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LIFE Income Disclosure Statement (IDS) Analysis for 2012-2013

June 3, 2013

LIFE Income Disclosure Statement (IDS) Independent Analysis

The long-awaited LIFE Income Disclosure Statement (IDS) is finally here1. In the revised LIFE Compensation Plan now available on the LIFE website2, a copy of the IDS has been included, along with a two-page overview, starting on page 13.

Income disclosure statements are commonly handed out by multi-level marketing distributors and companies to show the potential financial benefits of participating in the scheme. They are required by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in the United States. In Canada, the required document is called the Statement of Typical Participant Earnings (STPE). These documents must be presented when making any income claim.

In an email sent out to LIFE members, the company claims that the IDS provides complete transparency for prospective members. This is not the case with many MLM income disclosure statements. Often deliberately vague and lacking in critical details, these documents make it difficult for the lay person to truly understand his or her odds for success. Investigating the figures in an income disclosure statement goes a long way towards determining whether or not an MLM is a good business opportunity.

This analysis uses sound mathematical principles, the figures in the IDS and information from public sources such as Facebook, Twitter, and blogs to paint a realistic picture of LIFE. Our opinion and conclusion remain the same: the LIFE business opportunity is not good. Let’s jump in!

LIFE Income Disclosure Statement Analysis Spreadsheet

Click to view our LIFE IDS Analysis Spreadsheet »

Understanding the Columns in the IDS

The LIFE IDS covers the 9-month business period between May, 2012 and January, 2013. The main table in the IDS (reproduced in the screenshot above) lists the following information for each member rank (Student, Student 150-15000, Leader, Coordinator, Senior Coordinator, and Life Coach) within the LIFE business:

  • Percentage of All Members By Rank: This represents how many LIFE members belong to this rank, including apprentice, non-qualified, and qualified members.
  • Percent of Apprentice Members Within Rank: Each LIFE member starts as an Apprentice and has six months to develop a customer base that meets the customer sales requirements. These people are eligible to receive some commissions.
  • Percent of Non-Qualified Members Within Rank: Non-Qualified Members are Members who have completed the 6-month apprenticeship period but have not met the customer sales requirements. These people are not eligible to receive commissions.
  • Percent of Qualified Members Within Rank: These are members who fulfill the minimum monthly customer sales requirements and are thus eligible to receive commissions from LIFE.
  • May 2012-January 2013 Monthly Income for Qualified Members by Rank: The high, low, and average incomes for qualified members.
  • Number of Months as a Qualified LIFE Member: While the income figures cover just a nine month period from May 2012 to January 2013, the figures here take into account the time since the launch of the LIFE business in November, 2011.

It All Starts at the Top: Reverse Engineering the Numbers

The IDS is like a puzzle, and the critical piece of information that’s missing from the table is exactly how many people belong to each rank in LIFE. Knowing this number will help us determine how many people are (1) losing money each month or (2) making money each month after expenses.

We set about reverse engineering the numbers in the IDS. To that end, we have created a public spreadsheet which crunches and analyzes the LIFE IDS figures.

We know from Orrin Woodward’s LIFE First Year Business Results post that combined TEAM/LIFE sales topped $50,000,000 between November 2011 and November 2012. Furthermore, there are currently 8 Policy Council members in TEAM. Does this number also correspond to the number of LIFE Coaches, the highest rank possible in the LIFE business?

The main table are the figures copied from the IDS. Above that table are two variables that are adjustable in the original spreadsheet.

  1. Estimated number of LIFE Coaches
  2. Average expenses per month

This analysis uses 8 LIFE Coaches and $500/month in expenses to compute the following calculations:

  • Estimated total members per rank
  • Estimated qualified members per rank
  • For qualified members, the average gross income for the 9 months covered in the IDS
  • For qualified members, the average gross income per month
  • For qualified members, the estimated profits and loss per month
  • Estimated total payouts for all members over the past 9 months
  • Membership breakdown with regards to payout allocation
  • Average gross income per month for all ranks

After plugging in 8 for the number of LIFE Coaches, we can determine how many people are in the LIFE business (number of qualified members listed in bold):

  • Student: 20,441 (41)
  • Student 150: 9,860 (190)
  • Student 300: 11,811 (525)
  • Student 600: 8,826 (719)
  • Student 1000: 6,336 (825)
  • Student 1500: 6,106 (1,169)
  • Student 2500: 3,703 (975)
  • Student 4000: 2,012 (661)
  • Student 6000: 1,405 (553)
  • Student 10000: 477 (220)
  • Student 15000: 234 (99)
  • Leader: 199 (195)
  • Coordinator: 31 (31)
  • Sr. Coordinator: 11 (11)
  • Life Coach: 8 (8)

The total number of LIFE members is 71,461 (6,225 qualified) based on 8 LIFE Coaches. Recall that during the period of the IDS, Wayne and Raylene MacNamara were named Policy Council members in TEAM. If we plug in 7 LIFE Coaches, the total number of estimated LIFE members is 62,528 (5,447 qualified).

Once we know how many people are in each rank, it’s simple to calculate the average gross income and the payout allocation. As one might expect from these schemes, the majority of the money is made by the people at the very top of the LIFE pyramid. Here’s a visual representation of the money allocation:

Those at the top of the LIFE organization make the majority of the income.

Those at the top of the LIFE organization make the majority of the income.

Student 6000s and above get 78% of the total payout. Out of that group, Leaders and above take 53% of the total payout. Leaders and above make up 99% of the average monthly income per person in LIFE. Yet, Student 6000s and above make up just 3% of the total number of members in all of LIFE. Leaders and above make up a minuscule 0.35%!

Orrin and others within TEAM/LIFE like to poo-poo corporations, calling them corporate pyramids. Network marketing, he argues, “doesn’t pay based upon where you fall within the hierarchy or how long a person has been with the company.” If you look at the pay ratio between CEOs and employees of the top 250 companies in the S&P, you’ll note the following:

  • JC Penney: 1,795 pay ratio: $53.3 million (CEO) versus $29,688 (average worker)
  • Abercrombie & Fitch: 1,640: $48.1 million versus $29,310
  • Simon Property Group: 1,594: $137.2 million versus $86,033
  • Oracle: 1,287: $96.2 million versus $74,693
  • Starbucks: 1,135: $28.9 million versus $25,463

Comparing the average monthly income for a LIFE coach at $53,585/month with the average monthly income for all Members (Apprentice, Non-Qualified, Qualified) — $38.48, we see a pay ratio of 1,392. It gets worse if we calculate the pay ratio for the exceptional LIFE Coach who made $205,806.12/month: 5,348! Which pay ratio is out of whack here again? As MLM Myth points out, “Corporate America is simply a hierarchical organization. It isn’t a pyramid scheme with endless recruiting of 2 or more people making the same investment.”

As for the tens of thousands of apprentice and non-qualified members, they are clearly spending more money than they are making by being a part of the LIFE business.

40.4% of LIFE Members Do Not Renew

Contained within the fine print of the IDS is the following statement:

40.4% of Members do not continue with LIFE after their first year.

A 40% drop-out rate each year is not good. Nearly half of LIFE’s entire membership did not see the value in continuing to “improve” their lives after only one year? Imagine how difficult it must be for LIFE members to sell LIFE products to the general public knowing this statistic. Recall that the customer sales requirement is 50PV each month.

In the two-page summary in the LIFE Compensation Plan, the company tries to explain this number away by stressing that the business isn’t for everyone. LIFE then compares itself with college and fitness clubs. The implication here is that if you do the work — like in school or at the gym — you will succeed in the LIFE business. This is not the case with LIFE, because a member can do lots of things — show plans, attend meetings, buy tools, be a faithful member of LIFE — and never rise up in the ranks.

This is because the high drop-out rate shows that a large percentage of a LIFE member’s time will be spent replacing those people who quit the business and convincing those who stay in at the lower levels to “keep doing what they’re doing” in the hopes of making it big.

The Cash Value of One Time Cash Awards and LIFE Incentive Trips are Included in Gross Income Figures in the IDS

In his LIFE First Year Results blog post, Orrin Woodward listed a number of financial figures for the period between November 2011 and November 2012.

  • $1,800,000 in end-of-year bonuses and free trips.
  • $50,000,000 in combined sales for TEAM and LIFE

The IDS noted that the end-of-year bonuses and free trips were included in the calculations of the IDS. The One-Time Cash Awards were for those LIFE members at the Leader 6 rank and higher. As shown above, that’s where the majority of money is made in the LIFE business.

With 8 Policy Council / LIFE Coach members, the annualized sales estimate (based on Orrin’s comment that 70% of gross product volume is paid back to the field) was just shy of $47 million. If the numbers are run with 7 Policy Council / LIFE Coach members, the annual sales estimate is $41 million. It’s hard to know how much money TEAM made last year (separate from LIFE), but these numbers show that we’re in the right ballpark.

What’s the Break-Even Point in LIFE

Student 15,000 #1

  1. Total PV: 16,150, Commission Bonus Percentage: 50%
  2. Personal Volume Calculation
    • Personal Volume: 100 PV
    • Registered Customer Member Commission Volume: 50 PV (100 retail PV % 50%)
    • Calculation: 150 PV * 50% = $75
    • Registered Customer Commission (100 PV * 25%): $25
  3. Differential Volume Calculation
    • Downline Member Team #1 PV: 10,000 PV
      Commission Bonus Percentage: 45%
    • Calculation: 10,000 PV * (50% – 45%) = $500
    • Downline Member Team #2 PV: 6,000 PV
      Commission Bonus Percentage: 40%
    • Calculation: 6,000 PV * (50% – 40%) = $600
  4. Total Member Commission Bonus Calculation
    • $75 + $500 + $600 + $25 = $1,200

Student 15,000 #2

  1. Total PV: 16,650, Commission Bonus Percentage: 50%
  2. Personal Volume Calculation
    • Personal Volume: 100 PV
    • Registered Customer Member Commission Volume: 50 PV (100 retail PV % 50%)
    • Calculation: 150 PV * 50% = $75
    • Registered Customer Commission (100 PV * 25%): $25
  3. Differential Volume Calculation
    • Downline Member Team #1 PV: 15,000 PV
      Commission Bonus Percentage: 50%
    • Calculation: 15,000 PV * (50% – 50%) = $0
    • Downline Member Team #2 PV: 1,500 PV
      Commission Bonus Percentage: 20%
    • Calculation: 1,500 PV * (50% – 25%) = $375
  4. Total Member Commission Bonus Calculation
    • $75 + $375 + $25 = $475

In the spreadsheet, one can set the value for expected monthly LIFE business expenses. Based on previous posts on the subject, it’s easy to envision $500 in annualized monthly TEAM/LIFE expenses (i.e. meeting and conference tickets, gas, hotels, food, tools, and products).

With this amount, we see that the break-even point in the business is either at the Student 6000 or the Leader level3. A Student 15,000 may even be losing money depending on how his or her team is structured. See the example to the right which compares a two hypothetical Student 15,000 members.

It’s clear that most Student 15,000s are not configured like in the first example, based on the average Student 15,000 income of $547.17. Rather, it’s likely there are a number of Student 15,000 members who themselves have downlines that are Student 15,000s. Because their bonus money comes primarily from their personal volume and their meager side volumes, they are making little to no money after expenses.

Yet, this second person will still be walking across the stage as a Student 15,000 and hearing the cheers from the crowd. How many high-level members in LIFE are structured like the first example? How many are structured like the second example? Should those in the second bucket receive the same accolades and adulation as the former?

Remember only 3% of the entire LIFE organization are at the Student 6000 level or higher. That means that potentially 97% of all of LIFE may be losing money each month, based on $500 in monthly business expenses.

Medians and Averages

The IDS would have been more useful had it listed the median values (in addition to the average) for the monthly income by rank. Because we do not know how the income values are distributed, there could be extreme outliers (on both sides) that could be skewing the average values listed in the IDS. This becomes more important as you move down the list (i.e. rise up in the ranks of LIFE) and see such a wide disparity between the high and low income values.

TEAM Profit Sharing Not Included

As far as we can tell, TEAM profit sharing income is not included in the figures listed in the IDS.

From the TEAM FAQ:

Do some people make money on the sale of these leadership materials?

Yes, based upon the amount of total profits (if any) left over at the end of each month. Those who participate at this level are called Directors. LIFE Training invites certain individuals to become Directors from a pool of business builders who have proven their ability to build and lead successful teams of people. Directors must exhibit high character, integrity, professionalism, teamwork, people skills, consistency, and the ability to help the other Directors run and manage the training environment.

Because LIFE sprung out of TEAM, it is reasonable to assume that the structure of the two organizations are similar. As a result, TEAM profit sharing would mirror LIFE’s, with two exceptions: (1) only the high level LIFE leaders (and only those who are voted in) are making any significant money and (2) the lower-level LIFE members are making zero from the sale of TEAM tools.

On To A Million!

TEAM/LIFE members proudly follow their leader, Orrin Woodward, in proclaiming their goal to reach a million members in LIFE. Our LIFE IDS spreadsheet has a sheet in which we calculate the year-over-year growth required to reach one million members. Based on the 40% attrition rate, LIFE will need to experience 200% growth each year for 5 years to reach one million members4.

LIFE to a Million Analysis


While it is described as providing “complete transparency for prospective members,” the IDS is really translucent and does not show the full picture. The analysis here confirms what many people on this site believe — LIFE remains a bad business opportunity. LIFE members may argue that if the dream is big enough, the facts don’t matter. That may be the case in their minds, but the reality is this:

  1. The majority of people who are involved in LIFE do not make a profit after factoring in business expenses
  2. The income is skewed to those at the top of the organizational pyramid
  3. The high attrition rate shows that the business is not easy to maintain

Thanks to everyone who helped crunch the numbers on the IDS. Readers – have some thoughts about this analysis? Leave your comments below!

1 The IDS was first shown at the LIFE Chart Topper event in April, 2013. Only LIFE members who were at the Student 15,000 rank or higher were allowed to attend the conference, meaning the majority of LIFE participants have not seen the IDS until now.

2 Not wanting to miss out on selling a free tool to members, LIFE sells the IDS in packs of 25 for $12.

3 Those LIFE members with at least 15,000 PV in team volume and 6,000 PV in outside volume are also eligible for 8% Leader bonuses. The outside volume requirement gets reduced as the member develops more teams with at least 15,000 PV. These bonuses are significant enough to boost the average monthly earnings for those who qualify. See the LIFE compensation plan for more details.

4 An earlier version of the spreadsheet incorrectly calculated the One Million person analysis to take 12 years at 255% growth. The correct number is 5 years at 200% growth (with an attrition rate of 40%).

322 Comments leave one →
  1. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 3, 2013 6:41 am

    Incredible breakdown. No idea how you throw this stuff together this fast, Amthrax, but you are all over it. AND it is exactly how we said it was….everyone at the top makes all the money.

    Two things stand out as I read this. LIFE’s omission of the number of people at each rank is fascinating. Even Monavie put the number of people at each rank in their list. I think there may be an issue with the total number of LIFE members. 60,000 or more members seems awfully high. When you look at the pictures their members post to Twitter and Facebook of the crowd size at major conventions, one struggles to come up with 15,000 attending.

    The figure that really gets me is the 40.4% attrition rate. So let me get this straight, and I’m going to use a figure of 60,000 total members. They would lose 24,240 people this year and have to replace all 24,240 just to hit a break even point at the end of the year??? That’s ludicrous! Basically everyone that’s left has to replace themselves just to reach where they were. No wonder my former team isn’t growing. They are tired of losing one person out of every two they sign up.

    So the making money aspect aside, what does it say for the quality of a company or it’s product when 40.4% of all the people who try it decide that it’s not worth it or don’t like it? I can’t imagine that any company can survive a 59.6% approval rating. I know my retail business or my farm business would die.

    I can’t imagine feeling good about my product if 40.4% of the people who bought our free range eggs thought they weren’t worth the price…..even at the price I charge (which is more than the store price), that would suck. But what would suck worse is if I was at the same price as the store or lower, and they still felt that way. That’s basically what LIFE is saying. “Our self development material is less expensive and a better value than you can find in the stores, but 40.4% of the people disagree with us, don’t think it’s worth it, and wouldn’t buy it again.” Yikes! Gotta admit, it takes guts to post that.

    Here’s the real deal, and I told Mark Paul this about leadership….which is what I was doing on the side when I met Team. Only 2% of the top people in any industry are involved in it. The remaining 98% can’t see the value in it. But when you tell them in a plan that their job sucks and they need to do something else, it’s really hard trying to sell them on the idea of leadership. Makes me laugh when I think about it. “Join our business and you can invest on becoming a better employee working at the job you hate that I just said was dead end.” That’s ridiculous! They have become the Columbia House of leadership. How embarrassing.

    It is my belief that PC and Roundtables like these numbers, and they don’t mind the fact that this is a build and replace business. If they keep new money flowing in while keeping member numbers small, they can continue to not be worth the time and trouble of the FTC to investigate.

    It all boils down to this, the business model is pathetic and this IDS proves it. “Mark Paul, I told ya so!”

  2. June 3, 2013 7:12 am

    @Rascal – Look at the number of qualified members. It’s less than 7K in both estimates (based on 7 and 8 PC/LIFE Coaches). Factor in several thousand non-qualified members and apprentices, and it’s conceivable how TEAM/LIFE can attract 10-15K at Major Conventions.

    MonaVie used to list average number of people at each rank, but in a later revision of the IDS, they changed it to show percentages. With MonaVie, it is still hard to tell who was really qualifying as a Black Diamond and who’s just listed there because they once reached that level. LIFE obviously learned from this and chose to do the same thing from the get-go. But, because they have publicly stated sales and because we have a good estimate of the organizational structure of LIFE, we’ve been able to extrapolate and provide a ballpark-view of the business.

    If anyone within LIFE wants to debate these numbers, we welcome it in this forum!

  3. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 3, 2013 8:59 am

    Thanks for the clarification, Amthrax.

    Just boggles the mind, doesn’t it? People will hear all the income claims that Life can now legally make, and prospects will never read the fine print about the 40.4% attrition rate. But there it is in black and white…almost half will leave at the end of their first year.

    And the fact that they figured in the ONE TIME awards and called it income is just plain morally bankrupt. People want to know actual income….not income plus a one time bonus that makes the number appear larger.

  4. NO LIFE permalink
    June 3, 2013 9:33 am

    Can any one tell me what rank is the “Ranging Rhino” at? I have a friend who just achieved that status!

  5. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 3, 2013 9:43 am

    @No Life,

    If you are being serious about the name of that rank, it is not a LIFE or Team rank.

    If it’s anything legit, it sounds like some kind of created achievement within the Life group who calls themselves the Rhinos. Do you know if they are part of that group?

  6. June 3, 2013 9:44 am

    It’s probably a ranking within one of the local teams of TEAM/LIFE. There’s a group in Pennsylvania called Team Rhino:

    Probably has to do with having a certain number of people on System and coming to events (i.e. like Power Player).

  7. TruthSeeker permalink
    June 3, 2013 9:52 am

    @Rascal Teamster wrote, “That’s basically what LIFE is saying. “Our self development material is less expensive and a better value than you can find in the stores, but 40.4% of the people disagree with us, don’t think it’s worth it, and wouldn’t buy it again.”

    The Life self development material is created by people who 1. Have never succeeded financially. Or 2. Have generated wealth by taking it, not making it.

    They have cut a path of financial destruction across America just like every other group of hucksters would.

    The product they peddle is just as poor as their top-heavy, lop-sided, two-bit paying compensation plan.

    Great information, thank you for posting this.

    You suck Orrin!

  8. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 3, 2013 10:02 am


    You said….
    “The Life self development material is created by people who 1. Have never succeeded financially. Or 2. Have generated wealth by taking it, not making it.”

    That statement is soooo totally true, but that doesn’t say anything about the quality of the material. The real problem with LIFE is that the quality of the material is excellent. They say all the right things. You can listen to Zig Ziglar, Jim Rohn or John Maxwell and hear the same stuff. Orrin and Co. are really good parrots. That’s how I got hooked. They were saying all the right things that real leaders say.

    However, they are parrots who just spit up good stuff. They don’t know a damn thing of this and how it applies in the real world…..because of the accuracy of your two statements.

    And a BIG ditto from me….Orrin does suck!

  9. June 3, 2013 10:13 am

    Let’s refrain from excessive name calling. Let’s keep our focus on the IDS and how it shows how the LIFE Business is a bad opportunity for the majority of participants.

  10. OhBeJoyful permalink
    June 3, 2013 11:49 am

    Maybe I am not reading your spreadsheet correctly, but you state that with 80,000 members there will be 32,000 members a year later. But with a 40% drop out rate shouldn’t the number be 48,000 (80,000 x 60%)?

  11. June 3, 2013 11:56 am

    You may be right… if the calculation is incorrect, I’ll update the spreadsheet. Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

    [Editor’s note: I’ve updated the spreadsheet with the correct calculations. Thanks for the catch]

  12. Hershall permalink
    June 3, 2013 3:38 pm

    Well its about time! At the pre launch of LIFE we were told that an IDS was going to be available in 6 months. It was going to be HUGE! There was going to be stupendous growth. Everyone was going to come back,,,

    Nah. The group I was with is still in the same place they were. A few in and then out and then a few in and then out. Too bad. They’re a nice bunch of folks. But they just can’t see the whole picture. They’ve invited me back and instead of being coy I told them every bit of what caused me to leave. Every answer they gave to my concerns raised more questions they couldn’t answer. Cognitive dissonance………..

    I hope they see this analysis before they pay for their IDS tool.

    Thanks again for you guys at Amthrax!

  13. TruthSeeker permalink
    June 3, 2013 3:38 pm

    Great illustration with the “Allocation” graph and quite an amazing contrast to what Orrin himself wrote in previous blog posts.

    He wrote:

    “LIFE isn’t a plan to get a couple of people wealthy with everyone else trying really hard.”

    Exactly what type of plan is it then Orrin? It appears as if the allocation chart above would prove you either ignorant, or a liar.

    He wrote further:

    “Never before has a plan shared so much with so many, but that is how LIFE TEAM is going to reach 1 million people – by rewarding everyone who does the work based upon results.”

    The words “never before” are completely out of line and total bullshit. Life is average at best and super top-heavy. Who exactly are you sharing with, the PC members?

    Then he wrote:

    “The LIFE compensation plan is a game changer and one of the key planks in helping the TEAM reach 1 million people.”

    How is the 1 million thing going Orrin? Are you averaging 200% plus growth yet? Looks like it is burn and churn to me.

    It may be an easier read with the direct quotes from Orrin highlighted Amthrax, but that is your call.

    I never called Orrin a name, but he still sucks.

    [Editor’s note: Added blockquotes for easier reading]

  14. MemoryLame permalink
    June 3, 2013 6:26 pm

    The 40% number – what time frame is that based on? If it is just the period of LIFE’s existence, then the annual number is higher. My guess is closer to 60% and that number is low since thy are still playing off the momentum of the myth “this is new” and “you’re getting in at the ground level”. As the ruse wears on that % gets higher until Orrin & Co. have to reinvent themselves again.

  15. June 3, 2013 8:34 pm

    @MemoryLame – LIFE sent out an email a few days ago in which they referenced a change in the policies and procedures. Members who don’t maintain their customer sales requirement will be transitioned to customers. We’ll need to factor this change in when they release the new revision of the IDS next year.

    Here’s the email:

    June 01, 2013 – 2:44pm EST

    Good day, LIFE Members!

    What could be better than 25% commission on Registered Customer sales? MORE CUSTOMERS! While we were analyzing 2012, we took a good hard look at all of the Members that are currently enjoying LIFE subscription products but not actively building a business. In other words, they’re kinda behaving just like CUSTOMERS would (wink, wink)! So here is what we came up with: We will welcome every new LIFE Member to get to know us for one year and decide if he or she really wants to build a business. After that, we will start paying closer attention. If another six months in a row go by and there is still no sign of the new Member acquiring at least 50 PV in Customer volume, we will automatically switch the Member to Customer status.

    Now, if YOU happen to be one of these Members, don’t panic! Simply maintain your regular monthly subscription (50 PV minimum), and we will hold your spot in the LOS as long as you remain on subscription. Then, if and when you are ready, we will reinstate your LIFE business right where it was as long as you have a Customer in hand! NOTE: The monthly subscription requirement does not apply in Canada. If you live in Canada and are transitioned from Member to Customer status, you only need to acquire a Registered Customer for reinstatement.

    Member to Customer Transition Meat and Potatoes

    1. New Member
      1. Has 6 months to acquire a Customer. During this time, he or she will earn commissions on downline volume
      2. After 6 months, the Member must meet the Customer requirement in order to earn commissions on downline volume
      3. After the 1-year renewal date, if a Member at any time goes 6 consecutive months without meeting the Customer requirement, he or she is then transitioned to a Registered Customer
      4. This person will be a Registered Customer for his or her immediate upline Member
    2. Can a former Member who was transitioned to a Registered Customer be reinstated?
      1. In the US only: LIFE will hold the Member’s position only if he or she continues a $50 subscription to one or more of the LIFE subscription products
      2. In the US only: If a former Member who has been transitioned to a Registered Customer goes 3 consecutive months without the $50 subscription purchase total, that person’s position will be removed, and he or she will no longer be eligible for reinstatement based on his or her original position
      3. In the US and Canada: Reinstatement can occur under the following conditions
        1. Formal written request to LIFE Corporate Services via email to
        2. Must have Customers in hand that will result in meeting the Customer requirement as a Member
    3. What if the Member being transitioned to a Register Customer has more than one Team?
      1. This is treated the same as a Member termination or non-renewal
      2. The teams outside of the first team are moved to the bottom of the first team in order according to Member enrollment date
    4. How does this impact current Members?
      1. For an existing LIFE Member who has been a Member for at least 1 year as of June 1, 2013, the 6-month consecutive requirement referenced in item 1c will begin on June 1, 2013
      2. For an existing LIFE Member who has been a Member for less than 1 year, the policy is applied based on the Member’s enrollment date
    5. Will be added to the Policies and Procedures as Section 11.5
    6. Effective June 1, 2013
  16. TruthSeeker permalink
    June 3, 2013 9:46 pm

    Aaahhh…the classic redefinition of distributor/customer status, MLM 101 at it’s best.

    For an anti-Life person, the email Amthrax posted is a good sign. In other words, they are struggling to find real customers, so are altering their requirements and definitions to add an air of legitimacy to their product based pyramid.

    Hmmm…what is that? I smell internal consumption….it stinks!

  17. Chrisxrascal permalink
    June 4, 2013 1:21 am

    In my opinion Life shouldn’t even be considered a business if that many people are losing money. The products didn’t make me quit. The way it was introduced as this great business opportunity and once your a leader on team your considered on your way to an entrepreneur. Come on. It’s false advertising in my opinion and why I couldn’t do it any longer. It’s too bad that a lot people fall for the hype and the false hope of making a profit in this so called business. I hope people wake up to this reality.

  18. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 4, 2013 2:58 am

    Amthrax, that’s a peach! That will sure make the IDS look better. More customers and less people doing nothing. Artificially pumping up the value of their product so that it looks marketable. That’s laughable. I love the “wink wink” in the email. That’s so Chris Brady. So sick of them trying to be cute while they screw people over.

    The last time I had the opportunity to look at my LOS, there were maybe 100 people below me with only 7 qualified (only 7 had customers). But when only 60% find enough value in the product to renew, how do they expect to get and keep a customer?

    They are slowly turning what was supposed to be a business into a book club…..kinda like Columbia House. I want to know when I get 12 CDs for a penny. Orrin’s from Columbiaville, MI too. That’s too dang funny.

    I seem to remember a couple Amway Diamonds who were very vocal about how Amway changed the contracts on us. Isn’t it laughable that Orrin and the PC are doing the same thing?

  19. noteam permalink
    June 4, 2013 2:59 am

    Wow! Notice in the changes (point 3 under “Meat and Potatoes”) –

    3.What if the Member being transitioned to a Register Customer has more than one Team?
    i.This is treated the same as a Member termination or non-renewal
    ii.The teams outside of the first team are moved to the bottom of the first team in order according to Member enrollment date

    In other words – if someone has 2 teams but does not meet this new requirement, their 2nd team will be taken from them and placed at the bottom of the tap root. Yikes! More evidence that you do not own anything in Lifescam Land.

    I wonder if the LifeSheep are even paying attention to this. How many of these people have any real customers? I bet an extremely small percentage. Who would pay for that garbage unless they were part of the cult? I would be willing to bet the majority of these sheep are doing the same thing teamers did in Quixtar and place orders through a bogus customer that happens to live at the same address as they do.

  20. TruthSeeker permalink
    June 4, 2013 6:19 am

    Customers are easy to get with Life, that is what grandma and Rover the dog are for. 🙂

  21. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 4, 2013 6:31 am

    I think they are going to hang themselves with this. You know there will be false reporting of customer volume to the likes of Grandma and the dog being customers. If only 7 out of 100 in my former downline are visibly qualified (and I don’t even know if those are legit), the FTC will definitely have something to look at. But that won’t happen if they stay as small as they are. Unlike Fortune, I don’t think Team is worth their manpower. Might be hard for them to justify the expense for such a tiny group.

    Orrin does appear to be leading his sheep off a cliff though, doesn’t he?

  22. Mike Collins permalink
    June 4, 2013 8:53 am

    Very well done Amthrax. Gives a more accurate representaion of the earning possibilites in this “business opportunity”

    I sent Orrin Woodward an email just now with a link to this analysis inviting him to provide some input.

  23. I QUIT (and glad I did) permalink
    June 4, 2013 10:04 am

    Orrin won’t reply. He’d have to violate his own P&Ps to do so. And being the honest, sincere and humble man of integrity that he is, he can’t even think of entering into a debate with negative losers. How convenient.

  24. noteam permalink
    June 4, 2013 10:08 am

    Trust me, Orrin starts his day off reading this site everyday.

  25. Sonic permalink
    June 4, 2013 10:23 am

    Has anyone mentioned that the IDS may show 71,400 members but it is probably overstated if LIFE is counting the same person 2-5 times if they climb through multiple ranks within the same period of May 2012 – Jan 2013???

