Letters, We Get Mail, CXXVIII



Date: Fri, May 22, 2009 11:14 am     (answered 25 June 2009)
From: "Celeste N."
Subject: A Word of Thanks for the Enlightenment

Dear Sir,

I could not have found your website at a more convenient time. A few months ago, I joined an on-line support group to regain some insight for finding smarter ways of dealing with my alcoholic husband. I joined the health social network support site http://www.dailystrength.org

Up until this time, I had always thought of myself as conditionally co-dependent, e.g. I assumed the role of the bitching, nagging housewife when my husband's drinking habits became intolerable. As I stated, I was looking for more clever methods for dealing with him. Instead, however, I had to learn from other members in the group who either belonged to CoDA (Co-dependents anonymous) or Alanon (spouses of AA members) that I had always been a co-dependent person since childhood, and had always had an abusive personality.

Naturally I found this pronouncement not only presumptuous, but also offensive. One member encouraged that I even speak about my addict parents, which really heated my temper because my parents never drank alcohol or took narcotics. This statement was then excused, because they didn't know my parents were "dry drunks". At any rate, they were certain that somehow my parents had something to do with my situation, because otherwise I would have never married an alcoholic.

The next problem I had with these people was the topic about my "form of abuse". I kept replying, "I don't get it. He drinks. He's irresponsible. It makes me angry. Why am I the abusive person?" Then they hinged in about my addiction of wanting to control him, to which I replied, "I don't want to control him. I just want to try to reason with him." This reply was "proof of my addiction to control".

At this point was I becoming more defensive and sarcastic when we approached the topic, "enabling". I was abusing him, because I was "enabling" him to drink. This puzzled me, because I was not going to the market and buying him alcohol at the time. He was obtaining his own supply under my constant protest. And they replied that simply supporting him was enabling, to which I had to reply, "Wait a minute! I live in the Federal Republic of Germany. This country is a social democracy, and we have socialistic laws here, which means I cannot — as his legal wife — cut him off financially, because then he would go to the social services, who would immediately get a court order to dock my wages, which would involve even more expenses.?

Of course, you would have been amused at the array of responses I received — everything from "*How could you live in such a fucking commi country?*" to " *Pray to your Higher Power to help you. Let Go and Let God!*"

"Hah!" I thought, "You people and your infinite wisdom!" But since I am a person who doesn't completely give up, even in hopeless situations, I still tried to find more practical solutions, but the final straw was the subject about learning "to let go of your relationships". That was the one I almost took seriously and almost put me over the edge. I was being cajoled into believing the only mental way out of the box I found myself in was to forsake all present and future friendships and romantic relationships. I don't know how you feel about this subject, but I am a pretty sensitive person, and the very thought of never having another friend or lover for the rest of my life was making suicide seem like an attractive alternative.

It was then I found your pages, and suddenly my despair transferred into scorn and contempt for all those "twelve step friends" with their confounding answers. Of course it has always been hard for me to "Let Go and Let God" because I am a practicing heathen, who believes in the dual male/female nature of an impersonal god. It makes me my own Higher Power by definition, yet with the twelve steppers, it supposed to be some other entity other than me. I found that if you spend enough time with the twelve-step co-dependent support groups, who see relying on friends as a form of addiction, suddenly you begin to view every single person in the world as a co-dependent.

Recently in their forum, someone asked them to define what a healthy relationship is. They were only able to approach this subject using disclosures, e.g. most of the sentences were worded, "It when you don't do such and such". Concisely, none of them could tell anyone what a healthy relationship is, but they could all spot an unhealthy relationship by a mile. It is rather like a support group where everyone knows what a cancerous tumour is, but no one has a clue as to what healthy cell tissue looks like.

Perverse were the forum entries about people who have been members of CoDA for more than a decade and finally found enough self-confidence (probably through sponsor encouragement) to attempt dating. After three years dating the forum participants were still not sure if they were ready to commit, for fear of a co-dependency relapse — in other words, they were afraid to fall in love again — something they now regarded as a nasty and abusive addiction.

Another forum member related that in her CoDA meeting group she was annoyed about the group leader, who obviously did not take the anonymous concept seriously. Described as an original control freak, she demanded the names, addresses and telephone numbers of members (allegedly for emergency purposes — in case someone decided suicide was an attractive alternative), then proceeded to terrorise members for "ditching" CoDA meetings in lieu of other commitments.

After reading your pages, I could then finally be amused by the "Love Addict" support group — a group of dumped ex-spouses, lovers and friends who still pined after their lost loves. They were using the twelve step program to recover from their heartbreaks and "find serenity" again. It was amusing because the topics all revolved around the topic "she dumped me, and I'll never get over it". Interesting that not a single person would ever write, " *Help me, please! I just had a relapse! I found this gorgeous girl who is so crazy about me that we had the hottest sex I have ever had in my whole life, and we never got out of bed all weekend!*" Love addicts who use the twelve steps and make falling in love their "addictive drug of choice" are essentially begging for the permanent state of unhappiness.

That is hilarious: "I relapsed. I'm in love again." Thanks for a good laugh.

I finally found solace in a little pamphlet I found in the bookstore here in Germany. I took the liberty of translating it and I am passing it along to you, hoping it might amuse you, if you have the time to read it. It was written by a university professor of behaviour psychology, and is entitled, "*How to Really Piss Yourself Off!*" The author maintains that a number of chronic civilisation maladies, including alcoholism, depression, fibromyalgia, bipolar syndrome, asthma and high blood pressure are essentially made evident and become worse because people in today's society over-do it on stress. He believes alcoholism could be cured through detox, intense cognitive behaviour therapy and stress management. In 2002 they opened one such rehabilitation centre in the city of Moenchen-Gladbach, which does not use any form of twelve step approach, and operates with about 70-85% success. I must note that this high rate of success is because the patients have to qualify for this treatment centre. They must be married or have some form of stable romantic relationship, and they must be employed at the time they were admitted for treatment. Then they qualify for treatment for alcohol as a symptom of psychosomatic illness.

