"The people who are skeptical are the people who are the most unhappy, the most broke, the most struggling...the people you don't want to be with, let alone BE, because they're not radiating a passionate vibe of ecstatic life. You want to be around the happy, buoyant, vibrant people, the people who are doing things, the people like you and me."
~ Joe Vitale to Kevin Trudeau, in an interview on the Kevin Trudeau Radio Network, 15 July 2009
First of all, Dear Ones, I apologize for my extended absence from this Whirled. I was preoccupied with being sort of...er...um...skeptical, though far from unhappy, because I am nothing if not easily amused. I can always find something that makes me smile – horses, for example, and there are plenty of 'em around here. The daughter of the ranch owner rescues and boards horses in the stables and pastures that surround our house, and she was grateful when Ron helped save a colicky bay gelding a few weeks ago. The triple-digit heat and drought around here have really contributed to equine stress. Ron saw that the horse was down and that his sides seemed to be a bit swollen, so he went into the pasture to try to get him to stand up. The bay tried several times and finally got to his feet, farting loudly in the process, but he was obviously in distress, and his sides were still a bit swollen, though observably not quite as swollen as they had been before the gas-passing. Almost immediately he lay back down, and nothing Ron could do would get him back up. After a series of phone calls we were able to get help for the horse, and now he's doing fine.
Following that, the ranch owner's daughter asked if we'd mind checking up on all of the horses every day just to make sure none of them are in distress. Certainly we don't mind! We love walking around this place and we love horses. There are ranch hands around here to see to the horses' needs, but there's a lot of work to do on this place, and the hands can't always be everywhere. So Ron and I have taken to visiting all of the horses at the end of the day, every day, and have gained some new equine buddies. Several of the sweet things whinny greetings to us as we approach their stalls, as if they're happy to see us or something. Of course, they don't get out much so maybe they're kind of like me – easily amused.
The good news is that I have apparently become a horse whisperer. To tell the truth, I don't even have to whisper. I merely have to think certain thoughts, and the horses pick up on it, judging by an experience I had the other day with a dark brown and white pinto gelding whose real name I don't know yet, but whom Ron and I now call Thundercloud, for reasons that will soon become obvious. After talking with the pinto a few minutes on a recent evening, we walked on to look at some pigs that are in a pen adjacent to the horse's enclosure. There are two young feral hogs and what looks like a potbelly pig, and though they're all just cute as can be, I fear they are destined for what one of our local goat farmers refers to as "freezer camp." I am kind of afraid to ask.
Anyway, as we made our way towards the porcine ghetto, the pinto followed us for the length of his fence, and I found myself stopping several times to gaze at him, thinking about what a handsome fellow he is. I imagined seeing him a couple of hundred years ago, being ridden by some native across the plains, and then I saw myself riding him bareback (although the truth is that I kind of suck at riding, even with a saddle), and I thought how marvelous it would be to see him galloping across an open field. I'd sure love to see him run, I thought to myself, and at the same moment the old Christopher Cross song, "Ride Like The Wind," popped into my head.
No sooner had these thoughts formed themselves than the object of my admiration snorted and broke into a run, tearing around his enclosure a couple of times. He ended with a flourish, kicking up his heels, raising a cloud of dust and letting loose with a truly thunderous fart that put the above-mentioned colicky horse's efforts to shame, loudness-wise.
"Geez, you really know how to impress a gal," I muttered. But I was indeed impressed by his obvious ability to pick up on my thoughts, as well as by his performance, notwithstanding the flatulence. (I know, I know... I shouldn't have thought about "wind.")
Anyhow, it's good to be back in the saddle, so to speak, and I appreciate your comments and support during my hiatus. Now that I am feeling a little more buoyant and vibrant, I am ready to get this blog rolling again.
Equine flatulence has nothing on this
Poking around cyberspace, I see that nothing much changed while I was gone. The hustlers are still hustling, the scammers are still scamming, and the oceans of my Whirled are swirling with snark chum.
So let's get down to business, beginning with that quotation at the beginning of the post. The first thing you should know is that a "skeptic," in the context of the discussion from which the quotation was extracted, is anyone who pooh-poohs the validity (scientific and otherwise) of the Law Of Attraction. LOA was the topic of the recent conversation between the infamous serial conner Kevin Trudeau and his new b.f.f., Joe "Mr. Fire" Vitale. Back in January, I wrote at length about the first meeting between True-dough and Mr. Fire. The relationship has apparently only grown stronger; as noted, Joe was featured on a recent Trudeau radio show, and if you go to the show's web site you'll see that his name appears on Kevin's short blogroll as well. They recently had dinner together in Chicago, and Joe's sweetie, Nerissa, got a chance to meet Kevin. She apparently has some food sensitivities and other health issues, and was delighted to have an opportunity to discuss them with him. As we all know, health issues are right down Kevin's alley. (Apropos of that, on another radio show segment Kevin supposedly gives the real story of what happened between him and that pesky FTC.)
