Today’s 12-Step AAll-Star: Hogwashed

Today’s 12-step AAll-star is from our very own comment section. Hogwashed was able to step away from his/her serenity long enough to give us all a good scolding. Now, normally if an AA relies on the standards like “judges are sending these clowns to AA, and it isn’t our fault”; or, “AA had a 90% success rate back when Bill and Dr. Bob rand the show,” it doesn’t warrant AAll-star status. These things are easily overplayed. But some people just play the classics really well, and I’ll be hogtied if this isn’t one of those cases. This is one fine serenity rant. Congratulations, Hogwashed!

Slogabosity: 8
ad hominemnitude: 7
Serenitude: 9
Truthiness: 10

Total: 8.5

LOL, I see most of the negative comments people are leaving are from those who have never been to an AA meeting, or went to a few and quit going. Sounds like to me you are fear mongering over something you have no clue about, or are soured by something in your personal life, and taking it out on AA as a whole, If you’re going to speak about something, get your facts straight before you comment, and stop being ignorant.
AA doesn’t recruit first of all. If somebody wants to beat their addiction on will power, then go for it and see how far you’ll make it, because no one shows up at an AA meeting for coffee and conversation, so something must be seriously wrong with you if you’re there in the first place.
Secondly, AA cannot be held responsible for some deranged people that should be in jail to begin with, so why don’t you take it up with the judge or jury that released these convicts. AA is a non profit organization that wants nothing but to help other suffering alcoholics, in order to help themselves.
Thirdly, if anyone is a DR. or scientist here and has the cure for alcoholism, why are you keeping it a secret?? If not then close your lips, and get off your soap box.
AA has been the only thing that has been closest to a “cure” for addiction since 70 years ago when it started. And was started in part by 2 doctors in addition to Bill W..
Fourthly..Convicts are sent mandatory to AA and such programs by the judge.
People who voluntarily go to AA have an 90 % success rate since Bill W and DR Bob started the program. It wasn’t until the 60′s and 70′s that rehabs got their hands into the money pit that the AA message became washed and weak, and the courts starting sending convicts to it.
AA is not really a religious program, the only thing is you believe in something greater then[sic] yourself. weather[sic] its the fellowship, the meetings, God etc. Because like I said before, If you’re in an AA meeting to begin with, you obviously have some problems, and haven’t been able to deal with them by yourself.
I’d be interested in hearing rebuttals, but obviously a majority of people here are too fat headed and ignorant, to change their minds. Which I could care less, because I understand, “Ignorance is Bliss” Have a miserable day. : )
Oh and by the way, If anyone wants to call me a big book thumper or such, I’m not necessarily in any program or belief, I just research things and experience them before i start spouting off ignorant spittle at people or about people.
I’d take on anyone in a conversation like wise about politics, current events, or religion.

  • http://www.stinkin-thinkin.com friendthegirl

    Here's part 2 of Hogwashed's Serenity Rant:

    Hogwashed says

    Another AA Sexual Assault:

    Let’s ADD that to a hypothetical list of :

    Another Neo Nazi crime against blacks or hispanics.

    Another Black crime against a white person.

    Another congressman crime on a woman or prostitute, then hides the body and evidence.

    Another pot smokers crime against a working class person.

    Another presidents crime against a country that didn’t have nuclear weapons.

    Another cops crime against an unarmed person.

    Anyone see where I’m going with this…?

    You shouldn’t be prejudice against any group as a whole, because when it comes down to it, we are all individuals, some are sicker than others. I deplore when people are that ignorant. They dont belong in the 21st century.

  • SoberPJ

    Staunch believers in AA seem so bossy. It seems that when they post here, all they can do is tell others what to do and attempt to attack or belittle others that aren't in line with their erroneous beliefs. This blog would make a fascinating psychological study.

  • tintop

    If that individual was, in fact, apathetic about what is written here, we would never have seen this hyperventilating.

    It is amusing to see someone inflicting their apathy upon others at full volume.

  • hulahoop

    If that individual was, in fact, apathetic about what is written here, we would never have seen this hyperventilating.

    It is amusing to see someone inflicting their apathy upon others at full volume.

    I had the same thought. Why is it some of the steppers insist on not being a real stepper when they slam the real not stepping people? Damn, at least some of the others are honest about their level of involvement with AA. I appreciate their posts a lot more than this. At least they believe in something, don't deny it, and are willing to make a stand for it even if I don't agree with what they are saying.

  • Lucy

    Sites like this one scare people like Hogwashed. They know that they themselves have questioned the non sequiter reasoning in the Big Book, wondered why adult members behave like five year olds, why people come in and out of AA, etc. They soothe those intruding rational thoughts by repeating mind-numbing slogans, and going to more meetings to hear them said by others. But it sanity still creeps in,

    When someone tells them that their deepest fears may be true, and that they may very well be wasting their lives and money on a cult, it makes them even more crazy.

  • hulahoop

    Wait. This is troubling me. What JD and the rest of the steppers do not seem to realize is I wanted and needed AA to work for me. People who go voluntarily deserve a lot of credit for realizing they have a problem and wanting or needing to do something about it. It is real easy to be an armchair quarterback after the game and say, "Those people didn't really want help." "That person just didn't get it." "You should have worked a better program." "You didn't do it right." "You failed the program, the program didn't fail you."

    No. I was at an all time low when I walked through the doors of AA. I want to say, "You have no idea" but most of you do have an idea about it because you have been there yourselves. My drinking was out of control in a major way. I needed help and I sought it out on my own just like so many people do. I had an open mind when I walked in. I was totally receptive. I think if you can swallow the bullshit and want to do it the AA way, go for it. Just don't try to bullshit me. I have an excellent bullshit detector. If it looks like bullshit, smells like bullshit, and makes you gag like bullshit, then it is, beyond a shadow of a doubt, bullshit.

    All I needed was me. Not a group. Not a higher power. Not God. Not Jesus. None of that. Only the ability to say, "Enough is enough. I will not continue to live this way nor make bad decisions for myself anymore."

    I bought in to it at first. I truly did. Then the bullshit factor kicked in. Take what you want and leave the rest. How do you do that when you end up leaving more than you take? How can a person justify that in their mind? I couldn't. It was not only the God thing. It was so much more. To tell me to leave my brain at the door? Or I am doing too much thinking? Or to not allow me to use my three minutes to ask someone about something they said so I will understand it better? To say it's a "suggested" program and then tell you are failing at it because you would follow the suggestions if you really want it to work for you no matter how opposed you are to them? No, too much bullshit for me.

    In the end, everyone has to live with themselves. I had to do what was right for me. Just as JD and the rest of AA sheople have to do what is right for them. It's all about the person in the mirror. I think maybe some people have a larger sense of self than others. I do not mean self-esteem or anything like that. I mean it in a sense that AA squashes the sense of self. You stop being an individual and become a part of the group. Doing and saying things that will please and serve the group even if it means neglecting you real life relationships and activities. My sense of self would not allow me to do that even though it probably would have been the easiest thing to do. I wouldn't have to accept responsibility for myself and I certainly wouldn't be liable for any decisions I made. Nope. Couldn't do it.

    So the steppers should realize most people go to AA with best of intentions. I know the road to hell is paved with good intentions, but regardless…people want help and are willing to seek it out. The program fails them. Then they are blamed for it. It's a bullshit program.

  • hulahoop

    Oh, and the reason I spend my valuable, personal time to come this website daily and to post is because I do believe AA is a bait and switch program. And if you are not careful you will get sucked in. It is a cult and a false religion complete with a false prophet and false gods. I came so close to getting sucked in. But a little voice inside of me would not go for it. I think it was my will to survive and to learn to be sober on my own and to learn to happy on my own without depending on alcohol or a group.

    My God told me to go out and spread the word to as many people as I can about it. You may roll your eyes at that. But AA does suggest I pray and meditate and ask God(tm) to guide me in all my affairs and that I do the will of God(tm). (That is unless I am in Sex Addicts AA. They don't use the word "affairs" because of the obvious.)

    At first I thought it was the alcoholic in me refusing help because I heard that theory at meetings. After careful observation and contemplating I came to the conclusion that it was hulahoop's GOD (NOT TM) telling me to go out and share my experience and thoughts, and to help spread the word. So here I am. And If I can convince ONE person that they do not NEED AA to stay and be sober, they will not end up relapsing, end up NOT institution or NOT in jail, and especially DEAD then my mission is accomplished and all time spent to it will have been well worth it. All people need is themselves and some willpower to make the right choices for themselves.

  • Mr AA

    This may not be the right place for this, but here goes:

    My on and off association with AA hits 30 years this weekend. An active member for the first 7 years, I relocated to another area and non-ceremoniously stopped going to meetings for about 3 years to pursue career, family, community. After a serendipitous return to meetings after this prolonged absence, I was shocked at what I saw and heard – strangely enough, what had changed was me. Now on the other side of the looking glass, three years of unconscious deprogramming had now opened my eyes to how much I had ignored during my first stretch in the Program. In my zeal for my own sobriety I had previously associated myself only with healthy people and ideas (there are a few) and otherwise ignored anyone or anything that got in my way.

    Now I could not ignore the cognitive dissonance. For 3 more years I scratched my head in disbelief. As I questioned everything I thought I once knew about AA, I also began questioning my sobriety and went out drinking again: my choice, no excuses. After 6-7 years of rather uneventful drinking, I quit on my own. That was about 10 years ago. About 5 years ago I returned to AA and began spreading a new message. This weekend I will be speaking at an AA group that brings in those who have relapsed after an extended period of sobriety. To have a little fun, I will be presenting (with flip cards!): Top Ten Things that I Learned from my Relapse:

    10. I do not have a progressive, irreversible, disease

    9. I am not powerless over alcohol

    8. There are two ways to let go – one leads to relapse, the other does not

    7. It is a spiritual axiom that whenever Bill Wilson was disturbed there was something wrong with him – I am not Bill Wilson

    6. Sobriety is not safe – and sometimes, neither is AA.

    5. If my life revolves around not-drinking, then my life still revolves around alcohol.

    4. It's OK to outgrow AA.

    3. I am god in my life

    2. I was absolutely unable to stop drinking without self knowledge.

    1. Authentic living is the only guarantor of sobriety

    If my experience over the last 5 years is any indication – and it has been quite consistent – about one third will leave before I am finished. But the real surprise is that two thirds always seem to stay, and stay interested.

    Let' s not forget that, as hulahoop said, there are people in AA who want and need it to work for them, and are just waiting to hear some truth.

  • MA

    Mr AA -

    Let us know how this goes. We would love for you to post about your experience. Take notes!

  • tintop

    Mr AA, I regard all ten as true and accurate. We shall how that is received at your meeting. I have no problem with AA, in and of itself. If that is what people want to do, fine with me. It is free and readily available. The other organizations are much smaller and harder to find.

    The issue is: help or hinder. That is the test of any support group. And, at the end of the day, AA is a support group. Does AA help me? Or, does it hinder me?

    If it hinders, leave. If you no longer find it useful to you, after having been useful, why stay?

    For those who stay, one question: Do I help? Or, do I hinder?

  • Mike

    I don't think it's primarily fear that draws the Steppists here as much as it is shock. They've been happily going along all these years thinking they are part of a phenomenal social movement and now there's these know-it-alls suddenly crashing their party. It's like showing up in the cafeteria and finding out your clique no longer wants you around. Shock and anger ensues. Waaaaahhh

  • tintop

    MIke, I expect that you are right.

  • pretzl

    I read Hogs message and I want to just say one thing..or a few things actually.

    This person tells others to "zip the lips.." — a very controlling mindset toward those who have an opposite view. Where do the stats of a 90% success rate come from? Where are they? Post a link please.

    The writer claims to do research coupled with experience to come to their conclusion. I think after reading this blog/forum people have come up with thier conclusions through experiences in AA and through research. It's an inaccurate assumption presuming those who disagree have not done their own "research"..

    I've had a few interactions with AA memebers and have attended meetings in the past. Your stance is, if someone is in the AA rooms , they are alcoholic or have a serious problem. I agree with that to a certain degree. People are searching for a new way but not all who go into meetings are alcoholic.

    As far as my person experience.. I looked at the fourth step and said…what?! I talked with many "members" aboutt his and they said go to a priest, rabbi, sponsor etc… Then they went on to tell me about very personal things in there life that I didn't want to know. Molestations..abuse etc. For some reason they felt the need to open up. It was very awkward considering they are strangers.

    But the said part was them opening up about OTHERS.. I found out about personal things of others I didn't even shake hands with. I thought ot myself..no f***ing way. What topped it off was a member wanted me to meet them at a starbucks.. I walked in a found out he was doing a fourth step that took longer than expected. A fricken 4th step at a safeway starbucks… Weird. After their meeting he went ont o tell me…don't worry about your 4th, you should have heard what this guy said.."

    Totally blown the buck away. He had 28 years of sobriety too..

    Mr personal opinion on the writer is they exude everything they resent on this site(which is unfounded).. being closed minded, not doing research and being angry.

    Yes, I do encourage you to research AA and it's founders. Talk about a racket not to mention some pretty devious behavior.

  • Martha

    Hogwashed says: "AA is not really a religious program……."

    Hogwashed is in denial: http://articles.sfgate.com/2007-09-08/bay-area/17

    The Supreme Court of the United States allowed this ruling to stand. Calling AA religious is more than just an opinion. If AA itself was capable of rigorous honesty it would admit to being a religious program and that would end the practice of people being forced to join it.

    Also steppers need to quit telling us to zip it because that is simply not going to happen. Cross talk cannot be stopped anywhere except AA meetings.

  • BusBozo

    Mara

    I like your flip cards…What I find amazing is that you are invited to speak at meetings. The message you have is so inconsistent from the standard AA jargon that it seems to me that word of your "heresy" would spread and your speaking engagements would be non-existent. I support and admire your involvement. Your not So.Cal based by any chance? I would actually go to a meeting again just to hear you and see the reaction :)

  • howlermonkey

    Thanks, hulahoop. My experiences and feelings were and are very similar to yours, but you've expressed them much more clearly that I can.

    I really gave it a good try too. I wanted it to work, and to work it, so badly. But the deeper I got in, the more the dishonesty ("take what you want and leave the rest" ha!) and the vile emotional manipulation became obvious. And it wasn't just my brain thinking this, I could see the effect of the lies and manipulation in the faces and words of so many people.

    The ones I can never forget are the sweet, kind, sad ones – all self-medicators for depression, like me – who just kept growing more sad and hopeless the more they thought and talked about their "character defects." I hope they're still alive. Because with what AA was doing to them, they were not long for this world.

  • Lucy

    I think this site EXISTS because the people here wanted AA to work for them. I have yet to read anything from one of the regulars that suggests that ST was an excuse to go back to heavy drinking, a forum to blame AA for the problems we experience in our daily lives, or a pace to denigrate not drinking.

    The idea that one can criticize AA, escape from the soul-crushing insanity of the meetings, and still survive freaks the crap out of those who believe that leaving leads to death, insanity and jails. It scares them and they lash out at us. They think we will kill people (a big threat to anyone who dissents) by lifting up the curtain and showing them who the real wizard is.

    I spent 25 fucking years trying to make it work for me. I sponsored dozens of women, wnet to thousands of meetings, did the steps uncountable times and, by the time I left, was ready to blow ny brains out if there was one more meeting,

    To hear some shit like JD "instruct:" me as to how AA really is, to hear Dick B sanctimoniously tell me to seek God,… well, it isn't just nuttty. It's insulting and reminds me why I will never go back.

    Those people suck the air out of a room.

  • Mr AA

    BusBozo,

    Thanks for the supportive post. One key is to have "no attitude of Holier Than Thou, nothing whatever except the sincere desire to be helpful…no axes to grind, no people to please, no lectures to be endured – these are the conditions…found to be the most effective." (Sound familiar? AA p. 18).

    Another is to know the Big Book inside out as a piece of literature with a temporal, philosophical, religious, and social context. Know it better than a Tony J, a Danny S, or a Dick B – and from an angle that keeps any Big Book thumper on unsure footing. And support what you say by quoting the literature often: the canon is so contradictory that key tenets of the dogma can be shown as supporting a multitude of heresies. This begins the deprogramming process.

    Play their game on their turf and with their own toys whenever possible. Decline argument; grant the rabid AA-er their premises, and then relentlessly push them into absurdity. And most importantly, do all this with a light in your eye, a smile on your face, and in a well-tailored Italian suit and a hand-painted tie.

    Never let your own ego get in the way of your mission: to discover the truth, not proclaim yours as universal. Activists must always be prepared to be wrong, and ready to diffuse a mistake with a prompt admission of failure. Nothing is more powerful than an evolving message.

    Having said that, several AA meetings in my area have found it necessary to toss me out : this required calling a group conscience, voting, and electing someone as the primary to inform me that I was not welcome and should never come back. My politely respecting their traditions usually angers them even more. But why not? I work and live out of a large population center on the East Coast where I can drive an hour in any direction and find thousands of meetings to which I have never been.

    My experience also is that many AA groups are insular, incestuous, and never even socialize with members from other groups. Just a few miles away from a meeting from where I have been banned will be a meeting where no one has heard my message. Other groups make it a point of pride to invite me as a show of their open-mindedness – you have never seen such white-knuckling!

    The only time I go dark is when it is clear that my message is being dismissed as entertainment – when the messenger becomes more important than the message. Then I unleash what every AA member fears most in a meeting: an incendiary display of honest emotion.

    Often I feel that it is not worth the investment, and I contemplate throwing in the towel. Then, like clockwork, someone comes up to me after a meeting and says, "I have been waiting for a long time to hear someone say something like that. Now I know I am not alone." Just one is all it takes to keep me in the game.

    Sorry this got so lengthy, but passion rules sometimes. The point of all this is not a demonstration of my skill set, but that there are people in AA who want and need AA to work, and that there are many ways to reach them. It's often a lot shorter trip to meet someone where they are, then to ask them to meet you where you are.

  • causeandeffect

    Mr AA, I too am impressed with your flip cards and especially the above post. I wish I could be there.

  • Mona Lisa

    Mr. AA, I would actually go to an AA meeting just to hear you give that lead.

  • Lucy

    I did thta Mr. AA, going to meetings to help someone who heard me. But I realized that by being the one who said what I said in meetings again and again, and becoming identified as the rational woman who didn't believe in Bill Wilson's deity, I was robbing those people of the opportunity to come to that conclusion by themselves. I had to leave.

  • BusBozo

    Mr AA

    Thanks for your reply, it certainly put a smile on my face and a light in my eye.

  • http://duischooltruth.wordpress.com JR Harris

    This guy really is brainwashed with the AA backspeak:

    1. “AA doesn’t recruit first of all” – why do they go to schools, jails and rehabs then?
    2. “Secondly, AA cannot be held responsible for some deranged people that should be in jail to begin with” – why does the AA corporate website have instructions on how to reach these people?
    3. “AA has been the only thing that has been closest to a “cure” for addiction” – AA itself says that Alcoholism is incurable and a life long disease. Doesn’t this guy even read what AA puts out about this stuff?
    4. “AA is not really a religious program” – and why do they end every meeting with the “Lords Prayer”?
    5.) “Ignorance is Bliss” – well he did get this one right. I have to wonder if he is talking about this group or himself?

  • http://none violet

    As Lucy mentioned above, yep, this is a reminder to never go back. Did that chick even read anything on here? Most people who post on here are people who have pretty much had huge experience with AA. How did Hog ever miss this? unless, of course he/she was so excited to "take some one on" politically that he/she did not bother reading anything. Lordy.

  • BusBozo

    Last message to Mr AA….

  • Mr AA

    To causeandeffect, Mona Lisa (I still have my disclaimer that you liked from mentalhelpnet!), BusBozo, MA, and Lucy, I am heartened by your responses. But don't ever feel reticent to call me on anything I say that might feel disingenuous. I know what I want to say, but it is all of you who teach me the most effective way to say it.

    To MA (or ftg) specifically, I would feel honored to post on this site a "postmortem" of the meeting where I present "The Top Ten Things that I learned from my Relapse." Given that I am blessed with a scandalously good memory and am usually accompanied by a scribe that takes good notes (long story, not very interesting), you might actually feel that you were there.

