Letters, We Get Mail, CCLXXVIII
by A. Orange



[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-letters278.html#Amy_H ]

Date: Wed, December 14, 2011 6:42 pm     (answered 19 December 2011)
From: "Amy H."
Subject: aa 13 steppers

I am interested in exposing AA for the sex preditors that use it as a place to find victums.

Amy

Hello Amy,

So am I. Thanks for the note. I consider it a despicable crime to target and exploit sick women who are trying to get healthy. Talk about preying on the vulnerable. That is really low.

For some stories of the worst of it, check out these links:

Have a good day now.

== Orange

*             orange@orange-papers.org        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
*       http://www.Orange-Papers.org/forum/   *
**      Someday, maybe there will exist a well-informed, well-considered,
**      and yet fervent public conviction that the most deadly of all
**      possible sins is the mutilation of a child's spirit.
**         ==  Erik Erikson





[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-letters278.html#Christine_H ]

Date: Wed, December 21, 2011 8:42 am     (answered 14 November 2011)
From: "Christine H."
Subject: Help !

Hello Agent Orange,

I'm a mom of a 19 year old kid. He was in treatment for drugs for a year. He was "clean and sober" for almost 2 years, then he decided that NA was a cult and didn't want to be identified as "Hi, my name is Alex and I'm an addict". He said he hated to be reminded every single day that he was an addict. He said he was guilted out for not going to enough meetings (like every night). He says that he would never go to another NA meeting again even if he started using crack again. He says that I'm brainwashed (I went to a lot of meetings with him). I feel betrayed, I feel that his amends letter to me was a fake. He is now drinking and I'm worried he will go back to drugs eventually. I'm not asking you for help with my son. I have read all your work but then got confused when I read Agent Green's information. I did see that you have been "clean" for 10 years. How have you remained clean for 10 years without the program of AA or NA ? Can you give me some reading on othe ways to stay clean besides going to NA meetings so that I can pass it along to my son.

If you have read this email, I really appreciate it. Thank you

Christine

Hello Christine,

Thank you for the letter. I hope you and your son are doing well.

Last questions first: Yes, I have now stayed clean and sober for 11 years. I did it by not drinking any alcohol, or taking any drugs, or smoking any cigarettes. I do not go to any meetings or "work any program". I just don't take those things any more, because I don't want to get sick again.

There are many other organizations that can help people to get and stay clean and sober, and they all work better than the 12-Step cult. I made a printable list of them here:
http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-alt_list.html

I discussed what has helped me and other people to stay clean and sober here: How did you get to where you are?

Personally, I went to SMART meetings for a while, and I found that to be a breath of fresh air after the crazy dogma of Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous. I also hear good things about SOS, and Lifering, all of them are establishing more and more meeting sites.

Note that SMART does not expect anybody to go to SMART meetings for the rest of their life. What they expect is that you will go to meetings for a while, and learn what you are going to learn, and then walk out and get on with your life. It's like going to high school. You learn what you are going to learn, and then you graduate and go out and live. You don't spend the rest of your life going to the same classes again and again, forever. Only a cult demands that you always go to meetings forever, and you can't ever quit the cult. This is actually an A.A. slogan: "Alcoholics Anonymous is like the Mafia: If you leave it, you die."

Speaking of which, you can go to SMART meetings too, and learn the techniques too. We never objected to relatives coming to learn what it was all about, and learn what their kin were involved with.

One comment there: please go to at least three different meetings before deciding whether you like it. The reason is, meetings are as different as people's personalities, and they often take on the personality of the leader (facilitator). In my area, there were three meetings. The first was run by a professor, and it was staid and formal, and not my cup of tea. The second was run by university students who were learning to be drug and alcohol counselors. They were nice kids and I liked them, but I had a hard time relating to some kids who had never done any drugs or alcohol, and who were so young. I was older than their fathers. The third meeting was much looser and free-wheeling, run by a former doper who skate-boarded and played in a band. One visiting facilitator called it "the wackiest ship in the Navy". That fit me just fine. I felt comfortable there and could relate to the other people there.

About "Agent Green", she is a member of the Al-Anon cult religion, which is like the women's auxiliary of A.A. She is not in recovery. She has never quit drugs or alcohol. She just has strong opinions on the subject of 12-Step recovery, and is a true believer in it, even though she has never done it. Unfortunately, she grossly distorts the facts and outright lies about me while accusing me of lying. I have debated her here and here.

By the way, I don't think you are brainwashed. Brainwashed people do not ask questions and seek to learn the truth.

Have a good day now, and a Merry Christmas, and I hope your son does well.

