Wednesday, 26 July 2017

From 'Amway' to 'Utility Warehouse' - 'MLM' rackets have infiltrated the UK police service.




Statutory Warning

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.
  • 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 rigged-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.).
_________________________________________________________________________________

The following article has been specifically written to inform and guide senior UK police officers.

Picture James Hardisty, (JH1009/10h) New temporary Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police Dee Collins.
Dee Collins, Chief Constable of West Yorkshire
Last week it was brought to my attention by a Blog reader that the current Chief Constable of West Yorkshire, Dee Collins, has apparently forbidden subordinate officers from participating in the so-called 'Utility Warehouse MLM Income Opportunity'. As far as I'm aware, to date, no public statement has been issued by the Chief Constable, or by the West Yorkshire police, on these matters. Also, at this stage, I do not know whether the apparent ban applies only to 'Utility Warehouse' or to all 'Amway' copy-cat so-called 'MLM Income Opportunities.'

Roger Mariner
Roger Mariner

Our only source for the above information, was a somewhat foolish freedom of information request submitted to the West Yorkshire police on July 3rd 2017 by a self-righteous (and evidently still deluded) 'Utility Warehouse Group Leader' from West Yorkshire, by the name of Roger Mariner. 
In this jargon-laced document (see below) Mr. Mariner (an insurance claims assessor who joined 'Utility Warehouse' in 2007) admits that numerous serving police officers have been amongst his recruits. He then goes on to make the outrageous, and potentially libellous, suggestion (in the form of questions) that:
Chief Constable Collins might have imposed the ban due to her involvement with another 'MLM company' or for other hidden financial motives.
Mr Mariner's other claims that:
Dee Collins tried, but failed, to impose a 'ban' on Utility Warehouse whilst serving in Derbyshire,
Utility Warehouse is 'approved' by all other Chief Constables and is 'government regulated,'
are equally inaccurate.
________________________________________________________________________________
Dear West Yorkshire Police,
I understand that Dee Collins previously implemented a ban , subsequently overturned, in her previous Derbyshire remit that stopped officers pursuing a part time business with Utility Warehouse in their private lives. 
When she moved to West Yorkshire she proceeded to do the same without , as far as I can see, any legal justification. This cost me a huge amount of income as at the time I had many serving officers doing the business - which is approved by every other force and government regulated, and once people in my team found out she had stopped it they thought there was something illegal about it. 
Please tell me if she has any vested interest in another MLM company or any connection via family to the energy or telecommunications business. 
Please also give me the reasons why you should see fit to deny a citizen who is a police officer the right to a private life , guaranteed under European law?
Yours faithfully,
Roger Mariner
_www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/reasons_for_dee_collins_stopping

_________________________________________________________________________________


West Yorkshire Police replied July 24th 2017

Dear Mr Mariner,

 Thank you for your request for information, received by West Yorkshire Police on 03/07/17.

Chief Constable Dee Collins has no interests in any multi-level marketing (MLM) companies, nor does she have any connections via family to the energy or telecommunications business. West Yorkshire Police has a Business Interests and Voluntary Working policy which applies to both police officers and police staff and does not attempt to preclude individuals from undertaking additional employment. The policy covers the process on notifying when individuals have or wish to pursue a business interest, and the considerations which will aid in determining if the interest is acceptable or not. Any requests for a business interest are notified to the Business Interest Team and then considered by the Business Interest Panel. Please see the link below for the Business Interests and Voluntary Working.

www.westyorkshire.police.uk/sites/default/files/files/policies/business_interests_and_voluntary_wo rking_new_format.pdf

If you are not satisfied with how this request has been handled or with the information provided, please read the advice notice attached to this letter. If you do wish to take up your right of complaint, please remember to quote the reference number above, in any future correspondence.


Yours sincerely,

Rebecca Howcroft Disclosure Officer


www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/415733/response/1010887/attach/3/FOI%203128%2017%20Mariner.pdf?cookie_passthrough=1
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Various 'MLM/Prosperity Gospel' rackets have been using UK police officers, and former officers, as shills. Due to the increasing stress of the job, a significant % of serving UK police officers are always desperate to take early retirement from the service.

http://www.policeintoprivatesector.co.uk/utility-warehouse-opportunity/

Thus, a significant minority of UK serving police officers have been a particularly vulnerable target for recruitment into 'MLM' rackets like 'Amway', 'Herbalife' ,'Utility Warehouse', 'Forever Living Products,' Ariix', etc.

Back in the 1990s, when I first began to challenge the chapter of the pernicious 'MLM' fairy story entitled 'Amway,' to my horror, I discovered that numerous West Yorkshire police officers were adherents. At that time, my brother (who was a fanatical 'Amway' recruiter living in the town of Halifax) boasted that there were plenty of local policemen in his group. Members of my family were acting under the belief that:

'Amway' had existed in the UK for many years and had been endorsed by UK Conservative politicians and government regulators.

the widespread involvement of police officers was a further guarantee that 'Amway' could not be fraudulent. 

However, nothing could be further from the truth. 

Faced with an ongoing Federal Trade Commission investigation of 'Amway' in the late 1960s, the phenomenon of 'MLM/Prosperity Gospel' cultic racketeering began to spread out of the USA  (first infecting Canada, then Europe and Australia) in the early 1970s. The 'MLM' phenomenon was initially allowed to enter the UK 1972-1973 (apparently without any official scrutiny whatsoever) in the guise of 'Amway UK Ltd.' 

By the late 1980s, the 'Amway' racketeers were boasting 100 000 'Distributors' in the UK, but they never disclosed the overall churn/loss rate. This tragicomic situation continued without any regulation until 2007, when (mainly as a result of my own persistent complaints) the Company Investigation Branch of the Dept. of Trade and Industry (then Britain's equivalent of the US Federal Trade Commission) made a timid attempt to close 'Amway UK Ltd' by filing a Public Interest Bankruptcy Petition in the UK High Court (in the name of the Minister of Trade, John Hutton). At this time, 'Amway' claimed only 35 000 'Distributors' in the UK, but soon afterwards, this figure fell to 12 000.

Briefly, the UK government's case was brought against 'Amway UK Ltd.' on behalf of the British public, on the grounds that the company had been grossly-exaggerating likely earnings in its so-called 'MLM Income Opportunity' whilst charging significant sign-up fees to participate in it. The unobtainable 'Dream Amway Lifestyle'  had been presented (and sold) to 'Amway' participants in publications, recordings, meetings, etc., and it was submitted by government prosecutors that all these practises were in breach of UK trading schemes, and lotteries, legislation. Thus, UK government prosecutors requested that the High Court follow established legal precedent and deem these accumulated illegal revenues a new debt/liability to be handed over to the court, but which 'Amway UK Ltd.' did not have assets to cover. The financially insolvent company would then be automatically closed. 

Privately, I was assured by Company Investigation Branch officials that, once this standard civil insolvency procedure had been followed, a criminal investigation/prosecution of the vast frauds lurking behind 'Amway UK Ltd.' would then be pursued by the UK Serious Fraud Office.

Even though senior UK trade regulators had been fully-informed how the 'Amway' racket functions, at no stage was it clearly explained to the High Court that between 1973 and 2006 at least one million ill-informed UK and Irish citizens had been quietly churned through the so-called 'Amway MLM Income Opportunity.' Nor was it explained that 'Amway's' effectively 100% overall loss/churn rate had been deliberately hidden from the UK and Irish public in order to deceive new, temporary ill-informed victims and thus, sustain the fraud.

As far as the High Court was concerned,when examined in isolation, 'Amway UK Ltd.' didn't appear to be a significant problem. For a start, it had never once declared an annual trading profit in 33 years. In fact, on paper 'Amways' British front-company had lost millions of pounds and had only been kept afloat by regular cash injections coming from a labyrinth of other 'Amway' corporate structures registered in Europe and Asia (but which were controlled from the USA). In the light of this extraordinary evidence, the blindingly obvious question for UK prosecutors to have have put to the judge was:

What possible motive could anyone have to invest many millions of pounds in legal fees to attempt to prevent such an apparently pointless and chronically-insolvent company (like 'Amway UK Ltd.') from being closed?

Unfortunately, common-sense was not applied and this key-question was never asked, let alone answered, because the Trade Ministry investigation had been restricted to 'Amway UK Ltd.'

In reality (during 33 years of unregulated activity) the unlawful profits from the 'Amway' racket had been generated in the UK by peddling the never-ending chain of would-be 'MLM Diamond millionaires' a 'step by step plan to achieve total financial freedom.' This 'plan' was contained in a never-ending stream of over-priced publications, recordings, pay-through-the-nose-to-enter meetings, etc. It has been estimated that as much as one billion US dollars could have been removed (mostly in cash) from Britain via these secondary advance fee frauds. 





The bulk of the 'Amway' theft was carried out in the UK behind another labyrinth of legally-registered corporate structures, like 'International Business Systems UK Ltd.' This privately controlled British company (based in Somerset) appeared on paper to be owned and run by 4 'Amway Diamond Distributors' -  Jerry and Mandy Scriven, and Pat and Greta Gregory. In reality, it was controlled by members of the Yager family in the USA.





'MLM/Prosperity Gospel racketeers, like Dexter Yager, have pretended to be ordinary poor humans who have discovered the secret of how to transform into fabulously wealthy superhumans. They offer to share their secret knowledge with anyone for a price. Part of the price is always that the victims' surrender their critical and evaluative faculties. In other words, this is a particularly dangerous advance fee fraud employing co-ordinated devious techniques of social psychological and physical persuasion, but it can also be characterised as a very sophisticated form of protection racket in which vulnerable individuals are presented with a stark choice between financial doom and financial salvation.

https://www.cs.cmu.edu/~dst/Amway/blakey_report.pdf

In the 'Amway' racket, the secondary frauds have been controlled by just a handful of wealthy crime-families. This unoriginal system was first identified in the 1980s by Mafia specialist, Prof. Robert G. Blakey - who was employed as an expert by the attorneys of Proctor & Gamble Corp. who were embroiled in a bizarre series of lawsuits with 'Amway' and its bosses.

