Actaeon: Keith Raniere Subscribed to the Old Testament Standard

Keith Alan Raniere isnlt a sociopath. He's a simple conman and grifter - who stumbled onto Bronfman millions.

By Actaeon

Many religions have an obsession with keeping the womenfolk pure and under wraps. Strict guardianship laws are in effect in many Muslim countries, the hijab mandatory. Christianity wasn’t any different, a few centuries ago. The idea of a woman wearing pants and a tee shirt in the summer is a quite modern concept and part of the liberty of enlightened secular life.

Keith Raniere subscribed to that Old Testament standard. He fit the model of a patriarch, with multiple “wives”, with one set of rules for him, a quite different set of rules for them. The frenzy of moral outrage that one of “his” women so much as kissed another man is indicative. His whole program was quite regressive; the precise opposite of what it sold itself as being– some sort of enlightened new dawn.

It’s bizarre to me that the women put up with him, classic male chauvinist pig that he is. It was all so transparently regressive and completely out of touch with the modern zeitgeist in this post-Harvey Weinstein, #MeToo era.

Triply bizarre that someone like Allison Mack was on board with this, while proclaiming her feminist goals, all about empowerment. I suspect she was sincere, too, with the Jness and DOS bullshit. And likely was convinced that branding women with her lord and master’s initials really was the road to female empowerment.

People’s capacity to hold contradictory beliefs in their heads can be staggering. Religion is a classic example, modern educated people believing in fairy tales about angels and virgin births and burning bushes that talk. People with PhDs in the sciences who don’t believe in evolution because it goes against Bible teaching. Millions of people believe the Bible is the literal word of God, perfectly decent people who wouldn’t hurt a fly and yet can read Leviticus without a qualm, with its instructions on how properly to beat your slaves and how witches are to be killed and how to stone your bride to death in front of her father’s house should she turn out not to be a virgin on your wedding night.

People have a deep irrational streak; there’s nothing necessarily wrong with that, we are not Spock. But it’s a good idea to keep a careful eye on one’s irrational tendencies, lest one find oneself falling down the rabbit hole.

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Frank Parlato


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  • As one who has taken a 16 Day Intensive, the teachings are a blueprint of Keith in reverse.

    Perhaps he said it best in the module that teaches “projection” a concept of whatever we are saying or thinking of another person’s behavior is truly the expression of ourselves displaced on the other person. That is it in a nutshell. BTW this was not a concept he originated for there is nothing innovative about Keith!

    As I read the testimony each day and listen to the audio tapes of Keith, he is simply in one word REPULSIVE!

    As they say “Tell me who your friends are and I will tell you who you are.” His inner circle are REPULSIVE!

    May they all never again harm another well intentioned person who wants to make this a better world.

    There is no redemption for Nxivm.

    • Anyone who could actually STAY for the full 16 day intensive, without leaving after the first day, is basically a human pawn incapable of making firm decisions on their own.

      You’re a sheep. Baaah! Baaah!

      • Bangkok,

        I have to agree with you, partially. However, once people paid their money and realized they were suckered, they probably figured they might as well stay.

        The people that came back after the 16 day were the “sheep”. Some people feel empty and want to belong to something.

  • Why has no one addressed the elephant in the room? The question is: why do women when put in a hierarchical power structure turn on each other with such psychotic fury? You see it in the workplace quite often, just not to the degree that it was allowed to play out at NXIVM. Here we have middle class to upper middle class women with educations and ‘good backgrounds’ perfectly willing to psychologically, physically and sexually torture one another depending on their sash color. This requires introspection in the era of ‘me-too.’ It certainly makes me question some fundamental assumptions about women in the workplace…

  • It is funny how much a cognitive dissonance all those people have when you expose their religion with their set of supernatural miracles and irrational beliefs and practices – just like any cult has. Their defending of these are missing totally the point: from “x” is not a religion – which makes no sense because it has all the characteristics of it, to calling people immature and getting defensive whenever their set of irrational beliefs are criticized – which if you ask me is the mark of immature behavior, or just plain rambling about how critical thinking can coexist with blindly following a doctrine, and finally all the bad things their religion has done are just dismissed by saying “that’s not what a true x does”, “god does not say that” , “this x religion is not about doing that”, etc. What the author really wants to show (as you can see from the majority of comments) is that all those irrational characteristics of supernatural are part of human mind, she/he has no cure for this – just keep them in check and beware of those tendencies. Many of us could’ve joined NXIVM.

