James Arthur Ray and Possible RICO Act Case

charlatanAfter reading a comment at the Salty Droid, I did some research about the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (the RICO Act) which could tack on additional years to any James Ray criminal sentence, should he be found guilty of criminal acts. RICO may also give additional merit to the pending Class Action Law Suit being prepared in Arizona.

I am not an attorney. I’m just a reformed seminar junkie and insider who feels these Seminar Schmucks have done enough damage. After looking into this, RICO may make it possible to expand the Class Action Lawsuit to include the entire Seminar & Coaching Industry for harm and damages caused to their customers .

Fraud seems to be the most likely offense Ray & JRI committed under RICO. A Fraud is an intentional deception made for personal gain or to damage another individual. In particular charlatanism. A charlatan (also called swindler or mountebank) is a person practicing quackery or some similar confidence trick in order to obtain money, fame or other advantages via some form of pretense or deception). As I drilled down I discovered that our friend James Arthur Ray seems (IMO) to have built his business based on quackery.

Specifically, a charlatan is usually a salesperson. He does not try to create a personal relationship with his marks, or set up an elaborate hoax using role playing. Rather, the person called a charlatan is being accused of resorting to quackery, pseudoscience, or some knowingly employed bogus means of impressing people in order to swindle his victims by selling them worthless nostrums and similar goods or services that will not deliver on the promises made for them…. Do Seminars count?

A “quack” is a “fraudulent or ignorant pretender to medical skill” or “a person who pretends, professionally or publicly, to have skill, knowledge, or qualifications he or she does not possess; “a charlatan.”

Let’s see if this all fits together:

  • James Arthur Ray sells a seminar called “Spiritual Warrior” for approximately $9,000 promising lots of “benefits” but does not tell customers exactly what they are buying. Ray claims this seminar is the only place to get these experiences and benefits. About 50 people buy this seminar. This may be considered “Intentional Deception“.
  • James Arthur Ray meets his customers in Sedona and has them do the “vision quest“, “fast for 36 hours“, play the “God Death Ray Game” & the “sweat lodge experience” where 2 die on site, another dies 9 days later and 19 others taken to the hospital. Apparently Ray has no Native American Shamanistic Training and only pretended to be qualified. This may be considered quackery. Ray’s was ignorant about “pouring a sweat lodge”. IMO this was Ray and the Fredrickson’s “deliberately deceiving” JRI’s customers for their own personal gain.
  • James Arthur Ray’s refusal to speak with authorities seems to me to be the actions of someone with something to hide.
  • JRI & James Arthur Ray’s “business as usual” after killing 2 people further supports a possible claim that Ray is a Charlatan who’s only concern is getting in front of the next group of people to be swindled.

As far as intentional wrong doing: Ray hurt people in earlier “sweat lodge” experiences. Ray & JRI appear to have conspired to cover up the death of Colleen Conaway. Ray had no medical professionals on staff and did not train his staff in CPR….

Al Gore Lied & James Arthur Ray Killed 4 People. Now What?

Climate Gate!

Real?? Decide for your self and take action accordingly.

This is so interesting because james Arthur Ray has been a big proponent of the “Global Warming”. Not surprising at all if you believe there is merit in Climate Gate. Hmmmm – I’m starting to see a pattern.

Former James Arthur Ray Employee Melinda Martin – Her 15 Minutes???

courageI’ve seen critical comments about Melinda Martin and her interview on ABC.

Some people feel she is grandstanding for her 15 minutes of fame. IMHO, I don’t think so. It seems Melinda’s personality type is one that has her need to be pleasant, agreeable and nice. Over a life time, she’s developed the ability to smile and be most pleasant during trying and stressful times.

I don’t know about you, but being interviewed on National TV about an event 2 months earlier where 3 people died would be stressful. If I have the facts right, Melinda is the only JRI employee giving CPR to the victims. Melinda assisted the victims while her boss, Megan Fredrickson and her boss’ boss James Ray stood around watching people die. Melinda Martin is a HERO. None of the other JAR drones had the moxie to do the right thing or go against the wishes of Ray.

James Ray’s obsession with death and his actions in Sedona remind me of the Queen song “Bohemian Rhapsody“:

Mama just killed a man
Put a gun against his head
Pulled my trigger, now he’s dead

Or “Folsom County Blues” by Johnny Cash “I shot a man in Reno/just to watch him die”.

