Letters, We Get Mail, XXXII

Date: Thu, December 22, 2005 15:16
From: "John McC"
Subject: Federal Court Decision re: AA attendance

Does your site have the link re: the Federal Court decision that allows a person to NOT attend "compulsory" AA meetings due to its overwhelming religiosity? I am a DUI counselor, and have many clients who are interested in THAT court decision. Also, what can a person do for being "resistant" to a court order to ANY "self-help" group (even if its NOT AA)?

John McC.
Riverside, CA

Hi John,

Ah, Riverside. I lived there for a while, a lot of years ago, and went to Terrace Elementary School and Norte Vista High School over in Arlington. What a blast from the past.

I don't have those legal cases online, but Ken Ragge does. Look here:

http://www.morerevealed.com/courts/index.html — Archive of documents, including the legal decisions that declared that A.A. was engaging in religious ceremonies, and that sentencing someone to go to A.A. meetings was unconstitutional.

Your second question is much more interesting. Resisting all "self-help" programs and treatment. I don't think there has ever been a court case on that, and I don't think that a defendant would legally have a leg to stand on in refusing any kind of "self-help" program.

The reason is, the judge and the courts have a whole lot of freedom when it comes to sentencing people to prison, community service, education, work programs, compulsory mental treatment, you name it. The judge can even make up novel new punishments to make the sentence fit the crime. About the only things that the judge cannot do are sentence somebody to a religion, or sentence people to cruel and unusual punishments. Short of that, the judge in his courtroom is basically God.

The judge can make a defendant watch tear-jerker movies from Mothers Against Drunk Driving, and the judge can make somebody listen to old alcoholics telling their tragic stories. Somebody who objects to all self-help groups in general just doesn't have much legal ground to stand on. I doubt that he would get to first base with an objection like that.

Even arguing that treatment is completely ineffective isn't a good enough objection. It is easy to argue that prison is completely ineffective for rehabilitating criminals, but that argument rarely keeps somebody out of prison.

Have a good day.

== 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: Fri, December 23, 2005 23:26
From: PM @AOL
Subject: AA's Political Power

Mr. Orange,

Recently, I've given up alcohol and attended multiple AA meetings to see what they had to say there and if it was of any value. Overall, as you have outlined it really isn't of much value. Their dogmatic 12 step program is ridiculous and their Big Book is a product of a privileged reformed alcoholic of the 30's and reflects some of the thinking of that time as you also explain.

Why today does AA have respect and political support as a useful organization? I can't figure it out. The officially sanctioned recovery programs here in the Kansas City area apparently all support the AA approach. The only part of their approach that I fully agree with is 100% abstinence.

Where can I find out more about how AA has become a respected and applauded group of those in governmental power? Is there some money angle? i.e. corruption?

Thanks for your well written expose of AA.

Pat M.

Hi Pat,

Thanks for the compliments.

What you are asking about is one of the more amazing and fascinating stories of 20th-century America. For 70 years now, A.A. has relentlessly followed a clever plan of self-promotion, while sanctimoniously declaring that it is only a program of attraction. And they have constantly promoted their religion while declaring that it isn't a religion and they don't want to convert anybody.

For just a few of their promotional stunts, check out these links:

  1. Bill Wilson and gang used the New York Times book reviewer Percy Hutchison to promote A.A. and the Big Book for free.

  2. The early A.A. members managed to keep Morgan Ryan sober just long enough for him to appear on Gabriel Heatter's "We The People" radio program and tell all of America how a wonderful new organization called "Alcoholics Anonymous" had saved him from alcoholism, and then Morgan promptly relapsed afterwards.

  3. The June 30, 1940 financial statement of Works Publishing, Inc. says that the original A.A. members used a variety of media outlets to publicize the newly-published Big Book for free:

    The following have served to effectively publicize the book and the work during the past year. Gabriel Heater on "We the People" program, articles appearing in Liberty, Your Faith, Your Life, Time, Newsweek, The New York Times Book Review, Mr. Rockefeller's dinner for Alcoholics Anonymous, news articles on the recovery of Rollie Hemsley, catcher for the Cleveland Baseball Club, review of the book by Dr. Harry Emerson Fosdick, the Cleveland Plain Dealer series of articles, comment by Dr. Dilworth Lupton, the Washington Star series, the Houston Press, Texas newspaper series, together with many syndicated pieces.

  4. Bill Wilson went on the road and spent several years during the 1940s out grand-standing and promoting Alcoholics Anonymous.

  5. And the promotion just never stopped. Television and the movies always portray Alcoholics Anonymous in a positive light, with movies like "My Name Is Bill W.", "Clean and Sober", "The Days of Wine and Roses", and "28 Days", and positive portrayals in TV programs like "Cagney and Lacy" and "ER" and "The West Wing". Nobody on TV ever says that A.A. is actually a stupid superstitious cult religion that is completely ineffective for treating alcoholism.

Most people are fooled by A.A. and don't know anything about it except that they have heard that it is some kind of club that gets alcoholics to stop drinking and start praying, which they think must be a good thing.

A.A. has so much political power because it is a cult religion with a lot of fanatical determined true believers (who are also anonymous and invisible) who have deliberately gone after that power for a long time. Many A.A. members and "fellow travelers" have managed to work themselves into positions of authority in the "treatment industry", and they use the prestige of their positions to pass off their cult beliefs as established wisdom about alcoholism. For example, we were just recently talking about Rudolf H. Moos, Keith Humphreys, and Prof. George E. Vaillant.

In the U.S. Congress at this moment, we have Congressman Jim Ramstad (R,MN), who is openly a non-anonymous member of Alcoholics Anonymous and a true believer in it. He is constantly scheming to route more federal, state, and civilian health insurance money into the 12-Step cult. He calls it "giving alcoholics fair treatment", but what it really means is send more money to the treatment centers that employ 12-Step true believers and pay them to indoctrinate millions of prospective new members.
Addition: And there is also Senator Norm Coleman, also a Republican from Minnesota, who also openly promotes the 12-Step racket.

Is there corruption? Of course. The treatment industry is a multi-billion-dollar game. They don't want to give up all of that money. That last thing that they want the public to know is that 12-Step treatment is just superstitious cult religion, not actual "treatment" for a "disease", and that it doesn't work at all. There's plenty of good money to be made selling cult religion to the suckers.

A.A. tries to make you think that its financial situation is perennial poverty — They only pass the hat or a basket at the meetings, they say, and just barely collect enough to cover the rent. That is true of the little local groups, but that simply masks the other reality: The treatment centers, 93% of whom foist the 12 Steps on their clients, charge anything from $10,000 to $30,000 for a 28-day stay, during which time the agenda is to convince people that A.A. is the only way, and that they will have to be A.A. members for life.

Those treatment centers support lobbyists who contribute to Congressmen's campaigns — contribute a lot. You can guess the rest of the routine.

They also support front groups like

  • NCADD, the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, and
  • ASAM, the American Society for Addiction Medicine, and
  • NADAAC, National Association of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselors.

Those front groups in turn have lots of lobbyists and talking heads who do everything they can to promote the A.A. program and to convince people that A.A. has a working answer to alcoholism. We were just recently talking about how the A.M.A. let a joint committee of the NCADD and ASAM write the definition of "alcoholism" for the A.M.A.. The definition that they came up with is of course compatible with A.A. theology and superstitions. The really odd thing about their definition of alcoholism is that it does not say that alcoholism is caused by drinking alcohol.

And then A.A. uses the courts to force every drunk driver in town into A.A. meetings. A.A. has managed to fool the judges and make them believe that A.A. is a successful treatment program for the "disease" of alcoholism. That stunt actually predates A.A., and comes from the Oxford Group cult (as do many of the bad features of A.A.). Bill Wilson's own sponsor, Ebby Thacher, was drafted into the Oxford Group from a courtroom where he was facing 6 months in jail for habitual drunkenness. Rowland Hazard promised to take Ebby with him to New York and give him "the religious cure". Ebby chose cult religion over jail.

Speaking of fooling judges, Bill Wilson and A.A. have been lying about the A.A. success rate from the very beginning. That has also been a big part of the promotion — make people think that A.A. works great, when it doesn't work at all.

And it just goes on and on. That's enough for starters, but there is still more.

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.

Orange says: Unfortunately, Patrick didn't get that answer. Patrick is on AOL, and AOL didn't let Patrick get his email. It was blocked and returned here. Maybe somebody can tell Patrick to read his answer on this web site....

P.S.: Patrick, that brings up another way that A.A. holds onto its political power: censorship and suppression of dissent. The A.A. faithful go out of their way to scream about how offended and outraged they are when someone dares to tell the truth about their quack medicine and cult religion. They cry that you are killing alcoholics when you tell the truth about how the A.A. program does not help alcoholics to quit drinking. "You are doing a great disservice to those seeking sobriety," they say.

A lot of media outlets find it to be just too much of a bother to have an honest dialogue about A.A., considering the way that any criticism of A.A. stirs up a hornets' nest of complaints. So they don't bother.
Then, most folk are left with the impression that A.A. must be a good thing, because they don't hear anything negative about Alcoholics Anonymous. All that they ever hear is the same old talk about how if you have a drinking problem, you should go to Alcoholics Anonymous, where the "experts" will "help you".

On Wednesday morning, December 28, 2005, I found that both my email account, [email protected], and my IP number had been blocked by AOL.

It started out innocently enough:

Date: Wed, 28 Dec 2005 14:01:55 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Re: letters
From: "Orange" 
To: [email protected]

> how do we submit a letter
You just did.
Really, all kidding aside, you just email your letter to
this address.
Have a good day.

*               Agent Orange              *
*          [email protected]       *
*      AA and Recovery Cult Debunking     *
*      https://www.orange-papers.info/      *
** 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.

That letter immediately bounced back to me with an error message:

This message was created automatically by mail delivery software.

A message that you sent could not be delivered to one or more of its
recipients. This is a permanent error. The following address(es) failed:

  [email protected] 
    SMTP error from remote mail server after initial connection:
    host mailin-01.mx.aol.com []: 554 (RLY:B2)

I looked up that error message at the AOL URL, and it said:

Error RLY:B2

This error message indicates that a block has been placed against your IP address because we have received numerous complaints concerning mail coming from that IP address.

Please have your ISP or server administrator contact AOL for assistance. The mail administrator should request a feedback loop that will alert them to reported spam from their network. You can access the Feedback Loop request form here.