    The question is, do I submit my little report randomly on any of the discussion threads, or by some other method? As your guest, it is your call.

  • raysny

    To Mr AA:

    As a newcomer, I saw someone give a similar speech decades ago. Afterward, my sponsor told me not to listen to that claptrap, that he didn't have 'good sobriety', but then claimed it proved that anyone could get sober in AA. I ended up more bewildered and stuck around awhile longer.

    In my opinion, rational people in AA gives AA undeserved credibility.

  • http://stop13stepinaa@wordpress.com massiveattack

    Hulahoop,

    wow, I just read your two posts. ANd I have to say I could not say it better then you did here. Thanks!

    Mr AA, …Love the list,

    I, sober lots of years ( got sober at 18) uninterrupted sobriety as of today, for the last 5 meetings can not tolerate the hearing of chapter Five one more time. Ughhh, I wanna yell, but I don't "Will you please shut up and read something else" I get up leave the room. Get a cup of tea, whatever. I am so f… sick of it I could scream. SO why do I stay. Im not done there yet. That's all. I will be done there soon, I think. Maybe a few more months. Im not sure.

    So I was asked 2 months ago to lead a meeting. A woman's step study. I said yes. I went on Wednesday. A long drive east of downtown LA. It took up hours of my day to do this.

    I wondered , wtf I was going to say because I have made the biggest shift of fed upness with AA in these past few months. I have decided I will eventually leave, and only go into meetings to do outreach.

    SO they are reading Step 10. It comes to me and I get the paragraph thats says.

    "It is a spiritual axion that every time we are disturbed, no matter what the cause, there is something wrong with us" This is one of the most stupid lines in the book, that gets repeated over and over again.

    wow, I can't lie, I thought, so out comes the truth. I said "Im sober so and so many years and you know what ladies, I don't agree at all with the 2 paragraphs I just had to read, in fact I do believe that Bill W was tripping on acid when he wrote this part with Tom Powers."

    There was a flutter of laughter in the room from those old enough to know this is the truth.

    I did say that I've had enough, That AA needs a new text, new literature, That we are not a cult, but it looks like we are a cult. AND that I am not there to spout rhetoric. If I can not tell the truth, I will not come anymore. I don't agree with alot of what I hear today. I said things were different in 1975 and they were. I talked about the BS with Sponsors and giving them so much power. I was told by my hippie friends to seek for the answer within.

    So I did speak honestly. I did let it rip. Only a few thanked me in their shares who really feel what we feel here on ST. There was no thanking me, no shaking my hand, they had their little bus meeting as I left. In fact not until now did I realize that I didn't even care, how they did, or did not approve of what I said.

    some women said omg I am so glad you said that, cause she's been thinking it for years and left meetings and drank over what she really wanted to say. I handed her my Make AA Safer Literature, told her to contact me and left.

    It's all the stuff we all are saying here.

    I really think there are hundreds of thousands of us.

    I think I only have a few more leads left in me and today I woke up really sad about the years, the hours, the days, the service meetings, the coffee meetings, all the sponsoring I have done, how much of my life I have wasted and given there in AA.

    But on the campus of UCLA last night as I walked in the dark from my Documentary Film class, I realized I had made a choice back then, and now I am free. AND with my freedom I will document my life, and all the BS that happened to me that still happening, in the secret cult rooms of Alcoholics Anonymous.

    Knowing what I know now I would never send my 20 years old son there EVER!!!!

    I will continue to do whatever I can to warn the innocent public of what is really going on there!

  • Rick045

    "I read the posts of people here and it makes me very sad when they talk about the time they spent in AA and how it was wasted. All of that time you spent in AA helped to make you the people you are today." – hulahoop

    Thank you for that hulahoop. There are times when I regret that I stayed as long as I did, but I don't consider all of that time to have been a waste. AA isn't the only weird path I've traveled where I've had to stop, admit it just wasn't right, change course and get out. That's not necessarily an easy thing to do, and I think perhaps some of us here could stand to give ourselves a bit of credit for doing it, no matter how long it took.

    I can look back now and see how my cognitive dissonance functioned over time until it reached that tipping point where it could simply no longer be suppressed. I tried to cling to certain beliefs as long as I could, but reality kept getting in the way. I can't consider the overall experience without considering how desperate I was in the first place. AA sucks. I despise AA and yet I drank the kool-aid for several years. I cannot change that. I became stuck in AA partly because I was terrified of trusting myself, and yet I became better able to do that because of the experience. I certainly learned some hard lessons about trusting others, no matter how credentialed they are. I learned a lot by watching those empty shells known as old-timers who had absolutely nothing I wanted. If overcoming adversity is a form of growth, then many of us here have grown a lot. It's just a shame that the system itself is the very adversity that has to be overcome. People do grow in spite of AA, not because of it…

  • http://stop13stepinaa@wordpress.com massiveattack

    oh and I am so sick of AA members giving so much power to their sponsor. When did this get so crazy?
    I guess The Pacific Group and other culty meetings, groups.
    Anyone on this blog in LA and want to go with me to a culty meeting in redondo Beach that I heard about. I hear it’s really bad.

  • AnnaZed

    Well I regret having been a part of it and here's why; as Ray pointed out elsewhere having intelligent rational (or in my case maybe only rational-seeming but certainly personable and articulate) people in AA lends it legitimacy.

  • hulahoop

    @massiveattack – I think I only have a few more leads left in me and today I woke up really sad about the years, the hours, the days, the service meetings, the coffee meetings, all the sponsoring I have done, how much of my life I have wasted and given there in AA.

    I read the posts of people here and it makes me very sad when they talk about the time they spent in AA and how it was wasted. All of that time you spent in AA helped to make you the people you are today. Some of you say you are ashamed you bought in to it. Not one person here has anything to be ashamed about. It takes a big person to admit when they think they are wrong. One day most of us woke up and realized we had a problem we needed help with. We sought help because we wanted to improve our lives and ourselves. Don’t beat yourselves up over your time in AA when all you were trying to do was make things better and to improve yourself and your life. And many of you tried to help others too. It really was not wasted time especially if it helped you in some way.

    Oh hell yes, I so wanted AA to work for me. The saddest part for me is people really believe they NEED AA. That AA is what is keeping the sober. It isn’t true. People keep themselves sober. They do it every day without the interference of AA.

    @Mr. AA – If you are near New Orleans please let me know. I would love to hear you speak. I thought about doing what you are doing…taking it to the meetings. I decided that would be like me going in to a church of a different denomination than mine and trying to convert them to what I believe.

    I did occasionally speak privately with other members after the meetings. Usually when I had a question or wanted to speak with them about their share. There were so many times I heard what their reservations were. I wondered why they were still there. It seems to me a lot of people in AA are totally hooked but want to minimalize it like the author of this post did. If a person is going to be a stepper then use some of that rigorous honesty(tm) and admit that they are. Be proud of it. But don’t act like you can take it or leave it. That is first indicator to me that someone is really and truly is hooked.

  • Mona Lisa

    Rick045: Ditto.

  • Mr AA

    I am having difficulty understanding this argument:

    "Intelligent, rational people in AA lends it legitimacy"

    If some groups, or individuals, in AA accommodate intelligent, rational people – for what I suspect are a spectrum of reasons both noble and suspect – don't they deserve a little credit for that? Doesn't the presence of intelligent, rational people in AA help AA?

    Don't we want AA to be better?

  • tintop

    Of course people want AA to be better.

  • Martha

    "Don’t we want AA to be better?"

    In order to get better they would have to disband, get rid of the big book, tell people that we can make a choice to not drink, embrace scientific research on alcoholism and admit they were a religion all along. Since they are a religion they do not allow for a critical examination of there dogma. So I do not believe they are capable of getting better. What is more likely to happen is that as other methods of getting sober become more widely known AA will shrink and become even more dogmatic in isolation. There could be some schisms around who represents the "real AA" and about who is really doing the steps the right way.

    I do think the efforts to make people aware of the dangerous people who are now at meetings are needed. I think since AA has a history of not being held accountable that the efforts will not have any influence on AA as a whole, but may help people decide not to join in the first place. Factors outside of our control are going to destroy AA. Our efforts here are simply as witnesses to that process and frankly my own motives are to help speed that process along.

  • Martha
  • SoberPJ

    @ Diablo..I hear ya and considered it before my post. If you really dissect the language used when AA's post here, it is quite common for them to be bossy – moreso than any others. I find that interesting. By bossy, I mean they give explicit instructions on how to behave. The essence can be boiled down to statements that reflect "you people should" _______ fill in the blank. It is far more common in pro AA posts than in any others. I'm not saying it isn't in other posts as well, but I am saying it is more prevalent in pro-AA posts. So, the main question becomes, "why do they do that with such regularity?" It is a curious phenomenon. Is this common trait somehow fostered by being in AA, or are they just bossy people to begin with. Further, it's kind of a strange posture for people that stop fighting anyone or anything. Unless it runs counter to their own beliefs evidently.

  • diablo

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

    Martha, thanks. I believe I was one of the first 1,000,000 to read the Orange papers. I believe this was early 2000 or late 90's. We need to remember that the person (who left his name anonymous; coward) is expressing his experience and opinions, trying valiantly to gather scientific studies, surveys ect…yet failed. There is nothing he has produced that would hold scrutiny under a "Peer Review" or any anything similar.

    There used to be a site dedicated to chatting about this very topic. It closed during the middle part of this decade.

  • tintop

    nice rant.

    You, simply, did not like what he wrote. Which is your problem

  • SoberPJ

    Ya, Diablo,.. I won't let you call Terrance a coward. He gives his name to anyone who asks and it is posted many places on his site. He is much braver than I in that regard.

    All his work is not without some issues, but his devotion to that site is clear. I appreciate the fact he has done so much work and it has helped many, many people including myself. Ya kinda pissed me off with the coward comment. Let's see your body of work on any subject area of ANY kind ….

  • http://stop13stepinaa@wordpress.com massiveattack

    Martha,

    THanks for your post. I think your so right.

    "So I do not believe they are capable of getting better. What is more likely to happen is that as other methods of getting sober become more widely known AA will shrink and become even more dogmatic in isolation"

    I am still working on exposing the dangers in AA and telling the innocent public. I feel that AA World Service and it's commercials and website is fraudulent.

    So in that sense the work I have done is not a waste. I was just feeling that way when I wrote the post. For God's sake, there were many years I feel I wasted. I know that there is nothing I can do about it now in retrospect, so I'll just move on. I do have to say there were times I hid in AA because I was afraid of life. For real. I had 10 years of sobriety, I was 28 years old then and I was running to my meetings instead of to my rehearsals with my other classmates from my acting class. This was back in the 80's. I passed up a few wonderful opportunities. OK …Im being morbid again. I'll let it go. Bye.

    Thanks for all the support here I feel on ST!

  • Martha

    Diablo, apparently you have not taken a good look at the Orange Papers. It is one of the most well researched and well documented sites there is about the history of AA. BTW he does give his name and he has a facbook page. Also if you read the large volume of mail he gets you will likely be distressed to discover he is reaching a lot of people and impacting their decision to walk away from or avoid AA all together. Someone started the Green Papers as an attempt to discredit Orange and they have not put any holes in Orange's arguments. Speaking of peer review the 12 steps would not survive such a review itself. The Big Book is devoid of science and steeped in superstition and Billy W's lifting of the Oxford Group's religious dogma. Speaking of cowards perhaps you can explain why AA websites delete, censor and ban people who question their program. Censoring is always a sign of extreme fear and weakness.

  • http://duischooltruth.wordpress.com JR Harris

    The Orange Papers site is alive and well. So lets just stop that unfounded rumor right now Diablo. Here is a link to a letter sent to it on 1/9/2011 and replied to today 1/15/2011:

    http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-letters216.ht

  • diablo

    JR. Harris,

    Who ever said it wasn't alive and well. I was referring to when I first read is opinions.

  • diablo

    Rick045,

    I'm sorry I think you are confused.

  • Mr AA

    So, clearly Martha wants to see AA destroyed. At least that's a clear position not open to interpretation. I am beginning to suspect she represents many on this site.

    But I have heard the voices of many within AA who know there is something wrong, want to change, but do not know how. They are hungry for guidance, not annihilation, and should not be written off as incapable of changing.

    One idea is a sequel to the Big Book with the same format but giving a "No Higher Power" option. Such a parallell system is not uncommon in "psycho-spiritual" communities and, as an idea, has already tracked positively among several AA focus groups that I have tested over the last five years. It matters little what the New York Offices think: if the rank-and file decide to embrace a change, AA will change. Meister Eckhart is read in many meetings on the West Coast; Krishnamurti in the East. AA is a lot more diverse than people think.

    Only a few days on this site, and I am becoming increasingly uncomfortable with the rhetoric, but "I am good at being uncomfortable, so I can't stop changing all the time" (Fiona Apple)

    Namaste

  • Gunthar2000

    My name is Donald T. Quinn.

  • diablo

    friendthegirl,

    Attacking Terrance nope, I am not doing this. Terrance when he first wrote his piece left his name out. This is all I stated and we all felt he was a coward and "walaa" his name appeared later.

    Who said I was defending AA????

    WoW,, what kool-aid are you drinking.

    You folks are all set up with your speeches, mantra's, links and what not. My god did I waltz into the AA anti- world, from the "twilight zone".

    Guys I have not talked about the O papers in years. Millions are still going to AA worldwide and will continue.

    Bob and Bill started a group with a coffee pot and a Bible for Alcoholics. If y'all want to have a problem with that have at it.

    Yeah, with all the others problems in your lives at one time or another, will put AA right up there as a big one. You can't be serious. Most of you are not talking about AA anyway, your talking about your Treatment Center version of AA.

  • Rick045

    diablo, perhaps I am confused. You claimed that Bill Wilson never believed in the "disease/allergy" concept, and I provided a direct quote where he called alcoholism a disease. Tell me what I am confused about.

  • tintop

    That blog at mentalhealthnet was a joke. The moderator did not moderate – refused to control the inmates.

    Basically, AA does not do very much of anything; it certainy has very little to do with drinking. except on the margin. It serves mostly as a placebo or place holder. AA does serve as a sort of social club or safe haven for those who want that sort of thing. That is, more likely than not, what AA actually does.

    I have no problem with that, if that is what people want.

  • diablo

    Rick045,

    I read your link but I failed to read where Bill made a direct quote saying Alcoholism is a disease.

    Maybe I missed it or read to fast.

  • Rick045

    @diablo, toward the very end of his testimony, "When you consider the enormous ramifications of this disease, we have just scratched the surface. I think we should humbly remember this."
    http://silkworth.net/aahistory/print/congress1969

  • Gunthar2000

    "Now, we in Alcoholics Anonymous think that alcoholism is a disease. You have heard it spoken of this morning several times as such. I think informed medical opinion throughout the country recognizes it as a disease. It is defined as a disease of twofold nature, an allergy of the body coupled with an obsession of the mind."

    ~Chuck C.'s Testimony

    Before a U.S. Senate Subcommittee

    September 27, 1969

    http://westbalto.a-1associates.com/TESTIMONY/chuc

  • SoberPJ

    " In this pamphlet, he refers to Alcoholism as a disease, a malady and an illness."

    Whew, I'm glad that's all it is. I mean, it could be a curse too, or a bedevilment, or scourge, or bane and then I'd be in real trouble. Heck, the problem may get so big that I might have to petition the creator of the universe to help me get over it. Now THAT's a real problem !

    I hope he knows how to find me on this pale blue dot…..

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pale_Blue_Dot

  • diablo

    I am having a serious issue with authenticity of these articles. Bill flatly stated many times that he did not agree with the concept that Alcoholism was a disease or allergy. He even went on to say that he felt people were putting Alcoholism along side other diseases such as cancer. Which is incorrect, he was quoted as saying. Alcoholism can be arrested in most cases but cancer could not in the 60's and earlier.

    Why would he then contradict himself, (or I suppose none of you have heard of what I am talking about). I can not seem to find the link right now (as I said earlier) but I will it is archived. I will post within the next day I'm sure.

    The disease theory really took hold in the treatment industry. What better way then to keep them coming back, tell 'em they have a life long disease.

    I will say this Bill did promote this life or death theatrics baloney. I think he did this because of his experiences and others back in the 30's.

    I have always found it to be amazing when I read gifted intelligent people such as yourselves arguing and debating the ideas, concepts and conclusions of a man far older then you that had experiences with alcohol that were over as far back as 1934.

    He died in 1971.

    My point is not that you can not argue with Bill or Bob, it is more why???? He was dead when most of you were very young (including myself). I never felt in my whole time in AA that Bill or Bob was influencing my recovery. It seems that you folks have gave him more power then really is necessary.

    He was not coming to us as a Scientist, Doctor of Medicine or Psychology, a Professor or anything other then a garden variety drunk. Even Bob who was a Doctor never felt the need to exploit this advantage. They had a idea for helping fellow drunks that others appreciated and it bloomed from there. Bill wrote endlessly about alcoholism almost to a point of obsessiveness. His life had become and revolved around AA. I have never taken Bill, Bob or AA literally, in the sense that I gave up myself nor did I feel a overwhelming weight pushing on me to do this.

    I read all this rhetoric here and i wonder what the heck happened to you folks. Did you not get enough love growing up, so life is just pissing you off and hey BtW AA sucks too. Yeah!!! lets kick the crap out of AA. We have our AA anti-book the Orange Papers.

    I applaud the AA book and the Orange Papers. Great!!!!!

    AA has changed and AA is still the same depends upon your perspective. I don't think AA has changed at all. I received what I did and realized that there was nothing more to get. So just like I left home at 19 years of age, I left AA. Many had done the exact same thing as I had before, during and after.

  • http://duischooltruth.wordpress.com JR Harris

    Well Diablo,

    I think you answered you own question in your post:

    "I have always found it to be amazing when I read gifted intelligent people such as yourselves arguing and debating the ideas, concepts and conclusions of a man far older then you that had experiences with alcohol that were over as far back as 1934.

    He died in 1971."

    Bill W is dead, he was a know womanizer, adulterer, and had no income except from a Snake Oil Cult called AA. Unfortunately many people are trying to follow in his foot steps and the 10 Billion dollar industry it has spawned. Unfortunately people such as yourself are caught up in this and being played as pawns to help fund the cult. I feel sorry for you and hope you see the light some day. It is not to late to save yourself.

  • diablo

    SoberPJ says:
    Staunch believers in AA seem so bossy. It seems that when they post here, all they can do is tell others what to do and attempt to attack or belittle others that aren’t in line with their erroneous beliefs. This blog would make a fascinating psychological study.

    diablo wrote:
    Golly Gee, have you seen the remarks from all your buddies. You sound delusional, I would have said “in denial” but since we were pretending to do a psychological study, I mind as well be as accurate as I can be.
    I understand the venomous reaction to AA, many people who post here have had some very abusive negative experiences with AA. Examples: being court ordered there because they had a DUI, going to a 12 step treatment program, going to AA by yourself and feeling violated after a few minutes of being there. If you have never had any experience with AA other then what you have read, well I feel sorry for you. You are definitely a candidate for a cult. Please go and join Tom Cruise and John Travolta.
    Folks this site (chat) were having right now (at least the one your having with yourselves) could be considered thought reform, brainwashing and possibly a bit cultist. Read what you say. Tsk! Tsk!
    AA, can appear and sound like a cult, brainwashing, forced thought control, among some of the popular adjectives attached to AA protocol.
    There is one problem though (at least with the “cult” theory) , you can get up and walk out of any meeting you want. You can accept the steps or not ect…. AA is to open to be a cult. Read the definition of a cult, AA does not fit.
    Nice yakking with ya folks. Hope to continue.

  • tintop

    diablo, thank you for your advice. I will not take it.
    nice drive by rant though.