Thus, as Blakey predicted, to casual observers, the 'plan'-peddling front-companies appear to be independent of 'Amway.' However, when the UK government finally began to investigate 'Amway UK Ltd.,' the parallel British companies were immediately closed-down. The British 'Amway Diamonds' who ostensibly owned and ran them (like Jerry and Mandy Scriven), were excommunicated from 'Amway.' In reality, this classic hermetic system had been set up to prevent, and/or divert, investigation and insulate its beneficiaries from liability. Most of the cash profits from the British 'Amway' racket had been shipped to persons like the members of the Yager family in the USA, who are the real controllers of the front-companies like 'International Business Systems.'

None of the above criminal enterprise has ever been investigated, because the UK government's restricted bankruptcy petition against 'Amway UK Ltd.' was mysteriously declined and no further penalty imposed, first by a single High Court Judge and then by 2 out 3 Appeal Court Judges, after 'Amway UK's' company officers were allowed to submit unchallenged false statements to the High Court, in which they pretended to have been completely unaware that the company had been in breach of the law. They also gave unenforceable undertakings to the High Court that the company had already voluntarily reformed its activities to bring it in line with UK legislation.

Today, it is difficult to estimate accurately the total number of serving British police officers, and former officers, who are adherents, and who have been, adherents of 'MLM/Prosperity Gospel' cults. However, the figure certainly runs into thousands, if not tens of thousands. The British police officially allows its serving officers to pursue lawful part time business interests (provided these are compatible with police service), but officers have first to obtain the permission of their Chief Constable.  


David Brear (copyright 2017)

Thursday, 20 July 2017

'Utility Warehouse' - An appeal to contractees and former contractees.


Image result for utility warehouse


Image result for utility warehouse

Would anyone who has been involved with Utility Warehouse (either as a customer/member or distributor/partner) please contact this Blog by e-mail. Your information can be of great assistance.


axiombooks@wanadoo.fr


If required, your anonymity will be guaranteed.



Wednesday, 19 July 2017

'MLM' amendment FY18 - Yet another piece of the overall pattern of ongoing major racketeering activity.

Statutory Warning

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.

  • 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 rigged-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.).

David Brear (copyright 2017)
________________________________________________________________
Image result for william keep

Image result for the hill

Why multi-level marketing companies fear an honest conversation

http://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blog/economy-budget/342526-why-multi-level-marketing-companies-fear-an-honest

There’s no fool like an old fool, or a young fool, or a rich fool, or a poor fool.
Unfortunately, the multi-level marketing industry and its trade association the Direct Selling Association hopes to limit regulators’ power to stop the kind of business foolishness that makes victims of adult consumers of any age.
By garnering member support for the amendment passed Thursday night by a voice vote to the House Financial Services and General Government Appropriations bill for FY18, the industry attempts to avoid what it dreads most, an honest public hearing on the risk of MLM companies operating as illegal pyramid schemes.
The amendment, sponsored by Rep. John Moolenaar (R-Mich.), my home state and the home of Amway, among other MLM companies, legitimizes endless chain selling to the detriment of consumers. The language mirrors that of last year’s H.R. 5230, a bill roundly criticized by consumer protection groups.
Since 1996 the Federal Trade Commission filed 26 pyramid scheme cases against MLM companies, each time emphasizing false earnings representations and other deceptive marketing.
How did the FTC do?
Of the few MLM companies willing to face FTC prosecutors in court, all lost. Of the remaining cases, each MLM settled, agreeing to FTC terms. The vast majority closed their doors.
As anyone with a Facebook account knows, MLM activity can have a virus-like movement through social media. Here is an industry that, according to industry data, engages with approximately eight percent of the U.S. adult population each year, yet generates less than one percent of total U.S. retail sales.
Subtract the products that MLM distributors buy for their own use and keep buying to remain “eligible” to earn income and you get the idea of just how small MLM sales are to consumers who are not also MLM distributors. Factor in the churn of the distributor base and ongoing recruitment becomes a major source of income for distributors and to sustain the overall business model.
The FTC’s successful track record illustrates not only the quality and consistency of its legal arguments but also the continuing egregious behavior of members of the industry, and the role of the trade group as dutiful apologist.
One need only look at the DSA members subject to prosecutions and class actions to wonder about the conversations that take place at trade association meetings.
Are they the kind that I or any other business dean would send our students to watch?
The type of fraud known as an “endless chain” dates back to at least 1900 in the United States. In the 1920s and 1930s two cases attracted national attention because the defendants sold a commonly used consumer product — women’s silk stockings.
In the former case, the Nation’s Business reported that the Supreme Court “dealt a blow” to endless chains by letting stand the lower court decision of a “fraud order.” Less than five years later a similar scheme grew quickly until it too was closed by prosecutors.
The schemes did not purport to sell products to consumers other than to those who became part of the endless chain and help grow the scheme.
If made into law, the amendment passed on Thursday ties the hands of federal regulators and further facilitates an already troubled industry that lacks transparency.
If the MLM industry and DSA truly believe in the various manifestations of the MLM business model then let them welcome a full congressional hearing on the matter.
After all, it was DSA President Joe Mariano who said, "There are a lot of pyramid schemes that like to disguise themselves as legitimate direct-selling companies. That creates an environment where there can be confusion" and “Pyramids are bad guys…Their mere existence confuses the marketplace and makes it more difficult for legitimate direct-selling companies to do business and to be understood.”
By the way, the FTC agreed with Mariano when it wrote in 2011: “Drawing on its law enforcement experience, the Commission acknowledged that some MLMs do engage in unfair or deceptive acts or practices, including operating pyramid schemes or making unsubstantiated earnings claims that cause consumer harm.”
As documented by the non-profit TruthInAdvertising.org, evidence that mirrors FTC concerns six years ago continues to build, which may be what motivates the troubled industry to push an amendment that will tie the hands of regulators.
William W. Keep (copyright 2017)
William W. Keep is the dean of the School of Business at The College of New Jersey.

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Joanna Lumley has not cut her ties with the 'Utility Warehouse' racket.

Statutory Warning

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.
  • 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 rigged-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.).
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Image result for the guardian
Joanna Lumley Utility Warehouse advert



Part-transcript of a 'Utility Warehouse' recruitment video, 2017

"Becoming a Utility Warehouse partner is easy and risk free
Even the joining fee is fully refundable
If you have second thoughts after your training you'll get it back no questions asked.
You can work on your business part time, full time or from time to time.
It's like a mini franchise, but without any financial risk or stock to buy.
Spend a few hours per week building your business and you will quickly find yourself earning an extra few hundred pounds each month.
Keep going, work a little harder and you could earn thousands of pounds extra each month
You don't need to be a salesman, a utility expert or a workaholic, just organised and committed and passionate about helping others to save money and building a better future for yourself
And you won't be thrown in at the deep end - you'll get help every step of the way with free training an experienced mentor and local support groups who will share their knowledge and experience with you.
Every time you introduce a new member to Utility Warehouse, you'll get paid.
The more new members you introduce: the more you'll earn, it's that simple.
And what's more you will continue to get paid a % of their Utility bill for as long as they stay a member.
That means every time they boil a kettle, switch on the heating, make a phone call, you'll get paid.
But it doesn't stop there.
If the members you introduce become a partner like you and sign up the people they know you'll get paid again - a small part of their utility spend every month.
That could mean a regular extra income for life.
And there's another reward that I really love - seeing more and more people share in the success of Utility Warehouse, not just cutting their household bills, but as a partner fulfilling their ambitions and dreams.
There's no limit to how far or how fast your business can grow.
Start small with the people you know and grow big with the people you don't.
Tens of thousands of people have already become Utility Warehouse partners and are reaping the rewards financially socially and through gaining new skills and confidence.
It's a purple army that is leading a revolution in the way that people buy their utility services.
Why don't you join them?
It could earn you financial freedom for life."


Joanna Lumley  

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


www.theguardian.com/money/2017/jul/08/get-rich-quick-utility-warehouse-energy-scheme-joanna-lumley

Last week, a UK financial journalist, Rupert Jones, began to take a closer look at one chapter of the pernicious 'Utopian' fairy story entitled  'Utility Warehouse MLM Income Opportunity.' Although this commendable media report (which was guided by my own research and that of Robert FitzPatrick) could only scratch the surface of the 'MLM' phenomenon, within hours of it appearing, the 'Utility Warehouse' propaganda video it referred to (featuring iconic British celebrity, Joanna Lumley) had vanished from Youtube.

Despite the fact that the bosses of 'Utility Warehouse' have (contrary to the UK Fraud Act 2006 section 3) made a considerable effort to hide the quantifiable results of their so-called 'MLM Income Opportunity' from the public, probably on the advice of the Guardian's lawyers, Rupert Jones described this demonstrably-unlawful enterprise as: 'legal.'

A Blog reader then contacted me who imagined that, because the video had vanished, 'Joanna Lumley must have realised her gaff and cut her ties with Utility Warehouse.'

Unfortunately, Joanna Lumley is still being used not only to commit fraud in the UK, but also to prevent victims of the fraud from facing reality and complaining. Furthermore, although I accept how difficult it must be for her to face the truth, Joanna Lumley now cannot plead ignorance.

So far, Joanna Lumley has refused to make any comment on these matters, whilst Blog readers can still watch her acting out the comic-book ritual 'MLM' controlling scenario as 'reality,' by clicking on the link below.

www.uwopportunity.co.uk/?v=autoplay


David Brear (copyright 2017)


Saturday, 8 July 2017

'Utility Warehouse' - UK corporate-front for yet another 'Amway' copy-cat 'MLM/Prosperity Gospel' cult.


Statutory Warning

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.
  • 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 rigged-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.).
_________________________________________________________________________


Image result for guardian money


Image result for rupert jones the guardian
Rupert Jones (Deputy-Editor Guardian Money Section) 

www.theguardian.com/money/2017/jul/08/get-rich-quick-utility-warehouse-energy-scheme-joanna-lumley

Blog readers might possibly have spotted that the courageous part-exposé of the 'Utility Warehouse Prosperity Gospel' cultic racket which appeared in today's 'Guardian' was heavily-influenced by my previous article as well as by the work of Robert FitzPatrick. That said, the Guardian's editors and attorneys have so far ignored, and therefore effectively-censored, my published comprehensive analysis of 'Utility Warehouse' as being just one small part of an overall pattern of ongoing major racketeering activity which stretches back to the middle of the last century.

