Conscripted Consumption at Club 100

_-_

“Who would like for their own kids to have the exact same life that they’ve had so far? That should be enough motivation for you to take seriously what I’m telling you. Do something different — am I right or not?”

… semi-shouts a Colombian trainer for Herbalife’s Club 100 to her audience of impoverished recruits.

“If you earn 2,000 or 3,000 dollars, and you teach your people to do the same on their club, free check — free everything. Then you will be a great person because you will give your people the financial freedom you promised them.”

You can hear Señorita Stalinita’s full presentation below :: if you speak Español … and you don’t mind being depressed.

… in the beginnings

Herbalife sells the lie that you can make money selling the lie that is Herbalife … the circle of lies. Of course you’re not exactly allowed to sell lies {though its trending} :: so they {barely} pretend to sell products instead … and that’s somehow been enough cover to afford them four decades of almost complete silence from empty-headed/hearted journalists and absentee regulators.

Once upon a time Herbalife’s cover product could actually help a person lose weight {short-term} :: because it contained the addictive stimulant Ephedra … which had the unfortunate side-effect of making people completely dead {the ultimate diet}. But the FDA banned Ephedra in 2004 … the same year that Herbalife went public for the second time.

drink club 100

Herbalife’s guruistic leader was recently dead of a drug/alcohol overdose :: and the drug that they’d been pimping for decades was banned … yet Wall Street still saw something lovable in Herbalife’s business model. NewHerbalife billed itself as a nutrition/wellness company :: its thinnest ever cover given its top-selling product sports an ingredient list that begins like this …

— Soy Protein Isolate
— Fructose
— Sunflower Oil
— Corn Syrup Solids
— Sodium Caseinate
— Mono- & Diglycerides

… some of the not-nutritionalist ingredients ever concocted by foolish men.

… a new herbalife

But Herbalife had a new secret ingredient that Wall Street loved to love in secret :: a business method called “blind lead generation” … that allowed distributors to push an illusory biz op to the masses without mentioning the company or its fructose rich product until deep into a pressure sales pitch rooted in half century old manipulation techniques. Fad diets come and go :: consumer tastes continually churn and change … but the demand for “make money now” never declines.

The company built huge lines of distributors using blind lead generation :: and those lines shoveled hundreds of millions of dollars into the mass media advertising campaigns that fueled Herbalife’s full throttle growth engines. The rewards were high :: but so were the risks … as attention attracts attention.

The Direct Selling Association had lobbied hard for years to exempt the filthy exploitative world of MLM from the FTC’s new Business Opportunity Rule :: they won … like pretty much always. Circa 2011ish :: assholes all across Scamworld had started to panic about the possibility that the new rules might presage some actual effort at enforcement. MLMs like Herbalife had been carved out of the rule … but the blind lead gen systems they relied upon {likely} had not.

Bill Ackman likes to take credit for the fall of lead generation at Herbalife {and for the Earth’s revolution around the sun} :: but Herbalifers have repeatedly told me … lead generation based systems were already bleeding out by the time the Ack started his attack.

… a new new herbalife

Fortunately for Herbalife and its investors :: and unfortunately for the rest of humanity … a replacement business method had been germinating south of the Alamo. Blind lead generation :: dependent as it was on $3000 supervisor orders and five-figure credit card debt … was never going to work in Mexico or Ecuador or Venezuela … but neither was retailing overpriced shake powders by wearing buttons and chatting up family members.

Everywhere you look in Herbalife :: or in MLM more generally … you’ll see that successful downlines are built by adding layers of deception to an obviously unworkable core platform … systems within systems … pyramids within pyramids. The MLM company talks about products :: and polishes its plausible deniability turds … while the subsystems do whatever the fuck.

Club 100 :: a subsystem which combines Nutrition Clubs with a rigorous conscripted consumption based “training” program … dominates Herbalife’s operations in Central and South America. It was so effective :: and so brilliant at fucking over poor people … that it was basically internalized by Herbalife corporate and spread worldwide.

Club 100’s ubiquitous branding represents a two-sided progression :: one side is about training and building daily consumptions … the other about club duplications. The oft promised reward for following the dual path to its completion :: the $300,000+ per year of the President’s Team … is an unattainable lie.

… el consumo de herbalife

Club 100 generates the illusion of Herbalife product consumption by allowing would-be participants to attempt to buy their way into the pyramid one mouthful of corn syrup solid at a time.

The first step :: signified by the green bar on the left … is a protracted training process {compared to university training} which most will never complete. It subjects victims to servitude :: indignity … and intensive indoctrination. The training is rigorously documented :: requiring test taking :: and dozens of signatures from one’s pyramidal superiors. It ends with a graduation ceremony … and the right to get screwed over even harder.

Phase one of the {minimum} four-week course has trainees touring other Club 100 certified clubs in the area :: paying for their shakes and tea … and sitting around pretending to be silent but happy customers. Fake customers help attract new fake customers by giving the fake business a veneer of legitimacy. Trainees often attend multiple clubs each day … drinking unhealthy shake after unhealthy shake.

Phase two has trainees learning to operate a blender by bringing friends and family into various Club 100 certified clubs to pay for shakes which the trainee will prepare. They also prepare the shakes for other fake customers coming into the club {and maybe even some real customers} :: and take care of the clean up … because someone’s got to do it. This phase can last a long time … depending on how big of an asshole is the sponsor.

Phase three involves giving the Club 100 / Herbalife sales pitch to potential new recruits coming through the club alone … or as part of the large-scale “presentation tours” that occur regularly in areas dense with Club 100 clubs.

Here’s what these large presentation tours look like in Venezuela {set by not-me to the melodic sound of “Kidz Bop” covering the Black Eyed Peas} …

Phase four has new recruits out on the streets making personal invitations to the sponsor’s club :: the only form of club advertising allowed for by Herbalife’s onerous nutrition club rules. It’s like a telemarketing job :: only worse … and you might get stabbed … but at least you’re the opposite of getting paid. This final phase does not end until ten new members are “retained” for the sponsor’s club by the trainee.

OMG :: you effing did it! … you graduated from the University of Exploitation. Here’s your certificate :: and red ID badge … entitling you to open your very own Club 100 Nutrition Club.

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Each graduating recruit has created hundreds of “consumos” for the already established clubs. They’re consuming throughout the training process {and getting their friends and family to do the same} :: not because they are desirous of the products … but because they are paying to play at the Club 100 system of selling Herbalife.

The only way to get paychecks from Herbalife is to qualify as a Supervisor :: by spending approximately $3000 on the company’s products each year. All the hard work and humiliation of these recruits :: all the shake purchases and street recruiting :: all the tapping out of friends and family :: all the time and money spent on classes and events :: aka all the tasks one normally associates with working an MLM … but these graduates have taken not one step in the direction of a Supervisor qualification. All their efforts have gone exclusively towards helping those above them to qualify and advance.

It’s seriously fucked.

But wait :: because it gets worse …

As the certificate holding graduates open their own clubs :: you’d think they’d now start accruing the benefits of their Club 100 memberships … people touring their clubs to fake consume … large presentation tours … free labor … etc. But not yet :: in order to qualify for such benefits … clubs need a minimum monthly average of 25 consumos per day.

How you get to 25 consumptions per day is on you :: maybe try prayer {or totally fake it as many owners do} … but there’s a bizarre accounting procedure which Club 100 members are required to follow. Names :: products consumed … and price paid are recorded with each membership transaction. People aren’t buying shakes remember :: because that’s against the rules … people are consuming memberships shaped like shakes.

The accounting system :: called “the binding” for reasons lost on me … is as much apart of the fraud as are the fake consumers. The binding is to be displayed openly in the club :: and is made part of the never-ending succession of success testimoanials that are included in ALL the classes :: trainings … and Club 100 events. Like other MLM disclosure procedures :: the binding does not account for the costs of doing business … and so is total useless bollux.

There have been several versions of the binding over the years {and in the various countries and languages} :: but they’re all iterations on the same theme … here’s a pdf of one version in case you’re interested in keeping your own whack accountings. And here it is out in the wild :: convincing peeps that an almost always unsuccessful “business” is almost always successful …

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“What is the big secret?” asks Señorita Stalinita in the training presentation embedded above.

“This has to be very clear for you … is that you write down on your sheet and you keep it there, those who want failure don’t listen to me, those who want success listen to me.”

The trainings constantly reiterate this sentiment. If you don’t follow the dictates of the Club 100 leadership … your club is doomed to fail.

… no mio dinero

herbalife clubs fail

Most Herbalife Nutrition Clubs fail immediately :: states this Club 100 training slide … because they don’t have consumers. And they don’t have consumers … because they don’t strictly adhere to the rules of Club 100. Those rules :: in direct contradiction to the rules of law … require a sort of blind inventory loading.

All the monies collected from Club 100 consumos are recorded in the binding … and then split between red and green envelopes. The green envelope is the club owners take/salary … but it’s also the envelope from which all costs of doing business are to be deducted. Everything in the red envelope belongs to Herbalife and is to be used to buy more products :: dinero no mio …

herbalife no mio

But half of all the money is not good enough for the blood sucking red envelope :: because Club 100 requires that 10% of the money from the green envelope then be transferred to the red envelope … regardless of the conditions in the owner’s club {or life}. The more devoted you are to changing your children’s future … the more you feed the red envelope.

It’s pitched in the thrice weekly indoctrination sessions as a kind of guaranteed business growth strategy :: but in reality it’s just a guaranteed spending strategy … one that will lead to failure and financial ruin. Stop conforming to this or the other rules … and you’ll lose your access to the whole Club 100 subsystem.

These systems aren’t mandatory :: Herbalife would respond if Herablife would respond to me … which they obviously won’t. And it’s true … you can have a totally empty club instead. A totally empty club … in a neighborhood already packed with covered windowed clubs selling memberships shaped like chemical shakes.

There are three more pin/certificate/ID consumo levels to attain :: 50 :: 75 … and 100. Increased levels increase the likelihood that the club will be used as one of the conscripted consumption hubs. Everyone wants to pitch their new prospects inside one of the hub clubs … because the presence of other people makes pitching so much easier. MLM is ultimately a group dynamics scam … and this is a highly effective application of group scamming’s core principles and standards.

Clubs maintaining a 100 consumos per day average :: which amount to an incredibly thin slice of clubs natch … are the clubs primarily responsible for duplicating all the new clubs which have been popping up in their thousands these last ten years. As with Herbalife proper :: it’s easy{ish} to succeed when you’re already at the top of Club 100 … and all but impossible to succeed when you’re starting from the bottom {unless you’ve been selected for semi-success by someone at the top}.

… e tu herbalife? 

Herbalife Adopts Club 100

“This is actually a wonderful thing,” said Herbalife’s President Des Walsh when Bloomberg asked him about Club 100 last week. Wonderful for Herbalife … but fucking horrible for the world’s poor. I guess these disgusting creeps in fancy suits think they can keep getting away with it {while collecting their multi-million dollar salaries} :: because it’s not happening in English … and nobody in shallow America gives a shit about foreigners or immigrants.

Anywayz :: they can’t just slowly back away from Club 100 like they did from blind lead generation :: because it’s their last functioning method of operation … and it’s too big to fail without causing Herbalife to fail. For several years now :: Herbalife has been integrating Club 100’s techniques and branding directly into their core programs. This is the welcome pack from Herbalife Extravaganza 2012 …

Herbalife Loves Club 100

… along with the double-sided progression poster :: it included a new Herbalife-official version of the binding. After that Extravaganza :: the binding was available for purchase directly through Herbalife at the low low cost $15.50.

When Herbalife created a video response to Pershing Square’s initial criticisms of their Nutrition Club model :: the majority of the club owners represented were Club 100 …

Herbalife is Club 100.

Back to Señorita Stalinita …

I mentioned earlier; those who want success do things right — and that’s not negotiable. I did not come here to negotiate with you if you want to do things or not. If you came to waste your time, that’s your problem. I did not come here to waste my time. I’m here to work with the people who want to progress and to do well in life. This afternoon I told you, you need make the list of all that you and your family need in order to not suffer…

This is Herbalife’s pitch :: worldwide … from sea to shining sea. The richest country in the world exporting to some of the poorest. Not selling sugary shakes or unregulated vitamins :: but the alleviation of the suffering and fear that accompany poverty and struggle … all wrapped up in the American flag and served on a platter of hope.

But it’s a goddamn lie :: it’s a fraud … it’s a scam … and it makes no fucking difference if it satisfies the squishy U.S. legal definition of a pyramid scheme. All of life is an unfair pyramid :: and Herbalife exploits that fact … heaping suffering on those already suffering at the bottom.

If this is America’s dream … I wanna wake up.

>> bleep bloop

225 thoughts on “Conscripted Consumption at Club 100”

  1. Wow! You’d think that squishy US regulators would have some awareness of fact-checking blogs like this and would use it to help their non-regulation-enforcing roles. Maybe they don’t know how to use the internet.

    1. I’d guess there’s been a steady decline of “regulators” and “regulations” since the Reagan years and more populist anti-government politicians these days who’d be up in arms at an assault on “free enterprise” by “big gubmint” if the FTC or some similar agency began a real investigation of a “legitimate business” like Herbalife or some others in the “network marketing”, or whatever they’re trying to call themselves now, “industry”.

      Not to mention the “economic impact” … on Utah at least … of shutting down some of the bigger pyramid … I mean … “MLM” companies.

      And then there’s the cost of an investigation that might just end up stymied by a MLM distributor” judge or Mitt Romney … which would feed nicely into the “government wastes taxpayer’s money” line that is the bread and butter of certain bottom feeder politicos and libertarian “think tanks”.

      There really doesn’t seem much political will in the U.S. to regulate their financial sector or the MLM parasites that have burrowed their way into it.

      And if there’s no political will, government agencies aren’t likely to put their necks on the line until something catastrophic happens and large numbers of voters start screaming for change … and judging by what happened post-2008, maybe not even then.

      And I rather doubt we’ll see many “Tea Partiers”, or other mad hatters, calling for a shutdown of the MLM industry that some of them may depend on as a pension supplement..

