Is there a Robert Kiyosaki, EST, Money and You connection?
Read on and see:
[b:de7686e078]Poor Man's Prophet Robert Kiyosaki, author of Rich Dad, Poor Dad says that everything you've been told about money is a lie. Is his vision setting us on the right track--or is it just more financial snake oil?
By Peter Carbonara with Joan Caplin
January 1, 2003[/b:de7686e078]
From CNN Money:
"I'm a real estate guy," is how Kiyosaki responds when asked what his profession is. But he's also been in another business--motivational speaking--for more than 20 years, though this fact gets only a passing mention in Rich Dad. He began lecturing and leading seminars in the early 1980s, when he was first a student and then an instructor with a San Diego outfit now called Excellerated Business Schools. It offered (and still does) a 3 1/2-day program called Money and You, the creation of an attorney named Marshall Thurber who is a protege of Werner Erhard, founder of EST.
During the 1970s EST was a prominent and controversial part of the American cultural landscape. Enthusiastic graduates say it improved their lives by forcing them to break with old habits and ways of thinking; others say it was an authoritarian cult that charged them money for the privilege of being publicly browbeaten for failing to "get it."
Thurber built some EST ideas and techniques (as well as some of those of Erhard's sometime collaborator, the engineer and social theorist Buckminster Fuller) into his Money and You program, including unconventional "accelerated" learning techniques that involved games. Kiyosaki, who did EST training himself in 1974, was "a very, very good student," according to Thurber. In 1984 Thurber left the operation in the hands of Kiyosaki and a woman named D.C. Cordova. Together they expanded the business, bringing Money and You as far afield as Australia, where it found a ready audience that included the Fire Brigade of New South Wales, which sent its managers to take the course.
Everything was going fine until October 1993, when an Australian TV news magazine called Four Corners aired a report on Money and You. The main focus was on an Australian attorney who said that after taking the course his life had become a shambles, his business ruined, his marriage wrecked. Other graduates of the program were taped saying they'd been disturbed by learning techniques like the Blocks Game, an exercise in which participants competed to model abstractions like "trust" using only children's building blocks. The game could go on for hours and frustrations could run high. "We got to a stage where virtually everybody in the hall at one stage was crying," one participant told Four Corners. "Some of them were on the verge of a nervous breakdown.... You start losing sight of your own values and your own convictions."