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Twin Cities Carry Forum Archive • View topic - "Coconut Charlie" debate
 
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 "Coconut Charlie" debate 
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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 8:36 am 
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joelr wrote:
mrokern wrote:
*deleted*

Joel can stand up for himself just fine without needing my help.
Well, yeah, but I do get kinda crotchety.

Reminds me of an old story about Hillel, Shamai, and an ancestor of mine. It's somewhere on Livejournal, but I can't find it at the moment.

Damn.


I get downright punchy, so I figured your crotchety would be kinder. :wink:

I'm just amused that I'm in this debate without anyone knowing what I consider an average price. Joel, you know which instructor I've been helping / shadowing as of late, since you've seen us at the range. Cost of his class is certainly not the same as the cost of yours. Granted, it isn't $55 either.

I've been an owner of your book since before I got my permit, and based solely on that, I'd pay your rates (and intend to in a few years for my renewal).

I'll close by throwing this out there:

When I took my initial class, I didn't choose the cheapest, I went with an instructor who seemed to get a lot of respect around these parts. It happened to be Andrew. I know Andrew takes some crap for not liking to answer the same questions over and over again here on the forum, but after going through his class, I can say that even in my newbie days I never needed to ask any of those questions. My instructor covered them. To my mind, that made his class an excellent value.

-Mark


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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 8:37 am 
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ecrist wrote:
Wow. Thanks for enlightening me further. We've asked why the cheap guys are bad instructors. You can only really come up with, 'because I have experiences showing they're bad instructors.'
Yup. You're leaving out the damn list of experiences, which you whine at me for not compiling for you, here, in response to your foot stomping, sure, but, well, yeah. And not, by any means, all the inexpensive instructors -- I don't say that or suggest that because I don't think that they're all bad, and I think that the bad ones are cheap because they're bad, not bad because they're cheap.

I hope that clears that up for you, but I'm not optimistic. My guess is that you need some more footstomping about now, kid.
Quote:

Since you're to arrogant to type up the list, here's what I've been able to glean from various posts, specifically about Joe Penaz:

1) His students aren't properly supervised at the range. (One pointed a gun directly at joelr.
Yup.
Quote:
2) He provides poor, or no, after-class support, so students call other instructors.
Yup.
Quote:
3) His classes are less expensive.
Nope. Paul charges less than Penaz, at times; he hasn't been criticized here (or, as far as I know, anywhere) for being inadequate on those grounds, or at all.
Quote:
4) He doesn't provide one of joelr's books as part of the class.
Nope. ETA: oh, and fuck you.
Quote:
5) He doesn't spend as much time at the range with his students as other instructors.
Yup, in part.
Quote:
6) His actual qualification techniques are questioned. (By other instructors. They apparently meet Minnesota requirements.)
Yup; they do. Then again, so would a single shot fired from a borrowed .22 at two feet. One can't make the requirements foolproof, as the fools are far too ingenious.
Quote:

Now, number 4 will probably be perceived as a stomping of my feet by some,
Yeah, there is that possibility.
Quote:
but it's a legitimate point.
Nope, and if you say that it is, again, it won't somehow become true. It's bullshit. I've made it clear, over the years, that there are quite a few ways to distribute reference materials without using my book; it's just one way. I think it's a particularly good way, but, then again, I can't claim to have objectivity in that, and really don't need any more suggestions that when I criticize somebody for not giving out useful and/or accurate material, what I'm really trying to do is sell my book. To folks who want to suggest that, let me just add: "and the trike you rode in on."
Quote:
While I've certainly changed my opinion of joelr in the last 24 hours, I will say his book is worth the money. I've not purchased one at this point, as it's bundled into the class fee for which I'll be attending the week.

I don't need every email, phone log, and transcripts of personal conversations. I'm curious how much time you spend qualifying your students. What's the minimum and maximum? At what point, do you tell someone, 'I'm sorry, but you're just not ready?' What questions do students have for you, which aren't answered by these lame instructors?

