Letters, We Get Mail, XXIX



From: Dennis C.
Subject: Your Rants and general b.s.
Date: Thu, November 24, 2005 1:07 am

It was suggested to me to visit your site and examine your positions. After a cursory look, I have two sincere questions for you. First, what do you need so badly that you have to attack A.A and those who are seeking sobriety in the A.A. fashion to get it? Secondly, who or what hurt you?

Hello Dennis,

I want sick people to know the truth about their options, and what might help them, and what might hurt them.

I can imagine that you must feel very proud of your unproductive rantings on your web site. What do you think will be accomplished by this?

Some people say that it has helped them.

I for one am not interested in your positions, perspectives or attempts to tear down that which has built me up from nothing to what I am now.

So what are you now, and what evidence do you have that participation in a cult has improved your life? How?

Or has your life improved because you quit drinking, and quit wrecking your health? And maybe you quit losing jobs from habitual drunkenness, and started building a career? And maybe you have better relations with the people around you because you don't get drunk and get into fights with them?

It find it both amusing and sad how people in A.A. meetings will list all of the ways that their life has improved lately, and then they give the credit to A.A. and the 12 Steps, rather than to themselves and their abstinence from alcohol. And they stubbornly refuse to look at the guy next to them at the meeting, who relapses all of the time. His life hasn't improved. The meetings and the cult religion and the Steps haven't built up his life.

So what improves your life? Quitting drinking, or practicing the A.A. rituals?

Obviously, it is quitting suicide by ethanol that builds up people's lives, not practicing a cult religion.

Yes, we all expect that the institutions, systems or those people in whom we invest our hope to be perfect and return huge rewards to us.

That is a bunch of bull.

Has your spouse met all of you dreams and expectations? In fact, one would think that you would find better success in attacking the institutions of marriage/life partners or "special friends" as the real scams! Boy, did we get fooled (or better stated F**ked) from their lies and short comings?

That is an example of the standard propaganda tricks of The Straw Man and Minimization and Denial. Alcoholics use Minimization and Denial all of the time to argue that their drinking isn't really so bad. And Steppers use it to argue that A.A. isn't really all that bad: "Well, maybe A.A. isn't perfect, but what do you expect?"

Well, I expect something that saves more alcoholics than it kills.

Or maybe you can better explain why I prayed that my grandmother wouldn't die? I did all that I could for God, and she still died! Why don't you explain to my satisfaction why sincere prayer of a child doesn't work?

You tell me. Why didn't your prayers work then? And how can your prayers in A.A. work now? Does God like the prayers of alcoholics more than those of innocent children?
Why?
Will God start granting your wishes just because you drank too much alcohol for too many years?

You realize, don't you, that God has to turn into Santa Claus or Aladdin's Genie in order for the 12-Steps to work? If "Higher Power" won't deliver miracles on demand, then how can the 12 Steps work? They can't. So your question about your prayers not working is a good one. You should think about that long and hard. And read about The Heresy of the 12 Steps and the heresy of "miracles on demand" while you are at it.

What did you do for me today Agent Orange? Did you help me from wanting to harm or kill myself or someone else? Did you help me from not wanting to drink or use drugs? No and neither did or could my doctors or psychiatrists! No, you only want me to hate A.A. and it's fellowship. But, you do it anonymously? So you are a coward and bully!!

It isn't my job to do anything for you, especially since you don't want to know the truth. Other people, however, do say that some of my writing has helped them.

And since when is it anybody else's job to make you stop wanting drink or drugs? How could anybody possibly tinker with your brain and make you stop wanting to feel good?

What you have to do is get a grip and learn to deal with it, and learn to manage your desires. You won't get anywhere by demanding that somebody or something else make you stop wanting to get high.

That is just another replay of the old A.A. song and dance about how "nothing worked, not the priests or the ministers or the doctors or the psychiatrists that I had been seeing. But the magic 12-Step religion worked and took away my desire for drink." ("We Have The Panacea")

If that is true, then why does A.A. have such a humongous relapse rate? Why did a leader of A.A. find that treatment based on A.A. was completely ineffective, with no better a success rate than doing nothing? == That was Prof. Dr. George E. Vaillant, a member of the Board of Trustees of Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, who spent many years shoving A.A. treatment on alcoholics, and trying to prove that A.A. worked. He had to conclude that:
"...there is compelling evidence that the results of our treatment were no better than the natural history of the disease. ... Not only had we failed to alter the natural history of alcoholism, but our death rate of three percent a year was appalling."

If you really cared about the alcoholics half as much as the Steppers like to claim, then you would stop shoving ineffective quack medicine and cult religion on them, and start working on something that might actually help them.

By the way, I don't want you to "hate A.A. and it's fellowship." I just want you to stop shoving ineffective quack medicine and cult religion on sick people while repeating Bill Wilson's lies to them about how great it works: "RARELY HAVE we seen a person fail, who has thoroughly followed our path", and all of that bull.

** Foisting ineffective quack medicine on sick people is not
** a wonderful noble act of self-sacrifice to help others;
** it is the reprehensible behavior of a damned fool.

Oh, and you didn't bother to tell me whether you actually quit drinking and doping. Did you? How long have you been clean and sober?

I don't say that with rancor but with honesty. You hide behind a pseudonym, for what purpose? If you were sincere about your mission, you would speak in the A.A. meetings or on television and other media about your truth. Don't hide behind masks or facades. Be honest and face the music for it. You may face the boo's and jeers but no one person speaks for A.A. so you can speak against it.

You are misinformed about the facts of the situation. I'll let it go at that.

Besides, I don't know if I really want to go on television. What I have to say usually doesn't fit into the short sound-byte format of television. A web site works better for me.

Did you catch James Frey, author of "A Million Little Pieces" criticizing A.A. and the 12 Steps on the Oprah show? Do you want some more of that?

Oh, and I face plenty of boos and jeers from the A.A. true believers, like from you, here, now.

And you are wrong about "no one person speaks for A.A.". You are doing it right now. That is yet another thought-stopping A.A. slogan, mindless parrotted by members. "I'm not entitled to speak for A.A.", they all say, and then they spend the next five minutes speaking for A.A. and singing its praises. I sure get a lot of hate mail from people who aren't entitled to speak.

I challenge you to look into the eyes of those who have been brought out of the depths and found more "success" than they have ever known from the participation in A.A. and actions taken on A.A. precepts and then you tell them that it is a lie they have lived. That it doesn't work! Those who aren't willing to be honest, open minded or have the willingness to do everything to stay sober may agree with you. Those of us who have been willing to do anything and everything probably will not.

I've looked. And you know what? Almost all of the successful people in recovery have rejected the 12-Step cult. RARELY HAVE we seen a person succeed by thoroughly following the 12-Step path.

Some people have quit drinking. Yes. But why did they quit drinking? Not because of the 12 Steps or A.A., no matter how much they may have been fooled into believing that. Dr. Vaillant, A.A. trustee, proved that.

It's usually because they just got sick and tired of being sick and tired and decided that they really didn't want to die that way. They decided that the pain of drinking was greater than the joy of drinking, so they quit. They learned that they couldn't just nibble and have a few now and then and keep it down to a dull roar; that once they started down that slippery slope it always turned into the same descent into Hell; so they quit and stayed quit. A.A. had nothing to do with that learning experience.

If you think that A.A. does cause people to quit drinking, then why does A.A. produce a sobriety rate no greater than doing nothing and letting people quit alone, on their own? Where is the A.A. success rate?

Out of every 1000 newcomers who come to your A.A. groups seeking some kind of help in quitting drinking, how many of them turn into successful 10-year old-timers? Isn't the answer about 31? That's a mere 3%. That isn't a success rate; that's a failure rate, because the normal rate of spontaneous remission in alcoholics is about 5% per year. Five percent is the success rate that you get if you do nothing.

(I computed that 31 out of 1000 from the sales of those sobriety coins that are given away at the meetings. You know, the coins for 1 day, 30 days, 60, 90 days, 6 months, a year, etc.. For every 1000 of the "Just For Today" coins that are given away, they only give away 31 of the 10-Year coins.)

[CORRECTION: That A.A. success rate, 31 per thousand, is actually way too high. I miscalculated it by getting some Narcotics Anonymous information mixed with the A.A. information. The real A.A. success rate is only 11 or 12 10-year old-timers per 1000 newcomers. See this letter.]