If you need additional information please Contact Us.

I wrote a letter to AOL, explaining the situation, and that immediately bounced back too. I'm not even allowed to send an email to the postmaster at AOL:

From: "Orange" <[email protected]>
Subject: improperly blocked email
Date: Wed, December 28, 2005 14:32
To: [email protected]

Dear Webmaster or Postmaster:

I just received a letter from one of your members, and answered it, and when I did, I was informed that the letter had been rejected. I traced down the meaning of the error code, RLY:B2, and your web site informs me that my email account has been blocked from sending email to AOL members, allegedly "because we have received numerous complaints concerning mail coming from that IP address."

I have never spammed anyone on AOL, or even written much to anyone there, except for answering letters that come to my web site.

I run an anti-cult and anti-Alcoholics Anonymous web site, which the more cultish A.A. members hate. Undoubtedly, some of them have written complaints to you, falsely claiming that I have committed some kind of offense.

Not so.

They are merely trying to sabotage freedom of speech, and squelch dissenting voices.

Please look into this matter so that I can answer questions and pleas for help from your members.

I shall also post this letter to the letters section of my web site, here: https://www.orange-papers.info/orange-letters32.html

Have a good day.

The bounced letter in question is copied below.

*               Agent Orange              *
*          [email protected]       *
*      AA and Recovery Cult Debunking     *
*      https://www.orange-papers.info/      *
** 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.

And that letter was bounced back too.

Read the rest of the story here: orange-censored2.html

Date: Sun, December 25, 2005 10:25
From: "Mvega"
Subject: Addiction monster

Hi Orange!

First let me start by saying how great your site is! I still haven't finished reading it all and I've been at it for a month. Yup, you guessed it, I'm a lazy reader lol.

I agree with AA being a cult. I will be as of Feb 1st 2006 5 years sober. I work for the Canadian military and their policy is to send someone to rehab if they get in trouble, so off I went.

I had 28 days of brainwashing at a Toronto treatment center. Let me begin by first saying that some people (registered therapists) there had outright prejudice to the clients. Especially the ones that were in supposed recovery!

That smelled fishy to me right from the start. Just like the ignorance and stupidity that happens "in the rooms" happened there! (I guess the program breeds ignorance). I was really in a bad way. I had gotten myself in a BIG car accident. I almost lost my life. I hit my head pretty bad.

Drugs were the culprit, or lol, I should say I was the culprit. Let's not say that drugs are cunning and baffling because that simply is not the case.

I couldn't wrap my brain around the concept of some inanimate material thinking and conniving against me. Talk about stupidity! Most people in AA believe it. At least the ones I've come across.

On with the story. So, part of the treatment, was to attend "aftercare". Aftercare consists of a one year attendance to a councilor (in my case he was recovering himself), with a group of others like myself, so that we can continue the brainwashing to better the odds of the program sticking.

Like in AA meetings, I every time I spoke my own opinion or ideas that didn't jive with BW [Bill Wilson] I was shot down. This would follow up with a couple of single alone sessions with the councilor to try and correct my wrong way of thinking.

Damn it, was that ever a frustrating year. So as not to get fired, I just went in and faked it. I wanted to keep my job. This caused great heart ache and lowered my self esteem considerably.

It made me feel very small. After about 6 months of me "faking" it, the councilor approached me and said that I was coming along surprisingly well. He was pleased at my turn around and told me that I was working a good program.

I have to admit that I attended AA as well. You see, the Military Base here is situated in a very small town here and he would keep tabs on the people that didn't go. He had AA members reporting to him about our attendance. Part of the aftercare was to go to AA of course.

Somewhere along the line, some brainwashing did get to me and it took me 3 years to kick the AA habit!

I thought for sure I would relapse if I didn't go. What nonsense! Well, I stopped going and I'm still sober so there! LOL!

Now on to the subject of the addiction monster.

I am in the process of writing a book, with the help of a prominent doctor (he is in charge of the emergency department in this county), as well as a psychiatrist and psychologist.

My book tackles issues in regards to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Fragmented Personality, Phobias, Re-integration of self, and various other subjects not mentioned as it is not pertinent to this letter.

At any rate, After I showed these professionals my "model", they thought that it could FIX the addiction dilemma!

That was not my intent for the book. If it can help people to permanently "recover" so be it.

You see, for me there is no longer an addiction monster. I have found that he could be integrated to become part of me, not a separate entity. I am aware that the lizard brain is a separate part of the brain, but the brain is composed of all sorts of separate parts that work as a whole. In short, I made friends with it. I made it understand that even though it wanted to feel good (there is nothing wrong with wanting to feel good), that it's mode of operendi was killing both of us!

I had in my case, to address it this way. It may be different for others. You see, it is a primitive part of the brain and it works along the level of instincts I have found, and because of this it was quite easy to make it understand.

It, along with my higher self has no intentions of dying. So when it finally understood the death part, it stopped. It's a much more complex process but that's the short of it.

In dealing with myself and putting humpty dumpty back together again, the re-integration of the lizard brain was just and added bonus I wasn't counting on.

I was told that there was nothing I could do about it. I was told that it was a progressive, incurable disease. Think of it this way if you like.

  • *If it were having fun and I didn't approve so I came along and locked it up (we are told in AA to ignore it, they abhor dealing with anything that BW didn't address).*

  • *Then I told it that IT would be locked away forever until I/we die. That I would never let it out not even once!*

  • *It's safe to say that it would get quite angry and frustrated to say the least right?*

  • *It would be waiting for the chance or opportunity to escape! It is my opinion that this is the progressive part of it.*

  • *Because if and when it finally got out, it would strike back with a vengeance! NOW I'M OUT! I'M GONNA PARTY NOW!*

  • *So I told it to relax and that it would not be locked up as long as it was not endangering our life.*

  • */ AFTER it understood "why" it was killing us, it stopped. /*

He is a happy part of me today, rather I should say lol, I am happy today. Complete, whole, not many things are locked up and put away anymore. I still have more work to do but the majority of it is done. Well, sorry for the rant, but that's it!

Merry Christmas Orange, and everyone!

Thanks for a great letter, and congratulations on your survival.

And have a good year.

*                  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, December 26, 2005 13:37
From: "Michael S."
Subject: Correction

Hi Agent Orange,

On your home page I found the following as part of a footnote:

'And still, now I'm hearing that somebody else is saying that it is from "The Pathology of Trauma" by Herbert Spencer, 2nd edition, Edited by J.K.Mason, page 192. I haven't been able to get my hands on a copy of that book to verify that. I'm at the point where I don't believe any of that stuff until I see it for myself, so I'll go see.'

I'm guessing you got this information from www.aabibliography.com

Hi Michael,

You guessed correctly. I was browsing that site, looking for any old historic documents that I hadn't already read, and saw the statement that somebody had found the Spencer quote.

It's completely out to lunch. Herbert Spencer never wrote a book with that title.

Ah, well that explains why I was having such trouble finding a copy of it. The local city library's inter-library loan system is excellent, and their computers will find even the most obscure rare historical books for you. In one case, they got me the *only* available copy of a rare old book. — That means the only available copy in all of the United States and Canada. But I got no hits on that Spencer book. They didn't even list it as existing, never mind unavailable.

The book in question "The Pathology of Trauma" is a compilation of modern expert articles on traumatic injury. It is edited by J. K. Mason, now professor emeritus of Edinburgh University. The first edition of the book was published in 1978 under the title "The Pathology of Violent Injury." The first edition did not include the quotation. The second edition did, published in 1992.

I wrote to J. K. Mason to enquire about the use of the quotation. He told me that he left it up to the contributing authors to select epigraphs for their revised contributions for the second edition. He suggested I contact Dr. Flynn who authored the article that uses the "Spencer" quotation.

I found Dr. Flynn and sent him a letter. He wrote back and told me that he got the quotation from Appendix II: Spiritual Experience in the book "Alcoholics Anonymous." When I finally found the source of the quotation and provided him with a copy of my article, he said, "I have been embarrassed by my source," and went on to encourage me to let AA headquarters in New York know of the error as he believed they "would not want to lead anyone astray."

Aha! It's the always same old thing, isn't it? Every time that Spencer quote is repeated, it turns out that the source is ultimately the A.A. Big Book. People quoting people who quoted people who quoted people who quoted the Big Book.

I summarized all this in more condensed and private terms in my article. You can read the short segment here:
http://www.geocities.com/fitquotation/fitquotation03.htm#Anchor-1992-47423 [Dead Link]
There is now a local copy here: Survival_of_a_Fitting_Quotation.pdf


The webmaster of www.aabibliography.com has been particularly obnoxious since I announced this discovery. You will note that he failed to correct his own error in naming Spencer as the author of "Pathology of Trauma."

When I wrote to him with my discovery, he pried me for personal information. He wanted to know my occupation, place of residence, etc. He also cut and pasted my entire private message to him on the page he has devoted to the quotation. I didn't like that and asked him to remove it and just type up a generic little note. He wanted to publish my article on his web site and make my PDF downloadable on his site as well. When I told him I did not want him to do that, he continued to hound me. The impression I got was that he wanted to some how take some credit for the work I had done by being my publicity agent. It was totally ridiculous. Finally, I offered him a suggestion of what he might write on his web page since he seemed incapable. When I did this, he said he was more inclined to just remove any mention of the article. I told him to go right ahead, that I had never asked him to link to my article in the first place, and that people were finding the article through other means. I told him that if saying nothing about me was the only way he could find to respect me, then he should do that and stop writing to me.

I wouldn't trust much of anything you read on that guy's web site.

Okay, I won't.

Anyway, I just thought I'd like to clear that up for you as I'm guessing he was the source of the rumor about "Pathology of Trauma." I became very familiar with the various rumors and ways of thinking among people online who were asking about the quotation. Most rumors are tracable to other Internet sources. If you picked this one up somewhere else, the source is definitely www.aabibliography.com


Yes, thanks for the clarification, Michael. That's one less detail for me to worry about.

I was amused by the part about how the author Dr. Flynn encouraged you 'to let AA headquarters in New York know of the error as he believed they "would not want to lead anyone astray."'
As if the true believers at the A.A. headquarters would ever want to admit that Bill Wilson wrote something wrong in their holy book... :-)

Oh well, have a good day, and a happy new year.

