Guest View: Branding, and Branding Alone, Led to Raniere’s Downfall

KAR brands

By Erasend

My take is the branding, and only the branding, caused Keith Raniere’s downfall.

If not for the branding, DOS would have continued on just fine, likely even to this day. The result would have been a sizable library of sexual images and video for Keith to enjoy (when not taking advantage of the harem). The longer it went on, the less likely anyone would have come forward because the greater the threat that library would have created, even for those not in DOS.

Keith Raniere

The collateral system was clearly inspired by Scientology’s Auditing. While that cult added a bunch of nonsense to it, it is really just getting Scientologists to confess anything negative they have done or felt at any point in their lives. The Auditors would record and thoroughly document these sessions. The result is substantial blackmail material that can be used to at least ensure silence. Which works. Most ex-members refuse to talk about the cult for this reason. Not just to protect themselves but also protect friends and family that remain in or left the cult that could have their material released.

L Ron Hubbard founded the Church of Scientology. He had some pretty good ideas on getting to know his members very well.

Eventually its possible DOS would have internally fallen apart once Raniere’s part in it came out, but its likely that collateral would have prevented it from becoming public. Lets be honest, the NXIVM-5 do have one thing right – the only reason Raniere got investigated at all was the public notoriety of a harem inside his cult, a harem discovered via the branding.

The Nxivm 5, L-R Suneel Chakravorty, Nicki Clyne, Eduardo Asunsolo, Michele Hatchette and Marc Elliot.

Without that attention, there would have been no investigation and thus no knowledge of any of the other crimes he committed. At most rumors might have made their way to local police departments, who once saw Raniere was backed by two heiresses and their lawyers would have immediately thought “these people volunteered for this shit, we got bigger problems to deal with” and never made its way to the federal level for investigation.

In short the branding, not DOS and the collateral, was the bridge too far that led to his downfall.

Nxivm Brand Photo



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    • That’s ridiculous and not the reason that people find DOS so disturbing. It is the coercion and lies surrounding the brand that offend people. That the women were denied the opportunity to give informed consent.

      Nicki, Mack, Lauren et al. lied to their slaves; they told them that Raniere was not involved and that the brand was a symbol of the elements and not Raniere’s initials. Nicki knew it was his initials since she helped him design the brand. So, she knowingly and willingly lied to those whom she vowed to protect and guide. To those who trusted her. And, now she cries about how women lie! Her hypocrisy knows no bounds.

      It is troubling that most of the women believed they would be getting a tattoo up until the moment they were gathered for the ceremony. And, of course, the cherry on top is that they all had damaging collateral held over their heads.

      The use of the word “sorority” to describe DOS is also offensive. Sororities are usually women in solidarity, not women controlled by a misogynistic white man who believes all women lie and cannot be trusted.

      So, most people are not disturbed by the brand itself, but more by the shady circumstances under which the slaves became branded.

      I am sure they all know this already but continue to push this false assertion because it fits their agenda.

      Of course, they can believe whatever they want, and very few are listening to their distorted message. But, they have no right to bitch and play the victim when people disagree with them.

      • Lying isn’t necessarily wrong if it is for a just end. If you are harboring Jews in your attic like Anne Frank and the Nazis come to your door, the right thing is to lie to them. The women who joined DOS wanted discipline for self-improvement. Isn’t that a higher good?

        • Anonymous at 10:07 a.m.

          The holocaust. Really? Anne Frank? This is another Nxivm comment being forwarded to the anti-defamation league.

          And please. Search your heart. It is almost impossible to believe that you do not know how offensive this comparison is to many Jewish people. And especially those who lost their families.

          You would never put your name on that comment. Which shows that you do know.

        • How is lying about what DOS and the brand represented helping members to be more disciplined? You lost me.

          • Anonymous at 12: 10 pm

            In prison, Keith is more likely to get a blanket party.

            Nxivm has a history of anti-Semitic comments and really offensive Holocaust denial/diminishment. This isn’t a one-off.

          • You have to force women for their own benefit and advancement when it is to their advantage. These princesses would never have gone along otherwise, and Vanguard and the progressive slaveholders, after all, know best what is best for these effeminate, characterless good-for-nothings.

          • Is the ADL going to send a Jewish prison gang after Keith? Or outsource it to the Aryan Nation? MS-13? Kidnap him from prison and ship him off to Israel for a trial like Eichmann? Or just publish a press release that ruins NXIVM’s sterling reputation? What exactly is the ADL going to do with all the intelligence you’ve gathered?