Would this list be considered generally complete? If so, use this as a marketing opportunity and explain why our money is better spent with one of you. (For the record, I'm not taking Joe Penaz's class. I *did* spend more money than that on my class.)
Thanks for the invitation to do your homework for you or to market my classes at TCCarry. It's really awfully fucking generous of you.

Wait. No, it isn't.

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Last edited by joelr on Sun May 10, 2009 8:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 8:45 am 
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/me prepares for his ban/kline for being in the dissenting class.


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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 8:46 am 
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ecrist wrote:
1) His students aren't properly supervised at the range. (One pointed a gun directly at joelr.


There is no excuse for a properly supervised student to be pointing a gun at anyone. Ever.

ecrist wrote:
2) He provides poor, or no, after-class support, so students call other instructors.


So it's ok for other instructors to spend their personal time taking phone calls at home (since he hands out their number) and answering emails from students who didn't take their class?

ecrist wrote:
3) His classes are less expensive.


No beef here. There are good, low-cost instructors out there.

ecrist wrote:
4) He doesn't provide one of joelr's books as part of the class.


Again, no beef here. I don't think any of us care who provides a copy of what book. I think every permit holder should end up buying a copy of Joel's book, because it's a damn good reference...but I don't have a problem with an instructor not providing it.

ecrist wrote:
5) He doesn't spend as much time at the range with his students as other instructors.


Range time isn't the problem, but 9am-2pm is 5 hours. I can tell you that the MADFI curriculum, for example, is tough to cover in less than 5.5 hours...and it is a pretty straight-forward curriculum.

ecrist wrote:
6) His actual qualification techniques are questioned. (By other instructors. They apparently meet Minnesota requirements.)


Letting folks qualify with a .22, without a prescribed and well-thought-out course of fire? Yeah, I have issues with that. I want to know that somebody carrying a gun can safely shoot it, and a .22 doesn't give me any idea of whether somebody has a flinch, whether they can recover from recoil, etc. There's "legal", and then there is "smart".


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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 8:47 am 
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ecrist wrote:
/me prepares for his ban/kline for being in the dissenting class.
Nope. You're probably going to be banned under Rule Zero for being a rude, impertinent little boy who arrived on the scene ten minutes ago and started making impertinent demands -- and sending PMS to me that, if they were forwarded to me by anybody else who you sent them to would get you a time out, too -- but, sure; you want it, you got it.

Head over to the day care site; you'll be a better fit there, I think.

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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 8:56 am 
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mrokern wrote:
ecrist wrote:
1) His students aren't properly supervised at the range. (One pointed a gun directly at joelr.


There is no excuse for a properly supervised student to be pointing a gun at anyone. Ever.
And it makes it worse if the answer, when called on it, is, "well, I yelled at him after," and "well, when you do as many as I do at one time, this sort of shit happens." Yes, I'm quoting Penaz, minutes after.
Quote:

ecrist wrote:
2) He provides poor, or no, after-class support, so students call other instructors.


So it's ok for other instructors to spend their personal time taking phone calls at home (since he hands out their number) and answering emails from students who didn't take their class?
I think it's a smart marketing plan, actually -- not ethical, mind you -- as long as the other instructors will play along.
Quote:

ecrist wrote:
3) His classes are less expensive.


No beef here. There are good, low-cost instructors out there.

ecrist wrote:
4) He doesn't provide one of joelr's books as part of the class.


Again, no beef here. I don't think any of us care who provides a copy of what book. I think every permit holder should end up buying a copy of Joel's book, because it's a damn good reference...but I don't have a problem with an instructor not providing it.
I don't either, except when an instructor promises or implies that it's included, and then doesn't, or does it as an upsell extra. I think that's pretty bad, actually.
Quote:

ecrist wrote:
5) He doesn't spend as much time at the range with his students as other instructors.


Range time isn't the problem, but 9am-2pm is 5 hours. I can tell you that the MADFI curriculum, for example, is tough to cover in less than 5.5 hours...and it is a pretty straight-forward curriculum.

ecrist wrote:
6) His actual qualification techniques are questioned. (By other instructors. They apparently meet Minnesota requirements.)