== 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: Wed, December 28, 2005 5:49
From: "Ryan E."
Subject: A few questions


I just stumbled across your site and I'm wondering. What's with the incredible amount of virulent, hate-fueled effort you've put into "de-bunking" the whole AA movement?

Hi Ryan,

Maybe I get all energized when I see friends die, from, or at least in spite of, some cult religion's quack medicine.

I'm just curious. As a person who's working on "recovering" from addiction, I've found AA and NA meetings quite useful. I'm not a religious man and I am no moron either. What I see is a group of mostly earnest, well-meaning people with often genuine unconditional love and sympathy for one another. The funny thing is, going to meetings actually DOES help people feel better. Sure, many people relapse, but thanks to these silly little meetings they have a place to return to and continue developing themselves and helping others.

A.A. meetings may help true believer cult members to feel better, but "the program" kills other people.

What could any feeling, compassionate human being possibly have against a non-profit group that wants nothing more than to help troubled people find some hope and live better lives?

The 12-Step cult isn't non-profit; it isn't compassionate; and it wants a hell of a lot more than just "to help troubled people find some hope and live better lives". You are engaging in standard stereotypical Minimization and Denial, something that Bill Wilson said that alcoholics were good at.

You strike me as an over-intellectual, cold-hearted automaton of some sort.

As opposed to what? A mush-brained, non-thinking hostile cult member?

I can't imagine what kind of passion and love you feel in your life with the utter disgust you seem to have for anything that hints at spirituality or kindness toward others.

It doesn't really matter what you can't imagine.

And I am not opposed to "spirituality or kindness toward others"; I am opposed to lies and cruelty to others — cruelty like shoving ineffective quack medicine on some very sick people.

I've read much of your site and I appreciate all the dirt you've clearly taken enormous efforts to dig up on the AA old-timers. I think perhaps you've missed the point though. I mean, what is with the listing of AA finanacial arrangements for book proceeds in the early days? And you call Bill W. insane? I don't see how this incredible effort to undermine something that the vast majority of the world sees as a positive force for good in society could be the product of a sane or contented individual.

No, I have not missed the point. "The Point" of Alcoholics Anonymous was supposed to be to save the lives of alcoholics, something that A.A. has totally failed to do.
And "The Point" was supposed to be "grasping and developing" a spiritual lifestyle that demanded "rigorous honesty" (The Big Book, page 58), not a lifestyle of forever parrotting Bill Wilson's lies, and minimizing and denying all of the faults and failures of Bill Wilson and Alcoholics Anonymous.

The point of talking about everything from

is to show that A.A. has always been a dishonest cult, founded by a raving lunatic, not a spiritual organization that helps alcoholics.

I guess I'm just trying to understand what kind of person does such a thing? What are you trying to gain? To convince people to join you in your over intellectualized misery? If you don't understand the value of spirituality, especially in this day and age, then you're lost I'm afraid.

You can't understand what kind of a person would be interested in telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth? Pathetic.

You can't understand why someone would want to criticize quack medicine that kills sick people? What is the matter with you?

I'm not trying to "gain" anything. I'm just getting the truth out there, to counteract the evil people who are busy getting The Big Lie out there and making millions in profits by selling cult religion and voodoo medicine as a cure for alcoholism and drug addictions.

I understand the value of spirituality. One of the very first requirements for a spiritual life is that you learn a deep respect for the truth. You should congratulate, not condemn, someone who tells the truth, even if you don't like what the truth is.

Let me be clear. I am technically agnostic, before you paint me as some Bible clutching weak minded moron, but I have come to appreciate the value of ALLOWING for some possibilities. The world is a much nicer place with some sort of God-force/higher power in it. It's a natural function of human beings to have some sort of moral compass or guidance. We are doomed as a race the day we all become cold, unfeeling, analytical pessimists with chips on our shoulders such as yourself. It's a short road from that to base immorality and cruel self-serving behavior.

"Allowing for possibilities"? What a bunch of bunk. That is an example of the propaganda trick of "Escape Via Relativism". It's like, "Well, heck, it might be true. After all, it's just one person's opinion versus another's and we don't know anything for sure." That just isn't true.

The truth is that A.A. does not work. We have already considered the possibility that it might work, and put A.A. to the test, and it was a total failure:

  1. It increased the death rate of alcoholics, and
  2. increased the rate of binge drinking,
  3. increased the rate of rearrests for public drunkenness, and
  4. made alcoholics require more expensive hospitalizations later on,
  5. and caused all kinds of other problems. I believe that a good case can even be made that Alcoholics Anonymous also increases the suicide rate of its members.

Heck, Alcoholics Anonymous has now had 70 years in which to prove the "possibility" that it might work. All that A.A. has proven is that it is a crazy dishonest cult religion that is completely ineffective for saving the lives of alcoholics. In fact, it drives them crazy and raises the death rate.

Enough is enough. Time's up.

You are also using another propaganda trick there, when you say:
"The world is a much nicer place with some sort of God-force/higher power in it."

Well yeh, but what does that have to do with Alcoholics Anonymous and recovery from alcoholism?

That is what you call a False Dichotomy, an attempt to make a false division, like trying to divide the issue into those who believe in God and those who don't. I believe in God. I just don't believe in your favorite cult religion.

I think your cult is evil. It kills people. Lying to sick people about what might heal them is evil. "RARELY HAVE we seen a person fail...", they incant, when the real failure rate is greater than 95%.

The world is also a much nicer place when there aren't any evil deceptive cult religions in it, lying to and hurting people.

Just some things to think about. Feel free to respond to me in any manner you feel appropriate. I'm hoping you'll surprise me with a thoughtful, meaningful response rather than proving my point by merely being acidic and harshly critical of what you clearly do not understand.

Please can the sarcasm. (That is yet another standard propaganda trick.)

Ryan E.

[2nd letter from Ryan:]

Date: Wed, December 28, 2005 6:43
From: "Ryan E."
Subject: Follow-up


I just wanted to say I do appreciate what you're trying to do here, at least I'm trying to. I think it might be worthwhile for you to consider though that these belief systems operate as a sort of tool to help people reach many of the same conclusions you're eluding to with all of your lengthy writings about AVRT and lizard-brain and what-not. The difference is that many people like to attribute some meaning and yes "magic" to the reasons behind things. This is the nature of spirituality and it wasn't invented by Bill W. or the Nazi's or anyone else in your bizarre and complex conspiracy theory. It's merely man's appropriately humble acceptance that even in this modern day and age there are still things we do not and cannot completely comprehend.

That is a load of bull --
"there are still things we do not and cannot completely comprehend."

As if we are then supposed to believe that the Alcoholics Anonymous cult religion might work in some magical, incomprehensible way that is beyond our understanding.

That is again the propaganda trick of "Escape Via Relativism": "Maybe A.A. works in ways that we don't understand."

A.A. does not work at all. It has a zero percent success rate over normal spontanteous remission. All that Alcoholics Anonymous does is steal the credit from some people who were going to quit drinking anyway, and then crow that "it made them quit drinking".

If you think that Alcoholics Anonymous really works to make alcoholics stop drinking, then please tell me what your success rate is.
Out of each thousand newcomers who come to an A.A. meeting seeking something that will help them to quit drinking, how many of them are still around and sober a year later? Ten years later?

Please answer that question honestly before making any more assertions that "A.A. works".

(And no excuses are allowed, and no Lying With Qualifiers, like "Well, they didn't really try", or "Well, they didn't thoroughly follow our path".)

(By the way, I have never ever had a single Stepper honestly answer that question. That says a lot about the phony "spirituality" of Alcoholics Anonymous. They just won't tell the truth about the important things.)

That's very clever that you can point to the part of your brain where this addictive voice comes from. Good for you. Some people like a little more meaning than that. For many people cold, clincal psychology and biology may explain the reasons behind addiction, but they offer NOTHING to inspire people to overcome it.

That is just so much nonsense. Knowledge can be of value without "inspiring people". A.A. also fails to give people a reason to live. It is much better at giving them reasons to commit suicide.

I feel that's what you're missing here, perhaps.

Baloney. See this previous letter, where we talked about that very thing.

For all of your ramblings, the fact is AA and NA and this silly cultish hocus-pocus you are so fond at picking apart will and has positively affect(ed) the lives of more people than your webpage and AVRT and SMART (perfect name for a program for people who imagine themselves too intellectually superior for 12 step programs) ever will in the tiny drop in the bucket they represent.

That is simply not true. A.A. is a total failure with a zero percent success rate, above normal spontaneous remission. A.A. even drives people to suicide.

The truth is, like it or not, more people are affected by a message that includes a spiritual element and promotes virtues like helping others (real Hitler-like that) versus dry, clinical analysis taliored for athiests in love with their own intellects. See, most people on this planet do beleive in some kind of God I've discovered.

Again, another Stepper is pulling Bill Wilson's underhanded trick of accusing everyone who disagrees with him of being an agnostic or an atheist. I am neither an agnostic nor an atheist. I just don't like lying cult religions that deceive people in matters of life and death.

What's more, there may actually be a good reason for doing so. A world without meaning, rhyme or reason is an ugly place to live. I don't readily buy into the concept of a God in the traditional sense, but unlike you I can clearly recognize the value of opening my mind to the idea and accepting some possibilities.

What "meaning, rhyme or reason" do you get from parrotting the lies of a cult religion?

Open your mind? To what? Lies, deceptions, and propaganda tricks?

I think you may have begun with what could have been an objective analysis of AA, but at some point it degraded into a maniacal diatribe citing Nazi's and reaching out in every possible direction possible to cast AA in a negative light. For all of your clever writing about arguments, you lost your OWN objectivity somewhere in the mix. Maybe you should go back and read your own stuff again.

At some point, I think I grew impatient with the massiveness of the A.A. Big Lie. I also became angry when I saw just how cynical and callous the real A.A. leaders are, and how little regard they actually have for the lives of alcoholics as they continue to repeat their lies about what works to save alcoholics from death.

Again. You can construct all the negative statistics you like about AA. The fact is that it has probably positively affected more peoples lives than your cynical view and AVRT and SMART ever will because they are incomplete approaches (being devoid of spiritual weight to inspire people)

Probably? Now that is the propaganda trick of "Sly Suggestions".

What is "probable" — in fact, highly likely — is that A.A. has killed far more alcoholics than it has ever helped.

If you doubt the power of spirituality, you need to open your eyes.

