Wednesday, 2 July 2014

'USANA' / 'Ariix' - yet another 'Amway' copy-cat 'MLM Income Opportunity' racket.

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In 1945, whilst most, contemporary mainstream commentators were unable to look beyond the ends of their noses, with a perfect sense of irony, Eric Arthur Blair a.k.a. George Orwell (1903-1950) presented fact as fiction in an insightful 'fairy story' entitled, 'Animal Farm.' He revealed that totalitarianism is merely the oppressors' fiction mistaken for fact by the oppressed.




In the same universal allegory, Orwell described how, at a time of vulnerability, almost any people's dream of a future, secure, Utopian existence can be hung over the entrance to a totalitarian deception. Indeed, the words that are always banished by totalitarian deceivers are, 'totalitarian' and 'deception.'


Sadly, when it comes to examining the same enduring phenomenon, albeit with an ephemeral 'Capitalist' label, most contemporary, mainstream commentators have again been unable to look further than the ends of their noses. However, if they followed Orwell's example, and did some serious thinking, this is the reality-inverting nightmare they would find.




More than half a century of quantifiable evidence, proves beyond all reasonable doubt that what has become popularly known as 'Multi-Level Marketing' is nothing more than an absurd, cultic, economic pseudo-science, and that the impressive-sounding made-up term 'MLM,' is, therefore, part of an extensive, thought-stopping, non-traditional jargon which has been developed, and constantly-repeated, by the instigators, and associates, of various, copy-cat, major, and minor, ongoing organized crime groups (hiding behind labyrinths of legally-registered corporate structures) to shut-down the critical, and evaluative, faculties of victims, and of casual observers, in order to perpetrate, and dissimulate, a series of blame-the-victim closed-market swindles or pyramid scams (dressed up as 'legitimate direct selling income opportunites'), and related advance-fee frauds (dressed up as 'legitimate training and motivation, self-betterment, programs,' etc.).

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Earlier this year, I was contacted by a European financial journalist wanting detailed information about, and analysis of, 'USANA.' Essentially, he wanted to know if 'USANA' is a pyramid scheme and whether shares in 'USANA' have any value.






The same journalist also wanted to know if 'Ariix' is part of 'USANA.'




Recently, I was contacted by a concerned man from the USA. He had read my article on 'Herbalife' and Tim Sales,  and he asked for my opinion of 'Ariix.' He subsequently explained, that his father has been an adherent of several so-called 'MLM income opportunities,' (including  'USANA' and of 'Ariix' ) and that his father had lately been acting under the influence of two 'Ariix' shills, Tim Sales and Lynn Allen-Johnson.



'USANA' instigators, Myron W. Wentz and Jeff Yates, posing as a historically-important, visionary-scientists, autodidactic scholars and multi-millionaire, philanthropic businessmen who has helped millions of people around the world to start their own business.





According to the frighteningly familiar fairy story:

'USANA Health Sciences, Inc., a Utah corporation, was founded in 1992 by Myron W. Wentz, Ph.D. We develop and manufacture high-quality, science-based nutritional and personal care products with a primary focus on promoting long-term health and reducing the risk of chronic degenerative disease. In so doing, we are committed to continuous product innovation and sound scientific research. We have operations in 19 markets worldwide, where we distribute and sell our products by way of direct selling. Our net sales in fiscal year 2013 were $718.2 million, of which 78.1% were in markets outside of the United States. As a U.S.-based multi-national company with an expanding international presence, our operating results are becoming more sensitive to currency fluctuations, as well as economic and political conditions in markets throughout the world.'









The blame the victim 'MLM income opportunity' racket known as 'Ariix,' is a spin- off of the blame the victim 'MLM income opportunity' racket known as 'USANA.'

Various 'USANA' shills have transferred their allegiance (and networks of temporary recruits) to 'Ariix.'


The 'USANA' and 'Ariix' rackets have had extensive connections with the 'Mormon Church.'


Blame the victim 'MLM income opportunity' rackets are neither original nor unique; consequently, they cannot be fully-understood in isolation.

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According to the frighteningly familiar fairy story:

'ARIIX was born from the vision of six leading minds in business and nutritional science who wanted to create a unique company based on the "golden rule" of helping others as they help you.