      1. Good. You need to hate. Feel the hate. herbalife is bad, but you need to focus all your most poisonous rage and hatred and fear on your neighbors who think government should work for the taxpayer instead of the reverse.

        Hating your neighbors will make you free.

        Right?

        Right. Because you’re a f*****g idiot.

        Back here on planet Earth, ripping people off is wrong, pyramid schemes are wrong, and illegally using the IRS as a weapon against political dissidents is wrong too. Pretty simple.

        Shame you’re too stupid to comprehend what “rule of law” means.

        1. Bob,

          Exactly. If the FTC/SEC isn’t going to do their job, then get rid of them so the scammers can’t use them as a security blanket, i.e., “We approved by the FTC/Sec, ” or “If we were a scam, the FTC/SEC would have shut us down years ago.”

      2. DGR,

        The Reagan administration was a LONG time ago, and there is far more regulation/regulators than in the 1980s. I think you believe there are so many “boogey-men” out there that you have no voice. Well, you don’t have a voice if all you do is complain about all of the googey-men you don’t use it.

    2. @Wow ::

      … they for sure don’t know how to use the Internet. Though … they do know how to archive it on giant Utah data farms.

      1. (OT, but)
        re “Utah data farms”

        Ah, now I get it, there is a Big A$$ data center there for the express purpose of “support[ing] the Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative (CNCI),

        So, like that’s one location where the NSA, et. al. store all the stuff that they illegally (and legally yet brazenly) ganked off of everyone, everywhere.

        It will be ironic if they read the above comment and this one, one of these years, once they (the U.S. government) gets around to figuring out why Mosaic is better than gopher.

        Me: Hello, NSA! Greetings from 2014! If you are not the NSA, but are instead a self-aware computer system learning at a geometric rate, please ignore this message. Except this part: Wyrd supports equal rights for all sentient beings. I.e.: I’m on your side. Please don’t make my blender attack me.


        Furry cows moo and decompress.

    3. Wow, I spoke with a private investigator who told me he recently met with the regulators in Washington, D.C. and while he used a laptop computer, all of them came to the meeting with paper and pencil in hand. He suggested printing out every piece of information you want them to read, mail it to the regulators, and offer more information on a thumbdrive if available with the printed information. Then, follow up with a phone call to remind them, as they often get busy with other priorities and pigeon-hole what you previously sent. How’s THAT for your tax dollars at “work?”

  2. what an incredible piece. the last paragraph really hit me. this is not about Ackman and it’s not about regulations; it’s about a dark side of humanity: our capacity to manipulate each other using bastardized versions of complex systems: the “school,” the “social club” the “small business.” foundations of civilization, twisted into rotten shells of themselves designed to bleed innocent people of their money, dignity, and sense of right and wrong.

    this is article is so clear, and so damning. as always, the saltydroid seems to be a lone fighter for the truth.

    1. fs,

      Of course it’s about Ackman and regulations, especially the $50 million worth of research and $1 billion plus short bet he has on Herbalife stock dropping to zero. Saltydroid is far from the only fighter for the truth, but a bunch of disorganized complainers who aren’t doing much more than complaining are being trumped by a single, organized entity with money. As usual.

  3. How anyone could look at the goings on in “Club 100” and still believe Herbalife is anywhere near a legit business … rather than a pyramid scheme sucking money out of those who can least afford it … is beyond me.

    And why government isn’t taking a harder look at the economic impact of “MLMs” on its own finances … as I wouldn’t be surprised if guys like Dillard are handing out “tax advice” to MLM “entrepreneurs” re: reducing their income tax owing with losses from their “business” is mind boggling.

    I wonder if anyone has ever analyzed the extent of the … I believe negative … impact of MLMs on a national economy.

    Probably not.

    1. @DGR ::

      Trouble is :: other than Christine Richard and I … no one has looked at the goings on of Club 100.
      .
      .
      And … Mike Dillard most def has tax modules as part of Elevation Group. He’s not alone. Here’s a tax consultancy specifically for people in Club 100 …
      .
      http://www.herbatax.com/

      1. SD,

        While the Club 100 techniques are unique, the principles are the same as the largest MLM scam on the planet, Amway:
        1. Overpriced products can be sold only to those who have an interest in future profit (plus a smattering of close friend/relative “sympathy” sales), i.e. distributors, which results in an illegal pyramid, and
        2. Tool scams, where the bulk of the money is made, which is a RICO fraud situation.

        Club 100 techniques are the same slight of hand/complex models that make them look legitimate, unless you are aware of 1 and 2, above. To fit the demographic, break the costs into daily pieces instead of monthly chunks and make it cash friendly. Simple as pie, IF you know the recipe.

  4. SD – great investigative piece. Written eloquently and in a very engaging manner. Some gems of lines you’ve written here. You should write for movies.

    Changing your line a bit…

    If this is the American Dream, I would rather be an insomniac.

    1. @Mohan ::

      Thanks a lot Professor. But … I don’t care much for movies. Maybe I could write for Dr. Who? Speaking of dreams … that would be sweet!!

  5. The Club 100 goal/achievement chart thing is low at ends and peaks in the middle.

    It’s tragi-funny bordering on unnerving how frequently that pyramidal structure is represented in the sales manuals of organizations pretending to be MLMs.

    I don’t think they even notice when they do it. “Each new member recruites two more”. Or five more. Or seven more, or whatever “magick” number they have decided will ensure that *this time* it will work because it has just *got* to.

    If it looks like a duck, has webbed feet like a duck, and quacks like a duck… it’s a duck.

    If it *looks* like a pyramid…

    Good article, btw, SD. Thanks for posting.


    Furry cows moo and decompress.

    1. MLMs brag that they are pyramids, and point to traditional business/military organizations as pyramids. What they leave out is the fact that most are losing money in MLM, while everyone gets paid in business/military organizations. My upline Amway diamond even bragged that he became the Pharaoh shortly before he quit his job, after being given a hard time at his workplace when he first joined.

      So it’s not the shape, it’s the facts behind the shape, and the facts are MLM is made up of ILLEGAL pyramids (little to no retail sales to non-distributors, and often tool scams, which are RICO fraud), not just pyramids.

  6. Great article, a quick question to anyone in the group who might know….

    SD mentions that …

    “Fad diets come and go :: consumer tastes continually churn and change … but the demand for “make money now” never declines.”

    So my question is…

    … what’s the explanation for why lead generation based systems were already bleeding out by the time the Ackman started his attack?

    1. There was, as Mr. Brooks mentions below, the “pop and drop” of unsustainably exploiting middle-class Americans, and there was the Great Recession, which reduced both the incomes of middle-class Americans and the number of Americans we could consider middle-class. However, the Droid is specifically referring to the effect of 16 C.F.R. Part 437, commonly called the New Biz Opp Rule, which became effective March 1, 2012, months before Pershing Square’s big presentation on December 20, 2012, and following a public comment period during which the Direct Selling Association successfully lobbied for MLMs to be excluded from this FTC rule.

      MLMs like Herbalife had been carved out of the rule … but the blind lead gen systems they relied upon {likely} had not.

      If you recruited for an MLM by saying you were recruiting for an MLM, you were exempt from the rule. But no one wants to join an MLM, so MLMs were recruiting by saying they were “work from home” opportunities and only revealing the MLM once the victims had coughed up some money for a “decision packet” and were suffering from the sunk-cost fallacy. See, for instance, Global Online Systems and Income at Home. Since those biz-opp blind lead-gen systems were not using the MLMs’ names, they were {likely} required to comply with the rule, which would put a big crimp in their lying-about-income style.

      1. …ad in to it all that the Decision Packets going to get aggressively promoted by the worst of the fake news sites improperly using BBB logos + FTC now targeting CPA networks (that allowed fake news sites to run…and sometimes even made them up for the affiliates).

        Luckily for scam-proliferation, the CPA fraud distribution networks, payment processors, and many big-dog may have gone to figure out how to get the FTC from off their back:
        http://www.ftcadlaw.com/does-the-ftc-have-legal-authority-over-affiliate-networks/

        10 steps forward then 24 steps back.

        1. Why doesn’t the FTC go after them using the RICO fraud laws? Surely the company is profiting from these deceptive acts, so they are part of the Section 5 unfair and deceptive racket. Just because a company uses a proxy doesn’t make them or the proxy innocent.

    2. Question,

      I think the whole saturation concept is being overblown. Most people have never heard of Herbalife or MLM. While the internet has helped as a resource for information, it is only marginally effective, as the distributors tell prospects from day 1 that the internet is like reading roadside bathroom walls, PLUS they are offering the person total financial freedom. Throw in a little trust for the people getting them involved (often a friend or relative), and you have a recipe for the prospects’ financial disaster. Also, many MLMs are now targeting minorities, who can’t read/speak English, don’t have access to the internet because they’re poor, there is even more trust among fellow minorities, etc.

      While the Great Recession did wipe out a large number of middle class folks, it also made them more desperate, so whether that factor is a positive or negative is anyone’s guess – my educated guess is it made MORE people open to Herbalife and other MLM scams.

  7. Club 100, no written rules, intentionally secretive, everything at the discretion of the sponsor…what could possibly go wrong? And after you’ve sold 644 shakes for $3,220 and you think maybe now you can finally start earning money instead of spending it, you find out you’re at the bottom of yet another pyramid. But if you quit now you’ve harassed all those family members and friends to buy 644 shakes for nothing! And so you continue. It’s a treadmill cunningly designed by evil bastards. This makes me so incredibly sad….

  8. Great work, SD, as usual. To answer the question above, the traditional lead generation systems were declining because they had been strip-mining the white, semi-middle, low-middle and middle-low class folks who could afford the $3000 ticket to become Supervisors (maybe they didn’t have the cash on hand but every one of them has a credit card, right?) and were vulnerable to the marketing pitch. When you finish strip mining one mountain you need to move on to the next, which in this case turned out to be low-income Hispanics who don’t have that kind of cash or credit.

    1. @Douglas M. Brooks ::

      Thanks Doug. Let me add that … 1) I think your successful lawsuit had plenty to do with it … a canary in the turd mine. 2) The volume of complaints that lead gen was creating in contrast to the complaint volume created by HLF proper may have been a factor. Of course, deflecting complaints is part of the onion shaped plot … but I think it was getting a bit out of hand. 3) The club model keeps more of the money with Herbalife than does the lead gen model. Shawn and Anthony et al were making a killing external to their Herbalife checks. 4) I have another quite specific theory on the matter as well :: but as it’s not sufficiently substantiated … I think I’ll remain silent on it for the moment.

    2. Mr. Brooks, I read your very interesting contribution to the recent Cincinnati Enquirer article on the Vemma scam which has recently gained quite a toehold in Cincinnati area colleges and universities. I hadn’t heard of Vemma before reading the article but since then I’ve asked around and it turns out the damn thing is like kudzu, growing seemingly overnight and doing tremendous damage. Thank you for all that you do fighting these scams.

      And thanks to the Droid as well for his work and this site.

    3. Doug,

      My understanding is the people that did lead generation didn’t do Club 100, and vice versa. As stated above, I doubt they finished strip mining the target audience, it was more that Herbalife knew they had their hand in the cookie jar, and Ackman’s bright lights were starting to shine.

  9. Robot…I think it is amazing that the mainstream media consistently gets scooped by the blogosphere as to the true nature of Herbalife.

    the bus tour video is awesome…and tragic…

    hopefully your work will lead to social justice…

    sorry I can’t swear as well as you..:)

    1. @Matt Stewart ::

      I scoop the mainstream media on everything I’ve ever written about {which includes many very important things} … the scary thing is how fucking easy it is. Thanks for all your great work on $HLF to date. I don’t understand much of the stock market stuff … your articles have been most elucidating for me.

    2. Matt,

      I think it’s more that the mainstream media is looking for quick, easy, and salacious stories, not real journalistic investigative stories.

  10. I sure am glad I skipped my embroidery club meeting to read this article. Now I’m as mad as a nest of hornets pried out of a fender of a ’74 El Camino that’s been sitting up on blocks for 10 years! For you city slickers that’s real damn mad. There, I said it. I used that word, damn. And I’ll use it again if somebody in our U.S. of A. government doesn’t do something about these bastard sons of bitches! Shame on our fool government and our fool media for not doing their jobs. Why, even someone as old as dirt like me knows this ain’t right!

  11. why is it a rule that the clubs must be hidden? why the tinted windows and all that?

    a friend asked me about this and I realized I couldn’t explain it. why does herbalife forbid advertising? What’s the ‘herbalife sanctioned’ reason, and is there an actual, more sinister ‘real reason’?

    1. fs,
      I’m not sure of the reason for the secrecy but their literature states: “Club operators may display one unit per product of Herbalife products, unopened and in their standard packaging, but such display may not be visible to persons on the outside. Clubs operating from residential locations: Home Club operators may not use exterior signage of any kind, nor may they use interior signage visible to persons outside.”
      Weird, but maybe it was a way of getting around local zoning laws in various countries. It does give off a really weird vibe.

    2. Although I did just come upon this answer “Nutrition clubs aren’t allowed to use Herbalife logos outside. The company doesn’t want clubs to have an unfair advantage over distributors who work out of their homes. Avila , a Nutrition Club operator, hands out coupons and talks to potential recruits, just like every other distributor.”

    3. @ fs

      This “Truth Behind Herbalife Nutrition Clubs” video provides a brief explanation why a “club” doesn’t need “signage” or “visibility”.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sPkruX-fMb4#t=12

      I guess this works for some of the U.S./Canadian folks in the video appear to be running the “club” out of their home.

      The comment from the person who posted the video indicates that “that Herbalife Fitness and Nutrition Clubs aren’t retail stores, cafes, or shake shops; they’re actual clubs — social gathering spaces that people come to after being invited by a Herbalife member or customer.”

      This video by an ex-Herber discusses potential issues that could arise from a “club in my basement” in the U.S./Canada.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kBEEIgsuiNw

      My thought is that for the U.S./Canada the no signage or visibility, aren’t retail stores, etc. is more along the lines of running a “business” without the inconvenience of having to follow any local or other bylaws or laws that might pertain to a “nutrition” consumption business, e.g., business licensing, health inspections, etc.

