Rich and Jay go into business together selling Nutrilite vitamins, an early multilevel marketing scheme for which Jay’s second cousin and his parents are already distributors. When Nutrilite goes kaput in 1948 after an FDA crackdown on their ‘excessive claims’ regarding the products’ nutritional values (about which Rich only says, ‘Until then, there had been no official government position on what type of claims could be made about dietary supplements’), he and Jay strike out on their own – the American way. They can do it! We know they can!
It started with a guy I randomly met at Target. Now that I think about it, it's almost as if he was waiting for a prospect right outside the store. He entered the store right behind me and then he entered the aisle I went into shortly after I did. Not that it's relevant, but I was there to buy deodorant because, well, we're not apes anymore. Anyway, he pretended to be interested in the same product that I was looking at and was like "Oh you're a Degree guy too?" I was a bit weirded out at first but I was like, I don't know, he seems harmless. We started talking about success right off the bat and how he wants to live the better life/easy life (yachts and fancy cars). He came off as very ambitious. I am too, I own a small business and I'm looking to grow it, so of course, I related to him, and that's where he thought he had me. That's right, it felt like he was out to get me.
Group delivery. Amway will ship bulk orders to where their Platinum level distributors are (or higher) for free. This encourages all reps to maintain relationships with their customers. At one point customers were able to receive free shipping by ordering on their own if they exceeded a certain dollar amount, but this is no longer the case due to policy changes.
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As a guest speaker at the Quixtar LIVE! conference in 2003, Phil McGraw ("Dr. Phil") reportedly described Quixtar as "one of the greatest success stories in American business history."[citation needed] In a 2006 settlement involving a class-action lawsuit brought against McGraw and his Shape-Up diet products, plaintiffs received a share of $6.0 million in Quixtar-brand Nutrilite vitamins and $4.5 million in cash.[28][29]
“The time is ripe for cultivating entrepreneurs, as evidenced by this year’s AGER results” said Jim Ayres, Managing Director, Amway North America. “Over the past five years, we have seen how age, education levels and gender influence attitudes towards entrepreneurship. Through this research, we realized the importance of understanding what motivates individuals to start their own businesses. This year’s AGER reveals a growing number of Americans continue to express a desire to start their own business. This desire is shared among the many independent business owners we work with year-round.”

I am an IBO for the second time in my life. I tried when I was 20 and in the Air Force. Gonna make it rich in a year. Pffft. Naw. Can you get rich in Amway? Absolutely? Will you? Probably not. Same as any business you really have to work hard and put in a lot of time and capital in the beginning with little to no return. But you stick with it, don't quit before the miracle happens. This time around, I just want to work the business, maybe grow it a little, and make enough money to maybe get my wife home to raise our daughter and home school her full time. So, hey, if I can get it to $3000 a month....great. If not.....great. I love the products anyway and if some people want to come with me and maybe make a few bucks or just enjoy some good products, great. I'm happy with it and other people's opinions of me or my Amway business are none of my business. No need to be defensive....Amway's reputation speaks for itself.


"Amway differed in several ways from pyramid schemes that the Commission had challenged. It did not charge an up-front "head hunting" or large investment fee from new recruits, nor did it promote "inventory loading" by requiring distributors to buy large volumes of nonreturnable inventory," said Debra A Valentine, a general counsel for the FTC, in a seminar organised by the International Monetary Fund in May 1998.
The Amway Center makes it easy for families to come out for events, providing a cute play area for younger guests to climb, shoot baskets, and test their memory with STUFF's Magic Castle. There are entertainment areas for older fans too. The Nutralite Magic Fan Experience creates an interactive journey through Magic history, looking at players, big moments, and the history of the franchise.

Amway is unethical way of making money. Their representative lure you to this smartly designed plan. Amway’s representatives misguide and misinform like any other business or a product’s sale representatives. which is attractive to listen for the first time with the ‘Entrepreneur” motto. But it is another way of making money leaving you frustrated in the end. I advise every one not to join this unethical product promotion. I appreciate Jeremy’s article for giving information to people.