  26. June 4, 2013 11:04 am

    @Sonic – There’s no evidence that they are counting the same person multiple times. Would be interesting if they did, however!

  27. the bee permalink
    June 4, 2013 12:35 pm

    Has anyone read the book A Merchant of Deception by Eric Scheibeler .This is a must read. Only if I read this before making the MLM plunge

  28. June 4, 2013 1:58 pm

    @the_bee – a number of people here have read the book. A link to the book has been on my sidebar for several years now.

  29. No Life permalink
    June 6, 2013 8:38 am

    @Rascal Teamster
    Yes my friend and her husband are part of TEAM/LIFE and just achieved the “Raging Rhino” status….ridiculous name!! They are so convinced they will be making as much money as Orrin & Chris! All I see is the huge amount of money they spend every month!!

  30. No Life permalink
    June 6, 2013 8:41 am


    Thanks so much for answering my question about Team Rhino…my friends are located in PA!

  31. Melanie Morgan permalink
    June 6, 2013 9:09 am

    Excellent Job Amthrax, thanks to all the effort and time put in here!

    Holy cow, That is some major detail but if those who choose to ignore it, refuse to *see* …the bottom line; the obvious, they Will pay the price in more ways than one…they will get what they deserve and will get what they give and from the likes of their their blind embarassing examples of followers. And from what I have seen, they ought be heading their own advice; “sponsor up!“….they are perfect examples of what they are producing through their ‘system’… classless clown act…but then they act and ‘do’exactly what they are told…

    I agree with Rascal, they have provided enough of their own rope!

    The best predictor of their future, is their past..along with their past and present behavior…..

  32. Sidelines permalink
    June 6, 2013 1:07 pm

    Wish this website had a “like” button !!!

  33. MemoryLame permalink
    June 6, 2013 2:13 pm

    Can one of the administrators post this to the Facebook page?

  34. Freedomhaha permalink
    June 6, 2013 2:31 pm

    Amthrax and Company- I can’t overstate how excellent this work is!

    Challenge to current LIFE members: What percentage of your downline is making a profit?

  35. Former Fan permalink
    June 6, 2013 4:56 pm

    My fantastic spouse treated me to some delightful Schadenfreude this evening by purchasing a one-month subscription to Dennis Miller’s website so we could listen to Dennis’s interview with Orrin Woodward on May 17th. Poor Orrin, he didn’t quite pull it off. The phone calls from the Life sycophants, and Dennis’s comments afterwards are well worth $5.95.

    Now that the blinders are off, Orrin doesn’t sound nearly as smart as he used to. And Dennis is not easily fooled.

  36. Melanie Morgan permalink
    June 6, 2013 6:13 pm

    Sidelines-Agreed!!! 🙂


    I’ll see what I can do.

    The “wink,wink“ is pathetically arrogant and typical of these dirtbags…

    Got love the desperation of their #4 ( i & ii) notice how they managed to re-start the customer rule, bahahaha….for Another 6 months months, for those those who have already been in for At LEAST a year?…what a flippin joke.

    Thought they are a “sales business“ obviously,…a real bad one….if it takes someone a year and half to get a customer!!!

    Perhaps it takes years to get a dog or cat catand then put them on system, baha.or maybe the lack of territory protection or perhaps the competition of your upline, downline, crossline, neighbors in your unicorporated town of 100….I have seen the cut throat. OR no one wants to waste their money on the high priced recorded book reports, or is it just a bad “business opportunity“…add in that line of BS…of 40% attrition rate…….bahahahaha

    Let me get this straught if someone has been in 5 years they get a year and a half plus… to come up with… “1“ customer!!….but the newbie only gets from enrollment date? Typically senseless and seems quite unfair but “what-ever-it-takes….to desperately hold on to them…if all else fails….then lower the bar.

    Their IDS, COMP PLAN, POLICY & PROCEDUREs PROCEDURE, a mm d THEIR PAST……..what I see is an Epic….FAIL,..

    I suppose it is enough to cover their a$$….pillage the down line, get them to bring all their family and friends in…so THEY OWN them and “your“ business and “your customers“, decide if you are scammer material (get voted in to the good ole boys club…play the favorites…all “legall.“

    Who in their right mind…..would be dumb enough now after all this is in black and white, …well and the help of Amthrax, site, some great comp plan anaylsis, and all of you!!…ought be a NO BRAINER to everyone now!…lol lol

    This looks worse than when they were apart of and said AMWAY was?!

  37. Melanie Morgan permalink
    June 6, 2013 6:16 pm

    I apologize, this device loves to do its own thing and double up on words!

  38. Melanie Morgan permalink
    June 6, 2013 6:23 pm


    Bahahahaha 🙂

  39. The Truth Hurts permalink
    June 6, 2013 7:04 pm

    I have been reading the Policies and Income Disclosure Plan and decided to share some thoughts.

    First off, lets look at the business model. No, I mean REALLY LOOK. Let us go back to bankruptcy filings. When one digests the information contained in the bankruptcy filings, several things stand out..

    It seems the paperwork reveals all had the same issue…no credit for their business in the traditional sense. Now, this is important, and here is why. When one is in a business, one can obtain lending based upon Historical data. Basically, a line of credit for your business is obtained by credit worthiness; the Bank wants to be sure their loan is covered. They ask for historical data, such as tax returns, balance sheets, and profit & loss reports to obtain this data. If you are not making a profit, the bank is not going to be in a lending mood.

    And there is the big RED FLAG for all to see.

    The debt included in the bankruptcy filing was mainly credit card debt; if the income stream is so great, why no business lines of credit? How much profit was shown on those tax returns? I’ll bet Zip. Zilch.

    And another thing, we all heard the stories about how one or another of the big poohpahs didn’t have to pay taxes until they were Sapphire, or Emerald, whatever. That is ridiculous. . If you make money, you are going to pay taxes. If you have more expenses than income, you are fooling yourself, and you are broke.

    Maybe the slogan should have been “Building our Dreams, starving and lean” or, how about “The Great Pretenders”?

    The above is based upon my experiences and opinions.

  40. June 7, 2013 4:50 am

    @Former Fan – Can you summarize the interview, esp. Dennis’ comments afterwards?

  41. LIFER permalink
    June 7, 2013 6:48 am

    “Only LIFE members who were at the Student 15,000 rank or higher were allowed to attend the conference, meaning the majority of LIFE participants have not seen the IDS until now.” This is not an accurate statement. I cannot vouch for other Open meetings but it was disclosed during an open meeting I attended in Indiana the Tuesday following the Chart Toppers event.

  42. LIFER permalink
    June 7, 2013 6:50 am

    From other members I have spoke with it WAS in fact disclosed at other open meetings as well.

  43. LIFER permalink
    June 7, 2013 7:19 am

    “A 40% drop-out rate each year is not good. Nearly half of LIFE’s entire membership did not see the value in continuing to “improve” their lives after only one year? Imagine how difficult it must be for LIFE members to sell LIFE products to the general public knowing this statistic.”

    What you fail to take into consideration and what is not fully known is the reasons behind why some of these people drop out. You are making assumptions that all 40.4% are dropping out because they feel the information isn’t valid. Does it disclose at what point these individuals are dropping out? And why?

    Yes, some people DO drop out because they fail to see the value in the system and or information. They’ve never sugar coated that. But what’s the percentage rate on that? That is not disclosed here. Some people drop out because all they wanted was the information, They received the benefit of it, it helped them in their particular situation in life and then no longer needed it. That is typically your customer.

    -If you go to a councilor for marriage advise do you continue to see them every month for the rest of your life ($25-$50 a session usually set weekly) even if your marital issues have been resolved?

    -If your seeking advise from a financial advisor do you continue to meet with them every month for the rest of your life (with fees ranging from $50-$225 per visit) even though you’ve figured out how to effectively manage your finances?

    -If your seeking help with a difficult child and see a councilor for parenting advise will you need to keep seeing that councilor even if you’re no longer having issues with your child?

    -If you work yourself to the point where you have a substantial monthly income that you feel you can live comfortably on, isn’t it plausible to say one might decide to retire from LIFE?

    A true pyramid means that a person on the bottom of the pyramid can’t make more than someone above them. That is not true in LIFE. With the right motivation a student-say 300-can conceivably surpass a student 15000 if they follow the system as it is laid out. Where’s the data on those people? Because I know for a fact they are out there.

  44. June 7, 2013 8:04 am

    @LIFER – Disclosure is one thing, distribution is another. Was the IDS distributed at these open meetings following Chart Topper?

  45. June 7, 2013 8:13 am

    @LIFER – You wrote:

    -If you work yourself to the point where you have a substantial monthly income that you feel you can live comfortably on, isn’t it plausible to say one might decide to retire from LIFE?

    No, it’s not plausible. First, to maintain your income, you have to have a customer base. You have to have teams that are structured correctly (meaning they are still working the business). You have to maintain a certain amount of outside volume (and those legs aren’t just going to build themselves). Stop working your LIFE business, and it will eventually wither away.

    Show me one person in TEAM/LIFE that has retired from building the business (i.e. not on the speaking circuit, not showing plans, not motivating his/her teams) and is still making significant residuals.

  46. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 7, 2013 8:58 am


    Amthrax is correct in his last statement.

    I was part of The Tribe with Mark & Jenn Paul. I joined when the Team was part of Amway. I left a year ago. Mark & Jenn were big emeralds (quad 100) in a diamond run when I joined. I watched them back off a little and take it a little easy. I then watched them as their teams imploded and then watched them requalify at Triple 100. That’s when it hit me.

    I have no idea how frigging big you have to be, but 4 team 100 legs and two outside legs apparently is not big enough. They never were free and NEVER will be. The moment they stop, their business stops.

    Lifer, NO ONE retires from Team or Life and keeps their income, else Jenn wouldn’t have apologized to all of us for taking it easy and hurting all our businesses. She took the blame, and she was right. You can never rest.

    LIFE’s own Policies and Procedures say that, like my side leg when I quit, 3 months after you decide to stop, your side leg will be moved to the bottom of the tap.

    Soooo, you can’t walk away, or you lose your team. And if you don’t keep a customer, you don’t get paid. Don’t keep a customer long enough, and YOU become a customer and will lose tht side team.

    Oh yeah, there’s freedom in LIFE…..for Orrin….and it’s at the expense of your freedom. Choose wisely, LIFER, and be careful who you’re defending. He wrote those P&Ps.

  47. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 7, 2013 10:03 am

    Oh this is a hoot….

    Tim Marks (@viking4352) just Tweeted this, @viking4352: If you are looking for a predictable path to success, go STP in the life business!”

    Seriously Tim, you are incorrect. You should have said, “show two plans, as 40.4% will not renew. That is if you want any growth.”

    HEY…….maybe I’m all wet and have been saying it wrong. Tim, can you clarify this. Does STP now stand for Show Two Plans???

  48. Vogel permalink
    June 7, 2013 11:31 am

    LIFER said: “A true pyramid means that a person on the bottom of the pyramid can’t make more than someone above them. That is not true in LIFE. With the right motivation a student-say 300-can conceivably surpass a student 15000 if they follow the system as it is laid out. Where’s the data on those people? Because I know for a fact they are out there.”

    This type of knee jerk defense is totally inappropriate and, sadly, all too common; that is, some self-serving MLM defender puts forth their own unique definition of what a pyramid scheme is and then says “our company definitely isn’t that”. But here’s the problem – your re-invented definition of what a pyramid scheme is simply not accurate. A pyramid scheme is, essentially, a non-sustainable business model that involves promising to reward participants for enrolling other people into the scheme rather than supplying any real investment or sale of products or services to the public. It has nothing at all to do with whether or not a newer participant in the scheme can conceivably make more money than a more longstanding participant.

    The only real question that your response raises is why you took the low road to deceive people. There are only two plausible scenarios: (1) accidental deception – i.e., you are ignorant of what a pyramid scheme really is (in which case, you shouldn’t be so quick to pontificate) and are merely parroting what some other dishonest or misinformed source told you; or (2) purposeful deception – i.e., you know that your definition of a pyramid scheme is inaccurate an your intent was to purposely mislead people by trying to obscure the fact that LIFE fits the definition of a pyramid scheme.

    Which is it LIFER? Are you a menace to society by accident or by design?

  49. TruthSeeker permalink
    June 7, 2013 2:53 pm

    @Vogel, I vote menace by accident. Anyone who regurgitates MLM speak such as Lifer did is merely echoing what he has heard from stage or cd. It is quite obvious that he/she cannot truly demonstrate critical thinking.

    Unfortunately, a 40% dropout rate is quite exceptional in the MLM industry and shows just how powerful their ridiculous brain-washing system truly is. Trust me, people are not staying in because they find value, or love the material, they somehow believe that if they stay long enough, they may someday earn.

    They don’t teach basic business principles such as ROI, loss & profit, or business finance, as so eloquently described above. They don’t discuss things about real business, because it isn’t a real business. (with the exception of the PC, it’s a real business for them)

    It is great to see so much burn and churn though, and even better to realize that the Mike Collins “Compensation Video” on YouTube was actually very conservative in its estimations. Yes, more people are losing money than the “best-case scenarios” shown by Mike.

    But what takes the cake is the classic redefining of it’s customer/distributor base, Orrin is ahead of the game on that one. Starting to lose the legitimacy foothold so there needs to be way more customers created on paper.

    This is a good thread, appreciate all the comments.

    Orrin, you still suck.

  50. MemoryLame permalink
    June 7, 2013 6:52 pm

    Interesting, LIFER, ALL of your bullet points sans the last one, actually illustrate EXACTLY the fallacy of the LIFE product. Even if the material is good, why would you continue to pay a monthly subscription and go to monthly meetings once the benefit is gained? Why would you continue to pay hundreds of dollars each month, once you realize that you could get the same material for less and that you could attend or start a church or other accountability group for free to do the same thing?

    You see here’s how the arguments usually go –

    “Well, at first I thought it was a good business opportunity, but the system is SO good that even if I’m not making money, it’s worth it.”

    This usually means a person is not making money, but still hopes to one day. That “hope” is interesting in itself. It’s devastating really. It is the lump in your throat, OVER and over and over when you hear the dreaded question, “So, how much money are you making in that?”

    The leaders know this, that’s why they teach you to answer the question in creative ways. “More than you could imagine.” “I’m still in the learning phase.” Etc, etc.

    It’s also why they have to routinely (weekly meetings, monthly seminar, major seminars, and of course lots of CDs) build that hope to a state of grandeur! They tell you about the yacht that they bought to “serve their team” and how they want you “to join them on their next adventure” – then they wrap it with deeper purpose by explaining how “one day” you can build churches in India or buy goats for a poor Ethiopian farmer, if you will just delay your gratification, you can have it all.

    By the time you’re in it a while you feel so pulled between guilt and shame for what you haven’t achieved yet on the one end and euphoria for what you can accomplish once you’re at their level, that you can’t think straight anymore.

    Never mind the fact that you can change the world now in whatever you do, you can serve others now, you can be adventurous now, and you don’t have to be at any point level to do it. In fact, the longer you allocate the funds of your family to feed the non-delayed gratification of these hoodlums, the more of your life you will waste never accomplishing the priorities.

  51. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 7, 2013 7:28 pm


    Dear God, that was one of the best posts I’ve ever read. I literally got flashbacks reading your words. That is EXACTLY how it is.

    Thank you for putting into words precisely how it feels to be in an MLM. That sure echoes my Team experience, except when they asked me how much money I was making. I always said, “it’s unbelievable!” Kinda covers it either way.

  52. Melanie Morgan permalink
    June 7, 2013 10:53 pm

    Amen! Really need that like button!

  53. June 8, 2013 8:48 am

    @MemoryLame said,

    “Dear God, that was one of the best posts I’ve ever read. I literally got flashbacks reading your words. That is EXACTLY how it is.
    Thank you for putting into words precisely how it feels to be in an MLM. That sure echoes my Team experience, except when they asked me how much money I was making. I always said, “it’s unbelievable!” Kinda covers it either way.”

    They have a name for that – cognitive dissonance, i.e. the term is used to describe the feeling of discomfort that results from holding two conflicting beliefs.

    Creative Answer to “so how much money are you making?” then a favorite of yours truly. I first heard this teaching from then EDC Kumar and it caught on real well in BWW. Thus,

    “If I told you how much you won’t believe it!”

    Notice the inflection that MLMbot is killing it! In reality spitting out the pittance of the ahem, paltry income, (or more apt how much $$$ they are bleeding, a ubiquitous MLM phenomemon) no one would believe that a normal thinking person would still be at it in the face of such insurmountable loses. Now that I know, to me it’s not a creative answer. It’s a cognitive dissonance enhancer, if you will.

  54. MemoryLame permalink
    June 8, 2013 9:22 am

    @Rascal, you are welcome.

    @Exambot, you’re absolutely right. Cognitive Dissonance Enhancer – that is really the product they sell.

    It’s a bad drug designed as a help. DEATH to hope, dreams, purpose, and personal and financial freedom, disguised as LIFE.

  55. Melanie Morgan permalink
    June 8, 2013 2:11 pm


    Explain again how that is a not an accurate statement? Obviously a very tiny percentage of “qualifed 15000 pvers) can ONLY attend, so therefore and you stated yourself it wasnt disclosed until the FOLLOWING TUE, that would be AFTER the chart topper qualufied event, would it not? Nice try…quite typical. The rest of your BS about why people “quit“ laugh is laughable…and is just that, BS.

    You claim here we are making “Assumptions“ well hate to tell you its based on reality of building and if you have any group at all, why not tell us those numbers, how many quit , why they got stared and why they quit. because no one is buying your bs. And while your at it how about you give up your rose colored glasses, bring the data from a third party and signed statements from every single person who ever quit with WHY, they did.

    BTW- It doesnt count as a real customer if they are forced to be called one because they are not mandatory purchasing a minimum amount on auto or directship. Again save the BS, show the numbers and facts, otherwise we know better, you might get an uninformed sucker to believe that but good luck trying to convince anyone here.

  56. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 8, 2013 6:04 pm

    Thank you, Melanie.

    After 5 1/2 yrs of dancing with Mark Paul and Orrin Woodward, I know the steps. I know the dance. You dance around in a little circle with promises of learning new moves and a new dance with new partners only to find it’s the same old dance with the same old partners. They only changed the name of the dance…..three times. Well, four if you count that 9 months between Quixtar and Monavie. Still not sure if that was a business or a promise of a business.

    This LIFE business is a hoot. Every time the business takes a further downturn, they change the rules, and the business owners are get hosed worse.

    What was that again that Orrin said in court about Amway changing the dealer agreement without telling anyone? Seems to me he learned that dance real well.

  57. The Real Facts permalink
    June 9, 2013 7:20 am

    Sorry bud but not buying it. You give all this supposed information that you seem to have the “INSIDE” scoop and information and yet there is nothing on your blog or posts to give you credibility to anything. For all I know your just some drop out flunky wannabe who was too lazy to do the work. You hide yourself behind a fake wall thinking that your so smart and untouchable, which anyone can do. So if anyone actually reads this blog posting by Anthrax I would ask you to not waste your time. Anthrax was a rock group and a disease. I would take advice or believe anything from either a rock group or a disease. And Amway is a scam, so the fact that your promoting that tells me your with Amway trying to beat down competition. If your going to post or create a blog about something here are some very KEY things to remember. First, research the creditability of the source. Anthrax here has none. Second be careful what you post because you can be sued if you say the wrong thing or falsify information.

  58. Just Came To permalink
    June 9, 2013 7:27 am

    Thank you again Amthrax for crunching these numbers. Question for you and everyone else reading…when Orrin said he was going to one million, didn’t he say “not one million sign-ups, but one million people attending functions?” Does anyone else remember hearing that on a CD? I sure do. If that’s the case, LIEF would need an even more unrealistically high growth percentage in the next five years!!!

    Then again, if Orrin & Co. are still around in five years, they’ll change the deal again and make fun of those who were committed to LIEF. Just like how Chris Brady made fun of the “Wal-Mart of the Internet people” who were still “waiting in the wings” around the time of the LIEF launch; acting like he became too good for tube socks and lawn chairs all while the monsters he created still had the false hope of Quixtar.

    What a giant joke. So glad I got out. (Mentally, I should say. Soon I will revoke my membership in writing.)

  59. June 9, 2013 8:45 am

    FYI on @The Real Facts and @LIFER. He’s been posting from the same IP address, so I have reason to believe they are one in the same (or at least are in the same household).

    1) Amthrax is not equal to Anthrax. Learn to spell.

    2) With a name like Amthrax, do you think I promote Amway? Wrong. I am not in the employ of Amway.

    3) You call me a “drop out flunky wannabe who was too lazy to do the work” Wrong again.

    4) You wrote, “Second be careful what you post because you can be sued if you say the wrong thing or falsify information.” Is that a threat?

  60. June 9, 2013 9:02 am

    @Just Came To – I recall the line about one million being one million at functions. Other people who were in TEAM can corroborate.

  61. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 9, 2013 9:12 am

    Yes Amthrax, you are correct. That was one million attending functions… the same time. Orrin would say that when the one millionth person walked through the turnstiles, balloons would drop and we would All see it on live screens as all the monthlies would be simulcast.

    @Lifer & @the real facts,

    Can you (or you two) explain your posts coming from the same IP address? That would be interesting to know, as @the real facts just posted that we are hiding behind a screen name. I have given my name before.

    I am the author of the article on this site, “the future of Internet business.” In the first reply, I use my screen name and identify myself.

    So, now who are you, or are you hiding from Orrin and you Policies and Procedures that forbid you from coming here?

  62. noteam permalink
    June 9, 2013 9:47 am

    The Real Facts & Lifer coming from the same IP address….BUSTED!!!!!!! Yet another example of the deceit & dishonesty of Orrin Woodward & crew. I’d be willing to bet both of them are either Orrin or Tim themselves. Remember how they got busted in the Amway lawsuit for their anonymous blogging activity & deception. How much did Tim Marks have to pay for his deceit? I believe it was $60,000 or close to it. What a hypocrite. You cannot believe anything by these scammers. They will stoop to any depths to cover their butts and try and make themselves look good.

    Orrin & Tim – Was it you that was using the screen name Lifer & The Real Facts??? Hmmmmmmmm 🙂

  63. June 9, 2013 8:19 pm

    @noteam – There’s no reason to believe that The Real Facts or LIFER are either Orrin or Tim, based on the poster’s IP address.

  64. Chrisxrascal permalink
    June 9, 2013 9:36 pm

    The real facts – Amthrax does his homework. I quit team fairly recently. All the numbers are here, just compare the numbers from the info to team and it’s right in front of your nose. Amthrax is definitely not in Amway as of today. You should realize that Orrin was in Amway and carried the system on to sell ” Monavie” and now ” Life”. You yourself should do a little more research before judging this site. This site helped me realize the ” false” hope and the mirrors and smoke they put up on team. This site isn’t just solely about team, but on the evils of network marketing such as Amway where Mr. Woodward started out with the system to sell Amway products. The fact is the system part of team hasn’t changed too much. The other fact is that it is a pyramid scheme. As Team states, ” sometimes you have to face brutal reality” the case of team and you, the facts. The team talks a lot about checks and balances that we should have in government accountability, shouldn’t you hold the same standards and accountability for Team?

  65. Freedomhaha permalink
    June 10, 2013 5:04 am

    The Real Facts- “For all I know your just some drop out flunky wannabe who was too lazy to do the work. ”

    Sure, I guess it is theoretically possible that Amthrax could have been someone that quits without any hard work then pours hundreds of hours and talent into maintaining this blog. However, have you seen the quality of the content on this site? The work that is done here is not that of a lazy person. Keep in mind that no one here sees a dime from the time that is being spent instead it is done in order to save the lives of people out there that we have never met.

  66. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 10, 2013 5:48 am


    Absolutely correct. I and many others here may have not been able to build a big network marketing business, but we can certainly network as a team (lower case ‘t’).

    If I had been able to build relationships in the Team business the way I’ve been able to build them here, I’d have been “free” a long time ago.

    This site proves that while we can all network and make friends, the playing field certainly isn’t level in network marketing. Network marketing is the few who are free fleecing the few who never will be on the false hope that someday they will.

    That false hope turned me and everyone else into absolute liars every time someone asked me about the business. I would always tell people how good it was based upon how good I thought it could be….if in fact it was possible for me to succeed. It’s certainly not.

    The line I love in networking is that 80% of small businesses fail in the first five years. That is true. I’ve been running two retail store for 30 years, and I’ve seen many others fail. That 80% figure seems to hold true in networking as well…..actually it’s much worse. My immiate upline is still in, is not even a Turbo 25, and has been in for 10 years. He’s still riding on the false hope.

    For those who are currently in, why don’t you see your Round Tables all making PC? In the past 6 years, I’ve only seen two hit it who weren’t already there, and it’s questionable that they even earned it. How is that possible if the opportunity is that great? Why has inly one person made PC since LIFE started? The answer is right under your nose, but you can’t smell it. Why not?

    You can’t…..for the same reason a skunk can’t smell its own stink! It’s because network marketing makes you stink too! And the deodorant is quitting before you lose all personal integrity.

  67. June 10, 2013 8:47 am

    Ever since my first seminar, over a DECADE ago, the goal was to have “a million butts in seats”.

    @ The Real Facts (AKA Lifer)…Glad to see you’re a true follower of Amthrax’s awesome work! It would appear, however, that you’re suffering from an identity crisis. You might want to look into a good book on that to include in next month’s system 🙂

  68. Freedomhaha permalink
    June 10, 2013 8:56 am

    Rascal Teamster- I really appreciate your contributions to this blog. You have a gift for explaining the principals of TEAM in an interesting and entertaining manner. I have a feeling that many others out there that have left TEAM because of your writings are thankful as well.

    Maybe you can help shed some light on a thought I have been having for awhile regarding the PC level. While it is painfully obvious that no one is cracking the PC and has not for a long time it still shocks me. You would have thought that Orrin would lower the bar of the PC to include new members in order to create false growth. We have many forms of proof that tell us that TEAM is not above manipulation of numbers.

  69. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 10, 2013 10:06 am

    A couple of thoughts, Freedom,

    I remember when Orrin bought Sister Lakes, there was a Triple Power Player party scheduled. They then lowered it to Double Power Player. I thought, “dang. It’s not just my team. There’s no growth anywhere.” That major, there was only one Triple Power Player recognized. I was correct in my assumption. You can’t hold an event with only one qualifier. Every time they lower the bar (Orrin always says hold it high), more people catch on. The PC knows and fears that.

    The other thing is, tell me how to make PC. We know it’s 4 – 100 legs and 2 – 50 legs, but show me that legally. No Team ranks exist anywhere in writing. I have thought when they started moving the EBC Team stuff into LIFE, they were going to do away with the Team. If ever there was a pyramid, the Team side of the biz is it. I thought it took a lot of guts to recognize Wayne and Raylene as PC at a LIFE major. Those ranks aren’t LIFE ranks…..neither is round table or director. How do recognize levels that don’t legally exist? Why not just do away with Team entirely? I mean, heck, they’ve already changed the name to LIFE Training.

    I think they’re stuck….damned if they do and damned if they don’t. The Team system is the only glue that held the group together through all these changes. To kill it would hurt them big time in the next business move….if they survive their LIFE experience. The PC knows that as well.

    What I’ve been thinking about, Freedom, is if LIFE is soooo good, why aren’t they recognizing big LIFE ranks? Why only Team ranks (besides that those numbers are easier to fudge). Guess there’s must not be any LIFE growth?!? Is LIFE dead or dying? When will the lemmings catch on? Come on, people. Wake up and smell the coffin!

  70. Melanie Morgan permalink
    June 10, 2013 7:50 pm

    Rascal Teamster-

    You are welcome. 🙂

    Seems “the real facts or LIEfer“… lost his emotional intelligence…along with whatever credibility he has deceived humself into believing, he would have on here.

    Whats the problem?….couldnt take the heat in the kitchen while hiding behind a fake wall as LIFER?

    Then has the shameless audacity to throw stones and throw words around as if those same things and principles don’t or shouldm’t apply to him?!

    Unfreaking believable…no take that back…it is quite believable..the hypocrisy and one-sided loser mentality…is very typical and astounding!

    He knows damn well this site holds credibility!! They know they can’t fight the facts or
    win an argument ….so they lose control of their EQ….don’t even have the guts to be honest about who they really are? Hmm….nameless, faceless, coward?…hypocrites… But when all fails ….threaten with lawsuits?!!

    Which “F“ is this being taught under, I could think of one….They are a disgrace to real leadership, and they say they are changing America and families for the better?!…wow!

    My god…when will they ever learn??

    They cant hide, they will always be found out….they only continue to confirm for all the readers and world to see, and everything said on this site just gets validated!

    Keep being that example and glaring results of that lIFE changing mentorship and system.. LIEfer. YOU ARE DOING AWESOME, fired up!

  71. James Martin permalink
    June 11, 2013 4:48 am

    My girlfriend and I are part of this company. Im seeing flaws everywhere. This spreadsheet sealed the deal for me. I’m done with TEAM. How can I get this info to my girl without causing any anger? She defends the people and this company blindly. Anything negative sends her on a rage trip. I need to calmly get this across to her, but I’m thinking the time for niceties is over. She is making less money than me, and I’m broke, partially because of this. I just want to help her without her feeling like she has no hope, as life has so graciously made her feel will be the case if she leaves.

  72. June 11, 2013 5:48 am

    @James – Has your GF seen the spreadsheet? Has she analyzed the IDS for herself? Can you think of any time when you were able to talk seriously about the business without getting her angry? Check out the Freedom of Mind website (link in right-hand sidebar) for some tips. Good luck and report back to us in the future.

  73. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 11, 2013 6:23 am


    Welcome to the community, brother. I empathize with you. For me and my wife, it was the same thing. I had followed this site when Team left Quixtar and then stopped when we joined Monavie.

    I got back into this site when I realized some contradictions in what I was being told by my upline…..the Team system appeared to be falling apart. My wife didn’t really want to hear it. She didn’t think that she could trust the people here anymore than she could our upline.

    What it took for me was to find some stuff here that totally could not be denied, and I kind of had to put my foot down and lovingly show her the info and urge her to read it.