  • diablo

    I don’t regret being a part of AA as I don’t regret being a part of my ex-wife’s life or the last job I had ect…..My god man. Most of us who entered AA were banged up bad probably. We needed a solid footing to re-establish ourselves an those darn AA’ers helped. So as we leave we kick them in the balls on the way out. Like walking up to my ex-father in law and kicking him. No way I learned a lot from both experiences.
    Yes I no longer associate with AA as many here, I have moved on. AA opened my eyes (perspective) to so much I can not even begin to articulate everything. Just so much to be grateful for.
    Yes!!!!There are whack-jobs there (as in any exclusive society) there are folks who take the Big Book and the steps within and bastardize them as their own. Totally take them out of context. AA does (the people) try to make you dependent on them or you will die. This is a philosophy I had a major problem with. To many treatment centers got a hold of AA and twisted the steps to their advantage.
    There is a letter that was written concerning a speech Bill Wilson gave in 1970 at a conference (I believe in Pittsburgh) that he expressed his fears of Treatment Centers doing this very thing, He also shared again that he never believe in the disease/allergy concept. It begs you to read this speech. He was afraid of this very thing Treatment Centers would do to keep people coming back. Hey!!! They need to make money.

  • Rick045

    diablo wrote, “There is a letter that was written concerning a speech Bill Wilson gave in 1970 at a conference (I believe in Pittsburgh) that he expressed his fears of Treatment Centers doing this very thing, He also shared again that he never believe in the disease/allergy concept.”

    Bill Wilson could be pretty selective about referring to alcoholism as a disease, depending on the audience. He had no problem calling it a disease when testifying before the senate subcommittee chaired by AA member, Senator Harold Hughes in 1969. Those hearings led to the passage of The Hughes Act, which was a huge boon for the treatment industry.
    http://silkworth.net/aahistory/print/congress1969_2.html

  • diablo

    SoberPJ,
    FEAR……FEAR. You are introducing a behavior they are not familiar with (in so far as consciously) everyone else is, as you are pointing out but they are not.
    In one of my (3) posts (lol) I explained AA (the people) trying to create a atmosphere of dependence.

  • SoberPJ

    Diablo, I have no idea what you are talking about.

  • diablo

    SoberPJ,
    Terrance was a coward at first then later came out with his name.

  • http://www.stinkin-thinkin.com friendthegirl

    Attacking someone for their anonymity is a red herring — also kind of funny coming from someone defending Alcoholics Anonymous while using a handle. Writing under a pseudonym is often a wise thing to do (I’ve had 3 people try to discover my personal identity, with the intent to intimidate me… One guy posted my contact information under a picture of a gun). Seriously, was Mark Twain a coward?

    As long as Orange cites his sources, what difference does it make to a fact whether it has a given name attached or not?

    http://www.eff.org/issues/anonymity
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_pseudonyms

  • Gunthar2000

    diablo…. could you please prove to us that you are not a coward and post your real name.

  • Mike

    How about instead of a sequel to the BB we focus on medicinal/social-science approaches that can be verified using the scientific method? Can’t see what we have to lose there.

  • MA

    Hey, Mr AA. I’m one of those who would like to see AA disappear. It does no good, and does a great deal of harm. That’s why we started this blog.

    I don’t have a problem with a book that takes the spiritual, faith healing hocus pocus out of the program, but if it involved the same recruiting tactics and culture, that would be an issue. If you are looking for a support group without the crazy, just start one. Who cares if it has the AA brand or not?

    As for the tone of the site, it gets this way when Tony the gang start commenting. Things get really heated up. I wish we could keep it to a snarky tone, but that never happens.

  • Mike

    Also, Mr. AA, I have enough experience with you from the mentalhealth forum days to see where this is going. You come off like a moderate, yet continually espouse the spiritual remedy as the solution. When confronted, you gradually get more sarcastic and combative with your posts then leave for a while. At least this time you are not referring to yourself in the third person. Mike found that irritating because Mike feels like he is being talked down to. Mike does not like being talked down to.

  • Martha

    It is more accurate to say that AA is already dying and I think we should encourage it to seek a “softer way” so you could say I recommend them to Jack Kevorkian. AA’s time is up. It hurts more people than it helps, breaks up families, tells people to stop their medication and causes suicides. They tell desperate people who come seeking help that they in fact are powerless.

    Mr. AA says that people are hungry for guidance and I have spoken to people who fit that description. One of them was someone who had been in AA and had two slips in two years. I did not tell him to wait for some unnamed change to happen in AA. I pulled no punches in telling him my opinion of AA. At my urging he read the Orange Papers and read the Cult or Cure book on the internet. After using a combination of SMART and AVRT he decided to quit. All he needed was some validation that he was not powerless and that self will was his best tool. I would not tell those in AA who are hungry for guidance anything different. AA is not going to disappear so if people fell they need that sort of religion to stay sober there will always be some form of AA around for them. What will change is that AA will not be the first thing that people think of when considering stopping their drinking any more than one would consider bloodletting for curing the flu.

  • Mr AA

    Mike,

    Can’t fault your characterization of my mentalhelpnet days – but I believe I only got sarcastic and combative with you.

    Anyway, whether you believe it or not, I learned a lot on that site and you were a major player in my re-education.

    People can change just as AA can change. Of course, time is the best test of such claims

  • Martha

    FTG said: “I’ve had 3 people try to discover my personal identity, with the intent to intimidate me… One guy posted my contact information under a picture of a gun).”

    To rework a line from Bill Murray in Ghost Busters; that is not the sort of behavior we usually see from people who have achieved serenity from a spiritual awakening.

  • Mike

    Ah, good old chuck c. I remember a priest at a retreat once mention how upon seeing chuck c, clad in a brilliant white suit, mount the podium at an aa convention the phrase ‘but for the grace of god goes god’ immediately entered his mind.

  • http://duischooltruth.wordpress.com JR Harris

    I keep thinking about the original posting on this forum:

    “AA had a 90% success rate back when Bill and Dr. Bob rand the show,”

    OK there is a typo in it, but still, where did this information come from? Did they count the people who killed themselves because of the way that the 12 Steps made them feel?

    From my own experience I had a wife who had a problem with Alcohol. She joined the program and I was very happy at the beginning, then she began the steps and started to make amends. Some of the amends were really ridiculous and I will not get into those. She became so obsessed with the wrongs she had done that she could not face herself anymore and did attempt suicide. I was the one who found her nearly dead performed CPR and called the ambulance. After a while in intensive care and a psych ward she came out and went immediately back to AA. She spent more time at AA than with me and told them everything. Her sponsor told me that I can go to the meetings but not sit next to her or talk to her during the meetings because it was hurting her sobriety. This was the only time I could talk to her because I worked full time and she went to 3 meetings a day. I also learned from my wife that everyone at the meetings agreed that I do not understand her problem and never will. She would tell me about all of the divorces in the rooms with explicit details of the nasty things that these AA people did to their spouses. I came home from work one day to find the locks changed and all of my clothes in boxes, just like she had told me about someone else who did in that the rooms. We were not mad at each other , she had just decided with the help of AA that I am not like her and never will understand her.

    I was the one who got her into AA in the first place.
    I was also the one who saved her life when she tried to kill herself after AA tried to change her thoughts without any formal training.
    I was also the only bread winner in the house because she did not have to work.
    She is now one of the elite in AA and wants me to give her Alimony so she can do that instead of work.
    She is doing to me the same things that she told me her “Friends” in the room were doing to their spouses.

    Do I have a chip on my shoulder with AA? You bet I do. Did she learn a bunch of dirty tricks from people in the rooms? You bet she did.

    By the way, we went to 2 different therapists on this and they both told my wife that she needed to “slow down” on her relationship with AA. She refused to listen to them and wanted us to go to a therapist she met in the rooms, because she was a member of AA and understood how she felt. I declined on this offer for obvious reasons.

    Until you come home and find your wife barely breathing because of the mid bending untrained psychoanalysis that untrained people in AA provide – DON’T EVEN TRY TO TELL ME HOW MANY LIVES IT SAVES!

  • Gunthar2000

    @Jr Harris…

    Here is a pdf with info on early AA recovery rates.

    Notice that the Big Book statistics are manipulated by removing uncounted numbers from control groups and dismissing them as not having “really tried.”

  • Gunthar2000
  • hulahoop

    @mamaler – I definitely think that my time in the program brought me a few things, a) time out from using to grow up, and observe what normal adults do, and b) it brought me from an atheist back to being a Christian. (yeah, I know not a lot of people on this site see the religion part as a good thing, but hey)

    You will receive the same respect you give here. Nobody is going to chastise you because of your Christian belief. I was very worried about that when I came here and made my first post regarding it. Everyone has been kind and respectful of me talking about it. It takes more than one point of view to make an interesting mix of people.

  • http://www.stinkin-thinkin.com friendthegirl

    Bill Wilson wrote this: http://aa.org/pdf/products/p-34_letsbefriendlywith.pdf

    In this pamphlet, he refers to Alcoholism as a disease, a malady and an illness.

  • Commonsense

    After seeing JR Harris’ post, I think it might be beneficial to include a special “Collateral Damage” archives in Stinkin Thinkin to display the stories of the path of destruction to innocent bystanders left by XA members, along with other elements of the 12 step treatment industry.

  • SoberPJ

    And it's interesting that wine seems to be the one with the best results. I wonder if plain old grape juice does the same thing?

  • Mike

    I have a brother-in-law who just got a DUI but claims that alcohol is in fact healthy, based on studies like the one cited above. These types of situations cause me side with the skeptical AA'ers. Diet, exercise, and stress reduction are apt to have a much higher payback than moderate drinking IMHO.

  • Johny Crash

    The way the membership continues to grow 0n this site is amazing …. its because people smell a rat … they arent getting better the radar goes up before 1971 we didnt have the internet and people couldnt communicate like this … the rebellion is starting to spread like wildfire in another ten years AA will be viewed as mysticism … faith healing and a cult religion by most of America … Its a very good thing … I dont hate AA I believe it should be called what it is … Just another two bit church raising money for stuff and gaining control over people who are mezmerized by mysticism the same way primitive tribes were amazed by modern civilization

  • Martha

    "A final reason to believe that AA will shrink significantly over the next decade or two is AA's ideological fossilization. AA will not be able, as it has not been able, to adapt its program to changing social realities. AA's mem-bership characteristics and organizational structure ensure this.

    To a great extent, AA's direction in the coming years will be determined by its members, especially those members actively involved in AA's administration. For the most part, these people are quite conservative; AA's service structure is staffed by members deeply imbued with AA tradition who love the 12-step program just the way it is, and who would fight to keep it from changing.

    This is strongly related to the religious nature of AA's program. For many, probably most, AA members, the 12 steps and related beliefs are articles of faith; and it would be as unrealistic to expect AA believers to alter their central beliefs as it would be to expect Catholics to alter theirs. Additionally, as indicated in AA's Service Manual, approval by three-quarters of all registered AA groups would be required to make any changes in the heart of AA's program, the 12 steps. Anyone familiar with AA will recognize that this makes changes in the steps, AA's ideological core, utterly impossible. In spite of changes in the composition of its membership, it seems certain that as long as AA survives it will continue to be what it has been since its articles of faith were first published in 1939: a religiously oriented ideological fossil.

    These six things—the shrinkage of inpatient treatment; the drying up of court/penal-mandated attendance; AA's ineffectiveness; the loosening of its stranglehold on the media; the appearance and endurance of the "alternative" self-help groups; and AA's inability to adapt its program to changing social conditions—virtually ensure that AA will begin to shrink significantly within the near future, perhaps within the next five to ten years; and they make it entirely possible that AA will cease to exist as a significant social movement by the second quarter of the 21st century."

    http://www.morerevealed.com/library/coc/chaptr11….

  • mamaler0y

    Mr. AA, love the list.

    The reason I started on my quest to leave AA was actually going to LCDC school and hearing in an evidence based environment (instead of antedoctal) that a) most people that recover, get better with no treatment at all and b) that AA has a much lower recovery rate than SMART and behavioral based programs and c) that harm reduction is the new evidence based gold standard of treatment and d) that much to my belief, people will eventually change when they find something important enough to make them change. (That is why a lot of people of people calm down when they become parents, it’s not because “well, they weren’t really as addicted as I was to begin with”)

    I got clean within my first 2 months into the program. I had 13 years sober when I left. I didn’t leave to start drinking heavily, but I do drink., about 5 drinks a week and I have never gotten drunk, and I have never touched a drug since I’ve left.

    I definitely think that my time in the program brought me a few things, a) time out from using to grow up, and observe what normal adults do, and b) it brought me from an atheist back to being a Christian. (yeah, I know not a lot of people on this site see the religion part as a good thing, but hey)

    I left AA and didn’t die. I just like to say that tee hee! Seriously though, I was always so scared because they tell you you will be “back on the streets” if you leave and “you start where you stopped” BS!! I have seen thousands of young people that got sober young like me go and make “the about face”

    I used to go to a 12 step based church and I got tired of my 5 year old being around those crazy children who were a) always unsupervised and had no structure of discipline and b
    ) their moms were always relapsing every 3 months so they were all crazy in the head as a result. He started to act a lot better when I stopped allowing him to go to Sunday school with them and even more when we stopped going.

    I think that I learned a lot more about becoming an adult, being a parent, and I think that my children learn a lot better being out of the AA environment.

    I just hate those YPAA f$%^s! Back in ’04 I got pregnant and my ex didn’t want to be a dad and didn’t want to pay child support so he and all of his friends tried to convince me to have an abortion or put my kid up for adoption and I lost most all of my friends over it. I just repressed this memory until tonight but one time about 30+ of them were hanging out at the local coffee shop and I showed up with one of my friends and they looked at us and started whispering and then slowly one by one started walking away until they were all gone, in a 5 minute period. And they always trick the young people into believing that “the friends you make in these rooms will be the best friends you’ll ever make in your life” ha!

  • http://deleted Primrose

    Please stay around Mr AA. It is so rare to get an aa here who is willing to listen at all. Have you looked on the community pages? I started a thread there on ‘good things about aa’ and it is still a bit thin. Personally, I don’t want aa destroyed, I want it exposed, so this site and the defunct exposeaa site are doing what I think is best.
    Namaste

  • diablo

    J.R. Harris wrote:

    Bill W is dead, he was a know womanizer, adulterer, and had no income except from a Snake Oil Cult called AA. Unfortunately many people are trying to follow in his foot steps and the 10 Billion dollar industry it has spawned. Unfortunately people such as yourself are caught up in this and being played as pawns to help fund the cult. I feel sorry for you and hope you see the light some day. It is not to late to save yourself.

    Diablo wrote:

    J.R. ever cheated on a girl while involved, ever not had income except from royalties (Benjamin Franklin did)

    Oh boohoo, Billy boy was not your model citizen. Grow up!!!!!!!

    Who freakin cares, this is about my life (our lives) not Bills. Did I get something out of the Big Book Yes!!!, did I act like a automaton, No!!!! .

    All this crap your buddies and you are spewing here is just crazy. Oh, "chicken little" AA is coming.

    AA, is just fine…big, small, here or there. AA will keep doing what it has been doing for 76 years. Providing coffee, a donut, conversation and a reason maybe not to drink for a day.

    That's it…..the essence.

    Sorry I could not get into your "group think" here. I forget my percussion's. lol

    Maybe "you folks" should calm down on the, "confrontational attacking group therapy model" your ascribing to here. Jeesh!!!!!

  • Mr AA

    Primrose,

    I wasn't planning on going anywhere although, as Mike pointed out in a different context, I do have this habit of pulling back for periods to recharge.

    What I find most fascinationg about this site is the spectrum of anti-attitudes towards AA: from letting them alone to fade into oblivion, to catalyzing their reform by expose, to actively bringing about their apocalypse. The rarest seems to be (yours?) is what we can salvage from this Great American Experiment. ( greatness not always being measure of goodness)

    Most people I know in AA are oblivious to any of what goes on this or any other site: they go to meetings, have no real interest in the rhetoric, and just try to stay sober while making sense of this thing called life. They ignore the "God stuff", don't care about Bill Wilson, and have never participated in or even seen any of the real atrocities that are being increasingly documented. Whether or not this makes them part of the problem or the solution is not yet clear.

    I have outgrown AA, just as I have outgrown my parents. But outgrowing AA does not mean that I do not always carry a piece of AA with me, nor does it mean that I do not love AA and what they once did for me. At a time in the seventies when "stinkin thinkin" wasn't even a karma ripple they welcomed me when no one else would. And just like most families, they have been a constant source of frustration and disappointment.

    My life would be so much easier wihout AA, but I do not live a life based on convenience. Loyalty is one of my core values (NOT blind loyalty), and perhaps one of the reasons that my seemingly "anti-AA" messge consistently finds traction within the rooms is that they know that I love them – even with their imperfections, And not the sappy, emotional love, but an action that calls upon everyone to transcend their limitations.

    I will step down from my soap-box now; I think I am getting a nosebleed.

    Thanks for the support Primrose. I will look at the community pages as you suggested.

  • SoberPJ

    Here’s another SoberPJ tangent… It looks like moderate booze consumption makes people smarter and helps avoid dimentia ..

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/08/18/booze_makes_you_clever/

  • MA

    Interesting information, PJ. I felt like my thinking ability got better when I quit the sauce, but I was anything but a moderate drinker.

  • http://deleted Primrose

    I would like to see AA exposed. I tend to agree with those who describe it is a gigantic fraud. There is no disease of alcoholism. The success rate is terrible. The suicide rate is shocking and UNRECORDED. It has many cult like characteristics, including a refusal to tolerate criticism. I am glad there are some thoughful aas who come on here, especially those who have troubled to look at some of the 'essential reading' and the orange papers. But I don't see the point in 'reforming' something that has failed, consistently. It would make as much sense to me as 'reforming' the Scientologists. Why?

  • tintop

    Primrose, I do not see the point either. For all the reasons that you described.

  • diablo

    Hey tintop and Primrose my sentiments exactly. Why bother to educate the people who refuse to change. How ever I believe you ancient baby boomers will prevail eventually and come out of your whoa is me, attitude.

    AA is not making your life as unpleasant as you make it out here. All these horrific experiences that everyone just spouts off around here, is there a longitudinal study, a peer review any citations at all to back up all these atrocities.

    Naaaa, I didn't think so. Please don't quote; Stanton Peele and George Vaillants, been there done that.

  • http://duischooltruth.wordpress.com jrharris

    @diablo

    Why are you so angry? Do you realize that when you think the other person is dumb, you are making a fool of yourself? You don’t have to prove anything to anyone.

    Please try to not take other people’s inventory when you should be taking your own. Your criticisms seem like reflections of your own insecurities.

    Look at my point of view and then you can take what you can use and leave the rest. I think you should learn something new. Try something different. Convince yourself that you have no limits. Please, before you say I can’t, say I’ll try.

    You should try not to judge people.

    Have a good day, unless of course you have made other plans.

  • DeConstructor

    Actually diablo there are- in fact there are several studies that directly pertain to what is discussed in this forum.

    The most appropriate would be the Brandsma Study- a well run longitudinal study out of Maryland, documented the huge increase in binge drinking people have in their first year of AA.

    When this is combined with State of California, openly admitting they have wasted billions on substance abuse treatment, one cannot help but come to the conclusion that the taxpayer is getting swindled to pay for the indoctrination that does hurt people.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hjNZNayy3ig

  • SoberPJ

    It is so wonderful that alcohol abuse is being studied from every direction, with a focus on the young. It is very important to save kids from a life of self-inflicted misery and a possible sentence to life-long meeting attendance. Most research makes no mention of AA, so I think their days are numbered for sure. On a research site, a poster mentioned that treatment enrollments are down 15% in the last year. That is great news. Here is a list of some places that are funded by just the NIAAA. None of them list research into the nature and efficacy of faith healing – wonder why? It's all behavioral and neurobiology. Yeaaaahhhhh !

    http://www.niaaa.nih.gov/ResearchInformation/Extr

  • raysny

    Martha writes that "the shrinkage of inpatient treatment" will diminish AA. 12step treatment got a major shot in the arm with the passage of The Mental Health Parity Bill, pushed through by stepper Patrick Kennedy and his sponsor, Jim Ramstad (currently on the board of directors of the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University), who added provisions that insurance companies must pay for rehab as many times as it takes.

    I fear this will be a huge money drain on funds that should be going towards mental health.

  • Mona Lisa

    Oh, it’s quite clear that moderate alcohol consumption is a good thing for most people. I don’t doubt that. But if my own past history is any indication–and I have no reason to believe it isn’t–I can’t drink moderately.

