This whole subject is complete horse stuff. I worked at Odiyan from 1979 thru 1995 and basically nothing said in this comment thread is true. Odyian was (and still is?) a major heavy duty construction site. Like most such sites it is closed to the public. Because funds were always an issue living conditions were very spartan. As the title and substance of the book 'Skillful Means' imply work as a spiritual endeavor is very important in this lineage. People were there to work and work on their inner spiritual issues. And nobody got to be 'special' and not have to work. In fact the higher you rise the more responsibility you have and the more work you have to do. My guess is that the South American friend mentioned above thought is donation of money would earn him some kind of reprieve from the daily work load. It just doesn't work that way. If you don't want to work hard for long hours you shouldn't be there.
There were rules about who could be there and what they could do while they were there. People were asked to commit to stay there and work for a certain amount of time. Given the amount of training that had to take place before one was a productive member of a team this does not seem unreasonable to me. I know from my own personal experience that people could an did leave whenever they wanted to. There was no need to go over a fence at night when you could simply walk or drive out of the front gate anytime during the day.
Tarthang Tulku is one of the many recognized representatives of the Nyingma school of Tibetan Buddhism which is the oldest of the various lineages and which, until recently, had no Head Lama or Leader. All most all of the Tanjur/Kanjur sets were distributed to Tibetan schools in India. They were meant to help continue the lineage which means they were not destined for Amazon or Barnes & Nobel and the set is not available in the US. Printing the set took a tremendous amount of effort (thousands or tens of thousands of hours) and a great deal of money and it produced no income at all. So if you really want to see one go to India and join a Tibetan monastery and start studying Buddhism. Eventually you may be introduced to the Tanjur/Kanjur set.
Other parts of Tarthang Tulku's work include:
1. the very public Nyingma Institute in Berkeley, CA.,
2. Dharma Publishing which publishes at least 150 books & calendars that range from translated religious texts to cookbooks to children's books and more,
3. Ratna Ling and the Yeshe-De, Tibetan Aid Project. Much of the work of Ratna Ling and Yeshe-De has to do with the translation and preservation of the ancient texts which are of great importance of in the Nyingma Lineage and are not for the casual perusal by just anyone.
If you are really interested join the program, learn Tibetan and expect to work long and hard. Nyingma and Odyian are in no way a cult. They certainly don't hold people against their will and they do a great deal of good. At least if you're in favor of Tibetan Buddhism remaining a living tradition and effecting the world.