    For her, it was the bankruptcies of the Cullen’s and Darkangelos. We had heard Mark & Jenn talk about how successful they were…..and appeared to be. But for my wife to see $200,000 in consumer debt with ZERO charitable contributions sealed the deal. And when we all here with Amthrax leading the charge created the timeline and saw the contradictions by Orrin, she was done. Then she became a reader of this site.

    Find something that will hit her squarely in the heart….it sounds like she has a big one. That will start the ball rolling. Just like when you are showing the plan, find something she can relate to and go from there. Calmly, lovingly explain what you’ve found. You did the best first thing. You had the guts to reach out to us. You will find support in this group above and beyond anything you found in the Team. The truly good people have left. All that’s left there is the crooked and those who don’t know yet.

    Good luck!

  74. noteam permalink
    June 11, 2013 7:33 am

    James – I agree with Rascal – printouts of the Darkangelo, Huber, Cullen bankruptcies are powerful evidence that things are not on the up and up in Teamland. Very convincing evidence.

  75. Lurker permalink
    June 11, 2013 5:55 pm

    My analysis of the IDS is as follows:

    1. The average monthly income for all Members (Apprentice, Non-Qualified, Qualified) was $38.48. But that doesn’t seem to be consistent with the averages in the Income Disclosure Statement or the Gross Earnings statement.

    2. That is because the averages include ONLY qualified members – those who have finished their first 6 months and have sales to non-member customer with a PV of 50 or more.

    3. So what percentage of the total number of members are qualified members? If you crunch the numbers from the Income Disclosure Statement, you see that only 8.71% of all members are qualified members.

    4. Looking at the Gross Earnings averages, you can see that even of this small group of qualified members, the bottom 91.99% earn an average of $1016/year before expenses.

    5. Only 8.01% of the qualified members earn more than $5000/year, which means that out of all the people that sign up with Team/Life, only 0.7% (8.71% x 8.01%) earn more than $5000/year.

    a. That is gross income – before accounting for materials that you buy and time and money you spend trying to find customers and recruit new members. The IDS itself says that “Expenses for members can be several thousand dollars annually.”

    b. A large majority of those earning more than $5000/year are in the top 4 brackets (Leader and up) – and almost all of them have been qualified members since the company began. Most of them probably already had customers and downlines in place from when Team was connected with MonaVie.

  76. June 11, 2013 6:12 pm

    @Lurker – thanks for your analysis. We also calculated the 8.71% number in our spreadsheet. 32.1% were apprentice and 59.2% were non-qualified members.

    It would be interesting to know the average monthly expenses for qualified members earning more than $5000/year. We’ve long speculated that the average monthly cost of running a TEAM/LIFE/MonaVie business was around $500 or $6000/year.

  77. Melanie Morgan permalink
    June 11, 2013 6:51 pm


    Welcome and it is glaringly obvious it isn’t a wise or bad business opportunity! Thanks for your effort and time. Shame on them, Wow, do i wish we had all this information BEFORE, we ever got started! What a crock.

  78. Melanie Morgan permalink
    June 11, 2013 6:58 pm

    Oops should say it is a bad business!! Feel bad for all those uninformed who are believing the lies and/or will be mislead and sucked in….but most quit…40.4%…I believe it is much higher…the information on this site, will help them face the sad reality of this farce!

  79. Freedomhaha permalink
    June 12, 2013 11:11 am

    Another life saved (no pun intended). Welcome James!

  80. TruthSeeker permalink
    June 16, 2013 5:53 pm

    I had a chance to read through this IDS analysis again today in great detail. One thing caught my eye and really made me chuckle.

    I believe this analysis to be correct, and that the literal ‘break-even’ point happens somewhere around student 6000 based on a $500 monthly expenditure, which I feel is on the low side.

    If there are close to the 71,461 people as indicated and only 553 qualified student 6000s, that equates to 0.77% of all participants. Basically that would mean that for every 300 participants, somewhere around 2 are earning $500 a month. What the hell is wrong with that picture, and why do these sheeple continue to follow? I am totally amazed.

    If all 300 were only spending $100 a month on Life crap, that is $30,000 in volume, and only 2 are making $500, seriously? But wait, with a 75% payout where is the other $21,500 going?

    With that equation, the 71,461 will need to enroll 10,719,150 people to break-even as well.

    Orrin is going to 10 milion now, watch out!

  81. Freedomhaha permalink
    June 16, 2013 6:29 pm

    Truth- The part that finally pushed me out is when I realized that even if I built a business bigger than Orrin’s I would JUST CAUSE MORE PEOPLE TO LOSE MONEY THE BIGGER MY BUSINESS GOT. Sorry for shouting there I just had a point to make 🙂

  82. the bee permalink
    June 21, 2013 3:30 pm

    Amthrax I was asking about that book because when I was reading it it all sounded so familiar to me and as I keep reading I realized I knew these very people in this book I sat and ate supper with these people ( the main guy Zack who’s real name is changed in the book I spent personal time with him ) road in their cars filled up their gas tanks bought them supper lunch etc. The guy who bit his tongue in a car crash I just bumped into one of his kids last night I knew these guys personally and this book was written before I got involved with them I wish some one gave me this book to save us from the bankruptcy we went through
    PS Zack got screwed during the mona vie transition by the guy in the car wreck he took his whole organization away from Zack and now Zack has a hunting show Hollywood hunters True story

  83. June 26, 2013 8:12 pm

    Here’s a comment from my About page from @Helloeeze. It’s more appropriate to discuss it here:

    I went to a meeting last night for the first time I refuse to go along with any of it. I want to try to talk my friend out of wasting her money. I was handed a Income Disclosure Statement. It says basically only the top 2% make any money. My question is: How many Life Coaches, how many Sr. Coordinators or even Student 4,000s are there? If I had that number, I think it would be persuasive argument to my friend against joining this group. I would like to use Life’s own document to make this argument.

    I was told 20,000 people were in Columbus, Ohio at some meeting. I can’t believe there are so many gullible people out there. Maybe the tapes are good. I don’t know.

    This post has a detailed analysis of the LIFE IDS. Read it and base your questions to your friend here. If they disagree with it, ask them if they disagree with basic math, because that’s all that this is, a mathematical analysis of the LIFE IDS based on an estimated 8 Life Coaches. From the post above, we calculated the number of people at each rank to be (for the time period of May 2012 to January 2013). Numbers in parentheses are qualified LIFE members:

    Student: 20,441 (41)
    Student 150: 9,860 (190)
    Student 300: 11,811 (525)
    Student 600: 8,826 (719)
    Student 1000: 6,336 (825)
    Student 1500: 6,106 (1,169)
    Student 2500: 3,703 (975)
    Student 4000: 2,012 (661)
    Student 6000: 1,405 (553)
    Student 10000: 477 (220)
    Student 15000: 234 (99)
    Leader: 199 (195)
    Coordinator: 31 (31)
    Sr. Coordinator: 11 (11)
    Life Coach: 8 (8)

  84. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    June 27, 2013 2:35 pm

    Whoa, Nellie! I was really busy in early June….just had a chance to actually peruse the compensation plan info….under what they paid out in 2012 to “qualified” members, I love the stats–LOL!! Okay, 91.99% earned less than $2058/annum; of that 91/99%, a full 60.24% earn less than $468/annum. So much for the white stretch limo ride out into the sunset of joblessness, eh? Gee, said with sarcasm and cynicism, I wonder who the top 18/100’s of one percent who made over $100,000 in 2012 were, eh? I was amazed to read that they are claiming a retention rate of 60% in membership, too.

  85. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    June 28, 2013 6:40 am

    Fun crunching dollars on a hypothetical 10,000 membership:

    The published ‘ Qualified Member (meaning you are no longer an “apprentice” and have acceptable sales levels after first 6 months) Gross Earnings’ chart is a discombobulated hoot when you compare it to the published LIFE ‘Income Disclosure Statement’ and the ‘Receipt of Monthly Compensation and Average Monthly Earnings for Qualified Members’ chart. The fine print they show below the Income Disclosure Statement is even better!

    To get started, I took a simple number arbitrarily and decided they had 10,000 TOTAL members (qualified, unqualified, and apprentices).

    *Since I don’t know EXACT percentage totals of who is “qualified” while looking at their published fine-print of this fact: 31.47% earned nothing from May of 2012 through January of 2013, i.e., 9 months, I just had to use the 10,000 arbitrary number and assume that the 6,853 who did earn something are “qualified” members.

    So hypothetically, we have 6,853 people who DID earn at least a few bucks for this 9 month period (I’m sure they did this because their “fired up” BS just prior to launch saw a huge loss of membership in the first few months of operation and they didn’t want to drag the miserable numbers any lower than they are, so the 9 month period was used to bolster their figures).

    Okay: 6,853 people earned at least a few bucks–and remember, because I couldn’t figure out exact numbers( because of all of the student levels and constant dropouts/inductees who may or may not qualify), I’ve got to make the assumption that these 6,853 people are “qualified” members, just for the sake of being able to do the math here.

    Okie dokie: Here’s what you’re gonna earn, on average:

    *We already know that out of my arbitrary 10,000 members, 3,147 (31.47%) earned nothing for 9 months, which leaves 6,853 people

    4,128 of you 6,853 out of 10,000 members will be lucky to earn an average of $467 GROSS for 9-12 months in 2013

    2,176 of you 6,853 out of 10,000 members will be lucky to earn an average of $2057 GROSS for 9-12 months in 2013

    238 of you 6,853 out of 10,000 will be lucky to earn an average of $7063 GROSS for 9-12 months in 2013

    160 of you 6,853 out of 10,000 will be lucky to earn an average of $14,142 GROSS for 9-12 months in 2013

    93 of you 6,853 out of 10,000 will be lucky to earn an average of $36,357 GROSS for 9-12 months in 2013

    36 of you 6,853 out of 10,000 will be lucky to earn an average of $60,950 GROSS for 9-12 months in 2013.

    8 to 9 of you 6853 out of 10,000 will be lucky to earn an average of $88,071 GROSS for 9-12 months in 2013.

    12 of you 6853 out of 10,000 will be lucky to earn an average of $365,263 GROSS for 9-12 months in 2013.

    12 of you out of 10,000 people might be able to drive off into the sunset in your limos, while you hope that all of the downlines don’t collapse next month, or the month or year after. And don’t forget: that is GROSS income, prior to taxation and the cost of “building” your business, i.e., expenses.

  86. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    June 28, 2013 6:46 am

    CORRECTION TO MY INITIAL STATMENT: I meant say that the ‘Income Disclosure Statement’ which listed a lot of nebulous and questionable percentages seemed a discombobulated hoot, not the ‘2012 Qualified Member Gross Earnings’ was the hoot.

  87. ageofwisdom51 permalink
    June 28, 2013 6:47 am

    statment = statement….excuse the typos, too

  88. scariestnightofmylife permalink
    July 3, 2013 8:27 pm

    On Tuesday June 25, 2013 my good friend for over 20 years invited me to a meeting to learn more about her and her husbands business (she conveniently didn’t tell me the name so I couldn’t do a quick google search to see what I was getting myself into).

    I knew 5 minutes into the meeting that I was in a bad, bad, bad place! The standing and cheering, the audience hanging onto every word the speaker was saying as if he was preaching from the Bible, the speaker spending most of the time explaining why this wasn’t a pyramid scheme, the speaker saying duh this business is so easy and we should feel blessed that the person who brought us cares so much about us that they want us to exceed, etc, etc!

    When I left my anxiety was through the roof and I wanted to kidnap my friend and bring her to safety. My friend told me it was the first meeting that they were seeing those newly released compensation charts so I was studying it a lot during the meeting and I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why anyway would waste a single minute of their life for those figures, I mean honestly McDonalds pays more. And I am pretty sure the fine print on the board that I read said 50%+ don’t re-sign after a year, not 40%.

    My friends started with selling Monavie and moved to Life. They attend every Tuesday meeting and every seminar. I really need to figure out a way to talk sense into them. I guess they are Student 6000s and just earned an all expense trip to somewhere So I don’t think I will get through to them. They’ve been at this for 4 years and she said they are just now starting to earn money. They speak of these Team leaders as if they were Jesus Christ himself which is what REALLY bothers me. The Team was honestly cheering for the speaker as if Elvis walked in the building. I didn’t know what was happening!

    My friend scheduled my follow up meeting, I emailed her the day before and respectfully told her my husband and I are not interested in buying books and CDs on faith, family, friends, finances, etc and that if we or anyone else we know had problems in those areas we would pray for them, preach the BIBLE to them and invite them to our church, NOT sell the CDs, books or A BUSINESS!

    It’s been over a week and I am still in shock at what all I had witnessed. Any tips on how to get them to run for their lives?!

  89. Melanie Morgan permalink
    July 4, 2013 11:09 am


    I am not making light of your experience at all, but had to LoL @ how they spent so much time trying to convince the audience that it isn’t a “pyramid scheme?.” Hahaha…What a waste of your time and your money!

    Unfortunately there isn’t any quick easy answer to get your friends to wake up, especially since they have been in 4 years! Even with the facts that cleary contridict their “teaching” and if you knew others, there is mounds of direct experiences, their own comp plan proves that most lose, even though “it is a business”…and the facts in their own Policies & procedures should be enough, that cleary contridicts what they imply, and yet still people (like your friends) can’t see the forest for the trees!

    But it is because they indoctrinate intensely with their dogma. Just as you experienced at the seminar, can you imagine your same experience, EVERY month, for 4 or 13 years like us?!!… (plus a daily diet of cds and many, many other types of meetings, along with a daily dose of your “upline” (your friends), constant cliche’, quotes, and their language) for 4 steady years?!!

    Eventually, you do, think, act, and speak just like them, it is the way undue influence married with their propaganda works… you become them and eventually lose yourself and not much room for any original thought, that my friend is scary! Did that for way too many years and will tell you it is very oppressive and takes a long time to stop talking like a recording amongst other challenges.

    Check out Steve Hassan webite & books (found @ the right of this page). Also, “All That Glitters Is Not God ” by Athena Dean, I think you will find helpful & enlightening.

    You can pray for them and if all possible educate and share your insights with any mutual friends that you have.

    Thanks for sharing!!

  90. scariestnightofmylife permalink
    July 4, 2013 12:00 pm

    Melanie Morgan-

    Thank you for your reply. I agree, it’s not going to be an easy task undoing 4 years of, what I feel, is brain washing. At the meeting I asked her what is her profit each month (after paying for meetings and CDs/books) and she didn’t know the number off the top of her head. I asked twice what she they sold and both times she said “NOTHING”. She said they have over 200 people under them (eek). Her husband pretty much sounds like a motivational cd.

    I’m going to be spending a lot of time in prayer for them. I believe God has a plan for all of us and there are lessons in everything we do. My husband said maybe they will get rich off this but at what cost…the people in their downline?

  91. July 4, 2013 2:54 pm


    Your BS meter is great!

    In addition to Melanie’s comments I would add perhaps mention almost casually (or in an inquisitive mindset) the bankruptcies of their top leaders discussed on this site. You will throw a wrench in their minds. That should plant a seed of doubt somewhere on their minds. The inevitable inconsistencies they witness as they progress will water that seed. Eventually there will be enough germination to unravel for them their MLM entanglement. Actually for people who are this deep in it that’s an advisable strategy – read this website and when you can throw another seed of a tidbit of info., just don’t push it.

    “…we should feel blessed that the person who brought us cares so much about us that they want us to exceed, etc, etc!”

    The best antidote for an MLMer’s badge-of-ego is a matter of fact classy, deftly to-the-face or ear kind declaration, “Why yes, no dear I am not interested” and not to be followed by a convoluted discussion through the elbow to get to a thumb, about why not. Add a tasty topping by not thanking them for the invitation.

    That’s a good reality check for their charlatan pseudo-preacher leaders’ lies that you should thank them for inviting you to their meeting. MLMer’s only care about you/their potential victim, off-loading your pocket to them.

  92. July 4, 2013 3:00 pm

    @scariestnightofmylife, Said,

    “My husband said maybe they will get rich off this but at what cost…the people in their downline?”

    This is a very hard thing to make a cult indoctrinated mind to see. It takes the pockets of downlines’ own monies to support a so called success of those at the top because they, downlines, are always the significant source of MLM revenues. Hardly do MLM participants make any worthwhile sales to real customers outside of their MLM group. MLM models are based on adherent’s self consumption.

  93. Freedomhaha permalink
    July 4, 2013 9:31 pm

    “honestly McDonalds pays more.”

    Still at home playing video games pays more because you don’t lose money doing it. All his work for negative money. It is right there in the numbers current TEAM member!!

  94. scariestnightofmylife permalink
    July 6, 2013 9:09 am


    Thank you for your response. I keep going over in my head what I want to say to my friend the next time I see her. Since they hang onto every word Mr. W and Mr. B say (quoting them everyday on their twitter accounts) I am not sure there is anything I can say about the business itself that will click in their brains at the moment, especially since they just won that all expense paid trip. I think the route I have to take with my friend is the article you mentioned on this site by Dave Marriott. I think knowing that the way they we earning their money is morally wrong, that will strike a cord with her and hopefully her husband. I know you don’t want religious debates on this site so I will just leave it at that.

    I am grateful for your all the info on your website. It’s been very helpful.

  95. Melanie Morgan permalink
    July 6, 2013 12:35 pm

    Exambot love it! It really does take that seed(s) of truth (doubt) for most long timers because the virus spreads through the mind twists it up, and for some it takes truck loads of those seeds and perhaps even the sledge hammer effect, like (us) lol to make a crack in those heavy blinders we all aquire. But once it’s cracked and creates momentume; in that is the beginning of true freedom! That is why they waste so much energy trying to completey control & eliminate it…appreciate your posts!


    I hope more people are like you; who spend the time, think, approach their friends & loved ones in this situation with that kind of Understanding, who care and are willing to help them! Very wise and what a true friend you are! It takes patience, good luck!

  96. Chrisxrascal permalink
    July 6, 2013 4:01 pm

    Scariestnightofmylife- I felt the same experience with the praise of the leaders of team. Team is trained to that of course to create.excitement. Praise and appreciate. Part of why I quit is people put all their time, money and energies in team. Many not getting results still thinking they can make it big. I don’t believe Team is a.horrible.learning.experience. There are some good principles you can learn on team. On the business end, it takes a lot of time to make a profit and you have to retain people for a long period of time. After a year I realized how fast the information was getting old. The seminars, cds, even the books, I felt I was hearing the same things over and over. I saw so many come and go in team. I asked myself how can I convince people to keep going to the seminars and buying books that was more or less the same. I feel in the long term for me it was not an attainable business. I believe people are convinced in to making it big and they just give it one more try to make it to the next level. Sadly at least people I’ve spoken to,.who have been on team for years have not had significant income on team. Somehow they believe the next.event ( seminar, major) will help to motivate them to the next level. Even if somehow you win with team financially it a mathematical fact someone is losing money underneath you. ( a pyramid scheme). For.people that are in for a while,.because of the.indoctrination of team it would be hard to leave. Others on this site.have left team and no one said they regretted it, that should give you a clue that it can be done. The other reason I quit is I felt they put team over more important things. They claim they are ” Christians ” and I felt they glorified their business over faith. As a.” Christian” I felt it was wrong to give all praise to the leaders and the business. It seemed hypocritical to me. I just have one more thing to say, I quit and I.have no regrets.

  97. Helloeeze permalink
    July 12, 2013 1:18 am

    I told my friend about the numbers on the IDS and how basically less 2 percent of the people make anything. That didn’t seem to dissuade her, and she said she was in it “only for the information on the CDs.” But then in our discussions she would come back to the making money part again and then I would tell her again that, “You won’t be making money…remember, only 2 percent!!”

    I asked her how much this RT guy, that spoke at the open meeting I went to, was making, and she said 8K a month. I said, he must not have started with LIFE. He must have been in it before LIFE started. She said, no, he was just in LIFE.

    Well, this RT guy has a blog, and in that blog he said that he was welcomed as a RT, and the date was before LIFE even started. I feel she is being lied to. How does someone get to become a RT anyway?

  98. Chrisxrascal permalink
    July 12, 2013 1:42 am

    I’m not sure of the qualifications as of now. It’s most definatly for certain the person who is an RT was in the Team business before the company of ” Life”. All you can do is ask the Rt when he started as a member of the ” Team ” business. If the person started before November 2011, he was in the company “Monavie”.

  99. Rascal Teamster permalink
    July 12, 2013 4:57 am

    I’m trying to think of any Round tables that didn’t start with one of the groups in Amway, and I can’t think of any.

    Round table used to be two teams of 50 people on system with 100 seminar tickets in each of those two teams, and another team of 25 systems with 50 tickets in that group.

    That was as of last summer.

  100. Helloeeze permalink
    July 13, 2013 12:34 am

    In his blog dated November 2011, he says he is a brand new Roundtable in TEAM and Orrin and Tim Marks are his mentors. He also says he had started his association three years ago (from November 2011) But first heard Orrin five years ago and has been to Orrin’s house as part of an incentive by his mentor Tim Marks. So I guess I have answered my own question. He was involved starting in late 2008ish. I guess that was during MonaVie time.

  101. Melanie Morgan permalink
    July 13, 2013 9:44 am


    Who is the RT that you are speaking of? The fact is he says he is a RT in “TEAM” should pose many of questions and a red flag and definitely not be over looked. TEAM has a seperate “pay- out”, does every “member who pays to play get paid from TEAM & LIFE? So your friend doesn’t probably even understand that it is different from “LIFE”,

    The TEAM is more like a “good ole boys club” and I highly doubt your friend will ever make it in, or even recognizes there is a difference. Where in the “LIFE” documents, IDS, or anywhere does it mention you make 8 grand as a Round Table in LIFE?

    Ask your friend what she knows about the “TEAM” pay plan and for the disclosure and rules for becoming a RT or PC….oh thats right she isn’t in it for the money, “business” she signed up for!.Or at least she uses that “handling the objection”, she has has been trained on those CD’s to use and what to say against any facts or “objections”

    Isn’t it sad she knows she isn’t making a dime profit so she resorts to decieving herself and others that she is “only in it for the information on the cds” DO you think that is what she tells herself, her spouse, children, family etc ( if she has spouse or children) as she is spending ALL that money trying to “build her business”, it is way too sad, how they get people to convince themselves of these lies. why would she waste her time telling YOU about it if she is only in it for the information on the CDs?!

    Everyone who signs up doesn’t have a clue what “business” and are being mislead and enticed by the lifestyles and income claims from those getting paid from the “TEAM” and LIFE!

    They just ignorantly repeat, what they hear and are “trained” to say, and whitout question what the upline, and PC tell them. No fault for the most part on the newbies because they use some stop thinking techniques, deceptive practices and critical information is intentionally withheld, hidden or not disclosed. Therefore, they are forced to “trust” ow could they make an informed or sound “business” decision?

  102. Helloeeze permalink
    July 13, 2013 10:29 am

    His name is Varada Venkat and here is his blog

    In case my friend would listen to anything i say, I’ll explain TEAM is on a different pay structure than LIFE. Is there any documentation to that effect somewhere?

  103. Rascal Teamster permalink
    July 13, 2013 11:37 am

    LOL…Venkat Varada is the upline to Chris & Danae Mattis out of California. He didn’t start with Team. He was part of a group that left Amway and joined Team.

    Venkat has been in networking for YEARS before joining Team!!! Anyone know which group they came from? Wasn’t that another Yeager group?

  104. noteam permalink
    July 13, 2013 5:01 pm

    Chris & Danae Mattis are downline from Roger Sitzler. Roger was a Diamond in Amway under Jim & Margee Floor (part of the INA group). I believe Chris Mattis registered in Amway with his previous wife over 10 years ago in Amway. Roger left INA and got suckered into Team about a year before Orrin did his famous switcheroo and got everyone to register in MonaVie so Orrin could get his $3 million bonus (ah hem, ‘loan’).

  105. ItsaPauling permalink
    July 13, 2013 7:03 pm

    I can think of a LOT more RT’s that are no longer qualified or a part of this cult than those that have taken the “new” biz, including MV, to RT. Anyone have anything to add to that?

  106. ItsaPauling permalink
    July 13, 2013 7:05 pm

    You will not find “Round Table Member” on the IDS.

  107. OneTimeFly permalink
    July 14, 2013 8:49 pm

    Roger Siztler did not get “suckered” into joining TEAM. In fact he pursued the organization for a couple of years starting in 2006 I believe. He originally purchased a couple tickets for a Major (not thru normal channels, I recall it being reported as EBAY) but was not a TEAM member. During that Major h was seen by Rob Halstrand in the audience, and because Rob didn’t recognize him he was pulled from the floor, asked several questions by Rob, and then told to leave. A few months later he personally requested permission to attend another Major, with the complete understanding that his plan all along was to bring his group on board with TEAM (this was well before all the outside groups started joining TEAM) He was personally contact the office and purchase large amounts of tools for his group. Again, this was way before he came over to Team. To say he was suckered is an overreach. This guy made it clear even when OW would give him no attention, even with RH would blow him off over and over, his goal was to become a member of TEAM.

  108. noteam permalink
    July 15, 2013 10:35 am

    Onetimefly – yes, I am aware Roger pursued Orrin. When I said that he got ‘suckered’ I was referring to the fact that he ‘bought in’ to all the lies and deceit of Orrin & Team. I was aware of the incident with Rob Halstrand and the mass purchasing of tools. You are correct about those events.

  109. Melanie Morgan permalink
    July 15, 2013 6:55 pm

    Why would Rob Halstrand “pull him off the floor” when he bought a ticket,and interesting, because he didn’t recognize him, Out of all those thousands of people, really? Did RH know every single person? Why would he even be suspicious, and how would he know it came from ebay? Seems strange.

  110. Melanie Morgan permalink
    July 15, 2013 7:01 pm

    I highly doubt Orrin really cared or did anything about the mass purchasing tools!

  111. noteam permalink
    July 15, 2013 8:19 pm

    My personal opinion regarding Orrin & Rob’s concern about outside groups taping in was twofold:
    1. They did not want anyone going back to Amway/Quixtar and telling them what was going on. There were so many rules violations going on it was pathetic. As long as people were organically in Orrin’s group, they could pretty much control the information so all the team members thought everything was normal (ie. Amway was just a supplier, stacking, changing customer volume, etc).
    But once people from other groups came to functions (who knew the rules), Orrin risked being reported for yet another rules violation. Therefore they did not want anyone tapping into functions unless Orrin trusted them. (My opinion).

    2. Orrin wanted more numbers, but he did not want everyone else knowing the extra numbers were coming from outside groups. Orrin wanted everyone to believe the natural growth was continuing, even though in the end, the only net growth came as a result of his continually adding outside groups. If he was at 10,000 with just team members and then added Haugen, Harteis, Goetschel, Libby, Wilson, Sitzler, Newton, Paullin, etc – why is he still only at 10,000? That doesn’t bode well for his great system 🙂

    3. Also, my opinion that with outside groups, Orrin could keep all the tool money or pay outsiders at a different scale as long as his existing leaders didn’t know about it. Therefore more money for Orrin.

    All of the above are my own opinions based on some very serious time spent as a leader of Team.

  112. Melanie Morgan permalink
    July 15, 2013 11:39 pm

    Noteam & Onetimefly-

    That makes some sense, I am not sure what time frame, because fly said it was well before all the other groups,. Is that the time frame (when Quixtar was cracking down) you were referring too, Fly? Even then Orrin was saying from stage, keep building, Quixtar is behind us and loves what we are doing, which obviously was a lie.

    The PC definitely became paranoid, I remember, being at a major back stage with a few very weird incidents, and it wasn’t long before the s**t hit the fan with Q. It became even more obvious at the go-diamond that they were not disclosing everything and something was seriously wrong. But they kept pretending it was “business as usual” and and as much as they wanted to hide what was going on, people weren’t stupid and sensed they were hiding something or many things.

    I believe they feared more than anything, that they were going to lose it ALL and the PC were only concerned about themselves! It sure showed up in their action and their real character was revealed…What followed:, from the lawsuit, attorney general fiasco, contract they never let anyone read or take to an attorney, to telling everyone to resign and then deny it?! the resiging and then destruction in the registration into MV , 3 million dollar “loan” and all the other shenanigans they pulled and information they witheld.

    They don’t have any trouble justifing everything they do, right or wrong, what they did to everyone and their businesses after they spent years building, spending, sacrificing “for the team”, telling every single person it was their business and to “hold their spot” , they might have convinced themselves that they held their integrity, (which is amazing in itself, considering all who know different) and a few of them even think Orrin is a hero, including himself.

  113. OneTimeFly permalink
    July 16, 2013 1:52 pm

    PC was very paranoid when it came to outsiders. And you can either believe me or not, but yes..RH knew just about everyone at that time, it was actually a well played joke in PC and Staff Meetings. When Roger contacted the home office for a legitimate purchase of the Ticket there was a long discussion at a PC meeting with the “C” level managers and we went over the entire incident. The guy was basically interrogated at that Major before being asked/told to leave. noteam, your thoughts are pretty spot on. It got so bad that at one point that at the home office they put paper up on the warehouse door window and ordered the door closed (autolocked) so that nobody could see inside. At the time very few of the staff understood what was going on. Q was made out to be the bad guys and OW/CB were just the guys trying to save the country. Even when Legacy group came on board there were people within that group that PC were paranoid with.

  114. Melanie Morgan permalink
    July 16, 2013 4:44 pm


    I believe you, sorry if it came off that way. I guess it is still never ceases to amaze me and seems pretty weird coming from so-caled “leaders” who claim to be Christian.

    But Looking at how paranoid they got and what hound dogs they became; was a sure sign we should have cut and ran then! It’s great to be free!

  115. Melanie Morgan permalink
    July 16, 2013 5:31 pm

    Found something today that pretty much sums of the entire “Team” experience for me, so thought I would share it.

    “I was chasing my dreams, but tripped over reality and busted my head on the truth!”

    Wonder how many others had this same experience? 🙂

  116. Rascal Teamster permalink
    July 16, 2013 6:02 pm


    That’s an absolute peach. That will now become my answer to those of my former teammates who ask me where I went.

    That sums up my experience exactly!!!