    I’ve also never been able to run a marathon. No matter how healthy it is, I can’t do it.

  • Mike

    Kennedy was and is a disgrace. I lived in his district in RI when daddy first got him elected. Blatant carpetbagging. I'm just glad he is gone now.

  • diablo

    This needed to be posted again.

    LOL, I see most of the negative comments people are leaving are from those who have never been to an AA meeting, or went to a few and quit going. Sounds like to me you are fear mongering over something you have no clue about, or are soured by something in your personal life, and taking it out on AA as a whole, If you’re going to speak about something, get your facts straight before you comment, and stop being ignorant.

    AA doesn’t recruit first of all. If somebody wants to beat their addiction on will power, then go for it and see how far you’ll make it, because no one shows up at an AA meeting for coffee and conversation, so something must be seriously wrong with you if you’re there in the first place.

    Secondly, AA cannot be held responsible for some deranged people that should be in jail to begin with, so why don’t you take it up with the judge or jury that released these convicts. AA is a non profit organization that wants nothing but to help other suffering alcoholics, in order to help themselves.

    Thirdly, if anyone is a DR. or scientist here and has the cure for alcoholism, why are you keeping it a secret?? If not then close your lips, and get off your soap box.

    AA has been the only thing that has been closest to a “cure” for addiction since 70 years ago when it started. And was started in part by 2 doctors in addition to Bill W..

    Fourthly..Convicts are sent mandatory to AA and such programs by the judge.

    People who voluntarily go to AA have an 90 % success rate since Bill W and DR Bob started the program. It wasn’t until the 60′s and 70′s that rehabs got their hands into the money pit that the AA message became washed and weak, and the courts starting sending convicts to it.

    AA is not really a religious program, the only thing is you believe in something greater then[sic] yourself. weather[sic] its the fellowship, the meetings, God etc. Because like I said before, If you’re in an AA meeting to begin with, you obviously have some problems, and haven’t been able to deal with them by yourself.

    I’d be interested in hearing rebuttals, but obviously a majority of people here are too fat headed and ignorant, to change their minds. Which I could care less, because I understand, “Ignorance is Bliss” Have a miserable day. : )

    Oh and by the way, If anyone wants to call me a big book thumper or such, I’m not necessarily in any program or belief, I just research things and experience them before i start spouting off ignorant spittle at people or about people.

    I’d take on anyone in a conversation like wise about politics, current events, or religion.

  • hulahoop

    @johnycrash – I dont hate AA I believe it should be called what it is … Just another two bit church raising money for stuff and gaining control over people who are mezmerized by mysticism the same way primitive tribes were amazed by modern civilization.

    I totally agree. It’s a religious organization plain and simple. If people don’t see that then it is because they don’t want to see it. I don’t frequent other message boards of known cults or religions because people know what they buying in to when they walk in. Most of them have been exposed as cults and do not enjoy the media presenting them in a different light like AA does. AA should have to come clean and call itself a religion because it is the truth even if they deny it. Shit, at least when someone buys booze or cigarettes there is a warning label on them.

  • SoberPJ

    Diablo, it's on the flippin page, why does it NEED to be posted again? It's still drivel and now it takes up even more space. If you have something coherent and consistent to say please try to say it.

  • johnny crash

    poor guy … it must suck to have no life … keep going to meetings D …. in the end its always the same …life passed ya by and you wait for a bus that never comes

  • Mike

    "People who voluntarily go to AA have an 90 % success rate since Bill W and DR Bob started the program. "

    LOL, thanks for the whopper, I can skip Burger King tonight.

  • DeConstructor

    I am not going to waste any more time with Diablo.

    I have more important things to do rather than to waste time with one individual, and there is more important work to be done. Daiblo is simply not worth the time. We all have important work to do, as the AA faith and the recovery industry cartel continue to kill people through the promotion of misinformation marketed as medical fact.

    Diablo should go to a meeting, and perhaps spend the rest of his life at even more meetings.

  • diablo

    Hulahoop wrote:
    I totally agree. It’s a religious organization plain and simple. If people don’t see that then it is because they don’t want to see it. I don’t frequent other message boards of known cults or religions because people know what they buying in to when they walk in. Most of them have been exposed as cults and do not enjoy the media presenting them in a different light like AA does. AA should have to come clean and call itself a religion because it is the truth even if they deny it. Shit, at least when someone buys booze or cigarettes there is a warning label on them.

    diablo wrote:
    Please give me your definition of a religious organization, please. I had to throw out my Websters Dictionary and Religious Encyclopedia out because I felt they weren’t doing their job.

  • diablo

    Maybe the last 5 posters can do me a favor. READ MY POSTS CORRECTLY!!!!!!

    I have not been to a meeting in 5 years. This was after going for 23 years. Yes so almost 28 years have past.

    So I have a fairly rational account of AA and the people that attend AA. Most of you simply can not understand the difference.

    So I want my little chitin's to stop with your "group think" and allow for other thoughts to come in. OK…..

    Thank You

  • causeandeffect

    Diablo said "I see most of the negative comments people are leaving are from those who have never been to an AA meeting, or went to a few and quit going."

    Diablo, most here have many years in AA. Some have more time than you. I'm so sorry but you are in denial. In fact, every statement you made above proves you are not in the real world. So sorry, but you are in denial. Your eyes are closed. If you love AA, go back. It's that simple.

  • tintop

    Very interesting, mr aa. I do not view aa as a ‘great american experiment’. This country has had experiments a great more profound and interesting than aa can ever hope to become. Basically, aa is not very much of anything; I think that it should slowly expire from attrition. Which is what I think that it will do.
    I understand why some people ‘love aa’; and, why it is a source of frustration and disappointment. That is bound to happen, owing to the completely unrealistic expectations people have of it.

    AA is a support group; a support group with a very specific and religious pov. It is, also, a kind of a social club; for others, it is a variety of dysfunctional family.

    Having said all that, there are better and more scientific approaches available. Eventually, these methods will replace aa.

  • tintop

    diablo — get a life.
    You are wasting our time reading your drivel. No one is interested.
    You are wasting your time. Posting here is an even greater waste of your time than your silly meetings.
    Have a great day!!

  • tintop

    diablo get a life and stop whining

  • Gunthar2000

    Enough already.

  • Ben Franklin

    Diablo, I am a scientist. Here is the cure for EtOH abuse: stop drinking it. It also helps to avoid AA. Thanks for asking. Keep it simple stupid.

  • diablo

    Well Tony has a point doesn't he. JR., for everything I have read about you is drowning in narcissism. Your wife's so-called problems pale in comparison to your obsessive chastising of her and her choices. Women here, honestly, you would want to live with this.

    Whether you people here like it or not, Americans get to make their own choices.

    AA, is a choice folks make, regardless of what you may think. All this, Oh I have to save the world from AA, they are killing people bla, bla, bla. Please, save it for your Treatment Center Web Site Forums.

    You freak'in people are sick, I know most of the people who share on this site are from AA, it is obvious. You sound exactly like the crusty, crappy-heads that hang around AA for 50 years. You really do. There is no difference, you still have compulsive attacking behaviors. Your right and be damned with everyone else, it is "all or nothing" with you folks. All you have done is switched your hat, what is up in your head is still skewed.

    I can only hope in my time here that the "peanut gallery" I have been reading for the past couple of days changes.

  • http://www.stinkin-thinkin.com friendthegirl

    Mike, There's really no mistaking the two. JD has his limits.

  • Gunthar2000

    Fuck off diablo. You are a real sick fuck… The same kind of shit that goes on in AA every day… get a little bit of personal info about someone, and then try to use it against them.

    If you don't like what people on this blog have to say, you can find a whole bunch of wacky AA sites all over the web.

    Just fuckin' get lost now.

  • diablo

    Nope!!!! I'm staying right here and I will continue to point out your faults. I am not in AA, "bombastic one" for the 5th time. Used to be.

    I don't look at it as whether I like or not, I take stock in what people have to say and don't say.

    As in your case, you are an loud mouth, I got that 2 days ago.

    Thanks for your salient words.

  • http://duischooltruth.wordpress.com JR Harris

    If you hang around the barber shop long enough, you'll get a haircut.

  • Martha

    No, Diablo ego deflation is at the center of AA's approach. Telling someone coming to AA for help that they must accept they are powerless is bass ackwards. Do you really believe we are powerless? I do not. Self empowerment is what people need not the opposite.

  • Martha

    Diablo, I do not have a disease. I stopped drinking and I am therefore no longer an alcoholic. My abstinence alone is sobriety. There is no such thing as a dry drunk. People do not have to attend meetings in order to be legitimately sober. I refuse to subordinate myself to a group or turn my life over to a higher power. I am the only power that keeps myself from drinking. Saying that in an AA meeting would be considered cross talk. I mentioned before that a friend tried to discuss the Sinclair Method at a meeting and was told not to. Being able to stop is a difficult enough task and adding a bunch of steps makes it even more difficult.

  • causeandeffect

    To those who attacked JR above:

    JR seems like a really good husband. He genuinely cares about his wife and still obviously misses her terribly. It sounds like he was very tolerant when she was actively drinking and he did what he thought at the time was right to help her stop. He supported her though all of this both financially and emotionally. He’s had to watch painfully as the ego deflation caused her enough depression to attempt suicide and he had to resuscitate her, only for them to use fear to convince her that she somehow needed more of the same bad AA treatment. He hated to see her used and manipulated by her so-called AA friends. He even went through the discomfort of going to meetings with her just to have some time with her. And after all he’s done for her, she dumped him based on the opinions, and perhaps jealousy, of women who were incapable of having a relationship of their own. He posts here to help prevent anybody from falling into the same trap or support those who have. He has a website dedicated to helping and informing others.

    On top of all this, he respects women in general. His objection to the exploitation of underaged girls on a pro-AA site resulted in the young girl’s photo removed. He still objects to the exploitation of women who are of age on that site. So, whatever you want to say about him, I’ve only ever seen reason to respect him. I hope his wife comes back to her senses soon.

  • Gunthar2000

    I'm here to support people who've decided to leave AA because I understand what it's like to have worked AA's stupid worthless program until I felt so unsure of myself that I decided the world would be better off without me. I know what it's like to beat myself into the ground over and over waiting for a miracle that never happens. I know the liberation of realizing that I am not the freak that AA had suggested I was… I spent so much time waiting to be reborn. I spent so much time rejecting reality in favor of AA's delusional promises. Then I realized that I was a miracle all along. Just the fact that I'm here makes it so. I'm here to support others so that maybe they'll be able to escape AA's mind-trap also.

  • diablo

    Martha, you keep telling me about what people have said to you, "what the people have said", I never put that much stock in what people say when it comes to major Physiological and or Psychological, spiritual or physical changes. I in no way thought the Big Book, Twelve and Twelve or any other material AA supplies to be the "end all" in my quest for healing. AA was nothing more then a balming for my problems.

    I have never heard AA being explained in terms such as the people here do. You actually give AA much more power then it deserves.

  • diablo

    @ JR, I am asking you now with much humility to accept my apology for being a insensitive louse. If I knew how to erase the comment I would. Not for me necessarily but for you. I will use it as a barometer to gauge my behavior in the future.

    Once again sorry.

  • Gunthar2000

    diablo…. You are so full of shit. You know the bullshit that goes on in AA. There is no way you've never seen it, because it's all over the fuckin' place.

    Someone please email when these trolls are banned. This is like sitting in a room with the same assholes who abuse people at AA meetings. I think that people come here to get away from these people. They shouldn't be here… It's like opening old wounds.

  • diablo

    diablo says

    Well Tony has a point doesn’t he. JR., for everything I have read about you is drowning in narcissism. Your wife’s so-called problems pale in comparison to your obsessive chastising of her and her choices. Women here, honestly, you would want to live with this.

    To JR and everyone else,

    This was a excerpt from the post. Total stupidity on my part.

    Will not happen again. I can play fair.

    diablo

  • Gunthar2000

    Just fuck off.

  • Martha

    You must be willingly ignorant of all the other venues where people explain AA like we do here. We are by no means alone in expressing these reservations about AA. This is why people are looking for alternatives to AA. If it comforts you to believe that we are an isolated little group that operates in a vacuum go right ahead. The reality is that ST is a part of a growing trend wherein AA is becoming marginalized. Many professionals are now recommending Smart, Sinclair or SOS and many also feel no hesitation to criticize AA. Like it or not place like Orange Papers get a respectable amount of traffic and the letters he gets reflect that many other people are turning away from the 12 steps.

  • diablo

    @Martha,

    Well alrighty then…..AA will die soon.

    Your dreaming…….over 80,000 people, (filled to capacity) were in San Antonio, Tx this past July. In the Alamo Dome for a meeting. Standing room only from all over the world. AA is growing like it always has and will. It a simple way to get sober. Stop complicating it with your Treatment Center mumbo jumbo.

    This is what this blog/site is all about, Treatment Center garbage not AA.

  • Gunthar2000

    AA is treatment center mumbo jumbo.

  • http://stop13stepinaa@wordpress.com massiveattack

    diablo,

    AA is not growing. It is decreasing.

    THose of us who once went to 3-4 meetings a week, only go to one a week.

    Many meetings that once existed in Los Angeles and the valley are gone.

    I guess with a research team we could just look at the meeting schedule to see how it has shrunk in LA.

    Even the Pac Group has gotten smaller by 400 people. ANd because of this blog, all of us who want to create, find some alternative to AA are finding that we are not alone, that we are still sober, that we are sane, that we are empowered, not powerless, etc.

    There are already some other alternatives!.

  • Mona Lisa

    If I may be so bold, the proper way to ignore diablo and others like him is not to respond in the first place.

    Over and out.

  • Mike

    AA is shrinking, they flat lined years ago and have maintained current numbers through referrals, primarily via the courts. A positive trend is the gradual but steady decline of religion in the usa; this will further chip away at the aa religion. It's inevitable, people get smarter and they start to question the status quo. The internet has proved itself a vital tool towards this end. And the first amendment is also a great ally. The aa neurotics will have to find something else to keep themselves busy in the not too distant future.

  • diablo

    @Gunthar, this right here explains it all. Sad part you don't even know what I am talking about.

    @Massive, yo what's up!!!

    Naw, AA is doing just fine. It is the normal ebb and flo- wax and wane of things.

    @Mike, keep dreaming. Internet has nothing to do with anything. Sadly there will be alcoholics.

  • diablo

    @Mike, my comment to you was rash. Of course the internet is a vital tool. I am just saying it is not keeping drunks from coming to AA.

  • Martha

    Mike, I have similar thoughts about the role of the internet in neutralizing the power of AA. The other side of the coin is that AA also uses the net for their own purposes. What is different is that the net is pulling a lot of us together and people can find us just while googling things like "alternative to AA" or searching for answers about hearing the term stinking thinking in a meeting. Of course when we go out and place our links on blogs and media comment sections we can attract people here. We can practice attraction and promotion. Just a reminder that it is worthwhile when reading about the latest celebrity to go to rehab or really any story about DUIs, addiction or drinking to post links for here anf the Orange Papers. There may be a number of people who will avoid AA because of a simple bit of effort.

  • Tony J

    Mike :

    "The aa neurotics will have to find something else to keep themselves busy in the not too distant future."

    By the looks of this site, I think some of you already have.

  • Mike

    @martha, I agree, the internet is a double-edged sword. I think though it has the net effect of favoring the truth. I'm convinced that the goal of any established power base is to censor. The trolls visiting this forum can't directly do this so they opt for chaos. They have a stake in killing this forum – emotional as well as maybe financial. Their very presence means this site has clout. I'm excited to be part of this.

  • Tony J

    JR :

    ” I came home from work one day to find the locks changed and all of my clothes in boxes, just like she had told me about someone else who did in that the rooms. We were not mad at each other , she had just decided with the help of AA that I am not like her and never will understand her. ”

    Gee, can’t see why any sane woman would leave a charmer like you.

    Did you accuse her of engaging in kiddie porn and use the manipulation and shame monering you try to use on me here ?

    Good for her. I’m sure she’s better off without you.
    I chalk that up as another victory for AA.

  • tintop

    Keep coming back tony. You are dong an outstanding job of demonstrating the greatness of AA; you are outstanding in your field!!
    We will love you until you can love yourself.
    Have a wonderful day!!

  • Ben Franklin

    Gunthar I second that.

  • Tony J

    Gunthar2000 says Enough already.

    You’re right. It should be ‘shame-mongering’. It’s hard to type in this little box somtimes.

  • Gunthar2000

    "AA is only designed to work on people who can’t quit any other way.

    AA's solution is based on the religious idea that there is a God who is willing to take over your will and your life if you'll just ask him in the right way.

    There is no such thing as an alcoholic who can't quit any other way.

  • http://deleted Primrose

    I don't connect AA with alcohol. It is about who will, and who will not accept powerlessness and all the other dogma and structure, and the devotion to a badly written book. Is there much opposition to NA? Most references to NA seem to be second hand. I am not experienced in NA but it is my uninformed guess that it is harder to give up drugs?

    People who are ready to pay service to an illogical dogma may find it helpful in stopping drinking.

    But it is not helpful to people who don't want to join a cult so it would be nice if they would let people to come to them of the alternatives. For the sake of everyone, not just them.

    The deaths actually help aa to scare newcombers into staying and scaring doubters from escaping. They take the deaths from alcohol and suicide that their 'way' is even more right than before. They don't have an interest in helping people with alcohol problems because their very 'success' depends on many people dying.

    So AA has no interest in helping alcoholics in general at all. It has an interest in many 'alcoholics' dying of 'alcholism'. So, and do correct me, AA's suppression of any substance abuse treatment that is not their own is the first logical I can think of that they do.

  • Mike

    Weird, jd has virtually stopped posting, while tj’s posts have increased. Almost seems to be a linear relationship between the two.

  • Mike

    I’ll take your word for it, ftg. As we say in boston, yaw pretty smaht. (-8//

  • Gunthar2000

    Go fuck yourself diablow.

  • Martha

    There are more salient words in these posts that can be found in the entire Big Book. The first 164 pages are some of the most worthless ideas ever committed to print.

  • Gunthar2000

    I think all trolls should be banned immediately.

  • Tony J

    "Mike says Of course alcohol abuse kills people, when did I ever say it didn’t?"

    " I can almost telegraph the troll’s response to your last post: ‘you’re going to cause someone’s death!’ Yeah right. And the lame can walk and the blind can see. Pass the basket."

    You obviously don't see it as a matter of life and death. You suggest here that AA makes up the danger to get you to put something into the basket.

    Typical anti-AA dullard.

    C+E :

    "Since I’ve been here, nobody here has ever said anything remotely like it’s OK for a chronic alcoholic to drink or that alcohol abuse has never killed anyone. "

    C+E meet Mike.

    Mike, C+E

  • http://deleted Primrose

    I could not agree more with everything JRH has posted here about his (vicarious) experience of this cult. Primrose.

  • Tony J

    PJ :

    "Only those that believe in the WAY are right. All others are wrong. That includes researchers and doctors and clinicians and pharmaceutical companies. They aren’t the WAY."

    You're describing yourself here right ? Anyone who doesn't believe your anti-AA narratives is wrong because you have the only way. You prove it by your anti-AA talking poiints and cooked statistics.

    The 'Way' as you call it in AA is a spiritual experience of one sort or another. It doesn't have to be induced from AA. AA was designed to bring it on. AA didn't invent the idea. The Oxford Group didn't either.

    Don't be jealous. You'll never fit in AA but you're perfect here.

    The last time I checked there were plenty of researchers, doctors and clinicians who were pro AA though. I know your cult masters only allow you to look at certain studies but that's not a very good argument.

  • diablo

    Well Gunthar, On most sites you would have been already banned for your foul-mouth. I am not a troll, I just don’t happen to agree with you.
    As far as JR is concerned, I’m sure he is a big boy and he can take it. He dishes it out enough.
    Thanks once again for showing me the better side of, “Stinkin’ Thinkin’ ” (pun intended)

  • http://duischooltruth.wordpress.com JR Harris

    Taking others inventory (when you should be taking your own)?

