Letters, We Get Mail, CCCLIV



[The previous letter from Randaron is here.]

[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-letters354.html#Randaron ]

Date: Mon, May 20, 2013 10:15 am       (answered 21 May 2013)
From: randaron
Subject: Re: I don't know what AA u went to go observe. But next time you should go in without a blind fold and ear plugs!!! AA is for alcoholics not for people that merely drink.

You know it doesn't matter how much we banter back and forth About success rates For me and only me Alcoholics Anonymous worked 100 percent And regardless of what your success rate is As long as it helps one person either one of us Then the world has changed So good luck to you I hope everybody that comes to you gets sober. And I will do my best as well

Hello again, Randaron,

Actually, one person does not establish a rate, because a rate is something per something else, like miles per gallon, or success stories per 100 A.A. newcomers. So you can't declare that A.A. has a 100% success rate for you. Also, you have no idea what really caused you to quit drinking. There is zero evidence to support the idea that A.A. somehow caused you to quit drinking.

And what caused you to decide to quit drinking and go to A.A. in the first place? That was the real cause of your sobriety.

The A.A. rationalization about "if it helps one person" is just a just another standard propaganda trick and dodge. The truth is that A.A. kills more people than it helps. That is no great accomplishment. Dr. George E. Vaillant, who went on to become an enthusiastic Trustee of Alcoholics Anonymous, established that A.A. has nearly a 6-to-1 death-to-success ratio.

And Dr. Vaillant plainly said that the few people who quit drinking in A.A. were the ones who were going to quit drinking anyway. He said that A.A. did not improve the sobriety situation at all. A.A. produced a zero percent improvement over no treatment or help or "group support". But, because Dr. Vaillant just loves the A.A. cult religion, he said that everybody should get shoved into A.A. anyway, so that they can "confess their sins to a high-status healer". Yes, he is nuts. And that is the A.A. leadership talking.

We were just discussing the harm that A.A. does, in a previous letter, here:
http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-letters353.html#Andre_D
so I will point you to that.

Have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**
**    "Not only had we failed to alter the natural history of alcoholism,
**    but our death rate of three percent a year was appalling."
**      ==  Dr. George E. Vaillant, formerly a member of the A.A. Board of
**    Trustees, describing the treatment of alcoholism with Alcoholics
**    Anonymous, in "The Natural History of Alcoholism: Causes, Patterns,
**    and Paths to Recovery", Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA,
**    1983, pages 283-286.

[The next letter from Randaron is here.]





[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-letters354.html#Emma_C ]

Date: Mon, May 20, 2013 10:55 am       (answered 21 May 2013)
From: "emma c."
Subject: Account request

Hi Mr Orange,

I am real not a spammer. I would like to join the forum.

Also, i just wanted to ask if you knew much about a chap called Rick Ross?
http://www.rickross.com/
that is his website.

I sent an email to him the other day as he isn't willing to acknowledge AA or the splinter groups such as Primary Purpose, Road to Recovery & Pacific Group being cultish. I read a few posts of his to members asking genuine questions. The few that i saw were not abusive or derogatory in anyway — they questioned wanting to know more. Below is the email i sent to him:

I'm from London, UK.

Hello Rick,

I was kindly put in touch with your website today by a friend. I've been searching it briefly about Alcoholics Anonymous. Can i ask is there any recent more un-biased discussions about it? As the comments i have stumbled on seem to discredit people saying AA is a cult. Even though Dr Bob & Bill W were the founders (now dead like many other leaders). I noticed the moderator kept stopping people from expressing their concerns and valid questioning of how AA is run. I was in AA for over 6 years. I left a year and a half ago. And thankfully i found a therapist who has helped me recover from the trauma.

There is a stricter offshoot group called "Road to Recovery" which was created by men in the Westcoast of California — "The Pacific Group". They are also heavily linked to groups in Plymouth, Bristol, South East London and so on. And in New York "Atlantic Group, Washington DC Group and "Prime Purpose" back in California.

I have experienced the Road to Recovery group first hand for over an 18 month period. Hardcore brainwashing took place in these meetings. There was a clear distinct hierarchy and strict rules to adhere to. I suffered (and still suffer) from the control in these meetings. The usual AA meetings (if you want to call them that) are also abusive. People worship Bill W and Bill W worshipped himself — hence his name breaking the 'anonymity' rule. He was an ego who 13 stepped many women.

I look forward to your response.

Kind regards,
Emma

2nd email to him.