  117. Melanie Morgan permalink
    July 16, 2013 10:02 pm


    Who did they consider level “C” was that a term for office workers? I heard that they treated some office workers like garbage too and were paranoid with the info. that others could not have access to also.So much for their “people skills.” Quite htpicritical. I was actually pretty stuned but doesn’t shock me now, I have seen and heard way too much and know they don’t practice what they preach. I knew they were paranoid but geez what were they afraid of? Them seeing the warehouse full of tools or what were they hiding?

  118. Melanie Morgan permalink
    July 16, 2013 10:03 pm

    Rascal- perfect right? 🙂

  119. I Quit ( and glad I Did) permalink
    July 17, 2013 6:14 am

    Hey Mel- At least the truth found a way to knock some sense into our heads. Best headache I’ve ever had!! Love it!! True freedom is a wonderful thing.

  120. Rascal Teamster permalink
    July 17, 2013 8:51 am

    @I Quit,

    You just hit on something that’s been making me chuckle since I read it….such human nature…..and we all fell into the trap. But it lead to a realization that I felt compelled to pass along. Hope this blesses you as well.

    The Team and Orrin opened my eyes to how much more my heart desired, but it took getting out and away from him to make me realize how good I had already had it.

    I think true success is actively pursuing your goals and dreams while being content with what you have. That’s Biblical!

    The Team has to make you discontent with what you have while you pursue a bunch of material things. That’s NOT Biblical!

    How many times I was totally covetous while rationalizing the means as being to a good and noble end? The longer I’m out, the deeper in I see that I was.

    The Team is a cult of personality blended with glitter and idolatry? You betcha! The evidence is pasted all over my dream board!

  121. scariestnightofmylife permalink
    July 17, 2013 9:16 am

    Update: I haven’t talked my friends off the ledge yet but I’m working on it.

    In the meantime, I got approached by my husbands cousin to start this AMAZINGLY EASY business called Vemma. Sounds like another pyramid scheme. Anyone ever heard of it? What in the world is going on? Are people really afraid of a honest, hard days work?!

  122. Melanie Morgan permalink
    July 17, 2013 10:51 am


    Haha you make me laugh, and you are right ain’t nothin been more freeing!


    Dead on!


    Hang in there, you will eventually “succeed” if you don’t give in or give up on your friends and honestly , in a “business opportunity” where the deck is stacked against them and they are being (mis) lead into believing they “own their own business” and they have “control” over it (oxymoron) you control and own NOTHING, your debt that is inevitable, and basically a thousand cds with the same old information repeated on it, some ticket stubs and anda bunch of exspense you probably can’t write off because it becomes a hobby with no real profit for years. And hundreds of books you could have gotten for free or a lot cheeper! And most rack up major credit card debt that they will be trying to pay off long after they trip over reality and bust their head!

    As far as Vemman, I have zero experience and believe Amthrax has an article if my memory serves me but no doubt you could do your research. If you are serious contact Brent Hasen or Mike Collins, they would probably be able to tell you a lot more, especially the odds. But from what little I have read, it seems it is the same sheet, just different name. Do your research!

  123. OneTimeFly permalink
    July 17, 2013 1:26 pm

    “C” Level = Chief, CEO, COO, CIO, CFO, to also include, a couple folks that were managers in charge of certain sections.

  124. Mike Collins permalink
    July 17, 2013 6:33 pm

    Vemma’s comp plan is a 1/3-2/3’s weak side binary…an absolutely horrible comp plan with a 27 to 1 break even ratio. Just another top heavy piece of crap designed to enrich a few at the top at the expense of the masses at the bottom. Only 3.7 people out of every 100 can possibly break even in Vemma from the network.

    In other words, if you don’t “retail” the product, you ensure that 96.3% will lose money. And last time I checked nobody is spending $3+ a can on this stuff.

    I can be contacted at

  125. Melanie Morgan permalink
    July 18, 2013 3:15 pm

    Thanks, Mike for helping, snd sorry Brent for error should say Brent “Hansen.” 🙂

  126. Marc permalink
    July 19, 2013 10:17 pm

    I was about to commit to Life, but after reading this I am highly reconsidering, and I don’t think I will do it. I wanted to help people, but if most people aren’t being helped then what’s the point. Even if I believe in myself enough to succeed, my team would have to succeed and not quit for me to succeed as well. It’s more than just putting in work here. They say they give you your time back but really that just means you can wake up later and will still have to meet with people and sell them like crazy to succeed. They throw around words like multi millionaire too often giving false hope. I am so glad I came across these numbers because I was fooled. They are great at selling hope. I’d rather use the Bible. I like the information they provide, but I can maybe just buy a pack or two if anything.

  127. Chrisxrascal permalink
    July 22, 2013 2:02 am

    Mare – The information is good I agree. The problem is you can get the info cheaper on Amazon and at the library. It’s in my opinion not such a great deal.
    Yeah if you succeed in the rankings you will get your time back with endless meetings, commitments to functions, talking engagements and being led by Orrin and the PC. More success in team = more time put in to team. I recommend saving your time and money and efforts. Because in my opinion keeping the end in mind, team doesn’t = freedom, it equals more time in team, and less time with everything else.

  128. melanie Morgan permalink
    July 22, 2013 1:51 pm

    Marc make them give you documented proof of all the ” multimillionaires” ( how typical are those results of their income claims?) and all those who got their “time back!” Are they STILL misleading with that lie?

    The reality is; you become a slave to the illsionary and indoctrinated lie they feed you, of getting “all your time back” The fact is it will require ALL of your time “5 & 6 nights a week” at least ” 2 to 3 hours per day ( listening to cds) “, one full weekend per month and every quarter add another long weekend to the month, and ALL the “special” meetings and if you are “leader” you will read at least 4 books month on top of a full time job, how else will anyone pay thousands to play for the “what if” and the hope that you don’t see the facts bahaha in the comp plan, where 97% fail by design but get blamed for not doing the work?!

    Read the Policies & procedure, and then ask how anyone “owns their own business?” Do your research. Did they tell you that they pay secretly on the “Team” side and you have to be voted ? Where is it disclosed how you become a Round table and PC and what the qualifications are and how much do they make? Good lyck with your research and decsion making process. There are many questions yoy could ask but goo lyck getting any straught or honest answers.

  129. OhBeJoyful permalink
    August 6, 2013 5:29 am

    The LIFE Income Disclosure Statement (IDS) shows that 99.238% of the Coordinators are Qualified Members. If we assume that only one Coordinator is not qualified then the total number of Coordinators is 116 (100%/0.862%.)

    The total membership is 263636 (116 / 0.00044) plus or minus about 3000 and may include the 40.4% lost to attrition. This calculation is based on the fact than Coordinators make up 0.044% of All Members. BTW, using the methodology above, the number of Life Coaches is 26.

    All of this assumes that I did not make an error in my calculations and that the information provided in the IDS is correct.

  130. noteam permalink
    August 6, 2013 8:33 am

    OhBeJoyful – We need to have Mike Collins or Brent look at that. There is no possible way they have 263,636 members. I’d be surprised if it’s much more than around 10,000.

  131. Out in Pa permalink
    August 6, 2013 4:58 pm

    Freedom Of Mind
    Just started reading this book recommended on this site and written by Steve Hassan on how to help loved ones leave controlling people, cults, and beliefs.

    I highly recommend anyone considering this “business” to read this book or better yet go to this website – Click on “list of groups”. Click on “alphabetical group listing”. Click on the letter “T” which is in the group “STU”. Go down the list to find The Team/Life Business. Click and read the review.

    There is the following disclaimer statement “It is important to remember that the fact that a group appears on this list does not necessarily mean they are a destructive mind control cult. They appear because we have received inquiries and so we have established a file on the group”.

    Pay particular attention to thought reform and mind control:
    – control of environment and communication within that environment.
    – everyone is manipulated for a higher purpose.
    – establishing impossible standards for performance, thereby creating an environment of guilt and shame.No matter how hard a person tries, he always falls short, feels bad, and works even harder.
    -the cult of confession: the destruction of personal boundaries, and expectation that every thought, feeling, or action-past or present-that does not conform to the group’s rules be shared or confessed. This information is used to control.
    -the belief that the group’s dogma is absolutely scientifically and morally true, with no room for questions or alternative viewpoints.
    -loading the language; the use of vocabulary to constrict members’ thinking with thought terminating cliches understood by only insiders.
    -the imposition of group beliefs over individual experience, conscience, and integrity.
    -the belief that people in the group have the right to exist and all ex-members and critics do not.

    Also check out the BITE model:

    Behavior Control – dictate where, how, and with whom member associates. Being told how to dress. Sleep Deprivation – for example – the many late nights at meetings, seminars, conventions, showing the plan, etc. Financial exploitation. Restriction of leisure, vacation, and entertainment time. major time commitment for indoctrination and group meetings. require permission for major decisions. Insist that thoughts, feelings, and activities be reported to superiors – for example – up line.Control rewards and punishments. Discourage individualism and encourage group think. Impose rigid rules and regulations. instill obedience and dependency.

    Information Control – Deception -deliberately withholding information, distorting information to make it more acceptable, and systematically lying to group member. Discourage access to other sources of information such as internet, TV, radio, books, articles, newspapers, magazines, other media, former members with critical information. Compartmentalize information to us vs. them, controlling information at different levels within the pyramid, and allowing only leadership to decide who needs to know what and when. Impose buddy system to monitor and control member – for example – up line and insure that individual behavior is monitored by the group. Extensive use of cult-generated information and propaganda including magazines, journals, audiotapes, videotapes, and other media. Misquotations and statements taken out of context from other sources – for example – the bible. using confession of past experiences to manipulate and control with no forgiveness or absolution.

    Thought Control – member required to internalize the group’s doctrine as truth and us vs. them thinking. Use of thought terminating cliches. use of denial, rationalization, justification, and wishful thinking. Rejection of rational analysis, critical thinking, and constructive criticism. No critical questions about leader, doctrine, or policy allowed. Alternate belief systems viewed as illegitimate, evil, or not useful.

    Emotional Control – make the member feel that problems are their own fault, never the leader’s or the group’s fault. Excessive use of guilt – you are not a leader, you are not living up to your potential, your family and friends are deficient, your past is suspect, your affiliations are unwise. Excessive use of fear – fear of thinking independently, of disapproval, of leaving the group or being shunned by the group. No happiness or fulfillment possible outside the group. No questioning the leader’s authority and fear of what will happen if you do.

    Does any of this sound familiar??? You be the judge.

    These are my experiences and opinions as well as information provided from the book “Freedom of Mind” by Steven Hassan. It is to give another side to this “business” that is never spoken about from stage and to be helpful to people who have lost marriages, family members, friendships, jobs, and finances.

  132. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 20, 2013 11:58 am

    Out in PA-

    Yes, thanks, based on my experience and knowledge, it fits that criteria to a tee. Funny they act like they are the most knowledgeable in every area and have an answer for everything, but never address the cult issue.

    Interesting they have a “handling objection” for everything except the “cult” objection. The only way I have seen them ‘handle’ that one is to, AGREE and say they are! That’s the best they could do? hmm…wonder why? I saw a guy admit it in a meeting, and then (the majority in the meeting were in life as always) and they just laughed?! How is that funny?

  133. Fe0 permalink
    September 7, 2013 3:24 pm

    A very close friend of mine who I would consider a brother to me asked me to hear him out on a “great business” opportunity. His wife and him have fallen on some hard times and they see this as a way to achieve financial freedom at some point. A new found friend of theirs and them came over to see me to tell me about LIFE leadership and how the materials helped them and how there is a whole support system out there. After reading the information provided on this site I confronted him with the 40% attrition rate and he just passed it off like “who knows, maybe we will be in that percentage in a year”. As many have already said it does not seem plausible to convince them that this is a loosing battle and that only at Student 6000 do you even expect to break even. He states that they currently are putting out approximately $300 but that is because they are “ramping up” I will be declining their invitation to enter into this exciting venture but feel very bad because this friend and his wife are like family to me. It would seem these pyramid schemes have made their way to Atlantic Canada as up until now I have never had contact with them in my years around these parts. I feel deeply saddened that people could be brainwashed in such a way that they would knowingly enter into such a venture where you and anyone else you suggest such a system too will only lose money or break even, In their pitch to me they tried to claim that I could write off all the “tools”, subscriptions and travel expenses but as I have read unless you generate income.. other person said they recommend (2) people a year??? in order to stay a legitimate business and that LIFE Leadership was a registered Canadian business and so it couldn’t be illegal or wrong because even on their sign-up form they request your SIN… I would be interested to find out who started the Canadian “Leg” and any information about the LIFE structure here in Canada

  134. September 8, 2013 8:42 am

    Claude Hamilton has what is believed to be the largest TEAM/LIFE organization in Canada. You can do a search in Google for additional articles and information about him:

  135. Vogel permalink
    September 8, 2013 8:58 am

    Funny, I was reading over some of the bio details on Hamilton’s website and noticed that he was claiming that he was in Canada’s “equivalent to the Navy Seal program.”

    Sensing from experience that this is the kind of claim that would likely be total BS, I did a quick Google search and lo and behold, the answer came from someone who posted on this site back in Sept 2011. “Ernie” had this to say:

    “A message for the ‘navy seal’ as Claude Hamilton would like to say he was when in fact he was a diver who repaired the hulls of ships. Quite a difference. Claude is nothing more than a modern day snake oil salesman. ”

    Why am I not surprised that Hamilton would lie about something like this? What a pig! I loathe anyone who would misrepresent their military service record. It is an insult to every soldier who ever donned a uniform. George should be keelhauled.

  136. Rascal Teamster permalink
    September 8, 2013 9:02 am

    @FeO, welcome to the group. Thanks for posting. I feel bad for your friends. It will be hard to convince them, but you can do it.

    Claude and Lana Hamilton lead Canada.

    You can read his blog here

    Or check him out on Twitter @ClaudeHamilton

    It’s amazing to what depth these people go. When you place what they say alongside what’s posted here, it will make you scratch your head. Like this one….

    Show your friends the Bankruptcy thread and read on Joe Darkangelo. Make a note of the $200K in consumer debt with ZERO charitable donations (that’s a nice touch). Then show them this Tweet by Joe from this morning.

    @joedarkangelo: “Too many people spend money they don’t have…to buy things they don’t want… impress people they don’t like.” Will Rogers

    I am waaaaay not smart enough to make this stuff up. They actually say this crap.

    Orrin would spin this saying, “everyone makes mistakes. That’s why I like working with you, Joe. When you spill milk, you admit it and clean it up.” But Joe is a veteran businessman who owned a chain of successful pizzerias. He was no rookie.

    It’s total deception. It’s like putting a new coat of paint on a piece of crap Volkswagon Rabbit and trying to convince people it’s a Porsche.

  137. switch permalink
    September 8, 2013 9:56 am

    ….wow claude, I don’t even know what to say about LYING on your military background. But, I’m certainly not surprised. What was hysterical though is your response to Lewis and his delinquent tax records….

    “claudehamilton says: August 30, 2013 at 12:53 PM
    Great post Bill!!! Having worked with you on the policy council and having spent alot of time having fun all over the world with you and your family I have come to super appreciate you. You are forthright and honest and a great person. I also laughed out loud about your story because it sounds sooooo much like you, sending check to wrong place hahaha. It made me laugh also cause I did an open in Charlottetown, PEI on tuesday and on my way home saw the safety sticker on the coach is not just a few months but actually over a year overdue!!!!!! DONT TELL ANYONE!!!!! cause i dont want them to know im actually broke and can’t even pay to make my bus safe to drive……..bahahahahahahahaha actually im letting it go in hopes Orrin or Chris will bail me out cause they dont want to see me driving an unsafe bus bahahahahah. (obviously sarcasm).
    See you in Milwaukee!
    ps i also have a expired fire extinguisher in the kitchen…..dont tell anyone”

    ….maybe claude here, thinks he’s above the law too?….kind of see a pattern here but hey, I don’t expect anything else with people who have $hit-for-brains.

    gonna have to say no thanks to your scam in Milwaukee too….

  138. Fe0 permalink
    September 8, 2013 11:54 am

    All these people appear to be real “clean shaven” and kind of religious but those are the people who tend to get into snake oil sales. What interested me was from all that I read I don’t understand all the internal consumption if all the rankings seem to be around “pv” couldn’t you just blitz for new customers/members to boost you pv and avoid consuming anything they provide? I figure there has to be more to it than that because even my friend is shelling out approx $300 a month so there has to be come obligation towards consumption of the “company cool-aid” Would anyone be willing to explain? Also I think there is hope for my friend as many of you have mentioned cognitive dissidence my friend during his own conversations with me kept repeating “this is not a pyramid scheme” and “I am not being brainwashed”, both responses were never solicited by myself but yet he felt the need to state these things which leads me to believe he has his own doubts about what is going on. I presented him with the 40% attrition rate and about how the leader/founder of this program had prior ties to the exact companies he claims this is NOT like… I hope if I can keep presenting little inklings of doubt the foundation that these LIFE members have built around him will erode. I know going directly at him all at once will only risk our friendship and be possibly met with hostility but I think if I can become more informed and gain more information that what he posses about the system he wishes to become part of I can get though to him and his wife. They came to visit me on the weekend with their “friend” and I completely felt ambushed in the whole ordeal and ever since then there has been a imaginary grey cloud I feel is looming over my head because I rejected them and this “salvation” they feel they found in LIFE to overcome their financial burdens. I greatly look forward to every ones comments and feedback.

  139. September 8, 2013 12:17 pm

    Also read the comment that counters this argument from Peter Hatvani:

    Hey Ernie Larsen,
    Your message about Claude Hamilton fixing hulls of ships and is nothing more than a modern day snake oil salesman is definitely off track. Having been in the military myself, I can tell you that a clearance diver, which is what Claude was, does not repair hulls of ships, in Canada and Australia, the clearance divers are a feeder unit for the special forces. I can tell you that special forces guys don’t talk a lot about their past or operations. No cd from Claude has ever glorified himself…it is usually others who don’t know about the terminology of the military.
    The rest of your argument could refer to any business. It’s not easy. At least with mlm, your risks or running costs are not as high as conventional business.

    Sydney, Australia

    I have not investigated Claude’s claims, so I won’t debate this. More investigation is needed in this case.

  140. Vogel permalink
    September 8, 2013 3:31 pm

    “I can tell you that special forces guys don’t talk a lot about their past or operations. No cd from Claude has ever glorified himself…it is usually others who don’t know about the terminology of the military.” [Source: ‘Peter from Sydney, Australia’]

    Um, the claim about being a member of Canada’s equivalent to the Navy SEALs is featured on Claude Hamilton’s website; that would be an example of talking about “their past” and self-glorification, which, using Peter’s logic (and basic commonsense), would mean that Claude wasn’t anything remotely akin to a NAVY Seal. And who exactly is Peter from Australia and what’s the basis for his self-proclaimed expertise on the Canadian Navy? Isn’t this just another case of a senior LIEfer misrepresenting his qualifications and then being shielded by some lickspittle (possibly even Claude himself) that pops conveniently to damage control? We’ve seen that scenario play out a few times already, most recently with Bill Lewis’ tax delinquency, and also with the fake leadership awards.

    I call BS on the Navy SEAL claim. Like with all LIEfer claims, the onus should be on them to put up or shut up. Anything they claim but that they can’t conclusively prove should be assumed to be a lie.

  141. Memory Lame permalink
    September 8, 2013 8:00 pm

    I think it’s hilarious that all these “leaders” keep defending each other against claims from this site. It tells me that the bees are buzzing amongst the ranks. Good for the members using some critical thinking. Now, pay attention to how defensive they’re all getting, and ask yourself why they keep contradicting how they taught you to react. I mean, “people with integrity expect to be believed and when not they let time prove them right” right?

    Just look at all the things these guys have been through. Poor Bill & Jackie. Nobody thought Bill would ever amount to anything past thug life in jogging suits, until he got his engineering degree and a real job and then became a super band of brothers leader. Jackie was just a poor unwed mother who OWNED A CONSTRUCTION COMPANY and gave it all up to be with super stud Bill when he took her for a ride in his car.

    And poor Claude, his own mother in law couldn’t even respect him for his Canadian Navy Seal-like service and shut him out after he hitchhiked across country.

    (Incidentally, that’s not gossip. Those are the stories I personally witnessed them tell from stage)

    I could go on.

    They’ve all been through so much and the TEAM was the only place they found redemption and respect. EVERYONE ELSE has ALWAYS been a hater – their moms, dads, siblings, exes, ex-coworkers, pastors – ALL of them. You would think that by now the only critics that matter would be themselves. But, nope. Even though we are so insignificant, we merit the whole gang showing up to defend each other? I wonder how defensive they would be of Bill if he lost his house, got divorced, or (wait, sucking air) QUIT??

    I wonder what kind of farewell Orrin would post on a public resignation? Or Claude on divorce? Chris once publicly on a cd in the top 50 made a humiliating remark about time that Mark Huber left his wife, I wonder how mature he’s gotten since then?

    What a joke even their public alliance is!

  142. September 9, 2013 10:23 am

    I don’t mean to sound prudish, but the fact that Bill got Jackie pregnant out of wedlock always seemed like a double standard to me. The LIFE leaders tout themselves as honest, Christian men who are willing to do what’s right, but where is the honesty and self-control they always speak of in this case? I realize they are only human, but to whom much is given, much is expected. As leaders, I held them to a higher standard.

  143. Former Round Table permalink
    September 9, 2013 11:02 am

    Platinum Blond,

    The double standards for those guys are endless. I remember being shocked when Mark and Anna Huber (very secretly) got married. Their son Jake was around three years old and they had been living together for who knows how long. Orrin said they hadn’t gotten married before because it would have screwed up the Social Security payments Anna was getting for her daughter since her first husband committed suicide.

    So let’s see, they act like leaders and do the right thing as long as it is in their best interests financially. But if it pays better to lie, cheat, or scam, then go for it. (You know, strategic foreclosures, filing for bankruptcy, not paying property taxes, walking away from houses, pretending like you are married, …)

    We are all human, we all make mistakes, we all do things that we regret. BUT, we all don’t stand on stage and proclaim that we are role models and others should do what we do. Lying hypocrites.

  144. Rascal Teamster permalink
    September 9, 2013 11:18 am

    @Platinum Blond, you should hold them to a higher standard. When they elevate themselves to a “guru” status, not only do you have a right to hold them to a higher standard, but they have a responsibility to hold themselves to that standard.

    If the Teamie Weenies weren’t so blind, they’d have heard the crap spewed by Bill and Orrin in Bill’s blog. Bill cried, “human.” Are you flipping kidding me, Bill? How old are you? That’s about the most childish thing I’ve heard a PC say ever…..and Orrin went right along with you. He’s either kissing your butt for some reason, or he just doesn’t get it either. I didn’t see any of my former teammates who commented even catch it. Where’s the high standards of excellence, guys?

    The fact that Bill wrote the blog proves that he doesn’t get it. Some standards of excellence, guys.

    If a pastor robbed a bank, would we all hold him to a higher standard? Yup, you bet. Would we expect a stiffer sentence? Yup, you bet. But what if he wrote a blog about it full of excuses and justifications and cried, “Human?” Well, then I’d like to see him caned before being tried and given a stiffer sentence.

    Orrin and Bill, you should really be ashamed of yourselves. I thought you were supposed to be “in the World, not of the World.” Did you forget that verse? And Orrin, it appears that you are a liar, sir. You don’t really hold the bar high, as you have said. You do lower the bar…..right down to the level of your leaders. Absolutely pathetic!

    Don’t worry, Orrin. We have your back. If you aren’t willing to hold the line on your big leaders, we will.

  145. fastfruit2oo9 permalink
    September 11, 2013 9:54 am

    I actually bought a “t-5-o”… aka “Top 50″… 😦 during the Tm|M/v… you know the JUice of the Future….

    back then, there was a clip in the t50, which had OW explaining near the end in a quick sentence, that these great leaders paying the home office of team (aka “HOOT”) should use checks (preaching during the pre-credit card days, thus an OLDIE within the t50) that are ACTUALLY GOOD – otherwise what does that say about your business/ your character / your leadership / your self.

    Funny thing about my t50, which WAS billed as THE thing to really get your biz going and should be reviewed and re-heard and re-studied often… my upline admitted to having “given out most of their t50″… should have BEEN A CLUE TO ME – but I had a very LOOOOOOONG weekend in Milwaukee a few years back and broke down and ordered the t50 with the next seminar’s ticket.

    Great ‘characters’ who routinely brag about run ins with the law (motor cycle boy and the officers visits, CAN coach boy and speeeeeding tickets, joking about having best friends known as Gobel or Mr. Budwiser, claims of paying off huge amounts of credit card debt via the tod/tm/tm in hiding / tm-mv/tm-LIEf.. but how did the debt get there, bragging of having owned a great manufacturing biz and just up and ‘jumping to the better life in team’..), I am sure there are more they have spun.

    [Editor’s note: Cleaned up formatting]

  146. Melanie Morgan permalink
    September 13, 2013 9:40 am

    “We get what we picture”, right guys?~ one of Brady’s favorites… Can you ‘imagine’ what so many including those on here “picture?” 🙂

    Here’s one thing I picture: These 4 ladies (from this play-by-play witness from that youtube ) getting “recruited” into the Team/LIEf business…..Bahhahahahahahahaha!

  147. OhBeJoyful permalink
    September 14, 2013 6:42 am


    How many of us would be willing to work a job that paid $38.48 a day (roughly $10,000 a year?) Not many I suspect. But $38.48 is what the average member of LIFE makes according to the Income Disclosure Statement … but not in a day, or even a week, but in a month!


    It turns out that if you are making $38.48 a month in LIFE then you are doing comparatively well (by LIFE standards.) Based on my calculations less than 20% of the LIFE members make even $38.48 a month. This is because the income payments are so heavily skewed to the top levels of the organization.


    That is less than $2 a day! I don’t see how anyone can take the LIFE MLM organization seriously. I also wonder how many members of LIFE have actually read the Income Disclosure Statement.

  148. TruthSeeker permalink
    September 14, 2013 8:53 am

    @Vogel, where is Mrs. Vermont? I am on pins and needles now waiting for her to share more of her knowledge about the value of Lief materials.

    I would love to have a discussion with her about her Magic Fuel Additive company.

    Magic Fuel Additive, and now a Magic Self Improvement System. That’s real business isn’t it?

    @OhBeJoyful, great observation! A mere $38.48 per month being earned by less than 20% of participants, astonishing! Horrible allocation!

    Concerning allocation, I read this brilliant rebuttal the other day to a over-hyped post on Facebook talking about “leveraged” income.

    The original post:

    “Consider this, a person who works tirelessly 50 hours per week, 4 weeks per month = 200 hours per month. It would take 50 months or 4.5 years to achieve 10,000 hours of effort. On the other hand, if you had just 500 reps who all worked on 5 hours per week on their business, you would achieve the same amount of effort, and consequently the same amount of income (or possibly more) in one month.

    Which one is better? You decide.”

    The rebuttal:

    “I get the concept, but the concept only works if you have a tangible reference. If I was a landscaper, it would make more sense for me to bid jobs and hire people to do them for less money than what the bid so I can profit. Obviously if I did this 500 times, I can earn more than the time it would take me to do 50 jobs on my own. The trick behind leveraged income and network marketing, is to make sure everyone makes money. If I had 500 reps who were making $100 a week, no one could survive on that (except me who would be taking 1% of that). Now if I couldn’t even guarentee them that they would make $100 a week, I would have a hard time convincing them to work for me. So my original point is, if no one is making any money, how many hours do I have to keep working to replenish the people who say they aren’t going to work for $100 a week or less.
    15 hours ago · Like · 1

    I don’t mean to be a nay sayer but typically the only people that get wealthy of these “concepts” are people like Robert Kiyosaki who sells books describing the concept. The business section of the bookstore is full of people like this.”

    Boy do I love the truth!

  149. Justalittleguy permalink
    November 17, 2013 8:45 am

    Thank you for the great posts. I thought this smelled funny but could easily see how you can get hooked early with the promise of a good investment. I read the first book and though it made a lot of sense. I was even going so far as to think about members of my family/friends I could recruit. Now with your help I have all the knowledge I need to confirm this is a bad investment of my time. I’m looking forward to sharing this with the colleague who tried to recruit me and seeing what comes of it. Hopefully they can see the light too. Thanks again for the work here is one “life” saved. Pun intended.

  150. November 17, 2013 10:59 am

    Let us know how it goes with your colleague.

  151. noteam permalink
    November 17, 2013 11:06 pm

    Justalittleguy – I encourage you to print off some of the pages of this site and bring them to one of their next meetings. You may save a few more people before your exit from this scam. Think of the lives you could change.
    Sitting in the same room as you could be a couple who will waste $5-10,000 a year for the next 10 years and miss all the memories of their kids growing up, only to realize they have nothing to show for it except $50-100,000 of debt they rang up.
    You could truly change some lives by sharing this info with anyone you can from those meetings.

  152. AnotherOne permalink
    November 25, 2013 6:24 pm

    I also have a friend who has been hijacked by these greedy, twisted people. Divorced, then a series of illnesses, financial stress…next thing I know they are telling me they have changed , and now have a “purpose”. Found some “great” people who we’re calling, texting and all of a sudden new friends. Little did I know or understand a few months ago how quickly they could entrap someone whose life was going thru some stressful times. I believe now they are lost and will lose even more…nothing but buying books, cd,s, meetings ,showing plans, etc…surrounded by these people. I can’t seem to reach them…to open their eyes….they have been blinded.It is exactly as it has been written by so many others here. It is frustrating , disgusting, to say the least. I feel partially responsible for being so ignorant. Don’t know what or how to even begin to try to help.

