It is common knowledge that in cultic groups like 'Scientology,' core-adherents are programmed never to defend accusations against the group and its leaders, but always to attack the so-called 'suppressive' person(s) making the accusations, by completely ignoring all supporting evidence (particularly cult victims) and incessantly demanding:
'What are your crimes?'
Bearing the above in mind, Blog readers should be interested to discover this most recent paranoid piece of 'MLM income opportunity' cultic propaganda signed by Michael Johnson (the boss of the 'Herbalife' racket). One wonders why Mr. Johnson didn't simply entitle it:
Bill Ackman what are your crimes?
The case of Herbalife and activist investing run amok
Mr. Johnson follows the above 'Scientology'-style tactic, and inverts reality, by ignoring the quantifiable evidence (particularly 'Herbalife' victims) and steadfastly pretending that anyone who says that 'Herbalife' is a criminal enterprise, is a criminal.
It is also interesting to note that I openly-stated that 'Herbalife' has been the legally-registered corporate front for an 'Amway' copy-cat major criminal enterprise (and is, therefore, an effectively-valueless company) long before Bill Ackman made essentially the same pronouncement in December 2012 and backed it up with a billion + dollar short-selling gamble.
Not surprisingly, Michael Johnson makes absolutely no reference to me nor to my in-depth analysis of 'Herbalife' as an unoriginal blame-the-victim cultic racket - in which I predicted his paranoid reaction to persons challenging the authenticity of his group's 'capitalist' controlling fairy story (with almost complete accuracy).
Sadly for Mr Johnson, all apologists/propagandists for totalitarian/ totalistic movements are obliged to follow an inflexible script in which they are the truthful and enlightened good guys battling against the dishonest forces of darkness and evil.
Predictability has always been the great weakness of cults and totalitarian regimes.
- has a grandiose sense of self-importance.
- is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, ideal love, etc.
- believes that he/she is special and unique and can only be understood by other special people.
- requires excessive admiration.
- strong sense of self-entitlement.
- takes advantage of others to achieve his/her own ends.
- lacks empathy.
- is often envious or believes that others are envious of him/her.
- arrogant disposition.
'Herbalife' has employed co-ordinated, devious techniques of social and psychological persuasion (variously described as: ‘covert hypnosis’, 'visualisation', 'duplication', ‘mental manipulation’, ‘coercive behaviour modification’, ‘group pressure’, ‘thought reform’, ‘ego destruction’, ‘mind control’, ‘brainwashing’, ‘neuro-linguistic programming’, ‘love bombing’, etc.). These techniques are designed to fulfil the hidden criminal objectives of 'Herbalife's' leaders by provoking in the adherents an infantile total dependence on the group to the detriment of themselves and of their existing family, and/or other, relationships. 'Herbalife' has manipulated its adherents’ existing beliefs and instinctual desires, creating the illusion that they are exercising free will. In this way, 'Herbalife' adherents have also been surreptitiously coerced into following potentially harmful, physical procedures (sleep deprivation, protein restriction, repetitive chanting/ moving, etc.) which were similarly designed to facilitate the shutting down of an individual’s critical and evaluative faculties without his/ her fully-informed consent.
Although initiation can at first appear to be reasonable and benefits achievable, the 'Herbalife economic / medical pseudo-science gradually becomes evermore costly and mystifying. Ultimately, it is completely incomprehensible and its claimed benefits are never quantifiable. The self-righteous euphoria and relentless enthusiasm of 'Herbalife' proselytisers can be highly infectious and deeply misleading. They are convinced that their own salvation also depends on saving others.
Tellingly, the accurate terms, 'general public' and 'overall net-income,' have been specifically excluded from thought-stopping 'MLM' jargon. These terms are usually replaced by the impressive-sounding, but essentially meaningless, words, 'income' and 'customers and end users.' When faced with wide-eyed adherents, and/or grinning propagandists, spouting this particular 'MLM' jargon, 'income' can be accurately translated as, 'net-loss income,' and 'customers and end users' as, 'members of the never-ending chain of losing-participants who have been deceived into regularly purchasing effectively-unsaleable commodities, and/or services(based on the false-expectation of future reward).'
'Herbalife' itself can be accurately described as being only one part of a largely-unrecognized, ongoing, criminogenic / cultic phenomenon of historic significance. The quantifiable evidence demonstrates that, for decades, right under the noses of ill-informed, and/or naive, and /or corrupt, regulators, legislators, journalists, etc., hundreds of copy-cat 'MLM' rackets have been organized so that effectively 100% of all contributing participants were compelled to lose their money, whilst the insignificant percentage of bosses have shared billions of dollars of unlawful revenue which they have laundered as lawful 'sales.'
For many years afterwards, recovering former cult adherents can suffer from psychological problems (which are also generally indicative of the victims of abuse): depression; overwhelming feelings (guilt, grief, shame, fear, anger, embarrassment, etc.); dependency/ inability to make decisions; retarded psychological/ intellectual development; suicidal thoughts; panic/ anxiety attacks; extreme identity confusion; Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder; insomnia/ nightmares; eating disorders; psychosomatic illness; fear of forming intimate relationships; inability to trust; etc.
David Brear (copyright 2015)