Monday, 9 January 2017
'MLM' racketeering to feature in George Clooney-produced, US television tragicomedy.
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 organised 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, recruitment leads, lead generation systems,' etc.).
Kirsten Dunst has been cast in the lead role in an hour-long dark comedy series about a multi-level marketing firm, according to Deadline. The series, How To Be a God In Central Florida, was written by Robert Funke and Matt Lutsky and will be directed by The Lobster’s Yorgos Lanthimos. George Clooney and Grant Heslov are producing through Smokehouse Pictures.
Dunst will play a financially-ruined widow who is scraping by at a minimum-wage job at an Orlando water park. The series will follow her quest to rise through the ranks of the pyramid scheme/multilevel marketing company that conned her to exact her revenge. In an encouraging sign for the quality of the show, the company has the pitch-perfect name “Founders American Merchandise” (see, e.g., United Sciences of America, Market America, and of course, Trump favorite American Communications Network). In other words, this show has a great premise, and the role seems perfect for Dunst. Florida’s been ground zero for fraudsters since the first swampland sale—the man who oversaw one of the biggest scams of the 1990s recently got elected governor—and Orlando’s second-tier amusement parks are an ideal setting to dive into capitalism’s seediest back alleys.
The show is coming at the right time, too. Multilevel marketing is having a moment right now: John Oliver gave it 30 minutes in November, Slate’s Helaine Olen looked at Donald Trump and Ben Carson’s ties to the industry, and Andrew Kahn and Shon Arieh-Lerer built a simulator to give everyone a taste of being ripped off by an MLM. It’s unclear why the country is so fascinated by transparent cons that promise riches but only improve things for people at the very top. Apropos of nothing, here’s President-elect Donald Trump to tell you about an exciting business opportunity!
Matthew Dessem (copyright 2017)