    • Thank you– that’s exactly my point. We are all largely irrational, it’s not necessarily a bad thing, but it’s best to recognize our irrationality and keep it in some kind of check. That’s all. Belief in mainline religion like Christianity is basically irrational: believing in a guy in the sky with absolutely no proof or even evidence, accepting miracles as real, believing in an afterlife, all without question. Point it out, and people get pissed. Shoot the messenger, I guess. I point this out because it explains how people– sometimes perfectly normal ordinary well-intentioned people– can believe in a cult like Nxivm. It’s human nature to believe this stuff, and it becomes easy if everyone around you accepts it too. Someone raised in a Baptist family is probably going to be a Baptist. If born into a Jewish family, Jewish. Odd, how everyone just happens to be born into the “right” faith….

      I’m fascinated by religion. It’s a large part of human culture. Shamanism, Catholicism, paganism, Buddhism, they’re all interesting. I don’t happen to believe in any of them; believing in the supernatural seems so at odds with the modern world. Religion of course offers a sense of community, a (bogus) sense of purpose, a set of rules to live by. We evolved as social creatures, as tribal animals, so the pull of having a group identity makes sense. And that I think is why people join cults. Mxivm gave the rubes a set of rules to aspire to, a leader to follow, a sense of purpose. Its appeal was the same as most religions.

      I think it was St.Augustine who said “I believe because it is impossible”. He would’ve been a perfect candidate for the nutty Nxivm cult.

      • The same can be said for the religious-like devotion to ‘tipping points’ in the climate change debate.

        I’m guessing you’re a ardent follower of that religion.

        Since the 1990’s we’ve had several ‘tipping points’ foisted upon us by charlatans like Al Gore and many others.

        These ‘tipping points’ are future dates (usually expressed as a future year) which signify irreversible damage if we don’t pass massive climate legislation before that ‘tipping point’ date.

        But guess what?

        Every single tipping point since the 1990’s has been a sham.

        Every single tipping point has come and gone, with none of the catastrophic damage and death predicted.

        Every time we pass another tipping point, they just proclaim another tipping point, LOL.

        Kinda like when Jehovas’ Witnesses claim that God will be coming soon because we are near the end. Then when it doesn’t happen, they just pick a new time period when he’ll come. I hear they’ve been doing this for decades.

        I’m not questioning that climate changes over time.

        I’m also not questioning that man has ‘some’ impact on it.

        I’m just making the point that the climate change movement is a cult with religious-like believers, who literally make up all kinds of bogus ‘dates’ and ‘tipping points’ every few years.

        If I point out that these tipping points have never been accurate, they get VERY MAD at me for being the messenger of reason and fact.

        I’m guessing you’re one of those pathetic idiots. How sad.

        BTW: I’m going to heaven because Jesus loves me. Yes, I sin. But Jesus fucken loves me. 🙂

        Frank? Nope.

        Claviger? Nope.

        Heidi? Doubtful.

        What about You? You can still escape an eternity without God, but only if you’re quick. You need to receive Jesus into your heart before December 31, 2024 (EST). That’s the final tipping point.

  • This site is so frustrating. Frank’s in depth, context filled coverage of Dani’s testimony was better than any of the sites covering the trial. But he follows it up with off-topic, desperately reaching posts like this one.

    Have religious people done rotten things throughout history? Of course! Does it have anything at all to do with Keith Raniere? If this axe-grinding meandering post is any indication, not really.

  • Keith didn’t follow any religion that I have ever heard of. He was just an abusive, manipulative, misogynistic male who had a knack for finding finding needy people (mainly women) who were easy to manipulate. This is typical of all cult leaders. Cult leaders are always severely narcissistic, and so they always follow this similar behaviour pattern. Religion is not part of the equation here.

    • Yep needy women much like you. If these so called strong feminists had half a brain they would have seen through Raniere’s bullshit right from the get go.

      • Huh? I was never involved in NXIVM or in any other cult (unlike many of the other posters here, Frank included….) but yet I’m “needy”?

        I wonder if “Roses” still belongs to NXIVM and can’t even admit the truth? Probably you’re the same person who posted as Leon Festinger a few months ago.

  • Actaeon, religion is not science, and science is not religion. One can be a devout Christian and be a scientist. In fact, I know many people who are both. Science explains the physical world. Religion explains the “why”. For instance, assuming that all matter derived from the “Big Bang”, then one can ask “how did that instant occur?” Science tells us that something cannot come from nothing. Life cannot spawn simply by mixing certain elements together. So, from a scientific standpoint, can one completely dismiss “intelligent design” …aka God? And is is not possible that God created physical laws, such as the laws of thermodynamics?

