[Note: This blog post is reprinted from the December 11, 2006 edition of Scoobie Davis Online]
Pyramid scheme and success cult Amway/Quixtar is a microcosm of the Republican Party's vision for America: it has a small elite at the top who are multimillionaires but the vast majority of its distributors make very little or lose money. In fact, its structure is similar to another dysfunctional organization--the Unification Church: both Amway and the Moonies have a small elite who live like royalty but most of their members work their fingers to the bone to ensure that the elites retain their lavish lifestyles. Ironically, those at the bottom rungs of both groups tend to the most enthusiastic members--their enthusiasm (cynically drilled into them by their leaderships) apparently is all they have. Both have a theocratic view of American government (click here and here. Amway and the Moonies are also similar in that the hierarchy of both groups gives massive financial support to the Republican Party.
Anyone who has been to an Amway rally knows about the cultish nature of the group (Dateline NBC did a report on Amway and the videos of the Amway rallies are scary--click here and click on the top link--also read former Amway insider Eric Scheibeler's online book Merchants of Deception). Despite these reports, Amway continues to run a quasi-criminal enterprise with relative impunity and is able to maintain a veneer of respectability in the public's mind (though my Google bomb of Amway helped educate web surfers).
There is some recent great news about Amway/Quixtar: 2006 was an unmitigated disaster for the group:
1. Dick DeVos, son of Amway co-founder Richard DeVos, was soundly defeated in the Michigan gubernatorial election. Although DeVos' campaign spent $41 million (that's not a typo) on the campaign, he garnered only 42 percent of the vote against incumbent Jennifer Grandholm. DeVos is a hardcore theocrat who hold reconstructionist/dominionist views and a member of the notorious Council for National Policy.
2. Former Amway distributor Tom DeLay not only was indicted and resigned his seat but his seat went to Democrat Nick Lampson.
3. Amway distributor Richard Pombo (R-CA) lost his House seat.
4. The MLM Liberal Blog reported that many of the GOP members of the House and Senate who lost their seats had received money from Amway.
Amway's defeat is a victory for America.
UPDATE: Minddig sees parellels between Amway and the Jehovah's Witnesses.