ‘scary stuff’.

Grrr.

But I followed the link, and Im glad I did.

I dont think the comment was bot generated, but even if it was, I fully support the website advertised, humanewatch.org

They are keeping an eye on the Humane Society of the United States as an organization, and the people involved with the organization.

I hate HSUS so much, and even I learned some new stuff on humanewatch– Grown Up For Realsies stuff like how the IRS is investigating HSUS, but are having trouble because theyve never had to deal with charity fraud of this magnitude before. Personal things, like HSUS using a contributors picture of a handicapped pit (how was it hurt? lets all take a guess) to raise money and PR, when HSUS wants pits exterminated. And then internet lolz, like this EPIC FAIL that lost HSUS a ton of cash (tl;dr– Wayne-baby showed his true colors on facebook, members FREAKED OUT, HSUS responded by sending comments and members down the memory hole, cue more FREAK OUT).

And then they have done something I really respect– they actually put action behind their words. One thing I hate is when people/a group are really just blow-hards, and never really do anything to back up their writing (aka Chris Mooney), not these folks. They regularly feature local shelters in need of funding, they have put up a Randi-esque challenge to HSUS “Donate half of your income to shelters, and we will shut this blog down”, and they recently put up billboards in Times Square to get the message out about HSUS.

I am so glad ‘Pat’ left that ‘spam‘ comment.

Comments

  1. #1 Chris Lindsay
    February 9, 2011

    Thanks for the post. I’m a relatively new reader to your blog, so I’ve not read your past entries about the HSUS. I always considered them to be a better alternative to PETA, based on anecdotal stories of people who worked at the shelters. I hadn’t made myself aware of any deeper issues and philosophies that it maintains.

  2. #2 ERV
    February 9, 2011

    Quick summary– My family has always been about rescuing dogs. We dont buy dogs, our dogs find us. Thus I found myself with a pitbull, abandoned on the street in the middle of an ice storm, four years ago. Four years ago. He is still striped with scars (Im assuming at this point they are never going to heal).

    Shortly thereafter the Michael Vick thing happened, and I was *shocked* to see the hateful comments re: Pitbulls from ‘The Humane Societys’ president. Like most people, I thought HSUS was ‘The Humane Society’. My readers clarified that for me.

    I then found out more info about HSUS and pitbulls, their connections to animal liberation groups (I am a scientist. My field requires primate research. I dont want my building bombed, thank you very much), etc– Hate them. Hate. Them.

  3. #3 Chris Lindsay
    February 9, 2011

    Thank you for the clarification. Yeah, I was thinking the local shelter in my area was affiliated with HSUS for a moment. If anything, it’s a good example of the importance of doing thorough research on an organization.

  4. #4 Caudoviral
    February 9, 2011

    Shortly thereafter the Michael Vick thing happened, and I was *shocked* to see the hateful comments re: Pitbulls from ‘The Humane Societys’ president. Like most people, I thought HSUS was ‘The Humane Society’.

    I thought the same thing until you pointed out the difference in a blog post a while back. That is an extremely (and probably intentionally) confusing bit of naming. Glad to know that there are people working to hold this organization accountable for their lies.

  5. #5 Alan Kellogg
    February 9, 2011

    You shouldn’t hate the HSUS, you should despise them. The HSUS is not hateful, it is despicable. A big, and vital, difference.

  6. #6 titmouse
    February 10, 2011

    Scammers can set up a charity with a website, Facebook, testimonials, hundreds of followers, pretty quickly. They name it something that sounds kinda government sponsored like, “National Alliance for the Homeless.” (I just made that up).

    They plan a road race or concert in the park and get a couple of reputable charities to participate. Then they write on their blog, “…working with the Red Cross blah blah blah.”

    Sometimes the people who work for the crap charity don’t even know it’s crap, cuz no one watches the books but the bad guys at the top.

    Very sad that it’s so easy to create charities now that basically raise money to sustain their own fund-raising efforts.

    I pretty much assume anyone calling me on the phone asking for money is working for a scammer.

  7. #7 Charl
    February 10, 2011

    I don’t know if you watch Glee, Abbie (what else does a a scientist do when they’re on antibiotics and forbidden from setting foot in the lab in case they pick up some C. diff that next door are culturing?), but they had a horribly mangled Epstein-Barr virus storyline in the Silly Love Songs episode. 24 incubation period, from infection through to full glandular fever/mono symptoms? I could have wept. And I bet the two patients will be back next week, singing their little hearts out, when in reality they’d be in bed for a fortnight, have tonsils and lymph nodes the size of tennis balls, and they WOULD NOT BE ABLE TO SING! Even with X Factor-levels of auto-tuning.

  8. #8 Prometheus
    February 10, 2011

    I knew this about HSUS, but I never cease to be amazed at the abuse of 501-C3 status in this country.

    My favorite are douchebags with things like “christian jet-ski missions” or in-house church travel agencies letting nit wits write off the Hilton Tel Aviv Sushi Bar as part of a obligatory holy pilgrimage which includes mini golf and windsurfing.

  9. #9 titmouse
    February 10, 2011

    How about teaching the disabled to fly airplanes?

    Srlsy, if you have a hundred bucks to give, don’t waste it on an hour long entertainment experience for someone with cerebral palsy. Just give the guy in the wheelchair the cash directly. When you can’t work, money for food and clothes and bus passes comes in handy.

    But hey, pretty good way for rich wankers to write off a lot of expensive airplane and hangar maintenance costs, amirite?

    At least in the UK, there’s a formal “public benefit” test that charities are supposed to pass. So if the public feel an organization isn’t contributing enough to the common good, they can get the tax relief status changed.

  10. #10 titmouse
    February 10, 2011

    Link fail. Second try here.

  11. #11 Prometheus
    February 10, 2011

    “But hey, pretty good way for rich wankers to write off a lot of expensive airplane and hangar maintenance costs, amirite?”

    That’s how PETA runs it’s books. They pay themselves meager salaries and brag about “living frugally” but they have no personal expenses since their bene packages would make a teamster blush.

    They show up at their multi-million dollar office building on $5000.00 Calfree hemp lugged bamboo bicycles, screw around on their STOA tablets until they finish updating their vegan blogs and facebook pages, then take half the year off on full pay grief leave because their pet guppy ate it’s own young…..again. Gonna be a long six months, they have 37 PETA premium pre-paid fish life insurance checks to endorse and cash.

    Nuts.

  12. #12 Alan Kellogg
    February 11, 2011

    Titmouse, @#9 and 10

    You can help pay for my blogging, and you won’t have to fill out any special paperwork in your tax form. Of course, you won’t get any deductions for helping pay for my blogging, but who needs the hassles that come with claiming such deductions?

    Click on the link in my name and use the PayPal link in my left side bar to help support by blog, and aid PayPal’s bottom line. Best of all, you’ll never face the possibility of being ever getting behind the controls of any sort of aircraft. A win/win if you look at it the right way situation all around.

    This self-aggrandizing plug brought to you by a snarky sense of humor, the color red #3, and the square root of 2; keeping mathematics irrational since the 1400s (I think).

  13. #13 Paul Browne
    February 11, 2011

    “Thanks for the post. I’m a relatively new reader to your blog, so I’ve not read your past entries about the HSUS. I always considered them to be a better alternative to PETA, based on anecdotal stories of people who worked at the shelters.”

    To be fair that is a little like considering the clap to be a better alternative to HIV.

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