Letters, We Get Mail, CCXXXVII

Date: Wed, May 11, 2011 12:56 pm     (answered 12 May 2011)
From: Renee
Subject: Great Letter!

Hi Orange!

Mary's recent letter to you included a profound revelation,

After one starts drinking the diagnosis of alcoholism comes before anything else. This HAS to change or I don't see any progress happening in addiction treatment.

Mary is 100% correct in her statement! Although I suffer from the primary condition of ADD, I was never, not once EVER evaluated for any psychiatric issues on my long road to hell in 12 step treatment centers and AA. Each treatment center I found myself in, (4 of them starting at the age of 25) immediately branded me with the Scarlet A (alcoholic).

From that point on all of my secondary issues.... like depression and severe anxiety were caused by drinking, or so they told me. Sadly, life-long untreated ADD has a symptom check list very similar to alcoholism. This mal-practice or missed diagnosis is probably a result of the so called "professionals" who evaluated me back in the mid 80's. Most of them were "qualified" professionals because they had a little sober time in AA. Some even had AA's (associate degrees) in "addictions counseling.!!" The Physicians more often than not deferred to these quack-pseudo experts only because they drank a lot, resulting in people like myself who have spent years wondering why they "Just couldn't get it in AA" We would go to all the lengths we were told to go to in order to gain the ever elusive sobriety. We failed time and time again.

I SO understand Mary when she stated that suicide was far better than having to go back to the rooms after a slip, or relapse.... especially once you strung together more than a couple of years without a drink. Fortunately, for me I was a pretty good liar...... after my 5th relapse confession I decided I was D O N E doing that crap. A person can only take so much self imposed torture. When I left AA I had 9 years of "sober" time in AA with only a few... ahem.... slips. Jerks, I hated having to lie, but I also hated the humiliation far more. People with ADD already have low enough self esteems.... going back to be berated by the bastards at the meetings was hell for me.

oh well....just another letter from the one who got away ;)


Hello Renee,

Thank you for the letter. I think you and Mary are bringing up a subject that is really important. This should be printed in something like a medical journal for psychiatrists, but alas, I'm not a doctor and I don't have a controlled study to report. Still, we need to keep on publicizing this issue, and bringing it to the attention of psychiatrists.

Now there are some exceptions to the rule. I remember reading "Addict-L", which is a forum about addictions run by Kent State University. In there, a few doctors were saying that they considered ALL cases of addiction to be "dual-diagnosis" cases. That is, there must be some underlying reason WHY a person will drink or drug themselves to death. Untreated mental illness is often the reason.

Still, we need to get the word out more.

Have a good day and a good life now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     It may be difficult to determine where religious
**     beliefs end and mental illness begins.
**       —  Elaine Cassel

Date: Mon, May 16, 2011 6:53 am     (answered 17 May 2011)
From: Renee
Subject: Dual Diagnosis and Ducks!!

Hi again Orange! I wanted to let you know I love the Mallard picture in your most recent Letters! It is a very unique perspective and beautiful!!

If you don't mind I would like to print it out and frame it. I think I can copy and paste it to my photo file.....

I don't mind at all. And if you want a good print, I can put up higher-resolution versions of the best photographs. What you see on the web site is scaled way down, to make the size manageable. The original photographs are 10 megapixels, 3720 x 2800, and several megabytes in size. I have to scale the pictures down to 800 pixels wide to make them fit on the web page.

But if you want some good prints, I can give you higher-resolution versions. I've been thinking of putting up some higher-resolution photos scaled for wallpaper or screen-savers.

I love watching the ducks from my deck up in Michigan.... the babies are the cutest! But the mallards are so regal! Oh, and BTW anyone who takes such beautiful pictures can't be all that angry. (just a small reference to the latest barrage of the "You must be very angry" letters the steppers seem to be sending you lately.)

Thanks. Yes, they just don't get it. People really can be opposed to something wrong without being eaten up with "resentments".

In reference to your reply about the dual diagnosis....this is a sticky widget, but I believe that the medical community, in its all out deference to AA religious beliefs would rather diagnose someone with TWO disorders while at the same time blaming the secondary one on the alcoholism. I also believe the Doctors just don't know any better. Once someone is diagnosed with, for example "bi-polar" secondary to their alcoholism, the poor scnhmuck receives a prescription, a pat on the back with the words..."Take your meds and go to meetings." I believe these are the bulk of the relapsers. They are the people who are beaten down by AA and sponsors. Today, I understand that these are the people I used to pray for in the big AA circle after the meeting..... They were the "poor unfortunates" who killed themselves.

The medication issue in AA has grown very serious over the past 35 years. When an AA sponsor encourages their pigeon to stop taking their meds you have a big problem. I was told the AA message would not get through the fog created by anti-depressants. I know this may sound strange, but I can clearly remember being slightly suicidal for most of my tenure in AA. I always felt like a fraud and a failure. I could never be as happy as the true believers in AA. What I failed to realize at the time is this.... most of them were like me. They were fakers and full of crap. I believe the majority and I mean 95% of AA members have some primary psychological disorder which is the fundamental cause of their alcohol/drug abuse. I think this coincides with the relapse rate and the drop-out rate found in AA. I do not know how the suicide rate in AA could be accurately measured, but it would be an excellent research project.

