When you were an active JW, did you ever have dealings with a pyramid scheme?

by Tameria2001 39 Replies latest jw experiences

  • JeffT

    Yes, we were approached about Amway, some deal with putting stripe decals on cars, my wife was talked into trying to sell Avon for awhile. After we left and started attending a mainstream church we were hit up to get into Amway a couple of times, and a telecom deal. My wife's sister (LDS) is always working some scheme or another.

    I noticed a funny thing that unites all of these deals: everybody I ever talked to about one was ABOUT to be rich. None of them ever were, but it was going to happen soon. Just like JW's and Armageddon, the big money is always right around the corner.

    Once I got into accounting and finance and knew how to read a financial statement I began to be amazed the people running these things aren't in jail. There seems to be some sort of loophole in the laws that lets people get away with this.

  • sir82

    I was even told by the jw Herbalife person that if I didn't want to be healthy then I was going against god's

    command to preach

    Sounds like he learned his lessons from the Watchtower well.

    Watchtower: All persons who attend a university are greedy, materialistic, and narcissistic and crave only glory, fame, and obscene wealth.

    JW Herbalife guy: All JWs who refuse to buy my overpriced, likely ineffective pills 'don't want to be healthy'.

  • sir82

    There seems to be some sort of loophole in the laws that lets people get away with this.

    I think the "loophole" is that there is an actual product that someone, somewhere is selling.

    It's most likely overpriced & ineffective, but it is a thing that someone can buy.

  • neverendingjourney

    Looking back on my childhood, there wasn't a single door-to-door scam that my mother didn't fall for (including allowing herself to be converted by JWs who knocked on her door). She was a poorly-educated immigrant woman trying to raise a family in a strange country.

    Frying pans, tupperware, vacuum cleaners, cassette tapes and study programs to teach her to speak English, encyclopedias...all of it. And we barely made enough money to keep ourselves above the poverty line. We couldn't afford any of this, but, you know, payment plans.

    My brother got sucked into Amway. He paid the up front fee to receive his starter package but moved away from it quickly when he saw too many religious parallels with the Amway folks and convinced himself they were under the influence of demons.

    Homeopathy was popular, too. I'm convinced one local woman had munchausen by proxy. She'd go to quack herbalists who would diagnose various sicknesses in her children. They would take various sugar-looking pills throughout the day. Those kids were terrified of the world because their mother saw monsters around every corner.

    The local congregations were hotbeds for this kind of stuff. They are communities of gullible people with underdeveloped critical thinking skills. For scammers it's like shooting fish in a barrel.

  • Muddy Waters
    Muddy Waters

    YES! Omg, it was one of the things that actually helped to start waking me up.

    We got involved in "Melaleuca", and started going to some of their meetings, and lo and behold, would you believe, that many of their meetings were SIMILAR to the JW meetings!

    The same "sales pitches" and demonstrations, examples of how to "cold call", make placements / leave samples, find out what your customer is interested in, notice if they have kids, etc., keep track of your "magazines" (sales brochures, product info sheets), then praise and applaud your high sellers....

    Oh my god. It was spookily, eerily similar. At the time I tried to reason that "Satan hides things in plain sight, he will make the truth look like other things, or make other things look like the truth, blah blah blah...." and that all others were most likely copying the JWs for their best-est and most wonderful-est ways of doing everything.

  • waton

    was in 4 arm length touch with an outfit called High Desert, the head office was like a fortress, counting cash surrounded by shot gun toting security guards (but so were the banks, even Mc Donalds there).

  • Bill Covert
    Bill Covert

    There was one in San Diego Ca. late 1970's early 1980's where Brooklyn sent in somebody with the power to handle the powerful and influential people involved. There were many disfellowshippings, including former circuit and district overseers, as San Diego was prime retirement area. The reason I know was that a bit player in the scheme, a Ray Dale ran out of the area to Brookings Or. to escape disfellowshipping, then to Redding Ca. who became the source of my troubles. As described in my introductory post on this site.

    Royal Flush Phil commented on the vast amount of seniors Ray swindled in the Southern Calif. area.

    A couple of years ago someone punched in Ray Dale San Diego and Google took them to this site and my first post. They were investigating the swindle of a widow in Vista Ca. They had me go to County Recorders office for records pertaining to Shasta County Superior Court case #149893 talked about in my post. That case was sealed and the widow suing Ray Dale is no longer a JW but is a counselor helping JW molestation victims. I believe Ray got licenses pertaining securities and financial planning revoked. That was in 2004. I was told Ray moved to a real estate fraud of setting up an business entity that concealed his identity. So the scam was to locate seniors with houses and offer to manage their money for them. He would talk them into selling the house as he had a buyer [himself] for under market value and charge them going rate for salesman commissions, then be able to resale house at market value. I actually filed a report with Calif. Dept of Real Estate to investigate such fraud. The criteria was very tight and a couple of weeks got a letter stating there wasn't documents that would allow for an investigation.

    Evidently a judicial committee was formed and Ray was yet again able to escape disfellowshipping as he was able to show by being able to punch in his name Google would take you to my post on this site. Hence as the source of some of the evidence used against him was derived from a well known apostate he was not disfellowshipped. Check it out your self, Google Ray Dale San Diego it will take you to this form but Ray's name was deleted from the Google heading showing Ray was aware of material source and had his name removed.

    So from that multi level marketing scheme there came out a man who has swindled widows and seniors for 35 + years.

    As to how a man can operate for that long with in this church is to understand my initial post. Understand the Wt. 1987 article "A Time to Speak When?" and how Lev.5:1 was distorted by making the "man doing the cursing" into the sinner, and making the "witness" who was the sinner into the WTBT&TS policy of informants. On this site in 2013, 2or 3 posters [along with my 5 sons] doing the posting on the convention talk "Human Apostates" reported that the discourse alerted the people to a new tactic being used by apostates. That of apostates writing letters to the peoples homes. I wrote those letters! Hundreds of them. It is the information contained in those letters pertaining to Lev.5:1 that shows the WTB&TS policy of informants to be an apostate church policy. As proven by the RNWT released that year revision of Lev.5:1. Barbara Andersons article " Flawed Decrees Conceal Criminals", Ray Dale was the criminal. Also at issue was Isa.1:23 and the sin of simony. As Ray was the 'sugar daddy' to the traveling men. To of removed Ray Dale would of given substance to 30 years of protest on my part.

    So yes I am well aware of multi level marketing schemes .

    If you are not interested in reading my posts or Barbara Anderson article "Flawed Decrees Conceal Criminals" don't ask me to explain.


  • NVR2L8

    In our area there was Jewelway multilevel marketing and some of the elders were involed. I remember a sister that joined but her unbelieving husband threatened the brother to get her money returned.

    I knew an ex-district overseer was into Melaleuca...

  • sparky1

    Jewelway.......my brother lost 10's of thousands of dollars on that scam. I didn't know that any Witnesses were involved in it. One of THE WORST, MOST DISHONEST AND CROOKED MLM schemes of all time.

  • Solzhenitsyn




    Natures Sunshine

    Rainbow Vacuums


    Juice Plus

    Noni Juice

    Protandim (for humans...haha) / LifeVantage [I had to counsel a brother who was a LifeVantage top level, multi platinum, senior grand puba, pinnacle of the pyramid superstar and was awarded a Protandim Wrapped 4x4 who made many uncomfortable driving it out in service kind of counsel]



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