The head honcho in the Pacific Group is a chap called Clancy —
http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-clancy_i.html

I have met him, his 12 sponsee's, attended the Synagogue meeting in Los Angeles, spent lunchtime with him before (which was incredibly Cultish), met his followers and found this group to be led by him... the Guru.

When i said i couldn't stay at the meeting in the Synagogue till the end a woman said to me, "Clancy will NOT like that..."

Regards,
Emma

And this was his response to me:

There have been AA splinter groups led by various people, which have been described as "cults" such as Endeavor Academy and Synanon.

See [www.rickross.com]

Also see [www.rickross.com]

But AA itself is not a cult.

Some people disagree with AA teachings, but that doesn't make it a "cult."

Rick Ross

Personally i feel dismissed as if my experience was not Cult like in the slightest... He says he is an expert yet he isn't willing to investigate.

Anyway, thank you for your time.

Regards,
Emma

From: "Orange" <[email protected]>
Subject: Re: Account request
Date: Mon, May 20, 2013 5:35 pm
To: "emma c."

Hello Emma,

This is just a quicky response for now. I'll send a full properly-formatted response when I get it typed up.

I cannot find your registration. Did you actually register? If not, please do. It's easy and quick. Then email me and tell me what user name you registered and I'll approve your registration.

You can register any user name you wish. Anything that isn't already taken.

About Rick Ross: yes, that's quite a story. We have had our go-arounds too. Look here:
http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-rross_aa01.html

So register a name and I'll approve you. I'd love to have you in the forum.

And have a good day now.
== Orange

*          [email protected]       *
*      AA and Recovery Cult Debunking     *
*      http://www.orange-papers.info/      *
*    http://www.orange-papers.info/forum   *
** "Now I know what it's like to be high on life.
** It isn't as good, but my driving has improved."
** == Nina, on "Just Shoot Me", 13 Jan 2006.


2013.05.21:

Hello again, Emma,

Okay, now I have enough time to finish the answer.

You are quite right that Rick Ross dissed you and would not listen to your story. He has made up his mind and facts be damned. In his mind, your experiences are irrelevant because he is brilliant and you aren't.

What is really appalling is his definition of "cult". It comes from his history as an "exit counselor". He used to be in the business of kidnapping children from cults and holding them prisoner and torturing them until they said what the paying parents wanted to hear.

That is of course feloniously illegal. When "exit counselors" started getting busted and doing hard time in prison for kidnapping, and getting sued for millions of dollars for false imprisonment and torture, Rick Ross got out of the "exit counselor" business. Then he went into the "cult expert" business and testified in a lot of court cases as an expert on cults.

So Rick Ross's definition of cult is, "If there are paying parents complaining, then it's a cult. Otherwise, it isn't a cult." Rick Ross actually said that in a letter:

-----Original Message-----
Sent: 02 October 2006 12:19

I recognize the effort of some people to call AA a "cult" and organize anti-AA sites on the Internet.

However, I have received no significant complaints from families over the years (since 1983) about AA.

Complaints from families determine whether a group is a cult?

Now Rick Ross has a web site where he has collected a lot of newspaper stories and letters about cults, and he calls himself an expert on cults, and bases his "expertise" on years of experience in torturing children.

What is Rick Ross's training and education about cults? None.
Degrees in sociology or psychology? None.
Years of membership in a cult? None.
He has no basis for claiming to be an expert on cults. He just says that he is an expert. He seems to be a legend in his own mind.

In fact, his history is so bad that Wikipedia has the story of Ross going to Waco, Texas, and giving unsolicited advice to the FBI on how to deal with David Koresh during the famous standoff in 1993. Ross told the FBI to be confrontational and challenge Koresh. When the FBI did that, and tried to break into Koresh's compound, Koresh flipped out and killed himself and his whole cult in a mass suicide, including killing all of the children. Ross disavows any responsibility for the result.

See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rick_Ross_%28consultant%29

So I don't expect that Rick Ross will listen to you or anyone else about Alcoholics Anonymous. He has made up his mind, and just censors and blocks and bans people who say things that he doesn't want to hear. Of course he banned me, and also childishly awarded me "Two Flames" for being a critic of Rick Ross. (Wouldn't it be neat if this post got me three flames? How about four? What do I have to do to get four flames from Rick Ross?)

Oh well, I'll be happy to have you in my forum, and I won't censor you or delete your posts, even if I disagree with you about something. Welcome.

