Right Field

Only in Citi Field

Howard Megdal of Capital New York has more “You can’t make this stuff up” news from the tragically funny spectacle known as the Mets:

Amid fresh non-news that the Mets are still in debt, Amway, a business known for false promises of riches, has moved into a storefront at Citi Field.

The imagery isn’t great for the Mets, to say the least. Amway was busy settling a class action lawsuit alleging the company is a pyramid scheme at the same time Mets’ ownership group was fighting a lawsuit by the trustee for the Bernie Madoff victims over its role in Madoff’s Ponzi scheme.

But the cash-strapped Mets, who only recently contemplated putting a casino next to their stadium, seem to have made the calculation that whatever money they’re getting from the deal trumps any cosmetic problems that might stem from the association.

The Citi Field outpost is Amway’s first storefront in America.

On Saturday, Amway staged a grand opening (or “grand opening”: it got no coverage, as far as I can tell) with the Amway sign just a few feet away from a Mets ticket booth.

Amway is a multilevel marketing opportunity, to use the euphemism, or a pyramid scheme, to use the terminology of its critics. Individuals sign up as “Independent Business Owners”, or I.B.O.s, to sell an array of Amway products, buying them up front while simultaneously recruiting others to join Amway as well. . . .

When a class-action lawsuit against Amway’s now-defunct North American distribution arm, Quixtar, asserted that products were almost always sold to the next level of distributors, that Amway participants were asked to pay exorbitant up-front costs, that well over 99 percent of Amway participants lost money and that any effort to recoup losses were only possible in an expensive arbitration process, a judge allowed the lawsuit to go forward, calling the Amway contract stipluations ”a weapon to harass … and ultimately bankrupt their opponents.”

More here.

Most Popular

Culture

Yes We Kanye

Kanye West is unpredictable and not terribly coherent and has generated his share of infamous and insufferably narcissistic behavior -- “Bush doesn’t care about black people” and “Imma let you finish” come to mind. Color me skeptical that it’s a consequential victory for the Right now that West is ... Read More

Poll Finds Nevada Voters Support School-Choice Programs

According to an April poll, a large number of Nevada voters support school-choice programs. The poll, conducted by Nevada Independent/Mellman, found that 70 percent of voters support a proposal for a special-needs Education Savings Account and 59 percent support expanding the funding for the current tax-credit ... Read More
Education

Is Journalism School Worth It?

Clarence Darrow dropped out of law school after just a year, figuring that he would learn what he needed to know about legal practice faster if he were actually doing it than sitting in classrooms. (Today, that wouldn't be possible, thanks to licensing requirements.) The same thing is true in other fields -- ... Read More
Culture

Wednesday Links

Today is ANZAC Day, the anniversary of the Battle of Gallipoli: Here's some history, a documentary, and a Lego re-enactment. How DNA Can Lead to Wrongful Convictions: Labs today can identify people with DNA from just a handful of cells, but a handful of cells can easily migrate. The 19th-century art of ... Read More
World

Microscopic Dots. Let’s Look at Them.

Stuart E. Eizenstat has written a big book on the Carter presidency. (Eizenstat was Carter’s chief domestic-policy adviser. He also had a substantial hand in foreign affairs.) I have reviewed the book for the forthcoming NR. Eizenstat tells the story of a meeting between President Carter and Andrei Gromyko, the ... Read More