Our name, ARIIX, comes from combining the Latin word Aurum, meaning gold, with "IIX," similar to the roman numeral 8. Rotating the 8 gives you the infinity symbol, which you can see reflected in our logo. So the name altogether means eternal wealth, and also symbolizes our effort to set the "gold standard" for excellence in our products and our company as a whole.



ARIIX is set apart by our passion for helping individuals unleash their potential for success, as well as by our unparalleled product line. We are proud to offer the highest quality nutritional supplements available.'





'MLM Income Opportunity' shills, Tim and Laura Sales (left) posing as ordinary humans: turned multi-millionaire superhumans, with an instigator of the 'Ariix' racket, Fred W. Cooper.  


'Ariix  MLM income opportunity' racketeers (Mark Wilson, Deanna Latson, Fred W. Cooper, Riley Timmer and Jeff Yates) posing as visionary, philanthropic, multi-millionaire businessmen and women who have helped countless people around the world to start their own business.


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Second generation 'Domionist MLM income opportunity' racketeers, Dick De Vos and Steve Van Andel, posing as a pair of visionary, philanthropic, Christian billionaire businessmen who have helped more than 3 millions people around the world to start their own business. 




The original 'MLM income opportunity racketeer,' Carl F. Rehnborg (1887-1973), posing as a historically-important, visionary-scientist, autodidactic scholar and multi-millionaire, philanthropic businessman who helped thousands of people to start their own business.


The parallels between the 'Ariix' fairy story, peddled as reality by shills like Tim and Laura Sales, and the 'Nutrilite' fairy story, originally peddled as reality by Carl F. Rehnborg (and more recently by the De Vos and Van Andel clans), are quite remarkable. In brief, all these crooks have played the unoriginal role of ordinary humans, turned superhumans - prepared to share their secret of unlimited health, wealth, happiness and freedom with anyone (for a price). However, this again is hardly surprising, because ‘Nutrilite Products Company Inc.’ was, after all, the prototype corporate-front for all subsequent 'Multi-Level Marketing Income Opportunity' rackets.


In the 1950s, 'Nutrilite' was a highly-controversial trademark owned by Carl F. Rehnborg a.k.a.'Dr.' Rehnborg, a previously-penniless, American toothpaste-salesman (of German origin) who'd acquired a considerable fortune by reinventing himself as a historically-important, visionary-scientist, autodidactic scholar and philanthropic businessman. Lawyers from the US Food and Drug Administration Bureau of Enforcement, who successfully-challenged the authenticity of some of Rehnborg's many, absurd lies in the federal courts during two decades, privately knew him to be nothing more than one of a trio of sinister quacks protected by an echelon of shyster attorneys, who’d combined, and updated, the medicine show and Ponzi-scheme to reflect the spirit of the age. However, Rehnborg was no ordinary charlatan. He almost certainly suffered from severe and inflexible Narcissistic Personality Disorder. 

Former penniless science-fiction author, turned multi-millionaire, cultic racketeer, L. Ron Hubbard,posing as a historically-important,visionary scientist and philanthropist who had discovered the secret of how ordinary humans can become healthy, wealthy happy and free super humans. Hubbard was also prepared to share this secret with anyone (for a price).
The Nutrilite Story


Tellingly, Rehnborg's own comic-book version of his life and achievements (set-down in various published documents, including a book signed by his son and heir, Sam Rehnborg), reads uncannily like the autobiography dreamt-up by 'Scientology' instigator, L. Ron Hubbard - a man who was once famously described as 'a combination of  Baron M√ľnchausen and Adolf Hitler.'



Unfortunately, just as with the followers and casual observers of Hubbard, the only information made available to the followers and casual observers of Rehnborg has been carefully controlled.


Carl F. Rehnborg circa 1915

Thus, to date, the world has been led to believe that Rehnborg (who was born in 1887 in St. Pitersberge, Florida) :- 

- was a noted-child-prodigy who read voraciously and who amazed his teachers with his detailed knowledge of: philosophy, religion, history, politics, astronomy, mathematics, aerodynamics, chemistry and human rights. 

- was  fluent in many languages, including Chinese. 

- was not a believer, but he studied Christianity, making a boyhood pilgrimage to Palestine and Egypt.

- had a great passion in his teen-age years - the study of planet Earth, its population, its food reserves, and the 'technology of conservation of natural products, but his first love was always the science of nutrition. 

 - was, by the tender age of 27, already a 'doctor of chemistry' who had moved to Tianjin in China to work as an accountant for an American Oil company.