Sound sophomoric? Well, are you willing to be responsible and accountable for your truth? Bill Wilson took a lot of hits when he was alive and dead, are you? You really offer me nothing, just a tome of unqualified opinions from finely trained and educated non-alcoholics. Just like generals, they explain the war from the comfort of there bases and never got in the trenches! And yet the AMA has classified Alcoholism as disease. Review the work of Carl Jung with Roland Hazzard?

Oh, I'm so glad you brought up those points. We just discussed the AMA position on alcoholism. Did you know that the AMA let two A.A. front groups write the definition of "alcoholism" for them, and that it is as phony as a three-dollar bill? They don't even say that alcoholism is caused by drinking alcohol.

And Carl Jung never treated Rowland Hazzard. That is just another one of Bill Wilson's false fables and fairy tales. We've been over that before too. Read this.
[UPDATE: That may be an error. See this.]

Based on what I find in your premises, I am correct ,that because I have been in the offices under the care of doctors and tutelage of psychotherapists, I have completed the work assignments and read the assigned books, I now have the right and authority to have a qualified opinion of the profession of medicine or psychotherapy!

That is a bunch of B.S. and you know it. Can't you do better than that?

If you have actually spent years studying a medical subject, and have the native intelligence required to absorb the information and understand it, then at a certain point you would be knowledgeable on the subject and entitled to an informed opinion. How do you think that doctors get to where they are?

By the way, didn't you notice the flip-flop that you just pulled? You sneered at the doctors and the professionals as "finely trained and educated non-alcoholics. Just like generals, they explain the war from the comfort of there bases and never got in the trenches!" And then you sneered at me because I'm not a doctor.

So which one do you want, a doctor or an experienced alcoholic?

It looks to me like all that you really want is someone who will repeat your favorite superstitions back to you.

To use a line from your site: Everything Narcissistic vampires do is a move in the great game of self-aggrandizement, which is their main reason for living. All that you are doing is to build you up to be the "grand poobah" against A.A.

You are contradicting yourself. How can I be building myself up when I remain anonymous? How can I be the Grand Poobah of an organization that does not exist? It was Bill Wilson who broke his anonymity constantly and built himself up to be the most famous anonymous person in the USA and the Grand Poobah of Alcoholics Anonymous.

If you don't want me to become famous, why are you demanding that I go on television?

Well enough for me, I just wanted to share my experience with your website. I shall not be re-visiting anytime soon.

Dennis C.

Okay, goodbye.

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** Foisting ineffective quack medicine on sick people is not
** a wonderful noble act of self-sacrifice to help others;
** it is the reprehensible behavior of a damned fool.





From: Sarah R.
Subject: question
Date: Thu, November 24, 2005 12:41 pm

Are you in recovery because if not, you need to be and you are lying to yourself and could be hindering others from getting sober. Your bullshit is the reason that so many people DO NOT get help when they need it. The program of AA is a godsend and without it, I and many others would be dead or in jail.

Sarah R.

Hello Sarah,

Sorry, but the facts do not support your favorite beliefs. A.A. kills more people than it saves, and the A.A. bullshit is one of the big reasons that people do not seek help. A.A. and N.A. drive people away from recovery all of the time.

The truth is that you would probably be in jail or dead if you had not quit drinking. A.A. did not save you. A.A. did not quit drinking for you. You quit drinking and saved yourself. Congratulations on your sobriety.

Have a good day.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** Being surrounded by a group of people who keep
** telling you that you are powerless over alcohol,
** and that your will power is useless, is not
** getting "support". It is getting sabotaged.
** With friends like them, you don't need any enemies.





From: tuija
Subject: AA
Date: Thu, November 24, 2005 11:01 pm

are you still running that vitriolic, hate campaign against AA?

If you mean, "Are you still telling the truth about Alcoholics Anonymous?", the answer is "Yes."

Have a good day anyway.

== Orange





From: "Howard W"
Date: Sat, November 26, 2005

Dear Orange:

I went AA meetings for about two months after I quit drinking about two weeks before.

AA had nothing to do with whether or not I drank. I drank for a reason. When that reason went away, I no longer found alcohol abuse useful. The abuse was harmful to the healing process.

I do think that AA can be useful to some as a support group. AA can assist some to keep to their decision to stop.

It is, some part, a sounding board; a place to talk.

I find it difficult to believe that the 12 steps really mean very much. I suspect that many just pretend.

I suspect that people leave AA is no longer useful. That is why I left.

Regards, H

Hi Howard,

I agree. And for some, it is a sounding board, and a place to get some advice and moral support. Those who get only that are lucky.

Have a good day.

== Orange

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


[2nd letter from Howard:]

Date: Mon, December 12, 2005 6:21 pm
From: "Howard W."

Hi orange:

I have the impression that AA is for "oldtimers" to act out their obsession with alcohol. That is, going from drinking alcohol to talking about drinking alcohol. For me, "I think not."

I go to the SMART Recovery website. I wish to suggest that site.

"Newcomers" are, for the most part, ignored.

I assume that you mean that newcomers are ignored in A.A.. I wouldn't want to see them ignored in SMART.

I think AA is a revolving door; AA would be moribund without employer or court mandated attendance. Perhaps, it should be.

I am ambivalent about AA. It does give people a haven [ home is a place where, when you have to go there, they have to take you in] to get through the early days. It can save a job or prevent jail time.

Curative? NO.

Regards
Howard

Okay, thanks for the update, and have a Merry Christmas.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** "You go to war with the jokes you have, not the jokes
** you might want or wish to have at a later time."
**  == Our Secretary of Offense, Ronald McDumsfeld





From: "Doren"
Subject: Right on, Orange
Date: Sun, November 27, 2005 5:05 pm

Greetings,

I really enjoy your website — you should be proud of the service you provide with this work. Clearly an incredible amount of time and research has gone into it. I thought I'd write, as I spent several years in AA/NA and am now doing better on my own. One thing I must say is I can't believe some of these letters you get from people still in the groups. They seem to have a lot of similarities. Instead of debating points, they often just attack you personally. They will say you are full of anger and hate, and then they will say, have a drink on me! Talk about ironic. That's serenity? That's "live and let live", or "keep an open mind"? Wishing someone would go back to the hell of addiction because they say something you don't like, now THAT'S hate. Or they will say, "are you a doctor or a psychologist", as though only a person with a degree can criticize the Program. (We "stupid drunks" aren't qualified to do so). What medical background did Bill Wilson himself have anyway?

I saw a lot of sexism in AA , but closed my eyes to it because I just wanted to get better, and "get with the Program". I remember an older speaker up on the podium talking about how he found women drunks "disgusting". I heard the same 5 dudes speak night after night — women were rarely asked to tell their stories. Many of the oldtimers had a pretty narrow view of women — I never heard so many dirty jokes in all my life. And several men were most interested in me the first year I was there, wanting to "show me the ropes", I guess.

These groups can be a terrible place if you are a woman with an abusive background. Men in particular really didn't want to know about social issues. I decided to open up one night and mentioned incest, and it was like I'd dropped an anvil on the table. A male friend of mine who was there groaned, and then he avoided me for days after. Thinking about it, if I had been the perpetrator, I'm sure it would have been alright to unload about my guilt, etc., but because I was a VICTIM, no one wanted to hear about it.

I've never met so many emotionally disconnected people as I have in those groups. Few people could or would talk to you on a deep level — slogans and platitudes seemed to be the answer for everything. Makes life pretty simple, and you don't have to get too involved in your "friend"s problems. There were guys there who couldn't tell me if we could have coffee in two days, since they were living "one day at a time" and didn't yet know what that day would bring. Great. Couldn't make a committment when using, and now they have another excuse not to commit.

A lot of people hate the groups 'cause they are uncomfortable with the God stuff, but I was attracted to the "spiritual" aspect. But I can't understand what lacking compassion, being judgemental, and shunning those who leave the groups have to do with "spirituality". And I hated when someone would get up and reverently call the Big Book their "Bible". I'm a Christian who doesn't take the Bible completely literally, but still, there's only one Bible, and that crappy book ain't it. You obviously know your Bible — it goes to show that it's not just atheists who have problems with these groups.