== Orange

*             orange@orange-papers.org        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
*       http://www.Orange-Papers.org/forum/   *
**     Note that any- and everything that keeps you from appreciating
**     your spiritual source is an impediment. This particularly
**     includes relying on someone else or some organization without
**     examining the truths that they insist you believe.
**       ==  Dr. Wayne W. Dyer, Inspiration Perpetual Flip Calendar, 19 December





[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-letters278.html#Peter_F ]

Date: Wed, December 21, 2011 7:13 am     (answered 23 December 2011)
From: "Peter F."
Subject: Have You Been Labelled CoDependent?

Time Was You Might Have Been Saddled With Penis Envy

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/dr-peter-ferentzy/co-dependency_b_1160135.html

Peter Ferentzy, PhD
Author of Dealing With Addiction — why the 20th century was wrong
http://www.peterferentzy.com

Hello again, Peter,

Thanks again for another thought-provoking article.

I love these lines. They are true, and also funny:

Every generation has its quirks, and there was a time when people burned witches. Today, instead, we torment women with psychobabble — a much more humane approach to stupidity.

You described the rise of codependency as "part and parcel of a cultural shift hostile to any kind of dependence." Ironically, the 12-Step culture actually glorifies powerlessness and dependency. Bill Wilson constantly raved about how we had to be dependent on a "Higher Power". While he was in the middle of an 11-year-long bout of clinical depression, and under the care of two psychiatrists, Bill Wilson argued:

      We realize that the word "dependence" is as distasteful to many psychiatrists and psychologists as it is to alcoholics. Like our professional friends, we, too, are aware that there are wrong forms of dependence. ... But dependence upon an A.A. group or upon a Higher Power hasn't produced any baleful results.
      So how, exactly, can the willing person continue to turn his will and his life over to the Higher Power? ... His lone courage and unaided will cannot do it. Surely he must now depend on Somebody or Something else.
Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, William Wilson, pages 38-39.

No baleful results, besides 11 years of clinical depression and being reduced to raving lunacies.

Bill also rationalized:

"Therefore dependence, as A.A. practices it, is really a means of gaining true independence of the spirit."  
Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, page 36.

And Bill Wilson declared that his liberation from alcohol addiction was:

Six months earlier, the broker [Bill Wilson] had been relieved of his drink obsession by a sudden spiritual experience, following a meeting with an alcoholic friend who had been in contact with the Oxford Groups of that day.   ...   Though he could not accept all the tenets of the Oxford Groups, he was convinced of the need for moral inventory, confession of personality defects, restitution to those harmed, helpfulness to others, and the necessity of belief in and dependence upon God.
The Big Book, William G. Wilson, pages xv and xvi of the Foreword.

(That was, of course, terribly deceptive writing. Ebby Thacher, who recruited Bill Wilson into the Oxford Group cult, was not merely "in contact" with the Oxford Group. He was a member and a recruiter for the cult. And Bill Wilson really did "accept the tenets of the Oxford Groups", but he did not wish to admit that he was simply selling a copy of the pro-Nazi Oxford Group.)

Other 12-Step missionaries rationalize the wonderfulness of dependency on cult religion:

The AA program reverses that negative spirituality and provides the conditions necessary for a higher level of personality development to help recovering alcoholics satisfy their basic needs without alcohol and achieve a sense of well-being in their lives. If that development ultimately includes a joyful dependence on God, it seems far preferable to a destructive dependence on alcohol.
Title: Spirituality: The key to recovery from alcoholism.
Source: Counseling & Values, April 1996, Volume 40, Issue 3, Page 196.
Authors: Warfield, Robert D.; Goldstein, Marc B.

That is, of course, a good example of Pseudo-intellectual Bull — lots of big words that mean nothing, or worse, tell lies.

In searching for interesting quotes about dependency, I found Sharen K.'s letter, where she said,

In that same book I found someone's proposed symptomatology of codependence, followed by a statement that said that no symptomatology on codependence has ever been found to hold water. I added that to my webpage that starts out my description of my encounter with the idea of codepedence, at
http://home.att.net/~s.l.keim/Victim_Correction11.html.
The impression that I get from the recent research that this book describes, is that these traditional beliefs were based on a desire to believe in Wagnerian absolutes of powerlessness over one's own destructive tendencies, serene acceptance of others' destructive tendencies, and treating those who don't have this serene acceptance as pathetic mollycoddles.

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

== Orange

*             orange@orange-papers.org        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
*       http://www.Orange-Papers.org/forum/   *
**
**     Oh Great All-Powerful Winnie-the-Pooh,
**     There's no Higher Power quite like you.
**     Upon my knees I humbly pray
**     that you keep me sober just for today.
**     And now the whole wide world can see,
**     that I've been restored to sanity!
**     Amen.
**        ==  John





[The previous letter from Catherine_K is here.]

