Blog post first appeared on Quixtar Cult Intervention on January 30, 2009)
Didn’t Amway recently complain to the Indian Government that regulations be invoked against their competitors for operating chain letter type scams that were competing unfairly against their supposedly legit business? Couldn’t happen to a better bunch of schemers and scammers?
Since the original police investigation of Amway in Andhra Pradesh became public knowledge, David Steadson (a.k.a. Insider a.k.a. IBOFightback etc.) has been steadfastly pretending on his multiple Websites that it was purely the result of a malicious complaint made by a vindictive individual involved in a marital dispute.
Since the criminal charge against Amway India was confirmed, which blows this sinister lie out of the water, Steadson/Insider/IBOFightback has been posting comments on numerous Websites in which he now pretends that ‘it’s business as usual for Amway in India.’
In reality, Amway’s Indian agents are abandoning the organization in droves, whilst the corporate officers of Amway India now risk prison sentences. Meanwhile, the American authors of the Amway myth cannot be touched by the Indian authorities.
Dave, obviously this David Steadson* fellow can not be trusted on any point of fact involving the Amway business. It seems like so much of what goes on in the Asian MLM market is like a black hole. Hopefully there are some Indian citizens that might read this blog post and keep us up to date on what exactly is going on over there with Amway. Sounds like Amway has been put out of business, at least in this one State.
Amway likes to portray itself as being something so much more superior than the run of the meal “money circulating” and “Ponzi” schemes that seem to be popular in Asia. Amway always tries to differentiate their product based pyramid schemes from other scams and schemes. Obviously at least the regulatory authorities do not buy their arguments, at least not yet. Maybe regulatory oversight isn’t for sale in India as it is in the US?
The terms: ‘money circulating’ and ‘Prize Chit’ are used in Indian law to identify what should be more accurately described as a ‘Premeditated Closed-Market Swindle’. In Boston in the 1920s, Carlo Ponzi sold bonds printed in denominations up to $50 000. These promised a 50% profit in 12 months. Ponzi claimed that he could take the investors money and buy international postal coupons in countries with weak economies and then ship them to the USA to be exchanged for 4 times what they’d cost. This was a lie. There were no external profits. Ponzi retained absolute control of the means of exchange Amway’s instigators.
Ponzi retained absolute control of the means of exchange in a premeditated closed-market. Amway’s instigators have made this type of swindle even more complex, but, essentially, it remains the same. There are no external profits, because Amway’s products have always been deliberately priced too high. Amway’s instigators have retained absolute control over not only the means of exchange, but also the means of production and distribution in a premeditated closed-market.
What lies behind Amway’s closed-market swindle is a secondary, much larger, ‘advanced fee fraud’ using essentially the same tactics as the Nigerian bank scam. This has been operated behind a labyrinth of (apparently independent) corporate structures in order to prevent, and/or divert, investigation and isolate Amway’s instigators from liability. If you read the written statement given to the High Court by a senior company officer of Amway UK, she pretended that she had no idea what was occurring and anyway Amway UK could not be held responsible for the illegal activities of other companies (IBS, etc.) and the individuals who run them. This was Perjury. I made the company officers of Amway UK fully aware of what was occurring as long ago as the mid 1990s. At that time, Amway’s UK lawyers described my accusations as ‘foolish notions’ and circulated a letter which pretended that I’d invented everything as a result of a family dispute.
n the UK in the early 1990s, Amway also pretended to be opposed to pyramid scams and money circulating schemes. The company employed a Conservative UK member of parliament, Andrew Rowe, as a consultant ($20 000 annually). Rowe made several misleading statements in the House of Commons (concerning Multilevel Marketing in general and Amway in particular) when changes to the UK law concerning pyramid scams were being debated. At the same time, hoards of deluded UK Amway adherents contacted their members of parliament. Since the early 1990s, Amway UK has also also employed the directors of two (apparently independent) UK charities (Ian howarth, ‘Cult Information Centre’, and Graham Baldwin, ‘Catalyst’) as consultants. These charities pretend to offer advice and accurate information to members of the public, journalists, academics about cultic groups. Both directors have never openly declared their connections to Amway, but they have openly refused to categorize Amway as a cult. It is certain that Amway has followed similar information monopoly tactics in India.
Why not say that Amway operates a monopoly product based pyramid scheme? Seems so much easier. Recently I’ve taken to calling Amway a monopoly business since their products do not really compete against similar products in a fair and free market.
Distributors are taught to be product loyal customers and consumers of their own wares and therefore the products generally only compete against other products in the Amway catalog. When “negative” products are excluded from consideration, then high priced monopoly products are the obvious end result. For evidence we can turn to the Amway catalog prices which–even with the distributor discount–are priced exorbitantly higher than brick and mortar store products of similar value. ($78 retail for a one month’s supply of Double X vitamins. Even at distributor cost, this is a total money extracting ripoff!)
Since regulators refuse to recognize the obvious pyramid scheme aspects of Amway, they should then investigate the monopoly product aspects of the Amway scheme. The secondary tool and function business should be investigated in like fashion.
