By Aristotle’s Sausage
A commenter wrote that “the primary difference between a cult and, say, religion is: you can leave a religion without penalty. You cannot leave a cult ( without penalty).”
There are people who left Nxivm without penalty.
And there are mainstream religions with penalties for leaving. There’s even a term for it: apostasy. Aside from the obvious one, that you’re gonna go to Hell, there were here-on-Earth penalties. Like being burned as a heretic.
Religions are cults. All the ones we happen to not believe in anyway 😈
Sociologists sure do love their jargon.
According to Frank Report article, Life Reinvented, NXIVM Style – a Study by Susan Raine: “Professor Raine utilizes Susie Scott’s ‘reinventive institution’ thesis, one that was built upon the earlier Erving Goffman’s concept of the ‘total institution.’”
Most of this is impressive sounding word salad that’s eerily similar to Keith Raniere’s bullshit.
Making hair-splitting distinctions between a TI and an RI may make the stuff of sleep inducing academic papers, but it’s fundamentally useless. It’s just spinning jargon.
None of this stuff seems well researched and all of it looks speculative. Like the dubious assertion that “Reinventive Institutions are a feature of societies where conventional social structures are broken.”
No, they are not.
There are examples of these self-actualization schemes all through history. Many religious, and many not. Plenty of them have been business-based like Raniere’s ESP. His was in fact based on a hodgepodge of ideas “borrowed” from past schemes going back a century or more.
So unless every era in history is considered one where “conventional social structures are broken”, that thesis is pure BS.
Look, this isn’t complicated. Raniere was running a scam. Scammers have been doing this forever. They prey on gullible fools, who also have been with us forever. “There’s a sucker born every minute” after all.
The cure: don’t be a gullible fool. If someone tells you he’s the smartest man on Earth and will fix your life for you if you pay for his $2000 five day course, the man’s a liar. You don’t need to be a college professor to figure that out.
Vincent Bugliosi, the DA who prosecuted Charles Manson, had a simple explanation for why that madman had followers who would kill for him. It wasn’t that Manson had some diabolical power over people. Rather it was the fault of a few of his followers, just the law of averages. As a drifter hippie guru in hippie California, garrulous Manson encountered a ton of followers. A handful happened to be as homicidal as him. The idea seems convincing to me.
So keep in mind that the continued existence of scams and cults may well have as much to do with the fools who join them as with the scumbags who set them up.
Women Did Harm to Each Other
Susan Raine’s unconvincing thesis tells only half the story and tells that badly. Raniere may well have something called “malignant narcissism” but that doesn’t actually explain anything.
Cults need two things: a leader, and followers. A scam artist, and damn fool followers. Both are essential: you can’t have a cult without followers.
Susan Raine would have us believe that it’s all the scam artist’s doing.
Which is nonsense. Particularly in the case of Nxivm.
It was Nancy Salzman who designed much of the ESP/Nxivm “tech”. She was the psychobabble expert. It was Clare Bronfman who bankrolled the operation.
Sarah Edmondson would become the star recruiter (as she herself weirdly boasts in her book).
It was overwhelmingly women who actually ran Nxivm. And DOS.
Look at Mack’s eager, proactive lieutenancy of DOS. She enthusiastically believed in it, its goals and its methods. The lying, the blackmail, the torture-branding. The subjugation of women.
And don’t try to tell me Mack was “groomed” by Raniere. Check out the two of them in the pop-my-cherry volleyball video. If anything, it’s Raniere being played by Mack.
Look at Sarah Edmondson, running her Vancouver center, making good money selling Nxivm. She wasn’t under Raniere’s thumb. He rarely left Knox Woods, eating pizza, watching Star Trek, playing volleyball.
It was the women who ran Nxivm and DOS. They were the eager go-getters. They provided the money. And the brains.
Odd, then, that Professor Susan Raine would blame The Patriarchy for the damage this cult did. Odd that she wants to blame it on “grooming”.
Sarah Edmondson barely had any contact with Raniere. So how was she “groomed”?
The idea may not have occurred to Professor Raine, but women are fully capable of doing bad things. Things like running scams that make them money and give them power over others.