By the way, Rick Ross finally admitted that the Midtown Group in Washington DC was a cult after The Washington Post, Newsweek magazine, and NBC TV news revealed what was going on there. But Ross did not see — or refused to notice — that Mike Quinones, the leader of the Midtown cult, was the grand-sponsee of Clancy Imusland, and that the Midtown Group was only a tiny part of Clancy's sprawling empire. Clancy has groups all across America, with a variety of names. In Los Angeles, it's the Pacific Group. In San Francisco, it's The Nursery. In New York, it's the Atlantic Group (also look here and here). In the Midwest, it's the Foxhall Group (spreadsheet with failure rate here), and the "Lemont Oaks" group, "Oak Lawn Big Book", the "Between the Covers", "It's in the Book" groups, and the Badger Group. They even have missionary outposts in Plymouth, England, and London.

And as you mentioned in your letter to Ross, they also have the "Road To Recovery" group in Great Britain, and the "Prime Purpose" group in California.

Then even Young Peoples' AA has degenerated into a sexual exploitation society.

But Rick Ross didn't notice any of that. He tries to declare that things like the Midtown Group and other crazy extremists are merely isolated groups that have no connection to the parent organization.

Rick Ross's behavior there is so improper and stubborn and unrealistic that I wonder if he is secretly a member of A.A., who is trying to defend A.A. from the truth. Or maybe he just can't stand to be wrong about anything.

(Okay Rick, does that get me Four Flames?)

Have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     "I have sworn, before the altar of God, eternal hostility
**      against every form of tyranny over the mind of man."
**        ==  Thomas Jefferson, from a letter to Dr. Benjamin Rush, 1800





May 12, 2013, Sunday: The Fernhill Wetlands

Canada Goose goslings
The Family of 7
(Click on this image for an enlargement.)

Canada Goose goslings
A Family of 3

Canada Goose goslings
The 3 goslings of the Family of 3

Canada Goose goslings
The Family of 3 in the foreground. The proud father is giving me quite a look.
Many families have gathered here today to eat the grass.

[More gosling photos below, here.]





[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-letters354.html#Emma_C2 ]

Date: Tue, May 21, 2013 4:28 am       (answered 23 May 2013)
From: "emma c."
Subject: Re: Account request

Hi Mr Orange,

I signed up as sunsetanon

hope you can find it.

Many thanks for responding i really appreciate it.

When i received Rick's response it genuinely upset me. I told him i had had a break down and yet he wasn't kind, supportive or respectful. If i had said i was sexually harrassed (which i have been ample times and preyed on physically too) would he have dismissed me as a "hysterical woman"? I think he's insulting thousands of people's experience. I read the link you sent and boy is his arrogance disgusting.

He says he has no affiliation with AA — so then why does he refuse to even investigate? I know three stronghold cults within AA.

  • 1. Road to Recovery (UK hub for Clancy)
    http://www.roadtorecoverygroup.org.uk/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=24&Itemid=35
    As you can see it says on the banner "road to recovery — group of Alcoholics Anonymous". Now if that isn't an admission of splintering what is??
  • 2. Pacific Group (Clancy) (I have met Clancy & experienced his weird cult follows personally — i will tell you about it in another email — i really need to).
  • 3. Primary Purpose —

What i find the most upsetting of Rick is his belligerent refusal to research and investigate. He seemed to have started his career with good intentions... but then something changed along the way and now he has become the very thing he hates.

Have you checked out this web page: http://www.aacultwatch.co.uk/

Thank you again :)


Date: Wed, May 22, 2013 3:12 pm
From: "Orange"
Subject: Re: Account request


> Hi Mr Orange,
>
> I signed up as sunsetanon
>
> hope you can find it.

Okay, I found it. You are in. Welcome.

Again, I'll respond to the rest of your letter a little later.
Have a good day now.
== Orange

*              [email protected]       *
*          AA and Recovery Cult Debunking     *
*          http://www.orange-papers.info/      *
*        http://www.orange-papers.info/forum   *
**     "Now I know what it's like to be high on life.
**     It isn't as good, but my driving has improved."
**     == Nina, on "Just Shoot Me", 13 Jan 2006.


Date: Tue, May 21, 2013 5:57 am       (answered 23 May 2013)
From: "emma c."
Subject: Re: Account request

Hi Orange,

I just sent an email to Rick. His response has really got to me. I attach the email from the website and my response to it.

Anyway, thank you for bringing your website to the world. I stumbled on it over a year ago now and it's helped me so much.

Thank you
Emma
(sunsetanon)

(You can click on the images to get larger, more readable, versions.)