Methodology: Source Euromonitor International Limited. Claim verification based on Euromonitor research and methodology for Amway Corporation conducted from May through June 2018. Euromonitor determined the highest possible total historical sales of the leading global and/or regional Amway competitors and eliminated those whose total sales are less than double that of Amway's own stated historical total bonuses paid out to distributors historically. Of the remaining companies, Euromonitor eliminated companies whose average share of bonuses and cash incentives paid out totals were less than 70% of Amway's stated historical total of bonuses. No companies remained after this stage. To the extent permissible, Euromonitor does not accept or assume responsibility to any third party in respect of this claim.
Year by year, cycle by cycle, the DeVoses built a state Legislature in their own image. By the time Democrat Jennifer Granholm was term-limited in 2010 and Republican Rick Snyder was elected governor without any political experience, it was the DeVoses, not Snyder, who knew how to get things done. Unlike the Engler years, this time, they had more sway than the governor.
When I told my parents about the business, they were immediately skeptical, but since my dad is a salesman he was supportive. The next week I was in the middle of teaching and got a phone call from the girl. She claimed that she had gotten a "last minute ticket" to their Thursday night meeting. She tried to describe how exclusive it is and basically hinted how honored I should feel to be invited. Unfortunately, it was so last minute we just couldn't do it. We were too tired after a long day at work. The following Thursday we went to the meeting. It was the strangest experience, and it was WAY too long. We didn't get home till 11 o'clock, and my husband had to be at work by 7:15. We were exhausted. Every few days we were having to meet for training with our mentors as well as watching videos and listening to CDs. They make sure to consume your life with a little bit of positive Amway, so you don't listen to the negative Amway. Guys, this literally can be described as a brainwashing method.
The lack of government prosecutions, along with sophisticated PR spin and misleading income data have given MLM schemes an aura of legitimacy, heightening their ability to fool consumers and the media as well. Gradually, though, the truth about how MLMs have escaped regulation is coming to light. The answer is plain and simple: MLMs bought influence in Washington and in some state legislatures with campaign contributions and high pressure lobbying.

Its funny that you should say that because, in my opinion I don't think MLM is going anywhere and the Amway Corporation definitely isn't going anywhere. since the depression in 2008 amway has increased its annual revenue by 1 billion dollars a year, and today stands at 11.8 billion dollars. Now your entitled to your opinion but there are some little facts that all people should be informed of. such as the fact that if your between the ages of 18 and 32, by the time you reach retirement (working a job) you have an 80% chance of being dead, disabled, broke, or financially dependent upon the government to subsidize your income. also by that time statistically you will have changed jobs 32 times. how much do you really think your 401k is really going to worth then. Im just a messenger her but I think a company like Amway is really the best shot any average Joe has of creating financial independence. I love when people say its a pyramid scheme. lets look at the typical job. (trading time for money) who works harder, stock boy at A&P or the CEO at A&P who's probably sitting in his hot tub right now? Obviously the stock boy but no matter how hard the stock boy works he will never out earn the CEO. that in my mind is a pyramid scheme. at least in Amway if you do more work you get more money. But the fact still remains it is not a get rich quick scheme. Its going to take hard works. Lots of hard work. but take it from someone who has worked his way through this system. it is well worth the effort. the ends justify the means because once you make to the top of that system Amway provides you with a life that is unparalleled by any other lifestyle. Its not easy but it does work.
1, no inventory loading? Hebalife distributors are re-evaluated for their qualifications every January. Based solely on how much products they purchased. Distributors can claim the products are for their own personal consumption any time they need to make up the volume points they needed for the qualification. 2, way over priced products : 2-10 times of equivalent products in the market. Why would a real consumer pay such premium for products that are available everywhere? 3, the refund policy. Herbalife distributors make purchase through their uplines. Uplines get rolty override payment on every purchase their downline made. This policy only encourage focus on recruiting, push unwanted purchase, and in factual denied refund.