Sarah Edmondson’s book (inadvertently) shows her up as ambitious as hell, striving and conniving. She was obsessed with ascending the stripe path. And she wanted money. Money and success. And she seems to have little moral sense.
Women can be blindly ambitious just like men. Money-grubbing and power-obsessed. Note well that a hell of a lot of money poured into the Nxivm coffers. Where did it all go? Not into Raniere’s pockets. Just look at how he lived. How he dressed. He didn’t even have a car.
These women were a lot like Raniere. (Mack has been described as “cut from the same cloth”.) They craved power just like he did. Fact is, DOS had women eagerly being Masters over their Slaves.
Professor Raine’s thesis is full of holes and runs contrary to the facts. It wasn’t all Raniere’s doing and it wasn’t Raniere’s “malignant narcissism” coupled with The Patriarchy that somehow created this monster.
Women were the brains, the financier, and the entrepreneurs of Nxivm/DOS. Raniere was the sponge.
Keith was one lucky guy, getting laid, gambling on the stock market, having women fight over his sperm. He didn’t even need to buy shirts. He was lucky, that is until that fateful day in Mexico.
Professor Susan Raine may not believe it, but women can be as nasty, greedy, and power hungry as men. I think she gives her own sex too little credit.
[…] Not really sure of the point of the article It Was Women Who Ran NXIVM — Don’t Blame Patriarchy or ‘Grooming’ for What Cult Did […]
Look, I don’t like any of the women involved, and I do agree with most of what you said. At the same time: THERE’S A REASON Keith Raniere GOT SENTENCED FOR 120 YEARS! LOL Without him as the root of the problem, there may never have been that congregation of lackeys conspiring together. And I do still think he’s a bit worse than a lot of them, since it sounded like he was linked to child rape. Why even let pedophiles live I wonder? Taxpayer dollars can be spent on far better public interests
It was also the inner circle of women that ran Jonestown including the planning and administration of poison.
Allison Pimp Mack wants to get involved in Catering and Party Planning.
She just loves planning parties for her friends with games like “pin the tail on the sex slave.”
Here is a story about a Hollywood party planner who found a new use for a party planning company — sex trafficking.
Got another one: Hollywood producer indicted on money laundering and prostitution charges
SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY, CA – A 49-year-old movie producer was arrested earlier in July following an indictment from New York charging him with money laundering and running an international prostitution business.
WJZ | CBS Baltimore
A California movie producer was arrested Thursday on a New York indictment accusing him of using a movie production company to operate an international prostitution business.
California-based movie producer Dillon Jordan was arrested on July 15th in San Bernardino County under charges related to the Mann Act and money laundering, according to a release from the Justice Department.
The charges against Jordan were cited in the release as “conspiracy to violate the Mann Act, substantive Mann Act and Travel Act violations, and money laundering in connection with operating a prostitution business and laundering the proceeds of that prostitution business through two front companies.”
More specifically, the DOJ claims that Jordan used “a purported party and event planning company and an actual movie production company” to operate this alleged prostitution business in the United States and abroad from 2010 to May of 2017.
Officials say that through these two front companies, Jordan had maintained a roster of women that lived in the United States that would perform sexual acts for the defendant’s clients in the United States and abroad.
Jordan had also allegedly orchestrated the Interstate travel components of this purported prostitution business, and apparently “coordinated with a United Kingdom-based madam by sharing and referring customers and prostitutes”, according to the DOJ.
Through these two front companies, officials say that was how Jordan was able to accept payment for the services received by his clients and was also able to cut checks to compensate the prostitutes for their rendered services.
Commenting on the case, Manhattan U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss stated the following:
“As alleged, for years, Dillon Jordan operated an extensive and far-reaching prostitution business, using a purported event planning company and a movie production company to conceal the proceeds he made from exploiting women. Now the party is over and the film is a wrap.”
FBI Special Agent-in-Charge George M. Crouch Jr. added the following:
“This defendant apparently thought he could hide his alleged criminal dealings behind a supposedly legitimate business. But the FBI, in its mission to protect our citizens, uses every tool at its disposal to unmask those who violate federal law and assist the impacted victims.
We encourage anyone who was victimized by this defendant, and anyone with additional information, to contact our Newark field office.”