When introducing Joe, after the obligatory mention of Joe's Secret stardom, numerous bestselling books, etc., Kevin adds that Joe has "something very, very, very unique...a website that actually creates a group of people to send out vibrations for you to make the things that you want to happen, happen faster." This would be Joe's Attract Miracles online community, which, of course, was discussed at length a few months ago on this very blog. Kevin talks about it as if he's a true believer. My guess is that he really doesn't buy into all of the woo stuff, and may even secretly hold much of it in contempt, but he recognizes a good cash cow when he sees it. As I've previously speculated, perhaps he sees his alliance with Mr. Fire as a good solid foot in the door of the lucrative New-Wage/selfish-help market.
Throughout the interview Joe and Kevin use their very best radio voices, both of them enunciating very, very, very cleaaaaarly, extending their words and emphasizing every other word so their listeners can reaaaallly understand what they say. I know this will probably come as a huge surprise to you, but they begin the interview with a lengthy discussion of...hold on to your hats.... JOE'S CARS. And that's pretty much how the interview ends as well. Once again, Joe uses his immense car collection as proof that his stuff not only works for him but can work for anyone, and that his own life and thinking are in order.
At one point fairly early on, Kevin asks if Joe's $5,000.00-a-head Rolls-Royce MasterMind sessions are really effective. "Do they really make a difference in the lives of the people who go on these rides?" Kevin asks (I'm paraphrasing here but that's the gist of the question). Joe says it seems so, because people are RAVING about their experiences. He claims that in the nearly one year he has been having the RR MasterMinds, "Everybody has had a breakthrough!" He explains that these aren't billionaires; they're just ord'nary folk who are ready to take their dreams and visions to the next level.
Ord'nary folk who just happen to have five grand to throw around.
One such dreamer and visionary is Don Wilde, whose web site you absolutely owe it to yourself to read. (But remember, the address he gives on the site is not a retail location, so please do not visit without calling him first.) Don wants to change the world and make it a better place. He says he went on the Phantom ride at the urging of his "coach," a guy in New Mexico named Darshan Shanti (you have to wonder if that is his given name). Darshan describes himself as, among other things, a "professional ontologist." That's not oncologist, as in cancer doc, but ontologist. I am not sure exactly what it means to be a professional ontologist, but I suppose it's not relevant at the moment because this is about Don Wilde, not Coach Darshan. Anyhoo, Darshan apparently turned Don on to the idea of going on the Phantom Ride. (I can't help wondering why he would do this. Finder's fee? Or just because he truly had Don's best interests at heart? Heck if I know.)
So Don went on the ride, and was thrilled not only by the experience but by the fact that, incredibly, Joe invited him to a seminar to be held the following weekend by one of Joe's buddies, Pat O'Bryan. How lucky can one man get?!? Don went to that too, and apparently was on fire with excitement when it was over, but then he crashed and burned when he got home. All of his old "stuff" came right back to haunt him, gosh darn it. Now, I think most of us could have told him that the high always wears off, for some sooner than others, but he didn't ask most of us. Fortunately he didn't need to, because Joe had given Don the obligatory bag o'books and other goodies at the end of the Rolls Royce session, so Don dragged them out and somehow got his inspiration renewed. Now he's psyched and ready to expand his vision, thanks to Joe.
Here's a bit from the products page of his web site:
Do you want to be wealthy? Of course you do. We want everybody in the world to become wealthy, and we're going to make that happen with our new product!
Here's why: "Make Everybody Rich", by Frederick Turner
I have been dealing with money issues since shifting out of 'job mode'* in March, and Darshan, who I've known as a friend and coach since 2002, suggested that I do his money workshop. He gave me the gift of it, that he normally charges $1,500.00 for! I had just read the Turner paper the other day after it was pointed to by Michael Strong, Chief Vision Officer of Freedom Lights Our World, and as I came through the transformation caused by Darshan's questions I put the two together and came up with a product plan which I am now executing with Darshan's blessing.
We're going to give away the most important piece of it as a free paper and we will create a Gratitude Fund to translate it into every language on Earth. As hundreds of thousands of people start to transform their lives with it, people will start to lift themselves out of poverty and despair and the chains of abusive power.
For those who have computers and the Internet, we're creating a software desktop application containing the whole workshop -- and again, we're making the key piece work for free! Think of it as an Interactive Mindset TrainerTM , it's really powerful!
That's right. We believe you will get so much wealth and value in your life from the transformation caused by our free gift that not only will you gladly buy the rest, you'll bring so much wealth into your life that you'll gratefully shower our Gratitude Fund with money so that the rest of the world can benefit from this amazing system.