Inefficiencies were everywhere, since the supply chain rigidly followed the line of recruitment. Some of the items I ordered had to be sent by mail all the way from Seattle, since that was where Scott and Shelley Coon, our upline Direct Distributors, happened to live. Others could be shipped from a regional warehouse in Michigan—one of Amway’s attempts to make the system more workable—but still had to be ordered through the Coons. Some items—unavailable from the warehouse—could be sent directly to me via UPS, but my building didn’t have a front desk to receive them. Jean suggested I have them sent to her apartment to be picked up with the rest of my order.
Amway has historically gotten much more criticism for its business practices than its products. As middle men, distributors often falsely claim that they cut out that very middle man. This supposedly results in more competitive, “wholesale” prices. On the contrary, Amway’s prices are typically higher than their closest competitors. The prices only become more appealing when employees have a significant downline beneath them.
Beginning in 1992–93, USA Today and CNN took over publishing the coaches' basketball poll for UPI. Beginning in the 1993–94 basketball season, the Coaches Poll began publishing its final poll after the NCAA basketball tournament. From the 1993 to 1997 seasons, the poll was co-sponsored by USA Today, Cable News Network, and the NABC. Finally, in 1997-98, ESPN joined as a co-sponsor of the Coaches Poll along with USA Today and the NABC where selected NABC members serve as the voting block for the poll. ESPN retains its involvement in the basketball poll despite no longer being involved in the football poll.
And the victims of MLMs—that is, the people who pay high buy-in fees but never recoup their investment—are usually women. The second episode of The Dream is called “Women’s Work,” and in it Marie returns to her hometown of Owosso, Michigan, where childhood friends and women in her family recall how Tupperware, makeup, and jewelry parties were an essential part of the town’s social fabric. “They say you can work from home, you can pick up your kids from school, you’ll never miss a soccer game,” Marie said of the promises MLMs make to women. “You can be the stereotypical mom, American mom, and make a living. Except that you can’t. You now have women doing all the emotional labor of mothering, and unpaid labor of running a household, and you have them working nights and weekends to pay for their cell phone. It’s like being in jail.”
There have been instances in the past where even auto-rickshaw drivers had sold their belongings (including their auto-rickshaw) and paid upto Rs 35,000 to become members of such scheme (GoldQuest). But as with any pyramid scheme, they had to bear the brunt of the binary tree’s exponential function and they became bankrupt. As expected, the organizers went absconding.
On August 10, 2007, Quixtar announced that it had terminated the businesses of fifteen of the plaintiffs involved in the lawsuit,[52] and sought and received a temporary restraining order and preliminary order of injunction in a Michigan court preventing them from interfering with the LOS, soliciting IBOs for their new company, or disparaging Quixtar or the business in any way.[53][54] In mid October 2007, Quixtar argued that the former distributors were in violation of the court order since TEAM continued to have meetings and sell motivational materials. In Grand Rapids, Michigan, Quixtar argued that TEAM was using Quixtar's proprietary information to promote its meetings and sell materials. The court held in favor of Woodward and Brady and allowed TEAM to continue to operate.[55]
By using AWS serverless architecture, Amway has been able to take a very lean, agile approach to its IoT effort. “We didn’t need to invest in IT infrastructure because AWS offered a serverless architecture—that in and of itself is a huge savings,” says Binger. He predicts that a serverless approach will be adopted for many other systems throughout Amway’s enterprise IT architecture.
I like the convenience that they offer. They have a wide variety of high quality products and their shipping is always on time. The layout of the website makes it quite easy to find the products I need and the specific package sizes that I am looking for. It would be good it they allowed for bundling certain items together in order to get a discount. They do it to a certain extent, but it would be great if they offer far more options and combinations. It was a clear, organized experience that made shopping quite enjoyable. Checking out was easy and the entire experience was hassle free.