To his credit, Rupert Jones would probably be the first to admit that he is unqualified to write about the disturbing phenomenon lurking behind 'MLM income opportunities;' for underneath its reality-inverting commercial façade, 'Utility Warehouse' has exhibited the universal identifying characteristics of a pernicious cult.

(Again it is interesting to note that, since I posted this article, several of the incriminating linked videos have suddenly become unavailable)





http://leach-ross.co.uk/The_Team_Works/Dianas_MAD_Presentation.html


We are Clive Leach, David Ross & Diana Ross, directors of Leach-Ross & Associates Ltd., which is an Authorised Distributorship of The Utility Warehouse Discount Club owned and operated by the Telecom Plus Plc group of companies. The purpose of this site is to serve members of our team as an additional resource to that provided to them by Telecom Plus Plc and to provide an insight to prospective team members as to the “nitty gritty” of this brilliant business.







There is already a large body of documentary evidence proving that 'Utility Warehouse' adherents have been, and are being, exposed (without their fully-informed consent) to co-ordinated devious techniques of social, psychological and physical persuasion, designed to shut down their critical, and evaluative, faculties - dissociating them from external reality in order to exploit them and prevent them from complaining. Lying at the dark heart of the 'Utility Warehouse' cult has been the classic guilt-producing closed-logic controlling-narrative. This constantly tells 'MLM' converts that only those who exclude all negativity and continue to work hard and believe totally that they will achieve the future redemption of financial freedom, can achieve financial freedom. Thus, all those who lose money and quit must not have believed totally and only have themselves to blame. 


_______________________________________________________________________ 

http://cultcharacteristics.blogspot.fr/

The Universal Identifying Characteristics of a Cult 

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In 1961 (after years of field-research, including the interviewing of US servicemen and civilians held prisoner during the Korean War), Dr. Robert Jay Lifton (b. 1926) published, ‘Thought Reform and the Psychology of Totalism.’ In this standard medical text-book, Dr. Lifton identified 8 ‘themes’ which, if present in any group, indicate that its members are being subjected to a mixture of social, psychological and physical pressures, designed to produce radical changes in their individual beliefs, attitudes and behaviour.


1). ‘Milieu control’ — the attempted control of everything an individual experiences (i.e. sees, hears, reads, writes and expresses). This includes discouraging subjects from contacting friends and relatives outside the group and undermining trust in exterior sources of information; particularly, the independent media.


2). ‘Personal or mystical manipulation’ — charismatic (psychologically dominant) leaders create a separate environment where specific behaviour is required; leading to group members believing that they have been chosen and that they have a special purpose. Normally group members will insist that they have not been coerced into group membership, and that their new way of life and beliefs are the result of a completely free-choice.

3). ‘Demand for purity’ — everything in life becomes either pure or impure, negative or positive, etc. This builds up a sense of shame and guilt. The idea is promoted that there is no alternative method of thinking or middle way, to that promoted by the group or by those outside it. Everything in life is either good or bad and anything is justified provided the group sanctions it as good.


4). ‘Confession’ — personal weaknesses are admitted to, to demonstrate how group membership can transform an individual. Group members often have to rewrite their personal histories and those of their friends and relatives, denigrating their previous lives and relationships. Other techniques include group members writing personal reports on themselves and others. Outsiders are presented as a threat who will only try to return group members to their former incorrect thinking.


5). ‘Sacred science’ — the belief in an inexplicable power system or secret knowledge, derived from a hierarchy who must be copied and who cannot be challenged. Often the group’s leaders claim to be followers of traditional historical figures (particularly, established political, scientific and religious thinkers). Leaders promote the idea that their own teaching will also benefit the entire world, and it should be spread.


6)‘Loading the language’ — a separate vocabulary used to bond the group together and short-circuit critical thought processes. This can become second nature within the group, and talking to outsiders can become difficult and embarrassing. Derogatory names, or directly racist terms, are often given to outsiders.


7). ‘Doctrine over persons’ — individual members are taught to alter their own view of themselves before they entered the group. Former attitudes and behaviour must then be re-interpreted as worthless, and/or dangerous, using the new values of the group.


8). ‘Dispensing of existence’ — promotion of the belief that outsiders — particularly, those who disagree with the teaching of the group — are inferior and are doomed. Therefore, they can be manipulated, and/or cheated, and/or dispossessed, and/or destroyed. This is justifiable, because outsiders only represent a danger to salvation.

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Another giant in the field of academic research into the cult phenomenon, is Prof. Margaret Singer (1921-2003).  Her major work which was published in 1996, is 'Cults in Our Midst.' (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cults_in_Our_Midst). In this, Prof. Singer set out 'six conditions' in which totalistic thought-reform can be achieved:


1). Keep the person unaware of what is going on and how attempts to psychologically condition him or her are directed in a step-by-step manner.


Potential new members are led, step by step, through a behavioral-change program without being aware of the final agenda or full content of the group. The goal may be to make them deployable agents for the leadership, to get them to buy more courses, or get them to make a deeper commitment, depending on the leader's aim and desires.


2). Control the person's social and/or physical environment; especially control the person's time.


    Through various methods, newer members are kept busy and led to think about the group and its content during as much of their waking time as possible.


    3). Systematically create a sense of powerlessness in the person.


      This is accomplished by getting members away from their normal social support group for a period of time and into an environment where the majority of people are already group members.

      The members serve as models of the attitudes and behaviors of the group and speak an in-group language.

      Strip members of their main occupation (quit jobs, drop out of school) or source of income or have them turn over their income (or the majority of) to the group.

      Once the target is stripped of their usual support network, their confidence in their own perception erodes.

      As the target's sense of powerlessness increases, their good judgment and understanding of the world are diminished. (ordinary view of reality is destabilized)

      As the group attacks the target's previous worldview, it causes the target distress and inner confusion; yet they are not allowed to speak about this confusion or object to it - leadership suppresses questions and counters resistance.

      This process is sped up if the targeted individual or individuals are kept tired - the cult will take deliberate actions to keep the target constantly busy.


      4). Manipulate a system of rewards, punishments and experiences in such a way as to inhibit behavior that reflects the person's former social identity.


        Manipulation of experiences can be accomplished through various methods of trance induction, including leaders using such techniques as paced speaking patterns, guided imagery, chanting, long prayer sessions or lectures, and lengthy meditation sessions.

        The target's old beliefs and patterns of behavior are defined as irrelevant or evil. Leadership wants these old patterns eliminated, so the member must suppress them.

        Members get positive feedback for conforming to the group's beliefs and behaviors and negative feedback for old beliefs and behavior.


        5). The group manipulates a system of rewards, punishments, and experiences in order to promote learning the group's ideology or belief system and group-approved behaviors.


          Good behavior, demonstrating an understanding and acceptance of the group's beliefs, and compliance are rewarded while questioning, expressing doubts or criticizing are met with disapproval, redress and possible rejection. Anyone who asks a question is made to feel there is something inherently disordered about them to be questioning.

          The only feedback members get is from the group; they become totally dependent upon the rewards given by those who control the environment.

          Members must learn varying amounts of new information about the beliefs of the group and the behaviors expected by the group.

          The more complicated and filled with contradictions the new system is and the more difficult it is to learn, the more effective the conversion process will be.

          Esteem and affection from peers is very important to new recruits. Approval comes from having the new member's behaviors and thought patterns conform to the models (members). Members' relationship with peers is threatened whenever they fail to learn or display new behaviors. Over time, the easy solution to the insecurity generated by the difficulties of learning the new system is to inhibit any display of doubts—new recruits simply acquiesce, affirm and act as if they do understand and accept the new ideology.


          6). Put forth a closed system of logic and an authoritarian structure that permits no feedback and refuses to be modified except by leadership approval or executive order.

            The group has a top-down, pyramid structure. The leaders must have verbal ways of never losing.

            Members are not allowed to question, criticize or complain. If they do, the leaders allege the member is defective, not the organization or the beliefs.

            The targeted individual is treated as always intellectually incorrect or unjust, while conversely the system, its leaders and its beliefs are always automatically, and by default, considered as absolutely just.

            Conversion or remolding of the individual member happens in a closed system. As members learn to modify their behavior in order to be accepted in this closed system, they change—begin to speak the language—which serves to further isolate them from their prior beliefs and behaviors.

            ________________________________________________________________________



            Building on Lifton's and Singer's solid foundation (and after much research) I concluded that pernicious cultism is an evolving criminogenic phenomenon which, like all phenomena, cannot be accurately defined. Therefore, I set down the essential, and universal, identifying characteristics of a pernicious cult, and I first published these in 2005:

            It is important to note that cults don't just suddenly appear and they don't always exhibit exactly the same characteristics. This is because (like cancers and viruses) cults grow and evolve (and sometimes explode or even implode) and their identifying characteristics appear at different stages of their evolution cycle. Thus, the fact that a particular group doesn't exhibit all of the characteristics described in the following document, doesn't mean that it won't in the future or that it should not be identified as being a constituent part of the overall cult phenomenon.

            ___________________________________________________________________

            The Universal Identifying Characteristics of a Cult
            ___________________________________________________________________


            Apart from its use in the sense of ‘a popular fashion especially followed by a specific section of society’ or ‘a person or thing popularised in this way,’ the traditional definition of the English noun, cult (Latin cultus worship), has been ‘a system of religious worship (Latin religiosus obligation, bondage) especially as expressed in ritual,’ or ‘devotion or homage to a person or thing.’ However, the word is now also used as shorthand for what is more-accurately described as a pernicious cult. This ongoing historic, and criminogenic, phenomenon can be briefly described as: 

            any self-perpetuating, non-rational/esoteric, ritual belief system established or perverted for the clandestine purpose of human exploitation.

