TATOC Affiliated Companies

Started by hal540uk, December 26, 2012, 14:55:22

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hal540uk

Dear Carolinian
I have been reviewing all your postings mentioning Stuart Lamont or his companies.
Your first post on Timesharetalk, making reference to him, was in 2004 on August 26th
at 23:27:58.
My reason for doing this is to get an in-depth picture of your views on the situation.

It is also now becoming a concern to me that recently you have begun making negative comments on the integrity of TATOC.


Your postings
2004: 2
August 26th 23:27:58
November 9th 00:12:08
2005: 1 
September 10th 12:46:12                 
2006: 4   
March 14th 12:18:28
April 26th 23:08:09
April 27th, 22:47:15
July 20th 23:58:57 
                 
2007: 0

2008: 0                   

2009: 3
June 17th 09:27:12
June 17th 10:53:47 
June 26th 08:51:25

2010: 1
June 1st 08:42:23

2011:  8                   
March 18th18:02:07
March 20th 13:28:55
March 21th 12:15:23
March 27th 14:34:36 
April 14th  15:16:19
April 15th  06:36:19
August 2nd 17:31:50                         
December 23rd 09:35:58

2012: 20 up to November 19th
January 7th 09:43:53
February 28th 19:59:15
February 29th 19:03:28
March 16th 18:45:48
April 3rd10:49:50
April 26th 18:29:51
April 27th 10:23:56
April 28th, 05:54:01
April 28th 19:36:27
May 13th 17:39:28
June 6th 19:45:40
June 8th 13:30:00
June 8th 13:51:57
June 08, 2012, 14:13:54
June 24th 19:22:18
June 25th 15:09:13
October 16th 15:50:33
October 17th, 07:58:50
October 18th 21:26:47
November 19th 07:17:42

Obviously for TATOC to advance a study into any affiliated company we need to have some form of proof that improprieties are currently taking place, or have taken place in the recent past during their affiliation to TATOC.
It would be unprofessional of us as an organisation with a growing stature to conduct such a study were it to be built on conjecture and rumour. Therefore would you please be so kind as to furnish TATOC with any such documented proof that you may have.
Harry Taylor

Time and tide waits for no man

hal540uk

Time and tide waits for no man

Carolinian

First, I was not the first member here to make that observation about the appearance of TATOC slumming around with Spice / Aroma AND Silverpoint in that recent thread.  I just concurred with that previous poster.  And it is not just Spice / Aroma and its master, The Bullfrog.  There has been enough posted on this board about Silverpoint to know that they are pretty slimy, too.  Maybe you can address some of the postings that have been made on these boards about Silverpoint and the way it does business.

The more important overall concern, though, is that the interests of developers are sometimes in line with consumers / members, but also often at loggerheads with members / consumers interests, so there is a real danger of an organization intended to represent members / consumers being too closely aligned with developers.  There are inherent conflicts of interest as well as times that there are communities of interest.  In the US, the developer organization, ARDA, has its subsidiary ''members'' organization, ROC, which is an absolute joke.  If developers and members interests are in opposite directions, ROC, if it takes a stand, will always be for the developers not the members.  Looking at the long history of TATOC and why it was founded, I certainly hope that TATOC does not end up in a similar orbit as ROC.  There has recently been a genuine organization of member-controlled resorts formed in the US, under the guidance of Timesharing Today magazine.

To me, one of the most commendable things in TATOC's history is that it was organized to be a voice of member-run resort committees.  Personally, I only own at member-run resorts, and would never think of buying at a developer-run resort.  I have also served as a board member and president of an HOA board of a member-run resort.  In fact, in our area (here I am speaking of eastern North Carolina where I am from originally), most resorts are member-run.  Sometimes developers have to be given a push to get them to relinquish control to members.  I think one of the most positive things that TATOC could do for the industry is to assist members in getting control of their resorts from developers after the resort sells out or at least a majority of it sells out.  Of course, if you are too tightly aligned with developers, you would never really be in a position do that.