There were some rational explanations for Josh’s behavior. To recruit others, he needed the propaganda talents of his upline World Widers, who made it clear that their underlings had to be “fanatical about personal use,” and even held this up as an index of a distributor’s positive attitude. Another rationale was provided by the well-worn anecdote, often retold in the first person, about the distributor who missed a new Performance Bracket by a few dollars when a little bit more personal use could have taken them over the edge. The story always ended, “Well, you better believe I never made that mistake again!”
I had a very good experience with Amway. They have very nice people on website to help you, the employees know about all of the products that they sell. This probably one of the reasons they have been in business for so long. Also, they are a very good company that has top quality products. Amway probably has a large amount of orders to handle every day. However, the prices are very high on most products. They can probably keep the prices this high because all of the people that buy their products are used to paying the higher prices for wonderful products.
Remember Income is not profit.  Even if a business consultant earned 21,048 in commission for 2013, this figure does not include the cost of being an Amway member.  Remaining active is not cheap. Our own analysis of the numbers estimated that after expenses the average Amway IBO lost $1,176 per year.  Our calculations used data from Amway USA from 2010
When Dick and Betsy DeVos are asked why they’ve chosen to mount a personal crusade for education reform, they often cite their family’s charitable giving, which puts them into contact with scholarship applicants. For years, the DeVoses read reams of personal essays filled with wrenching stories of dire finances and an abiding hope in the transformative impact of education. Those stories, the DeVoses have said, made it clear that something had to change.
"Thought our kids came out," Smart said after the win. "We were sloppy at times, organizational, as far as substitution on defense, and we got some stupid, silly penalties early on offense. But they came out fast, they came out physical, and they answered the challenge which was to understand that we challenged them and said 'hey, we are creating a standard here, that we play to this level, regardless of who you play.'  You have to go own the standard. I really thought the players really tried to do that. Sometimes holdings and things like that are an aggressive penalty. But that is frustrating and as an organization, we have to do a better job defensively of having the right people on the field."
"Amway differed in several ways from pyramid schemes that the Commission had challenged. It did not charge an up-front "head hunting" or large investment fee from new recruits, nor did it promote "inventory loading" by requiring distributors to buy large volumes of nonreturnable inventory," said Debra A Valentine, a general counsel for the FTC, in a seminar organised by the International Monetary Fund in May 1998.
Great people; love their company and the Grand Rapids area; devoted to Amway's founding values of self-determination, opportunity, etc. Great place if you want to stay and grow with the same company for many years; everyone is open to the idea that you'll switch roles and teams more than once for the sake of personal growth and satisfaction. Great place to feel like you are cared about by the company.
But there is one thing that we need to understand here. Like in an MLM scheme which is a Ponzi scheme, the business that an Amway distributor does, depends on finding new distributors and then hoping that these new distributors sell Amway products and at the same time are able to appoint newer distributors. If a distributor is successful at this he makes more and more money. The trouble is that we go along it becomes more difficult to appoint new distributors. Lets try and understand this through an example. Lets say the first distributor that a genuine MLM company appoints, in turn appoints five distributors.
But judging by the Herculean efforts made to seduce me into The Business, the Plan couldn’t be quite as effortless as it sounded. Josh and Jean, who had now thrown themselves into signing me up as one of their “downlines,” had adopted a strategy that consisted mainly of driving me, at untold inconvenience to themselves, to as many meetings as possible (they were all in far-flung suburbs, so I needed the rides). My attempts to find refuge in the back of the car being firmly rebuffed by Jean, I sat captive in the passenger seat while Josh tried out the various small-talk friendship-building techniques he’d learned from World Wide. Our trips always ended with Josh proffering a Sample Kit, a large white box filled with detergents and propaganda, including Promises to Keep, a book by the suggestively named Charles Paul Conn, as well as xeroxed articles explaining why Amway was the most “misunderstood company in the world.” I resisted Josh’s offers; I was reluctant to take the Amway plunge and knew that the real purpose of the kit was to give him an excuse to drop by my house and retrieve it.