    • Question for Jarhead:

      If something cannot come from nothing, and if life cannot simply spawn all by itself —- then WHO THE FUCK created God? 🙂

      If the universe needs a ‘creator’ then certainly God would also need a creator.

      How can God just ‘spawn’ from nothing, if you just told us that shit like that can’t happen?

      Therefore God must have a creator, according to Mr. Jarhead.

      …and if God was created by another being, then WHO THE FUCK created that other being?

      *Also, technically speaking God wouldn’t be ‘God’ if he was created by another being, cuz God is supposed to be the creator of all beings — just some food for thought. 🙂

      Certainly God’s creator would also need another creator, else HOW THE FUCK did that mother fucker come into being?

      He can’t just spawn from nothing, cuz Mr. Jarhead says that just ain’t possible.

      I submit to you that, at some point in the distant past, some mother fucker was spawned from nothing. 🙂

      …and if that 1st mother fucker could be spawned from nothing, that means the universe could just as easily have been spawned from nothing (big bang came from nothing, as in magic).

      I challenge somebody to disprove my logic. 🙂

      • God is God. He has no beginning or end. That is the point of An eternal being. He has no beginning or end. Thank you for answering my question, Bangkookery. Also, you seem smart enough that you don’t need all the expletives.


      • It’s the age-old question Bangkook – what came first, the chicken or the egg? But what I find most puzzling is this : if there really is a God, why did he/she create so many shitty asshole people like Keith Raniere? Doesn’t make much sense, does it?

  • Seriously, you can rip this sleazy narcissistic sociopathic pedophile to shreds for the appalling and disgusting things he did but can’t you contain your hatred for Christianity and save it for when THAT is the topic at hand. You sound like a petulant child who must have had your knuckles whacked too many times by the old crabby nun, and you are now going to connect every evil thing In the world to “religion.” Your articles are idiotic, offensive and completely missing the mark when it comes to KAR. Get therapy.

    • No, they never can. Any opportunity to do so they will.
      It’s like, the other day I said to a co worker “in 13 days thete have been an average of 20 tornadoes a day” and what comes out of her mouth?
      Her liberal political bias. Not the weather, metorology, etc. A chance, since it obsesses their mind night and day, to opine about her politics.
      I begin to suspect itbis a mental illness easily spread by breathing in droplets.

  • News for the NXIVM defendants.
    Good News for Raniere’s champion Pea Onyu.

    Could Prostitution Be Next to Be Decriminalized?

    ALBANY — Marijuana has gone mainstream, casino gambling is everywhere and sports wagering is spreading. Could prostitution be next?

    Lawmakers across the country are beginning to reconsider how to handle prostitution, as calls for decriminalization are slowly gaining momentum.

    Decriminalization bills have been introduced in Maine and Massachusetts; a similar bill is expected to be introduced to the City Council in Washington D.C. in June; and lawmakers in Rhode Island held hearings in April on a proposal to study the impact of decriminalizing prostitution.

    New York may be next: Some Democratic lawmakers are about to propose a comprehensive decriminalization bill that would eliminate penalties for both women and men engaged in prostitution, as well as the johns whom they service.

    “This is about the oldest profession, and understanding that we haven’t been able to deter or end it, in millennia,” said Senator Jessica Ramos, a Democrat from Queens who is one of the plan’s backers. “So I think it’s time to confront reality.”

    The New York legislation appears unlikely to pass in the coming months, but the idea of decriminalization has already amassed a growing coterie of prominent supporters, suggesting that it might continue to gain traction.

    The debate is unquestionably polarizing in many circles, even among advocates for sex-trafficked and abused women who fear that creating a legal path for prostitution will not eliminate, but rather actually encourage, underground sex trafficking.

    And decriminalization is already facing intense pushback in state capitals from opponents who call the measures naïve and potentially dangerous.

    Still, the issue has crept into the Democratic Party’s nascent presidential campaign: In late February, Senator Kamala Harris of California became the first candidate to endorse some manner of decriminalization, an idea also floated by another contender, the former Colorado governor, John Hickenlooper.

    “When you’re talking about consenting adults, I think that yes, we should really consider that we can’t criminalize consensual behavior as long no one is being harmed,” said Ms. Harris, in an interview with The Root.

