Whirled Musings

Across the Universe with Cosmic Connie, aka Connie L. Schmidt...or maybe just through the dung-filled streets and murky swamps of pop culture -- more specifically, the New-Age/New-Wage crowd, pop spirituality & religion, pop psychology, self(ish)-help, business babble, media silliness, & related (or occasionally unrelated) matters of consequence. Hope you're wearing boots. (By the way, the "Cosmic" bit in my moniker is IRONIC.)

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Cheat-o Jesus's Prosper-ity gospel, #Lexit, and other wacky Whirled matters

The past few weeks have been pretty crazy, and as summer (in the Northern Hemisphere) and the political season both heat up, it is almost certainly going to get even crazier. But just for the sake of putting in my two-cents' worth on some of the craziness, here are a few tidbits and aggregated links.

Salty Droid and Daily Kos dig into Drumpf U's Prosper connections
In case you were worried about the little fake robot's prolonged absence, there's no cause for concern. Salty Droid returned earlier this month with
a teaser about the yuuuuge scam formerly known as Trump University, which he had exposed years ago for the massive fraud that it was/is. In the teaser he took a potshot at Donald Trump's obnoxious, tone-deaf self-congratulations in the immediate wake of the mass shooting in Orlando, Florida on June 12. Salty also put together a short video that competently demonstrated the cynical lie that was Trump U.

That was just the appetizer. A few days later
Salty came back with the main course, a post focusing on the intimate connection between Cheat-o Jesus' phony institution of liar education and notorious Utah boiler-room company Prosper Inc.

As many of you may know, Salty has been on
Prosper's and Utah's case for years, being one of the very first to call out that "rotting vortex of fraud," as he put it. Salty's postings inspired me more than once to add my own voice to the (still-too-small) chorus too. One reason I found the matter of such interest was that Joe "Mr. Fire" Vitale, a frequent snarget on this Whirled, "partnered" with Prosper years ago for his extravagantly overpriced "Miracles Coaching" scheme. Over the years, others such as In the Limelight blogger Jonathan Timar, as well as The Verge, have also nabbed Joe for Miracles Coaching and its dependence upon the Prosper-generated hard sell. There have been consumer complaints about Prosper's "business coaching" as well -- see here and here and here, for instance.

Apparently, though, Prosper's co-founder Ethan Willis
got out of that racket and into another one. If I'm reading things correctly, it appears that Prosper changed hands a couple of years ago and morphed into something called Achieve Today LLC. But according to their website, Vitale and his McMiracles machine are still "partners."

At any rate, Trump U is far from the only scam in which Prosper has been involved. But it seems clear that Trump U got a lot of help and enabling from the Willis boys -- not just Ethan but his brother Damon -- back in the day when Prosper was still Prosper. The bottom line, according to Salty:

It’s not enough to call this fraud. It’s intentional manipulation :: a full degree darker than deception … and it works like a motherfucker. These guys are so good at it :: scary good … which is why they generally contract to take more than half the money in these deals.

Trump University didn’t slide gradually into scam after being confronted with the reality of the web’s unprofitable profit model … as happens to so many companies. Trump came to this game partnered with Prosper … because he was always going straight for the jugular.
That sounds pretty accurate.

By the way, Salty isn't the only one on the Prosper/Drumpf U connection. Lenny Grover put some good info together and published it on The NewsHub and on Daily Kos.
Here's the Kos link.

But as I noted on my own
very long post about the Drumpf U playbooks -- a post that totally overlooked the Prosper connection, I'm sorry to say (and really, there was no excuse for that, since Prosper was mentioned in the playbook PDF to which I linked) -- I don't think that knowing that Donald Trump is a scammer will make any difference to the hatriots and scammer wannabes who are pushing for a Drumpf presidency. For the scammer wannabes, in fact, it will just be a selling point.

LoonyC gets out of Facebook jail, and he's loonier than ever
Another frequent snarget on this blog,
Not-Doktor Leonard Coldwell, was recently sprung from Facebook jail. I wrote about his most recent 30-day suspension in late May, detailing his whines about being "banned" because, according to him, he was writing posts in support of Donald Trump. More than likely, however, he was suspended for hate speech -- not that it stopped him from posting on Facebook. The only account that was actually suspended was his main English-language page, but he continued to post on his main German page, as well as several other pages he maintains, and he even created a new fake account under the name "Eyn Rand."