And so on. Be sure to follow that "Make Everybody Rich" link as well. Talk about brilliant satire; my hat is off to Frederick Turner.
You can see numerous other testimonials on the site promoting the Phantom rides, and some of the enthusiastic riders also list their web sites. I urge you to visit those too. My point is that there's no doubt that most of the folks who have been on the Rolls rides "rave" about the experience, and are glad to write their testimonials for Joe's site. But does all that raving translate into their actually making buckets of money, particularly over the long term, as Joe implies they will? Time will tell, but the evidence so far, judging from those web sites and blogs and such, is just not all that impressive.**
But then, what do I know? I'm the skeptical gal who attracts horse farts.
Those darned skeptics again
Kevin Trudeau has never been one to shy away from controversy, and in his interview with Joe he eventually gets down to the nitty-gritty, acknowledging that there's a bit of criticism regarding the Law Of Attraction. He asks Joe to 'splain the main criticisms of LOA.
Joe is on that one like a fly on...um...a horse's eye. "Ah, the skeptics have several objections," he says, and you can almost see him rolling his eyes at the word "skeptics." Their chief objections, he says, are that LOA, as taught in The Secret, etc., doesn't work, that it's just magical thinking, and that it offers false hope. Well, Joe is here to tell the listeners that it does work, and that other people, not just Joe, are proving every day that it does, not only by attracting cars and other material goodies, but by attracting good relationships, healing themselves of awful diseases, and the like. From there Joe and Kevin get into a brief but spirited scientifical discussion about brain vibes; Kevin points out the recent advances in brainwave-activated devices that help paralyzed people manipulate objects in their world. This is "proof" that thoughts have vibrations, and from there it's only logical to conclude that if you control those vibes you can lasso the LOA and make it do your will. Science has PROVEN this, Kevin asserts numerous times, and at one point Joe talks about how "the whole field of positive psychology has proven absolutely definitively that you get what you focus on." (Regarding Kevin's example of the brain device for quadriplegics, it should be noted that it is a physical device, and only works when it is physically attached to the person's head (or, in some experiments, when chips are physically implanted into the brain). It's not a case of someone influencing remote physical reality with mere brain waves. But Kevin doesn't mention this little detail.)
Later in the interview, Kevin and Joe both spend a bit of time lamenting the plight of those poor pitiful schmucks whom Kevin refers to as "professional seminar attendees." These are the folks who go to all the motivational gurus' workshops and buy all the products, but are still flat broke. Joe says they're either not taking the right action (and he hastens to add that he was the one person in The Secret who said you have to take action), or they're being held back by subconscious beliefs. Naturally, Joe has products and services to remedy these problems, such as his famous Miracles Coaching program that helps you clear out all that unconscious gunk. The truth, though – and I think Joe and Kevin are all too aware of it – is that those poor schmucks are a New-Wage guru's bread and butter, and if half of the stuff really did work half as well as promised, they'd probably stop buying so many products and workshops from Joe and Kevin and every other deity in the New-Wage pantheon.
So it would seem that even though one message Joe and Kevin are trying to convey is that critics and skeptics are losers, they also secretly (or perhaps not so secretly) believe that many of their very own most faithful customers are losers as well. In fact, they're banking on it.
Towards the end of the interview, in the customary nod to conspicuous altruism, Joe assures Kevin that his success is about much more than just buying expensive toys for himself; it has allowed him to help others. "I started a movement to end homelessness in this country," Joe explains, referring to his Operation Y.E.S., which, though first introduced to the world in March of 2008, still apparently consists of a single-page web site that allows one to sign up to receive information about Operation Y.E.S. when it is "launched." Well, okay, Joe has mentioned that some of the proceeds from various products and workshops and web sites will go to Operation Y.E.S., but so far there's scant information about this "movement." One can be forgiven for speculating that the main "movement" is the steady flowing of funds into Joe's coffers.
The gist of the interview is that LOA and the stuff Joe teaches are for real and really do work, but you have to change your thinking. And when you do, your life will be transformed and miracles can occur. Kevin mentions that Joe has seen people who were transformed instantly when they finally "get it." Some have been transformed just from one conversation or session. Joe agrees, adding that he wouldn't be surprised if some of Kevin's multitudes of listeners experienced an epiphany just from listening to this radio interview, either in real time or on their computers later. They may be leaning forward towards the radio to listen, and suddenly they'll just GET IT, he says (and again, I'm paraphrasing). I kept expecting him to say, "Put your hands on the radio, brothers and sisters, and you will be HEALED!" a la those old-timey radio preachers. Matter of fact, I can't help thinking that he had that in mind, especially given his fascination with the master motivators/manipulators from times past.
In due course, the two get back to ragging on "the skeptics." Kevin asks, "Isn't it true that the broke people are the skeptics?"
