Violin thief gets prison, likely deportation
Posted: 28 October 2008 12:53 PM   [ Ignore ]  
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I go to school with this guy.

He bought a round of drinks for a group of us a couple of weeks back at a local Eugene nightclub.  I did not know he’d be there. 

Everybody here at school has known about his conviction, including myself, since last year.

Since hearing about his arrest and conviction last year, it’s interesting that I see this guy performing and socializing in Eugene all the time, awaiting, I imagine, his sentence.  He seems to have a cosmopolitan and magnetic personality that attracts people (“I’m friends with an international fraud criminal!”).  He also has money, and buys rounds of drinks for groups.

When I ask myself why anybody would want to hang out with this criminal, I wonder if I’m being too harsh.  What do you think?

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Posted: 28 October 2008 01:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]  
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You are not being harsh, Aaron. Those drinks are likely being paid for with fraudulently received cash. IMO, it would be hypocritical to criticize preachers for profiting from fraud but not do the same for this man. I suspect that those receiving the free booze/Kool-Aid don’t really give a shit where the money came from.

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Real honesty is accepting the theories that best explain the actual data even if those explanations contradict our cherished beliefs.-Scotty

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Posted: 28 October 2008 02:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]  
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Beam_Me_Up - 28 October 2008 05:22 PM

You are not being harsh, Aaron. Those drinks are likely being paid for with fraudulently received cash. IMO, it would be hypocritical to criticize preachers for profiting from fraud but not do the same for this man. I suspect that those receiving the free booze/Kool-Aid don’t really give a shit where the money came from.

Thanks, Beam.  It’s a weird kind of moral dilemma. I was watching this guy behaving like such a glamourous player, flitting all over the bar, lavishing affection on his girlfriend, and thinking, “but you’ve cheated people out of so much money!  Everybody knows! Doesn’t anybody care?” 

I’m actually scared of people with so little regard for others.  And yet, there he was, the social butterfly, this suave, crowd-pleasing, partying, musical prodigy. I’m thinking “are you all stupid?” and wondering if I’m missing out on something. But I feel somewhat guilty for judging.

Guess he just knows how to present himself.

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Posted: 28 October 2008 03:35 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]  
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I think it is impossible not to judge. We cannot go through life without evaluating things. How can you protect yourself without making judgments? There is nothing wrong with judging a person based on the consequences and motivations of their actions. It IS wrong to judge a person based on personal traits that are not harming others. To judge is human and unavoidable. To be a bigot is easy; but deplorable. Based on your posts, you are certainly not a bigot. This con artist is hurting others. He appears to have little, if any regrets. You are a good person, Aaron. Go ahead and judge this dipshit for the greedy asshole that he is. Your empathy is beautiful and honorable; but there ARE times that you need to be wary of others.

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Real honesty is accepting the theories that best explain the actual data even if those explanations contradict our cherished beliefs.-Scotty

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Posted: 28 October 2008 04:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]  
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The simple fact is that the cheated many people out of a lot of money. Since these were musicians putting their instruments on consignment odds are they didn’t have a lot of money to begin with.

You’re probably right. I’m sure he’s friendly, charming and engaging. Good criminals and functional sociopaths usually are. It lets them be more effective predators. He’s got you feeling guilty. You’re afraid that you might be judging him. That’s exactly how a good scam works. Get the mark to stop judging and react the way he’s supposed to.

He’s scum. Anyone who eats his food or drinks his liquor is enjoying the fruits of his crime. It’s no different than partying off the proceeds of an armed robber, a pimp or a heroin dealer. An honorable man would have nothing to do with him.
.

[ Edited: 28 October 2008 04:44 PM by telner]
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Posted: 28 October 2008 06:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]  
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telner - 28 October 2008 08:39 PM

The simple fact is that the cheated many people out of a lot of money. Since these were musicians putting their instruments on consignment odds are they didn’t have a lot of money to begin with.

You’re probably right. I’m sure he’s friendly, charming and engaging. Good criminals and functional sociopaths usually are. It lets them be more effective predators. He’s got you feeling guilty. You’re afraid that you might be judging him. That’s exactly how a good scam works. Get the mark to stop judging and react the way he’s supposed to.

He’s scum. Anyone who eats his food or drinks his liquor is enjoying the fruits of his crime. It’s no different than partying off the proceeds of an armed robber, a pimp or a heroin dealer. An honorable man would have nothing to do with him.
.

I appreciate this.  I didn’t expect him to be joining our table and buying a round of shots (for which I now feel guilty for having imbibed).  However, if I follow this line of reasoning, it says something about all those other students (admittedly half my age) who cling to him, and that’s what throws me.

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