Get off it. Religious bigotry will get you nowhere. I am not an atheist, and I do not doubt the value of spirituality.

Alcoholics Anonymous is not a spiritual organization. It is a superstitious, dishonest, lying cult religion.

If you want to actually be spiritual, you should start with learning to love the truth, and start telling the truth, instead of yammering so much deceptive propaganda, and complaining about how I reveal all of those ugly old truths that you really didn't want to hear about.

Atheist, agnostic or otherwise, it's undeniable and while AA's approach may be a bit anachronistic in the 21st century, for all your words, you've failed to introduce any viable alternative that will work for anyone.

Wrong again. You should learn to read before opening mouth. Read this.

You see, in order to be successful a program needs to be accessible to the everyman as well. The homeless guy sleeping in the bushes doesn't have an internet connection so he can go through the little AVRT HTML slide show and even if he did, do you REALLY think something like that or SMART is going to inspire MOST people?

So you think that having lots of A.A. meetings available in every city makes A.A. work?

Well A.A. just does not work, so please quit trying to Assume Facts Not In Evidence. (That's yet another propaganda trick.)

Scientology also has offices in every city, and the Scientology cult is available to millions of people.
Does that mean that Scientology really works good to cure mental illnesses and alcoholism and drug addictions?

A.A. also does not inspire people, other than a few crazy cult members who get all emotional over hearing their favorite superstitions repeated.

I think what you've done, at best, is uncover some passable, though incomplete alternatives with tiny communities, suitable for diehard intellectuals who hate AA with a vengenance and fight any idea of a power greater than mankind tooth and nail.

Are you trying to suggest that cult religion works better than something that is true?

And again, you are using two more propaganda tricks: Assume Facts Not In Evidence and False Dichotomy, when you yammer about "diehard intellectuals who hate AA with a vengenance and fight any idea of a power greater than mankind tooth and nail."
It isn't "the atheistic intellectuals versus the faithful believers".
It's "the cult religion nut-cases versus the sincere healers who tell the truth".

Not such a staggeringly great accomplishment as your word count might suggest, but so be it. You could have accomplished all that without the frightening amount of effort devoted to discrediting AA by attacking the personalities from it's past.

Those "personalities from it's past" are the criminals who created that fraud — you know, "The Founders". They deserve to be criticized. They have gotten a lot of suffering people killed with their lies.

Thanks for reading-

Ryan E.

You have a good day, too.

Oh, and please remember to answer the question,
"What is your success rate? Out of each thousand newcomers who come to an A.A. meeting seeking something that will help them to quit drinking, how many of them are still around and sober a year later? Ten years later?"

== 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."

[3rd letter from Ryan E.:]

Date: Thu, January 5, 2006 2:13
From: "Ryan E."
Subject: Re: A few questions

Thanks for taking the time to reply so thoroughly. I'm still a bit confused as to where you are getting the statistics that indicate massive failure of the AA program. I do think there is merit to some of your criticisms of AA though, I don't accept it all as gospel truth and without flaws. However I think that when I go to meetings and constantly come across people with 10, 15, 25 and more years of sobriety, that is some indication of success. I imagine you'd credit them with sobering themselves up and give no credit to the program at all though.

Yes, when I run into someone with that many years of sobriety, I give the credit to them, not to some program.

Where do the statistics about the dropout rate come from? Well, from the A.A. headquarters for starters. Look here.
Also look at this analysis of the results of A.A. triennial surveys.
And then I just recently got some sales figures for A.A. sobriety coins. Guess what? For every 1000 of the 1st-day coins that they give away, they only give away 31 of the 10-year coins.

[CORRECTION: That A.A. success rate, 31 per thousand, is 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.]

By the way, when I asked about the A.A. success rate, you responded by saying that you have seen a bunch of people with 10, 15 or 25 years of sobriety. That is not an answer. That is not a rate. A rate is "something per something else", like miles per hour, or miles per gallon, or "sober oldtimers per 1000 newcomers".

The normal rate of spontaneous remission in alcoholics is about 5 percent per year. That means 5 newly-recovered sober people per 100 alcoholics, per year. That's how many people just quit drinking because they get sick and tired of being sick and tired. They quit alone, on their own, without any "support group" or "treatment program". The Harvard Medical School says so.

In order to claim some kind of success — to claim that A.A. actually sobers up some drunks — A.A. has to do better than the normal rate of spontaneous remission. It doesn't. All that A.A. does is try to steal the credit for the few people who were going to quit anyway. (That's why they went to A.A. in the first place — because they had decided to quit drinking.)

By your estimation every alcoholic that attends some meetings and relapses is a victim of the program rather than their addiction (regardless of whether or not they actually try to work the program as intended or not) and anyone who succeeds while attending meetings regularly succeeds in spite of the program, not because of it.

I don't see how you can have it both ways.

No. You are mixing apples and oranges. There is a big difference between quack medicine and a quack doctor. When quack medicine fails to cure people, those people are victims of the quack doctor, not victims of the medicine.

When people go to A.A. meetings and "work a strong program" and still don't get and stay sober, then the program has failed. But those people are not "victims" of the program. They may be victims of lying A.A. recruiters or sponsors, though.

Again, the numbers of people who succeed in getting sober inside A.A. is just equal to the normal rate of spontaneous remission of alcoholics, so A.A. can't claim to have made those people quit. If A.A. really made people get sober, then it should have a success rate greater than doing nothing for the alcoholics. It doesn't. Its success rate is just the same as, or actually less than, doing nothing for the alcoholics.

I'm willing to admit the program is not without flaws, but I don't see how you can write the entire thing off as worthless. I'm sorry you've seen people die despite trying to work the program (only you know how much effort those people actually put into it) The truth is if you are an alcoholic and you associate with other alcoholics, you will see people relapse and you will see people die. Do you honestly beleive that these people would be better off having no program at all and being left to their own devices and expected to engineer their own recovery with some self-help books and no guidance or fellowship like AA?

I can write A.A. off as worthless because it is a lying cult religion that hurts people. I write A.A. off just like how I write off Scientology and the Moonies, for many of the same reasons. (In fact, the only big difference between A.A. and those other two cults is that A.A. isn't as agressive in going after people's money. But the 12-Step treatment centers are.)

When you ask, "Do you honestly beleive (sic., sp.) that these people would be better off having no program at all", you are pulling the propaganda stunt called The Either/Or Technique — Bifurcation — the Excluded Middle.
It isn't a matter of EITHER Alcoholics Anonymous OR no help at all. I am all for other programs that might actually help the alcoholics. Maybe we could start with a program that really tells the truth to the alcoholics, just for starters.

I definitely believe it doesn't work for everyone and it's flawed in ways as are some of the personalities involved in it's inception, where you and I differ I think is that I still believe there is a lot of good that can come from objective character analysis of one's self, going to meetings to share with other alcoholics and finding out what works for them and having a sponsor. You can participate in all that without joining a cult or becoming a religious nut or thinking AA is without flaws.

It does not work at all. It is a cult. It lies like a rug. It deceives alcoholics and feeds them a load of misinformation about alcoholism and addictions.

As adept as you seem to be at deconstructing the arguments of others, I really don't see how you can think you are offering a better alternative. Suggestion 1: Just don't drink?, cost-benefit analysis?, lizard-brain?

Well, whether you like it or not, those things have a better track record than Alcoholics Anonymous.

All of these things you suggest appear to be nothing more than variants on the very concepts you read about in the big book and hear in meetings. I don't see what you've done aside from take them out of the spiritual context that the "cultish" aspects of AA imbue them with. The AA way is definitely a bit antiquated, but I think the spiritual flavor that glues the whole program is what lends this stuff weight. It drives home the seriousness of the problem and demands that people make it a priority and dedicate themselves to actually applying these principles. I don't see how boiling the very same ideas down to their basic essence and perhaps taking a slightly different tack on some of them delivers a better alternative.

No, those "things I suggest" are not like Alcoholics Anonymous:

  • I don't tell people that some ghost will solve all of their problems for them.
  • I don't tell people that they are nasty sinners who must get on their knees and confess to me.
  • I don't tell people that alcoholism is caused by sins, defects of character, moral shortcomings, and nagging wives.
  • I don't tell people that they are powerless over alcohol.
  • I don't tell people to conduct séances and get secret messages from 'Higher Power' like A.A. Step 11 does.
  • And I don't demand that people surrender control of "their wills and their lives" to 'Higher Power' and his cult like A.A. Step 3 does.
  • And I don't tell people to fib to the newcomers and withhold the truth — to only dole out the truth about the program by "teaspoons, not buckets".
There is little or no similarity between the things that I suggest and Alcoholics Anonymous.

What is the difference between "lizard-brain" and seeing your addiciton as a diseased part of the mind that you need to combat, for example. Your method may be more scientifically accurate but without a program of some kind to tie all these alternative ideas you've listed together it is left up to the individual to find some way to see it all working together and see that it REALLY matters and apply themselves to it. They've got to do that without any kind of guidelines or goal posts of any kind. Please explain to me why you feel that lack of structure is going improve the odds of success for the average person?

Lack of structure? So now you are trying to claim that the heirarchical power structure of A.A. is a necessary evil? You are now only one step away from fascism, you know — "Yassuh, bozz man. All dem nasty little alkies needs a massuh to whip dem and make dem behave."

And again you are trying to use the Either/Or propaganda trick. It isn't EITHER A.A. OR nothing.

It's more a matter of: "Let's toss A.A. into the trash can and put together a better program. With $15,000 to $30,000 per alcoholic, like the Betty Ford Clinic and Hazelden get, we should be able to do much better than them."

I'm not recommending that the alcoholics get no program or no treatment or no help. I'm recommending that they get something better. Something that actually works, just for a change.

It's easy to find things wrong with AA and to pick the negatives apart with a cynical eye but the alternatives you offered amount to not much more than common sense and I think most people have that already. That hasn't kept them from suffering as alcoholics. I think it's the simple comradarie of AA combined with an actual plan laid out on paper with texts tying it all together that give people something of substance to work with. Compare that to a bunch of bullet points posted by some guy on the Internet.

Haven't you heard the old saying that there is nothing as uncommon as common sense?
Even geniuses can become alcoholics or drug addicts.

Get it through your head that when A.A. was put to the test, NO TREATMENT was better than Alcoholics Anonymous. Dr. Brandsma found that after several months of A.A. indoctrination, the A.A. group was doing 5 times as much binge drinking as the no-treatment group, and 9 times as much binge drinking as a group that got Cognitive Behavior Therapy.