Some psychiatrists who examined sober, abstinent A.A. members found that about 90% of them were suffering from some kind of psychiatric malady. Only 10% could be considered healthy or normal. Look here: Disturbed Members, Mentally Ill Followers.

Thankfully, I believe the medical community is waking up to the real danger of AA. My physician is very well versed in their dogma. He knows about the anti-meds stance. During my first session with him I told him MY AA story, and I was stunned that he was not surprised. Apparently, he has seen a parade of patients like me. He also told me he rarely sends his alcohol abusers to AA any more. His therapy begins by treating the primary condition first. He explained to me that with his patients, 9 times out of 10 the alcohol and drug abuse stops or diminishes considerably once therapy (meds) begin.

That's great.

What about the other 5 to 7% of folks who really do have a problem with alcohol metabolism? I believe they are very real (I know you are in that category Orange)...and I also believe that if they just don't drink they won't be "alcoholic"..... There is no doubt in my mind that there is a segment of the population who really cannot metabolize alcohol properly. This may be a result of evolution or genetics.....Who knows? The studies are rather slim thanks to AA, the proverbial dumping ground for difficult patients. BUT it is a metabolic disorder that will not be cured by the teachings of Frank Buchman as they were regurgitated by Bill Wilson.

Yes. I don't know if "metabolize" is the correct word. I heard a doctor delivering a lecture on that, saying that we all metabolize alcohol into acetaldehyde exactly the same way, so it isn't metabolism. But it is something.

There is no doubt that my reaction to alcohol is extreme. It makes me want to marry it and make it my lifestyle, and even drink myself to death. And yet, if I just don't drink alcohol, I am just fine. Funny how that works.

Oh well enuf said. Here is some info for folks out there who may be questioning their sanity..... and AA.! There are some stats in this blog that will surprise you !

_ADHD and Addictions Blog Posts, Books and Articles_

From.....(my new tag-line)

The one who got away.......

Okay, thanks for the link. I'll go check it out.

Have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     A wise man should consider that health is the greatest
**     of human blessings, and learn how by his own thought
**     to derive benefit from his illnesses.
**       ==  Hippocrates (460 BC — 377 BC), Regimen in Health

[The next letter from Renee is here.]

Date: Wed, May 11, 2011 12:48 pm     (answered 12 May 2011)
From: "Ryan S."
Subject: link addition

Dear Orange Papers,

I am contacting you because I came across your site as I was doing research for asbestos exposure and diseases and saw that you have a link to mesotheliomasymptoms.com.

Because I found your site helpful, I clicked the link but soon realized that the site was not nearly as comprehensive or well kept as others on the web. At the end of my research I realized that www.maacenter.org was the best of all the sites I saw in my opinion.

I decided to make you aware of this and hopefully you can replace the link or at least add the link to enhance your site for your users in the future. Hope to hear back soon.



Hello Ryan,

I recognize blatant promotion when I see it. Nevertheless, I'll include the link, and people can read all three of them and decide for themselves.

Have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     If someone has cancer or diabetes or coronary disease,
**     we don't use a quack doctor to treat those sick people —
**     a quack whose only qualification is that he used to drink
**     too much alcohol or take too many drugs, and who is now
**     a member of a cult religion. But with the so-called
**     "disease" of alcoholism, the standard treatment is
**     to have former alcoholics or dopers dispensing their
**     platitudes and slogans, and insisting that "spirituality"
**     is the cure.

[The previous letter from LJ is here.]

Date: Wed, May 11, 2011 9:21 am     (answered 12 May 2011)
From: "LJ"
Subject: Re: like your site

Dear Orange,

thank you for taking the time out to write back to me!! :)

I have been reading the information posted on your site everyday. I cannot believe what I bought into, but to my defense I was just turned 26 when I was introduced to AA and extremely emotionally needy and just plain lost. I'm now 40. It is heartbreaking to think of what could've happened had I just received the kind of counselling I am now receiving. Instead I've been going around concentrating more and more each year on my 'defects'. It seems the more I work 'the program' the worse I feel including feeling like the biggest hypocrite that ever graced this planet.

As well, I never went to co-ed meetings when I did AA — just women's only thank God so I never had the 13th stepping thing but I can see that that was going on at a big meeting here in the Lower Mainland (Vancouver).

I did have one time once where a man a lot older than me became kind of obsessed with me and we spent the afternoon together — I was creeped out the entire time and thankfully nothing happened.

the last 7 years I was mostly in Debtors Anonymous. I only found one person on your site who was in that particular program. So I kind of feel doubly stupid but I like your advice throughout to just forgive myself for getting caught up in it all and move on.

