5 Stupid Get-Rich Quick Scams (People Still Fall For)
Want to get rich, but don't have the time or energy to start a business? Or get a job at one? Don't worry! In the era of the internet, any old dumbass can log on and make piles of cash with no effort or skill!
That or all of the following programs are complete bullshit.
Sell "The Greatest Vitamin in the World"
Don Lapre is that annoying hobbit-looking dude you might have seen a few years back trying to tell people they could get rich by placing classified ads, even if they didn't involve sexual services. This time he is back selling "The Greatest Vitamins in the World," because subtlety is another of Lapre's strengths.
The vitamins are supposedly the result of millions of dollars of testing and development and over 100 studies by the New England Journal of Medicine. Lapre claims the vitamins can help with diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. Cancer! Holy shit!
Nothing some vitamins can't fix.
For $35 you get a chance to make millions because Lapre will sell you one of his websites so you, too, can sell the vitamins. Then if 20 people buy vitamins from that website, Lapre pays you $1,000 that month. This seems a lot less efficient than just having one website and selling the pills himself but, like others on this list, Lapre obviously has no more room in his house to store cash so now he wants to help you.
This is all explained in this video. It left us badly confused but what it lacks in clarity it makes up for in boobies.
What You Will Really Get:
A website no one will visit, that sells something the FDA has warned is being falsely advertised. You mean it won't cure cancer?!?!
But don't worry if you don't get any sales from your site (and you won't), because Lapre's company will sell you some marketing help, for just a few thousand dollars. Of course the problem may be there are thousands of these websites he has sold to other people competing with yours for a product no one wants and that doesn't work.
Even when people manage to sell a few bottles of this junk, it turns out they still can't get paid by the company. This is probably because Lapre's math skills pretty much suck as he promised to pay people $1,000 each time they sold $900 worth of his product. Kids selling lemonade in front of their homes have a better business model than this.
Okay, yes, but, still...
It may have been Lapre's inability to count that caused him to file bankruptcy and get slapped by the IRS for failing to pay almost a million dollars in taxes. Or it could be it was because he is a con artist.
Free Money to Pay Your Bills
This is a book put together by Matthew Lesko, that annoying guy on late night infomercials who wears the suits with the question marks on them. In between fighting off trademark lawsuits from the Batman comics, he spends his time screaming at you about all this free money from the government that you are totally missing out on:
If you had a hard time understanding his wailing, Lesko is saying the government has $350 billion dollars sitting around in various programs that you--yes, you--can have if you just fill out some forms. The problem is, he claims, that the government is being its usual dick-ish self and keeps it a secret.
Fortunately, Lesko breaks this code of secrecy by revealing a list of 4,000 programs that will give you free money to pay your bills, just as his book title says (though we wonder if "Free Money to Pay for Lapdances and Nachos" would have sold more copies).
What You Will Really Get:
The good news is that you will get a book with lists of government programs that have money. The bad news is that you probably don't qualify for any of it despite the fact that the website says "Everyone who needs to Pay Bills Qualifies."
It turns out that the programs listed in the book fall into two categories: Obvious Stuff and Useless Crap. In the obvious category, it turns out that the majority of that money he was screaming about is stuff like unemployment insurance and food stamps which are about as secret as the Post Office.
In the useless category, the programs listed are so obscure that its unlikely anyone will find one they qualify for (most of it is given to other government agencies rather than individuals).
Sure, there are success stories like that dude who got 500 large to travel the world. You can get that, too, as long as you are a quantum physicist who got the award from the National Science Foundation. Otherwise, stay poor, asshole!
By the way, Lesko admits he just copied and pasted a book he ordered from the government and then sold it. Thanks to his minutes of hard work, now you, too, can spend $40 on a book of nearly useless information you could have Googled for free.
Quixtar is a way for you to have your own business without all those pesky business degrees and millions in start-up capital. The company claims that it's a $6.8 billion dollar business with three million "business owners" around the world. Hell, can three million people be wrong?
The process couldn't be simpler. They have a website where your customers log on and buy stuff, then you get a cut of the sales. Like a pimp but without the slapping and choking! And in case you need help with your business, professional consultants like this guy are there to help.
Ignore the home made sign, and the fact that "free" is in "quotes." According to some Quixtar representatives, you can make up to $250,000 a year working just 10-15 hours a week, which means you can finally hang up your squeegee and keep your sperm.