In the meantime, I have found an alternative support group to co-dependency — a group for Highly Sensitive Persons (HSPs), a personality model originally described by Carl G. Jung. In this support group the tendency towards shyness is not treated like a "sin" or "abuse", which requires treatment in the form of twelve steps or a Higher Power. We celebrate the uniqueness of people rather than berate them for imaginary "self-abuse". We take moral inventories of all of our good traits we are proud of, and praise each other and encourage people to make the lists longer.

I had to quit the co-dependency forum, because although the Daily Strength site requires people to be considerate to other peoples' feelings when they make statements, this admonishment does not apply for the defenders of the Disciples of the Twelve Steps. They are naturally allow themselves the liberty to lambaste anyone who views their system with criticism. Still, the co-dependents are not a rabid as those in the AA support group. They have a group for people who are attempting to stay sober without the help of the twelve steps, and most of the people there who have read your page have been mobbed away by militant sponsors from the main AA group. I was deleted from the group for quoting your page with links.

In the meantime, I have been able to find other techniques to reason with my alcoholic husband, who has decided for himself to stop drinking and become responsible, find a job, and take part in life — all *without* the help of twelve steps. I did borrow some of the questioning techniques from Robert Burney, but I was amused about how he labelled his techniques "letting go of control and manipulation".

You too would be amused at his statement about "asking a question and letting go of the outcome". Burney states on his webpage ( http://www.joy2meu.com ) that everyone has a choice when asked a question — even when a robber sticks a gun in your face and asks "Your money or your life".

Is he serious? In sales training sessions they call this questioning technique "choice manipulation", because you ask questions where there is "only one correct choice". Theoretically you do have a choice, but practically you don't. So Burney teaches his followers to practice choice manipulation questioning, but deliberately calls it "letting go of manipulation and control", and "leaving the outcome up to God".

Yeah! Right! Thomas Hopkins has trained thousands of salespeople in America to successfully sell everything from peanuts to industrial waste plant components using the very same "non-manipulation" techniques that Robert Burney is talking about when he encourages his followers to "let go of the outcome and leave it up to God".

I now call it "clever manipulation" as opposed to "stupid manipulation". "Clever manipulation" can lead your addict spouse into believing that leaving his addiction behind him is a smart choice, while "stupid manipulation" can lead your addict spouse into more of the same destructive behaviour that already prevails. My theory about good and bad manipulation went over like a lead balloon in the co-dependency forum, because "manipulation" is the nasty "M-word" for the twelve-steppers and thus "sinful". None of them want to admit that they are being manipulated everyday of their lives, even when it comes to the sort of laundry detergent they are purchasing. And not a one of them seems aware of how their own sponsors manipulate their thinking.

Should you wish to have many of your pages translated into German, I could help you, as well as promote it. Like many countries the courts give merciful treatment to DUI offenders in Germany who participate in AA meetings, which of course don't work, because all of the people who go there under those circumstances see it as a part of a legal scavenger hunt to get their driving license back.

Still, things which have a Nazi background are abhorred by the general public in this country, and I wonder how the German public would react if it became common public knowledge that the "benevolent" support group AA has its roots in the Nazi regime. What you have discovered is enough to become of interest to the German National Constitutional Protection Agency, which is the responsible government body in the Federal Republic of Germany to keep Nazi elements and influences out of this country. They already took the wind out of the sails of Scientology. Maybe it's time they should focus on the AA.

Many thanks again for your helpful pages.

Kindest regards,

Celeste N.

Hi Celeste,

Thank you for your letter, and thanks for all of the compliments and thanks. It really brightened my morning.

I'm also glad to hear that you escaped from the madhouse.

Just in case you haven't already found it, I wrote about "codependency" the most in the file on Twelve-Step Snake Oil. "Codependency" is an incredible hoax. Andrew Meacham described codependency in his book Selling Serenity as "invent a non-existent disease, and then charge a fortune to treat it."

And it's really tragic, and also just amazing, how people can waste so many years of their lives finding fault with themselves (and with others) just because they love somebody who drinks too much, or takes too much drugs... It's enough to drive some people crazy. And it really does. Those people are crazy.

I found that "How to Really Piss Yourself Off!" booklet very interesting. I wonder if the author would mind if I posted it on my web site. Can he be contacted?

The idea of mentioning the Nazi connection to the German National Constitutional Protection Agency piqued my interest. Publicizing and emphasizing the Fascist and Nazi sympathies of the Oxford Group and Moral Re-Armament sounds like a very good strategy. That is little-known history. It is surprising how Frank Buchman and the American Fascists just disappeared from the history books. I even studied both American History and the History of Western Civilization at a university, and I never heard about the popularity of Fascism among the rich Americans in the 1930s. It was as if it never happened. Few people realize that the whole theology and philosophy of Alcoholics Anonymous — and all of the other 12-Step groups — really came from an American Lutheran minister who thanked Heaven for giving us Adolf Hitler, and who praised Heinrich Himmler as "a great lad". And Frank Buchman wanted all of us to be living under "God-controlled Fascist dictatorships" and "the true dictatorship of the living God".

Bill Wilson, who took the alcoholic branch of the Oxford Groups and made it into Alcoholics Anonymous, even praised dictatorships himself, and later bragged that Alcoholics Anonymous had "all of the advantages of the modern dictatorship".

Yes, that Protection Agency should find that interesting.

And while you are at it, you might also mention the case where the German A.A., with the help of a legal representative from the New York A.A. headquarters, committed perjury in a German court to persecute a German A.A. member who was distributing his own translation of the old out-of-copyright first edition of the "Big Book" Alcoholics Anonymous, in order for the New York organization to extract more illegal profits from Germany. See the details here. The last I heard about that, the innocent man was fined a huge amount of money, and had given up in despair.