Sociologist David G. Bromley calls Amway a "quasi-religious corporation" having sectarian characteristics.[95][96] Bromley and Anson Shupe view Amway as preaching the gospel of prosperity.[97] Patralekha Bhattacharya and Krishna Kumar Mehta, of the consulting firm Thinkalytics, LLC, reasoned that although some critics have referred to organizations such as Amway as "cults" and have speculated that they engage in "mind control", there are other explanations that could account for the behavior of distributors. Namely, continued involvement of distributors despite minimal economic return may result from social satisfaction compensating for diminished economic satisfaction.[98]

Even so, among the DeVoses’ skeptics, there are those who strike a hopeful, if cautious, tone. “I think Mrs. DeVos could potentially be a really good secretary of education if she allowed parents and school districts to make policy at the local level,” says Daniel Quinn, executive director of the Great Lakes Center for Education Research and Practice, a nonprofit that receives a portion of its funding from the National Education Association. “But at the same time, I’m concerned.”
For dinner before a game, there are a number of options at the arena. One thing to keep in mind is that Loge ticket holders are also entitled to dinner at Jernigan's Restaurant on the Club Level and have the exclusive option to reserve a table from 5:30 - 6:30 pm as premium ticket holders. Regardless of when you're going, reservations are recommended. 

After four years of litigation Amway won a landmark case in 1979 concerning the legality of MLMs. Because distributors can make an income on direct selling in addition to their downline, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) ruled that Amway was a legitimate business and could continue to operate. This decision has only led to other MLMs adopting similar loopholes and has done little to protect the millions of people scammed into giving their time and money to Amway and other MLMs.


Josh also showed signs of breakdown. After the presentation he took his customary position near the speaker, a hand-held recorder jutting provocatively from his hip; but because he wasn’t in Dave’s downline, he wouldn’t be able to accompany him to dinner. Josh claimed that it was at such dinners that speakers, unfettered by FTC restrictions, could reveal “the good stuff.” He proposed tailing Dave to the restaurant: “They couldn’t stop us, could they?” When Jean talked him out of this, he became desperate to simply “go somewhere and meet people.” Jean reminded him it was a school night for her. “Well, maybe we should talk to the hotel staff,” he suggested.
Privately, many Michigan Republicans are afraid of getting on the DeVoses’ bad side. “At the American Federation of Teachers, there were always Republicans we’d endorse,” recalls Matuzak, who retired from the union in 2014. “And it got to the point where … the Republicans would say, ‘Please don’t endorse me because it will hurt me with the DeVoses.’ They’d send back money because the DeVoses would punish them.” (In an email to POLITICO, the chief of staff to one Republican state senator declined comment for this story, saying it would “not be productive” before linking to two anti-DeVos columns in the Detroit Free Press. The articles “speak for themselves,” he wrote.)
This article is all silly talk and based on no “real” evidence. There really is nothing “creepy” about it, it’s business. It gives ordinary people and even highly successful people who are willing to work hard, the opportunity to become an entrepreneur. You as an individual must just pick the right company for you to partner with, which suits your values. Amway is a very successful Network Marketing company. I speak on behalf of the Network Marketing industry for I’m involved with another very successful Network Marketing company, which is a proven way of making good money. The Network Marketing industry is predicted by Paul Zane Pilzer to be the next trillion dollar industry by 2020. It’s frowned upon because people don’t see it as a “real” profession.