      • Anonymous at 3:58

        Assuming this comment was not sarcastic, you just admitted that the women were deceived, coerced and that they never would have consented had they known the truth. In sum, you are conceding that there was no informed consent. So, I think it’s time for the DOS-8 to stop crying that the women’s participation in DOS, their branding, and their sexual relations with Raniere were consensual.

        Deception can never lead to true empowerment. Because they did not willingly and knowingly choose to have it done. It was forced upon them through blackmail and coercion. The brand did not empower these women. It brought them shame, anger and disgust. As did Raniere’s continuous sexual assaults.

        DOS has no higher good. It was built on a foundation of lies. That is why it fell, and why it will never grow to anything significant in the future.

        I will never understand how the DOS-8 believe they became empowered by catering to a man, objectifying themselves to nothing more than close-up pictures of their vaginas. It is so twisted. And sad. I feel bad for them all. They are lost, and they do not know it.


    True Crime: Before The Cult – Notorious Cult Leaders Before They Were Infamous

    Categories: Content, News, Local News, WWJTV

    From NXIVM to Heaven’s Gate, we speak to those who knew the figures at the forefront of these followings to gain insights into what could have led them to commit such horrific acts. Dr. Oz speaks to Frank Parlato about Keith Raniere’s blackmailing tendencies even as a child.

  • Andrew Cuomo’s early end in office as governor of New York is in sight. It is a matter of days or hours rather than months.

  • New York Times

    What to Know About Kathy Hochul, Cuomo’s Possible Successor

    Ms. Hochul, who has served as New York’s lieutenant governor since 2015, would become the first female governor in the state’s history if Gov. Andrew Cuomo resigned or was removed from office.

    By Katie Glueck
    Published March 12, 2021

    …, New Yorkers are growing more curious about Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul, who would replace him if he were no longer in office.

    … If Mr. Cuomo were to resign or be removed from office, Ms. Hochul would become the first woman in history to serve as governor of New York.

    Ms. Hochul, of the Buffalo area, is a lawyer by training and served briefly as a member of Congress. Mr. Cuomo chose her as his running mate in 2014, and she has won two statewide elections for that role. …

  • Thanks for the prison stats, Pandora. It’s an excellent illustration of the cost of mental illness to society.

    It’s known that while approximately 1% of the population suffer from psychopathology that these individuals are overrepresented in prison populations. It’s estimated that somewhere between 15%-25% of incarcerated people suffer from this disorder.

    I can’t diagnose anybody but there’s such a strong undercurrent of manipulation, lack of empathy and lack of remorse, that I can’t help but feel the heart of these DOS teachings could be more aptly named ASPD 101.

    Beginning with manipulation, there’s a constant drive to skew “the data”. Like a magician, they aim to redirect the attention of the listener. When cold hard facts, like texts and a personal confession surface? They say, “But the nude photo that was corroborated by both was tampered with!”.

    Lack of empathy? “Well? Our experience in DOS was amazing! We loved having slaves and taking pictures of each other’s vaginas. You must be a liar and full of hate to say that I did not enjoy it!”.

    Lack of remorse? At any point, any of these women could have spoken up and said “Hey, maybe lying to people and collecting blackmail-worthy material might be a bad idea?” But no. They are still very, very proud of their decisions.

    They make what is small to be huge, like someone offered them a ride. And then they make what’s huge to be small, like his sex with underage sisters and imprisoning one within her very own home.

    It’s all just so crazy! All of that and Nancy Salzman with hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash stored in her home. And Brandon Porter taking brain scans of people watching women being dismembered!

    Why anyone would think this was just about the branding is beyond me.

  • Tatler

    Ghislaine Maxwell’s brother casts doubt on Prince Andrew’s dismissal of photograph
    The Duke of York has alleged that the image, which shows him alongside a teenage Virginia Roberts, could not have been taken in London

    by HOPE COKE
    THURSDAY 11 MARCH 2021

    The image in question shows the Duke of York with his arm around Roberts (now Virginia Giuffre), with Ghislaine Maxwell visible smiling behind them. Virginia Giuffre has alleged that she was made to have sex with Andrew on three occasions while she was being trafficked as a teenage ‘sex slave’ for Epstein, including when she was 17 (a minor under US law). The Prince has strenuously denied her claims.

    According to the Times, Ian Maxwell, one of Ghislaine’s older brothers, has stated that the photograph was indeed taken at his sister’s house in Mayfair. Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme on Wednesday 10 March, Maxwell stated that he recognised its setting as his sister’s London townhouse. His claim runs counter to the account offered by Andrew, who has said that it could not have been taken in London. Both the Duke and Ghislaine Maxwell have challenged the authenticity of the photo.