The one count of conspiracy to violate the Mann Act and the one count of use of Interstate commerce to promote unlawful activity both carry a maximum sentence of five years in prison; however, the one count of enticement and the one count of money laundering both carry maximum sentence is of 20 years in prison.
Allison Pimp Mack was the Big Star of the CW Network.
How is the CW Network doing?
The CW’s ‘Dead Pixels’ Season Premiere Settles for a 0.0 Rating and 189,000 Total Viewers
The CW’s “Dead Pixels” Season 2 premiere was dead on arrival. The show returned to The CW last night with a 0.0 early rating among adults 18-49 and just 189,000 total viewers.
“Dead Pixels,” a British sitcom focusing on three friends obsessed with a fictional massive multiplayer online role-playing video game,” was one of two shows on the network to draw a double-bagel in Sunday’s ratings. “Wellington Paranormal,” which proceeded “Dead Pixels” at 9 p.m. ET, settled for a 0.0 rating and 225,000 total viewers.
Allison Pimp Mack was a Sixth Rate Star on a Seventh Rate Network.
Rolling On The Floor Laughing My Ass Off!
The CW has turned into the WC — the Water Closet. (toilet in the UK)
Mack wasn’t on these shows. When she was on CW’s Smallville, the first several seasons averaged 5 to almost 8 million viewers…and mostly the demographic advertisers wanted — young viewers.
In the last couple years, Mack herself has been a top story on most media. As T-Rump would say, all publicity is good publicity.
” all publicity is good publicity.” Mack’s PR team
If that is true, then why was Mack hiding her face on sentencing day?
Professor Raine’s theory isn’t full of holes. The only holes are the holes in your web of logic. You are attacking her because she’s a woman. She has a PHD and is greatly respected.
What’s your degree again? The school of life.
K.R. Claviger has blown it again! Frank needs to find a new legal correspondent! Timely reporting?!?!? I think not!
Raniere’s attorneys filed late!!!
Claviger = Vinny Gambini
Please Note: I am filling in for Bangkok
How cocky of you to fill in for the Big Bangkok. Very entertaining, today is when my fulltime vacation is just getting started, too! Purrfect timing is always appreciated so kindly keep up with your correspondences.
Sheela in the sannyasin cult had a lot of power too, as did that female cult leader Mother God who just died. However, more often than not, some man who wants a lot of sex with much younger women is in charge.
“Look, this isn’t complicated. Raniere was running a scam. Scammers have been doing this forever. They prey on gullible fools, who also have been with us forever. “There’s a sucker born every minute” after all.”
All the women who got caught and convicted of crimes here proved to be very foolish. It’s been said you cannot fix stupid. It’s true.
Exactly. Look up Freudian Transference and its less well-known Counter-Transference. It provides deep insight into cult leader/cult follower dynamics and their arcs.
AntiCultism is an over-simplistic, Torquemadan cartoon. It terrifies, persecutes and dehumanizes yet provides no understanding.
Perfect for anticult deprogrammer scammers.
Uh, it’s 4 women to 1 man getting prosecuted. Accurate demographic of Nxium baddies.
But a man was the leader. That is the definition of a patriarchy.
Based on the inner circle and DOS being led by and catering to a male leader’s will, needs and desires – that is a fact that cannot be escaped.
It is not unusual for women to internalize the misogyny and accept their role in male hierarchies. Especially if they feel they will benefit from their position. Or be protected by it.
In the case of Nxium they also all believed that men and women had very defined roles and strengths and weaknesses dictated by gender.
This gender disparity was taught in the curricula and tech. They separated men and women into groups based on the very strong belief that males and females were fundamentally different. And capable of only certain accomplishments.
Based on that forgone conclusion about men and women…
One could argue that the women of Nxium (and DOS especially) truly believed or thought they were living their best life in a position of subservience to a man (Keith).
That was the entire basis of DOS. The structure made Keith the ultimate authority and put every single aspect of their female lives under a man’s control.
I really don’t even care much about this – but do like accuracy.
Of course ,women can be vicious, greedy, sadistic as×holes.
But it is also very, very, common for women to aid and abet a man in a patriarchy. Especially a man they experience as powerful. In a society they embrace. Like Nxium.