    Supporters of decriminalization see their efforts as part of a larger, decades-long liberalization of American mores, like lifting Sunday bans on selling alcohol and legalizing marijuana. They also frame the issue as an act of harm-reduction for prostitutes and a tacit admission that modern law enforcement and age-old moral indignation has done little to stem the practice.

    “We’ve learned this lesson many times with the prohibition of alcohol, or criminalization of abortion, or even the criminalization of marijuana: The black market creates dark circumstances and provides cover for a lot of violence and exploitation,” said Kaytlin Bailey, a comedian and former prostitute who serves as the spokeswoman for Decriminalize Sex Work, which was founded last year.

    Prostitution is legal only in a few counties in Nevada, and even there, the brothel industry had to recently beat back a bill that would have outlawed prostitution in the state. And even the most optimistic of those pushing for changes do not believe that any state will soon fully decriminalize prostitution.

    But in places like New York, where Democrats now control the State Legislature after a slew of Republican incumbents were unseated in November by Democratic challengers running on progressive platforms, there is no question that the environment has changed.

    At a recent rally in Albany to repeal a statute criminalizing loitering for the purposes of prostitution, former sex workers stood next to lawmakers like Senator Ramos and Assemblyman Richard N. Gottfried, the chairman of the health committee.

    State Senator Julia Salazar, a Brooklyn Democrat who ran a successful insurgent campaign for office last year that included an endorsement of decriminalization, said that the “Nordic model” did not solve the problem of prostitution because it still made sex workers “complicit in illegal activity.”

    “It still would not bring the industry to the surface,” she said.

    Still, she added that she had been “very pleasantly surprised” by how rapidly decriminalization has elevated “in the public discourse” over the last year.

  • KAR was a philanderer who thought sex was like a game of tennis. The Abrahamic faiths, e.g., Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and indeed most religious traditions, such as Hinduism and Buddhism are anti-indulgence and opposed to licentiousness, adultery, sexual promiscuity, etc., and are nuclear family oriented.

    So this comparison is just not accurate.

  • Raniere had the assistance of several very evil women around him since his college days, and that’s completely different than the Old Testament. Many Christians find evolution and creation can coexist. Millions of Christians believe the Bible is not entirely literal.

    • Seems like more than s few.
      The eeeew factor gets worse the more we know.

      I wonder if Barbara Bouchey will persist in extolling the virtues of Keith and wanting to bring the “best” parts of NXIVM to the public?

  • When the jury find Raniere guilty he won’t be the patriarch in jail. Maybe he’ll pray to the fire,wind,rain,and earth gods for forgiveness. Or, maybe not.

    • Let’s see if the other male inmates fall for his crap.
      Keith would be best in the SHU for his own protection. Then again my vote is for some rough justice.

About the Author

Frank Parlato is an investigative journalist.

His work has been cited in hundreds of news outlets, like The New York Times, The Daily Mail, VICE News, CBS News, Fox News, New York Post, New York Daily News, Oxygen, Rolling Stone, People Magazine, The Sun, The Times of London, CBS Inside Edition, among many others in all five continents.

His work to expose and take down NXIVM is featured in books like “Captive” by Catherine Oxenberg, “Scarred” by Sarah Edmonson, “The Program” by Toni Natalie, and “NXIVM. La Secta Que Sedujo al Poder en México” by Juan Alberto Vasquez.

Parlato has been prominently featured on HBO’s docuseries “The Vow” and was the lead investigator and coordinating producer for Investigation Discovery’s “The Lost Women of NXIVM.” Parlato was also credited in the Starz docuseries "Seduced" for saving 'slave' women from being branded and escaping the sex-slave cult known as DOS.

Additionally, Parlato’s coverage of the group OneTaste, starting in 2018, helped spark an FBI investigation, which led to indictments of two of its leaders in 2023.

Parlato appeared on the Nancy Grace Show, Beyond the Headlines with Gretchen Carlson, Dr. Oz, American Greed, Dateline NBC, and NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt, where Parlato conducted the first-ever interview with Keith Raniere after his arrest. This was ironic, as many credit Parlato as one of the primary architects of his arrest and the cratering of the cult he founded.

Parlato is a consulting producer and appears in TNT's The Heiress and the Sex Cult, which premiered on May 22, 2022. Most recently, he consulted and appeared on Tubi's "Branded and Brainwashed: Inside NXIVM," which aired January, 2023.

IMDb — Frank Parlato

Contact Frank with tips or for help.
Phone / Text: (305) 783-7083