- ran a shipbuilding company, before becoming the representative of the 'American Dairy Company' and, eventually, the representative of 'Colgate Products Company' in Shanghai.

 - witnessed ‘mass-starvation’ in China, before surviving a ‘siege of Shanghai’ by supplementing his diet (and that of his starving friends) with an improvised, vitamin and mineral-enriched broth made from grasses, vegetables, powdered limestone, ground-up bones and rusty nails, etc.

- sailed across the Pacific (studying its many island-cultures on the way) and landed on the West Coast of the USA, where, despite having no money, he managed to establish a 'research laboratory’ in his modest loft-apartment on California’s Balboa Island.


- selflessly dedicated 6 years of his life (1927-1934) to develop a ‘Revolutionary New Food Supplement’ to save mankind from starvation, assisted only by his dutiful young wife, Edith.

- first naively tried to give his wonderful new formula away, but the cynical world wasn’t interested, so, in 1934, he reluctantly decided to create ‘California Vitamins Inc.’ 

- moved his flourishing  ‘Business’ to a ‘Manufacturing and Processing Facility’ in Buena Park, California, and created the ‘Nutrilite Products Company Inc.’ in 1939. 

- acting in association with a ‘Network Sponsoring Company’, ‘Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.’ (to whom he’d sold ‘Exclusive Nutrilite Distribution Rights’) created the ‘World’s First Multi-Level Marketing Scheme’

- had lived the American dream, starting from nothing to become an admired and respected millionaire through ‘Helping 15 thousands fellow Americans to build their own MLM Businesses.’ 


Carl F. Rehnborg  circa 1936


  

Exactly like L.Ron Hubbard, scant quantifiable evidence has been produced to prove that Rehnborg was qualified (let alone expert) in anything, other than lying to people to get their money. There is even reason to doubt that Rehnborg (who apparently did once work for 'Colgate & Co') was in China in the exact period he claimed during, and after, WW I; whilst all the other exciting episodes in his various occidental and oriental odysseys are largely anecdotal. However, the truth about Rehnborg’s convoluted Rags to Riches’ American fairytale is an entirely different matterIn 1934, Rehnborg (aged 48) created ‘California Vitamins Inc.’, allegedly to manufacture and distribute what he arbitrarily defined as 'the World’s First Multi-Mineral/Multivitamin Plant-Based Food Supplement - a Unique Combination of Vitamins and Minerals in a Special Base.’ At first, this so-called ‘Health Tonic’ was brewed up, and peddled as 'Vita-6'  a.k.a. 'Vitasol,' in insignificant quantities. Consequently, it was of no particular interest to regulators. However, anyone with an ounce of common sense could immediately tell that Rehnborg’s ‘invention’ was just another essentially-inert potion (in the absurd tradition of the medicine show); a random mixture of cheaply-procured common substances with an expensive price tag. It had probably taken Rehnborg 6 hours to concoct, not 6 years.

