To a certain extent it's understandable how over a quarter million people have fallen victim to stimulus-based scams. When it appears as though the government can perform spectacular magic tricks by making stimulus money appear out of thin air, people can be forgiven for thinking it's all part of a master giveaway plan.
A Web site featured a photo of President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden offering "free government money," and a postcard promised cash that consumers could use at their discretion for bills, travel, education or health care...Last week, the "Grant Writers Institute" was shut down under the FTC's effort for falsely claiming consumers were eligible for grants from the stimulus package, (FTC Chairman Jon) Leibowitz said. Telemarketers working for the outfit told consumers they were eligible for $25,000 stimulus grants and pitched $59 books on how to win funds, he said.
But before you go on thinking the government is going to pay your ConEd bill, the FTC Chairman attempted to clarify the matter once and for all.
"The federal government does not award grants to individuals to pay personal expenses or bills," Leibowitz said. "Nor does the government award money for leisure travel."
For that benefit, you need to be elected to office first.