    Ian Maxwell commented: ‘I don’t know anything about the photograph other than that I’ve seen it’s been published. This is outside the case that my sister is facing. And I know its interest to your listeners, but nonetheless I’m not here to talk about that photograph.’ When the interviewer pressed: ‘But do you recognise the setting of that? Was it taken in Ghislaine’s house in London?’, Maxwell replied: ‘I do recognise that setting.’

    • Le’s tell the truth about Ghislaine Maxwell.

      She was an eager and willing sexual predator who was thrilled to exploit teen-age girls along with Epstein.

      Now that Epstein is “suicided” Maxwell is more than happy to throw him under the bus to rescue her own rotten hide.

  • NYC spent $447,409 to incarcerate Keith in 2020. It costs an average of $1,226.00 per inmate PER DAY with 1.57 prison employees for each prisoner.

    About 40% of detainees in New York City are diagnosed with mental illness.

    Half of the prison population at the federal level is made up of people incarcerated on a drug conviction.

    The Sentencing Project says that most of these people are not high-level players in the drug trade and most have no prior criminal record for a violent offense.

    • “About 40% of detainees in New York City are diagnosed with mental illness.” Pandora’s JF

      I believe that Raniere and all his co-defendants have some form of mental illness or deficiency.

      How else could one explain people who think that branding and blackmail are acceptable forms of behavior?

      And I will add that any college fraternity or sorority that brands its members is filled with mentally ill people.

  • Ghislaine Maxwell selling London home where infamous Prince Andrew photo was taken
    By Lia EustachewichMarch 12, 2021 | 1:47pm

    The estimated value of the stylish abode, which sits just a couple blocks south of Hyde Park, is £1.9 million — about $2.7 million, according to UK real estate website The Move Market. It last sold in 1997.

    The lucrative deal would add to the $7 million Maxwell has already earmarked for her defense fund — pushing the total to over $10 million, Basham told the Telegraph.

  • The California Board of Education is considering a change of curriculum that honors the Aztec Gods.
    The Aztec Gods of Human Sacrifice and Cannibalism.
    The Gods of Callifornia

    • Shadow, your ignorance of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam is showing.

      The God of Abraham told him to take his son, Issac, tie him up and kill him. At the last second, this God decided to tell him to stop. If God had told him to go ahead and finish the job, no one could say God was wrong. The good is whatever God says it is. God does not stand below the good.

      So… if you are comfortable with an educational system that teaches about the God of Abraham, you ought to be comfortable with any religion.

      • The God of Abraham’s request was an exceptional one. It was a test of both the faith of Abraham and his son. It was not a “blood sacrifice” that was commanded, nor something that ever would occur on a periodic basis. Therefore, the comparison to Aztec or other pagan religions is not analogous and only superficially similar.

        • Jesus was a blood sacrifice. It is the central narrative of Christianity.

          Christianity’s most important ritual, communion, is cannibalism. Catholics believe that they are literally eating the body and drinking the blood of Christ. Protestants think it is symbolic.

          Christianity is a freaky religion. Of course, all religions are freaky to those who don’t believe in them.

        • I agree. Christianity certainly has pagan elements that underlie its theology. But this stands in stark contradiction to the other two Abrahamic faiths, Judaism and Islam, which are fiercely anti-anthropomorphic. Jesus has been reported to have said, “I have only been sent to the lost sheep of Israel” and to inform them of “another Paraclete” that would come after him. Jesus came during the time when the Roman Empire ruled large parts of Europe, the Middle East and parts of Africa. A number of Biblical scholars claim Christianity is more the religion of Paul than of Jesus, and in the Roman ruled political and social environment, the Jewish theological aspects that Jesus confirmed as a Jew were transformed and changed to allow for certain pagan aspects that made the conversion to the new religion easier for a people who still believed in them.

    • ” Honors”? Or teaches about it? Wasn’t the big push to leave statues standing all about “history”? According to some. Now teaching history is bad?

    • This is an ignorant comment, Shadow. They are proposing to teach them about the Aztec warriors and what their believes were. So what? I assume you prefer for California children to learn more about Scientology than history. That is exactly why people are falling into cults. Some white guy grabs a few phrases from another religion and people claim he is the world’s smartest man. It helps to learn history.

      California is filled with Satanists and Illuminati folks. Learning history is good.