Watch The Handmade’s tale. Or look at any prison snitch – male or female. People will sell each other out (of any gender) for perceived personal gain or protection. Even just social status in their little world. Gross. But true of human nature, generally.
And In societies were a woman can never really climb to the very apex of pyramid – Nxium being one – some women will settle even angle or strive for being power adjascent.
For example; A first lady or harem member of say… Nxium.
I believe you are oversimplifying a complex problem. The followers are not “damn fools”. They are people in pain. Pain from some past trauma or pain from feeling marginalized. There is a hole within them that only the “guru” can fill. These charismatic guru’s fill that hole, at least temporarily in benign ways. It is going forward and trusting this person that “helped” you that fanaticism is born and fanaticism about anything (or anyone) is wherein the danger lies. A fanatic will do anything to prove that their way is the right way, that you can only join the “elite” club by doing or coercing others to do horrible things.
All you have to do is look to history, and the atrocities that have occurred to prove my point. The inquisition, the witch trials, the crusades, the holocaust, Jonestown, Waco and many, many more. So don’t judge so harshly those you do not understand, don’t judge those that had an emptiness within them that urged them to join some group that promises to take that emptiness and pain away. Try having just a bit of empathy, a bit kindness and just a little more humanity
O well yeah its the fault of patriarchy. Theres something called introyected misoginy. So when a little girl is born the society is so stupid that we surround woman with misoginy even before they are born. Just think the abortions becasue” its a girl”. Who teach these woman to compete for a lizard face like Raniere? Society, parents, friends , trauma . A little baby dont know or Believe that man suppouse to have a lott of pussy right? The misoginy tendencys and belives are all over religión, but specially in luciferian/satanism. If you dont believe me just see cases like dutroux or Franklin, woman are mostly víctims. And there are a few participants. And they are vicious, more vicious and cruel than man, sometimes according to.regina louf for example i give you that, but at the end every single woman competed for Raniere dick and attention, even Emiliano was gay right? Well so they say. So all these succesfull power hungry people ,competing for an ugly talentless idiot, prepared to offer daughters in luciferian sex rituals, just be be a little bit more close . Woman treated as cattle, kids as things. And misoginy climatize people before they get into nxivm , becasue what happend in Nxivm wasnt as.far as.the thing that happend daily in church or in a company lets say. So yeah people where groomed. O yeah and they wanted money and success, like you and me right? Everyone want those things . well you know the american dream , the american Jeffrey epstein dream i should say, everyone wants these things , and we are teach to.do.anything to get these things, even if It hurts, even if is uncomftable . O yeah poor Raniere, poor pedophile luciferian sadistic posible killer victim, the bad actress taht her friend probably fuck Raniere first used her charms to get into his kid rapper dick , i can hear the violins . He should press charges. Maybe mack was a sociopath maybe she was shallow, before she meet vanguard, maybe she has everything, but maybe she has horrible parents , maybe even she was rapped . She deffinitly has marks of abuse . But yeah is the fault of misoginy , everything from the luciferian bullshit to people not.running when they make.money telling them to put the wives on the floor or woman wearing princess dresses for having feeli or.limits
Professor Raine should look up the word “Gold-digger”.
Gold-diggers are women who deliberately chase after men who have money and/or power.
When Allison Mack was treated to a private jet ride from Vancouver to Albany on the Bronfman Family plane she was hooked.
Partying on Richard Branson’s private island and meeting the Dalai Lama sealed the deal.
Before she joined NXIVM Allison Mack did not know who the Bronfmans were.
Allison Mack soon found out and glommed onto their money and power.
Male Gold-diggers are referred to as gigolos.
Keith Raniere is a gigolo.
Both Allison Mack and Keith Raniere are scum bags cut from the same cloth.
Kanye West – Gold Digger (feat. Jamie Foxx) Lyrics Video
Raniere was worse than a gold-digger. He was more than just that — he was a grifter.
Not really sure of the point of this article. I guess he takes offense to the attempt to make it gender politics when the reality is it’s simple human nature and the negative effects of hero-worshipping.