I have an opportunity now to start a 16-step group, although I've been doing just fine without meetings for almost 2 years. I like to think of these more as concepts than steps, and think they are great for growth in general and for people wanting an alternative to the 12 steps. Unlike Bill's sacrosanct steps, the 16 can be reworded any way you like to suit yourself. And they address the painful social contexts of addiction for so many people. To me, the AA/NA program just perpetuates the fear, shame and self-blame behind so much self-destructive behaviour, and doesn't allow for the self-love and the self-trust needed for true healing.

I loved your story about what you did during your break from the site. Nothing like getting away from the tv, the computer, (or the church basement), breathing actual fresh air and communing with nature, to really "recover", recharge our batteries, and realize we're not the only things in this world that matter.

Here's to healing,

Doren,
Ontario, Canada

Hi Doren,

Thanks for the letter. I was needing that, after the spate of hate mail I've gotten recently. It's nice to hear a sane voice now and then, just to balance things out.

I don't know anything about 16-step groups. I shall have to learn more. They sound good.

Have a good day.

== Orange


[2nd letter from Doren:]

Subject: Just to add
Date: Sun, November 27, 2005 8:28 pm

Hi Orange,

I had to add something to my first letter, having read your response to a Scottish writer in Letters XX. Your story about the hummingbird and the starfish really moved me. Clearly you are a sensitive human being — I wish more people would take the time to pay attention to the natural world around us. It is true that it's hard to believe in something in this world. We sure have made a right mess of it, and gotten more and more disconnected from our humanity, which is connected to all of life. Essentially, we don't need to believe in institutions, or in someone else's theories — we need to believe in ourselves, and in the love and goodness that most of us are capable of. That's where we started, and that's where we have to end up.

The Program talks about keeping it "simple". Well there's nothing more simple than getting out of another depressing old room and noticing the abundance of life all around us. We spent a lot of time dying, so let's live! My belief in God is such that it's all about those acts we think are "little", but really aren't. A smile, a little bit of help, an ear to listen, helping a creature in distress. To me, these are the things that really matter. To society, I am a failure: a fat, poor woman barely making it on disability. To God, I am beautiful, and a success: a loving, gentle soul who will toss a bug outside the house rather than kill it! To AA, I am a cookie-cutter alcoholic suffering from "terminal uniqueness". To myself, I am an individual; I know what's best for myself, and know when connection really means control. I can't live like Thoreau, but my attitude can reflect that simplicity which shows just how complex we really are.

Best Wishes,
Doren (November 27/05)

Yes, right on. What more can I say? So I won't say anything.

Have a good day, and a good life.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** The A.A. Plan: "Search out another alcoholic and
** try again. You are sure to find someone desperate
** enough to accept with eagerness what you offer."
** (The Big Book, page 96.)





Date: Sun, November 27, 2005
From: "Mark P."
Subject: I would enjoy a responce from you,

http://www.billygraham.org/MyAnswer_Article.asp?ArticleID=2431

Q: I grew up in a Christian home, but over the years I drifted away from it and don't believe in God at all now. My question is this: Once a person is a convinced atheist, is there any hope of becoming a believer again? I don't see how it's possible, but I'd be interested in your answer. ? A.McD.

A: *Dear A.McD.,
*Yes, of course it's possible for a convinced atheist to become a believer?if they aren't close-minded. Unfortunately, in my experience many convinced atheists don't have an open mind, and aren't really willing to reexamine the evidence honestly and fairly. I hope that won't be the case with you.

I could, of course, give you a number of reasons why it makes sense to believe in God; you probably already know them. But the most important thing I can do is urge you to look at Jesus Christ?not through the "lens" of your past experiences, but through the "lens" of the New Testament. Before you begin reading it, I challenge you to pray something like this: "God, I don't even know if You exist?but if You do, show Yourself to me." God will answer that prayer.

Why do I urge you to look at Christ? The reason is because He made a very startling claim about Himself: He said He was God in human flesh. "I and the Father are one" (John 10:30). Do you want to know what God is like? Look at Jesus, "For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form" (Colossians 2:9).

Jesus said, "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find" (Matthew 7:7). Don't let anything keep you from seeking God, for He loves you, and coming to know Him will be the greatest discovery you will ever make.


Hi Mark,

Thanks for the letter.

My simplest answer is, "I don't really care if some other guy is an atheist. It means nothing to me, and is no skin off of my nose. I have other fish to fry."

I also don't think that God really cares a whole lot, either.

Oh, I know that Moses wrote a whole lot of stuff about how God will hate you and kill you if you don't believe in Jahweh, right along with writing that you should raid the neighboring towns and villages and steal all of their stuff and kill them all, except for the virgin girls, whom you can keep as your sex slaves....

But I don't believe that Moses was right about any of that stuff.

Jesus Christ said that God loves you more than a mother loves her baby. If you really believe that Jesus was telling the truth, then you can't believe that God is gunning for you.

I believe that the Lord and Creator of the Universe is wise enough to clearly understand why some people don't believe that He exists, and light-hearted enough to laugh about it.

Did you ever hear about the crazy Texan rancher?

      There once was a rancher who had the biggest spread in all of Texas. It was absolutely huge, like 400 miles by 400 miles.
      One day, one of the hired hands came and reported to the boss man that there was an ant hill way out in the furthest corner of the ranch, and in that ant hill there was an ant who didn't really believe that the rancher existed. After all, he had never seen the rancher.
      The rancher flew into a screaming rage, and loaded up a jeep with guns and dynamite and gasoline and shovels and pick-axes, and drove day and night to find that ant hill. Then he blasted and burned and dug and blasted and burned some more, until he had killed every last ant in that ant hill, just to make sure that he had killed the unbeliever.

Now if a real adult human being acted in such a manner, we would lock him up in an insane asylum for being a dangerously unhinged psychopath.

And yet some people say that God acts in the same manner, without even noticing that they are insulting God, and contradicting Jesus Christ.

God is much better than a crazy Texan. Just a simple comparison between George W. Bush and Jesus Christ clearly shows that.

Have a good day.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**  You believe in God. I believe in God, too. But I also believe
**  in Santa Claus, The Easter Bunny, and The Tooth Fairy, so I
**  am obviously more religious than you, and morally superior to
**  you, because I believe in a lot more supernatural stuff than
**  you do.
**  Next, I'm going to come to believe that the world is flat, so
**  I can really be more religious than all of you.


[Next letter from Mark:]

From: "Mark P."
Subject: Re: I would enjoy a responce from you ,mark !
Date: Mon, November 28, 2005 9:48 pm

whats your point? this does not make any sense.you did not answer my original statements about AA? MARK

Whoa! Slow down there Mark.

You sent me four letters in rapid-fire succession. One of them was nothing but a link to yet another of Billy Graham's web pages.

I picked out one that I could respond to quickly, and answered that first.

I get lots of letters from other people, too, you know. Some of those people are trying to quit right now, rather than enjoying their 13th year of sobriety, so their issues are more pressing than your desire to convert me to Billy Graham's religion.

And I have other things to do with my life, too.

You said that my response made no sense?

Well, it's really very simple. You sent me one of Billy Graham's arrogant sneers at atheists, and I responded by saying that I didn't care if somebody else is an atheist. And I explained why.

You seem to be blind to the arrogance and condescension in Billy Graham's message. How would you feel if you read a web page that started with:

QUESTION: Is it possible to convert people back to True Christianity after they have been followers of Billy Graham?

ANSWER: Not likely. Unfortunately, in my experience, most of them are stubborn and narrow-minded and bigoted and stupid, and once their hearts have been corrupted with Billyism, they are pretty much lost causes.

Would you like that? Do you see the arrogance and condescension now?

I am not an atheist, but sometimes the allegedly Christian True Believers make it look very tempting. Billy Joel wrote a song, "Only The Good Die Young", that includes the line, "I'd rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints". I agree totally.

And now, since I have a minute, let's look at your other letters:


From: "Mark P."
Subject: you bring up some good points but ,are not totally correct! BORN AGAIN&in AA 13yrs sober-
Date: Mon, November 21, 2005

email me back, i would be open to a OBJECTIVE debate,you make some vadid criticisms but i & many more in AA would find SOME of your conclusions FAULTY. IM A born — again christian 13 yrs sober &consider myself fairly intellectual & logical. have you read cs lewis-mere christianity? lee strobel- case for christ?obviously they have a bias, but so do you. i like your web site somewhat , check out www.dickb.com
dick is a retired attorney in Hawaii & has a good handle on AA history& would probably correspond with you if your open to critisism.we all errors in our belief system to some degree , Mark.
www.answersingenesis.org take care.

