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Pyramid Scheme

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NEWS
April 25, 2005
FOR ALL THE good it does, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's food pyramid might as well be a food circle, shaped like the doughnuts, bagels or sweet potato pies we love to eat. The USDA has rejiggered the pyramid from its 1992 version, and even gave it a cute illustrated little person walking up its side to represent "activity. " And the department also gave it a new home sweet home, www.mypyramid.gov. How nice. But will more Americans follow its recommendations? We doubt it. The pyramid's supposed to be a guide to healthy eating, but is now more confusing than ever.
NEWS
September 9, 1994 | by Randolph Smith, Daily News Staff Writer
Attorney General Ernie Preate Jr. said he was offering the same warning that his Italian-American mother gave him as a child: "Don't invest in Ponzi schemes!" Yesterday, the state's top law-enforcer sounded the alarm about the latest Ponzi ripoff, Friends Network Gifting Program, promising to turn a $1,500 contribution into $12,000 - a 700 percent profit. So far, the illegal pyramid scheme has conned victims in Chester County and a few in Philadelphia out of hundreds of thousands of dollars, Preate said.
NEWS
January 4, 1995 | By Susan Weidener, INQUIRER CORRESPONDENT
Eight members of the Malvern Police Department, along with Police Chief John C. Rychlak, were involved in an illegal pyramid scheme in which participants were asked to contribute either $500 or $1,500, according to Mayor Dominic Pisano. While Rychlak's involvement had been known since last month, Pisano last night told the borough council that all but one member of the 10-member force had been involved. Pisano recommended that Rychlak, 35, be given six months' probation, while retaining the rank of chief.
NEWS
May 13, 1987 | By Jerry W. Byrd, Inquirer Staff Writer
The state attorney general is seeking a court injunction to bar operators of an illegal pyramid scheme called "the airplane" from soliciting investors in eastern Pennsylvania. Attorney General LeRoy S. Zimmerman sought the injunction in a lawsuit filed late Monday in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court. The suit alleges that any operator of the scheme is violating state consumer protection law. No hearing has been set for the lawsuit, the first action taken in the city against the get-rich-quick scheme.
NEWS
June 15, 1997 | By Doug Lansky, FOR THE INQUIRER
It's not easy to come to Cairo and avoid the Great Pyramids. You feel compelled to see them. How often do you get within 20 minutes of a Wonder of the World? I went with Anders, a Swedish soldier on leave from the United Nations peacekeeping force patrolling the Lebanon-Israel border. He had a great sense of humor about his role in the peace process. "We are like nature photographers," he said of the U.N. force. "We sit around with video cameras filming each side launching rockets over our heads.
NEWS
January 23, 1988 | By Elizabeth Hallowell, Special to The Inquirer
Delaware State Police are investigating a pyramid scheme that a police spokesman said is "very pervasive" in Kent and Sussex Counties and that could involve millions of dollars. The scheme, called "People Helping People" or "The Airplane Game," requires participants to invest $2,200 each before becoming one of eight "passengers" on an airplane, said state police spokesman Cpl. Gerald R. Pepper Jr. To become one of four "flight attendants" on the plane, participants must bring in two new passengers, each of whom pays $2,200 to join.
NEWS
April 26, 2002 | By Amie Parnes INQUIRER SUBURBAN STAFF
The principal of an elementary school here was involved in a pyramid scheme that bilked thousands of Pennsylvanians two years ago, according to a lawsuit filed this week by the state Attorney General's Office. Willow Dale principal Denise Wettstein was a "harvester," officials said, who gathered people at her home in the evenings and persuaded them to invest a couple of thousand dollars "for a gift" with the promise of doubling and tripling their money. Wettstein received thousands of dollars from "reapers, gardeners and sowers," according to the lawsuit, which was filed in Commonwealth Court.
NEWS
August 5, 1994 | By Edward A. Robinson, INQUIRER CORRESPONDENT
When two men walked into the Alpha Graphics print shop in Malvern and asked to see printer Scott Weil last Friday, the employee behind the counter thought they were friends and waved them into the back of the shop. But on finding Weil, Anthony C. Piraino Jr. and Evangelo Pastris showered him with insults, not pleasantries. Then Piraino assaulted Weil, punching him several times in the face, police said. Piraino was enraged about losing $1,500 that he and his sister had invested with Weil in an unlawful pyramid scheme, police said.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
November 26, 2012
Amway, short for "American Way," was founded by Richard DeVos and Jay Van Andel in 1959. Friends from Grand Rapids Christian High School, the two had started out selling nutritional supplements. Based on the principles of self-reliance and financial independence, the company remains privately owned, with the founders' children all involved in the business. Under the umbrella of Alticor Corporate Enterprises, Amway now reports having three million distributors worldwide. The products are not found in malls or on retail shelves, except in the employees' company store at Amway's world headquarters in Ada, Mich.