[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-letters278.html#Catherine_K ]

Date: Tue, December 20, 2011 7:31 pm     (answered 23 December 2011)
From: "Catherine K"
Subject: Re: Horror Story of 12 Step Eating Disorder Treatment

Orange,

Thanks for the info, and I would also like to thank the reader who replied. These links show a perspective that I had never seen before.

Incidentally, I thought you might be interested in this link:

http://news.yahoo.com/bizarre-case-castlewood-treatment-center-near-st-louis-205500290.html

It isn't about AA or 12 step treatment, but it addresses another brainwashing-related problem with an eating disorder treatment facility. I'm sure things like this may occur in drug and alcohol facilities too. It's sick what passes for treatment at "recovery" facilities of all kinds. The problem mentioned in this article — therapists implanting false memories — is something that I'm sure happened at the eating disorder facility as well as the one mentioned here. In your last reply, you advised that I look into suing them. I am thinking about it. My main reason for hesitation is financial: I don't have a whole lot of extra money to spend on hiring a lawyer. But then again, maybe others will jump on board if I do it. As is the case in the article with Castlewood Treatment Center, maybe other women would come forth after the initial suit is filed. Bottom line: someone needs to put a stop to the brainwashing and witch-doctoring that is happening throughout the recovery industry — in treatment of substance abuse, eating disorders, and other types of problems.

Thanks once again for all you do with this site.

Sincerely,
Catherine

Hello again, Catherine,

Thanks for the link to the Castlewood Treatment Center story. Actually, that is very relevant to what I'm doing with this web site. That is a story of some almost unbelieveable abuse in the name of rehab and treatment: "the memories of satanic rituals, multiple rapes and multiple personalities were all implanted by her therapist".

Jeez Loise. The "recovered memories" hoax is still going on? And of course they pronounced her as sick as her checkbook was healthy. That is a common rehab abuse. The fatter the patient's bank acount and health insurance are, the sicker the patient is diagnosed to be, and the more he or she needs prolonged treatment. This case bears watching.

Have a good day and a Merry Christmas now. And a happy New Year.

== Orange

*             orange@orange-papers.org        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
*       http://www.Orange-Papers.org/forum/   *
**
**     The Wizard's First Rule:
**     People will believe a lie because they want it to be true,
**     or because they are afraid it might be true.
**
**     The Wizards Second Rule:
**     The greatest harm can result from the best intentions.
**       ==  The Legend of the Seeker





May 24, 2009, Sunday:

Canada Geese family with 9 goslings
The Family of 9, coming to get some munchies.


Canada Geese family with 2 goslings
Canada Geese family with 2 goslings
I think this is the family with two new goslings that I was seeing five days earlier, here. These little babies grow so fast that you can see a big change in just five days.


Canada Geese famil`y with 2 goslings
Canada Geese family with 2 goslings

[More gosling photos below, here.]





[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-letters278.html#Kurt_L ]

Date: Wed, December 14, 2011 10:10 pm     (answered 24 December 2011)
From: "Kurt L."
Subject: Bill w and aa

God works in mysterious ways. He used a narcisscist to start aa. Thank god bill w had dr bob and all his other minders. I found your writings helpful. Many aa's try to turn bill into a saint. Even though at the beginning of our meetings we read "we are not saints"

Anyways, i would like to let u know that aa has saved my life, my fathers, my sister, but sadly could not save my brother. I understand how it appears to be a cult, sometimes i think so myself, but it works. I guess i am hoping to change your opinion of the aa a little. Please take another look at the 11 and 12 traditions as well as the general service structure of aa. I think bill was certainly a pscyopath, and knew it. Accordlying, Towards the end he tried to be more anonymous. He turned his leadership role over, perhaps his minders had to force him. Had he tried to remain a leader, guru, or prophet aa surely woukd not have survived to this point.

In conclusion, i see aa as a set of spiritual principles found in all nearly all religions. If one tries to live up to these principles their life will be better, and they can quit drinking, drugs, etc (there are over a hundred 12 step programs, more everyday). Its about progress not perfection. "I beg u to lay aside prejudice. Dont miss the beauty of the forest because of a few ugly trees." Paraphrased from big book.


Date: Thu, December 15, 2011 12:54 am     (answered 24 December 2011)
From: "Kurt L."
Subject: Bill w

Read page 254 of language of heart by bill w. To see how he finally eased up on athiests. Bill talks about an athiest whom bill realizes is more more spiritual than himself. He also wrote an a phamlet about how our critics can be our best friends or help us or something. (You will have to excuse, i am a paraphrase worse than b will) so really u are a friend of aa, u remind us of our flaws and therefore help us. Looking at more blogs and books u reconmended. I am on two weeks bed rest and enjoying a most likely imaginary debate with u. Aa certainly has no monopoly on recovery or spirituality.