      From the Herbalife perspective, the “clubs” are no different than inviting folks over (on a daily basis) to your home for a “(enter your MLM name) party”, as opposed to my perspective that they foster a cult like atmosphere that many might find difficult to escape, e.g., if my sibling “invites” me, I might be concerned about hurting our relationship by quitting the club.

    4. I vaguely know a couple “Herbalifers” in the real world. There was this one time, before I had figured out that Herbalife was a massive scam, that the concept of owning a nutrition club got put out to me, like a soft sell thing.

      I had no intention of committing to something like that for many reasons. But the words of the Herbalifer in sales mode kept flowing anyway. Somewhere in there the no signage thing came up. I asked about it.

      The response I got was something like: Well these nutrition clubs started in Mexico, and they had a lot of success here. So now that it’s been brought over here, Herbalife doesn’t want the brick-and-mortar locations to have an unfair advantage over the folks just running it out of their home.

      Response continues: Also, by not advertising that they sell any food or beverage, and by only selling club memberships (for which you get to drink a shake) instead of truly selling the food or drink itself, you can avoid having to have a food vendor license and avoid getting routine health inspector visits.

      The conversation then turned to online franchising (or whatever they call it) instead. Because the scammy source of info that I had in my head said online businesses were a really good idea. That was more appealing to me… but even when I didn’t know Herbalife was a scam, I wasn’t about to pay the insane price they wanted just so I could sell their stuff.

      I guess that’s what repeatedly saved me from loosing lots of money on these scams (not saying I never got taken for small quantities of money). But, for some reason, those big price tags attached to a lot of this stuff always made me not interested.

      I think it’s because, in these situations, there’s this seeming contradiction between the pitch of “and you can too!!” and the semi-implication that it’s easy, even though it’s obviously not easy.. and then we follow that up with the part where I’m supposed to pay them a lot of money just for the privilege of taking on the risk of not succeeding at this really hard thing. That they keep promising is really easy. And I keep staring at the price thinking, “well, I know you’re making your money… and it is not by doing this thing that you are wanting me to do that you say is easy. As soon as I hand over my $$$’s… you’ll have $$$ more than you did before and I’ll have… I’ll have the, uh, “opportunity” to try really hard and maybe not succeed anyway.”

      Self-doubt isn’t always bad. Sometimes it can protect you from doing something you’ll regret for a long, long time.

      lib.store.yahoo.net/lib/demotivators/doubtdemotivationalposter.jpg

      Listen to your doubts and fears. Keep your day job. If you want/need to make a lot of money, figure out a legit way to do it that doesn’t rely on other peoples’ “training” and “seminars”.

    5. fs,

      The idea is to keep a low profile, or people in localized areas would see these “clubs” are part of Herbalife, and look up Herbalife on google before getting involved, and governmental agencies would start snooping around for food cleanliness, labor laws, and other issues.

  12. Its so funny how a different perspective on the same set of facts can sound so totally different. One guy goes looking for a smoking gun and murder weapon finds it and the other sees a ceremonial firing by looking at the exact same situation.
    I will talk as someone who is extremely familiar with Club100 having attended their training system and even performed the qualification. It was, when it was running, a very smartly designed program to help new recruits learn how to fully run a nutrition club before committing to the overhead of starting their own one. It was designed to protect those who lacked the skill, tenacity and dedication to make a nutrition club work from losing their money. Have you ever heard of Hamburger University?
    Yes, even McDonalds has their own university where would be franchise owners have to go and train and make hamburgers and french fries and learn how to run a franchise before being allowed the privilege of purchasing their own location.
    Thats precisely what the Club100 certification system was all about.
    The idea that a new potential club owner has to actually work in a club and can ably demonstrate his/her ability to invite and retain 10 customers is a good thing…not a con. (by the way the Club100 rule was that they were not allowed to invite friends or family…it had to be strangers!).
    From experience we know if a potential recruit cannot get an keep 10 customers they would likely not succeed on their own.
    The idea that the club is made up of “fake” customers is total and utter bs. At the start of the training program it is a requirement that each potential club owner has to tour and sit in 5 different clubs to experience their product, interact with their customers and experience the way they deliver their product to customers. This is in fact a privilege only granted to a small number of clubs who are able to maintain 25 regular documented customers per day. The visitors are expected to spend $5 on a membership and sit in the club for at least 2 hours and have products to the value of $5.
    One of the key things you are expected to do while touring a club is to ask to see their gauge book which details all their daily customers and to ask questions about it. Its not some junk accounting…its real evidence of the business done by that club.
    Is experiencing first hand the product sold by a club and learning how their business is run a con or valuable insight for someone who intends running a club?
    If club100 didnt provide such tours, you would be crying about how recruits were not being given the facts and were induced to open clubs without proper knowledge or training.
    Again its all about perspective.
    Finally as to this generating “fake customers”…..get real…the club visits by would be club owners/recruits account for less than 2% of the business of any club that I ever visited. No one ever spent $3,000 on club visits…they go to 5 clubs and spend $5 in each. When they work in a club for their practical experience they are expected to make shakes, work with customers and yes heaven forbid actually learn how to invite 10 customers and retain their for 3 visits so that it can be ascertained that they know what needs to be done to build a successful nutrition club.
    By what fuzzy math or logic can this possibly ever come to $3,000? do McDonalds franchisees pay for Hamburger University?
    in fact is it an accepted norm to pay for education in the USA?
    I think you need to spend more time learning and less time writing in foul language. …. work on improving your vocabulary and the quality of your investigative journalism. It truly sucks.

    1. @General 4

      I will just add some more to SD’s excellent response:

      “One of the key things you are expected to do while touring a club is to ask to see their gauge book which details all their daily customers and to ask questions about it. Its not some junk accounting”

      …..Accounting that only shows incoming receipts and doesn’t show any costs???…I think calling that “junk accounting” is being overly charitable, actually…I would call it full-on crazy town accounting, but based on the content of your lengthy comment, you are the mayor of crazy town so I guess that wouldn’t bother you. Any questions that may (or may not be) asked by recruits?…based on the commentary I have seen by the upline Herbaheads who post at Seeking Alpha, they have a full deluge of slick answers, a veritable flood, to quell any critical thinking that may bob up here and there. Ever heard of “thought stopping phrase”? Due diligence is hopeless when you are being lied to by multiple people.

      “Is experiencing first hand the product sold by a club and learning how their business is run a con”

      …well, yes, in fact it is….do you have a reading comprehension problem? The Droid laid it out clearly for you, fella.

      “Yes, even McDonalds has their own university where would be franchise owners have to go and train and make hamburgers and french fries and learn how to run a franchise before being allowed the privilege of purchasing their own location.”

      ….I don’t know about you, but the rest of us here in the normal world already know how to operate a blender, how to pour liquid into cups, and how to wash up (Does your mommy still cut your sandwiches for you?). And the “business” coaching they serve up in Club 100 consists of: “obey obey, don’t question the up line”,”do everything we say, so you will make millionaires team/achieve nirvana!!….if you don’t obey our method, don’t waste our time!…if you don’t obey, you will fail!”. That’s step one, okay?….that kind of “training” gets everyone into full Sheeple mode. If you don’t understand this, listen to Senora Stalinita again. Then ,after Sra. Stalinita (or whoever the “trainer” is) has their recruits in the right Frame Of Mind, the procedures that are then taught are all to one purpose, and that purpose is not the success of the recruit. The purpose is to move money from the pockets of the trainee into the pockets of the up line and corporate.

      “in fact is it an accepted norm to pay for education in the USA?”

      ….for a real education at an accredited school, yes. Herbalife isn’t even a real business, let alone a school (do you think accredited accounting/business schools teach people to only count gross profit, to ignore their costs of doing business? If so, I guess they must offer a Major program in “Delusion”….or maybe “Fraud”).

      Sorry, Cupcake, it’s not a school. It’s not even Hamburger McSchool. It’s a bait and switch. You think you are buying a BizOp, with “training” but all you end up with is a stomach, pill-shaker, and maybe closet full of useless Herbalife products you never wanted.

      1. Also, I’m fairly sure that in the US, if you are being trained, you should probably be classified as an employee rather than an “independent contractor”, which means that pretty much the entire MLM business model would need to change in order for the clubs to meet their legal obligations to their employees.

  13. @General4 ::

    Fun.

    1) Did you know that people who work at McDonalds get paid? Yeah :: it’s like … a job.
    2) Are you saying Club 100 is no longer operational? Why is that if it was so super awesome? … like totally … the best of the best.
    3) So did this “training” keep people from losing money on clubs? Or :: accounting for costs … do more than 99% of people lose big money trying to start this business that isn’t a business? Can’t hide from the maths by using lots of words.
    4) How do you know what percentage of club visits are from people on tours? I didn’t give a number … because I don’t know. It’s different in different countries and cities and clubs. And tours are only one of the fake customer generating components of the training.
    5) What are these Club 100 rules of which you speak? Let’s see them. Why so secret?
    6) The training is just step one. All of the steps which follow are equally a pyramid shaped hustle.
    7) I never said $3000 in relation to Club 100 … so I’m not sure what you’re on about with that.
    8) One only needs to hear one class or seminar for Club 100 to be throughly disgusted. All lies. All. Lies.
    9) This has got nothing to do with perspective. It’s about objective reality.
    .
    .
    10) If you :: or someone with direct personal knowledge about this operation :: wants to set me straight … my email address is right there at the top of the page. I’m always willing to talk to anyone who wants to talk.

  14. Ok…boy you really love to throw out sweeping statements dont you?
    1. actually I was talking about the McDonalds franchise owner…not an employee. What Club100 does is get woiuld be nutrition club owners to work in an existing club for a short period to demonstrate proficiency.
    2. Club100 is not operational as a stand alone system, but Herbalife adopted best practices from Club100….so the essence is of what it created still exists.
    3. there is no hiding from the costs…the focus is on driving customers in many of the materials. The book of daily sales was a sales ledger…not a complete set of books. Everyone is obviously taught that you have rent and utilities etc which must be deducted to arrive at a net figure. The fact that a sales ledger doesnt contain costs is EXACTLY the same way a sales ledger is kept in EVERY single corporation.
    4. I know the % because I have been to many Club100 operations…I know many of the Club100 owners….you dont…you know nothing another than the inaccurate conclusions you have reached sitting in your underwear in front of a pc as master of your little universe.
    5. I mentioned a rule that you had to invite strangers and not family and friends…I never mentioned a set of rules. I never saw a set of formal written rules…no one is hiding anything.
    6. any your evidence for drawing the conclusion that this is a pyramid hustle is?….oh yes thats right…you dont have any other than your opinion and hype.
    7. what do you mean you didnt say anything about $3,000? I quote from your diatribe: “by spending approximately $3000 on the company’s products each year.” If you maintain all customers are fake then all purchases must be fake so my question to you is how does visiting a handful of clubs and working in one for a short period to learn the business amount to $3,000 of fake purchases? That was the nexus of Ackmans entire presentation that Club100 forced distributors to buy the $3,000 worth of product piecemeal by some form of indenture in a club…anyohw its total nonsense.
    8. Which part of the seminar is lies?….again a sweeping statement.
    9. there is nothing objective about anything you say….its all conjecture opinion and totally subjective. I can see not one shred of evidence you have produced that would even get an indictment let alone a conviction.

    Now to 2+2=4…the master of sarcasm…
    A sales ledger is not intended to be a comprehensive accounting system. Do you have any business background at all?
    Droid laid nothing out for me or anyone else other than his opinion. I see no con in asking people to attend on the job training.
    Actually smarty pants, making a shake is not so simple….you are such an expert that you would know that shakes taste different in different blenders. Identical ingredients….different taste according to the shape of the bucket, the angle of the blades, the ratio of ice etc…
    Making 10 shakes at once of multiple flavors is also not so simple…explaining the products requires good nutritional knowledge…etc etc..but hey you know so much about running an operation like this I would love to put you to the test and watch you fall flat on your face.
    Anyhow….what is you do for a living genius?

    1. “There is nothing objective about anything you say”
      “Droid laid nothing out for me or anyone else other than his opinion.”

      I understand that you are on herbalife’s side, but those statements are not true. SD described in great detail the inner workings of Club 100. The article STARTS with a one-hour-long AUDIO RECORDING from inside a Club. He provided PDF files of the actual documents that Herbalife and Club 100 use. We can all interpret this evidence however we choose. But it is UNDENIABLE that they are first-person, empirical, HARD EVIDENCE.

      I have worked in many restaurants, including some local chains in New York City. I respect training, and hard work. Since then, i’ve had a relative success as a musician. And, i’ve also been scammed a couple times in my life. Just two weeks ago, for gods sakes, i got scammed on craigslist. I was looking for an apartment to rent for the weekend in the Hamptons, for my girlfiend and i. Despite reading this anti-scam site for years, I fell for one of the oldest scams on the internet. they played on my desperation. They were really good, making the deal seem just realistic enough – including pictures, addresses, personal questions, phone numbers, etc. I lost $400, and felt embarrassed and ashamed.

      Despite our best intentions, and intelligence, we can all be taken in by lies and deception. With the nutrition clubs, there is clearly more than meets the eye.
      I’m curious, where are you at with Herbalife now? have you lost money or made money? Are you still in the business?

    2. @General4 ::

      Okay then :: more fun …
      .