            Such groups are identified by the following characteristics:
              

            1). Deception. Pernicious cults are presented externally as traditional associations. These can be arbitrarily defined by their instigators as almost any banal group (‘religious’, ‘cultural’, ‘political’, ‘commercial’, etc.). However, internally, they are always totalitarian (i.e. they are centrally-controlled and require of their core-adherents an absolute subservience to the group and its patriarchal, and/ or matriarchal, leadership above all other persons). By their very nature, pernicious cults never present themselves in their true colours. Consequently, no one ever becomes involved with one as a result of his/her fully-informed consent.

            2). Self-appointed sovereign leadership. Pernicious cults are instigated and ruled by psychologically dominant individuals, and/or bodies of psychologically dominant individuals (often with impressive, made-up names, and/or ranks, and/or titles), who hold themselves accountable to no one. These individuals have severe and inflexible Narcissistic Personalities (i.e. they suffer from a chronic psychological disorder, especially when resulting in a grandiose sense of self-importance/ righteousness and the compulsion to take advantage of others and to control others’ views of, and behaviour towards, them).* They steadfastly pretend moral and intellectual authority whilst pursuing various, hidden, criminal objectives (fraudulent, and/or sexual, and/or violent, etc.). The admiration of their adherents only serves to confirm, and magnify, the leaders’ strong sense of self-entitlement and fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beautyideal love, etc.
            __________________________________________________________________________

            ‘Narcissistic Personality Disorder,’ is a psychological term first used in 1971 by Dr. Heinz Kohut (1913-1981). It was recognised as the name for a form of pathological narcissism in ‘The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders 1980.’ Narcissistic traits (where a person talks highly of himself/herself to eliminate feelings of worthlessness) are common in, and considered ‘normal’ to, human psychological development. When these traits become accentuated by a failure of the social environment and persist into adulthood, they can intensify to the level of a severe mental disorder. Severe and inflexible NPD is thought to effect less than 1% of the general adult population. It occurs more frequently in men than women. In simple terms, NPD is reality-denying, total self-worship born of its sufferers’ unconscious belief that they are flawed in a way that makes them fundamentally unacceptable to others. In order to shield themselves from the intolerable rejection and isolation which they unconsciously believe would follow if others recognised their defective nature, NPD sufferers go to almost any lengths to control others’ view of, and behaviour towards, them. NPD sufferers often choose partners, and raise children, who exhibit ‘co-narcissism’ (a co-dependent personality disorder like co-alcoholism). Co-narcissists organise themselves around the needs of others (to whom they feel responsible), they accept blame easily, are eager to please, defer to others’ opinions and fear being seen as selfish if they act assertively. NPD was observed, and apparently well-understood, in ancient times. Self-evidently, the term, ‘narcissism,’ comes from the allegorical myth of Narcissus, the beautiful Greek youth who falls in love with his own reflection.

            Currently, NPD has nine recognised diagnostic criteria (five of which are required for a diagnosis):
            •       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.
            ______________________________________________________________________

            3). Manipulation. Pernicious cults employ co-ordinated, devious techniques of social and psychological persuasion (variously described as: ‘covert hypnosis’, ‘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 the 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. Pernicious cults manipulate their adherents’ existing beliefs and instinctual desires, creating the illusion that they are exercising free will. In this way, adherents can also be surreptitiously coerced into following potentially harmful, physical procedures (sleep deprivation, protein restriction, repetitive chanting/ moving, etc.) which are similarly designed to facilitate the shutting down of an individual’s critical and evaluative faculties without his/ her fully-informed consent.

            4). Radical changes of personality and behaviour. Pernicious cults can be of any size, duration and level of criminality. They comprise groups, and/or sub-groups, of previously diverse individuals bonded by their unconscious acceptance of the self-gratifying, but wholly imaginary, scenario that they alone represent a positive or protective force of purity and absolute righteousness derived from their leadership’s exclusive access to a superior or superhuman knowledge, and that they alone oppose a negative or adversarial force of impurity and absolute evil.Whilst this two-dimensional, or dualistic, narrative remains the adherents’ model of reality, they are, in effect, constrained to modify their individual personalities and behaviour accordingly.

            5). Pseudo-scientific mystification. The instigators of pernicious cults seek to overwhelm their adherents emotionally and intellectually by pretending that progressive initiation into their own superior or superhuman knowledge (coupled with total belief in its authenticity and unconditional deference to the authority of its higher initiates) will defeat a negative or adversarial force of impurity and absolute evil, and lead to future, exclusive redemption in some form of secure Utopian existence. By making total belief a prerequisite of redemption,adherents are drawn into a closed-logic trap (i.e. failure to achieve redemption is solely the fault of the individual who didn’t believe totally). Cultic pseudo-science is always essentially the same hypnotic hocus-pocus, but it can be peddled in an infinite variety of forms and combinations (‘spiritual’, ‘medical’, ‘philosophical’, cosmological,’extraterrestrial’, ‘political’, ‘racial’, ‘mathematical’, ‘economic’, New-Age’, 'magical', etc.), often with impressive, made-up, technical-sounding names. It is tailored to fit the spirit of the times and to attract a broad range of persons, but especially those open to an exclusive offer of salvation (i.e. the: sick, dissatisfied, bereaved, vanquished, disillusioned, oppressed, lonely, insecure, aimless, etc.). However, at a moment of vulnerability, anyone (no matter what their: age, sex, nationality, state of mental/ physical health, level of education, etc.) can need to believe in a non-rational, cultic pseudo-science. Typically, obedient adherents are granted ego-inflating names, and/or ranks, and/or titles, whilst non-initiates are referred to using derogatory, dehumanising terms. Although initiation can at first appear to be reasonable and benefits achievable, cultic 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 cult proselytisers can be highly infectious and deeply misleading. They are invariably convinced that their own salvation also depends on saving others.

            6). Monopoly of information. The leaders of  pernicious cults seek to control all information entering not only their adherents’ minds, but also that entering the minds of casual observers. This is achieved by constantly denigrating all external sources of information whilst constantly repeating the group’s reality-inverting key words and images, and/or by the physical isolation of adherents. Cults leaders systematically categorise, condemn and exclude as unenlightened, negative, impure, absolutely evil, etc. all free-thinking individuals and any quantifiable evidence challenging the authenticity of their imaginary scenarios of control. In this way, the minds of cult adherents can become converted to accept only what their leadership arbitrarily sanctions as enlightened, positive, pure, absolutely righteous, etc. Consequently, adherents habitually communicate amongst themselves using their group’s thought-stopping ritual jargon, and they find it difficult, if not impossible, to communicate with negative persons outside of their group whom they falsely believe to be not only doomed, but also to be a suppressive threat to redemption.


            7). False justification. In pernicious cults, a core-group of adherents can be gradually dissociated from external reality and reformed into deployable agents, and/or de facto slaves, and/or expendable combatants, etc., furthering the hidden criminal objectives of their leaders, completely dependent on a collective paranoid delusion of absolute moral and intellectual supremacy fundamental to the maintenance of their individual self-esteem/identity and related psychological function. It becomes impossible for such fanatics to see humour in their situation or to feel pity for, or to empathise with, non-adherents. Their minds are programmed to interpret the manipulation, and/or cheating, and/or dispossession, and/or destruction, of inferior outsiders (particularly, those who challenge their group’s controlling scenario) as perfectly justifiable.

            8). Structural mystification. The instigators of pernicious cults can continue to organise the creation, and/or dissolution, and/or subversion, of further (apparently independent) corporate structures pursuing lawful, and/or unlawful, activities in order to prevent, and/or divert, investigation and isolate themselves from liability. In this way, some cults survive all low-level challenges and spread like cancers enslaving the minds, and destroying the lives, of countless individuals in the process. At the same time, their leaders acquire absolute control over capital sums which place them alongside the most notorious racketeers in history. They operate behind ever-expanding, and changing, fronts of ‘limited-liability, commercial companies,’ and/or ‘non-profit-making associations,’ etc. Other than ‘religious /philosophical’ and ‘political’ movements and ‘secret societies,’  typical reality-inverting disguises for cultic crime are:

            ‘charity/ philanthropy’; ‘fund-raising’; ‘lobbying’ on topical issues (‘freedom’, ‘ethics’, ‘environment’, ‘human rights’, ‘women’s rights’, ‘child protection’, ‘law enforcement’, ‘social justice’, 'peace,' etc.); ‘publishing and media’; ‘education’; ‘academia’; ‘celebrity’; ‘patriotism’; ‘information technology’; ‘public relations’; ‘advertising’; ‘medicine’; ‘alternative medicine’; ‘nutrition’; ‘rehabilitation’; ‘manufacturing’; ‘retailing’; ‘direct selling/ marketing’; ‘multilevel marketing’; ‘network marketing’; ‘regulation’; ‘personal development’; ‘self-betterment’; ‘positive thinking’; ‘self-motivation’; ‘leadership training’; ‘life coaching’; ‘research and development’; ‘investment’; ‘real estate’; ‘sponsorship’; ‘bereavement/trauma counselling’; ‘addiction counselling’; ‘legal counselling’; ‘cult exit-counselling’; ‘financial consulting’; ‘management consulting’; ‘clubs’; etc. 

            9). Chronic psychological deterioration symptoms. The long-term core-adherents of pernicious cults are psychotic (i.e. suffering from psychosis, a severe mental derangement, especially when resulting in delusions and loss of contact with external reality). Core-adherents who manage to break with their group and confront the ego-destroying reality that they’ve been systematically deceived and exploited, are invariably destitute and dissociated from all their previous social contacts. For many years afterwards, recovering former core-adherents can suffer from one, or more, of the following 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 ( asthma, skin disorders, headaches, fatigue, etc.); sexual problems/ fear of forming intimate relationships; inability to trust; etc.


            David Brear (copyright 2017, first published 2005)
            _________________________________________________________________________


            Illogically, in his recent article, Rupert Jones stated that:

            'The (Utility Warehouse) partner payments scheme is legal,'

            but in almost the same breath, he was forced to admit that:

            '...trying to get your head around its byzantine system of commissions and fees, plus the jargon – there’s something called the “stairway to success” with eight different levels of partner – takes some doing.'