Okay, I am all for "a OBJECTIVE debate". That means citing facts, and being realistic about the facts, not just cutting and pasting Billy Graham's web pages.

And please cite specific issues, and specific statements. All that you have said so far is that you think I am wrong, and biased. Wrong about what, specifically?

I have not read the C. S. Lewis and Lee Strobel books you mentioned. I'll put them on my list of things to check out.

Yes, I know of Dick B. We have corresponded, and he sent me a bunch of his books. Thank you, Dick.


From: "Mark P."
Subject: the truth!
Date: Mon, November 21, 2005 3:28 pm

one more thing Jesus SAID,"the he was the WAY the TRUTH & the LIFE! NOT the JW's ,cults,christians& or any other person , my opinion doesnt matter ,your beefs with jesus not me or any other preson on the planet, whether you accept the bible as true doesnt prove anything its not a frame of reference for you and thats your bisness take care, mark

That is the propaganda trick of "framing the argument" — "your beefs with jesus"

No, actually, I don't have any beef with Jesus. (Out of respect, His name should be captalized, by the way.) My beef is with some people who don't tell the truth.

Funny that you can't tell the difference between the two.

And you said that you wanted "a OBJECTIVE debate". If you really want an objective debate, then please don't use underhanded propaganda tricks like that.

Thank you.


From: "Mark P."
Subject: is Jesus Divine?
Date: Sun, November 27, 2005

Q: We had some people come to the door the other day, and they showed us from their Bible how churches have misled people through the centuries by claiming that Jesus was divine. What do you have to say about this? They said they thought you were a sincere person but that you were still wrong. ? R.Q.

A: *Dear R.Q., *I'm sure your visitors were sincere but I urge you to examine their claims very carefully. Sincerity is not the test of truth; only God's Word is our final authority.

You see, it's significant that you mention they showed you these things from "their Bible." The reason is because this group you mention has been forced to make its own "translation" of the Bible to support their ideas?a "translation" which any scholar of the Bible's original languages would tell you distorts the Bible's clear meaning. In my view, this is a serious matter; the Bible itself warns us against adding to its words or twisting their true meaning (see Revelation 22:18).

The Bible is clear: Jesus Christ alone was God in human flesh, sent from heaven to save us from our sins. He wasn't just a godly man; He was God in human flesh?fully God and yet also fully man. The Bible says, "For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form" (Colossians 2:9).

Why is this important? The reason is because we cannot save ourselves. No matter how good we are, we will never be good enough, because God's standard is perfection. That is why we need a Savior?and God Himself provided the Savior we need by sending His only Son into the world to die for us. Don't go down a false road, but by faith turn to Christ and open your heart to Him.

You are cutting and pasting another one of Billy Graham's condescending web pages again, where Billy Graham attacks and puts down members of a competing church. Do you have any thoughts of your own to bring to the table?

Oh well, have a good day anyway.

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** Bill Wilson wrote that you cannot quit drinking by
** using your own intelligence and will power; that you
** must have a "Higher Power" doing the quitting for you.
** When I asked Jesus about that, He said,
** "Screw Bill Wilson.  I'm not gonna quit drinking."


[5th letter from Mark P.:]

Date: Mon, December 12, 2005 23:15
From: "Mark P."
Subject: Re: you bring up some good points but , are not totally correct! BORN AGAIN&in AA 13yrs sober-

hey , agent, i dont have all the time id like to put All my original thoughts on paper, but will try to work on this , thanx for gettin back to me, anyway why do you care if i do or do not capitalize JESUS name,i guess im in a rush , like now .its 10:57 here in ct, ive just come home from mt 2nd job and my wife is in nursing school,do you think its rite IF JESUS deserves respect to use his HOLY name with the word screw{ A sexual term} with Jesus in the same sentence ?,sounds hypocritical to me ? the pot calling the kettle black to me! do me a favor , read Romans 2:1. AA is not by far a perfect program to say the least ,and christians are way to radical for MOST AA people in the program,my father in law has been sober 31 yrs , my mother in law 31 yrs- his ex wife & my wife stepdad 31yrs approx. so the proof is in the pudding ,one last thing, the JESUS factor HAS the highest rate of recovery from alcohol addiction, with or without AA,AS FAR AS im concerned AA IS spiritual kindergarden. JOSH mcdowell has written" evidence that demands a verdict" a former attorney. take care& have a nice day

Hi Mark,

You know, I think Jesus would laugh at my joke about "Screw Bill Wilson". Jesus had a sense of humor, and he was a party-goer and a drinker. His first miracle was making water into wine at a wedding party, remember?

I know that Jesus would get the joke.

And for another such joke, see this.

Have a good day, and a Merry Christmas.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** "You go to war with the jokes you have, not the jokes
** you might want or wish to have at a later time."
**  == Our Secretary of Offense, Ronald McDumsfeld





Date: Mon, November 28, 2005 11:24 pm
From: "Hans P."
Subject: Hi.

Interesting reading your paper makes. Sometimes I wish it could be true for me. My experience shows me that it is not in my case anyway. I am a firm beleiver in the 12-step process as it is one route that has worked for me. I agree there are many things wrong with the fellowship as it stands today, from experience I have seen many draconian sponsors try to gain control of their victims lives and end very negatively. Have also seen these sexual prowlers feed on young newcomers leading to death in many cases and mistrust of the AA programme. Ironic that such things should happen as the twelve step process is a way of giving up control and showing love and tolerance for others. For myself I am unable to believe that such people are a result of the programme. Never has AA claimed to be a monopoly in treating alcoholism and if any members do then they are mistaken. AA offers a choice for many who cannot live anymore as they have. I guess I must have been lucky as from the begining my sponsor always told me to ask my higher power for answers and not him. He was mererly there to give me the right information in working the twelve steps. Personally I have little stomach for the fellowship but for the 12 steps I have my life to thank. I quess I cannot describe the beauty of my experiences in working this programme and unfortunatly my efforts in helping others seems to be of little concequence and low in result maybe because there are so few who wish to work the programme and prefer to live as they have done. The choice is always theirs and not mine. I as a worker of the 12-steps can only offer help to those who want it, neither do I wish to manipulate or dictate to others how they should live their lives. Everyones own experience is their own and not any other mans. I think I will stop there! Funny how I actually thought that by writing an e-mail I could do something to change your opinion, but after all every mans experience is there own!! Haha as I laugh at myself. Rule No.(cant remember what number it was!) never take youself to seriously!!

God Bless.

Hi Hans,

Thanks for the letter.

Starting with your last point first, you are right that one letter is not going to change my opinion. Let me congratulate you on your accomplishment in getting sober. I have no doubts about that. You deserve to be congratulated for your hard work and your achievement. My doubts are about things like your assuming that the 12 Steps made you quit drinking.

The reason is that there are several fundamental problems in your logic:

  1. Confusion of correlation or coincidence with cause and effect. You assume that somehow the 12 Steps made you quit drinking, and made you a moral person, even while you see that the other steppers are not nice people or well-behaved. The effect of the steps on them seems to be the exact reverse of what it is supposed to be.

  2. Post hoc, ergo propter hoc. That is, "if it happened after something, then it was caused by that something." As if the rooster's crowing makes the sun rise. As if doing the 12 Steps causes people to quit drinking.

  3. Proof by anecdote. You have a happy story to tell, but what about all of the very unhappy stories that you mentioned? Draconian sponsors, sexual predators, and deaths? Why isn't that also the real results of people working the Steps?

  4. A preponderance of evidence. The vast majority of the people who go to A.A. don't quit drinking. The vast majority of the people who do successfully quit drinking don't go to A.A. or "work the Steps".

  5. Assuming that the feelings that you get from practicing the Twelve Steps are a good thing.

Have a good day.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** Being surrounded by a group of people who keep
** telling you that you are powerless over alcohol,
** and that your will power is useless, is not
** getting "support". It is getting sabotaged.
** With friends like them, you don't need any enemies.





