Monday, November 7, 2016

MLM and John Oliver

Today's post is to celebrate and acknowledge a wonderful segment presented by John Oliver. I have been a big fan of his since he was on the Daily Show, and was both excited and stunned that he actually did a piece on MLM. I found out a few months ago that you can suggest topics for him to present (this is my subtle way of suggesting I may have helped make this happen), and I suggested MLM several times on his forum. The real reason I believe he decided to make the segment is the recent address from Edith Ramirez, chairwoman of the FTC, and her remarks against MLM. She basically threw everything at MLM including the kitchen sink, and here is what she said from David Brear's article (

It would seem MLM has been tossed into the spotlight recently, and that doesn't seem to bode well for its future. MLM tends to slink around in the shadows of society, and gradually picks people off as targets to join while still remaining ominous. In fact, MLM only tends to come out when people are at a vulnerable place in their life, and it is interesting to see the tides turning as MLM is starting to look very vulnerable. Bill Ackman (Billionaire and CEO of Pershing Square) and Robert Fitzpatrick (Pyramid Scheme Alert) have led the charge against Herbalife, and it wasn't clear at the beginning how it would pan out, but it seems to have been a slow and steady battle with many successes. Now that the FTC has concluded their investigation, sanctioned Herbalife, and forced them to restructure their compensation plan and their opportunity pitch, there could be some real change.

Without further ado, here is the John Oliver segment on MLM. Enjoy!

If you have a story involving abuses from your upline and would like me to share it on this blog as a guest post, then please e-mail me and I will be more than happy to post it! Your stories are not as unique as you may think, and your stories are some of the most impactful resources we have to fight MLMs. I will keep your anonymity upon request.


  1. It's not a pyramid, it just has a pyramid shape, like bullshit. ROFLMAO

    1. Yes, and Youngevity doesn't support any of the claims made by the "black diamond", meanwhile she is on the front page of their website with the words, she is Youngevity. These companies are spineless and will say whatever they can when they can to try and save their reputation, all the while continuing to pull the same old crap.

    2. Joe and John - It is perhaps more interesting that John Oliver introduced the cultic aspect of 'MLM' in his show - even using the phrase 'Scientology-like levels.'

      You should know that Robert FitzPatrick acted as an advisor to John Oliver's researchers. They were also directed to my Blog and to various other sources of information and anaysis.

      An important question now is:

      If a satirist (albeit from the UK) can immediately see through all the 'American Dream' BS and realise that 'MLM' has been the reality-inverting front for cultic pyramid/ advanced fee frauds preying on vulnerable persons all around the world, then why have US regulators and law enforcement agents been unable to identify, let alone halt, this phenomenon?

      Unfortunately, Donald Trump (an'MLM' pitchman and parasite closely-associated with other 'MLM' pitchmen and parasites) has benefitted from this chronic regulatory failure, and he will soon have control over federal regulatory agencies.

      Yet Trump is still facing prosecution over his so-called 'Trump University,' but his activities with 'ACN' have been generally ignored.

    3. David,

      Great job helping John on the segment! It is fantastic that they got research from you and Robert as you two are the leading resources on MLM/Pyramid Scheme information.

      As you mentioned, Trump has been a supporter of MLM as well as many members of Congress. I find it difficult to believe, with all of the information they have, that this wasn't shut down for any reasons other than money. Our politicians have to spend an insane amount of time fundraising, therefore they may choose to support criminals in an effort to reduce time spent on phone calls and dinners.

      Unfortunately, money is the key to power and in the case of Congress, their jobs. This needs to change, or the corruption will continue.

    4. John - The USA should be warned that even when specific laws are in place to stop the corruption of politicians via unlimited 'campaign funding,' nothing changes.

      Unlike the USA, the cost of Presidential political campaigning is strictly limited in France by law. So, during the last election, 2012, Nicolas Sarkozy's campaign spent many times the legal limit, but his declared campaign expenses were under the limit.

      Sarkozy's and his campaign managers achieved this by using a front PR company, 'Bygmalion,' to pay for major venues, video/sound equipment, technicians, caterers, etc. involving millions of Euros, but then 'Bymalion' sent Sarkozy's campaign fake accounts for a lawful fraction of what was really being spent unlawfully.

      The cash for 'Bygmalion' was secretly coming out of Sarkozy's party funds, but the official leader of the party (who was no longer Sarkozy) apparently didn't have access to his own party's accounts.

      Unfortunately for Sarkozy, a whistle-blower gave the real accounts to an independent media organisation, 'Mediapart,' and the shit hit the fan. The leader of Sarkozy's party resigned and was then cleared by an investigation.

      Sarkozy, and others, remain under investigation, but he's still trying to be nominated as the centre-right's candidate for next year's French Presidential election. In reality, Sarkozy must have directed operations, for the simple reason that ranks of expendable twits conveniently stand between him and criminal liability.

      No doubt, this is what Donald Trump would describe as being 'smart.' Ironically, Sarkozy lost the election campaign which had been illegally funded.

    5. David,

      What you described with the Sarkozy situation sounds eerily similar to the corporation labyrinth you described in the MLM industry, and in particular with Amway. I'm glad they were able to blow the whistle on Sarkozy, but are they going to have an effective investigation? What I mean is, are the people conducting the investigation also in Sarkozy's pocket?

      It is so difficult to hold politicians to the same standard as the citizens they govern. Even without the corruption, it is hard to blow the proverbial whistle on the people who influence the law.

      Our situation with Hillary is an absolute nightmare, because there is no end to her political and economic reach. Taking into account her connections to the NSA and the FBI, it makes prosecuting her an absolute joke. There seems to be a significant need for an overhaul to the entire system.

  2. The French media has done a good job exposing the 'Bygmalion' affair and few people now believe Sarkozy's : 'I knew absolutely nothing,' version. His political ambitions seem to be finished.

    Scandals like this have destroyed the faith of many French people in the political class and they might yet open the door for Mme. Le Pen's French National Front. Part of her familiar act comprises screaming that everyone is rotten except her.

    The Clintons and other self-satisfied members of the American political ruling class, have opened the door for Trump - a classic demagogue. Part of Trump's familiar act was to scream that everyone is rotten except him.