It's sad to see that people think that Amway is a Scam. When it really is a business that doesn't give you what you want right away. My father and I are in Amway and have made more money than other jobs have given us. The reason why people really think that it's a scam is because it's a waste of their time. And that's sad to hear because this business gives you opportunities. Like not to long ago my father went platinum and we got to go to Disney world. Other businesses just hand you that as a reward of not doing anything. But what gets me is if Amway is a scam why hasn't Amway gone away or why hasn't stopped them? Can you answer that for me?
The details of the agreement were finalized on December 22, 2006. In the agreement, the City of Orlando will take ownership of the new arena, while the Magic will control the planning and construction of the facility so long as contracting procedures are done in the same public manner as governments advertise contracts. In addition, the City will be paid a part of naming rights and corporate suite sales, a share estimated to be worth $1.75 million the first year of the arena's opening. The Magic will receive all proceeds from ticket sales for Magic games, while the City will receive all proceeds from ticket sales to all other events.[12] The Orlando Magic will contribute at least $50 million in cash up-front, pick up any cost overruns, and pay rent of $1 million per year for 30 years. The City of Orlando will pay for the land and infrastructure. The remaining money will come from bonds which will be paid off by part of the Orange County, Florida, Tourist Development Tax, collected as a surcharge on hotel stays, which was raised to 6% in 2006. The Magic will guarantee $100 million of these bonds.
Amway allows me to buy health, beauty, and home care products in a fashion that no other site does. It provides multi level marketing which builds a relationship between buyer and seller. However, the thing I would change about this company is to make their service more user friendly. As of right now it is extremely difficult for me to navigate their site to search for items I want. My overall experience for using this company has been rather well thus far. In terms of product selection, there are a large catalog of products that I can choose from. The purchasing process is as streamlined as any other site and the customer service has been impeccable too.
In their zeal, Josh and Jean shuttled me to at least one meeting too many. The worst was a Seminar, an afternoon of “professional training” definitely geared to insiders. Here, during a marathon transfusion of spine-stiffening resolve, I got a glimpse of just how demoralizing the travails of Amway could be. The speaker, Conrad Halls, a Hollywood cameraman with over-the-hill golden-boy looks, had been frank and congenial in his First Look the night before. His debunking of negative Amway stereotypes included the almost touching refrain, “I hope you don’t think I flew 3,000 miles to show you that kind of business,” spoken with a candid stare and open, outstretched arms.

Aubrey, the facts that you stated basically just tells us you failed and because you couldn't figure it out it is a scam grow up and realize life is not easy.... Mag, Playing professional sports works and makes people lots of money but not every does it, Why? because not everyone have the ability to do things others can do. Same bodes for the MLM business, most people don't have enough patients to Reap what they sow. Basically I use to be in Amway, I left because I needed to focus on getting my life together, I admit I was failing at the business and wasn't making money but the people around me including my Downline (Aubry) were very successful and was making more than I was. I left to get my life situated this is only a scam to those who are ignorant enough to think there is only one way to do things.


Listen to Rosemarie and Otto Steiner-Lang, who joined Amway in the hope of funding their own construction company and now run their Amway business full-time: ‘We have found in Amway the independence we were looking for. This business is a doable and affordable solution for the problems in the labor market today. Amway, which represents free enterprise perfectly, postulates and promotes the initiative of the individual, reducing the burden on the public social system.’
Today, the DeVoses’ charitable giving and local boosterism mean that people in West Michigan have a different view of them than Michiganders elsewhere in the state. “The political narrative that has grown around [the family] is unfair,” says Whitney, whose Hauenstein Center has received grant funding from the DeVos Family Foundation. “They have made life better for a lot of people, and I can’t say that loudly enough.”

As secretary, it’s likely DeVos will pursue a national expansion of school choice and charters. In this, DeVos has an ally in President-elect Trump. “There's no failed policy more in need of urgent change than our government-run education monopoly,” Trump said in a September 8 speech. “It is time to break up that monopoly.” In that speech, Trump proposed a $20-billion block grant program to fund national vouchers administered at the state level. “Parents will be able to send their kids to the desired public, private or religious school of their choice,” Trump said.
