Discussion in 'The Great Debate' started by MarkC, May 22, 2008.
You can polish a turd until it's nice, bright, and shiny. But it's still a turd.
As long as you're happy with that, good for you.
But I'll look elsewhere, thanks.
Hey Kembudo-kai Kempoka,
You posted, "You can polish a turd until it's nice, bright, and shiny. But it's still a turd."
My experiences have been considerably different than yours.
Perhaps we should just agree to disagree.
You posted, "As long as you're happy with that, good for you. But I'll look elsewhere, thanks."
You are welcome.
And just for the record; I have trained in one version or another of Moh Kempo for over thirty years. I am very gung-ho about it.
I think the person I spoke with would have left a better impression if she had spent more time talking about techniques than lineage and monthly fees. And telling me that they could get me to a black belt in 18 months, because of their superior and unique training methods wasn't a good move either since I had an excellent instructor, I'm not particularly retarded, and it took me about 5 years or so of 4 nights a week training to get my black belt, which was not a unique thing in my school.
Still, at the end of the day, what matters most is that you like what you're doing and that you're doing it well.
You said, "I think the person I spoke with would have left a better impression if she had spent more time talking about techniques than lineage and monthly fees."
'Sigh', that would do it in for me too (and, in fact, it did a long time ago). The guys I corresponded with in Edmonton and Calgary said they didn't do that anymore.
You also said, "Still, at the end of the day, what matters most is that you like what you're doing and that you're doing it well."
Ain't that the truth!
Well, Good Luck!
This thread has caught the attention of a moderator at this forum and has been viewed well over five hundred times (as of this post).
Therefore; I would like the following statements noted.
I found myself doing a slow burn after I had responded to MarkC's last reply.
And no offence to you MarkC.
I left the parent organization (years ago) for precisely the same reasons that MarkC listed for not joining in the first place.
I also know of many others who left for various reasons.
We all still teach Moh Kempo but we don't make these claims.
As I said earlier, Moh is a controversial art with a colourful past.
I have found Moh to be an exciting and interesting martial art.
I found the old business model to be intolerable (for me).
I also found the exaggerated claims to be foolish embellishments that I cannot support.
For me; I am able to separate the nonsense form the substance of Moh.
That is what I have attempted to do here.
Can I point out that the studio that Mark visited they still make the same outrageous claims they always did " the 23 and 24 heirs to the succesion of the fukien temple" or whatever crap they call it. That would negate your argument the board of directors changed things. And what did they change anyway? The money grab or the style? The money grab and false accreditions never sem to go away. And for my experience I have serious
issues with the efficacy of the style. Did they change that? Or it's still the same crap? So really all that changed is that there is board of directors lying instead of one man and his wife.
I did an informal survey and really tried to keep it as unbiased as possible.
It would seem that most kenpo folks do not see the kenpo in what you do.
Others seem to see a glimmer of "old" kenpo. I'm gonna guess a version SGM Parker left out of the system for good reason.
So here ya go. enjoy.
The fact that the studio MarkC visited made outrageous claims and placed a heavy emphasis on financing does not actually negate my argument that the board of directors changed things.
It could be that this particular studio has no ties to the board.
You yourself said that the board and parent organization has become non profit.
There are also many other Moh instructors who (like me) left the parent organization a long time ago.
I believe the old business model absolutely must go.
I believe that the outrageous claims of lineage and such must also go.
But I happen to believe in Moh Kempo as a viable and effective martial art.
I will continue to speak out about what I believe and I will continue to practice the art I have devoted my life to.
But the fact is "The Board" has close ties to the Seattle folks right?
I mean they are promoting all the same thing, right? They come from the same place? I really have no issues w/ you or whoever going on and practising whatever you want. I do have issues with outrageous claims
of false lineage. Especially when you or your ilk claim what you do is similar to American Kenpo. Call it something else if you like. If you want to keep telling folks you are doing Ed Parker karate, I will always be on your back. Maybe Ollie and Dorrie's adult Ninja Fantasy Camp would be more appropriate.
"I will continue to speak out about what I believe and I will continue to practice the art I have devoted my life to."
Let's address this as well. You haven't had any experience in any other art besides what you were shown. You don't know anything about or had a lesson in anything else, so you just know what you've been TOLD. You don't know from EXPERIENCE. Kinda like armchair quarterbacking.
BTW Denial is more than a river in Egypt.
You posted, But the fact is "The Board" has close ties to the Seattle folks right?
Actually, I was under the impression that there had been a split
You also posted, I mean they are promoting all the same thing, right? They come from the same place?
Again, that is yet another point of contention. The board has not seen fit to show anyone exactly what they do. Even among those like myself, there is a lot of diversity. The art of Moh is continuously developing.
You posted, I do have issues with outrageous claims of false lineage.
So do I.
You posted, Especially when you or your ilk claim what you do is similar to American Kenpo.
I have never made that claim. In fact, I explored that idea on the Moh forum.
There is some testimonial evidence to suggest that members of Moh and members of American Kenpo know each other and trained with each other (including Margitte, Olaf, Ed Senior and you).
Olaf has even made the claim that he (Olaf) was promoted by GMEP. Other than that, Moh Kempo and American Kenpo would appear to be two different martial arts.
You posted, You don't know anything about or had a lesson in anything else, so you just know what you've been TOLD. You don't know from EXPERIENCE.