Aerial View of Nutrilite Products Inc. Plant




By 1939, Rehnborg had spotted the existing term, 'Nutrilites' (probably in an old scientific magazine). So he legally-changed the name of his pay-to-play game of make-believe to the technical-sounding ‘Nutrilite Products Company Inc.’ and moved his quackery onto an almost unprecedented scale. Soon, Rehnborg was legally employing dozens of white-coated workers in purpose-built industrial buildings in Buena ParkCalifornia. He also acquired an alfalfa farm near to the city of Hemet in California's San Jacinto valley, but it is unclear exactly where he suddenly found all the necessary capital to pay for these impressive sites and their modern equipment. To his followers and casual observers, Rehnborg’s activity looked like any other lawful enterprise. His staff were ordinary honest folk, to whom the truth was also unthinkable. At this time, Rehnborg rechristened his potion ‘Nutrilite Double X (‘XX’) Supplement.’ He now proposed to offer it as two ‘complimentary products’ in one pack -  comprising little green bottles of bright red ‘Multivitamin Capsules’ and boxes of pale-coloured ‘Multi-Mineral Pills.’ The product was deliberately designed to look modern and scientific (like a proprietary medicine), but, tellingly, the price was fixed at just less than $20 a box (the equivalent of several hundred dollars today). Rehnborg claimed that the ‘XX’ brand-name was derived from the Roman numeral representing twenty. It should have been read as ‘double cross;’ for when the former toothpaste salesman’s pricey wampum was routinely analysed by independent chemists working for the FDA, it was discovered that (although it contained essentially what it said on the labels and was quite harmless) ‘XX Supplement’ really did mostly comprise a random mixture of cheaply-procured, common substances (dried vegetable extracts: alfalfa; parsley; watercress; yeast; etc.). FDA experts later estimated that XX Supplement’  cost no more than a few cents a pack to produce. Thus, FDA lawyers must have known that Rehnborg was, in fact, using authentic pharmaceutical equipment to mass-produce a precisely-measured, harmless placebo, but labelled as a ‘Health Tonic’ (a meaningless term), and peddling it at an exorbitant mark-up (certainly, more than 1000%). This crack-pot pseudo-scientific swindle, which was tantamount to a self-styled 'alchemist' stamping a valueless amalgam of base-metals, 'Pure Gold,' and selling it for the price of pure gold, could have been quickly nipped in the bud, simply by charging Rehnborg with criminal fraud. Apparently, prosecutors never considered the possibility that they might be dealing with someone with severe psychological problems whose own inflexible delusions were contagious. Instead, at first, FDA lawyers felt obliged to take no action; reasoning that, by truthfully listing the banal ingredients, but avoiding making any specific therapeutic claims, on his packaging, Rehnborg had found a loophole in federal laws concerning criminal misbranding of medicines. As result, an up-dated version of an age-old fiction was permitted to be mass-marketed as fact to an unsuspecting public. Unfortunately, the lack of any rigorous, official challenge only brought its author more credibility. Not surprisingly, a host of copy-cat 'Unique Vitamin and Mineral Health-Tonic’ scams quickly sprang up.





As WWII drew to its close, ‘Nutrilite’ had lost its novelty, so Rehnborg (who was approaching 60) had teamed-up with two respectable-looking associates, Lee S. Mytinger and William S. Casselberry (later described by FDA officials as a ‘cemetery-plot salesman’ and a ‘psychologist’). The result was ‘Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.,’ a second corporate structure peddling ‘Exclusive Commission-Agency Rights’ to ‘Distribute XX Supplement’ using (what was first defined by the company’s owners as) a ‘New Business Model.’ In theory you could try to sell ‘XX  Supplement’ to your social contacts for a small profit, but, if you wanted to make big money, you didn’t need to sell anything… you could buy a monthly quota of ‘XX Supplement’ yourself and sign-up your social contacts to do the same… your ‘Sponsored Recruits’ would then ‘Sponsor’ their own social contacts, etc., ‘compensation’ would automatically multiply in an infinitely-expanding geometric progression

‘Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.’ offered a mind-numbing contract’ in which the ‘company’ undertook to pay its ‘Independent Distributors’ an escalating ‘monthly commission’ on the totality of their escalating ‘Business Volume’ [i.e.their own regular monthly purchases (falsely defined as ‘sales’), added to the regular monthly purchases (falsely defined as ‘sales’), of their ‘Sponsored Recruits’, and those of the recruits of their recruits, etc. etcad infinitum].






In reality, the new set-up was merely the original lie with a second chapter added, but to casual observers ‘Nutrilite Products Company Inc.’ appeared to be exclusively manufacturing for, and wholesaling ‘XX Supplement’ to, ‘Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.,’ whose commission agents, in turn, appeared to be retailing it to the public for a profit. Although ‘XX Supplement’ was presented as ‘Unique,’ it mostly comprised substances which could easily be bought at a fraction of their exorbitant, assembled fixed-price, in traditional retail outlets. The product was effectively-impossible to sell to the public for a profit on the open market. Therefore, the overwhelming majority of its final customers were merely the non-salaried agents of the second corporate structure, which itself was the sole agent of the first corporate structure. In order for them to maintain the false hope that if they signed-up further contributing participants they would automatically become rich, the participants in this dissimulated money game were obliged by its rules to keep handing-over a monthly payment toMytinger and Casselberry, to be shared with Rehnborg. From all points of view (medical, economic, legal, etc.), ‘XX Supplement’ might have well not existed. It was just a convenient means of laundering illegal payments in a closed-market swindle based on the crack-pot theory of endless-chain recruitment. New victims were supplied with a $49.50 ‘Business Kit’ (i.e. a large cardboard box stuffed with a month’s supply of ‘XX Supplement’ and a fat folder containing page after page of mystifying pseudo-economic/medical presentations and diagrams, and instructions in how to go about remembering, contacting and recruiting everyone they’d ever known during their lives). These presentations contained the concrete evidence which FDA lawyers could use to prosecute Rehnborg,Mytinger and Casselberry. Contributing participants were being instructed to smile, project excitement and enthusiasm, and to recite a precisely-worded script which proclaimed ‘Nutrilite XX Supplement’ to be ‘good value,’ because it could ‘cure or prevent,’ virtually any known human illness.