            Thus, if Rupert Jones couldn't fathom how the 'Utility Warehouse income opportunity' is supposed to function, what chance have its adherents had? Indeed, without a well-informed comprehensive explanation of what is happening here, what chance has anyone had? 

            www.utilitywarehouse.co.uk/partner-help/partner/answer/stairway-to-success

            In reality, the so-called 'Partner Payments Scheme,' is typical, cultic hypnotic hocus-pocus designed to shut-down the critical, and evaluative, faculties of not only 'Utility Warehouse' adherents, but also those of all casual observers.

            In plain language, the 'Partner Payments Scheme' is a steaming pile of bedazzling bullshit, whilst the 'Utility Warehouse' racket is neither original nor unique and consequently, it cannot be fully-understood in isolation.

            Currently somewhere approaching 20 000 ill-informed people are being quietly churned through the 'Utility Warehouse' racket each year (i.e. at this rate, almost 200 000 per decade), whilst there is no quantifiable evidence to prove that any of these former so-called 'independent distributors/partners' have generated one penny of net-profit for themselves. This endless-chain of hopefuls have been temporary de facto slaves who have collectively generated vast net-profits for their temporary de facto masters. Since none of this key-information has been made available to new 'Utility Warehouse' recruits (in an easy to understand format), this so-called  'income opportunity' is revealed as being intrinsically fraudulent under criminal law in the UK .

            http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2006/35/section/3.

            For more than 20 years the 'Utility Warehouse' racket could not have continued to function and find the required new de facto slaves to invest their time and money in it, without its wealthy bosses deliberately hiding the truth from the public, regulators, journalists, etc. However, the same common-sense analysis applies to many other essentially identical 'MLM' rackets, whilst the phenomenon first infected the UK in 1973, when 'Amway' arrived.

            Given the growing mountain of evidence, how any chapter of the vast, mind-numbing self-perpetuating 'MLM' lie can be described as 'legal,' is beyond me? That said, no one has been enforcing the Fraud Act in the UK in respect of 'MLM' rackets, and I suppose the counterfeit companies peddling, and dissimulating, variations of the 'MLM' lie have been legally-registered. Mysteriously, there has never been anti-rackteering legislation in Britain.

            ________________________________________________________________________



            Image result for charles wigoder
            Charles Wigoder (b. 1960)



            Economic alchemist, Charles Wigoder (the ostensible boss of 'Utility Warehouse') says that his company's 'business model' is 'Multi-Level Marketing,' but (for obvious reasons) he doesn't care to explain where this term comes from. That said, I very much doubt if Charles Wigoder actually knows, or would be prepared to acknowledge, the true history of the pernicious fairy story which his company has peddled and upon which his current (approximately £200 millions) fortune precariously rests.



            Image result for nutrilite vintage



            The very first 'MLM' racket used an effectively-valueless, but nonetheless exorbitantly-priced, inert quack medicine labelled, 'Nutrilite Double X,' The racket was run behind a mystifying labyrinth of privately-owned corporate fronts by three Americans, Carl F. Rehnborg, Lee Mytinger and William Casselberry. This classic hermetic system prevented, and diverted, investigation and isolated its instigators/bosses from liability.



            See original image

            Carl F. Rehnborg (1887-1973)

            Carl F. Rehnborg and his first family, circa 1920


            When Charles Wigoder was born in 1960, 'Nutrilite' was a 20 year old, increasingly-controversial trademark owned by Carl F. Rehnborg a.k.a. 'Dr.' Rehnborg, a 73 year old previously-penniless, American toothpaste-salesman (of Germanic Swedish origin). However, from 1939 onwards, Rehnborg had acquired a considerable fortune by reinventing himself as a historically-important, visionary-scientist, autodidactic scholar and philanthropic businessman. Lawyers from the US Food and Drug Administration Bureau of Enforcement, who successfully-challenged the authenticity of some of Rehnborg's many outrageous lies in the federal courts during two decades, privately knew him to be nothing more than one of a trio of sinister quacks protected by an echelon of attorneys who had combined, and updated, the medicine show and Ponzi-scheme to reflect the spirit of the age. However, just like his contemporary, L. Ron Hubbard, Rehnborg was no ordinary charlatan; he exhibited the diagnostic criteria of severe and inflexible Narcissistic Personality Disorder. 


            Former penniless science-fiction author, turned multi-millionaire, cultic racketeer, L. Ron Hubbard, posing as a historically-important,visionary scientist and philanthropist who had discovered the secret of how ordinary humans can become healthy, wealthy happy and free super humans. Hubbard was also prepared to share this secret with anyone (for a price).
            The Nutrilite Story




            Tellingly, Rehnborg's own comic-book version of his life and achievements (set-down in various published documents, including a book signed by his son, and heir, Sam Rehnborg), reads uncannily like the autobiography dreamt-up by 'Scientology' instigator, L. Ron Hubbard (a man who was once famously described as 'a combination of  Baron Münchausen and Adolf Hitler').

            Unfortunately, just as with the followers and casual observers of Hubbard, the only information made available to the followers and casual observers of Rehnborg, has been carefully controlled.


            Rehnborg, Circa 1927.

            Thus, to date, the world has been led to believe that Rehnborg (who was born in 1887 in   Florida) :- 

            - was a noted-child-prodigy who read voraciously and who amazed his teachers with his detailed knowledge of: philosophy, religion, history, politics, astronomy, mathematics, aerodynamics, chemistry and human rights. 

            - was  fluent in many languages, including Chinese. 

            - was not a believer, but he studied Christianity, making a boyhood pilgrimage to Palestine and Egypt.

            - had a great passion in his teen-age years - the study of planet Earth, its population, its food reserves, and the 'technology of conservation of natural products, but his first love was always the science of nutrition. 

             - was, by the tender age of 27, already a 'doctor of chemistry' who had moved to Tianjin in China to work as an accountant for an American Oil company.

            - ran a shipbuilding company, before becoming the representative of the 'American Dairy Company' and, eventually, the representative of 'Colgate Products Company' in Shanghai.

             - witnessed ‘mass-starvation’ in China, before surviving a ‘siege of Shanghai’ by supplementing his diet (and that of his starving friends) with an improvised, vitamin and mineral-enriched broth made from grasses, vegetables, powdered limestone, ground-up bones and rusty nails, etc.

            - sailed across the Pacific (studying its many island-cultures on the way) and landed on the West Coast of the USA, where, despite having no money, he managed to establish a 'research laboratory’ in his modest loft-apartment on California’s Balboa Island.


            - selflessly dedicated 6 years of his life (1927-1934) to develop a ‘Revolutionary New Food Supplement’ to save mankind from starvation, assisted only by his dutiful young wife, Edith.

            - first naively tried to give his wonderful new formula away, but the cynical world wasn’t interested, so, in 1934, he reluctantly decided to create ‘California Vitamins Inc.’ 

            - moved his flourishing  ‘Business’ to a ‘Manufacturing and Processing Facility’ in Buena Park, California, and created the ‘Nutrilite Products Company Inc.’ in 1939. 

            - acting in association with a ‘Network Sponsoring Company’, ‘Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.’ (to whom he’d sold ‘Exclusive Nutrilite Distribution Rights’) created the ‘World’s First Multi-Level Marketing Scheme’

            - had lived the American dream, starting from nothing to become an admired and respected millionaire through ‘Helping 15 thousands fellow Americans to build their own MLM Businesses.’ 


            Carl F. Rehnborg  circa 1939


            Exactly like L.Ron Hubbard, scant quantifiable evidence has been produced to prove that Rehnborg was qualified (let alone expert) in anything, other than lying to vulnerable people to get their money. There is even reason to doubt that Rehnborg (who apparently did once work for 'Colgate & Co') was in China in the exact period he claimed during, and after, WWI; whilst all the other exciting episodes in his various occidental and oriental odysseys are largely anecdotal. However, the truth about Rehnborg’s convoluted ‘Rags to Riches’ American fairy story is an entirely different matter.


            See original image


            In 1934, Rehnborg (aged 48) legally-registered ‘California Vitamins Inc.’allegedly to manufacture and distribute what he arbitrarily defined as 'the World’s First Multi-Mineral/Multivitamin Plant-Based Food Supplement - a Unique Combination of Vitamins and Minerals in a Special Base.’  At first, this so-called ‘Health Tonic’ was brewed up, and peddled as 'Vita-6'  a.k.a. 'Vitasol,' in insignificant quantities. Consequently, it was of no particular interest to regulators.





            However, anyone with an ounce of common sense could immediately tell that Rehnborg’s ‘invention’ was just another essentially-inert potion (in the absurd tradition of the medicine show); a random mixture of cheaply-procured common substances with an expensive price tag. It had probably taken Rehnborg 6 hours to concoct, not 6 years.



            Aerial View of Nutrilite Products Inc. Plant



            By 1939, Rehnborg had spotted the existing term, 'Nutrilites' (probably in an old scientific magazine). So he legally-changed the name of his pay-to-play game of make-believe to the technical-sounding ‘Nutrilite Products Company Inc.’ and moved his quackery onto an almost unprecedented scale. Soon, Rehnborg was legally employing dozens of white-coated workers in purpose-built industrial buildings in Buena ParkCalifornia. He also acquired an alfalfa farm near to the city of Hemet in California's San Jacinto valley, but it is unclear exactly where he suddenly found all the necessary capital to pay for these impressive sites and their modern equipment. To his followers and casual observers, Rehnborg’s activity looked like any other lawful enterprise. His staff were ordinary honest folk, to whom the truth was also unthinkable.



            Image result for nutrilite XX vintage




            At this time, Rehnborg rechristened his potion ‘Nutrilite Double X (‘XX’Supplement.’ He now proposed to offer it as two ‘complimentary products’ in one pack -  comprising little green bottles of bright red ‘Multivitamin Capsules’ and boxes of pale-coloured ‘Multi-Mineral Tablets.’ The product was deliberately designed to look modern and scientific (like a proprietary medicine), but, tellingly, the price was fixed at just less than $20 a box (the equivalent of several hundred dollars today). 



