When you find yourself reporting on a fraud (yes that is what I now believe it was and/or is) like BizRadio and the related investment scams, you begin to wonder who the players are and what roles they play. Most of the time the magnifying glass is placed on the men – who step forth front and center – and little is addressed related to the wives. From my experience that is misguided.
The other day, as a digression, I was asked just how I seemed to know so much about how this fraud seems to have taken place. The comment was made that I seemed to have an inside track on the actions and, more importantly, how and why the actions took place. “How do you know so much,” the caller asked?
Let me be clear – it is with shame and regret that I say these next words – “I know because 25 years ago I was at the heart of a fraud that ultimately sent me to federal prison. I know because I’ve been there.”
With that said, I also know from my experience and the experience I’ve witnessed from others, the power that a relationship can have over the choices that we make. So with that said, let’s look at Elisea’s role and see if we can further piece together whether she was part of the reason the scam perpetuated. (As a side note, for those who might take issue with me calling what I’ve seen a scam, I would just suggest that you talk to the investors who feel betrayed and have lost substantial sums of money. I think they would agree with my characterization of what took place as a scam and/or a fraud.)
Not to be funny, but let me share a bit of a personal story (there is a point). When I met my first wife (we were in high school) she didn’t have an interest in me. So, being a bit of a salesman, I soon figured out that if I bought her things that she, otherwise, couldn’t have I could get her attention. Buy I did. One might say, looking back, I bought her love. Ten years later I was still, in my mind, needful of buying her affection and would give her whatever she desired. That emotional need was so strong, that I looked beyond what I knew to be true and honest and embezzled money. My fault – I accept full responsibility. But let me say, without the pressure to perform I suspect life would have been different. Wonder if Dan feels that way or will should he face time in federal prison?
STORY ONE: In an interview I recently conducted the following was shared. It struck me that if there were some element of truth…then Dan Frishberg started out a bit like myself – buying his way into the relationship.
And the story goes as follows – She comes from the Philippines. She was born in a little house with a dirt floor. She brought herself up by the bootstraps and the story goes that she met Dan while Dan was working at a stock exchange in New York. He met her one night when he (Dan) came back (from one of his trips abroad) and she wasn’t real interested in him. She said something about a fur coat (she’ll tell this story to anyone who will listen). “Buy me a fur coat and I’ll go out with you” (reportedly said from Elisea to Dan). And, Dan said, “Just a minute I’ve got to go get something.” And he came back and handed her a fur coat.
Every thing is about how she went from a little two bedroom apartment into this massive house. It’s all about what I did – how I got – what I’m driving – it’s all about material things that she acquired…not about what we have built for our investors.
As I heard those words I was taken back to my past and reminded how easy it is to become so taken by material possessions and the position and power they bring, that the move from ethics to lack thereof becomes easy. The three components of fraud are: NEED, OPPORTUNITY and RATIONALIZATION. I’ve mentioned them before, but as you see the story unfold it becomes clear how meeting NEED can drive RATIONALIZATION. Those two components are a bit addictive and can create a pattern hard to break.
Mine was broken -first by admitting that I was a liar and a thief (which took more fortitude that I could have every imagined I had) and second REINFORCED by an active prison sentence. Just as a side note – Prison sucked! But it was likely the best thing that could have ever happened to me as it gave me focused time to learn what it meant to achieve true success…something, unfortunately, I feel that Dan has missed thus far in life. But back to Elisea…
THE STORY CONTINUES… When a Ponzi scheme takes place typically you’ll find extravagances in lifestyle and assets (or what appear to be assets). Rarely do you find someone engaged in a fraud that doesn’t in some form or fashion project their fraud through their lifestyle flash. (Don’t assume that everyone living an extravagant lifestyle is a fraud. That is not true. But, many who are frauds certainly allow their lifestyle to reflect their abuse of money – other peoples money.)
In many cases while the wife (Elisea in this case) may not have perpetrated the scam…she perhaps is someone who could spend Dan Frishberg out of business?
They live in a house that costs $10,000 per month. (By the way I’ve heard from $7,000 to $12,000 per month) It’s a rental located in a country club section of town. That a pretty ambitious house to live in. They flew first class to Dubai. He took $275,000 out of BizRadio and Elisea was getting $85,000 – and that for a show that was on for two hours per day. That’s a lot for a station that was losing money. It wasn’t publically funded.
Right when all the Ron Crider stuff was coming to a head, she ordered pizza for the employees. The assistant who was told to order the food was going to call Pizza Hut, because they had a deal for three large pizzas for around $30. Well, Elisea refused, and said that they needed to order from some upscale restaurant. They ended up paying over $100 for one pizza, salad, and garlic bread. Keep in mind, this is right around the time when they’re laying people off left and right and not paying everyone else on time. They blow through money like it’s going out of style.