Date: Mon, November 28, 2005 11:34 pm
From: "Karl R."
Subject: RE: Recuiting Mind Games
Dear A. Orange,

I've just read your piece on Bill Wilson and am curious about motive. Is it your premise that because AA is not scientific or, perhaps, medical that it is of fundementally no value to the individual.

Hello Karl,

Thanks for the letter.

My premise is that because A.A. has a zero percent success rate (about normal spontaneous remission), coupled with a very high death rate, that it has no value to alcoholics who are trying to save their own lives.

And unfortunately, A.A. also has other nasty side effects like increasing the rate of binge drinking, and increasing the rate of rearrests, and increasing the cost of hospitalization. So that really makes it worthless.

And then there is the problem that A.A. is actually a cult religion.

I have a good friend in AA who swears by the meetings and the fellowship. He has been sober for several years and is in no way religious. He, to this day, states that he is an atheist yet derives strength from his membership in AA. He has earned a doctrate in economics and has founded and run five successful businesses.

Even very intelligent people can get fooled, and sucked into cults. At Jonestown, a doctor and a nurse mixed up the cyanide koolaid for everyone to drink. The doctor had a doctorate in medicine, but what good did that do him or anyone else?

I am also familiar with a devout Roman Catholic, also in AA, who has not changed his theology in his 15 year membership.

Yes, people have an enormous ability to overlook what they do not wish to see. You have to do a lot of overlooking to not notice the theological conflicts between Buchmanism (the A.A. theology) and Catholicism, but some people still manage to do it. And you have to do some more overlooking to not notice the grossly heretical elements in the A.A. theology, but some people still manage to do it.

There are a number of points that you make that seem to be made in anger.

So what? Why is that important?

Steppers have this huge fear of honest emotions, like rage at some damned fool killing sick people with quack medicine and cult religion. Why? Are they afraid that they really are guilty of manslaughter?

I have not shared your piece with the two AA friends I reference above. The tone of your piece does appear angry, even if I am not knowledgeable to question its scholarship. Please respond if you wish, particularly to my question of motive (warning to an unsuspecting public? personal disaffection to the program?...)

Regards,
KR

You are correct on both points: warning an unsuspecting public, and personal dissaffection. Here are some easy quick reads on motive: the introduction, and also this bait-and-switch trick, and also this friend gone missing.

PS: Having been to Manchester, VT, I too was curious about the name of its local high school. I found that the moniker "Seminary", which has since 2000 been jetisoned in favor of "Academy" had no religious distinction whatever since its founding in the mid 19th century.

I assume that you must be talking about the Burr & Burton Seminary in Manchester, VT. Yes, it went co-ed and stopped being a seminary way back when.... When Bill Wilson went, it was already a co-ed residential high school, not a seminary, although it kept that name.

Have a good day.

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** Foisting ineffective quack medicine on sick people is not
** a wonderful noble act of self-sacrifice to help others;
** it is the reprehensible behavior of a damned fool.





Date: Tue, November 29, 2005 8:59 am
From: "Cam"
Subject: Your site

Hi

As an alcoholic i admire your website, and feel you put a lot of important information for people.

I still attend AA for the companionship — it is the only place i know where i can meet other alcoholics and discuss the same problem.

I was 12 stepped initially, but dropped all the sponsorship BS, i soon realised that my sponsor was not a qualified psychiatrist etc.

AA has good coffee though and i have met some good people there!

All the best!

cam

Hi Cam,

Thanks for the letter and the compliments. And you are lucky. All I got was industrial-grade coffee.

== Orange


[2nd letter from Cam:]

Date: Tue, November 29, 2005 1:46 pm
From: "Cam"
Subject: great website

orange

i have emailed you earlier today, and find your website a great source of material.

Im a month long sober person now, and as i said before — go to aa for the companionship and coffee!

Congratulations! That is great. Immediately go read about the Lizard Brain Addiction Monster, because you are at the stage where the mind games start, and that little voice in your head will start whispering that you are doing so good that you have it under control now, and it is okay to just have one now...

I was wondering though, if aa is really fake etc [which it looks like it is] why? Why do they perpetuate the lie to such an extent and for so long?There doesnt seem to be any financial reason, and ive never been asked for any money at aa [except tradition 7, £1 maybe]

And there isnt a "leader" figure etc

That is a good question. There are lots of reasons, ranging from "a feeling of being special" to "fear of dying". I got that same question a few years back, and answered it here.

My opinion is that it is a good place for the odd [minority] egomaniac, because most of the people i meet in the rooms are not pushy at all — yes there does seem to be a "clique" of maybe 4 or 5 at meetings, the ones with longest sobriety seem to be the most smug and conceited, but alas i cannot pin down the reason "de etre" for such large scale deception.

Cults are amazing things. Read the Cult Test, especially the questions, for some examples of other cults that were also massive deceptions. I mean, cults routinely talk people into giving up all of their money, and their houses, and years of free work, and their minds and their common sense, and then they even sometimes talk the people into killing themselves for the cult.

I would love to know your opinion as i am genuinley confused/nonplussed.

Regards

cam

ps — please dont print my surname, thanks!

Okay, Cam. Definitely start with the Cult Test for a lot of information on the mechanics of cults, and how they work.

Have a good day.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** Being surrounded by a group of people who keep
** telling you that you are powerless over alcohol,
** and that your will power is useless, is not
** getting "support". It is getting sabotaged.
** With friends like them, you don't need any enemies.





Date: Wed, November 30, 2005 8:32 pm
From: "Diane X."
Subject: Thank you so much for your site

Hi Agent Orange,

I've been reading all of the letters and want to thank you so very much for all your hard work in putting this together. I so wish I'd come across it years ago, but it wasn't around years ago.

I attended my first AA meeting in 1977 when I was 17. I have been haunted by this program for almost 30 years now. Often, I would just give up and resign myself to drinking, rather than submit to AA. Then, after getting beat up some more, I'd trudge back into the "rooms" to confess my sins and get my daily dose of condescension and craziness. I can't tell you what horrors I've gone through in those rooms with some people. It's shameful when the cure is worse the sickness, quite often.

I did have a period of two years where I attended AA and did not drink, but I was very young. Yunno the saying you can never go home again? God knows I've tried, but it's impossible once you realize that no one there knows anything you don't and quite often they are crazier and more deluded than one (I) could ever be. I didn't do the sponsor thing, I didn't do the step thing during those two years, and I credit any success to that.

I am going to have to try to muddle through this via a combination of WFS, SMART and other online resources. I might still attend the meetings just for social contact. It does help to know I'm not alone, however, in that many feel as I do about "the program."

Your work is so very valuable and this message must go far and wide. I've already forwarded your link onto an AAer who works in the treatment industry. I am sure I'm not going to win any popularity contests, but I am past caring. It just burns me up that in the year 2005 this is the best we can do. We can do better. We MUST do better. Too many peoples' lives depend on it. We must find a way to get the message out that AA can be very harmful, and look to a more biogenic approach in treating addiction, rather than the psychogenic model used by AA.

Thank you,
Diane

P.S. Please don't use my last name. :-)

Hi Diane,

Thanks for the letter and all of the compliments. You sound like you are doing well. Congratulations. I hope you enjoy SMART, and I've heard good things about WFS. (I wouldn't know, personally. They never invited this old guy. :-) )

And have a good day.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** The one-eyed man is villified in the land of the blind.





Date: Fri, December 2, 2005 12:38 am
From: "William B."
Subject: Thanks

I wanted to thank you for a good website it was really an eye opener. I feel ashamed I have been "drinking the kool aid" of AA for a long time now. Recently I got diagnosed with both diabetes and MS and I have been doing a lot of thinking about what I have been doing with AA. See I haven't drank or used drugs in almost 13 years. It was a problem for me. I do think that drug dependence is some sort of mental illness. I went to a couple of lectures on nuclear medicine where I found some validation of that. I never really felt comfortable ever with what AA describes the problem as. Frankly I always got a little "creeped out" when they described what they thought was my problem. I believe that if I want to live a decent life I have to abstain from all of that stuff. It just isn't right for me.