            See original image
            See original image


            See original image
            Perhaps it's just a coincidence, but in 1940 Charlie Chaplin's celebrated satire of 'Nazi' Germany, 'The Great Dictator', had transformed the Swastika into the 'Double Cross.'


            Rehnborg claimed that the ‘XX’ brand-name was derived from the Roman numeral representing twenty. It should have been read as ‘double cross;’ for when the former toothpaste salesman’s pricey wampum was routinely analysed by independent chemists working for the FDA, it was discovered that (although it contained essentially what it said on the labels and was quite harmless) ‘XX Supplement’ really did mostly comprise a random mixture of concentrated cheaply-procured, common substances in which vitamins and minerals naturally occur (dried vegetable extracts: alfalfa; parsley; watercress; yeast; etc.). FDA experts later estimated that XX Supplement’  cost no more than a few cents a pack to produce. Thus, FDA lawyers must have known that Rehnborg was, in fact, using authentic pharmaceutical equipment to mass-produce a precisely-measured, harmless placebo, but labelled as a ‘Health Tonic’ (a meaningless term), and peddling it at an exorbitant mark-up (certainly, more than 1000%). This crack-pot pseudo-scientific swindle, which was tantamount to a self-styled 'alchemist' stamping a valueless amalgam of base-metals, 'Pure Gold,and selling it for the price of pure gold, could have been quickly nipped in the bud, simply by charging Rehnborg with criminal fraud. Apparently, prosecutors never considered the possibility that they might be dealing with someone with severe psychological problems whose own inflexible delusions were contagious. Instead, at first, FDA lawyers felt obliged to take no action; reasoning that, by truthfully listing the banal ingredients, but avoiding making any specific therapeutic claims, on his packaging, Rehnborg had found a loophole in federal laws concerning criminal misbranding of medicines. As result, an up-dated version of an age-old fiction was permitted to be mass-marketed as fact to an unsuspecting public. Unfortunately, the lack of any rigorous official challenge only brought its author more credibility. Not surprisingly, a host of copy-cat 'Unique Vitamin and Mineral Health-Tonic’ scams quickly sprang up.




            As WWII drew to its close, ‘Nutrilite’ had lost its novelty, so Rehnborg (who was approaching 60) had teamed-up with two respectable-looking younger associates, Lee S. Mytinger and William S. Casselberry (later described by FDA officials as a ‘cemetery-plot salesman’ and a ‘psychologist’). The result was ‘Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.,’ a second corporate structure peddling ‘Exclusive Commission-Agency Rights’ to ‘Distribute XX Supplement’ using (what was first defined by the company’s owners as) a ‘New Business Model.’ In theory… you could try to sell ‘XX  Supplement’ to your social contacts for a small profit, but, if you wanted to make big money, you didn’t need to sell anything… you could buy a monthly quota of ‘XX Supplement’ yourself and sign-up your social contacts to do the same… your ‘Sponsored Recruits’ would then ‘Sponsor’ their own social contacts, etc., ‘compensation’ would automatically multiply in an infinitely-expanding geometric progression

            ‘Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.’ offered a mind-numbing contract/payment plan’ in which the ‘company’ undertook to pay its ‘Independent Distributors’ an escalating ‘monthly commission’ on the totality of their escalating ‘Business Volume’(i.e. their own regular monthly purchasesfalsely defined as sales’, added to the regular monthly purchases, falsely defined as ‘sales’, of their ‘Sponsored Recruits’, and those of the recruits of their recruits, etc. etc. ad infinitum).





            In reality, the new set-up was merely the original mystifying lie with a second mystifying chapter added, but to casual observers ‘Nutrilite Products Company Inc.’ appeared to be exclusively manufacturing for, and wholesaling ‘XX Supplement’ to, ‘Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.,’ whose commission agents, in turn, appeared to be retailing it to the public for a profit. Although ‘XX Supplement’ was presented as ‘Unique,’ it mostly comprised substances which could easily be bought at a fraction of their exorbitant, assembled fixed-price, in traditional retail outlets. The product was effectively-impossible to sell to the general public for a profit on the open market. Therefore, the overwhelming majority of its final customers were merely the non-salaried agents of the second corporate structure, which itself was the sole agent of the first corporate structure. In order for them to maintain the false hope that if they signed-up further contributing participants they would automatically become rich, the participants in this dissimulated money circulation game were obliged by its rules to keep handing-over a monthly payment to Mytinger and Casselberry, to be shared with Rehnborg. From all rational points of view (medical, economic, legal, etc.), ‘XX Supplement’ might have well not existed; for it was just a convenient means of laundering illegal losing investment payments in a rigged-market swindle, or pyramid scheme,  based on the crack-pot, non-rational theory that endless-chain recruitment + endless payments by the recruits = endless profits for the recruits. New victims were supplied with a $49.50 ‘Business Kit’ (i.e. a large cardboard box stuffed with a month’s supply of ‘XX Supplement’ and a fat folder containing page after page of mind-numbing pseudo-economic/medical presentations and diagrams, and instructions in how to go about remembering, contacting and recruiting everyone they’d ever known during their lives). These presentations contained the concrete evidence which FDA lawyers could use to prosecute Rehnborg, Mytinger and Casselberry. Contributing participants were being instructed to smile, project excitement and enthusiasm, and to recite a precisely-worded 'positive' script which proclaimed ‘Nutrilite XX Supplement’ to be ‘good value,’ because it could ‘cure or prevent,’ virtually any known human illness.


            William W. Goodrich
            William W. Goodrich
            http://law.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/FSupp/87/650/2011431/

            Even though it wasn’t his area of responsibility, FDA Legal Counsel (1939-1971), William W. Goodrich, was probably the first senior US law enforcement agent to deduce that the innocent baby that Rehnborg, Mytinger and Casselberry had baptised a ‘New Business Model’ (later to become known as: ‘Multi-Level Marketing’) was actually the same old delinquent previously known a 'pyramid scam.’ Again, anyone with an ounce of common-sense could work out immediately that, since Rehnborg had been peddling medical alchemythe strong likelihood was that Mytinger and Casselberry were peddling economic alchemy. The sinister trio of quacks were obviously acting in association, but agents of the Food and Drug Administration and those of the Federal Trade Commission acted independently. At this time, anti-racketeering legislation did not yet exist in the USA. However, in the late 1940s, the rapidly-expanding ‘XX Supplement’ dossier was already in the hands of FTC lawyers. Apparently, prosecutors still never considered the possibility that they might be dealing with persons suffering from severe psychological problems and whose own inflexible delusions were contagious. Instead, they still felt obliged to take no action; this time reasoning that Mytinger and Casselberry appeared to have found a loophole in federal law prohibiting fraud. For even today, the fundamental identifying characteristic of all pyramid scams and Ponzi schemes, has not yet been accurately defined by legislators. As a result, another updated version of an age-old fiction was permitted to be mass-marketed as fact to an unsuspecting publicYet again, the lack of any rigorous official challenge only brought its authors more credibility. Not surprisingly, a host of copy-cat 'income opportunity' swindles (camouflaged by banal, but pricey, wampum) quickly sprang up.



            By 1947, Rehnborg, Mytinger and Casselberry were steadfastly pretending  ‘15 000 Successful Distributorships in the USA,’ with ‘sales’ totalling ‘$500 000 dollars per month.’ They had also organised the production of a ‘Free’ booklet, ‘How to Get Well and Stay Well’, in which they further pretended that ‘Nutrilite Double X Supplement’ had ‘cured or greatly helped such common ailments’ as : ‘Low blood pressure, Ulcers, Mental depression, Pyorrhoea, Muscular twitching, rickets, Worry over small things, Tonsillitis, Hay Fever, Sensitivity to noise, Underweight, Easily tired, Gas in stomach, Cuts heal slowly, Faulty vision, Headache, Constipation, Anaemia Boils, Flabby tissues, Hysterical tendency, Eczema, Overweight, Faulty memory, Lack of ambition, Certain Bone conditions, Nervousness, Nosebleed, Insomnia, Allergies, Asthma, Restlessness, Bad skin colour, Poor appetite, Biliousness, Neuritis, Night blindness, Migraine, High blood pressure, Sinus trouble, Lack of concentration, Dental caries, Irregular heartbeat, Colitis, Craving for sour foods, Arthritis, Rheumatism, Neuralgia, Deafness, Subject to colds.’



            Carl.F. Rehnborg circa 1947

            Rhenborg now cast himself in the role of ‘Scientific Adviser’ to ‘Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.’ He toured the USA preaching the gospel to wide-eyed ‘Distributors’ - ‘for less than $20 a month’‘Nutrilite Double X Supplement’ was the ‘Answer to Man’s Search for Health.’ After both companies’ owners were approached by FDA officials and warned that they could face criminal prosecution for misbranding, the booklet was ‘revised.’ Specific therapeutic claims were supposed to be eliminated. ‘All illnesses’ suddenly became a ‘state of nonhealth’ produced by ‘chemical imbalance’.… ‘Nutrilite XX Supplement’ cured nothing, it merely ‘enabled people to Get Well and stay Well’ by themselves. However, pages 41-52 of the booklet still recounted alleged case-histories explaining that ‘Nutrilite brought relief from such ailments as diabetes, feeble mindedness, stomach pains, sneezing and weeping.’ Not surprisingly, the FDA officials were not impressed, so they finally launched a number of raids, and seizures of ‘Nutrilite XX Supplement’ and associated publications.