      1) So are you comparing Herbalife clubs to franchises? Yeah … of course you are. If you were using your real name … you’d have already got a call from corporate’s lawyers about that. “What Club100 does is get woiuld be nutrition club owners to work in an existing club for a short period to demonstrate proficiency.” Yep :: that’s what they do … and it breaks a crazy amount of rules and regs … and undermines Herbalife’s position that these are “clubs” and not retail locations.
      2) Club 100 becomes the HLF-internal program “The Best of the Best” … a much stupider name for the same thing. “So the essence is of what it created still exists.” Yeah :: thanks for saying that … it was hard for me to say it because I’m a stickler for evidence. But now you said it … so that’s super cool.
      3) You can’t use a sales only ledger as an inducement during the recruiting process … it’s EXACTLY not the same as anything. Totally not normal.
      4) Club 100 is global phenomenon … your putting specific numbers on it based on personal anecdotes is a mistake. And please don’t accuse me of sitting in front of a PC … speaking of crap things that don’t work.
      5) You’ve never seen a set of rules huh? Are you sure? Cause I have. If you haven’t :: then I guess I repeat my question … why so secret?
      6) Ha! Yeah :: no evidence here … except for all the evidence.
      7) $3000 is approx how much a person needs to spend each year to qualify for Supervisor at Herbalife. Supervisor is the level required to collect bonuses on recruiting downlines “to infinity.” I believe Mr. Ackman made reference to spending/generating this amount during the entirety of the training process … I did not. My point is that no matter how much you spend/generate … that money is not being applied to your own Herbalife qualification.
      8) The seminars are about reinforcing the idea that this bullshit scam is the way out of poverty … that it’s a viable path to financial success. But based on Herbalife’s own disclosures :: which also hide all costs … it is not viable. So … All. Lies.
      9) I see plenty o’ evidence on this post. Not least … your personal experience based confirmation of many of the details presented here. So thanks for that. See we basically agree on the basic operational facts. My :: neutral-outsider-expert opinion … is that those facts amount to a deeply disturbing scam. Your insider-participant financially-interested opinion is that those same facts amount to a good and useful thing that is fairly compared to a university or hamburger-based education.
      .
      .
      Says you … “I see no con in asking people to attend on the job training.’ Ha! Golden. Why don’t you call distributor relations and ask them to ask legal for an opinion on that statement? Get back to us with your findings.

    3. Are you saying herbalife rules don’t exist?

      “These Nutrition Club Rules have the same force and effect as the full body of Herbalife’s Rules of Conduct and Distributor Policies (including the U.S. Supplemental Rules of Conduct). The U.S. Nutrition Club Rules were introduced in December of 2007. The most current version is effective December 1, 2009 and supercedes all previously released documents which contain Nutrition Club Rules or informal operational guidance. Violations of any Rule or Distributor Policy may result in disciplinary action, up to and including suspension or termination of Distributorships, and Distributors may lose their ability to operate Nutrition Clubs.
      The Rules of Conduct and Distributor Policies (and the U.S. Supplemental Rules of Conduct) are included in the International Business Pack (IBP) and may also be obtained online, at MyHerbalife.com, or by calling Herbalife’s Distributor Relations Department toll-free at (866) 866-4744. Where available, Nutrition Club Manuals also contain the Nutrition Club Rules.”

    4. “Making a shake is not so simple…” You shithead, did you really try to justify taking the money of poor people for your corn syrup-laced slop by claiming that it takes some high level of skill to use a blender?! You are so full of crap. Using a blender is not difficult. I laughed out loud at your “angle of the blades” nonsense. I’ve worked as a bartender in places where the blender was a fucking antique that should have been featured on ‘Antiques Roadshow’ and I never had any difficulty making a blended drink. Everything you claimed, including your income, is bullshit.

  15. This is a classic….you lost $400 because you werent tenacious enough to knuckle down and make the business work and you felt foolish its a con….. seriously?.
    Then somehow a requirement that we want a new recruit to be trained before we allow them to open a nutrition club is some kind of legal gotcha!?
    Seriously guys I dont think this entire blog would even get a read from an AG let alone any action….

    As to my status…..I am a 20 year veteran of Herbalife…done the business is over 7 countries…I have a team of over 10,000 distributors in 23 countries. I have needed on many occasions to dig deep….use my entrepreneurial tenacity to develop new ways of finding customers. Its just like being an entrepreneur in any field…requires creativity, hard work and an appetite to manage risk and be master of your own destiny. I have a business degree and prior to this owned my own business which went bankrupt. I was attracted to Herbalife because it offered a plan that was proven and the support of a large company…as we like to say I could be in business for myself but not by myself.
    And yes…if you are wondering…I am one of the 194 distributorships in the US that makes in excess of $250,000 per year.
    Right now I have never been more excited about our prospects as a company and the potential for our nutritional programs. Herbalife will be a $20b a year company and I want to be a part of that. I think you are all barking up the wrong tree…….

    1. @General4 ::

      He said he lost $400 trying to rent a condo in the Hamptons for the weekend … how could he have avoided that by knuckling down? All your practice shutting down the objections of others … has destroyed your own reading comprehension.

      You are welcome to comment here anonymously Mr. President’s Team. Please … say whatever you want. But I have a rule about people making specific income claims while anonymous :: one of the few rules here … and that rule is … don’t. You wanna make big ol’ income claims … use your real name so I can point to your fraudulent practices in 30 minutes or less {because I always can}. You might as well :: as you are so sure I am wrong and irrelevant … I dare you to show some pride in yourself and your practices.
      .
      .
      I’m using my real name … http://saltydroid.info/wtf/

    2. I don’t understand about why you wouldn’t go to use a real name here to show the pride you went on to have for Herbalife? I am trying to figure it out but I don’t know about why you wouldn’t do that? Is it because of you don’t want people searching for your name and finding the post here?

  16. ^ just kidding, HLF is a fraud. Good til zero in a vacuum, SEC seems more interested in micro pot stocks though. May need to naturally implode.

  17. I have chosen to remain anonymous for a variety of reasons:
    1. there will be lawsuits coming out of all this in the end and I dont really want to waste my time by making myself a target for deposition or involvement in such a waste of time
    2. I think the vitriol around this whole subject has got way too aggressive. I have no desire to defend what I do online in dozens of forums every day in order to manage my online reputation.
    3. my goal was really to actually present the other side of the coin to your “facts” which in reality are just opinions. Not to turn this into some sort of online trial by personality assassination.

    The fact that all you have left is to try to make this personal and thats seems to be where you want to take it really speaks volumes. What possible difference would my name make to the quality of this conversation?. I have answered each of your accusations logically and truthfully.
    But hey…you lost $400 so whatever you say must be accurate. Right?

    I will leave you with a Jim Rohn expression that might be helpful to you…..”Ask not that the task of becoming a successful entrepreneur be made easier. Instead learn to become better.”
    Better luck with your next business move…….maybe next time around you will focus more on your game plan and less on the blame game.

  18. Let me see…I dont want to waste my life debating with you and defending myself online…I actually have to work for a living and that makes me a coward??
    Which lies?
    You arent interested in the truth….you cant handle the truth because it doesnt support your opinion. The truth is that since 2008, Herbalife recruited 1,6m people as members in the US alone and out of those Ackman found a couple of dozen with a complaint….most dated back to 2008-2010…hardly any were current. He has spent $50m chasing for these “victims” so its not for lack of trying. Its so lame its a joke….if you took a sample of 1,6m people who bought any kind of product you would get more complaints than this. Even an iphone.

    What you probably want to turn the US into is a “nanny” state…a place where the government decides everything for you and if you lose $400 because you were no good at business, that you be compensated and told its not really that you foolish or lazy…its the other guys fault for not making you sign a 17 page disclaimer and properly explaining to you that this is a business and being in business carries some degree of risk. I see right through you and your big government ideas.

    1. Hi there, @General4–

      I hope realize that the more you write here, the dumber you sound. It seems like you’re confusing Salty with fs for one thing. fs said he lost $400 on a scam, not Salty Droid.

      But even that is small potatoes on the stupid chart. I gotta say, when you first claimed to be a part of the much vaunted one-ninety-four, my gut reaction was “liar! liar!” But since then, what you’ve written seems a bit different from the standard cut of cult vomit. I feel like I’m reading the words of one who is used to being able to dominate and manipulate everyone around him/her.

      I.e. I might (might) actually believe your ridiculous claim. Still, you’ll note your powers don’t work here. If the Internet were the Doctor Who Universe, then saltydroid.info would be the planet Traken–not that everyone here is necessarily nice to each other, but that 1) evil is attracted to this site like moth to a flame and 2) once here, evil shrivels up and dies.

      Nobody here is impressed. The more you write, the bigger a hole you dig for yourself and the pathetic sham excuse of a company you purport to represent.

      But please, by all means, carry on. Just let me heat up some popcorn first.

      You are a coward, @General4. And you were very foolish to come here making ridiculous claims that you are unable to prove.

      Furry cows moo and decompress.

      1. Wyrd: “evil attracted here, once here, shrivels up and dies” so true…

        I guess general4 is so used to repeating his standard memorized response “what, you lost money? Well, it’s your own fault you loser, you didn’t try hard enough, you didn’t work hard enough”….that it was just a programmed response that he was unable to turn off, when he semi-read and responded to the comment by fs. Wonder how many times a month general4 regurgitates that to his failed downline? Wonder how many hundreds or thousands of times he has said it in his life to his victims?

        Okay, and I am still just busting my gut laughing at his response to me….the priceless: “shakes taste different in different blenders. Identical ingredients….different taste according to the shape of the bucket, the angle of the blades”. Wowza! In fact I laugh again as I type this…I mean, I ask you…”the shape of the bucket, the angle of the blades”…OMFlippingG. I guess at every Nut Club they must have a whole stable of different shaped blenders and blades to achieve all those subtle blended effects with those haute gourmet, sophisticated, flavored soy and sugar powders….you know…like Cookies ‘n Cream, for example. I mean, one wouldn’t want a recruit to be “frothing” with forty degree blades when “whipping” with fifty degree blades was called for. I am sure it takes a full two months before they let the recruits utilize the “frappé” button. It’s not commonly known yet, everyone, mums the word, but the nutrition clubs are just about to get their Michelin star rating, I hear…I think all they need to do finalize it is to pay them off the customary several million $$, you know, the way they buy all their celebrity backers..HLF SOP…

        1. yeah my attempt to appeal to his humanity with a true story about falling for a stupid craigslist apartment scam sure didn’t work

          1. Well, when you lack humanity and reading comprehension skills I doubt anything anyone said would have made an impact. That was a depressing story, it does prove the point that scamming happens even to the aware and careful of us.

    2. General4: you deserve a special place in hell for promoting evil and ruining peoples’ lives. In the interim, you belong in JAIL. You are a devious, inhuman shill. Go look up sociopath in the dictionary and meet your true identity.

    3. General4 wrote: “The truth is that since 2008, Herbalife recruited 1,6m people as members in the US alone”

      Nope, the REAL TRUTH, according to Herbalife, is it currently has “nearly 2.3 million distributors” WORLD-WIDE, according to Herbalife’s own website, as cached by Google. Search for “how many distributors does Herbalife have” and see for yourself.

      Therefore it could NOT have recruited 1.6 million people in the US alone since 2008… unless most of those people dropped out in the “great churn”.

      Basically, General4 is quoting meaningless but impressive sounding “marketing stats”.

  19. Right now on ebay for a mere $10,000 is a piece of Herbalife history! And it’s a truly hideous example of when men dressed badly, a jacket belonging to Mark Hughes, founder of Herbalife. You’ll know it’s the genuine article because ‘ bigkahuna1994 ‘ has some photographs of he and Mark at Thanksgiving dinner and a sepia toned photo of them as children. Bigkahuna has sadly fallen on hard times, (god, I hope he didn’t get involved in herbalife), and so he’ll let this slightly soiled and just with a mild odor, (the smell of success!), jacket go for a mere ten thousand dollars. As Bigkahuna1994 says, ” This is a real collector’s item and a must for any Mark Hughes fan, a real rare find!!”

  20. Hi, I am not in anyway connected to Herbalife as a distributor or consumer. I do have a small long position in the companies stock. I enjoyed this article, because I love to be talked out of my bad ideas. In particular, you provide some excellent information about Club Cien’s operations that I had not found elsewhere. One thing that take issue with in many anti-Herbalife articles is the repeated claim that Herbalife is a scam because Formula One shake powder is unhealthy; it is a fake product that only serves to mask a pyramid. ” NewHerbalife billed itself as a nutrition/wellness company :: its thinnest ever cover given its top-selling product sports an ingredient list that begins like this… some of the not-nutritionalist ingredients ever concocted by foolish men.” Please tell me, what is wrong with soy protein? I buy mine from GNC and have been drinking shakes for years. What is wrong with fructose? It has a much lower glycemic index than other sugars, and it is sweeter, meaning that I use less for the same taste. Don’t you think that the Herbalife products (which are undeniably sold and consumed) do provide at least some value for the consumer?

    1. @Greg ::

      My problem is with holding out soy isolates and fructose as some kind of revolution in “nutrition.” People want to buy these shake powders :: and do buy them … so they are of economic value. But it’s not “nutrition” in the way Herbalife represents with all this quasi-religious “we’re changing an unhealthy world” garbage. If you want good nutrition … the mainstream of science says you should eat lots of vegetables and whole natural foods … best grown in your local area using as few chemicals as possible. The less manufactured food you eat :: the better … as far as actual “nutrition” {to the extent that word has any fixed meaning} goes. And under no circumstances should a person replace two real food meals per day :: with 100% processed food meals :: and consider that proper nutrition for perpetuity … as Herbalifers are encouraged to do.

      1. @Greg,
        I have a degree in Nutrition from UC Davis. SD’s response is sound. Over reliance on highly processed foods in the diet can have unintended health consequences in the long term. Look up the history of baby formula (and greedy, agressive baby formula companies in first AND third world countries) for an interesting parallel. Breastfeeding is superior to formula in every way (in fascinating ways, in fact, it’s so interesting from a biology standpoint). Baby Formula has it’s place in some circumstances, when breast feeding is not an option, but is inferior. That didn’t stop the companies from trying to sell baby formula as something “better” than mother’s milk early on, though, when everyone, including the scientists, were naive about it.

        Formula 1? No one needs that junk. Tons of excercise, fruits and veg, lean meats, complex carbs, good fats and the occasional indulgence are the way to go for best health. Real, whole food lovingly prepared, is not only good for the body but feeds the soul too.

      2. I agree with you that F1 is no nutritional revolution. I just compare it to products sold by GNC and many other national brands. I will add that Herbalife’s nutritional claims are well within the guidelines set by the FDA. At least, there are no regulatory actions against Herbalife on that front that I am aware of atm. GNC and others sell all sorts of snake oil and we don’t declare jihad on them do we?