Also, going over some of the ideas you posit on this site, I realize I too had already made a decision to quit drinking before I ever stepped foot in a meeting. What I found in the meeting though was people who seemed, initially, to accept me. My real problem was having survived a lot of childhood trauma and never having been treated for it. It's a shame. It's the same thing for the debting. I had actually knocked off about $7,000 worth of debt before entering a meeting, but that pesky idea I'd picked up from AA about how I'm 'powerless' and yada yada I think is what got me to go to DA. And I have to confess, I have been waiting for my miracle and enlightenment (what a joke!). And I also have to confess to a genuine fear that I might end up going crazy and racking up the debt again.

I was on the verge of entering another 12 step fellowship — this one for sex and love addicts. When finally my brain was like, uhm, excuse me — what the hell are you doing????? lol.. and then after looking up anti-AA stuff I found your site. It's the best one out there.

One thing I've realized is that I've never really gotten actually 'close' to anyone in the program, it's weird actually. and it's prevented me from forming strong relationships outside of it because in the past decade and a half I've viewed folks outside of the program as somehow dangerous? I'm not sure what but I finally wised up and said to myself — hey nobody's perfect and I want to have some actual REAL relationships in my life. And that is just going to take work and risks etc. like everybody has to do. I also allowed myself to be in a relationship for many years without intimacy. Everytime I brought up the issue it became about what 'my part' was in it and a bunch of therapy jargon was thrown my way about my anger being 'abusive' and the whole thing got sidestepped and so it just continued on and on with me wondering what I was doing wrong and feeling worse and worse till I finally woke up, realized a relationship is 50/50 and left. nice.!

My enlightenment, I now believe, is to wise up to all this stuff and not allow myself to be taken in by the various shucksters out there (of which there are plenty!). That's why I personally feel the cult angle is an especially important way to view this. It's a big ol' world and not necessarily always a nice one — nothing is going to change that. Except when there's little goslings in it (I love animals too!). I've enjoyed reading the story about the goslings very much...

My goal is to now put all that energy back into my life. I wish you well on your travels in life.

Thanks again Orange.


Hello LJ,

Thanks for the letter, and thanks for the thanks, and I'm glad to hear that you are feeling better and are free now.

And by all means, please do not be down on yourself. You were not stupid or gullible. You were up against some world-class con artists, people who have 70 years of experience in perfecting techniques for fooling the newcomers.

Heck, much more than 70 years, because Alcoholics Anonymous started off as Frank Buchman's Oxford Group cult religion, and A.A. just reused all of the standard recruiting and indoctrination tricks from the Oxford Group. And Dr. Frank Buchman, the founder of the Oxford Group, actually just reused Henry B. Wright's crazy religion... And Henry B. Wright learned it from Robert E. Speer, who got it from Henry Drummond... So it's really an old cult religion, with a lot of well-developed mind-bending conversion and indoctrination techniques. They got much more than a century of head start on you. It was never a fair fight.

You know, I wasn't any expert on cults back in my twenties, either. Back in the 'sixties and 'seventies, a lot of fake gurus came over here from India and Japan and Korea, and I didn't know that they were fakes. It seemed like we just had a lot of different religions to choose from now. And then a bunch of phony "spiritual teachers" came, like cockroaches, out of the woodwork in the USA too.

I hung out with a bunch of them, at least a little bit, and chanted and did yoga and meditation and this and that. And studied and read about even more. It never occurred to me that they were cults.

But I never joined one permanently. That is, I never married one. I never devoted my life to one. My saving grace was just that I am not a "joiner". I am pretty independent. Not anti-social, but not one to need or want a group around me all of the time. So whenever something seemed a little "off", or wrong, or illogical, I just walked on down the road. Little did I know what I was avoiding.

It was 20 years later before all of the news started coming out, and I began to hear how many of those "teachers" were just lying con artists. And then of course there were the disasters like the mass suicides.

So when I went to A.A. and N.A., I had the benefit of 30 years of experience with cults, and I was able to spot the same old cult characteristics very quickly. Again and again, it was like, "Gee, that's what they used to say in the XYZ cult back in the 'sixties or 'seventies."

So that's why I wasn't fooled by A.A. or N.A. It isn't that I'm so brilliant or perceptive. I just had a lot of education from other cults first.

By the way, I am also still just getting over traumatic childhood experiences, and I'm 64 years old. Having an alcoholic father is a real bitch.

Have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     And the cult said, "If you want what we have,
**     and are willing to go to any length to get it,
**     then, here, drink this koolaid."