William W. Goodrich
William H. Goodrich


Interview with William W. Goodrich, Office of General Counsel, 1939 - 1971
Even though it wasn’t his area of responsibility, FDA Legal Counsel (1939-1971), William H. Goodrich, was probably the first senior US law enforcement agent to deduce that the innocent baby that Rehnborg, Mytinger and Casselberry had baptised a ‘New Business Model’ (later to become known as: ‘Multilevel Marketing’) was actually the same old delinquent previously known a 'pyramid scam.’ Again, anyone with an ounce of common sense could work out immediately that, since Rehnborg had been peddling medical alchemy, the strong likelihood was that Mytinger and Casselberry were peddling economic alchemy. The sinister trio of quacks were obviously acting in association, but agents of the Food and Drug Administration and those of the Federal Trade Commission acted independently. At this time, anti-racketeering legislation did not yet exist in the USA. However, in the late 1940s, the rapidly-expanding ‘XX Supplement’ dossier was already in the hands of FTC lawyers. Apparently, prosecutors still never considered the possibility that they might be dealing with persons suffering from severe psychological problems and whose own inflexible delusions were contagious. Instead, they still felt obliged to take no action; this time reasoning that Mytinger and Casselberry appeared to have found a loophole in federal law prohibiting fraud. For even today, the fundamental identifying characteristic of all pyramid scams and Ponzi schemes, has not yet been accurately defined by legislators. As a result, another updated version of an age-old fiction was permitted to be mass-marketed as fact to an unsuspecting publicYet again, the lack of any rigorous official challenge only brought its authors more credibility. Not surprisingly, a host of copy-cat 'income opportunity' swindles (camouflaged by banal, but pricey, wampum) quickly sprang up.



By 1947, Rehnborg, Mytinger and Casselberry were steadfastly pretending  ‘15 000 Successful Distributorships in the USA,’ with ‘sales’ totalling ‘$500 000 dollars per month.’ They had also organised the production of a ‘Free’ booklet‘How to Get Well and Stay Well’, in which they further pretended that ‘Nutrilite Double X Supplement’ had ‘cured or greatly helped such common ailments’ as : ‘Low blood pressure, Ulcers, Mental depression, Pyorrhoea, Muscular twitching, rickets, Worry over small things, Tonsillitis, Hay Fever, Sensitivity to noise, Underweight, Easily tired, Gas in stomach, Cuts heal slowly, Faulty vision, Headache, Constipation, Anaemia Boils, Flabby tissues, Hysterical tendency, Eczema, Overweight, Faulty memory, Lack of ambition, Certain Bone conditions, Nervousness, Nosebleed, Insomnia, Allergies, Asthma, Restlessness, Bad skin colour, Poor appetite, Biliousness, Neuritis, Night blindness, Migraine, High blood pressure, Sinus trouble, Lack of concentration, Dental caries, Irregular heartbeat, Colitis, Craving for sour foods, Arthritis, Rheumatism, Neuralgia, Deafness, Subject to colds.’



Carl.F. Rehnborg circa 1950

Rhenborg now cast himself in the role of ‘Scientific Adviser’ to ‘Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.’ He toured the USA preaching the gospel to wide-eyed ‘Distributors’ - ‘for less than $20 a month’‘Nutrilite Double X Supplement’ was the ‘Answer to Man’s Search for Health.’ After both companies’ owners were approached by FDA officials and warned that they could face criminal prosecution for misbranding, the booklet was ‘revised.’ Specific therapeutic claims were supposed to be eliminated‘All illnesses’ suddenly became a ‘state of nonhealth’ produced by ‘chemical imbalance’.… ‘Nutrilite XX Supplement’ cured nothing, it merely ‘enabled people to Get Well and stay Well’ by themselves. However, pages 41-52 of the booklet still recounted alleged case-histories explaining that ‘Nutrilite brought relief from such ailments as diabetes, feeble mindedness, stomach pains, sneezing and weeping.’ Not surprisingly, the FDA officials were not impressed, so they finally launched a number of raids, and seizures of ‘Nutrilite XX Supplement’ and associated publications.