Hello Kurt,

Thank you for the letters.

  1. Well, the most important fact first: God did not use a narcissist to start Alcoholics Anonymous. Maybe the Devil did, but please do not blame God for the existence of A.A.

  2. Next most important point: Alcoholics Anonymous does not work to make alcoholics quit drinking and save their lives. Period. That fact has been verified over and over again. When A.A. was put to the test, it was found to make the binge drinking and the death rate worse.

  3. The fact that you and your relatives enjoy participation in A.A. after you quit drinking does not mean that it saved your lives. You saved your own lives by getting a grip and controlling your own behavior and quitting drinking. A.A. then stole the credit for your accomplishments and gave you a cultish social club.

  4. Alcoholics Anonymous does not just appear to be a cult, it is a cult. Read the Cult Test.

    Even a famous Trustee of A.A. said that A.A. was a cult religion:

    "...AA certainly functions as a cult and systematically indoctrinates its members in ways common to cults the world over. ...in the absence of proven scientific efficacy, critics are legitimate in suggesting that mandated AA attendance may be criticized as a failure of proper separation between church and state."
    == A.A. Trustee Prof. Dr. George E. Vaillant, The Natural History Of Alcoholism Revisited, page 266.

  5. Bill Wilson often talked out of both sides of his mouth on many issues, and his stance on atheists is an example of that. Bill Wilson wrote a lot of insulting condescending things about agnostics and atheists in chapter four of the Big Book — "We Agnostics". Bill also sneered at atheists in his second book, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions:

          Let's look first at the case of the one who says he won't believe — the belligerant one. He is in a state of mind which can be only described as savage. His whole philosophy of life, in which he so gloried, is threatened. It's bad enough, he thinks, to admit alcohol has him down for keeps. But now, still smarting from that admission, he is faced with something really impossible. How he does cherish the thought that man, risen so majestically from a single cell in the primordial ooze, is the spearhead of evolution and therefore the only god that his universe knows! Must he renounce all this to save himself?
          At this juncture, his A.A. sponsor usually laughs. This, the newcomer thinks, is just about the last straw. This is the beginning of the end. And so it is: the beginning of the end of his old life, and the beginning of his emergence into a new one. His sponsor probably says, "Take it easy. The hoop you have to jump through is a lot wider than you think. At least I've found it so. So did a friend of mine who was a one-time vice-president of the American Atheist Society, but he got through with room to spare."
          "Well," says the newcomer, "I know you're telling me the truth. It's no doubt a fact that A.A. is full of people who once believed as I do. ..."
    William G. Wilson, Tom Powers, and other hidden co-authors, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pages 25-26.

    By the way, that story is another Bill Wilson lie. There was no such organization as "the American Atheist Society" in existence then, so an ex-Vice President of that Society didn't join A.A. and become a believer.

    Then, many years later, in 1961, Bill Wilson discovered that an atheist who had died, a man with whom he had argued about theology, was actually a nice, generous man. So Bill Wilson wrote something nice about that one atheist, which was reprinted on page 254 of Language of the Heart. But they didn't bother to erase chapter 4 of the Big Book, did they? Nor did they rewrite chapter 4 to say nice things about the unbelievers. Nor did they change their actual attitudes towards the agnostics and atheists. Aren't you aware of the flap about the Toronto A.A. organization delisting the atheists groups? (Look here and here.) So much for allowing the atheists to be part of A.A.

  6. The pamphlet that you described is itself hypocritical. The atheists are not "critics" of A.A., are they? Not unless A.A. is nothing but a superstitious cult religion. The atheists do not challenge the value of quitting drinking and saving your own life, now do they? They just question the sanity of expecting the Easter Bunny, or Santa Claus, or some "Higher Power" ghost to save you. The atheists are people who try hard to be realistic and truthful about life, the universe, and everything, while the true believers are often nothing more than children indulging in wishful thinking and fairy tales. "Santa will bring us the toys if we are good, and Bill Wilson's Promises really will come true."

  7. Bill Wilson did try to remain the leader of Alcoholics Anonymous. He made a big show of turning control of A.A. over to the Board of Trustees, but he expected them to rubber-stamp his dictates. Bill thought that it was just a P.R. stunt, him appearing to be unselfish, and that the others would still obey him. Bill was shocked when the Trustees voted their consciences and rejected his new "Twelve Traditions". Bill whined and complained and wrote a sarcastic letter to the Board of Trustees asking if they would still allow him to have an office in the headquarters building. Then Bill went on a nationwide campaign for years to get the membership to vote for his new "Traditions". Bill finally got his own way.