I imagine Melinda Martin went public with her story to help her heal the Traumatic  experiences of giving CPR to people who died. Very few people have faced death up close. Even fewer have tried to save the life of another human being… Holding a lifeless body while the person entrusted with their safety looks on with disdain and fascination is unimaginable to me. Melinda’s speaking out is an act of courage. Thank You Melinda for helping the victims in Sedona and being a compassionate, caring and courageous human being.

Another consideration about Melinda’s speaking out about James Arthur Ray and Sedona is the possible legal consequences for her actions. It’s common practice for employees to sign Non-Disclosure and Confidentiality agreements when working for Companies that have intellectual property to protect (like a seminar company). I’m sure JRI was no different. With everything I’ve heard and read about James Ray’s ego and self-importance, I’d bet money that his employee and contractor agreements are particularly nasty, one sided and punitive. While any such agreements may deemed unenforceable when/if criminal charges are filed against Ray, this has to be determined by the court and legal/court fees are quite expensive.

Again Melinda Martin, my heartfelt thanks for blowing the whistle on James Ray and the happenings in Sedona. BRAVO!

Lies, Damn Lies & James Arthur Ray

ladyjusticeOn the cusp of possible criminal charges against James Arthur Ray, a former employee who was on site at the Seminar in Sedona is “blowing the whistle” about what she saw.

Melinda Martin, tells what she saw and experienced in Sedona.

My headline is a commentary about our legal system. Let the discrediting begin.

This legal battle will be an ordeal that lasts  3 to 5 years. The truth will be whatever you believe it to be. The facts  about what happened and who is responsible are secondary. This is the essence of truth in the Halls of Justice. The Secret & The Law of Attraction is all about your beliefs manifesting into reality.

Now begins the process of discrediting. Everyone involved must discredit the other side to get a jury of peers decide, beyond a reasonable doubt who’s lying. Our Legal System was designed that 100 guilty go free, rather than 1 innocent be imprisoned. It’s the way the legal game is played. Conflict is very profitable for the Legal Industry. Of course a person of James Ray’s Stature would only hire the best legal persuaders to represent him – remember the Law of Attraction and all. A Guru & Master Persuader attracts and hires the best Legal Masters of Persuasion.

The Arizona Criminal Charges that are scheduled to come down this month, if a case can be made. If Ray is indicted for homicide or murder and is subsequently convicted, this could invalidate his liability insurance policies which typically do not cover “criminal acts”. The civil suits against Ray may have been filed early to start negotiating settlements prior to any criminal charges against Ray.

In Civil Settlements, the terms and conditions are negotiated and enforceable. So Ray can settle using the Insurance Company’s money and keep the terms undisclosed. The Attorneys for the victims have a responsibility get a reasonable settlement that compensates their clients for damages and losses. The fastest way to do this is a quick settlement avoid court costs and in the case of Ray before possible criminal charges are filed. Settlement Negotiations may be why Ray & JRI have not filed Responses to the Civil Lawsuits (which would be public documents).

The next few weeks will be interesting to watch unfold because by his actions, it’s apparent that James Arthur Ray will be fighting this for a long time and have to live with the consequences of his actions (aka karma).

Norcross & Rosen have James Arthur Ray’s Number

seminarindustryregulationLet’s not throw the baby out with the bathwater, but the Seminar Industry Needs Regulation, Licensing & Accountability.

Many Mental Health Professionals feel that Seminar Gurus and “Coaches” are practicing therapy without a license. But no one really seemed to care.

That its, until James Arthur Ray Killed 3 people in Sedona and had 1 suicide during his San Diego Seminar. Looks like the Mental Health Professionals were right. Seminar Companies and Coaches are messing with people’s minds and don’t know what to do when something goes wrong.

The following are excerpts from a article published on CNN.com today. A link to the entire article can be found at the bottom is this post.

Self-help is a multibillion-dollar-a-year unregulated industry in the United States, according to John C. Norcross, professor of psychology at the University of Scranton…

…a lack of scientific evidence isn’t the only thing to look out for. Other characteristics that should make consumers wary, he says:

  • Authors or speakers who don’t have formal training in the featured topic. “They should look for someone with rigorous training at an accredited university and who has spent years investigating and conducting these treatments,” Norcross said.
  • Programs that don’t screen consumers for problems. For example, Norcross says, certain programs might be harmful for a person with bipolar disorder.
  • People who reject conventional knowledge and instead imply a revolutionary secret. “It’s marketing, essentially,” Norcross said.
  • People who propose solutions for all problems instead of particular problems.