“The primary difference between a cult and, say, religion is: you can leave a religion without penalty. You cannot leave a cult ( without penalty).” In theory, this is true. NXIVM (using the Scientology model) collected dirt on the followers, making it clear that dirt could be used against them if they left or spoke out of turn. That is a penalty. But the counterargument is religions make it clear your immortal soul (or variations of) is doomed if you leave. Which penalty is worse depends on your level of belief. Both have the penalty of estrangement from friends and family still within the cult/religion but a cult usually makes it a requirement, a religion does not. A religion also has people hero-worship a dead… let’s call “non-corporeal being”…while a cult encourages worshiping a central, alive, usually male person that is among them. Interestingly, Scientology rides the middle in a lot of ways because, after all, most followers don’t have the finances to even reach the point to find out they are worshipping a being called Xenu. A very real argument could be made that cults and religions are more alike than different and the only difference is one of degrees and how some policies are implemented.
In any case, central to both is hero worship. Hero worship can lead to great things but the reality is it usually just leads to damaging and stupid things. A good example that happened Friday is two people got arrested for engaging in a plan to commit terrorism for their hero Trump. They had no interaction with Trump, they were not groomed by him, he sure didn’t tell them to attempt this plan. He probably still doesn’t know they exist despite the headlines. Yet, because of their hero worship, they were willing to kill for him. This is a critical part of how a religion/cult can function. In most cases, that hero-worshipping is used for monetary purposes (super churches should own their own private planes after all) but it’s also used to accumulate power (see all of history), or sex (see Keith).
It doesn’t require actual active participation of those that benefit most to work. However, in a religion invoking the being is usually enough. In a cult though, it requires finding trusted lieutenants, the right believers, to do most of the dirty work on their behalf (see Mack, Nancy, Salzmans, Bronfmans, and more). Keith somehow sussed them out as only predators know how to do.
A key aspect of hero worship is asking the question “How do they benefit” If you really look at it, they don’t. That is a key way to know their actions are hero-worship-based and not based on something as simple as greed. They get the “satisfaction” of doing what they think is “the lord’s work” (or hero’s work) and knowing that is reward enough. This person said woman can be blindly ambitious just like men.” Well no shit, Except no clue what ambition he is referring to. The money aspect is nonsense too. Its an excuse to desperately try to fill in the gaps of understanding, otherwise might have to analyze what would they do if their religious leaders called on them to take some questionable actions (if I recall many religions, including Jesus’ ones, made use of branding among other things at one time or another….).
None of the women gained any financial windfall that anyone has discovered. Two of them were very rich and whatever income NXIVM added was a pittance to the fortune they already controlled. The inner-circle had “power” within their little community and I am sure they enjoyed that thrill but if that is blind ambition, it sure was wasted. Helping Keith groom a child didn’t help themselves, going on extreme diets didn’t help themselves, so on and so forth. No matter how I look at it, the inner-circle of NXIVM did not benefit in a tangible way except for knowing they were doing the good work of their hero and for them, that was reward enough (aka “the lord’s work”).
It’s possible to be both the victim and perpetrator at the same time despite your Indias of the NXIVM cult trying to pretend otherwise. The inner circle and those they ordered around are both. Keith doesn’t isn’t both. The only “pure” victims of the cult were the low-level followers that never rose high enough to get Keith or the inner circle’s attention and simply paid out for useless courses and did little else for the cult, for which I am sure they hate being tricked but glad to have avoided all the other drama. The inner-circle members are both for worshipping Keith’s pathetic ass to the point they ceased to see any moral lines they were crossing for they were for him and thus must be good. Those that followed the inner circle are also both but to a lesser degree but they still played their parts, there was plenty of times they knew what they were doing was not right and ignored that inner voice until it got too close to home. Never forget it was male outrage at the branding that started the ball rolling, not the branding event itself that caused Keith’s end.
So to the post’s primary conclusion “Women were the brains, the financier, and the entrepreneurs of Nxivm/DOS. Raniere was the sponge” is not wrong but it also just encourages the gender politics of it all. The sex of those involved really has nothing to do with it other than for Keith he knew he was more successful at manipulating women. It’s really just simple human nature and the negative impact of what happens when people place someone on a pedestal and decide they are “more” than others, eventually concluding that if they do/want a thing, by default it must be good.