One important issue on resort democracy is having a level playing field in board elections, which means that all sides must have the ability to communicate with the resort members who are the voters for those positions.  Democracy and transparency dictate that to be a free and fair election, it is essential that all sides have access to the voters list a meaningful time prior to the vote to communicate their positions.  Europe, has gotten bogged down in bogus ''privacy'' arguments that allow developers to deny those lists to members who want to challenge them, and this allows the continuation of developer dictatorship in resort committees.  In the UK, political parties have access to voters lists for their campaigns, and it is only fair that competitors in resort committee elections have the same access to their voter lists.  This is another area where members interests conflict with developers initerests.  In the US, state laws often require developers to turn over those lists to members who want to run for timeshare boards, and when one major developer, Worldmark, stonewalled and refused to comply citing the bogus ''privacy'' argument, the case went all the way to the California Supreme Court, with the develper defeated in each successive court.  Ultimately the Supreme Court ruled that not only did Worldmark have to turn over the maling addresses as the statute said but they went beyond the statute and also ruled that they had to turn over email addresses as well.  This is a battle for fundamental member democracy that I would hope some consumer oriented timeshare group would take up in Europe.

Turning from the conflict of interest issues in getting too cozy with developers, you asked about The Bullfrog, and there are a number of issues.

First is the way he runs his South African points clubs.  I would refer you to the article in the Johannesburg Star newspaper that has been posted on this subject.  Perhaps the reporter can update more recent info.  I would also refer you to the Hello Peter consumer site in South Africa that I put up a link to.  Of course, there is a lot of material on the old Cr)meshare site, the archive of which for South Africa is up on another timeshare board.

Second, and most disturbing is his pattern over the past few years to kill off timeshare resorts after running off most of the members, starting with The Seapointer in Capetown.  The list of those resorts is up in other posts, so you have the roadmap to do your research.  Finding members from the dismembered resorts may prove difficult, but some of the The Bullfrog's victims have posted on other timeshare sites as these things were happening.  I would suggest joining those sites and doing PM's to those members to get the low down on what happened from those who experienced it first hand.

Since your organization promotes member-controlled committees, you should also look at the resorts in South Africa that he controlls.  Start with those managed by his management company, First Resorts.  Look to see if First Resorts has been given a ''lifetime contract'' as has been reported.  Look at the composition of those boards.  What you will find is that in most cases it will only be cronies of The Bullfrog's Club Leisure Group, including The Bullfrog himself, The Bullfrog's son, and other associates including a former apartheid-era police general who works for him.  Actual timeshare members are not wanted on those committees.  Is this the type of resort committee that TATOC wants to promote?

The Bullfrog uses his points clubs to take over control of resort committees, and after he gets control, he will bring in his own management.  He tried to do that at a member-controlled resort I own at in South Africa and we fought him and his gang of pirates off.  Given that history, he presents a real danger to those member-controlled resorts in Europe which have foolishly let his Spice / Aroma organization operate on their premises, and TATOC's seal of approval is helping him get his camel's nose under the tent.  I hope you will reverse course on this to protect your own member-controlled resort committees.

 

Mavo

Which part of the last sentence posted by Harry Taylor is giving you the most problem Carolinian.
TATOC has said it will act on proof so either provide it or stop waffling and go away.
You are the one constantly bleating on post after post about Lamont and you have been for a number of years, not just months.
Lets have some solid proof up there.
Can you remember when you last, if ever, posted a positive piece on the legitimate timeshare industry because I certainly cannot.
You and the rest of "the little nest of vipers" are traceable on other forums backing up each others negative postings too.


It is very simple.
Harry has told you what TATOC needs for it to act . Now put up or shut up.

 

Morpheus

Quote from: Mavo on December 28, 2012, 08:54:51
Which part of the last sentence posted by Harry Taylor is giving you the most problem Carolinian.
TATOC has said it will act on proof so either provide it or stop waffling and go away.
You are the one constantly bleating on post after post about Lamont and you have been for a number of years, not just months.
Lets have some solid proof up there.
Can you remember when you last, if ever, posted a positive piece on the legitimate timeshare industry because I certainly cannot.
You and the rest of "the little nest of vipers" are traceable on other forums backing up each others negative postings too.