    Then, Bill flipped out again when the Trustees would not pay Bill's mistresses for him. (Look here.) Finally, when Bill Wilson learned that he really was not running A.A. any more, Bill quit A.A. and went to Stepping Stones to sulk, and had no more involvement with A.A. other than to collect the checks for the stolen Big Book royalties. Francis Hartigan, who was Lois Wilson's private secretary, wrote a biography of Bill Wilson where he said that the hard-core A.A. members were rather disconcerted to see that the Founder was no longer really in A.A. any more. But the true believers kept A.A. going anyway.

  8. Living up to "spiritual principles" is wonderful, if people do it. If everybody lived according to Jesus's teachings in the Sermon on the Mount, we would have Heaven on Earth. Unfortunately, they don't.

    The A.A. slogan "We Are Not Saints" is a disgusting excuse that is used to rationalize everything from sexual exploitation to financial dishonesty. Yes, the true believer A.A. members do believe that Bill Wilson was a saint who got the 12 Steps straight from God, but nobody else in A.A. has to be a saint.

    By the way, there are no "spiritual principles" in the 12 Steps. The 12 Steps are Dr. Frank Buchman's cult practices for brainwashing newcomers. So there are no A.A. "spiritual principles" for people to live up to.

    • "Dole out the truth to newcomers by teaspoons, not buckets," is not a spiritual principle.
    • "Don't tell the truth about the A.A. history," is not a spiritual principle.
    • "Find someone desperate enough to accept with eagerness what you offer," is not a spiritual principle. (The Big Book, William G. Wilson, page 96.)
    • "Make him feel hopeless. The more hopeless he feels, the better. He will be more likely to follow your suggestions" is not a spiritual principle. (The Big Book, 3rd Edition, William G. Wilson, chapter 7, "Working With Others", page 94.)
    • "Confess all of your sins to your sponsor," is not a spiritual principle.
    • "Declare yourself powerless and insane," is not a spiritual principle.
    • "Expect Higher Power to remove your defects," is not a spiritual principle.
    • "Conduct a séance and channel God and get work orders and the power to carry them out," is not a spiritual principle.
    • And Dr. Frank Buchman's "Four Absolutes" — Absolute Purity, Absolute Honesty, Absolute Love, and Absolute Unselfishness — are not spiritual principles, they are an advertising slogan.

  9. I have looked carefully at the 11th and 12th "Traditions", and analyzed them. Look here

  10. This line is really a typical Wilson Weasle: "I beg you to lay aside prejudice. Dont miss the beauty of the forest because of a few ugly trees."
    What that means is, don't notice the cultish defects of Alcoholics Anonymous. Don't see what is wrong. Abandon critical thinking and become a gullible believer for the cult.

    That is a good way to die, you know. The followers of people like Jim Jones and David Koresh and Luc Jouret did that. They suspended disbelief and just appreciated the beauty of their Prophet's teachings right up to the moment when they died for him. The smart people noticed that something was wrong and got the Hell out of there, and lived.

I hope you get well now. Take care of your health. Have a good day and a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

== Orange

*             orange@orange-papers.org        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
*       http://www.Orange-Papers.org/forum/   *
**     'If merely "feeling good" could decide, drunkenness
**     would be the supremely valid human experience.'
**       ==  William James (1842—1910), U.S. psychologist,
**        philosopher, in "The Varieties Of Religious
**        Experience", lecture 1, "Religion and Neurology" (1902)





[The previous letter from Meatbag is here.]

[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-letters278.html#Meatbag ]

Date: Fri, December 16, 2011 12:58 pm     (answered 24 December 2011)
From: "Meatbag"
Subject: Re: More Random Comments

I'm glad you find my comments amusing.

Hi again, Meatbag,

Yes, it beats many of the alternatives.

I can't really describe my own father as a peacenik Hippie, since he's too much of a Republican for that. (Though he has gotten slightly more liberal since divorcing my mother, as evidenced by him no longer foaming at the mouth when I mention food stamps or universal health care. Amazing what poverty does to your political beliefs.) However, he definitely is a sentimental teddy bear towards his kids. He adores both his sons and his daughters, and if he had any grandkids, he would love them all to pieces, regardless of sex. And I'm definitely one of those daughters who has her father wrapped around her finger.

And yeah, definitely send those pics to Cute Overload. They're probably one of my favorite parts of your site, and I wasn't even a big fan of geese before finding your site. (Used to live in a dorm next to a lake. Very pretty during the day, but the geese were a minor annoyance at night. The hairless apes upstairs who had the sex drives of rabbits on speed were a much bigger annoyance, however.)