Date: Tue, May 21, 2013 10:23 am       (answered 23 May 2013)
From: "emma c."
Subject: Re: Account request

Hi Orange,

Sorry to bombard you — just wanted to send my response to Rick.

Regards,
Emma

Re: AA
From: maganon
To: rrmoderator (Unread)
Date: 05/21/2013 12:32PM

Hello Rick,

Perhaps i am an old fashioned sort of women. It's just that when i receive emails — of a distressing nature — i tend to reassure the person that what they say is taken seriously and in confidence. I will always show i am listening — perhaps addressing the points mentioned using real data to back up my reasons and always sign off accordingly.

In that respect that is why i didn't think your email was particularly pleasant.

The fact is there are many NEW splinter groups that have been causing the UK major problems. Yorks Head Office has assimilated a set of questions and procedures for certain groups to adhere to. They retaliated by ignoring the request from Head office. The web link below is from the group i attended for 18 months. They even admit that they are a group of Alcoholics Anonymous. They do not have approved literature and advise their flock not to take medication. And that if they do take medication they are dropped from the group and sponsor. Some people have committed suicide because they have stopped taking serious meds. I don't know how many more accounts i need to send to you. I will if you want me to.

[www.roadtorecoverygroup.org.uk]

Clancy brought over his version of AA a long time ago from LA to the UK — in LA it's known as the Pacific Group — in the UK it's known as Road to Recovery.

They have a hierarchy of sponsors. You are only allowed a sponsor from these groups if you have a sponsor from non-road-to-recovery meetings then you are not taken seriously. I had a sponsor (the one i talked about) who was not part of this group and they only half involved me in the meetings. I had to arrive an hour before the meeting started to set up and open up — and stay an hour after the meeting. The meeting was an hour & a half long. If you were a full RTR member then you had to do that 3 times a week. Call your sponsor at 7am every morning. Complete the tasks on the card. If for any reason you were feeling bad then the sponsor would say, "have you done everything on the suggestions card?" if the answer was no the sponsor would then say, "call me when you have" and then hang up. They had to have two home groups and another meeting of their choice. The two home groups must have their sponsor in it. So, three nights a week from 5:30pm-10pm they had to attend these meetings. They (along with other people) were told not to speak until they had completed step 5 (the confessional step). And then once they had they could confess what they had done wrong in their life and now how good it was. Some people said the exact same thing week in week out. I was nearly able to recite what he said.

One of my friends (no longer friends) had to pick his kids up after school. He was told by his sponsor he wasn't allowed to do that — that AA came first above everything. He was told that afternoon. He had to leave them at school unattended for 2 hours.

There are only a handful of these groups in London but they are growing.

  • 1. West London — 5 meetings i know of.
  • 2. South East London — 2 i know of.
  • 3. Plymouth — most of the town (the local rehabs have tried to ban the members from poaching clients)
  • 4. Bristol
  • 5. Glasgow

Like i said the Head Office have investigated but as per usual they are not willing to do anything about it.

[www.aacultwatch.co.uk]

These guys are AA people who have acknowledged these splinter groups. You should (if you are willing to) talk to them about it. They have a massive hub of information and collated from Head Office too.

Families are being broken up, friendships dissolved, alienation and isolation occur regularly. The constant fear that if you do not do what they do you will drink again which in turn means you will die. That there is only one way to sobriety and that is AA. I have been treated with post traumatic stress because of the constant belittling, dismissive statements, ignoring, freezing out, mocking, constant judgements, slanderous opinions, 4 hours of ripping me down (which when it ended i wanted to go home and kill myself as i thought i was doing "this thing" incorrectly and i was a piece of sh**). I was constantly told that recovery is a lonely path. I didn't trust anyone in the end. Whenever i talked to people they were ready to offer up useless 'therapeutic' advice when they hadn't even experienced what i had been through. It would be a throw away statement like — have you prayed today? Have you turned over your will to god?

The thing is the splinter groups and AA too are cult-like in their approach to people. I have 6+ years of experience of meetings in London. We have over 800 meetings a week in our capital. At the height of my attendance i did 6 meetings a week. I was encouraged to co for coffee with other recovering people after the meeting. To make friends in meetings only (coerced). I constantly heard people refer to non-alcoholics as "normies". A new type of language had to be learnt and understood. 12 stepping? I had no idea what on earth that meant. I found out from my sponsor about 13 stepping... it was old timers (or even newbies) preying on vulnerable women. I was preyed on in the LA meetings on my first trip to LA. A guy saw me as a rabbit in the head lights. I was young and naive. He took me to a gallery and bombarded me with sexual innuendos, smothered my senses with jokes of sex, what he liked sexually for over 3 odd hours. I went to bed with this guy. I had no idea what happened. The next day he dumped me at a bus stop. I had a massive breakdown. And i heard this was a regular activity in meetings in Los Angeles. The meetings in Beverley Hills are just as messed up.