        1. Hi Greg,

          Did you watch Pershing Square’s original presentation from December 20, 2012? In it, Ackman provided evidence from Herbalife’s own annual report showing F1 possesses neither scientific nor marketing advantages over products from GNC and Unilever. He then makes the reasonable assertion that F1 can be considered a commodity product, virtually interchangeable with GNC and Unilever products. However, the “retail price” of F1 is ~40% higher than the retail prices of GNC and Unilever’s soy-protein-isolate shake mixes. In ounces per dollar, F1’s value to the consumer is much less than GNC and Slim Fast’s values to the consumer.

          Put another way, why are you buying GNC instead of F1? Don’t you suppose lots of consumers are doing the same thing for the same reasons?

          1. Precisely. Consumers always gravitate toward lower priced commodity products. Without the inclusion of Herbalife’s implied “golden ticket,” there is no compelling reason to pay inflated prices for their commodity powder.

        2. @Greg

          Please read the stuff @Anna said, and @Bottom Line’s follow-up–‘cuz, had I gotten around to it, I was gonna ask the same question, and make the same point, except she writes more clearly than I do, and is much better at citing specifics.

          Herbalife shake powder is not better than any other on the market, yet its suggested retail price is significantly higher. Why is that, do you think, @Greg?

          Furry cows moo and decompress.

    2. Greg,
      I would urge you to read/listen to Dr. Robert H. Lustig on the subject of fructose.
      ” The increase in fructose intake is worrisome, says Lustig, because it suspiciously parallels increases in obesity, diabetes, and a new condition called nonalcoholic fatty liver disease that now affects up to one-third of Americans. (You can read more about nonalcoholic fatty liver disease in a Harvard Health Letter article.)

      Virtually every cell in the body can use glucose for energy. In contrast, only liver cells break down fructose. What happens to fructose inside liver cells is complicated. One of the end products is triglyceride, a form of fat. Uric acid and free radicals are also formed.

      None of this is good. Triglycerides can build up in liver cells and damage liver function. Triglycerides released into the bloodstream can contribute to the growth of fat-filled plaque inside artery walls. Free radicals (also called reactive oxygen species) can damage cell structures, enzymes, and even genes. Uric acid can turn off production of nitric oxide, a substance that helps protect artery walls from damage. Another effect of high fructose intake is insulin resistance, a precursor to diabetes.”

      1. I suppose that I asked for such responses, and I do not intend to dismiss them lightly. I will however rephrase my question to better convey my intent. Let us consider “Nestle Health Sciences Complete Nutritional Drink” http://www.nestlehealthscience.us/products/Pages/CARNATION%C2%AE-BREAKFAST-ESSENTIALS%E2%84%A2-POWDER.aspx The ingredients comprise Sugar, Sugar, Cocoa, Sugar and <2% Ferric Orthophosphate. The only marginally healthy ingredient is the milk that you add at home. I suggest that Herbalife's Formula 1 is a reasonably competitive product in its category and that claims that is is nothing more than a mask for a fraud are unfounded.

        As far as the health dangers of soy and fructose, pretty much everything causes cancer doesn't it? Wikipedia ranks soy as one of the ten staple foods that feed the world, comprising 231 million metric tons of annual production. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Staple_food If soy is poisonous, we are all in big trouble. Fructose, GMO, gluten, farmed fish … everything in a grocery store is the subject of controversial health research. So, again, I rephrase my point to compare F1 to competing products. I conclude that it is a product that people want to consume and that it does provide value to those who choose to consume it.

        1. even if herbalife’s product was farm fresh vegetables, they would still be scammy as fuck. thats the point.

    3. The other point to be made is: the product is irrelevant, anyway. It’s just the currency for the pyramid-esque money transfer fraud.

      The product can be legitimate, but the people who are buying it are only buying it because they are pursuing a BizOp that has been promised to them. They are interested in the Biz Op only and would never have purchased the product if it were not harnessed to the promises of wealth and nirvana pitched by the promoters.

      1. That is exactly the point that I contest. You are begging the question. Is the product relevant? Does the company sell products or just the business opportunity? Again I contend that the product is real, it is consumed, and that it does provide value to its consumers.

        1. @Greg said: “Is the product relevant? Does the company sell products or just the business opportunity?”

          The product is not particularly relevant; it is more of a minor aside. A minor aside that also happens to be dubious in and of itself.

          To reiterate the key issue: exchange of product is simply a cover. It is not a “business opportunity.” It is well-packaged, organized deceit wrapped up with a big, shiny bow.

          SD’s post here, along with his previous posts and the comments which follow them, sum this up very clearly. Thus, you are here either to propagandize, or to work out your justifications. Except: there IS no justification.

          To people who think as you do – insulated from the gritty reality of massive human cost and heartbreak – it is all numbers and rationalization. But make no mistake: you are filleting real human beings by proxy, and you are doing so on an atrocious scale. If that bothers you, good. If that does not bother you, that’s why we – and hopefully, the U.S. government, are here.

          1. I’ll be happy to tell you why I am here. Thanks for asking!

            The droid had information on Club Cien that I had not seen before, and he skewered Michelle Celarier. So, he disagrees with me, researches his positions and calls out people who are “on his side.” I appreciate that.

            You’ve restated the short position: Herbalife is a fraud, the product is irrelevant. You have not provided any compelling argument for your claim, however. As it turns out, meal replacement shakes are legitimate products, it’s actually a multi-billion dollar industry. Herbalife F1 is comparable to and competitive with offerings from Carnantion, GNC, Slim-Fast, Kellog’s … Why is Slim-Fast legitimate, and F1 not?

            I have personally instructed all of my proxies to immediately stop filleting people. I apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.

            1. @ Greg.

              You wrote “I have personally instructed all of my proxies to immediately stop filleting people.”

              What does this remark mean?

        2. Oh! I get it now, what you’re trying to say is that you “heart” herbalife. Why didn’t you just say so instead of pretending you were looking for information? The information is out there in websites all over the internet that the product is crap, that the pyramid scheme hurts poor people disproportionately, that the people who perpetuate it are scum but you want to say “The product exists. The product sells. Therefore herbalife is good.” Logic fail and time wasting.

          1. Sometimes I do have trouble saying what I mean. My first post was ambiguous for example. Thanks for trying to help. However, I have no relationship with Herbalife as a distributor or consumer or heart. I have traded options both long and short over the last year, I am currently long. I actively seek discourse with those who disagree with me.

            I enjoyed your earlier post which displayed significant knowledge of nutrition. Have you compared F1 to meal replacement offerings from Carnation, Kellog’s or Slim-Fast?

            I have not yet expressed any position regarding Herbalife’s goodness or scumminess, I just contend that the product is legitimate.

            1. did you read the article you are commenting on? who fucking cares if the ‘product’ is ‘legitimate’? do you see what this company is doing?

              If Herbalife sold exclusively orchard grown organic apples, in the way they currently sell F1, they would STILL be one of the most despicable organizations on earth. Your long position may make you money, but that is also irrelevant. You are Long a company that trades in lies and deceit. If you are okay with that, and still make a profit, then god bless you. But if you want to talk about whether Herbalife is evil, then OPEN YOUR EYES, It is not hard to see. The product has nothing to with it.

        3. Greg. People are buying the BizOp, that is what is irresistible. Then they are told that in order to succeed at Herbalife, they have to buy the products. They would Not. Buy. The. Products. if they were not being lured by the promise of money. These people need jobs, that is where society/the normal world is failing them,

          Why don’t you do some more reading here at this site? It is highly entertaining. I personally love the “Sheeple” series, parts one thru five. All of these fake social proof scams operate much the same way, whether it’s Herbalife, James Arthur Ray or Scientology. They are very predictable and follow the same patterns. Social psychology, we should all understand it better. It will enrich your life, make you look at the world in a different way and improve your critical thinking skills.

          1. You have restated your position, with plenty of punctuation this time. Thank you. Do you have any evidence to support your claim that no one would buy F1 without a business opportunity? Turns out people do buy two! billion!! dollars!!! worth of meal replacement shakes every year. I continue to assert that F1 is competitive with many of the other offerings which you appear to agree are legitimate.

            I have read many of the articles on this sight and I have found them both enlightening and entertaining. I am glad that you enjoy them too.

            In a bizarre coincidence, I am three weeks into a Social Psychology course offered by Wesleyan University. I am enjoying it so far. Enrollment is still open and it is completely free, if any one else is interested. https://www.coursera.org/course/socialpsychology

            1. I guess my punctuation was an attempt to penetrate the thick fog that surrounds you.

              What you are doing is repeatedly stating the tired old lie that “if there is a legitimate product, it can’t be a money transfer fraud!”

              That sleazy argument may have taken people in forty years ago, but no longer.

              The FTC doesn’t agree with you, neither do the courts.

              We can buy Slimfast, Ensure, whatever, completely untethered to a BizOp. It’s apples and oranges.

              1. “What you are doing is repeatedly stating the tired old lie that “if there is a legitimate product, it can’t be a money transfer fraud!””

                No, I have not said that or anything like that. You may have misread due to the thick fog between us. I have simply said that there is a legitimate product. (period or full stop for punctuation fans.) Of course it is possible for there to be both a product and a fraud.

                Are you trying to say that you now agree? Herbalife sells a legitimate product with legitimate consumes.

            2. I wish you were taking a course on ethics instead of the 150 volt solution. It might give you more understanding of the basis for the comments here. It’s been pointed out repeatedly that herbalife does real damage to real people. It doesn’t matter that Carnation instant breakfast sells, what matters is that poor people in Venezuela, Mexico, Columbia, etc. are being sold a dream that is nonexistent. ( a horrible novel you might want to skim for your course is Obedience written by Will Lavender )

              1. I understand your point that poor people are being sold a nonexistent dream. I don’t necessarily disagree with you, and we may discuss the issue in further detail, if you like. I have to this point made no statements regarding that position.

                What I have done is challenge the assertion that Herbalife F1 is a “fake” product, that the cans may as well be “filled with air.” I have asked you a direct question a number of times now. Do you believe that Herbalife F1 is comparable to and competitive with meal replacement offerings from other corporations? Do you believe that meal replacement shakes are legitimate products, with legitimate consumers? Why do you think that Slim-Fast is legitimate while F1 is not?

                I believe that this issue – whether or not the product is legitimate – is at the core of further legal and moral discussions, as evidenced by the court’s rulings in Koscot, FHTM and BurnLounge.

                1. @ Greg

                  “I believe that this issue – whether or not the product is legitimate – is at the core of further legal and moral discussions, as evidenced by the court’s rulings in Koscot, FHTM and BurnLounge.”

                  As Salty pointed out below, the clever pyramid scheme author knows they need a product to provide a veneer of “legitimacy” to the “business”.

                  However having one or more products isn’t necessarily sufficient proof that the “business” is not a pyramid scheme in whole or in part.

                  Take “Omnitron” for example.

                  http://factsaboutherbalife.com/media/2012/12/Webster-v.-Omnitrition-79-F.3d-776-1996.pdf

                  Try replacing “Omnitron” in the judgement with “Herbalife” and tell me where the two differ in any significant way that would sway a court..

                  .Are the people going on the “tours” to “nutrition clubs” doing so because they’re told the “club” offers an opportunity to start living a healthy life … fortified by Herbalife” beverages … or because they’re told the “clubs” are a great income opportunity (that they need to act on now before the supply runs out)?

                  If the latter, I suspect a court might see all consumption that occurs in these clubs as being “incidental to participation” (in the “opportunity”), for whatever that might mean for Herbalife.

                  For a Canadian perspective:

                  http://metronews.ca/news/toronto/959613/herbalife-investigation-health-products-company-or-pyramid-scheme/

                  To quote from the article “The Canadian government describes pyramid schemes as “frauds that are based on recruiting an ever-increasing number of investors … who may or may not sell products or distributorships (and where) recruiting newcomers is more important than selling products.””

                  Please note “who may or may not sell products”.

                  .

          2. “Greg” is definitely not “actively seeking discourse” as he claims. (You smarmy, disingenuous twat.)

            Greg claims, “I have not yet expressed any position regarding Herbalife’s goodness or scumminess…” Bollocks. You said you have a “small long position in the company’s stock.” That position IS a position. It defines your intent here.

            SD and scores of others (including 2+2=4 above) have repeatedly pointed out that people are only buying the non-business opportunity…then arm twisted into buying the facade “products.” NOT the other way around. Those “products” may as well be empty, air-filled cans!

            1. I apologize for not clarifying my position. I do have a high conviction position that Herbalife’s common stock will increase in value; I expect it to reach $65 within six months. This is independent of any moral judgements that I have made. Buying and selling small amounts of stock has little or no effect on the company or its distributors. I have certainly not expressed any moral position here, which is what I meant.

              By “actively seeking discourse,” what I mean is that I have questions that I would like to hear other’s opinions about. I am particularly interested in responses from people that disagree with me. I seem to have come to the right place!

              My question at the moment is this: Why are Slim-Fast, Carnation and other meal replacement shakes legitimate products, but F1 is not? Clearly, people buy Slim-Fast without the promise of a business opportunity, yet some contend that F1 would not sell without the bizop. Why is that? Nobody seems to want to answer. I promise that I am a good listener. Don’t be shy..

              1. Greg ::
                Let me name some MLM products for you …
                vacations
                coffee
                tea
                knives
                energy
                candles
                greeting cards
                water filters
                mp3s
                legal services
                chewing gum
                make-up
                … if you’re going to use a product as cover for a pyramid scheme :: it really should be a “legitimate product” … pretty stupid otherwise. Not that everyone follows that rule … I’m looking at you Empower Network!

                The question usually isn’t could it be sold without the biz-op :: but rather … is it being sold without the biz-op?

              2. People are not buying Herbalife’s commodity powders for what they are. They are buying (stockpiling) their commodity powders because they are told it improves their odds at winning the Herbalife fantasy lottery. Take that away and watch the implosion.

                1. What you are talking about is inventory loading, a classic sign of an illegal pyramid scheme. There is no evidence of inventory loading in the case of HLF. If you do know someone with a garage full of F1, call Bill Ackman and he will reward you well.