Letting folks qualify with a .22, without a prescribed and well-thought-out course of fire? Yeah, I have issues with that. I want to know that somebody carrying a gun can safely shoot it, and a .22 doesn't give me any idea of whether somebody has a flinch, whether they can recover from recoil, etc. There's "legal", and then there is "smart".
Yup. I don't think the ZeroPrepInstaQual is unlawful -- I do think the Beamhit one is, though -- but I do think it's bad. Which is why I've said that it's bad, not unlawful.

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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 9:04 am 
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In my line-of-work as a piano technician it's up to us to self-police each other to weed out the bad ones or work with them to improve their methods. That said, I'm curious if Joel or other instructors have attempted to contact Joe Penaz and try to work out any wrinkles or discrepancies you may have rather than discredit him because of his very competitive prices.

Maybe it's time for us "all" to stop talking about Mr. Penaz behind his back. What do you say, Joel, would you mind if I invite him to partake in this discussion? After-all, it seems to be about him.

I won't contact Mr. penaz without the consent of this forum.

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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 9:13 am 
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Since I've been banned, and I'm no longer welcome here, I'll just throw in this last comment.

First, my intention was not to get into a pissing-match with anyone. I don't expect anyone to do my homework for me. I wasn't even the one to ask the original question, I just picked up the torch and carried it forward. I'm not the cheapest security contractor in town, either. I get asked, a lot, to justify my pricing. Some customers don't like what they hear, go somewhere else, and call me later when things don't work. Others, after my explanation, agree I sound reasonable, and pay what I'm asking.

I was simply playing the roll of the questioning customer. Sorry if that pissed you guys off, but I'm, also, not blessed with the need to be liked by everyone.

Also, it's really shitty to talk smack behind someone's back after you think you've banned them from your forum. I'll continue to lurk, but since my opinion, as either a member of the carry community, or a member of this forum, isn't appreciated for what it is, I'll keep my mouth shut.


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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 9:15 am 
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Magnum Mikie wrote:
In my line-of-work as a piano technician it's up to us to self-police each other to weed out the bad ones or work with them to improve their methods. That said, I'm curious if Joel or other instructors have attempted to contact Joe Penaz and try to work out any wrinkles or discrepancies you may have rather than discredit him because of his very competitive prices.

Maybe it's time for us "all" to stop talking about Mr. Penaz behind his back. What do you say, Joel, would you mind if I invite him to partake in this discussion? After-all, it seems to be about him.

I won't contact Mr. penaz without the consent of this forum.
You have my consent -- hell, blessing -- to use your First Amendment rights as you see fit. Period. [ETA: if you do, and you get emails from him that look like they were written by a legal assistant, you might want to note a curiosity: his wife, Marcia, is a legal assistant. If you get back emails that looked like they were banged out by a monkey and are infected by the belief that it's okay to make invidious claims if you put a question mark after them, she likely didn't write them. )

As to Joe participating here, he's been invited, in the past, by me, specifically because I hoped that being put on the spot here would encourage him to clean up his act. (Not his prices; that's not my concern.)

I gave up on that in early 2006; it was clear to me that he wasn't interested.

When he started using some of the perhaps not gentle gibes at the bizarrenesses of his many eyebleeding websites to gild the turd, I withdrew that invitation; he's not welcome to use the Forum as his copyeditor and proofreader. If, at some point, he's interested in using it as a way to help him improve what he's doing rather than how he's selling it, I'll reconsider. But it would take some persuasion, at this point; "fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me; fool me three times? Takes a lot of work."

Yes, in the past, I have tried to talk Penaz into cleaning up his act, because I think you're right: in the long run, bad instruction is bad for everybody. I don't think I'm the only one who has so encouraged him, privately. Honest.

At one point, he agreed that the ten-round qual looked bad, and put out a new handout for his students discussing his new, improved, thirty-round qual. That lasted about a week, I think; he went back to the shortcuts, and is now justifying them on his website with a lame explanation that it's because of the ammo prices.