To suggest that the only splinter groups are Synnanon and Endeavour is a dangerous path to go down. I'm not the type of person to make slanderous statements about people, groups or activities. I have experience and stories that will shine light on AA. It may not have been created to be a cult — however, over time people have done whatever they can to manipulate people. Another old friend lived with a fellow recovering alcoholic. The flatmate relapsed and my then friend kicked him out and stopped being his mate?! He justified it by saying he didn't want people like that (non-believers) affecting him and possibly making him drink again.

Anyway, those are but a few of my stories.

Regards,
Emma

Hello again, Emma,

Wow. That's about all I can say. Wow. They did that to you in Los Angeles, huh? And judges still sentence people to go to A.A. meetings?

Well, Rick Ross may ignore and delete your letters, but I'm not going to. And since this web site is getting almost 3 million hits a month now, a few people will read your story.

Speaking of which, yes, I occasionally read http://www.aacultwatch.co.uk/. I like their site, and learn some good things from them.

Have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
*
**     "A fanatic is someone who ignores all facts that do not agree
**      with his chosen opinion."
**       ==  Arianna Huffington





May 12, 2013, Sunday: The Fernhill Wetlands

Canada Goose goslings
A Gathering of the Families

Canada Goose goslings
The goslings of the Family of 3, wondering if I had any more bread. Alas, I had given it all away by then.

Canada Goose goslings
A Gathering of the Families
I can't count how many goslings there are in these pictures, but it's a lot.

Canada Goose goslings
The Family of 3

[The story of the goslings continues here.]





[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-letters354.html#Mona_Lisa ]

Date: Wed, May 22, 2013 4:16 pm       (answered 23 May 2013)
From: "Mona Lisa"
Subject: Rick Ross vs. Steve Hassan

Recently, while doing some research on the Scientology cult, I ran across what appears to be a feud between Rick Ross and Steve Hassan. Or perhaps it's more accurate to say that Rick is publishing some seriously nasty stuff about Steve, complaining about his ethics and fees. I don't think Steve is responding in kind.

http://www.rickross.com/reference/general/general1529.html

It seems to me that a guy with no professional credentials, no education past high school, a history of both criminal and civil legal troubles and who charges pretty steep fees for his own work is on fairly shaky ethical ground himself, and really shouldn't be going around pointing fingers at others. But I don't know the backstory. Do you know what's behind Ross's mudslinging?

Mona

Hello Mona,

It's good to hear from you again. Wow, when it rains, it pours. The previous bunch of letters also complained about Rick Ross.

I find Rick Ross's denunciation of Steve Hassan to be totally hypocritical. Rick Ross used to make a living by kidnapping children from cults and holding them prisoner and torturing and "reverse brainwashing" them to get them to say what the paying parents wanted to hear. Ross called it "exit counseling". And I never saw Rick Ross print up a schedule of what he charged the parents for committing such crimes. I know that it was a profitable business. Wikipedia mentions a typical price of $5000 per kidnapping (in 1980s dollars).

While I personally find Steve Hassan's prices to be high, that's his business and he has a right to set his prices as he chooses. He is making a living at it; I'm not.

The thing that I like about Steve Hassan is that he has some good sound advice about how to get loved ones out of cults. (See his books, here.) He understands what it is like to be in a cult because he was in the Moonies, and was personally used and abused by Rev. Sun Myung Moon, for several years. Rick Ross has zero experience there.

Steve Hassan does not recommend coercive "exit counseling" like Ross has done. Hassan recognizes that such abuse can cause more harm than good. The truth of the matter is, most people eventually drop out of cults without any kidnapping and imprisonment and "counseling" to "help" them.

I suspect that Rick Ross is behaving the way that he does precisely because he is incompetent and has nothing to sell. As you mentioned, he has zero credentials or training. And zero experience in a cult. He is just a self-declared "expert", without education, training, or experience. He seems to be very jealous of anyone who presents any competition. (There are more examples of that in the letters here.) He is very quick to denounce others as knowing nothing while promoting himself as an expert. And he rationalizes that his critics are all cult members, which is not true at all. (See the Wikipedia page.) That is an ad hominem attack, which is, ironically, a propaganda technique routinely used by cults. And it's also Delegitimize One's Opponent, another common propaganda trick.