Joe praises Kevin for his "brilliant insight," asserting that basically skeptics are broke because they're unhappy, and they're unhappy because typically they are "closed down, reserved, second-guessing everything." He wraps it up by declaring vehemently, "Well, to hell with them. I want to move on!"
Making a list, and checking it twice...
And move on he has. He's still doing his lucrative Rolls-Royce Masterminds, is also still busy on the lecture and interview circuit, and of course, he continues to churn out books and other products, either solo or as a joint venture with one or another of his pals. One solo book currently in the works is called Attract Money Now, and in a recent blog post publicizing the book, Joe offers a cheat sheet/teaser in the form of a list, "29 ways to attract money NOW." He explains that his book will go into much more detail about the items on the list, and will also include – and here is something devastatingly original – a seven-step formula for attracting money. Will the surprises just never stop coming?
Here are a few highlights from Joe's list (and hold on, because these tips will absolutely blow you away):
1. If you’re in the US, and in an emergency, call 211.
2. Call the Silent Unity prayer line in the US: 1-740-362-4214.
3. Give money to wherever you received inspiration or encouragement.
4. Buy something you want and can afford.
Shopaholics, are you paying attention? Break out that plastic that you promised the folks in your church's Dave Ramsey study group that you'd destroy, but that you really hid in your underwear drawer. It's time to dig the Visa, Mastercard and Discover cards out of that pile of stained tidy-whities or faded Victoria's Secret thongs, and buy your way out of moneylessness! But only if you can afford it, of course.
There's much more. F'rinstance, who knew that watching movies could attract scads of cash to your doorstep?
7. Watch the movie The Secret.
8. Watch the movie The Compass.
9. Watch the movie Try It On Everything.
He saves the best for almost last, though:
26. Imagine what you would do if you won the lotto for $37,000,000. Do it.
28. Get a job. While you pursue your dream, feed yourself with work.
Oh. My. God. Who would have dreamed that getting a job could help you attract money? That whole problem of massive unemployment that the talking heads are always yawping about is unfortunate and in some cases even tragic but, as it turns out, soooo unnecessary. Those unemployed people should just get jobs. Have the news media picked up on this one yet? Oh. Wait. I guess it wouldn't matter much if they did, because number 11 on Joe's list is, "Turn off the mainstream news."
I have to admit that my first thought upon reading this list, which seemed a tad simplistic even by New-Wagey standards, was, "He has GOT to be on glue." But I am pretty sure that Joe is not into inhalants or any other illegal intoxicants, so my next thought was, "He's beating me at my own game. This is brilliant parody. Or self-parody." Upon further consideration, however, I came to the conclusion that this list is intended to be serious, or at least to seem serious enough to get people interested in his book. Then the more I looked at it, the more I became convinced that not only is the list serious, but it is profound in the way that only Joe can be profound. So I have completely changed my thinking, and now I believe that this country owes a big round of thanks to Mr. Fire. "Oprah" has already thanked him***, as have numerous other respondents.
And the world's most successful huckster, Kevin Trudeau, just can't seem to get enough of him. I think we can expect great things from the happy, buoyant, vibrant True-dough/Mr. Fire team in the future. It's enough to make you want to joyfully run and kick up your heels and...well, you know.
PS ~ The radio show interview described above is not the only scintillating conversation between Mr. Fire and True-dough. If you order Joe's amazing "Hypnotic Marketing Library" you will get a free copy of Joe's interview with Kevin from Joe's "Hypnotic Gold" series. In this interview, Kevin reveals, among other things, how he made his first million by the age of thirteen; how to maintain a high level of confidence even in a prison cell...um... I mean, even in turbulent times; and "the shocking answer" to how the Law of Attraction relates to all of the "controversy" Kevin attracts. And the whole shebang is only $197.00. Oh, and Joe says that if you buy the program you will also learn how to virtually enslave all of your prospects, compelling them to "whip out the plastic" every time. Sounds pretty kinky to me. (Actually, it sounds pretty icky.)
* "Shifting out of job mode" in this context sounds suspiciously like the result of an involuntary separation from one's job – a scenario that's all too common these days. Can you blame a New-Wage entrepreneur for glomming onto a money op with desperate, vulnerable, recently unemployed folks who just happen to have a bit of cash saved up? Of course, I'm reading between the lines here, as I sometimes do, and I could very well be wrong. If I am, I trust that someone will let me know so I can retract or revise my comments.
** Okay, I know my own business web site is less than impressive and is long overdue for an update/redesign (I'm working on it!), but at least Ron and I create tangible products (books), and we offer services that, I am reasonably certain, do not make you scratch your head and say, 'WTF?'
*** Another respondent actually asked if that was really Oprah. Yup, this is the market any New-Wage guru should aim for: the easily fooled.
Labels: But enough about me..., Hustledorks and New-Wage masters, Joe Vitale, Kevin Trudeau, Pointy-eared angels