Thursday 26 October 2023

'MLM' is not an industry - Julie Anderson Interviews Robert FitzPatrick - 'Anti-MLM Declaration.'


In this interview with Julie Anderson, Robert FitzPatrick goes over his 'Anti MLM Declaration.' In his document, Robert states in conclusion that:

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) should:

  • end the current policy of neglect and presumption of MLM "legitimacy"
  • initiate investigations of MLM structure, methods and consequences
  • refer findings to the US Dept. of Justice.

In a recent comment sent anonymously to me, Robert FitzPatrick and I were accused of stopping (American) 'MLM' victims from filing complaints with the Federal Trade Commission by 'criticizing' it. 

In response, I posted the following:


Whoever you are, your comment is merely a limp apology for the chronic failure of US regulators to do their job and protect the American public. Furthermore, this chronic failure in the USA has led to the Big 'MLM' Lie being allowed to spread all around the world.

Since 1979, the FTC's official policy has been to sit on the fence pretending that 'MLM is a perfectly legal form of direct selling/commercial enterprise - provided potential income claims are not exaggerated and certain conditions are respected concerning the % of retail sales being conducted.' Yet each time an isolated 'MLM' company has been investigated by the FTC, it has been found to have always been acting illegally by design -making outrageous fake potential income claims and with virtually no authentic retail sales to persons who have not been contractors of that company.
Consequently, the FTC has issued what can appear to casual observers to be well-informed public warnings that 'MLMs' can be frauds. Laughably, every red flag that the FTC has outlined to the public (which indicates a fraudulent 'MLM'), has obviously been flying over every single 'Amway' copy-cat so-called 'MLM income opportunity.'

Not one 'MLM' company has set common-sense limits on the number of contractors being signed up or on the areas where they are supposed to find customers.

All 'MLMs' have offered their constantly- churning losing contractors commission payments on their own purchases and on the purchases of their recruits, etc. etc. ad infinitum.

All 'MLMs' have sought to hide, and/or mystify, the overall effectively 100% net-loss/churn rates for their so-called 'income opportunities.'

Thus, contrary to what you imagine, I am not criticizing the FTC, I'm absolutely condemning this government agency and those who have been in charge of it. I have repeatedly said that the FTC is a pathetic joke which should, itself, have been flying a flag ------- a white one! 

Years ago, as part of an attempt to rescue members of my family from the clutches of the 'Amway' racketeers, I wrote to various individuals in the UK: including trade regulators, law enforcement agents, legislators, journalists, editors, etc. However, I got absolutely no serious response to my urgent concerns. What I said at that time, is in broad agreement with Robert FitzPatrick's 'Anti-MLM Declaration.' 

The following is part of what I originally-wrote in 1999 when there was no Anti-'MLM' Movement in sight:

What has become popularly-known as, 'Multi-Level Marketing,' has been neither multi-Level nor marketing. On the contrary, it has been a reality-inverting, self-perpetuating, cultic racket in which victims have been exposed (without their fully-informed consent) to long-established, co-ordinated, devious techniques of persuasion (social, psychological and physical) designed to shut-down their critical, and evaluative, faculties. In this way, millions of our fellow citizens (including members of my family in Yorkshire) have been temporarily dissociated from external reality and deceived into buying infinite shares of what can only be their own finite money; all in the false-expectation of a demonstrably-non-existent future reward. In exchange for their unlawful losing investment payments (which have been laundered as 'lawful retail sales'), 'MLM' victims have been given exorbitantly-priced (effectively unsaleable) goods/services. Whilst they have remained under the contol of the pernicious 'MLM' fiction, victims have been deluded de facto slaves dissipating their own physical, financial, social, family and mental resources in an attempt to lure others into the same blame-the-victim cultic trap. It remains unclear how much damage this historically-significant, but still unrecognised, criminogenic phenomenon has done, and is doing, to the UK economy, not to the mention the social, and psychological, damage it has done, and is doing, to our fellow citizens.

David Brear (copyright 2023)


International Association to Expose, Study and Prevent Pyramid Schemes
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April, 2023
From: Robert L. FitzPatrick

Dear PONZINOMICS Readers, Colleagues and Friends,

Saying It Loud

"ANTI-MLM" is now a bona fide, large-scale consumer movement reaching millions around the world. More than a "consumer" movement, ANTI-MLM is, first, a movement for Truth over Big Lie.

Movement status was achieved only within the last 5 years or so, after decades of being denied, discredited or ignored.

In this early stage, ANTI-MLM has no office, spokesperson, or treasury. These may come. It does have volunteers, activists, academics, attorneys, researchers, podcasters, collegial networks, Reddit subgroups, and international conferences. Victim silence and shame are breaking down. ANTI-MLM is now respected and recognized by the media. ANTI-MLM is growing.

