Amidst one’s desperation to perhaps try and work themselves out of the sticky financial situation they find themselves in, it can be very easy to get sucked into the classic pyramid scheme structure of duping you out of your money. Somehow the pyramid scheme structure seems to live on even years and years after the famous watershed moments which led to it being named the Ponzi scheme.
How does it live on though?
The underlying fuel to the fire
Greed, laziness, desperation, naivety and bad luck – those are the five elements which come together to fuel the pyramid scheme structure and ensure it lives on, in many cases stronger than ever before. Each of these elements are strong enough as individual fuels of the pyramid scheme fire because all it takes is any one of these to serve as motivation to get this racket started and keep it going for as long as possible. I say “for as long as possible” because as with all pyramid schemes, no matter how cleverly concealed, it will come to a crashing halt.
Greed – often a pyramid scheme structure is operated by someone who already has a good amount of money to live off of, but their greed has them trying to gain even more, especially since trying to do so in this way requires less effort than more genuine ways.
Laziness – aside from pure greed, laziness is often a big driver for the erection of a pyramid scheme structure. The prospect of easy and quick money proves too powerful of a seductive force for so many people to resist and the thing is everybody who gets involved believes that they’re a special case. They believe that because it’s them involved in this, somehow things will work out in their favor. They never do though – pyramid schemes always implode at some point.
Desperation – lots of people who get caught up in pyramid schemes do so out of desperation and that is one of the main characteristics which the typical pyramid scheme appeals to. You’re typically shown what on the surface seems to be the answer to your immediate financial troubles and so you’re more willing to take part in what ultimately proves to be nothing more than a race to the bottom. There are only so many people you can recruit, even as an entire “sales force” team, at which point the recruits dry up and the entire scheme comes crashing right down.
Naivety – in all fairness, often the mastermind of the pyramid scheme is the number one accused of being guilty of a commercial crime, but there are many other people down the line who know exactly what they’re getting into when they get involved. However, many people are genuinely oblivious to the underlying criminality associated with what they believed to be a genuine investment opportunity, so naivety is indeed a big driver of pyramid schemes and why they continue to live on.
Bad luck – being down on one’s luck leaves you susceptible to the trappings of a pyramid scheme on two fronts, one being that you can be tricked into parting with money you’ll essentially never get back, while the other one being that of your vulnerability making you more likely to want to knowingly participate.