Thursday 2 June 2016

'Trump University' - a criminal racket using cult-style tactics.

Court documents have revealed co-ordinated devious techniques of persuasion deployed by employees at Donald Trump's (now defunct) bogus 'Investment School' against ill-informed and vulnerable individuals.
Coercive behaviour modification techniques designed to trick individuals into believing they were making a free choice to enter an advance fee fraud (peddled as 'education courses' containing Donald Trump's exclusive secrets to obtain financial success) are included in records released during a class-action lawsuit against the so-called 'Trump University.'
Predictably, Mr Trump continues to pretend moral and intellectual authority and has flatly denied that his 'school' misled 'students.'
'Trump University Inc.' is the focus of two class-action lawsuits in San Diego, California, alleging the company defrauded victims by failing to deliver on promises to impart Mr Trump's secrets of real estate investment success. Victims say they were misled by glossy propaganda boasting that Mr Trump had personally 'hand-picked' teachers and 'overseen the curriculum.' 

Robert Guillo, retiree, with a certificate he received after paying $34,995. to attending Trump University.
Robert Guillo, received an impressive-looking piece of paper in exchange for $34 995.

In responseTrump steadfastly pretends that the majority of his customers (98%) were satisfied. He is evidently secure in the knowledge that the majority of fraud victims always remain silent in defence of their egos.

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 Gonzalo Curiel.
The documents were released following an order by US District Court Judge, Gonzalo Curiel. The judge ruled that the files were in the public interest since Mr Trump had become 'the front-runner in the Republican nomination in the 2016 presidential race.'
Classically, Trump has completely ignored his victims' suffering and  attacked the Judge as 'biased.'


In a separate civil lawsuit in New York, Attorney General, Eric Schneiderman has alleged that 'Trump University' used deceptive practices and misled students about the support they would get, but Mr Trump has again flatly denied any wrongdoing. A judge has already said the $40m action in New York should proceed to trial, but Mr Trump is appealing this ruling and has attacked Schneiderman as politically motivated.

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The so-called 'Trump University' was instigated in 2005 as a commercial enterprise under the Trump brand, peddling so-called 'courses in entrepreneurship.' However, the real extent of 'University Chairman' Mr Trump's involvement is one of the key points at issue. Until it closed in 2010, ten thousands individuals are known to have given their money to the so-called 'Trump University' and an estimated total of $40 millions was collected.

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Victims were initially lured into the trap by Mr. Trump's 'billionaire' celebrity name and image, and by  'Free Trump University Introductory Classes.' 

The released documents include so-called 'playbooks' for employees which explain how to 'close the deal' and trick victims into buying further so-called 'business seminars' at up to $34 995 (£24 288). The so-called 'playbooks' also contained precisely-worded scripts for 'Trump University' recruiters to fob off reporters. They were instructed exactly how to dress and run 'Trump University' events, as well as how to identify victims who had access to capital assets. The unsealed files included depositions from former 'Trump University' executives describing how the fraud functioned. Former recruiter, Ronald Schnackenberg wrote that he resigned in 2007, because the program used 'misleading, fraudulent and dishonest' tactics.
Mr. Trump's recruiters were to use 'the most persuasive words in the English language according to a study by the Psychology Department of Yale University: You, New, Money, Easy, Discovery, Free, Results, Health, Save, Proven, Guarantee, and Love.'
Recruiters  were to talk to potential victims in a manner designed to have a 'powerful subconscious effect' on their thinking: 'Take every opportunity to emphasize that they need to learn the Trump way for continued and growing success!'
Trump Bronze Elite ($9,995), Trump Silver Elite ($19,495), or Trump Gold Elite ($34,995).
Potential victims were asked to disclose their liquid assets to 'help the Trump sales team' determine if they could be 'buyers.'
Recruiters were told to 'collect personalized information' about victims, e.g. the 'playbooks' said, 'are they a single parent of three children that may need money for food?'
According to the so-called 'playbooks:' 
'money is never a reason for not enrolling in Trump University; if they really believe in you and your product, they will find the money. You are not doing any favor by letting someone use lack of money as an excuse.'
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Michael Sexton (left).

Extensive testimony from former 'Trump University' executives begins to uncover Mr Trump's real level of guilt. Michael Sexton, ex 'Trump University President,' said in a 2012 deposition, that Mr Trump offered 'very good and substantive input' to the program's marketing materials.

David Brear (copyright 2016) 


  1. Hi David, still missing you on mn but just wondered what kind of personality would you say DT has? Is he psychopath or sociopath or something else? His contempt for just about everyone in the face of evidence of his typically underhand business practices is gobsmacking. To think he may one day be President just doesn't bear thinking about. Surely it could not actually happen?

    1. Anonymous - Thanks.

      Donald Trump reminds me of 'United States Air Force Brigadier General Jack Ripper' in Stanley Kubrick's tragicomedy, 'Dr. Strangelove.'