ANTI-MLM has profound grievances against MLM – billions in consumer losses, millions of damaged lives, disrupted families, pseudo-economics distorting work values, false feminism to exploit women, deceptive income claims raising false hopes, quack health remedies, cult coercion, corruption of regulators, and pyramid scheme fraud on a global scale.

Yet, beyond grievances, ANTI-MLM is still formulating what it stands for. ANTI-MLM does not have a common definition or even description of MLM, and therefore does not have a unified position on what to do about MLM.

Is MLM just a bad "business" or is it racketeering? Is it a real "industry" with a competitive market and a trade association or just a Ponzi scam using lawyers and lobbyists to disguise and protect it? Is MLM a form of direct selling that just needs more "retail" or is it a calculated pyramid scheme that cannot be reformed? Are regulatory "rules" needed or a ban on "endless chain" financial schemes? As penalties for MLM CEOs and vanguard recruiters – fines and reprimands or jail time? Is the appropriate law enforcement agency the FTC that regulates trade or the FBI that prosecutes frauds?

PONZINOMICS is the first book to dissect and fully describe MLM, how it began, the "direct selling" disguise, pyramid scheme model, the lobbying and evasion of law, and its cultic character and methods. It's an ANTI-MLM textbook. Other books from new authors are coming soon, as well as new documentaries, podcasts and websites.

The facts of MLM are known. Irrefutable evidence keeps mounting of MLM's perverse identity and the gigantic scale of its harm. But Anti-MLM has not yet made its own, unifying "Declaration" of what MLM is, and what needs to be done about it.

To advance the movement and support informed dialogue, I offer a "Declaration" for ANTI-MLM (edited for brevity)

#1: MLM Is Not “Business”; MLM Is Not “Direct Selling”
MLM contracts are never voluntary. Necessary information is always withheld. A fair exchange of value does not occur. The MLM financial proposition is inherently deceptive and harmful. Sustained, profitable retailing – direct selling – is non-existent and impossible under "MLM."

#2: The Use of Business Terminology for MLMs Is Inappropriate and Misleading
Using conventional business terms is misleading, inaccurate, and reinforces MLM's "business" disguise. “Sales, distributor, profit, direct selling, compensation, bonus," etc., do not apply in describing endless chain/money transfer scams. "Manager, Executive, Coach, and Director," etc., misleadingly indicate managerial or decision-making roles in a real business, when they refer only to levels of pyramid recruiting.

#3: MLMs Are Essentially Identical; MLM Product-Transactions Launder Money-Transfers and Disguise MLM as Direct Selling
MLMs are distinct, recognizable, essentially identical. All exhibit an endless-chain structure, payment and recruiting mandates, and extreme money-transfers from later to earlier participants. All produce the same devastating loss rates. MLM product-transactions at fixed pricing are not market-based, not driven by consumer demand, but are induced costs for securing recruiting-chain positions and transferring money from later to earlier recruits.

#4: Multi-Level Marketing Is a Destructive Cult
To enroll, gain money from, control, and silence victims, MLMs use undue influence and coercive control, resulting in financial loss, damaged relationships and psychological harm. They lure victims with utopian false promises and claims of mystifying knowledge for gaining financial success and fulfillment. Recruits are indoctrinated to accept the "infinite" endless-chain as a financial model, that "belief" shapes reality, to shun family and friends who question MLM, to reject critical thinking, and to unquestioningly believe and strictly obey MLM leaders – while paying fees, purchasing products and recruiting.

#5: US Law Enforcement Policy toward Multi-Level Marketing Is Unfounded; Perpetuates Harm; Must Be Changed.
Evidence does not support US law enforcement's presumption of MLM legitimacy and neglect of investigation and prosecution. Decades of evidence irrefutably show:

  • Absence of profitable and sustainable retail selling – invalidating the MLM identity of "direct selling" and revealing a closed, rigged financial scam.

  • Annual loss rates among MLM participants in excess of 99% – invalidating MLM claims of "income opportunity" and revealing enormous harm to millions each year.

  • Pervasive and deliberate falsehoods regarding “direct selling” identity, costs, health claims, failure rates, business opportunity, and recruiting requirements – revealing systematic deception and intentional harm.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) should:
  • end the current policy of neglect and presumption of MLM "legitimacy"
  • initiate investigations of MLM structure, methods and consequences
  • refer findings to the US Dept. of Justice.


  1. I lost my partner to an 'MLM.' I thought it was just the one group. Just like to say the more I've discovered about other MLMs, the more gob-smacked I've become. They are everywhere these days and out of control. I sort of get why this has never become headline news. MLMs only look OK because governments do nothing. They are obviously all the same. Until you and Robert came along, no one had sussed the best words to explain them. Thanks for all your effforts!!!