It would be very hard for me with my "common-sense suggestions" to do as badly as Alcoholics Anonymous. Even no treatment is better. It's so obvious — telling alcoholics that they are powerless over alcohol becomes a self-fulfilling prediction.

I guess perhaps we won't see eye-to-eye on this. I respect the amount of effort you've put into your research, though I still question your conclusions that AA is a total failure. It seems odd that you are one of a few voices in the wilderness making this claim, meanwhile the rooms I attend are full of people with 10, 15, 25+ years of sobriety and lives turned around by the program. Are all those people figments of my imagination? Are they delusional for believing a program that forced them to develop discipline and scrutinize their own character and overcome weakness may have actually helped them become better people? I just don't see how AA is a cult religion when it asks nothing of people except to improve their character and stay sober. Where is the evil you are seeing here?

Again, you are using the logical fallacy of assuming a cause and effect relationship where none exists. Sure you are seeing a few sober oldtimers. Far fewer than there should be. There is no evidence that "their lives were turned around by the program". I would suggest that their lives were improved by their decision to quit drinking, and then really doing it. The 12 Steps won't improve your life if you don't quit drinking, will they?

Where is the evil? Here:

  1. 1. The Guru is always right.
  2. 2. You are always wrong.
  3. 3. No Exit.
  4. 4. No Graduates.
  5. 5. Cult-speak.
  6. 6. Group-think, Suppression of Dissent, and Enforced Conformity in Thinking
  7. 7. Irrationality.
  8. 8. Suspension of disbelief.
  9. 9. Denigration of competing sects, cults, religions, groups, or organizations.
  10. 10. Personal attacks on critics.
  11. 11. Insistence that the cult is THE ONLY WAY.
  12. 12. The cult and its members are special.
  13. 13. Induction of guilt, and the use of guilt to manipulate cult members.
  14. 14. Unquestionable Dogma, Sacred Science, and Infallible Ideology.
  15. 15. Indoctrination of members.
  16. 25. Deceptive Recruiting.
  17. 24. Aggressive Recruiting.
  18. 27. You Can't Tell The Truth.
  19. 30. The End Justifies The Means.
  20. 32. Different Levels of Truth.
  21. 33. Newcomers can't think right.
  22. 34. The Cult Implants Phobias.
  23. 38. An Impossible Superhuman Model of Perfection.
  24. 39. Mentoring.
  25. 40. Intrusiveness.
Need I continue?

You make some convincing arguments, but you weaken them by revealing your own resentments about friends who've died as a result of alcoholism (you clearly blame the program for their deaths and that calls your motivations and credibility into question) Anger is not the place to start a well-reasoned argument from. You've got a great mind, that's clear. Imagine if you channeled all that energy into positive efforts toward helping alcoholics rather than a scary, fiery hatred toward all things AA.

I can see that AA might not be for everyone, but everything I've seen indicates that people can and do benefit from it and people who fail would have failed with or without AA and if they can't grasp something as simple as the 12 steps they are unlikely to piece together the disjointed suggestions and bullet points you present and turn them into something that works to keep them sober for the rest of their lives.

"Everything you have seen?" You must have blinders on. What about the hundreds of people who come and are appalled by what they see, and don't come back? A.A. didn't help them, did it?

"People who can't grasp something as simple as the 12 Steps?" That's two more propaganda tricks — Framing the argument, and Assuming the Major Premise. Actually, people do understand the 12 Steps. They clearly see that it is a plan for a cult religion and they are horrified.

It's you who can't see the true nature of the 12 Steps.

Why do you think it is that the majority of the world and most of the U.S. court system believes this program works, at least better than any alternatives out there? Is everyone in a delusional fog, hypnotized by the cult until they read all of the hyper-critical negative stuff on your webpage?

A.A. has been promoting itself for 70 years now, and has quite a propaganda mill running full blast. Treating alcoholism and addictions is a $6.2 billion industry in the USA, and the Steppers don't want to give up that kind of money. They will keep the river of lies running forever for that money.

We just discussed the answer to that question in another letter. Look here.

I don't see how you can write a billion words on the evils of AA and then, with a straight face, offer up a list of silly bullet points as your only alternative. You've got to have more than that to regulate your life and get to the root of what is causing you the pain and discomfort in your own skin that drives you to drink in the first place man.

A.A. is so bad that I could offer up a list of NOTHING and it would still be better for the alcoholics than the A.A. cult religion. Heck, I could do meetings with the Patty-Cake Treatment Program and it would get a greater success rate than Alcoholics Anonymous. Fewer would binge drink, and fewer would die. And fewer would waste their lives yammering the brain-dead slogans of a cult. And fewer would commit suicide.

If you care to, please address the specific points I made there rather than just picking apart the way I've made my argument.

Okay, I think I've addressed them all.



Okay, now will you please answer the question that you have refused to answer through all of your arguments and objections:

"What is your success rate? Out of each thousand newcomers who come to an A.A. meeting seeking something that will help them to quit drinking, how many of them are still around and sober a year later? Ten years later?"

I want hard numbers, not vague hand-waving and claims that you have seen a bunch of guys with 15 or 25 years. Of course you have. But how many of them are created per thousand newcomers?

(Damn few, right? Fewer even than spontaneous remission produces, right? And that is what is really bad about Alcoholics Anonymous.)

*                  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: Fri, January 13, 2006 17:01
From: "Ryan E."
Subject: Re: A few questions

[from previous letter:]

Okay, now will you please answer the question that you have refused to answer through all of your arguments and objections:

"What is your success rate? Out of each thousand newcomers who come to an A.A. meeting seeking something that will help them to quit drinking, how many of them are still around and sober a year later? Ten years later?"

I want hard numbers, not vague hand-waving and claims that you have seen a bunch of guys with 15 or 25 years. Of course you have. But how many of them are created per thousand newcomers?

(Damn few, right? Fewer even than spontaneous remission produces, right? And that is what is really bad about Alcoholics Anonymous.)

I still question the validity of the studies you are citing. Everyone is different, every AA group is different. I have been to mediocre groups where there were people that didn't seem to be really committed, then I have been to other meetings where more than half the room had 5 years or more sober. You know as well as I do that statistics can be used to prove either side of almost any argument. If you were able to cite multiple studies that were done with scientifically valid numbers of people, say several thousands of people in different meetings all over the country compared demographically similar people outside of AA, with their lives tracked over DECADES years or more, THEN you might have something that could persuade people who unlike you, don't already have a healthy hatred for AA because they bristle at the God concepts and the whole surrender thing.

You don't like the results of the best and most valid medical and scientific tests that have ever been done on Alcoholics Anonymous?
So you demand even bigger tests?

That is just an attempt to weasle out of it by making unreasonable demands. You don't want to know the truth, so you set the bar so high that no tests ever done will meet your demands.

The tests that have been done by doctors like Brandsma, Ditman, Walsh, and Orford and Edwards are far, far, better and more valid than any of Bill Wilson's lies about the A.A. success rate.

Speaking of weasle out of it, you still have not answered the question about the A.A. success rate. You dodged the question by complaining about some tests that you don't like.

So once again: What is the A.A. success rate?

As far as the simpler, secular programs you suggested, I tried Rational Recovery myself a few years ago. I, like you and your followers, was initially turned off by the idea of surrender and the religious undertones of AA. Rational Recovery and isolating my alcoholic/addict voice ("it") worked for about THREE WEEKS for me, then I was drinking again. Great program there. Now, that's only my experience, but that program was far too simple and without spiritual substance so it just didn't stick. It was a near total failure as far as I was concerned. AA has helped me sober for about 90 days to date.

Your anecdote is meaningless garbage. "It" didn't work at all. You decided to abstain from alcohol for 3 weeks, and then you changed your mind and decided to drink alcohol. So what?

The emotion and biting sarcasm all your arguments are peppered with really hurts your credibility. You come across as a bitter person with a score to settle. I'm sure you will tell me you don't care what I think. It is only my opinion, but I assume the purpose of your website is to convince people, is it not? If you want to do anything other than "preach to the choir" I suggest you consider tempering the sarcasm and opinion and stick closer to facts.

What's the matter? Can't you understand why I feel anger at quacks who kill my friends?

Perhaps you feel that the handful of small sample studies of very limited scope aren't enough to make your point and that's why your "book" is 99% angry, insane rambling about Hitler and fascism and cult religion and 1% scientific data.

Wrong again. There are a zillion more true facts in my web pages than there are in Bill Wilson's Big Book.

I anticipate your response will shift the burden of proof to AA and to say that AA should have to produce the proper scientific evaluations to prove their success, so I'll counter that now. AA doesn't have to prove its success to people with an expensive study because the vast majority of society has clearly seen some effect from it.

Well, considering that Bill Wilson and A.A. have been making grandiose claims of success for 70 years now, and A.A. has still not shown any success rate, it's about time for A.A. to put up or shut up.

Put yourself outside yourself for a moment. What is more likely? That nearly the entire world has been fooled for 60+ years by an insane cult that is actually worsening the recovery rate of alcoholics, despite mountains of anecdotal evidence to the contrary? Or... that a bitter, highly opinionated raving madman with a chip on his shoulder who has to publish his "book" on the Internet because no publisher would ever take it seriously has figured out all the answers and everyone else is dead wrong?

What is most likely is what has actually happened. A.A. is a very successful cult. (But then again, so was Frank Buchman's Oxford Group.) Shit happens. Cults happen.

Try answering the question, rather than identifying which flawed argument "method" you think I used there. It's alot more challenging, but I'm sure you're up to it.

If you would quit using propaganda tricks and logical fallacies, then I wouldn't have to call you on it.

Are all the psychiatrists and other mental health experts who run most treatment centers deluded as well? Are you just THAT much smarter than the rest of the world that only you have figured this out?

Wrong again. You are way over-generalizing. Many of the best doctors in the world recognize that A.A. is a cult with a terrible failure rate. Go read the file on The Effectiveness of the 12-Step Treatment again. You were just complaining about all of those tests that were done by doctors, and now you are trying to claim that the doctors say that A.A. works?


Oh, and many of those so-called "treatment centers" are not run by doctors. That's one of the big problems with them. They are run by A.A. members who think that a few years of A.A. meetings makes them qualified to be recovery counselors.