  153. Craig P permalink
    November 27, 2013 3:28 pm

    I feel your pain unfortunately there is nothing you can do to help your friend .Hopefully sooner than later they will have a eye opener and realize that these people only care about getting into their wallets and taking their $.Ask them if you can to just observe how many people are financially free from their JOB .After awhile when they see the attrition rate and that NO ONE NEW is free from their JOB maybe then common sense will kick in .Even the main people in this scam have a JOB if you look hard at it they have to go out and work mostly 2nd shift to keep replacing the people who lost their belief and get the new people across stage in 30 days so they don’t lose their belief. Here is a website for a lawsuit that is going on for business support materials .The same business the people from team came from hope it helps

  154. Concerned Brother permalink
    March 5, 2014 11:48 am

    It’s been awhile since anyone has posted. I recently came into contact with LIFE and was presented with this same IDS chart. I was wondering if there was any updates as to the information presented here. People around me that these leadership seminars hosted by LIFE have an attendance of above 250,000. I was skeptical when they approached me and began researching. To my understanding, the leadership/motivational product being sold is actually great content, but the business model of this MLM is entirely unstable and a manipulated pyramid scheme that fits just inside the vague lines of the law. Is there any. more recent information on this MLM that I can pass on to family and friends a little bewildered by LIFE Leadership?

  155. March 5, 2014 2:12 pm

    @Concerned Brother – according to Orrin’s blog, they are working on the 2014 version of the IDS. No idea when it will be released. He goes into more detail about changes to the compensation plan (interpret it how you will) in a post from February 27, 2014.

  156. Rascal Teamster permalink
    March 5, 2014 3:29 pm

    @Concerned brother,

    Your description of what the LIFE business is is dead on. The material is excellent as you mentioned. But it’s the same material you can find at the library for free and used book stores for pennies on the dollar. You can find this same material in CD all over the place. Find yourself a copy of the Jim Rohn Weekend Event, and you’ll get the same leadership. Read John Maxwell, and you’ll get the information from the source that Chris and Orrin gleaned it from. There is nothing new under the sun. Orrin and Chris are great students and even better parrots.

    As far as your Team numbers, 250,000 people is a number that has been bantered about since the Quixtar days. I never saw numbers like that I’m my time with Team….which spanned from Quixtar thru the first year of LIFE.

    Look at the pictures of their major conventions and you see less than 20,000 people present. At best, I’m guessing LIFE membership to be around 30,000…..but that’s a gut feeling.

    Fortune got closed down by the FTC. Rumors are that their membership (50,000) was a large enough beast to slay. And the reason they haven’t climbed up the Team’s butt with a microscope (even tho, as you mentioned, they appear like a pyramid) is that their numbers are not worth the FTC’s time. I believe that to be true.

    And quite honestly, if I was the Policy Council, and I wanted the game to continue as long as I could, I’d keep the total numbers low enough to fly under the FTC radar while replacing people as fast as they leave to keep incomes flowing to the upper levels. That is the chess game the PC is now playing….and playing it well.

    Someone kick the juke box. It keeps playing the same song.

  157. noteam permalink
    March 5, 2014 6:51 pm

    Concerned Brother – as far as the numbers being 250,000. Look at all the posts on facebook with pictures of the Columbus Major event a couple weeks ago. The upper level is completely empty and it looks like the lower level is only filled about halfway as the stage was moved out with large black curtains to give the appearance of a full arena.
    Count the number of rows and the number in a row in each section and I’d be surprised if there was anything over 6,000 people at that event. And that is one of the largest events of the year.
    Not only does it look like numbers are not growing. But it appears they are still on the decline from 5 years ago when they topped out at around 25,000 at the famous Louisville Major when they needed the overflow room. Since then, the numbers appear to have steadily declined.

  158. Concerned Brother permalink
    March 5, 2014 8:21 pm

    Yeah, just from the pictures I can tell it is way below even the 100k mark. Thanks for the tip and hasty responses. I’m anxious to see what (if any) numbers change in this upcoming IDS. Would love to see another one of these in-depth analysis, Amthrax.

  159. TruthSeeker permalink
    March 5, 2014 10:26 pm

    Concerned Brother, the numbers can’t change, they are dictated by mathematical equations.

    The new bonuses they just rolled out ensure more money for the elite, but do nothing for those just beginning, or struggling to build their (tongue in cheek) ‘business’.

    I expect to even see more dismal numbers with the next IDS as more people quit, more groups become fragmented, and it becomes harder to recruit.

  160. freedomhaha permalink
    March 6, 2014 6:31 am

    The thought of the TEAM leadership purposely keeping the numbers down is an interesting one. Once the numbers got to a certain point you would have to expect more mainstream stories, news clips, ect. that would expose the whole scam to a greater extent. It would make what we do here seem like nothing. They preach going to 1,000,000 people, but even they know it would be a bad idea.

  161. Rascal Teamster permalink
    March 6, 2014 8:06 am


    I was thinking about them keeping numbers low intentionally the other day. How in the heck are they still keeping this machine going with such low major numbers?

    Ok, so they fly under the FTC radar and that keeps them from getting closed down, but what are they doing about lost revenue? It doesn’t make sense, because it so obvious.

    Texting a former teammate of mine and fellow Amthrax member kinda clued me in.

    When I got in during Q, I had four to five really key upline’s between me and my Roundtable that really kept things rolling. They took up the majority of the planning and organizing on the ground. They were awesome foot soldiers.

    Fast forward to today, there is only one of them left. However for the new guy, there are still four to five key upline’s between him and the Roundtable. Four guys below me stepped up. It’s the same damn picture for the new guy. Kind of like trout fishing. Remove the big fish from the pool and the next guy slides in.

    My former upline is going on 10 yrs with Team. Those who were below me range from 4-6 yrs in…..right where my uplines were when I got in. See? It really is the same picture.

    But why in the World would they stay in so long while none of them are even at the Turbo 25 level yet? Cause to coin a friend, “it’s the cult that they can’t let go of.”

    The message Team preaches is a pure message. You can hear ALL of the great leaders throughout history preaching the same messages. This message coupled with the fact that it can truly be life changing for some and that most will never get exposed to this kind of talk, it’s easy to see why these five “leaders” stay with the Team….or why there will always be five leading the new recruits. Matter of fact, if they can get rid of the 10 yr guy, new guy will never know he’s been in for 10 and not making money.

    If the Roundtables and above can maintain a nice lifestyle while rotating this pattern of building up and replacing their foot soldiers, this charade could go on indefinitely with 20,000 total active members in Team.

    The one thing that throws a wrench into this is their dying major convention numbers. That is their largest money maker. At the St. Louis Commerce Thru Community major right after the termination from Q, it was told to me by a Team office employee when I worked in the tool room that Team took $2 Million in tools to St. Louis and only took $500,000 worth back. $1.5 million in tools is a lot of money, and I’ve been told that was the largest major Team ever had. It was huge!

    It appears to me they have a work around. Selling 20,000 self printed / self published books for $20 is $400,000. Almost seems to me that if they sell 3 PC books a year, it almost rivals that major convention revenue. $1.2 million vs $1.5 million, but their cost is less on the self published books. It’s more profitable today.

    Seems like this crap can run on forever until Brady’s hands fall apart. Then there’s dictation and speech to text programs. OK, he has to lose his voice too. Then Team’s done. No one else there can write well enough to stand on the quality of their work.

    But that point’s irrelevant, because the Team is not a FREE market economy. People on System will have to buy those books regardless of whether they think the book is worthwhile or not.

    How many PC books were authored last year? Three? Maybe Brady’s new book, “Pails,” should have been titled, “Buckets of crap!”

    Game on, baby!

  162. freedomhaha permalink
    March 6, 2014 10:54 am

    Rascal Teamster- I really appreciate your work and insight on this blog. Your point about someone stepping up to replace those that have left is a good one. These people are far from real leaders, so a lot of people can fill in when a good sized leader leaves the fold. Like you said that serves the TEAM well in a lot of ways because they can trot out the “X and Y just got in and they are already at Z level.”

    Can anyone with much more success in the business speak to artificially keeping numbers low?

  163. TruthSeeker permalink
    March 6, 2014 4:08 pm

    There is no need to “artificially keep numbers low” with the burn and churn compensation plan they have in place, numbers can never compound due to the nature of their model. They are constantly taking 1 step forward, and 2 steps backwards, for every one who joins, two quit.

    Why that is I will attempt to explain here.

    I know most people don’t comprehend the raw effects of geometric progression, but picture this:

    In the original Michael Collins compensation plan video, and the preliminary analysis written by Brent Hansen, an illustration is given showing a 1 in 27 break even ration based upon a basic $50 package.

    With team approach, positioning etc, that ratio can be tweaked, but what was show in last year’s IDS analysis is that for the most part a 1 in 27 ratio held true.

    That being the case picture a line of 27 people standing in a row.

    Now for those 27 people to earn enough to break even, they must all bring in 27 each (the actual IDS demonstrates this theory). When you take 27 to the 2nd power it is 729. For 27 people to earn at least $50 in Life 702 have to not earn even $50.

    For those 702 to earn $50 to cover their subscription, they have to each bring in 27 for a total of 19,683.

    Then comes 531,441 for the first three levels of people to earn $50, and 14,348,907 for the first four levels of people to earn $50.00.

    With their compensation plan payout, by the time you have reached 5 levels of people who can earn $50 you have already enrolled every man, woman and child in America because 27 to the 6th power is 387,420,489.

    What does that tell us?

    That means if they have around 20,000 turning up to functions, only those in the first two levels, in any direction can earn $50 or greater.

    They try to debunk the YouTube illustrations by citing Team Approach, etc. etc. (you can read all of the comments under Michael’s videos) but the IDS reveals the actual data.

    Don’t believe me? Just Google 27 to the 2nd power, 3rd power, 4th power, etc.

    That is why they don’t have to artificially keep numbers low, because they can never outgrow the fallacies written into their plan.

    To reach the 3rd level of people earning $50 they literally need 531,441 active Life members. The first 3 levels of people will never build, or wait around to reach 531,441, therefore they are on a treadmill of constant replacement.

    Their plan is idiotic, period!

  164. TruthSeeker permalink
    March 6, 2014 4:15 pm

    Because of their greed, they wrote a plan to pay themselves and screw over everyone else. I hope they like staying exactly where they are, because they will never be able to move past exactly where they are at.

    Every idiot in Life is ranting about their new bonuses that don’t even apply to 99.9% of them. Somehow these charlatans have convinced their blind followers that they can have those bonuses too.

    And the first 3 or 4 levels can have them, granted they help take the community to every household in North America…….RIGHT!

  165. Rascal Teamster permalink
    March 6, 2014 5:26 pm

    TruthSeeker, your analysis and input are much appreciated.

    The money from their comp plan sucks, but does anyone have any current insight as to how they run their system money on the Team side? When I left, they were pretty much gutting the Team System and moving everything over into Life packages. That’s still got to be where the money is for the upper levels?

  166. TruthSeeker permalink
    March 6, 2014 9:17 pm

    Rascal Teamster, whether or not there is another comp plan within a comp plan I am not sure. I know replication and production is not expensive and even a 75% payout of a $50 package leaves some extra money from production on the table, not to mention any breakage flowing back up to the top position.

    If I was going to set up Life as my company, I would have a partnership in the very top position with the other PC members. Within that partnership I would have a performance based formula to determine who gets what percentage of earnings from that top position.

    I am curious to know whether or not there is any PV given for monthly seminar tickets, major function tickets, and Tuesday meetings. It would be really easy to monetize those items and include them in the Life compensation plan as well.

    If they are not including those, or giving credit for those three things, then that would mean there is an entire different revenue stream, aside from what the standard Life model promotes.

    If they are giving PV for every dollar spent within their system, then it would be safe to assume that there is no “team side” to their system, and that aside from multiple positions, partnerships, and breakage, they would be earning only from the Life comp plan.

    Do you know?

  167. Rascal Teamster permalink
    March 7, 2014 3:30 am

    When I left they had already started the “Tuesday package and the Monthly seminar package.” There was PV attached to them. They were set up as subscriptions.

    All that was left of the Team system as we knew it was a four CD package.

    The last big argument I had with my upline was over the destruction of the Team system, and no one could tell me what the Turbo 25 and Director requirements.

    As near as I could tell, Team was dead. There was absolutely no reason to have the Electronic Business Center anymore. Everything you knew as the Team side of the business was rolled into LIFE.

    I’m sure that was their way to take the illegal pyramid side of the biz and make it “more legit.”

  168. freedomhaha permalink
    March 7, 2014 6:08 am

    TruthSeeker- Thank you for the numbers that you laid out. I will expand on my thought about keeping artificially low. I don’t think that they purposely keep numbers low rather, as you alluded too, create a plan that simply cannot grow much beyond where it is now. The PC can still make more money than they need while staying off the FTC radar, and out of the mainstream media.

  169. TruthSeeker permalink
    March 7, 2014 6:48 am

    freedomhaha, please share, but I probably can’t buy into that thought or theory, they are simply not that intelligent. Their model is driven by greed, not by deep and thoughtful contemplation.

  170. TruthSeeker permalink
    March 7, 2014 6:52 am

    freedomhaha, sorry, I misread and misunderstood your comment. It’s simple… They created a plan to line their pockets. That plan, ensures that a huge majority will never earn.

    Looking forward to your comment.

  171. Rascal Teamster permalink
    March 7, 2014 7:09 am

    That is what I believe has happened, and the point I alluded to in my reply. Because of their crappy business model, their numbers have dwindled.

    And what they’ve been able to do with the LIFE comp plan is create a plan that makes low numbers work well for the top levels who helped them make it happen.

    LIFE is a business cult that is run by an Oligarchy. They have become the very thing they war against…plain and simple…

  172. freedomhaha permalink
    March 7, 2014 9:23 am

    TruthSeeker and Rascal- Haha. No comment here both of you nailed it. The thing that makes me sick is that they are still out there “churring and burning”. It might only be for a couple months, but in this economy that can be enough to cripple someone financially. Many people are in jail for much less than what TEAM does.

  173. TruthSeeker permalink
    March 8, 2014 10:22 am

    Rascal Teamster, great point! The Oligarchy analogy is one that has never entered my mind, but you are exactly correct.

    What an oxymoron huh? While teaching and preaching of freedom, lifestyle, and wealth, the very model they engage in mathematically guarantees or demands, an Oligarchic outcome.

    The minions continue to serve the masters, and they don’t even know it.

    Orrin had, and still has the ability to change this by tweaking their model, but avarice will not allow it.

  174. Rascal Teamster permalink
    March 8, 2014 12:43 pm

    Look at the similarities between Team and modern day economics and politics in America. And this similarity holds true in EVERY MLM.

    The Policy Council is not unlike the Power Elite…the Wall Street Corpratocracy & International Banking Cartel who really call ALL the shots. They are the modern day kings, and he who has the gold makes the rules. The Policies and Procedures is their Constitution, and they can change it whenever they want.

    The Round Table is not unlike their friendly politicians and government appointees who carry out their agenda. They do this for the monetary gain either delivered by or promised by the Power Elite. Deep down inside, they know that this is all wrong, but they are stuck in a system that forces them to behave this way or get ostracized by the Power Elite who have total control over them. (They all know Raquel’s story, and they know that not following the rules of the kings will cost them their business.)

    The minions in Team are not unlike the masses in America who go around praising the agenda of the Elite (Policy Council) and preaching the message of their favorite politician (Round Table), while those very same people in whom they’ve put their trust are robbing them blind.

    I rest my Libertarian case on Team, and wonder when those in Team who used to preach Kiyosaki’s Cash Flow Quadrant will finally realize that THEY are the ones in the Rat Race.

    Yo Sheeple, those aren’t sheepdogs you are being lead by. You are being lead by the wolves.

  175. TruthSeeker permalink
    March 8, 2014 8:49 pm

    Hahahaha, hilarious Rascal! Not to mention that as they try to expand new boundaries (opening new states or countries) they are just like those elitists who seek to expand their empire, enslaving those in developing countries, and further widening the gap between the haves and have nots.

    Talk about colonialism at it’s best, these guys should all run for public office. Remember “Conquer, Fortify & Domesticate” those could be literal terms could they not?

    Ironically the very thing Orrin preaches against (big government) is perfectly replicated in the framework of their model.

    How the FTC has allowed them to sell motivation to motivate them to sell motivation I will never understand. The clock is ticking……..

  176. Melanie Morgan permalink
    March 13, 2014 3:59 pm

    Rascal (your comments are dead on) @ Truthseeker thanks!

    My experience has revealed and has become evident to me they have BECOME everything they claimed they were going to change in the industry and the outside world..they condemn, complain and continue to criticize the very things the rest of the world does!…

    Yet astounding they treat only worse than but also do ‘business’ much worse than Corporations.

    Therefore not only are not changing things for the better, they are making it worse…clearly they want “control”. to “shift” mainstream to their own “media” and arrogantly boast about how great tho are…but leave the impression they have all…the-answers-from wrapped up in a very bad business proposition.

    I was deceived….lesson learned….and If I believed for a second they were as benevolent, full of integrity, honest, trustworthy and Godly as they claim they are, then I would salute them….But my experience,… proved beyond a shadow of a doubt…Quite the contrary.

    And if I need judge by that ‘fruit’, then my thoughts & feelings are…

    “You cannot believe a liar even when he tells the truth”
    ― Aesop

  177. TruthSeeker permalink
    March 13, 2014 7:34 pm

    Selling motivation to motivate them to sell motivation! That is an almost perfect summary. 🙂
    Patting myself on the back for that one, har har..

  178. Melanie Morgan permalink
    March 13, 2014 9:52 pm

    Truthseeker….Simple….Genius!…You summed it up in one sentence!

    Did you just eliminate the need for any further training?.. I believe You did! 🙂

  179. Rascal Teamster permalink
    March 14, 2014 4:28 am

    I love it. Combine my definition of who Team is with Truthseeker’s description of what they do, and it’s perfect.

    “Team is a business cult run by an oligarchy who’s purpose is to sell motivation to motivate them to sell more motivation.”

    LMAO…. That is better than what I had to describe what I did when I did what they are still doing. (Say that three times fast).

    Happy Friday guys.

  180. TruthSeeker permalink
    March 14, 2014 5:44 am

    Quite an amazing and destructive cycle to be caught up in huh? 🙂

    “Team is a business cult run by an oligarchy who’s purpose is to sell motivation to motivate them to sell more motivation.”

    An almost perfect description, made me remember the destruction cycle of Fat Bastard. He sadly said, “I can’t stop eating. I eat because I’m unhappy, and I’m unhappy because I eat.”

    Not unlike Fat Bastard, Life members purchase more motivation crap which they think will make them more free, and more successful, when in fact it is those very purchases that enslave them further.

    It’s both vicious and pernicious.

  181. Helloeeze permalink
    March 15, 2014 9:52 pm

    My friend who is involved with Life says with the new program, if she gets two people to commit to the program she will be power player and is guaranteed 1100 bucks a month for 12 months. Does that sound right. She has been going to meetings for a year. She craves friendship and connection with people but has no sales or communication skills. She was happy to listen to the tapes but now She thinks she can makes money. She will be out dream building with her friend tomorrow

  182. Rascal Teamster permalink
    March 16, 2014 4:40 am

    That is only mathematically possible if the “new” program of Power Player requires getting two new people to come in with a few hundred people already under them…..and you put them on two different teams. No, what she says doesn’t seem possible.

    Curious as to why after a year, she “finally” feels that she can build it? What happened to change this feeling? Did she listen to a CD that gave her the nugget she needed to break through her walls of fear? Did someone (upline) say something to her that made her feel like she can finally do it? Did LIFE “change” something in the way they build the business that is gonna be a game changer……like Power Player?

    I only ask those questions, as I wish someone had asked them to me. I fell for that a lot…….a lot…..a lot….weekly….I was a good little Teambot.

    You see, they can change the way they build Power Player. They can change their product. They can change it all, but the numbers do not lie. Their Comp Plan is pathetic, top heavy, and one of the worst I’ve seen. Unless they change their plan, the deck is staked against anyone but the PC.

    I can still hear Mark and Jenn Paul frustrated that I was “stuck.” What a joke….I did what your friend did for 5 years. I think I bought the boat that sits at Mark’s house. I at least bought the dock. As long as you keep paying….listening for a year….they are happy.

    Just ask your friend how LIFE changed the Comp Plan that will enable her to finally break through the numbers game and wait for the blank stare…..wait….wait….wait…there it is.

  183. Helloeeze permalink
    March 16, 2014 10:56 pm

    Rascal, I don’t think my friend is really very savvy. She trusts what people say, whether what is written on a document says anything to the contrary. She told me everyone has noticed how much she has changed from listening to the tapes. I thought to myself, you mean the Life people who have known you for six months? How about your friends like me who have known you for 25 years? We see you doing the same old stuff. Let us see. There was Hebalife, Monavie, Arbonne, Carlton Sheets and more Ten of thousands of dollars wasted. I am bewildered. She should know better.

  184. chris permalink
    April 28, 2014 12:54 pm

    Helloeez – She is probably telling the truth. She worded it kind of strange to me but it would look like this.

    New CAB comp plan at lowest level ( which is what she should be talking about)

    – If a member has One team of 4,000pv (or 40 people average) with 20 total access points (20 individuals attending events or 10 couples) and a second outside team of 2,000pv (or 20 people average) that has 7 total access points (7 single or 6 1/2 couples) then she will receive 1,100 a month.

    So if your friend…
    * has one group that has 4000pv – and 10 of them got involved since Janurary and 8 couples besides herself are going to the events.
    * and her second group has 2000pv 5 of them got started after Janurary – Which I am guessing she has only 3 of them since she said she needs two more to commit – and 7 people are showing up to events

    Then she would be power player and she would also be getting the CAB money. It was a weird phrasing though cause you don’t need to be power player to get that compensation. So I think she told you two separate goals into one single sentence. Which is right, but a weird way to say it.

  185. chris permalink
    April 28, 2014 1:23 pm

    AMTHRAX- First, i am trying to get a copy of this new comp. plan but don’t know how to send it to you guys. Secondly, I am not here to debate, but on your IDS breakdown I just want to ask one question and two observations.

    Observ. #1 – We had only 4-5 LIFE Coaches at that time, 8 pc, but some PC are Senior Coordinator 12 not LIFE Coach. Not sure exact number but I know 3 atleast maybe 4. So that means only 4-5 guys were at LIFE Coach level. So that would change the member numbers and percents drastically (but not income average).

    Observe #2 – The check calculation was for student 15,000 and it was accurate. But after that level its personal + deferential + OTC + Leader depth bonus. Also not a massive deal, but just showing only the Personal and deferential sides to everyone excludes a lot of info for anyone who wants to calculate properly something beyond the entry levels.

    Question: On your month expense estimation I have a few thoughts. First I would say that whether I go to a Saturday seminar or sit at home on Saturday, I am going to have to eat food. So food should be excluded because its “anyway money” please lets not debate that, I believe that is a fair statement. So that would subtract $50 from that total. So $450.

    Now the estimation is fair but it can’t be applied across all members cause many don’t involve themselves to the fullest extent. So it has to be averaged to be a fair estimate. Again I feel this is fair to suggest since some Students 150 buy absolutely nothing and cant be displayed as if all of them are 100% paying these said expenses. Hope that made sense.

    So here is an average, based on loose figures but I feel they are close estimates:
    – Since 40% quit yearly most of them are buying nothing so out of all members involved… –

    * 30% – buy nothing = $0.00
    * 25% – only buy a single product (ranging from $10 – $50) so lets say = $50
    * 15% – take advantage of 3 for free program completely and only do gas = $80
    * 20% – Pay 100% of everything = $450
    * 10% – Have some 3 for free stuff, but not all, so lets say gas plus half the cost = $255

    The Median math of $0.00+ $50 + $80 + $450 + $255 = $835 divided by (5) categories = $167.00

    I know you guys don’t like that idea. But I think it should be allowed. Cause to represent students 150 (or other levels) as 100% paying the maximum expense can’t really be allowed. When in reality over 50% or higher of the lower levels are not going to everything and buying everything and driving everywhere. And in fact it is mathematically impossible for student 150 to be paying that full month expense. Cause part of our full expense would be the 200pv for qualifying. So they can’t buy 200pv but only be 150pv member.

    So with that thought. Monthly expense begins to break even around at student 2500 at average. Student 600 at high. I understand that this is controversial to you all. But I feel it can be something you might agree upon allowing.

    But either way, its impossible to spend $450 total (200 of which is 200pv) remain at 150PV level anyway. also you have to add in the fact that anytime that $450 of expense is paid out at any level you have to take 200 of that and return it at members said level. So a student 300 would get at least 20 dollars for personal. reducing his cost by twenty bucks. Student 1000 would get at least $40 back for personal, thus reducing his cost by $40 – so on and so forth all the way up the scale.

    That is way I honestly don’t understand a majority of the Student levels ‘low’ category that LIFE posted, most of the low numbers are zero. If you are a student 150 you would make a bare minimum of $7.50 bucks and so on and so forth. Pretty much the only zero amount would be the first student (who bought nothing). But the rest would always get at least something for bracket scale on their personal volume.

  186. ExTEAMster permalink
    June 21, 2014 9:47 am

    Aren’t we due for another IDS release very soon?

  187. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 21, 2014 12:37 pm

    That resulted in a “page not found” message, Mike

  188. Mike Collins permalink
    June 21, 2014 1:26 pm

    Sorry about that. It’s only Curtis Spolar spouting off on Facebook about Orrin Woodward breaking the book signing record. That’s quite the accomplishment I’m sure he’s proud. Just think now all the life clones have another wonderful selling point for their business opportunity. I’m sure because of this earth shaking event there’s going to be a deluge of new sign-ups into life. What a douche

  189. switch permalink
    June 22, 2014 6:49 pm

    IDS change or name change?

  190. exTEAMster permalink
    June 22, 2014 8:43 pm

    After further digging, I found an IDS for LIFE was released in January 2014, so don’t know if another one is coming this month.

    Speaking of Income Disclosure Statements, a friend of mine who has been unemployed for a few months came over and was very excited about an opportunity his good friend showed him. It’s with a company called Vemma. I knew they did some kind of juice product, so I suggested that before he gets too involved that he check out their IDS. He didn’t know how to do that so I showed him where to get it online. After showing him what a low percentage of people were earning anything more than a few thousand dollars per year, you could see he was somewhat disappointed in having his high hopes dashed. But a few days later he thanked me for showing him the numbers before he jumped into anything.

  191. Mike Collins permalink
    June 22, 2014 10:44 pm

    Vemma: a 28 to 1 ratio last time I analyzed their comp plan. It’s a 1/3-2/3s weak side binary. A total POS run by another charlatan, BK Boreyko. Troy drooly is totally on this guys jock. Should tell you enough

  192. freedomhaha permalink
    June 23, 2014 3:18 am

    I would love to see analysis of the new IDS.

  193. June 23, 2014 10:14 am

    A good site revealing the underbelly of Vemma is YPR Pariah –

  194. Melanie Morgan permalink
    June 24, 2014 11:54 pm

    Is there January 2014 IDS for view for all in the public, or is it top secret?

  195. exTEAMster permalink
    June 25, 2014 5:09 am

    My apologies. There is a new Compensation Plan document on the Life Leadership site dated Jan 2014 that includes an IDS, so I thought the IDS was new as well. But while the comp plan itself was revised the IDS itself is the same one released in June of last year.

  196. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 25, 2014 6:04 am

    @Mike Collins,

    Since your original breakdown of their comp plan, have you ever dissected their more recent ones?

    I know that they’ve added incentives such as trips and money bonuses. How do these figure in? If I had to guess, I would guess they are the dangling carrot you can never reach.


  197. Mike Collins permalink
    June 25, 2014 6:47 am

    No Rascal, I have not. But rest assured, any “bonus” or “trip incentive” would not change the ratio one iota.
    I really need to sit down and do the video on “team approach” to address that particular argument and show how ridiculous it really is once and for all.

  198. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 25, 2014 7:16 am

    I look forward to that one.

    Thanks for all you do, Mike.

  199. Melanie Morgan permalink
    June 25, 2014 9:22 am


    I would also like to see that done, thanks!

  200. July 3, 2014 6:17 pm

    I was reading over the information contained in the first wordpress income disclosure posted in this article and wondering if this is the original one released by Life Leadership? I was searching online to see if I could find their original to compare it, which I was unable to do. Is there a link you could provide for the original document? Also I wasn’t able to find: 40.4% of Members do not continue with LIFE after their first year. in the IDS publication. That number is very concerning indeed.

  201. July 4, 2014 8:19 am

    @Sasha: Look on page 18 of the Member Compensation Plan (TL0335A) document on the LIFE website. The figure still says 40.4%. You can find a link to the document on the LIFE FAQ Page here:

    It is notable that page 18 is a scanned image and not searchable text; this begs the question: Did LIFE not want that figure to be easily searchable on the Web?

    Also note that the Member Compensation Plan was updated in January, 2014, but the IDS displayed in the document is still the same one described in this 2012-2013 analysis article.

    Hope this information is helpful. Were you recently prospected by someone in the LIFE business?

  202. Sasha permalink
    July 29, 2014 11:03 pm

    @ Amthrax

    I have been introduced to the business through a family member. Making this an even more difficult proposition to deflect. Initially when I was introduced I was exposed to principals that resonated (which is the common pitch otherwise known as “the plan”). For example, the use of Robert Kiyosaki’s cash flow quadrant. I was also encouraged to envision where I wanted to go and contrast that to my current circumstance which bare restrictions on me meeting my financial dreams. I wanted to be supportive, so I promised to listen to the materials, I even purchased some materials, and attended meetings and pitches.

    After a short time certain patterns started to emerge that left me with an uncomfortable feeling. There were a few moments that felt discordant, and really prompted me to start investigating for myself. Having never been familiar with MLM I found it a bit strenuous to sort the details. Immediately I was expected to get on the total access to support those up line from me, which costs $300.00/month. You are told you are paying for world class information, as opposed to free information that you have to sort through. The leaders in the group are the ones that expound and select the material to be distributed. I used my membership to listen to the “library” of information, and basically it was a bunch of stuffed suits and house wives pining for relevant things to say. I listened to some CD’s. Everyone I met talked about how amazing the information was, and I felt like I might be ignorant for feeling less-than-enthused with the information, or that is was not perhaps as profound as others thought.

    I started going to the meetings hoping to be exposed to ideas that would stimulate me to grow, and it did, but only in the business. I only was involved for a short time, but I kept hearing the same messages over and over. I literally felt like I was being programmed. If you don’t want to be involved with TEAM, it’s because you either don’t understand, don’t have dreams, or like being poor. The whole business seems centered around Orrin Woodwards megalomania. If you perform well maybe you can get a phone call with one of the few self-appointed leaders. I thought, wow- these people are so great, why haven’t I heard of them. So, I started researching and found very little- well, nothing- positive outside of the TEAM community members. In fact all I have discovered to date are allegations of fraud and comparisons to cults of personality.