  • It’s sad that’s happening to the governor. We live at a time where women can point at a man without due process whatsoever and bring them down…

  • No, I don’t think that. I mean since Edgar’s interview, we know that Nxivm was a cult and DOS was not even in diapers when he said that. Also, I think that Nxivm extortion has to do more with the Bronfmans’ history of extortion and crime or MK-ULTRA satanic rituals. I mean Regina louf talk about how they use pedophile material to keep in-line people or make them sign contracts. Even the Epstein saga used that trick, and the Bronfmans have many connections to Epstein, from the Mobster pass to Lex Wexner. Also, these have to do with MK-ULTRA, Fionna Barnett talks about how Nancy Salzman was trained by an MK-ULTRA perpetrator and the whole experiment with humans or the trauma in the branding. We have to remember that the branding lasted 25 or 40 minutes, and every single testimony that I have read, described a part when there was so much pain that they had to get out of the body that was being burned. I think is truly sad that you have something right, if many things that happened where left on these case, no investigation Would come out of these. Like the Me-Too or Catherine Oxenberg

  • The Fall of Andrew Cuomo

    The Senator from NXIVM Kristen Gillibrand and Chuck Shumer call for Andrew Cuomo to resign

    Chuck Schumer, Kirsten Gillibrand Call on Andrew Cuomo to Resign

    Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) issued a joint statement Friday in which they called on New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) to resign as the governor faces duelings scandals over his alleged cover-up of nursing home deaths and sexual harassment allegations brought forth by at least seven women.

    Earlier Friday, nearly the entire New York Democrat congressional delegation, including House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler and House Oversight Committee Chairwoman Carolyn Maloney, called on the governor to leave his post immediately.

  • New York Post

    Epstein’s Palm Beach home sells for $18 million, frees up money for victims
    By Priscilla DeGregoryMarch 12, 2021

    “I am pleased to report that the Program can now resume full operations after this unfortunate and unexpected month-long delay,” Feldman said in a statement.​ “We have continued to process claims and hold meetings with claimants in anticipation of the resolution of the estate’s liquidity issue, and will begin issuing compensation offers immediately.”

    Feldman said that, so far, the program has received over 175 claims and has paid out a more than $67 million to eligible claimants. A deadline has passed for registering for the fund but anyone who is registered and hasn’t filed a claim yet has until March 25, Feldman said.

  • Well put. While NXVIM isn’t a religion, it DID ‘borrow’ heftily from Scientology. As somebody who counseled A LOT of FLAG escapees in FL, I can say that Scientology uses some of THE most rudimentary programming skills to control their members, one of those being Auditing. Ratting out yourself – and others – keeps everybody in line. This is an age-old programming technique and fairly simple to use. The problem is, it’s much more complicated to untangle in the mind of the victim. They are SO programmed and paranoid, they hold on for all they’re worth just to keep some sort of equilibrium, even after they’ve been ‘free’ for quite some time.

  • Infobae México

    “¡Me meo sobre tu familia!”: la humillante prueba que Emiliano Salinas tuvo que soportar para liderar la secta sexual NXVIM en MéxicoEl hijo de Carlos Salinas de Gortari sería el ariete de la secta sexual para imponerse en México
    12 de Marzo de 2021

    Raniere preguntó a Emiliano si estaba listo para liderar el movimiento contra la corrupción y la violencia en México. Respondió que sí, pero dijo no saber cómo. “No sé cómo organizar gente como esa”, admitió, refiriéndose a los pobres (capítulo 9).

    Vicente, quien compartió la Junta Ejecutiva de NXIVM con Emiliano, dijo que fue la misma táctica de control psicológico que usó Raniere con las hermanas Sara y Clare Bronfman, herederas del imperio licorero Seagram. Mientras que a ellas las hizo “sentirse mierda” para quitarles su enorme fortuna, a Emiliano lo manipuló para explotar sus conexiones políticas.

    Dolia Estévez recordó que Catherine Oxenberg, en su obra Captive (Gallery Books, 20018), detalló el plan de Raniere para establecer en México una cabeza de playa. El “grandioso esquema” de dominio mundial empezaría con el triunfo electoral de Emiliano Salinas en las elecciones presidenciales de 2018. “Su padre, Carlos, usaría sus métodos maquiavélicos para garantizar la victoria electoral de su hijo. A su vez, Keith usaría a Emi como peón para gobernar México” (página 262).

  • Strongly disagree.

    First of all, auditing is similar to EMs, not collateral. EMs cure disintegrations, auditing clears a person of thetans.

