If you haven’t heard of RNC speaker Michelle Van Etten, it might be because you’re sane. Van Etten, reports The Daily Beast, is the owner of Youngevity, a company that sells nutritional supplements that Van Etten improbably claims improve health and even fight cancer.
The company’s dubious science matches its dubious business strategy: they recruit salespeople who are rewarded for each new employee they bring in. In other words, it’s a
Speaking at the RNC: The head of an Alex Jones-backed supplement pill pyramid scheme
. Fittingly, Youngevity is similar to a project called The Trump Network, a marketing scheme involving vitamins that was run by the presumptive GOP nominee during the 2000s and early 2010s.
While scammers of Van Etten’s variety are common, her particular fan base makes her appearance at this week’s RNC especially troubling.
Youngevity products are shilled by conspiracy theory guru Alex Jones. Jones has claimed that just about everything from 9-11 to Sandy Hook to the Orlando attacks was a “false flag” operation conducted by the US government.
Trump himself broke a long-standing taboo by appearing on Alex Jones’ show last year. Jones agreed with Trump’s claims that thousands of Muslim-Americans cheered 9-11 (there was no evidence this happened).
When he’s peddled Youngevity products, Jones has said that the supplements made him “aggressive” and that “the only side effect is that I’m crazed now. Now I can jog eight miles instead of four miles.”
It’s unclear why Van Etten will be speaking at the RNC, although the event’s website makes the unlikely claim that she employs over 100,000 people.