Speaking of pictures, the newest ones you posted don't work. When I check the link for a single picture, I get a 403 Forbidden error. Could you fix that, please? I want to see more cute.

It's fixed. Somehow the new pictures got the permissions set to where only I was allowed to see them. That isn't very useful for a web site.

After looking through more of your previous letters, I found this comment from you:

>
> The computer manufacturers seem to have really cheapened out the
> quality lately, because I've never seen so much gear fail as I have
> during the last few years.
>

Speaking as a young whippersnapper who probably isn't much older than some of your gear, you are completely correct. I've had a netbook fail rather spectacularly within a year (Seriously, the thing smoked just before dying. That's why I have an extended warranty for AM). By contrast, the only hardware problems Marvin has is a broken touchpad, broken speakers, and a battery life of ~10 minutes (not bad for a laptop Marvin's age, actually). None of those are a big deal, and the only thing keeping Marvin from running is a lack of OS, which would be easily fixed if I had any other systems with floppy drives.

Also, you know that expensive gaming rig I keep mentioning? Yeah, it's currently a very expensive paperweight sitting in my room at my mom's house. Its old PSU died and took at least one of my other components with it. (Fuck you very hard, Apevia.) I think it's the motherboard, but I don't have the tools to really troubleshoot each part. I'll need to take it to either my uncle or Geek Squad. That PSU was a major scam. It couldn't handle anywhere near its rated capacity of 650W (all PSU calculators I used indicated that I needed a 350-400W PSU, yet it couldn't handle my graphics card or most of my case fans), and judging by the reviews that thing has gotten on Newegg since I got it, I'm not the only one that had problems. And annoyingly enough, Newegg stopped selling my motherboard. I did find an almost-identical motherboard should I need to replace it, but come on. My system's only a year old.

As for Deep Thought, the computer that got replaced by the gaming rig, the only major hardware failure it had was a 60 GB hard drive I added to it. To be fair, that's probably not the hard drive's fault, since it died less than a day after I got Deep Thought back from the cops (don't ask). I doubt that's a coincidence. I still have Deep Thought in a box somewhere, but the box fell while I was away at college. Not sure of its status now, but if any desktop can survive that fall, it would be Deep Thought.

I'll be glad to donate money to fix your gear once I get my own gear fixed. Just promise not to buy anything from Apevia.

Okay.

I also found Paul B's Letters and Kate S's letters while checking out your archives. They're funny. Really funny.

> you certainly have a deep anger of AA and a weird understanding of
> terriosts
Weird understanding of terrorists? If declaring that every Arabic-speaking brown person is a terrorist isn't a weird understanding of terrorism, I don't know what is. And those Sufis sound awesome. I wouldn't mind attending some of their services.

Yes, the Sufis are definitely the most ecumenical religion I've ever encountered.

As for Kate S., I'm pretty sure most smokers noticed that those little death sticks were making them feel like crap long before the 60's. And doctors that put money over the Hippocratic Oath are really not anything new, sad as that may be. Tobacco companies had a lot of money. They still have a lot of money. There's a reason why TV Tropes has the Stealth Cigarette Commercial page
<http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/StealthCigaretteCommercial>
(warning: TV Tropes is a black hole where productivity goes to die).

That, and the "nobody knew smoking was dangerous" excuse really doesn't cover modern steppers who smoke more than the aforementioned netbook.

Yes, really. That is the ultimate lame cop-out, isn't it? They didn't know, they couldn't feel the tobacco killing them. We know what we know now, so why do you "spiritual" guys still have those cigarettes in your hands now?

Incidentally, smoking is why three out of my four grandparents died before I was born. Yes, that includes the alcoholic asshole. My remaining grandparent died of Alzheimer's when I was 8. I found this article by Ben Goldacre that indicates that smoking increases the risk of Alzheimer's.

<http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2010/mar/05/smoking-alzheimers-goldacre-bad-science>

Said article is also a good example of tobacco companies paying off doctors and scientists, since the studies indicating the opposite were all done by people associated with tobacco companies.

I can believe it. Tobacco makes just about every disease worse because it cuts down on blood circulation. Smoking doesn't just make your skin gray, it does the same thing to all of your internal organs, too. One of the side effects of quitting smoking was that my digestion became four times as efficient as it used to be. The increased blood circulation suddenly made the intestines work very well at absorbing nutrients. Before, I could eat anything and never gain weight. After, suddenly calories counted, and if I indulged in too much chocolate, I gained weight and my pants got tight. It was a whole new experience.

Now imagine what is going on in your brain, and what 30 years of smoking and poor blood circulation does to the brain. Ouch! Then imagine if the improved blood circulation from quitting smoking suddenly makes your brain four times as efficient. Hmmmm....