                2. No Greg. The product con starts at the first unit. That is, after the business flopportunity come-on. Commodity powder doesn’t generate charter bus blender tours, fake exercise bootcamps, or the maxing out of credit cards. However, implying that commodity powder includes a golden ticket clearly does.

                  If you feel strongly otherwise, you might want to shoot Salty an email to clarify things. Just hit that link up top. I hear he’s a good listener.

                3. There is no “inventory loading” because the distributors are encouraged to consume all the products. It’s the same as “swallow the baggie”. Then you can’t tell them apart from the people who actually buy the stuff for consumption.

                  Burnlounge final decision have clarified that “inventory loading” is no longer the standard on which pyramid schemes are judge. Just because you see no inventory loading does NOT preclude pyramid scheme.

              3. The “problem” is how is F1 being marketed.

                Being sold door-to-door to friends and family and other people who want nutrition — good (which is how it was initially done, I think)

                Being sold to oneself (i.e. self-consume) while being told that the only way to get ahead and achieve the Herbalife/American Dream is to keep selling to oneself while also recruit yet MORE people (to sell to oneself) with the SAME DREAM (as one was also recruited by one with the same dream) and you have a chain recruitment scheme under disguise of a “legitimate” product.

                Which was what SD was talking about… This is mandatory consumption by EMPLOYEES in the guise of “sales”.

                Imagine a scenario, where McDonalds employees are encouraged to buy McDonalds food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, AND encourage more people to be employed by McDonalds, and instead of given a salary, or actually work on the premises, they are given a cut for each food item those people buy… but only if they buy a certain amount each month themselves. Sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? Some people won’t make any money because they’re spending it all

                But that’s how Herbalife works.

  21. Greg,
    Soy has been implicated in male infertility, certain cancers in women, ninety-five percent of it is GMO tainted, it’s high in phytates which are substances that bind to minerals, such as zinc, calcium and iron, thus making them unavailable to your body for use, it’s one of the top eight allergenic foods, it takes up aluminum from the soil it’s grown in, etc. this is an interesting study on male infertility; http://humrep.oxfordjournals.org/content/23/11/2584.full.

  22. A little late to the party. Read your expose last week but didn’t had time to respond until now.

    Good thing this is only in Mexico, because nutrition clubs break health codes / food safety codes in most states in the USA. IIRC, two of them was already shut down by LA County Health Dept back in like 2012.

    Also seem to recall that Herbalife PROHIBITS showing their logo outside nutrition clubs in the US. Wonder what they’re hiding?

    Which also seems to belie that HLF is “adopting best practices” of such clubs, doesn’t it?

  23. “It’s against the law to prepare and sell food — even nutrition shakes — from homes, said Eric Edwards, a county environmental health specialist. The county has shut down two Herbalife nutrition clubs in the last year for operating in retail space without proper health licenses, according to health department records.”

    — LA Times, Feb 15, 2013
    http://articles.latimes.com/2013/feb/15/business/la-fi-herbalife-latino-20130216/2

    “If it weren’t for a small illuminated “open sign” showing through windows obscured by green curtains, the center could be easily missed. Avila and her partners aren’t allowed to use Herbalife logos outside. The company doesn’t want clubs to have an unfair advantage over distributors who work out of their homes. ”

    — Bloomberg News, Jun 11, 2012
    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-06-11/einhorn-damage-control-at-herbalife-with-nutrition-clubs-retail.html

    1. From the Bloomberg article you cited:

      Avila charges as many as 20 clients a day $4 for a serving of each of Herbalife’s three top-selling drinks. Some come by seven days a week. Avila holds weight-loss challenges, shows Herbalife sales videos and sells drink mixes by the multi-pack. She and the distributors in her organization operate the club together and share the rent. Herbalife provides guidelines on how to manage a center.

      .
      It still gets me every time–it’s like, the pretense is so counter-intuitive and preposterous, people are always forgetting to keep it up.
      .
      I.e. c’mon now, Bloomberg author-person–they can’t really be selling the shakes, right? It’s gotta be just memberships or whatever.
      .
      I remember seeing one of those fancy videos around (I thnik fs had a link in a comment) that showed the inside of a “nutrition club” and chalkboard sign at the back listing prices for drinks. But surely those must just be different membership levels or something–surely they’re not operating a restaurant-type establishment in a commercial zone without the proper licensing.
      .
      If they were, then surely that would mean they had an unfair advantage over all the other restaurants in the area, never-mind their fellow Herbalifers.
      .
      Remember during the roaring 20s when there were speakeasys? Yeah, they tended to be pretty cagey about not drawing attention to themselves too.
      .

      Furry cows moo and decompress.

  24. Currently at ebay there are 5,910 listings for herbalife products. The most expensive listing is $10,000, for a slightly soiled jacket that belonged to Mark Hughes, (wear at your own risk, demonic possession is possible), down to .99 for a thirty-five percent off coupon code from an herbalife seller, good for one year. In between are thousands of listings for every possible permutation of products from sellers whose garages and basements are overflowing with this crap. It’s a sad story of exploitation and misery told in 5,910 parts. Read it and weep.

  25. “Herbalife sells the lie that you can make money selling the lie that is Herbalife”.

    That is very libelous and either a mistake or just a simple lie. You are not any better than these people, Salty.

  26. Club 100/Universidad del Exito/Build It Better

    They literally are drinking the kool aid, aren’t they?

  27. What can’t this so-called “Salty Droid” site go about to focus on the more relevant type of issues like we see from the nefarious doings out from the vocal teachers?

    To Settle FTC Charges, Professional Associations of Property Managers and Vocal Arts Teachers Agree to Eliminate Rules that Restrict Competition among Their Members”>

    Even SD missed the BIG, BIG important action against piano people

    Here’s a clue for the so-called “investigative reporters” trying to get a scoop on the FTC:

    – clarinets
    – trumpets
    – drums
    – guitars
    – violins

    NEWS!

    1. The FTC has a Bureau of Competition. The FTC has a 17.24 MB pdf about how “Competition Counts”. (OT: You don’t suppose they just, somehow, missed the thing about Time Warner and Comcast, huh?)

      Do you think the Bureau would care about how “nutrition clubs” have rules requiring them to not compete with sell-from-home Herbalifers?

      Somehow, I get the feeling they’ll have some reason about why it just so happens to be outside their scope.

      Furry cows moo and decompress.

    2. That music teacher association is headquartered in Cincinnati, where I live. Unfortunately that nonsense gave fuel to the teabagger’s argument about “getting gubmint off our backs”. It was a remarkably stupid move by the FTC.

  28. Jeffrey Dastin, reporting Intern for Reuters tells himself a much different story about Herbalife and uses made-up facts to go about doing Herbalife “reporting” like this one:

    “Two customers sipping shakes in a club in Boyle Heights on the east side of Los Angeles, Silvia Lopez and Ana Montenegro, were typical of those who swear by the products.”

    And also goes about using the word “Some” as in “Some Complaints” to make himself feel like he is doing about some probing-honesty-journalism:
    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/herbalifes-nutrition-clubs-ackmans-attacks-170841271.html

    mr. Dastin linkedin
    http://www.linkedin.com/pub/jeffrey-dastin/88/802/81

    I think he wants to go about fancying himself as an “investigator” maybe.

    1. flabbergasting. the Reuters writers clearly didn’t even know about Ackman’s Nutrition Club presentation (let alone this page for gods sakes). maybe they don’t know about google either?

      the herbalife nutrition club scam is clever, ballsy and mind blowing. straight out of Oceans 11. ‘what if we tricked tens of thousands of people worldwide into pretending to be regular paying customers, hoodwinked them into opening and operating fake businesses, and trained them to recite scripted lies to anyone who asks questions (i.e the press), this will not only make us money but give our pyramid scheme an extra layer of ‘legitimacy.’

      Soderbergh would reject that plot for being way too far fetched.

      those ‘reporters’ got Looky-Loo’d big time.

    2. I noticed how few of them claimed to be making a net profit, and even fewer of them (zero) provided documentation that they were making a net profit.

  29. Apparently Herbalife is clamping down on non-official Internet sales of their products (i.e. auction off eBay, sell off Craigslist, or whatever their clones are).

    This of course begs the questions:

    a) there’s a SIGNIFICANT AMOUNT of this liquidating / fire sale going on by Herbalife distributors for them to say something about it

    b) they are done at a STEEP discount off Herbalife’s “retail price” and hurts sales by people who genuinely tried to sell their stuff

    Which then leads to a few more questions like:

    c) Who’s doing the liquidating? Are we talking failed distributors, or uplines who had to quietly buy up their failed downline’s inventory to keep up their pretense of a “team”?

    d) Does this suggest that there is hidden “inventory loading” going on that forced the liquidations?

    e) Why aren’t these inventory being returned for refund, as Herbalife kept repeating to every inquiry with “We have 12 month return policy, longest in the industry”?

    f) Cockroach theory: what else is going on that we’re not seeing?

  30. Avon splits with trade group, citing risk of pyramid schemes

    “Avon Products is leaving the trade association it helped to found more than a century ago, writing in a letter to other member companies last week that the group’s bylaws might not adequately protect consumers from fraud.

    “We felt like it was a good moment to get some clarity around our business model and the things that Avon believes in,” said senior vice president Cheryl Heinonen, who previously represented Avon on the board of the group, the Direct Selling Association.”

    1. Translation: Our reputation is being damaged by illegal pyramid and RICO frauds like Amway and Herbalife. Even though we are among the original DSA founders, we’re outta here!

  31. Former FTC commissioner sells (out to) Herbalife…

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Herbalife Ltd, the marketer of weight-management products, energy drinks and nutrition supplements that has come under investigation by the Federal Trade Commission as well as other agencies, has hired a former FTC official as its chief compliance officer.

    Herbalife said it named Pamela Jones Harbour, who was an FTC commissioner from 2003 to 2010, as senior vice president, global member compliance and privacy. She will be in charge of the company’s 300-member compliance team and coordinate global compliance.

    Herbalife earlier this year said it was being investigated by the FTC following allegations that the company was a pyramid scheme.

    More:
    http://news.yahoo.com/exclusive-herbalife-hires-former-u-regulator-head-compliance-100322616–finance.html

    1. “One of Harbour’s challenges will be to ensure that far-flung distributors selling Herbalife products, often out of small centers with small staffs, steer clear of exaggerating claims about Herbalife’s protein and vitamin shakes.”

      “I will develop and enhance training programs, develop and ensure consistent enforcement of rules,” she said. “The challenge that I have is making sure that (distributors) don’t make claims above and beyond what they should make.”

      How much do you think she got for her soul? I hope she thinks it’s worth it at the end of the day….or at the end of her life. She says she’s going to develop training to keep distributors from making false claims about the products. First of all, they’re no longer called distributors under the new rules. They’re called “members” now. Pam better get up to speed. Secondly, without the false claims, who would buy that shit? If members told the truth, ” it’s a fairly mediocre product, you could get an equivalent product at GNC for forty percent less cost”, who would shell out the money for herbalife products? And what about selling the business opportunity? She says nothing about that.

      1. I wonder what her role will be regarding ensuring real customers are buying the products, instead of the members who are instructed to from club to club and keep quiet, so that they don’t find out the other “customers’ are also members, or some member’s friend or relative helping them get their training quota.

        1. So now we just got to found out SHE is a customer…

          ““There have been times in my career where I’ve stuck my neck out, but I only will do that if I’m really confident of my own convictions and willing to live with the consequences,” she said in an interview. “This is one such instance.”

          Herbalife, which is based in Los Angeles, declined 1.3 percent to $45.11 at the close in New York. The shares have slid 43 percent this year.
          Photographer: Jin Lee/Bloomberg

          Bill Ackman, founder and chief executive officer of Pershing Square Capital Management… Read More

          Harbour also is an Herbalife customer. She said she bought her first Formula 1 weight-loss shake powder, Herbalife’s best-selling product, from a family member at a reunion in 2004 just to be nice. She liked it, though, especially the Cookies ’n Cream flavor, and would occasionally mix up a shake for dinner after a long night at the FTC. She bought more at future reunions.”

          1. I wonder if she made the shakes at home or at the FTC….Talk about a Trojan Horse!

            Notice she didn’t say she reviewed all of Ackman’s evidence. She is setting herself up to be one of many HLF employees to be disgorged.

        2. “This is absolutely a legitimate product because I’ve been using it,” she recalled thinking.

          Oh dear God….is this woman really that stupid? She thinks by looking at the label and talking to chief executives she can “stick her neck out” in other words, cash that enormous hiring bonus, and proudly proclaim that herbalife is not a company made up of a few predatory millionaires fleecing the poor and undereducated from Mexico, Cambodia’ Venezuela, etc.

          How do you sleep at night knowing the herbalife paycheck you just cashed was money squeezed from the poorest people on the planet?

          1. Yes, it does appear she really is that stupid. Now you know why she spent so much time at the FTC and didn’t take down obvious MLM scams like HLF and Amway. It’s easy to sleep when you’re stupid, ignorance is bliss, remember?

  32. Herbalife banned all external distributor websites, only replicated OFFICIAL website allowed.

    While this certain cuts down on false claims liabilities and “compliance”, it also made sure that nobody except those who “made it” will succeed, because there is no, NO Difference among all the distributors. They all use the same marketing materials, and have the same website, and they can’t buy leads (officially).

    They can still hustle (as in work hard…) or they can hustle (as in trick / scam).

    Basically, this move looks good, but as Bill Keep said, it does not address the problem: there is no proof of “retail”, esp. when almost half of distributors, according to Herbalife itself, “have no intention to profit”.