Date: Wed, May 11, 2011 12:02 pm     (answered 12 May 2011)
From: Bob O.
Subject: Audrey Kishline

Mister T,

This is probably old news to you but I would like your thoughts on Kishline. I just read www.schlaer.net/inthenews/kishlinepeople.htm

I will never drink again. I dare not and the compulsion is gone. I used to tell the story of a scene in a "Barney Miller" episode. Barney Miller was explaining something to another character and holding up his fist, said "The gullet of (a large animal, I can't remember which one) is only about this big. Do you know why that is?..... Because that's the way it is." I would tell that story as answer to why am I an alcoholic? Because that's the way it is and listening to peoples reasons why they drank is tiresome and not logical. People will say they drank for a specific reason. I realized that if I drank because something happened then if the opposite happened, I would not drink but that was not the case.

I now question the validity of the word alcoholic. I realized two things were necessary.

  • 1. I must stop drinking and drugging.
  • 2. Stop drinking and drugging.

I have been sober and clean for more than 30 years and Bill W. has been dead all of that time, so I did it myself. I belonged to the "no matter what" club until the compulsion left me and abstinence became natural.

I thought the bird pictures were a waste but I now enjoy the relief they provide, the Mallard is outstanding. I considered a trip to visit you and Washington State but to send money for your work is a better idea.

Do you ever wonder what future generations will say about the 12-step plague? Someone should use your computer to crush Bill W's coffee pot.

Thank you for all you do. Long Island Bob O.

Hello again, Bob,

Thanks for the letter and a great question.

That article is very interesting. Unfortunately, it seems like the editor cut some issues short. But at least the author mentioned the fact that Audrey Kishline quit Moderation Management and returned to Alcoholics Anonymous, and was doing that program when she went on the binge that killed two people. That is one of the few mentions of that important fact that I found. Steppers never mention that important little detail while they are crowing about Audrey Kishline's drunk driving.

I have to strongly disagree with this line:

In June, however, her attorney John Crowley said that Kishline now realized that "moderation management is nothing but alcoholics covering up their problem."

No. The reality is that some alcoholics can learn to moderate, and some can't. I have mentioned the the Rand Corporation study many times, but I'll say it again: Their study found that half of the recovered alcoholics did it by total abstinence, while the other half did it by just tapering off into moderate, controlled, drinking.

Those hard-and-fast absolute rules like "No alcoholic can ever learn to moderate" are just not true.

As I've said before, I learned the hard way that I am one of those who cannot moderate, so I just don't drink at all.

I agree that the definitions of "alcoholic" are ambiguous, confused, and often just plain wrong. Alcoholics Anonymous really has several very different definitions of the same "alcoholic" word, and mixes them up freely, which really confuses the issue, and makes for some clever bait-and-switch tricks. See the definitions here.

I cannot pretend to be neutral or unbiased on the Audrey Kishline issue. When I met her in person, I saw a frail vulnerable gentle little woman who seemed overwhelmed and beaten down by events, and she was just trying to keep it together while doing her parole, and she seemed like the kind of person you want to cuddle in your arms and comfort and tell her that it's going to be alright.

I cannot condemn her, and I don't see any point now in even trying. What has happened has happened. I know that some web sites are very harsh in their denunciations, claiming that she is very immoral and all of that. But to me, it seems like a matter of luck. I am also guilty of having driven drunk. What alcoholic hasn't? I just never got into an accident or hurt anybody. Luck. Just great luck. And I also didn't get quite that drunk. And I never drove with a bottle of vodka in my hand. But it really was largely a matter of luck. A few feet this way or that way, a few seconds this way or that way, and things could have been very different.

Oh by the way, about the goslings. Yes, I've thought about that too, and wondered if all of the gosling pictures were just clutter. But then again, they give me something that I am trying to communicate. Here we are with all of these tragic stories of suffering, and then there are those cute little fluff-balls who are so beautiful and innocent and trusting. And they have an attitude like that life is worth living, and life is a joy. They show us a whole different world. They also just provide some relief, and a break from the heavy stuff.

The two Mallard ducks were a mated pair. They came on over to see what kind of goodies I was giving out, and hung around for a while, so I got some good shots of them.

Have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**      Never find your delight in another's misfortune.
**        —  Syrus,  42 B.C.

May 22, 2009, Friday: Day 22, continued:

Mallard Duck
Mallard Duck

[More gosling photos below, here.]

From: "Lisa"
Subject: your website...
Date: Wed, May 11, 2011 12:33 pm     (answered 12 May 2011)


I've been reading your website about AA as a cult... first of all wow! How extensive, amazing amount of work there!

I have a good bit of experience with AA... it *can* be "cultish" but "clique-ish" may be a better word... and though I do agree with some of the things you have said (like fear mongering) it seems misguided and might I say... resentful? Oh the dreaded word "resentment!" lol!

Your indictment of the "character flaws" of Bill Wilson is not news... they ARE the characteristics of Alcoholics... plain and simple... Bill W is highly respected in AA but recovering alcoholics know EXACTLY what Bill W is... an alcoholic!

The points you made about all the "turning our will and life over to God" well, you missed the mark on that. Recovering Alcoholics dont see the good things that begin to come to them after sobering up as a reward for drinking too much for too long... The good things are a result of trying to live right as responsible productive members of society who do the best they can to become more God-centered and less SELF-centered. Good things are the result of good living.