Well what started turning me around was basically I noticed that AA got some pretty crappy results. Most people just don't quit drinking in it. AA also has this really creepy approach to drugs — they don't want to come out and say you shouldn't do them but they don't want you to talk about them at their meetings. I think all of that stuff is about the same actually. I was at an AA meeting one night and they were going on about how drugs and alcohol are so different and I am thinking, "My God! I think I'd get more realistic thoughts about substance abuse at a Jimmy Buffet concert".

Well I'll get to my point see I did not know all that you did about the Big Book being written solely by Bill Wilson so I blasphemed one night at a meeting and suggested that since we were getting such crappy results maybe we ought to rewrite the book or something. That did not go over well at all as you can imagine. Then I started to realize on my own that it was just a cult. I never liked the idea of "conference approved" literature that to me always smacked of censorship and propaganda. Then I visited your website and it validated all my concerns. I was particularly bummed to find out Bill was taking acid all the time. I know that drug and there is nothing about it that is "clean" or "sober" or whatever people want to call it. I read your web site and man that guy was a real creep plain and simple.

Well I am trying to figure out what else I can do. One good thing about AA/NA/CA is that you make a lot of friends who aren't into drugs and alcohol so I will probably miss that. I just don't want to be a part of them anymore and I feel very stupid for believing their crap all these years and for taking the crap from their members who tried to make me feel bad because I was into drugs too. That I always hated about AA.

Like I said I do think it is some sort of mental illness, I mean most 16 year old kids from the suburbs don't find it desirable to go down to the housing projects to buy Heroin and Dilaudid. Then again AA says those are outside issues so i guess it is okay for their members to be crack heads or something.

Thanks for taking the time to write this page; it is badly needed. I feel so stupid for listening to them for so long and I feel really bad for some kid who has a drug problem that goes there.

By the way, you forgot to mention: They hate young people in AA, and Gays too. I was 18 when I came there; we had to start our own meetings back in the 80's to keep from being persecuted. I talked to some Gay people — they said the same thing. The people in it, you know, they're kind of good but AA sucks!

Thanks
Bill (thank god not W!)

Hi William,

Thanks for the letter and all of the thanks.

And congratulations on your recovery. Heck, with 13 years, you have recovered, you know? It isn't like you are still sick and "in recovery". Not at this point.

About the social circle thing — missing the social scene of the meetings — definitely check out the alternatives like SMART and LifeRing and similar groups. I moved the list of them up to the start of the page of links so that they are very easy to find.

Enjoy, and have a good day.

== Orange


[2nd letter from William B.:]

Date: Fri, December 2, 2005 10:37 pm
From: "William B."
Subject: Hello

Listen, your site has made me really think a lot and I want to help you out if I can. I am probably not as intelligent or well read as you are but I do have something you don't really have. AA is a cult and if you want to break up a cult you need to really infiltrate it and you weren't around those guys long enough to do that, unfortunately I was.

First of all let me tell you some of the actual techniques they use to keep their power. First of all it is going to be very hard for you to find something on them where they directly exercised their power. You know what don't underestimate them they're smart and they are good at what they do. Watch very carefully for the phrase, "we neither endorse nor oppose that". When they say that what they're talking about is something that threatens their existence. It's code to the cult what they are telling their members is, "we don't want you talking about that or thinking about it". It works for them in the public eye because people read it in a newspaper and they read it as "we don't care" and they just pass over it. Whatever they say it about focus on bringing those issues to the public light as best as you can.

I will tell you one thing I was on the archive committee for a few years in the Cleveland Akron area. I don't know what is all down there. But I will tell it is a LOT of stuff and New York wanted it BAD! They got really angry when we wouldn't give it to them either so that is how I know.

That stuff you write on the Oxford group it's good it's informative but that really won't hurt them. They have their own cult now and bringing up their history it won't help you too much. They already have too much of their propaganda in the public record.

Now I will tell you I know for a fact they don't want the courts sending people there anymore. Believe me I know they haven't said anything publicly about it and they won't. But they don't want that happening. Approach it like this as long as the government is some way involved. They can be held accountable for what they do. You can ask the question, "Hey were giving out lenient sentences and costing the taxpayers money with protracted cases and are you guys actually doing anything you say you do?". So actually though you may not like the practice, it gives you something to use against them. When you write to the government officials try to stress that. I promise you I will do the same thing on my end.

I will tell you a story you can use. There was a man in this area who committed a murder — plain and simple he did. If you talked to him for five minutes, you'd know it. His lawyer told him to start going to every meeting he could and get a paper signed. Now this was important — he volunteered to do so. The lawyer was able to argue the because he was going there of his own accord, it meant he was an alcoholic. He was drinking when he committed the crime. Therefore he was mentally unstable and they threw the case out — he walked free. I wish I could give you some details on that but as you can guess the guy is no where to be found. If he were say to commit a crime again AA could be in some deep shit. After that some groups just "all of a sudden" decided in their "group conscience" not to sign court verification slips. Now there was a pamphlet New York put out saying the groups were supposed to cooperate. I brought it up with the service council in my area. They told me it was a "group decision". Translation, "That is what we want them to do". You will have to just trust me on this I know AA speak well.

I associated with a lot of old timers when I first came in. They were around before the Big Book was published. Frankly a lot of them didn't like that. They told me before it came out Bill W. he was the leader don't get me wrong, but people were kind of starting to maybe think a little bit for themselves maybe question things a bit. Well after he did that his power was untouchable. They did not like that.

The last thing I will say is you do seem like a good person be careful. They will sue you if they think they can. I know how they do things they don't need to win all they want to do is cost you some money. I have seen them pull that trick before. They had some litigation going a while back they knew they had no chance. They already KNEW what they wanted to do about the issue. They made damn sure though that they dragged it out to the last possible moment before backing off of it. The thing they were going on about — it didn't matter to them at all. They were sending message I think, "If we want you to do something and you don't, this is what will happen to you".

I would really bet some serious money that they are somehow involved with the insurance industry in some way They like AA it saves them a lot of money in treatment costs. AA themselves made a really big deal of making a point within the cult that residential treatment facilities were something, "They neither endorsed nor opposed".

Hey you know what we'll probably never see eye to eye on the subject of addiction. However we both want AA out of the picture for different reasons. I hope I have helped you at least a little by maybe giving you some ideas. If I can do something I will try. Keep in mind though. I have been blaspheming lately so I am kind of an outsider now too. Have a good weekend and keep up the good work..

Hi William,

Thanks a lot for the letters. That's some real interesting stuff. I love to hear from old-timers who have all of the inside dope.

And heck, we probably do see eye to eye about addiction. You haven't said anything that I disagree with. You called it a mental illness. I have said a few times that if you are killing yourself with drugs and alcohol, that you really do need to get your head examined.

And have a good day.

== Orange


[3rd letter from W.B.:]

Date: Tue, December 6, 2005 7:10 pm
From: "William B."
Subject: HI again

Orange,

I wanted to write you a letter when I was feeling a little better. Again I want to thank you. I have been enjoying your website more and more every day. I particularly got a big laugh out of the anecdote concerning, Bill's "mastery" of differential Calculus. I aced freshman Calculus and frankly I don't know what the hell you could read in the history of mathematics which would lead you to understand the concept of a "limit" which is what I assume he is talking about being the great abstraction. Really a hoot!

It also occured to me. From what you said about Bill's "spiritual experience." That I might have been spared 23 years inside the cult if I had only listend to my pre school Sunday school teacher, "When you talk to God, You always say please and you always say thank you, Otherwise he won't listen". Have you noticed that about AA Prayers they NEVER bother to thank their God? Bill was in ecstasy and that was all that mattered.

I think that kind of says it all for AA actually. Your creator, he or she gives you their finest gift, the gift of free will, and AA teaches you to rudely cast that gift back and in it's place substitute a list of things you want him or her to do for you instead.

Oh I wanted to share with you a little bit of AA Lore I learned at founders day in Akron about 12 years ago. You know why there are 12 Steps, 12 traditions and 12 Concepts? I was told by a very old, old timer as we walked up the steps to Dr. Bob's house, "Count em kid." There are 12 physical steps from the sidewalk to the door. I don't know if this is true for sure or not, but let me tell you this man was definitely old enough to know.

Feeling better too checked out Smart and going to buy a copy of rational recovery and some other non 12 step books. Havent been to a meeting in a month and I feel great.

Peace dude! Keep up the good work next January 14th I'll be clean and sober 13 years!