      When it comes to the USA, nothing surprises me any more. If Donald Trump were to be elected US President, then I think WWIII might swiftly follow.

      Unfortunately, history proves that at times of mass-alienation (following wars, natural disasters, economic crises, etc.), otherwise mediocre charlatans and would-be demagogues peddling some form of future redemption on Earth rather than in Heaven, find it much easier to become widely-accepted as authentic Messiahs.

      For years, Donald Trump has exhibited the diagnostic criteria of severe and inflexible Narcissistic Personality Disorder. However, the more people have fallen for his ego-inflating act: the more Trump has believed it himself. I fear that if he doesn't soon get fully held to account for his many criminal activities, Trump will turn into a full-blown megalomanical psychopath.

      Trump's comic-book model of reality is already paranoid.

  2. Trump should get jailed over this, but he won't. Trump University had scam written all over it. Trump said he could teach anyone to be a successful real estate tycoon, but what all TU taught victims was to keep handing over their cash.

    1. Anonymous - The so-called 'Trump University' was the corporate front for essentially the same advance fee fraud which lurks behind hundreds of 'MLM income opportunity' rackets.

  3. Was TU linked to ACN?

    1. Anonymous - On paper, the corporate structures known as 'Trump University' and 'ACN' were independent of each other. However, these were essentially the same blame the victim rackets being pitched by Donald Trump, so yes, obviously they were linked by Donald Trump.

      'ACN' is a cultic racket which (2006-2015) openly used Donald Trump to lure ill-informed individuals into a self-perpetuating non-rational ritual belief system which had the hidden objective of exploiting them. The 'ACN' racket continues today, and although Trump's name and image have vanished from its reality-inverting propaganda, Trump is still linked with this racket, because he's received (and kept) millions of stolen $ from it.

  4. David ,
    What is your opinion on trumps involvement with ACN . Reading more about it, it seems he was used more as a shill and was not really part of the fraud. Apparently they paid him $2.5 mm for one speech ... I would think getting this type of offer would raise questions of legitimacy. It's a ridiculous amount of money to offer , but clearly worth it for the company as they then proceeded to use the trump name as a veil of legitimacy for scamming millions.... I guess the question is, how much can you really blame trump ? Many have fallen prey by MLM to be used as shills - Albright , Renaldo , etc ..

    1. ShakeOilSalesman - In reality, Donald Trump's well-paid involvement with the 'ACN' mob forms part of an overall pattern of ongoing major racketeering activity.

      Donald Trump is no ordinary 'MLM' shill and he's certainly not an 'MLM' useful idiot who has merely been bought by the 'ACN' racketeers. Remember, this is a pile of (stolen) money which we know Trump's been paid by the 'ACN' mob. Imagine what he's also received under the table

      In fact, I would characterise Mr. Trump as a narcissistic 'MLM' parasite who once tried, but failed, to launch his very own 'MLM' racket, 'Trump Network.'

      Over the years, Donald Trump has lured countless victims into many different 'MLM' rackets, because of a deeply-misleading book, 'Why we want you to be rich.' This classic 'MLM' brainwashing tome bears Trump's signature along with that of Robert Kiyosaki. The book repeats all the standard closed-logic thinking which is designed to keep ill-informed victims paying to play the 'MLM' game of 'capitalist' make-believe and convince them that failure to make money in 'MLM' is always entirely their own fault.

      Madeleine Albright is perhaps the highest paid 'MLM' useful idiot of all time, but beneath her on the long grey list we find a whole host of celebrities, politicians and retired politicians (including Tony Blair).

      If Ms. Albright sincerely believes that the likes of 'Herbalife' are entirely lawful enterprises, then she is probably too stupid to be held to account under the RICO Act, but (at the very least) she should be obliged to return all the stolen money she's been paid. Ms. Albright's father (who was part of the courageous Czech government in exile during WWII) must be spinning in his grave.

    2. Loads of ACN advertising had DT endorsing the "opportunity". Most ACN recruits only joined because DT said "it was a tremendous company led by tremendous people with tremendous products." What's that but a tremendous lie?

    3. As I pointed out on another post, no matter what quantifiable evidence proves him to be lying, Donald Trump can't see any statement which he makes in pursuit of his own current interests to be a lie. Indeed, at the time Trump made the outrageous reality-inverting propaganda statements about the 'ACN' racket, he almost certainly believed this comic-book drivel to be true, because promoting 'ACN' served his financial interests at that time.

      Subsequently, completely contrary to his previous statements, Trump has insisted that he knew nothing about how 'ACN' functions and that he only was paid to make motivational speeches at 'ACN' events. Again, because these latest demonstrably-false statments serve Trump's current political interests, I have no doubt that he believes them to be true.