    I have many reservations about TEAM. Among them the fact that everything Life Leadership produces costs almost nothing and they charge exorbitant prices. It is centered around people (Orrin Woodward, Chris Brady, etc..) whom the team members claim have “fruit on the tree”, one of the most popular expressions used in life leadership. Well, I have no found this to be the case at all, they are self-appointed rulers in a a self-contrived kingdom.

    I was reading about Mark Huber’s personal fiscal crisis while listening to him speak on conference call about how to run to business, while on his vacation. Talk about eye opening. I asked my up lines over and over how much money they were making who was making money….they would only point to the leaders, and then refer to the compensation plan to remind me what I could be making.

    I’m still getting familiar with the players and alternating business names involved, but am grasping the concept of Life Leadership now, and it makes a lot more sense than the story I am being told from the business owners.

    I am in a strange limbo with family members involved who I literally cannot talk to about this because they are ingratiated in the community. They left their jobs and I still, although am perplexed and definitely not involved, hope they make money.

  203. Former Round Table permalink
    July 30, 2014 5:28 am

    Sasha, your bullsh*t meter is working very well! I love your comments, “basically it was a bunch of stuffed suits and house wives pining for relevant things to say.” and “they are self-appointed rulers in a a self-contrived kingdom.”

    Brilliant, and kudos to you!

  204. freedomhaha permalink
    July 31, 2014 5:52 am

    Sasha- Thanks for sharing! I am sure that your story will help so many others that are going through the same thing. You are so right on with everything you said.

    Did your family members leave their jobs because they believed they had reached a high enough level in LIFE?


  205. Sasha permalink
    August 1, 2014 10:24 am

    They left with a savings from their former well paying job, in anticipation of hitting a high enough level to earn a passive income before their savings is exasperated. I believe fraternizing with the power players within the TEAM has encouraged them into accepting that they too can reach a critical level of income flow. They defer to the couples that were integral in establishing life leadership for inspiration in monetary terms. There is so much hype in the organization, they provide all neophytes with the income tier disclosure statement. What they neglect to address are the actual percentages within the organization that are reaching those income levels, something that Amthrax brought to my attention. The more people you have selling under you the more assimilated you become and there is a false association that somehow you now have greater insight into the qualities of leadership and success in the areas of the 8 F’s. This is such a grand inflation and incorrectly links the ability to sell the Life Leadership material or lifestyle with the ability to be a great leader or even a great person.
    Isn’t this a problem we already struggle with in our society? Exalting the wealthy and demonizing, or worse criminalizing those who are not? They are not working hard enough, they don’t want it enough. But the reality is that there is a preexisting system that is devised to make those on the top wealthier. That’s what I see in Life Leadership. Not to mention I just can’t quite grasp the ingenuity and greatness of a leader whose metamorphosing cliches sell for fifty dollars a pop.

  206. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 1, 2014 4:25 pm


    Welcome to the site, thanks for sharing.

    The clarity of your ‘in-sight’ into this so-called “business opportunity” is what I hope everyone could openly see, including your family. Sadly, and most likely your family members will end up depleted of ALL their savings and feeling dejected and rejected (before a year is up unless they have tens of thousands in savings which might last 2 years)… or otherwise…(broke and feeling like “losers and alienated when they run out of funds)…Ironically, the very thing the TOP LIEfers say their ” world class info. & opportunity” provides & prevents..

    They intentionally program their unquestioning followers into believing they have no other alternative…that they are the saviors from ALL who would be stuck with a “J.O.B” for 45 years to end up Dead, Disabled, and or Broke…

    Here’s the reality…they mislead people….you own or control nothing, one only needs to READ their P&P they own your voice and your (family) team!…It is nothing more than an illusion they create that their “business opportunity” is your only way out of your suggested (by them) the misery you live in and they are the door way to the ‘end of your rainbow’.

    No doubt your family will be back looking for a job… in probably less than a year. They will tell them if they want to get their level “fast” (people have been in 10-15 years and are still NOT there) but they will lead them to believe they need to do what they did (they do not disclose what they really did; such as shifting and giving unearned teams to rank and keep others ranked amongst other things…keeping their favorites..,the TOP can and will change the “DEAL” they made sure their ‘lawyers’ fixed that one.. doesn’t matter what they ‘promise’ they pull and own the puppet strings and can pull the rug out (ruin your business or take it from you) at any time for any reason.

    Good luck, keep sharing:) I would do some research on the “law suits” they try and bully others with.

  207. Helloeeze permalink
    August 2, 2014 10:17 pm

    Just a question. I saw on Youtube a video of a couple who made “six figures in only a year.” They appeared at the Columbus meeting in June. They are “coordinators.” How could they get there so quickly if it’s so hard and only 2% make it? And what is a “coordinator” anyway?

  208. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 3, 2014 4:25 am


    Could you copy and paste the link to that youtube, thanks.

  209. freedomhaha permalink
    August 3, 2014 5:46 am

    Sasha- Found myself nodding to every single thing you said. I just wish I would have your insight instead of hanging around for a year.

  210. ItsaPauling permalink
    August 3, 2014 2:37 pm

    Sasha, great vision you have! I wish we could have seen what you saw instead of blowing tens of thousands of dollars.

    Has anyone heard anything about the Team/LiFe offices moving from Grand Blanc to somewhere in North Carolina?
    Also heard that Brady was to be CEO.

  211. noteam permalink
    August 3, 2014 4:35 pm

    I smell something fishy about this 12 month Coordinator. Seems like a couple named Kevin & Lundyn Rae Conover are the couple they are speaking about. However, a simple google search allow one to arrive at a blog for each of them. A reading of Kevin’s blog from 2011 in which he seems to spout a bit of entrepreneurial tapespeak. However, Lundyn’s blog from December 2012, she talks about how great it is to be a stay at home mom. Interspersed are more tapespeak “A goal is a dream with a date on it”. But the interesting part……she mentions Oliver DeMille in Dec. 2012. Now who do we know who was buddying up with good ole Orrin in 2012? Anyone? Anyone? Were Kevin & Lundyn in another mlm and made the famous mlm jump to stardom? Were they given a position in a tap root due to their association with Oliver DeMille and then everyone upline helped build a 2nd leg just so they would have one person to be able to make the claim that someone who was not a part of Quixtar/Amway finally hit a new level with TEAM/LIFE after 5 disastrous years of 7,000 people trying with no results? Don’t know. But they are interesting questions.

  212. noteam permalink
    August 3, 2014 4:41 pm

    Also found a very interesting YouTube clip of Rob Robson being recognized in Columbus as a new Sr Coordinator. But during the talk he mentions that he walked away from a 6-figure income to follow Orrin (Obviously referring to the 2008 launch with MonaVie). However, he also mentions that he then got so deep in debt that he was 17 months behind on his mortgage and had to get food from his church to eat.

    Now, I doubt the 17 months started immediately in 2008. So that means somewhere around 2012, only a couple years ago, Rob was 17 months behind in his mortgage and getting food from a foodbank. I’d be willing to bet that at that exact time period, he was still on stage speaking regularly and was up there leading people to believe he was living an incredible lifestyle. If true, is that not disgusting!!!!! To be 17 months behind on a mortgage and misleading people on stage night after night into the same nightmare. I wonder how many of the people in those seats have now declared bankruptcy after listening to him.

    I wish we could track all these people down for a HUGE class action lawsuit for all the people who declared bankruptcy as a result of their association with TEAM/LIFE.

  213. exTEAMster permalink
    August 3, 2014 7:56 pm

    I heard Rob Robson speak at open meetings in AZ and he never mentioned anything about leaving a six-figure income or being that much in debt. in fact, his story was about how he was introduced to leadership materials in his early 20s or right out of college and within a few years he had become financially free and job optional. Always struck me as being way too rah-rah and hype to take him seriously.

  214. August 3, 2014 9:16 pm

    Don’t know about the office moving from MI to NC. Chris Brady is the new CEO of LIFE and has been for many months now.

  215. Helloeeze permalink
    August 3, 2014 9:38 pm

    Now that I look at this again, nowhere on the video do they say anything of substance. It’s the person who posted it that says they made that money. Rob Robson.

  216. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 6:43 am

    Thanks Helloeeze.

    Noteam~ Do you know if he was originally on Claude Hamilton’s team or was he from Legacy (Randy Haugen?)

    Interesting to say the least:

    Check out his linkedin Rob Robson claims he is OWNER of LIFE leadership. That isn’t all. 🙂

  217. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 6:44 am

    I too heard that it was moving to North Carolina, but not surprising that is where the CEO Chris Brady lives.

  218. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 6:47 am

    The real question is WHY would they move it there? Is it to make it convenient for CB, legal or other reasons?

  219. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 7:49 am

    Rob Robson…”The Launch of LIEF” video “just 8 days after the LIFE launch”…..Along with 2 more video’s.

    The intro. guy states he has been listening to “this” information since he was 15 years old… where his parents were a part of this environment. These guys just can’t help themselves..his “dramatic” (down on his knees?)…lol..pleeze…Ain’t that interesting how he says they want to be “open” about them wanting to “brain washed” too and also throws in the “scam” plan…How disturbing he states you are being brainwashed and then in then out the other side of his mouth talks about your choice?! He needs to spend some time studying brain washing and cults….it is the antithesis of “choice!” And people find it funny!Talk about desensitizing!

    I don’t know how I EVER sat and listened to this for Years?!!

    Another really mis leading video and linked from Rob Robison also, looks like this is an advertising page of his, does EVERYONE have this or is this only allowed (unfairly) by a certain ‘level’….It’s clearly an “advertising” page.

    He clearly is implying LIFE is a “school”…they even call the video “LIFE School” the other point is linked from Rob Robison (name in comment) off Claude site: interesting links to this site:

  220. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 7:56 am

    It should go without mentioning that the “advertising” page, also is a lead generation for ROB ROBSON. Hmm….if it is “duplicatable”…there must be thousands of these pages (one for EVERY person) out there?….They always said “we don’t advertise” and then gave a lame taught auto-response (handling objection) about the “COMPANY SAVES” all that “advertising money…billions” and puts it back into “our pockets” (how generous, lol) that is why it is “word of mouth”!

  221. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 7:57 am

    I thought I linked to the 3 video’s, here:

  222. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 8:18 am

    It just gets better (more obvious) with Rob Robson.

    It is so appalling the way these guys spin their “stories” (mislead).. I am not sure who would ever believe he was only in a ‘year’ in LIEF? Humm maybe cuz they just “changed the name” in 2011.. ….but then again, it is said… every lie has a little truth attached (it’s all in how you “frame it” and have to be really political with it)…check out this little story about Rob see how congruent it all is?

  223. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 8:38 am

    That link is very interesting read, His family was introduced to this “profession” “network marketing” information (Amway?) way back when he was 15. lol…

    “My parents got started in the profession; they started building very quickly and got to a level of making $2,000 to $4,000 a month within their first year. I thought, ‘man, we’re definitely going to be multi-millionaires,’ but five years later they were pretty much the same size. We just couldn’t seem to find a way to get past the the attrition of people quitting just as fast as they were joining. – See more at:

    “Couldn’t find a way to get past attrition of people quitting”…hmmm and apparently the amazing “information” he found at “15” wasn’t that amazing because he states:

    “From when I was about 16 until I was almost 21 years old, I got into a lot of trouble. I was very rebellious, got involved with the wrong crowd, and developed some destructive habits. When I was 21, I finally moved back home–really trying to change my life.” – See more at:

    Then he talks about his first mentor “guy made several million dollars a year in network marketing” who told him, “I’ll coach you on how to change your life if you listen to everything I tell you to do.” I said, “I’ll do it, whatever it takes!” Could he be talking about Claude Hamilton or was it a different “mentor?”

    So much can be gleaned from those links..

  224. August 4, 2014 8:39 am


    Good point about Team not advertising and the $ going into the leaders’ pockets. There’s also another plus in regards to word of mouth advertising…no paper trail. Instead of having concrete evidence that shows they are misleading people, they can simply claim they never said any such thing.

  225. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 8:49 am

    Sorry guys for so many posts but that link is a must read lol

    Certainly is interesting how Rob Robson has all these different links. ….Article is written by Bill Gantz is he ‘partners’ with Rob? And they have

    Bill states from the article, “This is how you help people achieve their effortless prosperity” Reeeally? Effortless?. – See more at:

    pyramid scheming/teaching at it’s finest….recruit, recruit, recruit!!

  226. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 8:53 am

    Amen…Platinum Blond, I believe George Guzzardo likes to refer it to the “Chinese Revolution” (fortune cookie)…”word of mouth” cover your a$$ whisper campaign. It’s the M.O. of cowards who don’t want to be transparent because if they were…..crap would happen:)

  227. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 8:56 am

    Please Don’t misunderstand me, I meant the M.O. of “Network Marketing” whom everyone single one I have seen claim they company and TOP cult like leaders are godly, transparent, honest, have integrity…blah, blah, blah….

  228. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 9:04 am

    Just another question: How many of these “TOP” guys like Rob, Orrin Woodward, Chris Brady, Tim Marks, Dan Hawkins, Claude, George…have blog advertising pages/lead generation pages and or paid per click pages that NO ONE else knows about? Would that be another little “secret” they keep from the masses only to say “do what I did and you will have what I have?” Gotta “make a list” of EVERYONE you know and do the “work”…while the TOP get “special spots” and perhaps lead generation sites?

  229. August 4, 2014 9:19 am looks like a site that solicits blog posts from MLM participants in all MLM companies. I don’t think Rob or Bill own

  230. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 9:22 am

    Holy crap…last post…. Read the article (from this same link, told it is a must read ;)…) International Credit Card Fraud: Take Proactive Action

    Glen Rawlins

    The guys in the “industry” are unbelievably disgusting and never cease to amaze me…..(i.e. writing on protecting your credit card from “fraudsters” when “signing up?!”)…” Fraudsters” Ha..the irony….perhaps he is also promoting “device recognition software provides some support.” Makes you wonder if they are “selling device recognition software?” …wouldn’t surprise me.

    What is really funny is he tries to imply they steal CC to by “products to (resell on ebay”) hummmm no I would be most likely that is people who have been stuck with a basement and garage full of that crap, that they bought and inventory loaded…to RANK!!!!….

    – See more at:

  231. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 9:32 am

    Yes you are probably right Amthrax, thanks for pointing that out 🙂

    My point was to link to one (wonder how many different versions)..his lengthy version of “Rob’s story” from that link (where most can see the chances of him starting at ground zero to coordinator in 1 year in LIFE would be preeetty far fetched and I would say misleading and dishonest.) and then couldn’t help but point out all the SAME ole stuff. 🙂 How they want people to “believe” what really isn’t the whole truth.

  232. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 9:35 am

    I also hope to find one I saw a long time ago where Rob made some claims that would really show how these guys mislead, it is some real eye opening.. dishonesty. But as of now I cannot find it.

  233. exTEAMster permalink
    August 4, 2014 10:54 am

    Robson is part of Chris Brady’s downlines but at the meetings I saw him speak he said the person who introduced him to the “leadership business” was Monassi Fotu (sorry if I butchered the spelling).

  234. noteam permalink
    August 4, 2014 1:22 pm

    Robson’s original upline in the old Amway business was Lennon Ledbetter. I have several old CD’s with him talking about how Lennon’s mentoring changed his life.

  235. noteam permalink
    August 4, 2014 1:25 pm

    Robson is another reason Amway/Quixtar sued Orrin. They were not so concerned about losing Orrin and his downline who were all abusing the rules of conduct in a blatant manner. Their real concern was people like Robson, Harties, Wilson, Haugen, Effie Ried, Newtons, Mattis, Hamilton and dozens of other mega leaders who were never a part of Orrin’s original line of sponsorship. They were all cross line groups.

    Once again, very hypocritical. How would Orrin like it if someone in another group of MonaVie started getting all of Orrin’s people to move to another company and cut Orrin out of the deal like he did to so many people?

  236. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 5:01 pm

    Noteam~ Thanks, So Lennon Ledbetter’s group was “raided” too? My oh my…OW must love making enemies? Just sayin….Lennon never joined the team as far as I ever knew.

    And you nailed it, I totally see that… If anyone of those “crossline” (or anyone for that matter) would “solicited or raid” “THEIR-HIS- business?” OR “downline” (read QRUSH or Orrin’s “hate” towards Bo Short who once tried it and OW found out)…so when the tables get turned on Orrin most know how he treats his perceived enemies.

    There isn’t a doubt in my mind how Orrin would have treated or done to anyone of those Diamonds if most of them left the TEAM to follow them, after all they for the most part destroyed the original LOS so who knows whose on whose team?OW would probably be living in court or at least there would have been a lot more lawsuits….seems they don’t like it when others treat THEM… the way they treat people….

    But then what goes around, must come back around….. Eventually, right?

    Look at how they hate the ‘critics’….no mystery….when you lie to people and screw people over can’t you expect and Don’t YOU create your own enemies? Why… I believe so (relationships 101).

    And since that I believe is the case then they should probably practice what they preach…and get that “thick skin” they always are telling everyone else you need along with their rhetoric about proving the critics wrong with results… and quit whining about those who obviously will never not worship or praise them. Accept it.

  237. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 6:40 pm


    Looking closer at Rob Robson’s stuff. makes me wonder if he is still even part of TEAM or lief? Do you know if he jumped off the titanic or is still there to rearrange the deck chairs?… haha

  238. noteam permalink
    August 4, 2014 6:53 pm

    Oh he is definitely still there. I believe he hit a new level at the last major in Ohio. And I could be wrong, but I believe this new 1 year couple (with DeMille connections) is downline from him. But he is definitely still drinking the Kool-Aid. Actually, I’m pretty convinced he is serving the Kool-Aid now.

  239. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 4, 2014 7:50 pm

    Thanks noteam!

    I was just getting a little confused with all the dates. Funny, I think if all those people who were not in Orrin’s original team left, wonder how many would really be left? It seems if there is ANY ‘new’ recognition it is always from someone who was never earned or originally on the Team . If these “Life Coach” guys wouldn’t have gotten those crossline freebies, just wonder if any or how many LIEf Coaches would there be? My guess…none.

  240. noteam permalink
    August 4, 2014 8:04 pm

    Melanie – I agree. Of the 7,000 or so that were coming to functions last year, I’d be willing to bet half of them were never in Orrin’s original downline. They were people he poached from Harteis, Florence, Wilson, Haugen, Goetschel, including Newtons, Mattis, Sitzler, Hamilton, etc. That would mean Orrin had a whopping 3,500 or so from his original downline. Great growth considering he had around 10,000+ from just his downline coming to the Breslin Center in 2006. So all this training from this ‘proven’ system has produced an incredible growth of negative 6,500 people in only 8 years (if you don’t count the groups he stole from crossline). What did Orrin use to say “Specific measureable results or something needs to change”. If a manager has 8 losing seasons, they normally fire the manager. Too bad the brainwashed members don’t realize it’s time to let Orrin go out of their lives.

  241. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 5, 2014 6:51 am


    I could have never said that better! Orrin is a poacher….that is the BEST!

  242. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 5, 2014 8:04 am

    Everyone knows that the LOS IS your MLM business, And it blows my mind how many (brainwashed) followers who never questioned the destruction and not just accepted but never stood up for those who because of their manipulation of everyone else LOS to enrich the few, lost it all!,

    Imo, You have to be the lowest forms on the planet to sit back and watch that!

  243. noteam permalink
    August 5, 2014 11:30 am

    Amthrax – This probably should be a new thread. But has anyone else heard that Chris Brady is no longer a distributor and instead is now the new CEO of the LIFE corporate office? What about all this bashing of ‘jobs’? Could it be that his outsides legs were crumbling and it would have been obvious that he was no longer at qualifying levels? Could it be that that would have really looked bad to one of the people who bashed Haugen, Florence, etc for wanting to still be recognized as a leader when their volume was no longer at those levels? Did they have to do something to allow Chris to save face?

    Not trying to bash Chris, because he really was my single favorite in TEAM/LIFE. So this is not meant as a personal attack on him. Just wondering if the system itself is not working so well so that had to do something different for him. Why would anyone want to give up a group that was supposedly one of the top in the country?

  244. August 5, 2014 12:09 pm

    The discussion can continue in this post, since it’s still relevant. Has it been confirmed that Brady is no longer a distributor in LIFE and is just the CEO? I hadn’t heard that one before. If you have facts stating one way or the other, please present to the group.

    Remember when Randy Schroeder from MonaVie (formerly Agel) gave up his distributorship to become a Master Distributor with MonaVie? Then, a few years later, he went back into the distributor ranks?

  245. noteam permalink
    August 5, 2014 9:23 pm

    Apparently it was announced at the last major in Columbus that Chris is definitely the CEO on the corporate side. Some high up leaders have told me that he no longer has his distributorship. Don’t know if that means he no longer builds, but still gets residuals on what’s left, sold it, or just gave it to Orrin who was next upline to help feed the frenzy that ‘no one has ever built a business as big as Orrin”. Laughable when you realize Orrin’s group is just a speck compared to what Dexter Yager built (Orrin’s ego hates to hear that). But remember, Dexter had over 72,000 at the Georgia Dome and had a couple other major functions that same month, not counting several majors for the Britt leg that had over 20,000 a piece that same month and the Gooch leg which also had several majors that month. Compare that to Orrin’s whopping 7-10,000 people at his major 🙂

    Anyway, no one seems to know who is taking the active lead in the business building activity role that Chris used to play. Or where the profits from that position are going.

  246. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 6, 2014 5:59 am


    Yes I did hear that also, but I also heard Dan Hawkins received some of his team. But it is the same ole whisper campaign they brag to their downlines and know and want them to repeat these things, but when it gets exposed in the real world, then they want to call it “gossip.” Perhaps they shouldn’t gossip to their downline.

    The fact remains Chris Brady has a J.O.B, which we all know how they bash JOBs. The double standard….hypocrisy.

  247. freedomhaha permalink
    August 7, 2014 11:41 am

    I really enjoy learning the deep history of TEAM when people post. I also think it is helpful for new people to understand the strong Amway connection that TEAM has. If I knew Orrin was EVER in Amway I would have run the other way as fast as I could have.

  248. August 8, 2014 7:01 am

    @freedomhaha – How was the background of TEAM communicated to you when you were prospected? At what point did you learn about the prior history of TEAM? What caused you to stay at that point? I remember you saying that you left once you found out about the bankruptcies of certain TEAM leaders.

  249. freedomhaha permalink
    August 8, 2014 3:41 pm

    Amthrax- When I was being prospected none of the TEAMs history with Amway was ever shared with me. It was drilled into my head many times that this was the opposite of Amway. It was about 11 months into my 12 months into TEAM that I started to learn the history with Amway. When I approached my upline about it they told me that “Orrin and Chris left to fix everything they thought was wrong with Amway. In TEAM history this was the buildup and the initial launch of LIFE. I remember hearing about how “finally Orrin could run his own company and do things the exact right way”. Due to this being the first company change I thought nothing of this. From my perspective it would be much easier to get someone to start on the LIFE system than sell them $45 bottles of juice.

    It was when I started to learn about the TEAM history (coupled with the fact that I had lost roughly $1,500- $2,000) that I had an uneasy feeling about what was going on. I had a two week stretch where I distinctly remember that I couldn’t listen to any of Orrin’s tapes. I still don’t completely know why, but they just made me feel slimy inside. I used Chris and Bill’s tapes to make me feel better about the business at that point. However, even they did not do the trick and I one day when I was looking up Darkagelo’s blog I saw that Amthrax link to the bankruptcies. I did my due diligence and checked them out. The very next day my LIFE into box, or whatever it was called, came to my door. I didn’t even open the material and dumped it straight in the trash.

    After finding out the truth I let my former TEAM know that I was out and why. That was in fall of 2012, and I have felt it is my duty to continue to help others through this blog. I never reached a high level, or even went Power Player, but Orrin and TEAM still robbed me of a whole lot.

    If any current TEAM members would ever like help on dealing with leaving TEAM we can work out a way to talk. It was rough, painful, and embarrassing for all of us but I promise it does get so much better!

  250. Brent Hansen permalink
    August 8, 2014 4:52 pm

    @Sasha, great to hear from someone who knows how to think critically. Over a 12 year “career” with Amway – Yager – Quixtar – Legacy – Team & Monavie, I became a 5 percenter.

    We worked very, very hard, built an organization that less than 5% of those involved in MLM are ever able to build, reached ranks that less than 5% of those involved in MLM ever reach, and still amassed net losses that exceed $250,000 over the span of that career.

    The amount of people who ever earn from MLM is negligible, and your family will most likely end up in the exact same position. Brace yourself for the mathematically inevitable.

  251. Rascal Teamster permalink
    August 8, 2014 5:21 pm

    Great post, Brent.

    Question for you if you feel like answering it.

    How the heck over a 12 yr period do you net a loss of $250K. By my math, that’s a net loss of just over $20K per year.

    Where does the $20K a year come from that you go backwards every year? Credit? Loans? It’s hard to fathom where the money originates to keep funding it at that level.

    Am I looking at this wrong? It almost seems unbelievable. How far into it were you job optional?

  252. August 8, 2014 5:45 pm

    @freedomhaha – I don’t think you’ve ever shared your story in such detail on my site. Do you mind if I make it a separate post? I’ll add your favorite comment (that you give to TEAM/LIFE members) about the percentage of their teams making a profit.

  253. Brent Hansen permalink
    August 8, 2014 6:08 pm

    @Rascal, without getting in to too much of the gory details, and really exposing my foolishness I’ll try to give a summarized version to help you understand.

    At age 25 (I’m now 45) I was blessed with an above average income and career in sales. I was earning around 80K a year and living on 30K, with zero debt, no mortgage, and no children to support.

    When I saw the ‘opportunity’ it rang true to me, so I was all in from day one, and I wasn’t afraid to invest in what I thought would one day payoff.

    Our teams were in rural areas in the west (closest meeting was around 50 miles away), so working with people to build required lots of cash flow. Between flights, hotels, meals, and wearing out a car every year and a half, the losses quickly accumulated. I remember several months that I put on enough miles I was changing the oil in my sharp car (cadillac, haha, so stupid) every 10 days. I recall spending around $20,000 in travel expenses when Amway launched the Philippines, and I was determined to get in on the ground floor since I had ties to the country.

    I remember when they began promoting the 300 PV club which would cost us about $750 – $900 a month in products alone (yes, there were no real customers), and many, many $1,000 tool orders, sometimes on a weekly basis.

    The first 6 or 7 years weren’t difficult to fund yet we were never able to produce a positive cash flow. As children came, along with that whole ball of wax, the following years became increasingly difficult to continue to ‘run the roads’, and stay in the game.

    Every time it looked like we could turn a profit, something would happen with a group (they would quit) , a transmission would go out, or something else would happen that would prevent us from turning a profit.

    I could honestly never get the deal to produce enough profit above expenses to become ‘job optional’, and apparently from all of the bankruptcies, and discussions I’ve had with other high level achievers, neither could they.

    The biggest difference between them and all of us is we actually tell the truth, while they continue to bury their heads in the sand and rob Peter to pay Paul. It is a horrible state to be in when you always believe that success is just around the next corner, while not even understanding the principles that really determine success.

  254. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 8, 2014 7:16 pm


    Freedomhaha and now Brent Hansen sharing more on what they went through/ stories, would be of great value for both of them to be put up. I think they both show so much of what people go threw at different levels. Thanks guys for sharing, appreciate what you bring to help others.

    Editor’s note: I have shared Brent and Freedomhaha’s stories in a separate post here.

  255. Rascal Teamster permalink
    August 8, 2014 9:32 pm

    Brent, thanks for sharing that. It’s the only way I could see the numbers work the way you describes was if you had that disposable income to invest from the start.

    So many people think that if they just had cash, they could make networking work. They think the thing that holds them back is cash flow. Your story proves otherwise.

    Sounds almost like a gambling addiction, doesn’t it? I certainly had one to this business….scared to bail. Heck, I took the $14K proceeds from a timber sale and blew through that in 1.5 years in Monavie cause I felt the $4K / year I had been investing wasn’t giving the business a fair shot. How sick is that?

    So when did you know it was time to call it quits?

  256. Brent Hansen permalink
    August 9, 2014 8:17 pm

    @Rascal Teamster, convincing a choleric or high D personality that the should ‘quit’ takes more than just a few bumps in the road. Reality set it when I placed a $30,000 mortgage on a 25 acre parcel that I owned free and clear as a means to continue to make ends meet.

    The subsequent loss of that property when I failed to meet a $500 a month payment began to open my eyes, but ultimately, I made a conscience decision to leave when I began to think critically and ask questions about everything. I was instantly labeled as a dissenter by those who had feigned loyalty all during the 12 years, and ostracized from the very groups that I had worked so hard to create. My undying loyalty to my ‘upline’ failed, and they slandered me to everyone in our organization.

    The financial devastation wasn’t sufficient, but the loss of friends, relationships, and self-dignity did the job. I basically hit rock bottom as I watched a $120,000 piece of property (with a $30,000 loan against it) go to creditors because I couldn’t scrape together 4 or 5 payments to bring the loan current.

  257. freedomhaha permalink
    August 10, 2014 11:36 am

    Brent- Thanks so much for sharing. I just hope that people see that and realize your story is pretty much the best case scenario as to what can happen to them. BEST CASE.

  258. freedomhaha permalink
    August 10, 2014 11:38 am

    Follow up to my comment. Of course reading this and quitting now is your best option, but I was speaking in terms of size of your potential group.

  259. August 10, 2014 4:44 pm

    Brent, reading your story made me sick to my stomach. It sounds like you were a true student of the system. The fact that it still fell apart is a testament to just how bad & dangerous MLM cults are. I’m glad you’re free.

    To any MLM’er reading this and still lying to yourselves, how can you consider Brent’s story anything other than fact? There are too many specifics for it to be otherwise. Scale it down to fit your efforts to date & see if it doesn’t match. I bet the themes and results are similar.