Hi again, William,

Wow! 13 years! Now that is getting up there. Congratulations.

I loved your point about the demandingness of A.A. prayers, never saying please and thank you. It makes a lot of sense, when you think about it. And it reveals just how much A.A. is a program of "miracles on demand".

Have a good day.

== Orange


[4th letter from WB:]

Date: Mon, December 12, 2005 22:51
From: "William B."
Subject: Re: Thanks

Hey Orange,

Thanks for writing me back! I am writing to you for two reasons. First of all there is this little pamphlet. I know it isn't conference approved but I think they still sell it only in Cleveland and Akron. It's on The Four Absolutes. It's really old and stuff I think they might still sell it at the Cleveland Central office if you want I will go get you a copy.

Yeh, that sounds interesting.

Second is something I was just thinking about that was funny to me. When I was about thirteen there was this one guy he was an old hippie like you from San Francisco. He knew Timothy Leary and some guy named Albert Owsely? I think it was I guess he used to make acid all the time. Well he used to let us kids come over to his apartment and trip there. He was real nice to us he'd make us food and kind of watch over us. Well he knew a lot about acid. He knew how to talk to you and make you feel good. Anyway one time I dosed and I started to feel really anxious and scared and paranoid. I don't know how but he just knew I wasn't feeling good. So "Wow Billy you're getting off wrong!". Then he said he knew what to do. So he put on the album "Surrealistic Pillow", and he said, "This will be intense but just go with it and you'll be fine". He was right there was something about the music that in the end left me really mellow. So I always used that in the future when I started off bad. I was just thinking, "Do you think if Dr. Silkworth would have had a copy to play for Bill when he was on Belladonna we might have been spared AA?". I was laughing about that all day. Sorry I have a weird sense of humor.

The name you are looking for is Augustus Owsley Stanley III, a.k.a. "Owsley" and "Bear", perhaps the best LSD maker this world has ever known. His stuff killed me and sent me into the next dimension and changed my life forever, and for that, I thank him. He used to hang out with the Grateful Dead, and also designed their "Wall of Sound" sound system. He must be quite a brilliant fellow, to master both chemistry and electronics. Unfortunately, I never met him. But I corresponded with him about 10 years ago when he was making enameled Deadhead jewelry. The WikiPedia says that he is now living in Queensland, Australia.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Owsley_Stanley
Also see Bear's web site: http://www.thebear.org/

Ah, Surrealistic Pillow. White Rabbit. Yeh, I used to trip to that too. That's a real stroll down memory lane. The subject of Gracie Slick just came up in another letter, here. This must be the Jefferson Airplane week. Time to put on an album.

You know, it's funny, and true, that history might be quite different if Bill had had a different trip. Did you catch the quote from Baba Ram Dass that seems so relevant there?

Don't be psychotic: Watch it. Watch it.

That psychosis business is an interesting business. If you go through the doorway too fast, and you're not ready for it, you're bound hand and foot and thrown into outer darkness.

You may land anywhere and lots of people end up in mental hospitals. The reason they do is: They went through the door with their ego on, and:

"Wow! I've been invited to the wedding feast.

"I mean dig me! Sam Jones!

"Sam Jones in Heaven! Sam Jones standing on the right side of the Lord. There's the Lord, and there's Gabriel and there's Sam Jones."

They don't understand that you gotta die to be born. That only when you have been born again do you enter the Kingdom of Heaven. So, they've gone in on the first round and what happens is they go on a huge ego trip, and it's called the Messianic Complex. It's called Paranoia, Delusions of Grandeur.
— Baba Ram Dass, Be Here Now, 1971, pp. 97-98.

Brother does that sound familiar — "God appointed me to save all of the alcoholics in the world."

Oh well, have a good day anyway, and a Merry Christmas.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** "You go to war with the jokes you have, not the jokes
** you might want or wish to have at a later time."
**  == Our Secretary of Offense, Ronald McDumsfeld





Date: Fri, December 2, 2005 10:17 pm
From: "mark m."
Subject: frank buchman site

Dear A. Orange:

I'm a 13-yr sober member of AA.

After reading the first few paragraphs of the Religous Roots website, and the obvious tone of the writing, I can only ask one burning question:

/What happened?/

Talk about going to any length to be negative....thank God for the 1st Amendent, huh?

Hello Mark,

Thanks for the letter. What, do you find it unusual for someone to feel like telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, especially when the lives of friends and acquaintances are at stake?

That is one of the more disturbing characteristics of Alcoholics Anonymous. Several Steppers have made essentially the same comment. They imagine that someone cannot possibly oppose their wonderful "spirituality" and ineffective quack alcoholism treatment program unless something really horrible happened to them.

Why is it such a shock that someone would feel like telling the truth?

Oh well, have a good day anyway.

== Orange

P.S.: If you really do want to know "what happened?", then these links will give you a few items: the introduction, and also this bait-and-switch trick, and also this friend gone missing.

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** Gandalf said, "The demons of the darkness howl in
** pain when you shine the light of truth on them."





Date: Sat, December 3, 2005 10:15 pm
From: "Andreas"
Subject: Interesting article about AA

Wow, what an amazing misrepresentation of pretty much everything AA is about. I never realized there were so many things in AA that could be taken so completely out of context. But I am glad that there are things like this article around. It is much easier to help someone trying to sober up after they have tried every other house on the block and have run out of alternatives as you appear to be suggesting. Fortunately, alcohol usually does a fine job of helping someone decide whether or not AA is right for them. And alcohol will help anyone who has tried AA and isn?t interested in it to decide whether or not they want to come back. I don?t know a single AA member who decided to join just for the heck of it. Believe me, no alcoholic wants to give up drinking and will do anything and everything possible to continue to do so. Since AA is apparently an evil cult, I suggest anyone with concerns about their drinking try every other alternative first. Don?t leave any stone unturned. Try to either find a way to drink that works for you or a way to stay sober successfully. I wish you the best of luck and I know it is possible because I know people who have done it (stayed sober anyway? the drinking successfully seems to be a little tougher). However, if you are convinced you have a drinking problem and cannot find a way to live with it successfully, and you are completely out of other options and have absolutely nowhere left to turn to, I suggest you give the old AA cult a try. It is usually best to do so before alcohol sends you to prison or turns you into a drooling vegetable in a mental hospital or simply kills you. The nice thing about alcohol, if a person has a problem with it, is that it will narrow down that person?s options all by itself.

I am actually quite curious if anyone will actually answer this email.

Hi Andreas,

Your wish is granted. Someone is actually answering your email.

That is quite a stream of slogans and clichés you have spouted. You keep saying that A.A. is the last house on the block and all of that; completely ignoring the fact that the vast majority of people who get sober do it without Alcoholics Anonymous. The Harvard Medical School says that 4 out of 5 alcoholics who get sober for a year or more do it alone, on their own, some even after 12-Step-based treatment has failed.

So "Do It Yourself" is really the last house on the block.

Oh well, have a good day anyway.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** Being surrounded by a group of people who keep
** telling you that you are powerless over alcohol,
** and that your will power is useless, is not
** getting "support". It is getting sabotaged.
** With friends like them, you don't need any enemies.





Date: Sat, December 3, 2005 10:22 pm
From: "jeff b."
Subject: Religious roots of AA

Hello

I have been reading this for a couple of hours and I have a long way to go to finish it, really.

It is my impression AA is a cult founded by a homosexual for other homosexuals, correct?

Jeff

Hi Jeff,

I assume that must be a joke. But just in case it isn't, the only noteable homosexuals involved in the founding of Alcoholics Anonymous were Frank Buchman, and maybe Peter Howard, who might have "swung both ways".

Have a good day.

== Orange





Date: Sun, December 4, 2005 1:11 am
From: "dewanda c."
Subject: AA as a cult

It's not the language or steps that work, It's God, May Mr. Orange find him now. Sounds like the writings of a person that failed at staying away from alcohol for the rest of his life and that the author is really angry at his failure.

So what if it's a cult. Society is a cult. Accept what works for you and then tend to your own Garden and find happiness there.

Sounds like this author is very unhappy. To Thy Self Be TRUE !!!!

Hi Dewanda,

That is just classic Minimization and Denial, just like a stereotypical alcoholic — "So what if it's a cult. Society is a cult."