We see it every day in politics, in social media, in sports, celebrity BS, and so on. The way people make excuses for bad behavior or wave it away as ok because their hero did it when otherwise would be angry if anyone else did anything like it. We don’t call it a cult or religion, but it’s there nonetheless.
If NXIVM is a lesson in anything, it’s the danger in hero-worshipping.
–I guess he takes offense to the attempt to make it gender politics when the reality is it’s simple human nature…
It’s not a matter of gender politics. It’s just reality. It has been documented and evidenced that women are more predisposed to join cults. In fact, in a particular article I read a long time ago, it was stated that women outnumber men almost 3-to-1 in them. Something in the psychology and nature of women makes them more susceptible to their influence.
You may have the cause and effect flipped. Men are statistically the predominant cult leaders. They attract women in order to attract more women
Because the end goal of almost all male cult leaders is sexual abuse of their female followers.
Cult leaders with pedophile inclinations seek to enroll families. In order to enroll more families.
Many male serial killers or serial kidnap rapists or predatory pedophiles use a woman in a similar manner. They will often be married to appear like a “family man” or bring a woman with them on the hunt to seem less on the prowl.
Also, if you want to pick up a female hitchhiker or give a female a ride home from a bar in your car – having a “girlfriend or wife” with the predatory man renders him instantly less scary.
A close older relative was part of the team that developed what became the B.A. U which is probably now called something else – within the FBI.
Surrounding yourself with women in order to attract more women is like a male sexual predator’s version of catching more flies with honey. Pimps do it. Terrorists do it. Very common.
All hard-core sexual predators set up a whole fake life in order to live out their real life. Which is being a sexual predator.
For Keith that was Nxivm/DOS.
Thanks for taking the time to debunk the thesis of this article!
The article is right on target.
Raniere is too lazy to do his own dirty work but he could always find plenty of women eager to do it for him.
“….his own dirty work…”
I dedicate this song to you and Lauren!
Another thank you to Erasend for taking the time to write this. Great post.
I wonder how long Frank is posting about NXIVM. Eternally? There are more things in life and very interesting. Will Frank take them into account?
“There are more things in life and very interesting. ” Tesalonicenses
Here are two articles that will stir up snowflakes.
Government Advisor Admits Masks Are Just “Comfort Blankets” That Do Virtually Nothing
As the UK Government heralds “freedom day” today, which is anything but, a prominent government scientific advisor has admitted that face masks do very little to protect from coronavirus and are basically just “comfort blankets.”
Dr Colin Axon, a SAGE advisor for the government told the London Telegraph that medics have given people a “cartoonish” view of how how microscopic viruses travel through the air, and the masks have gaps in them that are up to 5000 times bigger than Covid particles.
Masks are nothing more than Face Diapers and are designed to make people docile and compliant. Shadow State
Report: Vaccine Passports Now May Be Demanded For OFFICE WORKERS
The British government has suggested that not only should so called vaccine passports by used by clubs, pubs and restaurants, but also that office workers should be subject to the system in order to return to their jobs.
The London Telegraph reports that the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) has indicated that the pass system should be adopted in everyday workplaces.
You can’t fix stupid and no one is stupider than the government. Shadow State
Freedom Day’ is a Joke
The Frank Report was moving away from the NXIVM saga…
….Then the two documentaries, The Vow and Seduced came out. The NXIVM story blew up once more. Not to mention Mack’s sentencing…
“The people get what the people want.”
(Al Capone paraphrase)
Frank Report serves the public-at-large.
Tesa, the Frank Report is like any media outlet. You don’t have to read everything. Stick with what you want to read.
Totally agree with Aristotle AND his 🌭.
Thanks for blowing that crappola right out of the water. For crying out loud, of course women can be pricks, too.
Well, that didn’t come out quite as intended, but the night is young.
Why am I not surprised you like Sausage.
Really? I have never tried ANY sausage whatsoever in my life, as that stuff smells deathly, but I do enjoy phallic symbols, magnetically speaking. Who doesn’t?
One could say that I do NOT care for sausage and make an exception for Aristotle’s. A “sausage” who can write is often interesting.
Mr. Aristotle Sausage is a pleasant man.