I observe that an intellectually-castrated
comment in defence of the 'business opportunity' fraud known as 'Club Asteria,' has been sent by someone signing himself/herself as 'kalinou03.'
This person writes in French and, without any supporting evidence, accuses us of being motivated by jealousy and of not criticizing low-wage exploitation. We are then asked why are we criticizing something which gets people to dream? a question which is immediately answered for us: because the money is not being reserved for an elite.'Kalinou03' finally describes the 'Club Asteria' fraud as a superb business which helps the poor.
Years ago, I attended a conference on cultism in the USA organized by the Leo J. Ryan Foundation. I can remember being involved in a conversation with well-meaning fellow who confidently insisted that groups like 'Amway' and 'Herbalife' might be frauds, but they can't be described as cults, because they offer people hope of a better future on Earth rather than in Heaven.
This answer to this specious argument remains the same: 'MLM business opportunity' frauds are most-certainly cults, because their instigators have peddled false hope in the form of a fictitious future Utopian existence which they have presented as fact in a never-ending stream of over-priced publications, recordings and live performances. Tellingly, in 'business opportunity' cults, Utopia has always first to be visualized then built by the adherents' themselves using their own time, effort and money, but duplicating a precise mathematical plan of recruitment and self-consumption over a specific period of time (usually, 2-5 years). Consequently, when Utopia fails to materialize, it is always the fault of the selfish individual adherents: never the fault of group's proven plan or its selfless leaders.
Abusive totalitarian cults which peddle the illusion of Heaven on Earth have always existed. The phenomenon remains the same. However, its reality-inverting camouflage can be adapted to fit the spirit of the age. Today's 'business opportunity' cults are essentially no different to the 'fascist' and 'Bolshchevik' cults of the last century, the narcissistic leaders of which gathered huge fortunes for themselves by peddling a fictitious future Utopian existence for everyone which they presented as fact in a never-ending stream of over-priced publications, recordings and live performances. The overwhelming majority of their enthusiastic customers were actually reduced to the position of powerless serfs in a latter-day feudal system. Ultimately, tens of millions of these unquestioning sheep were slaughtered.
I would advise anyone who wants to understand any 'business opportunity' cult, to read George Orwell's satire of the reality-inverting 'Soviet' system, 'Animal Farm.'
David Brear (copyright 2011)