Quote of the Day

Monday, March 23, 2009

Classic Books and Gifts

Let me preface this post by making clear that I love the classics. This speech expresses my sentiments exactly.

A new bookstore has opened in Lehi, Utah. It is called Classic Books and Gifts. This is not just any bookstore, for it is co-owned by none other than Oliver DeMille. It will soon begin hosting classes for George Wythe University, as well as other classes and seminars associated with DeMille's "Thomas Jefferson" education (TJEd).

According to this person, there was a Classic Books in Cedar City that folded in December 2008. I assume that store was one in the same with Classic Books, Inc., owned by one Dana S. Chamberlain (Utah Dept of Commerce website).

The new entity, an LLC registered under Daniela Larsen, is apparently honoring unfulfilled (yet paid for?) orders to the Cedar City store. Why the magnanimous gesture? I don't know.

When I commented on the Provo Daily Herald profile article on the Lehi store one full day after it ran (and left a link to this blog), a flood of newly-registered users suddenly commented on how wonderful the store was.

Here's the breakdown: I made my first comment 22 hours ago. Then today between 11:00 am and 2:00 pm Utah time, six comments from different newly-registered users popped in (all in defense of TJEd). Hmm.

In any case, this whole article raises the question whether DeMille has relocated to Lehi. Now that he is no longer president or even "chancellor" of GW, maybe there's no need to stick around (especially since GW will be transforming into a correspondence school like DeMille's alma mater, Coral Ridge Baptist University).

If that is the case, it is our responsibility to get the facts about GW and TJEd out to the good people of Lehi and northern Utah County so unsuspecting people don't get sucked into this and separated from their money, like my relative did.

UPDATE: This is incredible. I checked the Better Business Bureau, and the profile for the Cedar City store has been updated with the address of this "new" Lehi store. Not only that, but Ms. Dana Chamberlain (registered agent for the Cedar City store) is listed as the president and customer contact.

There's more. The store has a DBA designation to do business as, drum roll, George Wythe College Bookstore! So much for this posting claiming the two bookstores are completely separate, including the claim that "we [at Classic Books and Gifts] are still seeking to honor all those orders from the old store as a good will gesture."

This is yet another example of the sleight of hand, exaggeration, and half-truth approach that to me appears to saturate George Wythe College / University and Thomas Jefferson Education. Judge for yourself my friends.

UPDATE: I have received a response from Rachel DeMille on this. See the next post.


Ellie said...

It sounds like you are upset that a new bookstore in Lehi is selling great books. It may be none of my business, but it seems to me like America could benefit from reading something a little deeper and more meaningful than Twilight and other such novels.

I understand that the real issue is that you hate George Wythe University and are seeking to find evidence that it is corrupt. I am truly sorry that your relative had a bad experience with it. For thousands of others it has brought into our lives a greater desire to become men and women who are filled with integrity and wisdom. Unfortunately, none of us are perfect in this, but I can at least speak for myself in saying that it has made me a more wise, loving, and honest person.

"By their fruits ye shall know them." Men don't cut down a tree just because it has a few bad apples.

Thanks for allowing me to comment even though we disagree. :)

The Real George Wythe said...

Thanks for your comment Ellie! First, I wish all the best to this new bookstore (as I said in my comment in the Daily Herald article). I know from experience the guts it takes to start a new venture.

Second, I haven't read Twilight. I read the Wall Street Journal, history, classics, and other good literature.

Third, I don't hate GW. You won't find me spewing hatred on this blog. I am only documenting verifiable facts. Occasionally I have inserted my opinion, but it is not a hate-filled one.

I do object to obfuscation, half-truths, and exaggeration, which in my experience saturates the goings on of George Wythe College / University. I don't think the people directly involved with the school realize how bad this looks from the outside.

A Thomas Jefferson Education is full of slipshod research and methodology, but I generally leave the criticism of that work to a different blog (http://whyidontdotjed.blogspot.com/).

The purpose of this blog is to put together the pieces on the history and goings on of GW, TJEd, and the associated actors.

Finally, I completely agree that "by their fruits ye shall know them." I think you and I disagree about what the fruits actually are.

Opposition and can actually be a good thing, because it keeps you honest. There is a big difference between honest criticism and vindictiveness. This blog is not about vindictiveness, it is about HONEST CRITICISM.

I encourage you to read the Wikipedia article on Mr. DeMille (see the left sidebar for a link), and then return here to discuss. The article is extremely well-sourced to original material. I would love to get a broader perspective on the subject from someone like you.


Rich Sanders said...

There probably are some benefits of the whole TJed approach invented by DeMille, who very inaccurately casts Thomas Jefferson as a bleeding heart Christian, but I don't think much credit is owed to dear sweet Oliver. Whose conspiracy pamphlets and fear mongering are well-enough known, and whose academic background is anything but impressive.

I applaud people who sincerely want to grow, streth their minds, and learn everything under the sun. But I don't see why they feel compelled to shell out absurd tuition rates to receive advice from "mentors" to read books they could get from the public library for free.

From a cynical viewpoint, it seems that DeMille and crew are taking a lot and giving very little. It's a model A scam, despite his best intentions.

Oh and props for the Twilight comment, I'm tired of seeing that book paraded around and called "the next Harry Potter", and I've never understood the girly obsession over a romance between a masochistic frail mary-sue with a 90 year old stalker trapped in a boy's body, with an enormous control complex.

BUT in Twilight's defense, in the context of your comment--person above me--Twilight is junk fiction, like junk food, something meant to entertain and provide pleasure rather than education. And pleasure and fun are at least as important as hard work and discipline.