You're way to smart not to see how this sounds. The truth is AA is not for everyone.

That is Escape via Relativism.

For people who are unwilling to accept the idea that there is anything in the universe greater than themselves and resistant to some humbling, character-building exercises, there are some other options which you have explained.

That is a False Dichotomy: It isn't a matter of the spiritual believers versus the atheists. It's a matter of the dishonest cult members versus those people who are truthful and realistic about alcoholism and addictions.

If you insist on continuing to use those propaganda tricks, I'm going to continue to call you on them, no matter how much you complain about it.

I think the number of people you see in all the AA alternatives versus AA are a clear illustration of what holds greater appeal and what is working for people.

Wrong again. You are using both Petitio Principii, Assume Facts Not In Evidence and Observational Selection. You are trying to imply that all of the people who are recovering from alcoholism are to be found in A.A. meetings. You only go to A.A. meetings, so you only see A.A. people recovering, so you assume that only A.A. people are recovering. Wrong, totally wrong.

The truth is that the vast majority of people who successfully quit drinking do it without Alcoholics Anonymous. The Harvard Medical School says that 80% of all of the people who quit drinking for a year or more do it alone, on their own, without any treatment program or any "support group".

So four out of five successful sober people prefer some other method than cult religion. That should be "a clear illustration of what holds greater appeal and what is working for people."

If Rational Recovery and "lizard brain" are as effective as you claim then I beleive you will be vindicated and they will replace 12 step as the prefered method of treatment. Time will tell.

Yes, time will tell. And in the interests of bringing the future here sooner, let's get the whole truth out there for everyone to see, including the A.A. failure rate and the entertaining Nazi history of Frank Buchman's Oxford Groups.

In the meantime, you could better serve your cause by toning down your own rhetoric to make your seething anger and spite towards AA a little less obvious, it would go a long way towards convincing people to seriously consider your point of view, just a friendly piece of advice. Cut out the absurd Hitler, fascism and cult religion references in every other sentence, they really make you sound like a delusional conspriacy theorist.

Absurd, huh? That one gets to you, doesn't it? That is all real documented history. The truth. The real roots of Alcoholics Anonymous. Bill Wilson and Doctor Robert Smith were both such enthusiastic members of the Oxford Group that they didn't even quit in protest when the leader Frank Buchman came back to New York from the Berlin Olympics and declared, "I thank Heaven for a man like Adolf Hitler!"

Wouldn't you have quit in protest? How do you explain away Bill Wilson's and Dr. Bob's failure to do so?

Hey, if you weeded that nonsense out and reprocessed all that text into a comprehensible, organized format you might even be able to get your work published so that it could reach more people instead of just the kind of people who get their news from conspiracy sites on the internet written in primitive HTML that look like the Internet circa 1995.

I like the HTML format.

Eagerly awaiting your ascerbic response. LOL


Okay, you have my response.

Have a good day.

[4th letter from Ryan:]

Date: Fri, January 13, 2006
From: "Ryan E."

[from previous letter:]

"What is your success rate? Out of each thousand newcomers who come to an A.A. meeting seeking something that will help them to quit drinking, how many of them are still around and sober a year later? Ten years later?"

I just wanted to address your question more directly. I think your asking the wrong question. That is like saying out of each thousand people that visit a psychologists office, how many turn their lives around 10 years later.

I think it's the right question.
In fact, it's the single most important question of all.
It's a matter of life or death for a lot of people.

A.A. is of no use at all if it doesn't keep people from dying of drink.

All of the talk about the wonderful "spirituality" or "fellowship" that A.A. supposedly offers is just irrelevant mindless prattle compared to the question of who sobers up and lives versus who dies.

And again, I see that you are just dodging the question, and won't answer it. What is the A.A. success rate? What percentage of the newcomers are sober a year later? Ten years later?

Sitting in a meeting doesn't guarantee you any recovery any more than half-assing one of your secular solutions would produce good results. It is only fair to ask the success rate among people who ACTUALLY WORK the 12 steps and follow the program and that is something that none of your studies address. Anyone is capable of doing this but it's not a quick and easy fix. I think it's hardly fair to evaluate the success of AA based upon everyone who enters a room. AA isn't entering a room, it's doing the steps and following the guidance as it's written.

In other words, the Steps don't work.
A.A. doesn't work.
People have to do all of the work themselves, and quit drinking for themselves, and then give undue credit to the 12 Steps or to Bill Wilson or to the A.A. cult or something...

Measure the the success rate of 3,4 or 5,000 people who've done THAT and see what you come up with.

Okay, so do it. You are in A.A.. You have better access to the A.A. headquarters and the Triennial Surveys than I do. So set up the tests, and do them.

If A.A. was really so good, then why does the A.A. headquarters stubbornly refuse to do any valid tests that will prove what the real A.A. success rate is? Why do they in fact go out of their way to hide the numbers?

I'm sure the success rate of people who buy exercise machines off an informercial is about the same as people who go into AA rooms--- because 98% of them use the exercise machine as a clothes rack and never work out on it.

You are proving my points for me. A.A. is worthless. People have to do all of the work themselves, or else A.A. doesn't work.

Given your conditions, the Patty-Cake Treatment Program will be just as successful as Alcoholics Anonymous.

Same goes for diets. They don't work if you don't follow directions and stick to them.

Right. Again, you are proving my points for me. All you have to do is follow the instructions of any quit-drinking program, and the program will work.

And Instruction One is:
1. Just don't drink any more alcohol.

Just follow that one simple instruction, and the program will be a big success.

But what is the program really worth?
Does the program actually cause anyone to quit drinking?
There is no evidence to support such an assumption.

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.

[another letter from Ryan E.:]

Date: Wed, February 1, 2006
From: "Ryan E."
Subject: Re: A few questions


Interesting. I think am beginning to see where you are coming from. I guess the one thing we agree on is that people have a hard time conquering addiction. We also agree that it can be done without 12 step programs. Personally, the advantage 12 step programs have for me are that they are focused on helping you become a better person, not just conquering addiction.

Hi again Ryan,

The 12-Step groups *claim* to be about making people better, but they are really about guilt induction and other very harmful practices. It's another bait-and-switch trick.

I think if you are going to look at AA and NA purely from the standpoint of the success rate across the board of every person who walks into a few meetings (versus my standard of people who actually apply the program) then it looks no more successful than anything else.

I'm sure that people can overcome addiction through sheer willpower and identifying their "addictive voice" the only problem I see with that is that there are other, underlying character issues like negative, pessimistic thinking, jealous, anger towards strangers etc. etc. that are common in addicted people and none of that is addressed by programs like AVRT.

Just look to the news about James Frey if you want to see why this matters. Here is this guy, the hero of recovery by rejecting 12 steps, just toughing it out and "holding on" through willpower--- and what do we come to find? The guy is a dishonest straight-out opportunistic LIAR. If Frey had worked the steps instead of recoiling from them in fear maybe he would have learned the value of honesty and not written "A Million Little Lies" and duped millions of people out of their money.

Bill Wilson "worked the Steps" and he was a book-publishing money-stealing compulsive liar all of his life. In fact, there are a lot of similarities between what James Frey did and what Bill Wilson did.

Don't bother going on and on about how Bill W. was a liar here. I beleive you. Most addicts are liars. That's the point of the program. Bill W. is not held up as an example for us all to follow, he never was, so attacking his character doesn't strengthen your argument.

Like hell is Bill not held up as an example. I regularly get letters that even deify him and declare that he was a Messenger from God.

You seem to bristle at the notion that anyone has any of these so-called character defects or the idea that they might play a role in RELAPSE and the addiction in the first place. I'm curious about that. It makes me wonder if it's because some of that stuff hit too close to home for you. You are clearly an angry guy. I think most people would take your entire argument alot more seriously if it weren't so painfully obvious that you have anger issues you have not yet worked out yourself. I actually find myself feeling a little embarrassed for you reading some of your rants. I'm not saying that to be condescending, I'm saying it because I can relate to anger and I feel for you.

Now that is a neat example of the propaganda trick called "ad hominem". Rather than talk about the faults of Alcoholics Anonymous and 12-Step programs, you want to turn it around and make it about me.

And once again, another Stepper parrots the standard A.A. lines about "angry" and "issues" and "resentments". Look here for more of the same.

I can only tell you what my experience has been. I was a very negative, pessimistic addicted person. I have been a pessimist and complainer for as long as I can remember. I hated other people for what they had or what they did. I felt sorry for myself often. Since I began actually WORKING this program I've gone through what can only be described as a miraculous change in attitude. That is a fact. I don't think for a minute that I could have, through willpower alone, just "changed" my entire outlook on life and attitude towards my fellow man. Beleive me I have tried. I'm not saying I'm perfect, but I have undergone more positive change in less time than I ever have before at any point in my life, including after years of psychotherapy, various anti-depressants (I take none now and I feel happier than I have in decades)

And did you also quit drinking ethyl alcohol while going through those changes? So what part of your recovery was caused by your no longer damaging your brain with alcohol?

I'm not sure how you'd explain that or measure it as a determining factor in you "success rate" but it is a very real thing to me personally and I see the same thing happening for other people around me.

Oh come on. That is so simple that it is obvious. Out of each 1000 newcomers to Alcoholics Anonymous, how many of them have 10 years of sobriety 10 years later? You know what the answer is. You have eyes that can see. You know how few people become old-timers.

I don't see how AVRT or any of the other programs and ideas that focus on addiction ALONE, rather than as symptomatic behavior of a spiritually unfit person would address any of that.

So you don't see. Please define "spiritually unfit".

Ultimately, YES, you do have to do the work. That is whole point of AA and NA. It is hard. Not everyone makes it. Most things worth having you do have to work for. Do you really expect a quick-fix for something as complex as addiction?

Actually, the so-called "work" involved a lot of psychological damage, things like "Create a sense of powerlessness, covert fear, guilt, and dependency." That is not a fix at all, quick or slow.

I think you are far too focused on your empirical evidence to see that it is barely relevant. You yourself admit that these studies are done based on people who attend meetings. Not people who have worked the steps and attend regularly and have a sponsor. Therefore you are judging the efficacy of attending a few AA meetings---- NOT of the AA program. The AA program is not "go to a couple of meetings, get pissed off and go home and relapse"

No, you are mis-characterizing the tests of Alcoholics Anonymous that have been done. Plus, you are trying to dismiss the results through the use of qualifiers — "The only people who count are the ones who 'worked a strong program'." That is the same thing as saying that you will only count the success stories.

