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the orange papers

The orange papers

There are very extreme/fringe elements in christianity and elsewhere. Because they are so extreme they are necessarily more “visible”. Synanon is to AA what the Westboro Baptist church is to christianity. Hardly even the same thing.

AA members are supposed to be anonymous. This is quite the opposite: a cult of personality.

AA doesn’t always manifest as obviously as Synanon, but that’s partly because it has a legacy of very effective propaganda normalizing it for the past 80 years, and partly because the local manifestations that are nearly as extreme as Synanon are swept under the rug of “well, OK, but on the whole it’s doing so much good for society!” There are many examples of AA meetings that have perpetuated a culture of exploiting people for sex, money, and power. Orange has some well-documented examples.

As an aside, I have met some former Synanon members in AA rooms. Most of them miss Synanon and consider AA to be weak tea. My point is that it still has enough of the tea that they go there rather than somewhere else.

In any movement with a spiritual basis you’re going to find zealots, fundamentalists, cult leader megalomaniac, etc. That’s all I was saying. Your comment that synanon folks think “mainstream” aa is weak is in agreement with the point I was attempting to make.

I disagree that AA is a “movement with a spiritual basis.” It’s not. To quote Orange, AA began as a branch of a cult religion invented by an evil fascist renegade Lutheran minister named Dr. Frank Nathan Daniel Buchman, who actually admired Adolf Hitler and praised the Gestapo leader Heinrich Himmler as a “wonderful lad.” It’s not at all “mainstream.”

So I guess the comparison for me is, AA is the Nazi party, Synanon is the SS. Neither is acceptable, though one is perhaps more obviously unacceptable on its face. So the Synanon members who hang out at AA meetings are like SS members hanging out at boring party meetings since they can’t any longer go out and do the ‘more exciting’ things they used to do.

I don’t argue with fanatics. You’re arguing the and hominem fallacy, at any rate. Whatever the case may be you seem to have very strong feelings about aa and let’s not waste any more time on it.

For example, Dr. Frank N.D. Buchman in fact did praise Adolf Hitler in a published interview [0], and did in fact meet with Himmler in Germany at the 1936 Olympics [1], and was close friends with Putzi Hanfstaengl, who personally helped Hitler into a car to escape after Hitler fell and dislocated his shoulder during the Beer Hall Putsch and was later his foreign press secretary. [2]

After Buchman was roundly criticized in the U.S. for his support of Hitler, he changed the name of the Oxford Group to Moral Re-Armament. The Oxford Group was, of course, the birthplace of Alcoholics Anonymous, and Bill Wilson attended its meetings for four or five years before breaking off to form AA.

I’m not a fanatic. I’m simply someone who was exposed to AA and discovered what a toxic dump of bad ideas it is. Which is what prompted my original comment that it is no surprise that Synanon was incubated in AA meetings.

The orange papers There are very extreme/fringe elements in christianity and elsewhere. Because they are so extreme they are necessarily more “visible”. Synanon is to AA what the Westboro Baptist ]]>