If Rick Ross were really devoted to getting rid of cults, and stopping them from harming young people, you would think that he would welcome all of the allies and help that he could get. (I do.)

In the final analysis, I think that the "anti-cult movement" as promoted by Rick Ross is just another scam. There are con artists on both sides of the fence.

Oh well, have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**    A fanatic is a man who consciously over compensates a secret doubt.
**      ==  Aldous Huxley





[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-letters354.html#Richard_B ]

Date: Sun, May 19, 2013 1:03 am       (answered 23 May 2013)
From: "Richard B."
Subject: Leaving AA, leaving an LGAT

Richard B here —

Thanks again for your spirited anti-cult muckraking. It helps keep me sane.

A useful term — Large Group Awareness Training, or LGAT — has come to my attention lately. http://www.lgattruth.com and Wikipedia have a lot to say on the subject.

Is AA an LGAT? One positive thing I've found about AA is the solid and down-to-earth accounts people can give you of their lives — this quite apart from the negative, life-hating Buchmanite theology that comes close to poisoning the whole damned thing. Disclosure: I'm a proud member of the Newcomers Rescue League. I make a special point of urging them to tear the Big Book to shreds. And questioning the virgin birth of Bill Wilson. Etc. etc.

One the other hand, unfortunately, there IS such a thing as a cult that is nothing but a cult through and through and can't possibly be turned into anything else.

I bring this up because the wife of a friend of mine has recently gotten involved in something called the Pathways Institute, with the result that she's up at 4 a.m. texting possible recruits. Besides being full of shit — selling people what they already have — this operation is also a classic pyramid scheme.

How many people, I wonder, "graduate" from AA, as she did, to blatantly money-centered and coercive LGATs? I'm horrified by what I've seen. And there's this creepy "Godspell look" that members have. I'd like to think there could be a happy ending to this — a sudden "what have I been doing" disaffection, followed by a rush to the exit — but then there's the thought of the damage that may have to come first.

No doubt there's something on your site that's germane to this situation. Could you point me in its direction?

Many thanks

rb

P.S.:

I've just just noticed your endorsement of Margaret Thaler Singer. A good sign. I'll keep digging. And thanks for letting me bend your ear.

rb

Hello again, Richard,

It's good to hear from you. Ah yes, the LGAT racket. The first time I heard of that particular con, it was "Werner Erhard" (really, Jack Rosenberg) selling it in his "est" scam. The logic is simple and brilliant: "Why cheat one person at a time out of their money when you can cheat 300 people at a time?" It's the application of mass-production techniques to cult money-making.

Werner Erhard claimed that he could enlighten whole crowds just as effectively as a more traditional teacher doing one-on-one work. But of course what was really going on there was some standard brainwashing techniques, including heavy use of the Cognitive Dissonance Technique.

People come out of those weekend-long sessions with their minds all spun out, and while they are still dizzy and euphoric, instructed to sign up for more courses of "awareness training", and to also go recruit their friends and relatives and co-workers.

By the way, it's still going on. When Werner Erhard was about to get busted for all kinds of crimes, he sold his organization to a subordinate and fled to Europe, where he lives in comfort off of his stolen millions. The subordinate continues the racket under the names "The Forum", "The Landmark Forum", "Landmark Educational Forum" and "Landmark Education".

Here are some links to information about "Werner Erhard" and "est":

  1. est graduates

  2. Adelaide Bry wrote a book that glorified Werner Erhard, and Werner approved of it.

  3. the chorus line of celebrities

  4. the Hunger Project rip-off

  5. Adelaide Bry praises Werner and his clones

  6. Superhuman Perfection

  7. Werner Erhard felt entitled to control and prohibit the sexual activities of his followers, while he enjoyed a life of unlimited non-stop sexual indulgence himself.

  8. Werner Erhard was a vicious woman-hater with an unstable personality

  9. Werner the megalomaniac

  10. And then there was this letter, ostensibly from one of "Werner Erhard"'s followers, Jack Rafferty disputes a story.

  11. Letter to a defender of Werner Erhard

About, "How many people, I wonder, "graduate" from AA, as she did, to blatantly money-centered and coercive LGATs?"
I think the answer is, "Some, perhaps many." And it isn't just LGAT rackets. I hear many stories about A.A. members also getting into goofy things like pyramid marketing schemes, and "gifting tables", and hocus-pocus nonsense like A Course In Miracles and God Calling. A few months back, there was a story in the forum about a "gifting table" racket in A.A. — sponsors recruiting their sponsees — that ended in murder:

And years ago, I was saddened to see Nori Muster finally get out of the Hari Krishna cult, only to declare that the 12 Steps were a "cure for cults".