Your English is excellent, by the way. Would you believe that most of the 12-Steppers who write to me, almost all of whom supposedly speak English as their native language, appear to be illiterate when compared to you?

Mein Deutsch ist jetzt schrecklich. Ich habe so viel vergessen. Ich wohnte in Wiesbaden von 1962 bis 1965 als student, und liebte es, und mein Deutsch var dan viel besser.

Habe ein guten Tag.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**  "I thank Heaven for a man like Adolf Hitler, who built a
**  front line of defense against the anti-Christ of Communism."
**  == Dr. Frank Buchman, founder and leader of the
**     Oxford Group and Moral Re-Armament, August 26, 1936.





Date: Sat, May 23, 2009 12:13 pm
From: "john w."
Subject: A bunch of lies.

You really are full of resentment and self delusion.


Date: Mon, May 25, 2009 12:27 pm     (answered 26 June 2009)
From: "john w."
Subject: I was wrong!

My email the other day entitled "a bunch of lies" was inappropriate. I apologize for my arrogance. Everyone has a right to their own opinion.

Hi John,

Apology accepted. But I have much more than just opinions — I have facts. There is a huge difference there. Like Senator Patrick Moynahan said, "Everybody is entitled to their own opinions, but not their own facts."

When I say that Dr. Frank Buchman, founder of the "Oxford Group" that created Bill Wilson's "Alcoholic Squadron" that morphed into Alcoholics Anonymous, repeatedly attended the Nuremberg Nazi Party rallies in the nineteen-thirties, that is a fact, not an opinion. And that fact is backed up by a bunch of historical books where eye-witnesses reported seeing him there.

Likewise, when I say that Bill Wilson went to Charlie Towns' hospital in New York City for detoxing four times in 1933 and 1934, and was dosed with poisonous hallucinogenic drugs that made him "see God", that is also a fact, not an opinion. And it is backed up by numerous books and historical accounts — even Bill Wilson's own autobiographies.

And when I say that A.A. fails to sober up the alcoholics, that is also a fact, not an opinion. That statement is backed up by a lot of other facts, and medical tests, and even the records and research of a doctor who is a leading member of the Board of Trustees of Alcoholics Anonymous [World] Services, Inc.

That's the difference between facts and opinions — the facts are tied into other facts that corroborate each other, while opinions are just one man's idea of what might be true, or what he thinks is true, or wishes was true.

I like facts much more than opinions, because they are far more reliable.

Have a good day.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**  "What gets us into trouble is not what we don't know,
**  it's what we know for sure that just ain't so."
**   == Mark Twain





Date: Mon, May 25, 2009 12:02 am     (answered 26 June 2009)
From: "Terri"
Subject: Things are changing

Hey Terry,

These folks seem to get it.

http://www.non12step.com/

I found out about them on e-zine tonight. Dr. Barnes wrote a short article posted there.

http://ezinearticles.com/?Alcohol-Abuse,-Alcoholism,-And-12-Step-Programs-That-Cant -Tell-the-Difference&id=2378294

Peace,

Terri

Hi Terri,

Thanks for the links. And have a good day.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**  The question is: "Are you someone who just listens to the
**  lies and takes them as true, or do you think for yourself
**  and analyze the situation?"
**  == posted by "Fate", in Washington Post "Energy Wire", 2 Aug 2008.





Date: Mon, May 25, 2009 9:40 pm     (answered 27 June 2009)
From: "Janet G."
Subject: Thankyou from Canada!

Let me add to the MANY people that I'm sure have expressed their gratitude for your work. I have just started reading the orange- papers and I'm just so thrilled to find them — where to start!

Last [year?] I spent 28 days in a $13,000.00 12 step boot camp and it was a slow realization for me that this is what brainwashing is and I was a victim of it. I thought it was the only way and consequently spent many a meeting reading this nonsense aloud and thinking I was indeed flawed because I didn't "get it."

I since relapsed and in order to access my disability insurance, had to enter into a "monitoring" agreement with my employer. To fast forward, part of this agreement includes AA meetings, although they stop short of referring to it as AA. "Mutual self help groups" are what they call the meetings, although the "monitor" I'm compelled to see weekly keeps trying to shove AA and NA down my gullet.... insisting I have a sponsor, etc. I happily attend SMART Recovery meetings but absolutely will not go the Bill W route. I'm an atheist and I hope to hell they challenge me on this. I'm so up for it.

Love the orange-papers... cutting this short to get back to reading more.... Hey... I think I know what GRATITUDE is now... go figure!

Thanks,
Lindsay

Hi Lindsay,

Thanks for the letter and the compliments. Sorry to hear about your troubles, and I hope that things are getting better now.

Have a good day.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     A.A. is not a "self-help group", it's an
**     "elf-help group". You are supposed to pray
**     and beg for an invisible "Higher Power",
**     like a leprechaun, or Cinderella's Fairy
**     Godmother, to solve all of your problems
**     for you and grant all of your wishes.





Two people sent me letters about a posting on Craig's List:

Date: Wed, June 3, 2009 10:58 am     (answered 27 June 2009)
From: "Scott H."
Subject: You are being slandered...

Someone wrote this about you on the craigslist recovery board. A couple of the regular members there constantly post your great stuff to deter newcomers from attending AA.

I'm hoping that none of this is true... they often get everything wrong.

Cheers,

Scott


Date: Wed, June 3, 2009 12:51 pm     (aswered 27 June 2009)
From: "Michael McF."
Subject: libel?

Soberfish posted this about you on Craigslist forum 3 JUNE 09.