Hum…money, extravagance and motive… One question (among many) is what role did Elisea play in the overall downfall of BizRadio and the scam/fraud perpetrated on the unsuspecting investors? Let me be clear – living an extravagant lifestyle – while despised by some – is, in and of itself, not a crime and should not cause someone to be painted with a criminal brush. Although it’s funny, I’ve been told that Elisea has questioned many wondering who is providing information about Dan and BizRadio? In fact, it was reported that I was labeled the “criminal.” So…if you haven’t gotten this yet…I was exactly what she labeled me. The thing I’ve found is – one is not defined by their past, but rather by the choices they make today. Sad, but it would be better if both Dan and Elisea would make more empowering choices and focus on how to return the investors money instead of spending money on pizza’s that further put salt in an already festering wound.
BUT WHAT ABOUT THE DREAM IN A BOX? Is it possible that BizRadio became Daniel and Elisea Frishberg’s own personal play station (I’m not referring to the Sony Playstation here – but then most of you get this)?
Sent: Thursday, August 06, 2009 7:05 AM
Subject: daniel wants to bring back american dream in the box, for 7-8pm
Doug and all-
This will be live and I know it will not last long – we go out of air sometime end of October.. we will supplement the show with 2 minutes commercials airing all over the station so we have congruence while we are not on air.. down the road..
Daniel wants to bring back the show American dream in the box. With an idea I will be part making some money. Making me a brand name bizadio personality able to Sell ideas on air- life style ideas, American dreams- nice merchandising- bizradio brand.. from exercise books-shoes. Clothes, shirts,= perfumes- ties- bizradiomall/bookstores. It will take awhile so we need to start now.
Please put me back on the hosts schedule- on flyers and what ever programming materials we need.
My regular guest will be several people- dani babb she has a lot of material selling stuff on line- I will need to make a deal with her to be part of bizradio so we can participate on all the sales of her on line products, one guest also will be dr. Arthur laffer’s wife- she can also sell some life style items.. and also teeka tiwari he can sell some newsletters and other intellectual stuff.
Doug , please let me know how soon can I start.. There is already intro made by Sal Monistere, I should be ready to go…just clear stuff for me.
I will start gathering deals with several stores.. newyork merchandising deals.. Kenny- this will also be good to discuss with la tesha , she can be my guest also selling her products since she has a lot of on line stuff- we can incorporate her stuff now in our website.. do not forget to mention that to her.. she has a lot of affiliates relationship.. part of wanting to be American is to enjoy the lifestyle the Americans are enjoying..
It will also include travel, since I travel a lot. we will put that too, I will incorporate also it in a tv show about travel of the rich and the famous… on tv.. and radio combine..i will include chinia- china and india- Europe and brazil area.. etc. how our people and their locals can connect.. several hotel ideas.. and hotel connections and deals we can participate.
Thanks Sal. Elisea
Since we are also radiowallstreet, I will have several guest thatElisea Frishberg Vice President BizRadionetwork 3050 Post Oak Blvd # 1680 Houston, Texas 77056
I try to be fair. Even with what I have shown above, I cannot say without doubt that Elisea was a co-conspirator in the investment fraud that I believe occurred, but I do believe that her fingers were in the pie perhaps up to her elbows in the flop called BizRadio. The following was shared with me and I can’t say that I disagree…but read for yourself and you be the judge.
In short, Elisea really believed that her (horrible, horrible…it’s not even a debate) show would bring in money for BizRadio. She envisioned “exercise books and shoes, shirts, perfumes, ties,” etc. etc. This is a show that aired last summer from 7-8pm (after her husband’s and Scott Bleier’s shows) and literally had so few listeners that the production of it was a complete waste of time. They had a guy producing a live video stream of this show (for the now-defunct BizTv) that, in the month it aired, had a combined viewership of zero (believe me, there were statistics from the website…every day: “how many?” every day, “zero.” In the end…NONE). What an asinine waste of time and money. This was just a small indicator of how delusional Elisea Frishberg is, and how she is most likely the reason why Dan lives in such a mind-boggling alternate reality.
Every choice has a consequence. I know as I’ve lived the consequences of my choices. The question is – what will be the consequence to Dan Frishberg and perhaps Elisea regarding the choices they have made? Many investors are angry and want what is just and fair. The larger question that looms is what does the government want (if anything)? I gotta admit, the more I look at this it appears that investor monies went into a black hole called BizRadio that was nothing more than Dan and Elisea’s personal playground that was used for personal business promotion. Was it ever a real business?
More to come…meanwhile I would love your comments on whether you feel that a spouse should be actively considered in any criminal accountability for choices based on enjoying the fruits of a financial scam or fraud?
YOUR COMMENTS ARE WELCOME.