Well, Lenny has been back on Facebook in full force now for a few days, and he hit the ground whining that he is probably going to be blocked again. Even more amusingly, he is boasting that he has a huge fortune of 100 billion dollars... or maybe euros; he doesn't seem to be sure which it is. And he is going to use that fortune to create his own sovereign nation. Now, where/when have we heard that before?
Oh, yeah, here -- back in April 2013 when he was boasting about having purchased 130-plus acres in South Carolina, near the Georgia border.

Bernie at GINtruth had some fun with Loony's latest claims.

As I noted on my comment on Bernie's blog post, in all of the posts that Lenny wrote immediately after getting out of Facebook jail, he hasn't made one mention of having been “banned” because of his pro-Trump posts. Yet his Trump advocacy was the excuse he gave at the beginning of his 30-day suspension. Post-suspension, he is only blaming the New World Order, or NWO. Maybe, I suggested, he just doesn’t remember the lie he told previously. Then again, that was 30 days ago, and probably (at least 30) bottles of bourbon ago as well.

And it seems that Lenny hasn't learned his lesson about hate speech, or perhaps he is simply trying to bait Facebook so he'll get suspended again, and can whine about it and gather more names and email addresses for his "exclusive" newsletter. On his German page, under the name "Dr." Leonard Coldwell, there's this, from June 23, 2016.

In that post he links to this awful German-language site.

Here's a link to the Googlish-translated page.

And even before that -- while he was still suspended from using his main English language Facebook page -- he shared
a link to this atrocious anti-Semitic work.

Post-suspension, and writing as Eyn Rand, he shared one of his favorite links -- again. And again:

Which makes his former lawyer's "eternal vocational suicide" defense of Lenny seem all the sillier. 

Indeed, judging by some of his Facebook posts, it would appear that Coldwell actively identifies with Hitler. This is from his German page:

A translation of the caption under the Hitler pic:

And then there's this: a clip from Lenny's June 28, 2016 interview with one of his long-time buddies, conspiracy nut and hate-monger Jeff Rense. This isn't the entire segment but it's enough to clearly call Lenny out for a particularly vicious form of anti-Semitism, marked by Holocaust denial and expressions of admiration for Adolf Hitler, whom he and Rense both portray as the egregiously misunderstood hero of history. Vocational suicide, indeed. Lenny's rants are the words of a maniac who has no real vocation left to destroy.

In light of the above, I'm all for Leonard Coldwell forming his own sovereign nation, but I hope it's far, far away from the United States. Actually, I'm thinking that the location for Loonyland might be somewhere in Russia, since Lenny has such a mad man-crush on Vladimir Putin and is supposedly going to be talking to him soon about how to save our world.

The more I think about it, the more I think that Russia would be a perfect place for Lenny, because overall people there are even more gullible than they are in the US,
as I noted in this September 2009 snarkfest.

In any case I had been wondering about Lenny's letter to Putin. I didn't have to wonder long; on June 26
he posted this on his German page:

Here is the link he shared to the letter to Putin. It's in German, but if you don't speak that language, you don't have to mess with Google or Bing's awkward machine translations. Here is the page in English.

If I'm reading his garbled garbage correctly, it appears that Lenny did not personally reach out to Putin; he merely signed an online letter. So are we to believe Putin is singling Lenny out of the 93,000-plus other souls all over the world who supposedly signed the same online letter, and that Vlad is going to be meeting personally with Lenny?

I think we all know the truth here: Lenny is just another silly Putin fanboy,
as are millions of other conservative wingnuts in the US, UK and elsewhere (e.g., Donald Trump, UKIP leader Nigel Farage, et al.). Perhaps Lenny even has a big poster of a shirtless Vlad on horseback taped to his ceiling. And so what if Amy doesn't like it? She's just a woman, and real men like Lenny don't let their wives tell them what to do.

Perhaps Lenny fantasizes about himself and Vlad prancing shirtlessly on horseback together, parading around the new sovereign nation of Loonyland, supervising drills of Lenny's Pinkshirt troops, overseeing the Lenions toiling in the organic gardens or attending the animals. Possibly he envisions Vlad and him hunting and shooting shirtlessly together like the man's men that they are.

Now that I've spoiled your appetite for dinner, let's get back to that sovereign nation notion. Like his idol
Donald Trump, Lenny has been a big and mostly ignorant advocate of #Brexit. Lenny has also gotten behind #Amexit (the US leaving the United Nations) and #Texit (Texas seceding from the United States). Well, I'm here to get behind what I hope will be a

Goodbye, Lenny, and good riddance.