No, Orange is . . . . < soberfish > 06/03 09:12:18

currently a pot-smoking, homemade beer drinking, Cal-Poly dropout (he studied computer science) now living in his mother's basement. He has never served in the military, honorably or otherwise.

Orange was convicted in 1988 on one count of child molestation and served a 4 year sentence in the CA penal system.

Orange has never been married. Women don't seem to care for his basement lifestyle and unkempt beard (or the beer belly).

Orange receives a modest disability check for a "back injury" he sustained while on the 2nd day of the only job he has ever held. The disability check and the monthly donations to his "Orange Papers" site (mostly from Jack Trimpey and other RR advocates) supports his pornography, pot, and cheetos habits.

Orange is an avowed atheist, although he did look into Scientology once when he thought his website revenues might generate the wealth necessary to sustain a life in the limelight. Such are dreams.

Facts are facts.

Hi again, Scott and Michael,

Thanks for the note.

None of "Soberfish"'s scribblings are true. Not a single sentence. It's all pure fabrication and reversal of reality. I guess that's what passes for "rigorous honesty" and "spirituality" and "facts" in "soberfish"'s mind, or in his Alcoholics Anonymous circles.

  1. I was married to a beautiful woman for several years, and my son is 33 years old now. And I am a grandfather, finally. (It took him long enough... :-)

  2. I don't smoke pot, and I don't drink beer. I haven't touched either of those things in 8 1/2 years. (Nor have I taken any other illegal drugs, or drank any form of alcohol, or even smoked a cigarette in that time.)

  3. I live on the 5th floor of a high-rise apartment tower, not in a basement. And my mother lives in another state.

  4. I pay the rent on my apartment with my Veterans' Administration pension, so yes, I was in the service.

  5. I was never convicted of any serious crime (nothing more than traffic tickets), and never spent any time in prison.

  6. I am not an atheist. I am more of a psychedelic mystic, a child of the Sixties, and my personal religion is a hodge-podge of goodies stolen from all of the major religions of the world.

  7. I checked out Scientology to the extent of going to the San Francisco headquarters one time, I think in 1967, and taking their "free personality test", and getting conned into giving them $10 for a little booklet called "The Problems of Work". That is the total extent of my involvement with the Scientology organization.

    A few years later, in 1969 in Taos, New Mexico, I shared a house with a couple of Scientology enthusiasts (who couldn't afford to take any more Scientology courses) and we discussed Scientology ideas a lot. We even tried some Scientology exercises like "Confronting", which is powerful stuff. It produces some interesting mental phenomena, and does funny things to your mind. But at the same time, I knew other ex-Scientologists in Taos who had quit Scientology when they were ordered by their Scientology "Case Supervisor" to cut off all communication with non-Scientologists. The most common opinion of everybody in general there was that Scientology might have some good technology, but that the organization sucked.

  8. The statement that I studied computer science in college is also wrong. I studied biology in college, and taught myself computer programming many years later, at the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory in New Mexico.

  9. I never went to Cal-Poly. I went to the University of California at Riverside and Berkeley.

  10. I don't have "pornography, pot, and cheetos habits". I have sunshine, gosling, and photography habits.

  11. I have never received a single penny from Jack Trimpey, but that's okay, because he doesn't have to send me any money. He's doing his thing, and I'm doing mine. I've also never received any money from any "other RR advocates" that I know of. The web site barely breaks even, and could never support an expensive vice.

  12. Soberfish's "facts" are not facts.

Gee, what a funny coincidence. That's twelve items. It looks like Soberfish has his own 12-Step program — 12 Steps to slander and libel.

Oh well, have a good day anyway.

== Orange

P.S.: When I finally found Soberfish's post on Craig's List, I noticed that Soberfish said that he would email his charges to me and ask me to refute them, and if I didn't, then he would assume that it was all true. Well, Soberfish never emailed me anything. I guess he must now be assuming that his charges are true because I didn't answer his non-existent email.

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     Always do right — this will gratify some and astonish the rest.
**     == Mark Twain (Samuel Longhorne Clemens) 1835—1910


From: "Scott H."
Subject: Re: You are being slandered...
Date: Tue, June 16, 2009 6:23 am

Hi,

Here is a link to the forum. I don't know how to link to the specific page, but it is on page 21. If you scroll down to the bottom of the streaming messages and click on page ten or the right arrows, then click on page 21 (June 2nd and 3rd are on that page).

http://portland.craigslist.org/forums/?forumID=12

About halfway down the pg. a guy named Jumpin Jehova posted some of your stuff. He posts "Daily Orange" in rebuttal to "Daily AA."

I've been posting anti-AA stuff on the internet for years. One thing that I see changing is that there are more and more people brave enough to say they agree.

Did you know that new membership is down by half in the last year? From 2008 to 2009, AA grew by only .5 new members for each group.

!!!

I'm in Portland too. I'm a young hippie chick who despises what AA has done to our country. We've abandoned all sense of responsibility for our own actions. It's not something I'd like to pass on to my son, so I try and throw as much sand on the fire as I can.

Hi again, Scott,

Thanks for the link. Isn't it odd, sort of uncanny, how loss of freedom and loss of responsibility go hand-in-hand?

A.A. says that it isn't your fault and you can't help it because you have a disease. But the consequence of that assumption is that you are no longer mentally competent to decide what to do with your life, and you are only fit for slavery — a life of obeying the orders of a supervisor, like a sponsor.

Funny how that works.

Oh well, have a good day anyway.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**    Responsibility walks hand in hand with capacity and power.
**      ==  J. G. Holland

P.S.: Now that's uncanny. I wrote that "hand-in-hand" line above first, and then went poking through a book of quotes to find an appropriate quote to finish with, and found J. G. Holland's line.





Date: Sun, June 7, 2009 11:26 am     (answered 27 June 2009)
From: "Bill A."
Subject:

That's quite an elabrote resentment you have.