Gerald Rosen, a clinical psychologist in Seattle, Washington, says he believes more self-help books should undergo pre-publication testing — especially those written by psychologists, who he says should be held to a high professional standard.

“When you look at a book for depression, there probably isn’t a blurb on the back that says this book has been shown in studies to help 65 percent of those who have been diagnosed with this. There’s just a claim that this can happen for you,” said Rosen, a former chairman of the American Psychological Association’s task force on self-help therapies.

In my personal experience, these gentlemen have hit the nail on the head. Hopefully there is now momentum to make lasting changes in an unregulated and unaccountable industry. This is required before more people are harmed financially, emotionally or physically.

I personally know there is a Golden Thread of Truth in everything that the New Age, Self Help and Metaphysical Gurus are teaching. But, these techniques are not mastered in a weekend seminar, regardless the entry fee. The truth is always simple and free. What is required is practice. The Secret & The Law of Attraction work just like any exercise program works, by consistent practice, evaluation and commitment…

Read the article on CNN.com @ Good, bad and ugly self-help: How can you tell?

Do you know Helice Bridges? She’s worth knowing!

helice-bridgesI met Helice Bridges in the early 90′s at T Harv Eker’s first Street Smart Business School (my first weekend seminar). During the weekend, Helice gave me my first of many “blue ribbons” in a quick but life changing “who you are makes a difference” ceremony. I’ve crossed paths with Helice many times over the past 15 years and she is always walking her talk, demonstrating and practicing what she preaches. All the time.

To find out what Helice does, watch this video on one of her websites: www.blueribbonmovie.com. You’ll be glad you did….

When I think about the people that died in James Arthur Ray’s Spiritual Warrior Seminar, I wonder what would have happened had they met Helice Bridges before meeting James Ray. What would have happened if someone from their lives had met Helice and presented them with a “Who You Are Makes A Difference” Ribbon in a simple and heart felt ceremony of acknowledgment and love?

We will never know… It’s the holiday season. Tell the people you know you love them and “Who They Are Makes A Difference”. Especially the children and parents you know…

Meet Helice Bridges:

James Arthur Ray’s Law of Gender is Making Me Crazy

James Arthur Ray Made Million$ Before killing 3 people in Sedona.

pat-snl-movieOne of the ways he made his millions was authoring  programs like The $cience of $uccess. From his website, The $cience of $uccess is billed as: (copy and pasted straight from the website)

The Science of Success
is the key to living The Secret…

As you master The Science of Success, you’ll automatically apply the same laws of achievement used by the world’s most successful people.

I’m going to let you in on a little-known secret… A lot of the most wealthy and famous people in the world would rather you not know this.

Now, come closer and pay attention because here it is…

  • Most of the truly successful people you meet are not any smarter than you…
  • They’re not any more gifted than you…
  • They’re not any luckier than you…
  • And they don’t work any harder than you.

In this program Ray talks about his 7 Laws that will deliver the promises above. When I listened to this program (yes, I am a student and practitioner of New Age & The Secret) Ray talked about the Law of Gender. What I heard was Yin/Yang, Masculine/Feminine,  good/bad. Not original, but interesting to consider as I wait to see what charges, if any, will be filed against James Ray. Ray’s responses to the first civil suits should be due this week also….

As I wait (which is feminine), I notice that there is a peaceful knowing that regardless of what happens, it is perfect. It has to be, because it happened. 1,000 years from now it will be 3009. and what difference will any of this make? (As a side note, I read somewhere that James Ray wanted his message and his mission to still be around in a thousand years). Waiting, patience and acceptance are not virtues. My basic personality is “driver/dominant” or results oriented. Through my years of meditation practice, I am more adept with patience (well as long as it doesn’t take too long).

When I’m not patiently waiting, I’m plotting and planning the next actions in my “Seminar Company Reform” campaign. This is masculine and testosterone based. Again in 3009, what difference will it make if Seminars and Coaches Licensed and Regulated? Any, none… Hmmm. I’ve often wished I was a guy who got my joy and pleasure from sitting in front of the TV watching sports. But not me, NO, I have to set out to change the damn world.

The person who taught me meditation used to say “Our life span is nothing more than a pimple on the ass of time.” Even if I live to be 120 (which James Arthur Ray says is possible), the pimple is still so insignificant as to not even be classified as the tiniest of boils. So what difference does all this make? Simply this, that people maybe able to understand their true nature. Which is Perfection. Even James Arthur Ray is an example of Perfection. His actions killed and hurt other people which doesn’t work, but he is, you are, and I am perfect, exactly as we are and exactly as we are not. The only problem is we are often the last person to recognize and accept our individual perfection. Otherwise there would be no need for war, personal development seminars or self-help books… Until then, it’s buyer beware when considering a Seminar to solve your life problems.

