On 7/6/07, Christopher Hickman
They benefited from my $50 order that I almost certainly wouldn't have
placed if I weren't already planning on buying EAC...
Which is why they call it bait and switch.
Actually, I think this was a good faith mistake. Normally, it's only bait and switch if TrU had no intention at the outset of being able to meet demand. This was probably a case of them trying to clear out old stock to make room for their pre-Christmas buying. They've offered deep discounts on games in the past (most notably their past deals on Heroscape items) and there have been lots of people who were able to take advantage.
Since the item eventually was listed as "sold out", this sounds like a case of them overselling their order.
I agree the credit card hold is bogus, but blame the merchant banking system for that one. TrU is at the mercy of the bank just as much as you are. Fortunately, the consumer protection granted by law to credit card customers will always trump in the end. You can call the issuing bank if the chargeback doesn't appear and they can immediately cancel it out.
Finally, if this wasn't actually a clearance sale, then the law in your state may require them to provide a rain check once the item is back in stock. It doesn't sound like this was the case, but if they get more in and don't offer you the same price, you can contact your state Attorney General's office and file a complaint.