I hope someday you get over it.

More importantly, I hope that somone who is in need of help isn't swayed against finding it by reading your "cause".

Please realize that your "need" to defame AA may literally kill.

Bill A.

Hello Bill,

This is really getting to sound like a broken record. It's downright tragic that Steppers are reduced to parrotting the same few lines, over and over. I cannot accurately count how many Steppers have repeated something like "You are doing a great disservice to those who are seeking sobriety." (By telling the truth about Alcoholics Anonymous).

Why is it that the people who use that line never say, "You are wrong about Alcoholics Anonymous. We actually have a 17% or 25% or 31% cure rate..." or whatever number? You are not arguing that I am wrong when I say that A.A. and the 12-Steps are ineffective for getting alcoholics to quit drinking. You just use the propaganda trick of It's Too Terrible To Tell, and argue that I should not tell the truth because it might discourage alcoholics from going to A.A. and wasting their time on something that doesn't work.

Look here for some more of the same parrotting:

  1. You are doing a real dis-service...
  2. I am afraid you are doing a great injustice to society by maintaining your website.
  3. Your "online book" does a great disservice to those looking for an answer.
  4. My dog demonstrates more care and responsibility than you do.
  5. ...can keep people who need real help from finding it...
  6. ...please try to be more responsible in espousing your version of the truth, it could prove deadly to someone.
  7. I feel you are doing AA a dis-service for those who CHOOSE to try it, like I did.
  8. Your site is a disservice to people who have doubts...
  9. go to hell for killing all those poor dying alcohalics.
  10. You have done a great disservice in putting this vile stuff up on the net.
  11. Telling addicts that simply their own will power will conquer their addiction does them a great disservice.
  12. You do a great diservice to those in need of this program.
  13. your website potentially damages suffering alcoholics who could recover in AA
  14. I just hope that you don't help enable people who otherwise might have been able to recover.
  15. i feel so sorry for any young or mature human being that comes accross your page and gets the wrong message...
  16. You've done more harm than good.
  17. Hurting those who might be helped by AA is a great idea
  18. Your ill-thought words have the potential to be very damaging.
  19. you have done a great disservice to any one who reads it.
  20. ...what if an alcoholic thinking about trying to do something to try and combat their addiction had also stumbled across your page and decided after reading your page to make the decision to not try this approach...
  21. i hope that nobody who is in need of help from a 12 step program reads the misinformed drivel that you have written.
  22. I wonder just how many alcoholics have died after reading your paper and getting the idea that there's no hope.
  23. putting up this sort of material in a blog/article is KILLING PEOPLE
  24. But we do have freedom of speech. Sorry to see it used in a way that can hurt people.
  25. Your opinion can influence others to stay away from AA and in my mind you could be killing a life instead of saving one.
  26. it gives the alcoholic a very authoritative-appearing excuse to avoid AA and continue drinking.
  27. I believe that your site is killing people.
  28. ...it could have the unfortunate result of dissuading people who could potentially benefit from what AA has to offer from looking into it...
  29. Do you realise how many people you may have killed by putting them off seeling the help they may have needed thro AA by your irresponsible paper?
  30. You and your organization should be ashamed of yourself for posting such complete nonsense...
  31. My only hope is that a person suffering does not read this and not give AA an honest attempt...
  32. Do you know how much damage you are doing with this?
  33. You are doing the world a disservice by putting all this cult bullshit out there on the internet...
  34. How good will you feel if someone thats in trouble reads your bullshit and looses all hope believing these crack pot statements you make and ends up dying from some kind of overdose when he was just about to go to a meeting...
  35. Irresponsible and arrogant. I can;t believe this is readily available online, what a joke.
  36. The garbage you are writing is only hurting people..
  37. I don't know how you can live with yourself for writing such an incredibly bias and dangerous article.
  38. don't plant seeds in the minds of people
  39. the damage you do to them in pursuit of the agenda
  40. Your obssessive web page is dangerous
  41. Have you ever considered that in their quest for understanding, after reading the really negative stuff on your site a whole bunch of people might just cash in too,.... and die?
  42. I hope your conscience and karma pays you back well for any opportunities of recovery that you have destroyed for some fragile, scared alcoholic browsing the web, who could have benefited from AA.
  43. you killed someone
  44. I wonder how many people died by your bullshit
  45. You are doing far more damage than the treatment centers themselves are.
  46. It is good that you are trying to help people, but maybe (just a possibility) you are being detrimental.
  47. You ... may have actually steered a person away from an experience that could possibly have saved their lives?
  48. You're killing more people by shying them from the one thing that might help them.
  49. now both YOU and AA and other 12 step groups, hospitals, many in the health fields, churches too, are equally guilty of "killing people."
  50. I hope someday you realize the harm you could be doing to others by ...you know?
  51. If people die after reading your words, I hope you have a conscience that can suffer.
  52. ...all you've done is misdirect the people in need of help. You're no better than ol' Bill preying on his helpless vixens.
  53. Is this rant of yours your attempt at mass murder?
  54. I hope if you meant to kill people with your tirade that you fail miserably...
  55. On the drive home, they drift into another lane and kill a family of four and themselves.

UPDATE: 2012.12.20: The list of accusations of "disservice" and "killing alcoholics" has grown so large that it has been moved to its own file: http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-disservice.html

And the line about "You have a resentment" is yet another commonly-repeated line, as if "having a resentment" somehow automatically makes someone wrong and changes the facts, and improves the A.A. cure rate.