But you don't make the real money by just hawking their giant boxes of soap and vitamins. No, the real trick is to sponsor new people to join and start selling products. Then you can get a cut of all of their sales and the sales of the people they bring in. So you can finally sit back and reap the rewards of the hard work of others, in the manner of kings, or tapeworms.
What You Will Really Get:
If this sounds a bit familiar, it's because Quixtar is just Amway with a website.
As with all pyramid schemes, starting your own "business" involves bugging the shit out of people you know to buy products from Quixtar and/or to join up and sell themselves. Once you get good at being obnoxious you can then start harassing complete strangers.
"Hi, old people, a quick moment of your time, please."
Quixtar says they are a multi level marketing company and not a pyramid scheme, which is like saying "call girl" instead of "whore." If you think that's harsh, here's a legal expert comparing them to the mafia.
But at least the mafia makes money. The average monthly income from an active Quixtar "business owner" is only $115 a month. We don't need a beautiful mind to know that $115 a month is a whole lot less than $250,000 a year. If you only worked 10 hours a week on your business you are looking at a return of about $3 an hour, or less than half the Federal minimum wage. But that's OK, because you won't need money after you've driven away all of the friends who used to go out with you by pestering them with sales pitches.
4X Made Easy (Wizetrade)
Quite simply, this is God-like software that will make you rich. It seems there is something called the foreign exchange market (Forex) where people can trade currencies. The average daily trading on this market is $4 trillion dollars, which is about as big a number as you can have before you have to start using made up stuff like bajillionmillion.
The Forex is a complicated market that involves a lot of analysis. Lucky for you 4X Made Easy makes it...uh...easy. For just $4,000! And a monthly fee!
4x's spokeswoman. She wants to take all your money and be sexy.
You also get access to hilarious Jay Leno type skits like this one from their spokespeople, where they make fun of people who don't know anything about trading. Haha...what? Wait.
It doesn't matter if you really know anything about trading yourself though. You are supposed to be able to make the right trades just by following the simple instructions, buying on green and selling on red. If you are color blind that's ok too because they also have arrows pointing up and down. Hell, a monkey could do it!
Not this one, though. He just doesn't want it bad enough.
What You Will Really Get:
A software program that will give you chance to go bankrupt, really fast.
Remember that part where we said this was fucking complicated? Well those banks and trading companies that you will competing against employ hundreds of people whose only job is to research the market. You're going to be like the Ewoks in Return of the Jedi, minus the help from Luke and Han and your arms and legs. Sure you may get lucky, but at the end of the day you're going to have your furry ass handed to you.
Experts say this kind of trading is somewhere between retarded and illegal.
Even better, you can actually lose more money than you have if you make enough bad trades, because you can trade on borrowed money. So all in all simply feeding your $4,000 to a goat would be a better investment.
John Beck's Free & Clear Real Estate System
This bunch of books will cost you $40 and will teach you how to find and buy houses for just few hundred dollars. Apparently there are homes out there where the owners are just desperate to sell, due to tax trouble or whatever. You'll pay almost nothing, then sell them yourself at full price. It's turning another person's misery and bad fortune into cash money in your pocket! That's what America is all about, baby!
Somehow very few people know about this little gimmick and it seems John Beck is totally not interested in becoming a billionaire by keeping this secret to himself and cornering the market on high profit desperation sales. Probably because he wants us to join in on his dream!
His website has a page of testimonials from people who claim success, including one guy who tells us he bought a unit of property for $10. He may have been confusing reality with a game of Monopoly he once played.
Don't get excited, the car is an extra $5.
What You Will Really Get:
The company of a lot of people who found out this scam was worthless.
While all these ripoffs have their share of unhappy people, John Beck's system has an impressive 44 pages of complaints on just one scam review site. It turns out that most of the information on the included DVDs is simply a repeat of the stuff you probably just finished watching in the advertisement for it, which is like having to pay for sex with your wife.
The company has been fined by the state of Utah and the Better Business Bureau has given this company its lowest rating.
Not the actual rating.
Customers have found that, amazingly, it's actually really hard to find houses being sold for pocket change. Hey! This may be why Beck went into the bullshit book business instead!
If you're really that desperate for money, check out The 6 Most Horrifying Ways Anyone Ever Got Rich.