Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Sleazy, how come gurus make money if they're so shit?

PUA shills haven't pestered me much recently, apart form some dude who tried to pollute my forum. However, quite recently there was a blog comment that had an angle I wasn't familiar with. Let me just cite the shill comment as a whole:
Yeah. Just out of curiosity, Aaron. A lot of people seem to say that speed seduction doesn't work. How would you explain that Ross (but also V Kelvin, RSD, and other "guru$") is still making money and have supporters?
(This comment appeared under Romance is for Losers.)

Please take a moment or two to let the previous quote sink in.

There are at least two good counter arguments. Let me start by questioning the premise, namely that PUAs make money and have fans. As I've shown in recent articles, interest in the big names of the PUA scene has dwindled dramatically. It's also a fact that there haven't been any big releases like 20-DVD sets in years. Also, many PUAs have moved on. David DeAngelo tried rebranding himself as Eben Pagan, Neil Strauss is back to writing about celebrities, and many of the B-team either quit or moved into self-help. Some seemingly well-established names like DJ Fuji are barely hanging on. His forum has something like 500 posts...

So, how much money do the PUAs make? Surely David DeAngelo didn't decide to focus on business coaching if peddling PUA advice was such a gold mine. The gold rush is over, and what's left are some people who are fighting over scraps.

Further, just because you make money doesn't mean that your product has any validity. Let's consider a steaming pile of bullshit like astrology. Do you know how big that market is? It's at least hundreds of millions of dollars per year, if my recent Google searches are to be believed. This means it's easily and order of magnitude larger than the PUA industry. I even came across an article that claimed that Italians spend several billions a year on astrology, being an unusually superstitions people:
Amid rising unemployment and general gloom over the state of the economy, Italians are spending billions of euros a year on astrology and fortune telling, according to a report by the European Consumers Association. 
Tarot card readers and pavement fortune tellers are doing a roaring trade, with about 30,000 Italians paying between 20 and 600 euros a day looking for advice to help them out of their financial woes.
Yet, astrology is complete nonsense.

Of course, having supporters doesn't mean that you are right either. This ties in with the previous point. For an obvious example, look at sects like the Catholic church, or Scientology. They do have followers, their followers donate absurd amounts of money, yet what they teach does not hold up to any scrutiny. They are in it for the money. The founder of Scientology, L. Ron Hubbard, famously said:
I'd like to start a religion. That's where the money is!
Likewise, the Catholic Church found itself quickly drawn towards money and power. The historic Jesus of Nazareth was a revolutionary, an anti-authoritarian, and an enemy of "money lenders". Heck, he even supported the use of force against enemies. Mere decades after his death, though, Christianity developed into quite possibly the worst kind of intellectual poison the world has ever seen, turning into a tool for subjugation the masses, and hindering scientific progress on a large scale. It's due to the influence of the Catholic church that the Middle Ages were a dark age, which cost us hundreds of years of progress. Imagine that we've had stem cell therapy and plasma TVs back in the year 1,000!

People are gullible, and those who sell hope in whichever form do so, to a large degree, to profit from it. Those who sell hope --- be it PUA gurus, religious leaders, astrologist or whoever else --- may delude themselves and believe their nonsenses. However, many are hardened business men, which I illustrated by the example of L. Ron Hubbard. Heck, he openly said what his real goal was, and people could easily have figured out that he was merely a science-fiction author. Nonetheless, many were stupid enough to fall for him and his organization. Victims include celebrities like Tom Cruise and John Travolta. "But, wait, how can Scientology be a scam if the mega alpha Tom Cruise is a member. I mean he's rich and famous, so he's got to know better. Right? Right??"

What's your opinion? Let me know in the comments below!


  1. Very interesting post. The question would be now, "Do they really make money?" As you say about DJ Fuji, it's true that him, but also guys like Tyler, now are nothing more than bad motivational speakers.

    But no doubt, as Barnum said a long time ago, "There's a sucker born every minute".

