Through my normal day-job, I come across all sorts of people, including deluded con-artists. Over the years, I have found that those who protest too much, often have something to hide. For example, you might have heard about gay-bashers being gay themselves. They project a false bravado to impress their mates, and they will do anything to send out a signal that they are not gay, simply because they cannot cope with the perceived humiliation of being shunned by their mates. So they will bash other gay people, in an effort to prove that they are not gay.
I have been involved in serious cases, such as the time when I was counselling an adult who would not get down from from his high horse. He was the type to protest about crime and criminals, saying that dole-bludgers ought to be shot, and those who cheat on the tax department are unethical gits, and those who cheat on their wife are low-life bastards… and after some time, I came across documentary evidence, including video evidence, that the loud-mouth righteous man was everything he protested about. (I documented my feelings at my website in an article called ‘Not listening but pausing’ .) The high-horse was a distraction. Indeed, he was a womaniser, a tax cheat, and a dole and welfare cheat, a con-artist, a scammer, a thief, and money launderer, forger and trafficker: over a ten-year period, and getting bolder and braver each year, while lying and cheating with two passports, ten different names, five different signatures and endless lies to everyone about everything. Yet to meet him, you would never know. He is quick to mask everything he does, by complaining about those who do it.
I mention this because Sam Cohen of IHRB reminds me of such people who protest too much. Like a runaway train, Sam ploughs though anything and everything that his competitors do, making out that he is the white angel. Now that I have been investigating his character and his conduct since August 2009 (after being a client for twelve months), I can see that Sam was never really protesting about his competitors, but he was trying to mask his own reality, and trying to get me to think that he is indeed the opposite of everything he had complained about. So when he speaks about competitors who lock clients into a contract that forces the clients to keep coming back and buying products, he is trying to distract me from the fact that it is his intention to lock clients into his grip. He always mentions and publishes the fact that any client will receive free 25-years of on-going support. That is not benevolence. That is his strategy of keeping a grip on each client so that they can return for another brainwashing session. He cannot afford for clients to drift elsewhere, lest they learn something new and realise that they had been duped.
In the top image, we see Sam Cohen warning people about competitors who keep people coming back. In the second image we see that he offers free 25 years of on-going advice. This is his way of getting people to come back. Why? So that they can purchase his products at sky-high prices. By way of example, his exorbitant prices are listed in another article called 'Exorbitant prices'.
Sam speaks disparagingly about his competitors. He warns his clients that they should not allow other companies to abuse them. He says (on his website and in a brochure) that competitors must specify the exact period of treatment and all the associated products and total cost of the program. This is hypocritical because Sam and IHRB did not disclose the associated costs to me, such as extra medication at my expense. He alludes to the fact that some bad companies expect you to sign-up to a lifetime commitment without giving you the approximate future expenditure. He make them out to be the bad guys, yet see below for how he is guilty of this very thing.
Sam warns that bad companies do not tell you how long you have to keep using their products. In my contract, he says that 'maybe' I have to use his product for three years plus less of it for one more year. An average person would assume that this is a four year 'suggested' commitment. Specifically, he crosses out the bit about being stuck with this program 'forever'. A reasonable person would now assume that this is not forever. The fine print shown in the next image voids this Mr-Nice-Guy approach. Regardless, even if it were four years, he does not do what he says others should do: he does not disclose the costs!
This image (and the one above it) are on the opposite sides of the same page which forms the contract. On page one he says that the program is for four years, yet in this image from page two of the contact (overleaf of the same page) he says in fine print, 'REMEMBER that, after the conclusion of the recommended period of your treatment program, you will require an ongoing maintenance usage of the hygiene products and pharmaceutical compound to maintain normal hair growth.' On page one, he uses words like 'suggested' and 'maybe' and 'upto'. Yet on page two, he used emphatic strong words like 'you will require'. And with hypocrisy, he does not outline those costs! Also note the life-time grip that he has just impose on the client, by referring to 'hygiene products'. What are these? It sounds soft and easy. No-one would think it unreasonable to be hygienic. Hygiene sounds good and dandy, but he does not tell you that this really means his own special product, on which he has a monopoly. It is his own Organic Shampoo plus his own Derma Clean plus his own Herbal Conditioner plus his intense Protein Treatment, and that's not all. You must use his 'pharmaceutical compound'. The term 'compound' is a technical term that most people would not understand. It means that the product in question has been 'compounded' by a chemist (his supplier in North Melbourne). It might contain nothing more than Minoxidil, which you can purchase at any pharmacy over the counter, but he does not want you to do this, so he will ask his chemist to mass-produce (which is illegal, full stop) products for him to sell (which is illegal without a licence (and I am investigating whether or not he has a licence)). He complicates the matter by compounding (mixing his own) when there are exactly the same products on the shelf at a fraction of the price. However, he will maintain that his compounded products contain secret ingredients, which he calls Indian Curries. This is for another article.
