AdSurfDaily: Bowdoin The Envy Of Con Artists Worldwide

andybowdoinbwASD President Andy Bowdoin demonstrated that any person with access to an autosurf script can put tens of millions of dollars on the table if he or she can meet two minimal conditions: the ability to recruit a few key MLM promoters, and the ability to be influenced by MLM promoters who know how to take the business to the next level by playing fast and loose with the truth.

One of the reasons autosurfs continue to proliferate is because other con men can’t stand the thought that Bowdoin — himself a con man — relieved people of nearly $100 million in a matter of only weeks.

“Con man envy” perhaps is Bowdoin’s greatest contribution to the autosurf trade. He is proof of the nefarious dream. Surfs have been popping up left and right since people learned Bowdoin had huge amounts of money stockpiled in banks (and in the form of uncashed checks) and had gone on a real-estate and vehicle-buying frenzy.

Did you think they were popping up because the model was the product of genius and a utopian desire to let all people share in wealth created by a perfect machine?

Bowdoin surrendered tens of millions of dollars to the government yesterday, demonstrating the machine is not perfect and no healthy ingenuity is involved. Bowdoin, for instance, spent $500,000 to place a deposit so ASD could process credit-card transactions from Antigua. He didn’t seek members’ approval; he simply did it, thus placing his enterprise in even greater danger of collapse. Members also paid for the properties, vehicles and toys he or insiders bought — each one of them weighting down the Ponzi even more.

Andy, who deposited corporate funds into personal accounts over which he had sole signatory authority, had new houses and new cars, places to go and people to meet. He’d finally arrived at age 74, and some people even were happy to trade wages for the earning power of all those “ad packs,” which became a new form of currency in Quincy and elsewhere.

And Bowdoin’s donation of 100,000 “ad packs” to a charity? That also weighted down the Ponzi, putting even more stress on members. The donation alone created a $365,000 liability for ASD at the advertised pay-out rates, even more over time with compounding.

Any volunteer or employee who’d accept “ad packs” instead of cash was a friend to Bowdoin, who simply could transfer the responsibility to pay for the “ad packs” and their earning power to members.

Still think ASD had a prayer of surviving?

Bowdoin also was spending money like a sailor who’d been at sea for six months and suddenly, excitedly, unexpectedly found himself in possession of a big paycheck on shore in the Bright City.  Lots of sailors spend money not because they need to, but because they can. Andy had become a big man in Quincy: Realtors and auto dealers couldn’t wait to see him or members of his family.

Some of the new surfs have ties to ASD, either directly or through sentiment. We know this because some of the people promoting the new enterprises traded on ASD’s pain to create buzz for the upstarts.

Cynical does not even begin to describe it.

A “Poor Andy” theme has been an early selling point in promotions. Part of it is because folks with big downlines don’t want to get sued by people they brought into the program, and they don’t want to have their “profits” disgorged by the government or a receiver it appoints. By casting Bowdoin as a victim of a foundationally corrupt government, promoters hope to keep the heat off themselves while launching new enterprises that essentially are ASD packaged with different words.

ASD was a Ponzi; the new autosurfs soon will become Ponzis, if they’re not already Ponzis. “Rebates aren’t guaranteed” is a Ponzi signature, a disclaimer the companies use on the theory it will insulate them from claims. It didn’t work for ASD; it won’t work for the new companies.

Why? Because it’s the equivalent of saying that bank-robbery laws don’t apply to you simply because you make a formal statement that bank-robbery laws don’t apply to you. To the Ponzi purveyor, however, the words themselves are self-validating. We aren’t a Ponzi because rebates aren’t guaranteed. They also serve the secondary purpose of sounding reasonable, putting the onus on you to recognize you’re granting the operator license to keep your money and become rich when the Ponzi math becomes too inconvenient.

Virtually all Ponzis pay in the early stages; it’s what keeps money flowing into the system. But “rebates aren’t guaranteed” is the “out” — one that can be exercised at any point in time and for any reason, including “We just want to keep the money now.”