    How do you see the future of pick up? Do you think that RSD, venusian arts, speed seduction, ..., are going to collapse?

    Several years ago, I went to a speed seduction seminar. Now, as I think about it, I feel shame. It was a very negative experience.

    Have you got a post on, "Reasons why not to attend a seminar?"

    1. I don't want to speculate too much about the future of some of those companies. I do think, though, that Speed Seduction is as good as dead, and Ross Jeffries' pushing 60, he'll be less and less convincing. He may be able to leech off those people who bought into his scam, but I don't think he is able to get many new (young) followers. The RSD forum seems to be doing quite well, but the average quality of the posts is atrocious. Their better known instructors face the same problem as Jeffries. Tyler is balding, Jeffy is quite a weirdo. Both are now around 40 and require significant suspension of disbelief in their audience. Venusian Arts has barely any presence. Last time I checked, their website lists "upcoming" seminar dates that were one year behind the current date.

      If you've got a story to share about your speed seduction seminar, feel free to post it here or send it to me via email. I haven't covered an insider account of that school of PUA nonsense yet. What made you sign up in the first place?

      We were discussing seminars on the blog and forum, but maybe I'll find the time to devote an article to that issue.

    2. why was it a negative epxerince? was it because you were surrounded by other losers?

    3. Before going to a seminar on hypnosis, communication, seduction, ..., make sure that A LOT of time is dedicated to practice. If it's not the case, don't go.

      About the speed seduction seminar that I attended:

      1 - you're sitting during the seminar on a chair. There is ZERO time for practice.
      2 - you're watching Ross, you're listening to Ross, ... Everything is about Ross. Nothing about the students. Huge ego.
      3 - Ross thinks the guys are all the same. He doesn't pay attention to the history of the guys and he gives ZERO feedback on what each guy should improve
      4 - The way he teaches is totally disorganized and confusing.
      5 - He talks about things like compassion, ..., and he expresses in his actions the opposite of that. I didn't like the energy he projected. Instead of a quiet, peaceful guy, I saw a controlling, frustrated guy.
      6 - He gives during the seminar (as most gurus do) that he's sort of your friend, he tells anecdotes, ..., but he doesn't allow guys to talk with him during the breaks.
      7 - He confuses jokes and insults

      I was bored and disappointed.

      The way Ross teaches is easy. Inside a room you can control what's happening and you can pretend with stories and anecdotes that you're a good seducer.

      One last thing about Ross. He talks negatively about a lot of male PUAs but he seems to promote "female" PUAs. For example, he promoted Kezia Noble and now, he's promoting Hayley Quinn. Both are young good looking girls (to me, calling a girl a "female PUA" is so ridiculous. What do women know about how to approach girls?).

    4. Thanks for the description. He does sound quite like some cult leader, and one with psychological issues. I don't view it as contradicting that he promotes female "PUAs". As you noticed, they don't know what they are talking about anyway. Since they target the most desperate of men (desperate enough to pay for the company of a woman, but too prude to pay for an escort), they simply serve a different segment of the market.

      By the way, Kezia is not young. When I bumped into her in London some years ago, she seemed to be around 30. Also, she doesn't at all look like in her PR pictures. Maybe just look for videos on youtube online to see for yourself!

  2. I doubt PUA folks made any money whatsoever. One of the "bootcamps" I know was being offered at a few thousand dollars. At a lair event, for a "special pricing" they were offering a some 60-70% discount. At least a couple of guys I know went to these people and said, guys, I am really broke so please reduce it further. They negotiated back and forth a bit, and this guy eventually said, look I just have $300, that's all I can pay. The gurus were like okay, we are doing this for you because you are special, we feel an amazing vibe, but please don't tell anyone else :) This was 2011, when PUA was still going somewhat strong.