Don't get me wrong the rooms of AA are full of sick people that's why they go there... a person doesn't end up in an AA meeting because they are brimming with love, joy, happiness, spirituality and social responsibility.

No, AA and the Big Book are not perfect, neither is any other "spiritual" book or "spiritual" group of people. Just look at what Religion has done for the world. But AA is *SOMETHING*, at least, to help those who want to help themselves... and find a better way.

Just my 2 cents... doesn't mean a thing...

Your website shows that you are full of passion and words! That's great, hope it serves you and society well!

Have a nice day!

Hello Lisa,

Thanks for the letter.

I know that there are different kinds of A.A. meetings, and that some are better than others. Some are more "cliquish". But the problem is that they all still use the same Big Book, which basically just lies and says that Frank Buchman's cult religion works great as a cure for alcohol abuse. No matter which meeting you go to, you are still going to get the same 12 Steps and 12 Traditions, and the same misinformation about addictions and recovery.

Worse yet, no part of A.A. will warn the girls which meetings are full of thirteenth-steppers and rapists. No committee or agency will tell the newcomers which criminals are very bad sponsors, or which mental nutcases are very dangerous sponsors. No pages of the Grapevine tell people which meetings are dominated by Clancy's Clones or Mike Quinones' sexual predators. In fact, they won't talk about that stuff at all. The A.A. headquarters just hides behind the slogan that "Every group is independent", and they do nothing to fix the problems.

That's why I have to write what I do.

You try to justify the existence of A.A. by saying:

"AA is *SOMETHING*, at least, to help those who want to help themselves... and find a better way."

The problem is, that "something" is very harmful and does not help. A.A. actually just does some very bad things like raise the rate of binge drinking, and raise the death rate in alcoholics. Cult religion just does not work, and just does not help, as a cure for alcohol abuse.

Oh, and there are plenty of better alternative organizations, meetings, and methods, so A.A. is not necessary for "something, at least". See the list here.

Have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     "If you ain't angry, you ain't paying attention."
**        ==  Mumia Abu Jamal

[The previous letter from greg is here.]

Date: Mon, May 9, 2011 11:06 pm     (answered 11 May 2011)
From: greg
Subject: Re: Personality Test

Thanks for your reply. It was not a duplicate.

I should point out that your Myers-Briggs type is not what THE TEST says it is, it's what YOU say it is. The test is far from perfect. It serves primarily to help you find the nearest-matching type description, which is what your real "type" is. The particular version of the test that you took happens to have a systematic bias towards Judging. So if you feel as if the type description provided with the test results doesn't sound quite right, try reading the description of the INFP. And since your numerical score on Feeling is quite low, it's possible that either INTJ or INTP might be even closer.

I should also let you know that Keirsey's type descriptions are not widely applauded by the mainstream Myers-Briggs community. My own favorites are found at:


— Greg

Hi again, Greg,

When I said that I was surprised at the results, I didn't mean that I was faulting the test. It was just that I've been playing "Dear Abby" here for about 10 years now (not entirely by choice), and then this test says that I am a counselor type. I found that uncanny.

I do wonder about some of the details of the test though. In particular, it seems to indicate that I prefer feeling over thinking. I think that came from me rejecting some statements that contained the word "should". As in, "I think people should act this way."

One of the things that SMART teaches is to avoid those loaded words. All of these words reveal hidden, unexamined value systems: "Should, ought, must, deserve, entitled". As in, "Those teenagers should not act so sexy. Girls ought to be more reserved and ladylike." You can practically hear a stern frigid Victorian grandmother scolding and insisting that children must conform to her standards.

My reaction to that is, "Teenage girls have been acting sexy and seducing their boyfriends for the last 60 million years, ever since the dinosaurs, who did it too. It's what keeps life going. The reality is, teenage girls should act sexy."

When you encounter those "should" words, the thing to do is drag the value system out of hiding and expose it to daylight and see if it can survive the glaring light of examination, or whether it will wither like a vampire in sunlight.

You can dispute irrational beliefs by asking, "Who says so? Where is it written in stone? What evidence is there for that belief? Is that really true?"

Anyway, that test contained at least two of those "should" statements, which I rejected as bad logic. I suspect that maybe they should change those questions if they want an accurate test of thinking.

I looked up
and it seemed similar:


Quietly forceful, original, and sensitive. Tend to stick to things until they are done. Extremely intuitive about people, and concerned for their feelings. Well-developed value systems which they strictly adhere to. Well-respected for their perserverence in doing the right thing. Likely to be individualistic, rather than leading or following.

The other two types that you mentioned also seem similar:


Independent, original, analytical, and determined. Have an exceptional ability to turn theories into solid plans of action. Highly value knowledge, competence, and structure. Driven to derive meaning from their visions. Long-range thinkers. Have very high standards for their performance, and the performance of others. Natural leaders, but will follow if they trust existing leaders.


