Are you tired of struggling to pay your bills every month? Would you like to start saving money hand over fist instead of living from paycheck to paycheck? Want to live the life of a business mogul or Hollywood celebrity? Would you like to make an extra $10,000 a month working from the comfort of your own home? Of course you would! Who wouldn't? And that's just for starters!
Now, with our revolutionary new line of vitamins, you can. Quit you job! Double, triple, even quadruple your current income! Enjoy a fabulous lifestyle replete with luxury automobiles, spacious houses and jet set vacations. All this can be yours through the miracle of the Vitamintastic FastCash Program of Wealth Raining from Heaven.
All you have to do is attend our seminar for the low, low price of $500, then invest $2,000 up front, then be present on our weekly conference call where we reel in other suckers ... er ...I mean associates. Then once you become a regional manager, all you need to do is invest another $5,000 to become regional director, provided you have roped in 20 other people to our operation, and then ...
If you've lived long enough, you've likely been approached by someone who presented a pitch to you that was not too dissimilar from the one above. It would only be natural to feel tempted to jump in, even if that little voice inside your head is telling you that something feels fishy about this whole thing. After all, the pitch came from someone you know, or at least a friend of someone you know. How could it be a scam? I know this guy. He seems so normal!
What's more, your questions have been anticipated as if your mind has been read.
Why do I have to invest my own money up front? We need to know that you are serious about being a partner in our Wealth Raining Down From Heaven Program. If we just gave away our products to anyone, many of them would not follow through with the program.
What if I buy a bunch of products and then I can't sell them? People in our organization are making thousands of dollars a month, sometimes even a week, by selling our products. You are only limited by your own efforts. Our product is the most awesome thing since sliced bread! People want our product. It practically sells itself! By spending only five hours a month, you can make your money back tenfold.
Why do I have to find other people to do this? Why can't I just sell at my leisure? Our mega-fabulous Wealth Raining Down From Heaven Program is fueled by numbers. It's like fishing. The more lures you have in the water, the more fish you are going to catch. In our case, the more people we have selling our insanely incredible product, the more money we all make. You do want unspeakable riches flowing into you back account like a flood of biblical proportions, don't you?
On and on it goes.
There's a sucker born every minute, and the folks who try to corral you into their scheme are looking at you as that sucker. It's called multi-level marketing (MLM), an industry that rides on the back of decent, hard working people who are just trying to get ahead financially. The MLM people know this. They count on it.
Life is hard for the vast majority of people in the world. Even in America, the land of opportunity, a comparatively small number of people control an extremely disproportionate amount of great wealth. This means that the masses of middle and lower financial classes have to fight for very small pieces of pie by toiling at their uninteresting jobs day after day, while making a valiant attempt at the American dream of owning a house, a nice car and raising a family.
Meanwhile, the richest 10 percent keep thinking of creative ways to add to the coffers by extracting more and more money from the have-nots. Naturally, this leaves the average American with a daily struggle to make their financial ends meet. Little wonder that it is not uncommon for a person in this country to carry many thousands of dollars of credit card debt.
This scenario leads the less wealthy 90 percent to try and figure out how to make more money than their education level and opportunities would allow. "You can do anything you set your mind to" is something we're told as young children. "In America, you can be anything you want to be". Well, I'm a 5'5" white guy with limited vertical leaping ability and no appreciable foot speed, so no matter how hard I set my mind to becoming the starting power forward for the Boston Celtics, it isn't going to happen.
However, I can make a decent amount of money and have a nice life doing a wide variety of things. Many people in my relative class and financial background realize this, and they have ambitions to become wealthy. They've stayed at a really nice resort at some point in their lives, and they want that lifestyle as a consistent reality. They know a rich kid from their high school; they've been to his birthday party where dad flew in sushi-grade salmon from the Sea of Japan to be eaten by members of Aerosmith. They want that for themselves and for their children.
Here is where MLM is born. It's created on the dreams of those who weren't born into money. It flourishes in the minds of people who work so hard just to keep their heads above water, only to ask themselves: "What's it all for?" It survives on the gullibility of people who believe that they got lucky enough to become included in an exclusive business opportunity that will provide them with waterfalls of cash.
And it's propelled by people who pretend to be your friend.
There's a reason why most people refer to MLM proposals as schemes. They're dodgy, backhanded operations that would go legit if they could. But they can't, so they siphon money from the na´ve souls with kind heats who foster dreams of a better life.
This isn't to say that all MLM operations are scams, and that one cannot make money at them. Sometimes it is possible and it does happen. Probably the most famous one of all was Amway, which really started this whole thing. That was actually a legit business.
But most of them today are complete crap. And even the ones that ooze into the realm of authenticity, well, they require you to become an MLM person. You have to call you friends and approach your co-workers and sell them on something they don't need. In short, it makes people treat their friends like suckers - and from what I've seen, most people do not really appreciate that.
So remember kids: if it sounds too good to be true, and they want money up front, run for the hills as if you were being chased by Scientologists.
Evan Redmon gets a lot of spam. If you are not spam, please feel free to drop him a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.