I'm getting rid of the Windows 7 VM. It's not worth the trouble, I doubt it could run anything that my 2000 and XP VMs and WINE can't, and I already transferred everything I was going to bother transferring. That's 66 GB open for more important things.

Now, back to my Morrowcrack and Final Fantasy Tactics A2. Say hi to the birds for me.

Okay, I will. And you have a good day and a Merry Christmas too. And a Happy New Year.

== Orange

*             orange@orange-papers.org        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
*       http://www.Orange-Papers.org/forum/   *
**     Hast thou named all the birds without a gun?
**     Loved the wood-rose, and left it on its stalk?
**       ==  Ralph Waldo Emerson [1803—1882] Forebearance





[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-letters278.html#De_Program ]

Date: Fri, December 16, 2011 4:19 pm     (answered 24 December 2011)
From: "De Program"
Subject: Holy crap

Orange,

Thank you so much for putting all of this together. I'm in the process of kicking the kool-aid at the moment. Not before they broke up my family however. Like most cults, this one wants to control all reproduction and finances. Any advice for a new escapee?

De Program

Hello, De Program,

Thanks for the letter, and I'm glad to hear that you are breaking free. They broke up your family? Sorry to hear about that. They wanted to control your love life and your finances? The heck with that noise.

We were just discussing how to liberate yourself from the meeting habit and cult addiction here:
http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-letters267.html#Rational_S

And there are also ongoing forum discussions of other people breaking free,
http://www.orange-papers.org/forum/node/435
and
http://www.orange-papers.org/forum/node/557

Have a good day now, and a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

== Orange

*             orange@orange-papers.org        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
*       http://www.Orange-Papers.org/forum/   *
**    To have freedom is only to have what is absolutely necessary to enable
**    us to be what we ought to be, and to possess what we ought to possess.
**      ==  Rahel





[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-letters278.html#Jim_McD ]

Date: Wed, December 21, 2011 7:02 am     (answered 24 December 2011)
From: "Jim McD."
Subject: Just read your diatribe on AA

http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-heresy.html

You are insane, lol. Do you really believe what you wrote? From which evil spirit do you take your orders? I hereby cast you back to hell, evil beast.

Hello Jim,

Thanks for the laugh. What is especially amusing is that it is A.A. that resembles selling your soul to the Devil, and you try to pin that one on me.

Have a good day and a Merry Christmas.

== Orange

*             orange@orange-papers.org        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
*       http://www.Orange-Papers.org/forum/   *
**     What is the difference between surrendering your Will
**     and your life to "Higher Power" in Step Three, and
**     selling your soul to the Devil in trade for sobriety?





May 24, 2009, Sunday, Downtown Portland, Waterfront Park:

Canada Goose Goslings
The Goslings of the Family of 2 new ones

Canada Goose Gosling
Gosling of the Family of 2

Canada Goose Gosling
Gosling of the Family of 2 begging for more munchies
Yes, they haven't forgotten that new skill — shaking down humans for the goodies.
It's a trip to be feeding these little guys from their first day of life, and for them to be so tame and accepting. They have an attitude like, "Oh we know this guy. We've known him all of our lives." Which is like 5 days.

[The story of Carmen continues here.]





[ Link here = http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-letters278.html#Max_B ]

Date: Wed, December 21, 2011 2:00 pm     (answered 26 December 2011)
From: "Max B"
Subject: hi

Hello, thank you for all the amazing info on AA, wow. I have been "half-measuring it" for a long time, simply cause there isnt much else to believe in, and AA is so prevalent in treatment centers that the brainwashing eventually convinces me to try again only to fall again.

Deeply i have never sold myself to it, and still resist to the point of shaking when i attend meetings but sit quietly and pretend i get along and maybe a spiritual awakening will intervene, i hate this half measure.

From your readings, i realize you place a big point on the bad of "religious" aspect of AA, in reality what is wrong with being religious in some way ? the life i lived using was much worse along with the rituals/ behaviors sometimes were religious to use the next one... so ok, AA is an evil but it is surely less evil than using ?

Ive tried Jack Trimpys AVRT method , but honestly was not able to grasp it alone, i realize i need some support regardless of a belief system. Ill admit to saying im afraid to do it alone, even though i know deep down its the only way, maybe AA destroyed /taking this individual freedom and instilled fear ? oh , im torn between Jack and Bill, what to do ? all i know is i do not ever want to be who, what i was, life is good and will get better! Please suggest if you can, it would be so kindly and greatly appreciated.

Best,
Max

Hello Max,

Thanks for the letter, and thanks for the thanks.