Logical, original, creative thinkers. Can become very excited about theories and ideas. Exceptionally capable and driven to turn theories into clear understandings. Highly value knowledge, competence and logic. Quiet and reserved, hard to get to know well. Individualistic, having no interest in leading or following others.

That's very nice. Almost too nice. It reminds me of those astrology tests where every one of the Zodiac signs is a great person. They never tell you that Libras are unfaithful and Geminis are schizoid and Capricorns are likely to become serial killers.

Oh well, have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     "A great deal of time and intellectual force are lost in the world,
**     because the false seems great and the truth so small and insignificant."
**       ==  Maria Montessori

BLOG NOTE: 2011.05.13:

Oh goody! It's Friday the Thirteenth again. I like those days. Thirteen is my favorite number. I was born on the 13th — both the thirteenth day of the month, and the thirteenth day of the year, because it was January 13th. And then my son was born on my own birthday. I consider 13 my lucky number, if there is such a thing.

So much for Robert Thomsen's ridiculous assertion that "No drunk was going to risk being the thirteenth anything."

Have a good Friday the Thirteenth.
== Orange

Date: Wed, May 11, 2011 9:50 pm     (answered 13 May 2011)
From: "Victor L."

One can only pity a person like you Mr. Orange, a sad, bitter, angry man who spends his day impugning the character of a dead man who cannot defend himself since he passed in 1971. Jack trimpey, a fat, bloated blowhard, a minor league player, like you, in the field of Alcoholism, could not touch Bill Wilson's pants cuff.

Wilson, author of a bestseller book called Alcoholics Anonymous which has sold over 30,000,000 copies is a recognized hero to millions of recovering alcoholics and their families. His work changed profoundly the thinking and treatment methods of alcoholism, whether you agree with his positions or not, while greedy little pea brains like you and Trimpey scrounge through the gutters of backstabbing to earn a grubby dollar about a subject you know little or nothing about. You sir make me sick, you are a disgrace.

Hello Victor,

You are probably not going to believe this, but I am quite happy. Are you so mentally incapable of understanding how someone can be happy while working against evil?

Yes, Bill Wilson's book that declared that Frank Buchman's cult religion is the cure for alcohol abuse has sold a lot of copies. That is no great measure of success, and it sure does not prove or even indicate that the 12-Step program is good or actually works. Adolf Hitler's book Mein Kampf sold a lot of copies too, and made Hitler a rich man. I hear that Lafayette Ronald Hubbard's books are big sellers too. (L. Ron Hubbard was the nutcase who founded Scientology, and declared that problems like alcohol abuse and addictions are caused by spiritual cooties from aliens who were murdered here 60 million years ago.)

I am not at all impressed with your claims that lots of people "recognize" Bill Wilson as a hero. Again, look at the success of Adolf Hitler and L. Ron Hubbard. They got recognized too. And Bill Wilson changed the thinking about alcoholics just like how Hitler changed the thinking about Jews, by spreading around a lot of misinformation, outright lies, and bad stereotypes.

It's funny how you mentioned Bill Wilson's pants. That is almost a Freudian slip. Bill's poor pants were down on the floor more times while Bill cheated on his wife and thirteenth-stepped the sick women who came to A.A. for help.... I wouldn't have mentioned Bill's pants if I were you.

Have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     Bill Wilson on alcoholics:
**     "They are not at fault. They seem to have been born that way.
**     They are naturally incapable of grasping and developing a
**     manner of living which demands rigorous honesty."
**       ==  William G. Wilson, Alcoholics Anonymous, page 58.

Date: Thu, May 12, 2011 9:32 am     (answered 13 May 2011)
From: "Ben N."
Subject: Recent addition

Dear Orange,

I have been struggling with AA for 25 years, on and off. I'm from England, where I first encountered AA, and have also had 10 years of (again on and off) experience in Germany. I've been active in several towns in England, the latest being Plymouth in Devon where I now live (Any bells ringing? — more of that later).

My story is not unique. The general sequence of events is — long drunk, world falls apart, goes to AA an abject mess determined to do it right this time. After stopping for a few weeks, months, however long, the ability to think rationally starts to return and I started to question things. Not encouraged!!!.

Eventually, I would just get so bored of hearing the same old rubbish repeated ad nauseam that I would drift away. The terrible thing is that I would always leave with the idea that I was wrong — that I was just not getting it. The ingrained indoctrination was so strong that it — literally — defied logic.

I am not stupid. I had a good education which I have enjoyed adding to over the years. In any test for intelligence or aptitude I have always come nearer the top than the middle. This is no defence against manipulation I now see. I always left AA with the sub-conscious thought that I will drink again and have to go back, which proved the case on several occasions. Couldn't seem to leave that behind.

Not this time. Your site has done several things, the first of which was to confirm that I wasn't wrong. Secondly, all of the facts are laid out for anyone to see and make up their own mind. More importantly for me, it is informative. The more evidence you have, the clearer the picture that you see. Try saying that in a meeting.