In his ads, Sam warms customers about the bad-guys who do not offer a money back guarantee. He boasts about being the only one to make such an offer. He told me that his competitors are furious with him for introducing this innovative level of honesty into an industry filled with expletive-after-vulgarity-after-expletive! Sam does give you a document that offers are refund, but my dear reader, as with all magicians, something else goes on in the background that you do not notice at the time of the slight-of-hand. When Sam took photos of my scalp during the first sales pitch, and after he made all his promises, and after he poo-pooed everyone and everything and every other company and every doctor and every other product including all (absolutely every) shampoo on the market, I handed over my American Express card. His receptionist (whom, when she leaves, he calls vulgar disrespectful names) returned with the EFTPOS docket for me to sign. Only then, after the deal was done, signed, contracted, folded into an envelope, did he pull out a stamp and stomp all over the photos with a warning that says something like, this area of the head will not receive any re-growth, while circling the photo with massive large sweeps of his pen, virtually covering my whole head. In my opinion, this is the scam. I protested and made him sign a different agreement, which he did. He did not want to lose $3700. This alleged scam will be outlined in another article.
Sam big-notes himself that he is the only company that gives you photos to take home. Like a conjuror, every move and every word has been rehearsed for a very good reason. While he is boasting about being the only company to be so nice and so honourable, he is distracting you from his magic trick. He is selling you on the idea that the photos you take home will be evidence for you, making you think that you have proof. How sad. This is his way of disarming you from getting any bright ideas about going home hand taking your own photos. He wants to be in control of the photos! He wants to give you files for your evidence so that he can manipulate the image. When he was taking photos of me, I could see that at the start, he would walk his fingers through my hair to expose the scalp, pulling up the hair so that the light can enter and capture the thinning scalp. Then as time wore on, he would take new photos, this time cupping his hand over my hair and flattening it so that all the hair covers as much of my scalp as possible so that it would give the illusion that I am not thinning like before. The final photo, during the final consultation, was blurred. I complained about this and he disputed that it was blurred. He said that I must be seeing things or going blind. So I pulled out my 10 megapixel Nikon camera and took a photo right there in front of him. I help my hand up high, took a shot, with his desk in the background so that a judge and jury will be able to see that the photo was taken while in his office, and Sam objected, saying that he cannot take evidence from my camera, and that we have to always use the same camera. There was clear evidence that my hair was getting worse, after 12 months on his program, but he would not accept it, and he went into robotic mode, repeating that my hair had grown and the program was successful. More about this in another article.
In his full-page ads, Sam tells people to be wary of other companies. Here he says, 'Are you consulting a doctor at your initial visit to so called Medical Hair Centres?' What hypocrisy! What does he care? Why make this statement? Is he making out that he is better than any other centre? Is he inferring that he has expertise equivalent to a doctor's? Is he saying that IHRB treats clients using doctors? He is as bad as they are. He has no qualifications whatsoever, so why is he throwing stones in a glass house? And what is the jibe about them being 'so called'. He is a so-called specialist. What qualifications does he have? Where has he studied? The laugh of all this is that the walls of his office are adorned with scientific posters of anatomical drawings of hair follicles and scalps and such like, making out that he understands anything scientific about hair or cells or bodies. This is yet another example of him casting aspersions about others, trying to deflect from his short-comings. By teasing other so-called companies, he is in fact trying to mask his inferiority.
In his ads, Sam mocks other companies who have been exposed by major TV shows. He makes out that the bad guys have been exposed. Yet he forgets to mention the people who have exposed him, including 'Australian Doctor' wherein the then NSW President of the Australian Medical Association said that Sam's methods were 'Absolutely disgraceful'. Sam fails to tell us that a Sydney GP (Dr Paul Fitzgerald) raised the alarm when he noted that Sam was mixing two products that should not be mixed together. Sam does not tell us what a dermatologist Dr Jo-Ann See says about there being 'cause for concern'. Everything that Sam points to in others, he is guilty of it himself.
In another article , I give examples if Sam Cohen’s and IHRB’s exorbitant prices, so that you can see how his complaints about other rip-off merchants are totally misplaced.