Actually, I do. While I have spent the majority of my training in Moh, I have explored other martial arts and I have trained other martial artists (no Moh Kempo stylists).
As was said to me long ago, so I pass onto you Jeff; your posts read as so bitter!
Bitter? Naah, over exuberant maybe. I gotta point out that you are in fact Spin Doctoring again .That was the entirety of your last post.
I'm REALLY passionate about this topic, because of their past (and seemingly current) practices. The average consumer like the original poster has no idea about this organization. I pointed out before I told no untruths in any of my posts. It's not that I don't like you, I cannot get behind anything this organization(group,style) does. In the future I hope that you would endevour to seek out a Kenpo senior and pick his mind,
feel the difference. Until then , Sorry for hurt feelings, but the Truth has a way of being uncomfortable.
If I was you or Grasshopper, I would try to contact Joe Rebelo or
Tom Bleeker. The both responded to my post @ kenponet.
They are both significant folks in the kenpo world.
Mr Rebelo inherited David German's system and seems to be a virtual encyclopedia of kenpo. Mr Bleeker has been around for quite awhile.
If you had any Bruce Lee questions as well, there's your man. He is a writer and author. He wrote the screenplay for "Dragon" ,wrote another more truthful biography of the man and was married to Linda Lee.
Best of Luck.
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I have no axe in this fight, but since I am veteran of several message boards let me tell you this Moh Kempo thread is déjà vu all over again.
So let me write you all a tale a tale that seems to repeat itself on many a thread throughout cyberspace (I am also aware that MT does not promote itself as having any Fraud Busting objective):
1. Back in the day (1960s or early 1970s) a master appeared and opened up a small school in some low rent building.
2. The master wove a story about his style and his lineage. This story could range from questionable embellishments to the truth to outright fantasy & lies. But this was back in the day long before the Internet and any scholarly research methods within most martial arts.
3. Through some level of personal athletic skill and knowledge, sweat, hard knuckle training before the age of lawsuits and leadership charisma this master develops his first generation of students as he struggles to keep his small school doors open.
4. With perseverance the master aided with that first generation of students opens up his second and third schools.
5. As the master gets to train his second and third generations of direct students the original style & lineage story is often embellished even more.
6. A business model for a franchise chain of schools is developed. (Pay attention this becomes more important later).
7. As the overall number of students grows they start making a significant impact on the regional martial arts scene i.e., they take championship trophies in the Podunk Regional Karate Championships for three straight years.
8. These local public successes lead to a greater influx of more students while surviving the various martial arts fads during the past three decades. Or perhaps, they incorporate the latest big fad into their own curriculum and history!
9. At this point of time the style & organization often undergoes its first name change, sometimes for marketing reasons.
10. Now the second/third generation of direct students are opening up franchises as the masters empire continues to grow.
11. Alas now a cult of personality is in full blossom regarding the master often with more historical revisionism. Any witnesses from the old small school days have been weeded out or they sit in senior positions within the organization. The second/third direct student generations running the schools are all true believers.
12. The business model becomes a key driver. Its about profits and growth baby! There appears to be a direct correlation between the growth of the number of schools and unethical/anti-consumer nature of the franchise model. Higher than normal market tuition, testing fees, other hidden fees, student contracts with long-term deals, segregation of students based on income, black belt clubs, patches & more patches, mandatory internal merchandising etc
13. As the years go by the franchise empire & master grow older. Cracks of dissention now appear often lead by the local franchise school owners. Some of these instructors have been loyal campers for ten-to-fifteen plus years but are becoming increasingly disillusioned by the organizational politics and focus on profit over quality. As they are the direct interfaces to the consumers - the local instructors get all the push backs about the training costs and fees. They see their students (peers and training friends) leave for other M.A. opportunities. As experienced martial arts individuals they wonder why they are busting their hump for someone elses profit.
14. The Information Revolution hits modern society including of course - the martial arts.
15. Now the lineage tale woven by the master back in the day (Bullet Item #2) becomes a major discussion point the cyberspace flashlight is shining brightly on this styles historical roots and any other public dirty laundry, such as decree settlements with governmental entities.
16. The keyboard battle lines are drawn. The masters loyalists & true believers versus the keyboard skeptics/historians along with the styles disillusioned former instructors/students.
Maybe after the holiday I will give examples of logical points/counterpoints that have been used in these debates. Maybe.
and if anyone wants to add any relevant bullets to the boilerplate listing I missed, feel free for today is Independence Day!
hey i thought the Villari thread was closed!
While I could say “touché” the genesis of the listing goes far beyond FVSSD and also takes into account for example:
… a group out of Pennsylvania
… a couple of mind control cults headed by “Korean Great Grandmasters” capable of mystical powers
… the subject organization of this thread
… some overseas franchise examples that border on pyramid schemes
… and on and on it goes
The sad thing is when back in ’68 if the founder had just opened up his original place as "Billy Bob’s American Kurroytee School” then half of these threads would never see the light of day.
Well other than from consumer issues around providing a crappy service.
If you tell me the instructor's name and area that they teach at, I can let you know if they are indeed a part of our organization as ALL black belts are sanctioned by our board and I promote them personally.
The instructor is Sensei Randy Zielke and I signed up a couple of weeks ago with him.
Just getting my feet wet, and so far , so good. It's interesting to see the similarities, as well as differences between Kara-Ho and my original style, as well as the American Kenpo group I attend also.
It's all good stuff! I hope my schedule and finances allow me to continue.123
Separate names with a comma.