On a more personal note, I thought I detected, in one of your recent answers to a letter, a slight note of uncertainty about whether what you are doing is worth it. It is, believe me. Without meaning to "big you up" too much, I can't think of one member of the "Serene Fraternity" who could have done 10 years of what you have and always remained courteous, objective and (most importantly) funny at times. We all have doubts from time to time — part of being human.

I mentioned earlier that I was from Plymouth — Wayne's World to those in the know. I have had the dubious pleasure of meeting Little Wayne on several occasions — doesn't like me — I'm argumentative. If you use a one size fits all solution to a problem, surely the outcome is the production of a host of clones that are the Clancy-inspired groups. Never thought I'd say this — Roads to Recovery are the only AA's truly "on the program".

I've just found this site which goes into details of AA litigation history — some interesting facts. I tried searching your site, but couldn't find it. If you've seen it before, apologies.


Thank you for your efforts.

Ben N

No drug, not even alcohol, causes the fundamental ills of society. If we're looking for the source of our troubles, we shouldn't test people for drugs, we should test them for stupidity, ignorance, greed and love of power.

Hello Ben,

Thank you for the letter, and thanks for all of the flattering comments. Yes, I still think it's worth doing. And congratulations on your sobriety. And congratulations for keeping your mind alive and thinking for yourself. And I love your signature there.

Yes, there are other web sites that have better lists of the legal cases about Alcoholics Anonymous. Here is another one that I know of:
== Important court decisions that declared that A.A. is a religion, or engages in religious activities, and it is illegal and unConstitutional to force somebody to go to A.A. meetings, or "work the Program".

But the link that you supplied also covers the cases where A.A. sued other A.A. members for the "crime" of printing their own out-of-copyright literature and giving it away, or selling it very cheaply. The criminals at the A.A. headquarters have to protect their profits, of course. I wrote about that before, here.

That thing about backsliding after leaving A.A. reveals how they implant phobias in people. They make you fully expect to relapse and drink, just because you left A.A. The power of suggestion actually works, sometimes.

Have a good day now, and a good life.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     The only freedom worth possessing is that which gives
**     enlargement to a people's energy, intellect, and virtues.
**       ==  William Ellery Channing (1780—1842), Amer. Unit. Clergy

[The next letter from Ben_N is here.]

May 22, 2009, Friday: Day 22, continued:

Canada Geese with goslings
The Family of 4
The goslings are stuffed with rice, and ready to take a nap. The pigeons are helping themselves to the leftovers.

[The story of Carmen continues here.]

Date: Tue, January 11, 2011 7:23 pm     (answered 14 May 2011)
From: "Mike"
Subject: Thank you so much....

I really appreciate your page. I can honestly say that your page changed my life. The 5 years I spent going to NA were the worst years of my life. I'm not going to bore you to death with all the details because I'm sure you've heard the story a million times. When I came to the end of my time in "The Program" I was on the verge of suicide. I ended up in the psych ward and told to continue meetings. At the time I thought I was the problem and that the program worked. I was under the assumption that if I worked the program properly life would get better. All that ended up happening was me feeling worse and worse and I just could not figure out why. I'd ask people for help and all I would get would be either regurgitated slogans or pages from the book or be told to do step work. I got so fed up with it I got online and sought out alternatives to 12 step programs and stumbled upon your site. There were a lot of things about the program that didn't seem quite right to me from the very beginning and your page did a really good job of explaining things, I especially liked the cult test and I was able to relate to the stories of the midtown groups as similar things happen in my area. To date I haven't drank or drugged in almost a year and quit smoking about a month ago and since I quit going to meetings my mental health has improved immensely. There needs to be more people like you exposing AA and other 12 step groups. Keep up the good work!


Hello Mike,

Thank you for the letter. That really brightens up my morning cup of coffee — good kick-ass Latté — which I'm working on right now.

Congratulations on your sobriety and drug-free living and quitting smoking. I'm glad to hear that you are free, both from the cult and the addictions. Quitting all addictions, including smoking, is especially good. Over the next year your health will improve so much that it will be amazing.

So have a good day and a good life now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     The building of a perfect body crowned by a perfect brain,
**     is at once the greatest earthly problem and grandest hope of the race.
**       ==  Dio Lewis

[The previous letter from Ted_D is here.]

Date: Fri, May 13, 2011 8:19 pm     (answered 17 May 2011)
From: "Ted D."
Subject: Re: Mr. A Orange, I've been reading your writings on AA and the Oxford Group...

Found your first letter, took a bit of time, but I got it, as I said, it was late when I first read your E-Mailed response. And the night progressed as I wrote back to you without having read where it was posted.

That being said, I certainly don't believe that AA can cure OCD, and I stated, my OCD began to go away long before I became involved with AA. It was a line in the Bible that Jesus had said that gave me great help. I am not looking for help with OCD in AA.