Fisking of Penaz begins:

Quote:
Due to the shortage of ammo if you cannot find ammo for the shooting portion of the class, I have several .22LR semi auto pistols for you to use to qualify with.
Because, like, you can't make sure to have major cailber ammo available for sale -- at your cost -- to those folks who need it for the qual? Others manage.
Quote:
We also have a limited supply of .22LR ammo for sale!
Yup. Wouldn't want to give away a quarter's worth of ammo.
Quote:
Don't let the ammo shortage stop you from choosing PCSD as your trainer.
....when there are so many better reasons . . .
Quote:
We have also lowered the required number of rounds fired because of the shortage.
It was ten before; now, what's it going to be. Minus twelve?
Quote:
We still encourage you to use the gun you will carry but offer this as a last resort so you can get your permit.
And there, I agree. I think that Penaz should only be considered as a last resort.

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Last edited by joelr on Sun May 10, 2009 3:13 pm, edited 6 times in total.

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After inviting Mr. Penaz to partake in this discussion, he emailed me stating that he has been banned from this forum even though he has never been on this forum. Maybe Joel could lift the ban so this man could speak his piece.

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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 10:38 am 
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Magnum Mikie wrote:
After inviting Mr. Penaz to partake in this discussion, he emailed me stating that he has been banned from this forum even though he has never been on this forum.
As is usual, Joe's own mouth is tripping him. How could he possibly be banned on the Forum without ever having registered for an account?

Answer: he couldn't.

Now, since I pride myself on having earned a reputation for honesty (which is one of the reasons that ecrist pissed me off by, in effect, calling me a liar earlier today, although, to be fair, he didn't use that word) that, if left alone, could be misleading. So I will add that the IP address from which he has sent me threatening emails had and has, indeed, been blocked here, and Joe Penaz has been told -- quite clearly, by me, and I'm pretty damn clear -- a way in which he could participate, if he chooses to.

I'll not be holding my breath.

My email to him of April 27, after he'd claimed that he had been banned. (At least, I think he was claiming that; with Penaz, sometimes, it's hard to tell what he thinks he's saying. He did ask a question. I can tell it was a question because that particular stream of typage ended with a question mark).

Here's my response to him:
Quote:
That's an utterly fair question; I'll give you a straightforward answer. I'm generous to a fault, after all.

You haven't been banned. The IP address you used to send me a threatening email last night has been. You don't have the right to access the Forum [ETA: I probably should have added, explicitly, "...from your home IP", although I think the following makes that clear, albeit not explicit. I wasn't writing that email for publication, at the time, so I was a bit sloppy; mea culpa. JR]; it's a privilege, which you've forfeited.

I think that you've been using (as certainly is your right, as long as they're available to you) some of the observations of the many errors, typos, and other embarrassing bloofs on your various eyebleeding websites as opportunities to clean them, at least up a little. I'm not sure I want to make that all that easy for you, as I don't think it's the job of the Forum to do your website copyediting and QC for you, and I'm not disposed to help you clean your act up. I've certainly tried in the past, but I'm kinda done with that, given your threats. (I think it's utterly bizarre for the guy who has homesteaded every variation of twincitiescarry.com he can grab to complain, mind you, but I don't expect you to get that.)

That said, you certainly can go to any public library and browse to the public areas of the Forum. [Emphasis added. JR]

(And that said, since, as you say, you fill all your classes, that probably isn't worth the trouble from your POV. Since it's working for you, why fix it?)

Fair enough? That said, if you want to participate in the Forum, rather than endlessly bitch about it, I'll consider it. [ETA: in the context, I'm talking about lifting the ban on his home IP, not lifting the nonexistent and improbable ban on every public library with Internet access, which I don't want to do anyway. JR] But, since, as you say, it has few readers, I'm not sure it would be worth your time. Your call, certainly.



Quote:
Maybe Joel could lift the ban so this man could speak his piece.
See above.

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Last edited by joelr on Sun May 10, 2009 4:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 12:59 pm 
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It's apparent after reviewing the comments in the links below that there's been an obvious conspiracy to beat down Joe Penaz. None of this can have a positive affect on the PTC community. Just imagine if some gun-grabbers start catching wind of this fiasco. No good can come of it.

