If you go to one of these meetings and start asking “negative” questions (or questions that force an unbiased examination of what they’re doing), you will cement your status as a nay-sayer and give up whatever ground you might have gained between now and then.
Confrontation is never a good idea, imo, with someone who is the victim of cult tactics, and you’ll find yourself in a room full of cult victims, probably LED by a cult victim. Remember, most of the people running the day-to-day operations of these things are unaware of the scams. They are simply doing what they’ve been taught to do.
Unless you are EXTREMELY well-versed in the questions you would likely encounter at a recruitment meeting or a “nut-and-bolts” seminar, they will tear your questions to shreds. They’re trained at doing that. I know. I was able to do it from the other side of the table. (While I was not able to recruit very many people when I was involved, I was very adept at convincing most of my prospects that I was not involved in something unethical or illegal.)
And finally, in regards to the money questions:
Yes, it is usually rude to inquire about someone’s personal finances. But is this or is this not a BUSINESS? You’re asking about how much money your son’s upline earns from the same business into which he was recruited. They (A/Q leaders) frequently talk about taking business advice from people who have “the fruit on the tree.” Well, is it rude to ask what kind of fruit they have and in what quantity? Is that not a germane question to ask if they’re going to limit who you can consult on the same criteria?
And when it comes to business, income and outflow are frequently in the conversation. It is NOT rude; it is normal and expected.
A few years ago, my wife and I were offered the opportunity to enter into a partnership with a medical practice near our home. The owner of the business provided us with all manner of documentation to illustrate the financial health of the company -INCLUDING his PERSONAL tax returns. He wanted to ensure that we understood what sort of income and profit his practice was generating and that he was not putting on some sort of “better-than-it-actually-is” front by having an undisclosed income source.
This sort of thing is not rare in business transactions. But it is almost unheard-of in MLM. They give every kind of excuse, but the one that seems to go unquestioned is that it’s rude to ask about one’s income. And again, I used it while I was involved to deflect MY lack of income from the business. It was “I’m just getting started.” I was “just getting started” for more than five years! And I never felt a twinge of guilt about saying it, since I was never any farther along, in terms of profit, than “just getting started.”
Keep reading. Keep asking those questions. Look at other web sites, including the ones that defend the business. Learn how participants view their activities and how they justify them. If you can manage it, go on a crash course, hitting as many sites as you can stand at a time. That may allow you to say the right things to your son without having to put yourself through a meeting in which you’d be vastly outnumbered.
For the most part, it’s a one-on-one effort getting people involved. It may (in many cases) be a one-on-one endeavor to get them out.
Good Luck to you!!