So Ackman wants us to believe this is the first ponzi scheme in history
that even the operators don't know they are running a ponzi scheme? This company was LBO'd in 2002. Don't you think the guys taking it private and the banks loaning $500 million to do the deal, as well as those taking the otherside of the paper did a little due dilligence? This is an amazing story.
He wants us to believe it's a pyramid scheme. Whether it is or not depends on your definition. Some people think any MLM system where many of the customers are distributors is a pyramid scheme. And the owners at the top of a pyramid usually do great, so whether or not it went private in the past has zero bearing on whether its present business model is legal or not.