In 1951, after a series of lawsuits, appeals and counter suits (in which Mytinger and Casselberry hired top lawyers who portrayed their clients as American capitalist heroes being crushed by Soviet-style bureaucracy), the FDA obtained (on behalf of the people) a permanent Supreme Court injunction against ‘Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.’ preventing ‘Distributors’ from referring to 50 publications making false claims about ‘Health Tonics and Food Supplements’ (including various ‘Revised Editions’ of ‘How to Get Well and Stay Well’). FDA agents soon found that the injunction was being flouted. As a result of mounting complaints, they infiltrated the organization (as potential recruits) and recorded deluded proselytisers chanting the same cure-all mantra abou‘XX Supplement.’ Faced with more litigation and fearing that their monopoly of information might be lost, in 1954, Rehnborg, Mytinger and Casselberry hired a leading advertising agency which handled the clean-cut Hollywood star, Alan Ladd. Along with his wife and children, Alan Ladd then briefly-featured in a kitsch 'Nutrilite' advertising campaign - published in various mainstream magazines right up until 1959.  






 

The charlatan-trio, 'Mytinger, Casselberry and Rhenborg,' also paid a team of Hollywood professionals to produce a 20 minute colour propaganda film, From the Ground up’ (featuring themselves as three nice ordinary American guys turned philanthropic scientists and industrialists), and they began to publish their own propaganda magazine, ‘Nutrilite News’ (stuffed with colour photos of happy, healthy and wealthy ‘Distributors). Soon, they were organizing ‘Rallies and Seminars’ (addressed by ‘Successful Christian Distributors’ like Rich De Vos and Jay Van Andel). No quantifiable evidence (in the form of audited accounts) was ever produced to prove what percentage of claimed ‘sales' were authentic retail transactions to the public for a profit, or how many people who’d signed a ‘contract’ with Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.’' had actually received an overall net-profit from the operation of what its instigators arbitrarily defined as an MLM income opportunity’. Excluding the tiny percentage of grinning schills at the top of the pyramid, the hidden, rolling insolvency/churn-rate was 100%. Since there was no significant or sustainable external revenue, participants were actually buying infinite shares in their own finite money. 




          Jay VanAndel                                                             Richard DeVos

circa 1960


In reality, in 1959, when it seemed that ‘Mytinger and Casselberry/Nutrilite Products Inc.’ might finally be shut down (under the ‘Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act 3381-3383’, rather than anti-fraud legislation) De Vos and Van Andel hid behind familiar, patriotic words and images stolen from contemporary popular culture. They created the ‘American Way Association’ - the first of what was to become a shoal of red, white and blue herrings.

The classic movie, 'Elmer Gantry' (released in 1960), was written and directed by Richard Brooks and is loosely-based on a novel of 1927 by the Nobel prize-winning author, Sinclair LewisIn the Movie, 'Gantry' (played by Burt Lancaster) is a grinning charlatan in a loud suit - a hard-drinking whore-chasing travelling-salesman, who, for sexual and financial motives, attaches himself to the beautiful 'Sister Sharon' (played by Jean Simmons), the focus of a profitable 'Tent Revivalist' group working the Bible-Belt during Prohibition (1920-1933). 'Elmer Gantry'keeps his grin, but he dons a sombre suit and black hat, and is reborn as 'Brother Gantry' 'Charismatic Preacher' and 'Moral Crusader'. He soon discovers that he has the power to create mass-hysteria, and reap tens of thousands of dollars, by manipulating individuals' existing beliefs and instinctual desires. At a key-moment in the movie, a Protestant Minister (bedazzled by 'Brother Gantry's' offer to fill his church coffers) abandons the traditional Christian message and proclaims: 'Business is business, that's the American Way'.

Perhaps it's just a coincidence, but at almost exactly the time that the American Way Association’ first appeared, ‘Elmer Gantry' was playing to packed movie-theatres all over America.