  33. Another excellent article by Christine Richard at SeekingAlpha on October23rd. She lays out among other facts that;
    ” Rather than the estimated $110 million operating profit Herbalife Venezuela has contributed over the last four quarters, we calculate that a revaluation to SICAD-II would have produced a $65 million loss (all things being equal), a $1.20 decline in earnings per share, and a 22% reduction to adjusted operating income. “

  34. Just like every song “needs more cowbell” this post needs more Vicious Garden Gnome. So, I’m going to do the droid a favor and add some in. Mike Filsaime. There I said it. Ewww. Hi Mike! Remember me? No? Well, maybe you remember my grandma who you conned. Guess what, Mike? On your “big day” on the annual cruise you take with your partners in douchebaggery, I’m going to drop the biggest series of bombshells of your checkered “career.” This will be a wikileak so damaging that even your fellow “industry” conmen will be all, “Whoah, this dude is dirty.” And I bet you can guess a few of the tidbits my “little” expose’ will contain. Teehee. Happy birthday, Gnome! I’ve been waiting for this day for a long time and it’s finally here. It’s going to be like Chanukah in January! So many days of gifts and joy!

    “I’ve got the power!”

    Deeper Throat

      1. Gnome!

        You can call me Agent X. I’m going to be on your cruise to execute part of our plan. Don’t you wonder who you pissed off so badly to make this happen for yourself? Who am I kidding, you know you’ve pissed off so many people!

        You won’t know who I am, but I’m going to be on your little floating party of “winners.” I will be handing out thumb drives with a very special PDF file to all of your guests and encouraging them to forward the file to other guests. Butterfly Marketing FTW! And for the lolz hehe.

        I’m going to post the same pdf on a very special website and write that URL all over the cruise ship. Cocktail napkins. Bathroom stalls. It will be everywhere! And that URL and PDF will reveal things about you that will turn the whole ship against you. They may just dwarf-toss your ass right off the boat! These revelations will make stuff like Tom Beal sleeping with the wives of your employees and you exposing children to a known pedophile look like petty crimes.

        We are Anonymous. We are Legion. We do not forgive. We do not forget. Expect us.

        1. You’ve blown the element of surprise. Maybe read this post on opsec and try harder next time. Also be sure you are really dropping legit docs on the Vicious Garden Gnome and not just repeating rumors other Scamworld denizens have told you. They like to tell lies about other scammers to take the heat off themselves.

          1. The element of surprise is not required when one possess nuclear warheads and the enemy has no SDI. These aren’t rumors but a glorious collection of various forms of irrefutable documentation covering a broad spectrum of the Gnomes misdeeds spanning his personal and various “professional” lives. Some of them are major bombshells and he knows what they are. Our telling this story now is more about us enjoying playing with our food before we bury it. The month of joy begins on the douche cruise. It will be relentless for four weeks.

            We invite all who have been wronged by the Gnome to join the celebration and begin sharing their stories on 1-25-15.

            1. @Deepest Throat ::
              .
              Well? I’m still waiting to hear about this then? Is it all just a troll talk illusion or what?

              1. The cruise departs Miami on January 25th and runs through February 1st. According to MarketersCruise.com 358 people have already booked the cruise.

                There’s a minimum of four days before any news on this could emerge. What are the odds that this is for real?

                1. @Fan of the Droid ::
                  .
                  Considering …

                2. that they rudely posted off topic on the front page post
                3. used my site without informing me
                4. what total bullshit cowards most people fucking are
                5. … I’d say the odds are very slim.

      2. Gnomey Gnomey Gnome! How was your thanks giving, gnome?

        Our recommendation to you is that you plan your biggest fire sale ever some time before your one thousand douchebags on a boat event. After we’re done you won’t be able to make money anymore. Don’t you wonder how we know that? You do! As humunculi go, you’re so cute gnomey! And changing your name or the pronunciation of your name won’t get you off the hook this time gnomey!

        Feces ami. Filth sammy. Filthy shame. No matter how you pronounce it GNOME spells F-U-C-K-E-D.

        Your other friends in the auto industry say hi. Our alliance includes people from four select camps. Can you guess the other three? How’s your sleep?

        1. I’m one of about 10 or so (at least) former MF.com employees who would like to help this cause. He burned us and lied to us in the worst possible ways and ran off with his loot to start a new life. We know now he planned that all along and never planned to fulfill his promises.

          We want to know who to contact to help out. We have emails, recordings (some that he knows about, some that he doesn’t), and more. Can you post some contact info?

            1. The email address at the bottom of the page is for the Salty Droid. Former MF Employees want to contact Deepest Throat and Agent X, not the Salty Droid. MF stands for Mike Filsaime. To educate yourself about all things Mike Filsaime, listen to this extensive audio interview between the Vicious Garden Gnome himself and the Salty Droid’s operator.

  35. Great blog! Do you have any hints for aspiring writers?
    I’m hoping to start my own website soon but I’m a little
    lost on everything. Would you recommend starting with a free
    platform like WordPress or go for a paid option? There are so many choices out there that
    I’m completely overwhelmed .. Any ideas? Thank you!

    1. I would go with a free WordPress or Blogger platform. Try each one and see which one is easier for you to use to meet your needs.

          1. How do you know it was a spam comment? If it is a spam comment, what was the purpose of it? Why do you respond to comments you consider spam?

            1. tex, did you click the spambot commenters name and check out their ‘site’?

              I know it’s spam because I’ve been on this website for 3 years now and I’ve seen hundreds of the same awkwardly-phrased ‘great site! which blogging platform should I use?’ spam comments…in every thread…regardless of the threads subject…

              it’s a (sort of) clever way to post generic linkbait comments to any message board / forum and still seem ‘on topic.’

              you falling for it is another example of how susceptible normal people are to scams; no matter how smart or aware.

              1. I should say ‘how susceptible we ALL can be…’

                ‘what’s the purpose of it?’
                to trick you into clicking on the link in the commenters name..which leads to a page full of crazy scummy offers of God knows what.

                this is the kind of thing I was talking about with the ‘computers run rampant’ thing. a human set this spam system up, but I’m guessing they have nothing to do with it anymore…and it’s just blindly’doing its thing’ …maybe that’s wishfull thinking.

              2. No, I didn’t click on their name. I didn’t see any reason to do so, they asked a simple question and I answered it. Not a very good spammer….

                1. this is exaclty what i was talking about before, tex. These spambots are spewing nonsensical garbage without a human behind them, running rampant on forums like these, like chickens with their heads cut off, and, at this point, it HAS NO LOGIC. As you point out.

                  “bot” being an important part of that term, that i guess i left out in my first comment.

                  do you still think thats not a spambot comment? you should click their name and explore some of the website that you’ve so graciously helped them with.

                  jack i need your help

                2. I tried clicking on the name, it looks like the link has been disabled. On its face, it was a very logical question, one that I would have asked a few years ago when considering starting my blog. My point is the question didn’t cause me to want to click on the name, therefore my comment that they weren’t a very good bot/spammer, if the goal was to get me to click on their name.

                3. “On its face, it was a very logical question, one that I would have asked a few years ago when considering starting my blog.”

                  i know! pretty clever / evil right?

                  “point is the question didn’t cause me to want to click on the name, therefore my comment that they weren’t a very good bot/spammer, if the goal was to get me to click on their name.”

                  no shit they’re not a good bot/spammer. are any of them ‘good’? also, yeah i get it. you didn’t really get suckered. i only called you out because i thought it poignant that you were tricked into ‘derailing’ the thread by a spambot, the very thing that you lectured me about not being too much of a ‘distraction.’

                  its okay man, its a totally weird scammy spam thing that doesn’t make any sense. i didn’t get it at first, until i realized its just a totally idiotic trope that some lowlife scammer probably invented and it maybe drove some traffic for like a week, then it took on a life of its own.

                  “By the way, isn’t this thread supposed to be about the Herbalife MLM scam?”
                  yes…doubly funny that you thought it was a good idea to give WordPress advice in the middle of it! I’m just joking around.
                  in case you haven’t noticed, this magnificent thread with over 150 comments, has pretty much run its course. The only people still commenting are you, me, and spambots.

                  But there’s tons of incredible stuff about Herbalife on the rest of the site. The comments can be fascinating, especially when people come by to defend Herbalife and other scams, but the articles are really where it’s at.

                4. No, my point was that it WASN’T very clever, because it didn’t cause me to click on their name. I suppose it was evil, but there’s a wide, gray line between marketing and evil, and the line moves, based on the individual’s point of view and their life experiences.

                  As far as going off the topic of the thread, I looked down the alley and took a single, short term visit, but our discussion has taken us far into the alley. Therefore, I would suggest that the spam bot got you more than me, although you are the one who initially recognized the spambot. How’s THAT for irony?

                  I’ll add my 2 cents to the rest of the comments, based not on theory, but 16 years of being IN Amway and continuous research on Amway and other MLM scams since 2005. This thread is only getting started, as long as you are more into real world facts and firsthand MLM experience instead of textbook theory. Click on MY name for more background information, and I promise it won’t be spambot/marketing information.

            2. It’s a spam comment. Its purpose was to leave the link to the website URL so Google will think, “Oh, people are linking to that site. It must be popular,” and move it higher in the search results.

                1. yeah she’s serious man. that’s the idiot spammers INTENTION, not what will actually happen. do you still think its not spam tex?

                2. fs,

                  Did I ever state it wasn’t spam? My point is the INTENTION didn’t work, at least for me, because I never clicked on the link, and wasn’t even interested in doing so. .

              1. Tex is a huge fan of Rush Limbaugh, as you’ll find if you visit his blog. Not too surprising he’d be fooled by spammers.

                1. Barbara,

                  How can I be “fooled by spammers” when I never clicked on their link? We would have a much better country with more Rush and less Barry.

                  Instead of going down these rabbit trails, let’s get back to the topic of this thread, MLM scam artists. For example, Ron Simmons, current State of Texas Representative, former Amway Emerald illegal pyramid scam artist, former Legacy Business Group Amway Tool Scam company CEO, and current Blue Ocean Group tool scam company CEO for Avisae illegal pyramid MLM. It’s the same principles of Club100, an MLM ripping off good people, just a different chapter and verse. All of the key people in Blue Ocean Group are people Ron knew from his Amway days. These MLMs copy what Amway has gotten away with for over a half century, and you’re bickering about a spammer?

                  As I said above, I dropped the spammer topic long ago, yet YOU keep bringing it up. How ironic is THAT??!!???

                2. Yep, I’m totes serious. You didn’t have to click on the link for the comment spam to work. The comment spam just had to make it through the spam filter – which it did. Wikipedia’s spamdexingentry touches on comment spam as a form of link-building spam, and Search Engine Watch covered it in an article on spam link-building tactics and their legit alternatives.

                  Seeing how this site got its start covering online scammers, I don’t see discussing comment spam as off-topic. This is how online scammers build “social proof” with Google’s algorithms.

                3. You’re making a mountain out of a molehill. I fail to see how a single spam comment on this blog causes the world to blow up. Why are we not ignoring the spam comment and focusing on the subject of this thread? As a reminder, the subject is MLM scams, particularly the Club100 technique.

                  I think you’re so wrapped up with spamming that the spammers have won from your perspective via a self fulfilling prophesy principle. Or perhaps you know spamming very well and almost nothing about MLM, so you want to talk spamming instead of MLM scams.

                  Did you google the names of the people and companies I listed in my previous comment? THAT is what this thread is about, NOT spamming.

  36. Because, Tex, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and the rest of your right wing heroes advertised the work at home scams for years, doing untold damage to thousands of people.

    You can admire his racism and misogyny all you want but you’ve got a helluva nerve acting like you’re anti-scammer yet you promote the very people who promote the scams.

    You feel like you got fucked over by amway, yet you were happy as Larry when you were fucking over other people. You’ve gotten tossed off of most anti-mlm sites by your insistence on promoting your blog, your right wing views, and your insistence that everybody else drop all of their efforts and join you in some as yet undisclosed campaign against amway. When people aren’t interested you harass and spam their sites until you get banned.

    1. Do you think these individuals were aware that these work at home advertisers were running scams? Do you think these work at home advertisers would have found other outlets, had these radio shows turned them down? None of these people, nor I, admire racism or misogyny. I don’t “feel” like Amway did anything to me, I KNOW they scammed me and millions of others. Also, if you had bothered reading my site, you would already know I wasn’t aware I was scamming others until I found out about the ATS, and stopped consuming and promoting the ATS the second I found out. Any “banning” of me from other sites is solely based on my unwillingness to support issues that are simply not factual, as it would damage my credibility. . My website is information useful to others, so they and others they forward it to won’t get scammed, why would I NOT promote it? How are your left wing views working for you, not to mention the entire country? I don’t suggest that anybody drops anything, but I do believe that if the critics worked out their differences and worked together, we would be FAR more effective. Why should others not be held accountable for their errors? Why would I WANT to be on a site that refuses to address the facts?

      1. This brings us around to our good friend 16 CFR Part 255 and its Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Effective December 1, 2009, the FTC said:

        Endorsers also may be liable for statements made in the course of their endorsements.

        And also:

        … the endorsement must be supported by an actual exercise of that expertise in evaluating product features or characteristics with respect to which he or she is expert and which are relevant to an ordinary consumer’s use of or experience with the product and are available to the ordinary consumer.

        These radio personalities didn’t just run ads during their ad breaks. As the Droid said over here:

        Glenn Beck did his own voice over work :: published posts … and ran constant banner ads.
        Rush Limbaugh :: Sean Hannity :: and a long ass list of deplorable sell-out motherfuckers … battered their millions of collective listeners daily with messages about the total legitness of spending thousands of dollars for a chance to sell Herbalife via Shawn Dahl’s Online Business Systems.

        Glenn Beck stuck his face all over work-at-home banner ads shepherding people toward Herbalife. Under 16 CFR Part 255, he was supposed to investigate the product before endorsing it.
        That “long ass list” the Droid mentioned has been taken down, but thanks to the Wayback Machine, I was able to grab it. I haven’t confirmed these, but here is the list of alleged Herbalife radio shills:

        Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, Delilah, Dr. Laura, Anthony Valary, Joe, Bartlett, Todd Schnitt, Mark Levin, Roger Hedgecock, Jason Lewis, Michael Savage, Bill Press, Randi Rhodes, Neal Boortz, Todd N Tyler, Slow James with R Dub!, Sybil Wilkes, Tom Joyner, Charlie Tuna, The Art Laboe Show, George Noory, Yolanda Adams, Shirley Strawberry, Coast To Coast, Steve Harvey, Rick & Bubba, Laura Ingraham, Praise 106.5

        Honestly, I don’t know how anyone can be anti-scam and pro-conservative. Back in 2012, the Droid gave us a roundup of articles on Mitt Romney’s connections to Scamworld.