Aside from that, I will take your facts and/or opinions into consideration. There are dangerous people in this world, and if many of them hide out in AA, praying on innocent people who are at the end of their rope, it helps to keep an eye out.

As I said before, I already have my own beliefs, that center around Jesus, and the words he spoke. To me, they are 100% pure, and I certainly don't rely wholly on the members of the church, I rely on God. Of course if you don't believe in God, that statement will seem quite foolish to you, but the point I am trying to get across, is that AA does not operate around the words Jesus spoke, so to me it can never be trusted fully. It operates around Bill W.'s words, which are loosely based on Frank's words from the Oxford movement, which are loosely based on biblical statements. AA doesn't function around 100% purity, so it can't really be considered pure can it? However, Jesus' own words pointed out that there were people who were not involved in the church (or the nation of Israel as it was at the time) that behaved better than people who were part of the nation (the story of the good Samaritan, who showed mercy to the man in trouble, as opposed to the priest and the levite, who had passed him by first.) So I am not going to go into the AA program with a holier than thou attitude, and think that there isn't anything that I can't learn from it. But I will beware of its faults, and go in with my eyes open.

Hello again, Ted,

I am not an atheist. You should read the file The Heresy of the Twelve Steps. There, I listed numerous ways in which the A.A. theology is grossly unChristian and heretical. Even Satanic.

Dr. Frank Buchman's Oxford Group had the same problem. Buchmanism is just not Christian, in spite of their claims that it was. As one contemporary critic of Buchman wrote, none of Frank Buchman's theology would have to be changed even if Jesus Christ had never been born. See Rev. Ironside's Sermon On Buchmanism.

I think if AA has any benefits, it would be the grouping together of a number of people who are substance abusers who realize they have a problem, and are relying on each other to help each other recover from their abuse. Naturally, people let each other down all of the time, so it would be foolish to think that this can work all of the time. When I Said I wasn't looking to hang out with people on their way out the door, I meant that if I was speaking to a person who I thought was getting ready to go back to using, I probably wouldn't hang around with them if I thought they would drag me down with them. And I wouldn't hang around with a person who has years of sobriety if I though there was a chance they could be a harmful person. This sort of thing is common sense, AA or no AA.

The problem with just "grouping together" is that everybody from the Communists to the Nazis all just "grouped together". So do the Moonies, and Scientologists, and Hari Krishnas, and the People's Temple... etc.

What I do like about AA, is that I can relate to the behavior of the people there. I can talk about the things I have done that have ruined my life, and the people there aren't going to judge me too harshly because they have all done many of the same things, if not worse. Many of those people have been able to stay sober, despite it all, and I am there to pick up any benefits I can find, and of course cast the bad away. It would be foolish to think that everything spoken at an AA meeting was the truth. I'm sure there are many horror stories that occur in AA, as there are with society in general, and of course with substance abuse, there are many horror stories as well. I don't think this can be avoided. If society has horror stories, AA will not be able to avoid them, nor will any church. And that being said, maybe AA deserves to be better regulated by the authorities.

Now that is a good point. There is some truth to the statement that nobody understands like somebody else who has been through the suffering. Remember that you can find the same understanding in other less harmful groups like SMART, SOS, WFS, LifeRing, etc.

Sure, a place that speaks about the belief in God, but doesn't preach his Truth completely is to be taken with a grain of salt. But as I said, I already have my own beliefs, but I won't think that because I have my own beliefs that there isn't something I can't take away from there.

I'm sure you have many methods you have used to help yourself overcome addiction. Please provide links for me if you do. And your doing so, would be what I believe to be a benefit. I hope to gain the same from AA. Learn what others have done to stay sober.

I've been asked that question many times before, so I already wrote most of it down. See this answer: How did you get to where you are?

As far as gaining something from A.A., all I can say is, "Watch out." A group that habitually lies to you is not somebody I would go to for life-critical advice. (You could peruse the file The 12 Biggest Lies of A.A..) Also, the 12-Step program is a proven failure that does not make people get sober. It just raises the death rate in alcoholics. And then A.A. lies to you about that.

And then remember that "The Program" is still Frank Buchman's heretical cult religion.

The good Samaritan was from the nation of Sumeria, That was an unholy nation considered to be filled with sin and idol worship. Yet there was still a person there, that had a better heart than a priest and a levite of Israel.

I'm sure that you can find a few good people in A.A. I even have a mythical club that I call The Newcomers Rescue League that is a bunch of sane good people who go to A.A. meetings to save the beginners from the bad sponsors. That club has a bunch of members. Look here: NRL.

Have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     Learn the truth, and the truth shall set you free.
**       == Jesus Christ

[The next letter from Ted_D is here.]

More Letters

Previous Letters

Search the Orange Papers

Click Fruit for Menu

Last updated 7 August 2014.
The most recent version of this file can be found at https://www.orange-papers.info/orange-letters237.html