            In 1951, after a series of lawsuits, appeals and counter suits (in which Mytinger and Casselberry hired top lawyers who portrayed their clients as American capitalist heroes being crushed by Soviet-style bureaucracy), the FDA obtained (on behalf of the people) a permanent Supreme Court injunction against ‘Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.’ preventing Distributors’ from referring to 50 publications making false claims about ‘Health Tonics and Food Supplements’ (including various ‘Revised Editions’ of ‘How to Get Well and Stay Well). FDA agents soon found that the injunction was being flouted. As a result of mounting complaints, they infiltrated the organization (as potential recruits) and recorded deluded proselytisers chanting the same cure-all mantra about ‘XX Supplement.’ Faced with more litigation and fearing that their monopoly of information might be lost, in 1954, Rehnborg, Mytinger and Casselberry hired a leading advertising agency which handled the clean-cut, but fading, Hollywood star, Alan Ladd. Along with his wife and children, Alan Ladd then briefly-featured in a kitsch 'Nutrilite' advertising campaign - published in various mainstream magazines right up until 1959. Alan Ladd (who secretly suffered from chronic depression and who had problems with alcohol and narcotics) was, however, soon to be air-brushed out of the 'Nutrilite' fairy story.



             
            The charlatan-trio, 'Mytinger, Casselberry and Rehnborg,' also paid a team of Hollywood professionals to produce a 20 minute colour propaganda film, From the Ground up’ (featuring themselves as three nice ordinary American guys turned philanthropic scientists and industrialists), and they began to publish their own propaganda magazine, ‘Nutrilite News'’ (stuffed with colour photos of happy, healthy and wealthy ‘Distributors')


            Amway Co-Founders Rich DeVos and Jay Van Andel (bottom row, second and third from the right, respectively) and their group of senior key agents pose with Nutrilite Founder Carl F. Rehnborg and his wife Edith Rehnborg, in front of their tour bus, 1956.
            Richard DeVos and Jay Van Andel (2nd and 3rd from the right, front row), Carl F. Rehnborg (immediately behind Van Andel, second row), circa 1950.






            Soon, the 'Nutrilite' show was touring the USA on a motor coach (like a 'Tent Revivalist' group).  Mytinger, Casselberry and Rehnborg had begun organizing pay-to-enter ‘Rallies and Seminars'’ (addressed by allegedly ‘Successful Christian Distributors’ like Rich De Vos and Jay Van Andel). No quantifiable evidence (in the form of audited accounts) was ever produced to prove what percentage of claimed ‘sales'’ were authentic retail transactions to the general public for a profit (based on value and demand), or how many people who’d signed a contract'’ with ‘Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.'’ had actually received an overall net-profit from the operation of what its instigators arbitrarily defined as an MLM income opportunity’. Excluding the tiny percentage of grinning shills at the top of the pyramid, the hidden, rolling insolvency/churn-rate was 100%. Since there was no significant or sustainable external revenue, participants were actually buying infinite shares in their own finite money. 


             Richard DeVos                                                    Jay Van Andel

            Circa 1950
            circa 1965

            In 1959, when it seemed that ‘Mytinger and Casselberry/Nutrilite Products Inc.’ might finally be shut down (under the ‘Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act 3381-3383’, rather than anti-fraud legislation) De Vos and Van Andel hid behind familiar, patriotic words and images stolen from contemporary popular culture. They created the ‘American Way Association’ - the first of what was to become a shoal of red, white and blue herrings.

            Previously, the two up-and-coming charlatans, Mytinger and Casselberry, gravitated towards the established (but ageing) Rehnborg, and vice versa. Rehnborg seems to have reflected the pair's own narcissistic delusions as reality and behaved as though they were important businessmen/psychologists, whilst the pair treated him as though he really was an important and respected scientist/ philanthropic businessman. This was the point at which'Nutrilite Inc.' (a legally-registered, and industrialised, pseudo-scientific swindle), began to transform into a highly-organised, self-perpetuating, blame-the-victim 'Prosperity Gospel' cultic racket - tailor-made to fit the existing beliefs and instinctual desires of a broad range of people - peddling a perversion of the 'American Dream' whilst giving victims the illusion that they were making free choices. 

            Evidently, US law enforcement agents never fully-understood that Rehnborg, Mytinger, Casselberry, DeVos, Van Andel and their close-associates, were dangerous manipulators who magnified each others' narcissistic delusions. The longer they went unchallenged: the more adherents they ensnared and the more-capital they acquired. The more capital they acquired: the easier it became to deceive more adherents and the more severe, and inflexible, their own delusions became. Sadly, and exactly like L. Ron Hubbard, the more convinced of their importance Rehnborg, Mytinger, Casselberry, DeVos and Van Andel became: the more convincing they became.


            On September 6th 1949 (along with Michael Pacetti), two, clean-cut, hitherto-unremarkable USAAF veterans of Dutch Protestant origin, Richard DeVos (aged 23) and Jay Van Andel (aged 25), registered the ‘Ja-Ri Corporation.’ However, throughout the 1950s, this (apparently independent) company was the agent of both Nutrilite Products Company Inc.' and of  'Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.'

            The two Pentacostalists, DeVos and Van Andel spent ten years perfecting their own sanctimonious 'MLM' act, before finally setting up a copy-cat 'income opportunity' racket.

             'Amway' first operated as an affinity fraud targeting the flag-waving adherents of Evangelical Churches in the Bible Belt. Most early 'Amway' adherents were already trained to defer systematically to the moral and intellectual authority of their pastors - so De Vos and Van Andel simply dressed up, and behaved, exactly likerespectable Church pastors. They taught their male followers to duplicate their clean-cut example. Thus, alcohol, cigarettes and even beards were forbidden. Amway men had to wear a suit and tie, whilst Amwaywomen were forbidden to wear pants or anything too sexy. Indeed, until relatively recently, 'Amway Network Leaders' were commonly referred to as 'Black Hats.'


            The classic movie, 'Elmer Gantry' (released in 1960), was written and directed by Richard Brooks and is loosely-based on a novel of 1927 by the Nobel prize-winning author, Sinclair LewisIn the Movie, 'Gantry' (played by Burt Lancaster) is a grinning charlatan in a loud suit - a hard-drinking whore-chasing travelling-salesman, who, for sexual and financial motives, attaches himself to the beautiful 'Sister Sharon' (played by Jean Simmons), the focus of a profitable 'Tent Revivalist' group working the Bible-Belt during Prohibition (1920-1933). 'Elmer Gantry' keeps his grin, but he dons a sombre suit and black hat, and is reborn as 'Brother Gantry' 'Charismatic Preacher' and 'Moral Crusader'. He soon discovers that he has the power to create mass-hysteria, and reap tens of thousands of dollars, by manipulating individuals' existing beliefs and instinctual desires. At a key-moment in the movie, a Protestant Minister (bedazzled by 'Brother Gantry's' offer to fill his church coffers) abandons the traditional Christian message and proclaims: 'Business is business, that's the American Way'.


            Perhaps it's just a coincidence, but at almost exactly the time that the
             American Way Association' 
            first appeared, ‘Elmer Gantry' was playing to packed movie-theatres all over America.


            Initially (and with an irony that is close to exquisite), in order to dodge being drawn into the ongoing FDA investigation of 'Nutrilite,' De Vos and Van Andel got rid of the pills and potions and now laundered all the unlawful investment payments into their copy-cat, dissimulated, closed-market swindle, behind the claim that they were selling a laundry detergent  (i.e. banal, but effectively-unsaleable, non-'medicinal' pseudo-scientific wampum of their own fabrication). Again, the updated snake oil stain remover was deliberately designed to look modern and scientific, whilst De Vos and Van Andel grinned from ear as they too steadfastly pretended that these strangely-familiar, cheaply-procured mixtures of common substances, were all-American, exclusive, good-value and unique.


            Image result for nutrilite
               

            The original 'Nutrilite' lie was progressively-absorbed back into the spin-off 'Amway' (aka 'Quixtar') lie, 1972-1994, where it still is peddled as the truth. The packaging has been updated, but the fairy story remains essentially the same.

            Only after the 'MLM' virus had spread to almost every State of the Union, did the US Federal Trade Commission finally make a half-hearted attempt to close-down 'Amway.' After receiving a significant number of complaints,  FTC prosecutors, advised by specialist economists, recognised that what they were faced with, was not a direct selling scheme, but as a classic pyramid scam, without a significant or sustainable source of revenue other than its own victims, but hidden behind a smokescreen of products. However, after years of investigations and hearings, in 1979, a naive, and/or corrupt, federal judge ruled that although 'Amway' had previously been massively in breach of the law and would have to pay fines, the company would be allowed to continue to trade. This was because the judge accepted the latest unbelievable chapter of the 'MLM' fairy story. i.e. That 'Amway' s owners were respectable Christian businessmen who were vehemently opposed to  pyramid schemes and that, consequently, they had stopped fixing prices and introduced their own rules which would, henceforth, oblige the members of 'Amway's' sales force to sell at least 70% (by value) of the products which they had bought wholesale from the company, to at least 10 customers, before they could receive commission paymentsAmazingly, no independent, common-sense mechanism was created to ensure that this latest twist in the fairy story was true, and that 'Amway' would now be in compliance with the law.

            Not surprisingly, this tragicomic judgement was seen as an open-invitation to thieve, and, consequently, a whole host of 'Amway' copy-cat 'MLM' rackets soon began to appear.   
            Today the so-called 'Direct Selling Association,' is a demonstrable lie financed and controlled by the bosses of a classic, organized crime syndicate. However, it is very difficult to determine exactly how many people in total around the world have already been churned through the pay-through-the-nose-to-play 'MLM/Prosperity Gospel' cultic game of make-believe, since it was first peddled as reality under the name of 'Nutrilite Inc. /Mytinger and Casselberry Inc.' back in the late 1940s. It is also important to distinguish between short-term and chronic 'MLM' losing-players. In general, the overwhelming majority of fraud victims never complain, but, right from the outset, the self-perpetuating 'MLM' lie was maliciously designed to implicate its victims - loading them with shame and guilt, and, thus, prevent them from ever facing reality. Classically, the quantifiable evidence proves that, without exception, chronic 'MLM' losing-players have been subjected to co-ordinated devious techniques of social, and psychological, persuasion designed to shut down their critical, and evaluative, faculties. In this way, they have been conditioned (unconsciously) to think of themselves, not as the victims of a cruel deception or as brainwashed cult adherents, but as 'Independent Business Owners' exercising free-will.  What has made external reality even more unacceptable, is the ego-destroying fact that a large proportion of 'MLM' victims were deceived by a close friend or relative (acting under the guided-delusion that 'MLM' has been of great benefit to its participants) and, in turn, these victims then deceived, or tried to deceive, their own close friends and relatives (acting under the same guided-delusion that 'MLM' has been of great benefit to its participants). The few, destitute, chronic former 'MLM' losing-players who have managed to recover fully their critical, and evaluative faculties, and who have filed well-informed civil lawsuits against the corporate fronts of 'MLM' cultic racketeers, have invariably been obliged to settle out of court. Although a number of isolated civil investigations, and successful prosecutions, have been pursued by the Federal Trade Commission against some smaller 'MLM' front-companies in the USA, no co-ordinated official effort has ever been made to face wider-reality and identify, let alone tackle, the overall criminogenic/cultic phenomenon that has lurked behind all the shielding layers of structural, and pseudo-economic/scientific, mystification, reality-inverting commercial  jargon and kitsch Utopian imagery.
            ________________________________________________________________________

            _____________________________________________________________________


             Questionnaire for Past,
             and Present,
            'Utility Warehouse Distributor/Partners' (Adherents).