I have trouble with the conflicting comments here on this forum as well as in the links below combined with what we hear from regulars at Gunstop. For me, there's something to be said about a man that doesn't attack other instructors even though they are attacking him. And, let's not forget that while these attacks are occurring here, the site administrator considers Joe Penaz a friend.

Maybe it's just me, but guys that actually took Joe's class spoke highly of him in the ripoff report below. The guys slinging mud, in my opinion, sure sound like disgruntled instructors trying to bury Mr. Penaz. Unsuccessfully, I might add. They are easy to pick out as they use bogus alias'. Myself along with many other students use our real names.

FWIW, I'm with the understanding that Joe Penaz was one of pioneers of PTC instructors. I'm sure I'll be corrected if this is untrue.

http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/0/2 ... 283042.htm

http://captaincapitalism.blogspot.com/2 ... nceal.html

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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 2:43 pm 
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Magnum Mikie wrote:
It's apparent after reviewing the comments in the links below that there's been an obvious conspiracy to beat down Joe Penaz.
Who are you claiming are these conspirators? Please be very specific.
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None of this can have a positive affect on the PTC community. Just imagine if some gun-grabbers start catching wind of this fiasco. No good can come of it.
I've heard that sort of argument from Penaz, repeatedly. I think him cleaning up his act would be better than "security by obscurity." Been saying so for, literally, years.

[ETA: fortunately, the problem you suggest won't be an issue in this lege; the time to submit new bills is long since over. With a lot of effort, Penaz could, possibly, be doing a good class without the shortcuts and the public embarrassment of his eye-bleeding websites before it sits again next January. I'm sure he'll get right on that.]
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I have trouble with the conflicting comments here on this forum as well as in the links below combined with what we hear from regulars at Gunstop. For me, there's something to be said about a man that doesn't attack other instructors even though they are attacking him.
Perhaps, but that would hardly be the case for Penaz. (Yes, I know that's what he told you, like he tells everybody. It's not true.) I can, if you'd like, quote you chapter and verse from stuff he's taken down from his various eyebleeding websites. Shall I? Or would you prefer to hit the Google cache yourself?
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And, let's not forget that while these attacks are occurring here, the site administrator considers Joe Penaz a friend.
Some of Penaz's defenders have made quite a lot of a single comment of Andrew's, here; I'll have to ask him, publicly, to respond to it, as it does keep coming up as, implicitly, some sort of defense of Penaz's practices.

For myself, I have many friends who aren't competent carry instructors; that said, I don't think any of those claim to be carry instructors at all, because they aren't, nor pioneers in permit to carry training in Minnesota, also because, like Penaz, they aren't.
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Maybe it's just me, but guys that actually took Joe's class spoke highly of him in the ripoff report below.
I don't know. I think that it's entirely possible that some of the critics and some of the supporters, there, are equally legit. [ETA: I'm confident that at least some of his supporters there are Penaz himself, and people who have taken his class, posting under their own names. If I'm ever trolled into posting there, and there are days when there is a temptation -- like when my name was brought into the discussion there -- I'll do it under my own name. I guess that could happen.) Or less so. I don't know for sure, as I've not been in communication with any of them, unless, of course, some are Penaz sockpuppets, as I've heard from him, and if any of his supporters, there, are Penaz sockpuppets, I've been in communication with said sockpuppets by being in communication with Penaz -- which I'm not at all sure is the case.

I will say that one of the critics there points to precisely the sort of thing I've seen happen at BPR when Joe and his students show up there.

What his basis (if any) for saying it is, I dunno; I know what mine is. I've seen it. I'm not the only one.
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The guys slinging mud, in my opinion, sure sound like disgruntled instructors trying to bury Mr. Penaz.
Yup; that is the Penazian pravda. I frankly doubt it [trans: I think it's unmitigated horse hockey] but I guess it could be the case. I dunno. Sounds unlikely; ripoffreport.com isn't exactly a prominent website for people looking to find a carry permit instructor in Minnesota, is it? Would a "disgruntled" competitor know, in advance, that Penaz was going to push the site? Hell, when I told him that it would be foolish to, I was stunned that he'd done it. He explained that it was his legal or website advisor who had told him to. (I don't make this stuff up, you know.)

