My Take

Beware of offers too good to be true

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 16 June, 2015, 1:25am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 16 June, 2015, 8:45am

Hey, Jimmy Lai and Apple Daily. Boy, have I got an exclusive for you! The board of trustees of "the Lotto of the United Nations" has mandated the Government of Malaysia to give me US$5.5 million. Meanwhile, the IMF is offering me US$200 million, while the widow of the late president of Kenya Jomo Kenyatta apparently has US$500 million waiting for me in an American Express bank account.

You know, every day when I come to the office and log on to my computer, I have middlemen - or junk emails - from important global organisations and politicians, or their relatives, offering me millions and millions. So much money that I have completely lost count of the amount. If I had bothered to cash in, I would be richer than Bill Gates and Warren Buffett by now.

"Long Hair" Leung Kwok-hung, eat your heart out. You are not the only one offered serious money to do a political hatchet job.

All right, you have admitted you made up the figure of HK$100 million from "a middleman" who offered it in exchange for your vote to pass the government's political reform package. And Apple Daily splashed with it, (mis-)reporting that the central government was ready to hand out the money to pan-democrats who would switch their no vote to a yes vote this week.

Leung had no proof that such an offer or middleman existed. I could at least point to the hundreds of emails now sitting in my deleted-items basket.

Why are they offering me so much money? Hummm, could it be a scam or a prank? I seriously don't think the IMF would be offering me millions. But, then again, maybe they are the fabled "foreign influences" which would try to dictate the views and take over the platform of an important and influential columnist such as yours truly? Who knows? All I have to do is to give them details of my bank accounts and ID card number, among other personal data.

So Leung, are you lying or just being absurdly gullible?

As for the editors of Apple Daily, perhaps they have let their venom against the government and Beijing get into their heads.

Journalism 101, always make sure you have multiple sources for a story, especially for one as implausible as Long Hair's.

But who needs facts when all you want is to bend public opinion and breed hatred.