  • diablo

    @Causeandeffect, that was a beautiful. I re-read what I wrote concerning JR. and realized it was a bit harsh.

    @ JR, I am asking you now with much humility to accept my apology for being a insensitive louse. If I knew how to erase the comment I would. Not for me necessarily but for you. I will use it as a barometer to gauge my behavior in the future.
    Once again sorry.

  • Vera

    Leave it to a stepper to consider the scientific method as "cooked statistics".

  • SoberPJ

    TJ …It is with sincere gratitude that I don't fit into AA. I have outgrown it and it only took 4,000 or so meetings. In the world of AA, compared to me, you may be a newbie. I am not powerless and I don't need some phony spiritual faith-healing horseshit to stay sober. It must be hard for true believers to watch their beloved program shrivel into obscurity. Without AA, where will they get their social status? I was once a wise oldtimer in the rooms with duct-taped chairs, coffee stained carpets and water-stained ceilings. Whoopee shit. One of the winners in the land of the lost. I chose to get a life. And I will never be jealous of anything or anyone in that faith-healing Buchmanite sect. And you're right, there are faith-healing researchers and the rest of the scientific community of substance abuse is running circles around them. They are researching the specific physical mechanisms for dependence KNOWING that it isn't a spiritual or moral malady. I have no cult master, I have no sponsor on this site, there is no one revered here, there is no dogma, no confession required. Any statement that ST is a cult is a display of pure and unadultrated ignorance.

  • Martha

    Well, Tony J you should consider the number of people who by coming here have decided that their own reservations about are confirmed. You seem a bit neurotic about your defense of a dying cult and you are in denial about the fact that our efforts here are working. That is why you keep coming back because this site works (if ya work it?) If you really though that this site was not keeping people from AA you would not come in here to disrupt. You are also forgetting that we do some of this work on other websites. There is one place set up by AA that has been un- moderated for sometime. It gets traffic directed there by AA and it is full of posts with links to Dr. Peele, The Sinclair Method, Smart, ST, OP and people who come for AA and get my take on it. No I will not tell you where that is, but suffice it to say AA has been denied some new members because of it.

  • Mike

    @martha, I can almost telegraph the troll’s response to your last post: ‘you’re going to cause someone’s death!’ Yeah right. And the lame can walk and the blind can see. Pass the basket.

  • Tony J

    “If you really though that this site was not keeping people from AA you would not come in here to disrupt. ”

    What this site does is give a person who might need AA a community to co-sign their bullshit. Thank God I didn’t have that.

    As far as using other methods, go ahead. Go drop all the flyers you want at AA meetings and have a ball. I don’t think anyone is a worried as you imagine them to be. That’s just part of your cult-think.

    AA is only designed to work on people who can’t quit any other way. That was the original intent. If you have a better way, promote it.

    Mike is right though. When you tell chronic alcoholics that it’s okay to drink or that AA is the real problem and not alcohol you will end up killing some of them.

    Not that you care. We know it’s all about you.

    Mike doesn’t believe that alcohol abuse has ever killed anyone.

    Honestly, which one of us is more likely to be brainwashed ?

  • causeandeffect

    Since I’ve been here, nobody here has ever said anything remotely like it’s OK for a chronic alcoholic to drink or that alcohol abuse has never killed anyone. That’s what this site is about. Telling people that AA is an ineffective way to quit drinking for 95% and those 95% deserve something so much better. Hint: there are science based alternatives on the right side of page.

  • http://deleted Primrose

    DO correct me on this.
    I have read that it is a breach of etiquette to criticise someone with more ‘sobriety’ than you.

    If alcohol is anything to do with this cult it is that the sobriety date system provides the hierarchy and the distribution of power. That is why it is so important. If someone has not had a cigarette for 5 years and has one at a party, they don’t suddenly feel the last 5 years is nothing. It would be silly. AA does exactly this and I think it just to define the power of each member.

  • Mike

    Of course alcohol abuse kills people, when did I ever say it didn’t?

  • SoberPJ

    “Can’t quit any other way…. can’t quit any other WAY” … It’s about that special WAY.. AA’ers belong to a club of the special WAY. The only WAY real alcoholics get sober. Belonging to the special way club meets some kind of need to be special, different, unique. To belong to a special club with all the answers to at least one situation. Certainty brings comfort, even if it’s wrong. It is the WAY for real alcoholics to get sober and there is no other WAY for them. Take away the WAY and you remove their elevated sense of specialness of belonging to the only way club. Only those that believe in the WAY are right. All others are wrong. That includes researchers and doctors and clinicians and pharmaceutical companies. They aren’t the WAY.

  • tintop

    ftg: good luck. Read what this black hearted bastard, aka tony, has written. This is exactly the sort sort of necrophilous imprecation that you will have to read. I told you to ban this useless sob. Live with the consequences as best you can. You were warned.

  • zooromeo

    WOW !!

    Thanks to Tony J and Diablo for reminding me of why I left AA.

    Its so funny how if you have left AA and are doing better, then you either are “in denial”, “not a real alcoholic” or a dry drunk.. Such circular garbage = perfectly design to be impossibly to argue with – its too illogical.

    You can get over alcohol-abuse-ism-whatever without it being a Killer-disease doing push ups in the parking lot.. didnt happen for me – especially after I dealt with why I was behaving the way I was – and AA never fixed me because:

    Spiritual malady=depression
    mental obsession=anxiety disorder
    physical craving=biochemical state from consistent alcohol abuse

    And I believe its the same for a lot of alcohol abusers/holics

    NO – I DONT recommend it for everyone because with some people, by the time they get to the root cause of it all – they have developed a habit too ingrained to change – but that doesnt mean anyone is ever so fucked up as to need ongoing, weekly/daily, steps, program, sponsorship, blah blah blah…

    What the people here are talking about is that if you need to, you can simply just stop drinking and fuckin move on with your life… AA wont let you do that

    And for that I am grateful :)

  • Ton J

    Vera :

    "Leave it to a stepper to consider the scientific method as “cooked statistics”."

    Leave it to someone who has no idea what science is to think the scientific method is statistics.

    Since you don't have anything to contribute to the conversation, can you please change tin foil hat's diaper ?

    I think it's full.

    PJ:

    "TJ …It is with sincere gratitude that I don’t fit into AA. I have outgrown it and it only took 4,000 or so meetings. "

    Somehow I don't think anyone hanging out on this site has outgrown AA.

    " I chose to get a life. And I will never be jealous of anything or anyone in that faith-healing Buchmanite sect. And you’re right, there are faith-healing researchers and the rest of the scientific community of substance abuse is running circles around them. They are researching the specific physical mechanisms for dependence KNOWING that it isn’t a spiritual or moral malady"

    LOL.

    I have a damn good life and I'm in AA. AA is not the cause of your general discontent.

    When you use loaded phrases like faith-healing Buchmanite sect you come off as kind of crazy.

    The Oxford Group (Buchman) wasn't a faith-healing sect.

    AA advises that medical and psychiatric treatment be undergone when needed, it always has.

    The Steps and program were based on the OG as taught by Sam Shoemaker but Shoemaker gave Wilson the boot because Wilson didn't fit in with the OG. He only cared about finding a cure for drunks.

    So to insist that AA is a Buchmanite sect is, again, quite a stretch.

    As far as KNOWING that it isn't a spiritual or moral malady, science knows no such thing nor is it interested in it. If the physical mechanisms can be controlled by scientific means they will be.

    If they were running circles around AA then you guys wouldn't be working so hard here. You're claiming science is on your side and your fighting a war of rhetoric. The day science finds a cure will be the day AA goes away and this site goes with it.

    In the mean time, enjoy your new cult. They seem almost like AA's but a bit angrier and less inclined to give you a hand when you need one.

    It's been said that the Oxford Group was the Salvation Army for snobs.

    Anti-AA is AA for snobs.

  • Ton J

    zoo:

    "Its so funny how if you have left AA and are doing better, then you either are “in denial”, “not a real alcoholic” or a dry drunk.. Such circular garbage = perfectly design to be impossibly to argue with – its too illogical."

    If you left AA and are doing better, then you left AA and are doing better.

    If you left AA and are having imaginary conversations with yourself about what everyone in AA is saying about you….well, you may not be doing as well as you think.

    I, for one, agree with you. People can get sober in AA and leave and move on.

    I believe what the BB says about the spiritual experience. Some people need it to stay sober. Period.

    That's not to say they need AA or they even need to attend AA meetings for the rest of their lives.

    That concept predates AA. It was the concept AA's steps were based on.

    The flip side is, you'll see plenty of people who 'left AA and are doing better' come back into AA over time and find out they stopped trying to live a spiritual life and relapsed or sometimes the didn't relapse and just get into a depression or anger jag. They say the come to AA because it helps them. They like the people in meetings or whatever.

    "What the people here are talking about is that if you need to, you can simply just stop drinking and fuckin move on with your life… AA wont let you do that"

    And how, exactly would AA stop you from doing that ?

    In fact, why would you even be in AA if you could 'just quit' ?

    You're doing the usual anti-AA double talk. Complaining that people in AA say you aren't a 'real alcoholic' and then saying you 'just quit'.

    By definition, if you have the ability to 'just quit' you aren't a 'real alcoholic' and therefore don't need AA.

    So that brings up the question, why is this site even here ?

    I suspect there's an underlying dynamic. People are drawn to cults because the cult answres questions and gives them a sense of purpose and social status. In a word, people don't come here because they 'just quit' and are leading happy fulfilling lives.

  • Martha

    Tony J said: "So that brings up the question, why is this site even here ?"

    This site is here because people want it to be here and it is working. If you can't deal with it, TJ then say the Serenity Prayer with special emphasis on the part about accepting the things you cannot change. We will not go away.

  • Mike

    Statistics are part of the scientific method. An integral part.

  • Gunthar2000

    There's a lot of double talk in AA. One minute they'll tell you that the steps are just suggestions… the next they'll tell you your only other options are jails, institutions, or death.

    AA members routinely insist that without AA alcoholics are doomed.

    The reason I'm here is to expose this nonsense for what it is. Initially I was directed to AA by health care professionals. Over time I became immersed in AA culture and AA's belief system but was still unable to quit drinking… In fact I felt hopeless and my drinking became a lot worse.

    This blog and the people who are a part of this community help me to understand that I am not alone when it comes to my AA experiences… There are many of us out there who are willing to lend a hand to people who have suffered as a result of their AA cult involvement. It's good to know that there are people like myself out there who have rejected AA's religious faith healing practices in favor of more sound and rational approaches to addiction treatment.

    I was misled by AA for years. I'm glad that someone was there to point out all of the contradictions and fallacies within AA literature, and the overall AA dogma.

    In my opinion AA is an abusive religious cult that stands a s a barrier between alcoholics and the treatment that they need. The sooner the cult is exposed for what it is, the sooner people will be able to find treatment that actually works.

  • Ton J

    "Mike says Statistics are part of the scientific method. An integral part."

    Repeatable and peer reviewed statistics.

    Not just 'statistics'. The anti-AA-bots seem to think that any statistic uttered by the masters is 'scientific'. That's just not true.

    There aren't any good statistics on recovery rates. The evidence is always anecdotal.

    If you want to use science to prove your point, that's fine.

    But saying you're using science isn't the same thing as using it.

    Martha :

    "We will not go away."

    Of course not. Where would you go ? You thrive on this chaos and drama.

    That's my point. There is a dynamic here that goes way beyond just 'not drinking'.

    It seems like alcoholilcs need to be fanatical about something.

    This cult is a bit negative for my taste but William James did say :

    "The only radical remedy I know for dipsomania is religiomania."

    You guys prove the wisdom of that quip every day here.

  • Gunthar2000

    There's plenty of evidence to support the claim that AA is an ineffective treatment for alcoholism.

    See Ditman, Brandsma, and AA's own triennial surveys.

    All three of these studies involved control groups, so the claim that the evidence is always anecdotal is just bogus.

    The real question here is… Is there any evidence to support the claim that AA actually helps alcoholics to stop drinking? The answer is NO! There is no evidence beyond anecdotal evidence to support these claims.

  • Mona Lisa

    The last triennial study I saw was a done couple of years ago. Of course, these things are not peer reviewed. Nothing AA puts out is peer reviewed.

  • Gunthar2000

    Not sure what you are getting at diablo.

    Are you suggesting that AA's lack of evidence proves that AA helps people to stop drinking?

  • diablo

    @Vera,

    Most have no clue what the definition of a cult is. Ask any professional source (outside of Terrance).

  • Mike

    Tony J(d)-ablo, anyone?

  • Gunthar2000

    It seems to me that the term "alcoholic" is pretty absolute. You are either an alcoholic, or you are not. there doesn't seem to be any need to define alcoholism any further, and I doubt that terms like "real alcoholic" or even "more alcoholic, or alcoholicer" are used anywhere.

  • Gunthar2000

    So AA's criteria for diagnosing alcoholics differs from the medical communities?

  • hulahoop

    @diablo – We continue to practice the principles that were taught (not just in AA but from many sources), we just don’t need a meeting anymore to reinforce this principles.

    There were things I learned in AA that I still use today. I like what the Serenity prayer represents. I tell myself "one day at a time." I do believe in the concept of HALT. (Don't get too hungry, angry, lonely, or tired. In other words, learn your triggers and how to control them.)

    But really, seriously, those meetings got too tedious for me. It was the same old, same old over and over and over again. The worst part of it was constantly having to censor myself. No asking questions. No asking others what they did to cope unless they felt like addressing it when they were speaking to me but not speaking to me in that strange cross talk sort of way.

  • Mike

    In the end aa really isn't about stopping drinking, it's about religious conversion. Buchman's legacy.

  • diablo

    @Gunthar,

    Why…. is the onus placed on AA to show success. Why is that so important, really.

    I succeed every day.

    If you don't like AA fine, I with you. If you have a problem with alcohol find another solution, if just getting honest with yourself does it, then do it.

    I am just tired of going to funerals for people who did nothing. Just my opinion.

  • Martha

    Another myth spread by AA is that if you stop drinking for a long period and then drink again that you will inevitably return to your old level of heavy drinking. With the use of opioid antagonist medication people have returned to moderate controlled drinking. This is not a path that I personally choose since I decided I will never drink again in my life. But what Sinclair has done is shattered the "once an alcoholic always an alcoholic" dogma of AA.

    "The goal of the Sinclair Method is to return a person's desire for alcohol to their rational control over a period of three to fifteen months.[7] They may continue to drink because they perceive rational benefit to drinking, but will no longer be driven to drink by uncontrollable urges.[8][citation needed] Once the patient is no longer drinking on a daily basis, administration of naltrexone is reduced to just those days during which drinking is expected, an hour before the drinking occurs. Taking naltrexone before drinking will need to be done for the rest of the patient's life, otherwise the endorphin conditioning will re-establish itself.[9]"
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sinclair_Method

  • http://deleted Primrose

    Hula, you probably know this but the serenity prayer predates the cult.

  • Martha

    Gunthar said: "I used naltrexone to stop drinking entirely."

    Glad to hear it worked for you, Gunthar. From what I understand abstinence was the original goal in using naltrexone, but that over time they discovered that some people were able to become moderate drinkers. What was a sidebar to the naltrexone story has taught us something new about addiction and is another factor that is challenging AA. As naltrexone becomes more widely used it may prove to be to AA what Kryptonite is to Superman.

  • diablo

    @Martha,

    You keep bringing up other methods to help people, OK. Why you think I would argue with you or discredit these organizations IDK.

    IMO if something helps you to better yourself do it, I don't care what it is. I think the Sinclair Method is great.

  • diablo

    @Gunthar,

    Are you saying that the fact that AA’s triennial survey numbers are outdated and that AA no longer does these types of surveys makes them irrelevant?

    I think you possibly answered your own question.

  • diablo

    @Gunthar, I am going as fast as I can and you are not the only one asking questions.

  • hulahoop

    @diablo – diablo wrote:

    Please give me your definition of a religious organization, please. I had to throw out my Websters Dictionary and Religious Encyclopedia out because I felt they weren’t doing their job.

    Sorry Sweetie. I wasn't ignoring you. I missed the post.

    Well for starters, one that opens and closes with prayer. One that that promotes religion and a God and a certain way of life. Or even a higher power. Yeah, I know they call it spirituality but I consider that to be another way of disguising religion to get vulnerable people to accept it. One that encourages you to get on your knees and pray and meditate when you are alone. Apparently some of the court system agrees with me on this.

    See? My deal with church is I know exactly what to expect when I walk in if I choose to walk in. My problem with AA is they come off as a helpful support group for vulnerable, desperate people but in the end promote God or a higher power. They begin and end in prayer. Their mission statements refer to God and some vague higher power.

    Truly, I have no problem with AA as long as everyone in the room is over the age of twenty-one and knows what they are getting in to. You are grown. Make the choice. It's that pesky little bait and switch thing I can't get over. Also that mutating thing they do. One minute a higher power is fine. The next you are praying to God and asking to receive his will and carry it out. I didn't write the steps. I only know what they say. It is the same thing organized Christians and Catholics and all those other religions ask for. Hopefully you didn't throw out your Bible too.

  • causeandeffect

    What are the changes done by treatment centers to which you refer?

  • diablo

    causeandeffect says

    Since alcoholism is said to be a genetic disease by AA, can one drink normally, or even less than most, then later in life become an alcoholic?

    diablo,

    I really don't know. I have a friend who did not drink earlier in her life because of her mother. A chronic drinker and abused her horribly.

    After she was married and had children went back to work, she started vacationing with her husband and her friends (my wife and I included) well she started drinking those flavored drinks and to make a long story short within 3 years she was in treatment and AA. She has also moved on from AA but her story at least shoes some attachments. In my family there is a history of alcoholism and emotional/mental handicaps.

    I think that is the missing link the emotional/mental handicaps examples; depression, addhd. bi-poplar ect….I don't think it is the alcoholism but the handicaps. It is no surprise the abundance of mental and emotional issues within AA and other forms of treatment. Just begs to look into, maybe.

    I personally went on a crusade to find out what was wrong with me, I learned about alcoholism from Doctors and Professors, I went to counselors and Psychiatrists and I studied. That was just me though.

  • diablo

    Hulahoop,

    please stop talking to me like I just walked out of a meeting. I already told y'all I have moved on from AA. I support the principles but not necessarily all the people.

    My meetings did not open or close with any prayer. To many denominations in the room. But you are right some are different then others.

    Remember there are no rules coming down from the GSO that says you must pray. Home groups do as they want.

    This rule you have of 21 or older, com'on. Just because the meeting you attended were sick and pedo doesn't mean they are all like this. I have moved 3 times since being sober, 3 different States in almost 30 years and I have always found meetings (lots of them) they were healthy and wholesome for people of any age and we had them.

    Thanks for replying.

  • causeandeffect

    Diablo, I'm sorry for inundating you with questions and I appreciate you answering respectfully. Thank you.

  • diablo

    @cause.

    you have to admit that it isn't AA (per say ) that is telling people, "that all the answers are in the BB) this is ignorant people who just happen to attend AA. I have never read where Bill or Bob said, "hey we have all your answers". AA doesn't and Bill implored people to go get additional help.

    I don't know where this crap came from and why people say such things.

  • diablo

    Results from Triennial Surveys:

    excerpt from the article in Wiki;

    While AA has continued to publish member surveys, they have not published any parallel commentary or analysis of the surveys since 1990.[6] A paper, however, was self-published in 2008 by three independent authors (not endorsed by AA) clarifying the 1990 commentary.[1

    • MA

      “…unbelievers will quickly start running you around in logical circles which you will never get out of — so I don’t even try to defend it rationally and logically.”

      The above quote is from Glenn Chestnut, who is one of the three independent authors who reviewed the triennial survey that you mention, Diablo. The three guys who put that together either have no understanding of how to interpret statistical data, or they intentionally lied. Here is a post we made about this last year. This type of thing preys on the ignorance of people, and is dishonest as hell. As for AA not having published any analysis since 1990, it doesn't matter because what they do publish has enough of the variables to discern that nothing has changed. AA has the same retention rate year after year, and the demographics are consistent with each survey. The reason AA does not publish the additional data, is because they got their ass handed to them when they first published it. If it showed AA worked, they would shouting the heavens how effective it is.