Nope; most of the prominence of the Penaz embarrassment was generated by Penaz linking to it, after all -- although you're certainly helping.
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Unsuccessfully, I might add. They are easy to pick out as they use bogus alias'. Myself along with many other students use our real names.
Which real name is yours? (I'm not doubting, just questioning.)

All in all, while I don't think Penaz is necessarily to blame for quite all of the criticism from what appears to me to be at least likely to be one or more of his students -- I think there's some "buyer's remorse" going on, and I'm guessing that was the cause of the initial post there, although that is just a guess -- I do think he is to blame for the prominence that the ripoffreport.com posting has gotten; I believe it was not the first hit on google for "Joe Penaz" until he linked to it from his own websites, repeatedly, and claimed that it was useful for his business. (Which, by the way, it may have been.)

ETA: and, just to be clear, that happened long before the site was linked to from here, by you or anybody else.
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FWIW, I'm with the understanding that Joe Penaz was one of pioneers of PTC instructors. I'm sure I'll be corrected if this is untrue.
This is untrue, for any reasonable value of "pioneer."

I understand that Joe likes to portray himself as such; he isn't. That's okay. I'm more than wildly guessing that you got that choice piece of pravda from Penaz, either directly or indirectly.

It's not true. It's false. It's easy to find out who the pioneers were; just ask somebody who knows.

Since you asked here, I'll tell you: locally, the pioneers in carry permit instruction were Darrell Mulroy and Julio Santiago, although mainly it was Darrell.

Unlike relative latecomers -- like me; if you don't count the pre-2003-change beta that I helped teach as my first taught carry class, I taught my first carry permit class several days after the law changed in 2003 (Penaz came along later) -- the real pioneers here were doing it years -- plural -- before the law changed.

No, it wasn't Penaz. It wasn't me, who was doing it before he was; it wasn't Mark Koscielski, who was doing it before he was. It wasn't Len and the Bill's crew, who were doing it before Penaz was. It wasn't Andrew -- he got started later. It wasn't any of the dozens of other folks who got started in doing it before Penaz.

It wasn't Penaz, either.

It was Darrell, and Julio. Me, I'd love to make the argument that by writing the original AACFI P2C course (based on my book) with Joe and Tim, the three of us get to claim pioneer status, except that it would be an arrogant lie, and I don't get to do that.

Mango Joe the Self-Proclaimed Carry Permit Pioneer thinks he does. And he's right; he gets to say that, and Darrell's not around to point out that it's bullshit -- but since it is bullshit, I get to point that out.

You might ask Penaz <s>when he got</s> to show you his first Minnesota carry permit, by the way; the answer, if not evasive, might be enlightening as to when he started his pioneerin'. (I don't know when Darrell got his first one; it was, literally, many years before I met him and took my first carry permit class -- there were others, later; under the old law, I had to requalify every year -- from him.)Hadn't seen that last one, or been aware of the guy's blog. He's certainly entitled to his opinion, and to post it there.

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Last edited by joelr on Sun May 10, 2009 4:28 pm, edited 10 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 3:08 pm 
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Does anyone else find it fishy that this blog entry just happens to date from when this topic was really starting to heat up, or that a blogger speaking so much in defense of Penaz seems to be taking some awfully direct shots at Joel, who isn't a part of the ripoff report?

I call bullshit, loudly.

-Mark


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PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2009 3:12 pm 
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Well, sure, but truth to tell -- and you're entitled to feel differently -- I don't care. That said, if I knew and respected the views of "Captain Capitalism" on other matters I'd probably take what he said seriously on this.

He'd still be wrong, but, hey, that's okay.

ETA: upon rereading, I gotta love this:

Quote:
but [Penaz's class] wasn't any worse than any other course I've taken
Ouch. Okay; I'm thinking more highly of this fan of Penaz's; thanks, Magnum Mikie, for pointing to it.

Just grabbed the screen shots; Craigslist, here I come.

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Last edited by joelr on Sun May 10, 2009 4:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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