Initially (and with an irony that is close to exquisite), in order to dodge being drawn into the ongoing FDA investigation of 'Nutrilite,' De Vos and Van Andel now laundered all the unlawful investment payments into their copy-cat, dissimulated, closed-market swindle, behind the claim that they were selling detergents  (i.e. banal, but effectively-unsaleable, non-'medicinal' pseudo-scientific wampum of their own fabrication) and not pills and potions. Again, the updated snake oil stain remover was deliberately designed to look modern and scientific, whilst De Vos and Van Andel grinned from ear as they too steadfastly pretended that these strangely-familiar, cheaply-procured mixtures of common substances, were all-American, exclusive, good-value and unique.





The original 'Nutrilite' lie was progressively-absorbed back into the spin-off 'Amway' lie, 1972-1994, where it still is peddled as the truth.

Only after the 'MLM' 

virus had spread to almost every State of the Union, did the US Federal Trade Commission finally make a half-hearted attempt to close-down 'Amway.' After  receiving a significant number of complaints,  FTC prosecutors, advised by specialist economists, recognised that what they were faced with, was not a direct selling scheme, but as a classic pyramid scam, without a significant or sustainable source of revenue other than its own victims, but hidden behind a smokescreen of effectively-unsaleable products . However, after years of investigations and hearings, in 1979, a naive, and/or corrupt, federal judge ruled that although 'Amway' had previously been massively in breach of the law and would have to pay fines, the company would be allowed to continue to trade. This was because the judge accepted the latest unbelievable chapter of the 'MLM' fairy story. i.e. That 'Amway' s owners were repectable Christian businessmen who were vehemently opposed to  pyramid schemes and that, consequently, they had stopped fixing prices and introduced their own rule which would, henceforth, oblige the members of 'Amway's' sales force to retail at leat 70% of the products which they had bought wholesale from the company, to at least 10 external customers, before they could receive commission payments. Amazingly, no independent, common-sense mechanism was created to ensure that this latest twist in the fairy story was true, and that 'Amway' would now be in compliance with the law.

Not surprisingly, this absurd and dangerous judgement was seen as an open-invitation to thieve, and, consequently, a whole host of 'Amway' copy-cat 'MLM' rackets soon began appear.   

More than 30 years later, the so-called 'Direct Selling Association,' is a demonstrable lie financed and controlled by the bosses of a classic, organized crime syndicate.


David Brear (copyright 2014)



2 comments:

  1. well done David,
    I've read through a variety of your blogs..you say it like it is, I have experience under the De Vos and Jerry and Mandy Scrivens system and even my boss one up from me in the police was drawn in to this malarky which destroys rational thinking and bullies people to act and manipulate people and utilises the conference ticket scam (you need to go to or the upline will not be happy don't forget Brian they are on call to you anytime you wish blah vomit) along with the book of the month and then Cassete tapes of Jerry and Mandy inspiring you to greater production levels.
    I just wish I had of read this in the early 1990s when my best buddy came to me and told me and my wife he had a sure fire way of making a sustainable profit....I should have seen his upline gawping at us and prodding him to show the various BV and PV charts 'The Circles' ...I was physically and nervously exhausted and my telephone bill and fuel costs for the two years I lasted were staggering before common sense finally kicked in ..I too watched a list of people who like Jasper Carrot took money for speaking motivationally at various conferences while 'Diamonds' swept in and out like Royal family to whoop the audience up into a state of hysteria...........I literally wasted two years of my life but am lucky that I got out and have no deep scars like some do..
    I hope to god that the UK do control this 20th century pheonomena which is a dark stain on humanity and one which pitches family member against family member as you have experienced,
    I am not religous but one short statement conveys all in my opinion 'God bless the vulnerables'
    I came to this page via a google search on Jerry and Mandy Scrivens ...I have discovered many fruits amongst your blogs and wish you good luck in your quest to educate people as to the ways and means of these MLM organisations.
    Brian

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    1. Brian - Thanks - like an increasing number of people, you now can see this criminogenic phenomenon very clearly

      I take it that you were, or are, a serving UK police officer? I am particularly interested to hear more from you about your own 'MLM' experience in the UK during the 1990s when my brother was in the 'Amway IBS network' ostensibly controlled by the Scrivens.

      The Scrivens and others, used my brother to defraud his own family.

      At that time, I tried to file criminal complaints with the police in Yorkshire (where my brother lived), Somerset (where IBS was based) and London, but discovered that there were too many UK police officers deeply-involved. In short, I was politely told to get lost.

      Please send me your contact details in the form of a comment (these will not be posted).

      Kindest regards

      David

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