BUSINESS
January 29, 2012 | By Joseph N. DiStefano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Doug DeVos, second-generation boss of consumer-marketing giant Amway and newly elected chairman of the National Constitution Center's executive board, sits at the center's Independence Mall headquarters, with its bronzes of the Founding Fathers in lifelike poses, and tells how the message of America's founding document isn't that different from what his company has found in its rapid expansion through Asia: "Economic freedom leads...
NEWS
April 20, 2011
Dear Harry: A close friend of mine recently asked me to switch my electricity provider. She claims that her supplier has a lower rate than what she had been paying to Peco. It does. She also said that she is an agent of some kind for the company, and she'll get a commission for every user she recruits. She will also get a piece of any commissions that her recruits bring in. This sounded like a pyramid scheme to me, so I called the company. They vigorously denied it, saying that what they are doing is perfectly legal as a form of advertising.
NEWS
December 28, 2008 | By Kristen A. Graham INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The fallout from the Bernard Madoff scandal continues, with several local nonprofits potentially facing gaps in their budgets as a result of an alleged multibillion-dollar pyramid scheme. The groups - including the Pew Charitable Trusts and the Juvenile Law Center - were partly funded by two foundations that have gone belly-up because the philanthropies' assets were managed by Madoff. Rebecca Rimel, Pew's president and chief executive officer, said the nonprofit would lose about $3 million pledged by the JEHT Foundation, a New York-based foundation that worked on justice and election issues.
NEWS
December 28, 2008 | By Kristen A. Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
  The fallout from the Bernard Madoff scandal continues, with several local nonprofits potentially facing gaps in their budgets as a result of an alleged multibillion-dollar pyramid scheme.   The groups - including the Pew Charitable Trusts and the Juvenile Law Center - were partly funded by two foundations that have gone belly-up because the philanthropies' assets were managed by Madoff.   Rebecca Rimel, Pew's president and chief executive officer, said the nonprofit would lose about $3 million pledged by the JEHT Foundation, a New York-based foundation that worked on justice and election issues.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 17, 2007 | HOWARD GENSLER Daily News wire services contributed to this report
AS LIBEL LAWS are less favorable in Europe to us ink-stained wretches, a celebrity trend even more popular than adopting foreign babies is to sue U.S. publications in foreign courts. Latest to jump on the bandwagon are Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony, who, with their aptly named Belfast lawyer, Paul Tweed, are suing the National Enquirer over its claim the couple was tied to a drug scandal. Tweed, who specializes in bringing U.S.-based celebrities' libel cases to British and Irish courts, told the Associated Press that Lopez and Anthony were seeking "a six-figure settlement" (aka pocket change)
NEWS
October 27, 2006 | CHRISTINE M. FLOWERS
THERE'S AN interesting scene in "The Ten Commandments" where Yul Brynner, as the pharaoh, decides to show everyone that his word is law. Like a petulant child worried that he's not being taken seriously, Egypt's absolute ruler juts out his chin, squares his shoulders and says, "So let it be written, so let it be done. " Which basically means, my way or the highway. Of course, having a temper tantrum can lead to bad things, like a plague of locusts and such. I thought of this on Wednesday when the New Jersey Supreme Court ordered the state legislature to amend current laws to permit same-sex marriage, or provide some comparable and virtually indistinguishable benefit to gay and lesbian couples.
NEWS
April 25, 2005
FOR ALL THE good it does, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's food pyramid might as well be a food circle, shaped like the doughnuts, bagels or sweet potato pies we love to eat. The USDA has rejiggered the pyramid from its 1992 version, and even gave it a cute illustrated little person walking up its side to represent "activity. " And the department also gave it a new home sweet home, www.mypyramid.gov. How nice. But will more Americans follow its recommendations? We doubt it. The pyramid's supposed to be a guide to healthy eating, but is now more confusing than ever.
NEWS
June 20, 2004 | By Ran Prieur
The most naive way of thinking about the future, after the escapist fantasy of techno-utopia, is the eco-liberal mantra that we must stop destroying the Earth right now, or it will be "too late. " This civilization is incapable of stopping or slowing down what it does. Like any system based on concentration of wealth, it is a machine whose only behavior is to keep taking more and more until it runs out of resources and implodes. It's been too late for a long time now. This raises the question: Too late for what?
NEWS
July 26, 2003 | By Desmond Ryan INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
I have just finished an advanced speed-reading course and gone through this morning's 405 spam e-mails. If I might briefly sum up: Mr. Ndeke Oblongo, a victim of unspeakable political persecution, finds himself temporarily short of funds. Anyone who sends him a modest advance of $100,000 will experience a dramatic enlargement of his mortgage by several inches and a shortening of his penis by many years. Or was it the other way around? Mr. Oblongo, who confidently expects to inherit King Solomon's mine next week and will reward investors with a 10,000 percent return on their outlay, will even send along a consignment of super-low-priced printer cartridges with a lifetime supply of Viagra couriered to your door by two hot nymphets for use with same.
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