Archive for April 1st, 2007

The newest idea in rounding up “deadbeat dads” is to display their photos and identifying information on pizza boxes. Each child support wanted poster in Butler County, Ohio depicts multiple men along with their last known address, age and date of birth, occupation, number of children, and amount owed.

I’m sorry, but as much as I think everybody should pony up to support their children, I think this plan could possibly do a great deal of emotional damage to the children whose fathers are pictured in such a public manner.

There is also the possibility that there is a legitimate reason why the person is behind on their support payments, as well as the rather chilling possibility that someone could be publicly outed as a “deadbeat” when they aren’t behind on their child support at all, thanks to the government system which very regularly has no idea who has paid or how much someone is behind.

No matter how I view it, it’s a bad idea. There’s too much margin for error, and an error in something of this nature could ruin someone’s life.

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An Illinois woman mourns her two young daughters, swept to their deaths in Hurricane Katrina’s floodwaters. It’s a tragic and terrifying story. It’s also a lie.

An Alabama woman applies for disaster aid for hurricane damage. She files 28 claims for addresses in four states. It’s all a sham.

Two California men help stage Internet auctions designed to help Katrina relief organizations. Those, too, are bogus.

More than 18 months after Hurricane Katrina decimated the Gulf Coast, authorities are chipping away at a mountain of fraud cases that, by some estimates, involve thousands of people who bilked the federal government and charities out of hundreds of millions of dollars intended to aid storm victims.

The full scope of Katrina fraud may never be known, but this much is clear: It stretches far beyond the Gulf Coast, like the hurricane evacuees themselves. So far, more than 600 people have been charged in federal cases in 22 states — from Florida to Oregon — and the District of Columbia.

The frauds range in value from a few thousand dollars to more than $700,000. Complaints are still pouring in and several thousand possible cases are in the pipeline — enough work to keep authorities busy for five to eight years, maybe more.

Read the rest of this article here.

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