May 20, 2020

CultNEWS101 Articles: 5/20/2020

Multi-Level and Network Marketing, Mind Control, Conspiracy Theories, Televangelist Jim Bakker, Eliezer Berland, ultra-Orthodox, Shuvu Bonim

Komo News: FTC warning to Multi-Level and Network Marketing companies: Cool it on the claims
" ... The FTC is going after multi-level marketers that use the coronavirus pandemic in their pitches to sell products or recruit new people.

"Two concerns that you have to be aware of when you're a MLM participant," said FTC Regional Director Chuck Harwood. First, you want to make sure that you're passing on reliable information."

Recent warning letters to 10 MLM companies point to unsubstantiated health claims related to COVID, that have no scientific verification and violate the FTC Act, which prohibits misleading and deceptive practices.

"There's simply no substantiation that the kinds of products that are being marketed and sold through these MLM schemes will prevent someone from contracting COVID-19 or help you recover from COVID-19 any faster than you would otherwise," Harwood said

Another big problem is inflated claims about the money you can make with a network marketing business.

"You have to be very careful if you're investing in one, be sure that the promises of how much money you're going to make, are actually truthful. a lot of times they're inflated," Harwood said. "A lot of times, what we find is that people who get into these kind of schemes- whether it's related to COVID-19 or anything else- find that they lose far more money than they ever make." 

The FTC website dedicates an entire section to multi-level marketing businesses and pyramid schemes and how to tell the difference. You can also learn what to look for and how to research a company before you get involved."

"A celebrity cook who called the coronavirus a government trick to plant mind control chips into Germans under the guise of vaccinations was hauled away by police from an unlawful demonstration in front of the parliament building. A pop star attacked face mask requirements and demanded evidence that Covid-19 really exists, while a leading Roman Catholic Cardinal in Germany added his name to a letter claiming the pandemic was a pretext to create a global government.

Prominent supporters of conspiracy theories are focusing on the Covid-19 shutdown that has crippled economies around the world, with angry protests against government-imposed limits on freedoms erupting across the country in the past week, despite rules banning such gatherings.

Police and journalists have also been injured in spasms of violent outbursts at the at-times unruly demonstrations. There are growing fears that the eclectic groups could exacerbate doubts about democracy in Germany by capitalising on the turmoil of the coronavirus."

CNN: Televangelist Jim Bakker is recovering from a stroke, his wife says

"Famed televangelist Jim Bakker recently had a stroke, his wife said. His eponymous TV show will continue to film without him while he recovers.Lori Bakker announced her 80-year-old husband would take a sabbatical from "The Jim Bakker Show," the Christian TV program the couple cohosts.Working nonstop took a "huge toll" on her husband's health, she said. Bakker was recently sued by Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt for claiming a silver product could kill coronavirus."We are thankful that Jim is okay, and that he is now at home with our family," she wrote in a Facebook post from the show's page. "Jim will be back!"For decades, Bakker and his then-wife, the late Tammy Faye Messner, ran the evangelistic empire "Praise the Lord," or PTL, from their own theme park in Fort Mill, South Carolina, near Charlotte, North Carolina. The two hosted "The PTL Club," one of the best-known Christian programs of its time, throughout the 1970s and '80s.He stepped down from the ministry in 1987 amid financial and sex scandals. The Charlotte Observer reported then that he'd paid off a church secretary with whom he'd had sex. He briefly handed over the reins to fellow televangelist Jerry Falwell Sr.Two years later, he was charged with fraud and sentenced to 45 years in prison, though he served just under five.He returned to TV in the 2000s with "The Jim Bakker Show," this time filmed from Missouri with his second wife, Lori, as cohost.But on a February episode of the show, Bakker and a guest discussed a product, called "Silver Solution," that they claimed could eliminate the coronavirus from the body within hours. There's currently no cure for the novel coronavirus, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention."

"The Jerusalem District Attorney's Office announced Monday that a sex offender rabbi who has been accused of defrauding his sick and elderly followers out of millions of shekels will be indicted, pending a hearing, for a number of alleged fraud and tax offenses.
Eliezer Berland will be charged with tax evasion, violations of money laundering laws and other offenses for failing to report and even concealing income generated through his activities at his ultra-Orthodox Shuvu Bonim sect.
Berland allegedly carried out counseling, fundraising and teaching and also offered what were called life-saving benedictions — all for a fee that wasn't declared to the authorities.
In addition, he is expected to be charged for paying employees millions of shekels without salary slips or paying tax as required.
The expected charges are in addition to a parallel case in which he was arrested for fraud after hundreds of people filed a police complaint against him for selling prayers and "wonder drugs" to desperate members of his community, and for promising families of individuals with disabilities that their loved ones would be able to walk and families of convicted felons that their loved ones would be freed from prison."

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Selection of articles for CultNEWS101 does not mean that Patrick Ryan or Joseph Kelly agree with the content. We provide information from many points of view in order to promote dialogue.

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