            (short version) 

            (Respondents are advised first to read all the questions before making any answer).
            _______________________________________________________________________________________

            1. Was the person who first approached you to participate in 'Utility Warehouse' a friend or relative, i.e. a person with whom you enjoyed a relationship based on love and trust? (if yes, give brief details).

            2. Did the 'Utility warehouse' recruiter(s) present a bleak picture of the world of traditional employment, in which most people are forced to go out to work for 45 years with only retirement and a limited pension to look forward to?

            3. Did the recruiter(s) present the 'Utility Warehouse Income Opportunity' as a viable alternative to the world of traditional employment, in which it is possible for anyone to retire and enjoy total financial freedom, after a just a few years of concentrated effort?

            4. At the time you were recruited, would you say that you were entirely satisfied with life; particularly, your achievements, education, career/employment status/prospects, home, relationships, social standing, salary, health, weight, physical appearance, etc.?

            5. How would you describe your level of satisfaction with your life at the time you were recruited?

            6. When, and how, were you first approached to participate in 'MLM' and when was the name 'Utility Warehouse' first mentioned?'
            • Was 'Utility Warehouse' first presented to you individually or as part of a group?
            • Did the presentation comprise drawing circles containing numbers and percentages on a board or sheet of paper? 
            • Did you fully-understand the presentation?
            • Was the presentation given by a man with a woman nodding in agreement next to him?
            • Were you given to believe that anyone could understand 'MLM?'
            • Did the recruiter(s) seem generally happy and excited as though they had wonderful news to share?
            7. What prior knowledge did you have of 'Utility Warehouse / MLM?'

            8. What was your initial reaction when you were approached?

            9. At the time you signed up, what did you believe to be the success-rate of persons participating in 'Utility Warehouse' (i.e. about what percentage of participants did you think made an overall net-income out of 'Utility Warehouse')?

            10. Were you ever shown any independent quantifiable evidence (e.g. income tax payment receipts) proving that anyone has ever made an overall net-income out of participating in 'Utility Warehouse?'

            11. Did you ever ask to see such evidence? 

            12. Could you give a brief explanation of what you understand by the term pyramid scheme or scam?

            13. What would you say was the essential identifying characteristic of pyramid scams, Ponzi schemes, money circulation games, chain letter scams, etc.?

             14. Were you given to believe that 'MLM' schemes are not pyramid scams, because they  are regulated by the 'Direct Selling Association,' involve the sale of products, and/or services, to customers and end users, and offer money-back guarantees?

            15. Were you given to believe that 'Utility Warehouse' cannot possibly be a fraud, because  'MLM' has existed for decades and has been investigated and approved by governments around the world?

            16. Were you given to believe that 'Utility Warehouse' cannot possibly be a fraud, because celebrities have endorsed it?

            17. Were you given to believe that 'Utility Warehouse' cannot possibly be a fraud, because of its involvement with charity?

            18. Were you given to believe that 'Utility Warehouse' cannot possibly be a fraud, because it has been endorsed by senior UK politicians?

            19. What was your main motivation for becoming a 'Utility Warehouse Partner' :
            •  to earn income?
            •  to buy services at a discount price?
            20. Before you signed up for 'Utility Warehouse,' were your encouraged by the recruiter to seek independent legal/financial advice?

            21. Did you ever seek independent legal/financial advice? (if yes, give brief details).

            22.  What factor would you say initially convinced you that 'Utility Warehouse' is an authentic opportunity to earn income?

            23. At the time you signed up for 'Utility Warehouse,' did you have any knowledge of pernicious groups that employ co-ordinated devious techniques of social, psychological and physical persuasion - designed to shut down the critical and evaluative faculties of ill-informed individuals in order to exploit them and prevent them from complaining?

            24. Could you give a brief explanation of what you understand by the terms:
            • Neuro-Linguistic Programming?
            • brainwashing?
            • coercive behaviour modification?
            • group pressure?
            • covert hypnosis?
            • ego-destruction?
            • thought reform?
            • mental manipulation?
            • love bombing?
            25. Were you given to believe that it is possible for anyone to replace their income by participating in 'Utility Warehouse?'

            26. Were you given to believe that after achieving a certain level of income in 'Utility Warehouse' you could cease all activity and receive the same residual income for the rest of your life?

            27. Were you given to believe that this residual income could be passed on to your descendants after your death?

            28. During your time in 'Utility Warehouse'were you taught that the 'exact duplication of a proven step-by-step plan' could automatically bring anyone 'total financial freedom?'

            29. As part of this 'proven plan,' were you taught:
            • to alter you habitual way of speaking? (if yes, give a brief explanation)
            • to alter your habitual way of dressing? (if yes, give a brief explanation)
            • to alter you habitual way of eating? (if yes, give a brief explanation)
            • to alter your habitual sleep pattern? (if yes, give a brief explanation)
            • to alter you habitual social contacts? (if yes, give a brief explanation)
            • that everyone above you in your 'MLM Network' was your 'Upline' and everyone beneath you was your 'Downline?'
            • that your 'Upline' was there to help you and was to be 'admired and respected?'
            • that your 'Upline's success in MLM depended on helping his/her 'Downline' to succeed?'
            • to divide everyone, and everything, in your life into 'negative' vs 'positive?'
            • that 'MLM' products/services were to be deemed 'positive' and non-'MLM' products/services deemed 'negative?'
            • that you should buy a regular quota (by value) of 'positive' products/services?
            • that you should draw up a list of prospective 'MLM' recruits comprising everyone you had ever encountered in your life?
            • that you should progressively contact all these 'prospects' and attempt to recruit them using a precisely-worded 'positive' script?
            • that when trying to recruit 'prospects' you should exhibit excitement and enthusiasm, and recite your own personal 'story' describing how your life had been been transformed for the better by 'Utility Warehouse?'
            • that you should never say anything 'negative' about 'MLM?'
            • that you should never listen to, or look at, anything 'negative' about 'MLM?'
            • that all persons who refused to join you (particularly, those who said 'MLM' is a scam) were to be deemed 'negative' and a threat to your own success?
            • that all 'negative' persons were to be deemed 'losers, whiners, dream stealers,' etc., and should be excluded from your life?
            • that all persons with regular jobs were to be labelled 'Just Over Broke' losers?
            • that you should only have contact with 'positive winners?'
            • that you should regularly buy, and listen to, recordings of 'positive winners?'
            • that you should regularly buy tickets to, and attend, extended meetings conducted by 'positive winners' at which you took part in group, rhythmic chanting and moving?
            • that you should regularly buy, and read, publications, written by 'positive winners?'
            • that you should exactly duplicate the 100% positive mental attitude and behaviour of the 'positive winners' in your 'Upline?'
            • that you should regularly visualise your 'dreams an goals' in life (luxury cars, expensive houses, exotic holiday destinations, etc.)?
            • that you should fix images of your 'dreams and goals' in strategic places in your home? 
            • that all persons who develop a '100% positive mental attitude and never quit, ultimately achieve their dreams and goals in MLM?'
            • that all persons who 'fail to achieve their dreams and goals in MLM, are negative losers, whiners, quitters etc., who always try to blame others, when they only have themselves to blame?'
            • that you should disclose personal information about yourself, and about your friends and family, to your 'Upline?'
            • that you should gather personal information about your 'prospects' (i.e. the persons whom you wanted to recruit) in order to find their 'hot button' (i.e. a specific means of approach tailored to an individual's personal situation and which could get him/her excited about 'Utility Warehouse').
            30. As a result of duplicating the 'proven Utility Warehouse plan,' approximately how much money did you lose overall?

            31. As a result of duplicating the 'proven Utility Warehouse plan,' approximately how many days per week were you active and approximately how much of your own time did you commit each day?

            32. How long did you remain under contract to 'Utility Warehouse?' 


            33. Did you ever manage to recruit anyone into 'Utility Warehouse?' (if yes, give brief details).

            34. What level(s), if any, did you rise to in the 'Utility Warehouse Stairway to Success' hierarchy? (give brief details).

            35. What do you now consider yourself to be, or to have been - a 'Utility Warehouse:'

            • 'Distributor?'
            • 'Customer ?'
            • 'Member?'
            • 'Partner'
            • Adherent?
            • Victim?
            • Other?
            36. Exactly how were you described on your 'Utility Warehouse' contract(s)?

            37. As a result of your involvement with 'Utility Warehouse,' did you lose contact with any family members, and/or with anyone with whom you had previously been close? (if yes, give brief details).

            38. Have you filed, or attempted to file, a complaint about 'Utility Warehouse' with any law enforcement agency? (if yes, give brief details).


            39. Were you led to believe that 'Utility Warehouse' cannot possibly be a fraud, because numerous police officers and former police oficers are 'distributors'.

            40. What agency of law enforcement do you think has the responsibility of protecting the UK public from pyramid schemes run behind legally-registered companies, for receiving complaint from pyramid scheme victims and prosecuting pyramid scheme instigators? 


            David Brear (copyright 2017)