The AA PROGRAM is working the 12 steps, attending meetings AND having a sponsor. Measure the "success rate" of people who WORK THE ACTUAL PROGRAM, then your statistics actually become relevant.

No, what is really important is that you do not put any more alcohol in your mouth and swallow it. That is the real measure of success in any sobriety program. The cult busy-work is just so much nonsense.

I'm not sure if I am not getting that very important point across clearly enough or if you are just refusing to address it.


Again, you are merely trying to ignore all of the A.A. failures by using qualifiers. Like Bill Wilson said, "They didn't really try. They didn't keep coming back. They weren't constitutionally capable of being honest with themselves."

What you do not understand is that there are no excuses.

Either the program works and makes people quit drinking, or it is a failure.

I don't care how much you yammer about other stuff, like spirituality or personality changes, the A.A. program is still a failure.

That's like measuring the weight loss of people who join a gym, and then saying exercise is an ineffective tool for weight loss. You don't measure the membership roster--- you measure the people who go in and work out everyday!!!! Is any of this registering? The kernel of your entire argument is flawed. If you are so well-versed in the art of debate you should be able to see that.

Excuses. Either the program achieves the desired end, or it is a failure. Find another program that does the job.

As for the Nazism and the rest. Henry Ford was an anti-semite and a Hitler fan. Do you think that means people shouldn't buy Ford Explorers now? It's irrelevant to a person who wants recovery. AA principles were not based on Nazi philosophies. Should people reject AA because Bill W. was far from perfect and because of Buchman? No. The principles behind AA are much older than Buchman or Bill W. They are basic rules to live by that have roots in all of the worlds major religions. Bil W. is no saint or hero. He simply compiled existing philosophies and ideas into a format targeted at alcoholics. Period. If you're arguing with the ideas themselves, you're arguing against the basic philosophies of most of the worlds religions.

That is more minimization and denial. There are no "spiritual principles" in Frank Buchman's cult practices that Bill Wilson rewrote as the 12 Steps. Bill didn't "compile" any philosophies. He just took Buchmanism, the whole thing, lock, stock, and barrel, when he stole the alcoholic branch of the Oxford Group and made it his own cult. Bill Wilson even said so:

"Early AA got it's ideas of self-examination, acknowledgement of character defects, restitution for harm done, and working with others straight from the Oxford Groups and directly from Sam Shoemaker, their former leader in America, and nowhere else."
Bill Wilson, Alcoholics Anonymous Comes Of Age, page 39.

In my opinion you have allowed your hatred of AA to cloud your judgement here. You would probably say I am brainwashed and so enamored of AA that I can't see it's a secret Nazi fascist cult.

No, A.A. is a cult that has a spiritual grandfather who was a Nazi sympathizer.

The reason I doubt that is that I am a natural skeptic and rejected AA for years. Being an agnostic hateful bastard didn't get me very far in life and made me feel pretty empty inside. I finally decided to allow for "God" and apply some old-fashioned principles in my life and for the first time ever the things I was promised by psychiatry and drugs (legal and illegal) have began to come true in a very real and indisputable way. What can I say? Am I deluded because you say I am? All I know is I am beginning to feel happy and satisfied with my life and the world in a way I never have been in my adult life. Maybe we will never see eye-to-eye. I can only go by what I am experiencing and what I see happening to the others around me who ACTUALLY WORK THE PROGRAM.

So you finally surrendered your mind to the cult and now you are very happy, except when somebody tells the truth about the history of the cult, at which point you become very unhappy.

Speaking of people who actually work the program, what is the A.A. suicide rate? I get a lot of reports that the program depresses some people so much that they commit suicide.

Thanks for taking the time to respond. I hope that you are able to see the most important point I made here and focus on that in your reply.


Okay, Ryan, 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.

Date: Thu, December 29, 2005 10:39
From: Rob S.
Subject: AOL Censorship (I thought this was the USA)

Dear Mr. Orange.

I came across your website about 2 weeks ago and cannot let go as I have found the AA to be very troubling. Your problem with AOL was an impetuous to my cancelling my subscription. I sent the following to the postmaster:

"This is to inform you that I am in the process of cancelling my aol account that I had for many years. This is due to that fact that you had censored a website or letters dealing with an individual that was providing information regarding the cult of AA. I find that your tactics are appalling and hope that someone will sue you as a result of not receiving the proper information from this individual and possibly causing harm or even death." — Besides I am tired of the high rates and having to speak to 1-800-NEW-DELHI whenever something goes wrong!!"

Your segment of the AA and Heresy is currently under review by my pastor (and good friend) Father Bob. Unfortunately, due to some legal circumstances, I need to be involved with these folks for a bit, but at least I will fly under the radar screen. I had a sponsor who wanted me to read aloud pages 84-87 everyday, this guy is history now, I am biding my time and checking out SMART. When I get some time, I will lay some of my philosophy, "Strength, Hope and Experience", ha!.

Take care and enjoy your stuff

Hi Rob,

Thanks for the compliments and the support.

Have a good day.

== 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: Thu, December 29, 2005 14:58
From: "Jo H."
Subject: Alcoholic Anonymous as a Cult

I have just read your critical analysis of the 12-steps. I found it reassuring and inspiring at a time when I was feeling very alone with my concerns and wondering whether I was simply being critical because I fear losing the person I fell deeply in love with.

He is a business analyst by profession, logical and critical. He was also a committed atheist.

Yes, he has an alcohol addiction. Yes, he was in danger of losing his job, home and relationship. However, after only a half dozen or so AA meetings he began spouting crap i.e. the slogans, the higher power, and instinctively I began to feel that the whole AA thing was very creepy.

During a visit he gave me a copy of the 12-steps and having read it I was horrified.

He has left detox today. He is expected to attend meetings every day for the first 90 days after leaving and then at least 3 times a week. I have not voiced any of my criticisms of AA to him yet, as I feel its too early in his recovery, and quite honestly I haven't decided the best way to go about it. I am also hoping that back in the real world he will regain his full critical faculties.

Thanks so much

Jo H.

Hi Jo,

Thanks for all of the compliments and thanks. I'm sorry to hear about your suffering, and your husband's problems. I also hope he regains his faculties.

But understand that the purpose of the "90 in 90" routine is to quickly brainwash him and convert him into a life-long member of the cult. They don't want to give him time to regain his full critical faculties.

I don't know if you should wait to try talking sense to him. You fear that he will relapse and return to drinking if you talk honestly with him, and coax him away from the cult? That is exactly what A.A. teaches — phobia induction. They make people afraid to leave, and afraid to challenge the cult, because it will make people relapse and die, they say.

But that isn't true at all. Cult religion does not keep people from drinking, and the truth doesn't make people relapse. A.A. has actually been shown to drive people to drink.

A.A. just causes so much suffering, while the true believers brag about how many people A.A. has "helped". I don't know what it will take to put a stop to that racket. But I would like to find out.

The first thing I would try is the jokes. Anybody whose mind isn't totally gone can enjoy a good laugh. But cult religion has a very hard time dealing with having its balloon punctured. The Papa Doc Ngobo joke and the TV repairman joke strike me as being particularly appropriate. At the end of the jokes file, you will find links to already-formatted pages of jokes, ready to print.

I'll bet he is also intelligent enough to appreciate the "Do You Think Too Much?" joke.

And I don't think it's any too early for you to read Steve Hassan's book Releasing the Bonds: Empowering People to Think for Themselves. It contains a wealth of practical advice on how to get through to somebody whose thinking has been taken over by a cult.

Have a good day, and a good life.

== 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."

Date: Thu, December 29, 2005 17:30
From: "DAVID M K."
Subject: Question?

Who are you? While I find much of the information on this site interesting and informative, I would like to "consider the source".

A non-theist AA member

Hi David,

Read these:

Have a good day.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** 'Treatment centers based on Alcoholics Anonymous concepts
** routinely advised their patients to find a "higher power"
** or take a "moral inventory", untroubled by the contradiction
** between giving such advice and providing insurance-funded
** treatment for medical diseases.'

Date: Thu, December 29, 2005 19:11
From: "Charlie"
Subject: I absolutely LOVE your website

Congratulations ----- I have finally found someone who thinks the same way that I do ---

I am a 65 year old woman who has been clean and sober for the past 22 years — no thanks to the "Fellowship" of AA. I would really like to correspond with you regarding your view and such. I truly admire the extensive research that you have done and have learned many beneficial things from reading the "Orange Papers". I look forward to hearing from you ------

Be Well

Hi Charlie,

Thanks for the compliments. You want to correspond? Sure, go for it.

And have a good day.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** Humans always do the most intelligent thing after every
** stupid alternative has failed. — R. Buckminster Fuller

Date: Fri, December 30, 2005 1:02
From: "richard j."
Subject: Mistress

Are there any actual numbers as to how many affairs Bill Had??? Thank you


Been reading some of your stuff...GREAT"""

Hi Richard,

Thanks for the compliments.

Alas, there aren't any solid numbers, that I know of, about Bill's affairs or sexual conquests. We have a lot of documentation that says there was a lot of it going on, but we don't get exact counts of notches in bedposts.

We have Tom Powers, the co-author of Bill's second book, "Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions", who said that, "This sex thing ran through the whole business. It wasn't just an episode."

And we have the early A.A. members forming a "Founder's Watch Committee", to follow Bill Wilson around and keep him from seducing the pretty girls who came to A.A. meetings.

But no exact numbers.

If you haven't already read it, do go read the web page Bill and The Other Women.

Have a good day.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** "Important principles may, and must, be inflexible."
** == Abraham Lincoln

Date: Fri, December 30, 2005 12:06
From: [email protected]
Subject: Free Choice Of Infomation?
To: [email protected]
Cc: [email protected]

To Whom It May Concern,

I'm indeed very surprised and concerned to hear that it is not possible in AOL to discuss freely a critical point of view about the activities of Alcoholics Anonymous and to support other approaches on addiction treatment. I cannot understand that you follow complaints of Your audience so blindly obviously without checking neither content nor circumstances.

As a result I will ask my friends, family and business partners not to further use AOL services as long as you have not managed to treat this subject in an adequate manner.

As You might imagine we are a little bit concerned over here, that in a country that helped us to develop our own democracy and helped so much in supporting us to get rid of totalitarism, such practices of thought control seem to be more and more common.