Burning soles redux: it's not the firewalk that's the main problem
Nearly four years ago, the Emperor of Scamworld Tony Robbins' firewalking shtick made the news because some folks at a California event got their tootsies burned. I blogged about it here. Well, it has happened again, this time in Dallas, Texas. (My pal Steve Salerno at SHAMblog was invoked by ABC News to provide insight, but they apparently did a piss-poor job of it; they ran a mere snippet of a prolonged comment he'd made after the 2012 incident.)

Not surprisingly, Robbins' faithful followers claimed that the injured people got burned
because of a lack of focus. But at least one participant said that it appeared that staff members didn't allow the coals to cool enough before adding more to the pile.

Maybe convicted, formerly imprisoned and now freed killer James Arthur Ray can get a job with the Robbins scampire.

In any case,
as Salty Droid noted back in 2012, after the California burning soles event:

bad things that scale + the internets = very scary

6000 people walking down 10+ lanes of hot coals for 90 minutes :: seems like a big bad … but it’s not the big number we should be worried about. Each one of the those 6000 people represents approximately 100 other people who were offered the opportunity to Unleash the Power Within in San Jose July 2012 and declined. Hundreds of thousands of sales messages constantly spammed across all mediums :: to the whole world … generating the contrivance of attention.

Tony Robbins will never stop telling you that the way to move forward with your life is to keep giving ever larger amounts of yourself and your life to Tony Robbins :: but he’ll never give it back … because he is a nothing and a nobody so he can’t. As shallow a god as ever there was.
But he is a shallow god who is still able to collect millions from the hopeful and the vulnerable.

Update 27 June: Salty Droid weighed in on the latest Tony's toasted toes episode, and as usual nailed it.
The media doesn’t do stories about the huge harms done by Tony Robbins. But they love the shit out of the #footburn #ambulance thing.
Yep. But the problem goes deeper...
People want solutions for their unsolvable problems … and scammers are allowed to use deception and manipulation to take advantage of that.

It wouldn’t be possible without buy-in from liars at
every level of our completely corrupted :: propaganda based … power structure.
The problem isn't just with Tony Robbins and Donald Trump. When someone as influential as former President Bill Clinton (whom I have supported, as I now support his wife) calls Tony Robbins a "very good friend," you know the malaise goes all the way up.

Sez Salty:

We best Awaken the Revolutionary Within … before there’s nothing left of our great democratic experiment but lies and burnt feet.
Update 30 June: And here is Steve Salerno, who also gets the big picture in relation to Robbins, Trump et al. and America's "Positive Mental Attitude-mania" -- a mania that has eroded common sense.

Trudeau diet book scam: come, thou long awaited refunds
Finally, and for what it's worth, many months after
U.S. District Judge Robert Gettleman approved the Federal Trade Commission's proposal to start compensating purchasers of Kevin Trudeau's fraudulent diet book, it appears that the refunds are finally being issued.

My friend Julie Daniel has shared this redacted screen shot of one person's huge refund.

Judging by its news releases, the FTC seems to be patting itself on the back for this one. Small victories, I suppose. It's nothing, though, compared to the millions that Trudeau scammed out of members of his mega-scam,the Global Information Network (GIN).

That's it for now... more soon.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Greatest Story Never Told. Arguing with white supremacist fruit loop on a forum led me to try watching that. Garbage.

Sunday, July 03, 2016 7:59:00 PM  
Blogger Cosmic Connie said...

Yep, it's garbage all right. And it is reportedly banned in Germany, although Coldwell doesn't hesitate to post links to it on his German Facebook page.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016 6:00:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can't fault it as a rags to riches story though - homeless bum to dictator and conquerer of Europe in a matter of years isn't to be sniffed at. That's a dream for a lot of people.
Well, OK, rags to riches to unprecedented catastrophe. Homeless bum to conquerer of Europe to chewing on his own bullet in the ruins of one of the world's great cities.
OK maybe we can sniff at it after all.

I wouldn't let the guy water my tomatoes let alone tend to my body.

Thursday, July 21, 2016 8:03:00 PM  
Blogger Cosmic Connie said...

Consider the story sniffed at, Anon.

And Amen to the comment about Loony Coldwell, whose "hands-on healing" techniques have been a sore point...

Friday, July 22, 2016 11:04:00 AM  

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