It seems that once people throw their logical thinking minds into the trash can and believe that irrational illogical nonsense can really work for them, they have opened the door to many kinds of insane behavior.

About Prof. Margaret Thaler Singer: Yes, I really like her and admire her for her work. I feel sad about how her life ended. She got ripped to shreds by attorneys who argued in court that if you cannot predictably compel someone to commit a crime, then there is no such thing as brainwashing. And they did their best to totally discredit her life's work. Well, the lawyers were just nitpicking and taking things to extremes. Yes, there is such a thing as brainwashing and coercive persuasion, even if you cannot reliably make The Manchurian Candidate out of everybody.

To end on a bright note, you must see the movie Semi-Tough, starring Burt Reynolds, Kris Kristofferson, and Jill Clayburgh. It is a delicious spoof of Werner Erhard and est. "Did you get it? Do you get it? You are all assholes and you can't go to the bathroom!" Perhaps you can find it on the Internet or on late-night TV.

Have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     "Of course, we brainwash in Synanon. The dirty brains we get
**     all the time need to be washed for Chrissake!"
**       ==  Charles "Chuck" Dederich





May 12, 2013, Sunday: The Fernhill Wetlands

Canada Goose goslings
A Gathering of the Families

Canada Goose goslings
The Family of 7

Canada Goose goslings
Several families, hanging out together

Canada Goose goslings
Several families, hanging out together

[The story of the goslings continues here.]





[The previous letter from Randaron is here.]

[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.info/orange-letters354.html#Randy_R ]

Date: Thu, May 23, 2013 3:13 am       (answered 27 May 2013)
From: "Randy R.", aka randaron
Subject: FW: I hope this helps...

Now you stated that Alcoholics Anonymous had a success rate of less than zero for sobriety, and established that A.A. has nearly a 6-to-1 death-to-success ratio. if success is measured by sales "how many books have you sold" A.A. 30 million, as well as many other publications, you ? as for Dr. George E. Vaillant. he is more likely to be disgruntled because the corporation called World Services Inc. did not give him a severance package of 2 or 300 million dollars like most non-profit trustees such as UNICEF and others with similar agendas... you know those people that help all those starving kids from there 8 million $ homes in the Hamptonsand of course its not about the money with them either...! So what you say is 30 million "according to the sale of Big books" got sober and 180 million committed suicide or was that Dr. Vaillant that says that? More than 2 thirds of the US population. wow 6 to 1 huh, by the way A.A. has no leaders just trusted servants you should read the book at least once. without injecting extremely superior intellect between sentences. And I had got the numbers from you and the link below

Hello again, Randaron,

Actually, one person does not establish a rate, because a rate is something per something else, like miles per gallon, or success stories per 100 A.A. newcomers. So you can't declare that A.A. has a 100% success rate for you. Also, you have no idea what really caused you to quit drinking. There is zero evidence to support the idea that A.A. somehow caused you to quit drinking. And what caused you to decide to quit drinking and go to A.A. in the first place? That was the real cause of your sobriety. The A.A. rationalization about "if it helps one person" is just a just another standard propaganda trick and dodge. The truth is that A.A. kills more people than it helps. That is no great accomplishment. Dr. George E. Vaillant, who went on to become an enthusiastic Trustee of Alcoholics Anonymous, established that A.A. has nearly a 6-to-1 death-to-success ratio. And Dr. Vaillant plainly said that the few people who quit drinking in A.A. were the ones who were going to quit drinking anyway. He said that A.A. did not improve the sobriety situation at all. A.A. produced a zero percent improvement over no treatment or help or "group support". But, because Dr. Vaillant just loves the A.A. cult religion, he said that everybody should get shoved into A.A. anyway, so that they can "confess their sins to a high-status healer". Yes, he is nuts. And that is the A.A. leadership talking. We were just discussing the harm that A.A. does, in a previous letter, here:

June 21, 2012 (REVISED July 2, 2012) "Books That Shaped America" Exhibition to Open June 25List Includes Popular Favorites, Forgotten Titles
The Library of Congress — the world's largest repository of knowledge and information — is beginning its multiyear "Celebration of the Book" with an exhibition, "Books That Shaped America," opening June 25. The exhibition is part of a larger series of programs, symposia and other events that explore the important and varied ways that books influence our lives.

http://www.loc.gov/today/pr/2012/12-123.html

"Alcoholics Anonymous" (1939) The famous 12-step program for stopping an addiction has sold more than 30 million copies. Millions of men and women worldwide have turned to the program co-founded by Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob Smith to recover from alcoholism. The "Big Book," as it is known, spawned similar programs for other forms of addiction.