It is very simple.
Harry has told you what TATOC needs for it to act . Now put up or shut up.



Now, Mavo, I have typically liked your posts.

However, and I do not want dragged into this, but CArolinian appears to have listed a number of independent sources providing the very proof you request, and I would far, far rather have access to source material like this than  anything else.

Given how often on this very site we have used source material from newspapers and similar as evidence it appears odd that you are ignoring the list Carolinian just provided.

Now there may be something else going on here, but perhaps someone can review the sources listed and then comment?
Long time member of MORPS (www.morps.org) the RCI Points owners group.
Experienced timesharer

If you LIKE the advice any member gives, please feel free to click the "APPLAUD" by their name and details on the left. It makes us feel valued.

Mavo

Quote from: Morpheus on December 28, 2012, 11:10:42
Quote from: Mavo on December 28, 2012, 08:54:51
Which part of the last sentence posted by Harry Taylor is giving you the most problem Carolinian.
TATOC has said it will act on proof so either provide it or stop waffling and go away.
You are the one constantly bleating on post after post about Lamont and you have been for a number of years, not just months.
Lets have some solid proof up there.
Can you remember when you last, if ever, posted a positive piece on the legitimate timeshare industry because I certainly cannot.
You and the rest of "the little nest of vipers" are traceable on other forums backing up each others negative postings too.


It is very simple.
Harry has told you what TATOC needs for it to act . Now put up or shut up.



Now, Mavo, I have typically liked your posts.

However, and I do not want dragged into this, but CArolinian appears to have listed a number of independent sources providing the very proof you request, and I would far, far rather have access to source material like this than  anything else.

Given how often on this very site we have used source material from newspapers and similar as evidence it appears odd that you are ignoring the list Carolinian just provided.

Now there may be something else going on here, but perhaps someone can review the sources listed and then comment?


I must confess that because of the length of it I only did a speed read on Carolinians post.
What I did not spot was any proof being furnished about misdemeanours around Lamonts current activities.
It all seemed to be centered on his past performances.
TATOC can only deal with issues which occur during the time a company is affiliated to it and bound by its code of conduct.
As I have pointed out in other posts it is not about casting companies out it is about bringing them into the fold and creating lasting reform.

I am sure that if there are independent sources listed pointing to proof of current misdemeanours then Harry or others will research them most thoroughly and vigorously and act accordingly. 

eneri

Mavo

I'm again wondering who the "little nest of vipers" or "the few trying to destroy timeshare" are. You seem to have nailed Carolinian to that particular mast, perhaps you would care to enlighten us on the others? 
 

Mavo

Quote from: eneri on December 28, 2012, 12:42:45
Mavo

I'm again wondering who the "little nest of vipers" or "the few trying to destroy timeshare" are. You seem to have nailed Carolinian to that particular mast, perhaps you would care to enlighten us on the others?


Enlighten yourself by doing a little research. I will give you a clue. ;)
If you take a few names of known negative posters and pair them together in Google.
For instance A.N.Other & A.N.Other it can be most illuminating as it brings them up posting together on other forums as well as timesharetalk.  8)  Cool eh!

Carolinian

Quote from: eneri on December 28, 2012, 12:42:45
Mavo

I'm again wondering who the "little nest of vipers" or "the few trying to destroy timeshare" are. You seem to have nailed Carolinian to that particular mast, perhaps you would care to enlighten us on the others?


I think by ''timeshare''. he means ''developers''.  He seems to ignore the positive posts I have put up on many of the reputable independent exchange companies, which are a real plus for timesharing, for member-controlled timeshare resorts, and even for the good guys among developers like Hapimag.  Also for genuine consumer oriented timeshare organizations like Timeshare Consumers Association and the new association of member-controlled resorts in the US.  In reality, timeshare has some really bad actors, some sorta bad actors, some okay actors, and some good guys.  We need to tell them all apart, and one cannot do that wearing Mavo's rose-coloured glasses.