Amway has provided cash cow handouts to Congressmen who then stand in the shadows behind regulators, whom we all know to be asleep at the controls, allowing thousands upon thousands of American citizens along with citizens of the World to be victimized by this worst of all American Scams! Amway is a clearing house for political payoffs much the same way Al Capone was a clearing house for graft in Chicago in days of old.
Amway’s tactics of complaining about other pyramid, Ponzi, money circulating, prize chit scams is a cover to separate themselves from the pack of other predators chasing the same wildebeests! It just boggles my imagination that countries, states, courts, and regulative bodies haven’t stepped in and put an end to these criminal activities before now. Amway has deep pockets to buy hordes of lawyers and special interest lobbyists to keep the scheme rolling forward.
Politicians accept MLM money in a shameless manner. Even Presidents schedule sit down visits to the Ada, Michigan Amway Pooh Bah, Rich Devos, to accept political donations. What a shame for the Grand Old Party! To even consider accepting money that has been extracted by massive consumer fraud makes the magnitude of Amway corruption of insane proportions!
The same lack of regulative oversight which lead to the current fiscal nightmare currently allows any number of MLM pyramid schemes (to include Amway) to continue in operation long after they should have been shut down. The Federal Trade Commission does not enforce its own rules and allows Amway distributors to disregard retail selling rules which the FTC had imposed to insure that Amway does not operate as a pyramid scam.
The term ‘monopoly-based pyramid scheme’ is not sufficiently accurate. Even the more-accurate term, ‘Premeditated Closed Market Swindle’, only begins to explain the problem. In reality, what ‘Amway’ offers is a form of economic pseudo-science, but presented using a constant repetition of reality-inverting ‘commercial’ words and images. What ‘Amway’s’ deluded core-adherents actually believe is that a finite amount of their own money can be infinite. Since they are effectively unsaleable on the open market, ‘Amway’ products are irrelevant. In the final analysis, all closed-market swindles are based on shutting down victims’ critical and evaluative faculties in order to create a belief in essentially the same puerile fiction. Although blief in a ‘Ponzi scheme’ can be temporarily sustained by using the later victims’ cash to pay out the earlier victims, classically, the perpetrators are forced to abscond with the cash when the authenticity of their fictitious claims are challenged and too many victims re-enter reality and demand their fictitious profits.
The perpetrators of the ‘Amway’ fraud have sought to avoid this problem and sustain their activities by arbitrarily defining their victims as ‘Independent Business owners’. To casual observers it then appears that the victims are reponsible when they fail to make money. Victims are also conditioned to accept unconciously that they can only achieve prosperity, happiness and freedom if they believe totally in ‘Amway’. Consequently, when inevitably they fail most can be easily persuded that it was their own fault. This form of closed-logic trap is classic of many cultic movements and totalitarian regimes. Long-term adherents of the ‘Amway’ myth are, in reality, insolvent de facto slaves, but their own egos will not allow them to accept this. Core adherents who manage to break with ‘Amway’ and to confront the ego-destroying reality that they have been deceived and exploited are invariably destitute and dissociated from all their previous social contacts.
Cognitive dissonance either does one of two things. Allows victims of MLM schemes to continue on in the “Closed Market Swindle” (as you call it) or eventually see through the deception, blame themselves and flush themselves out of the scheme. I follow your reasoning and description of how it works very well. Adherents are conditioned to blame themselves for the failures of the system. Heavy mind manipulation must go on to keep people paying to play in a game so heavily stacked against them.
I have pointed out the deception of calling oneself an “Independent Business Owner” as well. There is nearly zero independence involved in signing a contract with Amway. They have carefully constructed these contracts to place themselves in nearly complete control of “their” business. To think one is operating their own independent business if a sign of insanity. Amway controls almost every aspect of the business arrangement to include product, pricing, and promotion. An independent businessman makes the rules, doesn’t abide by rules set in stone by another. Being an IBO is the biggest joke on the duped group of suckers that get fleeced by this scheme.
...You demonstrate a high-level of understanding how the trick is pulled. The essence of mental manipulation is gradually to take control of its individual subject’s means of thought (i.e. his/her words and images) shutting down their critical and evaluative faculties whilst giving them the illusion that they are making free-choices. The great paradox of cultic movements is that their core-adherents are totally convinced that no one is coercing or controlling them. However, the term ‘Amway’ (corruption of the American Way) is itself an inversion of reality. The mere fact that ‘Amway’ is still being dealt with by commercial regulators is already a victory for its instigators. In order to understand and expose any cammouflaged totalitarian movement it is vital to use accurate deconstructed terms at all times. Any commentator who repeats the reality-inverting shielding-terminology of any cultic group, but without detailed qualification (or heavy irony) demonstrates that he/she remains at a pitifully low level of understanding. sadly, it is impossible for many former cult adherents to describe their experieces using terms other than those which they were conditioned to use in their group. ‘The most powerful weapon in the hands of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed’.
-07 Oct 08
If you enjoyed reading David Brear, there is more of his work that can be found by clicking on these links:
The Worlds Largest Automobile Factory Was A Fraud
Next to the Amway Mob Madoff Is An Amateur
Mother Of Mercy, Could This Be The End of Amway?
Scientology Challenged in France and Australia: But Apologist Pose as Innocent Victims
How Amway Fraud Works: The Bakker's Advanced Fee Fraud