Shame on prosecutors for not understanding “rebates aren’t guaranteed” are the magical words that make the enterprise wholesome, a business of which society can be proud  — even as family members are shunned and lose the esteem and respect of other family members for introducing them to such a wholesome pursuit.

There’s a good chance your friendly autosurf promoter is in deep trouble with his or her own family for ASD and Golden Panda losses and the grief associated with a court battle –and that the promoter is selling the new autosurf in a bid to recover losses and get back in the good graces of people they love.

And there also is a chance the promoter is trying to recover personal losses by selling yet another autosurf.

The Bowdoin Roadmap

By getting caught, Bowdoin accidentally provided a roadmap on how not to get caught — at least not right away. Few autosurf promoters these days would dare claim that Google endorsed the enterprise after entering into a “partnership.” Fewer yet would dare claim that the President of the United States had given the autosurf operator  his stamp of approval at a White House dinner.

There is shorthand for this: President = Secret Service, and Secret Service = No Stone Unturned.  Thus — at least temporarily — ends the ridiculous notion that the President is on board the autosurf ship. It was nothing more than a lie that achieved virality. The Google lie also went viral.

And the rallies, the ones at which faithful volunteers collected members’ money and paperwork on camera and laid it neatly in plastic baskets? Thanks to Bowdoin, new owners will put the lid on rallies and the collection of money by volunteers — customers, after all, might have trouble reconciling why a professional advertising company is using volunteers to round up the loot. (The irony of placing money in plastic baskets in a case what went on to become a money-laundering prosecution is almost too much to contemplate.)

But don’t rest easy, even as you’re reverse-engineering Bowdoin’s mistakes to make sure your operation doesn’t repeat them and get on the Feds’ radar screens.

Here’s how the new autosurf operators will get caught, despite what they’ve learned from Bowdoin’s experience and despite reportedly moving to “offshore” locations such as Panama and Uruguay:

  • The word “offshore” itself will signal investigators that the new enterprise studied the ASD case and determined one of ASD’s core “weaknesses” was its domestic location. Some people already are bragging about this. Early promoters of “offshore” surf sites have claimed the sites provide protection from the SEC, the IRS and state attorneys general. Some of these people are the same people who promoted Google “partnerships” and White House ties.
  • A hiccup by a payment processor or an international probe of payment processors could neuter autosurfs and leave tens of thousands of participants holding the bag. There is a distinct possibility that governments worldwide will crack down on processors that do business with autosurfs. In the post-Bernard Madoff Ponzi era — and with the global economy shedding jobs as wealth continues to evaporate — nations will take a closer look at the international wire business.
  • Credit-card issuers and banks will more closely monitor transactions. They’re tired of posting hundreds of billions of dollars of losses. Shareholders will demand additional controls and regulation.
  • Some autosurf promoters are trading so heavily on government resentment that it has become a signature of Ponzi fraud. Even at this moment, promoters are trying to build your resentment so you’ll give them more money. They’ll tell you that the government is antibusiness, anti-little guy, antiwealth, and they’ll point to the $700 billion U.S. corporate bailout and employ other populist rhetoric to make you believe that real patriots play the autosurf game. The loudness, coupled with the brazen conduct of promoters, will put them squarely in the sights of regulators and prosecutors.
  • The U.S. government is well aware that autosurfs exist, but agencies lack the money to police them individually. One possible approach is to work with domestic and international agencies to engineer a sting operation. Such an approach has political support because voters are tired of reading about Ponzi schemes and how wealth is being depleted by people with smiles on their faces and access to a computer. It’s not outside the realm of possibility that the government will work proactively with a TV network to record the actual planning and final execution of the sting. The networks live for this kind of thing, and the public loves to see it. (One new autosurf already is using a reference to the NBC television network to sanitize the opportunity, an act as reckless as claiming the President is your buddy when he is not. The shorthand for the pitch is Autosurf = NBC, an utterly preposterous claim. NBC doesn’t pay viewers, and NBC doesn’t tell its advertisers that they’ll get back 125 percent of their ad spend for viewing ads on NBC for a few minutes a day.)
  • Bernard Madoff fallout is having a profound effect on individuals and the government. Madoff fallout alone is bad news for Ponzi operators. The word is positively nuclear. People now understand what a Ponzi scheme is and the dangers of such schemes because they can put a face to it.
  • Autosurf operators will not be able to control the behavior of the most unscrupulous promoters, an age-old song. Despite ASD headlines — despite Madoff headlines — the seamy underbelly of this underground business once again will emerge.