  • diablo

    excerpt from AA wiki:

    Results from National Longitudinal Alcohol Epidemiological Surevey (NLAES)

    In 1992 United States Census Bureau and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) conducted the National Longitudinal Alcohol Epidemiologic Survey (NLAES). Direct face- to-face interviews were conducted with one randomly selected respondent,18 years of age or older, in each of 42 862 households within the contiguous United States and the District of Columbia. NLAES respondents were asked whether they ever attended an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting for any reason related to their drinking. 1106 respondents stated they had attended an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting for their drinking prior-to-the past year. 348 respondents stated they attended an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting prior-to-the past year and continued to attend Alcoholics Anonymous during the past year, a 31% continuance rate.[5]

  • Mike

    Diablo, c'mon, tony j can't get a word in if you keep posting. Hey, wait a minute…..

  • hulahoop

    Diablo, You are most welcome for the reply.

    You asked (in a snarky way) for me to give you my definition. So much is lost in email or posts. I was not speaking to you as if you had just come out of a meeting. And I never have. Don't try to turn this around on me. You asked me a question and I answered it. I was and am very aware you moved on from AA based on your posts. You mention it quite often. Why do you care what is said here then? I mean if you have truly moved on then why waste your time? What I am suggesting is you look at your Bible and see the similiarities(sp?) for yourself. I know what they are and that is how I know AA IS a religious organization in sheeps clothing. In their defense, so are all of the Christian rehabs that are popping up all over the place too. As somone said earlier in the thread, REHAB IS BIG BUSINESS $$$$$!!! Yes Sir, it truly is. People sell their souls for it.

    I'll admit my time in AA was brief. But I did attend meetings in four states (Georgia, Colorado, Florida, and Minnesota) in so many cities that I wouldn't be able to recall them if wanted to. EVERY meeting began with the Serenity prayer. EVERY meeting (with the exception of the gay ones I attended in Tampa and really liked by the way) ended with the Lord's prayer. We all got in a big circle, joined hands, and said the Lord's prayer at the end.

    I swear, everyone says their AA meeting different. But yet so many people have experienced the same bullshit. I have no doubt many of the former longstanding members here thought their meeting was different too. Look how that turned out for them.

    I don't give a shit what the GSO says. They do not have an officer at every meeting to ensure everything is above board and they are certainly not accountable for anything that happens at meetings. Before, during, or after. Don't try to hide behind them. And please do not spout that bullshit to me. The GSO doesn't give a damn as long as they get their money. The autonomous meetings don't want them to be.

    I'll agree with you. Not all meetings are sick and pedo. But how do you know which ones are and are not? You must have gone to different meetings than I did. Yep, the prayers were recited at every single one of them as well as the steps and traditions and promises and how it works. Good Lord, they wasted twenty minutes of the meeting on their required GSO bullshit but the GSO wasn't required to have any accountability for what went on in that meeting or any other meeting. I have no idea what went on before and after those meetings. I only know, after the fact, there were all kinds of people convicted of terrible crimes who were sent there by the court and courted by AA.

    So yes, a twenty-one year old age limit should be imposed on meetings because the government who sends all of the criminals to AA to mix and mingle with the volunteering alcoholics also says you are not an adult until you are twenty-one.

    Are you not aware there are several people here who still attend meetings? Nobody is cruel to them.

  • causeandeffect

    "348 respondents stated they attended an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting prior-to-the past year and continued to attend Alcoholics Anonymous during the past year, a 31% continuance rate."

    This doesn't show an attrition rate for one year. Nor does it show continuous sobriety. What it does show is the percentage of people who have over 1 year that are still attending. That would be from 366 days and up that are still attending. It's all prior to the past year. The respondents were all asked about attendance prior to the past year.

  • http://duischooltruth.wordpress.com JR Harris

    I think it all comes down to responsibility. Psychology is a regulated and Licensed profession and is used to hold people responsible for their actions. Unfortunately the licensing and penalties for not acquiring one, is dictated differently by each state. So you have to check and see what the laws are in your jurisdiction. AA hides behind the fact that they are not being paid for their services, they call it a self help group and just make "suggestions" to someone, hence they are not practicing psychology. If people have tragic consequences because of these "suggestions" they just blame it on the individual for not following the program correctly. What is needed is for these people is for them to be held accountable for their actions, it will cause them to be more careful.

  • diablo

    @hullahoop,

    First off sorry, I can be snarky.

    Second; I am fully aware of the Judia Christian influence in the BB. Lois used to read from the Bible prior to the BB, Oxford Group extremely religious, AA roots.

    I get it.

  • diablo

    @hulahoop,

    Well I have lived in Florida, Tampa, Sarasota and where most of my family is Port Charlotte, I have a home in Atlanta and right now I live about 7 hours from the Colorado east state line.

    So from the TRiangle in downtown ATL, to the HOW place in Woodstaock Ga, and all in between every meeting I was at did not say the prayers. Find them they are there.

    Same thing in Florida, TN. and Oklahoma.

    I guess you didn't stay long enough to know there are meeting without the prayers.

    Why you think AA/GSO should be responsible for everyone is beyond me. I guess it is the fantasy of a ideal you have, of how AA should be. Just like our police force should have a cop on every street corner.

    Please you are just as greedy as the next American so get off that jag. You want yours too.

    The gov't who sends criminals, are you talking about you Hula, ever had a DUI. Those are the only criminals I'm aware of. Unless you have a sensationalized story to come out with.

    Since you have had such a limited experience with AA, why don't you come at this conversation from a different perspective.

  • diablo

    @AnnaZed,

    Well for one I have no reason to lie and two they are all over the USA and other Countries and they are not just for atheists.

    My Gawd people there are all different kind of religious backgrounds in AA today is this all that far left.

    I can not believe I am the only one knowing this.

  • Mike

    @diablo, could you give us the names of the no-prayer meetings you are talking about?

  • diablo

    and no I will not give you anymore do your own research. If you have been to AA you know it is anonymous. I already broke that out of stupidity will not do it again.

  • AnnaZed

    diablo says (to Mike) ~ "…I already gave you some."

    Really?

    Where?

    I will freely admit to skipping over a lot of posts recently (a lot). So, just point me to the right thread where you gave examples of these prayer-free AA meetings, because (as I told you) in my many, many, many years in AA I encountered exactly 6 such meetings (2 in LA, 4 in New York), and I looked pretty hard and wrote to people about it. I am also an excellent researcher, usually.

  • Mike

    I just visited the triangle group's site. The thing is riddled with references to god. A lot must have changed since you left, old boy. Btw, it's a full-fledged club. For only $200/yr you get comradeship and salvation.

    Shame on you, diablo

  • AnnaZed

    Obviously, I'm leaving out the UK in my question (and India, Yugoslavia, Latvia, Sri Lanka etc.) because that's where I live. I will tell you that I was kicked off the UK based We Agnostics email forum for refusing to acknowledge any higher power. I believe that my final post was "In my life, I am the alpha and the omega." I was then told that I was bound to drink again, probably was already and was barred from the list.

  • AnnaZed

    Just a note: the AA entry on Wikipedia is completely and exclusively created by steppers who bar any participation and post any fabrication and any bs that they choose completely without oversight, correction or meaningful dialog. Links to criticism or even factual corrections are stricken with such vehemence that attempting to participate will get you banned from contributing to Wikipedia at all, accused of being a sock (no matter how long you have been a member or how many unrelated entries you have made, not to mention monetary contributions) and net you some interesting and hair-raising private mail from the administrators. Believe me, I know. If you don't believe me, ask raysny. These people make Scientologists look like Unitarians.

    So, more that usual with Wikipedia, approach that AA entry with skepticism.

  • AnnaZed

    Thanks Lucy, but I didn't mean online and diablo knows perfectly well that I am asking about United States based sanctioned AA meetings (meeting listed in the directories) what do not include any prayers. I have said that my own research reaveled exactly 6 such meetings and that my experience in those meetings was that it all came down to the same higher-power crap at the end of the day anyway. That said, I await further enlightenment.

    [I was told that there once was a We Agnostics group in San Francisco, it may well be reignited. So, being generous let's say that they might meet twice a week and serve about 25 people a meeting ~ that still leaves the rest of the 300 million Americans looking at your standard AA religions template with prayer to start and finish and the usual religious voodoo in between.]

  • diablo

    @MA

    Who said anything about AA/GSO changing or wanting to change anything. They came out with a fourth edition to the BB, added some new stories. First 164 pages remained the same as they always will. 12n12 will remain the same.

    So 3 independent people had opinions about AA, OK. I respect that as I have respected other opinions. I have my own opinions on people in AA, which did not jibe with most.

    So after my hearty though I moved on. I do though support and applaud the literature of AA.

  • diablo

    AnnaZed,

    consider your self enlighten. I never said they were agnostic or atheist mweetings, I just said the prayers were dropped from meeting. This was decided in the business meeting.

  • diablo

    Cause wrote:

    "What is your opinion of the stereotype of the alcoholic put forth in the big book and 12×12? Do you believe that if fits all alcoholics or some, or a small minority, please?"

    diablo wrote:

    No, absolutely not. Neither did Bill he writes about the differences throughout the first 164 pages.

    It fits a alcoholic but IMO many in AA are not Alcoholic. Just my opinion.

  • causeandeffect

    I'm not talking about drinking habits or how chronic one is, I'm referring to the personality of the alcoholic. Do you feel that there are those who should not be trying to fit into this? Do you feel that it may be futile or even harmful to some to try to figure out how they are just like bill wilson?

  • Mike

    Lol, mona.

  • SoberPJ

    Only a really good powerless AA follows the suggestions -

    We stop fighting anyone or anything

    Restraint of tongue and pen

    Acceptance is the key to all our problems

    The grouch and the brainstorm were not for us

    Love and tolerance is our code

    If ya don't follow those things, well, ya just aren't a good AA member. There is NO good AA member that doesn't abide by these obviously wise and life guiding tenants.

  • diablo

    Guys you asked me a question I answered it. Now if you don't want to believe it , so be it. I have been here what 4 days and I have had to bit my tongue on so many occasions, but hey I just moved on. Each to his own.

    These meeting exist and always will. If your interested, find them because as I said before I broke the anonymity rule once I will not do it again.

    Questioning my integrity is monumental and ill-deserved. I am on many sites discussing AA and Treatment Centers and never has anyone questioned my honesty.

    I say bullshit to you and your domineering style.

  • AnnaZed

    @causeandeffect ~ "…Having been to big book and 12×12 studies, and having read them myself, I would have to disagree. I find the unhealthy ideas to come directly from the literature. I have been stunned by the abusive language they contain, so much so as to be unable to comment. And please don’t try to imply that the literature is being misunderstood in any way. They are simple books. A elementary school student could easily read them…"

    Thanks for putting this plainly. I find it hard to believe that it needs saying at all. Towards the end of my AA tenure I reached a point where (not wanting to be disruptive or do anything that might cause anyone to go out or kill fellow alcoholics or anything) I simply would pass at book study meetings or (far worse 12X12 meetings) the ideas were so infantile and malignant and insulting that, really, there was nothing to say.

  • AnnaZed

    @diablo ~ I missed the part where you actually answered the question. WHERE do these prayer-free AA meetings take place? Name just ONE city.

  • diablo

    @ Cause,

    Please explain to me in the Big Book and 12n12 where there is abusive language and unhealthy ideas.

  • AnnaZed

    Re: Wikipedia ~ I did not say that the people who "run" Wikipedia were AAs but that the contributors who created and maintain the AA Wikipedia entry itself are all AAs and that no descent or questioning of their version of reality is sanctioned on Wikipedia. I think my elocution was clear enough. For reasons that I just don't understand this small cadre of devoted AAs (who seem to man the AA Wikipedia entry night and day) have the Wikipedia administrators completely hoodwinked in ways that are truly astounding. As I said, Scientologists (whom AAs resemble in so many interesting ways) have nothing like this kind of complete unquestioned autonomy at Wikipedia. I have a LOT of experience with this.

  • Martha

    “If you want to use science to prove your point, that’s fine.
    But saying you’re using science isn’t the same thing as using it.”

    You realize that AA rejects science altogether. Nothing in their approach has changed since the 1930s even though medical science has given us new information about addictions. A real program that was actually about how to become abstinent would make changes as new discoveries are made such as the Sinclair Method, but religion does not change as seen with the unchanging scripture of AA called the Big Book.

  • Mike

    Was the aa triennial survey peer reviewed? Has it been repeated in the last few decades?

  • Mike

    The graphs were hand drawn too. Yaba-dabba-doooooo

  • causeandeffect

    The word invariably is there. See it? Invariably. Meaning without exception. Did you look at the video? So, what if it wasn't me. What if it's someone else who I happen to know is a stellar human being but drinks excessively every single night for the past 20 years. When he comes to AA, how does he get out of the "invariably" trap?

  • causeandeffect

    "By definition, if you have the ability to ‘just quit’ you aren’t a ‘real alcoholic’ and therefore don’t need AA.”

    OH THANK GOD!!!

  • Vera

    You keep calling this website a cult. I do not think that word means what you think it means.

  • Martha

    I guess if someone can deny that AA is a religion it would stand to reason that they don’t know what a cult is.

  • Mr AA

    MA: "Atheists and agnostics in AA are treated like black people at a Republican convention. There aren’t too many, but they are paraded around and flaunted to give the illusion of inclusion."

    I don't know whether to take this comment as racially and politically offensive, ignorant, or just plain sad. Why not just "Atheists and agnostics in AA are paraded around and flaunted to give the illusion of inclusion." I can't imagine what you were thinking with your word choice.

    Maybe it's time to stop blaming the Tony J's for the tone on this site.

  • diablo

    Gunthar,
    Do you really understand the difference between anecdotal, peer review studies and studies done by a DR/PHD Professor in collaboration with others of them same ilk.
    Ditman, Brandsma, and AA’s own triennial surveys, are just that scientific studies, surveys.
    AA does not deny, argue nor debate the success statistics, WHY????? Seems a bit of a intrusion into ones personal life, aye.

  • diablo

    @Mona Lisa,
    I think you had better back that statement up, “a few years ago”. I don’t think so. Check again I”ll give you another try.
    I also wonder if you really know why the “Triennial Studies” were done in the first place.

  • Gunthar2000
  • Martha
  • diablo

    @Ton J,
    I would beg to argue one point. People who leave AA don’t necessarily come back because they lost something, sometimes it is just for a visit, special birthday, World Convention or just to hang.
    Many folks have moved on and they were and still are “real alcoholics”. We continue to practice the principles that were taught (not just in AA but from many sources), we just don’t need a meeting anymore to reinforce this principles. I do not believe in all my readings Bill or Bob desired that we become dependent on “going to meetings” to stay constructive. It says it all in the 12 step. Practice my friend.

  • Gunthar2000

    @ diablo and/or Tony J.

    Can you prove that AA helps people to stop drinking?

  • Gunthar2000

    How are real alcoholics diagnosed?

  • Mike

    I would also add: is it possible to be an alcoholic in one phase of one’s life then not be one?

  • Martha

    The criteria by which AA diagnoses alcoholics is not based on any scientific standard and changes in order to conform to their agenda. A person who comes to AA, accepts they are powerless and then drinks again is an alcoholic who failed to work the steps. A person who stops a pattern of heavy drinking forever and never attends AA is either a dry drunk or was never a “real” alcoholic.

  • diablo

    @Martha,
    Martha wrote:
    You realize that AA rejects science altogether. Nothing in their approach has changed since the 1930s even though medical science has given us new information about addictions. A real program that was actually about how to become abstinent would make changes as new discoveries are made such as the Sinclair Method, but religion does not change as seen with the unchanging scripture of AA called the Big Book.

    Diablo wrote:
    Your right AA was not primarily based upon scientific methods, faith and a little God mixed in was the order of the day. Horrible uh………
    Now, when your Treatment Centers got a hold of AA and screwed it up (you too) well they tried to get all scientific about it, you can’t do that. AA was built on the road, with sweat and hard work. Reaching out to others, traveling to the nut wards (where they put alcoholics) sitting at their bedsides ect…..
    Now 2010 we have this site and many more, so-called alcoholics (that did not have to go all the way to the bottom of the elevator), TC’s teaching AA and car salesmen running AA who are not even alcoholics.
    Your right in some respects AA has been kidnapped by snake oil salesmen but that has probably always been there, human nature. But what is different is the change AA started to incur dating back to the 60′s maybe late 50′s when Treatment programs were the new fad and alcoholics thought they could take AA and make a program out of it.
    What we are talking about here is the consequences of 40-50 years of pollution the treatment centers and some greedy people who happened to be members of AA caused (IMO). They are members not employees of the GSO/AA.

  • diablo

    @Gunthar,
    Ya, I’m sober 28 years later. All it takes is “one” and your successful. Get it.

  • Acacia H

    I remember one time an old timer let rip on a newbie. It was the first meeting the newbie was at. Well I was appalled, that this old timer even thought he could talk to another human being that way. No-one even pulled him up on it when there was a five minute break.

    Well this was the first time that I'd been to this particular meeting. Oh my word, he did'nt know what hit him when I gave him a taste of his own medicine. That old timer was firmly told about his business.

  • Martha

    @ Mike. Yes it is possible to be a former alcoholic. I stopped using that word to describe myself and just tell people I am a teetotaler who used to drink. People who have stopped drinking are by definition no longer an alcoholic. My own physician says the same thing and rejects the disease theory. Nobody can compel you to say you are in recovery or are an alcoholic.

  • Gunthar2000

    Oh…. I get it! The medical community (treatment centers) has screwed AA up. Before the medical community got involved in treating the supposed disease of alcoholism, AA was much more effective. Did I get that right?

  • causeandeffect

    Since alcoholism is said to be a genetic disease by AA, can one drink normally, or even less than most, then later in life become an alcoholic?

    What is YOUR definition of a cult?

    Why do YOU believe the triennial surveys were done?

    What do YOU have to back any of this up?

  • Gunthar2000

    @diablo…

    You have 28 years of what?

  • Gunthar2000

    Wait a second here diablo… I think that there are about 6 or seven questions you have failed to answer. We’ve listened to your circular rants for long enough. If you know so much about alcoholism I’d expect that you could at least answer a few simple questions.

  • diablo

    @Gunthar,
    28 years of sobriety. As far as this topic goes. We are talking about alcoholism it gifts and faults.

  • Gunthar2000

    @diablo… Have you been to many funerals lately?

  • Gunthar2000

    28 years without a drink?

    Are the promises coming true in your life?
    Are you practicing AA’s principles in all of your affairs?

  • Gunthar2000

    I used naltrexone to stop drinking entirely.

  • diablo

    Triennial studies were done so AA could have some know how as to how they were doing with the new-comer. They evidence was gathered at the ground level from home groups to district meeting through to the GSO conference. Brief explanation.
    This survey was then shared with selected Professors and others for their purposes and the GSO also used this information for their reasons.
    These surveys are no longer being done and or shared with anyone.

  • Gunthar2000

    diablo….

    Can you please answer the questions I’ve been asking?
    I just want to get a clear picture of exactly where you stand.

    Are you suggesting that AA’s lack of evidence proves that AA helps people to stop drinking?
    Can you prove that AA helps people to stop drinking?
    How are real alcoholics diagnosed?
    So AA’s criteria for diagnosing alcoholics differs from the medical communities?
    Oh…. I get it! The medical community (treatment centers) has screwed AA up. Before the medical community got involved in treating the supposed disease of alcoholism, AA was much more effective. Did I get that right?

  • Gunthar2000

    @diablo…

    Are you saying that the fact that AA’s triennial survey numbers are outdated and that AA no longer does these types of surveys makes them irrelevant?

  • Gunthar2000

    @diablo…

    I’m curios about your answer.

  • Gunthar2000

    @Martha… Naltrexone is the magic pill.

  • Gunthar2000

    @diablo….

    How many alcoholics have you helped to stop drinking using the 12-step method?

  • diablo

    @Gunthar,
    Treatment Centers have had a significance role in changing AA’s philosophy, Please do your own research as it would help you to understand. Do I think this would be enough to persuade you to change your mind about AA, no I don’t think so. It would just help you to understand the evolution of AA and TC’s.
    I make no excuses for AA.

