Tuesday, 21 September 2010

'Amway' - a play within a play within a play

As you probably know, there is an old theatrical tradition (used by William Shakespeare) where a play appears within a play.
Confidence tricksters, or grifters, can be described as a dishonest hybrid of playwrights, plagiarists, theatrical producers and directors, actors and stage illusionists. They are psychologically-dominant, narcissistic individuals who present a fictitious scenario as fact . However, there is no limit to the number of mind-numbing scenes which can be added to a grifter's controlling scenario.
In all confidence tricks, there comes a point where the grifter takes the money from the victim, or mark, because he/she unconsciously accepts the grifter's controlling scenario as reality. However, in some of the most-sophisticated cons, the money has been taken by persons secretly acting in association with the grifter, but whom the mark has been led to believe are totally independent.
As I have previously explained, the French grifter, Christophe Rocancourt, was not part of an organized gang. Acting alone (but invariably accompanied by useful idiots, who had little idea of what he was really doing), Rocancourt progressively duped his marks into bringing large sums of cash to hotel suites by first acting the role of a fabulously wealthy and successful international play-boy, then offering his marks the exclusive opportunity to exchange their real money for twice as much in undetectable, counterfeit US banknotes. Rocancourt swore his marks to secrecy and he insisted that they come alone. He was so confident that his marks couldn't complain to law enforcement agents, that he simply robbed them at gunpoint and also informed them if they tried to come after him themselves, he would kill them. Even today, no one really knows how many people Rocancourt robbed, or how much money he took, using this controlling scenario combined with the threat of exposure, and/or violence. However, had he been part of an organized gang, he could have expanded his controlling scenario to dupe his victims into silence.
The classic 'long con' has involved grifters luring their marks into agreeing to participate in fake undetectable major criminal acts (such as buying counterfeit perfect banknotes). However, at the moment of transfer, fake law enforcement agents have burst in on the fake fool-proof deal and siezed the marks' authentic cash whilst pretending to arrest or kill the grifter. At the same time, the marks have been allowed to flee, and/or walk away without charge, convinced that they have escaped a bullet or a long prison term.
In the extra long 'Amway' con, marks have been told to ignore 'Amway's' own fake (unenforced) 'rules' about retailing products to outsiders. Instead, 'Amway' marks have been lured into committing the crime of propagating a closed-market swindle, but at the same time they have been assured that what they are doing is perfectly lawful, has government-approval and cannot be prosecuted, and that the exact duplication of a plan of self-consumption and recruitment has already made countless persons fabulously wealthy and successful. The 'Amway' grifters have invariably been accompanied by useful idiots who had little idea what was really happening. In the 'Amway' con, long-term marks have been progressively duped into handing over relatively small, but regular sums, to the grifters who have hidden behind two main types of corporate structure which the marks have been led to believe are totally independent, but whose bosses have secretly been acting in association.
Even now, when you read material posted on the Net. by former, long-term 'Amway' marks who have accepted that they were duped, and used to dupe others, few of them begin to understand how what lurks behind 'Amway' is merely a much more complex, and sustainable, version of a well-known con with a tired old fictitious scenario that has been plagiarized, greatly-expanded and presented as fact, by the billionaire bosses of major organized crime group.
David Brear (copyright 2010)

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