For more information check:


Stefan T.
Bonn, Germany

Hi Stefan,

Thanks for the support.

Have a good day.

== 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: Fri, December 30, 2005 11:55
From: "Alberto P."
Subject: You got my attention

Lets just say, hypothetically speaking, I am an alcoholic doing the 90-day AA thing because I want to. Lets further say that I have now been attending EVERY DAY for 4 weeks. All of a sudden, when I'm supposed to start my "personal inventory" (the Fourth Step) alas! a funny (bad) feeling creeps up and makes me sick (as in spiritually, emotionally, mentally, or whatever sick). All of a sudden my heart beats differently. Alas! I just don't believe. I don't believe in the First Step — the "Powerless" thing.

I am a 46-year old attorney, who sometimes drinks too much and gets in minor trouble. My wife told me to quit, and I think it's time for a change. But I certainly did not become what I am (a damned good criminal defense attorney) by being "powerless" and having an "unmanageable life".

So I Googled the phrase "powerless alcohol" and your site came up — at the top. I read a lot of your stuff. You really put a lot of work into your research, and it shows. Thanks for shedding light on the subject. I like your stuff.

Tell me more! And by the way, you have my support to fight censorship.

Best regards, Alberto

Hello Alberto,

Thanks for the letter, and thanks for all of the compliments.

And bless Google. They have been good to me, and I never gave them a penny. I don't know what is going on, but I like it.

Tell you more? Well, I don't know what to say other than, "Just keep on reading. Someplace or other in there, I put down most everything that I could think of."

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: Fri, December 30, 2005 11:59
From: Jjd....@AOL

Wow you did a lot a work and research. I've been in AA, did the steps four times, and the fourth step with the Nazi types covering everything, and I've found its flaws too.

I'm 35 years old and I don't really trust too much of what old men did years ago in any thing. Any how I didn't read everything you've written. Maybe you'll agree with me that there are 1 or 2 good things in the book.
1 is being driven by fears; it's an emotion a core emotion as is love, which is only mentioned once in the book. If there was ever a word that has more power than love then I'm unaware of it. I think Bill and Bob were too.
The mentioning of fear though and if one adds science to the equation is that not only are AAs but everyone has fear and it makes unhealthy decisions for us. (Man i wish i took the chance and asked her out.) Said this one enough myself; I never asked because I was afraid.

I can only imagine some of the letters you've gotten both good and bad. I would like to see you pick apart Christianity; there's a cult for ya.

The other good thing I see is that men actually talk to one another about feelings. Where i grew up in New York if you tried to do this with the wrong person you were either labled Fag or you got a beaten constantly. So I can see where you're coming from.

I no longer go to AA after 4 years, but I've met people who I can share my feelings with and I don't have to pay a therapist.

If you were to write a book about how certain religion is about control (well, you might be shot) but with proper marketing you could have a best seller. I've been researching a little how people are sick of being told that Jesus loves you and the only way to heaven is......


Hi J.D.,

Thanks for the letter and the viewpoint.

Have a good day.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** Rev. Jim Jones said, "Drink the red koolaid. It
** has cured millions. RARELY HAVE we seen it fail...
** But then again, the green koolaid is good too.
** Take what you want, and leave the rest."

Unfortunately, J.D. didn't get that answer. J.D. pays AOL for Internet service, but AOL didn't deliver that letter to J.D.. It was blocked and returned here. Maybe somebody can tell J.D. to read his answer on this web site....

This time AOL returned the email with this message:

SMTP error from remote mail server after initial connection:
    host mailin-02.mx.aol.com []: 554- (RTR:BL) 
    554- AOL does not accept e-mail transactions from IP addresses which
    554- generate complaints or transmit unsolicited bulk e-mail.

Date: Fri, December 30, 2005 15:31
From: "R.T.B." Subject: the AOL thing


Yahoo not allowing a webpage on they're servers because they've gotten complaints is one thing. It's their server; they can censor anything they want. AOL not allowing anyone to use their email service to email you (or you them) is quite another. This may be a real freedom of speech issue and you should consult a lawyer. I would also go to other webpages that people would find offensive ( like ogrish.com or rotten.com and notmypope.com or porn sites or anything you can think of ) and email them through AOL's email service to see what happens, (and tell them of your situation) and catalogue it. This sounds like a serious deal, you should have the right to recieve email from whoever through any service no matter how "offensive" the page may be, and that's it! To put it bluntly — This is bullshit!

I'll be honest, I got real problems with your page, but as far as offensive, there are way more worse pages out there in terms of sex and violence and opinions. Do they get censored at all? I did a search of Yahoo geocites ( their FREE hosting service ) and first typed in Satan, here are the results:


I then typed in "anti christian" and got these results:


I tried the same thing for AOL homepages and didn't come up with anything (from the terms I used ) that anyone would find offensive (in my opinion). Apparently they have a more stringent "community standards" clause which they adhere to (which is their right as I said before).

But these are their FREE web hosting service mind you. I got a hunch if you looked at sites people paid yahoo or AOL webhosting for you'd find some pretty nasty stuff.

Since the real problem revolves around email, the above in and of itself isn't that big a deal. I've got no problem with a hosting service that protects kids ( I assume ) from stuff they shouldn't be seeing and even stuff adults may not want to see. The question is: Does orange papers really qualify as such?

The email situation by itself is intolerable and with the stuff mentioned above, looking at it in it's proper context, YOU GOT A REAL PROBLEM.



P.S. I never complained about any site I've seen except one that looked like it was peddling kids for sex, a pedophile site. I think it's safe to assume that's offensive.

Hi Rob,

Thanks for the letter and the support.

Like you said, any ISP can block obnoxious web sites, like the vicious white supremicists and the child pornographers. But blocking email that comes from a specific person because somebody else doesn't like his web site is a whole different issue. I wonder if that might even be a violation of the laws that protect email. Email doesn't have as much protection as USPS mail, but it has some, due to a law that Congress passed a few years back. But as I recall, there was a specific loophole that allowed ISPs to block spam.

But alas, lawyers cost a lot of money. I wonder if the ACLU will be interested. Did you know that AOL even kicked the ACLU off of the AOL message boards? 'Too controversial.' I have been investigating, and it turns out that AOL has a very long history of very heavy-handed arbitrary censorship.

Just to clarify a point — I can receive letters from AOL members; I just can't answer them. And apparently, AOL customers can still see my web site, and they can email me in response to what they read. And they do. I just can't talk back to them in email. (I wonder what AOL Instant Messenger would do...)

The whole issue of "who complained?" is interesting. In AOL's case, "numerous complaints" about the web site means that 3 unnamed people complained that they didn't like it. (Well, that's guaranteed. It isn't hard to find 3 true believers in a single big A.A. meeting.)

Then there is the question of what they are complaining about. If AOL objects to the presence of 4-letter words, then that is especially funny, because most of the 4-letter words on my web site come in the hate mail from the Steppers. That could have been their strategy — they send vulgar and obscene hate mail, and then, when I dutifully print their letters on my web site without censoring them, they go and cry to AOL that they are offended by the foul language that they found on my web site.

Could be.

Oh well, have a good day anyway.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** "Important principles may, and must, be inflexible."
** == Abraham Lincoln

Date: Sat, December 31, 2005 15:44
From: "Andrew W-S."
Subject: Orange Papers
To: [email protected]
Cc: [email protected],[email protected]

Dear Sirs

I write to protest your denial of email service to the owner of the 'Orange Papers' website on the wholy spurious grounds that people have complained about it. I dare say they have, and that is their privilege in a free society and a democracy of the sort which your country's administration claims to want to see established throughout the globe.

Writing as a British subject, I ask you to reconsider this decision. I can testify from personal experience that the Orange Papers website and its owner perform a valuable service in provifinhg information that many would like to see hidden. May they be enabled to continue to do so.


Yours faithfully
Andrew Witcombe-Small

Hi Andrew,

Thanks for the support.

== Orange

*                  Agent Orange               *
*             [email protected]        *
*         AA and Recovery Cult Debunking      *
*          http://www.Orange-Papers.org/      *
** "Important principles may, and must, be inflexible."
** == Abraham Lincoln

Date: Sat, December 31, 2005 11:33
From: "stefan h."
Subject: question

Hi, My name is Stefan. I was reading some of your letters and material online concerning the program of Alcoholics Anonymous. I was curious why you are saying AA doesn't work. And I was also wondering what alternatives you suggest to the alcoholic and/or Addict.

Thank You


Hi Stefan,

Thanks for the questions. The reason that I say that it doesn't work is because it doesn't work. (Pardon the short, flippant answer, but that is the simplest way to say it.) A.A. has been tested and examined a lot, and the results were that:

  1. A.A. increased the rate of binge drinking,
  2. increased the rate of rearrests for public drunkenness, and
  3. made alcoholics require more expensive hospitalizations later on, and
  4. A.A. increased the death rate of alcoholics, and
  5. caused all kinds of other problems. Read the whole file "The Effectiveness of the 12-Step Treatment"
  6. I believe that a good case can even be made that Alcoholics Anonymous also increases the suicide rate of its members. Read
    1. this, and
    2. this, and
    3. this, and
    4. another sponsee commits suicide after his sponsor tells him him not to take his medications, and
    5. this, and
    6. this, and
    7. this, and
    8. this, and
    9. this, and
    10. a mental patient commits suicide after his sponsor deprives him of his medications, and
    11. this, and
    12. this and
    13. another mental patient commits suicide after the A.A. old-timers talk him into not taking his medications, and
    14. the source of that story, and
    15. more on that suicide story, and
    16. this, and
    17. this, and
    18. this, and
    19. this, and
    20. doctors, nurses, and dentists driven to suicide, and
    21. this, and
    22. this, and
    23. this, and
    24. this, and
    25. My first nine months, two new comers killed themselves, and
    26. this, and
    27. this, and
    28. he did all the necessary stepcraft, and proceeded to take some anesthesia and slit his aorta, causing instant death, and
    29. she hung herself, and
    30. ...lots of people kill themselves after 20 years or so, it is the hump thing.
    31. my own sister had five years sober when she committed suicide in a most horrible way.
    32. two more suicides

    [Note: the list of suicides has been moved to its own file, and continues there:

For a list of discussions of alternatives, and what has worked for other people, look here.

Have a good day, and a good life.

== 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.

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