[16]His tedious auto-encomium was enlivened only by occasional, chilling anecdotes of violence: His mother hit him as a child until, old and strong enough, he could credibly threaten to hit her back; his frat brothers, drunken and rambunctious, tried to shave his head one night, whereupon he barricaded himself in his room, audibly cocked a semiautomatic shotgun, and threatened to kill them; and his family needled him about Amway until, one Thanksgiving, he jumped up and shouted, “I don’t dump on what you do, and if you keep dumping on what I do, I’ll take you outside and knock your block off; and if you’re a woman, I don’t know what I’ll do!”

My husband and I tried Amway, and here's the story: My husband's BEST friend and his wife started asking us to hang out a lot, which was cool because we enjoyed their company. I thought she was my best friend at the time, stupidly enough. It didn't take long for them to tell us about this "amazing" opportunity. We thought we would give it a try since we sincerely trusted our friends. We would go to their house for a "meeting" in their basement with a bunch of strangers and two guys in suits. The guys would talk about how nice it is to work from home, make tons of money and generally just talk about nothing to do with the actual business. After every meeting I would think, okay but what is the business all about!?!?!? So eventually they set us up as "business owners" and we purchased a ton of crap from Amway totaling over $1,000 because, "that is what you do." Eventually, we decided that we would not continue with the business. There was nothing wrong with it, but we knew it wasn't for us. We didn't want to approach complete strangers in coffee shops and present them with an "opportunity"; we didn't want to stay home on the weekends to attend meetings instead of spending them at the lake; we didn't want to choose Amway partners over friends and family like you are taught (yes, there is a "tier"); we didn't want to spend thousands of dollars on products and guilt-trip our friends and family if they didn't want to buy our products (yes, this was also taught). All in all there was nothing very wrong with it, it's not a scam, but it's definitely NOT for everyone. I am writing this not to bash anyone but to give anyone an insight if they are wanting to be part of Amway. Oh, and as for the "friends"... they now completely ignore us. And I mean, I'll see them in public and they'll turn away from me when I wave; they will talk to anyone BUT us. And this was my husband's long-time highschool friend; they were even in eachother's WEDDINGS. So to be quite frank I will talk everyone out of doing Amway and it's their fault. If that is how they will treat others for simply not continuing with the business then I will tell NO ONE to join.
Though they aren’t quite as large or wealthy as the DeVoses, the Prince family—even further west, in Holland, Michigan—shares one big trait in common with their in-laws: the idea that patriotism and politics are inseparable from Christianity. Elsa Prince Broekhuizen, Betsy’s mother, donated $75,000 to the successful 2004 ballot measure to ban same-sex marriage in Michigan; four years later, she gave $450,000 to an identical initiative in California. Betsy’s brother, Erik Prince, founded Blackwater, the military contractor that gained notoriety in 2007, when its employees fired into a crowd of Iraqi civilians, killing 17. (In 2009, two former Blackwater employees alleged in federal court that Prince “views himself as a Christian crusader.”)
Yager made a name for himself as the father of the ‘Yager System,’ one of the first and most profitable motivational ‘tools’ businesses run by Amway distributors (also called ‘tools scams’ by detractors). Distributors produce motivational tapes and videos, or ‘tools,’ and sell them directly to their downlines for immediate profit. Tools promote Amway’s free market philosophy but are not themselves Amway products – though the Yager Group is still today an Amway-approved training provider. The Charlotte Observer has said of Yager, ‘He sells not only soap but an ideology and a way of life. Admirers speak of him with reverence, as if his next plateau of Amway achievement were sainthood itself.’ The title of Yager’s first book, Don’t Let Anybody Steal Your Dream, was a Gerard household motto. We said it to one another with a near-religious zeal – like we were speaking in high-fives. I still feel nostalgic for my childhood when I hear it.
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