Again, I can't really count how many times well-indoctrinated Steppers have accused me of "having a resentment" (and hence of being 'spiritually inferior' and "axiomatically wrong"), but here's a list:

  1. ...lot of it makes sense but other part say to me that the writer may hold resentment and may not even be christian...
  2. I hate to say it, but I think you have a RESENTMENT.
  3. you sound like you have a hidden agenda a resentment towards aa that is driving you to destroy it.
  4. Another 10,000 pages, and you just might get this AA resentment out of your system.
  5. And work on the little resentment machine in your head.
  6. 'Resentment is the "number one" offender.'
  7. Carrying around such a huge resentment can't be good for your back.
  8. Sounds like you have a resentment towards AA as a whole.
  9. I don't understand the effort you seem to put in, unless you have some resentment about it.
  10. My my what a resentment!
  11. If I have a problem or resentment against someone, my sponsor and other people in AA tell me to pray for the bastard
  12. This is not a rigorous criticism of AA, this is a blatant rant of a small intellect and a big resentment.
  13. There is no spiritual condition when resentment fills a heart, let alone the capacity to MAINTAIN one.
  14. sounds like a resentment.
  15. You are clearly an angry guy. I think most people would take your entire argument alot more seriously if it weren't so painfully obvious that you have anger issues you have not yet worked out yourself.
  16. ...one who seems to act out of anger, resentment, and hatred...
  17. But, as AA talks about, you need to move on from your resentments and hatred of AA or it will destroy your quality of life.
  18. You sound like you have a lot of anger and resentment.
  19. ...such a hate in your heart...
  20. ...try losing some of your anger and resentments.
  21. it seems to be nothing more than a dump site for what appear to be resentments toward the Fellowship
  22. ...it sounds like you have a serious resentment
  23. Why the big resentment against Bill W and AA?
  24. You are one of the most resentful persons i have ever heard of.
  25. Your logic seems flawed because it is fueled by frustrated anger, instead of cool detachement.
  26. I'll be praying that you get over your obvious resentments someday...
  27. Your history is nice and some of your points are very valid but you seem to have resentments galore.
  28. I just hate seeing an intelligent person such as yourself going on in life with a "grudge".
  29. It is obvious that you have some kind of resentment toward AA to write that.
  30. The anger and resentment you have for B. Wilson seems genuine enough but aren't you throwing the baby out with the bath water.
  31. Sure reads like a resentment.
  32. sounds like you have lots of hatred.
  33. That's quite an elabrote resentment you have.
  34. You really are full of resentment and self delusion.
  35. Please take your extreme resentment out of your mind...
  36. ...when individual human growth is so apparently stunted and crippled by resentment...
  37. It seems you have a deep running resentment with the 12 Step Programs...
  38. Your tone of rage seems to suggest that you are ... a mental defective...
  39. So why the resentment...?
  40. They market to resentment
  41. still carrying some pretty huge resentments?
  42. You're Angry
  43. See a mental health therapist. You are VERY angry. Not logical, rational, or whatever.
  44. I can tell you have a resentment towards A.A.
  45. Chill out, the aggression must be killing you. As for the resentment .....
  46. Only an angry alcoholic would spend the absurd amount of time I am certain it took to compile all of your 'evidence' that AA is a cult.
  47. Why are you so angry? Why waste so much time attacking anything.
  48. I understand your bitter and hate filled attitude toward AA
  49. I have had some hum dingers as resentments but yours is so vicious, I feel compelled to let you know that it's likely to kill you.
  50. So, go on with your fantasies and your resentment.

UPDATE: 2013.09.15: The list of accusations of "resentments" has grown so large that it has been moved to its own file: http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-resentment.html

And the constant A.A. yammering about "resentments" has led to these discussions of resentments:

  1. ...your alcoholism can manifest itself in a lot of different ways. Here are a few: Drinking, depression, anger, resentments,...
  2. The greatest enemies of us alcoholics are resentment...
  3. Resentment, grudge, hate, and retaliation are burdens.
  4. Perhaps it is not resentments that are the number one killer of alcoholics but isolation.
  5. Such folks may use due to trauma, stress, or just because they like it, and even enter an addictive thought pattern of entitlement, resentment, etc.
  6. I'm resentful at: (moral inventory)
  7. ...what he [Bill Wilson] is really confessing to is feeling resentment about getting caught.
  8. When I expressed my feelings of resentment towards AA to a "friend" (who had introduced me to the program), he told me that "criticizing AA is a loser behavior".
  9. ...if we face our resentments, fears, and sex problems...
  10. Going at it exactly like the Big Book outlined (listing fears, sex problems, and resentments)
  11. the Diagnostic Statististical Manuel and The Addiciton Studies of American Medicine defines addiction/ alcoholism as a symptom of a deeper issue rather it be unresolved resentment and issues, personality / cognitive behavior disorders
  12. When you get a flame from a Stepper, have you ever considered telling him that he has a "resentment"?
  13. When Jesus Christ preached to people about morality, I don't recall him ever mentioning resentments.
  14. However, I refuse to be a doormat and I like my resentment, it reminds me of the fact that I have a back bone!
  15. However, my personal experience is that most people who are true alcoholics, who stop drinking on their own will, are not in recovery. They are still bound by fears and resentments, and are not living a serene life.
  16. Lois Wilson was "axiomatically spiritually wrong", as Bill Wilson put it, because she had a resentment...
  17. take a look at yourself. where have you fucked up? what are your resentments?

UPDATE: 2013.09.15: This list of discussions of "resentments" has grown so large that it has also been moved to its own file: http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-resentment.html

Oh well, have a good day anyway.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**
**  If I say something like, "You know, penicillin isn't really very good
**  for treating staphylococcus infections, and it is totally useless against
**  things like MRSA staphylococcus and anthrax", people respond in a
**  sensible manner like, "Yes, you are right. If somebody has infections
**  like that, they are better treated with Keflex or dicloxacyllin or
**  streptomycin — anything but penicillin."
**
**  But if I say, "You know, Alcoholics Anonymous isn't really very good
**  for treating alcoholism," the A.A. true believers scream "You are
**  heartless and immoral! You don't care how many alcoholics you kill!
**  You are doing a great disservice to those who are seeking sobriety!"
**
**  That alone is proof that Alcoholics Anonymous is a cult religion,
**  not a cure for alcoholism.