      Like all severe and inflexible Narcissists, Donald Trump, will do or say anything to control people's view of him, and he can't recognise the truth even when it falls on his wooly head.

    4. Are you saying that the leaders of ACN have duped DT or was he part of their scam?

    5. Anonymous - Like all narcissists, Donald Trump is easy to manipulate, but in the case of his dealings with the bosses 'ACN' Mob, these are narcissists feeding off, and magnifying, the delusions of another narcissist.

      The 'ACN' bosses evidently attracted Trump by telling him how wonderful he is, and paid him to tell the world how wonderful they are. They then all pretended to have access to secret knowledge which can enable anyone to become wonderful (just like them) and they peddled this pernicious fairy story to vulnerable individuals who needed to believe that it was true.

  5. 'A guy known for extravagant consumption, an overbearing braggart, a figment of PR spin, a regular on the covers of celebrity scandal magazines, a promoter of professional wrestling, a bankrupt executive in the gambling industry, a schemer notorious for skipping out on debts, a man famous for win-lose “deals.”'

    That was written by Robert Fitzpatrick back in 2009. The Dilbert cartoon creator, Scott Adams, defends Trump supporters by saying they are trying to shake America up by electing a man who would, in another time, be deemed unfit for president. I'm afraid that doesn't wash. Trump doesn't care about Americans. He just cares about getting hold of their money by any means necessary.

    1. Trump loves America and Americans. He is a billionaire and one of the greatest businessmen on the planet. If adults want to believe Trump can teach them to make money, then he would be a fool not to take their money.

    2. Anonymous - Have you heard of a guy called Sergei Mavrodi?

      In the aftermath of the unexpected fall of the Soviet regime (which left millions of ordinary Russians, particularly pensioners, facing destitution as the buying power of the once-protected rouble collapsed, and hyper-inflation took-hold) Mavrodi (an importer of office equipment) stepped-forward in the role of economic saviour and instigated what was soon to become one of the most-extensive closed-market swindles of all time, known as 'MMM.' .

      It has been estimated that between 1992 and 1994, 30 millions ill-informed Russians were deceived into giving a total of several billions US dollars to Mavrodi and his criminal associates, in the deluded belief that they were all going to receive a future reward of 1000% (to be paid annually). Typically, Mavrodi began to make the truth increasingly unthinkable, by using some of his ill-gotten gains to buy media advertising (including a series of humorous television commercials) as well as obtain public association with popular Russian sports, charities, celebrities and opinion-makers.

      Mavrodi later entered politics, but what he was doing was neither original nor unique.

      I presume if you'd have been around in the 1920s you would have said

      'Carlo Ponzi loves America and Americans. He is a millionaire and one of the greatest businessmen on the Planet. If adults want to believe Ponzi can teach them to make money, then he would be a fool not to take their money.

      Interestingly, Ponzi also planned on entering politics.

  6. David. Eric here. Never had heard of MMM before your above mention. Based on the size of his theft of "several billions", I assumed he and compatriots were long out of business..maybe even still serving some long prison sentence somewhere. To my surprise and amazement, I see that MMM is revamped (using the same name no less) and using bitcoin to continue the robbery.

    1. Eric - Over the years, Mavrodi has been behind various closed-market swindles, including a fake 'stock exchange' which was targetted mainly at Americans.

      Mavrodi has given interviews in which he boasts that his latest 'MMM' activities are pyramid schemes, but then he claims that the entire world economy is a pyramid scheme and that he is trying to oppose the racketeers who run the world economy by adopting their own tactics.

      Mavrodi and his followers live in a paranoid parallel world and he is undoubtedly a megalomaniacal psychopath.

  7. The Trump University model was just the umpteenth variation on "no money down" real estate investing that went along with the bubble economy, and rests on the fundamental financial delusion that borrowed money is not capital at risk. The answer is just wait till the market turns against you and you can't make the payments...

    1. Rogier van Vlissingen - The so-called 'Trump University' was a highly-organised advance fee fraud hidden behind a legally-registered corporate front.

      To non-Americans, it seems almost unbelievable that Donald Trump isn't already behind bars.

      The peddling of 'secret knowledge' can also be described as an 'esoteric blame-the-victim racket,' because victims are always taught never to give up and to believe 100% that eventually they will succeed. Thus, when esoteric racket victims inevitably fail to make money, they can be easily persuaded to believe that it was entirely their own fault for quitting and for not believing that they would eventually succeed.

      Almost any variation of this closed-logic 'secret knowledge' fairy story can be peddled to persons who are desperate to make money. Trump pretended to have a secret knowledge about real estate investing which he was willing to share with others (for a price). There are even some crooks have pretended to have a 'secret knowledge' about playing roulette.

      The 'secret knowledge' fairy story always infects a large group of victims when it has been tailored to fit the spirit off the times.