how to spot a fake, redux

March 11, 2013 § 7 Comments

How to spot a fake: they plagiarize and steal from established workers, artists, and serviteurs. Theft of my text by ConjuredCardea, aka Sarah Best, aka Moma Sara, on Etsy, here. See my 2002 store listing or 2009 blog post. I sent her a cease and desist note via etsy, but here’s proof if she takes it down and denies wrongdoing, theft, and fraud:

black destroyer theft

For comparison purposes, here’s my 2009 blog post:

A client writes to ask how to use Black Destroyer Oil.

Black Destroyer formulas are designed to help people clear serious messes out of their lives, protect their homes, and stop curses, evil, and resentment dead in their tracks.

Basically, you can use it for long distance candle work, to dress candles; you can dilute it in mineral oil and use it as a sprinkle on messes that people have laid for
you (like if you find powders in your yard); stuff like that. When I’m dealing with somebody who is aiming stuff at me, I like to dress a candle with Black Destroyer and/or Reversing oils (depending on what I want to happen), set their photo in a low, wide dish, set the candle on top of the photo, and then fill the dish with a dash of Black Destroyer and a lot of vinegar. (This works best with wider candles like small pillars, votives, and 7 knob candles, rather than the kind you have to put in a candle holder. You want to stick it right on top of their photo, and you need the candle to be able to hold it down.) You can add whatever herbs and stuff you want, appropriate to your case. Then let the candle burn down ’til the flame reaches the liquid. Don’t do this unless you’ll be right there to keep an eye on it though.

I find Black Destroyer to be an excellent “first aid” application when under attack, and often it kills the hell out of stuff without you having to do a whole lot more, though of course this depends on who is throwing for you and what they are using to do it. But I keep Black Destroyer Oil in the glove compartment of my car, along with Fiery Wall of Protection powder, my Safe Travel mojo, a Mag-Lite, a map, a Gerber multi-tool, a tampon, and a protein bar. Never leave home without it!

***

I am not one to get involved in conjure drama and name-calling. I tend to make private jokes on twitter when I see somebody being stupid and playing mix and match bullshit and pretending to be traditional hoodoo workers and telling people to cleanse mojo bags with oil, and then I leave it alone. But this is simple, demonstrable plagiarism, fraudulently passing off someone else’s work as her own, and is theft of my intellectual property which is my means of making a living. It is against the law. It’s also just shitty.

She didn’t just steal from me. She also stole from cat yronwode’s Hoodoo in Theory and Practice. Here’s just one example:

conjure cardea fraud

And here, for your comparison purposes, is cat yronwode’s page on railroad spikes.

***
ETA: But wait. there’s more.

devilshoestring fraud
Stolen from cat yronwode at Lucky Mojo.

And then she joined the tired old bandwagon of people who have been stealing from my chicken foot listing for over a decade now.

chicken foot plagiarism
Stolen from the same damned copy I’ve had in my chicken foot listings since 2002, though she did add some stuff of her own invention, with no basis in any Southern conjure lore that I’ve ever heard, and I’ve been doing this a long damned time, about using chicken feet to gain favor with judges. I’m not even going to comment on how impossible it would be to carry a standard-sized mojo containing a chicken foot of this size, which should tell you a lot right there. It’s funny – I have a blog post about how often my writing on chicken feet gets stolen and plagiarized. Silly bint. These tricks are NOT for kids.

***
ETA: an observant client has informed that she has noticed for some time that many of “Moma Sarah’s” oil descriptions are taken verbatim or nearly verbatim from Lady Rhea’s The Enchanted Formulary.

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§ 7 Responses to how to spot a fake, redux

  • The “stolen from Lucky Mojo” content is actually stolen from me, the author, catherine yronwode, and is part of my book “Hoodoo in Theory and Practice.” This woman, Conjured Cardea, also known as Lady Sayje, Moma Sarah, and Sarah Bell, the “ordained, initiated, and hereditary Chalcedonian witch,” is being shown for what she is, a thief. Thanks, Karma, for posting this. I have sent notification to Etsy. Not only did she steal my text and violate my copyright, there is no way in Hell she can claim that her railroad spikes meet Etsy’s requirement of being “hand-made.”

    • karmazain says:

      Thanks, cat – I fixed the attribution in the post to clarify your authorship. Now people are writing me to tell me about campaigns of harassment that this woman has perpetrated on them, and I’m hearing more stories about other things she’s stolen. The truth will out.

  • jane ransom says:

    Yeah but she makes the hell out of some oils boy. Fake or not the oils she sells are good stuff probably the best I’ve used in 25 years of practice…just saying

    • karmazain says:

      I am sad when customers simply don’t know – or even don’t care – what frauds like this do to people like us, our traditions, and the entire public face of the religions they play their mix and match bullshit with. I am also very sorry for the people who take her advice about how to work with certain spirits and think they are talking to somebody who isn’t a total fraud and unapologetic thief. They could really step in it approaching religions and traditions the wrong way.

      It’s simply a matter of ethics. If shopping from a demonstrated fraud and thief doesn’t concern people, then it doesn’t; nothing I can do about that. But I will continue to warn people not to take her advice OR purchase her products that have to do with religions like vodoun in which she is at *best* and *most generous* a tourist, knowing just enough to be dangerous and lying to the public about her knowledge level, background, and formal religious associations.

      So she makes the hell out of oils; good for her. But I wouldn’t hit a hog in the behind with a single thing she says or publishes, and I strongly recommend that no potential client EVER hire a worker who has been proven to be a liar. Why would you trust them when they tell you what they did with your money?

  • Norcam Aroug says:

    She’s stolen from many, and appropriates from many initiatory religions with training in none of them. The woman is a sad joke. It’s beyond me why anyone buys anything from her, ever.

    • karmazain says:

      Because they don’t know any better. Or, in some cases, like the previous commenter who said “well, her oils work no matter what kind of person she is!” they just have so narrow and personal a reference that they don’t care what frauds like this do to people like us, our traditions, and the entire public face of the religions they play their mix and match bullshit with. I am just sorry for the people who take her advice about how to work with certain spirits and think they are talking to somebody who isn’t a total fraud and unapologetic thief.

  • Val says:

    Some of the text for her listing for a little soul doll comes straight out of Luisah Teish’s “Jambalaya.”

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