Date: Fri, June 5, 2009 8:22 am     (answered 29 June 2009)
From: "Kris S."
Subject:

You people are fools

Kris S.





Date: Fri, May 29, 2009 6:49 am     (answered 29 June 2009)
From: "Andy M."
Subject: Writing to churches

Dear Orange

I have always thought one of the strengths of your site is that you point out not just that AA imposes a religious agenda, but that it is heretical in terms of Christian belief, contrary to the explicit claim in its literature that followers of the its program will encounter nothing incompatible with their existing religious beliefs. One of your correspondents (Bill N) mentioned writing to the ministers of churches to question the appropriateness of having AA meetings on their premises. I have also done this. Below is a letter written to a Catholic priest, but I am also going to write to other denominations making broadly the same kind of points:

Dear Father XXX

I am disappointed to hear that your church is allowing Alcoholics Anonymous to hold meetings on its premises. Whilst I am sure that this was done from the best of intentions, I would suggest that an examination of the precepts of this organisation as laid out in its literature and shown by the type of witnessing known as "sharing" in its meetings is incompatible with the Christian faith as understood by Catholics, or indeed any Protestant denominations I am familiar with. It's bogus "spirituality" has more to do with superstition, magic and occultism than Christianity. As a matter of fact (recorded in AA's own official biography of him, "Pass it On") this movement's co-founder Bill Wilson was an enthusiastic lifelong participant in seances in which he claimed to contact the spirits of the dead.

AA also explicitly encourages the heresy of indifferentism, which suggests that any conception of God (euphemistically downgraded in AA to "higher power") is as good as any other. Even the absurd notion that people can pray to things like light bulbs, doorknobs or chairs is routinely suggested in AA meetings as a step on the way to abdicating responsibility for one's own life and trusting implicitly that Alcoholics Anonymous has all the answers one will ever need on how to live one's life.

You may be surprised to know that Alcoholics Anonymous has very little to say about the nature of alcohol addiction as a health problem, but has a great deal to say about the supposed importance of embracing some very strange concepts concerning the nature of God, the purpose of prayer and the notion that "spiritual diseases" exist. These ideas are not really compatible with mainstream Christianity, although they may share some features with eccentric sects like Christian Science.

Alcoholics Anonymous had its origins in the 1930s in an envangelising protestant sect known as the Oxford Group, run by the Rev. Frank Buchman. This movement was highly contoversial, partly because of accusations of deceptive recruiting and religious heresy (Catholics were actually banned by the Vatican from participating in it) and partly because of the notorious far-right political sympathies of its leader who openly praised Hitler.

The sacrament of Confession, familiar to me as a baptised Catholic is sacrilegiously distorted in AA so that one is encouraged to divulge one's guiltiest secrets (supposedly with God's blessing) to an AA "sponsor" whose only qualification to hear them is that he or she has been a drunkard. Such a person is, of course, unordained, untrained, unaccountable and not sworn to secrecy.

This organisation has a morbid and sickly religiosity which is entirely its own and is not compatible with Christianity. To anyone who is involved with it for any length of time it becomes clear that its "spirituality" is a matter of making AA itself the central authority and guide in one's life, not God. This becomes very clear as one hears old-established members talk with undisguised contempt and disdain about the Christian religion, whilst literally giving AA writings such as the so-called "Big Book" (really called "Alcoholics Anonymous") the same reverence and affording it the same authority as Christians would reserve for the Bible.

AA successfully misrepresents itself to the outside world as a no-strings-attached self-help and support group. In reality it is closer to being a peculiar and exclusive medico-religious cult. Despite its protestations of ecumenical religious open-mindedness, it actually requires beliefs and practices which set it quite apart from any other religion and make it a de facto religion in its own right.

I know quite a lot about this organisation because in the past I had a problem with drinking too much. I am pleased to say that this is no longer an issue, but for a time I did become involved with the movement. However, I was repelled by its heretical religiosity, its dishonesty and the obvious danger of some of its practices to the mentally ill or vulnerable.

I don't think this movement should be taken at face value, any more than should, say, the Moonies or Scientology (who also run a plausible addiction "recovery" program). In particular, AA's claim that there is nothing in its teachings that can possibly conflict with a person's prior religious beliefs needs close examination. I don't believe that claim stands up to honest scrutiny.

I am not alone in having these concerns. There has for some considerable time been a growing body of criticism of AA in print and on the internet amongst ex-members, mental health professionals, researchers and members of churches about the unaccountable way this movement intrudes a skewed and loaded "spiritual" agenda into supposed help for vulnerable people.

I hope you don't mind my airing these views. When I first heard of Alcoholics Anonymous I assumed it to be an obviously benign movement, but considerable first hand experience of the organisation and its message has caused me to think differently.

Yours sincerely
etc.

I'd encourage anyone who feels strongly on this issue to write to churches. There may well be other relevant issues that I have not covered, but I thought the letter might spark off some ideas. I think it is worth writing, even if it only causes one or two ministers to look into the subject and discuss it.

Best wishes and kind regards to the goslings

Andy M


Date: Sat, May 30, 2009 5:18 pm     (answered 29 June 2009)
From: "Andy M."
Subject: Christian critique of 12 steppism

Dear Orange

If put on the spot to declare my religion, the best I could really come up with at present would be something like "agnostic lapsed Catholic", so I'm not looking to convert anybody. However, for some reason I do remain quite interested in theological ideas, and it's really quite impossible to ignore them when discussing steppism.