  260. Rascal Teamster permalink
    August 10, 2014 4:50 pm

    Brent, thank you, sir. What you just posted will help people tremendously. I didn’t know your story. Amazing testimony.

    PJ, very astute analysis. And you are correct. Brent and my results were the same…..except his numbers were way bigger.

    It’s the closest I’ve ever been to a gambling addiction. Too bad it isn’t marketed as a gambling. No, the odds might be better with gambling. At least with gambling you know what percentage the house takes before you sit down.

  261. Vogel permalink
    August 10, 2014 7:44 pm

    I offer my thanks too Brett. Your words ring true. Puts a real human face behind what we’ve known to be the truth all along.

  262. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 11, 2014 6:22 am


    Your story nails down the truth, the mob like tactics, and loses on so many levels. For all those who lived this, have ‘survived’ going to hell and back. Sadly, I too can relate. Kudo’s for your courage and for giving back to others that could save someone from this hell.

    I hope Amthrax makes this a top post.

  263. August 11, 2014 8:04 am

    I have shared Brent and Freedomhaha’s stories in a separate post here:

  264. Ray permalink
    August 15, 2014 6:22 pm

    First: This is also a ‘scam’ because you’re using other people’s success to drive traffic to your site. Ohhh you’re taking ‘advantage’ of people.

    Second: It’s not a scam just because you don’t make money. Do you make money when you shop at Wal-Mart, McDonalds, or at a Gas Station? Many people join to get discounts on the product just to get it cheaper (and it already is). Don’t people join Amazon Prime, Sam’s Club, or other various subscriptions to get discounts and cheaper prices?

    Third: If you study businesses, more than 90% of ANY business die within the first 5 years, and over 50% of the remaining dies after that…. does it mean that businesses are scams? does it mean that no one should ever start one? No. You wouldn’t have the internet or a computer to type/read this on if they thought like you did.

    Fourth: Most people do NOTHING and expect it to be easy and get rich quick when no one promised that it is. It’s just easier than working for 50 years to retire broke.

    Fifth: I’m a qualified Student 10-15k going to hit Leader by next summer… your guess of $500 month is flat out WRONG. To quality for compensation you only need 1 thing. Generate 50pv of customer volume…. that is about 2 customers on a $50 subscription or 4 on $25. So getting paid = $0. It is recommended that you get trained in the business and that is $80/month, but also optional. I also buy some for my personal consumption (not needed or required for the business in anyway, shape, or form so I won’t included that). You have to pay for Meetings and Seminars which are about $5/meeting and $30/seminar = $50/month.

    $80 training + $50 meetings = $130/month… even if I double that to $260 it is only half if what you estimated. Also I get deductions on every mile I drive and gas. I go to school or a normal ‘job’ and there are no deductions on gas or miles… why isn’t THAT a scam?

    Sixth: Let’s be on your side and say that this is a scam. What is a scam? The definition is, a dishonest scheme or fraud. Everything in LIFE Leadership is laid out, if it’s confusing ask someone and they will explain it to you. They are open to answer any and every question you have, nothing dishonest, nothing shady, nothing to hide. Think about this… people buy things ANYWAY!

    How many people shop at Walmart? Barnes and Noble? BestBuy? At&t? Comcast? Gamestop? (not even talking about partying, drinking, and gambling…. total waste of money)

    When you buy a DVD from Walmart, a Book from Barnes and Noble, or Internet from Comcast, who keeps the money? They do. How much? 100%, ALL of it.

    If you could ‘join’ Walmart, Barnes and Noble, or Comcast and save 25-50% on everything you buy, would you? Dumb question I know.

    What if everyone you referred to Walmart, Barnes and Noble, or Comcast they pay you commission? on top of giving you rebates on the products you already used…. Now you’re calling them ‘scams’ whereas before when they don’t do referrals or give you commission no matter how much business or profit you may bring them and keep 100% of the money is okay… do you see why it makes no sense?

    You need to understand where things are going… you only thing it’s a ‘scam’ because it’s not traditional or conventional and you’re not familiar with it. Not a lot of people make money at them? Does a lot of people make money anywhere else? No.

    Lastly: Some may be illegitimate, and some are. But that doesn’t make everything illegitimate and ‘scams.’ Some are good, some are bad, just like anything in life. It’s up to you to not only be honest, but be open minded and not be biased. You can fight it to the day you die but if it works it works. LIFE Leadership is not a random company where you HAVE to buy lotions and potions and rubber lashes just to have a business that works…. it’s a business that is built on leadership and making a difference… something we desperately NEED in not just our country, but in the world. So we’re also in the right trend. But if you’re honest, it’s not a trend. Living a good and meaningful life shouldn’t be a ‘trend’ that comes and goes, it should be a way of life.

    I hope this clears up some stuff.

  265. August 16, 2014 7:23 am

    @Ray – Thank you for bringing your voice to the discussion. I hope you stay a good long time to provide your MLM perspective. I’m going to comment on and asks question about several of your points below.

    First: This is also a ‘scam’ because you’re using other people’s success to drive traffic to your site. Ohhh you’re taking ‘advantage’ of people.

    I’m not making any money off of this blog.

    Second: It’s not a scam just because you don’t make money. Do you make money when you shop at Wal-Mart, McDonalds, or at a Gas Station? Many people join to get discounts on the product just to get it cheaper (and it already is). Don’t people join Amazon Prime, Sam’s Club, or other various subscriptions to get discounts and cheaper prices?

    Compare how these businesses are being promoted versus how you are promoting the LIFE business? Do Wal-Mart, McDonalds and the Gas Station have a profit sharing plan that they share with their customers? Are these companies being promoted as a way to making money and live the life you’ve always dreamed of? This is, of course, a rhetorical question, since we both know the answer is a resounding no.

    Yes, people join Amazon Prime and Sam’s Club to get discounts and cheaper prices. Again, they are not being promoted as being a money-making opportunity like your MLM business.

    Third: If you study businesses, more than 90% of ANY business die within the first 5 years, and over 50% of the remaining dies after that…. does it mean that businesses are scams? does it mean that no one should ever start one? No. You wouldn’t have the internet or a computer to type/read this on if they thought like you did.

    All that statistic shows is that building a business is difficult. The majority of people who start an MLM business don’t succeed either. Your MLM’s Income Disclosure Statement shows a 40% yearly attrition rate.

    To quote Freedomhaha, what percentage of your downline is making a profit after expenses? What is the attrition rate for those in your direct organization?

    Fourth: Most people do NOTHING and expect it to be easy and get rich quick when no one promised that it is. It’s just easier than working for 50 years to retire broke.

    How do you explain the business to people? Do you tell them about the 40% attrition rate? Do you show how the majority of profits goes to those at the top of your MLM’s pyramidal structure? Do you tell them about the history of your leaders? How many of them have been in the MLM industry for two decades? What about all of those that have flowed through their organizations over the years? Where are they now?

    Can you explain why and how it’s easier than working for 50 years? How do you know that those who do work for 50 years will be broke when they retire?

    Fifth: I’m a qualified Student 10-15k going to hit Leader by next summer… your guess of $500 month is flat out WRONG. To quality for compensation you only need 1 thing. Generate 50pv of customer volume…. that is about 2 customers on a $50 subscription or 4 on $25. So getting paid = $0. It is recommended that you get trained in the business and that is $80/month, but also optional. I also buy some for my personal consumption (not needed or required for the business in anyway, shape, or form so I won’t included that). You have to pay for Meetings and Seminars which are about $5/meeting and $30/seminar = $50/month.

    $80 training + $50 meetings = $130/month… even if I double that to $260 it is only half if what you estimated. Also I get deductions on every mile I drive and gas. I go to school or a normal ‘job’ and there are no deductions on gas or miles… why isn’t THAT a scam?

    You’re not annualizing your expenses over the course of the year. How much did you spend on travel, hotels, and airfare for the major conventions for your MLM? Isn’t a ticket over $125/person? Three to four events per year? $375-500? Travel, be it bus fare, gas, or airline tickets? Hotels? That adds up.

    What about extra “optional” tools that you purchase throughout the year? Business attire, shoes, food when you are out there pounding the pavement and showing plans?

    Even though you’re getting a deduction on miles, you still need to figure in how much you’re spending on gas. Please add those up for us and report back on your monthly expenses.

    Sixth: Let’s be on your side and say that this is a scam. What is a scam? The definition is, a dishonest scheme or fraud. Everything in LIFE Leadership is laid out, if it’s confusing ask someone and they will explain it to you. They are open to answer any and every question you have, nothing dishonest, nothing shady, nothing to hide. Think about this… people buy things ANYWAY!

    How many people shop at Walmart? Barnes and Noble? BestBuy? At&t? Comcast? Gamestop? (not even talking about partying, drinking, and gambling…. total waste of money)

    When you buy a DVD from Walmart, a Book from Barnes and Noble, or Internet from Comcast, who keeps the money? They do. How much? 100%, ALL of it.

    If you could ‘join’ Walmart, Barnes and Noble, or Comcast and save 25-50% on everything you buy, would you? Dumb question I know.

    What if everyone you referred to Walmart, Barnes and Noble, or Comcast they pay you commission? on top of giving you rebates on the products you already used…. Now you’re calling them ‘scams’ whereas before when they don’t do referrals or give you commission no matter how much business or profit you may bring them and keep 100% of the money is okay… do you see why it makes no sense?

    You need to understand where things are going… you only thing it’s a ‘scam’ because it’s not traditional or conventional and you’re not familiar with it. Not a lot of people make money at them? Does a lot of people make money anywhere else? No.

    What’s your take on TelexFree – free VOIP on top of a business opportunity? What’s your take on Vemma, energy drinks on top of a business opportunity? What’s your take on ACN, Internet, cable, telephone, and more on top of a business opportunity? What’s your take on MonaVie, purple juice concentrate on top of a business opportunity? What’s your take on Herbalife, Amway or Shaklee, nutrition and home-care products on top of a business opportunity? What’s your take on countless other multi-level marketing companies described here or on other websites?

    If you’re so interested in saving money and earning commissions, why aren’t you signed up for all of these wonderful, life-changing, money-making opportunities? What’s so different from these companies over your LIFE MLM?

    Lastly: Some may be illegitimate, and some are. But that doesn’t make everything illegitimate and ‘scams.’ Some are good, some are bad, just like anything in life. It’s up to you to not only be honest, but be open minded and not be biased. You can fight it to the day you die but if it works it works. LIFE Leadership is not a random company where you HAVE to buy lotions and potions and rubber lashes just to have a business that works…. it’s a business that is built on leadership and making a difference… something we desperately NEED in not just our country, but in the world. So we’re also in the right trend. But if you’re honest, it’s not a trend. Living a good and meaningful life shouldn’t be a ‘trend’ that comes and goes, it should be a way of life.

    I hope this clears up some stuff.

    Are you being honest with your downline about the statistics shown in your IDS? Have some of your upline or crossline leaders been honest about their past financial indiscretions like bankruptcies, strategic defaults, failure to promptly pay property taxes, and foreclosures? Was any of this information (in the public record) revealed while they were out prospecting people or showing the plans at meetings?

    My opinion is your comment asked more questions than it answered. We look forward to hearing your responses and to a continued discussion about your LIFE business.

  266. Rascal Teamster permalink
    August 16, 2014 9:49 am

    @Ray, you are totally correct on the 90% of small businesses failing within the first five years. We used to say 80%, but I believe as you obviously do, that the failure rate is much greater. I see that in my industry all the time. I’ve been in retail for 30 years. We own two stores.

    In small business, a failure is a business which fails to make a profit after a set number of years….or until the money runs out.

    In the 5.5 years I was in Team, I had gross expenses of just over $25K and gross receipts of just over $3K.

    By the numbers upon which you and I both agree, my Team business was a failure. It never even came close to breaking even on any of the five years I claimed a loss. (And be careful. I got out partly because I feared an audit….my 95% accountant advised me to get out or not claim a loss. The IRS frowns on too many consecutive loss years.)

    That point never came to me till after I got out. Matter of fact, my upline mentor had already been in for five years when I got in, and he has NEVER shown a profit. And we were sitting in a great spot in the Tribe….side leg of Orrin’s deepest leg…the tap root of the Team…Tim Marks, Bill Lewis, Huber and Brady’s as direct upline. Pretty good spot, no?

    The LIFE IDS says that only 4% of the members have a profitable business. I am failing to see how is Life a better opportunity than a conventional business? Felt to me that I had two self employed jobs…one that paid the bills, and the other that sucked up all the surplus. But that’s the result for 96% of all members.

    The only thing that would make a 4% success rate tolerable is if last year the number of 4%’ers was X, and this year it is X + Something. That would prove you and the people you sponsor have a chance.

    Team numbers are shrinking, Ray. The pool of 4%’ers is getting smaller. It has to. It’s basic math.

    This “lie” or “truth” is all very easy for Team to handle. Show a new IDS with bigger numbers. I do not believe they can, Ray, which is why you don’t have one. As Orrin always said, let the numbers do your talking. If you aren’t forthcoming with the numbers, what should that tell an investor?

    You are asking people to invest in your business, Ray. The first question is, as a potential investor in your opportunity, what do the numbers look like? Not what the numbers could be if it ever got to a certain point. Let’s start with right now….Income vs Expenses. Whatcha got, brother?

  267. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 16, 2014 10:45 am


    Have you been told and led to believe, by the all the TOP “leaders” and your upline that you “own your own business?”

  268. kilerb permalink
    August 17, 2014 9:36 am

    @ Ray I also want to thank you for your voice in this discussion like the posts after your post from Amthrax and Rascal Teamster I also would like to see your #s as in your portfolio income to out go I was recently contacted by another mlm selling electronic gadgets and I ask him this same question and he could not produce any #s for me see for me to get into business with one of these mlms or any other business I would want to see these #s since that shows the health of the business also a business portfolio would need to be presented See I was in this business back in the mid 2000’s .I was in the Harties line was in with the big dogs behind stage getting the speakers cars having lunch with the top leader’s (most of the time on my expense) and driving the diamonds to meetings in my groups or other groups for counseling .When Orrin came in for the merger that was labeled as a huge thing we where all excited he has awesome growth see I only drove my group 70 deep and was not making any $ so this was huge ($300 was my biggest check).The first thing Orrin did was ask Harties who is on fire in your groups .That was our direct Diamond So Orrin started to mentor this person and take him under his wing long story short in a years time Harties is out of the picture and this diamond that Orrin was mentoring took almost all of the Harties foundation over to Mona vie during that time frame that we were in NO ONE became free it was always the same speakers ( as a mater of fact around 95% of the people that were in when I was in are all gone either moved away divorced or bankrupt I went bankrupt personally .Now you may say I was not hitting it well I sold a car put that $6k into tools. Had 2 brand new cars in a 2 to 3 year time frame one had 124000 miles on it the other had 70000 miles on it .When the crap hit the fan the whole up line said I was mishandling my finances (oh I forgot to tell you my house was in foreclosure see I went out contacting and came home to a note on my door from the sheriff foreclosure papers fire it up) I was told that this was going to be a great story from stage from my blue Hawaiian diamond .After I lost my home and they repossessed my second vehicle the whole group cross line and all started to distance themselves from me left on a island . Remember I was mishandling my finances. So now when I am approached I ask for #s I want to see how healthy is your business. Were technically business partners right so when you sit down and prospect people are you willing to present this information or not. Now my advice to you is if it comes down to paying your bills or going to a function pay your bill that function is the same information you heard at the last one just repackaged differently. I remember coming home from a function dead off winter and being out of fuel to heat the house but hey that’s what all the winners do right it was only in the single digits that night break out another blanket put some gloves on all is well (PS I find it funny when I bump into people that are still in 2 couples come to mind and everything is great and they still have a J.O.B. they have been doing this for over 15 years when does the light go on come on)

  269. Rascal Teamster permalink
    August 17, 2014 9:51 am

    @kilerb, great post. Nice to hear from people outside the Team but close to the action. Love my waaaay cross line brothers and sisters.

    The more things change, the more they stay the same.

    You know, one big difference between my retail business and my Team business that hit me around year 4 was the difference between expenses.

    In my brick and mortar retail business, the expenses are pretty much fixed. Only inventory goes up, but inventory cost rise due to sales increases. As sales slow, inventory costs slow.

    In my MLM business, not just the inventory expenses go up as business goes up, but everything goes up. Travel expenses go up. Gas expenses go up. Meal expenses go up. Tool expenses go up. Damn, someone show a fixed expense in an MLM business.

    Someone show me the point at which you can say, “when sales get to this number, everything else is profit.” Real business can project that number.

  270. August 18, 2014 9:17 am

    It sounds like Ray signed up, got into a good tap by pure luck, held his spot (didn’t immediately commit to working the biz), and was pushed up the PV ladder. Now that he’s trying to build a 2nd, he’s getting peppered with objections that have sent him here. Since he did the bare minimum (or close to it) in the tap, he thinks his 2nd will grow just as easily.

    I say this because if his 15k was balanced & based on a mostly organic 1st & 2nd, he wouldn’t even be on this site because per LIEF policies only PC are allowed to impersonate MLMrs on the web…uuhhh…I mean he would be too focused on his dreams to care what a bunch of quitters think.

    I also was a perpetual ‘next summer’ guy, I hope he doesn’t ‘next summer’ himself into bankruptcy or divorce.

  271. exTEAMster permalink
    August 19, 2014 4:24 am

    Ray.. a few other things you need to consider in terms of expenses. First remember that if someone is married their spouse is also encouraged to be involved in the new business. That means doubling the meeting, seminar and conference fees. My wife and I attended every major over a two-year span (7 majors in all because we were told each one was critical to the growth of our business). Those trips cost us more than $5,000 between tickets, transportation, lodging, meals not to mention time away from our evil jobs and family. All to hear talks that were so inspirational and “amazing” that they showed up a few weeks and months later on cd’s that we were paying for as part of our subscription.
    Your estimates of expenses also doesn’t take into account the tools such as flip charts, “how to get started” cds and books, comp plan brochures etc that may not seem like much at first but start to add up quickly and make turning a profit even harder.

    Also take note of PJ’S comments regarding the building of a second leg. This is where our efforts hit the wall and we realized after more than $9k in expenses over two years that it was time to cut our losses. Tap root PV is tantalizing but the attrition rate in your second leg is a killer. A close family member of ours has been working LIFE extremely hard for more than 3 years and NEVER misses an event, reads EVERY book and shows multiple plans every week and still can’t keep more than 3 or 4 active members in his second leg. And the advice he gets from his upline? Just work it a little bit harder because he is “so close” to really taking off.

  272. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 19, 2014 6:52 am


    Sorry for your losses and bankruptcy!

    “Publicity and transparency are the enemies of a confidence game.”~ Bill Ackman

    You said: “The first thing Orrin did was ask Harties who is on fire in your groups .That was our direct Diamond So Orrin started to mentor this person and take him under his wing long story short in a years time Harties is out of the picture and this diamond that Orrin was mentoring took almost all of the Harties foundation over to Mona vie during that time frame that we were in NO ONE became free it was always the same speakers ( as a mater of fact around 95% of the people that were in when I was in are all gone either moved away divorced or bankrupt I went bankrupt personally.”

    It is clear and obvious how parasitic the confidence game Orrin and others play.

    Don’t think “Ray” is coming back, not a shocker… nothing new under the sun. They can’t hold a candle to the legitimate questions, public transparency or truth.

    Thanks for sharing!

  273. Melanie Morgan permalink
    August 19, 2014 8:21 am

    Perahps “Ray” would like to be honest about what it really costs to be a “PBO” (changed from IBO) “professional business owner.

    A “customer” is not complex and needs no arguments in fact a first grader with a lemonade stand can understand what one is… So why is it the only ones who have to try and redefine what one is, is the industry?! That would be an obvious rhetorical question. 🙂

    Gotta love it that Jason Fredrick refers ‘his’ LIFE “JFL Education Solutions,Developing the Next Generation of Leaders and Statesman” is the link that appears to be ‘his’ educational advertisement blog’.. warning…..humorous read!…:D

    ” Here is a link that explains what it takes to be “all in” and ‘what it takes’ to be a “PBO”….The ONLY “change” I have seen, is the numerous name ‘changes’ of their own scam and the jargon ‘change’ and the definition of course redefining of a ‘customers’…yawn

    And oh boy…side note, he is not a ‘newbie’ says he has been in since September of 2007

    I found his “3 most interesting….”Step 3: Marketing System

    The LIFE Marketing System is the how-to teaching of how to build a multi-million dollar LIFE Business. This is also the system that allows LIFE members to own a “B” business.’

    Hmmmm,,,,,Haven’t changed their methods or practices an iota…. promises, promises!!…says…Their “marketing system allows LIFE members”…and teaches you how to build and OWN your MULTI- MILLION dollar B business?!!!!!!

    Wonder how long that blog will stay up now that it is on here?!! LOL

    Read some of his articles…Maybe it is just be who got a good laugh from Jason Fredricks “Edification vs De-edification” and other articles( note and notice his own comment addressing the only person who commented lol)…”

    JFL Education SolutionsDecember 19, 2012 at 9:19 PM

    I didn’t write this as some cowardly, passive-aggressive, attempt to correct any one. I am talking to myself in this article, as much as anyone. If you’ve been messing up edification, it’s only because your leader has done a poor job of modeling it for you.

    Good one Jason lol…do they even recognize their own hypocrisy?
    Thanks Jason. 🙂

  274. kilerb permalink
    August 24, 2014 10:37 am

    Hi Melanie
    Thank you for your concern about our BK . I just hope other people see the comments on here and realize that there is consequences for their actions. After being out for several years and repairing everything . Everything turned out fine it’s very dark when you are going through it all and everyone you though you had as friends really turn out to not be your friends and then you realize some of you up line and down line ( and cross line) are going through some form or another issues due to making wrong decisions and having some of your down line take it out on you because you helped lead them down that path . There is light at the end of the tunnel .I am the one who made all the purchase’s ( the system seminars wasting gas that you clam you can deduct on your taxes that you don’t recoup the wear and tear on you vehicle and you don’t get back the full price of what it cost for the gas Ray ) no one held a gun to my head to build this business . But there is a price for being nieve and following these clowns I hope your listening Ray. I strongly suggest people to read The Merchants of Deception I can tell you who the real people are in that book ( the diamond I spoke of that Orrin mentored is on page 64) I sat in their cars, ate with them spent a lot of time with them I wish I read it before I started it may have saved me some headache especially since I knew them personally .The only people in mlms that make large amounts of $ are the founders period so Ray start your on mlm and you will be in that top 5% .If people would do a zero balance budget they would see that any of these business’s do not fit inside that budget numbers do not lie and after a short time of losses you would see its time to close up shop

  275. August 26, 2014 10:43 pm

    Glad I’m in the insurance business. It actually makes money, continuously. MLM used to be endorsed by guys like Kyosaki because of the education you got. But unfortunately it is not advertised as an education. Its sold as an opportunity to ‘make money’. Its funny, after seeing the cash flow quadrant, you would think alot of people working hard at it would ask a simple question like ‘when exactly does this turn into the B quadrant?’ I see total slave S business, and a crappy paying one, almost all of them. Thats why no matter what marketing crap they try, I always say the model trumps everything else. Look at the numbers. Third grade level numbers: if expenses are greater than income, month after month, what will eventually happen to you financially? The more years go by, the simpler things become (at least to me). Anyone else agree?

  276. August 26, 2014 11:14 pm

    Here’s another simple observation that should be in the faces of the ‘leaders’: “If you are successful, you go turbo whatever, and you start to speak at events (and even get paid to speak), you then have a speaking JOB, right?. You aren’t recruiting, you aren’t prospecting, you aren’t signing up people in YOUR OWN downline. Damn, you are causing someone’s business to grow, but whose?” NOT YOURS. No wonder the rich get richer. Unfortunately we all (myself included) at times act like sheep, and are easily exploited (until we clear the fog and think). The founders ALWAYS own the hamster wheel(s), all of them! Build YOUR OWN COMPANY. SCREW THEM AND THEIR B.S.!!

  277. exTEAMster permalink
    September 4, 2014 4:17 am

    Another way LIFE and other MLMs sell people on their program is the promise of residual income. In LIFE they use the pipeline story and how, if you take the time to build your pipeline, you can eventually turn on the flow of money and it will never stop. True residual income means doing something once and continuously earning from that one effort (I.e., recording a hit song and earning residual income from that one song for years). In LIFE the theory is that once you build a team you will always earn from that team. But that’s not true because to keep earning from that team you have to maintain your monthly membership and the people in that team have to maintain their quotas. So you can’t build a pipeline, turn it on and relax while the water flows. In fact you now have to maintain a certain flow rate or the owners of the pipe company (Orrin et al) will either divert the water to a different pipeline or take it away from you altogether.

  278. Rascal Teamster permalink
    September 4, 2014 7:58 am

    ExTeamster, that was perfect. I was of the same residual pipe dream opinion. At some it would become big enough that I could take a week off or walk away completely.

    The rose colored glasses were completely shattered when I watched the Paul’s drop from a BIG Quad 100 with two outside teams of almost 100 back down to Tripple 100.

    In a talk to their teams, Jenn blamed it on the fact that they, “took a break and weren’t working it hard.”

    What I heard was, “We’ve been in for over a decade, we’re not free and never were.” They talk about the Round Tables being free, but in reality, that is totally laughable.

    It begs the question…are you ever truly free if you can’t walk away without the pipeline going dry?

  279. freedomhaha permalink
    September 4, 2014 8:09 am

    Rascal- It is kind of amazing that the Paul’s still own that house. It is a really beautiful house.

  280. October 29, 2014 6:42 pm

    Put 200 people into health insurance. Took me 2 yrs. Stopped over a year ago. Still getting consistent residual income. Now doing financial products and building asset column (the way Kiyosaki teaches). There are real industries and businesses serving real needs out there. If it takes a ‘system’ to hold it together, then that means people don’t need the ‘product’. If they don’t need the product, you are a slave with an endless job recruiting, quitting and replacing.

  281. Mike Collins permalink
    October 29, 2014 7:45 pm

    Thanks for that Dale. Couldn’t have said it better!

  282. freedomhaha permalink
    October 30, 2014 4:54 am

    Dale- Even though it is on a small scale I have also incorporated streams of residual income into my life, but it has only happened since I have left TEAM. Take a few of the principals and leave the people!

  283. October 30, 2014 9:47 am

    freedom haha, That’s exactly what I do as well. People severely underestimate the power of building a little bit at a time. That sad fact is that in a mlm they only want you to think about their crappy business because they have no other way to get people to do anything. Brainwashing, cult-like nonsense. If a 25 yr old puts $200/month into a decent retirement vehicle until age 65, they are literally millionaires. And you can make a six figure income just putting people into those plans. If mlm leaders were truly about helping people, they would show ALL the options. But they are not. They are also stepping over the line on ‘changing the culture’. Save the world etc. What a joke. I see it will almost all mlm’s unfortunately. Only God can change anyone. By myself I passed almost all of them in lifestyle. Wow, I guess you don’t need a ‘following’ to get free. There goes one of their f’s. Anyway, thanks for sharing.

  284. freedomhaha permalink
    October 31, 2014 3:40 pm

    Well, you know what they say Dale, common sense is not common!

  285. Matthew Cole permalink
    November 4, 2014 4:54 pm

    Does anyone on this blog know when the next LIEf IDS Report is going to be released?

  286. exTEAMster permalink
    November 4, 2014 7:15 pm

    Matthew… I’ve been wondering the same thing. Don’t know if there is a required frequency from the FTC, but if I’m trying to sell LIFE and bragging about the income potential, I want the most up-to-date figures as possible….unless they are worse than the last IDS. But how could that be, given how much closer to the one million mark they are, right? LOL

  287. Matthew Cole permalink
    November 5, 2014 7:00 pm

    Right! I have had this friend involved with this LIEf garbage for quite some time now. I have tried showing her the IDS statement off the LIEf comp plain with the analysis of the statement off this blog. She looked at it and told me, ” I’m not getting out, I know it may not be the best decision, but please respect it.” I don’t get it, if you know it is a bad decision to stay involved why are you staying involved???

  288. Rascal Teamster permalink
    November 6, 2014 3:51 am


    You asked, “I don’t get it, if you know it is a bad decision to stay involved why are you staying involved???”

    The answer is so simple, it doesn’t make sense.

    Because the Team is a cult, and that is how people in cults behave.

  289. Melanie Morgan permalink
    November 6, 2014 5:32 am

    Rascal Teamster

    Fits like a glove. Saw a quote yesterday that would sum it up; revised and more appropriate would be more clear; ” The TEAM LIEF people are free to do exactly what they are told!

  290. Rascal Teamster permalink
    November 6, 2014 5:53 am

    Melanie, that is priceless. People still engrained in the Team System would call you a liar and fight that statement to the death, but it’s true.

    My upline had a saying he used all the time. It worked like magic to get people on the fence to attend events. It sounds absolutely ridiculous to me now….which proves how deep I was under their control.

    “All the cool kids are doing it.”

    That stupid statement sold tickets to events better than anything I ever used.

    When I was in, I knew that statement to be true and wanted to maintain my position as one of the cool kids. Now, two years removed, I see it as a piss poor attempt at child-like manipulation that I would laugh off and discredit the utterer of such garbage as being brainwashed.

    Hmmmm….I must have been brainwashed too, no? Again, that happens in cults.

    Be there for your friend when it all falls apart, Matthew. It will! Everyone fails. No one has legitimately made it into freedom since Team left Quixtar, and it sure isn’t going to happen with this current jacked up Comp Plan selling leadership products that everyone needs but no one wants.

  291. John permalink
    November 6, 2014 12:12 pm

    I joined life to get my supervisor/company owner off of my back a few months ago and mistakenly subscribed to a few cd’s as well as Total Access last month. I cancelled my subscriptions today because frankly, I think the entire business model is a joke. You only get paid for customers that stay enrolled. You are essentially selling all of their products and the 75% profit margin on products sold does not apply to you. If someone buys from you it filters down to you.