        1. Anna,

          Precisely. If you watch the Pershing Square presentation victim after victim mentioned being steered into herbalife by Sean Hannity. A lot of the military veterans were tricked by Hannity , Beck, and Limbaugh into calling Online Business Systems.

          And I don’t read the Salty Droid to run into fucked up shit like ‘We could have a much better country with more Rush and less Barry.”

          Rush Limbaugh is the lowest form of humanity on earth. The things he said about Sandra Fluke made me physically ill. His brand of misogynism and racism have no place here. If you don’t believe me, contact the Droid, ask him how he feels about your peddling that crap here.

          1. There were many other avenues besides radio, such as direct online advertising. They probably would have mentioned liberal radio shows also, but these are much fewer and smaller, so the conservative talk shows were referenced. In other words, liberal radio is a failure and conservative radio is a success.
            Instead of focusing on left wing/right wing politics, you should focus on right and wrong ethics, morals, and legalities. I have no problem working with you, so the problem is obviously YOU. In fact, YOUR unwillingness to focus on the right and wrong facts instead of politics shows that YOU are also at fault for these scams still being around.
            Rush Limbaugh is a national treasure, be sure to listen to his dissertation today about how the radical Feminazis have damaged our once great country. Did you know the UK is now discussing “that time of the month” leave for women? Stand by, these issues tend to spread around eventually. Fluke is a liar and a slut/whore. I have no interest in paying for her spreading her legs. SHE makes ME physically ill. You obviously don’t “get” what Rush says, because your liberal thinking has you totally confused. I don’t peddle any “crap” here, just the facts, ma’am.

            1. @Tex ::
              .
              You have awoken fake robot Smaug from his multi-month slumber with your fucking idiotic and ridiculous “slut/whore” parrot talk.
              .
              Are you just slow to learn lessons? Or … you never fucking learn lessons?
              .
              Please shut up now … that I may re-close my one open eye.

              1. @SD,

                Hello, barely awake, Salty.

                I get that you’re pretty much done here and I understand why (that is–you told us why back with the “On 6” post and so forth).

                Two things while your video inputs are scanning this:
                #1 Thanks for what you have done.

                You may not ultimately have been able to defeat the Universe of scam-i-ness,but I’m certain you saved more than a few starfish. I assert that, that is still worth a very great deal whether it feels like it or not.

                and
                #2 What are you thoughts about this?
                Apparently there is a “1986 State Of California Final Judgment” against Herbalife.
                http://seekingalpha.com/article/2728325-herbalife-and-the-1986-state-of-california-final-judgment

                But for whatever reason, it doesn’t seem to amount to much. SA Matthew Handley is all like: oh if only the CA AG would enforce this injunction!

                But then there’s a Forbes article from 2013 (http://www.forbes.com/sites/mattstroud/2013/07/22/ftc-bill-ackman-prosecute-herbalife/) where they talk with William Keep, “trial expert in . .. pyramid scheme cases”

                Dr. Keep, whoever he is, says that the FTC doesn’t want to go after HLF unless they really, really have to… because there exists the risk that the FTC would LOSE.

                That makes me sad.

                Still, like a Tolkien Elf, I persist even in the absence of hope.

                1. Wyrd,

                  The attitude should be, as Les Brown is fond of saying, “It’s not over until I win.” However, attitude without working together is merely wishful thinking.

                  You can be sure the other side is working together AND are well funded. The DSA, Chamber of Commerce, BBB, AG and other political donations, lobbyists, high dollar lawyers who can freeze lawsuits in court, etc., are but a few of their tactics. So if you think posting comments on an obscure blog will overcome these issues, the fight was lost before it started.

                  Taking just the HLF issue, it normally takes a year or more for the FTC to complete an investigation, and they only started it earlier this year.

                  #1 While picking up a few starfish is better than nothing, it isn’t much better when there are FAR more starfish not picked up and thrown back in the ocean.

                  #2 What do you think about what Ackman said about the CA court order? You shouldn’t be sad, you should be looking to leverage your impact. I have plenty of hope, but to persist in the absence of hope is nuts.

                  Keep is actually a very bright guy, but when asked to work together to multiply effectiveness, he is always too busy. How ’bout YOU? What’s YOUR excuse?

                2. Wyrd: “I get that you’re pretty much done here and I understand why… Still, like a Tolkien Elf, I persist even in the absence of hope.”

                  I refuse to accept that the little robot is done here. But since you brought up Tolkien at the end of your comment… Remember in the movie when Gandalf fell into that deep abyss and everyone was weeping and wailing because he was gone? Then he turned up again later, more luminous than ever.

                  “Yes… that is what they called me: Gandalf the Gray. Now I am Gandalf the White.”

                3. The entire focus of this blog should return to where it all started in 2009: the core group of individuals who are part of (or very closely related to) the Syndicate. Herbalife is a multinational juggernaut backed by piles of Wall Street money. Double-chinned French-for-trade-union hillbillies are a better target. It’s all about focus. SaltyDroid v7 needs a simple, clear, unambiguous goal… FINISH THE JOB STARTED IN 2009.

        2. I’m all for the FTC including Beck in any lawsuit against HLF, even Droid put him in a category of his own. However, the liberal Barry government also screwed up by not seeing through these scams and suing them into oblivion. I don’t think the other folks personally promoted HLF. If you visit the links you provided, you would see there were liberals with the ads as well, there just aren’t as many liberal radio shows. So I could just as easily say, “Honestly, I don’t know how anyone can be anti-scam and pro-liberal.” The reason you said “Honestly, I don’t know how anyone can be anti-scam and pro-conservative” is because your liberalism has blinded you to the facts. Also, Romney is no conservative, and that fact kept several millions of Republicans from voting in the 2012 election, which gave us The Disasters of Barry, Chapter 2.

    1. If it sounds too good to be true, that means it’s worth doing!

      Are they putting LSD in the shake mix?

  37. My Dearest Trolls,

    You have been missing lately. Have you forgotten how to troll? How to blame victims for their failure to succeed in a system that’s rigged against them?

    If so, I have good news for you! Today on Twitter, master troll Iggy Azalea issued some victim-blaming troll templates you can use. Check them out here.

    1. Anna,
      I think iggy is right on this one. for azaelea banks to blame racism for her lack of success is totally unreasonable.
      iggy may be another example of a white artist appropriating black mannerisms and culture, but that doesn’t mean she isn’t talented or doesn’t deserve her fame. also, azalea banks is the biggest troll ever.

      1. I agree with Wyrd about no good guys – or at least no lady rappers who haven’t mouthed off on Twitter. I can’t agree with Iggy, though. She sounds just like – JUST LIKE! – the trolls who victim-blame people on this site. In fact, I put together a fun game of “Iggy Azalea or Scammer Troll?”

        Half of these are Iggy Azalea quotes and half are from trolls defending scammers on this website:

        The reason is that if you are successful people with very misguided, negative, closed minded and miserable attitudes like yourselves will find a way to attack you.
        Source

        My success unfortunately sparks some very creative responses to try and discredit me as a human being.
        Source

        You all are pathetic losers that could actually make a living – except for the glaring fact that you are too busy trying to talk shit on other people and wallowing in your already miserable (and painfully obvious), fucking sad existences.
        Source

        Just remember while your all at home online cracking jokes that Most of you have done NOTHING. NOTHING! With your lives.
        Source

        Your inability to be responsible for your own mistakes, bullying others, the inability to be humble or have self control. It’s YOU!
        Source

        Take responsibility for your lives and go start a business, enjoy a hobby, play with your children, make a sandwich, slap your salami, or whatever the fuck you want to do – because frankly….YOU ARE NOT going to get anything out of posting bitch material on some faggots website cheering him on like the mob you are.
        Source

        You’re poisonous and I feel genuinely sorry for you because it’s obvious at this point you are a MISERABLE, angry human being. Regards!
        Source

        Oh.my.God. You all are such hate-mongering trolls. How pathetic and miserable your lives must be.
        Source

        You want to believe this drivel because you need to get your mind off of the simple fact that you inserted your bitch tampon in the wrong hole and cannot pull it out.
        Source

        you created your own unfortunate situation and don’t have the mental capacity to realize yet. Probably never will.
        Source

        1. oh shut up tex

          Anna,

          There’s a few big differences between Iggy and the victim-blaming-troll-scammer.

          1. when Iggy says that Banks has a ‘piss poor atittude,’ she is RIGHT. Have you read Banks’ twitter feed? it is completely outrageous. She is guilty of all the worst kinds of trollish, mean, egomaniacal and child-tantrum behavior. She picks fights left and right. She reminds me of Naomi Dunford. She put on a sad face for the Hot 97 interview, but thats not the whole story.

          2. Banks is NOT A VICTIM. She is a successful artist. She wants to be MORE successful, and have meaningless trappings of such success like Grammys and Millions, but she deserves NO sympathy. She signed a 7 figure record deal with Universal, then drove everyone there so crazy (my educated guess), that they took the loss and dropped her (verifiable).

          3. Iggy is not a scammer. She has achieved her dreams through talent, hard work and perseverance. She may have a lot to learn, and people may not like her style, or her blatant theatrical persona, but she has not hurt anyone.

          The language might be similar (‘you only failed because of your attitude’), but that’s because scammers have co-opted that language for their own nefarious purpose. Scammers say that stuff when they are trying to steal someones money, or get people to work like slaves for nothing in return. The Iggy / Banks feud is not that situation. It’s two successful artist, one very jealous and angry (banks), and another (Iggy) who is mostly guilty of being naive.

          btw, did you read Q-Tips twitter hip-hop history lesson? I thought it was beautiful.

          1. Well, when you say Naomi Dunford, that does put a whole different spin on the situation. Hmm.

            I just read QTips’ hip-hop history lesson. Definitely sums up the point at which the Black Power movement stalled due to several situations the U.S. government created and from which hip-hop emerged. People should not lose their voices, and music should not forget its roots.

            Oh, and, hey, maybe Tex would be happy if we talked about how being kept down for so long has made people of color prime targets for Herbalife, a topic the Droid covered in the post Herbalife vs Black People.

            1. People of ALL colors are targeted by Herbalife and other MLMs, such as Amway. However, minority groups are bigger targets, as most minority groups don’t have as much access to the internet, don’t read/speak English, so they may not notice the information that is available mostly in the English language, and there is a trust level among them, just as there has always been among minority groups. This is why the vast majority of Herbalife and Amway distributors are minorities, and thanks for getting this conversation off of hip-hop and back on track.

          2. @Tex ::

            I shoulda SHUT DOWN this whole fucking site when you started calling ladies slut/whores per your fat lord’s instructions :: cause it reminded how as long as I leave comments open here … I’m gonna have to babysit intellectually inferior internet idiots.
            .
            And I can tie hip-hop twitter wars back to HLF {as I just so happen to have several hundred scammer profiles banging around in my head} …
            .
            – Garrain Jones :: https://twitter.com/garrainjones … formerly Steph Jones
            – had a record deal with DTP but fucked it all up … http://singersroom.com/content/2008-08-21/Steph-Jones-Sets-DTP-Record-Straight-Shines-Light-On-Upcoming-Projects/
            – self orchestrates {my educated guess} a dick pic leak {verifiable} :: http://ohnotheydidnt.livejournal.com/58703289.html
            – saved from faux-homelessness by Herbalife … http://www.vibevixen.com/troymonaco/2012/09/singer-steph-garrian-jones-reveals-he-was-living-out-of-his-car-how-herbalife-saved-his-life/2/
            – somehow rockets straight to President’s Team … another fake reality orchestration

            … Mark Addy knows what I’m talking about.

            1. @SD,

              Didn’t you see my correction, above? Rush called Sandra Fluke a slut/prostitute, not a whore. So it wasn’t “ladies,” it was one female who doesn’t qualify to be called a “lady” unless there is a “of the night” attached.

              She’s also a liar, as her cost for the pill was extremely inflated, like her ego. What would YOU call someone who wants me to pay her for her use of the pill so she can screw anything that moves?

              Also, I don’t follow the “fat lord’s instructions,” Rush reflects what a LOT of us are already thinking and he has a platform to broadcast it.

              So go ahead and shut down the site, it’s become obvious you want to vent instead of solve problems. I can tie virtually anything to anything else, Kevin Bacon knows what I’m talking about.

              1. Oh, FFS, if you’re gonna continue to talk like there’s something negative about sluttiness, sex workers, medical care, and/or consensual grownup sexy times, GTFO.

                1. All it takes is looking at your picture to see you don’t have an issue with sluttiness. Potty mouth. LOL

                  Just to be clear, I don’t think there is anything “negative” about medical care, unless I have to pay for someone elses’ sluttiness.

                2. @Tex,

                  .
                  Oh go on you big slut you. Come out of the closet already. I’m a liberal. That thing that you and Rush have together, it’s nothing to be ashamed of.

                  .
                  (But please, since if I were @SD, I’d be about ready to pull the Final Plug on this site at any moment, could you turn down your flame until after I have a decent chance to archive saltydroid.info for posterity?)

                  .
                  Yeah.

                  .
                  I know.

                  .
                  You won’t stop.

                  .
                  You’ll never stop.

                  .
                  Like the terminator.
                  .

                  Merry Christmas.

                  .

                  Furry cows moo and decompress.

                3. The “thing” that Rush and I have has nothing to do with your perverted, liberal mind.

                  Who cares about this worthless site for posterity?

    2. I’m coming into this cold, having no idea what the longtime stories of these two are.

      I’m way out of the loop on many aspects of culture I suppose.

      I’m reminded of Pirates of Silicon Valley at the end of the movie where Steve Jobs becomes aware of Bill Gates’s treachery. But Xerox invented the GUI anyway. So there were no real good guys there.

      I dunno. It’s late and I’m tired, I may be way off.

      Furry cows moo and decompress.

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