The best way to save timesharing is to educate timesharers about their options to use honest independent exchange companies instead of the mega-companies that rent out our exchange deposits to the general public, to have members take control of their resorts from developers and manage them themselves, and similar positive moves.  It is not about staying in the hip pocket of the big developers or the mega exchange companies.
 

Carolinian

The problem is the tunnel vision.  He wants only things that the current company, Aroma / Spice has done SINCE they signed on with TATOC, and does not even give a date for that!  The Bullfrog's previous history is to be ignored.  The fact that The Bullfrog's MO is pretty well established seems to mean nothing.  His history would seem to be counter to everything TATOC says it stands for, yet they do not want to look at his history.

It seems under Harry's standards, if John Palmer, out of prison, sets up a new timeshare company and signs up to TATOC, then they will only investigate things he does in that new company.  All his past deeds will not be considered.  Is that any way to run a consumer-oriented timeshare association?

I also note that Harry gives a long list of dates of my posts instead of links to those posts, which would contain the reasons for concern about The Bullfrog.  Mighty curious that he does not provide links.  During that time The Bullfrog has crashed multiple timeshares in South Africa, starting with The Seapointer.

I am one who helped fight to keep the independence of my member-controlled timeshare resort against an unscrupulous raider (The Bullfrog) and we won. I own at other timeshares where people who went before fought those battles to get rid of developer control and put the timeshare members in charge, and those resorts have thrived. At the two European resorts I have owned at, the developers had the good manners to set up a transition to member control themselves, but not all developers have those good manners.  Have you or Harry ever tried to fight for members control at a timeshare? I very seriously doubt it.  Drinking the developer koolaid is not going to save timesharing.

TATOC is supposed to be there to support member-controlled timeshare committees.  Getting too tied up with developers can make that a difficult goal to accomplish.

Oh, and what about the other bad actor that was originally brought up by another member in the thread that inspired this one?  I don't think I have had much to say about Silverpoint, other than being appalled at what has been reported by others.  All the details have come from others on these boards.  What do you and Harry have to say about Silverpoint?

TATOC's goals are great and it has a great history.  It just seems to be getting a bit off track lately.  A little more concentration on what the real interests of its constituents is, and it could do great things.  Independent resorts run by their members are a huge positive for timesharing.  Not all developers are bad, and care needs to be taken to nudge them in a constructive direction to give members their proper voice.  DRI management's refusal to allow free and fair HOA board elections at Point at Poipu, where a free election might likely overturn DRI's majority on the board since DRI has only a minority of ownership is one clear example of abuse of power by a developer.  Ditto Fairfield / Wyndham's battle with the owners at Bluebeards Castle in which they spent lots of corporate money both in lawsuits and in political battles to try to oust member-control of the several HOA boards there.  Ditto Worldmark's denial of democracy in its board elections, which the California Supreme Court just spanked them on.  That is who is really attacking timeshare; the developers who deny democracy to their members.  Whose side are you on in that battle, Mavo?  Should developers be able to rig board elections at resorts to put their cronies on the boards and then keep themselves as overpaid management?


Quote from: Mavo on December 28, 2012, 08:54:51
Which part of the last sentence posted by Harry Taylor is giving you the most problem Carolinian.
TATOC has said it will act on proof so either provide it or stop waffling and go away.
You are the one constantly bleating on post after post about Lamont and you have been for a number of years, not just months.
Lets have some solid proof up there.
Can you remember when you last, if ever, posted a positive piece on the legitimate timeshare industry because I certainly cannot.
You and the rest of "the little nest of vipers" are traceable on other forums backing up each others negative postings too.


It is very simple.
Harry has told you what TATOC needs for it to act . Now put up or shut up.


 

Mavo

How many times do you have to be told that TATOC cannot in law act upon past demeanours that occured before any company became affiliated and signed the agreement to abide by the TATOC code of conduct.
I can see your reasoning but you must see that past performance is no guarantee of future performance and the law does not permit TATOC to judge any company on past performance.
What in effect you seem to be saying is that you have no proof of non-compliance in current performance.