The traditional autosurf pattern already is in play at the up-and-coming sites. Have you noticed roll-outs being called “Phase One” and the promises that more and more good things will follow?

And, hey, no sense insulting you by referring to you as a plain member. Puff out your chest and proudly wear the new title of “account executive” or “VIP.” Feel good about yourself knowing your friendly promoter thinks so highly of you.

Just be ready to feel the scorn of your family and friends — and perhaps even see yourself on TV — when the post-Bowdoin breed of autosurfs meets its inevitable fate.

In any event, you’ll still have the “rebates aren’t guaranteed” defense” to make you feel better.

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7 Responses to “AdSurfDaily: Bowdoin The Envy Of Con Artists Worldwide”

  1. Great post Patrick, and a new angle. Scammer Envy is a great term! I hope it isn’t real……but probably is…..

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  2. Excellent article; I wish the right people were going to read it.

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  3. Patrick, yet another stunning post, well written and informative. I am exploring the NESARA angle with Le, one of the AVG founders, as I am intrigued that aliens will soon come from the skies to sort out our problems. I have my “Alien Invasion Strength” foil hat ready and will be putting up a Foil Hat autosurf website soon. LOL

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  4. Hi Entertained,

    Scammer Envy is a great term! I hope it isn’t real……but probably is…..

    Actually, I like your idea of “Scammer Envy” better than my thought of “Con man envy.”

    So, if I have occasion to write about “Con man envy” again, I’m going to use “Scammer envy” — with a nod to you for language efficiency. :-)

    Yep. “Scammer Envy” is better.

    Patrick

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  5. Hi Marci,

    Excellent article; I wish the right people were going to read it.

    Thanks for the note. I’m hoping that at least some of the right people read it, “right” being defined as folks inclined to believe these autosurfs represent genius and a utopian world in which all people create fantastic profits by clicking on ads for 10 minutes a day.

    The new ones are just ASD with better art. They’re all selling unregistered securities, thus potentially drawing customers into expensive litigation — and creating conditions ripe for tremendous stress among family members.

    Regards,

    Patrick

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  6. Hi Wiz,

    AVG seems destined to have a short life. The early marketing for it read like a confessional, and the site itself is going to cause visitors to question why a professional advertising firm seems to lack PR and marketing acumen.

    Of course, talk about space aliens and conspiracy theories by promoters won’t do it any favors, either.

    Some of the promoters have done a lot of cheerleading for Andy Bowdoin, apparently not recognizing that it’s not a good idea to build a brand by conjuring visions of a suspected felon.

    Regards,

    Patrick

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  7. a conversation I just had
    sponser: you got to get in on this AVG!!!
    me: are you kidding me haven’t you learned your lesson? I don’t have $5,000.00 right now, and I thouhgt you didn’t either!!
    sponser: I don’t but I found it I got to get the 200% match
    me: honey please stay away, why would you even think about it.
    sponser: I got 2 people below me who want to get in so I got to get in before them!!!!
    me: who?
    sponser: one is Dave the other is my mother
    me: your 90 year old mother with the pace-maker????? what does she need with $5,000.00 of advertising??
    one word greed, greed greed, greed!!!! I hope the this one dosen’t hurt people. I t suck when the goverment closed down ASD but the feeling of the goverment freezing your bank accouts will be real bad

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