    Collateral is different. Collateral is the collection and ownership of information and assets intended to silence and destroy people.

    Branding is disturbing, not in its own right, but because of its relationship to both cataloging and ownership of humans (as in human trafficking) and its association to torture and mind control.

    Branding would have been nothing more than getting a breast cancer pink ribbon tattoo if it weren’t for the fact it was administered under the pretense of a lie and because all who were branded were first collateralized.

      • New York Magazine, “The Cruelty and the Casualties Inside Andrew Cuomo’s toxic workplace,” by Rebecca Traister. (Hot off the presses.) For the moment.

        Shadow, this is fairly new material, with a former Albany reporter, Jessica Bakeman, the seventh woman to talk about being sexually harassed by Cuomo.

        In light of the complacent endorsements being offered here at the Frank Report regarding Keith Raniere and his crew, this is how a whole lot of women feel, when pursued by either a Raniere, a Cuomo or an Andrew Cuomo, or by any rabid walk-eyed representative of such beasts or by any PACK of such assholian minions, really feels.
        Not that you’ve forgotten or anything.

  • Strongly disagree.

    First of all, auditing is similar to EMs, not collateral. EM’s cure disintegrations, auditing clears a person of thetans.

    Collateral is different. Collateral is the collection and ownership of information and assets intended to silence and destroy people.

    Branding is disturbing, not in its own right, but because of its relationship to both cataloging and ownership of humans (as in human trafficking) and its association to torture and mind control.

    Branding would have been nothing more than getting a breast cancer pink ribbon tattoo if it weren’t for the fact it was administered under the pretense of a lie and because all who were branded were first collateralized.

    • That is an incredibly concise and poignant description of why Keith’s decision to brand people was so wrong…

    • Why are these twisted terms still used, which only distract from the true facts and the correct terms, such as blackmail and blackmail material?

  • Michelle clearly shows very refined fashion choices. The only accessory she’s missing is a rubber cock attached with a suction cup to her left temporal cranial bone.

    A human obviously raised in an erudite environment.

    • “Michelle clearly shows very refined fashion choices. The only accessory she’s missing is a rubber cock” Alex

      Nicki can loan Michelle her rubber cock.
      Nicki is clearly he most intelligent person in NXIVM today but Nicki’s intelligence is precisely what makes her so dangerous.

      Frank recently wrote this:
      :”As for his followers, I like them. I do not perceive them as dangerous. I think they are genuinely interested in bettering themselves and, as far as it lies in their power, bettering humanity.” Frank Parlato

      Frank has to be very careful of Nicki or Nicki will arrange for Frank to be branded by Danielle Roberts.

  • What you are overlooking is that NXIVM was never declared a religion by the IRS. If it had been, it would have been much harder for the feds to go after Raniere.

    If Scientology weren’t a religion, it wouldn’t be in anywhere near the position it is today.

    This is the kind of crap you can get away with when you get yourself officially designated a religion:

    • Wow, One more solid reason to eliminate religion from this planet. Pity we need to control the vast majority of cretins. If they had nothing to fear, it’s doubtful Murdoch and a few others would successfully keep the clothed primates in check.
      A sad fact…

    • Meh. That says the appeal ruling affects ONLY the civil harassment lawsuit and NOT the criminal case.

      It doesn’t matter what religion you belong to, you can’t get away with criminal activity against the state. Raniere would still be in jail for what he did even if NXIVM was classified as a religion in the US.

        • The Catholic Church is ruled by the Vatican which is literally its own country. Just like any other country, its “diplomats” who are priests, bishops, etc., have practical diplomatic immunity. The Vatican can certainly waive that on an individual basis and it has. That some priests, bishops, etc., have been able to get away with sexual abuse and state prosecution is not due to the practice of religion as such.

          • The failure to prosecute priest abusers has nothing to do with diplomatic immunity.

            If you aren’t just trolling, you really need to read up on the topic. There is a ton written about it.

          • The implicit claim is that religion and religious organizations allow people to get away with things against the state. That is bullshit. The Catholic Church is a powerful organization. It has billions of believers, billions of dollars, owns over a hundred millions of acres of land, and it is practically run like the governmental organization of a country. That is what allows them to get away with it. Just like NXIVM was a powerful organization with its connections in Raniere’s tiny neck of the woods that allowed it and him to get away with the things he did for so long.

  • Loved this article. Short and sweet. Right on point. Not like the Nxivm 5 posts that are so lengthy.

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