Carolinian

Quote from: Mavo on December 28, 2012, 17:23:36
How many times do you have to be told that TATOC cannot in law act upon past demeanours that occured before any company became affiliated and signed the agreement to abide by the TATOC code of conduct.
I can see your reasoning but you must see that past performance is no guarantee of future performance and the law does not permit TATOC to judge any company on past performance.
What in effect you seem to be saying is that you have no proof of non-compliance in current performance.


TATOC is free to accept or not accept anyone as a member or to renew or not renew membership.

Let's take one simple issue that ought to be central to TATOC's mission.  That is member control of boards.  Simply look at the SA resorts The Bullfrog controls and stacks boards with himself and his cronies, pushing out the regular members.  It seems like that should be enough to say, ''hey, this is not what we want to promote''.  If you want current, then look at the current composition of all of those boards.
 

Mavo

Quote from: Carolinian on December 28, 2012, 17:53:23
Quote from: Mavo on December 28, 2012, 17:23:36
How many times do you have to be told that TATOC cannot in law act upon past demeanours that occured before any company became affiliated and signed the agreement to abide by the TATOC code of conduct.
I can see your reasoning but you must see that past performance is no guarantee of future performance and the law does not permit TATOC to judge any company on past performance.
What in effect you seem to be saying is that you have no proof of non-compliance in current performance.


TATOC is free to accept or not accept anyone as a member or to renew or not renew membership.

Let's take one simple issue that ought to be central to TATOC's mission.  That is member control of boards.  Simply look at the SA resorts The Bullfrog controls and stacks boards with himself and his cronies, pushing out the regular members.  It seems like that should be enough to say, ''hey, this is not what we want to promote''.  If you want current, then look at the current composition of all of those boards.


OK I will ask you a very simple question. Could TATOC act, under its rules and codes of practice, against Aroma on the basis of the composition of those boards?

Carolinian

Unless there is something very different in UK law, any organization generally can determine who can join or remain a member.  Now, with its own internal rules, I do not know.

The best thing might be to add member democracy standards to the Code of Conduct.

And with some of the things being reported on these boards about Silverpoint, I cannot see how they would comply with TATOC's standards. Why don't you send someone in undercover to pose as a buyer and see what they get?  That is the best way to get the true picture.


Quote from: Mavo on December 28, 2012, 18:22:12
Quote from: Carolinian on December 28, 2012, 17:53:23
Quote from: Mavo on December 28, 2012, 17:23:36
How many times do you have to be told that TATOC cannot in law act upon past demeanours that occured before any company became affiliated and signed the agreement to abide by the TATOC code of conduct.
I can see your reasoning but you must see that past performance is no guarantee of future performance and the law does not permit TATOC to judge any company on past performance.
What in effect you seem to be saying is that you have no proof of non-compliance in current performance.


TATOC is free to accept or not accept anyone as a member or to renew or not renew membership.

Let's take one simple issue that ought to be central to TATOC's mission.  That is member control of boards.  Simply look at the SA resorts The Bullfrog controls and stacks boards with himself and his cronies, pushing out the regular members.  It seems like that should be enough to say, ''hey, this is not what we want to promote''.  If you want current, then look at the current composition of all of those boards.


OK I will ask you a very simple question. Could TATOC act, under its rules and codes of practice, against Aroma on the basis of the composition of those boards?
 

Mavo

Quote from: Carolinian on December 28, 2012, 18:32:30


And with some of the things being reported on these boards about Silverpoint, I cannot see how they would comply with TATOC's standards. Why don't you send someone in undercover to pose as a buyer and see what they get?  That is the best way to get the true picture.
quote)

Who do you suggest -- me! :o
I am sure that TATOC are capable of doing their investigations without advice.