Hello again, Randy,

Well, starting at the top:

  1. if success is measured by sales "how many books have you sold" A.A. 30 million, as well as many other publications, you ?

    Success is not measured by book sales. It is measured by what percentage of the patients — alcoholic newcomers — get and stay sober.

    Don't you notice what is wrong with that number? 30 Million? But there are fewer than two million A.A. members in the whole world. But they have sold 30 million books just in the USA? So what is really happening is that a lot of people get invited, coerced, cajoled, or seduced into attending some A.A. meetings, where they are given a Big Book, or buy one. Then they find that it is bullshit and throw it away. I find old copies of the Big Book in used bookstores and Goodwills all over town. I have about 10 of them myself now, second, third, and fourth editions. And they have absolutely nothing to do with my sobriety.

    What is really sad is reading all of the inscriptions in the used books, people wishing the former owner well, and yammering about how wonderful the program is, and it's only up from here. And then the book ends up in Goodwill. We can only guess what happened to the former book owner.

  2. as for Dr. George E. Vaillant. he is more likely to be disgruntled because the corporation called World Services Inc. did not give him a severance package of 2 or 300 million dollars like most non-profit trustees such as UNICEF and others with similar agendas...

    Nice try at an ad hominem attack on Dr. and Prof. George E. Vaillant, but it does not wash. Dr. Vaillant did his research on alcoholics at the Cambridge-Sommerville Hospital for 20 years before he became a Trustee of Alcoholics Anonymous. And he is not against A.A., he absolutely loves it. He insists that everybody should get shoved into A.A. even if it does not work, so that they can "get an attitude change from confession of sins to a high-status healer." George Vaillant is in love with the cult religion. He doesn't seem to care that the program fails to save people's lives.

  3. 180 million committed suicide or was that Dr. Vaillant that says that? More than 2 thirds of the US population. wow 6 to 1 huh,
    I never said anything like that, and neither did Dr. Vaillant. Don't be ridiculous. What Dr. Vaillant reported was that out of his first 100 patients, whom he tracked for 8 years, the score was: 5 sober, 29 dead, 66 still drinking. That is nearly a 6-to-1 dead-to-sober ratio.

  4. by the way A.A. has no leaders just trusted servants
    Baloney. Ever heard of Greg Muth, President and General Manager, who took home $250,000 per year, at least, and gave his lawyer friend Thomas Jasper $469,000 of A.A. funds as a going-away present?

    Now the current chair of the General Service Board, elected in 2009, is the Very Reverend Ward Ewing, Class A Trustee and just retired President, General Theological Seminary, NYC (Episcopal). So, finally a man of the cloth as the head.

    And the General Manager of AA's General Service Office is Phyllis Halliday.

  5. you should read the book at least once. without injecting extremely superior intellect between sentences.
    Oh, I have read the book, and it is a pack of lies and cult religion bullshit. And that's why I criticize it.

  6. Then you quoted my last response to you, and you failed to absorb a single fact from it.

  7. Lastly, about your quote about The Library of Congress having a show, and the Big Book being one of the books that shaped America: Some librarian wrote some fluff:
    "Alcoholics Anonymous" (1939) The famous 12-step program for stopping an addiction has sold more than 30 million copies. Millions of men and women worldwide have turned to the program co-founded by Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob Smith to recover from alcoholism.

    Yes, millions of people turned to "the Program", and it failed them. It turned out to be a fraud and a hoax that didn't work to make people quit drinking. So they threw the book in the trash can. 30 million of them.

    And yes, the A.A. "Big Book" is a book that shaped America just like how Mein Kampf is a best-selling book that shaped Germany. Both books are packs of lies that harmed people. America is worse off for the 12-Step hoax.

Have a good day now.

== Orange

*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
**     If some fool practices medicine without a license and kills a
**     coronary disease patient by giving him a poisonous witch's brew
**     of toxic herbs and chemicals, that fool will most assuredly be
**     prosecuted for manslaughter and practicing medicine without a
**     license.
**     But if some fool practices medicine without a license and kills an
**     alcoholic or a drug addict by giving him a poisonous witch's brew
**     of old cult religion and faith healing, nobody gets prosecuted.
**     Now why is that?

[The next letter from Randaron is here.]





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