I wondered if you had come across this free e-book which criticises 12 step groups, co-dependency and the disease model of addiction from a Christian perspective. Whilst I am far from agreeing with everything it says, I think it makes some very good points, and is unevasive and internally consistent, once one takes into account its explicitly religious motivation. Anyway, I just thought I'd draw attention to it. It's interesting to see committed Christians disagreeing with AA about whether its doctrines are compatible with their beliefs. There are plenty of evangelicals who rant about AA being inspired by Satan (and in my more paranoid moments I sometimes think they might be right, but this seems more reasoned:
http://www.psychoheresy-aware.org/e-books/12steps-ebk.pdf

Best wishes

Andy M

Hi Andy,

Thanks for the letters. That letter to your favorite priest sounds just right.

In the letter to your priest, you might wish to mention that the Catholic Church actually banned Frank Buchman's organization twice — once when the English Cardinal banned the Oxford Group, and once when the Vatican banned Moral Re-Armament — and that bishops and higher-ranking Church officials criticized Buchman's theology for both indifferentism and syncretism.

For readers who are not familiar with those words,

  • "indifferentism" is the declaration that all religions and gods are just as good, and it doesn't matter which one you choose. (Jesus, Thor, Loki, Wotan, Lucifer, Satan, Golden Calf, rock, tree, Doorknob Almighty, Baal Bedpan, Miraculous Microwave, who cares? They are all okay...)

  • "syncretism" is "uniting conflicting religious beliefs so as to reduce them to a common denominator that is acceptable to all." In other words, reducing Church teachings to pablum that offends no one anywhere.

The Bishop Noa of Marquette (Detroit, Michigan, USA) wrote a pamphlet that criticized MRA and there is a quote here. Bishop Noa is the first one that I found who specifically denounced Buchman's religious groups for indifferentism and syncretism. (That's where I learned those words.)

About the psychoheresy-aware.org, yes, I've run across them before. I seem to vaguely remember that we might have communicated. I agree with their statement that A.A. theology is incompatible with Christianity.

Have a good day. Oh, and the goslings thank you for the good wishes.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**    True religion extends alike to the intellect and the heart.
**    Intellect is in vain if it lead not to emotion, and emotion
**    is vain if not enlightened by intellect; and both are vain
**    if not guided by truth and leading to duty.
**      ==  Tryon Edwards



May 12, 2009, Tuesday: Day 12, continued:

Canada Goose goslings
Two of Carmen's new siblings, who have something to say.

[The story of Carmen continues here.]





Date: Sun, May 31, 2009 4:07 pm     (answered 1 July 2009)
From: Seth M.
Subject: the "a.a secrets" artical

Dear author,

My name is Seth and I am an alcoholic. I work the 12 steps of A.A. and although I disagree with your views on this matter I do respect them. I was simply wondering what prompted you to write this article. The quote "Man has the intelligence to change his life, Sometimes, he just fails to use it" to me simply supports how the program works. I have been sober for just over a year and a half, putting me in the "top 5%" for success rate. I'll tell you flat out I am only seventeen years old and this program is what makes life work for me. I am not some cult like member that attends two meetings a day, I go to maybe three a week and live life as everyone else does.

My hope is that you will e-mail me back at sethman... when you can giving me some more explanation, if you don't I completely understand, I am just yet another curious member of society.

Respectfully

Seth M

Hello Seth,

Thanks for the letter and an honest question. And congratulations on your sobriety. You did it, not some program or meeting.

And the answer is, first off, A.A. does not work to make alcoholics quit drinking, and "The Program" doesn't work either. "The Program" is really just a collection of cult religion practices that Bill Wilson copied from the "Oxford Group" cult.

It's easy to assume a cause-and-effect relationship where none exists. You see a few people quit drinking, so you assume that A.A. somehow caused the sobriety. That is just like how Dumbo was able to fly because the crow gave him a "Magic Flying Feather". And girls get pregnant because they go to churches. Well, they go to churches for months or years, and then they get pregnant, so the churches obviously caused the girls to get pregnant, right?

Alcoholics Anonymous actually has a pathetically low success rate in getting people to quit drinking and stay quit. A.A. doesn't really have a "success rate"; it's actually a bad failure rate. Even the A.A. founder Bill Wilson said so, in one of his rare moments of candid honesty.

But A.A. deliberately ignores the huge numbers of alcoholics who don't quit drinking in A.A., and tries to minimize and deny and rationalize away the failures by saying "They didn't work The Program right." — Which is really saying that the Program didn't work to make the alcoholics quit drinking. The Program never actually works — the alcoholics really have to do all of the hard work themselves and then give the credit to A.A.

When A.A. was put to the test by qualified doctors, A.A. just:

  1. raised the rate of binge drinking, and
  2. raised the rate of rearrests, and
  3. increased the costs of hospitalization later, and
  4. raised the death rate in alcoholics.
  5. And a whole year of A.A.-based treatment was no more effective than a doctor talking to alcoholics and their wives for just one hour, telling them to quit drinking or they would die.

We've discussed this many times before:

  1. Why write the Papers? Here's the autobiographical story:

  2. Dumbo's Magic Flying Feather

  3. Dumbo falls

  4. Girls get pregnant from going to Baptist churches.

  5. Why write the papers?, again

  6. "Did they stay sober? Many did, despite what Harvard says."

  7. Informal testimonials are erroneously accepted as proof of the success of bogus therapies.

And you should read some of the horror stories that I have received, just to be forewarned of the other side of A.A.

Oh, and going to three A.A. meetings a week is not living life as everyone else does. That is close to an obsession.

Have a good day and a good life.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**    Someone commended Phillip of Macedonia for drinking freely.
**    "That," said Demosthenes, "is a good quality in a sponge,
**    but not in a king."





More Letters


Previous Letters









Search the Orange Papers







Click Fruit for Menu

Last updated 22 September 2013.
The most recent version of this file can be found at http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-letters128.html