* You forgot to say Silverpoints predecessors


eneri

Quote from: Mavo on December 28, 2012, 13:08:39
Quote from: eneri on December 28, 2012, 12:42:45
Mavo

I'm again wondering who the "little nest of vipers" or "the few trying to destroy timeshare" are. You seem to have nailed Carolinian to that particular mast, perhaps you would care to enlighten us on the others?


Enlighten yourself by doing a little research. I will give you a clue. ;)
If you take a few names of known negative posters and pair them together in Google.
For instance A.N.Other & A.N.Other it can be most illuminating as it brings them up posting together on other forums as well as timesharetalk.  8)  Cool eh!


Why do I have to do any research? Rather than give clues why don't you just answer a very simple question. Who are these people? After all you are the one making the accusations. Don't you think we should all know who you are taking about? If not, I would suggest you heed the advice you gave to Carolinian in an earlier post and "either put up or shut up".  ;)
 

Mavo

Quote from: eneri on December 28, 2012, 21:30:47
Quote from: Mavo on December 28, 2012, 13:08:39
Quote from: eneri on December 28, 2012, 12:42:45
Mavo

I'm again wondering who the "little nest of vipers" or "the few trying to destroy timeshare" are. You seem to have nailed Carolinian to that particular mast, perhaps you would care to enlighten us on the others?


Enlighten yourself by doing a little research. I will give you a clue. ;)
If you take a few names of known negative posters and pair them together in Google.
For instance A.N.Other & A.N.Other it can be most illuminating as it brings them up posting together on other forums as well as timesharetalk.  8)  Cool eh!


Why do I have to do any research? Rather than give clues why don't you just answer a very simple question. Who are these people? After all you are the one making the accusations. Don't you think we should all know who you are taking about? If not, I would suggest you heed the advice you gave to Carolinian in an earlier post and "either put up or shut up".  ;)


I just thought it may be enlightening for you eneri--- and obviously it must have been for you to kick off so ;)

eneri

Since I'm not really sure where you are going with this I'd rather you just explained yourself and also gave an answer to my original question.
PS. I didn't think I was kicking off but my clumsy attempt at jokingly quoting you has obviously backfired!
 

Mavo

Quote from: eneri on December 28, 2012, 23:13:17
Since I'm not really sure where you are going with this I'd rather you just explained yourself and also gave an answer to my original question.
PS. I didn't think I was kicking off but my clumsy attempt at jokingly quoting you has obviously backfired!

Your pretence of failure to understand is funny- not hilarious- but nevertheless funny.

*psst. The word you were scratching around for above was give not gave.

Regards  Tomeluk
 

eneri

Quote from: Mavo on December 28, 2012, 23:56:07
Quote from: eneri on December 28, 2012, 23:13:17
Since I'm not really sure where you are going with this I'd rather you just explained yourself and also gave an answer to my original question.
PS. I didn't think I was kicking off but my clumsy attempt at jokingly quoting you has obviously backfired!

Your pretence of failure to understand is funny- not hilarious- but nevertheless funny.

*psst. The word you were scratching around for above was give not gave.

Regards  Tomeluk
 


And your attempt to pick up on grammatical errors instead of answering simple questions is likewise.

Gawd, talk about pulling teeth!

Goodnight. I'll get back over the week-end.
 

Carolinian

I think the real problem for TATOC would be in 2 or 3 years if Harry gets a call from a committee chairman of a member-controlled resort that has long been affiliated with TATOC who will, in some distress relate that at their AGM on Saturday past, the Bullfrog walked in with the votes of the weeks ceded to Aroma and took over the board, that all of their new board were from The Bullfrog's companies, and one was even a former South African police general!  The longtime management had been informed that they were going to be replaced by a management company owned by The Bullfrog with a very longterm contract.

Harry, the chairman will say, TATOC told us this company was okay and gave their stamp of approval and now look what they have done to us!  We did a little checking on the internet and found out that they had been doing this for years, starting in South Africa, and that you had been informed of that.  Why, Harry, did you set us up for this?  Even if you did not warn us, why did you give your stamp of approval, which we depended upon>

How is Harry going to be able to answer that one?
 

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