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Outrageous betrayal: the dark journey of Werner Erhard from est to exileUser Review - Not Available - Book Verdict
Pressman, a San Francisco-based journalist, offers a compelling account of the 1980s guru who rose from selling used cars to peddling personal transformation. Erhard's dubious Est program--today known ... Read full review
Q. This is an older book. What caught your interest? A. I grew up in California, including the Bay Area, and had heard much of Werner Erhard, but knew nothing about him. I wanted to learn something about him and his teachings. Q. And what did you learn? A. Steven paints a very negative picture of Werner, but he had a lot of tangible evidence. Werner was basically a slick salesman who found out that people during the last part of the last century were groping around for someone to do whatever he did for them. Q. What did he do for them? A. Treat them harshly, make them do penance because, perhaps, they were born in a wealthy country but had no reason to be entitled to that wealth. Werner had his fight against hunger, but not much came out of it. His acolytes maybe felt relieved to be helping those who were poorer than themselves. Q. Do you think Steven was biased in any way? A. This was his first book, as he notes at the end. He had been a legal journalist. Werner reminded me a lot of Jim Jones of Peoples Temple and also L. Ron Hubbard, whom Werner admired. They wanted fame and fortune and recognition, all three, and they found it in three different, but related, ways. I think Steven was reporting what he found, but remember his report ends in about 1992. I am sure there has been more to report since then.