  292. Melanie Morgan permalink
    November 6, 2014 7:14 pm

    Rascal Teamster~

    Between the previous quote and this one. it could sum it up perfectly :

    “Violators cannot live with the truth: survivors cannot live without it. There are those who still, once again, are poised to invalidate and deny us. If we don’t assert our truth, it may again be relegated to fantasy. But the truth won’t go away. It will keep surfacing until it is recognized. Truth will outlast any campaigns mounted against it, no matter how mighty, clever, or long. It is invincible. It’s only a matter of which generation is willing to face it and, in so doing, protect future generations from ritual abuse.”


    I agree with Rascal. Sadly your friend will have to learn the hard way. The “business opportunity” is not based on common sense and logic, that is the last thing they want you to rely on. They have perfected the techniques and methods and go to great lengths to strip that from the individual. The core of their techniques used in the scam, are to keep people trapped in emotion and unquestioning conformity.

    Crazy, isn’t it.

  293. November 7, 2014 6:33 am

    @John – thank you for your comment. I hope your subscription cancellation does not get you into hot water with your supervisor/company owner. It shouldn’t, as he should respect your decision to cancel and not have it affect your working relationship.

  294. Rascal Teamster permalink
    November 7, 2014 8:09 am


    I’m glad you brought up the retail point.

    We are involved in retail. My family has been for 30 years. When we retail a product, we first buy it at wholesale for X dollars. We then mark it up to retail, which is X times whatever profit margin we have to get to stay in business. From that profit, we pay all the bills, pay the salaries and cover any other costs that come up. And I know I’m not the first to mention that the markup is generally accepted as cost times two. But it has to be to cover all the costs.

    The FTC has made it perfectly clear that in order for MLMs to be in compliance, they have to have a serious retail component.

    I am failing to see how the LIFE business can be operating on the sunny side of the law when it is essentially impossible to retail this stuff.

    A quick search of shows that I can buy “Launching a leadership revolution” for $15.95. If I am a member, I will get a small discount…however I have to pay shipping. Let’s also bear in mind that the “new guy” really isn’t getting a discount.

    A quick search of shows that I can buy the same book for $13.95 with FREE shipping.

    How is it possible that the Team could stand before the FTC and explain their legitimacy when, as a member, I have to sell at a loss to be competitive with another retailer selling a product that LIFE created?

    Thanks again for the comment, John. Your point about filtered down profit is spot on. There is no way within their business model to buy at wholesale and sell at retail totally reaping the profits while being competitive in the market.

  295. Isaac permalink
    November 7, 2014 12:20 pm

    @Rascal Teamster, to add to your point, LIFE’s products are only consumed by those in the business. There is literally no market outside of LIFE for their books or CDs. Case in point, OW just wrote a new book (The Leadership Train). The majority of endorsements for the book come from LIFE leaders and network marketing people. I challenge OW to write a book and try to sell it to the general public to see how much interest is generated. But OW and the LIFE leaders don’t do that. They self-publish the books and sell them at LIFE events because the profit will flow upline to them….that’s how the system is set up!

    I consistently shake my head when I see LIFE leaders writing books and the only people who buy them are LIFEr’s. But, I can empathize. I once thought LIFE/TEAM was a viable business and bought dozens of books that leaders wrote because I thought I was making a difference. The only difference I made was reducing the balance of my checking account.

  296. exTEAMster permalink
    November 8, 2014 6:29 am

    Isaac you are absolutely correct. Now imagine if Tim Marks and Claude Hamilton put their books into the regular market. Those books wouldn’t have sold more than 10 copies combined!

  297. Vogel permalink
    November 8, 2014 2:05 pm

    And on the other hand, their captive TEAM/LIEf audience would buy the books even if they were filled with nothing but blank pages.

  298. freedomhaha permalink
    November 10, 2014 6:57 pm

    Vogel- Blank pages would be an upgrade from their talks from stage that essentially plagiarize real leadership experts.

  299. udonome permalink
    March 7, 2016 5:35 pm

    How did your up-line Life Coach pay for his car? Courtesy of one of his Roundtable’s down-line.
    His big screen TV? Courtesy of you & your down-line.
    His dream location family vacation? The new signups in the last year.
    All he had to do was ask for your money and pretend he was honest about your chances.
    Your life savings is now his lifestyle.

  300. March 13, 2016 1:21 pm

    Does anyone know the current Retail Sales percentage in Life Leadership? I remember reading a quote by Orrin that it was 40%. But trying to find that information again is like finding a needle in a haystack. Is there anyone who can locate that info and report back? Would appreciate it!

  301. Mike Collins permalink
    March 13, 2016 6:12 pm

    There is no way it’s even remotely close to 40%

  302. exTEAMster permalink
    March 14, 2016 5:16 am

    The problem is the definition of the word “customer” as it applies to any MLM business. Almost all MLMs can bend the FTCs legal definition of retail purchasers to such a degree that it will make a company’s numbers look much better than they really are.

  303. Anonymous permalink
    March 17, 2016 7:05 pm

    The Compensation plan / IDS pdf file for Feb 2016 is up on their website. The IDS is on the last page of the pdf.

  304. March 18, 2016 4:17 am

    Is there any way to decifer the amount of retail business that is done based on the information given in the current IDS? I printed it off, but would need some guidance to figure that out if it’s even determinable from this information. Thank you in advance if you could help me out🤔

  305. Mike Collins permalink
    March 18, 2016 6:18 am

    No because one of MLM’s favorite things to do is to reclassify distributors as customers in order to deliberately obscure the numbers.

  306. June 3, 2016 12:34 pm

    Has there been any information on Amthrax that has determined if the 2015 Income disclosure statement looks any more promising than the 2013 statement? I just wondered if anyone analyzed it and what conclusions were drawn from the analysis?

  307. June 9, 2016 8:33 am

    An in-depth analysis was never posted, but there were some comments about it on this site. It’s not like the business suddenly got 100 times better. For instance, the percentage for people who did not renew after the first year increased to slightly over 50% (from 40.4% in the previous IDS). Lastly, the IDS to really analyze will be the next one, since those figures might be affected by those members who left TEAM/LIFE to go over to Bonvera.

  308. freedomhaha permalink
    June 14, 2016 6:04 am

    How often legally do they need to release an IDS?

  309. Rascal Teamster permalink
    June 14, 2016 8:49 am

    Hey Freedom,

    I don’t believe that this is a law. I believe that this was a marketing gimmick created by Monavie to lend credibility to their business.

    Now from LIFE you get some kind of BS mumbo jumbo that looks like the old IDS but crafted in such a way it’s impossible to determine how minuscule they’ve become.

    Meanwhile back in the ranch, their faithful brainwashed say, “yes, we have an IDS,” without even realizing what it reads.

  310. Anonymous permalink
    November 12, 2016 7:08 pm

    The Nov 2016 IDS:

    Click to access compus_english.pdf

    Page 19
    Average monthly income for all members: $ 81.26
    55.52% do not continue after the first year
    From Sept 2014 thru Aug 2015 44.37% of all members received no income at all

    I would like to know if anyone sees anything in the document that might be a result of the recent FTC / Herbalife agreement.

  311. Anonymous permalink
    November 13, 2016 10:19 am

    What’s up with the “” in the new IDS? Looks like this was created from a boilerplate that will be used for other mlm companies. Maybe Orrin Woodward will change the name once again, as Life has run it’s course. I hope someone can analyze next year’s IDS to check the impact of the bonvera exodus.

  312. Truly Free from Life permalink
    November 15, 2016 7:19 am

    Great catch on the “” that really yells template. Could also just be template for a business doc from Microsoft word. They really need a content editor by the look of it.
    All in all, it paints a pretty bleak picture of success for the average member. That $81 doesn’t got far with all the product, conferences etc that you “don’t” have to buy.

  313. December 5, 2016 6:01 am

    An excellent article from a lawyer for the Fed. Trade Commission on an upcoming class action suit against an mlm company from Texas, which may soon expose all mlm companies as fraudulent pyramid schemes. A step in the right direction…’MLM’ racketeering case shines a light on ‘Herbalife (HLF)’.

    More than half a century of quantifiable evidence, proves beyond all reasonable doubt that what has become popularly known as ‘Multi-Level Marketing’ is nothing more than an absurd, cultic, economic pseudo-science, and that the impressive-sounding made-up term ‘MLM,’ is, therefore, part of an extensive, thought-stopping, non-traditional jargon which has been developed, and constantly-repeated, by the instigators, and associates, of various, copy-cat, major, and minor, ongoing organised crime groups (hiding behind labyrinths of legally-registered corporate structures) to shut-down the critical, and evaluative, faculties of victims, and of casual observers, in order to perpetrate, and dissimulate, a series of blame-the-victim closed-market swindles or pyramid scams (dressed up as ‘legitimate direct selling income opportunites’), and related advance-fee frauds (dressed up as ‘legitimate training and motivation, self-betterment, programs, recruitment leads, lead generation systems,’ etc.)
    The MLM Racket: Class Action Ruling Exposes Reality Of A ‘Direct Selling’ Pyramid Scheme
    By Robert FitzPatrick


    A federal appeals court certification of “class action” status for the lawsuit against the MLM, Stream/Ignite, affects pyramid scheme claims against Herbalife and other MLMs.
    The case establishes that the operation of a pyramid scheme is sufficient for “racketeering” charges, tripling the potential damages.
    The ruling clarifies the reality that pyramid schemes are inherently deceptive, pre-ordaining participants to losses. The sales of products and other trappings of legitimacy are irrelevant to the outcome.
    The ruling addresses the reality that all pyramid schemes are disguised, for the purpose of duping people to believe the scheme is “legitimate.” People join Stream/Ignite in that belief.
    The Stream ruling may awaken regulators and other authorities from uncritically accepting MLMs as “legitimate”, and begin examining economic realities without prejudice or fear.
    At this writing, end of November 2016, in the world of “multi-level marketing” most attention is focused on one MLM company, Herbalife (NYSE:HLF). This is mainly due to a 4-year Wall Street battle over Herbalife stock price and a 2-year FTC investigation leading to a prosecution announcement and simultaneous Settlement agreement. The Settlement requires a $200 million restitution payment by Herbalife and basic restructuring of its USA operations, affecting recruiting, participant purchases, retail selling and income claims.
    One overriding issue lies at the heart of the Wall Street-Herbalife controversy, the FTC-Herbalife prosecution, and, whether stated or not, all other controversies, lawsuits, and prosecutions involving other MLMs such as Nu Skin (NYSE:NUS) or Usana (NYSE:USNA). That issue is “Pyramid Scheme.” It is not possible that Herbalife is uniquely or anomalously operating a pyramid scheme, since all MLMs are based on the same recruiting business model, top-loaded compensation plan, and endless chain income proposition. All have the same loss, failure and churn rates among participants. The devastating and hilarious treatment of Herbalife by satirist John Oliver on HBO and Youtube (6.5 million views) extended the label of “pyramid scheme” across the entire MLM “industry.”
    In addressing this underlying and fundamental issue of inherent fraudulence, a recent US Fifth Circuit Appeals court ruling granting class action status to a lawsuit brought against another MLM, called Stream/Ignite, (Juan Ramon Torres; Eugene Robison, v. SGE Management, LLC. et al.,) may have greater and longer-term impact than all the heat and noise around Herbalife. The lawsuit, originated and driven by Houston attorney, Scott Clearman, argues that the MLM, Stream/Ignite is engaged in “racketeering,” under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, generally known as RICO. The racket’s purpose, the case argues, is to perpetrate a pyramid scheme. To do this, it engages in mail and wire fraud. The RICO charge hinges on the underlying charge that Stream is a thinly disguised pyramid scheme. If a jury agrees with Clearman, penalties are tripled under the RICO law.
    AARP submitted an amicus brief as did the consumer advocacy group, Truth in Advertising in support of the plaintiffs (MLM victims) in the case. Other reports of the ruling are in Bloomberg News and Dallas News. A good overview of the case is provided at the Truth in Advertising website.
    Confusion, Vulnerability to Pyramid Fraud as the American Dream
    While almost everyone claims to know in general what a pyramid scheme is, public understanding of this type of fraud diminishes sharply when a pyramid scheme is disguised as “direct selling” and includes selling products. Millions of people fall into this form of disguised pyramid fraud and the FTC has stated that the average person could not be expected to see through the “sales company” disguise. Even though such a disguised fraud will do more harm than a more obvious one would, due its disguise as a real business, the FTC and SEC, America’s main regulatory agencies against business frauds, have closed down only about two dozen such schemes in 30 years. These few had wreaked enormous harm on an international scale, duping millions of victims and causing billions in consumer losses. Those MLMs that were prosecuted looked and acted just like the others that the FTC and SEC allow to operate with impunity. Neither agency has provided a usable guideline for legality. Two specific and inexplicable regulatory actions in 2016 reveal the regulatory breakdown:
    1) The SEC forced the shutdown of the MLM, Zeek Rewards for operating a pyramid scheme. This was done in a Settlement agreement in which Zeek did not admit wrongdoing. Then, the Dept. of Justice prosecuted the CEO of Zeek, Paul Burks, for criminal fraud. The DOJ did not try to prove Zeek was a pyramid scheme but only that the CEO employed deception to gain money from hundreds of thousands of people resulting in most losing money. A jury quickly found him guilty, despite his defense of being a “legitimate MLM.” Burks now awaits a prison sentence that may keep him in jail for the rest of his life.
    2) At about the same time, the FTC concluded that the MLM, Herbalife, was also engaged in massive deception leading to even greater losses from even more people and over a much longer period of time. Herbalife also signed a Settlement agreement in which it did not admit wrongdoing. Herbalife, however, was allowed to stay in business, subject to payment of a $200 million fine and agreement to stop illegal practices. Subsequently, no criminal charges were filed by the DOJ. The CEO was not prosecuted. Billions in shareholder funds are still in his trust.
    One can only conclude that size, wealth, and, apparently, political influence among MLMs (Paul Burks had no political friends in high places and did no significant lobbying) determines which ones get prosecuted, among the very few that ever do. Overall, the MLM model remains unexamined, unregulated, seemingly above the laws against fraud.
    “Multi-level marketing” enterprises, the sector that includes Zeek, Herbalife and Stream/Ignite and the source of the pyramid scheme confusion that leaves the public so vulnerable, are everywhere these days, at work, in churches, synagogues and mosques, at family gatherings, online, all over Facebook, and at high school and college campuses. This phenomenon of the pyramid income proposition replacing true work opportunity and outrageously representing itself as the promise of the American Dream is primarily due to government corruption, incompetence and neglect. If MLMs are frauds and not the extraordinary income opportunity they claim to be, millions of consumers reason, how could so many operate openly? It has reached a scale where the recruiting scheme is now viewed by millions of Americans as the last best hope for opportunity, while traditional jobs, trades, professions, businesses and public service work are viewed as unattainable, unfair, or diminished in value, just as MLM promoters constantly declare.
    The Disguise and Disinformation of Products and “Sales”
    But beyond MLMs buying protection from the law, there is the matter of the disguise itself. Pyramid schemes of the “product” type can be elaborately disguised organizations, with manufacturing facilities, distribution centers, lobbyists, lawyers, and even stock sold on exchanges. The camouflage is enhanced by years of confusion and dis-information sown by the Direct Selling Association that falsely spreads the story that any enterprise that gains revenue from product-purchase transactions is exempt from the definition of a pyramid scheme.
    In fact, as indisputably verified by math and tragically revealed in the documented losses among MLM participants, approaching 100% loss rates for those joining each year, a pyramid scheme is the same deceptive and destructive fraud whether it is a simple chain letter, a Madoff-style Ponzi or a global “sales” operation like Herbalife. Last-ones-in always lose and the last-ones are always the vast majority of the total.
    Implications of Steam/Ignite Lawsuit for Other MLMs
    Stream/Ignite, now the defendant in a class action pyramid scheme lawsuit certified by a federal appeals court, purports to sell energy services such as electricity. It does not produce or own or have any expertise in energy but functions merely as a reseller. The case argues that reselling electricity in the open market is not a viable and profitable business for Stream. It serves as a device for the real business, the plaintiffs claim, of perpetrating a financial fraud; a fraudulent pyramid income promise generates the “sales” not the value of its product offering.
    In the suit’s litany of revelations of Stream/Ignite’s income claims, structure, pay plan and marketing tactics, Houston attorney Scott Clearman demonstrated a rare insight into the reality of multi-level marketing and the nature of a pyramid scheme disguised as “direct selling.” The court ruling certifying Clearman’s RICO suit as “class action” to represent about 200,000 victims of Stream/Ignite, may put all other MLMs at risk for similar RICO/pyrramid scheme charges and lawsuits. The federal court’s positive ruling on class certification on the case will be cited in other cases against MLMs.
    Beyond its legal impact, the logic and reasoning that support Clearman’s arguments are important for understanding what a pyramid scheme is and for penetrating the “sales company” disguise. This form of disguise (other large-scale pyramids are disguised differently as social clubs, personal growth programs, or “sharing/gifting” networks) not only obscures the money transfer and economic harm, but even more importantly, the purchase transactions are designed to obscure the recruiting incentives, impossible income promises and to confuse the millions of people that fall victim.
    The payment for the right to gain rewards from recruiting is disguised as a “purchase” transaction, even when a purchase is required to gain the right to recruit and recruiting a certain number of people is required to obtain rewards, and most of the purchases are made by the recruiters.
    When the financial data reveal massive losses and obvious ties between purchasing and recruiting rewards, the perpetrators claim the motives of the victims are related only to purchasing products, rather than seeking income. Even the act of recruiting is obscured since rewards also require that the new recruit make a purchase before the recruiter can actually be rewarded. The false identity of a “sales company” serves to protect the executives from fraud charges and confuses the victims about how they lost their money. Also after victims have engaged in the required purchasing and recruiting, many understandably become fearful that they are now implicated, making any complaints to authorities unlikely. The code of silence is maintained by inducing victims to believe they are also perpetrators.
    Products as Currency Supplemented by Fees and Charges
    Stream is a typical MLM, however, the key elements of a pyramid scheme – (1) pay-to-play-purchasing, (2) endless-chain recruiting-requirements and (3) rewards-for-recruiting and (4) closed market/absence of retailing – are more readily recognized at Stream than in some other MLMs. As a reseller, not a producer, of energy, Stream starts out with only a very small gross profit margin. Under the classic MLM program the entire “upline” chain of recruiters gets a “commission” on every purchase of electricity made by those recruited and their “customers,” if they have any. The lawsuit claims that Stream/Ignite makes little or possibly no net profit at all on reselling electricity. But, whether the enterprise is profitable or not (as a private company, its books are not public) from reselling electricity, it is impossible for Stream to provide adequate funding to pay the whole upline out of this small margin; and that small margin, gained only from months energy purchases, would also not provide the necessary upfront cash for “fast start” bonuses and other typical MLM incentives for immediate recruiting.
    Embedding Recruiting Reward Money in Pricing or Adding Fees
    This financial limitation differs from schemes like Herbalife or Nu Skin that make their own “products” and can set high prices yielding gross margins as much as 80% or even more, out of which they pay 40%-50% in recruiting rewards, with the rest covering operations, administration and profits to the owners. In those schemes, almost all the recruiting rewards are embedded in the inflated price of the commodities, e.g., soap, face cream, protein powered, etc. The key pyramid factors of the endless chain, pay-to-play-purchasing and recruiting-for-rewards are the same in all MLMs but the funding for the rewards is more obscured by embedding the payments-to-participate and the rewards-for-recruiting inside the product’s high price.
    Like some other MLMs – such as North Carolina-based ACN, another “energy and utility” MLM, and the one hyped personally by Donald Trump – that also have lower-margin goods or services to sell, Stream is forced to get additional money from participants besides product/service purchases. In Stream’s case, each recruit must pay over $300 to sign up and about $30 a month to remain qualified. This gives Stream tens of millions in additional revenue gained directly and immediately from new recruits and out of which it can pay “endless chain” recruiting rewards and “quick start” bonuses to energize recruiting before the “losing” recruit eventually quits.
    The difference between the high-margin and low-margin MLMs is incidental. In fundamentals, these two types of MLM schemes are otherwise identical and they produce exactly the same loss rates since “rewards” are based on the “endless chain” recruiting that flows upward from last to first. Stream just offers a clearer window into the “direct selling” disguise.
    No Customers
    Supporting the view that Stream’s true business is a pyramid recruiting scheme, the class action lawsuit offers evidence – the very same type of evidence is often presented in other MLM cases – that profitable “retail selling” is not feasible for the participants and the pay plan does not support retailing, aka “direct selling” and none of the participants are profitable from personal selling.
    In the Stream pay plan, (as in nearly all other MLMs) almost no customers are required for a recruit to qualify for recruiting rewards, and very little income could ever be gained from just personal reselling. Each participant generally has only a few real customers to qualify for the promised recruiting money. Under the recruiting-based plan, recruiters can even count themselves and the purchase of the scheme’s website “back office” as “customers” for reward qualification purposes.
    The only feasible way for the participant to gain a net profit is not from “reselling” electricity to customers, but from recruiting others into the pay plan that do the same. The lawsuit’s claim that Stream’s and its distributors’ profitability is based on recruiting not retailing, and that the retailing opportunity does not exist are exactly the same charges the FTC leveled against Herbalife. By design and the laws of math, such a recruiting-based income plan must result in only a few of the total ever being profitable since their profits must be based on the unprofitable work and payments of all the others. Additionally, the vast majority of all participants must, by design, be in the no-profit bottom ranks. What makes this calculated scam more visible at Stream is that, even with a significant downline, the rewards gained by a dedicated recruiter as “commissions from the reselling of electricity” would be minimal due to the low margin that Stream has available to work with as a reseller. The plan can only work if more recruits are enrolled who pay the $300+ to join and the monthly fees on top of purchasing energy and continue the recruiting process – ad infinitum.
    Both the low-margin-additional-fee schemes like Stream and ACN and high-margin schemes like Herbalife, Nu Skin and Usana, (which don’t need to charge “fees” but do often induce large volumes of purchases into the thousands of dollars from recruiters) depend totally on deceiving recruits into believing they can make money from “direct selling” and that everyone who “tries” can always be profitable, no matter when they join or where they are on the chain. Also, as in all MLMs, the scheme relies on personal purchasing and fee-payments – from the distributors themselves – obtained through false income promises and quota-driven purchasing, rather than on market-based purchases by actual customers.
    Pyramid Scheme Racketeering
    What gives the Stream lawsuit special significance is the charge – now included in the certified class action status – of racketeering. RICO is usually associated with prosecutions of organized crime, especially the Mafia. It can also be applied in civil suits, as it is in this case. The racketeering charge has been brought against other MLMs. In fact, the author of the RICO statute, Professor G. Robert Blakey, wrote a famous expert report in a lawsuit brought against the largest of all MLMs, Amway, in which he showed how Amway mirrored a Mafia organization, exhibiting the defining characteristics of a racket:
    engaged in illegal activity (deceiving and harming consumers);
    was closely held by two families;
    top-gun recruiters, numbering about 8 at the time of his report in the late 1990s, equivalent to Mafia families working under the authority and in close coordination with the ruling families;
    a diverting labyrinth of official-sounding corporations to prevent law enforcement or money tracing;
    real operation dictatorially governed through an informal network of power relationships between the families, top recruiters, downliners, attorneys, and suppliers, equivalent to the famous Mafia hierarchy of Don, Underboss, Consigliere, Capo, Soldier and Associate;
    everyone in the organization required to abide by the rules exactly; no innovation, independence or dissent allowed. Any efforts at change or objection within the ranks is met with immediate dismissal or extreme financial and social punishment;
    code of silence;
    through a uniform set of policies and the total dependency of the recruiting “families” on the ruling families, even the lowest level and newest recruits are required to follow the rules totally without deviation. Any sign of defection or independence can be quickly detected by the recruiting organizations whose responsibility is to report any deviance and deal with it swiftly. As Dr. Blakey noted, such imposition of uniformity and obedience can extend even to clothing styles sales, vocabulary, attitude expression, sexual practices and family relations. “Amway becomes a way of life for its participants, much like those involved with the Mafia,” Blakey wrote.
    In the Stream case, the plaintiffs argue Stream’s true purpose is to operate a pyramid scheme. The promoters collaborate with the knowledge of operating a “robbing Peter to pay Paul” enterprise, that will not – and cannot – deliver on its advertised promise of an “income opportunity” to any more than a tiny handful at the top; all others are doomed to losses. The collaboration involves deceiving and cheating over 200,000 people out of tens of millions of dollars. The underlying nature of the scheme as a pyramid scheme makes the collaboration an act of racketeering, including mail and wire fraud.
    The lawsuit and the federal court ruling affirming class action status cut through decades of confusion and disinformation about what a pyramid scheme is, and how people are lured into them and harmed. For example, the suit argues and the court agreed that it is Stream’s claim to being a “legitimate MLM” that draws people into Stream/Ignite. Therefore, if a jury finds that Stream is a pyramid scheme, “the legal requirement of RICO, that a cause exist between company actions and victims’ harm is met “through a common sense inference that they (Stream participants) were duped into joining the pyramid scheme based on the representation that Ignite is a legitimate enterprise.”
    Further, the case argued, and the court agreed, that injury to victims is not subject to the classic MLM defense that the causes for losses are specific to each “loser,” e.g., dropped out, did not follow the plan, did not try hard enough, did not want to make money in the first place or that the victim must prove specific misrepresentations by the company. The court accepted the lawsuit’s claim that “it is enough to show that a ‘foreseeable and natural consequence’ of the allegedly unlawful pyramid scheme is “that the vast majority of the unwitting IAs (participants) would lose money.”
    As the court stated, ” Pyramid schemes are ‘inherently fraudulent’ and are per se mail fraud, a RICO predicate act. And, by design, a pyramid scheme’s fraud inheres in its concealment of the deceptive nature of the “robbing Peter to pay Paul” payment structure.”
    Simple translation:
    (1) The vast majority of people that join a pyramid scheme are doomed from the start whether or not they “try” or “want” to make money or not, or follow rules or not or “believe” or not or even whether the company lied to them. Virtually all who join will meet the same fate by virtue of the scheme itself, not due to any personal circumstance or individual experience in the scheme.
    (2) All pyramid schemes disguise their true nature and so no one can be said to have voluntarily “joined” a MLM that operates a pyramid scheme. What they think they joined – e.g., direct selling – is not the reality.
    Confusion or Willful Ignorance about Pyramid Scheme’s Inherent Deception?
    Perhaps the most important aspect of the federal court’s class action affirmation is that it upheld the basic premise of this lawsuit. This is that if the MLM, Stream is found to be a pyramid scheme by a jury, all the disguise of sales and the contradictory statements and promises and disclaimers are irrelevant. RICO-fraudulence is based upon what the scheme is, not in specific actions, statements, products or policies. All of that is just disguise and disguise is an intrinsic element of all pyramid schemes.
    Despite the reality of the inherent deceptiveness of a pyramid scheme with preordained harm to participants and despite the reality that “disguise” is an integral part of such a racket, the “sales” disguise seems to overwhelm, confuse and stop many legislators, journalists and regulators from even examining MLM reality. The disguise is accepted without inquiry, on faith, almost as if the scheme would have to tauntingly advertise itself as a fraud for the regulators to wake up. As long as the pyramid is properly dressed up to look like a real business, the regulators appear oblivious and make no investigation. This has led to epic regulatory neglect and to the sad practice of major news organizations mindlessly re-publishing provably and obviously false data from the Direct Selling Association – including totally impossible “income averages” as valid facts, without fact checking! It has also led them to ignore obvious contradictions of economic fundamentals and the laws of math and physics, such as the claim of immunity from market saturation, “infinite” sales chains” and eternally unlimited opportunity. The absurdity, the irony and the tragedy manifested in the MLM data on losses and churn rates seems to completely elude the media and the regulators. All manner of ridiculous rationalization have been accepted or concocted to evade facing reality.
    Pyramid Fundamentals
    Dissecting a MLM pyramid requires only a basic understanding of the fundamentals of pyramids, including its essential element of disguise. Expertise in economics, law, marketing or finance can sometimes be as much handicap as asset. What is most needed is the freedom of mind to evade preconceived perspective. For example, it is nearly impossible to see the pyramid if the scheme is accorded, from the start of an inquiry, the status of “direct selling” or even “legitimate business.” This type of flawed or pre-judged approach taken by many journalists and regulators is illustrated in their futile search for some “bright line” of illegality, to distinguish the “good” MLM from the fraud. In searching for evidence of “inventory stockpiling”, for example, they gloss over the fraudulent income proposition based on “infinity” that led to the inventory purchases in the first place and pay little regard to 99.7% loss rates.
    Many investigators unthinkingly accept MLMs’ identity of “direct selling” even though the MLMs encourage all their “direct sellers” to recruit their own competitors! One-on-one sales is claimed to be the basis of the MLM business while profitable direct sellers cannot be found, only predatory recruiters.
    Legal scholars, major economists, universities or investigative journalists are oddly missing from this international controversy, despite hundreds of billions in consumer losses globally, Wall Street warfare, class action lawsuits, whistle-blowing websites and books, FTC and SEC prosecutions, and the shocking exhibition of millions of people being led to believe that MLM is their only hope to achieve the American Dream.
    In its certification of the Stream lawsuit as “class action,” the US Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has perhaps opened the door for regulators and others to finally look past the disguise and examine MLM economic reality. Citing a much earlier landmark FTC case against the MLM fraud, Koscot Interplanetary, the court wrote, ” Indeed, the very reason for (pyramid schemes’) per se illegality… is their inherent deceptiveness and the fact that the futility of the plan is not apparent to the consumer participant.”
    And it went on, “Because pyramid schemes are per se mail fraud, which include inherent concealment about the deceptive payment scheme, one who participates in a pyramid scheme can be harmed ‘by reason of’ the fraud regardless of whether he or she relied on a misrepresentation about the scheme. An inherently fraudulent pyramid scheme . . . would fall within the broad definitions of fraud under RICO even if no misrepresentations occur. Participants are then harmed by the fraud involved in pyramid schemes not because of any misrepresentations, but because … harm to participants, is a direct and foreseeable consequence of such structure.”
    When the true nature of a MLM pyramid is understood and its inherent deceptiveness is grasped, the fact that hundreds of such schemes are allowed to operate can only be seen as an American tragedy.


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