    Even during those days, a couple of forums and mailing lists which I was on used to receive emails like, this guru is coming over for a special event. They feel like helping out guys, so instead of staying over at a hotel, they want to stay with someone, because they can really help someone by staying in close touch over a few days. If you let them stay at your place, you will get some very special price for the bootcamp!

    I also came across some threads on PUA Hate which said that Gambler had become broke and homeless because eventually the crap ran out. This is one of them

  3. Well, when I did a "Lovesystems" Bootcamp in 2007, I payed $ 3000. That's for sure.

  4. "Mere decades after his death, though, Christianity developed into quite possibly the worst kind of intellectual poison the world has ever seen, turning into a tool for subjugation the masses, and hindering scientific progress on a large scale."

    How true, how true! But the rest of this post isn't so bad, either. ;)

    Hic Rhodos et hic - per Iovem - tu saltas!

    1. While out of Islamic culture come some of the greatest scientific discoveries?

      I don't believe the Dark Ages were as dark as you paint them, for the reasons you state - and Wikipedia seems to agree:

      "The label employs traditional light-versus-darkness imagery to contrast the "darkness" of the period with earlier and later periods of "light""
      This implies the term 'Dark Ages' doesn't say much about the contents of that time period perse.

      "monasteries and convents remained bastions of scholarship in Western Europe and clergymen were the leading scholars of the age - studying nature, mathematics and the motion of the stars (largely for religious purposes)."

      This doesn't seem to fit your statement that Christianity hindered scientific progress 'on a large scale'.

    2. Read up on the history of mathematics if you think it was exclusively the work of the West. Also, monasteries primarily conserved (!) knowledge, and the Church actively opposed scientific endeavors that would threaten their dogmas. The Catholic church not only hindered but actively fought progress in physics and medicine for well over thousand years. Disease was seen as a punishment by God, after all, and even today we've got nonsense like "prosperity theology".

      I don't think it would be wise of you to argue any of those points further. Before you reply, please do some proper research yourself. It seems that you merely tried to cherry-pick some quotations. The second article you mention is brimming with condemning evidence. It takes quite some chutzpah to quote from that article and conveniently ignoring the majority of the content.

  5. I might do indeed. I'll have to catch up on how several catholic schools evolved into universities that still exist, or on how many christians in early Middle Ages practiced at least some form of science, etc. etc. Also, I'd have to read some history books about for example the Bubonic Plague, when apparently Franciscan monks did tend to the sick, even though medicine of that age wasn't advanced enough to point out the cause of the plague.

    I might do quite a bit of researching of the middle ages on the whole. Even though people keep saying stuff about 'dark ages' and such, I find surprisingly little that actually supports the idea of a prolonged period in time, bereft of any form of progress.

    Anyway, the article I pointed out doesn't support your statements about the church actively fighting progress in physics and medicine at all. Also, the whole idea of "punishment by God" doesn't seem to be in the article at all - on the contrary, and I quote again (cherry picking, of course): "The Jesuit order, created during the Reformation, contributed a number of distinguished medical scientists."

    This frankly is all new to me. I'm no scholar of history, but I was triggered by your statement about Christianity hindering scientific progress on a large scale. This doesn't seem to be supported by that Wikipedia article at all. Doesn't take a lot of 'chutzpah' either to draw that conclusion.

    You might note I'm saying "seems to be" all the time, instead of "it's simply not true". That's because, as I said, I'm not a scholar of history, but I do like some critical thinking. If you still think me wrong, then please point me towards books/sites/whatever that support your statements. Because I'm not finding them.

    Also: I'm well aware of at least some of the history of maths. What I meant to say is that I don't believe the christian West didn't come up with almost nothing valuable at all, while the muslim east did (and quite excellently at that).

    1. Again, doesn't the term "inquisition" ring a bell? Galileo? The concept of heresy? Darwin and the idea of evolution? Maybe read up on creationism as well, and the contemporary (!) attempts of the church to keep school children stupid. If the Church isn't anti-scentific then I wouldn't know what institution is.