Denial isn't just a river in Egypt.

No, society is not a cult. And it matters a lot that Alcoholics Anonymous is a cult.

Oh, and I am being true to myself, by telling the truth about some quackery that is hurting people.

Have a good day anyway.

== Orange





Date: Sun, December 4, 2005 1:33 am
From: "CLAIRE S."
Subject: who are you

hey mr orange my name is claire and I find your articles quite amusing and enlightening even though I'm in aa I have also been studying the history from were its roots came from. I aree with alot of your opinions and or facts but are you a believer or synic or what. Just curious Claire


Date: Sun, December 4, 2005 9:20 pm
From: "CLAIRE S."
Subject: why haven't you answer me

So I read more of your information on bill wilson and his gang of theives and liars so now what? Are you a spiritual person or a athesist? Its great research and all but I am a believer and I've been sober with and without aa so what's the point? What's the message your trying to tell that God has no part in a person's need to be addicted. I am a survior of types and want to grow or grow up any suggestions. What about dick b's website about the first aa's and the bible? Send me a reply would you.

Claire

Whoa! Slow down there, girl. I get lots of letters and am back-logged. It usually takes me a couple of weeks to answer letters, and some people have waited 6 or 7 months. But I try to answer all of them eventually.

Now, to deal with your questions:

  1. You have asked the same question in two different forms:
    "are you a believer or synic or what"?
    "Are you a spiritual person or a athesist?"

    Those things aren't exactly opposites, although they are nearly opposites.
    I am a believer in the sense that I know that there is a cosmic super-consciousness sort of hard-wired into the fabric of this universe. I know that there is something that we could call God.
    I am a skeptic when it comes to things like Moses claiming that God told him to raid the neighboring cities and towns and steal all of their stuff and kill them all, except for the virgin girls, whom his army could keep as their sex slaves. I don't think that Moses was speaking for God there, and it casts doubt on everything else that Moses wrote, including the Ten Commandments. I personally regard Moses as little more than a war criminal.

  2. This sentence seems to be garbled: "What's the message your trying to tell that God has no part in a person's need to be addicted."

    I think you must be asking whether God has a part to play in someone recovering from an addiction. My answer is that the Lord helps those who help themselves. It is downright lazy and disrespectful to expect God to magically fix you while you do nothing but still on your ass and "Let Go and Let God". Likewise, I find it moronically stupid to believe that the cure for alcoholism is to surrender to a cult and confess everything to your sponsor.

    Oh, and I don't see God or Jesus as being pleased when someone joins a cult religion and starts telling lies about God. You should read the web page on "The Heresy of the 12 Steps" for more on that.

    My disagreement with A.A. about "spirituality" isn't about spirituality, it is about someone passing off immoral superstitious cult practices as "spirituality".

  3. About Dick B.: I know of him, and we have corresponded, and he sent me a bunch of his books. My major disagreement with him is over the nature of the Oxford Group. He believes that it was a good thing, put here by God. I believe that it was an evil lying cult that was doing the work of the Devil.

I hope that answers your questions.

Have a good day.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** Bill Wilson wrote that you cannot quit drinking by
** using your own intelligence and will power; that you
** must have a "Higher Power" doing the quitting for you.
** When I asked Jesus about that, He said,
** "Screw Bill Wilson.  I'm not gonna quit drinking."


[3rd letter from Claire:]

From: "CLAIRE S."
Subject: Re: who are you
Date: Mon, December 12, 2005 23:59

Thanks for response and didn't mean to appear impatient anyway I do have to say personally I am saved and I believe in the fact like you've said that God would not take back a gift. I think AA gets people to think about increasing their spirituality because that's where all mankind falls back into the mess we create. I am a believer and have been studying and been abuse by different churches and organizations like Roy Masters. So saying all of that I take responsibility for the mess my alcoholic life created and God is not my Santa Claus but I do whole heartily believe every inch of his Word. I am not here to change your mind just expressing my own experiences and for me I have had plenty. Obviously if I would to by in all of AA then I wouldn't have taken time to read many of your articles. Would like to keep in touch. Claire

Okay, Claire,

Have a good day and a Merry Christmas.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** The A.A. Plan: "Search out another alcoholic and
** try again. You are sure to find someone desperate
** enough to accept with eagerness what you offer."
** (The Big Book, page 96.)





Date: Sun, December 4, 2005 2:20 am
From: "Maureen"
Subject: Cool

I checked out your site and I also looked at your SMART site and read some message board stuff there. Ya know, it really is all the same thing?..AA, SMART?.whatever. In fact, I agree with you on many counts. But, I suppose that I'm able to admit that because I learned the value of approaching pretty much everything without contempt before, during and even after investigation. Contempt sucks. Really. It'll make ya drink. That's what I learned in AA.

Thanks for sharing.

Hi Maureen,

Thanks for the letter.

I can understand how you might have read some cliquish stuff in some message board — all groups are vulnerable to that — but really, A.A. and SMART are not the same thing at all. In many ways, they are almost direct opposites. SMART is based on rational thinking, while A.A. is based on superstition and "faith".

I disagree about "contempt". Some of it is necessary, and it serves a useful purpose in our emotional lives. If you don't feel some contempt for a quack doctor who is poisoning one of your children with bad medicine, then you are crippled inside.

When Sir Herbert Spencer was using the word "contempt", he was denouncing those people who refused to even look at the facts — they had "contempt prior to investigation". That is an accurate description of the situation, and he was right to denounce such a dishonest approach to knowledge. He might as well have denounced prejudice, which is also what it is.

It is a very different thing to have contempt after investigating the facts, like the contempt I feel for the lying, scheming fraud Dr. Frank N. D. Buchman, who passed himself off as a holy man while he lived the lifestyles of the rich and famous and then screamed denunciations at a girl who dared to care about the poor. A man like that deserves some contempt.

Oh well, have a good day anyway.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** Gandalf said, "The demons of the darkness howl in
** pain when you shine the light of truth on them."





Date: Sun, December 4, 2005 7:13 am
From: edwards
Subject: Book on the Religious roots of AA

How can I get a copy of this book?

Hi Edwards,

There is no paper copy of the Orange Papers. To get a CD copy, do this:

  1. Get access to a CD burner. If you don't have one, get a friend who has one to make a CD for you.

  2. Go to the main menu page, where the archives are listed.

  3. Make a new empty subdirectory (or "file folder", as Windoze calls it) which will contain the "book".

  4. Download a set of archives into your new subdirectory. There are two sets of archives, one for Unix/Linux, and one for Windoze. Download the set that is appropriate for your system. You don't need both, because the files contained are identical. Only the archive format is different.

  5. Unzip all of the files into that new subdirectory. You now have the entire web site on your own hard disk. Keep the archive files. You can burn them into the CD too.
    Correction, 2012.02.14: Not any more. You don't have room to include the archive files on a CD copy of the web site. Things have gotten so large that you must move the archive files someplace else while you burn a CD, as the web site files now total 707 MB. However, you could burn the whole mess into a blank DVD, and it will all fit.

  6. Burn a CD that contains the entire web site. You now have your own copy of the "book".

Enjoy, and have a good day.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** When you can't tell the difference between patriotically
** defending America, and killing thousands of children in
** a foreign country, you are officially crazy.





Date: Sun, December 4, 2005 9:01 pm
From: "paul l"
Subject: Your paper

Dear sir,

Your article was interesting. While what you say is interesting and thought provoking it almost sounds like you have an ulterior motive for the strong statements against AA. Yes or no? What is the reason??

Paul

Hi Paul,

Thanks for the letter.

Ulterior motive? You mean like that maybe I'll steal all of the customers away from Alcoholics Anonymous and go open my own chain of for-profit hospitals and treatment centers that will treat the alcoholics with cheap cult religion? And then I can suck zillions of dollars out of the patients' health insurance plans and the state and Federal medical care programs by deliberately misdiagnosing the patients and then double-billing and triple-billing?

That kind of ulterior motive?

Ummm, no, I don't think so.

I just want to get the truth out there.

Once again, this is the standard introduction to my motives:

Have a good day.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** Foisting ineffective quack medicine on sick people is not
** a wonderful noble act of self-sacrifice to help others;
** it is the reprehensible behavior of a damned fool.





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