The odd case of Jerry "Moneylove" Gillies
For the past, oh, 15 years or so, I’ve occasionally wondered, whatever happened to Jerry Gillies?
I’m a longtime self-help junky. For more than two decades, I’ve gobbled up hundreds of business books and audiotapes (and CDs) — Napoleon Hill, Earl Nightingale, Tony Robbins, I’ve read or heard ’em all.
One of my favorites was always Jerry Gillies, who wrote a terrific book on prosperity consciousness called Moneylove back in the late 1970s. Gillies followed that up with a wonderful set of tapes for Nightingale-Conant in 1988, a kind of audio “sequel” to the book, again titled Moneylove. I devoured Jerry’s material at the time, met him at a seminar in the early ’90s, and then lost track of him. Actually, Gillies seemed to drop off the face of the planet. He wrote no new books. No new audio products appeared. Internet searches revealed nothing.
In the past ten years, I’ve probably re-read Moneylove twice and listened to that six-pack of tapes at least a half-dozen times. I still think those two items are among the best prosperity, how-to-deal-with-money products I’ve ever come across. I recommend them both highly, if you can find them (both are out of print; I recently saw a tattered paperback copy of the book for sale online with a $45 price tag).
So what indeed ever happened to Jerry Gillies?
Well, this past weekend, I stumbled across Jerry’s new blog. I was thrilled to have finally located him. But I was startled to learn that just last August, Gillies was paroled from Folsom State Prison after 12 years of incarceration! His crime? Attempting to hijack a motorhome in 1996! A real WTF moment for me. Here’s Jerry:
“I had originally been sentenced to 18 months in federal prison for an investment scheme involving underwriting bonds in
Europe. It had paid off successfully for eight years, when something went wrong — I still don't know what, but the bottom line was all the money was supposed to come back through one of the most respected banks in , Barings, and you may remember they had one of the biggest bank busts in history in 1995. I then went a little crazy as the date approached for me to report to federal prison. I decided I needed to avoid prison — I was panicking — by stealing a motorhome and becoming a fugitive, since I had almost no money, having lost it all in the overseas investment.” England
There’s much more to this crazyass story. And if you’ve ever read Moneylove or heard Jerry Gillies speak, you’re gonna want to check out his blog and read all about it. (And also learn about his current efforts to get back on his financial feet.)
But I want to end this by making one very important point: nothing Jerry Gillies did, from ripping off investors to stealing a motorhome, negates the positive and valuable messages of his books and audio sessions. That’d be like disregarding the brilliance of Atlas Shrugged because Ayn Rand was, at times, well, a tad kooky.
I’m keeping positive thoughts about Jerry Gillies and wish him well. And I’ll probably be reading Moneylove again in the next week or two.