    2. Yes, and these all stem from more recent times. At least not the middle ages. Which was your original point. Plus, they are controversial even within 'the Church' (which one? Nowadays, there are quite a few more than in the ME, and they aren't all equally narrow-minded).

    3. Religion and the formative concepts contained within has always been the very poison which made decent or otherwise intelligent people do wicked deeds and believe ludicrously stupid concepts.

      But those, who have philosophy, science and art don't need religion any longer.

      Btw: Monasteries were also vaults to securely lock away "dangerous" books of ancient Greek and Roman knowledge, and if deemed fit to secretly destroy them. Lucretius' "De rerum natura" (edited for publication by Cicero himself at that time) is one of the prime and most shocking examples of this scheme. If it was not for one single copy, which entirely by chance survived ecclesial elimination, and was rediscovered in the 14th century, we would have no detailed record of atomistic Epicurean philosophy at all and it would not have been a prime inspiration for the scientific minds of Newton, Linné, Descartes, Leibnitz, Montaigne, Jefferson, Paine et al.

    4. While I find that a likely story, a quick google didn't yield any results supporting the theory of the fate of this book. Not about it being systematically destroyed, nor of the single copy that survived.

      "Religion and the formative concepts contained within has always been the very poison which made decent or otherwise intelligent people do wicked deeds and believe ludicrously stupid concepts."

      Of course, the other possibility is that people will justify their deeds by calling upon their religion. That however doesn't say anything about that religion, or any religion at all. Take it all away, and people will find reasons to do wicked deeds and believe ludicrously stupid concepts anyway. (PUA's for example, to slowly steer back to topic ;) )

  6. jcz youre not going to get very far with sleazy while hes a high functioning angry aspie atheist who is performing a valuable service for men have been poisoned by pua nonsense one of his priors is "religion is evil" and that is where the conversation is going to end

    sleazy humans are anti-scientific when they dont like what the science says for whatever reason look at whats happened to jason richwine now or james watson back in the day for making the common sense observation that iq matters and varies by races and probably has a genetic component meanwhile this idea is readily encapsulated in jesus' parable of the talents

    anyway theology is pretty irrelevant to this blog and obviously well outside of sleazys intellectual wheelhouse

    1. oh man, another stupid manosphere scientific racist dumbass. you guys are everywhere and keep popping up when least expected, like fucking herpes. and you guys are so inclined to fucking lie all the time to try to garner sympathy.

      anyway, like a typical scientific racist hbd believer, you LIE about what got jason richwine (and james watson) in trouble. there are tons, TONS, of academic papers and studies that point out that different races have different average IQs and not a single one of those authors or researchers gets in trouble for pointing this out. richwine got in trouble for making questionable, unfounded scientific claims about the iq being primarily the cause of genetics and claiming that hispanics were genetically doomed to be a permanent cognitive underclass. he was saying that their IQ levels were unchangeable thanks to genetics and using that as an excuse to stop them from immigrating to America.that's what got him in trouble. it wasn't pointing out the different iq levels of races that got him in trouble, but the ridiculous "scientific" conclusions he drew from that that was the problem.

    2. Correction to my comment. Meant to say "genetics being the primary cause of iq" instead of "iq being primarily the cause of genetics" in my comment above

  7. @ jcz: "Google" won't be that much of a help in this. Take a look at some sturdy books about classical philology instead. Particularly: "Texts and transmissions" by Leighton D. Reynolds (Oxford Univ. Press).

  8. I was saddened to have to had to pay large sums of money to Adam Lyons many years ago. For one to one coaching in dance floor game. What I thought was amazing turned out to be a scam.

    Adam took me to a famous club in London and showed me his dance mirroring technique. Where you synchronize your moves with hers and then seduce her. When he did a demo I as thinking wow it really works as he basically walked upto a girl on the dance floor began dancing with her and began making out with her and got her number. It turned out the girl was a close friend of his ( later discovered he had pulled the same trick on a few other guys with the same girl !


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