  • diablo

    Gunthar
    How many alcoholics have you helped to stop drinking using the 12-step method?

    Diablo,
    Gunthar that question is inappropriate at best. This is not a competition.

  • Mike

    The serenity prayer is the product of reinhold niebuhr, who would no doubt have disliked aa.

  • Gunthar2000

    @diablo… I’ve done my research. I’m satisfied that I understand AA entirely. AA and the 12-steps are used by over 90% of all treatment centers in the USA, and AA’s program doesn’t work. It’s big business.

  • Gunthar2000

    @diablo…. can you give us some idea as to how many alcoholics you have helped to stop drinking using the 12-step method?

    10?
    20?
    30?

  • hulahoop

    Yes, thank you Prim and Mike. I am being sincere. I researched it because AA meetings open with it and the gay meetings I attended chosed to close with it rather than the Lord’s prayer. I have an Athiest AA friend who has it on his refrigerator. Only he cut out the word God. I had heard the prayer before AA but never really took it to heart until I attended AA. It did and does help me a lot.

  • Gunthar2000

    diablo… I realize that you have reached some lofty heights, rubbing elbows with Doctors and Professors and such, but aren’t these the same addiction treatment industry professionals that you claim have screwed AA all up in recent years?

  • causeandeffect

    Diablo, I agree with you that sometimes, probably most of the time, there are co-existing conditions, but I wouldn’t agree with anyone who says that AA is adequate to handle such conditions.People are routinely told all the answers are in the big book. If AA didn’t jealously guard people from seeking other methods, I’d have no problem. Yet it tells people that if they don’t do things the AA way, their only other options are jails, institutions and death. People believe that and don’t seek elsewhere, ones that are appropriate for them, just because they don’t know anything else. I have a huge problem with AA not openly offering alternatives for those whom the 12 steps don’t work. It is many times a death sentence. If someone wants AA fine, if not, don’t just leave them to their own devices.

  • diablo

    Rick045 says

    @diablo, I do agree that some groups are better than others, and I did meet some supportive people there. I’ve acknowledged that here in other posts. I personally attribute that more to certain individuals than a particular group or the program itself. I had the ability to avoid many of the pitfalls and the abuses, but I watched many others who simply couldn’t, and that did bother me a great deal.

    Thanks Rick. Your right there are groups and people who are appalling. AA is just the literature, I understand some people find it useless. But i have a hard time buying into that what is written is hurting people.

  • AnnaZed

    @diablo ~ “…My meetings did not open or close with any prayer.”

    The only meetings in the entire United States of which that could be truthfully said are the just scarcely sanctioned “We Agnostics” meetings in Los Angeles and New York. Together these groups comprise about 6 meetings a week accommodating about 25 people per meeting most of whom are regulars (tops ~ I’ve been to a lot of these) in two locations for a population of over three-hundred million people. Now I’m not calling you a liar; I’m just sayin’.

  • diablo

    @cause,

    I don't know what to say. If this was your experience I don't want to minimize this. I am just sad this was your experience. But I must say I am not surprised.

  • diablo

    @JR,
    Who is hiding JR. This is such a ridiculously ignorant assumption to make. It shows your inexperience and lack of education. This is not a insult just a fact.
    Yes you can come here and spout off all you want nobody is checking your experience, education and/or your motivation. You can just run wild.
    You seem to be a learned man, went to college act like it. Go and become educated on AA and take out the resentment. I am not saying you are going to find AA to your liking. But my god, maybe you will stop making these grandiose statements that have absolutely no relevance to the processes of AA.

  • diablo

    I already gave you some.

  • AnnaZed

    Mike says @diablo, could you give us the names of the no-prayer meetings you are talking about?

    I too would be interested in this, locations too. I went to We Agnostics meetings for years (which of course aren’t for atheists at all, as any 12-step religious meeting ultimately can never be for obvious reasons) and what I found was that after all of the understanding offered about resistance to religious indoctrination and all of the “liberating” shares about refusal to say the Lord’s Prayer (that most futile, infantile and ultimately absurd gesture made by the well-and-truly indoctrinated as they succumb to another meeting of mind-numbing religious mumbo-jumbo to stave off the fear of death that 12-step religious dogma has already imprinted upon them) and all of the other bull-shit came down to the same “higher power” mantra and the same powerlessness doctrine, as indeed it must do because that IS the program.

  • Mike

    Anna, he mentioned some a few posts up

  • causeandeffect

    Thanks diablo. It's good to be able to keep an open mind to what others have experienced. What I hope you take away from this blog is that AA is not good for everybody, in case you encounter someone who has a problem, you can tell them they have options and alternatives. Hint: posted on the right side of the page.

  • Lucy

    AnnaZed – I have only been to the online atheist groups, but they do exist. I used to attend one on Sunday mornings on Stickam called Tokyo Twelve

    You can find them on the Online Intergroup of AA meetings.

    I thought they were the same old stuff as regular online AA meetings. I didn’t like all of the fighting and flaming that go on in those.

  • Mike

    Mike using his gomer pyle dialect: shayme, shayme, shayme, mr. diablo, sir

  • diablo

    @Mike,
    How many meeting do they have a day.

  • causeandeffect

    But diablo, you were offended when I suggested that perhaps bill’s stereotype of the alcoholic fit you, so I thought you might not applaud it. What is your position on the stereotype that bill put forth in the literature?

  • diablo

    @Cause,
    Bring me up to date on your last comment. I can’t keep track of convo’s.

  • Mike

    @diablo, how mamy times is god/hp listed on the site? Shame on you, false witness.

  • causeandeffect

    I have no idea where the comment was, so don’t worry about that. What is your opinion of the stereotype of the alcoholic put forth in the big book and 12×12? Do you believe that if fits all alcoholics or some, or a small minority, please?

  • diablo

    @MIke,
    You are missing my point. I don’t disagree that members of AA push the god thing to a point of no re-turn. I am not arguing whatever point you have. All I am saying is because we had many different people from different religious backgrounds we changed accordingly. I grew to like this because I was non-denominational and believed more in just a spirit. So I sought out groups without prayer (not atheist or agnostic). They seem (the groups without prayer) to have more of a eclectic flavor, that I liked.

  • Tony J

    MA (professional dumb ass):

    “The three guys who put that together either have no understanding of how to interpret statistical data, or they intentionally lied. Here is a post we made about this last year. ”

    Hey, FTG, are you paying attention. THAT was an ad hominem. Your man MA attacked the authors of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) Recovery Rate Outcomes: Contemporary Myth and Misinterpretation”.

    MA never bothers to refute their findings. He uses some rote Orange material (his master) and nit picks a few fringe facts and declares victory.

    No one who’s familiar with the work in question could possibly take MA seriously.

    Here’s a sample :

    From the paper (source: triennialreviewaa):

    The erroneous 10%, 5% or less success rate myth for contemporary AA has proliferated without as much as a token challenge to its veracity or investigation of its origin. The topic of AA success or failure outcomes suffers from a great deal of anecdotal misinformation, misinterpretation and editorializing.”

    MA responds :

    The “erroneous interpretation” was not a result of outside commentators. It was AA’s own interpretation. One has to assume it to be true, because AA has zero interest in manipulating data against itself. They also say that nobody has bothered to examine the source data for this interpretation, but that is because AA will not provide it.

    This is a classic example of a circular argument.

    MA provides no proof of his arguments that AA has correctly inerpreted the data or the three authors have misinterpreded it.

    MA provides nothing but his opinion based on his own premise that AA has a 5% success rate.

    Let ye who have brains think….it’s the only way out of the cult.

    Speaking of cultees

    Anna Z says :

    “Just a note: the AA entry on Wikipedia is completely and exclusively created by steppers who bar any participation and post any fabrication and any bs that they choose completely without oversight, correction or meaningful dialog”

    Not true Anna. Wikipedis requires sources. The people who run it aren’t in AA. That’s just your paranoia.

    Get them some sources and they’ll post whatever you like. Talk your bullshit and they’ll tell you to beat it.

  • Tony J

    Diablo :

    “I would beg to argue one point. People who leave AA don’t necessarily come back because they lost something, sometimes it is just for a visit, special birthday, World Convention or just to hang.”

    I stand corrected.

    “Many folks have moved on and they were and still are “real alcoholics”. We continue to practice the principles that were taught (not just in AA but from many sources), we just don’t need a meeting anymore to reinforce this principles. I do not believe in all my readings Bill or Bob desired that we become dependent on “going to meetings” to stay constructive. It says it all in the 12 step. Practice my friend.””

    I couldn’t agree more. The BB mentions church membership and civic duty and family responsibilities.
    A meeting every day for 90 days or maybe even the first year is reasonable. After that you need to branch out and learn how to live a balanced life.

    If not, you’ll spend 20+ years in AA grinding your wheels, get nothing out of it and join the anti-AA cult because you got a resentment.

    Mike :

    “Was the aa triennial survey peer reviewed? Has it been repeated in the last few decades?”

    No, but why would you bring that up ? It’s Orange and his cultees who rely on that to show a 5% success rate.
    No one in AA ever heard of them until Orange put it online.

    You’re so crazy you’re arguing against yourself and you actually think you’re winning.

  • diablo

    Yes, I think I understand what you are saying. I do think AA can be harmful when a group of individuals begin to take over and dictate their own brand of AA, as I have seen many times.
    I have seen or heard about many young people come into AA and be harassed, shamed, assaulted, violated and molested. I have sat in a meeting in Memphis Tn. and heard a white person with 17 years of sobreity call a Afro-American person the “N” word while there were Afro-Americans sitting there. Nobody said anything.
    Now this being said there are also wonderful, loving and caring groups also. You have to look a little more for them.
    Very few Alcoholics today will ever get to where Bill got with his Alcoholism. There is to much awareness, information and resources to get the info and help from TC’s.

  • diablo

    @Tony J,
    Thanks for your reply. I concur on the need to keep moving. My first and only sponsor told me this. He moved on a long time ago and is still moving. Not physically or geographically but with his life.
    Many AA’ers got caught up in the dogma of what many folks are saying here, they never really read the book or the 12n12. They just listened to the old timers who hang out year after year. Good for some bad for most.
    I came in to AA was blessed with a gifted sponsor who helped me become a better person, I learned, became educated, and practiced. I have been moving ever since. In my case literally. LOL My job calls for it.

  • AnnaZed

    @diablo ~ “…AnnaZed, consider your self enlighten. I never said they were agnostic or atheist meetings, I just said the prayers were dropped from meeting. This was decided in the business meeting.”

    Oh I know what you are claiming, and I would like to know where these prayer-free meetings are being held (even one) because you see I tried that in my long journey through AA and (you know what) I found my fellow AAs surprisingly resistant to the idea of dropping prayer from the spiritual-not-religious program for all sorts of reasons too tedious to reevaluate and not once, not one time ~ even in the very secular East Village of New York City ~ not once did I find that idea put to a vote and passed ~ never. Individual secretaries can attempt it, but they soon find their meeting unattended and themselves maligned, accused of drinking and marginalized until they are effectively ejected. So, if you have had a different experience from mine I would like to know where ~ geographically & exactly ~ this genuine AA miracle has occurred. I think that the assembled here would like to know this as well.

    I’m not calling you a liar (per se), just sayin’.

  • causeandeffect

    Having been to big book and 12×12 studies, and having read them myself, I would have to disagree. I find the unhealthy ideas to come directly from the literature. I have been stunned by the abusive language they contain, so much so as to be unable to comment. And please don’t try to imply that the literature is being misunderstood in any way. They are simple books. A elementary school student could easily read them. The sickest behavior seems to always come from the big book thumpers.

  • Mike

    Anna, if I were a betting man I’d say diablo’s pants are on fire right about now.

    • MA

      In the meetings that I have been subjected to, in two countries and across five time zones, I have never seen a meeting without a prayer.

      Atheists and agnostics in AA are treated like black people at a Republican convention. There aren’t too many, but they are paraded around and flaunted to give the illusion of inclusion.

  • Mona Lisa

    My daughter has a saying: “Oh, teller of untruths! Your trousers have combusted!”

  • MA

    It isn’t breaking anonymity to tell us which meetings are prayer-free. Meeting places and times are listed in every newspaper in the country.

  • zooromeo

    @ Ton J:

    “If you left AA and are having imaginary conversations with yourself about what everyone in AA is saying about you….well, you may not be doing as well as you think.”

    I’m not imagining that people are saying these things – THEY SAY THESE THINGS – 7 years of AA experience proves it, I heard it over and over along with the old passive aggressive – “Our hats are off to you” bullshit – no-one really means that – they expect and hope that you fail and unfortunately are often right because years of being convinced to expect failure – ensures failure – a LOT like abusive parents.

    “I, for one, agree with you. People can get sober in AA and leave and move on”

    Yes they can – but they wont be told that in AA will they ? What anonymous fellowship did you go to? AA in Sydney, Brisbane, Wellington, Taupo, Vancouver, San Francisco, New York, London & Stockholm all consistently deliver the same message, which is basically “leave AA and risk death”

    “I believe what the BB says about the spiritual experience. Some people need it to stay sober. Period.”

    PERIOD? PERIOD? What? ONE sentence is unequivocal proof? Spiritual experience, Schmiritual experience!! the Spiritual malady is simply the best explanation they had in the 1930s… the feelings described in the BB are those of mental illness that’s all – Mental health science and human experience has come a LONG way in 70+ years and most people’s problems can be fixed without the need for a big imaginary fairy in the sky to exclusively help them on demand…

    “That’s not to say they need AA or they even need to attend AA meetings for the rest of their lives.” –
    So why do they then…

    ‘“What the people here are talking about is that if you need to, you can simply just stop drinking and fuckin move on with your life… AA won’t let you do that” And how, exactly would AA stop you from doing that?”———

    By convincing you that you need it… It’s all subliminal messaging people use shame and things like body language to communicate to people that they are expected to fail. For example, when they talk about things like leaving AA or doing less meetings etc…

    “In fact, why would you even be in AA if you could ‘just quit’?”

    All sorts of reasons – not the least of which because quitting is hard – but so is changing any behaviour!!! Losing weight is hard, quitting smoking is hard, learning to be patient is hard, starting a new job is hard – Changing is hard!!!!!!!! Do most people who quit smoking do it easily ? Do they spend 20+ years going to meeting to talk about their smoking days, telling smoking stories, calling their sponsor after stopping for 15+ years to declare their powerlessness and ongoing struggle with their addiction ?

    Its all fear.. which is supposed to be the opposite of “Gods love & Grace” There is so much fear – fear of failure, fear of relapse, fear of leaving AA…

    “You’re doing the usual anti-AA double talk. Complaining that people in AA say you aren’t a ‘real alcoholic’ and then saying you ‘just quit’. By definition, if you have the ability to ‘just quit’ you aren’t a ‘real alcoholic’ and therefore don’t need AA.”

    EXACTLY… I once upon a time met AAs definition of an “alcoholic” perfectly, spiritually, mentally, physically… but I changed and when I restarted consuming alcohol again – my drinking pattern had changed too – But I cant win this argument – its constructed too well as to be impenetrable to logic…

    But hey – If you want to replace effective, permanent treatment options with ongoing, self-defeating, guilt-inducing dogma which encourages the philosophy that you are permanently flawed, damaged and at risk to yourself – then you deserve every outcome that that way of thinking provides…

  • causeandeffect

    Well, Diablo, this would be just one of my little favorites.

    “Let’s look first at the case of the one who says he won’t believe—the belligerent one. He is in a state of mind which can be described only as savage.”

    You don’t have to be an atheist to really get steamed over that one.

    “Selfishness—self-centeredness? That, we think, is the root of our troubles. Driven by a hundred forms of fear, self-delusion, self-seeking, and self-pity, we step on the toes of our fellows and they retaliate. Sometimes they hurt us, seemingly without provocation, but we INVARIABLY find that at some time in the past we have made decisions based on self which later placed us in a positions to be hurt.”

    Couple that statement with the video on this page.

    http://stinkin-thinkin.com/2011/01/09/what-are-your-qualifications-again/

    Eh, most won’t be as bad an ASS as this guy is, but this is what women get for all their pain. They are expected to find their part. Now tell me, how can a child possibly step on some toes that really brings on this kind of treatment.

    Those are just a couple. There are many more where that came from, but I’m tired today.

  • DeConstructor

    As far as the wiki thing, I would suggest that since it is a user run service for everyone to feel free to add to it. It does require a source reference, and I am sure we have access to the references in this group, or they should be available at oranges site.

    Also, it may be an idea to not add actual facts to the wiki threads on alcoholism, AA, Bill Wilson, disease theory of addiction, but also such things as charlatan and cults.

    We have the ability to make these changes.

  • Rick045

    Diablo wrote, “I have seen or heard about many young people come into AA and be harassed, shamed, assaulted, violated and molested. I have sat in a meeting in Memphis Tn. and heard a white person with 17 years of sobreity call a Afro-American person the “N” word while there were Afro-Americans sitting there. Nobody said anything. Now this being said there are also wonderful, loving and caring groups also. You have to look a little more for them.”

    I guess that racism was one of those stubborn character defects that god just wasn’t quite ready to remove. I’m glad that you acknowledge witnessing those abuses in the rooms. I saw some pretty unacceptable behavior there too. I was particularly bothered by verbal abuse toward newcomers. I could have found other groups, but those abuses would have continued whether I was there or not. Some of the things I found most bothersome occurred in what was considered to be relatively decent group for that particular area. Considering the shape that many of those newcomers are in on arrival, I simply think it’s inexcusable to put the burden on them to distinguish good groups from bad. Anyway, I appreciate your acknowledgment that those egregious behaviors do occur in AA.

  • diablo

    @cause,
    OK……hmmmmmmm…….let me see alright I’ll bite. I’m at a loss here. I do not understand what you mean here, I’m not even sure this is the example you wanted to use.
    This is dealing with selfishness being self centered, ya know for drug addicts and alcoholics. That want to stay out all night, not go to work, not pay the bills and practice infidelity. Then when your wife forgets to get the dry cleaning because there is no money and she hates your guts you yell at her for forgetting or instead of a male you could put a female in there.
    This is one example of what this means. There are more in-depth cases.
    Just as your username implies cause n effect……….
    You are are selfish and self centered and are not aware of it and you step on people’s toes they retaliate and you look at them as if they are crazy. Now put drugs and alcohol in the mix, ya know sex, drugs and rock n roll. What a mixture.
    Maybe this wasn’t you “cause” maybe you can not relate that is fine but a lot of us can.
    I was butt ass wild by the time I had gotten to AA, freak’in crazy. Did not give a shit about anyone nor was even aware I did not.

  • diablo

    @Rick, thanks for the reply. Now you could have went a step further (no pun intended) and said there were groups that helped. I understand you have a image to uphold here and would not want anyone seeing your a nice guy. lol….

  • AnnaZed

    Oh diablo, I thought that you were going to tell us where these actual AA meetings without prayer due to a group conscience in favor of dropping prayer take place . You know, and I know, that to do so would not be a breech of anonymity and that it is not possible just to “look it up.” We all know that there are not the hundreds of such meetings that you claim, or even tens of such meetings, but even ONE would do.

  • AnnaZed

    Deconstructor ~ Have at it, and good luck. I can’t; I’ve been banned.

  • Rick045

    @diablo, I do agree that some groups are better than others, and I did meet some supportive people there. I’ve acknowledged that here in other posts. I personally attribute that more to certain individuals than a particular group or the program itself. I had the ability to avoid many of the pitfalls and the abuses, but I watched many others who simply couldn’t, and that did bother me a great deal.

  • Tony J

    Zoo :

    “I’m not imagining that people are saying these things – THEY SAY THESE THINGS – 7 years of AA experience proves it, I heard it over and over along with the old passive aggressive – “Our hats are off to you” bullshit – no-one really means that – they expect and hope that you fail and unfortunately are often right because years of being convinced to expect failure – ensures failure – a LOT like abusive parents.”

    When I say “My hat is off to you” I mean exactly that.
    If you can drink safely or get/stay sober without AA, then go ahead.