  1. I have nothing against religion. What I am opposed to is phony lying cult religions. There is a huge difference there.

    Personally, I like the Eastern religions like Buddhism and Hinduism (properly named "Vedantic teachings"), but I don't shove that on anybody else.

    You can join any religion you wish to. I just strongly recommend that you don't join a group that will lie to you and deceive you to get you to join. And if you are getting involved with a religion — any religion — where they frown at you and disapprove if you ask probing questions about the founders and the early history of the church, get the hell out of there. And if you discover that the entire history of the church is a fabricated fairy tale, and that the "saintly" founders were really lying criminals, run, don't walk, out the door.

  2. When you say, "so ok, AA is an evil but it is surely less evil than using ?" you are reducing the issue to an either/or question. It isn't a choice of Either join A.A. Or be an addict. There are other choices available too. You don't have to be either an addict or a member of a cult religion.

    I, for example, have 11 years clean and sober now, and I don't go to any meetings or "believe in" any system, or belong to any group. I don't "work a program", either.

    What I religiously believe is, that if I just follow these few simple rules, then I won't get into trouble with drugs or alcohol:

    • Just don't take that first drink, not ever, no matter what.
    • Just don't smoke that first cigarette, not ever, no matter what.
    • Just don't take that first hit of dope, not ever, no matter what.

    Also beware of people who tell you that they have the only way, and who try to reduce the issue to a choice of either join their group or die.

  3. If A.A. actually worked, and saved the lives of alcoholics and addicts, then I would praise it. But A.A. does not work, and does not save millions, or even thousands. They are lying to you when they claim to have saved millions. (Look here.) So even joining A.A. and fervently parrotting the crazy jabber won't save you, because it doesn't work.

  4. You don't have to do it alone. There are many sane methods and groups to choose from, and they are establishing more meetings every day. I made the list into a printable file, here:
    http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-alt_list.html

    Personally, I went to SMART for a few years. That is good. I also hear a lot of good things about SOS and Lifering, but have not been to any of their meetings because they don't have meetings in this city.

  5. You wrote, "all i know is i do not ever want to be who, what i was, life is good and will get better!"
    Yes, what you want is really the core of the whole thing. When someone backslides, it is because, at that minute, he wants to get high more than he wants to stay clean and sober. A woman in SMART once described the problem as, "First, we only want to want to get sober. We wish we wanted it enough to really do it. The trick is to progress from wanting to want to get sober, to really wanting it enough to do it." Anything that helps to increase your motivation and will power is a big help. SMART teaches some techniques for "enhancing motivation".

  6. I am not sure which of Jack Trimpey's books you read. His first one — The Small Book — contained a rehash of everybody else's techniques and methods. Then, in his second book — Rational Recovery — he declared the first book obsolete and just promoted AVRT — "Addictive Voice Recognition Training" — as a panacea. Personally, I don't regard his first book as obsolete, because there is still a lot of good stuff in there, nor do I consider AVRT to be a panacea, although it is a very good thing to know.

    AVRT is really just a matter of recognizing that little voice inside of you that argues that it will really be okay to "just have one" now. One of whatever — cigarette, drink, dope. I stumbled across the same thing from 30 years of quitting smoking, and backsliding and relapsing. I noticed that, when I quit smoking, part of my mind was jabbering this stuff about how smoking is really okay, and it had a zillion excuses for why smoking only one cigarette now would be just fine. (And if I ever gave in to temptation, my goose was cooked and I was hooked again.) I called that voice the "Lizard Brain Addiction Monster", and wrote about it here:
    http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-addmonst.html

    Please read that. It isn't hard to understand. It is very much like those Walt Disney cartoons where Donald Duck has a little devil duck on one shoulder, and a little angel duck on the other shoulder, and the devil is whispering, "Smoke, Drink! It will put hair on your chest and make a man of you!" And the little angel is saying, "Oh no, no!"

    Again, I find that as long as I dispute that little addictive voice, and don't follow his suggestions, I am just fine.

    • Just don't take that first drink, not ever, no matter what.
    • Just don't smoke that first cigarette, not ever, no matter what.
    • Just don't take that first hit of dope, not ever, no matter what.

  7. It's really simple.

Have a good day, and a good life now, and Happy New Year.

== Orange

*             orange@orange-papers.org        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
*       http://www.Orange-Papers.org/forum/   *
**    Drunkenness is the vice of a good constitution, or a bad memory;
**    of a constitution so treacherously good, that it never bends till
**    it breaks, or of a memory that recollects the pleasures of getting
**    intoxicated, but forgets the pains of getting sober.
**       ==  Charles Caleb Colton (1780—1832), English writer and clergyman





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