James Arthur Ray Seminars: A Gang for the Middle Class

Another Reason I Blog About James Arthur Ray Killing 3 People in a Seminar

I’ve been healing a case of PSSD or Post Seminar Stress Disorder (no, it’s not PiSSeD). PSSD is Seminar Induced PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder). I’m sure that I’m not the first to coin this phrase, but I could not find any other reference for PSSD. So maybe I have coined a term.

Blogging about James Ray and the seminar industry business practices I want to see changed is been healing and cathartic for me.

It seems that Seminar Communities fill the same need in Middle Class folks as Gangs fill for Poor People in the Inner City.

Stress-ZebraStripesIt wasn’t until after I quit the seminar industry in 2007 that I realized how much stress I put myself through. I was numb and felt dead. I was a good student and always worked and tried harder, but the harder I tried the worse I got. After decompressing in early 2008, I realized how far astray I was from my true feelings, beliefs and core values. I made big mistakes in judgment in my business, financial and my personal life.

The “results at any cost” mantra that pervades many personal growth and transformational seminars had me seeking “creative solutions” to problems that only existed because of a “weed of discontent” some where inside. I could never quite pull all the roots of this weed. The seminars added water and fertilizer to this part of me and helped it grow uncontrollably promising the next seminar, book, program held the answer. To say that differently, I wanted to belong, be loved, accepted, make a difference and feel powerful. I wanted these things very badly and I got disconnected from my voice of reason and knowing. I was running intuitively blind.

It’s funny. There’s one Seminar where you’re encouraged to be “Unreasonable”. But for me,  acting without reason is running without my internal radar system.

Here’s what I realized when I got out of the Seminar Rat Race:

  • I prefer places of quietude and peace.
  • I have all the answers I need, if my mind is quiet enough to hear.
  • There’s nothing in the world I will take with me other than my memories.
  • If I think I know what’s best for anyone else, I AM WRONG!
  • Life is more than a “dash” on a tombstone.
  • Love is the answer to everything.
  • Love starts and ends with me and I can share my love with the world.
  • Life is too short to drink bad wine and deal with a**holes.
  • For those that don’t “get it”, they will… In time and On time.
  • There are only 3 questions and now I know their answers (for me that is).

That’s it. I have a simple life. I develop websites to help business owners make money (no seminar companies yet). I Enjoy being with my wife and watching my granddaughter grow up.  I am happy!

James Arthur Ray’s Lawsuit Responses Due as Criminal Charges Get Closer

ask-jamesBg

James Arthur Ray’s Response to the first civil lawsuits due this week.

The first civil lawsuits were filed against James Arthur Ray at the end of October. Civil Lawsuits require an Answer or Response be filed with the Court within 30 days. From what I’ve heard, Ray has hired some of the best lawyers in the Country to defend him. His response to the Civil Suits will be the first meaningful communication made by Ray or his people since killing 3 people in Sedona on October 8.

I’m sure that Ray’s legal team has used the very best legal endoscope to examine Ray’s every nook and cranny in order to defend their client. Here’s a sample of the types of things that may have been examined by James Ray’s new best friends (that money can buy):

  • Insurance policies reviewed.
  • Contracts with Angel Valley.
  • Who built what.
  • Who supplied materials to build the death lodge.
  • Confidentiality Agreements.
  • Non-disclosure agreements.
  • Arizona Law.
  • What happened at past events (injuries & deaths).
  • JRI’s event manuals, practices & policies.
  • “Waivers of Liability” & Disclosures signed by customers.
  • James Rays “credentials” to run sweat lodges and vision quests.
  • Ray has probably undergone Psychological Exams.
  • Results of James Ray’s team of investigators.

Ray’s Lawyers, after reviewing all this and working closely with Ray’s Director of “Ooooops” Megan Fredricksen (Megan reportedly ran JRI), will file Ray’s legal response this week. Ray’s response will be the first public statement by Ray and will reveal who they are blaming for the deaths in Sedona. Angel Valley will be certainly be counter sued and anyone else they feel will misdirect attention away from Ray, their client. My prediction is that Ray, et al. will put everyone on trial, including the victims in their response.

Immediately after Ray’s Civil Responses are due, the State of Arizona will be filing Criminal Charges if any against Ray.