Thursday, January 15, 2015

This ain't the Garden of Eden:
Wrong on more levels than Amway

"Any progress on the new Paleo Diet book?" asked tigris.

I frowned at the Riddled typewriter, which has never worked properly since the time that Mrs Spat got it into her little furry head that there was a haddock concealed somewhere in the mechanism. "Slowly," I admitted. "I'm having to rely on imagination... the Book of Genesis is not forthcoming about the details of prelapsarian cuisine."

"They were squeezed out, no doubt, to make more room for smiting and begatting," said tigris. "But we know that apples are off the menu."

"Perhaps 'Paleo' is not the aptest term for a time only 6000 years ago," I said, "How about 'The Garden-of-Eden Diet'? Right now I'm writing a historical Appendix about Counter-reformation attempts to revive Adamic cuisine."

"I do not rate for the Diet of Worms," said Another Kiwi.
I do not remember whose idea it was to mash up the unchecked cave-bear fantasies of the Paleo Diet crew with Old Testamenty preacherman creationism. The topic arose after several pints of Spargelpony Asparagus Ale, and unconsciousness intervened before it could be explored at length. Imagine our shock, however, to find our inspiration has been pre-stolen by Ben Carson, US loon and grifter (whose portfolio of crazy includes Presidential aspirations) to tout multilevel-marketted dietary supplements!
The wonderful thing about a company like Mannatech is that they recognize that when God made us, He gave us the right fuel. And that fuel was the right kind of healthy food. You know we live in a society that is very sophisticated, and sometimes we’re not able to achieve the original diet. And we have to alter our diet to fit our lifestyle. Many of the natural things are not included in our diet. Basically what the company is doing is trying to find a way to restore natural diet as a medicine or as a mechanism for maintaining health.
Supple-ment caused by ointment
(one shilling the box)
It turns out that for the purposes of searching the Intertuba, the Great Gazoogle recognises 'MLM' and 'scam' as synonymous.

The instigator of Mannatech was not the first person to notice the excellent fit between the psychology of MLM -- the reliance on credulity, authority-worship and obedience to keep the newest recruits handing over their earnings to higher tiers in the hierarchy -- and that of conservative politics and televangelist grifting. Nor will he be the last. Still, he gets full marks for his success in harnessing religion to suppress any vestigial skepticism among the rubes. By the way, dibs on the term "Ziggurat Scheme".

The result is a circle of True Believers who see the promotion and consumption of Mannatech products as not just an income stream, but a sacred duty and proof of piety, while anything discrediting the company must be the work of demonic forces waging spiritual warfare. The outsourcing opportunities of the MLM business model has allowed the operators to route their entertainingly outrageous claims for the benefits of Mannatech through these lower echelons, in the hope of plausible deniability.

Outside that circle, Mannatech has received a less favourable press. So in public, Carson denies ever endorsing Mannatech, and who are you going to believe, him or your lying eyes? His spokesman and disgraced wordpimp reckons that on the numerous occasions when Carson addressed company meetings about their magic medicines, it was on a purely professional basis in which he remained professionally ignorant of the identity of his client for the night.

We know about this because some other aspirant to the Republican 2016 candidacy sent out an oppo-dump through a National Review Online fuckpuppet. Implying that someone regards Carson as a serious rival. This does not bode well for the party.
Must credit Oglaf!

Afterthought: I found myself trying to distinguish sincere religious stupidity from cynically self-seeking religious stupidity. Caster (founder and main beneficiary of Mannatech) is clearly of the latter camp; his first two MLM scams were purely secular, but went tits-up amid recriminations and lawyerly scrutiny, before he realised the crucial role of cross-waving Anglosaxon Aramaic-attitude Godtalk in persuading the suckers to overlook the fraudulent promises and made-up bullshit (indeed, to embrace them as a test of faith).

But for Carson and all the lower echelons, sincerity and cynicism go together... there's nothing like the conviction that God wants you to be rich, to help rationalise being part of the con-job. Everyone in Mannatech thinks that other people are the suckers, and everyone in Mannatech except Caster thinks that God wants it that way.


H. Rumbold, Master Barber said...

NRO link not working- thank you!

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

Ben Carson is a serious rival...for the One L Bachmann 'craziest goat in the rodeo' spot.

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

We know about this because some other aspirant to the Republican 2016 candidacy sent out an oppo-dump through a National Review Online fuckpuppet. Implying that someone regards Carson as a serious rival. This does not bode well for the party.

That immediately jumped out at me- ratfuckers gotta ratfuck, just as grifters gotta grift.

The most horrible thing about this whole mess is that Carson puts a patina of "SERIOUS MEDICAL AUTHORITY" on yet another turd.

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

I tried to go on a Paleo diet, but I couldn't find a grocery store that sold trilobites.

rhwombat said...

Bit late aren't you. Try asking for Limulus polyphemus or the deliciously named Carcinoscorpius rotundicauda . Haemocyanin to die for.

Smut Clyde said...

I couldn't find a grocery store that sold trilobites.

Talk to Robert Silverberg about it.