    It’s not the contest for me (and I dare say most AA’s) that it seems to be for you.

    I don’t have to prove to you AA works. I know it does.

    I don’t have to prove that you need AA (or a spiritual experience) or that you can’t drink like a gentleman. Honestly, I don’t care. If you want to try AA I can help you, if not I can’t.

    I think it’s insecurity of the anti-AA’s that makes them so competative and paranoid.
    Then they project it onto AA’s.

    Oh, and that bullshit about expecting failure proves that you were never a ‘real alcoholic’.
    I picked up every single day knowing I wasn’t going to fail. I even managed to stay sober for months not believing I was powerless. It wasn’t until I did the step work and looked at my drinking that I realized AA was right.

    You have the whole deal backwards which tells me you never belonged in AA in the first place. No alcoholic ‘learns’ to be powerless. We ‘realize’ that we are.

    Now, can I take some magic drugs and drink again ?

    Who the fuck cares? I’ll leave that to the anti-groupers who still have alcohol on the brain. I had the shit beat out of me enough. I give up.

    But, by all means, if you want to drink…..my hat is off to you. Enjoy.

  • causeandeffect

    Ah, but diablo, sadly, it is. It may have been what you needed. For some it’s exactly what they don’t need. Not all egos need deflating, you know. Some desperately need inflating. There are nice people, who have always been nice. You can just tell. But they’ll say, “I always thought I was nice, but now I see how selfish it was to be nice.” They always look to deflated, like the life has been sucked right out of them. It’s not good. They are not allowed by the language of the literature to appreciate who they really are. My last sponsor was that way.

  • Acacia H

    Right, I’ve had enough of this crap!! I’m listening to TALKSPORT radio inthe UK. There talking about drinking and alcoholism. The aa’ers are out!!! Promoting their programme and disease message!! I’ve just emailed the show!

  • Vera

    Holy crap on a serenity biscuit, diablo has been posting since early this morning, all afternoon and into the night. I think someone is obsessing.

  • Acacia H

    I hear ya Vera. I’m now obsessing about these aa’er twats on this radio station

  • causeandeffect

    I think I’m obsessing. Oh wait, no, I’m just bored.

  • soberbychoice

    Diablo above said the Triennial Surveys “are no longer being done.” Actually the survey was completed in 2010 and the preview of the 2010 Survey will be unveiled at the GS Conference in the Spring in NYC and then published for the media and membership. It’s a stratified random sampling technique of about 8,000 members in groups in the US. A couple of Columbia University stat proferssors provide the sampling methodology while AA uses its own group databases to generate the groups to be sampled. SRS sampling is a well-accepted procedure in both finance (think index funds and exchange-traded funds that replicate a universe of thousands of stocks by purchasing only a hundred or so and achieve investment returns within a few hundred basis points of the total index) and statistics in general. The Center for Disease Control, for example, and all epidemiologists use the technique in estimating the number of people affected by epidemics etc. AA just finished a review of the Survey methodology and endorsed the one in place last year.

  • zooromeo

    Tony J says
    Zoo :

    @Tony J:

    I’m going to assume for now that you are actually being genuine

    “When I say “My hat is off to you” I mean exactly that.
    If you can drink safely or get/stay sober without AA, then go ahead.”
    Thanks, I will, but to qualify – its not for everyone

    It’s not a contest for me either but you say you don’t have to prove AA works… Well, I say you do – the reason is because AA claims to be the Premier solution to alcohol problems… It does this in overt and covert ways – this doesnt mean Im paranoid – it just does.. In treatment centres, advertising but mostly by an undeserved reputation. But AA wants to encompass EVERY TYPE.. despite what the BB says

    I can concede that SOME people have a type of alcohol problem which is beyond moderation, medication or counselling – but AA is NOT the only solution – even for these people….

    What gets me is that there were so many people like me – got to AA young, with a drinking problem bad enough to need addressing – and being slowly seduced into “belonging” – which I AGREE – I didnt !! AA is very attractive to a lonely, vulnerable person

    You miss my point about “expecting failure” – I mean after a few years of AA – most people who leave without the right support will do exactly what they have been told they will do & act out a self-fulfilling prophecy..

    “You have the whole deal backwards which tells me you never belonged in AA in the first place. No alcoholic ‘learns’ to be powerless. We ‘realize’ that we are.”

    And I argue that “powerlessness” is not a fact – but an experience.. with multiple causes – people with anxiety and low self-esteem often feel like they have no control over their own behaviour – but just because you feel something doesn’t make it true – you should read up about the mood altering effects of adrenaline on the brain. Adrenaline makes all sorts of things more real than they are…
    “Now, can I take some magic drugs and drink again ?”
    Maybe you can but it sounds like youll never find out and youve made your choice.. But it is only a choice based on preference – not based on need as far as I am concerned.
    “Who the fuck cares?”
    I do and obviously you do…

  • zooromeo

    @diablo,

    Fine, I get that… And I accept that some people have perhaps crossed some kind of line where they are unable to moderate in any way..

    I can also accept that some people need a reminder that its not a safe thing for them to do. Its just not mentally or emotionally healthy to believe that you need to be dependent on an organisation or a set of beliefs (12 steps) instead of trusting the self and moving on.

    Personally, I had a history of lacking control around alcohol – but that stopped after an abstinent period and seeking effective treatment. My thing is that I believe that there are many (especially younger people) in AA who could do a lot better with something else…

  • Ton J

    Zoo :

    I see your point. AA is a victim of it’s own success in that respect.

    But AA is what it is. If you are able to stop or moderate you should. I would have.
    To me AA is a drastic method. You should work your way up to it, not try it right off the bat.

    I have no problem with professionals screening people and working with them using other methods.

    But as far as my personal experience is concerned, there are plenty of people who need AA (or some similar) treatment.

    I don’t buy the hyperbole. AA does work for lots of people but it isn’t the only solution.
    The only people who usually think that are newbies on the recovery high. Most of us grow out of the phase and settle down to a more realistic perspective.

    Saying AA is the ‘only’ way is every bit as histrionic as saying AA is and evil cult that has a zero success rate.
    Both positions are irrational.

    “And I argue that “powerlessness” is not a fact – but an experience.. with multiple causes – people with anxiety and low self-esteem often feel like they have no control over their own behaviour – but just because you feel something doesn’t make it true – you should read up about the mood altering effects of adrenaline on the brain. ”

    Powerlessness as the BB describes it is not having the ability to remember the consequences of your last drunk with enough emotional/mental force to prevent you from having another one.

    Of course you have free will and chose to drink. The problem is, it’s a piss poor choice that you’ve decided over and over and over again not to make.

  • zooromeo

    “Of course you have free will and chose to drink. The problem is, it’s a piss poor choice that you’ve decided over and over and over again not to make.”

    OK let me get this straight…

    Your whole post was logical and sensible and then you make an assumption that I am powerless over alcohol ??

    Let me be clear… I can drink as much or as little as I choose. I can have 1 beer or I can go out with friends and have 10. Mostly, with a wife and a baby, I dont drink much, just a beer or 2 at home, occasionally a glass of wine with dinner – but whatever I consume is a choice…

    Where is my “physical craving”, “mental obsession” etc.. used to be there.. not now !! When I was an unhappy little human being – it was there big time – not any more…

    You aren’t hearing me…… I had issues which I used to self-medicate… I dealt with them.. No need to self-medicate anymore, done, door closed, dealt with… So I am a fairly balanced, well adjusted person now and as such, dont NEED to get wasted.. and dont have all those feelings of anxiety, powerlessness & depression anymore…

    I was really into your whole post and then you ruined it with those last 2 lines…

    Indicative of AAs mentality – Alcohol is “bad”.. well, it might be bad for YOU – but used responsibly its a fun, enjoyable experience…

  • diablo

    @Zooromeo,
    Now we get to the definition of a alcoholic. A alcoholic can never drink again. Not because he is depressed or happy, successful or not ect… there is this phenomena (hate to say that word, so corny) that happens every time we drink, we always end up drunk.
    I hate it and wish I could drink, i loved it. Nothing better then hanging with the bro’s at a Red Sox game sucking on the ale and eating bratwurst, or hanging with my friends (w/ wife) in Cancun getting sprayed with a stream of Tequila in your mouth at Senor Frogs. Dude I tried and tried it just doesn’t work for me like it does for you. I have accepted it and moved on. It get my buzz on differently or if it is not a buzz your looking for I just hang with the bro’s and not drink.

  • diablo

    @Zoo,
    I will definitely agree to that. The old crust in AA can be a detriment.

  • diablo

    Ya know I don’t know if y’all have ever met a (used to be) AA’er like me. There are plenty but I don’t think they care to share on this site or any other.
    We are a different breed not the normal, kinds like things are way and did things are way. I hate being told what to do.
    So I can understand y’all scratching your heads not knowing if I am bullshitting or not. Let me be me and in time you will see that I am straight and not of ill refute.
    I have my views which may be “out of sync” with others you would like to compare me with, you can’t pigeon hole me or box me in, I will fly out and break out. I have my own views and “that is that”.

  • AnnaZed

    We’ve met plenty of former AAs that still for some reason think that AA is just dandy and wonderful and all-inclusive and harmless for other people. The world is full of such people in fact.

    I will say that “ill refute” was a nice touch (oh lord).

    This was a little hard to parse though:
    “…kinds like things are way and did things are way.”

    I’m going with “our” as a possessive adjective instead of “are.”
    I’m thinking “kinds” was meant to be “kind of.”
    Maybe “like” was supposed to be past tense “liked” (to align with “did”)
    Conversely maybe “did” should be “do.”

    It’s about as comprehensible as Sid here:

  • diablo

    AnnaZed,
    are we like Bonnie and Clyde…..Bogie and Bacall….. maybe more like Ralph and Alice.
    I waz ply’n mys parrrrt.

  • Ton J

    zoo:

    “I was really into your whole post and then you ruined it with those last 2 lines…

    Indicative of AAs mentality – Alcohol is “bad”.. well, it might be bad for YOU – but used responsibly its a fun, enjoyable experience…”

    oops. I didn’t mean you personally.
    I was talking about what powerless is according to the BB. The peculiar mental twist that keeps the ‘real alcoholic’ on the merry go round.

    That’s why I said if you can moderate or stop in some other way, that’s what you should do.

    You’re able to moderate. That means you don’t need AA.

    Trust me, I don’t see AA as a first line of defence against alcohol abuse. For most people it’s overkill. I agree with you on that. Sending 20 somethings who blew a .08 on a Friday night to AA is stupid. It waters down our primary purpose too. It’s not good for them and it’s not good for us.

  • Ton J

    Gunthar2000 says My name is Donald T. Quinn, millionare. I own a mansion and a yacht.

    “Can you prove that AA helps people to stop drinking?”

    It helped me. What would you like me to prove ? That it helped you ? I don’t think it did.

  • Tony J

    “Selfishness—self-centeredness? That, we think, is the root of our troubles. Driven by a hundred forms of fear, self-delusion, self-seeking, and self-pity, we step on the toes of our fellows and they retaliate. Sometimes they hurt us, seemingly without provocation, but we INVARIABLY find that at some time in the past we have made decisions based on self which later placed us in a positions to be hurt.”

    Couple that statement with the video on this page.

    http://stinkin-thinkin.com/2011/01/09/what-are-your-qualifications-again/

    Why do you guys love to hate on Chris R so much ?

    Have you ever listened to one of his talks ?

    He’s big on therapy and medical treatment and thinks AA meetings should be used only to ‘carry the message’ which you guys could turn into ‘religious revival’ or something.

    He seems like a guy the anti-AA should be able to get along with…..if the anti-AA were able to get along with anyone, that is.

  • hulahoop

    Against my better judgment – @ Diablo – again I apologize for my late response –
    @hulahoop,
    Well I have lived in Florida, Tampa, Sarasota and where most of my family is Port Charlotte, I have a home in Atlanta and right now I live about 7 hours from the Colorado east state line.
    So from the TRiangle in downtown ATL, to the HOW place in Woodstaock Ga, and all in between every meeting I was at did not say the prayers. Find them they are there.
    Same thing in Florida, TN. and Oklahoma.
    I guess you didn’t stay long enough to know there are meeting without the prayers.
    Why you think AA/GSO should be responsible for everyone is beyond me. I guess it is the fantasy of a ideal you have, of how AA should be. Just like our police force should have a cop on every street corner.
    Please you are just as greedy as the next American so get off that jag. You want yours too.
    The gov’t who sends criminals, are you talking about you Hula, ever had a DUI. Those are the only criminals I’m aware of. Unless you have a sensationalized story to come out with.
    Since you have had such a limited experience with AA, why don’t you come at this conversation from a different perspective.

    I was going to write a point by point response to your post…but decided it really wasn’t worth the time nor the hassle of it.

    I spend the majority of my time traveling. I do not know when I will be back in Georgia again. For now, we will have to agree to disagree and many of the points you tried to make about me are dead wrong.

    If you are up to it and still around, I will contact you when I get back to Georgia on my Mind. Perhaps we can attend one of those non prayer meetings together and then go out for a cup of coffee afterward to discuss our differences in person. Or maybe you can come up to Appalachia where I live and we can go to one of those heavily prayed over meetings up there. And then a cup of coffee. The Spring is lovely in North, North Georgia.

    Thank you for your response.

  • AnnaZed

    Wait, the prayer-free meetings are supposedly in Georgia? That would not happen in a million years of Sundays. That my friends is some pure coal-fired bull-shit, sorry. I was thinking Portland (maybe) or Austin, Texas but Georgia ~ no way. I’m from Louisiana so don’t try to tell me that I know nothing about the South, even the cosmopolitan South.

  • hulahoop

    Wait, the prayer-free meetings are supposedly in Georgia? That would not happen in a million years of Sundays. That my friends is some pure coal-fired bull-shit, sorry. I was thinking Portland (maybe) or Austin, Texas but Georgia ~ no way. I’m from Louisiana so don’t try to tell me that I know nothing about the South, even the cosmopolitan South.

    Yes ma’am. One of the states we are talking about is Georgia. I have never been in to a meeting in Atlanta proper. I did go to one in a city that is about 40 miles away. They had their own clubhouse there. And yes, it was a very traditional meeting with prayer and everything. It was also the most unfriendliest meeting I had ever attended.

    I can see where there might be some no praying meetings around the city. Frankly I didn’t search for them any place I went. I didn’t stick around long enough.

    I don’t see where my experience with AA is any less valid than that of someone else who spent years in AA as Diablo tries to make it to be. I was very lucky and the miracle happened for me sooner than it did for other people. I am glad I didn’t stick around. I would have found this site in four months or in seven years or in twenty. I would eventually have come around.

  • causeandeffect

    Georgia is definitely in the bible belt. Extremely unlikely to have a prayer free meeting even in Atlanta.

  • Mike

    Hell, massachusetts is supposedly the bastion of liberalism and I’ve only encountered one here. It is very ritualistic though.

  • diablo

    @Hulahoop,
    I am in Oklahoma City right now on business. I signed a two year contract, so I will not be in Georgia for any length of time. My home is leased out for this time.
    Now concerning meeting, even if I was still living in Georgia you could not drag me handcuffed to a meeting. I told you I am through with AA.
    I was just trying to make a point. BTW I do live in No.Georgia sorta Canton off State Hywy 20 near Macedonia.
    Maybe we can do coffee and just talk about the different religious/ethic people in AA and the fact they feel not heard.

  • diablo

    @QAnnaZed and Hula,
    Anna obviously you are making assumptions about Georgia based on your southern heritage rather rashly.
    Atlanta was taken over by outsiders by more then 60%, Google it. Atlanta is not southern. They have a thriving metropolis Korean, Russian, Hispanic, South American ect…the Northeast including Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and Pennsylvania are heavily represented dating back to the 60′s. Look at the demographics. The town I was before Canton, Town Lake part of Woodstock close to Alatoona Lake was almost 80% not from the south.
    I will say this we all do love sweet potato pie, pecan pie, black eyed peas and chicken fried steak. Throw in some hamhocks and hambones, whitebeans for some good “hambone stew”. Chicken Dumplings stew is great also.
    Now lets talk Cajun country “cause my first love was from there she is coon-ass” met her in Fat City, she was from Baton Rouge. I was working out of Morgan City, oil rigs. I lived in Kenner when I first got there then moved across the Pontchartrain to Slidell. This was back when “Fat City” was jumping up the causeway.
    Bourbon St over by Hogs Ale is usually where I start now when I go there, end up at the Blues. Ever heard of a guy Anders Osborn originally from Europe has been living in N.O. for a while. Check him out great band/singer.
    When I was there a great song was play’in by Louisiana Leroux, New Orleans Lady. My love and I had this as our favotite song.
    As a said earlier I met my then girlfriend in Lousiana actually in Fat City at a disco.
    Now if you knew New Orleans Anna, you would know that N.O. is diversified with folks also. Not as much as Atlanta.
    If I have my way I will retire in either Mobile Al., Pascagoula Ms or Biloxi. Love it down there.

  • diablo

    I will make a correction, I said “Atlanta is not southern” of course it is. It is referred to the NYC of the south.
    Did not mean to insult any southerns.
    Hula I too, have traveled extensively t/o my adult life.

  • AnnaZed

    She doth protest too much methinks.

  • diablo

    @Hulahoop,
    I don’t see where my experience with AA is any less valid than that of someone else who spent years in AA as Diablo tries to make it to be.

    diablo,
    Your experience is valid. Most definitely. More important then mine because it is yours.
    I am not trying to do anything but figure my way around here with all my ideas and beliefs.
    Sorry…buddy!!!

  • hulahoop

    diablo, go back and look at your posts to me. Since you have had such a limited experience with AA, why don’t you come at this conversation from a different perspective. And one or two others if I felt like digging for them. I appreciate your apology if was sincere, but don’t call me “buddy” again. Really. We are not buddies.

    Yes, it is MY experience. I thank God each and every day that I did not have to spend years in that cult before I realized what was going on around me. When I witnessed for myself what happens to people after they drink the kool aid, and I read the stories of here of people who DID spend a lot of years in AA…I am greatful in the purest, truest sense of the word.

    I offered to meet you in Georgia when I get back there so you could take me to some of those non praying meetings you posted about. I can tell you that they do pray in the meetings from Dahlonega all the way to extreme northeast Georgia. More than they do in other states and cities I’ve been to. I know where Canton is because I’ve done work there. I have a hard time believing they are not praying it up there.

    Now about that post you made to me since it looks like we will not be attending a non praying meeting together – Yes, I am an American. Why do you assume most Americans are greedy? And more importantly, why do you assume I am? You need to get off that jag. You don’t know me. I lead a very unextravagant life. I am not trying to gain monetarily by posting here. I am not selling anything other than to tell people AA is a religious program complete with false gods, false prophets, and false religion.

    Also there are A LOT of criminals forced to go to AA meetings. Those stories are not sensationalized. You have to look for them. They are usually stories found in small hometown papers just like in the same small town I live in. It isn’t like they are running them every twenty minutes on Fox News or CNN. That is why most people don’t realize the person sitting next to them, or even worse sponsoring them and doling out advice on how they should live their life, could be a child molester, potentially violent, a rapist, or a career criminal or anything in between.

    If people want to buy what I am saying, great. If not, fine too.

    Do I think there should be cop on every street corner? No. I think people should be above that and the need for it should be there. People should do what they know is right. That is why we have police in the first place. If everyone abided by the law and did what was right there would be no need.

    I do think the GSO should be accountable for what goes on in AA meetings. AA groups are like a franchise to me. Does Mc Donald’s corporate actually own the Mc Donald’s down the street from me? No. If something happens to me there is Mc Donald’s corporate responsible? Very most likely they are. As are other franchises as well.

    Nobody is accountable in AA. Not even the “owners” of the group or the club house. The GSO isn’t accountable. Perhaps if someone, somebody was accountable for the bullshit that goes on in those meetings AA would be a better, safer place. Go to the main AA website. Listen and watch the PSAs. Also check out AA for the medical community and the legal community. The GSO is selling AA as a safe place and something that works.

    Maybe you should start your own meeting where you can take AA back to the good old days and relive it all you want with like minded people such as yourself. AA made themselves the organization they are today.

    ,