    1. Thank-you for your support.
      You are correct, 'MLMs' look legit because, by doing effectively-nothing to stop them, regulators and law enforcement agents, have actually made them look legit. Sadly, the authorities have been a significant part of the 'MLM' problem. My experience has been that, if you try to contact the relevant agencies to inform senior staff of their own failure, you will now find name-less, sympathetic low-level staff (some of whom will admit to having personal experience/knowledge of 'MLM's), but who are ultimately powerless. This situation would be a farce, if it wasn't for the serious results of the Big 'MLM' Lie.
      A while ago, I posted about the Japanese authorities finally launching a well-informed criminal investigation of the 'Moonie' cultic racket. Tragically, this long-overdue action has only been taken, because the son of a brainwashed 'Moonie' victim became so frustrated with the Japanese authorities previous chronic failure to protect the public, that he assassinated the former Japanese Prime Minister, whom he believed to have been corrupted by the 'Moonie' bosses.
      Although I would never condone violence, I can fully-understand this man's anger and frustration. He seems to have decided that, if there is no rule of law when it comes to the criminal activities of a cult, then why should he respect the law?

    2. Wow! I didn't get it was a cult victim who killed the Japan PM. Why was he so mad at him? Was he really corrupt for the moonies?

    3. Put it this way, various Japanese politicians (including Shinzo Abe and members of his family dating back to his grandfather) have acted as useful idiots for the 'Moonie' cult. The 'Moonies' have posed as being 'a peace-promoting anti-Communist religious movement,' but for decades, the group's bosses have been allowed to steal billions of $ from countless Japanese victims who have become the brainwashed de facto slaves of the cult.
      The 41 year old man who shot Shinzo Abe, Tetsuya Yamagami, has revealed that his life had been derailed and poisoned, due to his mother undergoing the classic cultic personality-transformation and handing over all her family's property and money to the 'Moonies.'
      Yamagami was forced to quit his education, and his planned career. He then spent years trying to bring his mother back to reality and obtain justice. However, when the Japanese authorities did effectively-nothing, he began to blame Shinzo Abe and other members of his government, who were known to have connections with the 'Moonies.'
      Personally, I have experienced my own mother being controlled by a paranoid 'us vs them' scenario peddled by the 'Amway' cultic racketeers. You stated in your first comment that you had lost your partner to an 'MLM' cult. I would say that, for me, it worse than having my mother die, because she turned into a completely different person - a deluded fiend. She handed over all my family's money and property to my brother who was completely under the control of his 'Amway' handlers. This derailed and poisoned my own life.
      No matter who I complained to, effectively nothing was done to stop the destruction of my family. The thought of committing murder never entered my head, but I can perfectly understand how Tetsuya Yamagami became so angry and frustrated, that he finally resorted to extreme violence.

  2. Hi David, I just wanted to congratulate you on the Anti-MLM Declaration and Movement. Although it's 38 years ago that my five year employment in the "Direct Selling" Industry ended - actually there were some non MLM direct sellers then - every word of the recent declaration rings true. Rather like Madoff duped everyone with a Big Lie in plain view, including thousands of clients, journalists, family, closest friends, regulators and JP Morgan so Amway and the awful copycats like Herbal Life duped even their own employees. It only took me one year as CEO to start feeling very, very uncomfortable and start taking action to find "retail sales" but in my 3 years before that, like 200 other employees at Amway UK, we really had swallowed the story. We were really proud of our work in supporting distributors and believed in the 'business opportunity'. The leading distributors were wary of us employees and we now know why. I can't ever see the USA regulators taking action and the big MLMs are powerful but your work will ensure most of the world will be protected. I've been campaigning for =PayIn30Days or less for nearly 30 years and I haven't had half the success you have. The great sadness, tragedy - like the current Post Office scandal, the loan charge victims and the 3 million #ExcludedUK from income support during COVID is that innocent people who just wanted to make ends meet through a "business of their own" should suffer so much from lies and coverups. That suffering not includes physical and mental health issues, life and livelihood strangling debt but also a horrific number of addictions and suicides. Keep going. All Best.

    1. Thanks Tony. The Big 'MLM Income Opportunity' Lie has produced a vast stinking trough of stolen money, and many greedy little pigs have had their snouts firmly planted in it.
      e.g. For decades, some of the world's most-prestigeous accountancy firms have been signing off on fraudulent financial declarations given to them by the employees of 'MLM' front companies. These declarations have laundered billions of $ of unlawful losing investment payments (based on the false-expectation of future reward) as 'lawful retail sales (based on value and demand).' Governments have been collecting sales tax on these unlawful transactions, making them appear to be lawful.
      The current prosecution of 'Amway' in India by the Enforcement Directorate sets out how, in this way, $7 billions has been stolen from millions of vulnerable Indian citizens over the years.
      UK law enforcement has been made fully-aware of all this, but has done absolutely nothing to protect the UK public. I have found it impossible to make direct contact with senior UK law enforcement agents and policy makers.
      The real bosses/beneficiaries of 'MLM' cultic rackets remain hidden behind mystifying labyrinths of corporate structures. These have been maliciously constructed to prevent/divert investigation and insulate the bosses from criminal liability.